Archive for the ‘Value of the Church’ Category

One Accord One Mouth

 

Today, the reply is on the priorities for church congregations, and the use of church funds for ministry to the poor instead of for special observances and seasonal programs. Ministry intended to rejoice the church body as a community separated to Christ is not to be accounted as self-indulgent, superfluous, or unrighteous. While Christian church groups perform good works ministering to the community-at-large and the World, the members of a congregation themselves must maintain their peculiar identity as those joined by their spirit content from GOD. Those having discernment will insist that programs presented to the congregation be prophetic in their nature, and correctly convey comfort, edification, and exhortation. Choices and decisions will be required that give the assembly an appearance of indifference, an exaggerated focus on religion, or even undue self-promotion. Even so, many of the works that must be done to establish an anointed congregation of Christian believers are unseen by the community-at-large, and are provided only through the active relationships found among mature members of the church. The idea that one gives GOD a Rolodex—not a cheap copy or knock-off’—comes into view with the principle, we are to give GOD only our best. Therefore, silver and gold will appear even among congregations of poor, third-world, and working class believers, because they want to serve unselfishly, and correctly acknowledge the divine preeminence. It is written: Malachi 3: 13-18, King James Version (KJV): 13 Your words have been stout against me, saith the LORD. Yet ye say, What have we spoken so much against thee? 14 Ye have said, It is vain to serve God: and what profit is it that we have kept his ordinance, and that we have walked mournfully before the LORD of hosts? 15 And now we call the proud happy; yea, they that work wickedness are set up; yea, they that tempt God are even delivered. 16 Then they that feared the LORD spake often one to another: and the LORD hearkened, and heard it, and a book of remembrance was written before him for them that feared the LORD, and that thought upon his name. 17 And they shall be mine, saith the LORD of hosts, in that day when I make up my jewels; and I will spare them, as a man spareth his own son that serveth him. 18 Then shall ye return, and discern between the righteous and the wicked, between him that serveth God and him that serveth him not. One of the fighters in the “Yahoo! Answers” public forum for Religion & Spirituality who uses the ID “Anonymous” (no profile is shared) posted the following:

 

How could a church justify blowing a grand on soloists for Christmas Eve?

Our church has decided to spend a thousand dollars on musicians for Christmas Eve preludes before the service. This is 30 minutes of music before each of 3 Christmas Eve services. This thousand dollars could easily house and feed a poor family, and it could provide water to someone in the Sahara so they don’t dehydrate, or help close the ozone hole.

How hard is it for someone to just belt out Ooooooh Hoooooleeeee Naaaaaaiiiicht thuuuuuuu staaaaaaaaaars are braaaaaiiiiiiichtly schaaiiiiiiiiniiiing ……….

Just having someone in the church perform the preludes would definitely save money to give to the poor, and do they really need a piper piping and a drummer drumming. Is this wasting good money and equivalent to lighting the money on fire to see all the pretty sparks and colored flames. It just ends up going up into the night sky either way.

Why pay a grand for something that is so easy to get done for free. People are starving and freezing without heat and the church wastes money on special music is this fair?

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Updated 2 hours ago:

I bet most people would gladly sit through a terrible screeching rendition of these songs if it meant that money went to someone so they could have heat this winter. Or a family could have a turkey on the table.

Updated 1 hour ago:

Since when was singing o holy night as complicated as brain surgery or something to justify such a high cost. Just belt it out and save the money if it was me.

Updated 1 hour ago:

That money would be better spent on education of church members. It could pay for the textbooks for a law student for a semester. Think of how much that compounds returns, education is the gift that keeps on giving, or it could pay for an elderly dementia patient’s diaper changer for a month. Or help someone afford their nursing home bills.

 

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

 

THE DOUBLE DAGGER: Why Do They Sing? (11/14/2019); Patriotic Songs To Worship? (11/10/2019); Christian Celebration And Rejoicing (11/03/2019); The Purpose Of Worship (10//10/2019); The Church Of Jesus (06/18/2018); Salvation By Good Works? (03/08/2018); Can A Church Not Be “Religious”? (07/27/2016); Why Are Works Required? (07/18/2016)

 

Anonymous”, Christian believers do not become justified before GOD by performing good deeds and community service works; the process and substance of our deeds must be Spirit. Properly understood, worship at Christmas, or Easter and other feasts are sacred events, to be shared within the sanctuary that is set apart by prayer, and among the saints of GOD. During celebrations and seasons of observance, the purpose for those who gather in fellowship continues to be that they resemble, reflect, and reveal Jesus Christ. Even so, Christian believers usually come short of the mark set by the Savior as head of the church when they seek to rank and rate secular works (e.g., distributing clothes; presenting programs for public health awareness; hosting political and social activists; presenting concerts and music programs) against spiritual practices (e.g., confession; praise; prayer; prophesy using music and dance). The offering to divine fullness (divinity; the Godhead; the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit) is no longer the blood of bulls, goats and sheep; rather, it is the blood of Jesus. Standards that applied when making offerings and sacrifices continue today as principles for behavior and conduct when acknowledging and showing reverence to divinity. Because buying and selling (bake sales, yard sales, etc.), charitable giving, and philanthropy are very visible, and can generate much discussion and excitement, many congregations mistakenly seek to build up their assembly’s name and reputation through fund-raising and personal service, where lasting benefit to the church as a body may come only by the presence of Jesus Christ and the operations of the Holy Spirit. Consider again the following that uses language from the Bible, and a selection from the music ministry of John Michael Talbot:

(1.) Leviticus 22: 20-22, King James Version (KJV): 20 But whatsoever hath a blemish, that shall ye not offer: for it shall not be acceptable for you. 21 And whosoever offereth a sacrifice of peace offerings unto the LORD to accomplish his vow, or a freewill offering in beeves or sheep, it shall be perfect to be accepted; there shall be no blemish therein. 22 Blind, or broken, or maimed, or having a wen, or scurvy, or scabbed, ye shall not offer these unto the LORD, nor make an offering by fire of them upon the altar unto the LORD.

(2.) Luke 11: 41-42, KJV: 41 But rather give alms of such things as ye have; and, behold, all things are clean unto you. 42 But woe unto you, Pharisees! for ye tithe mint and rue and all manner of herbs, and pass over judgment and the love of God: these ought ye to have done, and not to leave the other undone.

(3.) Mark 14: 3-9, KJV: 3 And being in Bethany in the house of Simon the leper, as he sat at meat, there came a woman having an alabaster box of ointment of spikenard very precious; and she brake the box, and poured it on his head. 4 And there were some that had indignation within themselves, and said, Why was this waste of the ointment made? 5 For it might have been sold for more than three hundred pence, and have been given to the poor. And they murmured against her. 6 And Jesus said, Let her alone; why trouble ye her? she hath wrought a good work on me. 7 For ye have the poor with you always, and whensoever ye will ye may do them good: but me ye have not always. 8 She hath done what she could: she is come aforehand to anoint my body to the burying. 9 Verily I say unto you, Wheresoever this gospel shall be preached throughout the whole world, this also that she hath done shall be spoken of for a memorial of her.

There is far more that should be said, correctly examined, and spiritually apprehended. (For example, (4.) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T6tGWMV22AA.) Even so, I trust this fragment will be useful. Be it unto you according to your faith.

 

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THE BLACK PHOENIX

Washington, DC

2-samuel-6-5-make-a-joyful-noise

 

Today, reply is on the use of music and song during worship. The church founded by Jesus Christ provides multiple sacred gifts that can not be found in any other place on earth. There, divinity allows the use of simple devices to acknowledge, access, and approach the high throne of GOD, even, the use of songs by those who are not singers. Rather than the blood of bulls, goats and sheep that were offered within the sacred tabernacle of Moses and the Temple at Jerusalem as depictions and demonstrations of unseen things in heaven, Christians now gather to offer and sacrifice the elements of life essence (breath; spirit; word) that reside within the Son of GOD, Jesus Christ. It is written: Hebrews 10: 4-10, King James Version (KJV): 4 For it is not possible that the blood of bulls and of goats should take away sins. 5 Wherefore when he cometh into the world, he saith, Sacrifice and offering thou wouldest not, but a body hast thou prepared me: 6 In burnt offerings and sacrifices for sin thou hast had no pleasure. 7 Then said I, Lo, I come (in the volume of the book it is written of me,) to do thy will, O God. 8 Above when he said, Sacrifice and offering and burnt offerings and offering for sin thou wouldest not, neither hadst pleasure therein; which are offered by the law; 9 Then said he, Lo, I come to do thy will, O God. He taketh away the first, that he may establish the second. 10 By the which will we are sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all. A fighter in the “Yahoo! Answers” public forum on Religion and Spirituality who uses the ID “Tasm” (Level 6 with 17,816 points) posted the following:

 

As a religious person?

Do you believe all that you are told in church or do you pick certain things and disgaurd some of it?

I went to church two or three times and liked that they try to guide to live healthier, but I did not believe much of what they said about the after life. Also they sang a lot and I found it to be a really big waste of my time, why do they sing all the time. It was like they tried to hold me and waste my time on purpose instead of just stating their business and releasing me.

 

THE GOLDEN ARROW: Praise ye the LORD. Praise God in his sanctuary: praise him in the firmament of his power. Praise him for his mighty acts: praise him according to his excellent greatness. Praise him with the sound of the trumpet: praise him with the psaltery and harp. Praise him with the timbrel and dance: praise him with stringed instruments and organs. Praise him upon the loud cymbals: praise him upon the high sounding cymbals. Let every thing that hath breath praise the LORD. Praise ye the LORD. (Psalms 150: 1-6, KJV)

 

THE DOUBLE DAGGER: Patriotic Songs To Worship? (11/10/2019); By Death and Resurrection (10/29/2019); One Body, Many Members (10/17/2019); The Purpose Of Worship (10//10/2019); Justified By Church Attendance? (06/21/2019); GOD Speaking Through Song? (11/01/2013); Why Not One Bible? (11/02/2013)

 

Tasm”, those who regularly attend church participate in a sacred operation that is put forward from divinity, rather than a man-made event provided from the World. Mature Christian believers are in an ongoing relationship with divinity through offerings and sacrifices made by Jesus Christ as their High Priest in heaven. Those who turn to GOD through Jesus must willingly accept that divinity (we also say, divine fullness; the Godhead; the Father, the Son, the Holy Spirit) is guiding them in a lifetime journey whereby their inner spirit is to be permanently changed and transformed. Sinners are to receive a fresh endowment of the same life essence (we also say, breath; spirit; word) imparted to mankind from divine fullness at Creation. Included are inseparable aspects of the full substance of GOD such as balance, faith, forbearance, holiness, longsuffering, lovingkindness, personhood, righteousness, wisdom, and wrath against sin. Just as babies must develop before their birth, those coming to Christ must undergo a process of death and burial of their inborn nature with rebirth from divine DNA, so to speak, and life from the resurrection of Jesus Christ. Those born again are to “grow up again” and become mature/ripe for harvest by the Lord at his appearing (the Advent; the Rapture; the Second Coming). Developing believers will endure multiple life challenges and “growing pains” while on the earth. Before the coming of the Lord, all are to be made ready by experiences of discovery; fellowship within the household of faith; gradual growth; sacred practice (e.g., discernment, praise, prayer, thanksgiving); study of the holy writings; unselfish service; and suffering. Consider the following that uses language from the Bible, and a presentation from the music ministry of Steve Amerson and Ralph Carmichael:

(1.) Hosea 14: 2, King James Version (KJV): 2 Take with you words, and turn to the LORD: say unto him, Take away all iniquity, and receive us graciously: so will we render the calves of our lips.

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

(3.) Hebrews 9: 13-15, KJV: 13 For if the blood of bulls and of goats, and the ashes of an heifer sprinkling the unclean, sanctifieth to the purifying of the flesh: 14 How much more shall the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself without spot to God, purge your conscience from dead works to serve the living God? 15 And for this cause he is the mediator of the new testament, that by means of death, for the redemption of the transgressions that were under the first testament, they which are called might receive the promise of eternal inheritance.

There is far more that should be said, correctly examined, and spiritually apprehended. (For example, (4.) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-yd8nVLtnAA.) Even so, I trust this fragment will be useful. Be it unto you according to your faith.

 

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THE BLACK PHOENIX

Washington, DC

one-nation-under-god

 

This Sunday, as the observance of Veterans Day approaches in America, November 11, 2019, reply is on the use of patriotic songs during Christian worship. The Spirit imparted to make divinity present and knowable is different from a man or woman’s fighting spirit, esprit de corps, pride, the sense of brotherhood, and the special camaraderie among soldiers and others who together are the defenders of homes, communities, and states (we say, emergency first responders, militia, police). It is not an error or transgression of sacred law that men unite as a geopolitical nation or sovereign state appealing to GOD for benefits, blessings, deliverance, and privilege. Also, achievements, hardship, mourning, suffering, and victory all are to be celebrated and lifted up to GOD by united peoples. Even so, the church of Jesus Christ is to operate on earth as ambassadors from the kingdom of heaven. Men, women, and children are to become filled with spirit substance from the makeup of GOD. As though they had no other country of origin, or place of birth other than heaven, sinners will be set apart to exist as life companions to divinity by their repentance and acceptance of permanent change. As those “born again”, sanctified and vessels of divine fullness, developing Christian believers will be acknowledged as “peculiar” because of their godly lifestyle and daily routines, rather than for their business, family, political, or social affiliation. It is written: 2nd Acts 17: 24-31, King James Version (KJV): 24 God that made the world and all things therein, seeing that he is Lord of heaven and earth, dwelleth not in temples made with hands; 25 Neither is worshipped with men’s hands, as though he needed any thing, seeing he giveth to all life, and breath, and all things; 26 And hath made of one blood all nations of men for to dwell on all the face of the earth, and hath determined the times before appointed, and the bounds of their habitation; 27 That they should seek the Lord, if haply they might feel after him, and find him, though he be not far from every one of us: 28 For in him we live, and move, and have our being; as certain also of your own poets have said, For we are also his offspring. 29 Forasmuch then as we are the offspring of God, we ought not to think that the Godhead is like unto gold, or silver, or stone, graven by art and man’s device. 30 And the times of this ignorance God winked at; but now commandeth all men every where to repent: 31 Because he hath appointed a day, in the which he will judge the world in righteousness by that man whom he hath ordained; whereof he hath given assurance unto all men, in that he hath raised him from the dead. One of the fighters in the “Yahoo! Answers” public forum on Religion and Spirituality using the ID “Anonymous” (no profile is shared) posted the following:

 

At Mass, should we Really be singing patriotic songs instead of worshiping God?

 

THE GOLDEN ARROW: For the grace of God that bringer salvation hath appeared to all men, Teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly, in this present world; Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ; Who gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify unto himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works. (Titus 2: 11-14, KJV)

 

THE DOUBLE DAGGER: Kings, Popes, Priests, Prophets? (09/22/2019); Messiah Already Has Come (04/14/2019); Being A Holy Nation (02/20/2018); Eternal Praise and Worship? (01/30/2018); Righteousness Exalts A Nation (07/04/2017); Politics and The Kingdom? (05/31/2017); Beliefs, Customs and Racism? (09/24/2014); GOD Speaking Through Song? (11/01/2013); Why Not One Bible? (11/02/2013)

 

Anonymous”, among Christians, activities and gatherings for worship must address a broad range of needs within the community of believers, and are intended to provide encouragement, guidance, and nourishment to those having multiple levels of commitment, maturity, need, and understanding. The up-tempo music of the marching band, patriotic songs, and sermons to rouse the elan and shared national spirit are often used in church services with the intent of crystallizing and expressing gratitude, hope (i.e., an expected end; the fulfillment of divine promise), joy, and all the other inseparable aspects of spirit endowment from the makeup of GOD. Included are faith, holiness, longsuffering, lovingkindness, oneness without sameness, personhood, righteousness, wisdom, and wrath against sin.

In Christian gatherings for sacred acknowledgment and praise, there should be no effort by worship leaders to influence politics and social platforms, or to identify and make thrusts against other ethnic and racial groups, other nations, or those having different national origins. Rather than a focus on carnal reasoning, material objects and social behavior, the primary focus is to fellowship with and through Jesus Christ. Sinners who return to GOD through the salvation offered by his Son are not approved on the basis of their nationality, tribe, skin color, employment, poverty, wealth, or their status as citizens and immigrants. Born-again believers are granted fresh endowments of life essence and are to exist as the new creation. Developing believers are to receive Christ-likeness, eternal purpose, mercy in judgment, justification, and glorification through an ongoing relationship that will continue even despite the occurrence of death. Prayer that includes confession of errors, faith, and material needs should appear along with prophecy (i.e., comfort, edification, and exhortation). Thanksgiving may be made and memorials for specific events in ones collective and public life as well as ones personal and private life. Consider the following that uses language from the Bible, and a selection from the music ministry of Steve Amerson:

(1.) 1st Chronicles 16: 8-12, King James Version (KJV): 8 Give thanks unto the LORD, call upon his name, make known his deeds among the people. 9 Sing unto him, sing psalms unto him, talk ye of all his wondrous works. 10 Glory ye in his holy name: let the heart of them rejoice that seek the LORD. 11 Seek the LORD and his strength, seek his face continually. 12 Remember his marvellous works that he hath done, his wonders, and the judgments of his mouth;

(2) 1st John 1: 1-10, KJV: 1 That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we have looked upon, and our hands have handled, of the Word of life; 2 (For the life was manifested, and we have seen it, and bear witness, and shew unto you that eternal life, which was with the Father, and was manifested unto us;) 3 That which we have seen and heard declare we unto you, that ye also may have fellowship with us: and truly our fellowship is with the Father, and with his Son Jesus Christ. 4 And these things write we unto you, that your joy may be full. 5 This then is the message which we have heard of him, and declare unto you, that God is light, and in him is no darkness at all. 6 If we say that we have fellowship with him, and walk in darkness, we lie, and do not the truth: 7 But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin. 8 If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. 9 If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. 10 If we say that we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us.

(3.) Hebrews 10: 23-27, KJV: 23 Let us hold fast the profession of our faith without wavering; (for he is faithful that promised;) 24 And let us consider one another to provoke unto love and to good works: 25 Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another: and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching. 26 For if we sin wilfully after that we have received the knowledge of the truth, there remaineth no more sacrifice for sins, 27 But a certain fearful looking for of judgment and fiery indignation, which shall devour the adversaries.

There is far more that should be said, correctly examined, and spiritually apprehended. (For example, (4.) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D02LsAp8xow.) Even so, I trust this fragment will be useful. Be it unto you according to your faith.

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THE BLACK PHOENIX

Washington, DC

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.

 

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THE BLACK PHOENIX

Washington, DC

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.

 

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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.

 

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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

 

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