31 October 2019

Examples of failure and God’s disapproval are what we are NOT to do

I have often stated that the rules in the New Testament have been given by Jesus directly or through the early church Apostles and prophets.

We learn God’s will for many situations by
B1 What we must do
B2 What we must NOT do
B3 Principles on what we we must do
B4 Principles on what we must NOT do
B5 Examples of success and God’s blessing are what we are to do
B6 Examples of failure and God’s disapproval are what we are NOT to do

Some examples of failure and God’s disapproval are what we are NOT to do
B1 People influenced by money
C1 Balaam
D1 His story Numbers 22-24
D2 The result: Joshua 13:22 NIV In addition to those slain in battle, the Israelites had put to the sword Balaam son of Beor, who practiced divination.
D3 The warning
E1 2 Peter 2:15 NIV They have left the straight way and wandered off to follow the way of Balaam son of Bezer, who loved the wages of wickedness.
E2 Revelation 2:14 NIV Nevertheless, I have a few things against you: There are some among you who hold to the teaching of Balaam, who taught Balak to entice the Israelites to sin so that they ate food sacrificed to idols and committed sexual immorality.
D4 A comment. God told Balaam not to go, not to curse them, and not to take money from them, but Balaam did anyway. God refused to let Balaam curse Israel. Balaam, evidently, so covetous for money, instructed Balac to entice Israel with forbidden food and sex. He was slain in battle and is given as an example of what not to do.
C2 Judas
D1 His story is in the Gospels. He spent 3+ years following the Lord Jesus, seeing what Jesus did, and hearing what Jesus taught.
D2 Influenced by money. John 12:3-6 NIV Then Mary took about a pint of pure nard, an expensive perfume; she poured it on Jesus' feet and wiped his feet with her hair. And the house was filled with the fragrance of the perfume. 4 But one of his disciples, Judas Iscariot, who was later to betray him, objected, 5 "Why wasn't this perfume sold and the money given to the poor? It was worth a year's wages." 6 He did not say this because he cared about the poor but because he was a thief; as keeper of the money bag, he used to help himself to what was put into it.
D3 The result: Acts 1:16-19 NIV and said, "Brothers and sisters, the Scripture had to be fulfilled in which the Holy Spirit spoke long ago through David concerning Judas, who served as guide for those who arrested Jesus. 17 He was one of our number and shared in our ministry." 18 (With the payment he received for his wickedness, Judas bought a field; there he fell headlong, his body burst open and all his intestines spilled out. 19 Everyone in Jerusalem heard about this, so they called that field in their language Akeldama, that is, Field of Blood.)
C3 Ananias and Sapphira
D1 Their story and greed: Acts 5:1-2 NIV Now a man named Ananias, together with his wife Sapphira, also sold a piece of property. 2 With his wife's full knowledge he kept back part of the money for himself, but brought the rest and put it at the apostles' feet.
D2 The result: Acts 5:5, 9-10 NIV When Ananias heard this, he fell down and died. And great fear seized all who heard what had happened. ... 9 Peter said to her, "How could you conspire to test the Spirit of the Lord? Listen! The feet of the men who buried your husband are at the door, and they will carry you out also." 10 At that moment she fell down at his feet and died. Then the young men came in and, finding her dead, carried her out and buried her beside her husband.
D3 The warning: Acts 5:3-4 NIV Then Peter said, "Ananias, how is it that Satan has so filled your heart that you have lied to the Holy Spirit and have kept for yourself some of the money you received for the land? 4 Didn't it belong to you before it was sold? And after it was sold, wasn't the money at your disposal? What made you think of doing such a thing? You have not lied just to human beings but to God.
D4 A comment. They coveted, they lied, and they stole (they had promised to give all the money). The motive evidently was to gain admiration.
C4 Simon the Great
D1 His story is in Acts 8.
D2 His sin: Acts 8:17-19 NIV Then Peter and John placed their hands on them, and they received the Holy Spirit. 18 When Simon saw that the Spirit was given at the laying on of the apostles' hands, he offered them money 19 and said, "Give me also this ability so that everyone on whom I lay my hands may receive the Holy Spirit.
D3 The result: Acts 8:20-24 NIV Peter answered: "May your money perish with you, because you thought you could buy the gift of God with money! 21 You have no part or share in this ministry, because your heart is not right before God. 22 Repent of this wickedness and pray to the Lord in the hope that he may forgive you for having such a thought in your heart. 23 For I see that you are full of bitterness and captive to sin." 24 Then Simon answered, "Pray to the Lord for me so that nothing you have said may happen to me.
B2 People influenced by sex
C1 Solomon
D1 The start of his reign:
E1 His story begins with his love for God: 1 Kings 3:3 NIV Solomon showed his love for the LORD by walking according to the instructions given him by his father David, except that he offered sacrifices and burned incense on the high places.
E2 What he should have continued in: 1 Kings 3:5, 9-12 NIV At Gibeon the LORD appeared to Solomon during the night in a dream, and God said, "Ask for whatever you want me to give you." ... 9 So give your servant a discerning heart to govern your people and to distinguish between right and wrong. For who is able to govern this great people of yours?" 10 The Lord was pleased that Solomon had asked for this. 11 So God said to him, "Since you have asked for this and not for long life or wealth for yourself, nor have asked for the death of your enemies but for discernment in administering justice, 12 I will do what you have asked. I will give you a wise and discerning heart, so that there will never have been anyone like you, nor will there ever be.
D2 The towards the end of his reign:
E1 His love for sex and women: 1 Kings 11:1-2 NIV King Solomon, however, loved many foreign women besides Pharaoh's daughter--Moabites, Ammonites, Edomites, Sidonians and Hittites. 2 They were from nations about which the LORD had told the Israelites, "You must not intermarry with them, because they will surely turn your hearts after their gods." Nevertheless, Solomon held fast to them in love.
E2 1 Kings 11:4-6, 9 NIV As Solomon grew old, his wives turned his heart after other gods, and his heart was not fully devoted to the LORD his God, as the heart of David his father had been. 5 He followed Ashtoreth the goddess of the Sidonians, and Molek the detestable god of the Ammonites. 6 So Solomon did evil in the eyes of the LORD; he did not follow the LORD completely, as David his father had done. ... 9 The LORD became angry with Solomon because his heart had turned away from the LORD, the God of Israel, who had appeared to him twice.
C2 David
D1 His general character:
E1 1 Samuel 13:14 NIV But now your kingdom will not endure; the LORD has sought out a man after his own heart and appointed him ruler of his people, because you have not kept the LORD's command."
E2 Acts 13:22 NIV After removing Saul, he made David their king. God testified concerning him: 'I have found David son of Jesse, a man after my own heart; he will do everything I want him to do.'
D2 His sin:
E1 His lust arises. He knows she is married: 2 Samuel 11:2-3 WEB And it came to pass in an evening, that David arose from off his bed, and walked upon the roof of the king's house: and from the roof he saw a woman washing herself; and the woman was very beautiful to look upon. 3 And David sent and inquired after the woman. And one said, Is not this Bath-sheba, the daughter of Eliam, the wife of Uriah the Hittite?
E2 He rapes Bathsheba: 2 Samuel 11:4 WEB And David sent messengers, and took her; and she came in to him, and he lay with her; for she was purified from her uncleanness: and she returned to her house.
E3 Sin has many consequences:
F1 She becomes pregnant: 2 Samuel 11:5 NLT Later, when Bathsheba discovered that she was pregnant, she sent David a message, saying, "I'm pregnant."
F2 He tries to cover up his sin by ordering her husband murdered: 2 Samuel 11:15, 17 NLT The letter instructed Joab, "Station Uriah on the front lines where the battle is fiercest. Then pull back so that he will be killed." ... 17 And when the enemy soldiers came out of the city to fight, Uriah the Hittite was killed along with several other Israelite soldiers.
F3 God knows and sends a prophet to confront David: 2 Samuel 12:7-9 NLT Then Nathan said to David, "You are that man! The LORD, the God of Israel, says: I anointed you king of Israel and saved you from the power of Saul. 8 I gave you your master's house and his wives and the kingdoms of Israel and Judah. And if that had not been enough, I would have given you much, much more. 9 Why, then, have you despised the word of the LORD and done this horrible deed? For you have murdered Uriah the Hittite with the sword of the Ammonites and stolen his wife.
F4 God punishes: 2 Samuel 12:10-12, 14 NLT From this time on, your family will live by the sword because you have despised me by taking Uriah's wife to be your own. 11 "This is what the LORD says: Because of what you have done, I will cause your own household to rebel against you. I will give your wives to another man before your very eyes, and he will go to bed with them in public view. 12 You did it secretly, but I will make this happen to you openly in the sight of all Israel." ... 14 Nevertheless, because you have shown utter contempt for the LORD by doing this, your child will die."
D3 Today we know the principle: James 1:14-15 NLT Temptation comes from our own desires, which entice us and drag us away. 15 These desires give birth to sinful actions. And when sin is allowed to grow, it gives birth to death.
D4 Thankfully, David repented, that is, confessed his sin and never did anything like this again. Psalm 51 and 2 Samuel 12:13 NLT Then David confessed to Nathan, "I have sinned against the LORD." Nathan replied, "Yes, but the LORD has forgiven you, and you won't die for this sin.
C3 Jezebel (the New Testament person)
D1 Her position is prophetess.
D2 Her sin was in her teaching and action: Revelation 2:20 NLT But I have this complaint against you. You are permitting that woman—that Jezebel who calls herself a prophet—to lead my servants astray. She teaches them to commit sexual sin and to eat food offered to idols.
D3 Her punishment and the consequences of sin: Revelation 2:21-23 NLT I gave her time to repent, but she does not want to turn away from her immorality. 22 "Therefore, I will throw her on a bed of suffering, and those who commit adultery with her will suffer greatly unless they repent and turn away from her evil deeds. 23 I will strike her children dead. Then all the churches will know that I am the one who searches out the thoughts and intentions of every person. And I will give to each of you whatever you deserve.

We have principles of what we must not do. We must not let money and physical pleasures influence our actions and cause us to sin.

Jude 1:24-25 NLT Now all glory to God, who is able to keep you from falling away and will bring you with great joy into his glorious presence without a single fault. 25 All glory to him who alone is God, our Savior through Jesus Christ our Lord. All glory, majesty, power, and authority are his before all time, and in the present, and beyond all time! Amen.

29 October 2019

A Few More Thoughts About Faith

B1 Defined
C1 I define faith as believing God.
C2 Bible verses
D1 Jonah 3:5 CSB Then the people of Nineveh believed God. They proclaimed a fast and dressed in sackcloth—from the greatest of them to the least.
D2 Romans 4:3 CSB For what does the Scripture say? Abraham believed God, and it was credited to him for righteousness. (Genesis 15:6)
D3 Romans 11:30 WEL For just as in times past you refused to believe God, yet now you have received mercy through their disobedience.
D4 Psalm 78:20-22 NLT Yes, he can strike a rock so water gushes out, but he can't give his people bread and meat." 21 When the LORD heard them, he was furious. The fire of his wrath burned against Jacob. Yes, his anger rose against Israel, 22 for they did not believe God or trust him to care for them.
D5 John 3:18 WEL The one who believes in him is not judged, but the one who does not believe is judged already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.
B2 Hebrews 11 is the faith chapter. What faith is. Examples of brothers and sisters in faith. They show their faith by what they do. We do what we really believe. It is not just what we say we believe.

Classes of faith (from my feeble mind)
B1 Blind faith
C1 Blind faith is the faith where there is no reason to believe something other than what someone says of writes. An example might be I might someone whom I have never met before. This person tells me that they have 3 earned doctorate degrees. This person tells me something he/she has learned. I believe this person explicitly. I have never met them before. I do not know if they have any degrees. They give no reasons or logic to support their statement. I just believe it. This is blind faith. We all must have a little skepticism to test what someone claims.
C2 The common example: Too many still mention God’s command to Abraham to sacrifice his son Isaac. They claim this was blind faith.
C3 But
D1 Abraham had many times believed God. Always it was the best choice to make.
E1 Genesis 12 Leave Haran:
F1 Genesis 12:1-4 NIV The LORD had said to Abram, "Go from your country, your people and your father's household to the land I will show you. 2 "I will make you into a great nation, and I will bless you; I will make your name great, and you will be a blessing. 3 I will bless those who bless you, and whoever curses you I will curse; and all peoples on earth will be blessed through you." 4 So Abram went, as the LORD had told him; and Lot went with him. Abram was seventy-five years old when he set out from Harran.
F2 The rest of the chapter and following chapters show how God blessed Abraham.
E2 Genesis 15 Prediction of a son who will be the heir:
F1 Genesis 15:1-6 NIV After this, the word of the LORD came to Abram in a vision: "Do not be afraid, Abram. I am your shield, your very great reward." 2 But Abram said, "Sovereign LORD, what can you give me since I remain childless and the one who will inherit my estate is Eliezer of Damascus?" 3 And Abram said, "You have given me no children; so a servant in my household will be my heir." 4 Then the word of the LORD came to him: "This man will not be your heir, but a son who is your own flesh and blood will be your heir." 5 He took him outside and said, "Look up at the sky and count the stars—if indeed you can count them." Then he said to him, "So shall your offspring be." 6 Abram believed the LORD, and he credited it to him as righteousness.
F2 Prediction of a son in about one year: Genesis 18:10 NIV Then one of them said, "I will surely return to you about this time next year, and Sarah your wife will have a son." Now Sarah was listening at the entrance to the tent, which was behind him.
F3 Prediction fulfilled: Genesis 21:1-3 NIV Now the LORD was gracious to Sarah as he had said, and the LORD did for Sarah what he had promised. 2 Sarah became pregnant and bore a son to Abraham in his old age, at the very time God had promised him. 3 Abraham gave the name Isaac to the son Sarah bore him.
E3 Genesis 18 Prediction of judgment:
F1 Genesis 18:1, 20-23 NIV The LORD appeared to Abraham near the great trees of Mamre while he was sitting at the entrance to his tent in the heat of the day. ... 20 Then the LORD said, "The outcry against Sodom and Gomorrah is so great and their sin so grievous 21 that I will go down and see if what they have done is as bad as the outcry that has reached me. If not, I will know." 22 The men turned away and went toward Sodom, but Abraham remained standing before the LORD. 23 Then Abraham approached him and said: "Will you sweep away the righteous with the wicked?
F2 Prediction fulfilled: Genesis 19:28-29 NIV He looked down toward Sodom and Gomorrah, toward all the land of the plain, and he saw dense smoke rising from the land, like smoke from a furnace. 29 So when God destroyed the cities of the plain, he remembered Abraham, and he brought Lot out of the catastrophe that overthrew the cities where Lot had lived.
E4 Genesis The test:
F1 Genesis 22:1-2, 8, 10, 13 NIV Some time later God tested Abraham. He said to him, "Abraham!" "Here I am," he replied. 2 Then God said, "Take your son, your only son, whom you love--Isaac--and go to the region of Moriah. Sacrifice him there as a burnt offering on a mountain I will show you." ... 8 Abraham answered, "God himself will provide the lamb for the burnt offering, my son." And the two of them went on together. ... 10 Then he reached out his hand and took the knife to slay his son. ... 13 Abraham looked up and there in a thicket he saw a ram caught by its horns. He went over and took the ram and sacrificed it as a burnt offering instead of his son.
F2 Isaac was delivered by a substitute.
D2 So it was reasonable for Abrahma to believe God in Genesis 22. Abraham had had many dealings with God. God proved faithful. What God predicted about Isaac being the heir came true. If Isaac was to die, then God would prove to be a liar or too weak. Isaac lived. Further, we know from Hebrews 11 that Abraham couldn’t understand this command but thought that God would raise Isaac from the dead. Hebrews 11:17-19 NIV By faith Abraham, when God tested him, offered Isaac as a sacrifice. He who had embraced the promises was about to sacrifice his one and only son, 18 even though God had said to him, "It is through Isaac that your offspring will be reckoned." 19 Abraham reasoned that God could even raise the dead, and so in a manner of speaking he did receive Isaac back from death.
C4 Some articles:
B2 Reasonable faith—is a faith that the person mentioned about might have some proof of their degrees or perhaps, we have met them before. Still, we need a little skepticism to see if they really have these degrees and need more than a little, simple support for their statements. We simply must have some evidence.
C1 Personally, I look to Jesus as the foundation.
D1 It is reasonable that He existed. See here (also read the comments as there is much more information there) and here (PDF) for examples.
D2 It is reasonable that what is written about Him is true. See here and here and here (book) for examples.
D3 It is reasonable that what He said was true.
D4 It is reasonable that He is the Messiah. See here and here for examples.
C2 The Gospel chain of custody as presented by J. Warner Wallace. It is also here.
C3 Some examples of how others twist meaning into Jesus’s words.
D1 This is from a rebuttal to a debate by atheist Richard Carrier in the David Marshall v. Richard Carrier debate.
D2 Words of the Lord Jesus:
E1 Matthew 26:60-61 NLT But even though they found many who agreed to give false witness, they could not use anyone's testimony. Finally, two men came forward 61 who declared, "This man said, 'I am able to destroy the Temple of God and rebuild it in three days.
E2 John 2:19-21 NLT "All right," Jesus replied. "Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up." 20 "What!" they exclaimed. "It has taken forty-six years to build this Temple, and you can rebuild it in three days?" 21 But when Jesus said "this temple," he meant his own body.
C4 Some other sources (I don’t necessary agree with all they teach. Always be a Berean).
D2 The Evidence for Christianity by William Lane Craig

26 October 2019

My Statement of Faith Revised

A1 Truth

We believe that truth is reality and fact. We believe that the greatest truth is an attribute of God and expressed in the Christian Scriptures. Proof only exists in math and logic. The truth of Christianity exists because it is the most reasonable of all possibilities. This leads us to the understanding that the Bible is the only source of 100% truth. Jesus Christ is the person who has authenticated the Bible.

A2 Scriptures

We believe the Bible, in its commonly accepted 66 books, is inspired of God to the extent that the words represent what God wanted for humanity to know (Deuteronomy 29:29, 1 Thessalonians 2:13). This would include statements made by individuals who were not inspired but the statement itself is 100% representation of the thought itself. For example, when the devil speaks, the quote is 100% accurate, but it is not God’s words. The Bible is not a book of science or history, yet when science or history is the topic, it is 100% accurate, thus creation and Noah’s flood are accurate history. Creation was in 6, 24-hour days in the literal sense. Noah’s flood was worldwide flood of water covering every inch of the earth’s surface.

Scriptures are necessary for humans to know God and His purpose, plans, personality, salvation, sin, and other topics (Psalm 19:7-9, Psalm 119, Matthew 4:4). The Bible is to be read, studied, and understood in its plain, normal, grammatical-historical sense using the context of the passage (Psalm 19:7, Matthew 11:27). Symbolism will be seen as symbolism. Allegory will be seen as allegory. It is not to be interpreted or overruled by theology, science, philosophy, or some type of grid (as some dispensational teachers do (ultra, hyperdispensationalism)). Experience, voices, impressions, dreams, physical manifestations are to be rejected today as having no authority. The sole authority for speaking and writing God’s words are the Lord Jesus, the Apostles, and the prophets (Ephesians 2:20). There are no apostles or prophets today (1 Corinthians 13:8-10). The cannon of Scripture was decided on by the time of John the Apostle’s death. Our Christian beliefs in thoughts, desires, words, and deeds, teaching, doctrine, etc. are found in the New Testament (2 Timothy 3:16-17, 2 Peter 1:21). The Old Testament is for Israel and contains examples, prophecies, and the framework for the New Testament believer.

A3 Trinity

We believe in one God who exists as three persons (Deuteronomy 6:4, Mark 12:29). There are not three Gods (John 5:18, Matthew 28:19). The one God is one essence. The essence of God is the spirit body of God, the stuff that is Him. He has no material body (John 4:24, 2 Corinthians 3:17). The three persons are God the Father, God the Son (Jesus, Yeshua), and God the Holy Spirit. Each person is fully God. Each has the same essence and the same attributes but are separate persons. Hierarchy in the Trinity refers to the roles of the Godhead. God is eternal without beginning or end (1 Timothy 1:17, John 1:1, Romans 16:26, Hebrews 9:14). God is above the universe but active in the universe (John 16:27, Genesis 18:22, and Jesus Christ). He is personal having relationships, thoughts, and will. He is the perfection of rational thought (Proverbs 8, 1 Timothy 1:17, Romans 16:27). He needs nothing. He does not need to learn anything (Isaiah 40:13-14). He is not a force or thought in everything, or even the universe itself. He is totally in heaven, yet He is present everywhere in this universe (Psalm 139). He is the perfection of all attributes among which are communicable attributes as compassion, love, mercy, anger, judgment, good, etc. He is also the perfection of all attributes among which are incommunicable attributes as omniscience, omnipotence, omnipresence, omnisapience, omnibenevolent, eternity, etc. He knows the future including what can be known to humans (as science) (Isaiah 40:26) and what cannot be known to humans (as future decisions) (Acts 15:18, 1 Corinthians 2:10, Matthew 12:25, John 1:47). He is totally sovereign (Psalm 135:6, Luke 1:37, Isaiah 43:13). He is King of the Universe. Nothing can control Him or overrule what He decides. Foreknowledge is not decreeing all things; it is truly knowing the known and unknown. Separateness between members of the Trinity is clear (John 5:22, Isaiah 48:12-16, John 20:21, etc.). Oneness between the members of the Trinity is also clear (John 14:9, John 10:30-34).

A4 God the Father

We believe that God the Father in Scriptures is so designated as such by the role or position He accomplishes. The teaching in the Bible about what a father is and how to live as such gives us some understanding of His role.

He is designated by the term father for a number of reasons. First, He is father of the Lord Jesus Christ in the incarnation (John 5:17-18, John 10:29-33, John 11:41). Second, He is father to believers in the regeneration (Ephesians 1:2, Romans 1:7). He is not the father of all humans (Ephesians 4:6 in context refers to the church, that is, believers. It does not refer to all humans). He is the creator of all humans but only the Father of believers. All humans might call Him God, but only believers can call Him Father. For the Lord Jesus, God the Son, to be a human, He needed to be conceived in the womb of a female (Isaiah 7:14, Matthew 1:23). The power of the Holy Spirit accomplished this in and through the Virgin Mary (Luke 1:30-35). God the Father, then, is Father to God the Son as to the flesh. God is the Father of God the Son, as to deity, only in the role the members of the Trinity have decided on. The Old Testament describes God as Father to the nation of Israel but not to the individual (Isaiah 64:8). In the New Testament, God the Father is to believers only (Ephesians 1:2, Philippians 4:20, etc.).

A5 God the Son

B1 Person
We believe He is 100% God and 100% man (John 1:14, John 10:30, John 8:40). He is one person with two natures. All the attributes of God are found in the person, Jesus Christ (1 Timothy 1:16-17). The incarnation of Jesus is God the Son becoming enfleshment (the meaning of incarnation). He is God manifest in the flesh (1 Timothy 3:16 (in the best manuscripts. Wilbur Pickering comments on 1 Timothy 3:16: "Instead of 'God', 1% of the Greek manuscripts read 'who', and most modern versions follow this 1%. But 'who' is nonsensical (in the context), so most of them take evasive action: NEB and NASB have "he who"; Phillips has "the one"; NRSV, Jerusalem, TEV and NIV render "he". Berkley actually has "who"! In the Greek Text the relative pronoun has no antecedent, so it is a grammatical 'impossibility', besides being a stupiditywhat is so mysterious about someone being manifested in flesh? All human beings have bodies. The pronoun can be accounted for as an easy transcriptional error, a simple copying mistake, so why not stay with the 98.5%? "God was manifested in flesh"now there you have a mystery!). He was born of a virgin (Luke 1:26,27, 34). The word for virgin is the medical term for virgin. No one has ever seen God, but the Son reveals, has made him known (Matthew 11:27, John 1:18). He is also the Creator, not created (Colossians 1:16, John 1:3, Hebrews 1:8-10). Jesus has the nature of God and the nature of a human (Philippians 2:6-7). His divine nature has always existed—past, present, and future (Hebrews 13:8, Revelation 1:8). His human nature began with the incarnation in the womb of the Virgin Mary. Nature refers to the essential kind or characteristics of something. A cat has a different nature from a dog. God has a nature that describes what He is as a person. Humans have a nature, too. The nature of God is different from the nature of a man. Jesus has the perfect nature of God and the perfect nature of a man. He was truly tempted (Matthew 4:1-11) but did not sin (Hebrews 4:15, John 8:46, 2 Corinthians 5:21, 1 Peter 2:22). He obeyed God’s law as written in the Old Testament perfectly, fulfilling everything perfectly (Luke 24:44, Acts 3:18).
C1 Humanity
We believe He is Son of Man. He has the body, soul, and spirit of a man (Galatians 4:4, Matthew 26:38, Luke 23:46). He has the nature of a man. He is sinless (Hebrews 4:15, John 8:46, 2 Corinthians 5:21, 1 Peter 2:22). In the incarnation, he received a body, soul, and spirit of a man in order to be our savior—truly a man (Hebrews 10:8, 1 Corinthians 5:7).
C2 Deity
We believe He is God the Son. He has always existed (John 1:15, John 8:58, John 17:5, Hebrews 1:8). He has always existed as the son. Son does not always refer to generation, as it would for humans, but to relationship, the role, the designation of Jesus (Yeshua, the Holy One of Israel) (Isaiah 7:14, Isaiah 9:6). God the Father is the father of the Lord Jesus in relation, designation, and role. The Father addresses Jesus as the son (Matthew 3:17, Luke 9:35). Humans (Matthew 16:16, John 1:29) and demons (Matthew 8:29) address him as Son. Jesus is the Messiah. He has, is, and will be always, both eternally past and eternally future, the Messiah. Jesus is prophet (Deuteronomy 18:15, Acts 3:22, Acts 7:37), priest (Hebrews 3:1, Hebrews 4:14, Hebrews 6:20, Romans 8:34), and king (Matthew 2:2, Matthew 27:11, Luke 1:31-33, Revelation 17:14). He is fully and completely God in every possible way (Colossians 2:8-10, 1 Timothy 1:16-17).
We fully and finally reject these heresies about the person of Messiah:
Adoptionism: the belief that Jesus was a normal man, who was adopted, given the Christ spirit at His baptism, because of His holiness and character. Finnis Dake and others teach this. He could not have paid the penalty for our sin if He was not God. Even if any man could be sinless (the Bible teaches all are dead in sins and trespasses), he would die only for his own sin, not for the sins all of humanity.
Apollinarism: the belief that Jesus had a human body and soul but his spirit was God, divine. This was a blending of the nature of God and the nature of a man, instead of two natures. Jesus to be a man had to have the soul and nature of a man, and for Jesus to be God had to have the nature of God. Jesus had to have the nature of God and the nature of man to be the savior. He had to have the nature of God to pay the penalty for sin. He had to have the nature of man to be our representative. Jesus was not a human who was possessed by God, but who truly was, is, and always will be God.
Arianism: the belief that Jesus was a created being, first among all of creation. He had a beginning. The title Son of God was one of courtesy. Even though there were different forms of this, all believe that Jesus is not of the same essence as the Father.
Docetism: the belief that Jesus’s body was not real flesh and blood but an illusion, a ghost, so to speak. When Jesus died on the cross, it was not a real, physical body, just a spirit body that appeared to die.
Monophysitism: the emphasis on Jesus’s divinity and lessening His humanity. The Bible clearly teaches two natures of Jesus—the fully human and the fully divine.
Monothelitism: Jesus had two natures, divine and human, but only one will. The correct understanding is that Jesus had two wills as well as two natures.
Nestorianism: the belief that Jesus the human was united but not identical with the divine.
Patripassianism: the belief that the Father and the Son are not separate persons, thus the Father died on the cross as Jesus, not the Father.
Psilanthropism: the belief that Jesus is fully human. He did not exist before birth and never became divine.
Sabellianism (Modalism): the belief that the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit are not 3 persons but different characterizations or appearances of one god. Sometimes taking the role of Father, sometimes the role of Son, and sometimes the role of Holy Spirit.
B2 Work of Messiah
We believe He is savior (Titus 1:3, Titus 2:10). He suffered for our sins, the just for the unjust (1 Peter 3:18). He is our Passover Lamb (1 Corinthians 5:7). He is head of the church (Ephesians 1:22). He is the Messiah of Israel (the Jewish people). The prophets foretold about the suffering Messiah (Isaiah 53 and many others) and the glorious Messiah (Revelation 19, Isaiah 11:3-5, Jeremiah 23:5-6).
B3 Ascension
We believe He truly died (Matthew 27:54, John 19:31-37). He truly was buried (John 19:38-42, Acts 13:29, 1 Corinthians 15:4, etc.). He truly raised bodily from the dead (John 20:1-8, 1 Corinthians 15:6). He went bodily to heaven (Acts 1:6-11, Luke 24:51).
B4 His return
We believe He will return bodily to earth to rule and reign eternally in Jerusalem.

A6 Person and Work of the Holy Spirit

B1 Person
We believe the Holy Spirit is a person, not a force or power (John 14:26, Acts 5:3-4). He convicts all people of their sin (John 16:8). He is involved in regeneration (being born again) (Titus 3:5, John 3:5-6). He has all the attributes of God including eternal (Hebrews 9:14), omniscience (1 Corinthians 2:10) and omnipresence (Psalm 139:7-13). He inspires Scripture (1 Timothy, 3:16, 2 Peter 1:21). He gives wisdom (1 Corinthians 12:8) and strength (Romans 15:19).
B2 Work
C1 Brings conviction (John 16:8)
C2 Teacher (John 14:26, 1 Corinthians 2:13).
C3 Gives gifts (1 Corinthians 12:4-11).
C4 Comforter, assistant, helper, encourager of believers (John 14:16, John 15:26, Romans 8:26)
B3 Spiritual Gifts
C1 Exist (1 Corinthians 12:4-11)
C2 Each gift is not given to all, for not all had (1st century church) the gift of Apostle, etc. Not everyone was an apostle, etc.
C3 Some of these gifts are presently not in operation (1 Corinthians 13:8-12).
C4 The Baptism of the Holy Spirit is not tongues (real languages) but God’s presence with believers to protect, discipline, encourage, and do the work of God (Romans 14:17, 1 Corinthians 6:19, 2 Corinthians 13:14, Ephesians 1:13, Hebrews 6:4).

A7 Salvation

B1 Salvation is not salvation from the ills of society. Salvation is forgiveness of sins and a reconciliation of fellowship between God and humans.
B2 No human seeks God (Romans 3:9-20). No human is good (Romans 3:12), Ecclesiastes 7:20, Isaiah 64:6). There is no spark of divinity, or something good in anyone that would seek God. All humans, except the Lord Jesus, have sin inherited from Adam (pride, me first attitude). All humans are dead in sin and trespasses (Ephesians 2:1). They are spiritually dead, not physically and mentally dead, for people can resist (Ephesians 2:1, Luke 15:24, 1 Timothy 5:6, 2 Timothy 3:8, Acts 7:51).
B3 We believe in a libertarian free will, which is the ability of contrary choice. God in His sovereignty decreed for humans to have a measure of true free will. This is not limited to selecting different choice but not be forced or decreed to a certain choice. We believe that after the Holy Spirit gives prevenient grace, people then have a freed will, then people have the ability to resist or not resist God’s gracious invitation for salvation.
B4 The atonement of the Lord Jesus was unlimited to all but effectual for only those who meet God’s conditions (Romans 10:9-14, 1 John 5:1). Jesus truly died for all people (John 3:15-19, Matthew 9:13, 1 Timothy 1:15-16, Matthew 11:28) and wants all people to believe (Matthew 9:13, 1 Timothy 1:15, 2 Peter 3:9). God opens the eyes, mind, and heart of all people, but most resist because of pride and love of sinful pleasures. God gives a genuine offer of salvation to all people.
B5 Most Reformed/classical Arminians and Wesley Arminians believe that God foresees those who will believe. These are the elect. Others tend to favor corporate election. Election is not based on foreknowledge of good works or merit.
B6 After God initiates salvation and opens the heart and mind of a person, a person can then resist or not resist God’s grace (Luke 24:45, Acts 16:14, Acts 26:18). No human has ever, is able, or ever able to initiate salvation (Romans 3:10-11). All people are spiritually dead and cannot choose. God enables and all people then and only then can believe or not believe. God calls all humans to salvation (Matthew 11:28, Acts 17:30).
B7 God’s call is genuine. Those who are not saved are those who resist. They choose to not believe because of their pride and love of sinful pleasures.
B8 Choice is our responsibility after God initiates salvation by opening our eyes, mind, heart, and freeing the will. Most will resist God’s call.
B9 All people are dead in sins and trespasses. We believe in total depravity and total inability. God initiates salvation, afterwards all people have a freed will to resist or not resist God’s gracious invitation for salvation.
B10 The Gospel is grace alone through faith alone in Jesus Christ alone. Believing God is the essence of saving faith, so Enoch, Noah, Abraham, etc. to this very day and forever. There is only one Gospel. It was taught perfectly by God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit. The Apostles of Jesus Christ then preached this same Gospel to others, who preached it to others to this very day.

A8 Security, Assurance

We reject the Once Saved, Always Saved (osas) concept, though we recognize that true believers and Bible students do believe osas.
The Bible, in its plain, normal reading, studying, and interpreting, gives warning passages as 2 Timothy 2:12, Hebrews 3:12, Hebrews 6:4-6, Hebrews 10:26-39, 2 Peter 2:20-22. These verses deal with true Christians who apostatized, will die, and go to hell. The Christian faith is initiated by God’s grace and finishes with God’s grace. Those who resist eventually will be cast aside. Those who continue to believe will be welcomed into heaven. Though all Christians have times of rebellion, we believe that God’s chastening will have the good effect of each to repentance. We also believe that one sin will not cause loss of salvation. We believe that John 10:25-30 refers to people who have religious authority pronouncing loss of salvation. This passage states their pronouncement has no effect. Assurance for the Christian is daily (Hebrews 6:11, Hebrews 10:22, Romans 8:38-39, 2 Timothy 1:12), and we can be calm and peaceful in our secure salvation (Romans 5:1, Philippians 1:6, 2 Timothy 4:18).

A9 Humanity

We believe that all humans are created. Adam was created from dirt; Eve was created from one of Adam’s ribs. The rest of us are created biologically. God is creator of all humans but not Father of all humans (Ephesians 4:6 is addressed to the church, that is, believers). All believers call God, Father (1 Peter 1:2-4, John 1:12-13, 1 John 3:2). Humans have a sinful nature from conception. This is termed original sin, since it is from the corruption of Adam (Romans 5:12, 1 Corinthians 15:22). Original sin is noticed, observed, as me first and pride.
Our sinful nature is as satan’s nature is (John 8:44, Matthew 13:38, 1 John 3:8-12).
We believe that all humans are created in the image of God (Genesis 1:26, Genesis 5:1-2, James 3:9). This image is not physical but as a rational soul that shares the communicable attributes of God. This image has been tarnished by sin. Without Jesus the Messiah and His salvation, all humanity will go to hell.

A10 Church

B1 Who
The local church is the church that meets in a building, house, outdoors, etc. and is comprised of men and women who have met God’s conditions for salvation. The church universal is all believers from Pentecost to and including the Rapture. The church is only believers, not necessary church members. (1 Corinthians 12:12-14, Ephesians 1:22-23, Colossians 1:24, Colossians 2:19).
B2 Autonomy
The local church is independent and free of any external authority or control.
B3 Other
The church (people, not building) is God’s (1 Timothy 3:15). Jesus Christ is the ruler (Ephesians 5:23).
B4 The church service should include prayers (1 Timothy 2:1), singing (Colossians 3:16), reading, exhortation, and teaching (1 Timothy 4:13) to build up the saints in faith or witness. This would include apologetics to defend one’s faith (1 Peter 3:15).

A11 Baptism

B1 General
We believe in baptism. Baptism does not wash away sins. The only thing that washes away sins is the blood of Jesus Christ (Revelation 1:5, Revelation 7:14, 1 John 1:7). Baptism is not needed to have salvation (Romans 6:3-4, 1 Peter 3:21, Romans 10:9-10). It is done in obedience to God’s command. It signifies our being under His authority. It signifies a new life. It is an appeal for a guilt free conscience (Hebrews 9:14, 1 Peter 3:20-22).
B2 Holy Spirit Baptism
We believe the Holy Spirit baptizes all believers (Galatians 3:2-5). The baptism of the Holy Spirit is not in gifts as tongues or manifestations but an invisible anointing and presence indwelling each Christian immediately at the new birth (born again, regeneration) (Ephesians 4:5, 1 Corinthians 6:19, 1 Corinthians 12:13, Galatians 3:27).
B3 Water Baptism
We believe the mode of water baptism can be immersing, pouring, or sprinkling (Romans 6:3-8, Acts 2:17-18, Hebrews 10:22, 1 Peter 1:2). Generally, it will be done by immersion signifying dying with Jesus Christ and being raised to new life (Romans 6:3-8).

A12 Lord’s Supper

We believe the Lord’s Supper, Communion, is to be enjoyed by believers to remember what great sacrifice the Lord Jesus made for our salvation, that He, and He alone, suffered for our sins (Hebrews 13:12, 1 Peter 3:18) and paid the penalty of death (Colossians 1:14, Hebrews 9:15, Galatians 3:13-14). The instructions for us Christians are found in the Gospels (Matthew 26:26-29, Mark 14:22-24, Luke 19:20-20) and in 1 Corinthians 11:23-26,

A13 Washing of feet

We believe and practice the washing of the believer’s feet (men with men and women with women). The example and teaching of Jesus is taught and practiced in John 13:1-17.

A14 Lord’s Day

We believe that Sunday is the first day of the week. Believers may meet on any day to worship (Romans 14:5-6), but Sunday is the normal day to gather and worship (Acts 20:7, Revelation 1:10). It is done so in memory of Jesus’s resurrection, which was on the first day of the week (Luke 24:1-3, John 20:19).

A15 Separation

We believe that there are two kingdoms, the kingdom of satan (Matthew 12:26-27, John 12:31, John 14:30, 2 Corinthians 4:4) and the Kingdom of God (Matthew 6:33, 1 Corinthians 6:9-10, Ephesians 5:5). Each kingdom has a ruler and rules. They are separate and have nothing in common. All humans are born into the kingdom of satan (John 8:44, 1 John 3:8) and follow satan’s ways and desires (2 Corinthians 11:13-15). After our rebirth, Christians are in the Kingdom of God and want to live in obedience our King Jesus and follow His rules (1 John 3:9-10, 2 Corinthians 10:5-6). Thus, there is to be a separation in thoughts, desires, words, and deeds from those of the kingdom of satan (James 4:4, 2 Corinthians 6:14-18).

A16 Second Coming

We believe Jesus is coming back to earth. He said so. This consists of 2 parts. The first is the Rapture of believers before the Tribulation (1 Thessalonians 1:10, 1 Thessalonians 4:16, Titus 2:13). The second is at the end of the Tribulation to deliver Israel (the Jews) and set up the Millennial Kingdom (Matthew 24:30, Revelation 1:7, Revelation 19:11-21, Zechariah 14).

A17 Eternal State

We believe that all humans live forever (Daniel 12:2-3, 1 Corinthians 15:22). There is no annihilation or destruction of the person. There is Hades and Hell. Hades is the jail where conscious souls wait for sentencing (Luke 16:19-31,). Hell is the Lake of Fire where those who did not believe will suffer forever without end (Revelation 20:13-15). The Lake of Fire was created for the devil and his angels (Matthew 25:41, Luke 8:28, Matthew 8:29). There are degrees of punishment in hell (Matthew 10:15, Matthew 11:22). There is no second chance for salvation (Hebrews 9:27). Heaven is the place where God lives and has His eternal kingdom.
When people die, the flesh stays on earth and returns to dust. The souls of people go to their respective places. The non-believers go to Hades and believers go to heaven (2 Corinthians 5:8). The Old Testament saints are in “Abraham’s bosom” (Luke 23:43, Daniel 12:2, Luke 16:25) waiting for their resurrection at the end of the Millennium.
People are conscious after death (Luke 16:19-31, Revelation 14:9-10). We reject soul sleep and soul destruction. All people will be resurrected (Daniel 12:2-3, 1 Thessalonians 4:16-17, Acts 24:15). The Christians who have died and not living at His return will be resurrected at the Rapture (1 Corinthians 15:51-54, 1 Thessalonians 4:16-17). The living will then be with the Lord without experiencing death.
The Bema sea is for Christians to be judged and rewarded for how they lived while on earth (Romans 14:9-12, 2 Corinthians 5:10).
The separation of sheep and goats is for the people living at the end of the Tribulation and is based on their attitudes and actions to the Jews (Matthew 25:31-46).
The Great White Throne is the final resurrection and judgment of all those who did not believe, whether Old Testament saints, or those of the Millennium (Daniel 12:2-3, Revelation 20:12-15).
Those who go to heaven will exist eternally (1 Thessalonians 4:17), and those who go to the Lake of Fire will exist eternally (Isaiah 66:24, John 5:28-29, Mark 9:48).
The saints will have new, resurrected bodies like Jesus had after His resurrection (1 John 3:2, Romans 8:18, 1 Corinthians 15:49, Philippians 3:21). The unbelievers will have their old, mortal body, the one they have now, forever (Matthew 5:29).

A18 satan

We believe satan is a being originally created as the covering cherubim. He was holy. He became proud, sinned, and was cursed by God. He is the ruler, prince, of this world causing all sorts of evil as he rebels against God and God’s people (Job 1-2,). He is the enemy of God and man. He will be punished forever and ever in the Lake of Fire. He is not sovereign though he has great power. He seeks to deceive through any means possible that others will continue in their rebellion (Revelation 20:8, 2 Corinthians 11:14, Genesis 3:1-5, Revelation 12:9, 2 Corinthians 2:11, 1 Peter 5:8). He seeks to deceive Christians that they might rebel against God, too. (Isaiah 14:12-21, Ezekiel 28:13-17, Revelation 12:7, Revelation 20:10)

A19 Creation

We believe the Bible regarding creation and history is accurate. Creation was completed in 6, 24-hour days (Genesis 1, Exodus 20:11). Noah’s flood was totally global with every inch of the earth being under water (Genesis 7-8, 2 Peter 3:6). Evolution in any form is not the most reasonable explanation of origins and is rejected. If God is not to be believed in the first few chapters of Genesis, it is unlikely any should believe anything else. We believe that design is evident in all of creation that cannot be explained by natural methods.

A20 Civil Government

We believe God has ordained civil government. God places men and women in the highest positions in countries. They are to rule, lead, guide that nation in God’s ways. They do not, so they will pay a heavier penalty than non-leaders. We are to submit as far as possible, unless it causes us to disobey God. We are to pay our taxes. We are not to be at war or cause social unrest. (Matthew 22:21, Romans 12:18, Daniel 4:25, Romans 13:1-7, Acts 5:29). We are to pray for them daily.

A21 Human Sexuality and marriage

We believe God made humans male (XY) or female (XX). Each is distinct in gender. God made sex for pleasure and procreation. God made males to have sex with females, and females with males. Any other gender or illusion is not God’s will. Sex is only for marriage. It is an expression of oneness. This oneness is not only sexual but also spiritual, emotional, rational, and purpose. Sex outside marriage of any type is not God’s will. Sex is a commitment to another person—a commitment of a lifetime.
We believe that marriage is either Christian or controlling. A controlling style is marriage is not a Christian marriage. Both spouses need to work to a common, agreed solution. In the case where all has been discussed without solution, the wife then must yield to her husband. If the husband’s decision is wrong, then he must acknowledge this and if still possible choose the wife’s solution.
We reject patriarchy as being abusive and against God’s will for marriage.
We believe that children are a blessing. Sometimes God does not allow husband and wife to have children (Psalm 127:3). This is not a sin. Medical assistance is encouraged as well as prayer. Parents are not to make their children bitter (Ephesians 6:4, Colossians 3:21), are to teach them the Christian faith, are to give answers to difficult questions as evolution, social issues, atheism, etc.
We believe if a person does not marry, they are still loved and blessed by God. They have the gifts of the Holy Spirit. They can serve in the church. They are not to be shunned or treated as lesser Christians.

A22 Male and female spiritually and gifts.

We believe both are equal in God’s sight. Both can pray. Both can prophecy. Only males can be pastors of the local church. Males and females can be deacons/deaconesses (Romans 16:1) and should be ordained as such. This is not only taught in the Bible but is practical for counsel and comfort. The qualifications are given in Scripture (1 Timothy 3:8-13, Acts 6:3). One does not have to be married to be a pastor or deacon/deaconess.

A23 Divorce and Remarriage

We believe marriage is a uniting of a male and a female to go through life as partners and friends. All that they face, they face together. Love is a choice. The outward manifestations of love to each other are clear in Scripture (1 Corinthians 13:1-7, Ephesians 5:28). Any abuse be it physical, emotional, financial, sexual, spiritual or any type is evil. Divorce is recommended because abuse is never right. Abuse is a violation and abandonment of marriage vows. Marital counseling in abuse situations is essentially never successful as the wife is almost always blamed for the difficulties.
We believe that divorce is allowed in the Bible for only three reasons—sexual sins (e.g. incest, porn, and adultery), abuse, and desertion (e.g. physically leaving, spiritually leaving (this would be one might lose their faith in Jesus)). One doesn't have to divorce for adultery but it is allowed. Abuse is not from one doing irritating behaviors; it is physical, or emotional, or financial, or sexual, or spiritual, etc. These abuses are spiritually threatening as well as emotionally and physically threatening. The wife is usually blamed as not being submissive enough, but that is an excuse of evil pastors, evil pastor's wives, and the abuser themselves. The abused need to divorce and be safe. There should be no contact to low contact. See Exodus 21:10-11, Matthew 19:9, 1 Corinthians 7:11, Ephesians 5:28.
We believe that pastors who do not take abuse issues seriously should be removed from the pulpit as they do not want to understand the awful sin of abuse. Remarriage, if desired, is spiritually allowed. Since marriage is very serious, each person must be careful whom they marry. We believe it is necessary for godly, premarital counseling.
We believe that pastors are only the spouse of one living wife. If a pastor’s wife dies, he is free to marry. If there is a pastor who is divorced, he must give up his pastorship until he is examined as to why. If there is a scriptural reason for divorce (desertion, abuse, or sexual sins), one should not be a pastor but a teacher or assisting the church.

A24 Abortion

We believe that human life begins at conception. The unborn child in the uterus is fully human and is worthy of life. Abortion is murder of an innocent human being. We reject abortion for gender choice, rape, incest, birth defects, mental wellbeing, or population control. If it is diagnosed that the mother is likely to die, the pregnancy will have to be removed.

A25 Euthanasia

We believe in natural death. If it appears that it is likely that person is going to die, natural death is to be allowed. Any natural medicines (plants/herbs) or prescribed medicines are acceptable for comfort, pain, anxiety, etc. Any active termination of life, as euthanasia, is murder of an innocent life.

A26 Missions

We believe that one of the duties of the church is to spread the gospel. This is required of all Christians. Some Christians may be called to missions in their native country or elsewhere and should be supported by prayer and meeting of their needs.

A27 Lawsuits between Believers

We believe that Christians are not allowed to bring civil lawsuits (1 Corinthians 6:1-8) against other believers or the church without first attempting to resolve the problem personally and in the local church body. Lawsuits are often necessary to stop others from hurting someone else as in medical lawsuits. Truth and honesty must be the highest priority, while covetousness and revenge are to be totally abhorred and rejected.

A28 Giving

We believe that Christians should cheerfully give to the local church for paying expenses as mortgage, utilities, insurance, taxes, etc. The tithe can be followed if desired, but the tithe is not required for Christians. Pastors should be helped materially whenever possible, for they do the work of the ministry and watch out for the souls of the members of the congregation.

23 October 2019

A Few Thoughts on the Epistle of Titus Part 10

Titus 3:12-15 Final Greetings

Final Greetings

12 When I send Artemas or Tychicus to you, be diligent to come to me at Nicopolis, for I have determined to winter there.
13 Help Zenas the lawyer and Apollos in any way you can, so that they are lacking nothing.
14 Also, let ours learn to keep up good works for essential needs, so that they won’t be unfruitful.
15 All that are with me greet you. Greet those who love us in the faith. Grace be with you all. Amen.

B1 Paul doesn’t mind asking for assistance. Asking God for assistance is the first thing we do, but asking help from fellow believers is good and right.
C1 Acts 18:27 NIV When Apollos wanted to go to Achaia, the brothers and sisters encouraged him and wrote to the disciples there to welcome him. When he arrived, he was a great help to those who by grace had believed.
C2 It is fellowship.
D1 God desires fellowship: 1 John 1:3 NLT We proclaim to you what we ourselves have actually seen and heard so that you may have fellowship with us. And our fellowship is with the Father and with his Son, Jesus Christ.
D2 United into one family: 1 Corinthians 10:16-18 NLT When we bless the cup at the Lord's Table, aren't we sharing in the blood of Christ? And when we break the bread, aren't we sharing in the body of Christ? 17 And though we are many, we all eat from one loaf of bread, showing that we are one body. 18 Think about the people of Israel. Weren't they united by eating the sacrifices at the altar?
D3 The whole church: Philippians 4:14-15 NLT Even so, you have done well to share with me in my present difficulty. 15 As you know, you Philippians were the only ones who gave me financial help when I first brought you the Good News and then traveled on from Macedonia. No other church did this.
D4 In suffering: Hebrews 10:33-34 NLT Sometimes you were exposed to public ridicule and were beaten, and sometimes you helped others who were suffering the same things. 34 You suffered along with those who were thrown into jail, and when all you owned was taken from you, you accepted it with joy. You knew there were better things waiting for you that will last forever.
D5 In hospitality: 1 Peter 4:9 NLT Cheerfully share your home with those who need a meal or a place to stay.
D6 In prison: Colossians 4:10 NLT Aristarchus, who is in prison with me, sends you his greetings, and so does Mark, Barnabas's cousin. As you were instructed before, make Mark welcome if he comes your way.
D7 Financially: 1 Timothy 6:17-18 NLT Teach those who are rich in this world not to be proud and not to trust in their money, which is so unreliable. Their trust should be in God, who richly gives us all we need for our enjoyment. 18 Tell them to use their money to do good. They should be rich in good works and generous to those in need, always being ready to share with others.
D8 Brothers and sisters in the congregation: 1 Corinthians 14:26 NLT Well, my brothers and sisters, let's summarize. When you meet together, one will sing, another will teach, another will tell some special revelation God has given, one will speak in tongues, and another will interpret what is said. But everything that is done must strengthen all of you.
D9 Help when tempted, in sin, and/or other burdens (spiritual, emotional, intellectual, physical, financial, etc.): Galatians 6:1-2 NLT Dear brothers and sisters, if another believer is overcome by some sin, you who are godly should gently and humbly help that person back onto the right path. And be careful not to fall into the same temptation yourself. 2 Share each other's burdens, and in this way obey the law of Christ.
D10 We need each other: Romans 1:12 NLT When we get together, I want to encourage you in your faith, but I also want to be encouraged by yours.
D11 Our brother or sister should be a very high concern:
E1 1 Corinthians 10:24 NLT Don't be concerned for your own good but for the good of others.
E2 Philippians 2:1-4 CSB If then there is any encouragement in Christ, if any consolation of love, if any fellowship with the Spirit, if any affection and mercy, 2 make my joy complete by thinking the same way, having the same love, united in spirit, intent on one purpose. 3 Do nothing out of selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility consider others as more important than yourselves. 4 Everyone should look out not only for his own interests, but also for the interests of others.
D12 Praying for one another. Many, many of our brothers and sisters are suffering in every area of the world. Come, Lord Jesus: James 5:14-16 CSB Is anyone among you sick? He should call for the elders of the church, and they are to pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord. 15 The prayer of faith will save the sick person, and the Lord will raise him up; if he has committed sins, he will be forgiven. 16 Therefore, confess your sins to one another and pray for one another, so that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person is very powerful in its effect.
B2 Verse 13 is to help our brothers and sisters in any ministry they have:
C1 Acts 18:27 CSB When he wanted to cross over to Achaia, the brothers and sisters wrote to the disciples to welcome him. After he arrived, he was a great help to those who by grace had believed.
C2 Romans 16:1-2 WEL I commend to you Phoebe, our sister, who is a deaconess of the church at Cenchrea, 2 So you may welcome her in the Lord in a worthy manner as saints and assist her in whatever matter she has need of you, for she has been a helper to many including me.
B3 Verse 14 Encourages us to not quit doing good works to honor God.
C1 Matthew 5:16 CSB In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father in heaven.
C2 Praying for each other that God will encourage and strengthen us to do them: 2 Thessalonians 2:16-17 CSB May our Lord Jesus Christ himself and God our Father, who has loved us and given us eternal encouragement and good hope by grace, 17 encourage your hearts and strengthen you in every good work and word.
C3 God’s grace enables, provides, and strengthens us: 2 Corinthians 9:8 NIV And God is able to bless you abundantly, so that in all things at all times, having all that you need, you will abound in every good work.
C4 We do these because we love our God and our brothers and sisters: Hebrews 6:9-10 CSB Even though we are speaking this way, dearly loved friends, in your case we are confident of things that are better and that pertain to salvation. 10 For God is not unjust; he will not forget your work and the love you demonstrated for his name by serving the saints—and by continuing to serve them.
B4 Verse 15 deals with greeting one another and encouraging in the faith.
C1 When we meet in a foreign place or a familiar place, let us greet one another and assist as needed.
C2 In the faith is the Gospel, doctrine, and life God wishes for us to be consistent. 1 Corinthians 16:13-14 CSB Be alert, stand firm in the faith, be courageous, be strong. 14 Do everything in love.