Archive for the ‘Value of the Church’ Category

One Body Many Parts

 

Today, the reply is on the role of the church as an embodiment of divinity, and whether the church should provide messages on politics and social issues. Often the concerns and conduct we display surrounding such issues as crime, employment, poverty, and voting rights arise from fear, lack of faith, and secular entanglement that oppose the authentic work of Christian growth and spiritual development. By continually pursuing its agenda for redemption, salvation and eternal life the church addresses pressing unmet needs and life priorities that will be fulfilled by no other agencies, authorities, and powers. It is written: Isaiah 60: 14-22, King James Version (KJV): 14 The sons also of them that afflicted thee shall come bending unto thee; and all they that despised thee shall bow themselves down at the soles of thy feet; and they shall call thee; The city of the LORD, The Zion of the Holy One of Israel. 15 Whereas thou has been forsaken and hated, so that no man went through thee, I will make thee an eternal excellency, a joy of many generations. 16 Thou shalt also suck the milk of the Gentiles, and shalt suck the breast of kings: and thou shalt know that I the LORD am thy Saviour and thy Redeemer, the mighty One of Jacob. 17 For brass I will bring gold, and for iron I will bring silver, and for wood brass, and for stones iron: I will also make thy officers peace, and thine exactors righteousness. 18 Violence shall no more be heard in thy land, wasting nor destruction within thy borders; but thou shalt call thy walls Salvation, and thy gates Praise. 19 The sun shall be no more thy light by day; neither for brightness shall the moon give light unto thee: but the LORD shall be unto thee an everlasting light, and thy God thy glory. 20 Thy sun shall no more go down; neither shall thy moon withdraw itself: for the LORD shall be thine everlasting light, and the days of thy mourning shall be ended. 21 Thy people also shall be all righteous: they shall inherit the land for ever, the branch of my planting, the work of my hands, that I may be glorified. 22 A little one shall become a thousand, and a small one a strong nation: I the LORD will hasten it in his time. One of the fighters in the “Yahoo! Answers” forum on Religion and Spirituality using the ID “JOE” (Level 6 with 21,612 points, a member since February 09, 2018) posted the following:

 

My pastor at church sticks to the scripture and refuses to make politics and issues part of his message, right or wrong?

Update: It’s an evangelical church, he’s a great orator, but will not go down the politics/religion messaging.

 

THE GOLDEN ARROW: 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. For it pleased the Father that in him should all fulness dwell; And, having made peace through the blood of his cross, by him to reconcile all things unto himself; by him, I say, whether they be things in earth, or things in heaven. And you, that were sometime alienated and enemies in your mind by wicked works, yet now hath he reconciled In the body of his flesh through death, to present you holy and unblameable and unreproveable in his sight: (Colossians 1: 16-22, King James Version, KJV)

 

THE DOUBLE DAGGER: Our Displays of Divinity (06/19/2019); To Be Jesus’ Sheep (06/10/2019); Scripture Has No Ethnicity (05/27/2019); Commitment To Jesus Christ (03/07/2019); On Diversity and Equality (05/22/2018); Separation of Church and State (07/04/2014); The Point of Wisdom? (07/05/2014); Holy Ground (03/30/2014); The Temple Mount (03/31/2014)

 

JOE”, for many developing and mature Christian believers, the church is to be acknowledged as a sacred process and a divine tool that is used to reveal and make divinity knowable, known, accessible, and approachable by those who are living on the earth. Like divine law that proclaims and makes present the grace of GOD (we also say, divine prerogative), eternal purpose, prophecy, and the sovereign will of GOD, the church is a physical and social embodiment of Jesus Christ who continues communication, exchange, and interaction with mankind by imparting fresh endowments of inseparable spirit substance from the makeup of GOD. Included are balance, faith, forbearance, holiness, joy, longsuffering, lovingkindness, oneness without sameness, personhood, wisdom, and wrath against sin.

In the same way the Bible is a record of GOD appearing through thousands of human and natural events, within thousands of lives, over the course of thousands of years, the church is an appearing of Jesus Christ today through godly character; commandments, determinations, and principles within sacred law as well as the resolution of conflicts and settlement of sacred disputes through applications of divine law; sacred events (we say, miracles); the endurance of sufferings; and the continuance and fulfillment of divine works. The members of the church will not be everyone whose name is listed as enrolled so much as those who voluntarily become sanctified (set apart to serve divinity) by their commitment, their devotion, their giving and financial support, their repentance, their lifestyles, and their daily living routines.

Those who become “born again” as members within the church must “grow up again,” and become mature/ripe for harvest from the earth by the Lord at his coming. Living on the earth as vessels of divine substance, the offspring of GOD, and heirs with Jesus, the church will face many intense life challenges and “growing pains.” Even so, the church is reinforced with the promises of GOD. Consider again the following that uses language from the Bible:

1. Psalms 34: 17-19, King James Version (KJV): 17 The righteous cry, and the LORD heareth, and delivereth them out of all their troubles. 18 The LORD is nigh unto them that are of a broken heart; and saveth such as be of a contrite spirit. 19 Many are the afflictions of the righteous: but the LORD delivereth him out of them all.

2. John 17: 14-19, KJV: 14 I have given them thy word; and the world hath hated them, because they are not of the world, even as I am not of the world. 15 I pray not that thou shouldest take them out of the world, but that thou shouldest keep them from the evil. 16 They are not of the world, even as I am not of the world. 17 Sanctify them through thy truth: thy word is truth. 18 As thou hast sent me into the world, even so have I also sent them into the world. 19 And for their sakes I sanctify myself, that they also might be sanctified through the truth.

3. 2nd Corinthians 4: 6-11, KJV: 6 For God, who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, hath shined in our hearts, to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ. 7 But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellency of the power may be of God, and not of us. 8 We are troubled on every side, yet not distressed; we are perplexed, but not in despair; 9 Persecuted, but not forsaken; cast down, but not destroyed; 10 Always bearing about in the body the dying of the Lord Jesus, that the life also of Jesus might be made manifest in our body. 11 For we which live are always delivered unto death for Jesus’ sake, that the life also of Jesus might be made manifest in our mortal flesh.

There is far more that should be said, correctly examined, and spiritually apprehended. (For example, 4. Galatians 2: 20, KJV: 20 I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me.) Even so, I trust this fragment will be useful. Be it unto you according to your faith.

 

Image downloaded 1:46 AM, June 25, 2019 @ https://i.ytimg.com/vi/VX0S2lhsa2Y/hqdefault.jpg

 

Signature Mark

THE BLACK PHOENIX

Washington, DC

Advertisements

Passiontide and Easter

 

Today, reply is on the use of “Resurrection Sunday” and similar labels to replace “Easter”. Many feel the use of “Easter” is a comfortable tradition; however, the church of Jesus Christ also is to acknowledge admonitions, guidance and principles that speak against indulging custom, fashion and novelty such as the following: Matthew 15: 8-10, King James Version (KJV): 8 This people draweth nigh unto me with their mouth, and honoureth me with their lips; but their heart is far from me. 9 But in vain they do worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men. 10 And he called the multitude, and said unto them, Hear, and understand: One of the fighters in the “Yahoo! Answers” public forum on Religion and Spirituality who uses the ID “Anonymous” (no profile information shown) posted the following:

 

Christians, do you think we should change Eater name to Resurrection day?

 

THE GOLDEN ARROW: And at that time shall Michael stand up, the great prince which standeth for the children of thy people: and there shall be a time of trouble, such as never was since there was a nation even to that same time: and at that time thy people shall be delivered, every one that shall be found written in the book. And many of them that sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake, some to everlasting life, and some to shame and everlasting contempt. And they that be wise shall shine as the brightness of the firmament; and they that turn many to righteousness as the stars for ever and ever. (Daniel 12: 1-3, King James Version, KJV)

 

THE DOUBLE DAGGER: “I Am The Resurrection” (03/25/2018); Why An Easter Season? (04/19/2017); Chocolate Bunnies! Easter Eggs! (04/18/2017); Resurrected With The Lord (04/16/2017); The Cross and Resurrection Sunday? (03/16/2016); The Resurrection of Jesus Acknowledged? (04/03/2015); Resurrection from the Dead? (04/23/2014); Not A Matter Of Opinion? (04/24/2014); Are Holidays Bad? (11/16/2013); Denying GOD by Eating Shrimp? (11/17/2013)

 

Anonymous”, many developing Christians are now using the label “Resurrection Sunday” when speaking of the observances and worship activities related to the death of Jesus Christ on the cross, his being raised from the dead, and other sacred events that include his ascension into heaven. Mature Christian believers often continue the use of “Easter” in the understanding that focus must be on the spirit substance from the makeup of divinity residing within events, within oneself and others, within ones practices, and within ones utterances. All believers are cautioned to be vigilant against the spiritual confusion that sometimes arises by discussion of the first and second resurrection for the final judgments of mankind, and of becoming joined to divine fullness (we say, the Godhead; the Father, the Son, the Holy Spirit) by the resurrection of Jesus (we say, the new life; the new creation). Consider again the following that uses language from the Bible:

1. Acts 12: 1-5, King James Version (KJV): 1 Now about that time Herod the king stretched forth his hands to vex certain of the church. 2 And he killed James the brother of John with the sword. 3 And because he saw it pleased the Jews, he proceeded further to take Peter also. (Then were the days of unleavened bread.) 4 And when he had apprehended him, he put him in prison, and delivered him to four quaternions of soldiers to keep him; intending after Easter to bring him forth to the people. 5 Peter therefore was kept in prison: but prayer was made without ceasing of the church unto God for him.

2. 2nd Corinthians 3: 4-6, KJV: 4 And such trust have we through Christ to God-ward: 5 Not that we are sufficient of ourselves to think any thing as of ourselves; but our sufficiency is of God; 6 Who also hath made us able ministers of the new testament; not of the letter, but of the spirit: for the letter killeth, but the spirit giveth life.

3. Acts 24: 14-16, KJV: 14 But this I confess unto thee, that after the way which they call heresy, so worship I the God of my fathers, believing all things which are written in the law and in the prophets: 15 And have hope toward God, which they themselves also allow, that there shall be a resurrection of the dead, both of the just and unjust. 16 And herein do I exercise myself, to have always a conscience void of offence toward God, and toward men.

4. Romans 6: 3-6, 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.

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

There is far more that should be said, correctly examined, and spiritually apprehended. (For example, 6. Revelation 20: 4-6, KJV: 4 And I saw thrones, and they sat upon them, and judgment was given unto them: and I saw the souls of them that were beheaded for the witness of Jesus, and for the word of God, and which had not worshipped the beast, neither his image, neither had received his mark upon their foreheads, or in their hands; and they lived and reigned with Christ a thousand years. 5 But the rest of the dead lived not again until the thousand years were finished. This is the first resurrection. 6 Blessed and holy is he that hath part in the first resurrection: on such the second death hath no power, but they shall be priests of God and of Christ, and shall reign with him a thousand years.) Even so, I trust this fragment will be useful. Be it unto you according to your faith.

 

Image downloaded 11:06 AM, April 23, 2019 @ https://twitter.com/johnmrutter

 

Signature Mark

THE BLACK PHOENIX

Washington, DC

confusion

 

Today, reply is on why congregations among Christian churches might consider making changes to their policies on same-sex marriage. The understanding that the church must address the concerns and needs of the community of faith as their servant, rather than the people be a servant to the church is taken to be a major principle taught by Jesus Christ. The church is to listen and respond, where legislators and the courts are deaf and inactive. It is written: Matthew 20: 25-28, King James Version (KJV): 25 But Jesus called them unto him, and said, Ye know that the princes of the Gentiles exercise dominion over them, and they that are great exercise authority upon them. 26 But it shall not be so among you: but whosoever will be great among you, let him be your minister; 27 And whosoever will be chief among you, let him be your servant: 28 Even as the Son of man came not to be ministered unto, but to minister, and to give his life a ransom for many. Also, John 15: 12-13, KJV: 12 This is my commandment, That ye love one another, as I have loved you. 13 Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends. To lay down ones life for a friend is not so much to die as to be a living sacrifice who yields ones own desire, opinion and self-will to provide benefit, and unselfishly carry out the will of another. In a word, we say, “to love” where love is displayed through accountability, balance, commitment, gratitude, respect and truth. One of the fighters in the “Yahoo! Answers” public forum on Religion and Spirituality who uses the ID “Anonymous” (no profile information shown) posted the following:

 

Why are Methodists debating same-sex marriage? That should be a no brainier?

 

THE GOLDEN ARROW: For God is not the author of confusion, but of peace, as in all churches of the saints. (1st Corinthians 14: 33, King James Version (KJV)

 

THE DOUBLE DAGGER: Reasoning Together With GOD?(03/11/2019); The Church Of Jesus (06/18/2018); That GOD Is Immutable (05/04/2017); Thoughts on Sexual Relationships (03/07/2017); The Cross Condemns Fornication (05/20/2016); Answered by The Cross? (03/14/2016); Bad GOD, Good GOD? (01/03/2016); The Male, the Female, and GOD (02/09/2014); Destroying the Resurrected Body? (02/10/2014)

 

Anonymous”, among those who now account themselves to be followers of Jesus Christ there are many differences in levels of commitment, knowledge, maturity, respect, and zeal. There is confusion of human appetite, desire, emotion, and sensation as the origin for ones actions and choices, rather than divine prerogative, eternal purpose, and the sovereign will of GOD. Seeking to address the full person and their various needs, the church often operates as an institution having multiple goals and practices that go beyond promoting rebirth, salvation, and spiritual growth, and that expresses greater concern for things having a character and nature that is carnal, material, political, psychological, and social. Efforts to suppress superstition, and demystify practice and worship have led to eliminating many ceremonies and formal standards (e.g., dress codes; speaking within the sanctuary; weekend grocery shopping); and many congregations no longer promote the truth that GOD is a spirit. The process and purpose wherein the male and female should populate the entire earth through the flesh in obedience to the spirit is no longer thought the only response men and women should pursue (e.g., there are donating sperm; surrogate services; the freezing, storage and thawing of ones own eggs for later in vitro fertilization (IVF) ). The makeup and substance of mankind once imparted to Adam from GOD is neither clearly displayed, nor correctly discerned to be the same indwelling endowment of life essence (we say, breath; spirit; word). Through the ministry of Jesus Christ, sinners who return to GOD in repentance are to receive fresh deposits of the inseparable aspects of divine fullness that include faith, holiness, longsuffering, lovingkindness, oneness without sameness, personhood, wisdom, and wrath against sin.

The human process we acknowledge as natural, normal, and ordinary tends to install as values within the church elements such as ceremony, habit, human rights, and tradition in place of strict discipline, sacred doctrine, and godliness. As a result, errors may be found such as (1) GOD no longer pursues the purposes declared through Creation; (2) there can be no direct communication, exchange and interaction between GOD and human beings; (3) mankind will use education and science to escape the condition that resulted from the fall of Adam and Eve; (4) the Bible and ancient holy writings are no longer valid, because divine truth is ever-changing, expanding, and progressing; (5) GOD wants mankind to have freedom and to enjoy whatsoever they may desire; and (6) GOD wants the children of men to control and possess the earth, not merely manage and supervise the earth. Consider again the following that uses language from the Bible:

1. Numbers 23: 19, King James Version (KJV): 19 God is not a man, that he should lie; neither the son of man, that he should repent: hath he said, and shall he not do it? or hath he spoken, and shall he not make it good?

2. Isaiah 55: 10-11, KJV: 10 For as the rain cometh down, and the snow from heaven, and returneth not thither, but watereth the earth, and maketh it bring forth and bud, that it may give seed to the sower, and bread to the eater: 11 So shall my word be that goeth forth out of my mouth: it shall not return unto me void, but it shall accomplish that which I please, and it shall prosper in the thing whereto I sent it.

3. Isaiah 45: 17-19, KJV: 17 But Israel shall be saved in the LORD with an everlasting salvation: ye shall not be ashamed nor confounded world without end. 18 For thus saith the LORD that created the heavens; God himself that formed the earth and made it; he hath established it, he created it not in vain, he formed it to be inhabited: I am the LORD; and there is none else. 19 I have not spoken in secret, in a dark place of the earth: I said not unto the seed of Jacob, Seek ye me in vain: I the LORD speak righteousness, I declare things that are right.

There is far more that should be said, correctly examined, and spiritually apprehended. (For example, 4. Hebrews 13: 8, KJV: 8 Jesus Christ the same yesterday, and to day, and for ever.) Even so, I trust this fragment will be useful. Be it unto you according to your faith.

 

Image downloaded 11:56 AM, April 21, 2019 @ https://williamoconnor.files.wordpress.com/2011/07/confusion.png

 

Signature Mark

THE BLACK PHOENIX

Washington, DC

Cardinal in ScandalsThe 77-year-old Cardinal Ezzati had submitted his resignation two years ago when he reached the mandatory retirement age of 75 but but pope Francis kept him on. Cardinal Ezzati became the flash point of survivors’ ire for mishandling several cases of abuse. Luis Hidalgo/Associated Press (see reference below)

 

Today, reply is on responses by the Pope and other church leaders to cases of abuse and scandals within their congregations. The church as a material and social reality will continue to be challenged by the world, and troubled by the problems associated with the shared human condition that include mortality, sexuality, and mankind being vulnerable to sin. Many within the communities of faith are unable to correctly separate all the multiple subtleties and streams of truth now appearing in the public forums. In the same way that questions about the administration and supervision of conduct and practice for the clergy are very different than the issues of doctrine, liturgy, and sacramental practice for the full body of Christ, the questions for assigning eternal condemnation to personhood as in divine final judgment must be continually acknowledged as distinct from those to determine the fruitfulness, spirit content, or the godliness and unselfishness of a persons ministry, service, and sacred works. One of the fighters in the “Yahoo! Answers” public forum on Religion and Spirituality who uses the ID “Anonymous” (no profile is shown) posted the following:

 

Why hasn’t Pope Francis made some major changes in the Catholic church in response to recent revelations?

 

THE GOLDEN ARROW: When a righteous man turneth away from his righteousness, and committeth iniquity, and dieth in them; for his iniquity that he hath done shall he die. Again, when the wicked man turneth away from his wickedness that he hath committed, and doeth that which is lawful and right, he shall save his soul alive. Because he considereth, and turneth away from all his transgressions that he hath committed, he shall surely live, he shall not die. Yet saith the house of Israel, The way of the Lord is not equal. O house of Israel, are not my ways equal? are not your ways unequal? Therefore I will judge you, O house of Israel, every one according to his ways, saith the Lord GOD. Repent, and turn yourselves from all your transgressions; so iniquity shall not be your ruin. Cast away from you all your transgressions, whereby ye have transgressed; and make you a new heart and a new spirit: for why will ye die, O house of Israel? For I have no pleasure in the death of him that dieth, saith the Lord GOD: wherefore turn yourselves, and live ye. (Ezekiel 18: 26-32, King James Version, KJV)

 

THE DOUBLE DAGGER: Challenges To The Church? (03/01/2019); The Workings of Divinity? (01/15/2019); Appetite and Human Sexuality? (10/19/2018); Questions GOD Might Ask? (05/11/2018); Thoughts on Sexual Relationships (03/07/2017); Temporal and Eternal Judgment (02/15/2017); The Work of Forgiving (11/23/2016); Why Is Lust Condemned? (07/20/2016); Flesh Against the Spirit? (06/19/2016)

 

Anonymous”, the course for things promised and prophesied from GOD is not disturbed by what you call “recent revelations.” The present-day issues of sexual abuse and misconduct within Christian assemblies and congregations are not a new problem or crisis that will result in the total destruction and elimination of the church. Human consciousness is repeatedly separated from divinity through such elements as appetite (e.g., hunger, thirst, sexual craving), sensation (e.g., hearing, seeing, tasting, touching) and emotion/mental process (e.g., anger, fear, imagination, recall, sadness). The church was founded by Jesus Christ to reveal and make visible otherwise unseen sacred operations and divine substance (we say, active presence; divine fullness; the Godhead; the Father, the Son, the Holy Spirit). Sinners become joined to the church as developing Christian believers when they (1) acknowledge divine judgment, mercy, forgiveness and grace; (2) choose to experience permanent change through the indwelling of GOD, and (3) receive fresh endowments through the ministry of Jesus Christ of the life essence (we say, breath; spirit; word) imparted from divinity to Adam and Eve.

The existence, nature, and process of the church are not intended by GOD to overturn or replace ceremonial, mechanical, and natural law; and despite being an instrument of GOD for eternal change that now provides a foretaste and visions of perfection from GOD, at this time, the church can not eliminate the operations of sin that may dominate awareness and self-will within created beings and living creatures. Sin has not been created by GOD; and the operations of sin oppose the continued existence of sacred law, the Lawgiver, and divine order throughout the universe. Sin promotes return to the conditions of chaos, confusion, and un-directed streaming that were in place before the founding of heaven and earth.

Many do not acknowledge the operations of sin as contrary or foreign to their own makeup and substance. They may regard error, sin and wickedness as ordinary and “normal” because their standards for deciding what is “good”, quality, and truth become ongoing aspects of their own inner workings (e.g., attitudes; goals; intentions; pledges). The breadth and depth for change that must occur within their life to release the grip of sin is so great, Christians simply say, You must be born again. This means the spirit processes and substances that generate consciousness, desire, and willpower must be altered to continually display the image of GOD. Included are balance, completeness, faith, holiness, longsuffering, lovingkindness, righteousness, wisdom, and wrath against sin. Consider again the following that uses language from the Bible:

1. Ecclesiastes 1: 8-10, King James Version (KJV): 8 All things are full of labour; man cannot utter it: the eye is not satisfied with seeing, nor the ear filled with hearing. 9 The thing that hath been, it is that which shall be; and that which is done is that which shall be done: and there is no new thing under the sun. 10 Is there any thing whereof it may be said, See, this is new? it hath been already of old time, which was before us.

2. Jude 1: 5-13, King James Version (KJV): 5 I will therefore put you in remembrance, though ye once knew this, how that the Lord, having saved the people out of the land of Egypt, afterward destroyed them that believed not. 6 And the angels which kept not their first estate, but left their own habitation, he hath reserved in everlasting chains under darkness unto the judgment of the great day. 7 Even as Sodom and Gomorrha, and the cities about them in like manner, giving themselves over to fornication, and going after strange flesh, are set forth for an example, suffering the vengeance of eternal fire. 8 Likewise also these filthy dreamers defile the flesh, despise dominion, and speak evil of dignities. 9 Yet Michael the archangel, when contending with the devil he disputed about the body of Moses, durst not bring against him a railing accusation, but said, The Lord rebuke thee. 10 But these speak evil of those things which they know not: but what they know naturally, as brute beasts, in those things they corrupt themselves. 11 Woe unto them! for they have gone in the way of Cain, and ran greedily after the error of Balaam for reward, and perished in the gainsaying of Core. 12 These are spots in your feasts of charity, when they feast with you, feeding themselves without fear: clouds they are without water, carried about of winds; trees whose fruit withereth, without fruit, twice dead, plucked up by the roots; 13 Raging waves of the sea, foaming out their own shame; wandering stars, to whom is reserved the blackness of darkness for ever.

3. Ezekiel 16: 49-50, KJV: 49 Behold, this was the iniquity of thy sister Sodom, pride, fulness of bread, and abundance of idleness was in her and in her daughters, neither did she strengthen the hand of the poor and needy. 50 And they were haughty, and committed abomination before me: therefore I took them away as I saw good.

4. 1st Corinthians 5: 1-5, KJV: 1 It is reported commonly that there is fornication among you, and such fornication as is not so much as named among the Gentiles, that one should have his father’s wife. 2 And ye are puffed up, and have not rather mourned, that he that hath done this deed might be taken away from among you. 3 For I verily, as absent in body, but present in spirit, have judged already, as though I were present, concerning him that hath so done this deed, 4 In the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, when ye are gathered together, and my spirit, with the power of our Lord Jesus Christ, 5 To deliver such an one unto Satan for the destruction of the flesh, that the spirit may be saved in the day of the Lord Jesus.

There is far more that should be said, correctly examined, and spiritually apprehended. (For example, 5. 2nd Corinthians 7: 9-11, KJV: 9 Now I rejoice, not that ye were made sorry, but that ye sorrowed to repentance: for ye were made sorry after a godly manner, that ye might receive damage by us in nothing. 10 For godly sorrow worketh repentance to salvation not to be repented of: but the sorrow of the world worketh death. 11 For behold this selfsame thing, that ye sorrowed after a godly sort, what carefulness it wrought in you, yea, what clearing of yourselves, yea, what indignation, yea, what fear, yea, what vehement desire, yea, what zeal, yea, what revenge! In all things ye have approved yourselves to be clear in this matter.) Even so, I trust this fragment will be useful. Be it unto you according to your faith.

 

Associated Press. March 23, 2019. Pope Replaces Chilean Cardinal Accused of Sexual Abuse Cover-Up. The New York Times: New York, NY. Downloaded 11:59 AM, March 27, 2019 from The New York Times (Europe) Internet site @ https://www.nytimes.com/2019/03/23/world/europe/pope-chile-cardinal-sex-abuse.html

 

Signature Mark

THE BLACK PHOENIX

Washington, DC

 

committed.png

 

Today, reply is on commitment, politics, and continuing within a home church where social issues may be a major focus. The modern disciples who serve as members of the church founded by Jesus Christ also must face and overcome many of the same contradictions, errors and obstacles to godliness that existed among those to whom the Son of the Highest was sent displaying the authentic humanity required from GOD. More than to family, friends, neighbors, the local community or the world-at-large, within the body of believers, Christians must be committed to divinity (we also say, divine fullness; the Godhead; the Father, the Son, the Holy Spirit). Christian believers all are challenged to minister and share while on the earth as agents and spokespersons of Jesus Christ (we say, prophets). Rightly understood, the doctrine, teachings and works provided are not those determined by the members of the body, so much as they are the demonstrations and proclamations from the heart and mind of Christ made present through his Spirit. Thus, it is written: 1st Corinthians 1: 26-31, King James Version (KJV): 26 For ye see your calling, brethren, how that not many wise men after the flesh, not many mighty, not many noble, are called: 27 But God hath chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the wise; and God hath chosen the weak things of the world to confound the things which are mighty; 28 And base things of the world, and things which are despised, hath God chosen, yea, and things which are not, to bring to nought things that are: 29 That no flesh should glory in his presence. 30 But of him are ye in Christ Jesus, who of God is made unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption: 31 That, according as it is written, He that glorieth, let him glory in the Lord. A fighter in the “Yahoo! Answers” public forum on Religion and Spirituality who uses the ID “Brandon” (Level 2 with 495 points, a member since February 19, 2019) posted the following:

 

Why do I keep going to this church it won’t ever change?

It keeps talking politics and discusses hating people instead of loving them. I believe in love to everyone. No matter who they are.

 

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

 

THE DOUBLE DAGGER: Ministry Is Through Relationship (03/05/2019); Recognizing Holy and Unholy (01/31/2019); Christians Are Following Jesus (01/24/2019); Offering Yourself To Christ? (12/27/2018); Known By His Fruit (11/04/2018);Serving In Christian Relationships (08/31/2018); Changed And Made Christ-like? (06/19/2018); Attending Church a “Chore”? (01/23/2018)

 

Brandon”, here are some points to consider that you may find helpful:

1. All who turn to Jesus Christ for change, redemption, and salvation must undergo a process of rebirth, discovery, gradual growth, and becoming mature to display divine presence through their own endowment of life essence (we say, breath; spirit; word) from the makeup of GOD.

2. Developing believers are to take on a new consciousness of things having spirit content, divine process, eternal purpose, and sacred substance, rather than focus on prosperity or survival, and the things having carnal, material and social importance.

3. Members of the church are diverse, and do not all have the same levels of accountability, faith, knowledge, maturity, readiness, selflessness, stability, and willingness to endure suffering. There is only one faith, one Lord, one truth for all; and, what, when and how a believer receives their unique portion of the divine provision, is carried forward by the Holy Spirit in ways that are simple, yet, profound, and may appear only earthly and unrelated to sacred truth.

There is far more that should be said, correctly examined, and spiritually apprehended. (For example, 4. The church as a unified body and a community in accord is to display and make present the attitude, commitment, lifestyle, and works that were carried out by Jesus while ministering on the earth.) Even so, I trust this fragment will be useful. Be it unto you according to your faith.

Signature Mark

THE BLACK PHOENIX

Washington, DC

The-Flow-of-Grace-in-the-Body-of-Christ

 

Today, reply is on completeness and perfection for Christ as the Head of the church, and the multiple streams of change and growth that must appear as the process for the church as his body on the earth.  Fellowship and relationship with divinity is not so much a growth and movement from new truth to new truth as it is growth from faith to faith, and glory to glory.  When Jesus Christ began his ministry on earth as an incarnation of divinity, he would accelerate, continue and fulfill things already begun in Adam, the Patriarchs, and Abraham.  At his birth, sophisticated mechanisms and practices were in place through Judaism and the Temple at Jerusalem.  Jesus founded his church as a fulfillment of unchanging eternal purposes, and a new creation.  The church has continued mankind’s focus and systematic examination of the life and teachings of Jesus, and has developed and maintained its own customs, practices, sacred history, and traditions.  The operations and process of the church to bring about sacred events (we say, miracles), divine order, godly law, judgment, and salvation not to be repented of have gone forward through discovery, gradual growth, unselfish service, and suffering.  One of the fighters in the “Yahoo! Answers” Religion and Spirituality forum who uses the ID “Anonymous” (no profile information shared) posted the following:

 

I am a Catholic, I am wondering what is wrong with Catholic teaching that goes against the Bible?

Like praying to saints and stuff like that?

 

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, King James Version, KJV)

 

THE DOUBLE DAGGER:  The Church Of Jesus (06/18/2018); Abraham Demonstrates Spiritual Growth (05/30/2018); Diversity Within The Body (04/13/2018); Duties of a Christian? (03/13/2018); Meanings for “Apostolic Church” (05/08/2017); Diversity and Prophetic Gifts (11/22/2016); The Apocryphal Books? (08/07/2015); Catholics, Protestants and The Trinity? (10/12/2014); The Gift of Life Despised? (10/13/2014)

 

“Anonymous”, many Christians are perplexed by the fact that there are various differences in doctrine and practice found among the assemblies and congregations who name Jesus Christ as their head.  While Christ is to be acknowledged as complete, timeless, spiritual, and unchanging, the members of his body, the church, each must develop within the frameworks of time and space; the frameworks for cultural, intellectual, organizational, and social process; the framework of permanent changes by the Spirit of GOD provided through water baptism (i.e., death and burial of the inborn spirit with rebirth, spiritual growth, and maturation as born-again believers), and complete the transformation to exist as immortal, incorruptible companions to divinity at his appearing (we also say, Advent, the harvest, the Rapture, the Second Coming).  

The church is challenged to apprehend sacred knowledge, divine operations, and spiritual truth that go beyond accounts of the Creation, the promises to Abraham, or the Ten Commandments and the Covenant of Moses.  Created beings and living creatures are to receive a revelation of divine fullness (we also say, the Godhead; the Father, the Son, the Holy Spirit) whereby divinity becomes knowable, known, accessible, and approachable.  The holy writings (Old and New Testament) describe thousands of events within thousands of lives over the course of thousands of years.  Even so, the Scriptures that include covenants, praises, prayers, proclamations, promises, and prophecy are held by many as only a single source for divine truth.  Inseparable aspects of the makeup of the Creator (breath; life essence; spirit; word) are imparted to indwell the living.  Thus, believers are to operate as vessels containing faith, forbearance, forgiveness, holiness, joy, longsuffering, lovingkindness, meekness, oneness without sameness, personhood, righteousness, wisdom, and wrath against sin.

With this in view, the streams of sacred truth are held to flow from “holy men of God” including the Patriarchs, the Judges, the Prophets, the Kings, the Apostles, the Bishops, the Church Fathers, and the Accord/Commonly Held Understanding of the Members within the Church.  Consider again the following that uses language from the Bible:

(1.)  Ephesians 4:  4-7, King James Version (KJV):  4 There is one body, and one Spirit, even as ye are called in one hope of your calling;  5 One Lord, one faith, one baptism,  6 One God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all.  7 But unto every one of us is given grace according to the measure of the gift of Christ.

(2.)  Ephesians 4:  11-16, KJV:  11 And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers;  12 For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ:  13 Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ:  14 That we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive;  15 But speaking the truth in love, may grow up into him in all things, which is the head, even Christ:  16 From whom the whole body fitly joined together and compacted by that which every joint supplieth, according to the effectual working in the measure of every part, maketh increase of the body unto the edifying of itself in love.

(3.)  Romans 3:  21-23, KJV:  21 But now the righteousness of God without the law is manifested, being witnessed by the law and the prophets;  22 Even the righteousness of God which is by faith of Jesus Christ unto all and upon all them that believe:  for there is no difference:  23 For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God;

There is far more that should be said, correctly examined, and spiritually apprehended.  (For example, (4.)  Acts 20:  28, KJV:  28 Take heed therefore unto yourselves, and to all the flock, over the which the Holy Ghost hath made you overseers, to feed the church of God, which he hath purchased with his own blood.)  Even so, I trust this fragment will be useful.  Be it unto you according to your faith.

Signature-Mark.png
THE BLACK PHOENIX
Washington, DC

Apt To Teach

 

Today, rather than attack the former First Lady, Secretary of State, and recent Candidate for President of the United States as many were doing in the “Yahoo! Answers” Religion and Spirituality forum, my reply is on teaching and volunteering within the church of Jesus Christ.  Within the household of faith, there are four callings to ministry acknowledged among believers:  preaching, teaching, music, and hospitality.  It should not be surprising that many who are activists, elected officials, leaders in their homes and workplaces, and thought leaders of the community-at-large offer themselves to the church through roles as comforters, study guides, and teachers.  Included are the positions as deacons and deaconesses, godparents, and nursing attendants as well as Sunday School supervisors and teachers.  In many church congregations, the work of the Sunday school teacher is that of a moderator who encourages discussion of the major points provided from prepared lesson booklets, or verses and passages recorded in the holy writings.  Developing believers are not to answer the challenge to serve Christ and the people of GOD on the basis of having a shared ethnic or racial background, issues of gender and sexual behavior, or even the depth of affection for their own families, friends, and relatives who are part of the congregation.  The same alertness, vigilance, impartiality and righteousness displayed by GOD in judgment should appear through their service as the children of GOD.  Therefore, these workers rarely boast having greater knowledge and skill than others within the body; and they serve on the basis of their humility, their love for the divine fullness (we also say, the Godhead; the Trinity; the Father, the Son, the Holy Spirit), their acknowledgment of the needs for salvation among others, their desire to continue sharing what they themselves receive from GOD, their willingness to make meaningful offerings and sacrifices along with their zeal.  One of the fighters who uses the ID “Anonymous” (no profile data appears) posted the following:

 

Is Hillary Clinton really a Bible scholar ? Hillary Clinton says she taught Sunday school Could Hillary Clinton be classified as pastor ?

 

THE GOLDEN ARROW:  But speak thou the things which become sound doctrine:  That the aged men be sober, grave, temperate, sound in faith, in charity, in patience.  The aged women likewise, that they be in behaviour as becometh holiness, not false accusers, not given to much wine, teachers of good things;  That they may teach the young women to be sober, to love their husbands, to love their children,  To be discreet, chaste, keepers at home, good, obedient to their own husbands, that the word of God be not blasphemed.  (Titus 2:  1-5, King James Version, KJV)

 

THE DOUBLE DAGGER:  Conversation In The World (04/03/2018); Comparing Sacred and Secular (03/15/2018); Duties of a Christian? (03/13/2018); …Gathered In My Name (05/29/2017); Understanding Spiritual Growth? (03/13/2015); The Gift of Meekness (11/25/2014); Concerning Meekness (11/26/2014); Driving Under the Influence (02/07/2014); Immortality (02/08/2014)

 

“Anonymous”, here are some thoughts I can share that may help as you continue to examine the operations and process within the body of Christ:

(1.)  Academic achievement, degrees, and titles are often acknowledged and respected among Christian believers; however, the primary requirements for pastors and teachers are aspects of divine personhood and Christ-likeness.  Included are faith, forbearance, forgiveness, gratitude, humility, longsuffering, lovingkindness, sincerity, wisdom, and wrath against sin.

(2.)  Many who have been professionals in classroom and school settings volunteer to serve in counseling and teaching roles within the church.  They bring secular knowledge, skills, and accounts of experience in the world along with such traits as adultness; skill using language and spoken word; and experience with curriculum development, classroom management, preparing lesson plans, and sharing through lectures and other forms of presentation.  In many assemblies those in these roles receive no money as payment for their work, and it is more in the nature of sharing and exchange than formal instruction.

(3.)  Clergy and leadership in the church family are respected and venerated as elders where they will continually display accountability, approachability, balance, completeness, mature perspective, sobriety, and stability.  

(4.)  Commitment to Christ, faith, love of the Scriptures, and a host of other factors explain why a person believes and stands up to offer themselves in ministry.  This is true not only for Bible study classes; there are many roles demanding unselfish service such as praise and prophecy through music (i.e., the choir), church feeding programs, and programs for healing that focus on health, hygiene, and wellness.  Even so, many are called, and few are chosen.  Members do best when they acknowledge the eternal motives of divinity, avoid self-promotion, and continue in the discipline and works of prophecy.  Consider again the following that uses language from the Bible:

(a.)  John 7:  14-18, King James Version (KJV):  14 Now about the midst of the feast Jesus went up into the temple, and taught.  15 And the Jews marvelled, saying, How knoweth this man letters, having never learned?  16 Jesus answered them, and said, My doctrine is not mine, but his that sent me.  17 If any man will do his will, he shall know of the doctrine, whether it be of God, or whether I speak of myself.  18 He that speaketh of himself seeketh his own glory:  but he that seeketh his glory that sent him, the same is true, and no unrighteousness is in him.

(b.)  1st Corinthians 12:  27-29, KJV:  27 Now ye are the body of Christ, and members in particular.  28 And God hath set some in the church, first apostles, secondarily prophets, thirdly teachers, after that miracles, then gifts of healings, helps, governments, diversities of tongues.  29 Are all apostles? are all prophets? are all teachers? are all workers of miracles?  30 Have all the gifts of healing? do all speak with tongues? do all interpret?

(c.)  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 that should be said, correctly examined, and spiritually apprehended.  (For example, (d.)  1st Timothy 6:  3-11, KJV:  3 If any man teach otherwise, and consent not to wholesome words, even the words of our Lord Jesus Christ, and to the doctrine which is according to godliness;  4 He is proud, knowing nothing, but doting about questions and strifes of words, whereof cometh envy, strife, railings, evil surmisings,  5 Perverse disputings of men of corrupt minds, and destitute of the truth, supposing that gain is godliness:  from such withdraw thyself.  6 But godliness with contentment is great gain.  7 For we brought nothing into this world, and it is certain we can carry nothing out.  8 And having food and raiment let us be therewith content.  9 But they that will be rich fall into temptation and a snare, and into many foolish and hurtful lusts, which drown men in destruction and perdition.  10 For the love of money is the root of all evil:  which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows.  11 But thou, O man of God, flee these things; and follow after righteousness, godliness, faith, love, patience, meekness.)  Even so, I trust this fragment will be useful.  Be it unto you according to your faith.

Signature-Mark.png

THE BLACK PHOENIX
Washington, DC