What We Really Need

Tuesday, September 1, 2015

“But my God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus” (Philippians 4:19 KJV).

Do not be a spiritual hoarder. Be content with what you find in Jesus Christ!

Some people live in absolutely deplorable, filthy, unsafe, rotten environments. I am referring to hoarders, individuals who seek identity, meaning, purpose, and security in filling their homes—literally from floor to ceiling—with items. What begins as an innocent hobby of collecting “neat” or “rare” items becomes madness… to the point where nothing is discarded. Every newspaper clipping, every last empty plastic bottle, every single knick-knack, and so on, is stored. Someone’s home is transformed into a death trap, fire hazard, a literal breeding ground for anything and everything harmful and foul-smelling.

A man owning 12 large barns—each packed with miscellaneous items he bought in bulk! A lady amassing over 3,000 purses! Someone living with 120 cats in her home! A man collecting approximately 10,000 sheets of music and an estimated 5,000 books! A lady storing dozens upon dozens of deceased pets and assorted wildlife specimens… in her home’s freezers!

If you listen to these people talk about their situation, you can understand that they suffer mental disorders. They are not thinking rationally. There is a lot of confusion as to what is truly garbage and what is actually useful. There are also underlying emotional problems. Two or three failed marriages, an abusive childhood, a near-death experience such as armed robbery, and the like… these events triggered hoarders to “go over the edge.” They know they are missing peace, security, love, joy, acceptance, and so on. Inside they are hollow. They have tried their very best to fill the void with material items, having only driven a wedge between themselves and family and friends.

Think about today’s Scripture. What we really need, what we truly need, we already have it in Christ. We do not need to go around in religion, “collecting” a water ceremony, a “tithe” receipt, a “miracle healing,” an “epiphany” or some other experience, and so on. Worthless clutter! God has “riches in glory.” If by Christ Jesus we have richestrue riches, eternal riches—why should we collect “valueless papers and empty bottles” in religion?

Our latest Bible Q&A: “What does John 3:16 really mean?

The King Immortal and His Words Eternal

Monday, August 31, 2015

“The words of the LORD are pure words; as silver tried in a furnace of earth, purified seven times. Thou shalt keep them, O LORD, thou shalt preserve them from this generation for ever” (Psalm 12:6,7 KJV).

Dear friends, we know the King immortal by reading His eternal words. Yea, He is the greatest Person ever known, and He speaks the greatest words ever heard!

From Satan’s finagling Eve to question and deny God’s Word (Genesis 3:1-5) all the way up to our present-day with nearly 200 modern English versions (disparities) all allegedly “Holy Bibles,” there is a very subtle and wicked plan to prevent mankind from knowing God’s eternal words. Despite all the “illuminating” manuscript discoveries and new “helpful” translations, we are not getting closer to the truth. Though the average “scholar” will disagree, the fact is that we are getting further from the original manuscripts. During the past few centuries, there has been an increase—not a decrease—in Bible ignorance.

Take today’s Scripture, for example. Did you know modern English versions attack it by watering it down? As it sits in our King James Bible, David describes how God will “keep themand “preserve them.” The “them” of verse 7 is the noun of verse 6—“the words of the LORD.” This is one of the clearest passages on the doctrine of Bible preservation. Demonstrating their utter incompetence and downright unbelief, the translators of nearly all modern English versions replace “them” with “us” twice. So, the “revised” reading says God will guard believing Israel from her oppressors and He will preserve believing Israel from her enemies. Why this textual change? Because their underlying manuscripts are not those of our King James! They are using a different Hebrew (and Greek) Old Testament text (and a different Greek New Testament).

Beloved, faith leads us to believe the Bible’s testimony of itself. God’s Word is “pure” and “preserved.” We can present our King James Bible for examination and it is vindicated. We can scrutinize the modern versions. They thoroughly condemn themselves. If we claim to believe the Bible is perfect, but we cannot produce a perfect copy, then that, friends, is as worthless as believing nothing to start with. Think on it! :)

Words Smoother Than Butter

Sunday, August 30, 2015

“That this is a rebellious people, lying children, children that will not hear the law of the LORD: Which say to the seers, See not; and to the prophets, Prophesy not unto us right things, speak unto us smooth things, prophesy deceits: Get you out of the way, turn aside out of the path, cause the Holy One of Israel to cease from before us (Isaiah 30:9-11 KJV).

Slip not on the “words smoother than butter!”

We Anglophones use the idiom, “He is a smooth talker.” This eloquent speaker manipulates words—using flattery, overly-complementary words—to make us think or do whatever he wants. With the mind and heart (emotions) captured, the physical body naturally follows.

Today’s Scripture is JEHOVAH’S controversy with Israel. They are disobedient and deceitful. When JEHOVAH sends seers and prophets to guide Israel back to Him, she refuses. “Do not tell us what the Bible says! Get out of our way! Let us do what we want! Tell us something nice and cheerful! Shut up about sin, righteousness, and God’s impending judgment!” (Sound familiar?) “For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears” (2 Timothy 4:3).

Interestingly, God will one day give Israel exactly what she wants. A man, a “super-man,” will make a false seven-year peace treaty with Israel. This Antichrist will promise Israel great peace and prosperity. David wrote about him in Psalm 55:21: “The words of his mouth were smoother than butter, but war was in his heart: his words were softer than oil, yet were they drawn swords.” “He shall come in peaceably, and obtain the kingdom by flatteries” (Daniel 11:21). The Antichrist will dazzle Israel—yea, the world—with likeable traits, great speeches, and supernatural abilities (Revelation 13:1-4). Once he gains Israel’s trust, he will destroy them militarily, mercilessly slaughtering as many of his enemies as possible (Daniel 8:22-25; Zechariah 11:15-17; Revelation 12:1-17; Revelation 13:15-18). As a dear pastor-brother-friend warned, “Beware of those who over-complement! They are the first to stab you in the back!”

Beloved, watch out for and avoid the “words smoother than butter!” Christendom, like Israel of old, is still slipping doctrinally because of them!

Our latest Bible Q&A: “Is faith enough to enter heaven? Do not the devils ‘believe?’


Saturday, August 29, 2015

“And thinkest thou this, O man, that judgest them which do such things, and doest the same, that thou shalt escape the judgment of God? Or despisest thou the riches of his goodness and forbearance and longsuffering; not knowing that the goodness of God leadeth thee to repentance? But after thy hardness and impenitent heart treasureth up unto thyself wrath against the day of wrath and revelation of the righteous judgment of God;” (Romans 2:3-5 KJV).

Exactly 10 years ago today, the worst natural disaster in modern United States history struck the Gulf Coast. Was it really God’s wrath?

On August 29, 2005, a Category 3 (formerly a Category 5) hurricane departed the Gulf of Mexico and struck the Louisiana/Mississippi border, roughly three hours’ drive east of here. Over 1,000 people died. Causing over US$100 billion in damage, Katrina is the costliest hurricane on record. It greatly affected our state (Louisiana) and the rest of the Gulf Coast. The Greater New Orleans Metropolitan Area was particularly affected.

Ten years ago, I was steeped in denominationalism. I agreed with the religionists that God’s wrath had finally hit New Orleans. The debauched Mardi Gras parades, violence, racism, murders, sexual immorality, and so on, would be no more there. Friend, let me assure you—10 years ago, I was totally ignorant of the riches of God’s goodness, forbearance, and longsuffering!

If one does not “study… rightly dividing the word of truth” (2 Timothy 2:15), all of his or her theology will be unstable. Dispensational Bible study is absolutely critical—not only in understanding the Bible, but also in understanding what God is doing today. The God of the Bible is often portrayed as cruel, yet today’s Scripture says He is a good God, a forbearing God, and a longsuffering God. Not only that, but He is rich in goodness, rich in forbearance, and rich in longsuffering! There is no better Person than Him!

God’s wrath against man’s sin will be revealed one day, but let us not despise His grace, goodness, patience, and longsuffering, today. Grace postpones the wrath! Peace postpones the war! Friends, let us come by simple faith in Jesus Christ’s finished crosswork, that we not see that wrath when it does finally come!

James and Dispensationalism

Friday, August 28, 2015

“And after they had held their peace, James answered, saying, Men and brethren, hearken unto me: Simeon hath declared how God at the first did visit the Gentiles, to take out of them a people for his name. And to this agree the words of the prophets; as it is written, After this I will return, and build again the tabernacle of David, which is fallen down; and I will build again the ruins thereof, and I will set it up: That the residue of men might seek after the Lord, and all the Gentiles, upon whom my name is called, saith the Lord, who doeth all these things (Acts 15:13-17 KJV).

What can the Apostle James teach us about dispensational Bible study?

In the famous Jerusalem Council of A.D. 50; James, Peter, and John heard Paul and Barnabas give their testimony of Paul’s ministry (verse 12). Israel’s God had indeed left her and was now reaching the Gentiles through Paul. James commented with today’s Scripture, quoting Amos 9:11,12: “[11] In that day will I raise up the tabernacle of David that is fallen, and close up the breaches thereof; and I will raise up his ruins, and I will build it as in the days of old: [12] That they may possess the remnant of Edom, and of all the heathen, which are called by my name, saith the Lord that doeth this.”

Obviously, “After this” was not in Amos’ original prophecy: James added it to interpret the passage according to the divine revelation he learned from Paul. Interestingly, Amos knew nothing of our Dispensation of Grace or of the Church the Body of Christ. (Simeon/Peter had an experience with Gentile Cornelius years earlier, in chapter 10, helping both him and James understand God was going to the Gentiles.)

Like the other Old Testament prophets, the Prophet Amos foretold that, one day, Jesus Christ would return to fulfill the Davidic Covenant (cf. Luke 1:31-33). He would be Israel’s King, thereby making her His kingdom of priests. But, what happened to Peter and Paul caused James to realize prophecy was delayed. Peter wrote about it in his second epistle, chapter 3, also learning from Paul. Yes, James agreed, Israel’s kingdom is coming, just not today!

Our latest Bible Q&A: “I experienced difficult times. Was God chastening me?

Paul and Dispensationalism #20

Thursday, August 27, 2015

“Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth. But shun profane and vain babblings: for they will increase unto more ungodliness. And their word will eat as doth a canker: of whom is Hymenaeus and Philetus; Who concerning the truth have erred, saying that the resurrection is past already; and overthrow the faith of some” (2 Timothy 2:15-18 KJV).

What else can the Apostle Paul teach us about dispensational Bible study?

The only verse that tells us to “study” the Bible tells us how to study it. It is found in the last Bible book Paul wrote. We must “rightly divide the word of truth.” Confusing ourselves with Israel and stealing her passages will cause major problems, both in this life (today’s Scripture) and in the next.

Ignoring dispensational Bible study will affect everyone in eternity. Most Christians will arrive at the Judgment Seat of Christ with worthless information in their inner man. They did not follow Paul’s instructions, but preferred religious tradition, philosophy, non-dispensational Scripture, et cetera. That “wood, hay, and stubble” will result in loss of reward (1 Corinthians 3:9-15). Many lost people will wake up in hell because they grabbed a Gospel for another dispensation as though it applied to them (Mark 16:16, Acts 2:38, Matthew 19:17, et cetera)!

Friends, may we believe the right Gospel right now. It is not about “repenting,” “turning over a new leaf,” “asking Jesus into your heart,” et cetera. It is about trusting Jesus Christ’s shed blood, death, burial, and resurrection as complete payment for your sins (1 Corinthians 15:3,4). Paul’s Gospel is the only valid Gospel message today, the Gospel that will save us unto eternal life and guarantee us a place in heaven. We do not have to go to hell!

Brethren, may we study all of the Bible, Genesis through Revelation. May we recognize Paul’s epistles, Romans through Philemon, apply directly to us. Paul is our apostle (Romans 11:13). May we take those grace doctrines in Paul’s books and apply them to life by faith. This is the “gold, silver, and precious stones” that will profit us in eternity (1 Corinthians 3:9-15). We do not have to stay confused and defeated! :)


Paul and Dispensationalism #19

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

“[God] Who hath saved us, and called us with an holy calling, not according to our works, but according to his own purpose and grace, which was given us in Christ Jesus before the world began, But is now made manifest by the appearing of our Saviour Jesus Christ, who hath abolished death, and hath brought life and immortality to light through the gospel: Whereunto I am appointed a preacher, and an apostle, and a teacher of the Gentiles” (2 Timothy 1:9-11 KJV).

What else can the Apostle Paul teach us about dispensational Bible study?

Long before there was a Heaven and an Earth, there was the triune Godhead—Father, Son, and Holy Ghost. And there was Their purpose and plan for Heaven and Earth. They determined that some of the people who would be saved unto eternal life, they would form a special body of believers, the Church the Body of Christ. But, the Triune Godhead never said so much as one word about that plan for over 4,000 years. Imagine keeping a secret that long!

Then, the time came for God’s marvelous secret to be revealed. That “mystery”—that “hidden wisdom” (1 Corinthians 2:6-8)—was finally manifested for all to see. Not only would people see it but also the angels and Satan! Today’s Scripture says that Paul was thus appointed “a preacher, and an apostle, and a teacher of the Gentiles.” The risen, ascended, and glorified Lord Jesus Christ appeared to Paul and chose him for a special purpose (Acts 26:16-18). Paul would declare to all the world how Jesus Christ, at Calvary’s cross, had utterly destroyed Satan’s plans (Colossians 2:15). Through Paul, Jesus Christ, via His heavenly ministry, would tell all the world that there was eternal life and immortality available to them through His finished crosswork. Beloved, this is the wonderful Gospel of the Grace of God!

To revert back to Christ’s earthly ministry, or the other Old Testament Scriptures, is to ignore Jesus Christ’s heavenly ministry and the wonderful Gospel of Grace. Our message today is found in the writings of Paul, Romans through Philemon. To abandon God’s Word through Paul has dangerous, everlasting effects, so let us exalt his Gentile ministry as the Holy Spirit did (Romans 11:13)! :)

Our latest Bible Q&A: “Did God give angels free will as He gave to mankind?