07 November 2018


Chapter 4:7-16

A1 Scripture
B1 First: Ephesians 4:7-16 WPNT Now to each one of us the grace according to the measure of Christ’s gift was given.  That is why He says, “When He ascended into the heights He captured the concentration camp, and distributed gifts to men.”  (What does ‘He ascended’ imply if not that He also first descended into the interior regions of the earth? He who descended is the very one who also ascended far above all the heavens, that He might fill all things.)  Yes, He Himself gave some to be apostles, some to be prophets, some to be evangelists, and some to be pastors and teachers, for the equipping of the saints into the work of the ministry, so as to build up the body of Christ,  until we all attain into the unity of the faith and of the real knowledge of the Son of God, into a complete man, into the resulting full stature of Christ; so that we no longer be ‘infants’, tossed about as by waves and carried off by every doctrinal fad, through the underhanded dealings of the people who collect the fee for the error;  rather, speaking the truth in love, let us in all things grow up into Him who is the Head, Christ; from whom the whole body, being fitted and knit together by what every joint supplies, as each individual part does its work, promotes its own growth, its own edification, in love.
B2 Second: Ephesians 4:7-16 WEL To every one of us is given the grace according to the measure of Christ's gift. 8 Therefore, he says, "When he ascended up on high, he led captivity captive and gave gifts to people.” 9 Now, this "he ascended" implies that he also descended first into the lower parts of the earth. 10 He who descended is the same one who also ascended far above all heavens that he might fulfill all. 11 He gave some to be apostles, some prophets, some evangelists, some pastors and teachers, 12 For the equipping of the saints for the work of ministry, for building up the body of Christ, 13 Until we all come into the unity of the faith and the knowledge of the Son of God into a full, complete man, into the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ, 14 So that we would no more be children tossed back and forth and carried off by every wind of doctrine by the cunning deception and sneaky craftiness of men lying in ambush so as to deceive. 15 Instead, speak the truth in love. We must grow up into Him in everything who is the Head, that is, Christ, 16 From whom the whole body is harmoniously joined together and united by every joint's contribution according to what is required for efficiency from each part. This causes growth of the body into building itself up in love.
A2 Outline
B1 God's Gifts
C1 Jesus Christ gives
D1 To each believer
D2 The amount He wishes
C2 Prophesied—Ephesians 4:8 WPNT That is why He says, “When He ascended into the heights He captured the concentration camp, and distributed gifts to men.
D1 Difference between our passage and Psalms is interpreted differently.
D2 “He captured the concentration camp” doesn't sound very much like “He led captivity captive” now does it. The point is that ‘captivity' refers to people held in captivity, and they are freed. When an invading army takes a concentration camp, the prisoners are set free (usually). We have here a quote from Psalm 68:18, where the second half says, “You have received gifts from men,” just the opposite of ‘distributed'. What to do? The Targum (a Hebrew commentary) interprets as, “You have given gifts to the children of men.” Upon reflection this would appear to be obvious. When you put tithes and offerings in the offering plate at church, you are giving to God, but does that money literally go to Heaven? No, it is redistributed down here—some goes to the preacher's salary, some to a missionary, some to pay the light bill, etc. God does indeed receive gifts from men, but He doesn't stash them in Heaven somewhere; they are redistributed down here. When done properly He gets the credit: “He distributed gifts to men.”  Wilbur Pickering New Testament Note on Ephesians 4:8.
D3  "...gave gifts unto men—in the Psalm, "received gifts for men," Hebrew, "among men," that is, "thou hast received gifts" to distribute among men. As a conqueror distributes in token of his triumph the spoils of foes as gifts among his people." JFB comment on Ephesians 4:8.
D4 The Lord Jesus is the conqueror who receives gifts to give them to the prisoners who have been freed. Similar to the Hebrews when they left Egypt. They had not been paid for their hard work for years, (Exodus 3:21-22 NKJV)  And I will give this people favor in the sight of the Egyptians; and it shall be, when you go, that you shall not go empty-handed. 22 But every woman shall ask of her neighbor, namely, of her who dwells near her house, articles of silver, articles of gold, and clothing; and you shall put them on your sons and on your daughters. So you shall plunder the Egyptians.
C3 Ascended/Descended
D1 Paul interprets the passage for us.
D2 To go up you have to go down first.
D3 The going down is into Hades (Paradise) (the interior parts of the earth). Some interpret this to refer to the incarnation or even the descent of the Holy Spirit at Pentecost.
D4 The going up is the resurrection.
D5 The resurrection is an awesome victory over the devil and his demon followers, the Jewish leaders, and death itself.
D6 He ascends into heaven itself.
B2 Gifts
C1 These are spiritual gifts. There are three lists.
D1 Ephesians 4:11-13 NKJV - And He Himself gave some to be apostles, some prophets, some evangelists, and some pastors and teachers, for the equipping of the saints for the work of ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ, till we all come to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to a perfect man, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ.
D2 1 Corinthians 12:1-11 NKJV  Now concerning spiritual gifts, brethren, I do not want you to be ignorant:  2 You know that you were Gentiles, carried away to these dumb idols, however you were led.  3 Therefore I make known to you that no one speaking by the Spirit of God calls Jesus accursed, and no one can say that Jesus is Lord except by the Holy Spirit.  4 There are diversities of gifts, but the same Spirit. 5 There are differences of ministries, but the same Lord. 6 And there are diversities of activities, but it is the same God who works all in all.  7 But the manifestation of the Spirit is given to each one for the profit of all: 8 for to one is given the word of wisdom through the Spirit, to another the word of knowledge through the same Spirit, 9 to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healings by the same Spirit,  10 to another the working of miracles, to another prophecy, to another discerning of spirits, to another different kinds of tongues, to another the interpretation of tongues. 11 But one and the same Spirit works all these things, distributing to each one individually as He wills.
D3 Romans 12:1-8 NKJV  I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your reasonable service.  2 And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.  3 For I say, through the grace given to me, to everyone who is among you, not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think, but to think soberly, as God has dealt to each one a measure of faith.  4 For as we have many members in one body, but all the members do not have the same function, 5 so we, being many, are one body in Christ, and individually members of one another. 6 Having then gifts differing according to the grace that is given to us, let us use them: if prophecy, let us prophesy in proportion to our faith;  7 or ministry, let us use it in our ministering; he who teaches, in teaching; 8 he who exhorts, in exhortation; he who gives, with liberality; he who leads, with diligence; he who shows mercy, with cheerfulness.
C2 The first list, Ephesians, are the offices, while the second are the abilities, and the third for encouragement to use them.
C3 The choosing for the offices, the abilities, and the amount are all the decision of the Holy Spirit.
C4 These are based on the love and wisdom of God.
C5 They are wholly of grace, not works. We deserve nothing.
C6 These gifts are to accomplish the mission that Jesus has for us.
C7 These are to
D1 Equip the saints for service
D2 Edify the saints
C8 When we are converted by God’s grace through our repentance, confession, and trusting into the Lord Jesus, we are just baby Christians. God expects us to grow. We grow by eating food; this food is the Bible. We need to study and live it. We need to be taught it and encouraged in the faith by the ministry. God’s goal is, Until we all come into the unity of the faith and the knowledge of the Son of God into a full, complete man, into the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ. The purpose of this full, complete, mature Christian is, So that we would no more be children tossed back and forth and carried off by every wind of doctrine by the cunning deception and sneaky craftiness of men lying in ambush so as to deceive.
B3 We all need to be solid in the faith. Doctrine is important. A Christian life is imperative.
B4 There are many deceivers who want to lead us away from sound doctrine and living a Christian life.
B5 We must interpret the Bible in its plain, normal sense.
B6 We must speak the truth, not in anger, not in arrogance, not in any controlling, narcissist, psychopathic method, but in love. We care about people’s souls, not to win an argument.
B7 Every believer is to grow into the person God wants us to be, and the model of this faith is the Lord Jesus.
B8 We need each other. We are a family. I need you, and you need me. We need each other. It is a must. If you can do nothing else, you can pray.
B9 Be encouraged, be steadfast, be praying, be studying, be serving, be at peace. (Hebrews 13:20-25 WPNT) Now may the God of peace—who through the blood of the eternal covenant brought back from the dead our Lord Jesus, that great Shepherd of the sheep—  equip you for every good work to do His will, working in you what is well pleasing in His sight, through Jesus Christ, to whom be the glory forever and ever. Amen.  Now I appeal to you, brothers, bear with this word of exhortation, for I have written to you in few words. Know that brother Timothy has been released, with whom I will see you, if he comes quickly.  Greet all your leaders and all the saints. Those from Italy greet you. The Grace be with you all. Amen.

31 October 2018

Ephesians 4:1-6



A1 Scripture—I, therefore, the prisoner of the Lord, beseech you to walk worthy of the calling with which you were called, with all lowliness and gentleness, with longsuffering, bearing with one another in love, endeavoring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace. [There is] one body and one Spirit, just as you were called in one hope of your calling; one Lord, one faith, one baptism; one God and Father of all, who [is] above all, and through all, and in you all. (Ephesians 4:1-6, NKJV)
A2 Outline
B1 Beseech
C1 Walk
D1 Walk has the idea of living our daily life. Walking in Scripture is to live the Christian life as outlined in the New Testament. We live a Christian life because we love God, not to earn our salvation.
E1 Old Testament example
F1 Version 1 using the word walk: Leviticus 18:3-5 KJV After the doings of the land of Egypt, wherein ye dwelt, shall ye not do: and after the doings of the land of Canaan, whither I bring you, shall ye not do: neither shall ye walk in their ordinances. 4 Ye shall do my judgments, and keep mine ordinances, to walk therein: I am the LORD your God. 5 Ye shall therefore keep my statutes, and my judgments: which if a man do, he shall live in them: I am the LORD.
F2 Version 2 using other words: Leviticus 18:3-5 GW You used to live in Egypt. Don't live the way the Egyptians do. I am bringing you to Canaan. Don't live the way the Canaanites do. Never live by their standards. 4 Follow my rules, and live by my standards. I am the LORD your God. 5 Live by my standards, and obey my rules. You will have life through them. I am the LORD.
E2 New Testament example
F1 Version 1 using the word walk: Ephesians 4:17 KJV This I say therefore, and testify in the Lord, that ye henceforth walk not as other Gentiles walk, in the vanity of their mind.
F2 Version 2 using other words: Ephesians 4:17 GNB In the Lord's name, then, I warn you: do not continue to live like the heathen, whose thoughts are worthless.
D2 Some characteristics of walk in our passage:
E1 Walk worthily of the calling with which you are called. We are Christians and are expected to talk and live like Christians. Truly, the Christian life must be in thoughts, desires, words, and deeds.
E2 Walk in all lowliness (humility, not arrogantly)
E3 Walk in all gentleness
E4 Walk with longsuffering (patience)
E5 Walk forbearing one another in love (showing some tolerance)
E6 Walk to endeavor to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace
C2 One (a description of that unity spoken of here)
D1 Body
E1 The church
E2 This is not an organization. This is all the believers from Pentecost to the Rapture.
E3 It has members who are Jews or Gentiles, but they all are believers.
E4 Being in the body does not mean:
F1 Church membership
F2 Holding to a particular theology.
F3 Growing up in a so-called Christian country.
F4 Just identifying as a Christian.
D2 Spirit
E1 This is the Holy Spirit.
E2 All believers have the Holy Spirit at the moment of conversion.
F1 Romans 5:5 GW We're not ashamed to have this confidence, because God's love has been poured into our hearts by the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us.
F2 1 John 4:12-13 GW No one has ever seen God. If we love each other, God lives in us, and his love is perfected in us. 13 We know that we live in him and he lives in us because he has given us his Spirit.
F3 Romans 8:9 NRSV But you are not in the flesh; you are in the Spirit, since the Spirit of God dwells in you. Anyone who does not have the Spirit of Christ does not belong to him.
E3 He enters the “heart” of a person at conversion. There is no ceremony or act that accomplishes this.
F1 2 Corinthians 5:5 NRSV He who has prepared us for this very thing is God, who has given us the Spirit as a guarantee.
F2 1 Thessalonians 4:8 NRSV Therefore whoever rejects this rejects not human authority but God, who also gives his Holy Spirit to you.
F3 Galatians 4:6 NRSV And because you are children, God has sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, crying, "Abba! Father!"
F4 Ephesians 1:13-14 GW You heard and believed the message of truth, the Good News that he has saved you. In him you were sealed with the Holy Spirit whom he promised. 14 This Holy Spirit is the guarantee that we will receive our inheritance. We have this guarantee until we are set free to belong to him. God receives praise and glory for this.
D3 Hope
E1 Hope is confident expectation.
E2 It is a one hope for the future promises to believers of a new heavens and new earth,
F1 2 Peter 3:13 KJV Nevertheless we, according to his promise, look for new heavens and a new earth, wherein dwelleth righteousness.
F2 Revelation 21:1-8 WEB I saw a new heaven and a new earth: for the first heaven and the first earth have passed away, and the sea is no more. 2 I saw the holy city, New Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared like a bride adorned for her husband. 3 I heard a loud voice out of heaven saying, “Behold, God’s dwelling is with people, and he will dwell with them, and they will be his people, and God himself will be with them as their God. 4 He will wipe away every tear from their eyes. Death will be no more; neither will there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain, any more. The first things have passed away.” 5 He who sits on the throne said, “Behold, I am making all things new.” He said, “Write, for these words of God are faithful and true.” 6 He said to me, “I have become the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End. I will give freely to him who is thirsty from the spring of the water of life. 7 He who overcomes, I will give him these things. I will be his God, and he will be my son. 8 But for the cowardly, unbelieving, sinners, abominable, murderers, sexually immoral, sorcerers, idolaters, and all liars, their part is in the lake that burns with fire and sulfur, which is the second death.”
G1 A place to live.
G2 A fellowship to enjoy (God with us)
G3 A place of comfort (God will wipe away)
G4 A place of life, not death.
G5 A place where the King of the universe lives.
G6 A source of life (the Lord Jesus and His salvation).
G7 A promise of grace to overcome.
G8 A promise to have no evil people.
D4 Lord
E1 Lord as in boss, king.
E2 Jesus is Lord of lords and Kings of kings.
F1 Deuteronomy 10:17 NRSV For the LORD your God is God of gods and Lord of lords, the great God, mighty and awesome, who is not partial and takes no bribe.
F2 Psalms 136:3 NRSV O give thanks to the Lord of lords, for his steadfast love endures forever. (All of Psalm 136 is great to read).
F3 1 Timothy 6:14-15 NRSV To keep the commandment without spot or blame until the manifestation of our Lord Jesus Christ, 15 which he will bring about at the right time—he who is the blessed and only Sovereign, the King of kings and Lord of lords.
F4 Revelation 17:13-14 NRSV These are united in yielding their power and authority to the beast; 14 they will make war on the Lamb, and the Lamb will conquer them, for he is Lord of lords and King of kings, and those with him are called and chosen and faithful.
F5 Revelation 19:16 NRSV On his robe and on his thigh he has a name inscribed, "King of kings and Lord of lords.
D5 Faith
E1 Believing God.
E2 Believing the Bible in its plain, normal sense.
E3 Believing God’s evaluation of sin.
E4 Believing God’s Gospel.
E5 Believing His promises.
D6 Baptism
E1 This mainly refers to Holy Spirit baptism.
E2 This baptism is right after conversion. There are no lights, lightnings, or experiences.
E3 There are 8 baptisms in the New Testament. This is but one, but the most important.
E4 1 Corinthians 12:13 NRSV For in the one Spirit we were all baptized into one body—Jews or Greeks, slaves or free—and we were all made to drink of one Spirit.
E5 John 1:33 NKJV I did not know Him, but He who sent me to baptize with water said to me, 'Upon whom you see the Spirit descending, and remaining on Him, this is He who baptizes with the Holy Spirit.
D7 God
E1 There is only one God―Yahweh.
E2 Deuteronomy 6:4 WEB Hear, Israel: Yahweh is our God; Yahweh is one.
D8 Father
E1 Above all (in authority, in everything, in authority and care of believers)
E2 Through all (sovereign, assigns gifts)
E3 In you all (dwells in believers: 2 Corinthians 6:16 WPNT Further, what agreement can a temple of God have with idols? Because you are a temple of the living God, just as God said: “I will dwell in them and walk among them; I will be their God and they will by my people.)
A3 Notes
B1 Definitions
C1 Walk =
D1 Conduct, that is, following, obeying God's laws. There are over 1,000 laws in the New Testament.
D2 Spiritual life, that is, with a worldview of pleasing God, who is Spirit, and not the fleshly desires.
C2 Lowliness = not being proud. Pride manifests itself often as "I'm right; you're wrong."
C3 Meekness = not being pushy, bullying over others to get "my" way.
C4 Longsuffering = patience towards others, not expressing anger too soon, too long, too violent
C5 Bearing = putting up with one, enduring, another, overlooking mistakes and faults that are not Scriptural.
D1 For example, driving a Ford instead of a Chevy, using the NASB instead of the KJV.
D2 Chrysostom defined longsuffering as the spirit that has the power to take revenge, but never does. It is characteristic of a forgiving, generous heart.
C6 Endeavoring = working hard to
C7 Unity of the Spirit = the opposite would be to have splits in the church.
D1 Sometimes there must be a split as for wrong doctrine or plain disobedience to New Testament laws. To be one in unity just for the sake of being one leads to corruption—eventually one corporation under one boss.
D2 God makes the unity, not us. The unity is because of those who having been convicted of their sins have repented and placed their trust in Jesus Christ alone.
D3 We keep the unity with the help of God.
D4 It is not that we are one because of a common interest; we are one family.
C8 Body = the group of Christians, that is, all true believers of all ages of the New Testament period.
C9 Spirit = the Holy Spirit. Maintaining not experiences but truth to the plain, normal understanding of the Scriptures.
C10 Hope of your calling = forgiveness of sins and the resurrection to heaven. A happy contentment.
C11 Lord = Jesus Christ who is head of the church
C12 Faith = body of doctrine
C13 Baptism = into the body, church, of God. A testimony of a clear conscious and its guilt by the grace and mercy of God.
C14 God = the one and only ultimate authority
C15 Father of all = especially those who are adopted into the family of God. In a very general sense it would include the idea that God creates all people.
C16 Above all = highest authority that exists
C17 Through all = giver of life
C18 In all = Christians
B2 Paul, through the Holy Spirit, is
C1 Giving instructions of how we should
D1 Act as Christians
D2 Believe as Christians
C2 These are
D1 Practical doctrine
D2 Theological doctrine
D3 Not optional
D4 Not just for the early Ephesian church
D5 Not a nice standard, but the required standard
D6 Not for salvation but because of salvation

24 October 2018

Ephesians 3:14-21



A1 Scripture
For this reason I bow my knees to the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, from whom the whole family in heaven and earth is named, that He would grant you, according to the riches of His glory, to be strengthened with might through His Spirit in the inner man, that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith; that you, being rooted and grounded in love, may be able to comprehend with all the saints what [is] the width and length and depth and height to know the love of Christ which passes knowledge; that you may be filled with all the fullness of God. Now to Him who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us, to Him [be] glory in the church by Christ Jesus to all generations, forever and ever. Amen. (Ephesians 3:14-21, NKJV)
A2 Outline
B1 He bows
C1 He acknowledges God’s superiority. God does not bow, which would mean humans are superior. He does not stand, which would mean they are equals. People bow because God is the superior.
C2 We bow because He is father. We profess His greatness.
C3 This does NOT mean we are to bow before our earthly fathers or any priest.
B2 He prays
C1 Paul bows his knees to the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ
C2 Of whom the whole family
D1 The believers, the church, are the family of God.
D2 Named
E1 This is a verb and means assigned a name.
E2 Some have interpreted family as
F1 The church
F2 Family in the sense of order
F3 Family in the sense of hierarchy
F4 The idea of what a family is
B3 His prayer
C1 To
D1 Grant you (give you)
D2 According to the riches of His glory (He is rich in ability, authority, and mercy)
E1 Riches that are not good
F1 Deceitful because they cannot meet the deepest needs of any human: Matthew 13:22 (WEB) What was sown among the thorns, this is he who hears the word, but the cares of this age and the deceitfulness of riches choke the word, and he becomes unfruitful.
F2 Earthly riches cannot and often prevent someone from truly believing in Jesus Christ for salvation: Mark 10:23 (WEB) Jesus looked around, and said to his disciples, “How difficult it is for those who have riches to enter into the Kingdom of God!
F3 Riches do not have a guarantee to help us: 1 Timothy 6:17 (WEB) Charge those who are rich in this present world that they not be haughty, nor have their hope set on the uncertainty of riches, but on the living God, who richly provides us with everything to enjoy.
F4 Do not last forever: James 5:2 (WEB) Your riches are corrupted and your garments are moth-eaten.
F5 Some believe that earthly riches indicate God’s blessing; they are wrong: Revelation 3:17 (WEB) Because you say, ‘I am rich, and have gotten riches, and have need of nothing;’ and don’t know that you are the wretched one, miserable, poor, blind, and naked.
E2 Riches that are good
F1 God’s goodness: Romans 2:4 (WEB) Or do you despise the riches of his goodness, forbearance, and patience, not knowing that the goodness of God leads you to repentance?
F2 Our source for wisdom and knowledge: Romans 11:33 (WEB) Oh the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and the knowledge of God! How unsearchable are his judgments, and his ways past tracing out!
F3 God’s grace for our salvation. Everything from initiation to completion is His grace. Ephesians 1:7 (WEB) in whom we have our redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of his grace.
F4 Christians are adopted daughters and sons to whom God gives inheritance: Ephesians 1:18 (WEB) having the eyes of your hearts enlightened, that you may know what is the hope of his calling, and what are the riches of the glory of his inheritance in the saints.
F5 His kindness: Ephesians 2:7 (WEB) that in the ages to come he might show the exceeding riches of his grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus.
F6 To give strength in discouragement, trial, and everyday life: Ephesians 3:16 (WEB) that he would grant you, according to the riches of his glory, that you may be strengthened with power through his Spirit in the inward man.
F7 The blessing of knowing Messiah Jesus and His truth: Colossians 2:2 (WEB) that their hearts may be comforted, they being knit together in love, and gaining all riches of the full assurance of understanding, that they may know the mystery of God, both of the Father and of Christ.
F8 Moses suffered for believing in Messiah but judged that Messiah is better than all the riches of Egypt: Hebrews 11:26 (WEB) accounting the reproach of Christ greater riches than the treasures of Egypt; for he looked to the reward.
C2 For (Paul prays)
D1 The people of God to be strengthened
E1 With might (strength of ability and will)
E2 Through His Spirit (the source)
E3 In the inner man (the place of motivation)
E4 Note that this is grace. It is not something earned or deserved. It is a gift from our father.
D2 That Christ may live in your hearts through faith
E1 We are already Christians, believers.
E2 Live in the sense of being obviously a Christian to us and all others.
D3 Since we are rooted and grounded in love, we may be able to understand—along with all the people of God—His love
E1 The width, length, depth, and height
E2 Christ's love
E3 Which is greater than anything we can understand
D4 That we may be filled (to the brim) with all the fullness of God (everything that He stands for, not to be what He is. We are not God, nor do we become gods. We are to be in His image, so that all we do in thoughts, desires, words, and deeds are His way—like Him).
C3 His blessing/prayer for them
D1 To God
E1 Who can do more than anything we can think of (ability, authority, and mercy).
E2 According to the power in us (not some presence or ability in our own, but instead this refers to the Holy Spirit, who lives in us).
D2 For us
E1 To praise God (We, the church—the people of God—in all generations praise Him for His goodness to us).
E2 To remember that it is Christ Jesus who is our Savior for all these things that we do not deserve.
A2 Applications
B1 God is always supreme.
C1 The Bible teaches us that it is His will, not ours. We must yield to His will always.
C2 It is His timing, not ours.
C3 It is His results, not ours.
C4 We must recognize this and be content.
C5 It is for our peace and safety.
B2 His order and organization is always best.
B3 He wants us to be strengthened in our inner selves, our heart. We must read and study the Scriptures.
C1 James 1:2-4 NKJV My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into various trials, 3 knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience. 4 But let patience have its perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing.
C2 Romans 5:3-4 NKJV And not only that, but we also glory in tribulations, knowing that tribulation produces perseverance; 4 and perseverance, character; and character, hope.
C3 2 Peter 1:5-8 NKJV But also for this very reason, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue, to virtue knowledge, to knowledge self-control, to self-control perseverance, to perseverance godliness, to godliness brotherly kindness, and to brotherly kindness love. For if these things are yours and abound, [you will be] neither barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.
B4 He wants us to live an obvious Christian life as taught in the New Testament. This is an active faith, not a passive faith. Passive faith is the emergent church, progressive Christianity, and any other group, belief, or teaching that uses mysticism, silence, contemplative, bypassing the brain, etc.
C1 Matthew 7:15 NKJV Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravenous wolves.
C2 Colossians 2:8 NKJV Beware lest anyone cheat you through philosophy and empty deceit, according to the tradition of men, according to the basic principles of the world, and not according to Christ.
C3 1 Peter 5:8 HCSB Be serious! Be alert! Your adversary the Devil is prowling around like a roaring lion, looking for anyone he can devour.
C4 Even IN prayer: Colossians 4:2 HCSB Devote yourselves to prayer; stay alert in it with thanksgiving.
B5 2 Thessalonians 2:16-17 HCSB May our Lord Jesus Christ Himself and God our Father, who has loved us and given us eternal encouragement and good hope by grace, encourage your hearts and strengthen you in every good work and word.

21 October 2018

How To Evangelize False Christians



Here is a great video. She gets right to the point. Fake Christians are among us. Highly recommended.

18 October 2018

Ephesians 3:8-13



A1 Scripture
Ephesians 3:8-13 NKJV To me, who am less than the least of all the saints, this grace was given, that I should preach among the Gentiles the unsearchable riches of Christ, 9 and to make all see what is the fellowship of the mystery, which from the beginning of the ages has been hidden in God who created all things through Jesus Christ; 10 to the intent that now the manifold wisdom of God might be made known by the church to the principalities and powers in the heavenly places, 11 according to the eternal purpose which He accomplished in Christ Jesus our Lord, 12 in whom we have boldness and access with confidence through faith in Him. 13 Therefore I ask that you do not lose heart at my tribulations for you, which is your glory.
A2 Past and present life
B1 Before salvation
C1 Pharisee
D1 Studied under Gamaliel
E1 Acts 22:3 NKJV I am indeed a Jew, born in Tarsus of Cilicia, but brought up in this city at the feet of Gamaliel, taught according to the strictness of our fathers' law, and was zealous toward God as you all are today.
E2 Acts 23:6 NKJV But when Paul perceived that one part were Sadducees and the other Pharisees, he cried out in the council, "Men and brethren, I am a Pharisee, the son of a Pharisee; concerning the hope and resurrection of the dead I am being judged!
E3 Acts 26:5 NKJV They knew me from the first, if they were willing to testify, that according to the strictest sect of our religion I lived a Pharisee.
D2 Zealous (this is a partial list from Torrey Topical)
E1 Zealous for Law
E2 Zealous for tradition
E3 Outwardly moral
E4 Fasting
E5 Proselytising
E6 Self-righteous
E7 Cruel
E8 Believed in the resurrection
E9 For the most part hated Jesus
D3 Tent Maker
C2 Accomplice: Acts 7:58-60 NKJV And they cast him out of the city and stoned him. And the witnesses laid down their clothes at the feet of a young man named Saul. 59 And they stoned Stephen as he was calling on God and saying, "Lord Jesus, receive my spirit." 60 Then he knelt down and cried out with a loud voice, "Lord, do not charge them with this sin." And when he had said this, he fell asleep.
B2 After salvation
C1 Apostle
D1 Called by God: Acts 9:15 NRSV But the Lord said to him, "Go, for he is an instrument whom I have chosen to bring my name before Gentiles and kings and before the people of Israel.
D2 Commissioned by God: Acts 13:2 NRSV While they were worshiping the Lord and fasting, the Holy Spirit said, "Set apart for me Barnabas and Saul for the work to which I have called them.
D3 Gifted by the Holy Spirit: Acts 9:17 NRSV So Ananias went and entered the house. He laid his hands on Saul and said, "Brother Saul, the Lord Jesus, who appeared to you on your way here, has sent me so that you may regain your sight and be filled with the Holy Spirit.
D4 Witness of the resurrected Son of God, Jesus: Acts 9:4-5 NRSV He fell to the ground and heard a voice saying to him, "Saul, Saul, why do you persecute me?" 5 He asked, "Who are you, Lord?" The reply came, "I am Jesus, whom you are persecuting.
D5 Signs of an Apostle
E1 Seen the resurrected Jesus
E2 Signs and miracles: 2 Corinthians 12:12 NKJV Truly the signs of an apostle were accomplished among you with all perseverance, in signs and wonders and mighty deeds.
E3 Anointed preaching (this is NOT the so-called anointed preaching today which is just a compliment, not reality): 1 Corinthians 9:1-2 NRSV Am I not free? Am I not an apostle? Have I not seen Jesus our Lord? Are you not my work in the Lord? 2 If I am not an apostle to others, at least I am to you; for you are the seal of my apostleship in the Lord.
E4 God’s strength to do this work (by application, we can do what God calls us to): Philippians 4:13 WPNT I can handle anything through Christ who strengthens me.
C2 Missionary
D1 To Jews: Acts 22:1-5 NKJV Brethren and fathers, hear my defense before you now." 2 And when they heard that he spoke to them in the Hebrew language, they kept all the more silent. Then he said: 3 "I am indeed a Jew, born in Tarsus of Cilicia, but brought up in this city at the feet of Gamaliel, taught according to the strictness of our fathers' law, and was zealous toward God as you all are today. 4 I persecuted this Way to the death, binding and delivering into prisons both men and women, 5 as also the high priest bears me witness, and all the council of the elders, from whom I also received letters to the brethren, and went to Damascus to bring in chains even those who were there to Jerusalem to be punished.
D2 To Gentiles (primarily)
E1 Acts 13:2-4 NKJV As they ministered to the Lord and fasted, the Holy Spirit said, "Now separate to Me Barnabas and Saul for the work to which I have called them." 3 Then, having fasted and prayed, and laid hands on them, they sent them away. 4 So, being sent out by the Holy Spirit, they went down to Seleucia, and from there they sailed to Cyprus.
E2 Romans 11:13 NKJV For I speak to you Gentiles; inasmuch as I am an apostle to the Gentiles, I magnify my ministry.
A3 Plan
B1 Mystery: Salvation/redemption
C1 Hidden and need to be revealed: Matthew 11:25-27 NKJV At that time Jesus answered and said, "I thank You, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, that You have hidden these things from the wise and prudent and have revealed them to babes. 26 Even so, Father, for so it seemed good in Your sight. 27 All things have been delivered to Me by My Father, and no one knows the Son except the Father. Nor does anyone know the Father except the Son, and the one to whom the Son wills to reveal Him.
C2 Hidden from teachers of Israel: John 3:8-10 NKJV The wind blows where it wishes, and you hear the sound of it, but cannot tell where it comes from and where it goes. So is everyone who is born of the Spirit." 9 Nicodemus answered and said to Him, "How can these things be?" 10 Jesus answered and said to him, "Are you the teacher of Israel, and do not know these things?
C3 The future blessings for believers: 1 Corinthians 2:6-9 NRSV Yet among the mature we do speak wisdom, though it is not a wisdom of this age or of the rulers of this age, who are doomed to perish. 7 But we speak God's wisdom, secret and hidden, which God decreed before the ages for our glory. 8 None of the rulers of this age understood this; for if they had, they would not have crucified the Lord of glory. 9 But, as it is written, "What no eye has seen, nor ear heard, nor the human heart conceived, what God has prepared for those who love him.
C4 Salvation, fellowship, and indwelt by God: Colossians 1:25-27 NKJV Of which I became a minister according to the stewardship from God which was given to me for you, to fulfill the word of God, 26 the mystery which has been hidden from ages and from generations, but now has been revealed to His saints. 27 To them God willed to make known what are the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles: which is Christ in you, the hope of glory.
C5 The suffering Messiah: 1 Peter 1:10-12 NKJV Of this salvation the prophets have inquired and searched carefully, who prophesied of the grace that would come to you, 11 searching what, or what manner of time, the Spirit of Christ who was in them was indicating when He testified beforehand the sufferings of Christ and the glories that would follow. 12 To them it was revealed that, not to themselves, but to us they were ministering the things which now have been reported to you through those who have preached the gospel to you by the Holy Spirit sent from heaven—things which angels desire to look into.
C6 The finish of the mystery: Revelation 10:7 NKJV But in the days of the sounding of the seventh angel, when he is about to sound, the mystery of God would be finished, as He declared to His servants the prophets.
B2 Purpose: to show the plan which was unknown (and cannot be known) by wisdom or search.
A4 Persecutions
B1 His did
C1 Stephen: Acts 7:58-60 NKJV And they cast him out of the city and stoned him. And the witnesses laid down their clothes at the feet of a young man named Saul. 59 And they stoned Stephen as he was calling on God and saying, "Lord Jesus, receive my spirit." 60 Then he knelt down and cried out with a loud voice, "Lord, do not charge them with this sin." And when he had said this, he fell asleep.
C2 Christians: Acts 22:4 GW I persecuted people who followed the way of Christ: I tied up men and women and put them into prison until they were executed.
B2 He received
C1 2 Corinthians 11:23-28 NKJV Are they ministers of Christ?—I speak as a fool—I am more: in labors more abundant, in stripes above measure, in prisons more frequently, in deaths often. 24 From the Jews five times I received forty stripes minus one. 25 Three times I was beaten with rods; once I was stoned; three times I was shipwrecked; a night and a day I have been in the deep; 26 in journeys often, in perils of waters, in perils of robbers, in perils of my own countrymen, in perils of the Gentiles, in perils in the city, in perils in the wilderness, in perils in the sea, in perils among false brethren; 27 in weariness and toil, in sleeplessness often, in hunger and thirst, in fastings often, in cold and nakedness— 28 besides the other things, what comes upon me daily: my deep concern for all the churches.
C2 As all Christians do: 2 Timothy 3:12 NKJV Yes, and all who desire to live godly in Christ Jesus will suffer persecution.
A5 Application
B1 What God calls us to, He will give the strength and ability to accomplish it. Philippians 4:13 WPNT I can handle anything through Christ who strengthens me.
B2 Boldness to pray: Hebrews 10:19 NKJV Therefore, brethren, having boldness to enter the Holiest by the blood of Jesus.
B3 Comfort and encouragement
C1 Romans 8:35-36 NRSV Who will separate us from the love of Christ? Will hardship, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? 36 As it is written, "For your sake we are being killed all day long; we are accounted as sheep to be slaughtered.
C2 John 16:33 NKJV These things I have spoken to you, that in Me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world.