Archive for the ‘Peter’ Category

Glaciers-in-Tibet-East Rongbuk

 

Today, I share an original poem I recently posted at Facebook (October 21, 2018, 9:09 PM), TO BE TOLD, BE STILL. Existing as a servant to GOD and abiding in a relationship with divinity poses many challenges to romantic love as well as to the hopes for family, home, and the stable relations of marriage. Endowed with mountain-moving faith, the Apostle Peter and others who were married made the sacrifice for many years separated from their wives while serving as evangelists and circuit preachers. It is written: Matthew 19: 23-30, King James Version (KJV): 23 Then said Jesus unto his disciples, Verily I say unto you, That a rich man shall hardly enter into the kingdom of heaven. 24 And again I say unto you, It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle, than for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of God. 25 When his disciples heard it, they were exceedingly amazed, saying, Who then can be saved? 26 But Jesus beheld them, and said unto them, With men this is impossible; but with God all things are possible. 27 Then answered Peter and said unto him, Behold, we have forsaken all, and followed thee; what shall we have therefore? 28 And Jesus said unto them, Verily I say unto you, That ye which have followed me, in the regeneration when the Son of man shall sit in the throne of his glory, ye also shall sit upon twelve thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel. 29 And every one that hath forsaken houses, or brethren, or sisters, or father, or mother, or wife, or children, or lands, for my names sake, shall receive an hundredfold, and shall inherit everlasting life. 30 But many that are first shall be last; and the last shall be first.

 

THE GOLDEN ARROW: From that time many of his disciples went back, and walked no more with him. Then said Jesus unto the twelve, Will ye also go away? Then Simon Peter answered him, Lord, to whom shall we go? thou hast the words of eternal life. And we believe and are sure that thou art that Christ, the Son of the living God. (John 6: 66-68, King James Version, KJV)

 

THE DOUBLE DAGGER: Discernment And Godly Love (06/26/2018); The Relationship As Servant (06/03/2018); The Practice of Love (07/27/2017); 1st “Poem-fall” 2017: THE SNOWFLAKE BALL (01/10/2017); Divine Jealousy? (09/11/2015); A Valentine, 2014 (02/15/2014); Family and Romance? (10/13/2012); Why Courage? (10/14/2012)

 

TO BE TOLD, BE STILL

It disturbs us to be told

be still and know

for the winter days begin

when we shall be encased in snow

and ice, all action frozen, paused

unwillingly, impotent, halted

like the sunshine process in the leaf

that turns the light to sweetness

from the root

 

Is it by stillness only fullness comes

the emptiness from all you know

dismissed, released

the days of frost rush over

hidden bulbs to bloom

in spring that may not be

how shall we bare or dare

without you

an evergreen of forest

 

can not exist alone

nor lovers without each other

embrace a new unknown

glacial abrasion, melting from

a heat of burning cold

putting aside our

youth with all its rage

succumbing to the quiet of old age

 

defiance and rebellion came

as wise, without deceit

and stealth, without fresh lies

through stolen moments

kisses fresh as dew

creating memories

that keep us new

and joined alive to life

 

what God has joined together

celebrate, receive as blessing

should deadly chill winds echo

I will never ever leave

and though we be apart

when shadows fall

in strength of what we share

I will not grieve

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©Michael Andrew Williams, 2018. All rights reserved.

 

There is far more that should be considered, 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

 

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Flesh Is Contrary

 

Today, reply centers on the acceptance and finality of prophecy, and on the warnings in Scripture against false prophets.  The disapproval, skepticism, and unbelief of created beings and living creatures have no power to annul divine utterance, or make it vain (empty; without spirit substance from the makeup of GOD).  Sacred prophecies declaring divine prerogative, eternal purposes, and the sovereign will of GOD all are certain of fulfillment, and are dismissed or ignored only at great risk.  Included are prophesies that address Advent (we say, the harvest; his appearing; the Rapture; the Resurrection; the Second Coming), the end times, the final judgment of the wicked, the second death,  the elimination of mortality and sin as well as the descent of the holy city, New Jerusalem, from heaven to the earth.  One of the fighters in the “Yahoo! Answers” Religion and Spirituality forum using the  ID “Skittles” (Level 3 with 1,292 points, a member since May 12, 2012) posted the following:

 

What does this verse mean: “Whenever it is that they are saying, “Peace and Security!” then sudden destruction is to be instantly on them.”?

1 Thessalonians 5:3

Who says this? How is religion and government involved? How will it affect us?

 

THE GOLDEN ARROW:  For we have not followed cunningly devised fables, when we made known unto you the power and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, but were eyewitnesses of his majesty.  For he received from God the Father honour and glory, when there came such a voice to him from the excellent glory, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.  And this voice which came from heaven we heard, when we were with him in the holy mount.  We have also a more sure word of prophecy; whereunto ye do well that ye take heed, as unto a light that shineth in a dark place, until the day dawn, and the day star arise in your hearts:  Knowing this first, that no prophecy of the scripture is of any private interpretation.  For the prophecy came not in old time by the will of man:  but holy men of God spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost.  (2nd Peter 1:  16-21, King James Version, KJV)

 

THE DOUBLE DAGGER:  “The End Is Near” (03/14/2018); The Coming(s) of Christ (03/11/2018); Recognizing True Christian Prophets (02/26/2018); Sharing The Correct Message (01/30/2017); Why Is Lust Condemned? (07/20/2016); World Peace Is Coming? (05/08/2016); About The End Of The World (08/30/2015)

“Skittles”, many respond to prophecy with denial.  (For example, when Jesus prophesied that he would be crucified, the Apostle Peter insisted on voicing his own desire (it would not be so), and was severely rebuked by Jesus.)  Given the operations of the flesh will resist prophecy, the sacred wisdom developing Christian believers receive through the holy writings include multiple admonitions, advice, alerts, counsels, declarations of divine law, guidance, instruction, divine proclamations, warnings, and prophecies that provide comfort, edification, and exhortation.  Believers must practice discernment whereby they use their own spirit endowment from GOD as a standard to recognize, respond to, and connect with the same spirit content as it appears within events, exchanges, other people, relationships, the Scriptures, etc.  Often, legitimate messages announcing the will of divinity are despised, dismissed, and rejected because they do not agree with popular opinions, carnal reason, or material and social dictates.  Disbelievers, skeptics, and those bearing malice will contradict, distort, and oppose divine truth by offering alternative ideas and “what they want to hear” that are properly labeled and understood as “false prophecy,” even though they may contain useful information from such areas as philosophy, politics, science, and technology.  Consider again the following points that use language from the Bible:

(1.)  Jeremiah 23:  14-17, King James Version (KJV):  14 I have seen also in the prophets of Jerusalem an horrible thing:  they commit adultery, and walk in lies:  they strengthen also the hands of evildoers, that none doth return from his wickedness; they are all of them unto me as Sodom, and the inhabitants thereof as Gomorrah.  15 Therefore thus saith the LORD of hosts concerning the prophets; Behold, I will feed them with wormwood, and make them drink the water of gall:  for from the prophets of Jerusalem is profaneness gone forth into all the land.  16 Thus saith the LORD of hosts, Hearken not unto the words of the prophets that prophesy unto you:  they make you vain:  they speak a vision of their own heart, and not out of the mouth of the LORD.  17 They say still unto them that despise me, The LORD hath said, Ye shall have peace; and they say unto every one that walketh after the imagination of his own heart, No evil shall come upon you.

(2.)  Ezekiel 13:  1-3, KJV:  1 And the word of the LORD came unto me, saying,  2 Son of man, prophesy against the prophets of Israel that prophesy, and say thou unto them that prophesy out of their own hearts, Hear ye the word of the LORD;  3 Thus saith the Lord GOD; Woe unto the foolish prophets, that follow their own spirit, and have seen nothing!

(3.)  Ezekiel 13:  10-14, KJV:  10 Because, even because they have seduced my people, saying, Peace; and there was no peace; and one built up a wall, and, lo, others daubed it with untempered mortar:  11 Say unto them which daub it with untempered mortar, that it shall fall:  there shall be an overflowing shower; and ye, O great hailstones, shall fall; and a stormy wind shall rend it.  12 Lo, when the wall is fallen, shall it not be said unto you, Where is the daubing wherewith ye have daubed it?  13 Therefore thus saith the Lord GOD; I will even rend it with a stormy wind in my fury; and there shall be an overflowing shower in mine anger, and great hailstones in my fury to consume it.  14 So will I break down the wall that ye have daubed with untempered mortar, and bring it down to the ground, so that the foundation thereof shall be discovered, and it shall fall, and ye shall be consumed in the midst thereof:  and ye shall know that I am the LORD.

There is far more that should be said, correctly examined, and spiritually apprehended.  (For example, (4.)  Isaiah 30:  8-15, KJV:  8 Now go, write it before them in a table, and note it in a book, that it may be for the time to come for ever and ever:  9 That this is a rebellious people, lying children, children that will not hear the law of the LORD:  10 Which say to the seers, See not; and to the prophets, Prophesy not unto us right things, speak unto us smooth things, prophesy deceits:  11 Get you out of the way, turn aside out of the path, cause the Holy One of Israel to cease from before us.  12 Wherefore thus saith the Holy One of Israel, Because ye despise this word, and trust in oppression and perverseness, and stay thereon:  13 Therefore this iniquity shall be to you as a breach ready to fall, swelling out in a high wall, whose breaking cometh suddenly at an instant.  14 And he shall break it as the breaking of the potters’ vessel that is broken in pieces; he shall not spare:  so that there shall not be found in the bursting of it a sherd to take fire from the hearth, or to take water withal out of the pit.  15 For thus saith the Lord GOD, the Holy One of Israel; In returning and rest shall ye be saved; in quietness and in confidence shall be your strength:  and ye would not.)  Even so, I trust this fragment will be useful.  Be it unto you according to your faith.


THE BLACK PHOENIX
Washington, DC

cornelius-peter-household

The painting depicts how the Holy Spirit began to fall before Peter was able to complete his introduction to the sermon.

 

Today, reply is on the falling of the Holy Spirit upon the household of Cornelius, a Gentile who was a retired Roman Centurion.  The figure of Cornelius and the community gathered around him compares to those of Abraham, the Friend of GOD, and David, the warrior king who wanted to build a permanent house (temple) for GOD.  The falling of the Holy Spirit that brought them into covenant with GOD through Jesus Christ, established them as a habitation of GOD through the Spirit, and his new creation.  Cornelius and all assembled received a “circumcision of the heart.”  The fighter in the “Yahoo! Answers” forum using the ID “GRANNY NORINE” (Level 1 with 234 points, a member since May 16, 2014) posted the following in the Religion and Spirituality section:

 

Why do you ALL continue to IGNORE Peter “FORGOT” (Acts 11:15-16) what Jesus said in Acts 1:5 that “fulfilled” water baptism?

 

THE GOLDEN ARROW:  The word which God sent unto the children of Israel, preaching peace by Jesus Christ:  (he is Lord of all:)  That word, I say, ye know, which was published throughout all Judaea, and began from Galilee, after the baptism which John preached;  How God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Ghost and with power:  who went about doing good, and healing all that were oppressed of the devil; for God was with him.  And we are witnesses of all things which he did both in the land of the Jews, and in Jerusalem; whom they slew and hanged on a tree:  Him God raised up the third day, and shewed him openly;  Not to all the people, but unto witnesses chosen before God, even to us, who did eat and drink with him after he rose from the dead.  And he commanded us to preach unto the people, and to testify that it is he which was ordained of God to be the Judge of quick and dead.  To him give all the prophets witness, that through his name whosoever believeth in him shall receive remission of sins.  While Peter yet spake these words, the Holy Ghost fell on all them which heard the word.  And they of the circumcision which believed were astonished, as many as came with Peter, because that on the Gentiles also was poured out the gift of the Holy Ghost.  For they heard them speak with tongues, and magnify God. Then answered Peter,  Can any man forbid water, that these should not be baptized, which have received the Holy Ghost as well as we?  And he commanded them to be baptized in the name of the Lord. Then prayed they him to tarry certain days.  (Acts 10:  36-48, King James Version, KJV)

 

THE DOUBLE DAGGER:  The Gift(s) From GOD (04/08/2018); Salvation By Good Works? (03/08/2018); The Law and The Prophets (03/07/2018); What Is A Spirit? (03/06/2018); Choosing to be Reborn (01/29/2018); The Water, The Fire (10/10/2017); Receiving The Holy Spirit (12/08/2016); Cornelius, and Prayer By Sinners? (03/09/2015)

 

“GRANNY NORINE”, here are some points you might find useful as you continue to consider the falling of the Holy Spirit in the home of a retired Roman soldier:

1.  The work of an apostle is to provide eyewitness report (we say, testimony in judgment) that Jesus has been raised from the dead, and to authenticate genuine manifestations of the Holy Spirit (we also say, the Comforter; the Holy Ghost; the Spirit of Prophecy; the Spirit of Truth).

2.  Following the appearance of an angel in his home, Cornelius summoned Peter to minister, for the first time, in the home of a Gentile.  However, along with Jewish customs, law, and tradition, Peter had to overcome his own attitudes of bias, ethnic arrogance, fear, exaggerated pride, racism, and suspicion that made him hesitate before he could acknowledge Cornelius, who was well-known for almsgiving and enthusiastic support of Jewish belief.

3.  The falling of the Holy Spirit in the home of Cornelius was the same as that in the Upper Room on the day of Pentecost.

4.  In the same way, Peter preached repentance and baptism to the crowd that assembled at Pentecost having questions, and as many as 3,000 were added to the church through water baptism, all the members of Cornelius’ household who experienced the falling of the Spirit also received water baptism.

5. Receiving divine gifts by the falling of the Holy Spirit does not cancel, or take the place of water baptism and the requirement for living in repentance. 

6.  Those in the Upper Room all received baptism before the cloven tongues of fire, yet, in the home of Cornelius, all received cloven tongues of fire before they received water baptism.

There is far more that should be said, correctly examined, and spiritually apprehended.  (For example, 7.  Peter and the others trained by Jesus could not impart the Holy Spirit from themselves to others through the operations of their own self-will (willpower).  The Holy Spirit shares in the authority, personhood, and sovereignty of divine fullness (we say, the GODhead; the Trinity; the Father, the Son, the Holy Spirit), and himself bestows and distributes his consecrated gifts.)  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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Peter Sword

The image depicts the hand of Jesus restraining the hand of Peter.

 

Today, reply is on the acknowledgement of covenant and law by Jesus Christ, and his surrender to the mob sent to arrest him at Gethsemane.  Jesus was among those within the Garden as an Incarnation of divinity to fulfill the promises and prophesies of GOD, a priest, a prophet, a rabbi, and the “ram caught in the thicket.”  Rather than resist the arrest, fight against the force that was dispatched, or take flight, Jesus acknowledged that his role was to submit as a lamb that would be placed on the altar of sacrifice.  When Peter attacked using a sword, Jesus rebuked him, and healed the servant of the High Priest whose ear Peter had cut off.  The fighter in the “Yahoo! Answers” forum who uses the ID “?” (Level 6 with 14,244 points, a member since April 16, 2017) posted the following:

 

If someone told Jesus what was going to happen to him, and gave him a gun, would he have tried to escape?

 

THE GOLDEN ARROW:  For every high priest taken from among men is ordained for men in things pertaining to God, that he may offer both gifts and sacrifices for sins:  Who can have compassion on the ignorant, and on them that are out of the way; for that he himself also is compassed with infirmity.  And by reason hereof he ought, as for the people, so also for himself, to offer for sins.  And no man taketh this honour unto himself, but he that is called of God, as was Aaron.  So also Christ glorified not himself to be made an high priest; but he that said unto him, Thou art my Son, to day have I begotten thee.  As he saith also in another place, Thou art a priest for ever after the order of Melchisedec.  Who in the days of his flesh, when he had offered up prayers and supplications with strong crying and tears unto him that was able to save him from death, and was heard in that he feared;  Though he were a Son, yet learned he obedience by the things which he suffered;  And being made perfect, he became the author of eternal salvation unto all them that obey him;  Called of God an high priest after the order of Melchisedec.  (Hebrews 5:  1-10, King James Version, KJV)

 

THE DOUBLE DAGGER:  Yes, Jesus Did Die (04/01/2018); His Suffering At Gethsemane (03/12/2018); Jesus Demonstrated Perfected Humanity (10/29/2017); The Cross was Premature? (04/07/2016); Animals Do Not Sin? (09/29/2013); GOD is Acknowledging (09/30/2013); The Passion at Gethsemane (03/28/2013); Separated and Sealed? (03/29/2013)

 

“?”, Christian believers are to understand Jesus correctly knew that he himself was a child of prophecy, and that he was anointed and ordained to complete the events of his life that included his death, burial, and resurrection from the dead.  Through the holy writings, through the events surrounding his birth (e.g., the slaughter of the innocents by King Herod; the Temple prophets Anna and Simeon), through the challenge made by Satan following his water baptism (turn this stone into bread), through the confirmations he received through prayer, and through many other sacred events that served as signs, he was strengthened to continue his ministry on the earth as one having authentic humanity, as one sent from GOD, and as one who would suffer the same fate as many others who served as divine prophets and spokespersons.

The revelation of GOD granted to Moses was that the Creator and Deliverer is also a GOD of Judgment.  Moses was allowed to see his glory, and Jesus Christ came as the image of GOD to further display the forgiveness, the mercy, the obedience, the reconciliation, the righteousness, and the surrender that pertain to divine judgment.  Consider again the following that uses language from the Bible:

(1.)  Matthew 23:  29-39, King James Version (KJV):  29 Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! because ye build the tombs of the prophets, and garnish the sepulchres of the righteous,  30 And say, If we had been in the days of our fathers, we would not have been partakers with them in the blood of the prophets.  31 Wherefore ye be witnesses unto yourselves, that ye are the children of them which killed the prophets.  32 Fill ye up then the measure of your fathers.  33 Ye serpents, ye generation of vipers, how can ye escape the damnation of hell?  34 Wherefore, behold, I send unto you prophets, and wise men, and scribes:  and some of them ye shall kill and crucify; and some of them shall ye scourge in your synagogues, and persecute them from city to city:  35 That upon you may come all the righteous blood shed upon the earth, from the blood of righteous Abel unto the blood of Zacharias son of Barachias, whom ye slew between the temple and the altar.  36 Verily I say unto you, All these things shall come upon this generation.  37 O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, thou that killest the prophets, and stonest them which are sent unto thee, how often would I have gathered thy children together, even as a hen gathereth her chickens under her wings, and ye would not!  38 Behold, your house is left unto you desolate.  39 For I say unto you, Ye shall not see me henceforth, till ye shall say, Blessed is he that cometh in the name of the Lord.

(2.)  John 18:  3- 13, KJV:  3 Judas then, having received a band of men and officers from the chief priests and Pharisees, cometh thither with lanterns and torches and weapons.  4 Jesus therefore, knowing all things that should come upon him, went forth, and said unto them, Whom seek ye?  5 They answered him, Jesus of Nazareth. Jesus saith unto them, I am he. And Judas also, which betrayed him, stood with them.  6 As soon then as he had said unto them, I am he, they went backward, and fell to the ground.  7 Then asked he them again, Whom seek ye? And they said, Jesus of Nazareth.  8 Jesus answered, I have told you that I am he:  if therefore ye seek me, let these go their way:  9 That the saying might be fulfilled, which he spake, Of them which thou gavest me have I lost none.  10 Then Simon Peter having a sword drew it, and smote the high priest’s servant, and cut off his right ear. The servant’s name was Malchus.  11 Then said Jesus unto Peter, Put up thy sword into the sheath:  the cup which my Father hath given me, shall I not drink it?  12 Then the band and the captain and officers of the Jews took Jesus, and bound him,  13 And led him away to Annas first; for he was father in law to Caiaphas, which was the high priest that same year.

(3.)  Matthew 16:  21-28, KJV:  21 From that time forth began Jesus to shew unto his disciples, how that he must go unto Jerusalem, and suffer many things of the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be killed, and be raised again the third day.  22 Then Peter took him, and began to rebuke him, saying, Be it far from thee, Lord:  this shall not be unto thee.  23 But he turned, and said unto Peter, Get thee behind me, Satan: thou art an offence unto me:  for thou savourest not the things that be of God, but those that be of men.  24 Then said Jesus unto his disciples, If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me.  25 For whosoever will save his life shall lose it:  and whosoever will lose his life for my sake shall find it.  26 For what is a man profited, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul? or what shall a man give in exchange for his soul?  27 For the Son of man shall come in the glory of his Father with his angels; and then he shall reward every man according to his works.  28 Verily I say unto you, There be some standing here, which shall not taste of death, till they see the Son of man coming in his kingdom.

There is far more that should be said, correctly examined, and spiritually apprehended.  (For example, (4.)  Matthew 26:  52-54, KJV:  52 Then said Jesus unto him, Put up again thy sword into his place:  for all they that take the sword shall perish with the sword.  53 Thinkest thou that I cannot now pray to my Father, and he shall presently give me more than twelve legions of angels?  54 But how then shall the scriptures be fulfilled, that thus it must be?)  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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Jerusalem Visit by Paul the Apostle
A depiction of James, the brother of Jesus, and the Elders in Jerusalem meeting with the Apostles Paul and Peter

 

Today, reply is made on James, Paul, Peter and Matthias; authority; and succession within the early church.  The criteria for being acknowledged as an apostle was more than simply having been in association with Jesus from the beginning of his ministry to his dying on the cross.  The apostles all were chosen and installed to testify and witness to the resurrection of Jesus, to authentic the falling of the Holy Ghost, and to certify the genuine manifestation of sacred gifts.  Jesus did not bestow on his disciples dominance and power to demand the obedience of others so much as he provided a fresh endowment of spirit substance from the makeup of divinity along with the consciousness and willpower to serve others while practicing self-government.  The leadership within the body would be acknowledged and recognized on the basis of such features as their humility, industry, meekness, and unselfishness.  One of the fighters in the “Yahoo! Answers” forum who uses the ID “Anonymous” (no profile data shared) posted the following:

 

Did the Early Church operate under valid central authority?

 

THE GOLDEN ARROW:  Wherefore I give you to understand, that no man speaking by the Spirit of God calleth Jesus accursed:  and that no man can say that Jesus is the Lord, but by the Holy Ghost.  Now there are diversities of gifts, but the same Spirit.  And there are differences of administrations, but the same Lord.  And there are diversities of operations, but it is the same God which worketh all in all.  But the manifestation of the Spirit is given to every man to profit withal.  For to one is given by the Spirit the word of wisdom; to another the word of knowledge by the same Spirit;  To another faith by the same Spirit; to another the gifts of healing by the same Spirit;  To another the working of miracles; to another prophecy; to another discerning of spirits; to another divers kinds of tongues; to another the interpretation of tongues:  But all these worketh that one and the selfsame Spirit, dividing to every man severally as he will.  For as the body is one, and hath many members, and all the members of that one body, being many, are one body:  so also is Christ.  For by one Spirit are we all baptized into one body, whether we be Jews or Gentiles, whether we be bond or free; and have been all made to drink into one Spirit.  (1st Corinthians 12:  3-13, King James Version, KJV)

 

THE DOUBLE DAGGER:  Flesh As Divine Vessels? (01/14/2018); Meanings for “Apostolic Church” (05/08/2017); A True Apostle? (09/20/2015); How Many Apostles? (04/30/2014); The Ruler Of the Earth? (05/01/2014); Succession (02/05/2014); On Youth Doing Enough (02/06/2014)

 

“Anonymous”, the Holy Spirit (we also say, the Comforter, the Holy Ghost, the Spirit of Prophecy, the Spirit of Truth) was present as the spokesperson for Jesus Christ in the early church.  Responses that rely on secular knowledge will present the church as an ordinary institution, and a formally structured social organization.  Reponses that rely on sacred knowledge shared among Christian believers will describe the church as a body, or a fellowship having many distinct members with Jesus Christ as its head.  In that view, the church is most correctly portrayed as active, alive, diverse, developing, organic, and personal.

When the continued existence of the church became threatened by persecution, the believers that came to number in thousands were scattered; however, they also began to evangelize, go out, and spread the gospel in ways that otherwise would not have occurred.  It was then that James, the brother of Jesus, and others who remained in Jerusalem began to be recognized as a legitimate body to give counsel on issues of doctrine and practice, to address the challenges of embracing both Gentiles and Jews, and to resolve recurring conflicts.

While the Book of Acts reports that Peter preached a sermon on the day of Pentecost after the Holy Spirit had fallen upon the 120 men and women in the upper Room, who had fasted and prayed together awaiting the promise, Peter was not acknowledged at that time as the “successor” to Jesus, or as the chief spokesperson.  The early work among these believers included nominating candidates to fill both the office of apostle, and of bishop (elder) that had been vacated by Judas Iscariot.

A device used among the Hebrews from ancient times was employed to select the new apostle from the two proposed candidates.  The casting of lots was used with the understanding that the will of GOD would be indicated by its outcome.  This technique was akin to that used for judgment by the High Priest in the tabernacle and in the temple that involved his consecrated garments and full regalia, the breastplate, ephod, urim and thummim (also called, Lights and Perfections).  At Pentecost, the early church received multiple gifts to nourish and expand the community of faith that would establish the will of GOD in a similar way:  the word of wisdom, the word of knowledge, faith, prophecy, the working of miracles, and discerning of spirits (there were no gifts of reading minds, or predicting the future).  Consider the following that uses language from the Bible:

(1.)  Numbers 27:  20-23, King James Version (KJV):  20 And thou shalt put some of thine honour upon him, that all the congregation of the children of Israel may be obedient.  21 And he shall stand before Eleazar the priest, who shall ask counsel for him after the judgment of Urim before the LORD:  at his word shall they go out, and at his word they shall come in, both he, and all the children of Israel with him, even all the congregation.  22 And Moses did as the LORD commanded him:  and he took Joshua, and set him before Eleazar the priest, and before all the congregation:  23 And he laid his hands upon him, and gave him a charge, as the LORD commanded by the hand of Moses.

(2.)  Acts 1:  13-16, KJV:  13 And when they were come in, they went up into an upper room, where abode both Peter, and James, and John, and Andrew, Philip, and Thomas, Bartholomew, and Matthew, James the son of Alphaeus, and Simon Zelotes, and Judas the brother of James.  14 These all continued with one accord in prayer and supplication, with the women, and Mary the mother of Jesus, and with his brethren.  15 And in those days Peter stood up in the midst of the disciples, and said, (the number of names together were about an hundred and twenty,)  16 Men and brethren, this scripture must needs have been fulfilled, which the Holy Ghost by the mouth of David spake before concerning Judas, which was guide to them that took Jesus.

(3.)  Acts 1:  22-26, KJV:  22 Beginning from the baptism of John, unto that same day that he was taken up from us, must one be ordained to be a witness with us of his resurrection.  23 And they appointed two, Joseph called Barsabas, who was surnamed Justus, and Matthias.  24 And they prayed, and said, Thou, Lord, which knowest the hearts of all men, shew whether of these two thou hast chosen,  25 That he may take part of this ministry and apostleship, from which Judas by transgression fell, that he might go to his own place.  26 And they gave forth their lots; and the lot fell upon Matthias; and he was numbered with the eleven apostles.

There is far more to be said, correctly examined, and spiritually apprehended.  (For example, (4.)  Acts 15:  12-20, KJV:  12 Then all the multitude kept silence, and gave audience to Barnabas and Paul, declaring what miracles and wonders God had wrought among the Gentiles by them.  13 And after they had held their peace, James answered, saying, Men and brethren, hearken unto me:  14 Simeon hath declared how God at the first did visit the Gentiles, to take out of them a people for his name.  15 And to this agree the words of the prophets; as it is written,  16 After this I will return, and will build again the tabernacle of David, which is fallen down; and I will build again the ruins thereof, and I will set it up:  17 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.  18 Known unto God are all his works from the beginning of the world.  19 Wherefore my sentence is, that we trouble not them, which from among the Gentiles are turned to God:  20 But that we write unto them, that they abstain from pollutions of idols, and from fornication, and from things strangled, and from blood.)  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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Fall of the Spirit

THE FALL OF THE HOLY SPIRIT ON THE HOUSEHOLD OF CORNELIUS

 

Today, reply is on whether water baptism and the falling of the Holy Spirit both are needed for a sinner to be saved.  Water baptism, preaching the Gospel, repentance, and other “good works” serve as visible actions and events that  crystallize and focus the operations of spirit content from the makeup of GOD that must reside within a new believer.  As vessels of divine spirit content, developing believers should demonstrate and display sacred knowledge, divine inheritance, eternal purposes, and personal relationship as joint-heirs with Jesus Christ and the sons and daughters of the Creator.  The fighter at “Yahoo! Answers” using the ID “GRANNY NORINE” (Level 1 with 56 points, a member since May 16, 2014) posted the following:

 

Why Did “The Holy Spirit [Just] Fell On Them As Peter Began To Speak” (Acts 11:15-16) IF Water Baptism SAVES?

 

THE GOLDEN ARROW:  For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves:  it is the gift of God:  Not of works, lest any man should boast.  For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them.  (Ephesians 2:  8-10, King James Version, KJV)

 

THE DOUBLE DAGGER:  Sacred Baptism, Divine Resurrection? (09/14/2017); Holy Fire From GOD? (04/27/2017); Receiving The Holy Spirit (12/08/2016); Cornelius, and Prayer By Sinners? (03/09/2015); The Fire From GOD? (06/22/2014); Origin of Baptism? (06/22/2013); Money-changers in The Temple? (06/23/2013)

 

“GRANNY NORINE,” despite that their properties seem to make them opposites, emblems of both fire and water are used to convey understanding of our salvation.  The present salvation is conditional and temporal (i.e., it will last only so long as certain criteria are correctly met), and requires the further fulfillment of multiple promises, prophecies, and sacred operations.  Included are resurrection of the dead, Advent (we also say, his appearing, the harvest, the Rapture, the Second Coming), the completion of mortality among the living, the conclusion of final judgment, and the total elimination of death and sin using the Lake of Fire.

Simply “believing” can be discerned as an emotional and intellectual act that of itself has no saving power, and is vain (i.e., lacks the inseparable spirit content imparted from the makeup of divinity such as faith, holiness, longsuffering, wrath against sin).  Thus, separated from the full doctrine and sacred context for meaning and value, there is continuing error when reading the Scriptures to say that baptism and believing are enough to establish a sinner in new life.  Within the context of sacred doctrine through Jesus Christ, “believing” has been given a new definition, and we must be careful to “rightly divide” (i.e., correctly acknowledge its new expression and focus).

Questions about the correct order and sequence for receiving water baptism, gifts for ministry of the Gospel, and the endowments of the Holy Spirit that permanently are to indwell the believer have continued since the days of the early church.  Where baptism may be understood as a ceremony for spiritual cleansing and renewal, it is yet an act of choice and human will.  The appearing and works by the Holy Spirit should be acknowledged as entirely on the basis of sovereign will, and determinations that result through divine process.  Thus, before anyone was baptized, and just as the apostle who had been summoned began to preach his sermon, Cornelius, a non-Jew, with his family, friends, and entire household were baptized with fire.  The attendance of Peter in the home of Cornelius was not to bring or deliver the Spirit to his household so much as to witness and authenticate their experience was the same as what occurred on Pentecost.

Salvation is not a “one-time” event, and must unfold for a believer through revelation that includes discovery, gradual growth, learning, maturing, and undergoing permanent change.  Baptism also signals a joint work of flesh and divinity wherein a sinner’s inborn spirit undergoes death, burial, and resurrection as a seed and offspring of GOD.  Consider again the following:

(1.)  Romans 6:  3-7, King James Version (KJV):  3 Know ye not, that so many of us as were baptized into Jesus Christ were baptized into his death?  4 Therefore we are buried with him by baptism into death:  that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life.  5 For if we have been planted together in the likeness of his death, we shall be also in the likeness of his resurrection:  6 Knowing this, that our old man is crucified with him, that the body of sin might be destroyed, that henceforth we should not serve sin.  7 For he that is dead is freed from sin.

(2.)  John 1:  10-14, KJV:  10 He was in the world, and the world was made by him, and the world knew him not.  11 He came unto his own, and his own received him not.  12 But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name:  13 Which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God.  14 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.

(3.)  1st Timothy 2:  13-15, KJV:  13 For Adam was first formed, then Eve.  14 And Adam was not deceived, but the woman being deceived was in the transgression.  15 Notwithstanding she shall be saved in childbearing, if they continue in faith and charity and holiness with sobriety.

(4.)  Mark 16:  14-17, KJV:  14 Afterward he appeared unto the eleven as they sat at meat, and upbraided them with their unbelief and hardness of heart, because they believed not them which had seen him after he was risen.  15 And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature.  16 He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned.  17 And these signs shall follow them that believe; In my name shall they cast out devils; they shall speak with new tongues;

There is far more to be said, correctly examined, and spiritually apprehended.  (For example, (5.)  Acts 19:  1-7, KJV:  1 And it came to pass, that, while Apollos was at Corinth, Paul having passed through the upper coasts came to Ephesus: and finding certain disciples,  2 He said unto them, Have ye received the Holy Ghost since ye believed? And they said unto him, We have not so much as heard whether there be any Holy Ghost.  3 And he said unto them, Unto what then were ye baptized? And they said, Unto John’s baptism.  4 Then said Paul, John verily baptized with the baptism of repentance, saying unto the people, that they should believe on him which should come after him, that is, on Christ Jesus.  5 When they heard this, they were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus.  6 And when Paul had laid his hands upon them, the Holy Ghost came on them; and they spake with tongues, and prophesied.  7 And all the men were about twelve.)  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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Today, Scriptures are shared on receiving the Holy Spirit.  Recognizing and responding to the active presence and operations of the Holy Spirit are to be accomplished through spiritual discernment and faith, rather than by intellect, logic, and sensation (e.g., hearing, seeing, touching).  While most Christian congregations teach regarding the fall (i.e., sudden appearance) of the Holy Spirit on Pentecost upon the apostles and disciples who had prepared themselves by obeying the command to tarry, and continued fasting and praying together in the upper room in Jerusalem, many do not also proclaim the similar spiritual events occurring in the home of Cornelius, a retired Roman soldier.  Where a confession, creeds, or a statement of belief is used to instruct new members in place of the Scriptures, many important points on receiving the Holy Spirit and the right hand of fellowship are often overlooked.  One of the fighters at “Yahoo! Answers” using the ID “Anonymous” (no profile information shared) posted the following:

 

How to receive Holy Ghost?

Do you believe that lay on of hands for the gift of the Holy Ghost?

We believe that the first principles and ordinances of the Gospel are: first, Faith in the Lord Jesus Christ; second, Repentance; third, Baptism by immersion for the remission of sins; fourth, Laying on of hands for the gift of the Holy Ghost.( The Articles of Faith of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints)

And he called them by name, saying: Ye shall call on the Father in my name, in mighty prayer; and after ye have done this ye shall have power that to him upon whom ye shall lay your hands, ye shall give the Holy Ghost; and in my name shall ye give it, for thus do mine apostles.( The book of Mormon/ The Book of Moroni2:2)
But the Bible does not say that
In whom ye also trusted, after that ye heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation: in whom also after that ye believed, ye were sealed with that holy Spirit of promise (Ephesians1:13)

If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children: how much more shall your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to them that ask him? (Luke11:13)

 

THE GOLDEN ARROW:  He came unto his own, and his own received him not.  But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name:  Which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God.  (John 1:  11-14, King James Version, KJV)

 

THE DOUBLE DAGGER:  Diversity and Prophetic Gifts (11/22/2016); Sacred Events and Subtlety? (11/21/2016); Works of the Spirit? (11/04/2016); GOD Within Christian Believers (07/31/2016); A True Apostle? (09/20/2015); Endowed With Spirit? (05/08/2015); Cornelius, and Prayer By Sinners? (03/09/2015)

 

“Anonymous”, many continue to pursue quarrels about the form of baptism (e.g., fire, immersion, running water, sprinkling, standing water, with/without physical contact), the order for receiving the Spirit (before or after water baptism), and ways to invoke or make the Holy Spirit appear.  The presence of the apostles in the early church was to bear witness to the resurrection of Jesus Christ, and to authenticate the genuine appearance of the Holy Spirit.  For your full “sacred knowledge” concerning the order of baptism and receiving the Holy Spirit (also called the Comforter, the Holy Ghost, the Spirit of Prophecy, the Spirit of Truth), also be aware of the following from the holy writings:

(1.)  2nd Peter 1:  16-21, King James Version (KJV):  16 For we have not followed cunningly devised fables, when we made known unto you the power and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, but were eyewitnesses of his majesty.  17 For he received from God the Father honour and glory, when there came such a voice to him from the excellent glory, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.  18 And this voice which came from heaven we heard, when we were with him in the holy mount.  19 We have also a more sure word of prophecy; whereunto ye do well that ye take heed, as unto a light that shineth in a dark place, until the day dawn, and the day star arise in your hearts:  20 Knowing this first, that no prophecy of the scripture is of any private interpretation.  21 For the prophecy came not in old time by the will of man:  but holy men of God spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost.

(2.)  Ezekiel 36:  25-27, KJV:  25 Then will I sprinkle clean water upon you, and ye shall be clean:  from all your filthiness, and from all your idols, will I cleanse you.  26 A new heart also will I give you, and a new spirit will I put within you:  and I will take away the stony heart out of your flesh, and I will give you an heart of flesh.  27 And I will put my spirit within you, and cause you to walk in my statutes, and ye shall keep my judgments, and do them.

(3.)  Acts 10:  40-48, KJV:  40 Him God raised up the third day, and shewed him openly;  41 Not to all the people, but unto witnesses chosen before God, even to us, who did eat and drink with him after he rose from the dead.  42 And he commanded us to preach unto the people, and to testify that it is he which was ordained of God to be the Judge of quick and dead.  43 To him give all the prophets witness, that through his name whosoever believeth in him shall receive remission of sins.  44 While Peter yet spake these words, the Holy Ghost fell on all them which heard the word.  45 And they of the circumcision which believed were astonished, as many as came with Peter, because that on the Gentiles also was poured out the gift of the Holy Ghost.  46 For they heard them speak with tongues, and magnify God. Then answered Peter,  47 Can any man forbid water, that these should not be baptized, which have received the Holy Ghost as well as we?  48 And he commanded them to be baptized in the name of the Lord.

(4.)  Acts 19:  1-7, KJV:  1 And it came to pass, that, while Apollos was at Corinth, Paul having passed through the upper coasts came to Ephesus:  and finding certain disciples,  2 He said unto them, Have ye received the Holy Ghost since ye believed? And they said unto him, We have not so much as heard whether there be any Holy Ghost.  3 And he said unto them, Unto what then were ye baptized? And they said, Unto John’s baptism.  4 Then said Paul, John verily baptized with the baptism of repentance, saying unto the people, that they should believe on him which should come after him, that is, on Christ Jesus.  5 When they heard this, they were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus.  6 And when Paul had laid his hands upon them, the Holy Ghost came on them; and they spake with tongues, and prophesied.  7 And all the men were about twelve.

(5.)  Acts 8:  14-24, KJV:  14 Now when the apostles which were at Jerusalem heard that Samaria had received the word of God, they sent unto them Peter and John:  15 Who, when they were come down, prayed for them, that they might receive the Holy Ghost:  16 (For as yet he was fallen upon none of them:  only they were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus.)  17 Then laid they their hands on them, and they received the Holy Ghost.  18 And when Simon saw that through laying on of the apostles’ hands the Holy Ghost was given, he offered them money,  19 Saying, Give me also this power, that on whomsoever I lay hands, he may receive the Holy Ghost.  20 But Peter said unto him, Thy money perish with thee, because thou hast thought that the gift of God may be purchased with money.  21 Thou hast neither part nor lot in this matter:  for thy heart is not right in the sight of God.  22 Repent therefore of this thy wickedness, and pray God, if perhaps the thought of thine heart may be forgiven thee.  23 For I perceive that thou art in the gall of bitterness, and in the bond of iniquity.  24 Then answered Simon, and said, Pray ye to the Lord for me, that none of these things which ye have spoken come upon me.

There is far more to be said, correctly applied, and spiritually apprehended.  (For example, (6.)  Acts 4:  29-33, KJV:  29 And now, Lord, behold their threatenings:  and grant unto thy servants, that with all boldness they may speak thy word,  30 By stretching forth thine hand to heal; and that signs and wonders may be done by the name of thy holy child Jesus.  31 And when they had prayed, the place was shaken where they were assembled together; and they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and they spake the word of God with boldness.  32 And the multitude of them that believed were of one heart and of one soul:  neither said any of them that ought of the things which he possessed was his own; but they had all things common.  33 And with great power gave the apostles witness of the resurrection of the Lord Jesus:  and great grace was upon them all.)  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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