Author: religiouscommonsense

Tossed All Over The Place

Tossed All Over The Place

In the past I’ve written several articles about unity, and given scriptures to prove every word I wrote.  So far no preacher has even made an attempt to correct any article I’ve written so I’ll assume that we all agree that Christ prayed for and commanded unity.

(John 17:20-21) “21 That they all may be one; as thou, Father, art in me, and I in thee, that they also may be one in us: that the world may believe that thou hast sent me.  22 And the glory which thou gavest me I have given them; that they may be one, even as we are one:”

(1 Corinthians 1:10) “10 Now I beseech you, brethren, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that ye all speak the same thing, and that there be no divisions among you; but that ye be perfectly joined together in the same mind and in the same judgment.”

I’ve also give the perfect solution.  We must have unity, agreement, harmony with the Holy Spirit.  (Ephesians 4:3) “3 Endeavoring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace”  This means unite, using the scriptures as our only standard and guide.

If you will read the fourth chapter of Ephesians for yourself, you will find a “big” reason for staying with the scriptures—especially verse 14 “That we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive;”

After listening to a few different preachers, have you ever felt like you have been “tossed” all over the place?  Yes, you have—one says one thing, another tells you something completely different!  Shame!!! One or the other is preaching a false doctrine.

The Christians at Galatia had the problem of division at one time, and here is what the Holy Spirit said about it.  (Galatians 1:6-9) “6 I marvel that ye are so soon removed from him that called you into the grace of Christ unto another gospel: 7 Which is not another; but there be some that trouble you, and would pervert the gospel of Christ. 8 But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed. 9 As we said before, so say I now again, if any man preach any other gospel unto you than that ye have received, let him be accursed.”

Preacher you had better get it right, or the scripture said you are to be accursed!  I didn’t say it, so don’t be proud and stubborn—the Holy Spirit says accursed!

Thanks for reading and God bless!

A Great Truth!

A Great Truth!

Here is a great truth!  I don’t want you to think that I think that I am better than you!  I’ve made my mistakes too!—Sinned and left the “Father’s house”.  I tremble when I think of the times God could have left me beside the “road”, and I would have been lost forever!

Yes, I do know the agony of my sins, knowing what is right and doing what is wrong.  Have you ever felt like that?  Let’s thank God for His mercy for giving us, while in sin, a chance to return to the fold.

(Luke 15:11-24) “11 And he said, A certain man had two sons:  12 And the younger of them said to his father, Father, give me the portion of goods that falleth to me. And he divided unto them his living.  13 And not many days after the younger son gathered all together, and took his journey into a far country, and there wasted his substance with riotous living.  14 And when he had spent all, there arose a mighty famine in that land; and he began to be in want.  15 And he went and joined himself to a citizen of that country; and he sent him into his fields to feed swine.  16 And he would fain have filled his belly with the husks that the swine did eat: and no man gave unto him.  17 And when he came to himself, he said, How many hired servants of my father’s have bread enough and to spare, and I perish with hunger!  18 I will arise and go to my father, and will say unto him, Father, I have sinned against heaven, and before thee,  19 And am no more worthy to be called thy son: make me as one of thy hired servants.  20 And he arose, and came to his father. But when he was yet a great way off, his father saw him, and had compassion, and ran, and fell on his neck, and kissed him.  21 And the son said unto him, Father, I have sinned against heaven, and in thy sight, and am no more worthy to be called thy son.  22 But the father said to his servants, Bring forth the best robe, and put it on him; and put a ring on his hand, and shoes on his feet:  23 And bring hither the fatted calf, and kill it; and let us eat, and be merry:  24 For this my son was dead, and is alive again; he was lost, and is found. And they began to be merry.”

To me this is “one” of the greatest lessons the Lord ever taught.  I feel like David must have felt after his great sin and repentance.  (Psalms 51:12-13) “12 Restore unto me the joy of thy salvation; and uphold me with thy free spirit.  13 Then will I teach transgressors thy ways; and sinners shall be converted unto thee.”

David knew the joy of His salvation—then he could teach others about that joy.  I wish (and pray) with all my heart as I write this article that I could do the same for you because that joy passes all understanding!  (2 Timothy 2:2) “2 And the things that thou hast heard of me among many witnesses, the same commit thou to faithful men, who shall be able to teach others also.”

That’s my only purpose.  God had mercy on me, and I want very much to share it with you.

Thanks for reading and God bless!

Are You An Honest Person?

Are You An Honest Person?

(John 17:17) “Sanctify them through thy truth: thy word is truth.”

If you read the last article and still have the heart to read this one, I take it that you are really an honest person—willing to put God’s word above mothers, fathers, brothers, or sisters, man or group of men.  If you are not willing to do that, don’t call yourself a Christian—because you are not!

(Matthew 10:34-38) “34 Think not that I am come to send peace on earth: I came not to send peace, but a sword.  35 For I am come to set a man at variance against his father, and the daughter against her mother, and the daughter in law against her mother in law.  36 And a man’s foes shall be they of his own household.  37 He that loveth father or mother more than me is not worthy of me: and he that loveth son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me.  38 And he that taketh not his cross, and followeth after me, is not worthy of me.”

Now that settles “that”!  Read for yourselves from your bible Ephesians 4:1-14.  Read it again, and this time really look at what you are reading.  First verse 2 “With all lowliness and meekness, with longsuffering, forbearing one another in love;”.  Verse 3—“Endeavoring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.”

A group of preachers met for the monthly meeting and to ‘pat themselves on the back’, and one said “We have the spirit of unity for once.”  Boys, let’s get it right!  by having the “spirit of unity” they meant no one disagrees with anybody.  We don’t point out where anyone is unscriptural.  We don’t mention such a thing as a ‘false doctrine’.

Do you have to read verse 3 again?  Notice it did not say “spirit of unity”.  It says “have the unity of the spirit”.  There is a great difference!  Boy oh boy!  Where is the Common Sense?

The Holy Spirit gave you the words you just read.  “16 All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness:  17 That the man of God may be perfect, thoroughly furnished unto all good works.” (2 Timothy 3:16-17)  We are to be in agreement with the Holy Spirit.  We are to have unity, believing and doing as the Holy Spirit teaches.  If the scriptures say “go”—we “go”!  If the scriptures say “stop”—we “stop”!  It’s just that simple!

God never intended for denominations to get together and say.  “We will take some of your beliefs and you will accept some of ours, and we will all have unity.”  Now that is ridiculous!

(2 Peter 1:3) ” According as his divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness, through the knowledge of him that hath called us to glory and virtue:”

If the Holy Spirit gave us in writing everything we need, what man or group of men can improve on that?  CANNOT BE DONE!  So throw away your denominational manuals, creed books, rules for your faith, and just take the words the Holy Spirit gave.  Honest people can agree and unite on that.

Common Sense tells me I may never have the pleasure of meeting and getting to know many of you.  But, I do know there are good and honest people in your ‘neck of the woods’, and if I could help you to know what the Holy Spirit teaches, that’s all I want.

Thanks for reading and God bless!

Impossible?

Impossible?

In past articles we put the spotlight on unity, knowing full well that some do not want the light put on them because their deeds are evil and they prefer darkness rather than light (John 3:19-20).  But Common Sense people know that the Lord prayed for (John the 17th chapter) and commanded unity (1 Corinthians 1:10).

Let’s remember that unity can be a bad thing or a good thing.  Now read it for yourself (Genesis 11th chapter—the first few verses).

All the people got together and decided to build a tower to the heavens.  God knew when all the people unite they can do things that seem impossible.  So God confused their languages.  All the people seemed to just “babble” on and on.  Work stopped!

If all believers would unite, what appears to be impossible, would happen.  I’ve said many times before, and I’ll say it again—There are good people in every church—not just good people but real good people in every church!  If all Christians complied with (1 Corinthians 1:10) “10 Now I beseech you, brethren, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that ye all speak the same thing, and that there be no divisions among you; but that ye be perfectly joined together in the same mind and in the same judgment.”  We would have more influence than any organization on earth.  We then could set the standard for the world!  Would you like that, or would you let pride or family sentiment stop you from uniting?

Example:  The whores and homosexuals in Hollywood and some other big cities are trying their best to set the standards for our young people.  But thank God they have not accomplished that yet!  But as sure as there is a “Hell”, they will keep trying, and are making progress every day.  Let’s wake up, those who call themselves Christians, and get our act together before it’s too late!

The whores, lesbians, and homosexuals are doing their dead level best to tell the world (especially our young) what is sinful and what is not.

(1 Corinthians 6:9-10) “9 Know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind,  10 Nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall inherit the kingdom of God.”

The question comes up again—how can we unite when there are so many churches, faiths, and doctrines?  In the interest of space, I’ll wait until the next article, and I’ll give you the “only way”.

But a word of caution:  If you don’t have an honest heart and love for the truth, don’t even bother to read the next article because you are condemned already.

If you really want what the Lord wants, commit this scripture to memory.  (2 Thessalonians 2:10-12) “10 And with all deceivableness of unrighteousness in them that perish; because they received not the love of the truth, that they might be saved.  11 And for this cause God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie:  12 That they all might be damned who believed not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness.”

Thanks for reading and God bless!

Which Church To Put Your Trust In

Which Church To Put Your Trust In

So with Common Sense (you’ll need nothing more), you are considering which church to put your trust in.

Years ago an article was written—it’s been so long ago that I’ve forgotten just who wrote it—but it does sound like something that Mark Twain or Will Rogers would say.  He closed his witty sayings with “I hope to see all of you in heaven except the guy that invented the telephone.”  I suppose it got the desired result.  Well, I think the telephone can be very helpful at times.

Get on the phone and start calling your local preachers and ask some direct questions and compare their answers with scripture.

Ask what is the name of your church?  Here are the Bible names the Holy Spirit recorded. (Acts 20:28) The word “God” is referring to Christ. (Romans 16:16)—(1 Corinthians 1:2)—(Ephesians 1:22-23)—(Colossians 1:13, 18 and 24)—(1 Timothy 3:15)—(Hebrews 12:23)

In all of these references they are in harmony with Colossians 1:18 “And he is the head of the body, the church: who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead; that in all things he might have the preeminence.”  Christ is to be the first, number one, the head and have preeminence in all things.

Now that’s a good start—at least you would have a Bible name.  Even Martin Luther wrote and told his followers, “Leave my name out of it.”  Christ is not divided.  By the way, every Lutheran preacher that I’ve talked to knows of that statement by Mr. Luther.  But they choose to ignore that like they do several other scriptures.

Let’s look at this from another angle before we make a choice.  Read for yourself John 3:1-7.  (The reason I say sometimes read it from your Bible is I want you to remember “Who” said “it”!  Not just that Common Sense guy.)  The scripture is the inspired word (2 Timothy 3:16-17) and has all the authority. (only authority)

In the scripture you just read (John 3:1-7) Nicodemus confessed that Jesus must be from God.  Instead of Jesus thanking him for being such a smart boy, the Lord “cut right to the chase” and said “Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.”  Of course Nicodemus did not understand that so in the 5th verse Jesus said. “Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God.”—Simply put, the “Kingdom of His dear son.” (Colossians 1:13) or the church.

Nicodemus still didn’t understand, and Jesus at that time did not explain just what was involved.  Other things had to take place and be fulfilled first.  Even the Apostles did not understand all these things until all was fulfilled, including the death of the cross and the resurrection of the Lord.

The Lord at that time (of Nicodemus) did not explain, but silly men have tried and they haven’t agreed.  I used the word “silly”.  Frankly, I think I was being very kind.  What would you call a man who is silly enough, dumb enough, or presumptuous enough to try to tell the Lord what He meant?!

Now my good old “countrified friends” who still use Common Sense, you don’t need a college education or a PhD to figure this one out.  Let’s just read on about the life of the Lord until all was fulfilled—such as establishing a church or kingdom (Matthew 16:18-19).  The kingdom would be in existence during the Apostles lifetime (Mark 9:1), and find out what people would have to do!

Very simple:  Just read Acts the second chapter.  You will find there was preaching by “inspired men” that convinced 3000 that Jesus was Lord and Christ, and they wanted to know what to do—verses 37 and 38.

This was the first time people were told what to do in order to be added to (born again) into the kingdom or church.  This message, instruction, was to be preached to the whole world!—without any changes.  If any preacher preaches anything other that what Peter preached, “let him be accursed” (Galatians 1:8-9 and Romans 6:3-4).

Yes I know the popular Baptist preacher Jerry Falwell said, and put into print, that Peter should not have used the word “baptized” because baptism does not have anything to do with remission of sins.  Now, Mr Falwell’s argument is not with me.  His argument is not even with the Apostle Peter.  His argument is with the Holy Spirit.

You might find it interesting to call up some preacher in your “neck of the woods” and state this situation.  Tell the preacher that if you came to hear him preach, and his sermon really moved you—in fact you were “cut to the heart”—if he does not give the answer Peter gave, you have a choice either recognize how wrong the preacher is, or follow him through the “wrong gate”.

Thanks for reading and God bless!

A Man Who Wished He Could Change

A Man Who Wished He Could Change

Those of you that have read previous articles know that I favor people from Texas and Oklahoma.  I was born in Motley County, Texas and found the people to be about the same there as in some parts of Oklahoma I have lived.

Talk about your family farms, back in the “good” old days, there was a family farm on most every 1/4 section—no TV, very few radios.  Good neighbors—they were the finest kind.  They would come to “town” most every Saturday, and were really glad to see each other, to talk and visit, and catch up on all the news.  If you come from that kind of “stock”, you do have an advantage over a lot of people we see on the news every day.

Last time I wrote about the need to change religion, not because I don’t like you, it is because I do care—and do care quite a lot—at least enough to create a few enemies just to get the truth out there (Galatians 4:16).

Today we will talk about a man that has wished many times that he had made a change, but it was too late.  He finally had to face the truth and pay for his mistakes.  You will do yourself a big favor if you read from your bible Luke 16:19-31.

You will find the Lord “highlighted” the situation of two men.  One was a very rich man who could afford to dress up in his “Sunday-go-to-meeting” clothes every day of the week.  He had everything money could buy.  He sure never knew what it was like to have a blister on his hand from chopping cotton from sun up till sundown, or have a sore back from pulling a 14-foot cotton sack at harvest time.  His was a life of ease.

The other man, Lazarus, was living in extreme poverty—had nothing, would have been grateful for the scraps from the other man’s table, evidently didn’t get them.  The dogs would lick his sores, maybe that helped ease the pain, I don’t know.  But it would be hard to picture a worse situation.

Both men died, as we all shall some day (Hebrews 9:27).  Then we are judged according to the way we have lived.

Right Here!  Let’s stop and realize what happened to Lazarus.  He died and was “carried away by the angels”.  I would think that was a better ride than “first class” on any airline.  Can you imagine that?—Suffer so much for so long, then all of a sudden he was in the arms of the Lord’s own angels!  Destination?  Paradise!

If we could ask Lazarus—Was being a faithful man, with all the health problems, worth it?  You know what his answer would be!

Now the “rich man”—The Lord didn’t give his name.  Do you suppose there was a reason?  Maybe he had relatives in the crowd.  It really doesn’t matter.  Their situations have been “completely” reversed.  Lazarus had been “attended” by the dogs, had nothing, now he is attended by the angels and has everything.

The unfaithful rich man opened his eyes in torment—having nothing.  He could not even make “one” request.  But before we begin to get sentimental or think God is too “harsh”, let’s remember that he did not have to be there!  He could have had ten thousand gallons of God’s merciful “water of life” in his lifetime, but he ignored that saving “grace” that our God had provided.

Some things for you to remember:  He knew who he was (remember Abraham said) and where he was!  He also remembered that he had five brothers back at the “old home place”.  He knew too that his brothers were not faithful!  He knew they were headed for the same fate as he.  I don’t know how much he cared for his brothers while he lived, but he sure “cared now”!  TOO LATE!!!

Now here is where the going gets tough for all of us.  Often I’ve heard people say “well if I change, I’m admitting that some of my loved ones are lost.  You don’t know that!  There may have been some circumstances that you don’t know about.

Again, I have been asked many times: “What about the American Indians before the white man came?”  They never had a chance to hear about Christ.  What will happen to all of them?

Now use some Common Sense! Here are some things that you and I had better remember.

God is the most “righteous judge” of all things.  He does know the opportunities passed up or never had.  Suppose God did save all those Indians that died before the “white man came with many ponies.”  What business is that of yours?  You nor I are one of those Indians.  Let’s not be stupid—we can’t stand before our Lord and use that excuse can we?  With all the opportunities we have today, what excuse do we have?  NONE!

Something else to remember we may have loved ones that went through that “wrong” gate.   If they did, and cared for us, perhaps they made the same request the rich man made to “send Lazarus back, and tell my folks (all of them) to change before it is too late!”  They don’t want to see you or me there, but they could perhaps have some satisfaction in knowing that they helped you select the “right” gate (Matthew 7:13-14)

I’ve spent a lot of time trying to persuade good people that my “goal” is to be a “real” help so you with Common Sense can select the “right” gate.

I have no motivation—certainly not money.  I don’t work for you or anybody so you can’t give me a raise.  I’m sure not trying to win a popularity contest—If I were, I sure would not “ruffle feathers” or “rub hair the wrong way.”  Would I?

So, I think it is time for me to give the best advice I know about making a change concerning your religion—in the next article.

Thanks for reading and God bless!

A Conversation With A ‘Preacher’

A Conversation With A ‘Preacher’

You ask one preacher. “What must I do to be saved?”  He answers.  “Believe on the Lord Jesus, and thou shalt be save, and thy house.”  Of course the preacher is quoting from Acts 16:31.  Then, the preacher goes on to support his answer—salvation is a “free” gift.  You can’t do anything to earn it.  Believe is all you have to do.

I believe the preacher missed the point or context of the scripture.  So let’s use Common Sense and analize what is meant in Acts 16:31.

Does it mean that if the jailer “believes” the jailer and his “house” (structure that he lives in) will be saved?  The preacher says.  “No, that means his family.  They don’t have to do anything but believe either.

Now!  Here comes that “Common Sense” guy causing trouble and asks. “Can a person be saved (or born again) without repentance?”  If the preacher knows anything about the bible, he will say no.  Read Luke 13:3 ” I tell you, Nay: but, except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish.”

Luke 24:47 “And that repentance and remission of sins should be preached in his name among all nations, beginning at Jerusalem.”

Acts 2:38 “Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.”

Acts 26:20 “But shewed first unto them of Damascus, and at Jerusalem, and throughout all the coasts of Judaea, and then to the Gentiles, that they should repent and turn to God, and do works meet for repentance.”  There are many more but that is enough.

The preacher then says. “Well, no, a person does have to repent.”  So our preacher contradicted himself with the first question I asked.  But it doesn’t stop there.  Does the “would-be” convert have to do anything to show his repentance?  Even John the Baptist answered that. (Matthew 3:8) “Bring forth therefore fruits meet for repentance:”

Back up and read Acts 26:20 again.

But Common Sense (the trouble maker) is not through.  He has another question.  Must our “would-be” convert have to confess Jesus?  (Matthew 10:32) “Whosoever therefore shall confess me before men, him will I confess also before my Father which is in heaven.”  The preacher then says yes!

Let’s review this conversation that I have had many times with preachers.

Our preacher first said all you have to do is believe.  Then he says (number 2) you must repent and do the deeds of repentance, then comes the confession.  Looks to me like our preacher is a double-minded man.  Does James 1:8 apply? “A double minded man is unstable in all his ways.”

But I don’t want to get sidetracked.  Let’s get back to the jailer in Acts 16:31-34.  Verse 32 says. “And they spake unto him the word of the Lord, and to all that were in his house.”

Verse 33—“And he took them the same hour of the night, and washed their stripes; and was baptized, he and all his, straightway.”

The same as was done on the day of Pentecost, and we know the Lord added them to His church. (Acts 2:47).

Nowhere in this account of a sinner being converted to Christ was the “sinner’s prayer” mentioned or at any other conversion.  So where did you get it preacher?  Now we know that I’m not a ruler or a judge. So you don’t have to answer me, but you will answer the Lord!

Matthew 7:21-23 “21 Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven.  22 Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works?  23 And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity.”

Now look at another sick excuse to minimize baptism or eliminate it completely.  (John 4:1-2) “1 When therefore the Lord knew how the Pharisees had heard that Jesus made and baptized more disciples than John, 2 (Though Jesus himself baptized not, but his disciples,)”

The Lord did the preaching or the teaching, and some one of the disciples did the baptizing.  But the Holy Spirit gave Jesus the credit for the conversion.  It’s quite obvious that it didn’t make any difference which one of the disciples actually immersed the convert.  The deed was done, and Jesus was responsible for it!

The church at Corinth had its problems—one was division (first taste of denominationalism).  (1 Corinthians 1:12-18) “12 Now this I say, that every one of you saith, I am of Paul; and I of Apollos; and I of Cephas; and I of Christ.  13 Is Christ divided? was Paul crucified for you? or were ye baptized in the name of Paul?  14 I thank God that I baptized none of you, but Crispus and Gaius;  15 Lest any should say that I had baptized in mine own name.  16 And I baptized also the household of Stephanas: besides, I know not whether I baptized any other.  17 For Christ sent me not to baptize, but to preach the gospel: not with wisdom of words, lest the cross of Christ should be made of none effect.  18 For the preaching of the cross is to them that perish foolishness; but unto us which are saved it is the power of God.”

Paul was thankful that he had not baptized many of them because he did not want them to think he had baptized by his own authority.  Paul did the preaching, like Jesus did, and another immersed the convert.

Paul was handicapped in some way.  he called it a “thorn in the flesh” (2 Corinthians 12:7).  No one knows what that “thorn” was—withered arm, bad back, or failing eyesight.  Did this “thorn” make it difficult for Paul to immerse someone?  I don’t know and neither do you.

When I was overseas, we had a missionary who was an older man, a little overweight, and not very agile.  The place where we baptized there was a slick and rough surfaced reef.  One night he slipped and almost fell so from then on I volunteered to do the immersing.  Now that I am the “old” man sometimes I ask one of the younger brothers to do the baptizing.

Thanks for reading and God bless!

P.S.  If you want to preach “Jesus” you must include baptism.  Read Acts 8:35-36.  Philip preached Jesus (gospel), and at the first water hole the man wanted to be baptized.  Where in the scriptures does God authorize anyone to change the gospel?  Romans 1:16 Galatians 1:8-9

How God Dealt With False Teachers

How God Dealt With False Teachers

There have always been false teacher, and there always will be until the end of time.  I’ll ask you to read from your bible 1 Kings 18:17-40.  You will see how God dealt with false teachers when he dealt with man directly.  you will find it interesting, and maybe just a little amusing.

First, there were 450 false prophets against one man.  How do you like those odds? (verse 22) Be that as it may, Elijah challenged all of them.  He asked the people to take notice of what was about to happen—then make up their minds—“if the Lord be God”, then follow him.  Common Sense—it seems fair to me.

My friend, “we” have the same choice.  In fact, we make “that choice” every day, whether we know it or not.  Will we serve God?  It’s a simple yea or nay.

Elijah gave the false prophets “all” the advantage that he could—let them choose their bullock first, and he would take the other.  They were to take the one they chose and put it on the wood, but put no “fire” under it.  Now the test—you can call on “your” God to send down fire to consume the offering, and I’ll call on my God.

Can your really see the picture?  450 men gathered around their altar, making a spectacle of themselves.  Oh yes they “whooped and hollered” calling on Baal, but lo and behold no fire came down from heaven to consume it!

Now here is what I was referring to in the last article:  The man of God, Elijah, made fun of them.  He teased, picked, prodded, and taunted them (verse 27).

Can’t you just visualize this confused, mixed-up mess?  “Hey your god might be on a trip somewhere, you need to call him back or maybe he is asleep, yell louder, wake him up.”  They cut themselves with knives—blood everywhere!

The false preachers tried everything they could think of, but still no “fire”.  From morning til noon—still nothing happened.  But they continued their ridiculous behavior until evening—all day long!

It doesn’t make any difference how long you try, how loud you yell, or cut yourself until you bleed all over the place—you cannot change a lie into the truth!

At the close of the day, Elijah takes his turn, but he handicaps himself—puts 12 stones, digs a trench around, and puts 12 barrels of water on his offering.  Everything was soaking wet.  He prays one time—the fire comes down and consumes it all.  Then what happens?  The people had their eyes opened to the truth.

God had all the false prophets put to death.  Now that’s what happened when God dealt with people directly.  We are not to take such action today.  God will deal with them at the judgment.  Don’t be in that group.  “Vengeance is mine saith the Lord.”

Question:  What do you suppose would have happened if one or two of the false preachers would have stepped out before Elijah prayed and said “whoa Nellie I am not going to be with this Baal bunch anymore?

Thankfully God has always been a forgiving God, a loving God and a merciful God.  But there always comes a time when it’s too late!  (Luke 12:20) “Thou fool, this night thy soul shall be required of thee.”

Thanks for reading and God Bless!

Follow Up

Follow Up

Recently I wrote about “baptism” and “faith healers”.  Surely you know that there is so much false teaching on these two subjects that I could not cover everything in one article.  I’ll call this one a “follow up” on these two subjects that caused such a “shake up” among some readers.

Just take a “glance” at what is said about John’s baptism (Luke 7:29-30) “29 And all the people that heard him, and the publicans, justified God, being baptized with the baptism of John.  30 But the Pharisees and lawyers rejected the counsel of God against themselves, being not baptized of him.”  Now would you have been in the camp with the Pharisees and Lawyers?  Of course not—right?  Well, dear heart, how much more are you rejecting when you reject the baptism that Jesus commanded?  Acts 2:38, Acts 10:43, Acts 22:16, and 1 Peter 3:21 just to name a few.

You may reject what “I” write and say:  “How silly and stupid I am”—but when you stand before Christ at the judgement, I plead with you don’t tell Him how silly and stupid He is! (2 Corinthians 5:10) “For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ; that every one may receive the things done in his body, according to that he hath done, whether it be good or bad.”

Now as for the baptism of the Holy Spirit, this occurred only twice—once on the day of Pentecost.  The first miracle miracle was the Apostles spoke in languages they (the Apostles) had never known, but the people understood.  This was the first proof that they were speaking for God.

The second time it happened at Cornelius’ house, the difference was—God was showing His endorsement of the Gentiles.  They (the Gentiles) spoke in languages they had never known before.  There is absolutely no evidence that it ever happened again.

I know that some disagree with that, but they will never find a scripture to prove it—just their words.  That, honest heart, is a big reason why there is so much division and confusion.

Peter was promised that he would have the keys to the kingdom/church.  And friend he used those keys—opening for the Jews on Pentecost—opened for the Gentiles at Cornelius’ home.

I made a solemn promise that I would never make a statement involving the Lord’s will unless I had a “clear cut” scripture to back it up.  Here it is.  (Ephesians 4:4-6) “There is one body, and one Spirit, even as ye are called in one hope of your calling;  5 One Lord, one faith, one baptism,  6 One God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all.”

Two things to remember:  first, one body/church.  (Ephesians 1:22-23) “22 And hath put all things under his feet, and gave him to be the head over all things to the church,  23 Which is his body, the fulness of him that filleth all in all.”  Did you notice that Paul explained what the one body is?  I don’t care what your preacher said.  The Holy Spirit said one.

The second thing to remember is one baptism.  The book of Ephesians was written after the kingdom was opened by Peter at Cornelius’ home—and never happened again!

After the Gentiles were endorsed by the Holy Spirit on this second occasion, the kingdom (church) was open to all.  There was nobody else to use the “keys” for, and the grace of God had appeared to all men.  But water baptism was and is very much a part of the gospel.  Read Romans 6:1-6.

Thanks for reading and God bless!

P.S. Next time, Lord willing, I’ll tell you why I pick, prod, and taunt some of the people that call themselves preachers.

How God Used Water

How God Used Water

Baptism!  It should be no surprise that God chose to use “water” in His plan to save man.  He has several times before.

Remember when God freed Israel from the Egyptians (Exodus 14:21-30).God used the Red Sea to destroy Pharaoh’s army.  God’s people didn’t need to “fire a shot”.  This could be compared to freeing man from sin.  They got the chance to start a new life.

They (Israel) were led in the wilderness for years.  God provided food, clothing and protection all those years.  When they reached the “promised land”, God used another miracle involving “water”. (Joshua 3:14-17)  Notice the river was “out of banks”—flood stage.  That was as much a miracle as crossing the Red Sea.  In some ways their “promised land” could be compared to our “heaven”.

In 2 Kings 5:9-14, we have another example of God using “water” to perform another miracle.  This seemed too simple for Naaman.  It even made him angry!  Lucky for him his servants used Common Sense, and he did as the man of God said and dipped himself 7 times in the Jordan River.  When he came up the 7th time, his flesh was like that of a little child.

But we are talking about Baptism!  Let’s start in Matthew and the commission (authority) of John the Baptist (Matthew 3:1-6).  This was commanded of God, and all who were faithful obeyed him, even Jesus (Matthew 3:13-15).

John recognized the fact that Jesus had never sinned.  Knowing this, John said ” I have need to be baptized of you!” (verses 14-15)  Everyone needs to pay very close attention to what Jesus said—“Suffer it to be so now: for thus it becometh us to fulfill all righteousness. ”

Even though Jesus had no sin to repent of He obeyed anyway—a very simple act (like Naaman the leper) fulfilling every command His father had given.  Now, what would you have done?  Would you have started talking about some mythical man in an airplane or in the desert where there was no water?  Would you have been so silly as to start making such an excuse—therefore baptism is not necessary and not be baptized?

Many of the false preachers today make and will make that silly excuse next Lord’s Day.  What happened to people in John’s day that made such “silly ” excuses?  Silly is a very “mild term”—I could have used words like stupid, ignorant, crazy, rebellious, and they all would have fit.

I know very well that some of you boys will be “offended” by what I just said, but before you open your mouth, please read (Luke 7:29-30).  “29 And all the people that heard him, and the publicans, justified God, being baptized with the baptism of John.  30 But the Pharisees and lawyers rejected the counsel of God against themselves, being not baptized of him.”  That word “counsel” means purpose of God or will of God.  Read Matthew 7:21.

Now if you still want to try to refute what I said, just present the “scripture” and I’ll sure be glad to listen and make a retraction.

But let’s get back to the subject of baptism.  (Matthew 28:18-19) “18 And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth.  19 Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost:”

(Mark 16:15-16) “15 And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature.  16 He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned.”

Moving right along Luke put it this way.  (Luke 24:46-47) “46 And said unto them, Thus it is written, and thus it behooved Christ to suffer, and to rise from the dead the third day:  47 And that repentance and remission of sins should be preached in his name among all nations, beginning at Jerusalem.”

The gospel was to be preached first in Jerusalem, and the one gospel was to be preached all over the world.  Now read the 2nd chapter of Acts again, and this time really read it, and for your sake don’t try to change one word.

As Peter makes his point, he says in Acts 2:36 “Therefore let all the house of Israel know assuredly, that God hath made the same Jesus, whom ye have crucified, both Lord and Christ.”  How did the people take that?

Verse 37—“Now when they heard this, they were pricked in their heart, and said unto Peter and to the rest of the apostles, Men and brethren, what shall we do?”  No more of this foolishness folks.  The audience realized that Jesus had been killed and raised from the dead and was made Lord and Christ.  They very well knew the danger they were in.  They knew they were in sin.  They knew they needed forgiveness.  They were ready to comply with whatever God required.

The Holy Spirit gave Peter these words—(verse 38) “Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.”  Peter’s words, as given by the Holy Spirit, are in perfect harmony with Matthew 28:18-19, Mark 16:15-16, Luke 24:46-47, Acts 22:16, 1 Peter 3:21, and all the other scriptures pertaining to baptism.

Thanks for reading and God bless!

P.S. Where is the scripture that authorizes division/denominations?  Preachers show me or admit there is no such scripture.  Also, are you still looking for the “sinner’s prayer”?

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