Christianity, faith

THE DEVIL EXISTS, SIN IS REAL, AND HELL IS HOT

When I say unto the wicked, Thou shalt surely die; and thou givest him not warning, nor speakest to warn the wicked from his wicked way, to save his life; the same wicked man shall die in his iniquity; but his blood will I require at thine hand.Yet if thou warn the wicked, and he turn not from his wickedness, nor from his wicked way, he shall die in his iniquity; but thou hast delivered thy soul. Again, When a righteous man doth turn from his righteousness, and commit iniquity, and I lay a stumbling-block before him, he shall die: because thou hast not given him warning, he shall die in his sin, and his righteousness which he hath done shall not be remembered; but his blood will I require at thine hand.Nevertheless if thou warn the righteous man, that the righteous sin not, and he doth not sin, he shall surely live, because he is warned; also thou hast delivered thy soul (Ezekiel 3:18-21).

This message will result in mostly hate mail and condemnation. Not only from society as a whole, but from the Body of Christ as it is today. I work with social media and writing to put forth the word of God as is the commission of every believer to do. And as I look around our nation and the globe, I see the church losing souls. Even its own. We, as a society have come to the point spoken of by the Prophet Isaiah. Woe unto them that call evil good, and good evil; that put darkness for light, and light for darkness; that put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter (Isaiah 5:20). And the reason we have reached this point in the global society is failure and compromise for those that call themselves Christian. But by their words and actions, this is in name only.

The whole reason behind the CRUCIFIXION was and is the need for REDEMPTION through CHRIST JESUS. For the wages of SIN is DEATH; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord (Romans 6:23). This is the part of the Gospel message that has been lost. Those claiming to be the children of the Most High and redeemed through the blood of Jesus, preach and teach that God loves everyone and only judges the heart. And yes, God does love everyone. But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us (Romans 5:8). For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved (John 3:16-17). 

Sin is real. No matter what people think, it exists. If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us (1John 1:8).We see homosexuality and transgenderism in the pulpit. Both of these are an abomination (SIN) to God. Wherefore God also gave them up to uncleanness through the lusts of their own hearts, to dishonour their own bodies between themselves:Who changed the truth of God into a lie, and worshipped and served the creature more than the Creator, who is blessed for ever. Amen.For this cause God gave them up unto vile affections: for even their women did change the natural use into that which is against nature:And likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust one toward another; men with men working that which is unseemly, and receiving in themselves that recompence of their error which was meet ( Romans 1:24-27).

The Holy Scriptures say what type of activity is a way to hell. And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a reprobate mind, to do those things which are not convenient;Being filled with all unrighteousness, fornication, wickedness, covetousness, maliciousness; full of envy, murder, debate, deceit, malignity; whisperers,Backbiters, haters of God, despiteful, proud, boasters, inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents,Without understanding, covenantbreakers, without natural affection, implacable, unmerciful:Who knowing the judgment of God, that they which commit such things are worthy of death, not only do the same, but have pleasure in them that do them (Romans 1: 28-32). You shall not permit a sorceress to live (Exodus 22:18). Do not turn to mediums or necromancers; do not seek them out, and so make yourselves unclean by them: I am theLordyour God (Leviticus 19:31). And other actions.

These are the three things the Devil (Satan, Lucifer) has made men believe. That he doesn’t exist. God won’t send people to a lasting death. And nothing is sin. So let us break these into verse points.

The Devil does exist. WRONG. Be sober-minded; be watchful. Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour (1 Peter 5:8).

There is no eternal death. WRONG. And death and hell were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death (Revelation 20:14).

There is no sin. WRONG.  If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. (1John 1:8-9).

The real problem with this whole scenario is that it are preachers, teachers, and the amen pew sitters. They try, now, to be friends with the world so they are not accused of hating people. They speak blasphemy so that they can fill the churches and coffers and receive pats on the back. And most of all, make sure that those of the world no longer hate them. But Christ told us what true believers would go through. If the world hate you, ye know that it hated me before it hated you (John 15:18).But beware of men: for they will deliver you up to the councils, and they will scourge you in their synagogues;And ye shall be brought before governors and kings for my sake, for a testimony against them and the Gentiles.But when they deliver you up, take no thought how or what ye shall speak: for it shall be given you in that same hour what ye shall speak.For it is not ye that speak, but the Spirit of your Father which speaketh in you.And the brother shall deliver up the brother to death, and the father the child: and the children shall rise up againsttheirparents, and cause them to be put to death.And ye shall be hated of allmenfor my name’s sake: but he that endureth to the end shall be saved. (Matthew 10:19).

And he also said he wasn’t here to bring peace.Whosoever therefore shall confess me before men, him will I confess also before my Father which is in heaven.

33But whosoever shall deny me before men, him will I also deny before my Father which is in heaven.Think not that I am come to send peace on earth: I came not to send peace, but a sword.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.And a man’s foesshall bethey of his own household.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.And he that taketh not his cross, and followeth after me, is not worthy of me.He that findeth his life shall lose it: and he that loseth his life for my sake shall find it. (Matthew 10:32-39).

And even though we have Christ as our Savior, we are not so perfect that we don’t need to still hit an altar or our knees and seek forgiveness. We are only different because we have already been saved by grace. But now the church is leading people away from understanding the need for grace. The need for salvation through the blood stained cross of Christ.

It is time to start speaking loud to the world. THE DEVIL IS REAL, HELL IS REAL, SIN IS REAL, AND THERE IS ONLY ONE WAY TO BE SAVED FROM THE SECOND DEATH IN HELL.

The message we are to give is that Christ died to cover the sins of all that seek Him and the salvation He offers. His is the only way to God and eternal life in heaven. Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is no other name under heaven given among men, by which we must be saved. And in no other is the great salvation to be found; for, in fact, there is no second name under Heaven that has been given among men through which we are to be saved (Acts 4:12).Remember this, if nothing else. For those of us that have the saving grace of Christ, a sinner is going to die in his sin if there is no going to Christ. So the question we need to ask ourselves is this. Are we willing for their blood to be on our hands because we either didn’t say anything or we twisted scripture and lied to them.

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Commandment 5: Parent/Child

Honour thy father and thy mother, that thy days may be long upon the land which HaShem thy G-d giveth thee. (Exodus 20:12 Tanach).

The 5th commandment is the only commandment with a promise from God. That promise is a longer life for those who honor their parents. The biblical definition of honor is showing esteem for one deserving of respect, attention, or obedience. Now, the commandment does not mean to honor at all times. There are rules that the bible speaks of about the parent/child relationship.

Child Towards Parent

Ephesians reiterate the 5th commandment. Reminds the child of the promise that comes with obeying of the commandment. Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right.“Honor your father and mother,” which is the first commandment with promise:“that it may be well with you and you may live long on the earth.” (Ephesians 6:1-3).

In Proverbs we see how a child is suppose to to react to the words of the parents. My son, hear the instruction of thy father, and forsake not the law of thy mother:For they shall be an ornament of grace unto thy head, and chains about thy neck (Proverbs 1:8-9). 

In these couple of verse, we see how children are to honor their parents. In modern times we call it respect. We can see how, today, many children either were not taught to respect their parents or that they care more for how they believe they are better than past generations and deserve to act like barbarians.

BUT, the scriptures gives us more verses toward how parents are to raise their children than how children are to respect their parents. Looking into these verses, it may be possible to see why the younger generation acts with such disrespect.

Parents Towards the Child

Proverbs tells the parent how raising their child(ren) is to be done as far as proper ways to be. Train up a child in the way he should go; even when he is old he will not depart from it (Proverbs 22:6). Deuteronomy tells us what that proper way is.These commandments that I give you today are to be on your hearts. Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up (Deut 6:6-7).I have no greater joy than to hear that my children are walking in the truth (3 John 1:4).

When reared and taught through the scriptures of God, we find that children will understand where their true peace comes from and who will actually be teaching. And that the parent is just a vessel that is used for that teaching.All your children will be taught by the Lord, and great will be their peace (Isaiah 54:13).

A parent is told how to treat and correct their child(ren). Because along with training and teaching does comes a form of chastisement.  Discipline your children, and they will give you peace of mind and will make your heart glad (Proverbs 29:17). But the parent is also warned how to NOT chastise and treat a child. Fathers, do not provoke your children to anger by the way you treat them. Rather, bring them up with the discipline and instruction that comes from the Lord (Ephesians 6:4). Fathers, do not embitter your children, or they will become discouraged (Colossians 3:21).

Summing It Up

Children are to honor their parents. But in turn, God expects parents to do right by their children. With that, I’ll leave you with these verses.

Children are a gift from the Lord; they are a reward from him (Psalm 127:3).

Children’s children are a crown to the aged, and parents are the pride of their children (Proverbs 17:6).If you haven’t asked for Christ to be the Lord of your life, take time and do it now. Time is running out to be able to be saved. Tomorrow is never promised to any of us.

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Why the World Mocks God

Do not be deceived: God cannot be mocked. A man reaps what he sows.Whoever sows to please their flesh, from the flesh will reap destruction; whoever sows to please the Spirit, from the Spirit will reap eternal life.Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good to all people, especially to those who belong to the family of believers. Galatians 6:7-10

When one looks around today, we see every evil deed spoke about in the Holy Scriptures. Both old and new testaments show what constitutes evil in God’s eyes, the only definition allowable. And until our society (globally) became woke in to many areas, these positions and thoughts of evil were preached against by the pulpits of our nations.

What comes next in the article will make people mad and bring with it vehement attitudes. Most will be from the non-Christian society in our nation. But what will be worse is that it will also come from those that say they follow Jesus Christ. The mindset of the American Christian Church has become one of including the allowance of sin, even within the confines of the church. This is not to say that certain people or groups are not allowed to come to God. Nor do they have to be perfect. But what does need to occur is this. They have to be told the truth of God. Does God love everyone and want them to turn to him. Of course. Did Jesus deny a person’s coming to Him because of their sin. No. That’s the reason He came, died, and rose from the grave, so that we would have a means by which to make sure our souls are saved from sin.

Never once in Scripture did Jesus say, be saved and continue in your sin. He said Afterward Jesus findeth him in the temple, and said unto him, Behold, thou art made whole: sin no more, lest a worse thing come unto thee (John 5:14). She said, No man, Lord. And Jesus said unto her, Neither do I condemn thee: go, and sin no more (John 8:11).So by allowing sin to reign, these ‘Christians’ defy and deny the sacrifice of Christ on the Cross. For a person who claims salvation through the death and resurrection of Christ but continue to sin, there is no more hope.For if we sin willfully after that we have received the knowledge of the truth, there remaineth no more sacrifice for sins (Hebrews 10:26). This doesn’t mean that if a truly repentant sinner does fall that there is no hope. Mankind isn’t perfect so we do make mistakes. But it is expected to ask for forgiveness and strength. What the verse means is that you sin by choice after being saved, the sacrifice is not enough to cover it.

A gay preacher is loved by God. However, God does not approve of the sin. And since the preacher has claimed to be saved through the blood, he/she must seek forgiveness not continue in the sin. And yes, being any part of the LGTBQ+ community, engaging in the acts, and either not seeking forgiveness or continuing in the sin by choice is a sin. I know lovely people that are within this community, and I love the people, but have no option but to call the sinful act what it is…A SIN. Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: neither the sexually immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor men who practice homosexuality,nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God (1 Corinthians 9-10). Also included are cross-dressers The woman shall not wear that which pertaineth unto a man, neither shall a man put on a woman’s garment: for all that do so are abomination unto the LORD thy God (Deuteronomy 22:5)

The reason God gave us a moral code in the 10 Commandments was to help us understand that God loves us. The punishment that comes from sin without repentance is seen in how we raise our own children and deal with the criminal element. Why? Because like a parent, God chastises those who choose not to follow moral codes, laws, rules, whatever name you chose to give them. For whom the Lord loveth he chasteneth, and scourgeth every son whom he receiveth (Hebrews 12:6).

  It needs repented for and turned from. I will not turn my back on those that sin, but I will tell them it needs fixed. And for those in the LGTBQ+ community, God doesn’t make mistakes. He made you genetically what you are, male or female. The rest of the gender discussion is one of a sin sickness not a mental health issue or crossed wires in the brain. To say it is either of those things is strictly the devil playing games and stealing souls.

We are to pull ourselves out of the ways of the world. And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God (Romans 12:2).So when preachers are seen and heard saying things like, God looks on the heart, that statement is only right up to a point of understanding and redemption. The only time that the sin is not looked at is when a person is saved through grace and turns from the sinful nature of the world. A person who does not understand because he/she has not been taught will be looked at with that in mind at judgment. But for those that know and still refuse to turn from their sin will be judged according to that choice.

Romans chapters 2-4 tell us we are not to judge whether a person is good or bad. We are to show them the path to Christ and the need for redemption. No man has the ability of say this one will go to heaven or that one will go to judgment of the damned. We are to preach Christ crucified and risen. We are to lead the non-believer (and in today’s society the believer as well) to understand that God has said in the Scriptures what actions will not make it to judgment of the saved. A person can only no what sin is by biblical description. The knowing of the sin brings with it the understanding for the need of Christ’s redemptive power.

How will those that do not believe learn form those that teach error and blasphemy? Those that preach the Gospel message are warned against teaching false doctrines. I appeal to you, brothers, to watch out for those who cause divisions and create obstacles contrary to the doctrine that you have been taught; avoid them. For such persons do not serve our Lord Christ, but their own appetites, and by smooth talk and flattery they deceive the hearts of the naive (Romans 16:17-18). Take no part in the unfruitful works of darkness, but instead expose them (Ephesians 5:11).I am astonished that you are so quickly deserting him who called you in the grace of Christ and are turning to a different gospel— not that there is another one, but there are some who trouble you and want to distort the gospel of Christ. But even if we or an angel from heaven should preach to you a gospel contrary to the one we preached to you, let him be accursed. As we have said before, so now I say again: If anyone is preaching to you a gospel contrary to the one you received, let him be accursed (Galatians 1:6-9).

In this woke wilderness, we are searching for ways to make things better. Here’s the best way to do so. Read the bible, repent from sin, and follow Christ. We are told how to make things the way we should, without sending our nation into a tailspin of no return. We are told how to conduct business. We are told how to treat people. We are told how to raise our families. And we are told what it takes to make that trip into a heavenly home at His coming.

If you haven’t made that choice to follow Christ as a believer and follower, OR you have but still live with sin you refuse to give up and turn from, NOW IS THE TIME. Jesus Christ is coming back in all His glory. And it will be soon. When that time comes, it will be too late. Please consider your eternal future. It only takes a moment to make that choice to be covered by the soul cleansing blood of Jesus.

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Commandment 4: The Sabbath

Remember the Sabbath day to sanctify it. Six days shall you work and accomplish all your work; but the seventh day is Sabbath to Hashem, your God; you shall not do any work-you, your son, your daughter, your slave, your maidservant, your animal, and your convert within your gates- for in six days Hashem made the heavens and the earth, the sea and all that is in them, and He rested on the seventh day. Therefore, Hashem blessed the Sabbath day and sanctified it. (Exodus 20:8-11 from the Tanach, Stone Edition).

This commandment is the only one of the ten, given on Sinai and expounded on by Jesus, that the majority of the Christian world does not follow. This article will have three sections. The first will be examples from the Old Testament (Tanach) that show where it originated and why it is important.

The second section will be from the New Testament and show how important the commandments are. It will use the Gospels, Letters, and Revelation to show the importance of keeping all the commandments by those professing faith in Christ.

The third will be historical looks on the changing from Sabbath worship to Sunday worship. It will use writings of main denominations of Christianity. And it will look at how the Roman Catholic church looks at the ability and reason for the change and their views on the biblical Sabbath.

This debate of Sabbath v Sunday will probably be debated through Christendom until the second coming of Christ. But this article will show the biblical (not man’s interpretation) of God’s Holy determination of the day of worship.

Old Testament Views

The heaven and the earth were finished, and all their array. On the seventh day God finished the work that He had been doing, and He ceased on the seventh day from all the work that He had done. And God blessed the seventh day and declared it holy, because on it God ceased from all the work of creation that He had done (Genesis 2:1-3). The first book of Moses shows us why the day is sacred, and the day of holy rest. It was the only day sanctified by God himself. Six days God worked creating everything. He took the seventh day and sanctified it as a rest day. When God brought the Israelites from Egypt to Mt. Sinai, he made it clear in his commandments that because he sanctified it at creation, they were to keep it sanctified in their faith. It was retold to them in Deuteronomy 5:12-14 & Leviticus 23:3.

We learn in Numbers that the Sabbath rest also was extended to gentiles and had penalties for breaking its observance. But the person, be he citizen or stranger, who acts defiantly reviles the LORD; that person shall be cut off from among his people. Because he has spurned the word of the LORD and violated His commandment, that person shall be cut off—he bears his guilt. Once, when the Israelites were in the wilderness, they came upon a man gathering wood on the sabbath day. Those who found him as he was gathering wood brought him before Moses, Aaron, and the whole community. He was placed in custody, for it had not been specified what should be done to him. Then the LORD said to Moses, “The man shall be put to death: the whole community shall pelt him with stones outside the camp (Numbers 15:32-36).

New Testament Views

The Gospels tell us of the important parts of Christ’s life and ministry. Such things as his birth, miracles, baptism, death, and most important of all, his resurrection. Being brought up in the Jewish faith, he went to the synagogue on the Sabbath.He went to Nazareth, where he had been brought up, and on the Sabbath day he went into the synagogue, as was his custom (Luke 4:16). At a few points, the Pharisees asked why he would profane the Sabbath by doing healings and getting food to eat from the fields. He gave them a couple different answers like reminding them of God’s compassion (healings) and of David eating food meant for the priests (gathering food).

But he also expounded on the Sabbath as a hallowed day. Then he said to them, “The Sabbath was made for man, not man for the Sabbath.So the Son of Man is Lord even of the Sabbath (Mark 2:27-28).There are theologians who will say that this proves that Jesus, while reverencing the day hallowed by God, that because he is the Lord of the Sabbath, he changed its meaning and importance. Two issues arise from this perspective. The first being, he never said it was open to interpretation or that it didn’t need to still be followed. The second issue comes from the understand that he was God in the flesh “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.The same was in the beginning with God.All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made.In him was life; and the life was the light of men. And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth (John 1:1-4,14)” and that God never changes Jesus Christ the same yesterday, and to day, and for ever (Matthew 13:8).So saying Jesus was indicating that the validity of the sanctity of the Sabbath was no longer important, is saying that Matthew 13:8 is a lie. Since the scriptures tell us AllScripture isGod-breathedandis usefulforinstruction,forconviction,forcorrection,and fortraininginrighteousness,so that the man of God may be complete, fully equipped for every good work (2 Timothy 3:16-17), that would be the same as calling God himself a liar.

We find in Acts and in various letters by the apostles that they followed the Sabbath as the holy day.And Paul, as his manner was, went in unto them, and three sabbath days reasoned with them out of the scriptures (Acts 17:2). And Paul said Imitate me, just as I also imitate Christ (1 Corinthians 11:1). We also see that those gentiles seeking to hear of Jesus observed the Sabbath because it is when Paul and other disciples preached to them. So when the Jews went out of the synagogue, the Gentiles begged that these words might be preached to them the next Sabbath.Now when the congregation had broken up, many of the Jews and devout proselytes followed Paul and Barnabas, who, speaking to them,persuaded them to continue in the grace of God. On the next Sabbath almost the whole city came together to hear the word of God (Acts 13:42-44).

In many places of the New Testament, Jesus tells his followers what it takes to be saved and earn eternal life.If yekeepmy commandments, ye shall abide in my love; even as I have kept my Father’s commandments, and abide in his love (John 15:1). If ye love me, keep my commandments. He that hath my commandments, andkeepeth them, he it is that loveth me: and he that loveth me shall be loved of my Father, and I will love him, and will manifest myself to him (John 14:15, 21).

In Revelation we are told through John’s writing are those that will see eternal life with God. And the dragon was wroth with the woman, and went to make war with the remnant of her seed, whichkeepthe commandments of God, and have the testimony of Jesus Christ. (Revelation 12:17). Here is the patience of the saints: here are they thatkeepthe commandments of God, and the faith of Jesus (Revelation 14:12).These few verses, as well as others, should make it important to understand that the commandments and faith in Christ are needed to make it to a heavenly reward of eternal life.

History of Change

The bible prophesied the change of times and laws. And he shall speak great words against the most High, and shall wear out the saints of the most High, and think to change times and laws: and they shall be given into his hand until a time and times and the dividing of time (Daniel 7:25). There is only one commandment that is also a time. The fourth commandment (law) is the command for Sabbath (time) holiness. Let look to see where that change came from.

The Catholic Catechism states in Part 3 Section 2 Chapter 1 Article 3 Subsection 2 Line 2174Jesus rose from the dead “on the first day of the week.” Because it is the “first day,” the day of Christ’s Resurrection recalls the first creation. Because it is the “eighth day” following the sabbath, it symbolizes the new creation ushered in by Christ’s Resurrection. For Christians it has become the first of all days, the first of all feasts, the Lord’s Day (he kuriake hemera, dies dominica) Sunday:We all gather on the day of the sun, for it is the first day [after the Jewish sabbath, but also the first day] when God, separating matter from darkness, made the world; and on this same day Jesus Christ our Savior rose from the dead”. What is interesting is that they use the pagan vernacular “the day of the sun”. They also say they celebrate for two reasons. Christ rising from the dead on the first day AND God’s “separation of light and dark” on the first day of creation.

Since the Bible writers didn’t say that God the father or God the Son (Jesus) changed the rules of the fourth commandment, it has to be understood that the Catholic Church got that ability from somewhere. The church tells us where that power came from. “ “All power is given Me in heaven and on earth; as the Father sent Me so I also send you,” said our Divine Lord in giving His tremendous commission to His Apostles. “He that heareth you heareth Me.” We have in the authoritative voice of the Church the voice of Christ Himself.The Church is above the Bible; and this transference of Sabbath observance from Saturday to Sunday is proof positive of that fact.Deny the authority of the Church and you have no adequate or reasonable explanation or justification for the substitution of Sunday for Saturday in the Third – Protestant Fourth – Commandment of God. As the Rev. Mr. Smith rightly points out: “The Jewish Sabbath is not Sunday, the Lord’s Day. Christians are all wrong in speaking of the Sabbath as Sunday.” The Christians who so speak are “Bible Christians,” those who make the Bible the sole rule of Faith; and the Bible is silent on Sunday observance, it speaks only of Sabbath observance. The Lord’s Day – Dies Dominica – is the term used always in the Missal and the Breviary. It occurs in the Bible once (Apoc. 1.10;) in Acts xx. 7 and 1 Cor. xvi., 2 there is a reference to “the first day of the week;” but in none of these is there the remotest intimation that henceforth the first day is to take the place of the seventh. That is the crux of the whole question, what authority does the Bible give for the change? And that difficulty Mr. Smith and his critics, though pious and effusive and vaguely eloquent about many things, have each and all sedulously evaded.

    If affects very materially and very intimately the question of the proper observance of the Lord’s Day.

    In the first centuries the obligation of rest from work remained somewhat indefinite. The Council of Laodicea, held at the end of the fourth century, was content to prescribe that on the Lord’s Day the faithful were to abstain from work as far as possible. At the beginning of the sixth century St. Cesarius and others showed an inclination – very familiar to us – to apply the law of the Jewish Sabbath to the Christian Sunday. But the Council of Orleans in 538 reprobated this tendency as Jewish and non-Christian.

    Thus by the same Divine authority, in virtue of which she did away with the Jewish Sabbath and substituted therefor the Christian Sunday, the Catholic Church legislated as to how the Lord’s Day should be observed.

    Due to the exaggerated importance given the Bible after the Reformation and to the influence of Puritanism, the Lord’s Day in England and still more in Scotland began to take on all the rigorism of the Jewish Sabbath. That heritage, though somewhat softened, we still have with us. A game of ball where participants and spectators enjoy health-giving rest and recreation in the open air is “desecration of the Sabbath.” The swimming pool controversy is another good example.

   We would not be misunderstood. With much of the activity of the Sabbatarians we are in sympathy. Their insistence on a day of rest being given all workers is admirable. But their muddle-headed confusion of the Lord’s Day with the Jewish Sabbath – against which the Rev. Mr. Smith so vigorously protests – finds no sympathy amongst the Catholics who receive the Lord’s Day itself as well as its mode of observance from the Church and not from the Bible(Saturday, September 1st, 1923 edition of The Catholic Record of London, Ontario, Canada, Volume XLV, #2342 and appeared on page 4http://www.aloha.net/~mikesch/c-record.htm).

The Bible does not say that God or Christ (or the Apostles through leading of the Holy Spirit) changed the day of worship or said that the commandment was void. The Catholic Church admits that they changed it and call those that worship on the day set aside by God are ‘B ible Christians’. So do you follow traditions set by man or are you a “Bible Christian”?

Jesus called out the Pharisees of his day. But he is also talking to the Pharisees of our day.

He answered and said unto them, Well hath Esaias prophesied of you hypocrites, as it is written, This people honoureth me with their lips, but their heart is far from me. Howbeit in vain do they worship me, teaching for doctines the commandments of men. For laying aside the commandment of God, ye hold the tradition of men, as the washing of pots and cups: and many other such like things ye do. And he said unto them, Full well ye reject the commandment of God, that ye may keep your own tradition (Mark 7:6-9)

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Commandment 3: Lord’s name

Thou shalt not take the name of the Lord thy God in vain, for the Lord will not hold him guiltless that taketh his name in vain.”  (Exodus 20:7)

For many, even in the church, take this to mean not to swear using God’s name in any form. But it goes beyond that. The term vain means producing no result or worthless. The term in vain means using without the proper respect, abuse, misuse, perverted or changing the inherent purpose or function of something. Understanding the meanings of both the word and phrase bring this passage, and the Commandment into a new light.

It is understood that any form of the Lord’s name is not to be used in cursing. The simplicity of this command can even be understood to not say things like ‘oh my God’, ‘dear Lord’, or ‘sweet Jesus’. These common expressions are usually said in disgust, amazement, or surprise. While they may seem harmless, they violate this command.

But it can also be seen in other areas of speech. Things like swearing by God in a statement or trial swearing in is allowable, as long as the intent is in praise, worship, or other things allowable. You shall fear only the Lord your God; and you shall worship Him and swear by His name (Deut 6:13). But the king will rejoice in God; Everyone who swears by Him will glory, For the mouths of those who speak lies will be stopped (Psa 63:11). Therefore, whoever swears by the altar, swears both by the altar and by everything on it (Matt 23:20).

There are also warnings that many do not see as a relation to the commandment. But above all, my brothers, do not swear, either by heaven or by earth or by any other oath, but let your “yes” be yes and your “no” be no, so that you may not fall under condemnation (James 5:12).Again you have heard that it was said to those of old, ‘You shall not swear falsely, but shall perform to the Lord what you have sworn.’ But I say to you, Do not take an oath at all, either by heaven, for it is the throne of God, or by the earth, for it is his footstool, or by Jerusalem, for it is the city of the great King. And do not take an oath by your head, for you cannot make one hair white or black. Let what you say be simply ‘Yes’ or ‘No’; anything more than this comes from evil (Matt 5:33-37).And You shall not swear by my name falsely, and so profane the name of your God: I am theLord (Lev 19:12).

Billy Graham answered the question like this, “Perhaps most people don’t think about it when they curse or use God’s name—but that’s the problem! God is far too important to treat casually or as if He doesn’t matter.” John Wesley commented this in his exhortations on scripture, “Thou shalt not take the name of the Lord thy God in vain — Supposing that, having taken Jehovah for their God, they would make mention of his name, this command gives a caution not to mention it in vain, and it is still as needful as ever. We take God’s name in vain, First, By hypocrisy, making profession of God’s name, but not living up to that profession. Secondly, By covenant breaking. If we make promises to God, and perform not to the Lord our vows, we take his name in vain. Thirdly, By rash swearing, mentioning the name of God, or any of his attributes, in the form of an oath, without any just occasion for it, but to no purpose, or to no good purpose. Fourthly, By false-swearing, which some think is chiefly intended in the letter of the commandment. Fifthly, By using the name of God lightly and carelessly. The profanation of the form of devotion is forbidden, as well as the profanation of the forms of swearing; as also, the profanation of any of those things whereby God makes himself known.

For the Lord will not hold him guiltless — Magistrates that punish other offences, may not think themselves concerned to take notice of this; but God, who is jealous for his honour, will not connive at it. The sinner may perhaps hold himself guiltless, and think there is no harm in it; to obviate which suggestion, the threatening is thus expressed, God will not hold him guiltless – But more is implied, that God will himself be the avenger of those that take his name in vain; and they will find it a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God”.

Charles Finney said this, “The true spirit of this commandment: It requires a feeling of the utmost holy awe, reverence, love, and respect for God. The happiness of the universe depends on their virtue. Their virtue consists in obedience to God; and their obedience to God depends upon the light in which they regard Him. Therefore, the highest good of the universe demands that God should respect His name, and never suffer it to be trifled with”.

Let us remember the words of Matthew’s Gospel,I tell you, on the day of judgment people will give account for every careless word they speak, for by your words you will be justified, and by your words you will be condemned (Matt 12:36-37).For those not yet saved by the blood of Christ, now is the time for redemption. All it takes is a simple sinner’s prayer. Such as the one from the parable of the Pharisee and the sinner “Lord, forgive me a sinner”. For those that walk in God’s light and Christ’s grace, we all slip from time to time. We are not yet perfected. Even we need to hit the altar and ask for forgiveness.

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But For Grace, There Go I

Live in harmony with one another. Do not be proud, but be willing to associate with people of low position. Do not be conceited (Romans 12:16).

Today, the pastor did a switch of sermon. I don’t know if he was led by the Holy Spirit to do so or if he had seen something from one congregants that caused it. But it was a message that was needed. Not just today, not just our church. But by the body of Christ globally.

You see churches like Westboro Baptist, evangelical churches, and others today forgetting that they were sinners at one point. They seem to have forgotten that they had a calling to kneel at the altar rail and ask for forgiveness. That they are still not worthy of grace but are given that grace because of the love of God through the death and resurrection of Christ.

Somewhere along the line, they forgot about hating the sin and loving the sinner. Members of the church as a whole have gotten to a point where they condemn a person instead of simply explaining sin and redemption through the shed blood of Christ. Or like my grandmother would have said in her sweet southern/midwestern mixed Ozarks voice, you catch more flies with honey than you do vinegar.

The passage for his message was Matthew 20: 1-16. “For the kingdom of heaven is like a landowner who went out early in the morning to hire workers for his vineyard.He agreed to pay them a denarius[a] for the day and sent them into his vineyard.“About nine in the morning he went out and saw others standing in the marketplace doing nothing.He told them, ‘You also go and work in my vineyard, and I will pay you whatever is right.’So they went. “He went out again about noon and about three in the afternoon and did the same thing.About five in the afternoon he went out and found still others standing around. He asked them, ‘Why have you been standing here all day long doing nothing?’“‘Because no one has hired us,’ they answered. “He said to them, ‘You also go and work in my vineyard.’“When evening came, the owner of the vineyard said to his foreman, ‘Call the workers and pay them their wages, beginning with the last ones hired and going on to the first.’“The workers who were hired about five in the afternoon came and each received a denarius.So when those came who were hired first, they expected to receive more. But each one of them also received a denarius.When they received it, they began to grumble against the landowner.‘These who were hired last worked only one hour,’ they said, ‘and you have made them equal to us who have borne the burden of the work and the heat of the day.’“But he answered one of them, ‘I am not being unfair to you, friend. Didn’t you agree to work for a denarius?Take your pay and go. I want to give the one who was hired last the same as I gave you.Don’t I have the right to do what I want with my own money? Or are you envious because I am generous?’ “So the last will be first, and the first will be last.

He reminded us that, like the ones who had worked all day, those that have been in the faith for a long time, tend to forget that the redemption of Christ’s blood covers everybody who asks. He reminded us that it has the same exact value for those that came to that altar 50 years ago as well as those that hit the altar yesterday or have yet to hit it. He could have just as easily used the verse of the Pharisee and the sinner. “Two men went up to the temple to pray, one a Pharisee and the other a tax collector.The Pharisee stood by himself and prayed: ‘God, I thank you that I am not like other people—robbers, evildoers, adulterers—or even like this tax collector.I fast twice a week and give a tenth of all I get.’“But the tax collector stood at a distance. He would not even look up to heaven, but beat his breast and said, ‘God, have mercy on me, a sinner.’“I tell you that this man, rather than the other, went home justified before God. For all those who exalt themselves will be humbled, and those who humble themselves will be exalted” (Luke 18:10-14).

Having spoke with him after service, I told him that switching a message to one that calls the faithful to account is very seldom welcomed. The Pharisees had grown so pompous, that they ran their Messiah ragged and eventually to the Cross because of their inflated self-worth. Many Christians today have that same self inflation. But this pastor had an inspiration to remind them that their time in God’s service doesn’t equate for more love than new Christians or even those who yet have the calling to come to the Savior.

After his message, he did something I have never seen a pastor do in the 51 years I have been alive and the 40 plus years I have been going to services. He went and knelt at the altar while the final hymn was sung. I found it amazing that even a pastor realized he still isn’t perfect. Many congregants in all denominations need to see his example and remember the old adage, ‘but for the grace of God, there go I’.

I understand that this may not seem like much to most. But seeing how the pulpits have become compromised and even desecrated by soft wording and no fire by the pastors, a person doesn’t need to look hard to see why our neighborhoods, towns, nations, and world are in the position that they are in.

This pastor doesn’t preach with the flair or flame of men like Billy Sunday or Billy Graham. But he speaks with the humility and humbleness of a saint. He allows the words to be like arrows of the Holy Spirit. May this man’s ministry be blessed and a blessing, calling even the saved to repentance. Because no matter how long ago you knelt at that altar, tears of regret flowing down your cheeks, and asked for Christ to be the master of your life, we all still need repentance and the renewing of Christ’s saving grace.

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Chasing Dragons

A song released in 2016 is a huge Tik Tok trend tune. The title of this song is Suga Boom Boom. Part of the song says “Suga Boom Boom, I’m chasing dragons, this dragon’s got my hands. Suga Boom Boom, I’m robbing people but I’m an honest man”. The song goes on to talk about being on parole. But when you look at just the first couple lines, it shows the oldest war in human history, God and Satan. And a great sign appeared in heaven: a woman clothed with the sun, with the moon under her feet, and on her head a crown of twelve stars. She was pregnant and was crying out in birth pains and the agony of giving birth. And another sign appeared in heaven: behold, a great red dragon, with seven heads and ten horns, and on his heads seven diadems. His tail swept down a third of the stars of heaven and cast them to the earth. And the dragon stood before the woman who was about to give birth, so that when she bore her child he might devour it. She gave birth to a male child, one who is to rule all the nations with a rod of iron, but her child was caught up to God and to his throne (Revelation 12:1-5).

So what this song does, without knowing it, tells the plight of man. In this case, man is chasing the dragon (Satan). To understand this, one needs to understand original sin. Although not a popular topic today, original sin is inherent in all sin the fall of Adam and Eve in the garden. Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned (Romans 5:12). For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God (Romans 3:23). And because of that inherent sin, man is evil and following Satan’s path.For the flesh sets its desire against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh; for these are in opposition to one another, so that you may not do the things that you please (Galatians 5:17).

Today, many people who claim to follow Christ have forgotten His teachings. They say, don’t judge. And in a way they are right. A Christian isn’t to judge the heart of a person, but they are to watch a person’s actions and determine how the person acts, within righteousness or evil. Men like Joel Olsteen preach God’s love. They do forget that love of a parent comes with chastisement. These are false teachers and prophets. And we are warned against them. For the time will come when people will not put up with sound doctrine. Instead, to suit their own desires, they will gather around them a great number of teachers to say what their itching ears want to hear. They will turn their ears away from the truth and turn aside to myths (2 Timothy 4:3-4). Keep watch over yourselves and all the flock of which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers. Be shepherds of the church of God, which he bought with his own blood. I know that after I leave, savage wolves will come in among you and will not spare the flock. Even from your own number men will arise and distort the truth in order to draw away disciples after them (Acts 20:28-30). The ones who fit this description are preachers like the prosperity preachers and preachers who only preach love or say you can get to God ONLY because you are a good person with a good heart.

But, there is true hope in this world. You don’t find it through politics. You don’t find it through any misguided gospel. You find it only through the blood stained cross of Jesus Christ. No man on this rock is, or has been, perfect but God in the flesh, Jesus. For it was fitting for us to have such a high priest, holy, innocent, undefiled, separated from sinners and exalted above the heavens (Hebrews 7:26). For it was fitting for Him, for whom are all things, and through whom are all things, in bringing many sons to glory, to perfect the author of their salvation through sufferings (Hebrews 2:10).

So here is the question one must ask. Are you going to continue to chase the dragon? Or are you going have faith to ask Jesus Christ to free you from the burdens of sin? Only one leads to Eternity in Heaven.The other leads to destruction. You can be free from original sin through the perfect sacrifice of Jesus on the cross.

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Christianity, faith

When Salt Has No Flavor

You are the salt of the earth, but if the salt has lost its taste, how shall its saltiness be restored? It is no longer good for anything except to be thrown out and trampled under people’s feet.” Matthew 5:13 

The church is called the salt of the earth. A Catholic professor does podcasts and videos quite often. He ends all of his broadcasts with ‘you are the salt of the earth and a light to the world. Go out and be salty’. He says the last line because salt does 2 things. It seasons the bland and heals. If you have every worked in meat processing, by most stations there is a box of cure salt. If you cut yourself, you put your hand in the salt. Yes it burns, but it also heals the wound. Our salt, the Testimony of Christ, burns old wounds and impurities. But it also leads one to healing through the redemptive power of Christ.

The reason that the world has embraced the church, is because it has lost its spice. It has forgotten that we Christians are not to be friends with the world. Our mission is to bring the lost to Christ. So many times I hear people say “I led someone to the Lord”. No you didn’t. You may have gave someone the road map but the Holy Spirit was who led that person to the foot of the cross. We, as Christians do nothing more than plant the seed. The Holy Spirit does the rest. But the church today can’t even show someone the road map to the Cross. We have lost our flavor.

You hear in this times, we have to except people as they are because God looks at the heart. Yes God does look at the heart. And unless that person has come to Christ, the heart has not been washed clean. Draw near to God, and he will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners, and purify your hearts, you double-minded (James 4:8).Being a good person doesn’t cut it. For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God—not by works, so that no one can boast. For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do (Ephesians 2:8-10).

We, the Church, are not to make people happen in their sins. The Bible (remember that book that was written through the Holy Spirit by men) tells us who will make it to Heaven and who won’t. Or do you not know that the unrighteous[a] will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: neither the sexually immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor men who practice homosexuality,nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God (1 Corinthians 6:9-10). And yet, the modern church can be seen supporting these things in their own congregations. They have become the world. The only difference in these congregations is that they preach only the love of Christ. They don’t tell the members of the world that they need to seek Christ and REPENT.  He told them, “This is what is written: The Messiah will suffer and rise from the dead on the third day, and repentance for the forgiveness of sins will be preached in his name to all nations, beginning at Jerusalem. You are witnesses of these things (Luke 24:46-48)I have declared to both Jews and Greeks that they must turn to God in repentance and have faith in our Lord Jesus (Acts 20:21)

Yes, the love of Christ must be taught. But the message wasn’t ‘God loves you so everything is ok’. The message is repent and be saved.Now, that doesn’t mean blood bought Christians won’t mess up. We aren’t perfect. Even Christians need to repent.Consider how far you have fallen! Repent and do the things you did at first. If you do not repent, I will come to you and remove your lampstand from its place (Revelation 2:5)

Christ told John at Patmos who would make it to heaven. Here is the patience of the saints; here are those who keep the commandments of God and the faith of Jesus (Revelation 14:12). The faith of Jesus is repentance and the saving grace of Christ through the Cross. Without it, there is no hope of salvation.

The church today is being given the same warning as those of Israel in His time. Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye are like unto whited sepulchres, which indeed appear beautiful outward, but are within full of dead men’s bones, and of all uncleanness (Matthew 23:27).

Church, quit playing fast and loose with the edicts of God. Time is running out and those you say you love from the world will die in their sins because the church has lost its salty flavor. The warnings to the church are clear. 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 (Matthew 7:21). This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come.For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy,Without natural affection, trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good,Traitors, heady, highminded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God;Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away.For of this sort are they which creep into houses, and lead captive silly women laden with sins, led away with divers lusts,Ever learning, and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth (2 Timothy 3:1-7). 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.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 (Galatians 1:8-9).Members of the Bride of Christ, the Church, we more than the world need repentance. We have let false thinking invade our doctrines. We have become tasteless in our giving of the message of SIN, REPENTANCE, and HOPE IN CHRIST. The Church preaches a different Gospel and will be held accountable at judgment. Better to make members of the world hate us than to lose our place in the Lamb’s Book of Life.

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Christianity, faith, Uncategorized

Ghosts, Spirits, and Demons, OH MY!

Over the last few decades, ghost hunting has been a huge event worldwide. Shows like Ghost Hunters have elevated it to the point groups around the country have formed. I will admit, I like going out from time to time when something feels off. However, despite what is thought, is not actually the case.

I will not say that entities do not exist. They do and there has been quite a bit of evidence scientifically. The issue is not whether or not there are entities, the issue is what is actually being found. Whether the evidence is caught on video, in an EVP, a ghost box, through a Ouija board/witch board, or even through the medium you visited in New Orleans, it is not your dear granny, the lady that died mysteriously, or Johnny Cash. What you are capturing is demonic.

The Bible gives clear instruction on the dead in many places. And in revealing the scriptures, it will also bring to view the idea that death does not immediately mean Heaven  or Hell for the recently departed. And as you know, most preachers when giving the funeral services, more than not he will say that Mr. So and So is now in heaven. You never hear they went to hell, no matter how evil the person was. Nor do they go to a place of limbo (Purgatory for Catholics) to be cleansed of any remaining sin that was not bad enough to go to Hell. And Hell itself will be dealt with in another article.

The writers of the Old Testament tells us that the dead have no knowledge, memory, or ability. For there is no mention of You in death; In Sheol who will give You thanks? (Psalms 6:5). Will Your wonders be made known in the darkness? And Your righteousness in the land of forgetfulness? (Psalms 88:12). Will You perform wonders for the dead? Will the departed spirits rise and praise You? Selah. Will Your loving kindness be declared in the grave, Your faithfulness in Abaddon? (Psalms 88:10-11). The dead do not praise the Lord, Nor do any who go down into silence; (Psalms 115:17).

In other Old Testament books we find more writings of the dead. For the living know they will die; but the dead do not know anything, nor have they any longer a reward, for their memory is forgotten (Eccl 9:5). Whatever your hand finds to do, do it with all your might; for there is no activity or planning or knowledge or wisdom in Sheol where you are going (Eccl 9:10). 

Other scriptures in the Old Testament speak of death as sleep. But as for you, go your way to the end; then you will enter into rest and rise again for your allotted portion at the end of the age (Daniel 12:13). And many of those who sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake, some to everlasting life, and some to shame and everlasting contempt (Daniel 12:2).

The bible makes it clear that a person dies, that is it it until the resurrection of the dead. By the sweat of your face you shall eat bread, till you return to the ground, for out of it you were taken; for you are dust, and to dust you shall return (Genesis 3:19).Your dead shall live; their bodies shall rise. You who dwell in the dust, awake and sing for joy! For your dew is a dew of light, and the earth will give birth to the dead (Isaiah 26:19). And many of those who sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake, some to everlasting life, and some to shame and everlasting contempt (Daniel 12:2).For the Lord himself will descend from heaven with a cry of command, with the voice of an archangel, and with the sound of the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first (1st Thess 4:16).

Then I saw thrones, and seated on them were those to whom the authority to judge was committed. Also I saw the souls of those who had been beheaded for the testimony of Jesus and for the word of God, and those who had not worshiped the beast or its image and had not received its mark on their foreheads or their hands. They came to life and reigned with Christ for a thousand years. The rest of the dead did not come to life until the thousand years were ended. This is the first resurrection. Blessed and holy is the one who shares in the first resurrection! Over such the second death has no power, but they will be priests of God and of Christ, and they will reign with him for a thousand years (Rev 20:4-6).

Now, there are two terms, Sheol (Hebrew) from the Old Testament and Hades (Greek) from the New Testament. Both of these terms simply mean the grave. So all that die are headed to Sheol/Hades. It is that 6×6 hole in the ground.

The Bible is clear that the dead are just that, DEAD, until the resurrection. Now, you hear this verse often, Then shall the dust return to the earth as it was: and the spirit shall return unto God who gave it (Eccl 12:7). Most think that when term spirit is used in this verse, that is the person’s essence (being) going to Heaven. This can’t be the way the term means because it does not differentiate saved and non-saved. That would mean that all go to Heaven, and we know by Scripture that only those who believe in Christ and follow His commandments are saved and go to Heaven. The spirit spoke of here is strictly the breathe of life, Then the LORD God formed a man from the dust of the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and the man became a living being (Genesis 2:7).

Since ghosts and haunts are not those that have passed, what are they? They are demons, or more correctly, Lucifer (Satan) and the third of the angels that followed him. For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places (6:12). Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour. Resist him, steadfast in the faith, knowing that the same sufferings are experienced by your brotherhood in the world. But may the God of all grace, who called us to His eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after you have suffered a while, perfect, establish, strengthen, and settle you (1 Peter 5:8-10). Therefore rejoice, O heavens, and you who dwell in them! Woe to the inhabitants of the earth and the sea! For the devil has come down to you, having great wrath, because he knows that he has a short time (Rev 12:12).And the great dragon was thrown down, that ancient serpent, who is called the devil and Satan, the deceiver of the whole world—he was thrown down to the earth, and his angels were thrown down with him (Rev 12:9).

So the next time you hear that disembodied voice that sounds like a loved one, a friend, someone you don’t know from the past, or Michael Jackson remember that the dead are dead until resurrection and that they know nothing because their is no type of life within or from them, pray to the Lord for aid and send the entity from you pleading the blood of Christ. Therefore submit to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you (James 4:7).

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Christianity, faith, Uncategorized

Commandment 2: No Graven Images

You shall not make for yourself an image in the form of anything in heaven above or on the earth beneath or in the waters below. You shall not bow down to them or worship them; for I, the Lord your God, am a jealous God, punishing the children for the sin of the parents to the third and fourth generation of those who hate me,but showing love to a thousand generations of those who love me and keep my commandments. Exodus 20:4-6 (NIV)

While most know the first part of this commandment but don’t go on to read the second part. This has led to various concepts of the verses and the commandment. The Amish have no images (pictures, faced dolls, statuary, etc) because they believe that these can lead to false worship and ego. But then you have the Catholic Church which allow it in certain ways.

The Catholic Church has combined the 1st and 2nd commandments and split the 10th commandment into two commandments. This allows them the use of statuary in private and parish worship. So in this concept, we will look at how not every man made image is an idol or god and how some are within Christendom.

The first part of the commandment leads directly into the second part. What makes a man made image a sin is the person’s giving it adoration given only to God. So the pictures of your kids, a concert poster, an star’s autographed picture, the garden gnome are NOT what the commandment is referring to. These are just images UNLESS you bow down to them and give them the adoration and praise allowed only to God.

The Catholic Church has statuary, prints, reliefs, etc that correspond to those they deem saints, the blessed mother of Christ, the walk to the cross, etc. What makes them sin is the prayers and adoration given them. The catechism states that worship is given only to God (which is true). The part that is in defiance of the 2nd commandment is giving prayers to the saints that these statues and prints that represent them. No where in the Holy Scriptures does it say to pray to the dead (which the saints and mother of Christ are).

It actually says not to pray to them because they can’t hear prayer. For the living know that they will die,but the dead know nothing;they have no further reward,and even their name is forgotten.Their love, their hateand their jealousy have long since vanished;never again will they have a partin anything that happens under the sun. Eccl 9:5-6 (NIV)

Now, they will bring up Moses and the making of the image of a serpent. But as you will see, that image was ordered by God and not worshiped, but only looked upon.  They traveled from Mount Hor along the route to the Red Sea, to go around Edom. But the people grew impatient on the way;they spoke against God and against Moses, and said, “Why have you brought us up out of Egypt to die in the wilderness? There is no bread! There is no water! And we detest this miserable food!”Then the Lord sent venomous snakes among them; they bit the people and many Israelites died.The people came to Moses and said, “We sinned when we spoke against the Lord and against you. Pray that the Lord will take the snakes away from us.” So Moses prayed for the people.The Lord said to Moses, “Make a snake and put it up on a pole; anyone who is bitten can look at it and live.”So Moses made a bronze snake and put it up on a pole. Then when anyone was bitten by a snake and looked at the bronze snake, they lived. Numbers 21:4-9 (NIV). Jesus later told what this action actually was.Just as Moses lifted up the snake in the wilderness, so the Son of Man must be lifted up,that everyone who believes may have eternal life in him. John 3:14 (NIV).Prayer is a form of worship (https://www.thomasnelsonbibles.com/blog/prayer-is-an-act-of-worship/). Worship is to God alone. So not matter what you pray to or worship, if it is NOT God alone it is a violation of the commandment of God. This would include pagan gods and deities. As well as the saints, the mother of Jesus, and any image of them.

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The Commandments: No Other Gods

“Thou shalt have no other gods before me” Exodus 20:3

This verse starts what are known as the 10 commandments of God. Given to Moses on Mt. Sinai after being brought out  of Egyptian captivity and going across the Red Sea. But what is the meaning of this verse? Many believe it says that only God Jehovah is the only god. But as you go down through history, there are three types of gods that can be seen in this quote.

The definition of a god is simply something a person worships. There are three classifications to this: spiritual gods, men who are seen as gods, and inanimate objects. All three will be discussed and to show why the GOD of the Abrahamic faiths is the one that is the one true God.

Spiritual Gods

Spiritual gods in this article are referring to the multitude of pantheon gods of bygone cultures and civilizations. I will not say that this entities had no abilities. The bible proves they did at some point. After all, the bible tells us in Exodus that the priests (magicians) of the the Pharaoh could perform certain things like Moses and Aaron. And the Lord spake unto Moses and unto Aaron, saying, When Pharaoh shall speak unto you, saying, Shew a miracle for you: then thou shalt say unto Aaron, Take thy rod, and cast it before Pharaoh, and it shall become a serpent. And Moses and Aaron went in unto Pharaoh, and they did so as the Lord had commanded: and Aaron cast down his rod before Pharaoh, and before his servants, and it became a serpent. Then Pharaoh also called the wise men and the sorcerers: now the magicians of Egypt, they also did in like manner with their enchantments. For they cast down every man his rod, and they became serpents: but Aaron’s rod swallowed up their rods. And he hardened Pharaoh’s heart, that he hearkened not unto them; as the Lord had said.” (Exodus 7:8-13)

The actions of Aaron’s ‘serpent’ show that God Jehovah was superior. Later, when it was time for the Israelites to leave God used some of the Egyptian gods to plague the Egyptians and proved He alone was almighty. (http://www.stat.rice.edu/~dobelman/Dinotech/10_Eqyptian_gods_10_Plagues.pdf) Look through Exodus 7:1-12:36 and study the hyperlinked pdf.

Then we move to areas like Babylon. Where there gods were put to the test. So Ahab sent to all the people of Israel and gathered the prophets together at Mount Carmel.And Elijah came near to all the people and said, “How long will you go limping between two different opinions? If the Lord is God, follow him; but if Baal, then follow him.” And the people did not answer him a word.Then Elijah said to the people, “I, even I only, am left a prophet of the Lord, but Baal’s prophets are 450 men.Let two bulls be given to us, and let them choose one bull for themselves and cut it in pieces and lay it on the wood, but put no fire to it. And I will prepare the other bull and lay it on the wood and put no fire to it.And you call upon the name of your god, and I will call upon the name of the Lord, and the God who answers by fire, he is God.” And all the people answered, “It is well spoken.”Then Elijah said to the prophets of Baal, “Choose for yourselves one bull and prepare it first, for you are many, and call upon the name of your god, but put no fire to it.”And they took the bull that was given them, and they prepared it and called upon the name of Baal from morning until noon, saying, “O Baal, answer us!” But there was no voice, and no one answered. And they limped around the altar that they had made.And at noon Elijah mocked them, saying, “Cry aloud, for he is a god. Either he is musing, or he is relieving himself, or he is on a journey, or perhaps he is asleep and must be awakened.”And they cried aloud and cut themselves after their custom with swords and lances, until the blood gushed out upon them.And as midday passed, they raved on until the time of the offering of the oblation, but there was no voice. No one answered; no one paid attention.Then Elijah said to all the people, “Come near to me.” And all the people came near to him. And he repaired the altar of the Lord that had been thrown down.Elijah took twelve stones, according to the number of the tribes of the sons of Jacob, to whom the word of the Lord came, saying, “Israel shall be your name,”and with the stones he built an altar in the name of the Lord. And he made a trench about the altar, as great as would contain two seahs[a] of seed.And he put the wood in order and cut the bull in pieces and laid it on the wood. And he said, “Fill four jars with water and pour it on the burnt offering and on the wood.”And he said, “Do it a second time.” And they did it a second time. And he said, “Do it a third time.” And they did it a third time.And the water ran around the altar and filled the trench also with water.And at the time of the offering of the oblation, Elijah the prophet came near and said, “O Lord, God of Abraham, Isaac, and Israel, let it be known this day that you are God in Israel, and that I am your servant, and that I have done all these things at your word.Answer me, O Lord, answer me, that this people may know that you, O Lord, are God, and that you have turned their hearts back.”Then the fire of the Lord fell and consumed the burnt offering and the wood and the stones and the dust, and licked up the water that was in the trench.And when all the people saw it, they fell on their faces and said, “The Lord, he is God; the Lord, he is God.”And Elijah said to them, “Seize the prophets of Baal; let not one of them escape.” And they seized them. And Elijah brought them down to the brook Kishon and slaughtered them there.” (1 Kings 18:20-40)

As we move through the points of history, the gods and goddesses of every pantheon have fallen. From Medo-Persian and Roman of the ancient world to Celtic, Viking/German, African, and Meso-American. In the end, all of these pantheons fell to the Judeo-Christian God. And were left buried in antiquity until modern times. Now these pantheons are making a comeback. But like then, they will again fall.

Here’s where these false gods came from. They created nothing. They can’t save the soul of their believer. And they must bow down and forfeit to the one true God because they came from him. They are nothing more than the fallen that sided with Lucifer against the Creator himself. Because of lust of self and power, Lucifer and one third of the angels were cast from heaven. Where did they go? Here. “How you are fallen from heaven, O Day Star, son of Dawn! How you are cut down to the ground, you who laid the nations low! You said in your heart, ‘I will ascend to heaven; above the stars of God I will set my throne on high; I will sit on the mount of assembly in the far reaches of the north; I will ascend above the heights of the clouds; I will make myself like the Most High.’ But you are brought down to Sheol, to the far reaches of the pit” (Isaiah 14:12-15). Now war arose in heaven, Michael and his angels fighting against the dragon. And the dragon and his angels fought back, but he was defeated, and there was no longer any place for them in heaven. And the great dragon was thrown down, that ancient serpent, who is called the devil and Satan, the deceiver of the whole world—he was thrown down to the earth, and his angels were thrown down with him” (Revelation 12:7-9). “For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places” (Ephesians 6:12).

Men who place themselves as gods

Throughout man’s history, there are men who have placed themselves as god on earth. Pharaoh was believed to be the sun god Ra walking on earth. In more modern times, people like Jim Jones and David Koresh have led followers to their deaths with these claims. Most of these are demigods of man’s making. Take how people flocked and followed to Donald Trump over the last few years. They have been blinded by his words and emotional influence. Much like men throughout history: Julius Caesar, Adolph Hitler, and quite a few television evangelists/prosperity preachers (such as Benny Hinn and Kenneth Copeland). But one seems to be set above all others. The Pope of Roman Catholicism. Over his reign, the pope has commanded countries who bowed, armies who fought (inquisitions and crusades), and placed himself as god on earth.

The Catholic church believes they have the ability to forgive sin, According to the “Catechism of the Catholic Church,” confession involves either “venial” (minor sins) which are confessed to God and “mortal” (major sins) which must be confessed through a priest. This means the priest (or above) acts as mediator between man and God. But we are told in Scripture that not understanding that Jesus was God in flesh (John 1:1-14) they made the statement Who can forgive sins, but God alone?” (Luke 5:21). The Catholic also tends to forget that there is only one mediator between man and God, and the priest is not it.For there is one God and one mediator between God and mankind, the man Christ Jesus” (1 Timothy 2:5).

In Pope Leo XIII’s 1885 Encyclical ‘The Reunion of Christendom’ he states, “the pope holds upon this earth the place of Almighty God”. His title is, besides Pope and Bishop of Rome, is Vicarious Filii Dei ‘Vicar (replacement or agent) of God on Earth’. So, by the Church’s own admission, the seat of the papacy is the thrown of a man that is seen as a god. The power and influence of the papacy have grown majorly, especially since the Francis became Pope. We see the spiritual and political influence this man has throughout the world.

Inanimate objects

Everything else that can be worshiped falls within this category. Money, power, and position are the main points of this category. This are tangibles that man seeks for. Now, these things may be needed (try buying groceries without financial ability or having a business operate without a person in the lead). BUT when the desire for these become the main component of one’s life and ambition, that is when they become a god to that person. For these things when they reach that level of importance, mankind has killed, cheated, lied, warred, and stolen to get them. They have taken precedents over his soul and his compassion for his fellowman.

Conclusion

There is one reason that the first commandment is what it is. With all of these categories of false gods, we need reminded that there is only one God over all. He is the Creator of all things. He is the spoken word that became flesh in Jesus the Christ. HE IS GOD ALONE. Because we fell for the great satan, the liar and deceiver, the once great Lucifer, we need to be reminded who our Father really is.

Take a moment and ask the Father, the one true God to help you always remember who He is and to have the strength through him to turn away from these false gods. We all need that repentance and forgiveness. As an earthly parent may chastise his children, he will also have their back when they need him. How much greater will the Father that created all protect His children. As time draws near to the end of all things and the return of Christ the King, please remember who the true God is, and seek His protection and salvation.

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Christianity, faith

THE NATION THAT FORGETS GOD

The wicked shall be turned into hell, and all the nations that forget God.For the needy shall not always be forgotten: the expectation of the poor shall not perish for ever.Arise, O Lord; let not man prevail: let the heathen be judged in thy sight.Put them in fear, O Lord: that the nations may know themselves to be but men. Selah  (Psalms 9:17-20) 

George Washington in his farewell address stated the morality and religious principle are required for a government to operate properly https://www.vindicatingthefounders.com/library/washington-farewell-address.html. Men like William Blackstone, Noah Webster, the authors of our pre-Revolution papers made it clear, the course of our nation’s laws and morality were to be based within the Holy Scriptures https://www1.cbn.com/biblestudy/judge-moore-the-founding-fathers-and-the-ten-commandments. Not the Koran, not philosophy, but the Commandments of God and the faith of Jesus the Christ.

Over the past decades, this nation has forgotten who gives it strength. While the military is one of the best globally, our strength did not come from it. While our economy was once the lead of financial circles our the world, that was not what gave us our strength and position. While we were the beacon of hope for the oppressed, the lowly, those seeking a better life, it was not because of the above mentioned reasons. Yes, they played into the reason, but were not the underlying cause of our hope or theirs.

The main reason was because of our laws, compassion, and moral compass in the world. The Scopes Monkey Trial (as it was named) started the slide from grace for the nation. An Arkansas trial solidified the ability to teach beyond Creation, the alternate view of Evolution https://www.history.com/this-day-in-history/monkey-trial-begins . Then came the removal of prayer and the Holy Scripture from schools https://www.cnsnews.com/news/article/penny-starr/education-expert-removing-bible-prayer-public-schools-has-caused-decline.

In 1948, multitudes of nations stepped into the UN and signed the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Eleanor Roosevelt signed for the US. The first Human Right is the Right to Life. God already knew this, “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you” (Jeremiah 1:5A). For you created my inmost being;you knit me together in my mother’s womb.I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made;your works are wonderful,I know that full well.My frame was not hidden from youwhen I was made in the secret place,when I was woven together in the depths of the earth.Your eyes saw my unformed body;all the days ordained for me were written in your bookbefore one of them came to be” (Psalms 139:13-16). But in 1973, a landmark case (Roe vs Wade) disallowed that primary right for human life https://www.britannica.com/event/Roe-v-Wade.

While different aspects of the LGTBQ+ community has existed (illegally) in this nation since it’s founding, the 20th Century brought with it a change for this specific community. From the 1973 decision by the APA to remove homosexuality from its mental defect list to the 2015 case that stated homosexual marriages were protected https://www.lgbtqhistory.org/lgbt-rights-timeline-in-american-history/. These actions, as all of those in support of LGTBQ+, defy the will and laws of God. For this cause God gave them up unto vile affections: for even their women did change the natural use into that which is against nature: And likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust one toward another; men with men working that which is unseemly, and receiving in themselves that recompense of their error which was meet” (Romans 1:26-27).

Since the turning away from the Holy Scripture and faith in God, the divorce rate in rate in America (tied with Gibraltar) ranks as the world’s highest https://worldpopulationreview.com/country-rankings/divorce-rates-by-country and crime (while not at its 1990s peak) is increasing in many categories including homicide https://www.bbc.com/news/57581270. The elected of our nation fight over helping other (needy, disabled, homeless, imprisoned, immigrants) but have no qualms about allowing the greed of men run business, finance, industry.

With these, we wonder why out nation has been under attack, the economic failures, as well as the ultra progressive movements and the ultra right movements pulling the nation farther apart. A president and House Speaker who claim to be Catholic Christian but support the murder of innocents at will and national immorality. And worse is a church that has, in the majority of cases, used the preaching of God’s love for man in salvation through His Son, Jesus the Christ’s death and resurrection to welcome all so as not to seem combative or judgmental towards society.

Christians are by no means perfect, as we are sinful man saved through grace not being yet transformed to the full glory of God. But like the Church of Laodicea, the church of today has become lukewarm. To the angel of the church in Laodicea write: “These are the words of the Amen, the faithful and true witness, the ruler of God’s creation.I know your deeds, that you are neither cold nor hot. I wish you were either one or the other!So, because you are lukewarm—neither hot nor cold—I am about to spit you out of my mouth.You say, ‘I am rich; I have acquired wealth and do not need a thing.’ But you do not realize that you are wretched, pitiful, poor, blind and naked.I counsel you to buy from me gold refined in the fire, so you can become rich; and white clothes to wear, so you can cover your shameful nakedness; and salve to put on your eyes, so you can see.Those whom I love I rebuke and discipline. So be earnest and repent.Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with that person, and they with me. To the one who is victorious, I will give the right to sit with me on my throne, just as I was victorious and sat down with my Father on his throne.Whoever has ears, let them hear what the Spirit says to the churches” (Revelation 3:14-22).

I will be the first to admit I am imperfect and only a sinner saved by the grace of God by the shed blood of Jesus. But there comes a point when even the those like me, not close to perfect but trying, have the need to say to the people of the nation….

***REPENT***

“The instant I speak concerning a nation and concerning a kingdom, to pluck up, to pull down, and to destroy it,if that nation against whom I have spoken turns from its evil, I will relent of the disaster that I thought to bring upon it”.

Jeremiah 18:7-8

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