Archive for the ‘Comfort’ Category

From Dust

 

Today, reply is on burial for the dead as the fulfillment of divine proclamation, rather than comfort in bereavement, family duty, or using novelty to express affection and memorial.  The substance of mankind is both from dust and from heaven.  Many of the human errors regarding the condition and state of the dead also are recorded in the holy writings (e.g., in the Golden Arrow below, Job describes a widely held error, that there is a realm of the dead where the living may rest and sleep.  By contrast, the Holy City, New Jerusalem, is to be a realm of those raised and returned from the dead who all will have eternal life.  Even so, the Bible does not teach that we will die, go to our graves, and there live happily ever after.)  While some insist that their dead be interred in settings that have been sanctified through prayer (i.e., church yards; holy ground)—and account it a form of excommunication to be denied burial as a benefit, privilege, and righteous reward for having been loyal members within a church congregation—resurrection of the dead in completion of divine judgment even will include divinity acknowledging and restoring bodies that were destroyed or lost through burning, dismemberment, and explosions.  Beyond resurrection and ones personhood existing in the divine presence, there is little indication within the holy writings that how the physical body is disposed of determines closure, completeness, contentment, or fulfillment for ones spirit.  In the vision granted to John, souls under the altar behave as petitions and prayers for judgment, justice, and righteousness, to wit, the redemption of the body.    The  fighter in the “Yahoo! Answers” Religion and Spirituality forum who uses the ID “?” (Level 1 with 30 points, a member since April 11, 2018) posted the following:

 

Do you want to be cremated or buried ?

 

THE GOLDEN ARROW:  Why died I not from the womb? why did I not give up the ghost when I came out of the belly?  Why did the knees prevent me? or why the breasts that I should suck?  For now should I have lain still and been quiet, I should have slept:  then had I been at rest,  With kings and counsellors of the earth, which build desolate places for themselves;  Or with princes that had gold, who filled their houses with silver:  Or as an hidden untimely birth I had not been; as infants which never saw light.  There the wicked cease from troubling; and there the weary be at rest.  There the prisoners rest together; they hear not the voice of the oppressor.  The small and great are there; and the servant is free from his master.  Wherefore is light given to him that is in misery, and life unto the bitter in soul;  Which long for death, but it cometh not; and dig for it more than for hid treasures;  Which rejoice exceedingly, and are glad, when they can find the grave?  (Job 3:  11-22, King James Version, KJV)

 

THE DOUBLE DAGGER:  Completing Divine Unfinished Business (04/17/2017); Life Is GOD’s Intent (11/15/2016); The Purpose of Resurrection (07/05/2016); The Body of Moses (05/11/2014); GOD Permits Evil? (05/12/2014); Our Present Comfort? (06/28/2013); Come As You Are? (06/29/2013); Scripture at Funerals? (04/30/2013); Why Jesus Authored No Books (05/01/2013)

 

“?”, here are some points mature Christian believers have found helpful for maintaining godly focus on issues of death, mourning, and remembrance:

1.  The word of GOD to Adam (“to dust thou shalt return”)  was speaking about the material form (we say, the body; the flesh) that may exist without life essence (we say, breath, spirit, word) imparted from the makeup of GOD.  A physical complete body may exist, yet, be without spirit content to qualify as “a living soul.”  It is written:  Ecclesiastes 12:  7, King James Version (KJV):  7 Then shall the dust return to the earth as it was:  and the spirit shall return unto God who gave it.

2.  Abraham traveled throughout Canaan as a nomad, and did not seek to obtain property by conquest, by continuous occupation, or purchase.  Abraham was offered a piece of land as a gift, and a show of respect, however, the Patriarch insisted there be an open transaction for the public record in the gate (i.e., downtown; the business district; the town square).  It is written:  Genesis 23:  19-20, KJV:  19 And after this, Abraham buried Sarah his wife in the cave of the field of Machpelah before Mamre:  the same is Hebron in the land of Canaan.  20 And the field, and the cave that is therein, were made sure unto Abraham for a possession of a buryingplace by the sons of Heth.

3.  Blood from murder and warfare defile the earth.  Thus, burial comes into view as more than simply an act of sanitation to remove decomposing flesh.  Burial comes into view as an expression of dynasty, family, inheritance and marital love that uses the frameworks of time and space to provide measurable dimensions and unchanging parameters for remembrance.  It is written:   Genesis 49:  28-33, KJV:  28 All these are the twelve tribes of Israel:  and this is it that their father spake unto them, and blessed them; every one according to his blessing he blessed them.  29 And he charged them, and said unto them, I am to be gathered unto my people:  bury me with my fathers in the cave that is in the field of Ephron the Hittite,  30 In the cave that is in the field of Machpelah, which is before Mamre, in the land of Canaan, which Abraham bought with the field of Ephron the Hittite for a possession of a buryingplace.  31 There they buried Abraham and Sarah his wife; there they buried Isaac and Rebekah his wife; and there I buried Leah.  32 The purchase of the field and of the cave that is therein was from the children of Heth.  33 And when Jacob had made an end of commanding his sons, he gathered up his feet into the bed, and yielded up the ghost, and was gathered unto his people.

4.  The examples from Abraham (who is called the Friend of GOD) and Jacob (also called Israel) are seen responding to the oneness without sameness that mankind is to display as a product and fruit of the earth as well as the initial commission that mankind replenish the earth.  Christians do not preserve dead bodies to await the return of their spirit.  No dead body is of itself holy or sacred (thus, the taking up of Joseph’s body at the Exodus was not an act of idolatry and worshiping his remains); and there is no belief in an “immortal soul,” or reincarnation where spirit content is recycled.  It is written:  1st Chronicles 10:  10-14, KJV:  10 And they put his armour in the house of their gods, and fastened his head in the temple of Dagon.  11 And when all Jabeshgilead heard all that the Philistines had done to Saul,  12 They arose, all the valiant men, and took away the body of Saul, and the bodies of his sons, and brought them to Jabesh, and buried their bones under the oak in Jabesh, and fasted seven days.  13 So Saul died for his transgression which he committed against the LORD, even against the word of the LORD, which he kept not, and also for asking counsel of one that had a familiar spirit, to enquire of it;  14 And enquired not of the LORD:  therefore he slew him, and turned the kingdom unto David the son of Jesse.

There is far more that should be said, correctly examined, and spiritually apprehended.  (For example, regarding the activity, condition, and state of the dead, the holy writings plainly declare the dead neither have awareness or physical feeling; they do not praise GOD; and they neither labor nor rest.  Even so, spirits from the living are being maintained through sacred operations.  Many offer heartfelt prayers that the response of GOD to souls of the saints will continue compassion, mercy, and peace.  It is written:  5.  Revelation 6:  8-10, KJV:  8 And I looked, and behold a pale horse:  and his name that sat on him was Death, and Hell followed with him. And power was given unto them over the fourth part of the earth, to kill with sword, and with hunger, and with death, and with the beasts of the earth.  9 And when he had opened the fifth seal, I saw under the altar the souls of them that were slain for the word of God, and for the testimony which they held:  10 And they cried with a loud voice, saying, How long, O LORD, holy and true, dost thou not judge and avenge our blood on them that dwell on the earth?)  Even so, I trust this fragment will be useful.  Be it unto you according to your faith.

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THE BLACK PHOENIX
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Zarephath-and-Nain

 

Today, reply is on the duty of Christians to proclaim hope, share divine ministry, and acknowledge genuine sacred events (miracles; resurrection) when attending funerals.  Within the church, only apostles have been granted lawful authority and faith by being charged and ordained to raise the dead as representations of Jesus Christ.  Therefore, like atonement accomplished only by Christ as High Priest, raising the dead is not a benefit, duty, or privilege routinely imparted to born-again followers of Jesus Christ.  The raising of the dead is not intended to cause confusion, intimidate, strike fear among, or threaten the living.  For Christian believers the raising of the dead is a divine operation and entails sacred processes that reveal the authority, power, and eternal purposes of divine fullness.  Responding to the needs or requests of loved ones, Jesus raised multiple persons from the dead (e.g., Jairus’ daughter; the son of the Widow at Nain; Lazarus) in demonstration of his divine origin (“I am the resurrection”); none of them are alive on the earth today.  This helps us understand that the aspects for resurrection that pertain to eternal life are very different.  Followers of the Lord will not endorse accounts and explanations that continue antichrist sentiment; horror movie and fictional characters along with so-called living things created or re-animated by science (e.g., clones, Frankenstein, flesh-eating ghouls, vampires, zombies); superstition; beliefs in the occult and the supernatural; sorcery and witchcraft; or other forms that allow and generate spiritual confusion.  A fighter in the “Yahoo! Answers” Religion and Spirituality forum using the ID “?” (Level 4 with 3,457 points, a member since August 31, 2014) posted the following:


Should Christians only attend funerals if they are planning to raise the dead as Christ instructed us to do?

 

THE GOLDEN ARROW:  For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with him.  For this we say unto you by the word of the Lord, that we which are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent them which are asleep.  For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God:  and the dead in Christ shall rise first:  Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air:  and so shall we ever be with the Lord.  Wherefore comfort one another with these words.  (1st Thessalonians 4:  14-18, King James Version, KJV)

 

THE DOUBLE DAGGER:  Be Still Before GOD? (05/20/2018); “I Am The Resurrection” (03/25/2018); Jesus Rose? (11/08/2013); Why Was A Son Sent? (11/10/2013); Sacrificed and Risen? (10/06/2013); Assurances of Salvation? (10/07/2013); Our Present Comfort? (06/28/2013); Come As You Are? (06/29/2013); Scripture at Funerals? (04/30/2013); Why Jesus Authored No Books (05/01/2013)

 

“?”, it is a Christian’s duty to counsel and assist those who are in mourning to practice forbearance, forgiveness, longsuffering, lovingkindness, and “the patience of the saints.”  The raising of the dead pertains to the deceased appearing alive before GOD through the harvesting of the earth by Jesus Christ (we say, Advent; his appearing; the Rapture; the Second Coming) as well as the restoration of the dead to appear in tribunals of final judgment.  Resurrection of the dead provides more than a response to human needs that are emotional, financial, and social in nature.  The primary purpose of a funeral is a public witness to the burial and internment of the physical remains (body; cadaver; corpse) of someone deceased.  With this in view, Christians are to attend funerals as acquaintances, co-workers, family, and friends who respond to the bereavement and loss of others through personal expression more than as spiritual spokespersons sent to alter the beliefs of others, to make prophetic demonstrations, or to be witnesses who authenticate and testify regarding divine operations and sacred process.  Believers may not raise the dead by the application of their own self-will, on the basis of their own emotions and feelings, or as a practice of personal power.  Christians are to establish the active presence of divinity by being those who prophecy (i.e., comfort, edify, exhort) and share testimony in divine judgment.  The believer is to display humility, glorify GOD, and avoid magnifying his own office and self-promotion.  Consider again the following that uses language from the Bible:

(1.)  Luke 9:  57-60, King James Version (KJV):  57 And it came to pass, that, as they went in the way, a certain man said unto him, Lord, I will follow thee whithersoever thou goest.  58 And Jesus said unto him, Foxes have holes, and birds of the air have nests; but the Son of man hath not where to lay his head.  59 And he said unto another, Follow me. But he said, Lord, suffer me first to go and bury my father.  60 Jesus said unto him, Let the dead bury their dead:  but go thou and preach the kingdom of God.

(2.)  1st Corinthians 15:  12-14, KJV:  12 Now if Christ be preached that he rose from the dead, how say some among you that there is no resurrection of the dead?  13 But if there be no resurrection of the dead, then is Christ not risen:  14 And if Christ be not risen, then is our preaching vain, and your faith is also vain.

(3.)  1st Corinthians 15:  50-57, KJV:  50 Now this I say, brethren, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God; neither doth corruption inherit incorruption.  51 Behold, I shew you a mystery; We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed,  52 In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump:  for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed.  53 For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality.  54 So when this corruptible shall have put on incorruption, and this mortal shall have put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written, Death is swallowed up in victory.  55 O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory?  56 The sting of death is sin; and the strength of sin is the law.  57 But thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.

There is far more that should be said, correctly examined, and spiritually apprehended.  (For example, (4.)  Philippians 3:  7-14, KJV:  7 But what things were gain to me, those I counted loss for Christ.  8 Yea doubtless, and I count all things but loss for the excellency of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord:  for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and do count them but dung, that I may win Christ,  9 And be found in him, not having mine own righteousness, which is of the law, but that which is through the faith of Christ, the righteousness which is of God by faith:  10 That I may know him, and the power of his resurrection, and the fellowship of his sufferings, being made conformable unto his death;  11 If by any means I might attain unto the resurrection of the dead.  12 Not as though I had already attained, either were already perfect:  but I follow after, if that I may apprehend that for which also I am apprehended of Christ Jesus.  13 Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended:  but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before,  14 I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.)  Even so, I trust this fragment will be useful.  Be it unto you according to your faith.

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THE BLACK PHOENIX
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He Will Cover You

 

Today, reply is on the state of the dead, the difference between angels and spirit content from men, and Christian ministry to children in their bereavement.  At death the spirit content that projects the character, personality, and spirit makeup within the living is removed, and separated from the flesh.  The lifeless body (we say, cadaver; corpse) may be buried or interred; while the spirit matter returns to GOD.  The tool Christian believers have been given for comforting one another during their bereavement is called “prophecy”.  How sacred truth is presented and shared with children may vary from how the same truth is shown to adults, however, there is only one faith, one Lord, one baptism, one God and Father of all.  There is no teaching from the Bible that says spirit content that leaves a human body and goes to live and interact in heaven among the angels and other sacred creatures there.  The dead praise not GOD; do not watch over and protect the living; and the dead have no carnal, mental, and social abilities (e.g., communication, talking, exchange).  The dead must be restored to life (i.e., there must be resurrection) for judgment according to divine law.  One of the fighters in the “Yahoo! Answers” Religion and Spirituality forum who uses the ID “Anonymous” (no profile information shown) posted the following:

 

Religion- I told my son his late mom is now with the angels when he asked me. Am I deceiving him?

 

THE GOLDEN ARROW:  Howbeit we speak wisdom among them that are perfect: yet not the wisdom of this world, nor of the princes of this world, that come to nought:  But we speak the wisdom of God in a mystery, even the hidden wisdom, which God ordained before the world unto our glory:  Which none of the princes of this world knew:  for had they known it, they would not have crucified the Lord of glory.  But as it is written, Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him.  But God hath revealed them unto us by his Spirit:  for the Spirit searcheth all things, yea, the deep things of God.  For what man knoweth the things of a man, save the spirit of man which is in him? even so the things of God knoweth no man, but the Spirit of God.  Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the spirit which is of God; that we might know the things that are freely given to us of God.  Which things also we speak, not in the words which man’s wisdom teacheth, but which the Holy Ghost teacheth; comparing spiritual things with spiritual.  But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God:  for they are foolishness unto him:  neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.  (1st Corinthians 2:  6-14, King James Version, KJV)

 

THE DOUBLE DAGGER:  Lower Than The Angels? (09/12/2017); Signs From The Dead? (01/15/2017); Life Is GOD’s Intent (11/15/2016); On Really Seeing Angels (10/09/2016); Spirit, Spirit Beings, Spirit Persons? (10/13/2015); Getting It Right About Angels (05/10/2015); Comfort? (09/06/2014)

 

“Anonymous”, non-biblical teachings on the angels often result in spiritual confusion; this is also true during times of bereavement when honest expressions of ones developing belief and faith may contain and impart errors and misunderstandings.  Expressions of our own individual affection and feelings of love can not replace, or accomplish all the sacred work required to be done within the household of faith by proclaiming the Gospel of Jesus Christ, and the love of GOD.  Among Christian believers there also are specific sacred things that are to be shared as comfort with those who endure bereavement.  Believers are to minister to one another from what they themselves have received as deposits and endowments of spirit substance from the makeup of GOD through Jesus Christ.  Included are expectation (we say, hope), faith, gratitude, joy, longsuffering, lovingkindness, oneness without sameness, personhood, purpose, resilience, regeneration, and renewal of the mind.  Such consolations are effective during grief and mourning because a believer’s consciousness is centered on, and interwoven with streams of prophecy and divine revelation.

The Creator has made it that every man, woman, and child must be prepared to endure the completion of their own mortality and separation(s).  Loss of a parent, a child, a spouse, and other loved ones will be experienced throughout every aspect of the emotional, material, psychological, social, and spiritual order fitted together within ones own person.  Thus, many experience bereavement as a form of temporary insanity.  The sudden introduction of absence and imbalance should not be met by dismissing reality and truth, or relying on exaggeration, fantasy, and extremes of imagination.  Regaining balance, self-discipline, firmness, purpose, and stability are reasonable goals and practices.  Existing as “born again,” finite, and mortal, children and adults who belong to Christ are continually challenged to “grow up again” (mature/ripen) on the earth before being harvested by Jesus Christ at his appearing (we also say, the Advent, the Rapture, the Second Coming).

Where we counsel children and those who are only beginning the long journey to fullness and maturity in their bereavement we must acknowledge the existing level of their grasp and understanding; and it is not incorrect or unkind to speak to them using (1) their own language, (2) the shared language within relationship as well as (3) the new language provided from GOD intended to carry them forward in the divine will.  Often, where children mistakenly appear to be lying by adult standards, the young ones are answering with responses that correctly and sincerely express their heartfelt desire, their faith imparted from GOD, their intent, their perseverance, and their efforts to apply and focus their own self-will (willpower).

Even within the communities and families of Christians those enduring a loss may operate as though it is acceptable to use commonly held and familiar doctrine and teachings that are not found within the holy writings.  Some feel they are justified on the basis of the importance of behaving as accepting, non-judgmental, supportive, and understanding.  Others feel that children may be weaned from the devices used as short-term solutions while they are being brought gradually to the fullness of Christ.  Because there are many subtleties (barely visible differences; hidden shifts in meaning, quality, and value) involved, those who take up alternatives to Christ should be cautioned, for in effect they say, “I am right when I am wrong, because….”  Consider again the following that uses language from the Bible:

(1.)  1st Corinthians 12:  25-27, King James Version (KJV):  25 That there should be no schism in the body; but that the members should have the same care one for another.  26 And whether one member suffer, all the members suffer with it; or one member be honoured, all the members rejoice with it.  27 Now ye are the body of Christ, and members in particular.

(2.)  Matthew 18:  10, KJV:  10 Take heed that ye despise not one of these little ones; for I say unto you, That in heaven their angels do always behold the face of my Father which is in heaven.

(3.)  Colossians 2:  8-12, KJV:  8 Beware lest any man spoil you through philosophy and vain deceit, after the tradition of men, after the rudiments of the world, and not after Christ.  9 For in him dwelleth all the fulness of the Godhead bodily.  10 And ye are complete in him, which is the head of all principality and power:  11 In whom also ye are circumcised with the circumcision made without hands, in putting off the body of the sins of the flesh by the circumcision of Christ:  12 Buried with him in baptism, wherein also ye are risen with him through the faith of the operation of God, who hath raised him from the dead.

(4.)  Colossians 2:  18-19, KJV:  18 Let no man beguile you of your reward in a voluntary humility and worshipping of angels, intruding into those things which he hath not seen, vainly puffed up by his fleshly mind,  19 And not holding the Head, from which all the body by joints and bands having nourishment ministered, and knit together, increaseth with the increase of God.

There is far more that should be said, correctly examined, and spiritually apprehended.  (For example, (5.)  1st Thessalonians 4:  13-18, KJV:  13 But I would not have you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning them which are asleep, that ye sorrow not, even as others which have no hope.  14 For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with him.  15 For this we say unto you by the word of the Lord, that we which are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent them which are asleep.  16 For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God:  and the dead in Christ shall rise first:  17 Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air:  and so shall we ever be with the Lord.  18 Wherefore comfort one another with these words.)  Even so, I trust this fragment will be useful.  Be it unto you according to your faith.

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THE BLACK PHOENIX
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Do This In Remembrance

 

Today, the reply addresses duties, obligations, and responsibilities for developing Christian believers.  The church is more than a community center for recreation or social welfare programs.  More than anything else, the church is to be a location for praise, prayer, prophecy, revelation, sacred studies, and worship.  Disbelievers usually have little knowledge of the many disciplines, lifestyle practices, and daily routines willingly used by Christian believers to express their gratitude, faith, and hope in the things from GOD through Jesus Christ.  Church attendance can be the most important aspect of the “new life” for developing Christian believers because it provides organization and structure for godly comfort, discovery, gradual growth, repentance, sorrowing for sin, and the ongoing exchange of sacred knowledge.  Believers are not to be passive, simply gathered like sheep to be fed, watered, made to wait for the coming of the Shepherd, or continually behave as servants to clergy and others.  A writer at “Yahoo! Answers” using the ID “Disco Stu” (Level 3 with 1,840 points, a member since September 16, 2010) posted the following:

 

Do you have to go to church every week to be a Christian?

 

THE GOLDEN ARROW:  Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature:  old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.  And all things are of God, who hath reconciled us to himself by Jesus Christ, and hath given to us the ministry of reconciliation;  To wit, that God was in Christ, reconciling the world unto himself, not imputing their trespasses unto them; and hath committed unto us the word of reconciliation.  Now then we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God did beseech you by us:  we pray you in Christ’s stead, be ye reconciled to God.  For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him.  (2nd Corinthians 5:  17-21, King James Version, KJV)

 

THE DOUBLE DAGGER:  Christian “Thoughts and Prayers” (03/01/2018); Attend Chapel or Church? (02/04/2018); Attending Church a “Chore”? (01/23/2018); The First To Help? (12/22/2017); Free Speech in Church? (12/18/2017); Not All Are Welcome (11/28/2017); As An Anointed Body (10/04/2017)

 

“Disco Stu”, many sacraments (sacred practices), divine gifts,  and endowments of sacred knowledge are found only within the church.  Some mistakenly respond to communities of faith because they are seeking a greater level of social acceptance, personal freedom, opportunities to express their own beliefs, and the rewards that may come through volunteer service.  More correctly, those turning to Christ by becoming members of a standing congregation are acknowledging accountability; agreeing to fulfill the duties and obligations of membership; joining themselves to divinity through fellowship, ministry to others, and unselfish service as well as continuing to ripen (mature) for harvest by the Lord at his Advent (we also say, his appearing, the Rapture, the Second Coming).

The sinner who turns to Christ must be “born again;” his inborn spirit must die, be buried, and raised from the dead, so to speak; and those who once were sinners become the offspring of GOD, vessels of divine spirit, and the new creation of Jesus Christ.  A developing believer must “grow up again” by facing the same life challenges, “growing pains,” hardships, and suffering as others on the earth.  However, they now are endowed with spirit substance imparted from the makeup of GOD.  Included are faith, holiness, longsuffering, lovingkindness, wisdom, and wrath against sin.  As with saying, “I love you”, there is no quota or rule for how often one should practice forbearing, forgiving, praise, sharing, study, unselfishness, and worship with others within the body.  However, meaningful sacred exchange, interaction, and support will require mature communication, divine order, regularity, respect, and stability.  Consider again the following that uses language from the Bible:

(1.)  Hebrews 10:  23-26, King James Version (KJV):  23 Let us hold fast the profession of our faith without wavering; (for he is faithful that promised;)  24 And let us consider one another to provoke unto love and to good works:  25 Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another:  and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching.  26 For if we sin wilfully after that we have received the knowledge of the truth, there remaineth no more sacrifice for sins,

(2.)  Mark 10:  42-46, KJV:  42 But Jesus called them to him, and saith unto them, Ye know that they which are accounted to rule over the Gentiles exercise lordship over them; and their great ones exercise authority upon them.  43 But so shall it not be among you:  but whosoever will be great among you, shall be your minister:  44 And whosoever of you will be the chiefest, shall be servant of all.  45 For even the Son of man came not to be ministered unto, but to minister, and to give his life a ransom for many.

(3.)  1st Corinthians 11:  23-29, KJV:  23 For I have received of the Lord that which also I delivered unto you, that the Lord Jesus the same night in which he was betrayed took bread:  24 And when he had given thanks, he brake it, and said, Take, eat:  this is my body, which is broken for you:  this do in remembrance of me.  25 After the same manner also he took the cup, when he had supped, saying, this cup is the new testament in my blood:  this do ye, as oft as ye drink it, in remembrance of me.  26 For as often as ye eat this bread, and drink this cup, ye do shew the Lord’s death till he come.  27 Wherefore whosoever shall eat this bread, and drink this cup of the Lord, unworthily, shall be guilty of the body and blood of the Lord.  28 But let a man examine himself, and so let him eat of that bread, and drink of that cup.  29 For he that eateth and drinketh unworthily, eateth and drinketh damnation to himself, not discerning the Lord’s body.

There is far more to be said, correctly examined, and spiritually apprehended.  (For example, (4.)  Romans 8:  5-9, KJV:  5 For they that are after the flesh do mind the things of the flesh; but they that are after the Spirit the things of the Spirit.  6 For to be carnally minded is death; but to be spiritually minded is life and peace.  7 Because the carnal mind is enmity against God:  for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be.  8 So then they that are in the flesh cannot please God.  9 But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his.)  Even so, I trust this fragment will be useful.  Be it unto you according to your faith.

 

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THE BLACK PHOENIX
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our-thoughts-and-prayers-are-with-you-2

 

Today, reply is on the value of “thoughts and prayers” as a response to mass shootings, tragedies, and extreme weather events.  Among Christian believers, many occurrences outside the church and within the general community (i.e., the world) are recognizable as cries for help.  Crisis, emergency, and traumatic events often demand divine intervention, can include clear violations of sacred law, and are properly seen as attacks against divine order.  In spite of issues of disbelief, lack of gratitude, and skepticism, when disaster and terror events turn a spotlight on unmet needs for the ministry of Christ as Risen Lord, it is correct for Christians to apply the same solutions and tools relied on within the congregations and communities of faith.  Outreach may provide expressions of love and support through music ministry, intercessory prayer, prophecy, and selected readings from the holy writings.  Meaningful recovery, treatment, and volunteer efforts will require cooperation and shared focus that also can counteract the increased threats that workers will become overwhelmed by feelings of anger, bitterness, defeat, depression, helplessness, fear, and exaggerated pride.  One of the fighters in the “Yahoo! Answers” forum using the ID “Anonymous” (no profile data appeared) posted the following:

 

What exactly do “thoughts and prayers” accomplish?

Any time there’s a tragedy or mass shooting, social media is plastered by conservative Christians saying “sending thoughts and prayers.” What exactly does this do to help the victims?

 

THE GOLDEN ARROW:  Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God.  And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.  Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.  (Philippians 4:  6-8, King James Version, KJV)

 

THE DOUBLE DAGGER:  GOD Protects the Faithful (12/19/2017); Storms to Punish America? (09/08/2017); Why Pray For Victims? (06/14/2016); Shot While in Church? (06/18/2015); Saved While in Church? (06/19/2015); Faith for Facing Tragedy? (06/04/2013); Words Spoken By GOD? (06/05/2013); Unless You Repent (03/05/2013); The Childhood of Jesus? (03/06/2013)

 

“Anonymous”, thoughts and prayers serve to counteract our extreme natural responses such as anger, bitterness, despair, and irrational, mindless violence.  Where people are being courteous and friendly to us during times of bereavement, emotional crisis, and stress, we often fail to realize that their responses to us that are most encouraging and helpful may have been generated by their indwelling spirit imparted from the makeup of GOD.  Christian believers are to operate as incarnations of divinity, spokespersons, and the offspring (sons and daughters) of GOD on the earth who make divinity active and present during times of trouble, and our hours of need.  Sinners who are “born again” experience the death, burial, and resurrection of their inborn spirit, and are to become vessels of divine DNA, so to speak.  As those repenting and returning to GOD, sinners in transition who undergo the permanent changes in rebirth are filled with inseparable sacred substance from the fullness of divinity.  Included are balance, faith, forbearance, holiness, humility, longsuffering, lovingkindness, personhood, respect, wisdom, and wrath against sin. 

GOD is not an abstraction, an academic construct, or a human intellectual device; therefore, the sacred work of revelation goes forward to make divinity knowable, known, accessible, and approachable to created beings and living creatures.  Communication, exchange, and interaction (we say, entering into a personal relationship with GOD) are shared through multiple lives and actual members of the full body of Christ, the church.  In addition to shared worship, there are fellowship, marriage, meditation, praise, prayer, study, and unselfish service.  Our shared thoughts and prayers become acceptable gifts, offerings, requests, and sacrifices to GOD when they are presented by Jesus Christ.  Also, Christian believers are to understand that “comfort” along with “edification” and “exhortation” is one of the three works that provide divine disclosure and revelation appearing as aspects of sacred prophecy within the church.

The proclamation of the Gospel (good news) provides truth that is directed against fear, isolation, loneliness, poverty, the operations of sin, and all spiritual confusion.  On surface, the non-worship activities and programs of the church may appear little different from what goes on in community recreation and social centers.  However, the church uses simple things that impart lessons and resources that nonetheless are spiritually profound.  Included are divine assurances, emblems, opportunities to serve, seals, signs, and sacred tokens that express and establish the integrity of GOD.  Survivors, victims, and those still on the battlefield will be encouraged and refreshed when they are not answered by ignorance, blamed, despised, forgotten, ignored, condemned by indifference and silence, or rejected as being unfit.  Consider again the following that uses language from the Bible:

(1.)  2nd Peter 1:  2-4, King James Version (KJV):  2 Grace and peace be multiplied unto you through the knowledge of God, and of Jesus our Lord,  3 According as his divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness, through the knowledge of him that hath called us to glory and virtue:  4 Whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises:  that by these ye might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust.

(2.)  Jeremiah 29:  11-13, KJV:  11 For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the LORD, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end.  12 Then shall ye call upon me, and ye shall go and pray unto me, and I will hearken unto you.  13 And ye shall seek me and find me, when ye shall search for me with all your heart.

(3.)  1st Thessalonians 4:  13-18, KJV:  13 But I would not have you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning them which are asleep, that ye sorrow not, even as others which have no hope.  14 For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with him.  15 For this we say unto you by the word of the Lord, that we which are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent them which are asleep.  16 For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God:  and the dead in Christ shall rise first:  17 Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air:  and so shall we ever be with the Lord.  18 Wherefore comfort one another with these words.

There is far more to be said, correctly examined, and spiritually apprehended.  (For example, (4.)  2nd Corinthians 7:  1, KJV:  1 Having therefore these promises, dearly beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from all filthiness of the flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God.)  Even so, I trust this fragment will be useful.  Be it unto you according to your faith.

 

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THE BLACK PHOENIX
Washington, DC

You Are With Me

 

Today, a response is made to encourage accountability, healing, holy boldness, and new strength throughout our communities.  In times of crisis, hardship and suffering, caretakers, parents, teachers and others who are close must not fail to share with our youth the very beliefs and understandings teens often find most difficult and strange.  Christian believers rely upon the sacred things imparted to us from the makeup and substance of GOD for the comfort and reinforcement we need to carry on and to persevere.  It is not always a matter of asking for, or expecting sudden changes and miracles (we say, sacred events) so much as it is one of ourselves realizing and helping others to recognize that GOD continues to be an active presence among us who becomes “visible” through his creation and those who are vessels of divine spirit.  The living become the offspring (sons and daughters) of GOD, heirs with Jesus Christ, and saints within the divine kingdom through divine DNA, so to speak.

Those “born again” must “grow up again” by enduring “growing pains” and meeting the same life challenges as all others on the earth.  There must be discovery, gradual growth, fellowship with other believers, unselfish service, and becoming mature.  In addition to faith, developing believers receive inseparable spirit content from the makeup of divinity that includes balance, forbearance, holiness, joy, longsuffering, lovingkindness, meekness, personhood, wisdom, and wrath against sin.  Consider again the following that may already be familiar from the Bible and from four contemporary music ministries:

 
(1.)  1st Thessalonians 5:  11, King James Version (KJV):  11 Wherefore comfort yourselves together, and edify one another, even as also ye do.

“Be Grateful” (Original, 1978) Walter Hawkins, Lead by Lynette Hawkins Stephens, written by Walter Hawkins.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9-UdwIHSyqo

 

(2.)  Psalms 23:  1-6, KJV:  1 The LORD is my shepherd; I shall not want.  2 He maketh me to lie down in green pastures:  he leadeth me beside the still waters.  3 He restoreth my soul:  he leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for his name’s sake.  4 Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil:  for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me.  5 Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies:  thou anointest my head with oil; my cup runneth over.  6 Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life:  and I will dwell in the house of the LORD for ever.

“No Need To Fear” Wintley Phipps
https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=359&v=eV37H4sjbok

 

(3.)  2nd Timothy 1:  7, KJV:  7 For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.

Worth” (Official Music Video) Anthony Brown and grouptherAPy
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iX59fjowutw

 

(4.)  Psalms 100:  1-5, KJV:  1 Make a joyful noise unto the Lord, all ye lands.  2 Serve the LORD with gladness:  come before his presence with singing.  3 Know ye that the LORD he is God:  it is he that hath made us, and not we ourselves; we are his people, and the sheep of his pasture.  4 Enter into his gates with thanksgiving, and into his courts with praise:  be thankful unto him, and bless his name.  5 For the LORD is good; his mercy is everlasting; and his truth endureth to all generations.

“Be Grateful”
Jennifer Hudson, John Legend, Roots at the Terminal 5 in New York City, on 23 September 2010.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Kd8LsuqzHpY

 

There is far more to be said, correctly examined, and spiritually apprehended.  Even so, I trust this fragment will be useful.  Be it unto you according to your faith.

 

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THE BLACK PHOENIX
Washington, DC

1st Peter Roaring Lion

 
Today, a special reply is shared on three divine tools GOD uses when endowing mankind to exist as the new creation.  As part of the inheritance for joint-heirs with Christ, developing believers are to be aware that there are strong prophecies and warnings that encourage maintaining readiness and vigilance in anticipation of an end to the world as we now know it.  For example:  Revelation 22:  8-13, King James Version (KJV):  8 And I John saw these things, and heard them. And when I had heard and seen, I fell down to worship before the feet of the angel which shewed me these things.  9 Then saith he unto me, See thou do it not:  for I am thy fellowservant, and of thy brethren the prophets, and of them which keep the sayings of this book: worship God.  10 And he saith unto me, Seal not the sayings of the prophecy of this book:  for the time is at hand.  11 He that is unjust, let him be unjust still:  and he which is filthy, let him be filthy still:  and he that is righteous, let him be righteous still:  and he that is holy, let him be holy still.  12 And, behold, I come quickly; and my reward is with me, to give every man according as his work shall be.  13 I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end, the first and the last.  Probably because of their inconsiderateness and irreverence, two separate questions were removed from the Yahoo! Internet sites, and neither could be answered online.  I was challenged to minister by responding to “Anonymous” at “Yahoo! 7 Answers (Australia)” who asked, “Why didn’t God protect the people in the texas church before they were shot. Doesn’t God want to show he cares about thoses who pray?” when the system would not allow response to “ElmsofTaste” at “Yahoo! Answers” (Level 1 with 2 points, a member since November 08, 2016) who had posted the following:

 

Why did the Good Lord scramble their brains on the floor of First Baptist Church?

Update: Just like 26 abortions 😥 26 more Angels

1st Baptist Victims

 

THE GOLDEN ARROW:  But I would not have you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning them which are asleep, that ye sorrow not, even as others which have no hope.  For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with him.  For this we say unto you by the word of the Lord, that we which are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent them which are asleep.  For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God:  and the dead in Christ shall rise first:  Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air:  and so shall we ever be with the Lord.  Wherefore comfort one another with these words.  (1st Thessalonians 4:  13-18, King James Version, KJV)

 

THE DOUBLE DAGGER:  Having Consciousness of Death (11/03/2017); Undergoing A Sacred Transformation (10/24/2017); Accepting Christ, Accepting Change (10/20/2017); From Dust Thou Art (09/07/2017); The Nature of Death (04/25/2017); Life Is GOD’s Intent (11/15/2016); Comfort? (09/06/2014); We Become Comforters? (07/19/2014)

 

“ElmsofTaste”, among Christian believers, bereavement, death, and suffering are to be understood and accepted as divine operations that are managed and carried out by the Holy Spirit, for they are events having sacred consequences that pertain to more than carnal, material, secular, and social situations governed by natural law.  Inseparable aspects of the spirit fullness within the makeup of GOD must be imparted, engage, exchange, interact, and be permanently changed.  Included are faith, forgiveness, holiness, lovingkindness, mercy, mortality, wisdom, and wrath against sin.  Through the divine device of death the living are led to manifest and impart otherwise hidden depths of love, respect, sacrifice, and unselfish service.

Developing believers often focus on death as the punishment for sin, and must be lifted through the Holy Spirit to attain higher levels of edification where they can correctly grasp that the provisions of their own salvation include appearing in judgment now as an ongoing aspect of our being alive on the earth before our decease; comfort and peace during testing and trials; and resurrection from the dead as well as escape and exemption from annihilation of the wicked (the second death).

In the same way, Adam was set apart, preserved and protected during the Creation of Eve using “sleep”, many members of the body of Christ (we say, the church) and those who are saints within the kingdom of GOD will complete their own mortality (die) before the Savior returns.  Their “falling asleep” before the harvest (we also say, Advent, his appearing, the Rapture, the Second Coming) will in no way alter or cancel their divine inheritance as joint-heirs with Christ.  As divine tools, death and sleep are applied to fulfill eternal purposes that include establishing and maintaining created beings and living creatures as companions to immortal, incorruptible divinity.  Thus, death may be discerned as preserving the church through times of crisis, persecution, and tribulation.  Consider the following that uses language from the Bible:

(1.)  Isaiah 57:  1-4, King James Version (KJV):  1 The righteous perisheth, and no man layeth it to heart:  and merciful men are taken away, none considering that the righteous is taken away from the evil to come.  2 He shall enter into peace:  they shall rest in their beds, each one walking in his uprightness.  3 But draw near hither, ye sons of the sorceress, the seed of the adulterer and the whore.  4 Against whom do ye sport yourselves? against whom make ye a wide mouth, and draw out the tongue? are ye not children of transgression, a seed of falsehood.

(2.)  2nd Peter 3:  8-14, KJV:  8 But, beloved, be not ignorant of this one thing, that one day is with the Lord as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day.  9 The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.  10 But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night; in the which the heavens shall pass away with a great noise, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat, the earth also and the works that are therein shall be burned up.  11 Seeing then that all these things shall be dissolved, what manner of persons ought ye to be in all holy conversation and godliness,  12 Looking for and hasting unto the coming of the day of God, wherein the heavens being on fire shall be dissolved, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat?  13 Nevertheless we, according to his promise, look for new heavens and a new earth, wherein dwelleth righteousness.  14 Wherefore, beloved, seeing that ye look for such things, be diligent that ye may be found of him in peace, without spot, and blameless.

(3.)  1st  Peter 4:  1-8, KJV:  1 Forasmuch then as Christ hath suffered for us in the flesh, arm yourselves likewise with the same mind:  for he that hath suffered in the flesh hath ceased from sin;  2 That he no longer should live the rest of his time in the flesh to the lusts of men, but to the will of God.  3 For the time past of our life may suffice us to have wrought the will of the Gentiles, when we walked in lasciviousness, lusts, excess of wine, revellings, banquetings, and abominable idolatries:  4 Wherein they think it strange that ye run not with them to the same excess of riot, speaking evil of you:  5 Who shall give account to him that is ready to judge the quick and the dead.  6 For for this cause was the gospel preached also to them that are dead, that they might be judged according to men in the flesh, but live according to God in the spirit.  7 But the end of all things is at hand:  be ye therefore sober, and watch unto prayer.  8 And above all things have fervent charity among yourselves:  for charity shall cover the multitude of sins.

There is far more to be said, correctly examined, and made a part of our own spirit makeup.  (For example, (4.)  1st Corinthians 15:  50-57, KJV:  50 Now this I say, brethren, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God; neither doth corruption inherit incorruption.  51 Behold, I shew you a mystery; We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed,  52 In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump:  for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed.  53 For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality.  54 So when this corruptible shall have put on incorruption, and this mortal shall have put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written, Death is swallowed up in victory.  55 O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory?  56 The sting of death is sin; and the strength of sin is the law.  57 But thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.)  Even so, I trust this fragment will be useful.  Be it unto you according to your faith.

 
THE BLACK PHOENIX
Washington, DC

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