ksazma posted:

Yes. Karma is a bitch and when you lie and is caught you are forever remembered not for the lie but for being a liar. In the future, don't be so lazy. Ascertain what people claim before pretending you actually read it.

I didn't lie about anything, I used what your teachers taught the young lads before the go off committing suicide. While dreams of celestial babes may motivate the impoverished Palestinian kids who blow themselves up on Israeli street corners, a number of the 9-11 terrorists were older and had known something of earthly delights.

Now to your question. The difficulty in determining what the quran has to say about virgins and such is establishing what the quran says, period. Translators vary widely in their rendering of the spare and often opaque text. For example, we find the following passage in a Web-based version of Islam's holy book: "Verily, for the Muttaqun or righteous, there will be a success paradise; gardens and grapeyards; and young full-breasted mature maidens of equal age; and a full cup of wine" (An-Naba 78:31-34). However, most other English translations, both online and in print, replace "full-breasted maidens" with some tame construction such as "companions." Inquiring further, we find that the Arabic word at issue is WakawaAAiba, which appears nowhere else in the quran. The French, less prudish in these matters, usually render it as something like des belles aux seins arrondis, "beautiful ones with rounded centers," so I think it's pretty clear what your prophet, or at least his stenographers, had in mind.

It's true ksazma that nothing in the quran specifically states that the faithful are allotted 72 virgins apiece. For this elaboration we turn to the hadith, traditional sayings traced with varying degrees of credibility to Muhammad. Hadith number 2,562 in the collection known as the Sunan al-Tirmidhi says, "The least reward for the people of Heaven is 80,000 servants and 72 wives, over which stands a dome of pearls, aquamarine and ruby."

A little hype from the marketing department, you may say. Fine. Let's return to the quran, your font of religious authority. Even if we leave out the racy detail and make allowances for metaphor, we're obliged to admit that Islamic heaven is a pretty rockin' place, with an emphasis on sensual pleasures. The provision of virgins in indeterminate quantities is alluded to at numerous points, and you know they're not just there to fluff the pillows. In fairness to your prophet, the physical quality usually attributed to the houris, as they're called, is "wide lovely eyes." The food, service, ambience, etc, are great. You're allowed to enjoy things the quran explicitly denies you on earth, such as alcohol, and you won't even get sick. "Wine delicious to those who drink it will neither dull their senses nor they will become drunk." Granted, the whole thing is skewed toward the male idea of a good time, a defect by no means confined to Islam. Were Muhammad to found a religion today, I'm confident that each female arrival in heaven would be assigned a comely stud who would provide pleasure and in addition hang the curtain rods the first time he was asked. Granted, also, the emphasis on virgins is a little weird. Think back on the first nights you've been party to. Was this your idea of great pleasure?) Still, you have to admit, heaven as Party Central sure beats the Christian idea of angels with harps.

Does this make Islamic cosmology "unsophisticated and juvenile"? Maybe. Oh, let's not be lame about this. Of course it does. But don't be too quick to judge. Christianity, after all, invented the idea of paradise in the first place. Looking at things from the point of view of a cynical materialist, which is the more outrageous proposition luring the proles with the promise of eternal life, or throwing 72 virgins into the bargain?

Have a great week dude.

I will address the things you mentioned in the post above but for now I wish to go on record by stating that even in that post you are lying when you stated that you "didn't lie about anything". You clearly asked on the preceding page if you "misunderstood the translation" suggesting that you read it with your own eyes. Now that is deceitful for a professed man of God. That is why I play it safe by declaring that I am not religious.

Keith posted:
cain posted:

Just read Proverbs 22:15

"Foolishness is bound up in the heart of a child; the rod of discipline will remove it far from him."

What utter nonsense is this?

Not surprise you don't understand maybe you should let ksazma take a whack at it to see if he can. Here how about this one, a few verses back.

Proverbs 22:6
Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it.

22:6 is all well an good I can live with that. What I do have issue with is 22:15....when a child acts foolish, lay a beating on him. Not cool with me.

Foolishness is the result of a person misusing the intelligence God has given him. A fool uses his reasoning skills to make wrong decisions. The most basic type of foolishness is denying God’s existence or saying “no” to God (Psalm 14:1). The Bible associates folly with a quick temper (Proverbs 14:16–17), perverse speech (Proverbs 19:1), and disobedience to parents (Proverbs 15:5). We are born with an innate foolishness, but discipline will help train us in wisdom (Proverbs 22:15).

Proverbs 19:3 says that foolishness is counterproductive: “A person's own folly leads to their ruin.” Jesus in Mark 7:22 uses a word which means “senselessness” and is translated “folly.” In that context Jesus describes what comes out of the heart of man and defiles him. Foolishness is one of the evidences that man has a defiled, sinful nature. Proverbs 24:9 says, “The schemes of folly are sin.” Foolishness, then, is really the breaking of God’s law, for sin is lawlessness (1 John 3:4).

Back to Proverbs 22:15 "Foolishness is bound in the heart of a child; but the rod of correction shall drive it far from him."

Children are mischievous. The way children learn right from wrong is by their parents training them. A lesson is best learned by making mistakes and being punished by those mistakes. A good paddling along with correction drives the lesson home.

The child, who is punished for doing things he has been told not to do, learns quicker than if he is just talked to. It is a natural tendency for a child to misbehave. A loving parent will spank him for bad behavior, and he will learn to do better.

There is a phrase known to many of us "spare the rod, spoil the child" is a modern-day proverb that means if a parent refuses to discipline an unruly child, that child will grow accustomed to getting his own way. He will become, in the common vernacular, a spoiled brat. The saying comes from Proverbs 13:24, “He who spares the rod hates his son, but he who loves him is careful to discipline him.” The Lord uses discipline to reveal our sin to us. This is also how parents reveal the truth of our need for a Savior to their children. When a child does not feel the consequence of his sin, he will not understand that sin requires punishment. The Lord provides a way to salvation and forgiveness through Jesus, but that means little to those who do not see their sin.

Furthermore, correction shows us that we are not above reproach and that we are accountable for our actions.

When it comes to our eternal destiny, one is either a fool, meaning he rejects the gospel of Christ, or one is wise, meaning he believes in Christ and commits his life to Him (see Matthew 7:24–27). The believer discovers that the gospel—what he thought was foolishness—is in reality the wisdom of God providing him eternal salvation.

Keith posted:
 

For example, we find the following passage in a Web-based version of Islam's holy book: "Verily, for the Muttaqun or righteous, there will be a success paradise; gardens and grapeyards; and young full-breasted mature maidens of equal age; and a full cup of wine" (An-Naba 78:31-34). However, most other English translations, both online and in print, replace "full-breasted maidens" with some tame construction such as "companions." Inquiring further, we find that the Arabic word at issue is WakawaAAiba, which appears nowhere else in the quran. The French, less prudish in these matters, usually render it as something like des belles aux seins arrondis, "beautiful ones with rounded centers," so I think it's pretty clear what your prophet, or at least his stenographers, had in mind.

It's true ksazma that nothing in the quran specifically states that the faithful are allotted 72 virgins apiece. For this elaboration we turn to the hadith, traditional sayings traced with varying degrees of credibility to Muhammad. Hadith number 2,562 in the collection known as the Sunan al-Tirmidhi says, "The least reward for the people of Heaven is 80,000 servants and 72 wives, over which stands a dome of pearls, aquamarine and ruby."

 

Now lets see what that passage really stated.

إِنَّ لِلْمُتَّقِينَ مَفَازًا

[But,] verily for the God-conscious there is supreme fulfilment in store

حَدَائِقَ وَأَعْنَابًا

luxuriant gardens and vinyards

وَكَوَاعِبَ أَتْرَابًا

and splendid companions well matched (16)

وَكَأْسًا دِهَاقًا

and a cup [of happiness] overflowing

Note 16 (Quran Ref: 78:33 )

For the above rendering of atrab, see surah 56, note 15. As regards my rendering of kawa’ib as "splendid companions", it is to be remembered that the term ka'b -from which the participle ka’ib is derived - has many meanings, and that one of these meanings is "prominence", "eminence" or "glory" (Lisan al-Arab); thus, the verb ka'ba, when applied to a person, signifies "he made [another person] prominent", "glorious" or "splendid" (ibid.) Based on this tropical meaning of both the verb ka'ba and the noun ka'b, the participle ka'ib has often been used, in popular parlance, to denote "a girl whose breasts are becoming prominent" or "are budding" hence, many commentators see in it an allusion to some sort of youthful "female companions' who would entertain the (presumably male) inmates of paradise. But quite apart from the fact that all Qur'anic allegories of the joys of paradise invariably apply to men and women alike, this interpretation of kawa’ib overlooks the purely derivative origin of the above popular usage - which is based on the tropical connotation of "prominence" inherent in the noun ka'b - and substitutes for this obvious tropism the literal meaning of something that is physically prominent: and this, in my opinion, is utterly unjustified. If we bear in mind that the Qur'anic descriptions of the blessings of paradise are always allegorical, we realize that in the above context the term kawa’ib can have no other meaning than "glorious [or "splendid"] beings", without any definition of sex; and that, in combination with the term atrab, it denotes, "splendid companions well matched" - thus alluding to the relations of the blest with one another, and stressing the absolute mutual compatibility and equal dignity of all of them. See also note 13 on 56:34.(Quran Ref: 78:33 )

That Qur'anic passage has nothing to do with any maiden much less any full breasted maiden so try again.

Regarding the ahadiths, I take some and leave some because like the Bible, the ahadith is subject to human errors. If the ahadith agree with the Qur'an, I am cool with it, if it doesn't agree with the Qur'an, I don't care for it. And there is no way that any 72 virgins for any man is going to agree with the Qur'an.

About Muslims not being allowed alcohol. In fact the Qur'an prohibits intoxicants which could include alcohol, drugs, etc. The drink mentioned in heaven is pure and does not intoxicate like the alcohols we have here.

يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُواْ إِنَّمَا الْخَمْرُ وَالْمَيْسِرُ وَالأَنصَابُ وَالأَزْلاَمُ رِجْسٌ مِّنْ عَمَلِ الشَّيْطَانِ فَاجْتَنِبُوهُ لَعَلَّكُمْ تُفْلِحُونَ

O ye who believe! intoxicants, and gambling, (dedication of) stones, and (divination by) arrows, are an abomination,- of Satan's handwork: eschew such (abomination), that ye may prosper.

Keith posted:

Foolishness is the result of a person misusing the intelligence God has given him. A fool uses his reasoning skills to make wrong decisions. The most basic type of foolishness is denying God’s existence or saying “no” to God (Psalm 14:1). The Bible associates folly with a quick temper (Proverbs 14:16–17), perverse speech (Proverbs 19:1), and disobedience to parents (Proverbs 15:5). We are born with an innate foolishness, but discipline will help train us in wisdom (Proverbs 22:15).

Proverbs 19:3 says that foolishness is counterproductive: “A person's own folly leads to their ruin.” Jesus in Mark 7:22 uses a word which means “senselessness” and is translated “folly.” In that context Jesus describes what comes out of the heart of man and defiles him. Foolishness is one of the evidences that man has a defiled, sinful nature. Proverbs 24:9 says, “The schemes of folly are sin.” Foolishness, then, is really the breaking of God’s law, for sin is lawlessness (1 John 3:4).

Back to Proverbs 22:15 "Foolishness is bound in the heart of a child; but the rod of correction shall drive it far from him."

Children are mischievous. The way children learn right from wrong is by their parents training them. A lesson is best learned by making mistakes and being punished by those mistakes. A good paddling along with correction drives the lesson home.

The child, who is punished for doing things he has been told not to do, learns quicker than if he is just talked to. It is a natural tendency for a child to misbehave. A loving parent will spank him for bad behavior, and he will learn to do better.

There is a phrase known to many of us "spare the rod, spoil the child" is a modern-day proverb that means if a parent refuses to discipline an unruly child, that child will grow accustomed to getting his own way. He will become, in the common vernacular, a spoiled brat. The saying comes from Proverbs 13:24, “He who spares the rod hates his son, but he who loves him is careful to discipline him.” The Lord uses discipline to reveal our sin to us. This is also how parents reveal the truth of our need for a Savior to their children. When a child does not feel the consequence of his sin, he will not understand that sin requires punishment. The Lord provides a way to salvation and forgiveness through Jesus, but that means little to those who do not see their sin.

Furthermore, correction shows us that we are not above reproach and that we are accountable for our actions.

When it comes to our eternal destiny, one is either a fool, meaning he rejects the gospel of Christ, or one is wise, meaning he believes in Christ and commits his life to Him (see Matthew 7:24–27). The believer discovers that the gospel—what he thought was foolishness—is in reality the wisdom of God providing him eternal salvation.

That is your foolish assumption. Hopefully you know that hitting a child is child abuse and you can end up in jail for doing so. Lets see if that Holy Ghost can poof you out of jail. Maybe someone should give you a good paddling so you don't lie in the future.

I cannot believe Mr Righteous believes in hitting a child. I have never laid a hand on my son even the times he made mistakes...the reason..I evolved. My son has never been inside a police car..never seen the inside of a police station..prison..nada. I on the other hand who was beaten when late for school..when making mistakes in school work, for losing my way home and for every dam reason the old folks came up with, saw the inside of a few cop cars...been in police stations a few times...thankfully never in jail.

Dam dude get with the program.

That is what happens when people get too religious. They tend to lose their ability to think clearly. This is also the case with some Muslims so I an not singling out the brother. We were always whooped back in Guyana and mostly because of that spare the rod line that the brother quoted. My kids are way better than I ever was and no one ever hit them.

The Privilege Corrupted

Romans 1:21-32

God has revealed Himself to mankind and provided all that is necessary for a relationship with Him. Yet many people foolishly refuse His offer.

By choosing to live without God, a person will spiral downward into sin and a skewed view of the truth. As ignorance overpowers the capacity for intelligent understanding, an ever-darkening heart develops. The individual hungers for something to fill his emptiness but fails to recognize that only the Lord can satisfy his longing.

Desiring to fill his spiritual void, the person will look for an idol to worship. It won’t be a statue of wood or gold, but rather something on which to focus his affections. “Idols” occupy a person’s passion, time, and energy; in today’s world, they often take the form of money, prominence, and relationships. The “worshipper” begins to indulge in earthly pleasures and desires, yet nothing can satisfy the emptiness. Eventually, as Romans 1:28 makes clear, the Lord will turn such a person over to a depraved mind—one that can no longer make right judgments.

Remember, the heavenly Father desires a relationship with us. He even gave His own Son to make this possible. It is man who rejects Him and begins the journey toward godlessness and emptiness.

Look around. Notice the manifold evidence that points to a holy, loving God who desires an intimate friendship with you. Don’t put off accepting His offer of relationship—the consequences of rejection are far too dangerous, and the benefits of saying yes are beyond what you can imagine (Eph. 3:20).

cain posted:

I cannot believe Mr Righteous believes in hitting a child. I have never laid a hand on my son even the times he made mistakes...the reason..I evolved. My son has never been inside a police car..never seen the inside of a police station..prison..nada. I on the other hand who was beaten when late for school..when making mistakes in school work, for losing my way home and for every dam reason the old folks came up with, saw the inside of a few cop cars...been in police stations a few times...thankfully never in jail.

Dam dude get with the program.

You're both laughable especially when you cannot comprehend what is being said scripturally. You both seem to paint a picture as though I or Christians for that matter hit our kids for every or anything they do. I 'll just leave you in your thoughts process.

Growing up I just had to be informed once with the explanation of the consequence of my action and even if I was tempted to test my parents the look my dad would give deterred my temptation.

I did get spank as a child for willful disobedience/rebelliousness. When I hit my tween and into adulthood my parents didn't had to worry about me. The values and correction I receives as a child mold me into the man I'm today. This principle was the key, Proverbs 22:6, "Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it."

Hey bless is the man that never had to correct his child using the rod or place a child in timeout for anything and today that child is discipline as ever and respectful.

ksazma posted:
Keith posted:

 

Look around. Notice the manifold evidence that points to a holy, loving God ........

Evidence everywhere by the more than half the world's population living in abject poverty and oppression.

So tell me about this God in your quran, what is he doing about the people living in poverty today?

"Those who live in glass houses should not throw stones."

ksazma posted:
Keith posted:

The believer discovers that the gospel—what he thought was foolishness—is in reality the wisdom of God providing him eternal salvation.

That is only because the believer became foolish.

What is your understanding of word fool/foolish from the Bible perspective? Don't even bother...When the Bible uses the works fools it doesn't mean someone who's mentally deficient. It mean one who is morally depraved. That's what the Bible means when it used the word fool, "a fool has said in his heart there is no God".

Keith posted:
ksazma posted:
Keith posted:

The believer discovers that the gospel—what he thought was foolishness—is in reality the wisdom of God providing him eternal salvation.

That is only because the believer became foolish.

What is your understanding of word fool/foolish from the Bible perspective? Don't even bother...When the Bible uses the word fools it doesn't mean someone who's mentally deficient. It mean one who is morally depraved. That's what the Bible means when it used the word fool, "a fool has said in his heart there is no God".

 

The words in the Bible seem to be interchangeable. Anytime a question is asked we can never get an honest answer. Oh when he changed water into wine it wasnt wine as we know it...was just sweet drink. When we say in heaven they are treated to milk and honey we really mean Big Mac and a beer. The stone cast was not really a stone but a sponge.

Everything is a parable/fable...nonsensical words thrown hither and dither.

Perhaps when I call someone a butthead or ahole in the Political forum I really mean they are quite intelligent...hmmm.

Keith posted:
ksazma posted:
Keith posted:
Look around. Notice the manifold evidence that points to a holy, loving God ........

Evidence everywhere by the more than half the world's population living in abject poverty and oppression.

So tell me about this God in your quran, what is he doing about the people living in poverty today?

 

I don't need to my friend because I don't make statements like the one you made above. Islam teaches that everything is earned, not given. People tend to appreciate things more when they actually earn them. Even one's place in heaven or hell is earned.

That is why I am not in favor of using a public forum to post sermons. Maybe you should consider the hypocrisy of sermons.

The Power Within

Ephesians 3:14-21

Bertha Smith, a missionary to China, once pronounced some of the most discouraging words I’d ever heard: “Charles, I want to tell you that you’re as good as you’ll ever be. You’re as good as you’ve ever been, and you won’t ever be any better than you are.”

I had grown up believing a falsehood—that believers were to pour effort into turning their flesh around and doing right all the time. Thankfully, Bertha wasn’t finished. “God never intended for you to get better, because you can’t improve flesh,” she said. “But the Holy Spirit, who is living inside you, will enable and live through you.”

She was right. My flesh hasn’t changed one bit. But as the Holy Spirit releases His supernatural power in my life, I find myself going beyond what is inherent to the nature of man. And the indwelling Spirit intends to do the same with every follower of God.

Although the works of the Holy Spirit are many, four are basic to the life of faith: The Spirit illumines the mind, enabling believers to understand the things of God; He energizes physical bodies to serve the Lord; He enables the will to follow through on doing what is right; and He quickens emotions to feel and express the fruit of the Spirit (Gal. 5:22-23).

Bertha Smith passed on an important truth to me: Flesh is insufficient. Only the Holy Spirit living inside us has the strength and wisdom to live out the Christian life victoriously. That’s why God gave us His Spirit, through whom we reap all the benefits of a righteous and godly life.

ksazma posted:
Keith posted:
ksazma posted:
Keith posted:
Look around. Notice the manifold evidence that points to a holy, loving God ........

Evidence everywhere by the more than half the world's population living in abject poverty and oppression.

So tell me about this God in your quran, what is he doing about the people living in poverty today?

 

I don't need to my friend because I don't make statements like the one you made above. Islam teaches that everything is earned, not given. People tend to appreciate things more when they actually earn them. Even one's place in heaven or hell is earned.

That is why I am not in favor of using a public forum to post sermons. Maybe you should consider the hypocrisy of sermons.

From observation, I mention this before, it's not just you but your fellow faith believers as well, whether if from the Bible or the articles I post your moto is to nitpick a line/sentence (just as you highlighted above) and make silly arguments that don't warrant a response.

Yet you responded which proves that that Holy Spirit you depend on so hopelessly is inadequate to help you. If you hope to have what you post swallowed up blindly like the church hopes you  will be sadly disappointed. GNI is not a church. It is a discussion board where dissent is welcome.

Releasing the Holy Spirit’s Power

Romans 8:26-27

God’s Spirit indwells believers at salvation, which means His power is available from that moment (Eph. 1:13). God created a simple way for us to access that strength every single day.

First, we must accept the truth that in and of ourselves, we are powerless to live out God’s will. No matter how capable we may be, our own strength and wisdom are insufficient. Sometimes Christians become prideful about the good they have done or the number of years they’ve been saved. Imagine how much more we could serve the Lord if we would humbly get out of God’s way and let Him work through us.

Second, we surrender our entire life to the guidance and governing of the Holy Spirit. In other words, we choose to conduct our spiritual walk—as well as our vocation, finances, family, and relationships—as God desires. His Spirit is not going to release supernatural power into a life that is continuing in rebellion.

Third, we exercise faith, which means demonstrating belief and trust in the Lord. Faith is the “switch” that releases the Spirit’s power. It’s like saying, “I believe You’ve got a plan, God, so I’m going to trust You to give me what I need in order to do Your will.” Then He will move heaven and earth to provide for your need, whatever it may be.

Merely memorizing and reviewing the steps isn’t enough. Instead, commit to these principles as a way of life. Get used to thinking, I can’t but God can— I’ll submit to His will because His plans are for my good and His glory. That’s the kind of life that overflows with the Holy Spirit’s power.

Keith posted:

 

First, we must accept the truth that in and of ourselves, we are powerless to live out God’s will.

 

Why then would God in His 'infinite wisdom' create a will that we are powerless to live out? Is God not able to know the capabilities of his creation and set realistic goals and objectives? We see executives excel at setting goals and objectives all the time. What are they doing right that God is unable to do? If Jesus came on earth roughly 2000 years ago and man has been living on earth for hundreds of millions of years, why did God wait so long causing all those people to not 'know' Jesus? For this question, my explanation is much more reasonable than yours. God has been providing His creation with guidance and sustenance from the first creature He created and will do so until the last one. He sends people at different times and to different places as the need arises. Nonetheless, feel free to box yourself into Paul's doctrine.

Confidence in Times of Distress

Psalm 46:1-11

“I’m out of here!” Most of us will feel like crying out this way at some point in life. When a demanding circumstance feels overwhelming, or when the pressure of the daily routine seems unbearable, a common reaction is the desire to escape. Whether the stress is related to a job, relationship, or other situation that seems too hard to handle, we want relief. So we decide we are walking out. Moving on. Heading for anywhere but where we are now.

The Father has a powerful truth for us: The way to handle stressful situations is to cease fighting against them and instead be at rest. To the psalmist, this meant being still and knowing God is truly God (Psalm 46:10 NIV). Jesus promises peace in the midst of trials when we let go of troubles and entrust them to His care. (See Matt. 11:28-30; John 16:33.) So, while human instinct clamors for escape, God calls us to draw near to Him. Then we can discover calmness of spirit as we absorb the truth of His Word.

Most of all, the Lord wants us to know who He is. As we believe the truth of His sovereignty (1 Chronicles 29:11) and accept both the absolute goodness of His plans (Jer. 29:11) and His deep, abiding love for us (Eph. 3:17-19), we will grow in our trust of Him. Then we will find it easier to be still and truly know He is God.

Our stress need not become distress. The better we understand our heavenly Father, the more we’ll be able to walk through circumstances with calmness (Phil. 4:7) and confidence (Jer. 17:7 NIV). This is our privilege as God’s children.

Bible In One Year: Psalm 119

Seek Spiritual Discernment

Proverbs 2:1-7

At one time or another, everyone feels confused, uncertain, or misled. When that happens, we can live victoriously and confidently only by possessing spiritual discernment—the ability to see life from God’s perspective. We need His help to distinguish between right and wrong, good and best, truth and error.

Each day we make many decisions—some trivial, others critical. The Lord doesn’t want us to form judgments based on mere appearance or human reasoning. But the world is so full of deceptive information that we, on our own, couldn’t know what to believe. And so God has given us the Holy Spirit to help us see the reality of each situation as He does.

We can fully trust the Lord with our relationships as well. Since He knows every person’s heart, the only way we can wisely interact with others is to be sensitive to the leading of God’s Spirit within us.

Although the Father gives each of His children the capacity for spiritual discernment, many Christians are unaware of it. They stumble through life, doing the best they can, but fail to use this wonderful provision. Others may not think they need it. They make choices according to their own knowledge and reasoning, never giving the Lord a second thought. Unless we cooperate with God in the development of His gift of discernment, it will lie dormant within us.

A discerning spirit begins with a humble, teachable attitude. If you’ve been handling decisions, situations, and relationships through your own wisdom, confess this to God. Then ask for His perspective and search His Word for direction. Your wisdom will grow, and discernment will protect you.

Swaggart used to say that he has a special relationship with God also. Actually he even bragged that because he is a Christian, he can only have one wife so he picked the best. This he was bragging while he was having sex with a different woman every night. But that 'relationship with God' was good for him. At a tune of one million dollar per day. While his relationship with God allowed him to swindle and have his sexcapades, those who actually gave him that money continue to live paycheck to paycheck. That is what it is all about. Preachers have no problem screwing people who allow themselves to fall prey to the ponzie scheme. 

 

The Basis for Discernment

Hebrews 4:12-13

Spiritual discernment is the ability to see life from God’s perspective. It requires that we know how He thinks and acts. The Bible is His unchanging, infallible revelation of Himself. However, the Lord doesn’t simply give us a list of facts about His character and ways. All throughout the pages of Scripture, He illustrates who He is and how He operates.

Although an ancient book, the Bible is in no way obsolete. Its stories may have taken place centuries ago, but its principles and applications are still relevant, offering discernment about situations and guidance for decisions.

God’s Word—which Ephesians 6:17 refers to as “the sword of the Spirit”— is active and piercing, like a surgeon’s scalpel. The words don’t simply sit on the page; rather, they penetrate our heart and judge our thoughts and motives. This convicting quality is why some Christians avoid reading the Bible. They prefer to live on a surface level but never understand why they react to situations the way they do. If we don’t want to keep making the same mistakes, it’s essential that we become discerning about ourselves. The way to do that is by approaching the Word of God with an open spirit. Then God will bring to light our hidden motives and unrecognized sins.

Spiritual discernment involves seeing not just circumstances but also ourselves from God’s perspective. Have you learned to embrace the piercing sword of Scripture, or have you avoided doing so because it makes you uncomfortable? Remember, whenever the Lord uses a surgical knife, His purpose is always to make us healthier.

ksazma posted:

Swaggart used to say that he has a special relationship with God also. Actually he even bragged that because he is a Christian, he can only have one wife so he picked the best. This he was bragging while he was having sex with a different woman every night. But that 'relationship with God' was good for him. At a tune of one million dollar per day. While his relationship with God allowed him to swindle and have his sexcapades, those who actually gave him that money continue to live paycheck to paycheck. That is what it is all about. Preachers have no problem screwing people who allow themselves to fall prey to the ponzie scheme. 

 

Ksaz, when Brother Keith is done with you he will cut and past the whole Bible on GNI website.

skeldon_man posted:
ksazma posted:

Swaggart used to say that he has a special relationship with God also. Actually he even bragged that because he is a Christian, he can only have one wife so he picked the best. This he was bragging while he was having sex with a different woman every night. But that 'relationship with God' was good for him. At a tune of one million dollar per day. While his relationship with God allowed him to swindle and have his sexcapades, those who actually gave him that money continue to live paycheck to paycheck. That is what it is all about. Preachers have no problem screwing people who allow themselves to fall prey to the ponzie scheme. 

 

Ksaz, when Brother Keith is done with you he will cut and past the whole Bible on GNI website.

Skelly, the brother can cut and paste all he wants but he will never be able to refute the observations you and I made because they are in black and white. Too bad the brother does believe in the courtesy of not turning a discussion board into Sunday school. He has never shown any inclination to have discussions unless if you support his sermons.

Questions in Times of Great Disaster

Isaiah 55:8-9

Whenever a great disaster strikes, legitimate questions spring to mind. Why does the Lord let such things happen? Couldn’t He have stopped this? Doesn’t He care? The magnitude of death and destruction caused by earthquakes, tornadoes, or floods disrupts our everyday thoughts and causes us to seek explanations for suffering.

Often the answers people come up with are based on their relationship with God. Those who know nothing of Him have no frame of reference for understanding how He works. Believers, on the other hand, have the Bible to guide them as they wrestle through these issues. But even then, the accuracy of one’s perspective is determined by his or her knowledge of God’s Word. Those with limited understanding may very well reach inaccurate conclusions.

We must guard against attempts at forcing the Lord to act the way we think He should. If He does something that won’t fit into the “box” we’ve devised for Him, we easily become upset, angry, or confused. God will never stay within the parameters we set for Him. Since we are mortal and sinful, we have a very narrow perspective and understanding of life. But our eternal, sinless, sovereign, and omniscient Creator sees and knows what we cannot perceive.

We want to be sure that our viewpoint of God’s role in natural disasters comes from the Bible, not from our own limited perspective. Scripture tells us of the Lord’s love, faithfulness, and wisdom. Whenever we cannot understand His ways, faith in His goodness must be our foundation.

Question for the good brother Keith. You stated that people cannot be saved by works but only by grace. You went on to explain that people who depend on works has no guarantee since they have no idea "how much is enough". Maybe you didn't in quite these words but you express them through your postings. Many Christians, especially preachers like to brag that they are saved because of grace and their acceptance of Jesus as the Christ. For those preachers like Swaggart who were exposed for doing wutliss things, what happened to that grace guarantee that they once bragged about and how did a guarantee became a NO guarantee. Once something is guarantee it should remain a guarantee right? Otherwise that guarantee was meaningless right? 

This is intended as a discussion, not a sermon. Thanks.

ksazma posted:
skeldon_man posted:
ksazma posted:

Swaggart used to say that he has a special relationship with God also. Actually he even bragged that because he is a Christian, he can only have one wife so he picked the best. This he was bragging while he was having sex with a different woman every night. But that 'relationship with God' was good for him. At a tune of one million dollar per day. While his relationship with God allowed him to swindle and have his sexcapades, those who actually gave him that money continue to live paycheck to paycheck. That is what it is all about. Preachers have no problem screwing people who allow themselves to fall prey to the ponzie scheme. 

 

Ksaz, when Brother Keith is done with you he will cut and past the whole Bible on GNI website.

Skelly, the brother can cut and paste all he wants but he will never be able to refute the observations you and I made because they are in black and white. Too bad the brother does believe in the courtesy of not turning a discussion board into Sunday school. He has never shown any inclination to have discussions unless if you support his sermons.

Brother Keith does not argue anything that he cannot quote from the bible where he can cut and paste. No logical argument outside the cut and paste. He is not allowed to think outside the box.

Answers in Times of Great Disaster

Deuteronomy 29:29

Almighty God reserves the right to reveal some things and conceal others. Although we may not know why natural disasters occur, the biblical truths we do know with absolute certainty allow us to trust the Lord even in times of great suffering. Because of the Bible, we can be certain:

God is in control (Psalm 103:19). Nothing in heaven or on earth is outside of His rule and authority. He does not react to events but sovereignly ordains or permits them to run their course. Although we cannot know for certain if He has sent a catastrophe or allowed it, we can trust in His goodness and wisdom.

The Lord loves people and wants them to be saved (John 3:16-17). Giving His Son for the salvation of the world proves without a doubt that He loves each person. This truth stands firm despite the fact that many reject the Savior. He cares for us, even when we can’t feel it or won’t accept it.

God works circumstances for His good purpose (Isa. 46:10). Though we can’t fully comprehend what He’s doing in each incident, every disaster is a wake-up call for humanity. God is alerting us to the need for repentance—so the lost can be saved and the saved can be revived to live totally for Him. The Lord wants to get our attention, and catastrophes open our ears to hear from Him.

The One who loves us perfectly is in full control, working everything out according to His plan. Knowing this should fill us with hope, even in the midst of crisis situations. The Lord promises to turn disaster to good for those who “are called according to His purpose” (Rom. 8:28).

The Power of Corporate Prayer

2 Chronicles 20:1-30

When Jehoshaphat saw trouble looming, the first thing he did was turn attention to God and proclaim a fast throughout Judah. People came from all around to support their king in prayer (2 Chronicles 20:3, 2 Chronicles 20:13).

Sometimes we are too proud to ask others to pray for us. Jehoshaphat was a king, yet he didn’t put on airs of self-sufficiency. Instead, he admitted his army paled in comparison to the three forces united against him. He recognized his limitations and sought divine intervention. Though Jehoshaphat reigned over his subjects, he nevertheless called on them for prayerful support.

One of the wisest things we can do in the midst of difficulty is to engage the assistance of someone who knows how to talk to God. The body of Christ depends upon cooperation. When the people of Judah began to pray, God provided a solution through a trusted prophet. Jehoshaphat was humble enough to listen and wise enough to follow his directives (vv. 14-17). As a result, the Israelites were saved. The advancing armies turned against each other and destroyed themselves completely. Without shooting an arrow or drawing a sword, Judah’s forces suffered not even one casualty. Because their humble king listened, they witnessed the Lord’s remarkable victory (vv. 22-30).

We have to attune our ears to God’s voice in order to hear Him. Sometimes He speaks through people we would not choose to follow, and He often says things we’re not expecting to hear. But He will provide us with solutions to our problems if we are willing to heed His words.

The Symptoms of Discouragement

James 1:2-4

One of Satan’s most effective weapons is discouragement. The enemy knows that if he can destroy our courage, we’ll be ineffective in our attempts to accomplish anything for Christ. Let’s explore the downward spiral created by this destructive force.

One mark of discouragement is a divided mind. This underlying distraction affects every area and decision. No matter what you’re doing, it feels as if a dark cloud covers your entire thought life.

Discouragement also leads to the “blame game,” where it’s common to feel the need to point a finger at someone else. You may want to find fault with God because He has allowed painful circumstances in your life, or you may accuse others because of the way they treat you. Perhaps you yourself feel guilty for poor choices or past mistakes. My friend, blame is an empty activity. No healing or restoration ever came from trying to pin responsibility on someone else for the hardships in your life.

Anger is another common indication that a person is discouraged. When this occurs, bitterness may develop and finally become a spirit of vengeance. If you let anger grow and fester without resolution, it can easily turn into depression. Then resentment can act like a cancer that slowly spreads and invades every aspect of your life.

The traits described above aren’t what one would expect of a Christian, are they? However, they are all too evident in the church. Ask the Lord to search your heart for any trace of discouragement—and to eliminate its destructive power from your life.

The Outcome of Discouragement

Psalm 40:1-3

Discouragement is a common problem. As we saw yesterday, it may start with a divided mind but can easily turn into blaming others and wallowing in anger. Sadly, its effects don’t stop there.

For one thing, if you regard the one who disappointed you as the cause of all your troubles, you might distance yourself or even end the relationship. On top of that, when disappointments are allowed to build up without resolution, your sense of self-worth could be damaged. This could deliver a blow to your ministry and interactions with others, since no one likes being around critical, negative individuals.

A dangerous drift in your spiritual walk is the ultimate consequence of discouragement. God will seem distant, uncaring, or perhaps even absent because you’ve built such high walls around yourself. Things that were once cornerstones in your life—like worship, Bible study, and prayer—easily fall by the wayside. Before long, you will be surrounded only by your disappointments and negativity, unable to see anything of positive value at all.

Discouragement can eat away at a believer’s relationships and productivity. Don’t allow disappointments to build up and take such a toll on your life. Psalm 40:2 is a wonderful reminder that the heavenly Father can lift you out of the “miry clay” and “set [your] feet upon a rock making [your] footsteps firm.” Let your discouragement motivate you to turn to the Lord, the one who can “put a new song in [your] mouth”—a song of praise to Him (v. 3).

Certainty About Salvation

1 John 5:13

One of the main reasons many Christians fail to serve God joyfully is their uncertainty about where they stand with Him. They don’t understand the basic nature of their relationship with the Lord and, as a result, hold back from dedicating themselves fully to His service.

You probably have seen similar types of hesitancy played out in day-to-day life. For example, perhaps you’re acquainted with a man and a woman who are known as the “on again, off again” couple—the pair who seem to dance around the idea of relationship but somehow never quite seem able to commit. It’s difficult to make that life-changing decision when you’re not sure how the other person feels about you, isn’t it?

The same thing holds true in your life of faith. No one wants a spouse—or a Savior—who might leave at any time, for any reason. No, we want certainty. And when that is missing, the whole context of the relationship is out of balance.

The apostle John was surely thinking about this as the Holy Spirit inspired him to write the beautiful word of encouragement we find in 1 John 5:13. What was his purpose in writing? “That you may know that you have eternal life” (emphasis added).

John was writing to bring certainty to uncertain believers. He wanted them to know that there was no “off again” time for anyone who had engaged in a relationship with the Father. Because God is your constant companion, you can trust that He is faithful—eternally.

Saved and Sure

Hebrews 11:1

To help you understand the concept of “saved and sure,” here are three truths that indicate what the Lord wants for all people:

1. God wants everyone to be saved. He calls all men and women to Himself, but there must be a response to His invitation. When we answer His call to salvation, the Father makes us part of His everlasting family (Rom. 10:9-13). If we decide to reject the Lord, however, then we will eternally remain outside of His redemption plan for mankind.

2. God wants everyone to be saved by grace through faith. Ephesians 2:8-9 declares that our salvation is 100 percent the work of the Lord. It is His plan, His work, His gift. We have no responsibility whatsoever, other than simply receiving the free gift that He lays at our feet.

3. God wants everyone to be saved by grace through faith and sure of salvation. Lack of certainty can absolutely destroy faith. If you are not sure that you are saved, then the devil will use that seed of doubt to plague your spirit every time you feel you have done something unforgivable. In the Lord’s eyes, though, there is no such thing as unforgivable. He has already established the plan by which every one of us can join His eternal family, and He wants us to have confidence in our salvation.

Passages like John 3:16, 1 John 5:13, and Ephesians 1:13-14 all point to the complete certainty with which we can embrace our salvation. Does your faith fluctuate with your feelings and circumstances, or is it firmly grounded in Scripture?

For years Swaggart proclaimed that he was saved through grace and faith. Yet what caused him to lose his church was his actions. This proves that it is one's actions which matters. To go through life thinking that you are saved by the grace of someone who showed little or no graciousness when he had the chance is foolish.

Partners in Ministry

Acts 20:1-6

No one can dispute that the apostle Paul played a foundational role in the establishment of the early church. We generally think of him as the man who took the gospel to the ends of the civilized world of that era. But Paul never worked alone. Throughout the book of Acts and the Epistles, we catch glimpses of people who partnered with Paul in ministry.

In today’s reading, we meet a small missionary team—including Luke, the author of Acts—who accompanied Paul as he journeyed through Macedonia. Although we know little or nothing about most of them, each played an important part in the formation of the church. From God’s perspective, there are no insignificant people or ministries in the church of Jesus Christ.

In 1 Corinthians 12:1-31, Paul likens the church to a body, whose health depends on the proper functioning of all its various parts. The Holy Spirit gives each believer a special ability for service within the church. Although people like Paul, who have a more visible role, may seem more necessary, in reality every believer is essential. Behind-the-scenes services rendered by less visible people are never forgotten by the Lord.

To God, the issue is not who sees our service or knows what we’ve done; He’s interested in our obedience, attitude, and motive for serving Him. He doesn’t want us wallowing in self-pity or low self-esteem because our work isn’t noticed or appreciated. Instead, we should aspire to glorify the Lord and be faithful in whatever we do, knowing that He promises to reward our service and will not overlook our obedience.

Keith posted:

 

No one can dispute that the apostle Paul played a foundational role in the establishment of the early church.

 

 

Same thing I have been telling you all this time. You finally ketch sense. Well, better late than never.

Partners in Suffering for Christ

Acts 19:23-31

In the book of Acts, Paul stands out as the most prominent preacher and apostle. That’s why we tend to pass over the names of other individuals who are mentioned only briefly. An example is Aristarchus—one of the men dragged into the theater of Ephesus during a riot. Paul was the target of the dispute, but Aristarchus was also on the receiving end of the hostility.

>Who was Aristarchus? Though not well known, he is actually mentioned five times in the New Testament. We know he was from Thessalonica and that he joined Paul on his third missionary trip as the apostle was going to Jerusalem (Acts 20:4). The next time he showed up in Scripture (Acts 27:2), he was boarding a ship with Paul, who by that time was a prisoner on his way to Rome. At sea, Aristarchus and Paul suffered through a great storm that resulted in shipwreck. The last mentions of Aristarchus are as a fellow prisoner with Paul in a Roman jail and a fellow worker (Col. 4:10; Philem. 1:24).

Almost every reference to Aristarchus involves suffering for Christ. Yet this isn’t a popular concept today. We want a Savior who will make life easy, comfortable, and prosperous. But that’s not the message Jesus preached, nor is it the example Paul and Aristarchus set. As the apostle wrote, “Indeed, all who desire to live godly in Christ Jesus will be persecuted” (2 Tim. 3:12).

Although most of us probably won’t experience the hardships Paul and Aristarchus suffered, we must be willing to stand for Christ in the face of rejection, ridicule, misunderstanding, discrimination, and even hostility. Are you willing to suffer for Christ?

Actually Paul is mentioned so much because he is the real founder of Christianity. If there is no Paul, there is no Christianity. Prior to Paul colluding with the Romans, the people living where Paul did were Jewish. Those people knew nothing of the Greek Sun god that Paul used to create his son of God concoction.

ksazma posted:
cain posted:

Yall still deh pon dis stupidness?    heheeee

It is all entertainment for me as I have no problem with if someone believe in God or not or what they choose to believe. I am not sure what it is to the good brother though.

Bai, you contributing to the man "cut and paste". By the time he is done with you, GNI will have a complete bible. We can do research on the bible by just referencing this GNI website. The man is a typical seminary college graduate. They do no see natural phenomena.

Don't worry Skelly. The man will never post every every part of the Bible. There are parts that no Christian preacher will inform others of. They are trained to limit their preaching to only what they think are selling points. Think about it. Have you ever heard a preacher talk about the whoring sisters or Rueben having sex with his stepmother on the rooftop? If "all scriptures are from God and is profitable for instruction ......,", why they never instruct their listeners about those scriptures? Are they more holy than the Lord of Hosts?

Encouraging the Pastor

2 Timothy 1:1-6

Do you attend church? If so, God has placed a person in your life whose job it is to train you in righteousness and speak the truth, even when you don’t want to hear it. You are blessed to have a pastor who loves you and cares about your spiritual well-being. He needs to know you care about him too.

Many churchgoers neglect to encourage the pastor, but being aware of his needs is an important part of belonging to the body of Christ. In his second letter to Timothy, Paul models the way we’re to encourage those who minister.

1. Tell your pastor you appreciate him. There’s nothing more uplifting to a person’s heart than to know someone else cares. Words are certainly valuable, but actions can speak even more loudly. So intentionally seek ways to demonstrate your love for your minister.

2. Express confidence in the pastor. Let him know you recognize the sincerity of his faith and appreciate his commitment to speak scriptural truths into your life.

3. Affirm the call of God on his life. Work with your pastor; respond to him in a way that shows you understand he’s been called to minister and therefore has God’s hand upon him. And when you experience the Lord working through him, let him know.

Above all, pray for your pastor. Don’t assume that others in the church are praying or that a spiritual leader doesn’t need intercession. The opposite is true. The devil would like to thwart effective ministering, but you can help to defend your shepherd as he tends the flock.

That is the classical way to reel people in and make them subservient to the leader. This is usually a big red flag to Muslims who don't believe in paying any homage to the leader. Muslims revere only God. Even the prophet Muhammad didn't ask anyone to pay homage to him. No wonder he addressed those who believed in him as his companions and not as his disciples or followers. He was consistent that "All praises are for Allah, the Lord of the world's".

Those guys not satisfied with poor people giving tithe ( which is supposedly 1/10 of earnings) they asking to pat your pastor on the back telling him he is daman.

Timothy 1:1-6 is also wherea woman should be quiet..not permitted to teach or assume authority over a man ... be on full submission.

Sometime way back in the 80's, this Muslim dude asked all of us who had gathered to learn from him to hold each other hands and pledge our loyalty to him. That was the last day I regarded him as an honest Muslim striving to teach others about God. I thought that he was using his Islamic education to prop himself up and I thought it was a dangerous approach to take and I was not going to be an participant to that strategy.

At some point the pastor has to reap the benefits of his efforts and he obviously knows that it is better to get the perks right here rather than bank on a belief that may not materialize. Personally, I am better off with my cars, mansions, bank accounts and bitches right here than follow a pipe dream. And judging from many of the preachers' actions, they seem to feel the same way.

Can God Use You?

Luke 10:38-42

Martha welcomed Jesus into her home. Her act of service may seem small compared to works like the apostle Paul’s missionary trips and letters. But she and her family provided a place of rest and refreshment for the Savior, which must have been a welcome pause in His life. It’s true that Jesus once corrected Martha for placing too much emphasis on the details of hospitality (Luke 10:41); nevertheless, when He visited her home, He no doubt anticipated food and fellowship with people He loved.

God’s plan for every believer is made up of a lifetime of small opportunities. No matter what our career or calling may be, we should each seek ways to serve the Lord daily. We do this by ministering—wherever we are—to family members, friends, neighbors, and coworkers.

Since the Lord gives His children gifts and talents suitable for fulfilling His purpose, we know that He wants to use us. The question we should be asking is, “Can God use me?” That is, have we made ourselves available to follow Him in any circumstance? The areas of service set aside specifically for us are waiting. No one knows ahead of time exactly what God will require, but we can be sure He will equip us with the right tools for the task.

Are you ready to say, “Yes, God can use me”? If so, then tell the Lord you are available to work for Him in any way He desires. He will respond by placing people and opportunities in your path. Through His strength, you will do more to further the kingdom than you ever imagined—one day and one small act of service at a time.

Yesterday Trump said that the GOP are not doing enough to defend their President. Leaders don't go around asking people to defend them. They take the charge of defending the people they lead. Leaders don't waste their time complaining about their situations like Trump does. Same reason I have about how the Bible projects Jesus. He is always complaining about his situations not even pausing to consider the situations of others. Even to the end when he is on the cross he couldn't resist the temptation to complain to God and instead accused God of forsaking him. You don't see that attitude from Muhammad who never complained about anything. When there was a challenge, he rolled up his sleeves and resolved it. Now he was a REAL leader.

Take My Yoke

Matthew 11:28-30

Jesus invites all burdened individuals to come to Him for rest, yet so often we misunderstand what He is offering. When stresses and problems weigh us down, the most natural response is to ask God for relief: “Lord, I can’t carry this anymore. I’m going to leave it here with You.” Having dumped the burden like a bag of garbage, we walk away but remain unchanged inside.

God doesn’t operate that way. Christ’s invitation is to join Him in the yoke so you can walk and work together. He doesn’t want just your burden; He wants you. The yoke of Christ is a symbol of discipleship, characterized by submission and obedience to Him. God’s goal isn’t simply to give relief by removing a weighty trial or affliction; He longs to draw you to Himself in a close and trusting relationship. Those who take Him up on His offer will turn from their old ways and be transformed.

The process of lightening the load begins with learning to know and understand the Lord. The burden is not necessarily removed, but our thoughts and responses are changed as we begin to love Him, trust Him, believe His promises, and rely on His power. Then, as the weight of the affliction shifts from our shoulders to His, we will discover relief, although the situation may remain unchanged.

Being yoked with Christ results in rest for your soul. Life’s pressures may not lessen, but if you are intimately linked with Jesus, your soul is free from churning anxiety, and His peace is ruling in your heart. You have nothing to lose—except your weariness—and much to gain.

ksazma posted:

Yesterday Trump said that the GOP are not doing enough to defend their President. Leaders don't go around asking people to defend them. They take the charge of defending the people they lead. Leaders don't waste their time complaining about their situations like Trump does. Same reason I have about how the Bible projects Jesus. He is always complaining about his situations not even pausing to consider the situations of others. Even to the end when he is on the cross he couldn't resist the temptation to complain to God and instead accused God of forsaking him. You don't see that attitude from Muhammad who never complained about anything. When there was a challenge, he rolled up his sleeves and resolved it. Now he was a REAL leader.

A particular group of people killed Christ, Mohammad on the other hand killed ALOT of people. You may have very well been within the group that killed the Lord. Your rationale of the Lordship of the Lord seems bent on a deep seated hate. 

Bai Siggy. Based on Christian teachings, no one is responsible for killing Jesus. You folks brag that Jesus and God had an agreement since the beginning of time that Jesus would lay down his life for the sins of the world. So don't go blaming anyone for what you claim was God and Jesus plans. Secondly, the Bible that you swear by shows God (unconditionally loving God according to brother Keith) telling folks to go kill multitudes of people to avenge him. Look what your Bible says God did to the world after Noah finished building the ark. So why you criticizing now? Are you holier than God who have no problems killing people?

ksazma posted:

Bai Siggy. Based on Christian teachings, no one is responsible for killing Jesus. You folks brag that Jesus and God had an agreement since the beginning of time that Jesus would lay down his life for the sins of the world. So don't go blaming anyone for what you claim was God and Jesus plans. Secondly, the Bible that you swear by shows God (unconditionally loving God according to brother Keith) telling folks to go kill multitudes of people to avenge him. Look what your Bible says God did to the world after Noah finished building the ark. So why you criticizing now? Are you holier than God who have no problems killing people?

For those not of the faith Islam, Allah seys kill dem for they are infidels. I think dem Middle Eastern ppl are blood thirsty. Look how dem kill themselves in ths modern times. You ought not to be following their teachings. Confused ppl.

Tek the Hindus for example, they explain God in the details. And their explanation doan dipict anything like dem Jews, Christians and Muslims. And dem all come out of that corrupt womb. Perhaps, infidels comes from infidelity which explains why mohammad would kill christians and jews, all in the middle east. The converts of Mohammad seem to want to kill Christians in the West, those guys seems to believe Allah doan like christians, anywhere.

ksazma posted:

Don't worry Skelly. The man will never post every every part of the Bible. There are parts that no Christian preacher will inform others of. They are trained to limit their preaching to only what they think are selling points. Think about it. Have you ever heard a preacher talk about the whoring sisters or Rueben having sex with his stepmother on the rooftop? If "all scriptures are from God and is profitable for instruction ......,", why they never instruct their listeners about those scriptures? Are they more holy than the Lord of Hosts?

Dat wah a seying middle east people have a sex problem, dat why Paul preached so much on it. He even encouraged dem middle east wimen to cover up demselves. Our here, dem moh scared of the dem badazz mussalmen.  You will be amazed how demented middle-east men are. Especially in the west.  

seignet posted:
ksazma posted:

Bai Siggy. Based on Christian teachings, no one is responsible for killing Jesus. You folks brag that Jesus and God had an agreement since the beginning of time that Jesus would lay down his life for the sins of the world. So don't go blaming anyone for what you claim was God and Jesus plans. Secondly, the Bible that you swear by shows God (unconditionally loving God according to brother Keith) telling folks to go kill multitudes of people to avenge him. Look what your Bible says God did to the world after Noah finished building the ark. So why you criticizing now? Are you holier than God who have no problems killing people?

For those not of the faith Islam, Allah seys kill dem for they are infidels. I think dem Middle Eastern ppl are blood thirsty. Look how dem kill themselves in ths modern times. You ought not to be following their teachings. Confused ppl.

Tek the Hindus for example, they explain God in the details. And their explanation doan dipict anything like dem Jews, Christians and Muslims. And dem all come out of that corrupt womb. Perhaps, infidels comes from infidelity which explains why mohammad would kill christians and jews, all in the middle east. The converts of Mohammad seem to want to kill Christians in the West, those guys seems to believe Allah doan like christians, anywhere.

But why yuh concerned with others who kill when you don't have any problems with the God of the Bible who had an insatiable desire for blood. Shouldn't you first denounce the Father's words and actions before you criticize those of Allah and Muslims? You can't have it both ways bai.

seignet posted:
ksazma posted:

Don't worry Skelly. The man will never post every every part of the Bible. There are parts that no Christian preacher will inform others of. They are trained to limit their preaching to only what they think are selling points. Think about it. Have you ever heard a preacher talk about the whoring sisters or Rueben having sex with his stepmother on the rooftop? If "all scriptures are from God and is profitable for instruction ......,", why they never instruct their listeners about those scriptures? Are they more holy than the Lord of Hosts?

Dat wah a seying middle east people have a sex problem, dat why Paul preached so much on it. He even encouraged dem middle east wimen to cover up demselves. Our here, dem moh scared of the dem badazz mussalmen.  You will be amazed how demented middle-east men are. Especially in the west.  

So yuh saying that even though the Father have no trouble talking about those sex stories, nowadays preachers are holier than the Father since they have troubles talking about them.

ksazma posted:
seignet posted:
ksazma posted:

Bai Siggy. Based on Christian teachings, no one is responsible for killing Jesus. You folks brag that Jesus and God had an agreement since the beginning of time that Jesus would lay down his life for the sins of the world. So don't go blaming anyone for what you claim was God and Jesus plans. Secondly, the Bible that you swear by shows God (unconditionally loving God according to brother Keith) telling folks to go kill multitudes of people to avenge him. Look what your Bible says God did to the world after Noah finished building the ark. So why you criticizing now? Are you holier than God who have no problems killing people?

For those not of the faith Islam, Allah seys kill dem for they are infidels. I think dem Middle Eastern ppl are blood thirsty. Look how dem kill themselves in ths modern times. You ought not to be following their teachings. Confused ppl.

Tek the Hindus for example, they explain God in the details. And their explanation doan dipict anything like dem Jews, Christians and Muslims. And dem all come out of that corrupt womb. Perhaps, infidels comes from infidelity which explains why mohammad would kill christians and jews, all in the middle east. The converts of Mohammad seem to want to kill Christians in the West, those guys seems to believe Allah doan like christians, anywhere.

But why yuh concerned with others who kill when you don't have any problems with the God of the Bible who had an insatiable desire for blood. Shouldn't you first denounce the Father's words and actions before you criticize those of Allah and Muslims? You can't have it both ways bai.

I trying to tell u that those ppl in ME are bloodthirsty and all their religions wants a god who like spilt blood. I think their history as  far back has always been a gorie affair. ME ppl wants to talk on behalf of god in wah dey write. Hindus have it right, they believe in what was handed down to them.

ksazma posted:

Why doesn't a preacher tell his congregation that the two whoring sisters liked their penises big like those of horses? The Father didn't have any trouble using that description. Are preachers more decent and moral than the Father?

Preachers are lead by the Holy Spirit, and their sermons are spirit ordained. 

Women of illrepute does have a tendency to experience all sizes of penis, they have a spirit too.

Yuh really think God gat the time for such trivialities as penis.  

seignet posted:

I trying to tell u that those ppl in ME are bloodthirsty and all their religions wants a god who like spilt blood. I think their history as  far back has always been a gorie affair. ME ppl wants to talk on behalf of god in wah dey write. Hindus have it right, they believe in what was handed down to them.

Good to see that you have returned to your Hindu roots.

Since Hindus don't go around condemning other religions while propping up their own flawed ones, I don't have any issues with Hindus or Hinduism.

No doubt the ME has had a history of violence so I am not denying that. I have no problem acknowledging that there are many scriptures where God has sanctioned and allowed it. My trouble is the brother lying against the written record by preaching that the Father has unconditional love when we see all the passages where He sanctioned and allowed lots of violence against others. Go back and read where He ordered Aaron to kill everyone of the Moabites. All the men, women and children. Even animals and trees. Burn it all. BUT SAVE FOR YOURSELF ALL THE GIRLS WHO IS OF AGE TO HAVE SEX BUT HAVE NOT HAD SEX. So they found 32 thousand such girls and kept them. But they went a bit further. THEY GAVE TO THE FATHER 16 THOUSAND OF THESE WOMEN. THE FATHER MUST HAVE HAD QUITE A SEXCAPADE WITH THOSE 16 THOUSAND VIRGINS. Now we see where the virgin idea came from. 

seignet posted:
ksazma posted:

Why doesn't a preacher tell his congregation that the two whoring sisters liked their penises big like those of horses? The Father didn't have any trouble using that description. Are preachers more decent and moral than the Father?

Preachers are lead by the Holy Spirit, and their sermons are spirit ordained. 

Women of illrepute does have a tendency to experience all sizes of penis, they have a spirit too.

Yuh really think God gat the time for such trivialities as penis.  

Enough time to mention it here

She lusted after lovers with genitals as large as a donkey's and emissions like those of a horse. Ezekiel 23:20 New International Version Bible

 

 

Walking With Christ

Colossians 1:10-12

The pathway of faith has divine purpose, and we’re to obey the Lord, no matter what. But even when God’s direction is perplexing, we can count on the fact that He is good.

Walking obediently with Christ doesn’t guarantee an easy life, which is obvious when we consider Paul. He encountered all kinds of hardships, including shipwreck, persecution, and beatings (2 Corinthians 11:23-27). Keep in mind, though, that nothing can touch a child of God without the Father’s loving permission. He uses difficulty to strengthen and correct believers—and eventually as a tool in achieving His plan. Also remember that the Lord protects His followers in their suffering, just as He kept the apostle safe in situations that seemed impossible to overcome.

Adversity can tempt us to ignore the Holy Spirit’s guidance. But we will ultimately regret such a decision, as God doesn’t spare us from the consequences of our sin. However, He never lets go of His children, whom He will continue to protect and guide throughout life.

Walking in obedience and trust is the only way to true peace. As Paul sat in an uncomfortable Roman prison where his life was in danger, he encouraged believers not to worry but to trust the Lord and pray with gratitude (Isa. 26:3; Phil. 4:6). Doing so leads to experiencing His perfect peace.

The only wise way to live is to believe in almighty God and follow wherever He leads. That is the road to contentment, fulfillment, protection, and peace. Are you journeying on the pathway of faith? Or is something holding you back from all God intended for your life?

ksazma posted:
seignet posted:
ksazma posted:

Why doesn't a preacher tell his congregation that the two whoring sisters liked their penises big like those of horses? The Father didn't have any trouble using that description. Are preachers more decent and moral than the Father?

Preachers are lead by the Holy Spirit, and their sermons are spirit ordained. 

Women of illrepute does have a tendency to experience all sizes of penis, they have a spirit too.

Yuh really think God gat the time for such trivialities as penis.  

Enough time to mention it here

She lusted after lovers with genitals as large as a donkey's and emissions like those of a horse. Ezekiel 23:20 New International Version Bible

 

 

Ksazma on one occasion accuses the Bible of being a pornographic book because of such passages as Ezekiel 23. It is only ignorance of the inspired scriptures that results in such outrageous claim.

The whole chapter is describing the sin of idolatry of the two nations Samaria and Israel. The two nations became senseless and apathetic so that no amount of decent admonition would work with them. There was no amount of nice words that would cause them to recognize the gravity of their sin, the sin of idolatry. So the prophet had to use this language to make his point. Such strong language needed to be used to burn into their hearts and minds like acid the message of the prophet. Since the beginning of the nation of Israel they have been unfaithful to the God who delivered them out of the land of Egypt. At that "time they made an idol in the form of a calf. They brought sacrifices to it and held a celebration in honor of what their hands had made. This agrees with what is written in the book of the prophets: 'Did you bring me sacrifices and offerings forty years in the desert, O house of Israel? You have lifted up the shrine of Moloch and the star of your god Rephan, the idols you made to worship." (Acts 7:41-43) The children of Israel were violating the first and the most important commandment, which says, "I am the Lord your God, who brought you out of Egypt, out of the land of slavery. You shall have no other gods before me. You shall not make for yourself an idol in the form of anything in heaven above or on the earth beneath or in the waters below. You shall not bow down to them or worship them." (Exodus 20:2-4)

Had ksazma taken the time to read the whole chapter he would have recognized the main message of the prophet Ezekiel.

Here is the summary of that chapter:

"You shall pay the penalty for your lewd conduct and be punished for your idolatry, and you will know that I am the Lord God." (Ezek. 23:49)

Had the prophet gone to them and preached against idol worship in more ordinary tones that would have had less effect. But he used the image of a harlot and sexual acts to portray the sordidness of the sin of worshipping idols. It is a language that makes people take note.

Strong imagery is not strange to the quran either.

"And do not spy, neither backbite one another; would any of you like to eat the flesh of his brother dead?" (Q. 49:12)

This is an image of cannibalism which is just as disgusting as harlotry or immoral sexual acts. If the quran simply commanded people not to backbite, the message would not be nearly as powerful. But the revolting image of cannibalizing one's brother had to be used to communicate the vileness of backbiting.

"God forgives not that aught should be with him associated; less than that He forgives." (Q. 4:48)

And the Bible says about the sin of idolatery:

"Long ago you broke off your yolk and tore off your bonds; you said, 'I will not serve you!' Indeed, on every high hill and under every spreading tree you lay down as a prostitute. I have planted you like a choice vine of sound and reliable stock. How then did you turn against me into a corrupt, wild vine? Although you wash yourself with soda and use an abundance of soap, the stain of your guilt is still before me,' declares the Sovereign Lord. How can you say, 'I am not defiled; I have not run after the Baals? See how you behaved in the valley; consider what you have done. You have a swift she-camel running here and there, a wild donkey accustomed to the desert, sniffing the wind in her craving - in her heat who can restrain her? Any males that pursue her need not tire themselves; at mating time they will find her. Do not run until your feet are bare and your throat is dry. But you said, it's no use I love foreign gods and I must go after them. As a thief is disgraced when he is caught, so the house of Israel is disgraced - they, their kings and their officials, their priests and their prophets. They say to wood, 'You are my father', and to stone, 'You gave me birth.' They have turned their backs to me and not their faces; yet when they are in trouble, they say, 'Come and save us!' Where then are the gods you made for yourselves? Let them come if they can save you when you are in trouble! For you have as many gods as you have towns, O Judah. 'Why do you bring charges against me? You have rebelled against me,' declares the Lord. In vain I punished your people; they did not respond to correction. Your sword has devoured your prophets like a ravening lion." (Jeremiah 2:20-30)

We can see that this was a method of communication to the children of Israel the sordidness of their sin of idol worship.

ksazma should have heeded the advise of the prophet of Islam when he said, "do not believe the people of the Book and do not disbelieve them" - "Why?" he was asked. "Because if you believe them and they were found to be wrong, you blaspheme. And if you disbelieve them and they were right, you blaspheme."

According to the above ksazma by attacking the Bible has thus blasphemed.

First of all, is the Bible the words of God or the prophet.

Secondly, since when one has to use distasteful words to get their message across? The prophet Muhammad didn't feel the need to do so. He got his message across with wisdom as in the case of the man who liked visiting bars and having sex with lots of women. The prophet asked him how he would feel if that woman was his mother or daughter? The prophet said nothing else to him. The man commented after talking to the prophet, "I went in there liking women (meaning sex) more than anything else. After speaking with the prophet, it was the most detestable thing for me". That is the wisdom of Muhammad. Take the case of drinking. The passage stated that intoxicants was bad so shun it if you want to prosper. No shock treatment distasteful words. Yet the companions of Muhammad never touched it after that passage.

So God needing to report that the two whoring sisters like penises large like those of horses and ejaculations plentiful like that of horses is poor use of words by the God of the Bible.

Why would Muhammad make a silly suggestion about if Jews and Christians are found to be right or wrong when he already knew where they were right and where they were wrong? Muhammad was not unsure of the things he addressed. Not like another dude who thought there was figs on a tree only to sadly find out afterwards that it wasn't fig season.

ksazma posted:
seignet posted:

I trying to tell u that those ppl in ME are bloodthirsty and all their religions wants a god who like spilt blood. I think their history as  far back has always been a gorie affair. ME ppl wants to talk on behalf of god in wah dey write. Hindus have it right, they believe in what was handed down to them.

Good to see that you have returned to your Hindu roots.

Since Hindus don't go around condemning other religions while propping up their own flawed ones, I don't have any issues with Hindus or Hinduism.

No doubt the ME has had a history of violence so I am not denying that. I have no problem acknowledging that there are many scriptures where God has sanctioned and allowed it. My trouble is the brother lying against the written record by preaching that the Father has unconditional love when we see all the passages where He sanctioned and allowed lots of violence against others. Go back and read where He ordered Aaron to kill everyone of the Moabites. All the men, women and children. Even animals and trees. Burn it all. BUT SAVE FOR YOURSELF ALL THE GIRLS WHO IS OF AGE TO HAVE SEX BUT HAVE NOT HAD SEX. So they found 32 thousand such girls and kept them. But they went a bit further. THEY GAVE TO THE FATHER 16 THOUSAND OF THESE WOMEN. THE FATHER MUST HAVE HAD QUITE A SEXCAPADE WITH THOSE 16 THOUSAND VIRGINS. Now we see where the virgin idea came from. 

U always seying how de Bible was misquoted bcz of all dem translations. Why doan u treat the above as a mistranslation. You believe that God was involved in the above? Look dem ME ppl under the guidance of Islam is killing everyone who is not a muslim-back then with the moabites, hittites and all dem other ites, some other ISIS group was doing the ethnic cleansing. Mohammad respected Moses who in one afternoon killed 3000 jews for misbehaving. I guess Mohammad like the blood letting, suh he recorded Moses as one his prophets. The Bible never recorded Moses a prophet, but Mohammad did.

ksazma posted:

Why would Muhammad make a silly suggestion about if Jews and Christians are found to be right or wrong when he already knew where they were right and where they were wrong? Muhammad was not unsure of the things he addressed. Not like another dude who thought there was figs on a tree only to sadly find out afterwards that it wasn't fig season.

Mohammad came from a corrupt culture and he witnessed their depravities. He found wisdom in the Christian and Jewish way of life from those in that culture. And so, rather than in a tolerant manner of changing the culture he used weaponary to subjugate the ME ppl. Mohammad never saw the West, he only saw the ME ppl. And he imposed life style values on them, forcing dem to be like mummies, programmable. He set in motion for generations that program.

The Bible is written about MIddle-Eastern ppl, and from all accounts, they love to have sex. And God, if He did say or the prophets sey, the emphasis was made using the analogy they were most familiar with, sex.  

Keith posted:
ksazma posted:
seignet posted:
ksazma posted:

Why doesn't a preacher tell his congregation that the two whoring sisters liked their penises big like those of horses? The Father didn't have any trouble using that description. Are preachers more decent and moral than the Father?

Preachers are lead by the Holy Spirit, and their sermons are spirit ordained. 

Women of illrepute does have a tendency to experience all sizes of penis, they have a spirit too.

Yuh really think God gat the time for such trivialities as penis.  

Enough time to mention it here

She lusted after lovers with genitals as large as a donkey's and emissions like those of a horse. Ezekiel 23:20 New International Version Bible

 

 

Ksazma on one occasion accuses the Bible of being a pornographic book because of such passages as Ezekiel 23. It is only ignorance of the inspired scriptures that results in such outrageous claim.

The whole chapter is describing the sin of idolatry of the two nations Samaria and Israel. The two nations became senseless and apathetic so that no amount of decent admonition would work with them. There was no amount of nice words that would cause them to recognize the gravity of their sin, the sin of idolatry. So the prophet had to use this language to make his point. Such strong language needed to be used to burn into their hearts and minds like acid the message of the prophet. Since the beginning of the nation of Israel they have been unfaithful to the God who delivered them out of the land of Egypt. At that "time they made an idol in the form of a calf. They brought sacrifices to it and held a celebration in honor of what their hands had made. This agrees with what is written in the book of the prophets: 'Did you bring me sacrifices and offerings forty years in the desert, O house of Israel? You have lifted up the shrine of Moloch and the star of your god Rephan, the idols you made to worship." (Acts 7:41-43) The children of Israel were violating the first and the most important commandment, which says, "I am the Lord your God, who brought you out of Egypt, out of the land of slavery. You shall have no other gods before me. You shall not make for yourself an idol in the form of anything in heaven above or on the earth beneath or in the waters below. You shall not bow down to them or worship them." (Exodus 20:2-4)

Had ksazma taken the time to read the whole chapter he would have recognized the main message of the prophet Ezekiel.

Here is the summary of that chapter:

"You shall pay the penalty for your lewd conduct and be punished for your idolatry, and you will know that I am the Lord God." (Ezek. 23:49)

Had the prophet gone to them and preached against idol worship in more ordinary tones that would have had less effect. But he used the image of a harlot and sexual acts to portray the sordidness of the sin of worshipping idols. It is a language that makes people take note.

Strong imagery is not strange to the quran either.

"And do not spy, neither backbite one another; would any of you like to eat the flesh of his brother dead?" (Q. 49:12)

This is an image of cannibalism which is just as disgusting as harlotry or immoral sexual acts. If the quran simply commanded people not to backbite, the message would not be nearly as powerful. But the revolting image of cannibalizing one's brother had to be used to communicate the vileness of backbiting.

"God forgives not that aught should be with him associated; less than that He forgives." (Q. 4:48)

And the Bible says about the sin of idolatery:

"Long ago you broke off your yolk and tore off your bonds; you said, 'I will not serve you!' Indeed, on every high hill and under every spreading tree you lay down as a prostitute. I have planted you like a choice vine of sound and reliable stock. How then did you turn against me into a corrupt, wild vine? Although you wash yourself with soda and use an abundance of soap, the stain of your guilt is still before me,' declares the Sovereign Lord. How can you say, 'I am not defiled; I have not run after the Baals? See how you behaved in the valley; consider what you have done. You have a swift she-camel running here and there, a wild donkey accustomed to the desert, sniffing the wind in her craving - in her heat who can restrain her? Any males that pursue her need not tire themselves; at mating time they will find her. Do not run until your feet are bare and your throat is dry. But you said, it's no use I love foreign gods and I must go after them. As a thief is disgraced when he is caught, so the house of Israel is disgraced - they, their kings and their officials, their priests and their prophets. They say to wood, 'You are my father', and to stone, 'You gave me birth.' They have turned their backs to me and not their faces; yet when they are in trouble, they say, 'Come and save us!' Where then are the gods you made for yourselves? Let them come if they can save you when you are in trouble! For you have as many gods as you have towns, O Judah. 'Why do you bring charges against me? You have rebelled against me,' declares the Lord. In vain I punished your people; they did not respond to correction. Your sword has devoured your prophets like a ravening lion." (Jeremiah 2:20-30)

We can see that this was a method of communication to the children of Israel the sordidness of their sin of idol worship.

ksazma should have heeded the advise of the prophet of Islam when he said, "do not believe the people of the Book and do not disbelieve them" - "Why?" he was asked. "Because if you believe them and they were found to be wrong, you blaspheme. And if you disbelieve them and they were right, you blaspheme."

According to the above ksazma by attacking the Bible has thus blasphemed.

I agree.

Clearly Muhammad didn't follow the Jews nor the Christians. He said the Jews were too obsessive and the Christians were too reckless. He ADVISED (not ordered, Siggy) his companions to take the middle path between the two instead which would be more reasonable, rational and correct. The proven wisdom of Muhammad.

ksazma posted:

Praise the Lord. Brother Siggy has seen the light. He admits that the translation of the Bible can't be relied on. Therefore he can't be certain of who Jesus is or any of the things his pastor says is true. Praise the Lord.

Bro, I seen THE LIGHT of the world. When I say, "seen" the LIGHT, I mean I saw The Christ in person. There is no UNCERTAINTY in my mind about His Lordship over this world.

ksazma posted:

Clearly Muhammad didn't follow the Jews nor the Christians. He said the Jews were too obsessive and the Christians were too reckless. He ADVISED (not ordered, Siggy) his companions to take the middle path between the two instead which would be more reasonable, rational and correct. The proven wisdom of Muhammad.

Mohammad had fundamental differences with Christians of ME. He had dialogue with them  for a long time. His major objection was how the Almighty God was percieved. Basically, he felt so strongly about it, he took to the sword to ENFORCE his ideaology.

seignet posted:
ksazma posted:

Praise the Lord. Brother Siggy has seen the light. He admits that the translation of the Bible can't be relied on. Therefore he can't be certain of who Jesus is or any of the things his pastor says is true. Praise the Lord.

Bro, I seen THE LIGHT of the world. When I say, "seen" the LIGHT, I mean I saw The Christ in person. There is no UNCERTAINTY in my mind about His Lordship over this world.

No doubt there is no uncertainty in your mind but that is what is in your mind because you are way too young to have seen the Christ in person. What you are experiencing is hallucinations.

seignet posted:
ksazma posted:

Clearly Muhammad didn't follow the Jews nor the Christians. He said the Jews were too obsessive and the Christians were too reckless. He ADVISED (not ordered, Siggy) his companions to take the middle path between the two instead which would be more reasonable, rational and correct. The proven wisdom of Muhammad.

Mohammad had fundamental differences with Christians of ME. He had dialogue with them  for a long time. His major objection was how the Almighty God was percieved. Basically, he felt so strongly about it, he took to the sword to ENFORCE his ideaology.

Muhammad's understanding of God is similar to everyone before Paul concluded with the Romans to concoct the fraudulent claim that Jesus was part of a triune Godhead. Even Jesus couldn't bring himself to have another address him as good one (telling the man that ONLY God is good) much less allow a fraud like Paul to betray Jesus by lying that Jesus is part of a triune Godhead.

An Ordinary Person

Matthew 4:18-20

The apostle Peter was an ordinary person who lived in an extraordinary time. His was the generation during which Jesus Christ lived on the earth, died for the salvation of mankind, and rose again.

It was through his brother Andrew that Peter (who was originally called Simon) met the Lord (John 1:40-42). When Jesus invited him to become a disciple, he immediately left his fishing trade and placed himself under Christ’s authority (Matt. 4:20). He became a passionate follower who consistently demonstrated an eagerness to be near the Savior and in the middle of whatever was going on. Whether meeting Jesus on the water during a storm (Matt. 14:27-29) or speaking to Him during His transfiguration (Matt. 17:1-5), Peter was devoted to his Master’s service.

In the beginning, the former fisherman was quick to speak and to act, and this impulsiveness created many problems for him. For example, when Jesus was talking about His imminent suffering and death, Peter objected, as if he knew better than the Lord. Christ’s rebuke was swift and direct (Matt. 16:21-23). The apostle, however, learned from his mistakes. He’s a good example of how we should let go of personal desires, wholeheartedly embrace Jesus’ way, and walk closely with Him (Mark 8:34).

The Lord chooses unexceptional people like Peter, you, and me to build His kingdom. He asks His followers to love Him above all else and fully commit to obeying Him. When we do, He will accomplish more through us than we could ever imagine.

Again, it is only ignorance of the Bible that results in such outrageous claim.

Jesus is using a penetrating question to push the man to think through the implications of his own words, to understand the concept of Jesus’ goodness and, most especially, the man’s lack of goodness.  Review the scripture again.

"As Jesus started on his way, a man ran up to him and fell on his knees before him. ‘Good teacher,’ he asked, ‘what must I do to inherit eternal life?’ ‘Why do you call me good?’ Jesus answered. ‘No one is good – except God alone. You know the commandments: Do not murder, do not commit adultery, do not steal, do not give false testimony, do not defraud, honor your father and mother.’ ‘Teacher,’ he declared, ‘all these I have kept since I was a boy.’ Jesus looked at him and loved him. ‘One thing you lack,’ he said. ‘Go, sell everything you have and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me.’ At this, the man’s face fell. He went away sad, because he had great wealth."

The young ruler "went away sad" (Mark 10:22) because he realized that although he had devoted himself to keeping the commandments, he had failed to keep the first and greatest of the commandments—love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength (Matthew 22:37-38). The man’s riches were of more worth to him than God, and thus he was not "good" in the eyes of God.

Thus, Jesus’ question to the man is designed not to deny His deity, but rather to draw the man to recognize Christ’s divine identity. Such an interpretation is substantiated by passages such as John 10:11 wherein Jesus declares Himself to be “the good shepherd.” Similarly in John 8:46, Jesus asks, "Can any of you prove me guilty of sin?" Of course the answer is "no." Jesus was "without sin" (Hebrews 4:15), holy and undefiled (Hebrews 7:26), the only One who "knew no sin" (2 Corinthians 5:21).

Shows how gullible people will believe anything. Although Jesus' statement was clear (in fact one of his clearer statements since most of the times he just beat about the bushes) gullible people will choose to grab at straws. Then they make assisine statements about not understanding the passage. I prefer to think I people like me are not willing to drink the kool aid.

To each his own. A simple, "I don't understand" would have suffice .

The Bible never records Jesus saying the precise words, "I am God." That does not mean, however, that He did not proclaim that He is God. Take for example Jesus’ words in John 10:30, "I and the Father are one." We need only to look at the Jews’ reaction to His statement to know He was claiming to be God. They tried to stone Him for this very reason: "You, a mere man, claim to be God" (John 10:33). The Jews understood exactly what Jesus was claiming—deity. When Jesus declared, "I and the Father are one," He was saying that He and the Father are of one nature and essence. John 8:58 is another example. Jesus declared, "I tell you the truth … before Abraham was born, I am!" Jews who heard this statement responded by taking up stones to kill Him for blasphemy, as the Mosaic Law commanded (Leviticus 24:16).

Mathew 16:13-20:
13 
When Jesus came into the region of Caesarea Philippi, He asked His disciples, saying, "Who do men say that I, the Son of Man, am?"

14 So they said, "Some say John the Baptist, some Elijah, and others Jeremiah or one of the prophets."

15 He said to them, "But who do you say that I am?"

16 Simon Peter answered and said, "You are the Christ, the Son of the living God."

Here a thought: Now why didn't Christ corrected Peter if he is not God?

17 Jesus answered and said to him, "Blessed are you, Simon Bar-Jonah, for flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but My Father who is in heaven. 18 And I also say to you that you are Peter, and on this rock I will build My church, and the gates of Hades shall not prevail against it. 19 And I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven, and whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be looseda]">[a] in heaven."

Another thought: ksazma mention a few post back that "Paul started the Christian church" maybe not in those exact words but as you can see ksazma the church was stared long before Saul...excuse me Paul got converted

20 Then He commanded His disciples that they should tell no one that He was Jesus the Christ.

John reiterates the concept of Jesus’ deity: "The Word [Jesus] was God" and "the Word became flesh" (John 1:1, 14). These verses clearly indicate that Jesus is God in the flesh. Acts 20:28 tells us, "Be shepherds of the church of God, which he bought with his own blood." Who bought the church with His own blood? Jesus Christ. And this same verse declares that God purchased His church with His own blood. Therefore, Jesus is God!

Thomas the disciple declared concerning Jesus, "My Lord and my God" (John 20:28). Jesus does not correct him. Titus 2:13 encourages us to wait for the coming of our God and Savior, Jesus Christ (see also 2 Peter 1:1). In Hebrews 1:8, the Father declares of Jesus, "But about the Son he says, ‘Your throne, O God, will last forever and ever, and righteousness will be the scepter of your kingdom.’" The Father refers to Jesus as "O God," indicating that Jesus is indeed God.

In Revelation, an angel instructed the apostle John to only worship God (Revelation 19:10). Several times in Scripture Jesus receives worship (Matthew 2:11; 14:33; 28:9, 17; Luke 24:52; John 9:38). He never rebukes people for worshiping Him. If Jesus were not God, He would have told people to not worship Him, just as the angel in Revelation did. There are many other passages of Scripture that argue for Jesus’ deity.

The most important reason that Jesus has to be God is that, if He is not God, His death would not have been sufficient to pay the penalty for the sins of the world (1 John 2:2). A created being, which Jesus would be if He were not God, could not pay the infinite penalty required for sin against an infinite God. Only God could pay such an infinite penalty. Only God could take on the sins of the world (2 Corinthians 5:21), die, and be resurrected, proving His victory over sin and death.

Keith posted:

To each his own. A simple, "I don't understand" would have suffice .

The Bible never records Jesus saying the precise words, "I am God." That does not mean, however, that He did not proclaim that He is God.

Why would I say that I don't understand? I understand the written words perfectly. What you do is swallow conjectures gullibly. Now explain in English what is highlighted above. God never had any problems proclaiming at the top of his voice that He is God so why was Jesus so shy to do the same? And all this nonsense about Jesus being the son of God doesn't make it any more bona fide. The Bible has countless statements of God having "sons by the tons". Even Israel (Jacob) was God's son, "His Firstborn". And this word Christ. That is no more than a translation for the Greek word Cristos which is a Greek translation of the Hebrew word masah which is used constantly in the Bible for different people and things. Even pots and pans are labeled masah. So they labeled Jesus as masah, then translated it to Cristos and then to Christ and today people mistakenly go around thinking that Christ is only for Jesus. After Paul colluded with the Romans to concoct a religion similar to Mithraism, the writers of the New Testament fell in line with his argument and made up stories about Jesus to corroborate his. Why do you think the first book on the New Testament is called The Gospel ACCORDING to Matthew? That is because it was not actually written by Matthew. Modern Bible scholars have long maintained that Matthew was actually written by Mark but they are open to someone other than Matthew or Mark.

That analogy is how to understand what one reads. You do nothing other and conjecture and made up stories that one has to be gullible to accept.

The Authority of Our Message

1 Kings 17:1

After encountering the prophet Elijah, King Ahab may well have thought, Of all the nerve! Just who does this guy think he is? Bursting onto the scene as if out of nowhere, Elijah confronted Israel’s wicked king with a message that would soon disrupt life throughout the region.

The validity of the prophecy rested with the Source, not the mouthpiece. Elijah was a man of great faith who spent time alone with the Lord and listened to Him carefully. The prophet could pass the message on with boldness and authority because he knew and trusted the One from whom it came.

We can’t expect our Father to communicate with us in exactly the same way that He spoke to the Old Testament prophets, but the process of receiving His message hasn’t changed. It starts with being alone in His presence and listening as He speaks through His Word. But it shouldn’t end there.

Prophets had the responsibility of telling the people what the Lord revealed to them. Similarly, we’re to share with others what we learn from God’s Word. Devotional time with the Lord is not just about our own interests and needs. The Father reveals His truths to us so we can share them with others.

Begin each day alone with God in His Word and in prayer, listening as He speaks to your heart. Believe what He says in Scripture, apply it to your life, and then share with someone else what He has revealed. Be bold and remember that the authority of your message comes from Him.

ksazma posted:

Why would I say that I don't understand? I understand the written words perfectly. What you do is swallow conjectures gullibly. Now explain in English what is highlighted above. God never had any problems proclaiming at the top of his voice that He is God so why was Jesus so shy to do the same? And all this nonsense about Jesus being the son of God doesn't make it any more bona fide. The Bible has countless statements of God having "sons by the tons". Even Israel (Jacob) was God's son, "His Firstborn". And this word Christ. That is no more than a translation for the Greek word Cristos which is a Greek translation of the Hebrew word masah which is used constantly in the Bible for different people and things. Even pots and pans are labeled masah. So they labeled Jesus as masah, then translated it to Cristos and then to Christ and today people mistakenly go around thinking that Christ is only for Jesus. After Paul colluded with the Romans to concoct a religion similar to Mithraism, the writers of the New Testament fell in line with his argument and made up stories about Jesus to corroborate his. Why do you think the first book on the New Testament is called The Gospel ACCORDING to Matthew? That is because it was not actually written by Matthew. Modern Bible scholars have long maintained that Matthew was actually written by Mark but they are open to someone other than Matthew or Mark.

That analogy is how to understand what one reads. You do nothing other and conjecture and made up stories that one has to be gullible to accept.

What stories have I made up? Everything I've said are factual, I present my facts from the BIBLE to backup my statements as you can see below.

The Bible teaches that God has many sons but it is not correct to assume that this somehow means that Jesus is God’s Son in the same sense as the rest.

In the first place, angels are God’s sons in the sense that they are spiritual creatures that dwell in heaven, God’s abode, unlike man who is created from the dust of the ground to dwell on earth (cf. Genesis 2:4-7, 3:19; Job 1:6, 2:1, 38:4-7).

In other words, angels are called sons because their nature is similar to God in that they are spirit beings like God:

"Yet a time is coming and has now come when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth, for they are the kind of worshipers the Father seeks. God is spirit, and his worshipers must worship in spirit and in truth." John 4:23-24

"And of the angels He says: ‘Who makes His angels spirits And His ministers a flame of fire.’" Hebrews 1:7 NKJV

But even here we need to be careful since God is an omnipresent and timeless Spirit Being whereas angels are not. Thus, even though angels are similar to God this doesn’t mean that they are identical to him since God is infinitely more complex and greater than them:

"And the heavens will praise Your wonders, O LORD; Your faithfulness also in the assembly of the saints. For who in the heavens can be compared to the LORD? Who among the sons of the mighty can be likened to the LORD? God is greatly to be feared in the assembly of the saints, And to be held in reverence by all those around Him. O LORD God of hosts, Who is mighty like You, O LORD? Your faithfulness also surrounds You." Psalm 89:5-8 NKJV

Secondly, the nation of Israel is God’s son because he chose them to be his people who would reflect his glory to the nations:

"‘You yourselves have seen what I did to Egypt, and how I carried you on eagles' wings and brought you to myself. Now if you obey me fully and keep my covenant, then out of all nations you will be my treasured possession. Although the whole earth is mine, you will be for me a kingdom of priests and a holy nation.’ These are the words you are to speak to the Israelites." Exodus 19:4-6

"I am the LORD your God; consecrate yourselves and be holy, because I am holy. Do not make yourselves unclean by any creature that moves about on the ground. I am the LORD who brought you up out of Egypt to be your God; therefore be holy, because I am holy." Leviticus 11:44-45

And as Israel’s Father God would save and protect them, as well as provide for their every need, much like an earthly father does for his children:

"Be careful to follow every command I am giving you today, so that you may live and increase and may enter and possess the land that the LORD promised on oath to your forefathers. Remember how the LORD your God led you all the way in the desert these forty years, to humble you and to test you in order to know what was in your heart, whether or not you would keep his commands. He humbled you, causing you to hunger and then feeding you with manna, which neither you nor your fathers had known, to teach you that man does not live on bread alone but on every word that comes from the mouth of the LORD. Your clothes did not wear out and your feet did not swell during these forty years. Know then in your heart that as a man disciplines his son, so the LORD your God disciplines you." Deuteronomy 8:1-5

"But you are our Father, though Abraham does not know us or Israel acknowledge us; you, O LORD, are our Father, our Redeemer from of old is your name." Isaiah 63:16

Thirdly, David and the rest of Israel’s kings were God’s sons because they were chosen to sit on God’s throne to rule over his people. As such, God served as guardian of the throne who made sure that their enemies were brought under complete subjection:

"Why do the nations conspire and the peoples plot in vain? The kings of the earth take their stand and the rulers gather together against the LORD and against his Anointed One. ‘Let us break THEIR chains,’ they say, ‘and throw off THEIR fetters.’ The One enthroned in heaven laughs; the Lord scoffs at them. Then he rebukes them in his anger and terrifies them in his wrath, saying, ‘I have installed my King on Zion, my holy hill.’ I will proclaim the decree of the LORD:  He said to me, ‘You are my Son; today I have become your Father. Ask of me, and I will make the nations your inheritance, the ends of the earth your possession. You will rule them with an iron scepter; you will dash them to pieces like pottery.’ Therefore, you kings, be wise; be warned, you rulers of the earth. Serve the LORD with fear and rejoice with trembling. Kiss the Son, lest he be angry and you be destroyed in your way, for his wrath can flare up in a moment. Blessed are all who take refuge in him." Psalm 2:1-12

"David said to Solomon: ‘My son, I had it in my heart to build a house for the Name of the LORD my God. But this word of the LORD came to me: "You have shed much blood and have fought many wars. You are not to build a house for my Name, because you have shed much blood on the earth in my sight. But you will have a son who will be a man of peace and rest, and I will give him rest from all his enemies on every side. His name will be Solomon, and I will grant Israel peace and quiet during his reign. He is the one who will build a house for my Name. He will be my son, and I will be his father. And I will establish the throne of his kingdom over Israel forever."’" 1 Chronicles 22:7-10

"Then David said to the whole assembly, ‘Praise the LORD your God.’ So they all praised the LORD, the God of their fathers; they bowed low and fell prostrate before the LORD and the king… Then they acknowledged Solomon son of David as king a second time, anointing him before the LORD to be ruler and Zadok to be priest. So Solomon sat on the throne of the LORD as king in place of his father David. He prospered and all Israel obeyed him. All the officers and mighty men, as well as all of King David's sons, pledged their submission to King Solomon. The LORD highly exalted Solomon in the sight of all Israel and bestowed on him royal splendor such as no king over Israel ever had before." 1 Chronicles 29:20, 22b-25

Fourth, Adam is God’s son by virtue of the fact that God created him, being his life-giver and Sustainer. In this sense everyone is a child of God since God gives life to and provides for everyone:

"The God who made the world and everything in it is the Lord of heaven and earth and does not live in temples built by hands. And he is not served by human hands, as if he needed anything, because he himself gives all men life and breath and everything else. From one man he made every nation of men, that they should inhabit the whole earth; and he determined the times set for them and the exact places where they should live. God did this so that men would seek him and perhaps reach out for him and find him, though he is not far from each one of us. ‘For in him we live and move and have our being.’ As some of your own poets have said, ‘We are his offspring.’ Acts 17:24-28

Fifth, the reason why peace-makers are called God’s children is because they reflect and share God’s attribute of peace. In other words, the term son is being used here in the sense of one who has a specific characteristic of God (albeit to a limited extent).

Jesus, on the other hand, is the unique Son of God:

"For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son (ton huion ton monogenee), that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life… Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe stands condemned already because he has not believed in the name of God's one and only Son (tou monogenous huiou tou theou)." John 3:16, 18

The term monogenes literally means of sole descent, only one of its kind, unique. Thus, Jesus is the only Son of his kind, God’s Son in a unique manner, Son in a sense that no one else is.

Christ’s uniqueness consists of his having the following qualities and characteristics:

1.He bears the very nature of God:

"The god of this age has blinded the minds of unbelievers, so that they cannot see the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God. For we do not preach ourselves, but Jesus Christ as Lord, and ourselves as your servants for Jesus' sake. For God, who said, ‘Let light shine out of darkness,’ made his light shine in our hearts to give us the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Christ." 2 Corinthians 4:4-6

"Your attitude should be the same as that of Christ Jesus: Who, being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be grasped," Philippians 2:5-6

"He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation… For God was pleased to have all his fullness dwell in him," Colossians 1:15, 19

"The Son is the radiance of God's glory and the exact representation of his being, sustaining all things by his powerful word. After he had provided purification for sins, he sat down at the right hand of the Majesty in heaven." Hebrews 1:3

Christ bearing the nature or form of God and being the very exact representation of God’s being means that he is fully God in essence, that he has every essential attribute of God. This is precisely the point made by both John and Paul in their inspired writings:

"In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God (kai theos een ho logos)." John 1:1

John places the word "God" (theos) before the verb "was" (een) in order to stress and emphasize the qualities or nature of the Word. John is basically saying that the Word has all the essential qualities of Deity, possessing the very nature of God. Paul says the same thing when he writes that:

"For in Christ all the fullness of the Deity lives in bodily form," Colossians 2:9

In light of this does it come as a surprise that Jesus is addressed as God or Theos in the NT?

"Thomas said to him, ‘My Lord and my God!’" John 20:28

"Theirs are the patriarchs, and from them is traced the human ancestry of Christ, who is God over all, forever praised! Amen." Romans 9:5

"while we wait for the blessed hope—the glorious appearing of our great God and Savior, Jesus Christ," Titus 2:13

"Simon Peter, a servant and apostle of Jesus Christ, To those who through the righteousness of our God and Savior Jesus Christ have received a faith as precious as ours:" 2 Peter 1:1

Or that OT prophecy identifies him as the Mighty God?

"For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace." Isaiah 9:6-7

  1. He Fully Comprehends and Reveals the Nature of God to man.

"At that time Jesus said, ‘I praise you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, because you have hidden these things from the wise and learned, and revealed them to little children. Yes, Father, for this was your good pleasure. All things have been committed to me by my Father. No one knows the Son except the Father, and no one knows the Father except the Son and those to whom the Son chooses to reveal him.’" Matthew 11:25-27

"It is written in the Prophets: ‘They will all be taught by God.’ Everyone who listens to the Father and learns from him comes to me. No one has seen the Father except the one who is from God; only he has seen the Father." John 6:45-46

"Then Jesus, still teaching in the temple courts, cried out, ‘Yes, you know me, and you know where I am from. I am not here on my own, but he who sent me is true. You do not know him, but I know him because I am from him and he sent me.’" John 7:28-29

"Just as the Father knows me and I know the Father—and I lay down my life for the sheep." John 10:15

"Righteous Father, though the world does not know you, I know you, and they know that you have sent me." John 17:25

The point that the above references are all making is that since Jesus alone has seen and knows God, due to his intimate relationship as the Son, he alone is qualified and capable of perfectly revealing God to man. In the words of the inspired Evangelist:

"No one has ever seen God, but God the One and Only (monogenes theos), who is at/in the Father's side/bosom, has made him known (exeegeesato). John 1:18

John is essentially saying that Jesus is the One who explains or interprets God for man, that he is the perfect commentary on God’s nature, which is precisely what he claims in his first epistle:

"We know also that the Son of God HAS COME and has given us understanding, so that we may know him who is true. And we are in him who is true—even in his Son Jesus Christ. He is the true God and eternal life." 1 John 5:20

This explains why Jesus could say that to see him is to see the Father:

"Then Jesus cried out, ‘When a man believes in me, he does not believe in me only, but in the one who sent me. When he looks at me, he sees the one who sent me.’" John 12:44-45

"‘If you really knew me, you would know my Father as well. From now on, you do know him and have seen him.’ Philip said, ‘Lord, show us the Father and that will be enough for us.’ Jesus answered: ‘Don't you know me, Philip, even after I have been among you such a long time? Anyone who has seen me has seen the Father. How can you say, 'Show us the Father'? Don't you believe that I am in the Father, and that the Father is in me? The words I say to you are not just my own. Rather, it is the Father, living in me, who is doing his work. Believe me when I say that I am in the Father and the Father is in me; or at least believe on the evidence of the miracles themselves.’" John 14:7-11

In conclusion a child of God is one who is perfected forever and receives a glorified physical body, which is free from sin and decay, so that s/he can live in God’s eternal presence and reign with Christ forever!

ksazma posted:

And this word Christ. That is no more than a translation for the Greek word Cristos which is a Greek translation of the Hebrew word masah which is used constantly in the Bible for different people and things. Even pots and pans are labeled masah. So they labeled Jesus as masah, then translated it to Cristos and then to Christ and today people mistakenly go around thinking that Christ is only for Jesus.

Lets get this right, the word Messiah is use in the Bible NOT masah come on ksazma get your facts right. Messiah is used instead of Christ. Messiah is derived from the Hebrew word Mashiach (which means "anointed one"). Christ is the English equivalent of the Greek word christos, (which means "anointed one"). The Greek word to the use of the original Hebrew term is a way of emphasizing that the Messiah is for Jewish people and not exclusively for Gentiles. A second reason for using this term is that as with the name Jesus thousands and thousands (perhaps millions) of Jewish people have been persecuted and killed by those claiming to act on behalf of Christ. To Jewish people, the word Christ is not simply a non-Jewish word out of the Greek language. "Christ" is a word that carries anti-Jewish connotations.

After Paul colluded with the Romans to concoct a religion similar to Mithraism, the writers of the New Testament fell in line with his argument and made up stories about Jesus to corroborate his.

Where are your facts?

Let’s talk about Apostle Paul whom ksazma love to mention

It may come as a surprise to some to hear that the quran implicitly affirms that the teachings of the Apostle Paul, which has become the foundation of Christianity, are derived from Christ. In other words, the quran indirectly testifies that Paul’s theology wasn’t something that he simply concocted in order to win converts from the Gentiles, but came from God through Christ.

Before presenting the evidence, lets clarify the reasons for appealing to the quran. I do not believe that the quran is God’s Word. However, I do believe that the quran is an early record of what the first Muslims believed. As such, the quran becomes an important source of information for discovering the official beliefs of the first Muslims.

In light of this, it bears repeating that the quran testifies that the Christianity proclaimed by Paul (i.e., "Pauline" Christianity) is true Christianity.

Base on the quranic claim that Christ’s true believers would prevail over the unbelievers till the Day of Resurrection:

Behold! Allah said: "O Jesus! I will take thee and raise thee to Myself and clear thee (of the falsehoods) of those who blaspheme; I will make those who follow thee SUPERIOR to those who reject faith, TO THE DAY OF RESURRECTION: Then shall ye all return unto Me, and I will judge between you of the matters wherein ye dispute." S. 3:55

O ye who believe! Be ye helpers of Allah: as said Jesus the son of Mary to the Disciples, "Who will be my helpers to (the work of) Allah?" Said the Disciples, "We are Allah's helpers!" then a portion of the Children of Israel believed, and a portion disbelieved: But We gave power to those who believed against their enemies, AND THEY BECAME THE ONES THAT PREVAILED. S. 61:14

According to these passages, Allah gave Christ’s followers the power to prevail over the disbelievers, and made them superior till the day of resurrection. Yet the ones that prevailed were the Apostles such as Paul, as well as his followers. This means that if the quran is correct, then Paul’s message is the truth since it has become dominant and has prevailed over all other opposing messages.

Sayyid Qutb comments on S. 3:55:

... It was also the will of God to elevate the followers of Jesus above the unbelievers until the Day of Resurrection ...

It is not difficult, on the other hand, to explain God’s statement that He had placed those who follow Jesus above the unbelievers, and that this elevation continues until the Day of Resurrection. Those who follow Jesus are the ones who believe in God’s true religion, Islam, or surrender to God. Every prophet is fully aware of the true nature of this religion. Every messenger preached the same religion and everyone who truly believes in the Divine faith believes in it. These believers are indeed far superior to the unbelievers according to God’s measure, and they will continue to be so until the Day of Judgement. Moreover, they prove their superiority in our practical life every time they confront the forces of un-faith with the true nature of faith and the reality of following God’s messengers. The Divine faith is one, as preached by Jesus, son of Mary, as preached by every messenger sent before him and by the messenger sent after him. Those who follow Muhammad at the same time follow all the messengers sent by God, starting with Adam until the last messenger. (In the Shade of the Qur’an - Fi Zilal al-Qur’an, Volume 2, Surah 3, translated and edited by Adil Salahi & Ashur Shamis [The Islamic Foundation, 2000], pp. 97-98)

The problem with Qutb’s claim is that the Christian believers that prevailed over all were not Muslims and their message certainly wasn’t Islam. Hence, either the true followers of Christ were vanquished, thus falsifying the Quran which says that they would dominate. Or, the Quran is false since it contradicts the true message of Christ’s followers.

In response to a question regarding 3:55, Moiz Amjad writes:

This verse relates to the law relating to the messengers of God. As a punishment on the rejecters of Jesus (pbuh), the Qur'an has mentioned that at the time of the God's decision relating to the termination of Jesus' (pbuh) mission, God declared that after him those who believe in Jesus (pbuh) will dominate those who rejected him (i.e., the Jews) till the Day of Judgment. In the referred verse, those who believed in Jesus (pbuh) refers to the Christians. It is clear that even today, the Jewish collectivity is completely dependant upon Christian collectivities for even maintaining their existence.

Maulana Muhammad Ali writes regarding S. 3:55:

This verse contains four promises relating to Jesus’ triumph over his enemies as against their plans ... And the fourth promise is that those who follow Jesus shall be made dominant over his rejectors till the day of Judgment. The truth of this fourth prophecy is witnessed TO THIS DAY in the dominance of the Christians over the Jews. (Ali, Holy Quran [Ahmadiyyah Anjuman Isha'at Islam Lahore Inc. USA, 1995], pp. 147-148, fn. 439; bold and capital emphasis ours)

Here are his statements regarding S. 61:14:

... The description applies to the triumph of the teachings of Christ over those who opposed the dissemination of his teachings, and speaks prophetically of the ultimate triumph of Islam over all other religions of the world. (Ibid., p. 1058, fn. 2501; bold emphasis ours)

Ali fails to mention that the teachings that dominated were those passed on by Paul (which is actually the same message preached by Christ and the other disciples)!

  1. Yusuf Ali, in his translation The Holy Qur’an - Text and Commentary, p. 1543, footnote 5448, states:

A portion of the Children of Israel - the ones that really cared for Truth - believed in Jesus and followed his guidance. But the greater portion of them were hard-hearted, and remained in their beaten track of formalism and false racial pride. The majority seemed at first to have the upper hand when they thought they had crucified Jesus and killed his Message. But they were soon brought to their senses. Jerusalem was destroyed by Titus in A.D. 70 and the Jews have been scattered ever since. "The Wandering Jew" has become a bye-word in many literatures. On the other hand, those who followed Jesus PERMEATED the Roman Empire, brought many new races within their circle, and through the Roman Empire, Christianity became the predominant religion of the world until the advent of Islam ... (bold and capital emphasis ours)

What this Ali failed to note is that the form of Christianity that permeated the Roman Empire is what Muslims degradingly call "Pauline" Christianity. Hence, that Paul’s message dominated is a sign that his Gospel was that which God entrusted to Christ’s true followers. If it were argued that Paul’s version of Christianity is an aberration of the truth, this then means that the Quran is wrong for claiming that God had caused Christ’s true followers to prevail. It would mean that Paul was able to thwart Allah’s purposes, being able to prevent the true believers from dominating over their enemies.

Here are the late S. Abu Al’a Maududi’s comments on S. 61:14:

... Those who disbelieved in Jesus Christ are the Jews, and those who believed him are the Christians as well as the Muslims, and Allah granted them domination over the disbelievers of Christ. This is meant to requires [sic] the Muslims that just as the believers of Christ have dominated over his disbelievers in the past, so will the believers of the Prophet Muhammad (upon whom be Allah’s peace) prevail over disbelievers. (Meaning of the Qur’an, Volume V, english rendering by A.A. Kamal, M.A. [Islamic Publications (Pvt.) Limited, 13-E, Shahalam Market, Lahore-8 Pakistan], p. 516, fn. 21; underline emphasis ours)

As we had noted earlier, the obvious problem with Maududi’s explanation is that the message of Christ’s true believers directly contradicts the message of Islam. That is, unless one wants to claim that Christ’s true message got distorted and a false message prevailed over it, a claim which then contradicts the plain reading of the passages in question.

As Maulana Abdul Majid Daryabadi, while commenting on the last part of S. 61:14, states:

... (and neither the Messenger NOR THE MESSAGE could be destroyed). (Tafsir-Ul-Qur’an Translation and Commentary of the Holy Qur’an, Volume IV [Darul-Ishaat Urdu Bazar, Karachi-1, Pakistan; First edition: 1991], p. 356, fn. 270; capital emphasis ours)

Again, if "Pauline" Christianity is a corruption of Jesus’ true teachings then the message was destroyed and Allah failed to bring to pass what he said would happen!

Noted Muslim commentator Ibn Kathir’s statements are most interesting. Commenting on S. 3:55, he writes:

"This is what happened. When Allah raised ‘Isa to heaven, his followers divided into sects and groups. Some of them believed in what Allah sent ‘Isa as, a servant of Allah, His Messenger, and the son of His female-servant.

However, some of them went to the extreme over ‘Isa, believing that he was the son of Allah. Some of them said that ‘Isa was Allah Himself, while others said that he was one of a Trinity. Allah mentioned these false creeds in the qur’an and refuted them. The Christians remained like this until the third century CE, when a Greek king called, Constantine, became a Christian for the purpose of destroying Christianity. Constantine was either a philosopher, or he was just plain ignorant. Constantine changed the religion of ‘Isa by adding to it and deleting from it. He established the rituals of Christianity and the so-called Great Trust which is in fact the Great Treachery. He also allowed them to eat the meat of swine, changed the direction of the prayer that ‘Isa established to the east, built churches for ‘Isa, and added ten days to the fast as compensation for a sin that he committed, as claimed. So the religion of ‘Isa became the religion of Constantine, who built more than twelve thousand churches, temples and monasteries for the Christians as well as the city that bears his name, Constantinople (Istanbul). THROUGHOUT THIS TIME, the Christians had the upper hand and dominated the Jews. ALLAH AIDED THEM AGAINST THE JEWS BECAUSE THEY USED TO BE CLOSER TO THE TRUTH THAN THE JEWS, even though both groups were and still are disbelievers, may Allah’s curse descend on them." (Tafsir Ibn Kathir (Abridged), Volume 2, Parts 3, 4, & 5 (Surat Al-Baqarah, Verse 253, to Surat An-Nisa, Verse 147), abridged by a group of scholars under the supervision of Shaykh Safiur-Rahman Al-Mubarakpuri [Darussalam Publishers & Distributors Riyadh, Houston, New York, Lahore; First Edition: March 2000], p. 171; bold and capital emphasis ours; cf. online edition)

Ibn Kathir’s explanation doesn’t solve the problem since if the Quran is correct then the Christianity that Ibn Kathir attacks is indeed the truth. Otherwise, Ibn Kathir’s comments imply that Allah either allowed a false form of Christianity to prevail, or failed to grant Christ’s true believers dominance over those seeking to pervert the true teachings of Christ!

Another renowned commentary, Al-Qurtubi, says of Surah 61:14:

It was said that THIS VERSE was revealed about the apostles of Jesus, may peace and blessing be upon him. Ibn Ishaq stated that of the apostles and disciples that Jesus sent (to preach) there were Peter AND PAUL who went to Rome; Andrew and Matthew who went to the land of the cannibals; Thomas who went to Babel in the eastern lands; Philip who went to Africa; John went to Dac-sos which is the tribe to whom the sleepers of the cave belonged; Jacob went to Jerusalem; Bartholomew went to the lands of Arabia, specifically Al-Hijaz; Simon who went to the Barbarians; Judas and Barthas who went to Alexandria and its surrounding regions.

Allah supported them (the apostles) with evidence so that they prevailed (thahirin) meaning they became the party with the upper hand. Just as it is said, "An object appeared on the wall" meaning it is clearly visible (alu-wat) on the wall. Allah, who is glorified and exalted, knows the truth better and to Him is the return and retreat.

Notice how al-Qurtubi had no qualms in admitting that Paul was a legitimate follower of Christ! If al-Qurtubi is correct, then this means that Paul was one of the followers whom God gave the power to overcome the unbelievers and prevail!

This next writer, a moderate, makes the following rather candid admission in reference to 3:54 and 61:14.

Christian readers especially will be interested to learn that the quran teaches that Jesus was God's best prophet, and that Christians will be placed above non-believers until the Day of Judgment. Does it surprise you to learn that the quran may have been intended for Christians, to confirm all that they had been taught by Christ?

The first time I read this verse [3:54] in the quran, I could hardly believe my eyes. Even today, any Muslim I discuss this verse with is shocked. In the quran, God tells all Moslems that the followers of Jesus will be exalted above the disbelievers until the Day of Resurrection. While there are some verses in the quran that promise the world to the Muslim people if they follow its teachings, these are followed up with predictions that they will disobey their holy book, and not uphold its commands. God's prediction that the Christians will succeed in doing so is even clearer in the following verse [author then cites 61:14] ..." (Ibid., pp. 103-104)

Most Muslims obtain their understanding of the quran from the interpretations of their religious leaders. Few ever question what they are told to believe. But the holy book contains many messages that might shock them from their complacency. For example, in the quran there is a verse saying [quotes 3:54] ...

The above verse says very simply that Christians will be above non-believers until the resurrection. Moreover, the quan states:

"Do not falter and feel saddened since you are superior, if you are believers."

The most reasonable conclusion to this is that among all believers, whether they are Jews, Christians, or Muslims, only one group will be above the non-believers and only one group will be superior. That group will be comprised of the believers who are the followers of Jesus (Christians)... (Ibid., p. 119)

Hence, Muslims are in a dilemma that they cannot easily resolve. Namely, to accept the quran is to accept "Pauline" Christianity. Yet to accept "Pauline" Christianity is to reject the quran, since the quran contradicts the core teaching of Paul as has been preserved in the pages of the Holy Bible and amongst true Christians historically.

ksazma may wish to argue that these verses refer to Muhammad and the Muslims as those who truly believe in Christ and dominate till the Resurrection Day. This explanation fails to resolve the issue. The passages do not say that Christ’s followers would only prevail from the time of Muhammad’s advent, but from the time that Christ was taken to God and unto the Day of Resurrection.

In fact, this Muslim view can be found in the commentary of the late Mufti Shafi' Uthmani who wrote regarding Surah 61:14:

Baghawi interprets this verse in the light of a narration of Sayyidna Ibn 'Abbas that when Prophet 'Isa was raised to the heaven, his followers disagreed and became three groups. A group claimed that He was Himself God who went back to the heaven. The second group claimed that He Himself was not God, but God's son. God lifted him up and salvaged him from the enemies and granted him superiority. The third group proclaimed the truth and said that he was neither god nor the son of god, but that he was Allah's servant and His messenger. Allah took him away to the heaven and to protect him from the enemies, and to raise his status. Those people were the true believers. Different sectors of the general public attached themselves to each one of these groups. The groups clashed with one another. The two of the non-believing groups overpowered the third group, which was a group of true believers. Eventually, Allah raised the Final Messenger of Allah who supported the group of the true believers. This group thus dominated the others because of their correct belief and its solid proofs confirmed by the Qur'an. [Mazhari].

In this interpretation, the phrase ... "those who believed [14]" would refer to the Ummah of the Prophet 'Isa who would triumph against the unbelievers with the help and support of the Final Messenger. [Mazhari]. Some scholars hold that when Prophet 'Isa was raised to heaven, his followers were divided into two groups. One of them believed that he was God or God's son and thus they became polytheists. The other group believed that he was servant of Allah and His Messenger, and thus they stuck to the right religion. Then there was a war between the believers and the unbelievers. Allah GRANTED VICTORY to the believing faction of Prophet 'Isa against the unbelieving faction. But it is popularly understood that in the religion of Prophet 'Isa the institution of jihad did not exist. Therefore, it is inconceivable that believers would have waged a war. [Ruh-ul-Ma'ani]. However, it is possible that the unbelieving Christians might have started the war and the believing Christians were forced to defend themselves. This will not fall under the category of war.

As stated before the problem with this explanation, but it bears repeating: the text of Sura 61:14 does not say that Jesus' true followers would prevail only at the time of Muhammad, but that they were clearly given the victory over the unbelievers from the very start. This means that the second interpretation proposed by the Mufti is the sounder one (even though this also has serious historical problems). Moreover, although we agree with the Mufti that Jesus never commanded jihad for his followers, his comments are in direct conflict with the Quran which claims that Allah did command Christians to observe jihad in the Gospel:

Verily, Allah has purchased of the believers their lives and their properties; for the price that theirs shall be the Paradise. They fight in Allah's Cause, so they kill (others) and are killed. It is a promise in truth which is binding on Him in the Taurat (Torah) and the Injeel (Gospel) and the Qur'an. And who is truer to his covenant than Allah? Then rejoice in the bargain which you have concluded. That is the supreme success. S. 9:111 Hilali-Khan

Be that as it may, it is quite apparent from the Mufti's comments that Muslims really had a hard time trying to reconcile the Quran with the historical fact that the Christianity that has prevailed till this day is that which Paul taught and which is recorded in the pages of the NT!

This is perhaps why men such as Ibn Ishaq, Ibn Kathir, al-Tabari, al-Qurtubi, and al-Thalabi could view Paul in such a positive light. They seemingly realized that Paul had a tremendous influence in the growth and spread of Christianity, and had been sovereignly used by God as his instrument of domination over the unbelievers.

To summarize the Islamic evidence, we discovered that

  • The quran records the domination of Christ’s true believers over the disbelievers.
  • This domination would continue till the Day of Resurrection.
  • Paul’s message dominated and became superior to all other opposing messages.
  • This implies that if the quran is right then Paul’s message must be correct.

Yet, these factors introduce the following problems for the Muslims:

  • The quran contradicts the core teachings of the Apostle Paul as well as the message of the Holy Bible as a whole.
  • Since the quran and early Muslim commentators clearly testify to the accuracy and legitimacy of Paul’s preaching, this means that the quran cannot be the word of God. Rather, it must be the word of fallible men such as Muhammad and/or others.
  • This also implies that the author(s) of the quran was (were) unaware of the true message of the Holy Bible and of the Apostle Paul, and thought that it agreed with his (their) own preaching. The author(s) presumably thought that in acknowledging the testimony of the Holy Bible he (they) would therefore be legitimizing the prophetic claims of Muhammad. Had he (they) been aware of the true message of the Holy Bible the author(s) might not have given so much credence to both Paul and the Holy Bible.

Sources: Charles Ryrie and some excerpt taken from Mr. Shamoun

It is very pitiful that you need to post all of that to try to prove your point? Why don't you try something novel like making your arguments in your own words? Is it that you don't understand what you are told and can't put it in your own words so you have to post wholesale what others write (probably not even taking the time to ascertain is that person is making accurate statements or not). You chose to enter a discussion forum but seems incapable of any meaning discussion, insisting on just posting entire articles of other people's work. I can do the same but I have way too much self dignity to reduce myself to that kind of nonsense. I just scrolled down your post and decided that it is not worth wasting my time on. You should have done the same and save yourself the shame.

Why would I want to sound like a broken record when Mr. Charles Ryrie and Mr. Shamoun so eloquently stated some of what I intended to point out. 

We each have free will to do want we want in providing accurate and factual information. Who's stoping you from quoting others? 

What's probably eating you up right now is fact I can used the quran to repudiate your statements about Paul. 

Try no to lose any sleep brother. Have a good night. 

God’s Ways: Ordinary and Miraculous

1 Kings 17:2-7

In Isaiah 55:8, God declared, “My thoughts are not your thoughts, nor are your ways My ways.” And in fact, one of the biggest frustrations of the Christian life stems from a lack of understanding about God’s ways. There are times when we could really use a miracle, but He does not come through for us the way we think He should. Our unmet expectations lead to confusion, disappointment, and even anger. We might think, Why did the Lord let me down?

Some people don’t believe God performs big miracles at all, while others are convinced that if He’s not doing the miraculous every day, then something is wrong with their faith. Neither belief is true. We need a balanced perspective, which we find in the Bible.

God works in both supernatural and ordinary ways, and He determines the method. Elijah ate food miraculously delivered by ravens, but his water supply from a brook was completely natural. When the water dried up, the Lord could have made more spring from the ground, but He didn’t.

Sometimes God uses ordinary means to move us in a new direction. The curtailment of Elijah’s water supply opened the door for his next assignment. When the Lord withholds miraculous intervention and lets your brook dry up, He has something else planned for you.

Seeing the work of God in the miraculous is easy. But He’s just as involved in the everyday aspects of life as He is in any supernatural event. Look for His fingerprint in the day’s mundane activities. He is there, opening and closing doors, drying up one opportunity but initiating another.

Keith posted:

Why would I want to sound like a broken record when Mr. Charles Ryrie and Mr. Shamoun so eloquently stated some of what I intended to point out. 

We each have free will to do want we want in providing accurate and factual information. Who's stoping you from quoting others? 

What's probably eating you up right now is fact I can used the quran to repudiate your statements about Paul. 

Try no to lose any sleep brother. Have a good night. 

Nothing is eating me up dude. Feel free to use the Qur'an whenever you want especially where it CLEARLY states that God has and never had any sons. I made a simple and short reference to a passage in the Bible of what Jesus said. All you need to do is show where the statement is not where I stated it is or show that it does not mean what it stated. Posting a whole book to refute a statement of a few words shows that you either need all of it to try to support your argument or you are not interested in any response. Discussions are points by points processes. GNI is not your personal Sunday school forum.

ksazma posted:

Imagine taking liberties with your words like 'I' can use the Qur'an when you didn't actually use the Qur'an but only parroted what someone else wrote. You are as fake as a three dollars bill.

oh, I must have hit a nerve there for you

I have a question for you, do any authentic hadith's exist that say Jesus was not the Messiah, you know, the anointed one?

I was looking over surah 27:65 which stated, "Say, none in the heaven or on earth, except Allah, knows what is hidden", then in surah6:59 we have, "With Him are the keys to the unseen, the treasures that none knoweth but He"

Look at the first verse you notice the quran emphasizes beyond any doubt that knowing what is hidden belongs only to God and nobody else. The second underlines the fact that only God knows the unseen and the future.

Meanwhile, the quran teaches about Mohammed that he used to rebuke anyone who attributed to him the ability to know what was hidden, look at surah 6:50, "Say, I tell you not that with me are the treasures of Allah, nor do I know what is hidden"

I read an article awhile back where Moaz was having a discussion with Mohammed and said, "if Allah wills and you will", and Mohammed interrupted the man saying, "How could you make me equivalent to Allah? No one in heaven or on earth knows what is hidden but Allah."

As for Christ, we find all limitations removed. He knows and does what every other person cannot. The quran says, in surah 3:49, "And I declare to you what ye eat, and what ye store in your houses".

It is very unusual that in these verses Christ speaks in the first person; on the other hand, Mohammed was always told what to say. Christ was unique because He spoke of himself, which means that His abilities were His and not acquired. Wouldn't you agree my friend?

Don't flatter yourself about striking a nerve. You demonstrate a high degree of laziness content with parroting other peoples' work. Now go back and read clearly the Qur'anic passages that you posted. While you are at it, read the Qur'an for start to end.

Keith posted:

If you care to dispute anything that was said above lets here your arguments. Answer the questions and stop dodging. It's already established that you have a problem with comprehending.

Your first post has over 2600 words and your second one has over 3400 words. So where do you want to start? Did you even read them or you just posted them after someone gave them to you?

Here is a better place to start. In the passage I quoted many times, Jesus said "Why call me good? The only one who is good is God" Simple English answer. Did Jesus object to the man calling him good and reminded the man that only God is good? I don't care about any other passage because if you point to another passage that contradicts this statement, then you are admitting that Jesus contradicted himself.

When you are done answering this one in your own words, we can discuss another one but if you expect me to read your post which I have great doubt that you even read, you are kidding yourself.

Rely on the Source

1 Kings 17:8-16

From God’s perspective, being in need can have spiritual benefits. For example, people often look to economies and markets as their basis for financial security. But if the bottom drops out, they’re in a position to discover the reality that all provision comes from God’s hand. The Lord uses various instruments to meet needs, but He alone is the source of all we have.

God can use ordinary means or remarkable methods to supply our needs. Through God’s unusual ways, Elijah had learned to live by faith—such as the time he’d been fed by ravens. Now God sent him to Zarephath, to a starving widow with no ability to feed him.

Every financial need is an opportunity to learn to walk by faith, recognizing the Lord as our source. Prosperity can lead to a sense of independence that blinds us to how inadequate we actually are to provide for ourselves. We’re totally dependent upon the Father whether we know it or not.

Believing God would provide, Elijah witnessed His miraculous intervention. We may not see the Lord perform a supernatural work in our financial situation. However, we can be sure that just as God fulfilled His promise to Elijah, He’ll likewise be faithful to His Word in our situation, supplying “all [our] needs according to His riches in glory in Christ Jesus” (Phil. 4:19).

Are you focusing on the instrument or the source of your provision? The means God uses may change, but His faithfulness endures forever. He’s infinitely more reliable than any employer or 401(k). The Lord is inviting you to trust Him and live in both the adventure and security of a life of faith.

ksazma posted:
Keith posted:

If you care to dispute anything that was said above lets here your arguments. Answer the questions and stop dodging. It's already established that you have a problem with comprehending.

Your first post has over 2600 words and your second one has over 3400 words. So where do you want to start? Did you even read them or you just posted them after someone gave them to you?

Here is a better place to start. In the passage I quoted many times, Jesus said "Why call me good? The only one who is good is God" Simple English answer. Did Jesus object to the man calling him good and reminded the man that only God is good? I don't care about any other passage because if you point to another passage that contradicts this statement, then you are admitting that Jesus contradicted himself.

When you are done answering this one in your own words, we can discuss another one but if you expect me to read your post which I have great doubt that you even read, you are kidding yourself.

The passage/scripture you are referring too is where Jesus is using a strident question to push the man to think through the implications of his own words, to understand the concept of Jesus goodness and, most especially, the man's lack of goodness. Just like I challenge you daily to understand what you are reading due to your lack of understand what you read.

He is challenging the religious leader to wake up and understand the truth that stands right in front of him. If he is calling Jesus "good", then he must come to understand that Jesus is God and not play religious games, but come to truly believe. Jesus isn't denying that he is God; I clearly made that distinction in previous post, Jesus is affirming that he is God. Eternal questions are not simply religious speculation, but the core questions of the human soul. Only God can answer those questions. So if he is going to ask Jesus this question, he needs to pay attention and place his faith in Jesus' answer.

You tell me where is the contradiction? As usual you love to pose questions while ignoring the ones that were addressed for you to answer. You took the time to count the numbers of words in my previous post did you took that much time reading to edify yourself? Why don't you start tally the number of questions you failed to come up with an answer for? Now who's kidding who?

Here are a few thoughts for you
"Wisdom is the principal thing; therefore get wisdom: and with all thy getting get understanding"

"Those who know, do. Those that understand, teach." 

"Nothing in life is to be feared, it is only to be understood. Now is the time to understand more, so that we may fear less."

Jesus did not tell the man that he was teaching him anything. He simply objected to the man addressing him as good. Then he told him to follow the 10 commandments ESPECIALLY THE FIRST ONE. It is Christian apologists who make up the argument about Jesus teaching the man something.

Did you read those two long and erroneous posts that you posted? Or did you just post them because someone gave them to you?

Be honest now.

ksazma posted:

Jesus did not tell the man that he was teaching him anything. He simply objected to the man addressing him as good. Then he told him to follow the 10 commandments ESPECIALLY THE FIRST ONE. It is Christian apologists who make up the argument about Jesus teaching the man something.

Did you read those two long and erroneous posts that you posted? Or did you just post them because someone gave them to you?

Be honest now.

Why don't you go back and READ the entire chapter slooooooowly. It may hit you in the head this time. Again, it is only ignorance of the Bible that results in such outrageous claim. Are you for real dude simple comprehension.

By the way what was the moral of the verses Jesus was trying to teach his disciples? I believe you clearly understand this one, try not to fail me bro.

Keith posted:
ksazma posted:

Jesus did not tell the man that he was teaching him anything. He simply objected to the man addressing him as good. Then he told him to follow the 10 commandments ESPECIALLY THE FIRST ONE. It is Christian apologists who make up the argument about Jesus teaching the man something.

Did you read those two long and erroneous posts that you posted? Or did you just post them because someone gave them to you?

Be honest now.

Why don't you go back and READ the entire chapter slooooooowly. It may hit you in the head this time. Again, it is only ignorance of the Bible that results in such outrageous claim. Are you for real dude simple comprehension.

By the way what was the moral of the verses Jesus was trying to teach his disciples? I believe you clearly understand this one, try not to fail me bro.

So you didn't read the two posts that you posted, right?

Refocusing on Jesus

John 15:4-6

Today’s passage urges us to stay connected to Jesus. The image of Him as the vine and believers as the branches helps us understand that apart from Him, we can do nothing. It is possible to receive His salvation yet still act out of the flesh, distracted or separated from His direction and power. All believers find their focus wandering at times, but some have strayed so far that it’s hard to see their way back.

If you discover your heart is loyal to something besides Christ, it’s vital to acknowledge that this has happened. Identify which attitudes or activities are drawing you away from Him. Then repent and get whatever help is necessary to set aside diversions, insecurity, worldly desires, or anything else that draws your attention away from the Lord.

Once the distraction is gone, refocus on Jesus by reading the Word, praying, learning from biblical messages, and spending time with godly friends who will encourage you. After living outside of God’s best for a while, it can be hard to discipline yourself to function as the Lord desires. But remember that those who abide in God will bear much fruit (John 15:5).

Don’t delay. As Hebrews 12:1 urges, “lay aside every encumbrance” so you can run with endurance the race set before you. Acknowledge anything that is keeping you from living passionately and fully for Jesus Christ. Following His plan—in His strength—is the way to peace, joy, and contentment in life. Ask for His help and commit to action. There is nothing like living fully for God.

Prayer on Behalf of the Church

Colossians 1:1-12

Today we meet Epaphras, a man who had a heart for the local church. He was most likely converted to Christ under Paul’s teaching when the gospel was rapidly spreading throughout Asia Minor. Epaphras evangelized his hometown of Colossae and founded a church there—and possibly the churches in Hierapolis and Laodicea as well.

Although very little is written about Epaphras in the New Testament, the letter to the Colossians emphasizes his great love and deep concern for Christ’s church (Col. 4:12-13). At the close of the letter, Paul points out that Epaphras is “always laboring earnestly for you in his prayers, that you may stand perfect and fully assured in all the will of God” (v. 12).

What he was asking for wasn’t greater numbers or bigger offerings but spiritual maturity and the true knowledge of God’s will. At that point in time, Epaphras was in prison with Paul (Philem. 1:23), and he couldn’t refute the false teachers who’d infiltrated the church at Colossae. But being apart from his congregation didn’t mean he was helpless. Intercession is a powerful ministry. It can alter circumstances, change thinking, and bring God’s truth to light. Epaphras went to his knees to plead for the church, and Paul joined him, which we see in his prayer in Colossians 1:9-14. (See also Col. 1:7)

Is anything weighing on your heart? Do you feel helpless to remedy the situation? If so, follow Epaphras and Paul’s example: Go to the One who knows exactly what to do and has the power to accomplish it. Then rest in Him and let His peace guard your heart and mind.

The Believer’s Highest Honor

John 12:24-26

I’ll never forget the best introduction I’ve ever received as an invited speaker. The presenter simply said, “It is my great pleasure to introduce to you my brother, Charles Stanley, servant of the Most High God.” I couldn’t move from my seat for a few moments; I was so struck by this opening that glorified the Lord and identified my proper position.

The Word of God describes believers as ambassadors (2 Corinthians 5:20), soldiers (2 Tim. 2:3), and saints (Eph. 2:19). But the highest honor that we can receive is to be called servants of the Most High God. From the world’s perspective, those who die to self in order to follow the Lord may stand in last place—in reality, however, they are first in His kingdom. (See Matt. 20:16.)

Sadly, service to God is often equated solely with what goes on at church. The preacher serves. The choir serves. The worker in the soup kitchen serves. But the guy pushing papers and the woman cleaning up others’ messes tend to be seen as simply doing their jobs. From the Father’s vantage point, though, work well done brings as much glory to His name as a song lifted in praise. (See Col. 3:23-24.) So take heart—if you’re doing quality work and striving to make an impact on those around you, then you are serving God.

Service to the Lord is not about what we do, but rather how well we do all that the Lord has given us to accomplish (1 Peter 4:10). A good servant shares both Jesus Christ’s attitude of humility and His motivation to reach people with the love of God.

Jesus Christ, Bondservant

Philippians 2:5-7

The disciples gathered around a table to celebrate Passover with Jesus. If one of them had been more thoughtful of the others—or possessed a spirit of servanthood—he would have done the very thing Christ did: take water and a cloth, kneel before the 12 other men, one at a time, and wash their feet. Jesus came into this world as a servant (Matt. 20:28). He was willing to do whatever was necessary to move men and women’s hearts and bring them to a saving knowledge of God.

A bondslave was the lowest of household servants, and he had the distasteful job of washing the feet of anyone who entered the home. This is the very task Christ voluntarily performed that evening, right before His trial and sufferings would begin. His act was a foreshadowing of the service He was about to render on behalf of the whole world—by dying on the cross for humanity’s sin.

We who believe in Jesus Christ do not call Him “slave”; we identify Him as our Master. So when He says that a servant is not greater than His master, He is speaking of our relationship with Him (John 13:16). Believers bend their knees to God’s most humble servant, His Son. How are you serving the almighty Lord?

Christians are God’s workmanship, created for the purpose of good works (Eph. 2:10). In other words, we were saved to serve. Therefore, there is no valid excuse for refusal. When you surrender to the Lord, you step onto the pathway of Jesus Christ, which is the best possible way to live.

Overcoming Obstacles

Matthew 17:14-21

Nothing is impossible for the heavenly Father. No obstacle confuses God or poses any kind of challenge for Him. Though we know He is sovereign over every situation, we have trouble maintaining this perspective, just like the disciples in today’s passage. Too often when difficulties arise, we ...

Experience a shift in focus. During trials, we tend to take our eyes off the Lord and instead see only our problems. The longer we look at our circumstance, the larger it seems. As we dwell on it in thought and conversation, our mindset can become very negative. Though God still has a direction for us to take, we are no longer concentrating on His purposes.

Develop an incorrect assessment of resources. In our troubles, we start taking inventory of our own strength and abilities. When they prove insufficient, we become discouraged. The truth is that we don’t have what is needed for life’s trials—Jesus Himself told us that. (See John 15:5.) But God’s capabilities are unlimited, His power is never-ending, and His wisdom is complete. We need to take stock of His resources, not our own.

View obstacles as barriers. For the obedient believer, impediments represent opportunities, not problems. The Lord can demonstrate His awesome power through our difficulties. (See 2 Corinthians 12:7-10.) At such times, we grow in our faith and learn more about our Father. If we view hardships simply as troubles, then we can miss demonstrations of God’s love, power, and wisdom.

Start each day committed to a Christ-centered focus, a dependence on His resources, and an “opportunity” mindset.

Obstacles as Opportunities

Psalm 27:14

Learning to see obstacles as opportunities takes time. Recalling certain truths can help our perspective:

God is at work. As barriers remain in place and our situation seems unchanged, God is orchestrating people and events to move His plan forward. He works silently, invisibly, and effectively.

God prepares the way. He has already decided in His mind which hindrances to remove and which to leave unaltered. For the obstacles that remain, the Lord will arrange a way around them or fit them into His plan. What He has determined will be accomplished.

God requires our cooperation. He wants us to be ready to face difficult situations. Through His Word, He communicates what we need to know and also equips us (Heb. 13:20-21).

God is personally involved. He wants to develop in us a greater sensitivity to His presence. Through Scripture, prayer, and other believers, we can receive the assurance that the Lord is near.

God gives clear instruction. He does not bring confusion. Whether we receive His direction in stages or all at once, He asks us to trust in Him rather than our own thinking (Prov. 3:5-6).

Facing challenges involves courage, patience, and faith. It takes courage to accept the presence of barriers, to move in step with God, and to do what He asks. Patience is required as we wait for Him to equip us and reveal His plan. Faith is necessary for us to trust God with the outcome and to focus on obeying Him.

The Rewards of Patience

Psalm 40:1-17

The Scriptures contain many stories of people who waited years or even decades before the Lord’s promises came to pass. What modern believers can learn from the patience of biblical saints like Abraham, Joseph, David, and Paul is that waiting upon the Lord has eternal benefits.

Today let’s look at Israel’s most memorable monarch. David was the chosen heir to Israel’s throne, but he spent years dodging King Saul’s wrathful pursuit. Despite having two different opportunities for vengeance, David resisted the temptation and spared Saul’s life. He chose to adhere to God’s timetable for his coronation instead of dishonoring the Lord by killing the divinely anointed king. David’s psalms reveal his intimate awareness of Yahweh’s work in his life. The shepherd king not only achieved his objective through patience; he also observed that God’s way is always the best.

David left behind an incredible testimony of God’s faithfulness for each of us to read and ponder. He was committed to waiting upon the Lord, and as a result, he had the Father’s approval and blessing. We cannot underestimate the reward of living in divine favor. That isn’t a special state reserved for the “giants of the faith” like David. All who obediently endure until the Lord acts on their behalf abide in His favor (Isa. 40:31).

David didn’t receive his blessings because he was special; he was honored among men because he honored the Lord above all. And since he trusted in God’s faithfulness, he endured hardship with patience. We, too, can expect to be blessed when we wait upon the Lord.

Bible in One Year: Jeremiah 25-27

Patience: Our Gift of Service

Colossians 3:12-13

When we are troubled or in pain, we turn to people who will listen patiently to our cries of distress. But I wonder how often we seek to be the person who steps up to share a hurting friend’s burden.

In today’s reading, the apostle Paul encouraged believers to put on a heart of compassion, kindness, and patience. In other words, we don’t come from the womb pre-equipped with these traits. Rather, we receive on-the-job training in imitating Jesus Christ as we bear with and forgive one another. The Holy Spirit is more than willing to instruct us in the proper ways to grow spiritual fruit. The heavenly Father then provides opportunities for us to try out our newly developed skills.

We tend to classify patience rather narrowly as “waiting.” That’s certainly part of the definition, but so are concepts like endurance, perseverance, and persistence. When we’re relating to others as Paul challenged us to do, we are not simply waiting for them to become better versions of themselves. We are enduring their hardship alongside them or persisting in our attempts to offer aid. We’re caring, listening, and serving however we can. In a world that insists on doing everything quickly, patience is an amazing gift to give another person.

By placing patience on the list of spiritual fruit (Gal. 5:22-23), God indicated that every believer could develop this trait. Whatever additional gifts and talents you possess, patience is an attribute that you can put on. Practice it for the glory of God and as a way to serve your fellow man.

Measuring Our Spiritual Growth

2 Peter 3:17-18

All around the world, people go to church, bow their heads to pray, and hear sermons, but many are not growing spiritually.

It is all too common for believers to assume that these actions fulfill Christian obligations. They may complete a checklist but have an idle relationship with Jesus. Do you see evidence in your own life that you’re maturing in your walk with the Lord?

To blossom spiritually, we must be saved. This happens the moment God makes us new, cleansing us of unrighteousness and adopting us as His own children. Then, we can begin to grow. However, even with this new life, we can be stagnant.

There are several indicators that reveal the quality of our Christian journey. Today, let’s explore a few of them. First, growing believers should sense a deepening hunger for Christ. As we experience more of Jesus, who is the bread of life (John 6:35), our desire for Him will increase. Second, believers dwelling closely with the Savior will notice that their discernment of sin sharpens. Faulty teaching and thinking become more obvious as we accumulate truth within our spirit. Third, our sphere of love should continuously expand. In time, the Holy Spirit enables us to care for people who previously were either unnoticed or difficult to accept.

Do you have a hunger for God and an increasing awareness of sin? Is your love available only for those who match your personal standard of performance—or do you find yourself caring about even difficult people? These are important questions to ask when evaluating your spiritual growth.

Evidence of a Growing Believer

James 4:8

I have a friend who was, at one point, a self-confessed shopping addict. Recently, his family realized that this activity had stopped, though he hadn’t intentionally curtailed it. Why did his longing to acquire more goods dissolve?

The reason was that my friend had become more satisfied with the Lord. He no longer needed fulfillment from what the world had to offer. What a terrific illustration of growth in Christ.

In addition to finding fulfillment in God, there are many other growth indicators that are noticeable to the believer. For instance, offering forgiveness becomes easier over time. Consider our Savior, who asked God to forgive even those who crucified Him on the cross (Luke 23:34).

Also, as we mature, our faith will increase. God loves us, and He gracefully and gently builds our confidence in Him. Then, as our trust grows, we realize how faithful He truly is—which makes our assurance even greater.

Finally, as our relationship with the Lord deepens, we will increasingly desire to obey Him. We will be able to confidently proclaim, “O how I love Your law! It is my meditation all the day” (Psalm 119:97). The desire is born not out of fear but out of love for our heavenly Father. Similarly, when we do sin, our heart will become saddened and repentant.

Are you satisfied spiritually? Or do you have a growing, insatiable hunger for more of Jesus? Friend, if you think that you’ve come far enough in your journey with Christ, you have made a terrible mistake. You are missing great fulfillment and excitement that come from getting close to Him.

Evidence of a Growing Believer

James 4:8

I have a friend who was, at one point, a self-confessed shopping addict. Recently, his family realized that this activity had stopped, though he hadn’t intentionally curtailed it. Why did his longing to acquire more goods dissolve?

The reason was that my friend had become more satisfied with the Lord. He no longer needed fulfillment from what the world had to offer. What a terrific illustration of growth in Christ.

In addition to finding fulfillment in God, there are many other growth indicators that are noticeable to the believer. For instance, offering forgiveness becomes easier over time. Consider our Savior, who asked God to forgive even those who crucified Him on the cross (Luke 23:34).

Also, as we mature, our faith will increase. God loves us, and He gracefully and gently builds our confidence in Him. Then, as our trust grows, we realize how faithful He truly is—which makes our assurance even greater.

Finally, as our relationship with the Lord deepens, we will increasingly desire to obey Him. We will be able to confidently proclaim, “O how I love Your law! It is my meditation all the day” (Psalm 119:97). The desire is born not out of fear but out of love for our heavenly Father. Similarly, when we do sin, our heart will become saddened and repentant.

Are you satisfied spiritually? Or do you have a growing, insatiable hunger for more of Jesus? Friend, if you think that you’ve come far enough in your journey with Christ, you have made a terrible mistake. You are missing great fulfillment and excitement that come from getting close to Him.

Living in God’s Grace

Philippians 1:1-11

Since all of Paul’s letters begin with an expression of God’s grace to us, we may be tempted to think that it is simply a customary word of greeting. But in reality, God’s grace is our foundation, our covering, and the sphere in which we live as believers in Christ.

Grace is commonly defined as God’s unmerited and undeserved favor. According to Ephesians 2:8, it’s the means by which we are saved through faith. And Romans 5:2 says that by our faith, we have “obtained our introduction … into this grace in which we stand.” In other words, we are continual recipients of an abundance of grace throughout life and into eternity.

Just as our salvation never ends, so God’s grace never ceases to do its work in our life. That’s why Paul could confidently say, “He who began a good work in you will perfect it until the day of Christ Jesus” (Phil. 1:6). We never have to fear that we will lose our salvation, because God is the one who keeps us and promises to complete us when Christ returns. Furthermore, Paul says we have been “filled with the fruit of righteousness which comes through Jesus Christ [and glorifies] God” (v. 11).

Sometimes it’s difficult to see righteousness in ourselves, because we know how weak and flawed we are. But if we’ve been saved, then Christ lives in us and we in Him (John 15:4). He is our righteousness, and He’s actively producing His fruit in our life as we abide in Him. This process, known as sanctification, is God’s grace working to align our behavior with Christ’s righteousness. So let’s stand firm in His grace and trust Him to complete us.

Evaluate Your Commitment

1 Corinthians 6:19-20

Have you ever evaluated your level of commitment to our heavenly Father? Sadly, many Christians have entered the door of salvation and settled down into their pew, expecting nothing more. But Christ wants us to make a deliberate decision to let Him be the Lord of our life. This requires the surrender of all our rights and recognition that He’s the one who plots the course. Our responsibility is simply to follow.

However, our natural tendency is to limit the areas where we allow God access. The day you trusted Christ as your Lord and Savior, did you keep the title deed for your life? Have you drawn a circle indicating, “This is the area in which I will serve You, Lord, but don’t ask me to go any farther”? If so, you’ve failed to recognize that when Jesus granted you forgiveness from sin, He also purchased you for Himself. All that you are and have belongs to Him. It’s the height of pride to assume authority over that which no longer belongs to you.

When the Lord challenges us to do something beyond our self-determined boundaries, He is calling us to a higher level of commitment. No matter how dedicated we may be at present, none of us have yet “arrived.” Each challenge is an opportunity to hand Christ full authority over every aspect of life.

You are only as committed as you are obedient to whatever God is asking of you at any given moment. If you’ve posted a “no trespassing” sign anywhere in your life, now is the time to take it down. As Christ’s blood-bought possessions, we are His—not only by purchase but also by His sacrificial love.

God Honors Our Commitment to Him

Daniel 1:1-21

Daniel and his friends faced the same dilemma that we do today—how to live a holy life. At times, our society seems to accept Christian values and standards, but that’s not always the case. Our challenge is to live under God’s authority while remaining in submission to the law of the land. But what if we are forced to choose between the two? Our first inclination should be to seek the Lord’s guidance before marching forward.

Had Daniel bluntly declared, “I won’t eat this food!” he wouldn’t have lasted long, and we wouldn’t have the book of Daniel in the Bible. But the Lord gave him the wisdom to humbly seek permission from the person who was in a position of authority over him. God honored the young man’s commitment and provided a way for him to live righteously in a pagan world.

We tend to hold up Daniel and his three friends as extraordinary people who lived amazing lives. But they were regular people, just like us. Have you ever wondered what the Lord could do in the life of an ordinary person like you or me? The determining factor is not the individual’s greatness, but rather his or her commitment to a heavenly Father who can do remarkable things in a life fully devoted to Him. That’s the kind of person God is looking for.

Although we don’t know all that God could do in and through us if we radically committed ourselves to Him, the thought of missing out on His plans should be enough to motivate us to obey. On arriving in heaven, we don’t want to discover blessings were forfeited because we weren’t fully devoted to Him.

Hey brother Keith, does Gentle Jesus have any role in these hurricanes and earthquakes that are affecting us the past few weeks? Is that some of the evidence of his unconditional love? Between his unconditional love and his power, what is stopping him from killing the storms? Why does he prefer to allow the storm to kill people?

Freedom From Enslavement

Colossians 3:5-10

Sin cannot dominate believers who throw themselves upon the Lord’s mercy—the Father is faithful to restore fellowship with His beloved children. He does this by breaking down walls that were built up through disobedience.

However, it is our job to confess the specific bondage that holds us, since denial blocks the healing and freedom God offers. Whatever the nature of our sin, the root of the problem is ultimately spiritual, not simply a weakness or social ill. Treatment meant to ease our emotional, mental, or physical discomfort will not be fully effective until we acknowledge the spiritual aspect of our difficulty.

Though sin is uniquely spiritual in nature, the reasons behind wrong behavior are often emotional. Emotions trapped deep within the believer—like insecurity, inadequacy, or lack of self-worth—drive the individual to search out ways to satisfy or escape the feelings. What results is often some form of unhealthy behavior. For instance, at one time in my own ministry experience, I allowed myself to be overextended. Out of a sense of inadequacy, I was driving myself to succeed in “God’s work,” which turned out to be the responsibilities He gave me plus anything else I thought needed doing for Him. I discovered that freedom from bondage is a choice.

As Paul explains, Jesus’ followers must lay aside their sin. For me, that meant putting away my misguided drive to succeed and taking a long rest. Through the Holy Spirit, we voluntarily surrender our chains in order to gain freedom in Christ.

Love how the good brother Keith is so absorbed in his own preaching shit that he couldn't even realize that some of us have just been through a very devastating few days with hurricanes and fires. These are the opportunities when we are able to separate the blind preachers from the people with humanity. Not even a word of well wished, hope or encouragement. Love it when fraudsters can be exposed.

Keep on preaching brother. 

Confidence in Prayer

1 John 5:14-15

Throughout the Scriptures, we are encouraged to pray. In the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus tells His disciples to keep asking, seeking, and knocking while trusting the heavenly Father to give what is good to His children (Matt. 7:7-11). And in Philippians 4:6, Paul urges us to respond to anxiety by praying about everything. Therefore, it’s obvious that God wants us to come to Him with all our needs and concerns.

Today’s passage assures us that the Lord hears and answers our prayers. However, this promise is accompanied by one very important stipulation: We must ask according to His will. But how can we know whether our request is what He desires? Much of God’s will is clearly revealed in Scripture, but what are we to do when an issue is not directly addressed in the Bible?

Though we’d like to feel confident that the Lord will hear and answer, at times our prayers seem like shots in the dark because we have no idea whether they align with His will. If we dare to admit it, there are also times when we just want God to do what we ask, without regard to what He desires.  

If we want to pray effectively, our goal should not be to offer up quick, thoughtless, or self-willed prayers in hopes of receiving speedy answers. Instead, we must learn to pray wisely and wait patiently. Along with voicing our concerns and requests to God, we should also offer ourselves up in submission to our Father, as Jesus did in Gethsemane (Matt. 26:39). When we are yielded and obedient to the Lord, His Spirit guides us and provides the wisdom we need in order to pray according to His will.

Satan’s Strategy

Luke 22:31-34, Luke 22:54-62

Every one of us makes tracks through the valley of failure. The question is, How are you going to respond? Plenty of people give up and exchange a vibrant kingdom-serving life for a defeated existence. But failure need not be the end of the story. It’s a chance for a new beginning, living in Christ’s strength.

Peter had a life-altering failure. Jesus warned that Satan had asked permission to “sift” the disciple like wheat (Luke 22:31), referring to the vigorous shaking required to separate wheat kernels from debris. The enemy wanted to shake Peter’s faith hard in hopes that he’d fall away from Jesus like chaff.

Peter believed the promise he’d made to Jesus: “Even though all may fall away, yet I will not” (Mark 14:29). But Satan knows a few things about the power of failure. He realized that the disciple would be wounded by his own disloyalty. A man with tattered pride can’t help but question his usefulness.

When Satan sifts believers, his goal is to damage our faith so much that we’re useless to the Lord. He wants us shelved far from the action of God’s kingdom. Therefore, he goes for our strengths—the areas where we believe ourselves to be invincible, or at least very well protected. And when the devil succeeds, we are disappointed and demoralized. But we don’t have to stay that way.

If we are willing, God can use our failure to do spiritual housecleaning. Peter laid down his pride and instead put on the Holy Spirit’s courage. Thereafter, he risked humiliation, persecution, and death to proclaim the gospel. Failure was the catalyst that led to greater faith and true servanthood.

This is how mixed up the world is we want God to be, "ALL LOVE" with no condemnation, no judgement. We don't want to hear about the CONSEQUENCES, we want to hear about pleasure, about God goodness but don't speak about any consequences of ungodly living because it makes us uncomfortable and we certainly don't want to hear about it. The deception is that people get along so well they don't think it's true.

This is how mixed up the Christian preacher is. He wants to talks about God's unconditional love but still is confused about whether God has unconditional love or whether God is not "ALL LOVE".

"CONSEQUENCES" are akin to buts. There is no place for buts where there is unconditional love.

The preacher is a used car salesman like Trump is.

The Blessings of a Spirit-Filled Life

1 John 2:3-6

There was a time when I was so disheartened that I wondered whether I should remain in the ministry. How could I tell people that Jesus would give them peace and joy while I felt discouraged by my own failure to be godly? I understood what “fruit of the Spirit” (Gal. 5:22-23) meant but was never sure which of those qualities, if any, would be apparent in me from day to day.

God let me stew in my anxiety until I was fully committed to finding out if His Word was true or not. I encountered my answer in a biography of Hudson Taylor, the founder of China Inland Missions. For a long time he, too, felt that his efforts fell short of the Lord’s expectations. But Taylor came to realize that God wanted believers to trust Him fully and rest on His promises. So when Jesus Christ said to abide in Him, He meant that His followers were to stop striving and struggling. Instead they were to trust Him to subdue their flesh.

As a child, I’d been taught that a person got saved and then went to work for God. You did the best you could to act in a godly manner, think right, and speak wisely. When your best wasn’t good enough, well, you tried harder. Such an impossible expectation was wearing me out, and now the idea of letting Jesus Christ work through me sounded both biblical and liberating.

A branch doesn’t bear grapes because of its determined efforts to get sunshine; rather, it simply abides in the vine, and fruit appears. The vine does all the work. In the same way, believers are to abide in the Savior so that spiritual fruit can grow in their life.

The Book of Books

Isaiah 55:9-11

Step into almost any bookstore, and you will find volumes covering every topic imaginable. Want new direction for your life? Self-help sections are extremely popular and accessible. Are your children disobeying? Parenting literature abounds. But do all of these “expert” authors have trustworthy credentials?

There is a place to find guidance and information that won’t ever mislead: The Bible will bless and benefit everyone who reads and applies its wisdom. Here’s what the Author—“the God of truth” (Isa. 65:16)—says about His own Word:

1. The Bible gives direction for life (Psalm 119:105). God uses His Word to lead us, no matter what our circumstances may be. The Holy Spirit can take even simple verses, which seem general at first glance, and apply them to our specific situation.

2. Scripture strengthens us when we grieve or face difficulty (Psalm 119:28, Psalm 119:116). By spending time processing what God says, we’re reminded that He loves us, cares about our situation, and can handle whatever we’re facing. Worry and pain turn into peace, hope, and joyful confidence.

3. God’s Word helps us understand our inner motivations (Heb. 4:12). Scripture acts like a mirror that lets us see ourselves as we truly are.

The Bible is the very mind of God put into words so that man can know his Maker more fully. In deepening our understanding of the heavenly Father, we learn how to live successfully and die unafraid. To what extent do you depend upon this amazing Book as your foundation for life?

How to Handle the Bible

Psalm 1:1-3

The value we place on something determines how we treat it. For instance, you probably wouldn’t give much thought to caring for an old shoebox. Yet if someone placed $10,000 inside before handing you that same cardboard container, you’d likely rearrange your day to protect it against damage or theft.

Once we realize the worth of Scripture, we no longer read merely out of obligation. Instead, we hunger for its revelation and life-changing power.

Here’s how you can prioritize God’s Word so that it impacts your heart and behavior. First, turn to it daily with eager expectation for what the Lord will reveal. Second, meditate upon the Word by thinking about what you’ve read and absorbing its meaning and implications. Third, study God’s truth. There are a variety of ways to do this. For example, follow a specific word through the Old and New Testaments by using a concordance or search engine. Or study an entire book by dissecting one chapter at a time. Fourth, believe what the Lord says. Fifth, obey. In other words, take what you read and apply it to your life circumstances. This often requires courage and discipline. Sixth, share what you’ve learned. Doing so will encourage others while strengthening you and sinking the lesson deep in your heart.

The Bible may look like just another book. But it is living truth that can protect and guide, pierce and encourage. It holds the story of Christ’s sacrifice and our salvation, so we can eventually dwell with the Lord in heaven. The way that we look to and depend on God’s Word will reflect to others the value we place on it.

The Witness of Suffering

1 Peter 3:13-18

We’d all like to be witnesses for Christ. If we faithfully display His righteousness, love, patience, and joy in our interactions with others, it’s logical to think they’ll be drawn to Jesus. Yet while that’s true for some, many have an opposite reaction.

Jesus called believers the light of the world and said we’re to let our light shine so men will see our good deeds and glorify God (Matt. 5:14-16). But He also said, “All who do evil hate the light” because it exposes their sin (John 3:20 NLT). Then Jesus warned that if men persecuted Him, they would also persecute His disciples (John 15:20).

History has proven Christ’s words to be true. He was hated and crucified, all His disciples except John were martyred, and throughout history Christians have been persecuted in numerous places around the globe. Yet despite all this, the church still marches forward, and people continue to be saved.

While the righteous conduct of the saints and the preaching of the gospel may not always win the lost, many have been converted by watching how Christians suffered. Foxe’s Book of Martyrs describes believers voluntarily laying down their life—even singing, praying, and praising God as they faced excruciating deaths. In parts of the world today, believers are still being faithful witnesses for Christ with their response to persecution and suffering.

Although most of us are not facing intense hatred, our lives may be an irritation to those living in darkness. When we face slander, mocking, or mistreatment because of our faith, let’s remember that a godly response may be our most effective witness.

Prashad posted:

Brother Keith go get a real job. The koolies works for their money and so should you.

The man began by stating that he is not offering a sermon but spent months doing just that. Looks like honesty is not big on bro. Keith list.

God’s Sovereignty and the Existence of Evil

Genesis 2:7-25, Genesis 3

Throughout the Bible, we see evidence of God’s authority over both humanity and nature. However, many of us have trouble reconciling God’s sovereign control with the existence of evil. Let’s look at what Scripture tells us.

In the beginning, God created a perfect world, after which He declared that all He had made was good (Gen. 1:31). Wickedness was not part of what He’d fashioned. In the heavens, however, an angel known as Satan sought to elevate himself above God and was cast down to earth (Isa. 14:12-14).

God created Adam and Eve in His image. They were made with the capacity to love their Creator and the ability to choose to obey or disobey Him. God had no desire for Adam and Eve to sin (James 1:13), but He allowed their will to be tested. We know the rest of the story. When they disobeyed God, sin entered our world and corrupted mankind. As Adam and Eve’s descendants, we inherited a sinful nature (Rom. 5:12).

The Lord’s permissive will allowed events to unfold as they have. God did not create evil, but He has permitted it to exist and uses it to accomplish His good purposes (Isa. 45:6-7).

When you have questions or doubts about the Lord’s sovereignty, start with what you do understand, study what God has revealed about Himself and His ways, and ask the Holy Spirit to help you believe. A few answers to your questions will come quickly, while some will require diligent study and spiritual maturity. As for the answers to other questions, which God has chosen to keep hidden, we are to walk by faith (Deut. 29:29).

God’s Response to Sinful Behavior

Genesis 20:1-16

Despite appearances, evil men are not in control of our world; God is. How does our sovereign Lord respond to sin?

At times He allows sin to run its full course. After the exodus, He promised Israel abundant blessings if they were obedient (Psalm 81:10). When they persistently disobeyed, He “gave them over to the stubbornness of their heart” (Psalm 81:12). God remained in control but chose to let the nation experience the consequences of continued rebellion. He deals with individuals the same way (Rom. 1:24, Rom. 1:28). Apart from Jesus Christ, the end result of sin is eternal death (Rom. 3:23).

At other times, God stops the sinful behavior completely. When Abraham lied about Sarah being his wife, the king of Gerar brought her into his household for himself. Abraham’s lie—“she is my sister”—put the king at risk. God intervened and prevented any further sinful action from taking place. For believers, God limits the intensity, scope, and time we have to deal with a particular temptation (1 Corinthians 10:13). For those who have rejected Jesus Christ, there is no such promise.

To believe the heavenly Father is sovereign, we must embrace certain truths: His thoughts and ways are superior to ours (Isa. 55:8-9); He always keeps His promises (2 Corinthians 1:20); His perfect character is unchanging (James 1:17); and He has control over everything, including times of blessing and disaster (Isa. 45:7).

The next time you are confronted with the effects of sin, remember these important truths, and look to God with trusting faith.

ksazma posted:

There are kids buried under concrete rubble in Mexico. All due to an act of God. How does that match up with this "unconditionally loving God" nonsense?

Due to your ignorance, I will response to your questions on this issue. We all notice that tragedies cause many people to question God’s goodness as we can see from your post above. It is distressing that natural disasters are often termed "acts of God" as you put it, while no credit is given to God for years, decades, or even centuries of peaceful weather. God created the whole universe and the laws of nature, read Genesis 1:1 for reference. Most natural disasters are a result of these laws at work. Hurricanes, typhoons, and tornados are the results of divergent weather patterns colliding. Earthquakes are the result of the earth's plate structure shifting. A tsunami is caused by an underwater earthquake.

The Bible proclaims in Colossians 1:16-17 that Jesus Christ holds all of nature together. Could God prevent natural disasters? Absolutely! Does God sometimes influence the weather? Yes, as we see in Deuteronomy 11:17 and James 5:17. Numbers 16:30-34 shows us that God sometimes causes natural disasters as a judgment against sin. The book of Revelation describes many events which could definitely be described as natural disasters in Revelation chapters 6, 8, and 16. Is every natural disaster a punishment from God? Absolutely not.

In much the same way that God allows (allow! NOT influence) evil people to commit evil acts, God allows the earth to reflect the consequences sin has had on creation. Romans 8:19-21 tells us, "The creation waits in eager expectation for the sons of God to be revealed. For the creation was subjected to frustration, not by its own choice, but by the will of the one who subjected it, in hope that the creation itself will be liberated from its bondage to decay and brought into the glorious freedom of the children of God." The fall of humanity into sin had effects on everything, including the world we inhabit. Everything in creation is subject to frustration and decay. Sin is the ultimate cause of natural disasters just as it is the cause of death, disease, and suffering.

We can understand why natural disasters occur. What we do not understand is why God allows them to occur. Why did God allow the tsunami to kill over 225,000 people in Asia? Why did God allow Hurricane Irma to destroy the homes of thousands across the Caribbean? For one thing, such events shake our confidence in this life and force us to think about eternity. Churches are usually filled after disasters as people realize how tenuous their lives really are and how life can be taken away in an instant. What we do know is this, God is good! Many amazing miracles occurred during the course of natural disasters that prevented even greater loss of life. Natural disasters cause millions of people to reevaluate their priorities in life. Hundreds of millions of dollars in aid is sent to help the people who are suffering. Christian ministries have the opportunity to help, minister, counsel, pray, and lead people to saving faith in Christ! God can, and does, bring great good out of terrible tragedies (Romans 8:28).

Now explain to us does the God you serve has unconditional love? Why/why not? What is the Muslim community doing concerning all these natural disasters that's going on around us? Next time you get that urge of making spectacle of yourself and displaying ignorance think twice.

Love how the good brother Keith finds it necessary to prelude what he writes with "due to your ignorance". Seems like a very Christian thing to do.

Now explain what those kids did to your God that he feels the drunken desire to hurt them. Guess that is what an unconditionally loving father would do.

ksazma posted:

So god's way of getting people into churches is to f uck with little children lives. Sounds like what an unconditionally loving father would do.

Here is my take on all this. I am muslim. When my father passed away after 4 months in the hospital I had a lot of questions and a lot more anger. A very good family friend and distant relative sat down with me and told me that muslims believe that when someone suffers on Earth, they are basically paying for their sins here and not later in the afterlife. I don't know if the same applies here and if so what sins those children could have committed to have paid the ultimate price.

GTAngler posted:
ksazma posted:

So god's way of getting people into churches is to f uck with little children lives. Sounds like what an unconditionally loving father would do.

Here is my take on all this. I am muslim. When my father passed away after 4 months in the hospital I had a lot of questions and a lot more anger. A very good family friend and distant relative sat down with me and told me that muslims believe that when someone suffers on Earth, they are basically paying for their sins here and not later in the afterlife. I don't know if the same applies here and if so what sins those children could have committed to have paid the ultimate price.

GT, as a Muslim you know that everyone is born sinless so it is difficult to think that these kids are paying for their sins.

That said, it is a bigger problem for folks like Bro Keith who seeks to trick people into buying the nonsense of an unconditionally loving father when all the evidence is of a vengeful god. Folks like him are like used cars salesmen.

Keith posted:

 

We can understand why natural disasters occur. What we do not understand is why God allows them to occur. Why did God allow the tsunami to kill over 225,000 people in Asia? Why did God allow Hurricane Irma to destroy the homes of thousands across the Caribbean? For one thing, such events shake our confidence in this life and force us to think about eternity. Churches are usually filled after disasters as people realize how tenuous their lives really are and how life can be taken away in an instant. What we do know is this, God is good! Many amazing miracles occurred during the course of natural disasters that prevented even greater loss of life. Natural disasters cause millions of people to reevaluate their priorities in life. Hundreds of millions of dollars in aid is sent to help the people who are suffering. Christian ministries have the opportunity to help, minister, counsel, pray, and lead people to saving faith in Christ! 

So the Christian preachers are having massive orgasms over these tragedies. They get the opportunity to entrap vulnerable people recovering from the tragedies. Just like predators who entrap vulnerable women after a breakup.

GTAngler posted:

Here is my take on all this. I am muslim. When my father passed away after 4 months in the hospital I had a lot of questions and a lot more anger. A very good family friend and distant relative sat down with me and told me that muslims believe that when someone suffers on Earth, they are basically paying for their sins here and not later in the afterlife. I don't know if the same applies here and if so what sins those children could have committed to have paid the ultimate price.

GTAngler, First my condolences to you and your family on the lost your dad. I pray that God will continue to comfort your family and draw everyone much more closer in love and unity. 

A bit about myself, I'm a Christian, I'm NOT a religious leader nor am I a bible scholar. I attend church listening to the sermon(s) being preach, I study God's word and apply it (I try to) in my life. Therefore I am just a church goer per say. I study God word for my own benefit so that likes of our friend ksazma or Christian preacher themselves would not bring forth any foreign doctrine to me; I also do this for correctness. I do have a career 9-5 job M-F.

I have took the liberty of highlighting a few lines from your statement above because I want to address those. Your family friend is right, "when someone suffers on Earth, they are basically paying for their sins" or sin from pass generations. There is a saying that goes, "We reap what we sow, more than we sow, and later than we sow". The effects of sin are naturally passed down from one generation to the next. When a father has a sinful lifestyle, his children are likely to practice the same sinful lifestyle. The children will choose to repeat the sins of their fathers and that develops into a generational curse.

The cure for a generational curse has always been repentance. When Israel turned from idols to serve the living God, the "curse" was broken and God saved them according to Judges 3:9, 15; 1 Samuel 12:10-11. Yes, God promised to visit Israel’s sin upon the third and fourth generations, but in the very next verse He promised that He would show "love to a thousand generations of those who love me and keep my commandments", Exodus 20:6. In other words, God’s grace lasts a thousand times longer than His wrath.

After you have departed this earth will come your judgement to determine where you would spend your afterlife, in heaven or hell. We all have to face the judgement and give an account of the life we live here on this earth.

Being born sinners results in the fact that we all sin. Notice the progression in Romans 5:12, sin entered the world through Adam, death follows sin, death comes to all people, all people sin because they inherit sin from Adam. Because "all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God", Romans 3:23, we need a perfect, sinless sacrifice to wash away our sin, something we are powerless to do on our own.

Now if we both were born sinless then there is no need for us to die because as stated in the above paragraph, because of SIN comes DEATH. So I've to ask, why is there death if there is no sin? Please don't answer it's a rhetorical question.

"For just as through the disobedience of the one man the many were made sinners, so also through the obedience of the one man the many will be made righteous." God is just in applying Adam’s sin to the entire human race, and He is just in applying Jesus Christ’s death to all who will receive Him by faith.

So in a nutshell we the children could be suffering due to the life our grandparents and their parents and even the parents before lived. How do we break this cycle? By repentance and training up a child to admonition God so that the generations to come will seek God and walk according to His will.

Keith posted:

 

I study God word for my own benefit so that likes of our friend ksazma or Christian preacher themselves would not bring forth any foreign doctrine to me; I also do this for correctness. I do have a career 9-5 job M-F..

Still being dishonest. If you study God's word for your own benefit, why are you posting them here? Is posting them here how they benefit you? Why do you feel the need to bring foreign doctrines to other s when you have already decided that no one would bring any foreign doctrine to you? Why seek to impose your endless sermons on others?

Oh and by the way, death is not the result of sin. That is a Biblical mistake. You thump your chest and claim that Jesus died. Yet you insist that he was sinless. Go figure your confusion. Anything that experiences birth will experience death. That is the natural process of things. Even plants and animals die. What sins do they commit?

Perhaps you need to expand your reading since your view of the world is extremely limited.

cain posted:

So because a parent or grand parent commits a sin, God, in all his wisdom places the blame at the child's feet. Not my type of God, my God wouldn't be that much a moron. 

Exactly. And the good brother likes to refer to that God as the unconditionally loving father.

We read in the Bible that God promises to punish a person for their sins up to their fourth generation. That is almost a whole 100 years that that unconditionally loving father holds a grudge for a single infraction.

Two of Noah's sons laughed at Noah because he was drunk and naked. So who did God put the sin on? The grandson of the son who did not laugh and who actually covered his naked father. That is one strange unconditionally loving (but weird) father.

The Source of Guilt

2 Corinthians 7:9-10

I once read a survey that asked 500 people what emotions they felt when experiencing guilt. The answers were heartbreaking. Respondents reported feeling punished, depressed, worthless, rejected, and isolated. Many were overwhelmed by a general sense of low self-esteem. There was no joy, no hope, and no vitality. In a sense, it was as though the feelings of guilt had completely blotted out everything else in their life.

This seems like such a sad way to exist, and yet it’s safe to assume that we all—even those of us who are believers—have experienced these exact same emotions. In fact, you may be dealing with intense guilt right now. If so, let’s consider one simple question: Where does it come from?

In 2 Corinthians 7:10, we see two forms of guilt. One is a sorrow that comes from God. This call to repentance is a tool the Lord uses to draw unbelievers to Himself through salvation in Christ. It also motivates believers to confess any wrongs causing “interference” in their fellowship with Him.

A second form of guilt is the dark emotion that plagues people with remorse and the reactions mentioned on the survey. Such sorrow isn’t from God at all, but from the world.

If you’ve received Jesus’ free gift of salvation but still struggle under the assault of guilt, let Scripture assure you: These feelings didn’t come from God. He is not attacking you. Rather, He holds the keys to your freedom. Don’t fall victim to the enemy’s lies. In Christ, you are forgiven and free. Lay down your chains today.

cain posted:

So because a parent or grand parent commits a sin, God, in all his wisdom places the blame at the child's feet. Not my type of God, my God wouldn't be that much a moron. 

You clearly misunderstood the point.

"When a father(or PARENTS for that matter) has a sinful lifestyle, his children are likely to practice the same sinful lifestyle. The children will choose to repeat the sins of their fathers and that develops into a generational curse."

An example of what I mention above would be Jonathan Edwards, the Puritan Preacher from the 1700s. Jonathan and his wife Sarah left a great godly legacy for his 11 children.

At the turn of the 20th century, American educator and pastor A.E. Winship decided to trace out the descendants of Jonathan Edwards almost 150 years after his death.  His findings are astounding, especially when compared to a man known as Max Jukes. Jukes’ legacy came to the forefront when the family trees of 42 different men in the New York prison system traced back to him.

Jonathan Edwards’ godly legacy includes: 1 U.S. Vice-President, 3 U.S. Senators, 3 governors, 3 mayors, 13 college presidents, 30 judges, 65 professors, 80 public office holders, 100 lawyers and 100 missionaries.

Max Jukes’ descendants included: 7 murderers, 60 thieves, 50 women of debauchery, 130 other convicts. 310 paupers (with over 2,300 years lived in poorhouses) 400 who were physically wrecked by indulgent living.

It was estimated that Max Juke’s descendants cost the state more than $1,250,000.

Sources:
https://thinkgospel.wordpress....st-in-family-legacy/
http://archive.org/stream/juke...ds15623gut/15623.txt
http://www.rfrick.info/jukes.htm

ksazma posted:

Based on bro Keith's logic, if you are a baker, all your descendants will be bakers. How does that work out for y'all? Religion is how you control stupid people.

We already know how shallow you are when it comes to comprehending what's being discuss. You love evading questions and comes up with precipitous ignorance. Quit making a spectacle of yourself.

ksazma posted:

Based on bro Keith's logic, if you are a baker, all your descendants will be bakers. How does that work out for y'all? Religion is how you control stupid people.

To entertain your foolishness here lets see what a baker descendants might look like for generation to come.

Baker start selling from within his/her home, then spawn other family Bakers who now own their own shops, then their descendants open their own brand name shop(s) (entrepreneurship), now there is a family franchise, the baker descendants sits on the board as board member of the baker company and also has descendent who's a CEO of the company. Impressive. ;)

Keith posted:
ksazma posted:

Based on bro Keith's logic, if you are a baker, all your descendants will be bakers. How does that work out for y'all? Religion is how you control stupid people.

To entertain your foolishness here lets see what a baker descendants might look like for generation to come.

Baker start selling from within his/her home, then spawn other family Bakers who now own their own shops, then their descendants open their own brand name shop(s) (entrepreneurship), now there is a family franchise, the baker descendants sits on the board as board member of the baker company and also has descendent who's a CEO of the company. Impressive. ;)

Only in your narrow mind dude. There are farmers whose children are doctors. Secondly, a baker who start selling baked products from his/her home will not spawn others to also sell baked products. That will only result in too much baked products in that neighborhood and no other types of goods or services. Terrible formula that only a Christian preacher can concoct.

Keith posted:
ksazma posted:

Based on bro Keith's logic, if you are a baker, all your descendants will be bakers. How does that work out for y'all? Religion is how you control stupid people.

We already know how shallow you are when it comes to comprehending what's being discuss. You love evading questions and comes up with precipitous ignorance. Quit making a spectacle of yourself.

You sound like Trump. Who is this "we" and how do this "we already know"? My only objective is to consolidate that from your very first utterance, you chose to deceive. You don't discuss anything here dude. All you do is post sermons. On a topic where you initially declared that you will not post sermons.

Keith posted:
cain posted:

So because a parent or grand parent commits a sin, God, in all his wisdom places the blame at the child's feet. Not my type of God, my God wouldn't be that much a moron. 

You clearly misunderstood the point.

"When a father(or PARENTS for that matter) has a sinful lifestyle, his children are likely to practice the same sinful lifestyle. The children will choose to repeat the sins of their fathers and that develops into a generational curse."

An example of what I mention above would be Jonathan Edwards, the Puritan Preacher from the 1700s. Jonathan and his wife Sarah left a great godly legacy for his 11 children.

At the turn of the 20th century, American educator and pastor A.E. Winship decided to trace out the descendants of Jonathan Edwards almost 150 years after his death.  His findings are astounding, especially when compared to a man known as Max Jukes. Jukes’ legacy came to the forefront when the family trees of 42 different men in the New York prison system traced back to him.

Jonathan Edwards’ godly legacy includes: 1 U.S. Vice-President, 3 U.S. Senators, 3 governors, 3 mayors, 13 college presidents, 30 judges, 65 professors, 80 public office holders, 100 lawyers and 100 missionaries.

Max Jukes’ descendants included: 7 murderers, 60 thieves, 50 women of debauchery, 130 other convicts. 310 paupers (with over 2,300 years lived in poorhouses) 400 who were physically wrecked by indulgent living.

It was estimated that Max Juke’s descendants cost the state more than $1,250,000.

Sources:
https://thinkgospel.wordpress....st-in-family-legacy/
http://archive.org/stream/juke...ds15623gut/15623.txt
http://www.rfrick.info/jukes.htm

We went through something like this before. Some of the info on Mac Juke is incorrect and I wouldn't go so far to say that being a VP, Governor,Mayor, Judge, Lawyer etc means they are godly..good Lord man. Better yet, my dad was quite an alcoholic, worked in the interior involved in sawmill/logging business. I have never seen much of the interior, dont work in logging, do not touch alcohol. Should I punish for whatever actions my father may have done because some nitwit decided that?

 

The greatest fallacy preached by Christian preachers is that we are born with sin. A new baby comes into this world and doesn't even know how to breathe. He or she has to be slapped so they can cry so they can start breathing. They can't talk, walk, eat, etc. They can't do anything. How then can they already have sin? I am not religious but I like the other approach that teaches that every new born person comes into this world free of any burden that came before it. They create their own record, either good or bad. It is also a fallacy that people are more prone to doing bad than good. The opposite is actually true. When someone intends to do something virtuous, they do so quickly and easily. On the other hand, when someone intends to do something bad or sinful, they are hesitant and uneasy. And even after they commit that act, they are restless.

See Bro Keith. This is how thought and discussions are done. This is what you should have done instead of posting sermons ad nauseam. Then your actions would have mated your sworn statement.

What Is Guilt?

Romans 5:6-11

Guilt is something with which we’re all familiar. Oftentimes, Christians wear it like a badge of honor, in some misguided effort to demonstrate humility. But this is a misunderstanding that poisons the church and steals the joy of Christ from believers. It’s worth taking the time to stop and ask the question, “What is guilt?”

When we see the term in English translations of the Bible, we tend to apply a worldly interpretation of the passage. In the context of the world, guilt refers to feelings of remorse, depression, or rejection over some event from the past. Scripturally speaking, however, the word is used only to denote responsibility. The word is not associated with feelings of shame or rejection; instead, it is more of a legal term, as when a court finds an offender “guilty.”

What does this mean for the believer? Well, we should already know that we have been found guilty—we all have an enormous sin debt that we could never pay. However, Jesus Christ took that guilt upon Himself at the cross, and He paid our debt in full. We need to realize that if He has already paid our debt and released us from liability, then we are no longer guilty. Yes, we have been tried, but we’ve been declared forgiven.

The Lord doesn’t want us to hide the joy of our salvation beneath a smothering blanket of guilt. Rather, we are called to rejoice in the glorious redemption that Christ’s sacrifice made possible. For this reason, we can proudly proclaim, “So if the Son makes you free, you will be free indeed” (John 8:36). Go, and be free today.

ksazma posted:
Keith posted:
ksazma posted:

Based on bro Keith's logic, if you are a baker, all your descendants will be bakers. How does that work out for y'all? Religion is how you control stupid people.

To entertain your foolishness here lets see what a baker descendants might look like for generation to come.

Baker start selling from within his/her home, then spawn other family Bakers who now own their own shops, then their descendants open their own brand name shop(s) (entrepreneurship), now there is a family franchise, the baker descendants sits on the board as board member of the baker company and also has descendent who's a CEO of the company. Impressive. ;)

Only in your narrow mind dude. There are farmers whose children are doctors. Secondly, a baker who start selling baked products from his/her home will not spawn others to also sell baked products. That will only result in too much baked products in that neighborhood and no other types of goods or services. Terrible formula that only a Christian preacher can concoct.

You are slow but you are catching on. Jonathan Edwards generations just didn't continue on with preachers, likewise I didn't expect the baker generation to do the same but I analyze that way for simplicity.

The point of all this is to teach our generation good morals and raise them up with respect and integrity. We just don't need to only teach it but to live it out in front of them as well so they, the children can see it. You raise them up in a Mosque, Church or Temple, they will continue with that path doing the same for their children, you raise them up instilling the value of a good education, the trend will continue spawning outstanding citizens.

seignet posted:

Perhaps, it is more like, an infant will eventually sin as adult. Being in a sinful world, it rubs off or on-which ever. Maybe, born into sin means entering into a world inundated with sinful acts by grown men and women.

I don't think ksazma will ever comprehend that. That's a mouth full being said that he cannot wrap his head around.

Keith posted:
ksazma posted:
Keith posted:
ksazma posted:

Based on bro Keith's logic, if you are a baker, all your descendants will be bakers. How does that work out for y'all? Religion is how you control stupid people.

To entertain your foolishness here lets see what a baker descendants might look like for generation to come.

Baker start selling from within his/her home, then spawn other family Bakers who now own their own shops, then their descendants open their own brand name shop(s) (entrepreneurship), now there is a family franchise, the baker descendants sits on the board as board member of the baker company and also has descendent who's a CEO of the company. Impressive. ;)

Only in your narrow mind dude. There are farmers whose children are doctors. Secondly, a baker who start selling baked products from his/her home will not spawn others to also sell baked products. That will only result in too much baked products in that neighborhood and no other types of goods or services. Terrible formula that only a Christian preacher can concoct.

You are slow but you are catching on. Jonathan Edwards generations just didn't continue on with preachers, likewise I didn't expect the baker generation to do the same but I analyze that way for simplicity.

The point of all this is to teach our generation good morals and raise them up with respect and integrity. We just don't need to only teach it but to live it out in front of them as well so they, the children can see it. You raise them up in a Mosque, Church or Temple, they will continue with that path doing the same for their children, you raise them up instilling the value of a good education, the trend will continue spawning outstanding citizens.

Evidently it does not keep church members from being dishonest.

Keith posted:
seignet posted:

Perhaps, it is more like, an infant will eventually sin as adult. Being in a sinful world, it rubs off or on-which ever. Maybe, born into sin means entering into a world inundated with sinful acts by grown men and women.

I don't think ksazma will ever comprehend that. That's a mouth full being said that he cannot wrap his head around.

I take pride in the fact that I am not gullible. Pies in the skies preaching is worthless.

Uniting Belief and Behavior

Acts 24:14-16

If we understand that we are sinners saved by grace, we may find ourselves struggling with the idea of a “blameless conscience” (Acts 24:16). After all, we know our own hearts and motivations. Yet the apostle Paul found a way to ensure that his conscience commended rather than condemned him. What was his secret? Paying attention to his beliefs and his behavior.

In today’s passage, Paul pleaded his case before the Roman governor Felix, offering the consistency of his faith and behavior as evidence of innocence. His actions were determined by his convictions—namely, that he served the God of his fathers, and God would raise the dead to judgment. Together, these two firm beliefs helped him maintain a clear conscience

As a student of Christ, Paul knew that our deeds flow from who we are on the inside. In the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus described conditions of the heart and illustrated with practical applications. He was saying His followers would be “the light of the world” because of their work, but the work begins in the heart (Matt. 5:14-16; Luke 6:45).

Too often, Christians focus on doing the right things, rather than on the underlying beliefs that drive such behavior. We can give, serve, or in some other way act “good,” but unless we pay attention to the convictions motivating our actions, we may end up with an unclean conscience after all. If, however, we submit to God and allow Him to transform us from the inside out, then our consciences and our testimony will be strong and clear. We will be able to speak the truth through our deeds.

What assurances do we have that our submissions are accepted by God? We see many instances where preachers brag that they are saved by God only to later cry out that Satan has deceived them. Clearly at the time that they bragged that they are saved by God, they really weren't. Clearly they were mistaken by leaning on false hopes.

Caring With Our Conscience

1 Corinthians 8:9-12

How do you approach your decisions—by thinking primarily of yourself? Or do you consider how your actions will affect the beliefs and lives of others? Since coming to faith, we all have had to discipline our conscience for it to grow stronger. It is also important to use discernment so we can avoid wounding a weaker believer.

Some Christians never stop to think that their choices can hurt or destroy someone else’s faith. They justify their behavior, saying God doesn’t convict them for it. While they don’t necessarily indulge in sinful acts, their spiritual defenses have grown strong enough to let them do things they wouldn’t have done in the early stages of their spiritual walk. These believers fail to realize that younger Christians are watching how they live out their faith. When “weaker” ones follow the example they see, their ship of faith may capsize because of a conscience that is troubled or confused rather than strengthened.

Paul blames the “stronger” Christian for these shipwrecks. He says we’re responsible not only for our actions, but also for the effect of those actions. In the end, we are to care more about the “brother for whose sake Christ died” than about our own wants or desires (1 Cor. 8:11).

Because our faith is on display before the world, God promises rewards but insists on responsibility. One of the rewards is freedom from condemnation. But that freedom doesn’t mean license to do as we please without considering those who watch our example. Through the Spirit, we must discern the greater good and act on it.

Avoiding Compromise

Proverbs 2:1-22

Although the temptation to compromise threatens every believer, we don’t have to give in to it. If we’re aware of the danger and understand the downward progression and consequences, we can remain vigilant and stay on track.

The first step in learning how to avoid compromise is understanding why we find it so tempting. When others pressure us to take part in what we know God has forbidden, giving in becomes easy because we don’t want to feel rejected. But anyone who’s committed to living a godly life must be willing to stand alone and face ridicule or even persecution (2 Tim. 3:12). At other times, in an effort to avoid conflict, we may consent to activities that violate our conscience—then seeking peace at any price can result in disobedience.

The temptation to compromise, however, doesn’t always originate with others; we can be carried away by our own desires. Many Christians have fallen into sexual immorality or pornography, and others are motivated to give in because of greed. If you alter details on your income tax or take a few things home from the office, you’ve stepped over the line of obedience to the Lord. Our choices should be based on scriptural truth, not on our feelings and desires.

In order to stand firm against compromise, it is important to seek wisdom in Scripture and let it set the standard for your conduct. If you begin each day with God in His Word, He will guide your way. Then when the Holy Spirit gives a warning, obey immediately, because giving consideration to the temptation opens a door for Satan.

Spiritual Maturity

Isaiah 48:10

The world’s way is to choose the strongest and smartest individuals to accomplish tasks. In contrast, the Lord often selects the weakest, who have nothing to offer except total reliance upon Him. This dependency on God is what characterizes the mature in faith.

Such maturity isn’t automatic. Our Father patiently meets people where they are but lovingly refuses to let His children stagnate. Instead, He helps us to grow more and more like His Son (2 Corinthians 3:18). As followers of Christ, we must let go of old ways, ideas, and motivations. The Holy Spirit illuminates our understanding and lets us see from God’s perspective. Then, the Lord can build in us a dependence on Himself and a submission to His Spirit. Transformation is often gradual, but God sometimes will allow difficulty and pain to develop our reliance upon Him.

Consider biblical models of faith. Sarah and Abraham dealt with infertility for many years prior to receiving the promised child (Gen. 21:1-2). Joseph was sold into slavery and wrongly imprisoned before he spared his nation from the effects of famine (Gen. 45:5). To take on God’s assignment of raising the baby Jesus, Mary risked accusations of immorality (Matt. 1:18-19), and her husband Joseph followed God’s inconvenient command to flee areas of danger (Matt. 2:13, Matt. 2:22). These people all faced hardships and brokenness, which allowed them to recognize both their own inability and God’s ability.

What’s standing in your way of full submission to the Lord? His desire for you is to learn to depend on Him so that in your weakness, He will be strong.

Keith posted:

What’s standing in your way of full submission to the Lord? His desire for you is to learn to depend on Him so that in your weakness, He will be strong.

Sayyyy what, God doesn't have time for strong willed persons? He/she wants only the weak so they have to depend on help only then God can be perceived being strong?

cain posted:
Keith posted:

What’s standing in your way of full submission to the Lord? His desire for you is to learn to depend on Him so that in your weakness, He will be strong.

Sayyyy what, God doesn't have time for strong willed persons? He/she wants only the weak so they have to depend on help only then God can be perceived being strong?

The preachers don't have time for the strong-willed persons. It's tough for them to convince these strong-willed persons to dole out cash and give it to them. The con artists look for the poor, the unfortunate, and the weak so they can inject the fear of God into them. All they care about is the almighty dollar so they can live the luxurious lives off the poor. Jim Baker, Franklin Graham, Jimmy Swaggart.....

Mary did not risk accusations of morality to give birth to Jesus. She and her husband went into hiding until after the baby was born. If she was truly risking accusations she would have stayed where she lived and tell anyone accusing her of morality that it is her p ussy and she will do whatever she please with it. It is just like the lie preachers tell of Jesus laying down his life when the truth was that he did so only because he had no say in the matter. He can be heard complaining all the time and even lost faith in God accusing God of forsaking him.

A Helper for All Occasions

John 14:16-18

Have you ever wished there were some kind of emergency telephone that rang in heaven, allowing you to access God anytime you wanted? Well, in a way there is. We all face situations that cause us to cry out to God for help. And He has given us a Helper for all circumstances.

Even the disciples, who received Jesus’ personal teaching, could not live successfully without divine aid. That is why the Lord insisted they wait in Jerusalem for the Holy Spirit to come before beginning to share their faith. Jesus told them, “It is to your advantage that I go away; for if I do not go away, the Helper will not come to you” (John 16:7).

While Jesus was living on the earth, He couldn’t simultaneously be with everyone who needed Him. Now, however, God’s help is readily available through the Holy Spirit, who indwells all believers and is constantly present with each one.

Thanks to the Spirit, every Christian can become the person God designed him or her to be. Through the Helper’s knowledge and power, we can be devoted Christ-followers, even in a corrupt culture. The Spirit’s work includes opening our minds to God’s truth, providing supernatural energy when we are weary, and comforting us during heartache.

God loves people so much that He provided an ever-present Helper to all who place their faith in Jesus Christ. When we are in trouble or in need, we can call upon the Holy Spirit and instantly connect to the power of our heavenly Father.

Our Helper in Prayer

Romans 8:26-27

The Holy Spirit is a practical helper. He is part of the Trinity, which means He’s one with the Father and the Son Jesus Christ. And He is all-powerful and all-knowing, just like the other two members of the Godhead. In other words, the Spirit dwelling within us knows exactly what God in heaven wills for our life.

Since even the most intelligent people operate with limited knowledge, it is wise to depend upon the Holy Spirit’s guidance, especially in prayer. We do not know what the future holds; as a result, our desires may not fit God’s plan. Or it might never occur to us to request something that the Lord knows we will eventually need.

There are believers who give up on prayer because our human limitations prevent fully understanding how it works. But those who stop communicating with God miss out on the awesome work of the Spirit. He directs our prayers, impresses upon our hearts the truth about what we have asked, and ultimately opens our minds to God’s will.

Believers never have to worry about offering up a wrong prayer. In our humanness, we often ask for something that we think will satisfy our fleshly need. But the Holy Spirit won’t present a request that goes against the Father’s will. Instead, He intercedes to ask for what is right. And at the same time, He whispers to our heart that what we have requested is not suitable.

If God’s will is our true desire, then we’ll be sensitive to the Holy Spirit’s guidance. He is our prayer link to the heavenly Father, and where He leads, we must follow.

When God Is Silent

John 11:1-27

Have you ever felt as if God were giving you the silent treatment? Perhaps you prayed and asked Him to give you direction for your life but didn’t hear a thing. Maybe you are going through some physical illness or a family problem, and nothing’s happening even though you’ve pleaded with God.

How do you respond when the Lord doesn’t appear to be answering your prayers? Do you take advantage of the opportunity to learn something from the experience, or do you simply conclude that He is ignoring you? Typical responses are disappointment (God let me down), discouragement (I should stop praying), confusion (Where is God?), feelings of guilt (I did something wrong), anger (God isn’t faithful!) and fear (God has deserted me).

Today’s passage gives us a good example of a time when the Lord seemed unconcerned with the life of someone He loved. On hearing that His friend was sick and about to die, Jesus delayed doing anything for two days! His disciples and the dying man’s sisters—Mary and Martha—no doubt wondered why Jesus seemed not to care. Yet they continued to trust Him, and ultimately their faith was strengthened.

When we can’t hear God, it doesn’t mean He’s asleep or unaware of our circumstances. It also doesn’t mean He is going to deny our request. However, He wants us to have an intimate relationship with Him that is independent of how He responds to our prayers—we must love Him just because He is God. Consider the basis of your love for the Lord, and ask Him to help you make it unconditional.

Keith posted:

When God Is Silent

John 11:1-27

Have you ever felt as if God were giving you the silent treatment? Perhaps you prayed and asked Him to give you direction for your life but didn’t hear a thing. Maybe you are going through some physical illness or a family problem, and nothing’s happening even though you’ve pleaded with God.

How do you respond when the Lord doesn’t appear to be answering your prayers? Do you take advantage of the opportunity to learn something from the experience, or do you simply conclude that He is ignoring you? Typical responses are disappointment (God let me down), discouragement (I should stop praying), confusion (Where is God?), feelings of guilt (I did something wrong), anger (God isn’t faithful!) and fear (God has deserted me).

Today’s passage gives us a good example of a time when the Lord seemed unconcerned with the life of someone He loved. On hearing that His friend was sick and about to die, Jesus delayed doing anything for two days! His disciples and the dying man’s sisters—Mary and Martha—no doubt wondered why Jesus seemed not to care. Yet they continued to trust Him, and ultimately their faith was strengthened.

When we can’t hear God, it doesn’t mean He’s asleep or unaware of our circumstances. It also doesn’t mean He is going to deny our request. However, He wants us to have an intimate relationship with Him that is independent of how He responds to our prayers—we must love Him just because He is God. Consider the basis of your love for the Lord, and ask Him to help you make it unconditional.

So these fanatical Christians don't have an intimate relationship with God? Don't they love him? What about your heroes, Franklin Graham, Bob Jones, Jimmy Swaggart, and the rest of the holier than thou group? These people don't have an intimate relationship with God? If not, who is their God then? Jimmy Swaggart's hoe? He seemed to have a very intimate relationship with her.

Effective Prayer for Others

Colossians 1:11-12

One of the disciples saw Jesus praying and made the request, “Lord, teach us to pray” (Luke 11:1). If Christ’s close associates needed instruction, then surely we, too, must learn about prayer. Thankfully, there are many examples in Scripture for us to follow, such as the passage we looked at yesterday.

Paul’s first-century requests for the people of Colossae are not only still applicable; they’re also instructive in terms of types of petitions to make on behalf of others. For instance, Paul prayed that these people would know God (Col. 1:10). In other words, he wanted them to grow in the Lord and not stagnate in their faith. This transformation takes place by studying the Word, applying biblical principles, and heeding the consequences of obedience.

Another plea was for the Colossians to experience God’s power (v. 11). The apostle wanted them to have the Lord’s supernatural energy and the strength they’d need to carry out His will. What is impossible by man’s effort becomes possible when believers rely on God. Then the glory rightly goes to Him.

Finally, Paul asked that they would give thanks joyously (vv. 11-12). This indicates the apostle’s hope that they would exhibit the proper attitude, expressing gratefulness even during difficult situations.

In church, we often hear people asking for prayer. And many believers make a prayer list so they don’t forget to intercede for certain individuals during the week. Using Paul’s example, we can be confident that we are praying for those on our list in a manner that pleases the Lord and aligns with His will.

Forsaking Anger

Ephesians 4:30-32

A righteous life has no room for lingering anger, whether in the form of rage or resentment. Fury that hardens in our hearts becomes a stronghold for Satan.

The fleshly method for “curing” wrath is to either let it out or suppress it. Neither is effective for solving problems or relieving the anger. However, God’s way of dealing with this dangerous emotion dissolves it and sets the believer free. As today’s passage reminds us, we are to “let all bitterness and wrath and anger and clamor and slander be put away from [us], along with all malice” (v. 31).

Whether we are annoyed at ourselves, another person, or God, we have to own that feeling. Pretending that the emotion doesn’t exist or that we’ve somehow risen above anger is useless. If you’re angry, admit it and then identify the source. Knowing who or what ignited the initial fury can prevent people from misdirecting irritation onto the innocent.

Here are some questions to help in identifying a source of anger:

• Why am I angry? At whom am I angry?
• What caused me to feel/act this way?
• Where or when did this feeling start?
• Have I been angry a long time?

Once we know the source of our anger, it’s time to forgive. Fury and unforgiveness often go together, and both will drag us down. God calls us to set them aside and take up love and kindness instead. Forsaking anger means walking in His will with a light step.

ksazma posted:

What about all the anger that Jesus displayed when he walked the earth? Like the time he got upset and overturned the tables of the money changers? Maybe your preacher can teach Jesus a thing or two about anger management.

I remember hearing that one. The banna was really pissed at dem for selling crap without a vendors permit so he cuss dem up an' buss up the place.

The Danger of Anger

Ephesians 4:26-27

Yesterday we learned how to deal with anger in our life. Today we’ll discover God’s principle for preventing long-term bitterness. The key is to deal with this emotion promptly.

It’s important to realize that believers can have moments of anger and still remain right with God. Yet anger that lingers and festers is an opportunity for Satan. He quickly plants justifications in our mind: That person deserves to be yelled at. You shouldn’t be treated that way! God understands that you’re frustrated. By handing people excuses to harbor fury, Satan creates a stronghold in their life. It is a foolish person who allows anger to reside in his or her heart (Eccl. 7:9).

We are not to lay even one brick for the devil’s stronghold. Instead, believers must respond to provocation by forgiving others as God forgives. His mercy is unconditional; there’s no wrong that He will not pardon. Believers with long-standing anger cannot come before God and justify harboring resentment. So we must release it at once through forgiveness.

We can further protect ourselves by identifying frequent irritants. When those situations (or people) loom, we should pray that God makes us “quick to hear, slow to speak and slow to anger” (James 1:19). That is the spiritual fruit of self-control in action.

Anger produces only rotten fruit—such as sour relationships or a poor witness. The wise believer takes a two-fold approach to dealing with it. First, heeding the Bible’s many warnings about this dangerous emotion, be vigilant against it. And second, forsake your anger in favor of forgiveness.

Lets review the following scriptures. It's good to read and understand what is being said.

Matthew 5:22
But I tell you that anyone who is angry with his brother will be subject to judgment. Again, anyone who says to his brother, 'Raca,' is answerable to the Sanhedrin. But anyone who says, 'You fool!' will be in danger of the fire of hell.

John 2:13-17 (also Matthew 21:12-13, Mark 11:15-18, Luke 19:45-46)
When it was almost time for the Jewish Passover, Jesus went up to Jerusalem. In the temple courts he found men selling cattle, sheep and doves, and others sitting at tables exchanging money. So he made a whip out of cords, and drove all from the temple area, both sheep and cattle; he scattered the coins of the money changers and overturned their tables. To those who sold doves he said, "Get these out of here! How dare you turn my Father's house into a market!"

His disciples remembered that it is written: "Zeal for your house will consume me."

Mark 3:1-6
Another time he went into the synagogue, and a man with a shriveled hand was there. Some of them were looking for a reason to accuse Jesus, so they watched him closely to see if he would heal him on the Sabbath. Jesus said to the man with the shriveled hand, "Stand up in front of everyone."

Then Jesus asked them, "Which is lawful on the Sabbath: to do good or to do evil, to save life or to kill?" But they remained silent.

He looked around at them in anger and, deeply distressed at their stubborn hearts, said to the man, "Stretch out your hand." He stretched it out, and his hand was completely restored. Then the Pharisees went out and began to plot with the Herodians how they might kill Jesus.

Jesus is indeed shown as displaying anger in the latter two passages above. However, consider the context of each. In the case of the temple, Jesus threw out usurers and others who were taking advantage of the poor. He was angry at the wrong they were doing and also at the blatant disrespect for God they showed by doing wrong even in God's temple. In the next passage, Jesus was angry with the Pharisees, who wanted to catch Jesus breaking one of their laws, yet were unwilling to consider the morality of the law or to believe in Jesus despite seeing the miracles he did. In both cases, Jesus was angry with people who were doing wrong and refused to listen to God.

And is such anger wrong? To say "God is never angry" or "God should never be angry" is to say that God shouldn't be angry when innocent people are hurt or killed, or that he shouldn't be angry that the Holocaust took place. There are different kinds of anger, as described in the Merriam-Webster dictionary:

ANGER, IRE, RAGE, FURY, INDIGNATION, WRATH mean an intense emotional state induced by displeasure. ANGER, the most general term, names the reaction but in itself conveys nothing about intensity or justification or manifestation of the emotional state "tried to hide his anger". IRE, more frequent in literary contexts, may suggest greater intensity than anger, often with an evident display of feeling "cheeks flushed dark with ire". RAGE suggests loss of self-control from violence of emotion "screaming with rage". FURY is overmastering destructive rage that can verge on madness "in her fury she accused everyone around her of betrayal". INDIGNATION stresses righteous anger at what one considers unfair, mean, or shameful "a refusal to listen that caused general indignation". WRATH is likely to suggest a desire or intent to revenge or punish "rose in his wrath and struck his tormentor to the floor".

Indignation, as described above, is what could be called righteous anger - anger at wrongdoing. This is Jesus' anger, for Jesus is angered by wrongdoing. Clearly some forms of anger such as fury as defined above are wrong, and this is the anger that Jesus spoke out against in Matthew 5:22 - anger that is destructive and unnecessarily demeaning.

cain posted:

Yeh....what a prik eh?

That is why I think people should stop talking so much about God. Their obsession with talking about God puts God in an indefensible position. Take for instance a current news story in South Florida. This woman found  a suitcase in which was a dog left for dead. She said that she thinks God placed her there to save that dog. My question is, where was this God when the dog was placed in that suitcase left for dead? 

These preachers will never be able to reconcile their God is all about doing good talk with actual reality.

The Victorious Life

1 Samuel 17:12-51

The Philistine army was ready to fight. Merely a boy, David traveled from his home to the battlefront in order to check on his brothers and supply them with food. There, on hearing the notorious Goliath threaten Israel, the young Israelite was outraged. Who was this giant to challenge the Lord’s army?

David sensed God’s direction and obeyed. A battle ensued between a giant and a boy, but the almighty God stood with David. Goliath, along with the entire Philistine army, was defeated.

This is truly an amazing story—we rarely hear of anything this miraculous in our world today. But we, like David, can live triumphantly, even in the midst of terrifying and seemingly impossible circumstances. First, we need to understand success from the Lord’s perspective: Goals should align with Scripture; then our Father directs us, and we follow with confidence.

Second, we—like David—ought to have a clear picture of what needs to be accomplished. Goals should be clear enough to write in a sentence or two. For example, David’s aim was to free God’s people from their enemies. Our goals may be huge and lifelong, like modeling dependence on Jesus for our children. Or others may be simpler to achieve, like creating a weekly family night.

Whether facing a daunting challenge like David’s or an easier undertaking, you should live intentionally. Ask the Lord for direction and purpose as you contemplate your goals, both big and small. The same God who led David in victory desires to lead you today.

Keith posted:

The Victorious Life

1 Samuel 17:12-51

The Philistine army was ready to fight. Merely a boy, David traveled from his home to the battlefront in order to check on his brothers and supply them with food. There, on hearing the notorious Goliath threaten Israel, the young Israelite was outraged. Who was this giant to challenge the Lord’s army?

David sensed God’s direction and obeyed. A battle ensued between a giant and a boy, but the almighty God stood with David. Goliath, along with the entire Philistine army, was defeated.

This is truly an amazing story—we rarely hear of anything this miraculous in our world today. But we, like David, can live triumphantly, even in the midst of terrifying and seemingly impossible circumstances. First, we need to understand success from the Lord’s perspective: Goals should align with Scripture; then our Father directs us, and we follow with confidence.

Second, we—like David—ought to have a clear picture of what needs to be accomplished. Goals should be clear enough to write in a sentence or two. For example, David’s aim was to free God’s people from their enemies. Our goals may be huge and lifelong, like modeling dependence on Jesus for our children. Or others may be simpler to achieve, like creating a weekly family night.

Whether facing a daunting challenge like David’s or an easier undertaking, you should live intentionally. Ask the Lord for direction and purpose as you contemplate your goals, both big and small. The same God who led David in victory desires to lead you today.

Brother Keith, Did God only care for the Jews? What about the Hindus, Muslims, Buddhists etc.? Was God present only around the Jews to protect them? Was this God not the God of all the people in the world? Reading some of this stuff reminds me of Indian movies, heroes can beat up ten men without suffering any serious injury.

skeldon_man posted:
ksazma posted:

Looking forward to brother Keith's response to your question there Skelly.

He is going to ignore my question.

The brother is only interested in posting sermons. Yet his very first declaration was that he is not posting a sermon. The brother made that declaration as he introduced himself to the GNI community. In effect, he declared, "my name is Keith and I am a fraud". 

How to Reach Your Goals

Isaiah 41:10

Yesterday, we learned the importance of determining goals. We should also be sure to establish them with God’s guidance, rather than devising them on our own and expecting Him to bless our efforts. Our success will be determined by our dependence upon the Lord. If we set out to accomplish anything in our own strength—even a godly task—we are likely to fail.

Other factors can also help us achieve an objective. A consuming passion, for example, can provide us with motivation and prevent us from becoming discouraged. In addition, we should have confidence to reach the goal, knowing that the heavenly Father will equip us for every task He assigns. Think back to David, the shepherd boy: He seemed like no match for Goliath, but the Lord prepared him through his experience in protecting sheep from dangerous animals.

Planning a step-by-step course of action will also help us be successful—a calendar is useful in setting up deadlines for each part of the plan. And two more things we need are courage and consistency. Fear of failure and the opinion of others can be paralyzing. But courage comes from reading God’s Word, praying, and turning a deaf ear to negativity. Then, consistency will keep our eye on the goal so we will not deviate from it.

Is the heavenly Father leading you toward a specific goal? Remember, the Lord is all-powerful. If you depend on Him completely, you’ll experience His ability to do mighty things and accomplish His divine objectives through your willing spirit.