Archive for the ‘Public Forums’ Category

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Today, reply is on sharing personal testimonies acceptable in public forums during gatherings of the church.  The great hunger answered by the church is that her members experience the active presence who is divinity, clearly hear the voice of GOD, and apprehend the multiple expressions from his sacred heart and mind.  In the church, only those displaying the inseparable aspects of spirit content from the makeup of GOD (we say, the Comforter, the Holy Spirit, the Holy Ghost, the Spirit of Prophecy, the Spirit of Truth) should be received, heard, obeyed, and respected as reliable sources of sacred knowledge and divine revelation.  When disputes arise within the community of faith, answers and responses should be made on the basis of doctrine, divine law, outcomes from deliberation by clergy and other leadership as well as from statements of confession, creed and policy that describe the shared commitment that should be seen among the believers.  Personal accounts, anecdotes, and eyewitness reports can be useful when clarifying needs for change, individual growth, and transformation; however, such finite tools can not replace rebirth, practice of the sacraments, preaching the Gospel, and regular study of the Scriptures.  The imparted, indwelling Spirit is, himself, the verdict (divine “sentence”), the “concluding statement,” and the officer (we say, executioner) charged to carry out all remaining tasks in the divine judgment focused on the proclamations and promises by the GODhead assuring eternal life (we say, the Testimony from Jesus).  One of the fighters at “Yahoo! Answers” who uses the ID “Anonymous” (no profile information appears) posted the following:

 

Why Mormon lesbian girl was interrupted in testimony in the Mormon church , why?

If the “god” of the Mormon church has ever allowed this kind of situation common among Mormons (practice of homosexuality without being expelled from the organization), why are Mormon leaders ashamed of an authentic and true testimony of a Mormon girl practicing This now? ….

what’s the problem? It is more proof of contradiction that lies in this organization!

 

THE GOLDEN ARROW:  And he saith unto me, Write, Blessed are they which are called unto the marriage supper of the Lamb. And he saith unto me, These are the true sayings of God.  And I fell at his feet to worship him. And he said unto me, See thou do it not:  I am thy fellowservant, and of thy brethren that have the testimony of Jesus:  worship God:  for the testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy.  (Revelation 19:  9-10, King James Version, KJV)

 

THE DOUBLE DAGGER:  Conforming to Divine Standards (06/18/2017); Divinity Must Be Proclaimed? (05/09/2017); The Testimony From Jesus (08/05/2016); Without Preaching The Cross? (02/21/2016); Denying Oneself (05/17/2014); From Such Turn Away (05/18/2014); Not A Matter Of Opinion? (04/24/2014); What Faith Makes Possible (04/25/2014)

 

“Anonymous”, men, women, and children all wrestle with conflicting desires and emotions that, as believers, we must suppress to avoid their becoming a burden to others, and a source of others having error and misdirection.  For those with mature understanding, a church is not an open or public forum provided to share secular instruction, or promote issues from popular culture, political trends, and social issues.  In addition to declarations of conviction through sacred events such as gatherings conducted for Baptism and Confirmation of spiritual faith and growth, adult believers enroll as members through written legal agreements (some say, contracts, promissory notes) that may include “confessions” and other statements of belief.  A member pledges to discharge specific duties that include regularly supplying financial resources.  While sanctions against disobedience/for obedience may not appear as within statements of law, rules and standards for discipline and order are expressly provided, outlined as “principles”, and strongly suggested.

All members—even minor children—are to regard the church as a location where the people of GOD are sanctified (i.e., anointed, made fragrant to Deity; set apart and prepared for exclusive service to divinity).  Because intense and troubling questions that pertain to life experience and human development will arise from many diverse causes and circumstances, it is the wisdom of the church to share only fixed, stable and tried responses that appear as doctrine, official policy, manifestations of the Holy Spirit, and the holy writings, rather than rely upon subjective and variable elements such as “individual conscience,” intellectual opinions, carnal reason, philosophy, and science.  Correctly understood, members will practice humility, disciplined self-expression, and share collective responsibility.  Often there must be “self-sacrifice” by practicing restraint and silence; a member is to defer and give place to the word from GOD through Christ and by the Holy Spirit.  Believers are to speak from duty (like it, don’t like it) what must be said, not merely “what I want to say.”  Elements such as controversy, divisiveness, exaggeration, extremism, hypocrisy and nonconformity are to be avoided along with self-promotion, showing-off, and vainglory.  Consider again the following from the Bible:

(1.)  1st Corinthians 1:  9-10, King James Version (KJV):  9 God is faithful, by whom ye were called unto the fellowship of his Son Jesus Christ our Lord.  10 Now I beseech you, brethren, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that ye all speak the same thing, and that there be no divisions among you; but that ye be perfectly joined together in the same mind and in the same judgment.

(2.)  1st Corinthians 1:  18-21, KJV:  18 For the preaching of the cross is to them that perish foolishness; but unto us which are saved it is the power of God.  19 For it is written, I will destroy the wisdom of the wise, and will bring to nothing the understanding of the prudent.  20 Where is the wise? where is the scribe? where is the disputer of this world? hath not God made foolish the wisdom of this world?  21 For after that in the wisdom of God the world by wisdom knew not God, it pleased God by the foolishness of preaching to save them that believe.

(3.)  1st Corinthians 14:  26-33, KJV:  26 How is it then, brethren? when ye come together, every one of you hath a psalm, hath a doctrine, hath a tongue, hath a revelation, hath an interpretation. Let all things be done unto edifying.  27 If any man speak in an unknown tongue, let it be by two, or at the most by three, and that by course; and let one interpret.  28 But if there be no interpreter, let him keep silence in the church; and let him speak to himself, and to God.  29 Let the prophets speak two or three, and let the other judge.  30 If any thing be revealed to another that sitteth by, let the first hold his peace.  31 For ye may all prophesy one by one, that all may learn, and all may be comforted.  32 And the spirits of the prophets are subject to the prophets.  33 For God is not the author of confusion, but of peace, as in all churches of the saints.

There is far more to be said, correctly applied, 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.

THE BLACK PHOENIX
Washington, DC

 

 

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THE PASSION OF THE CHRIST
Director Mel Gibson with Actor Jim Caviezel

 

Today, focus is on how Christian believers are to respond to recurring insults and persecution in Social Media.  In the same way the challenges for maintaining security for data and files shared over  the Internet have become a major obstacle to its use, the difficulty of enforcing online user agreements, continuing genuine etiquette, and maintaining standards of common decency now discourage many from using the forums provided by the World Wide Web.  For those who are born again through Jesus Christ, concerns about communication, disappointments, false accusers, mockers, and frustration when seeking to teach or share with others should be carried to the Lord.  Increasingly, there are those (called “trolls”) who express anger, bitterness, imbalance, irrational hostility, malice, venom, and vulgarity.  Even though their behavior may be seen as arrogant, cruel, hateful, and without compassion, because mockers are deceived, they often are sure they will be amusing to others, will be well thought of, and will become popular.  When not clearly asked for advice and counsel, rather than seeking to tell the mocker what he must do, the response of believers must be their own return to GOD, and intercession for those who are victims of callousness.  The peace for Christian believers to endure the abuse by trolls also is called being grounded in sacred knowledge, faith, joy, longsuffering, divine love, strength, and trust.  A writer at “Yahoo! Answers (New Zealand)” using the ID “JayNat” (Level 3 with 1,212 points, a member since March 01, 2017) posted the following:

 

What can be done to stop the “Romans sodomizing Jesus” questions once and for all?

I believe that initially just one person was asking that question. But now several trolls are continuing that trend.

Such questions are becoming more vulgarity and gross these days.

 

THE GOLDEN ARROW:  For this cause we also, since the day we heard it, do not cease to pray for you, and to desire that ye might be filled with the knowledge of his will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding;  That ye might walk worthy of the Lord unto all pleasing, being fruitful in every good work, and increasing in the knowledge of God;  Strengthened with all might, according to his glorious power, unto all patience and longsuffering with joyfulness;  Giving thanks unto the Father, which hath made us meet to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in light:  Who hath delivered us from the power of darkness, and hath translated us into the kingdom of his dear Son:  In whom we have redemption through his blood, even the forgiveness of sins:  Who is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of every creature:  For by him were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers:  all things were created by him, and for him:  And he is before all things, and by him all things consist.  And he is the head of the body, the church: who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead; that in all things he might have the preeminence.  (Colossians 1:  9-18, King James Version, KJV)

 

THE DOUBLE DAGGER:  The Passion of Christ? (03/16/2017); The Peace of Christmas? (12/25/2016); When GOD Never Forgives? (12/28/2015); Martyrdom and Tribulation? (09/30/2015); A Price for Religious Liberty? (06/30/2015); Guilt and Ignorance? (12/04/2014); Joined To Christ Through Faith (12/05/2014); Denying Oneself (05/17/2014); From Such Turn Away (05/18/2014)

 

“JayNat”, our continuing need, even as mature Christians, is for peace (the strength) that allows us to endure.  Until sin is completely eliminated and erased there will be those proclaiming error, exaggerated pride, ignorance, and lust.  Before his death as well as through the apostles, Jesus instructed believers to expect insults, opposition, persecution from government and religious institutions, concealed thrusts against the doctrine, and efforts to kill his steadfast disciples and followers.  Many who repeatedly post accusations, blasphemy, insinuations, and slander against Jesus Christ, his Church, and the Holy Spirit do so because they are apostate, immature, simple (i.e., underdeveloped), and capable of showing respect only to things carnal, inanimate, material, and social.  They are sinners and blind to the sacred spirit content in events, other persons, the holy writings, and themselves.  That these offensive writers justify themselves, and are not justified by GOD, is evident, for even by obedience to divine law, no man is justified before Deity.  Despite appeals, shared instruction, and warnings, these sinners can not comprehend that they are hurting many others who are sensitive people by their disrespect and irreverence.  Some are now enslaved as minions of the Adversary whose awareness and self-will are dominated by the operations of sin that generate death, destruction, nonexistence, and return to the conditions that were in place before Creation.  The recourse granted believers is that we focus more completely and correctly upon Christ through contemplation, duty, fellowship with other believers, prayer, study, and unselfish service.  Consider again the following:

(1.)  John 16:  1-3, King James Version (KJV):  1 These things have I spoken unto you, that ye should not be offended.  2 They shall put you out of the synagogues:  yea, the time cometh, that whosoever killeth you will think that he doeth God service.  3 And these things will they do unto you, because they have not known the Father, nor me.

(2.)  Matthew 5:  10-12, KJV:  10 Blessed are they which are persecuted for righteousness’ sake:  for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.  11 Blessed are ye, when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for my sake.  12 Rejoice, and be exceeding glad:  for great is your reward in heaven:  for so persecuted they the prophets which were before you.

(3.)  1st Timothy 4:  1-2, KJV:  1 Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils;  2 Speaking lies in hypocrisy; having their conscience seared with a hot iron; 

(4.)  2nd Timothy 3:  1-5, KJV:  1 This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come.  2 For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy,  3 Without natural affection, trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good,  4 Traitors, heady, highminded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God;  5 Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away.

There is far more to be said, correctly applied, and spiritually apprehended.  (For example, (5.)  Galatians 5:  19-23, KJV:  19 Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are these; Adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness,  20 Idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies,  21 Envyings, murders, drunkenness, revellings, and such like:  of the which I tell you before, as I have also told you in time past, that they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God.  22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith,  23 Meekness, temperance:  against such there is no law.)  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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Focus, today, is upon The Passion Live, and similar entertainment programs broadcast to celebrate and remember the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ.  Be not deceived.  GOD’s message for mankind’s salvation now must compete against amusements, diversions, and pastimes that are often very colorful, filled with exciting images, and rich in detail.  Even so, they serve as poor substitutes for preaching that conveys the power of the cross, and direct instruction from the holy writings that impart the Holy Spirit.  The disciples and followers of Jesus Christ are to experience permanent changes in their character, nature, and spirit content.  The process for this used by divinity is described as rebirth that must be intimate, organic, and personal.  Eternal purposes must be established along with faith, joy, respect and trust.  The impact of Internet, motion pictures, televangelism, and other public media events often are surface, and does not endure.  Viewers should not trust such 5 to 90 minute programs to provide complete and full sacred knowledge.  The work may be tainted because everyone (i.e., the full cast, camera men, sound specialists, writers, etc.) involved may not be anointed and endowed as believers in Christ.  The sacred message may be altered and edited with precious aspects omitted and overlooked.  More than this, just as small children master reciting their ABCs, yet, still can not create the combinations and permutations for reading and writing, casual viewers are encouraged to feel they have finally have been given all the information about Christ that they will ever need, yet, remain lacking in necessary knowledge concerning Advent, judgment, eternal life, and the second death.  Consider again the following Scriptures, and the presentation below:

1st Corinthians 3:  11-15, King James Version (KJV):  11 For other foundation can no man lay than that is laid, which is Jesus Christ.  12 Now if any man build upon this foundation gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, stubble;  13 Every man’s work shall be made manifest:  for the day shall declare it, because it shall be revealed by fire; and the fire shall try every man’s work of what sort it is.  14 If any man’s work abide which he hath built thereupon, he shall receive a reward.  15 If any man’s work shall be burned, he shall suffer loss:  but he himself shall be saved; yet so as by fire.

Matthew 16:  21-24, 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.

2nd Corinthians 5:  7, KJV:  7 (For we walk by faith, not by sight:)

1st Corinthians 3:  1-3, KJV:  1 And I, brethren, could not speak unto you as unto spiritual, but as unto carnal, even as unto babes in Christ.  2 I have fed you with milk, and not with meat:  for hitherto ye were not able to bear it, neither yet now are ye able.  3 For ye are yet carnal:  for whereas there is among you envying, and strife, and divisions, are ye not carnal, and walk as men?

The fighter at “Yahoo! Answers” using the ID “BiEn Galas” (Level 1 with 104 points, a member since January 28, 2015) posted the following:

 

WHY IS THE PASSION LIVE USING A MODERN SETTING?

Shouldn’t it be set during the time of Jesus?

 

THE GOLDEN ARROW:  Grace and peace be multiplied unto you through the knowledge of God, and of Jesus our Lord,  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:  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.  And beside this, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue; and to virtue knowledge;  And to knowledge temperance; and to temperance patience; and to patience godliness;  And to godliness brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness charity.  For if these things be in you, and abound, they make you that ye shall neither be barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.  But he that lacketh these things is blind, and cannot see afar off, and hath forgotten that he was purged from his old sins.  Wherefore the rather, brethren, give diligence to make your calling and election sure:  for if ye do these things, ye shall never fall:  For so an entrance shall be ministered unto you abundantly into the everlasting kingdom of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.  (2nd Peter 1:  2-11, KJV)

 

THE DOUBLE DAGGER:  The Cross and Eternity (03/21/2016); The Cross and Resurrection Sunday? (03/16/2016); On Wearing Sports Jerseys? (11/20/2015); Are Holidays Bad? (11/16/2013); Denying GOD by Eating Shrimp? (11/17/2013); Can GOD Die? (05/14/2013); The Church as a Bride? (05/15/2013); Double Standard? (10/12/2012); Family and Romance (10/13/2012)

 

“BiEn Galas”, many mature Christian believers tuned into the broadcast of The Passion Live as a contemporary  entertainment event using modern day language and themes to make the Gospel proclaimed by Jesus Christ recognizable, “relevant”, and “easy” to understand.  Because such productions are directed to our emotions and intellect, they often recreate displays of secular history through the use of costumes, formal language (e.g., dialect, poetry, rhetoric), exotic locations, and lavish sets.  While the intent of their performers, producers, and everyone involved may be to provide a genuine discussion of redemption and salvation through the Lord, viewers may quickly forget and turn away from such productions, because the medium (e.g., animation, DVD, Internet, motion picture) with advertising and commercial interruptions also affect and alter how the viewer decides the importance, and weight of the program’s message.

To the extent a production carefully focuses the viewer upon the meanings, principles, and values of the Gospel, one may have an experience of “baby steps,” acquiring basic information regarding salvation through Christ, and becoming aroused and engaged by sacred truth.  In the same way Moses, on his way home after work, was drawn aside by curiosity to discover the burning bush—and not by his desire to praise GOD or to pray—many viewers initially responded to The Passion as just another TV program, and were challenged to realize a peculiar expression of faith was being publicly shared.

What Christian believers are to experience and receive in their places of prayer, praise, study and worship is spirit content from the makeup of divinity, and, therefore is not centered upon finite human images, thoughts, and feelings.  Even today, 2016, the disciples and followers of Jesus acknowledge that, despite time and space, through operations of the Holy Spirit, blood and truth from the cross are flowing to here and now.  Achieving full awareness and a correct understanding of the life, ministry, death, resurrection, ascension, outpourings and sacred gifts we receive through Jesus requires the active presence of Deity.  When alert, committed, and set apart (we say, sanctified), a believer experiences exchange and interactions among the inseparable spirit substances that are the makeup of GOD.  Included are faith, holiness, longsuffering, love, wisdom, and wrath against sin.

There is far more to be said, understood, and spiritually apprehended.  (For example, the holy writings remain the most reliable resource shared by believers for sacred knowledge.  It is written:  1st Peter 2:  1-3, King James Version (KJV):  1 Wherefore laying aside all malice, and all guile, and hypocrisies, and envies, and all evil speakings,  2 As newborn babes, desire the sincere milk of the word, that ye may grow thereby:  3 If so be ye have tasted that the Lord is gracious.  Also, Acts 20:  32, KJV:  32 And now, brethren, I commend you to God, and to the word of his grace, which is able to build you up, and to give you an inheritance among all them which are sanctified.)  Even so, I trust this fragment will be useful.  Be it unto you according to your faith.

THE BLACK PHOENIX
Washington, DC

 

New Disclaimer

 

The war that was begun in heaven will be finished upon the earth!  Thus far, the McAffee Virus Plus and its tech-support have been unable to stop the hackers who hijack browsers to pollute our computer connections with pop-up ads and security warnings (“Verizon, Llc”, LaSuperba, reimage.com, etc.).  Despite their threats against my computer, I will continue to claim Jesus Christ as my savior by posting on the Internet as a Christian writer so long as it pleases divinity.  Differences between judging others and divine judgment are considered, today.  Divine judgment is mandatory, never optional.  Just as Creation reveals the breadth and depth of the divine mind, and Salvation reveals the breadth and depth of divine love, Judgment reveals the breadth and depth of divine righteousness.  There are multiple appearances, forms and purposes for judgment among finite created beings and living creatures in addition to the processes for eternal judgment that are to be acknowledged and practiced upon the earth.  Just as divine judgment to express wrath against sin occurs within the body of believers, there is judgment to admonish, build up, and instruct the followers of Christ.  Law is provided by GOD to make visible the presence of sin (a non-material, non-spirit influence that opposes the continued  existence of divine law and Deity), that otherwise would be hidden and unknown.  Judgment is the application of sacred law to expose sin, resolve conflicts, and settle disputes.  Thus, peace is the outcome of judgment, not war.  The writer at “Yahoo! Answers” using the ID “johnson” (Level 1 with 5 points, a member since September 09, 2015) posted the following:

Why do we judge eachother when god love us all the same?

THE GOLDEN ARROW:  This witness is true.  Wherefore rebuke them sharply, that they may be sound in the faith;  Not giving heed to Jewish fables, and commandments of men, that turn from the truth.  Unto the pure all things are pure:  but unto them that are defiled, and unbelieving is nothing pure; but even their mind and conscience is defiled.  They profess that they know God, but in works they deny him, being abominable, and disobedient, and to every good work reprobate.  (Titus 1:  13-16, KJV)

THE DOUBLE DAGGER:  Making Sin Appear as Sinful? (06/07/2015); Judge Thy Neighbor (02/15/2015); What to Do About Liars? (11/14/2014); Refraining Our Tongues? (11/15/2014); The Sin of Pride? (08/13/2014); Judged For Acts and Thoughts? (08/14/2014); Humility Needed for Salvation? (08/15/2014)

“johnson”, before they receive sacred knowledge and spiritual discernment, developing Christian believers typically confuse being attacked with negative criticism, “condemnation”, “judgment” (the work of GOD), and “slander” (the work of the devil).  Because people practice condemnation as a matter of personal feelings, opinions, and self-expression they cast others into hell without the careful and complete examination of that person’s deeds, of relevant subtleties (i.e., barely visible differences; hidden shifts in meaning and value), of the other person’s spirit content, or the eternal purposes of GOD.  In doing so, they presume, usurp, and take to themselves authority that belongs only to GOD.  More than imposing punishment and damnation, judgment includes administering praise and rewards, discovering truth, establishing balance and impartiality, providing correction and mercy as well as correctly identifying the character and nature of attitudes, behavior and conduct (we say, calling sin by its proper name).  Discipline (we also say, training, not punishment) and self-examination that appear within the body is important to maintain order that nourishes, protects, and stabilizes the community of believers.  Where divine judgment appears there are applications of such features as faith, forbearance, forgiveness, respect and trust.  Here are a few points intended for Christian believers that I can share from the holy writings:

(1.)  Jeremiah 17:  9-10, King James Version (KJV):  9 The heart is deceitful above all things, 10 I the LORD search the heart, I try the reins, even to give to every man according to his ways, and according to the fruit of his doings.

(2.)  Jeremiah 32:  17-20, KJV:  17 Ah Lord GOD!  behold, thou hast made the heaven and the earth by thy great power and stretched out arm, and there is nothing too hard for thee:  18 Thou shewest lovingkindness unto thousands, and recompensest the iniquity of the fathers into the bosom of their children after them:  the Great, the Mighty God, the LORD of hosts, is his name.  19 Great in counsel, and mighty in work:  for thine eyes are open upon all the ways of the sons of men:  to give every one according to his ways, and according to the fruit of his doings:  20 Which has set signs and wonders in the land of Egypt, even unto this day, and in Israel, and among other men; and hast made thee a name, as at this day;

(3.)  1st Corinthians 5:  9-13, KJV:  9 I wrote unto you in an epistle not to company with fornicators:  10 Yet not altogether with the fornicators of this world, or with the covetous, or extortioners, or with idolaters; for then must ye needs go out of the world.  11 But now I have written unto you not to keep company, if any man that is called a brother be a fornicator, or covetous, or an idolater, or a railer, or a drunkard, or an extortioner; with such an one no not to eat.  12 For what have I to do to judge them also that are without? do not ye judge them that are within?  13 But them that are without God judgeth.  Therefore put away from among yourselves that wicked person.

(4.)  1st Corinthians 6:  2-5, KJV:  2 Do ye not know that the saints shall judge the world? and if the world shall be judged by you, are ye unworthy to judge the smallest matters?  3 Know ye not that we shall judge angels? how much more things that pertain to this life?  4 If then ye have judgments of things pertaining to this life, set them to judge who are least esteemed in the church.  5 I speak this to your shame.  Is it so, that there is not a wise man among you? no, not one that shall be able to judge between his brethren?

(5.)  Luke 6:  37-38, KJV:  37 Judge not, and ye shall not be judged:  condemn not and ye shall not be condemned:  forgive, and ye shall be forgiven.  38 Give, and it shall be given unto you; good measure, pressed down, and shaken together, and running over, shall men give into your bosom.  For with the same measure that ye mete withal it shall be measured to you again.

(6.)  1st Corinthians 4:  5, KJV:  5 Therefore judge nothing before the time, until the Lord come, who both will bring to light the hidden things of darkness, and will make manifests the councils of the hearts:  and then shall every man have praise of God.

There is far more to be said, correctly applied, and spiritually apprehended.  (For example, (7.)  1st Corinthians 11:  31-32, KJV:  31 For if we would judge ourselves, we should not be judged.  32 But when we are judged, we are chastened of the Lord, that we should not be condemned with the world.)  Even so, I trust this fragment will be useful.  Be it unto you according to your faith.

THE BLACK PHOENIX
Washington, DC

Today, response is shared for a discussion on paradise, purgatory and teachings within the Scriptures on the place and state of the dead.  Principles for answering supposed contradictions found in Scripture as well as differences among accounts and doctrines are considered.  Linjo Eveline who participates with me in THE BIBLE STUDY GROUP (a Public Group on Facebook presently having 19,656 members), invited comments by sharing a presentation that included the following at about 11: 41am on August 18, 2015:

 

please borthers and sisters l realy wish to know if there is a place call PURGATRY where if u die with sin u will stay there then ur family will pray so that God should fogive your sins?

 

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, KJV)

 

THE DOUBLE DAGGER:  The Living Baptized for the Dead? (03/27/2015); Like a Thief? (12/01/2013); Only While We Live? (12/02/2013); Reveal Himself To All? (12/03/2013); The Dead in Christ? (11/18/2013); Too Much Holy Spirit? (11/19/2013); Ghosts (09/02/2012); About Conversion (09/03/2012)

 

Linjo Eveline, be encouraged!  Holding to the principle that there are no contradictions within the Scriptures, believers still can identify differences, near repetitions and shifts that many take to be errors.  The Bible must be read with an eye to divine intent and eternal purpose.  Every attractive and pleasing idea may not be appropriate, for the holy writings contain many subtleties (i.e., barely visible differences; hidden shifts in meaning and value).  Those who exaggerate the significance of discovered differences often become excited and seek to discredit and dismiss the entire Bible.  Examples even are seen when a simple change in spelling occurs as with “Esaias” instead of “Isaiah”, “Cora” and “Kore” instead of “Korah”.  It is not that differences do not appear, rather, it is that—because our salvation is through grace, by faith, and not by works—discovered differences are often irrelevant, and not significant.  This truth also applies when considering differences among long-held doctrines and traditions such as those regarding the place and state of the dead.

The references to the bosom of Abraham and Paul praying for the dead are unfortunate, for they encourage ideas regarding the state of the dead that are in conflict with other teachings presented from the Scriptures.  For example, the state of the spirit separated from the body is indirectly described in the account of Saul using the witch of En-dor as a medium or vessel to contain the spirit of the prophet Samuel.  As surely as it is written, the dead praise not GOD, and lose all concern and interest for the things of the earth, spirits separated from flesh as living souls no longer may display character and personality they showed when living, and can not know or predict the future.  In the instance of Saul, Samuel repeated things that had been proclaimed while the prophet was alive that, in fact, had addressed Saul’s future.  Where touching a dead body renders a person unfit to participate in the community of believers, surely, having contact with a “dead” spirit renders a living person defiled.

Many of us assume that the spirit of a dead person remains in the coffin, and with the cadaver of the deceased.  However, when a spirit is separated from its body through death, the spirit does continue to exist.  The Scriptures only state that the spirit returns to GOD who gave it; and does not provide detail on an area or gathering place for spirits.  In accounts we have been given, there is no indication that spirits separated from flesh (many say, ghosts that exist through death and natural processes) roam the earth as do Satan and his followers (spirit beings created by divinity).  Thus, in the account of a man who ran amok among the tombs and had  a legion of unclean spirits, these were not spirits from the deceased; and the devils were not willing to inhabit the corpses buried there.

That a spirit can exist without a body is further shown by the account in Revelation where John of Patmos reported hearing souls beneath the altar in heaven that cry, “How long, O Lord, holy and true dost thou not judge and avenge our blood on them that dwell on the earth?”  These are described as having been lifted from the earth, and are understood as having gone through the complete process of their own final judgment; yet, they are not in full resurrection, and are awaiting the return to their physical body.

Many believers want to avoid the anxiety, depression, emotional pain, fear, and multiple errors that result by exaggerating our focus upon damnation, death, the dead and dying.  These are more likely to affirm that there is a spirit realm that compares to the spheres of life created for those upon the earth, and within heaven.  These unknowingly alter the teachings from the Apostle Paul that discuss resurrection and various differences in flesh and glory.  For the Christian believer, release from despair, gloom, morbidity, and pessimism are accomplished primarily by concentrating on the divine proclamations, promises and prophesies regarding our redemption, our salvation, the Second Coming of Jesus Christ, his harvesting all believers from the earth as well as life in New Jerusalem and upon the earth made new.

There is much more that could be said, that should be carefully weighed, and spiritually taken into account.  (For example, we agree, one faith, one Lord, one baptism, one GOD and Father of all.  Yet, just as the harmony and peace of the church as the body of Christ does not result from believers all wearing the same type of clothing, having the same employer, or sharing the same marital status, unity in Christ is not an outcome of believers all agreeing on every question and topic, all ministering (e.g., hospitality, preaching, teaching) to others in the exact same way, or all placing the exact same emphasis upon the shared doctrines.  Disagreement with continued respect and diversity are  important to the fullness and richness of the church as a living expression of divinity.)  Even so, I trust this fragment will be useful.  Be it unto you according to your faith.

 
THE BLACK PHOENIX
Washington, DC

Hero-worship (i.e., idolatry), false religiosity, distraction from the work of the Gospel and misdirection are themes, today.  Because just being sorry for sin does not cleanse, excuse or save us, Christian believers are participating in a sacred process of identifying themselves in Christ such that the Savior becomes accountable for their errors and sins, and the righteousness of Christ becomes manifest and present through the life of the believer.  Just as Christ is credited for enduring condemnation and suffering, the Lord—not his follower or servant—is to be recognized for the circumspection, courage, discipline, dutifulness, faithfulness, generosity, obedience, reverence, tenderness, truthfulness, sacrifice and sweetness expressed by every believer.  Consider again 2nd Timothy 1: 7-10, King James Version (KJV):  7 For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind. 8 Be not thou therefore ashamed of the testimony of our Lord, nor of me his prisoner: but be thou partaker of the afflictions of the gospel according to the power of God; 9 Who hath saved us, and called us with an holy calling, not according to our works, but according to his own purpose and grace, which was given us in Christ Jesus before the world began, 10 But is now made manifest by the appearing of our Saviour Jesus Christ, who hath abolished death, and hath brought life and immortality to light through the gospel:  The fighter at “Yahoo! Answers” using the ID “Solitary Wiccan” (Level 3 with 1,369 points, a member since May 06, 2014) posted the following:

 

Why is Kim Davis seen as a hero to a lot of Christians?

 

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.  (Ephesians 2:  8-9, KJV)

 

THE DOUBLE DAGGER:  None Higher Than Christ? (09/04/2015); How To Measure Spiritual Progress? (04/19/2015); Heroes Who Are Atheists? (01/23/2015); Asked to Carry the Cross? (07/25/2014); Good Intentions? (07/26/2014); Wanting to Have Our Way (03/09/2013); Not Even Sorry? (03/10/2013); Hero or Zero? (12/04/2012); The Adversary? (12/05/2012)

 

“Solitary Wiccan”, throughout human history and the many religious traditions, Jesus is the only champion for mankind’s deliverance (i.e., rescue) and salvation from sin acknowledged upon the earth as provided from GOD.  When a person appears having the courage to champion the Bible and its teachings, many are deceived as though GOD is active and present through that individual.  Mature believers are slow to endorse celebrities, political figures, and those promoted through popular culture, because we realize that Satan can still appear as though an angel of light, and has been known to use Scriptures as well as carnal, material and social appeals to ensnare the weak.  Here are a few points to consider that have helped many Christian believers maintain a balanced, mature and sober understanding of their new relationship with the Creator through Jesus Christ:

(1.)  Born again believers are challenged to “grow again”, gradually acquiring sacred knowledge, continuing special  practices (we say, sacraments) within a sanctified community, and meeting the routine life challenges (we say, growing pains) for those upon the earth.  Because there is a shift at the core and foundation of their full character, person and spirit content, every aspect of a believer’s desires, emotions, motives, psychological makeup, standards, thoughts, and values also are permanently altered.

(2.)  Through fresh deposits of the spirit matter received by Adam at Creation, the consciousness within a believer centers upon divinity more continuously, and acknowledges the exalted and unique aspects of Deity as they appear and become manifest.  Included are such inseparable aspects of divinity as faith, forbearance, forgiveness, holiness, longsuffering, purity, wisdom, and wrath against sin.

(3.)  Relationships among believers are established and maintained primarily upon the basis of fellowship and intimacy as co-workers in spreading the Gospel, prayer-partners, those preparing for the Advent (soon-coming) of Jesus, and those who suffer together as incarnations, spokespersons (we say, prophets) and representatives of Christ.  With this in view, spouses, ones parents, their children and other family members, even holy angels have a new standing and status that is lower than that of the Savior.  No one other than Jesus can or will endure for mankind and all the earth, and serve as our divine advocate before the universe.

There are many other points that should be carefully considered, correctly understood, and spiritually apprehended.  (For example, (4.)  Secularization of the Scriptures is forbidden, as are the vain efforts to use sacred authority in secular offices (e.g., government clerk, Congressman, President).  The divine process for salvation does not encourage boasting, self-promotion, showing-off, and vain glory.  The holy writings provided to establish health, peace and strength within the body of believers is not a tool for secular conflicts.  Modern clergy and evangelists often walk a thin line between the sacred and the profane.  Thus, even canonization now looks suspect as a practice in the church as though saints are voting members to a hall of fame, or all-star players roster in baseball.)  Even so, I trust this fragment will be useful.  Be it unto you according to your faith.

THE BLACK PHOENIX
Washington, DC

Today, I continue an exchange that focuses on whether the Mother of Jesus is divine.  Engaging one of the Internet fighters who regularly blogs at thoughts.com (Universal Consciousness Cycle), and who uses the ID “wirelessguru1”, the following comments have been posted:

 

wirelessguru1 commented on (08/21/2015) About Praying to Mary

Is she a Goddess!?

The_Black_Phoenix
No, she is not a goddess or aspect of the full Divine Person. Thus, those who acknowledge her as the mother of Jesus and the Mother of the Church are those moved by such elements as innocence, love, respect and understanding. Be encouraged!

wirelessguru1 commented on (08/21/2015) About Praying to Mary

So fanatic, are you saying that Mary is not fully Divine then!?
WAKE UP!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
August 23, 2015

The_Black_Phoenix
Look into some of the other recommended blogs in the DOUBLE DAGGER section. Then, let’s talk.

wirelessguru1 commented on (08/21/2015) About Praying to Mary

I do not need to look at your BS, rubbish and nonsense!
Answer My question now!
Are you saying that Mary is not fully Divine then!?

The_Black_Phoenix
I am in the midst of writing an answer to you as tomorrow’s blog. Your own beliefs, convictions, and maturity have become suspect through your attitude. I will not call you, fool or BEYATCH, simply because you show no courtesy. I will warn you.

wirelessguru1 commented on (08/21/2015) About Praying to Mary

Well, I don’t like your lousy attitude so answer My question: Are you saying that Mary is not fully Divine then!?
August 24, 2015

The_Black_Phoenix
Because GOD, who is righteous, and has the inner strength to tolerate your wretchedness, here is a portion of what is coming. Be it unto you according to his faith:

Like the translation of Enoch, the Prophet Elijah being taken up in a chariot of fire, the resurrection, ascension and exaltation of Mary are prophetic in nature, demonstrating the blessed condition that will come upon all who have place as joint-heirs with Christ. Simply being raised from the dead, or receiving atonement, cleansing, immortality and incorruptibility does not establish the myriad other unseen points of being that identify deity (e.g., accountability for cosmic order; origin as sui generis; role as law giver; duty as sovereign majesty).

 

THE GOLDEN ARROW:  And there appeared a great wonder in heaven; a woman clothed with the sun, and the moon under her feet, and upon her head a crown of twelve stars:  And she being with child cried, travailing in birth, and pained to be delivered.  And there appeared another wonder in heaven; and behold a great red dragon, having seven heads and ten horns, and seven crowns upon his heads.  And his tail drew the third part of the stars of heaven, and did cast them to the earth:  and the dragon stood before the woman which was ready to be delivered, for to devour her child as soon as it was born.  And she brought forth a man child, who was to rule all nations with a rod of iron:  and her child was caught up unto God, and to his throne.  And the woman fled into the wilderness, where she hath a place prepared of God, that they should feed her there a thousand two hundred and threescore days.  And there was war in heaven:  Michael and his angels fought against the dragon; and the dragon fought and his angels,  And prevailed not; neither was their place found any more in heaven.  And the great dragon was cast out, that old serpent, called the Devil, and Satan, which deceiveth the whole world:  he was cast out into the earth, and his angels were cast out with him.  And I heard a loud voice saying in heaven, Now is come salvation, and strength, and the kingdom of our God, and the power of his Christ:  for the accuser of our brethren is cast down, which accused them before our God day and night.  (Revelation 12:  1-10, KJV)

 

THE DOUBLE DAGGER:  About Praying to Mary (08/21/2015); The “Talking Cross”? (02/13/2014); Able to Become Gods? (01/11/2014); Why Christians Pray for Others (01/12/2014); A Kindness to Mary? (04/21/2013); When GOD Controls? (04/22/2013); Quoting Scripture to GOD? (04/24/2013); The Divine Use of a Human Life? (04/23/2013)

 

“wirelessguru1”, while I am a person who became committed to Christ while a child; has had many years of formal education; has endured emotional, financial, psychological and other suffering (such as is common to man); has authored books on the sacred meaning of marriage, human sexuality, and the crown of life; and have a testimony that I have seen Jesus Christ, I do not claim to be an overseer to, or have the support of any Christian hierarchy, or institution.  Nor do I declare that I have all the right answers to all the right questions, like many around me.  I count myself as merely someone who is able to answer many issues and points of question only because of humility, prayer, disciplined study, and the gifts of sacred knowledge that have been shared with me.  For Christian believers, consciousness of divinity is configured and imparted through sacred operations that include permanent alterations and change; admonition and correction; gradual unfolding as discovery, growth, learning and maturation; incarnation; praise; prayer; prophecy; rebirth and sanctification.

Nothing in my broad experience of the revelation of GOD through Jesus Christ indicates that his mother, Mary, should be thought of as an aspect of the full GODhead, or that Mary should be regarded as a goddess.  Even so, because of her continuing ministry, Mary is worthy of the honor she is receiving.  Like the translation of Enoch and the Prophet Elijah being taken up in a chariot of fire, the resurrection, ascension and exaltation of Mary are prophetic in nature, demonstrating the blessed condition that will come upon all who have place as joint-heirs with Christ.  Simply being raised from the dead, or receiving atonement, cleansing, immortality and incorruptibility does not establish the myriad other unseen points of being that identify deity (e.g., accountability for cosmic order; origin as sui generis; role as law giver; duty as sovereign majesty). 

Mary is often called the Mother of the Church; and may be seen as an elder, a Matriarch like the Patriarchs that followed Adam, a pioneer, a prophetess, and a widow.  It does not discount sacred truth, nor is it a source of spiritual confusion to those who are correctly grounded in the Gospel, that some testify to appearances and visitations by Mary.  For many, error does come by Mary being called “the Queen of Heaven,” for she is then taken as the figure of idol worship opposed through the Prophet Jeremiah.  Similarly, many question whether Mary or the Church is the one described in Revelation clothed with the sun, the moon under her feet, and crowned with 12 stars.  Here are a few of the Scriptures from the holy writings containing the precepts, principles and tenets for faith that I have found helpful when considering the place of Mary above and among Christian believers:

(1.)  Titus 1:  15, King James Version (KJV):  15 Unto the pure all things are pure:  but unto them that are defiled and unbelieving is nothing pure; but even their mind and conscience is defiled.

(2.)  1st Timothy 2:  5-6, KJV:  5 For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus;  6 Who gave himself a ransom for all, to be testified in due time.

(3.)  1st Timothy 5:  1-5, KJV:  1 Rebuke not an elder, but intreat him as a father; and the younger men as brethren;  2 The elder women as mothers; the younger as sisters, with all purity.  3 Honour widows that are widows indeed.  4 But if any widow have children or nephews, let them learn first to shew piety at home, and to requite their parents:  for that is good and acceptable before God.  5 Now she that is a widow indeed, and desolate, trusteth in God, and continueth in supplications and prayers night and day.

(4.)  1st Timothy 5:  17-19, KJV:  17 Let the elders that rule well be counted worthy of double honour, especially they who labour in the word and doctrine.  18 For the scripture saith, thou shalt not muzzle the ox that treadeth out the corn. And, The labourer is worthy of his reward.  19 Against an elder receive not an accusation, but before two or three witnesses.

(5.)  1st Peter 5:  1-4, KJV:  1 The elders which are among you I exhort, who am also an elder, and a witness of the sufferings of Christ, and also a partaker of the glory that shall be revealed:  2 Feed the flock of God which is among you, taking the oversight thereof, not by constraint, but willingly; not for filthy lucre, but of a ready mind;  3 Neither as being lords over God’s heritage, but being examples to the flock.  4 And when the chief Shepherd shall appear, ye shall receive a crown of glory that fadeth not away.

(6.)  Jeremiah 44:  16-18, KJV:  16 As for the word that thou hast spoken unto us in the name of the LORD, we will not hearken unto thee.  17 But we will certainly do whatsoever thing goeth forth out of our own mouth, to burn incense unto the queen of heaven, and to pour out drink offerings unto her, as we have done, we, and our fathers, our kings, and our princes, in the cities of Judah, and in the streets of Jerusalem:  for then had we plenty of victuals, and were well, and saw no evil.  18 But since we left off to burn incense to the queen of heaven, and to pour out drink offerings unto her, we have wanted all things, and have been consumed by the sword and by the famine.

There is far more that could be said, and that must be correctly understood and spiritually taken into account.  (For example (7.)  1st John 2:  22-24, KJV:  22 Who is a liar but he that denieth that Jesus is the Christ? He is antichrist, that denieth the Father and the Son.  23 Whosoever denieth the Son, the same hath not the Father:  [but] he that acknowledgeth the Son hath the Father also.  24 Let that therefore abide in you, which ye have heard from the beginning. If that which ye have heard from the beginning shall remain in you, ye also shall continue in the Son, and in the Father.)  Even so, I trust this fragment will be useful.  Be it unto you according to your faith.

THE BLACK PHOENIX
Washington, DC