Posts Tagged ‘ceremonies’

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Today, reply is on baptism as a divine witness displaying the character and makeup of divinity, resurrection, eternal life, and righteousness, rather than ceremonies, exercising authority over others, obedience, and the letter of the law. The forms of baptism depict a range of sacred operations that include absolution, atonement, judgment, refreshing, remission for sin, and restoration. Baptism does not complete the full transformation and perfecting of mankind to exist as immortal and incorruptible. Even so, the importance and sacred value of baptism is on record as inarguable. It is written: 1st John 5: 9-12, King James Version (KJV): 9 If we receive the witness of men, the witness of God is greater: for this is the witness of God which he hath testified of his Son. 10 He that believeth on the Son of God hath the witness in himself: he that believeth not God hath made him a liar; because he believeth not the record that God gave of his Son. 11 And this is the record, that God hath given to us eternal life, and this life is in his Son. 12 He that hath the Son hath life; and he that hath not the Son of God hath not life. The fighter in the “Yahoo! Answers” public forum on Religion and Spirituality who uses the ID “Norine” (Level 1 with 11 points, a member since October 01, 2019) posted the following:

 

Why when knowing only the baptism of John when there is a more perfect way of God do you continue in water baptism (Acts 18:25-26)?

Update: JOHN SAID IN JOHN 1:33

“…HE SENT ***ME*** TO BAPTIZE WITH WITH WATER…[BUT] THE SAME IS ((( HE ))) WHICH ((( BAPTIZETH ))) WITH THE HOLY GHOST.”

ACTS 19:4 SAYS “JOHN BAPTIZED WITH WATER WITH A BAPTISM OF ((( REPENTANCE ))) >>>BELIEVING THAT JESUS IS COMING”<<<

IS THAT WHERE TODAY’S “CHRISTIANS” ARE; >>>”BELIEVING THAT JESUS IS COMING”<<< CONTINUING IN A BELIEF OF A WATER BAPTISM THAT WAS DONE ((( UNDER THE LAW )))???

 

THE GOLDEN ARROW: If I bear witness of myself, my witness is not true. There is another that beareth witness of me; and I know that the witness which he witnesseth of me is true. Ye sent unto John, and he bare witness unto the truth. But I receive not testimony from man: but these things I say, that ye might be saved. He was a burning and a shining light: and ye were willing for a season to rejoice in his light. But I have greater witness than that of John: for the works which the Father hath given me to finish, the same works that I do, bear witness of me, that the Father hath sent me. And the Father himself, which hath sent me, hath borne witness of me. Ye have neither heard his voice at any time, nor seen his shape. And ye have not his word abiding in you: for whom he hath sent, him ye believe not. Search the scriptures; for in them ye think ye have eternal life: and they are they which testify of me. (John 5: 31-39, King James Version, KJV)

 

THE DOUBLE DAGGER: Through Faith And Patience (10/02/2019); Following The Apostle Paul (09/24/2019); Now Are Ye Light (09/18/2019); Focus On Things Revealed (09/12/2019); Life Because of Righteousness (08/29/2019); Our Displays of Divinity (06/19/2019); Baptism Is Not DIY (05/28/2019); The Testimony From Jesus (08/05/2016)

 

“Norine”, trusting that yours is a case of “gradual growth,” not one of “ever learning and never coming into the knowledge of the truth,” the continuation of water baptism among mature Christian believers is established by “the testimony of Jesus.” All who tarried in the Upper Room, and received the gifts of the Holy Spirit on the day of Pentecost, first received water baptism, just as Jesus himself. Baptism that appears by the operations and visitation of the Holy Spirit is distinct from that carried out and performed as a ceremony and ritual manifesting the faith of men. The two are not interchangeable, nor does one cancel the other. In the same way multiple gifts of the Spirit are bestowed by divinity within the church that do not annul or eliminate divine law, adoption of the Spirit and other sacred operations complement one another, and are to edify the church. Consider again the following that uses language from the Bible:

(1.) Matthew 3: 13-17, King James Version (KJV): 13 Then cometh Jesus from Galilee to Jordan unto John, to be baptized of him. 14 But John forbad him, saying, I have need to be baptized of thee, and comest thou to me? 15 And Jesus answering said unto him, Suffer it to be so now: for thus it becometh us to fulfil all righteousness. Then he suffered him. 16 And Jesus, when he was baptized, went up straightway out of the water: and, lo, the heavens were opened unto him, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove, and lighting upon him: 17 And lo a voice from heaven, saying, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.

(2.) 2nd Corinthians 5: 20-21, KJV: 20 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. 21 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.

(3.) Romans 10: 2-4, KJV: 2 For I bear them record that they have a zeal of God, but not according to knowledge. 3 For they being ignorant of God’s righteousness, and going about to establish their own righteousness, have not submitted themselves unto the righteousness of God. 4 For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to every one that believeth.

There is far more that should be said, correctly examined, and spiritually apprehended. (For example, 4. Revelation 19: 9-11, KJV: 9 And he saith unto me, Write, Blessed are they which are called unto the marriage supper of the Lamb. And he saith unto me, These are the true sayings of God. 10 And I fell at his feet to worship him. And he said unto me, See thou do it not: I am thy fellow-servant, and of thy brethren that have the testimony of Jesus: worship God: for the testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy. 11 And I saw heaven opened, and behold a white horse; and he that sat upon him was called Faithful and True, and in righteousness he doth judge and make war.) 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

His Crown of Thorns

© Provided by CBS Interactive Inc. A priest wipes the Crown of Thorns, a relic of the passion of Christ, at Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris, April 14, 2017.

 

Today, reply is on the keeping of sacred relics among Christian believers. Many are presently offering their prayers in response to the massive fire that raged on April 15, 2019 through areas of the Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris, France. There is great concern for the irreplaceable art treasures, stained glass windows, and sacred relics maintained there. The first house erected on the earth as a dwelling place for the divine presence was a tabernacle featuring panels of cloth and boards of cedar wood. In addition to daily offerings and sacrifices of blood being made there, sanctified objects that compare to relics were gathered. The Ark of the Covenant was found within the tabernacle that was a storage chest to preserve and transport selected sacred objects commanded to be kept by divinity as memorials. These items were to be maintained within the ark beneath the platform where the Shekinah presence of GOD appeared (we say, between the cherubim; the Bema Seat; the Mercy Seat; the throne of judgment). The ark held two tables of stone displaying the covenant law that first had been written by the finger of GOD, and later was proclaimed by the voice of GOD to those assembled at Horeb; a pot of the manna that fell daily and not on the Sabbath for 40 years during the wanderings of Israel; and the almond rod of Aaron that GOD made to bud and blossom overnight to indicate the family and tribe whose inheritance would be the priesthood of Israel. 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 would Catholics store what they claim to be Jesus’ crown of thorns in a wooden building?

The Notre Dame cathedral was built mostly of wood.

 

THE GOLDEN ARROW: Which had the golden censer, and the ark of the covenant overlaid round about with gold, wherein was the golden pot that had manna, and Aaron’s rod that budded, and the tables of the covenant; (Hebrews 9: 4, King James Version, KJV)

 

THE DOUBLE DAGGER: The Virginity of Mary (01/14/2019); Attend Chapel or Church? (02/04/2018); The Pattern To Follow? (01/19/2018); Flesh As Divine Vessels? (01/14/2018); Worship and the Cross (11/27/2017); Spirit, Spirit Beings, Spirit Persons? (10/13/2015); About Praying to Mary (08/21/2015); Ark of the Covenant? (03/17/2015)

 

Anonymous”, among the faithful, houses of worship (tabernacles, temples, cathedrals) are to be fashioned after the pattern of things in heaven. In the same way Christians rely on GOD for the keeping of the physical body (often called, a house), the cleansing and keeping of buildings and places for assembly by the people of GOD rely on continuous operations by divinity. In addition to copper, gold and silver, the architectural materials for the first sanctuary prepared on the earth at the time of Moses featured the use of cedar wood. The sacred discipline of acknowledging and preserving relics is in harmony with maintaining observances, memorials, and sacred practices as an inheritance for the children of GOD upon the earth. Mature believers in divinity seek to capture and repeat the authentic proclamations, promises, divine utterances, and testimonies they receive as benefit and privilege from GOD, and that they are challenged to share by unselfishly ministering to others.

While relics are accounted as objects that have been set apart for divine use (we say, made anointed, consecrated, holy, sanctified), and are preserved following sacred events that may include miracles, relics are not believed to embody life essence (i.e., breath; spirit; word) from the makeup of GOD that appears within all the living. Relics are not idols; yet, may be displayed using ceremonies, customs and traditions. Only sinners who return to GOD through rebirth and repentance will contain the inseparable aspects of divine fullness that join mankind to divinity in ongoing relationship. Included are faith, holiness, lovingkindness, oneness without sameness, personhood, wisdom, and wrath against sin. Relics are lifeless objects having no independent ability, or sovereign will that allows communication, exchange, or their own continued existence among the living.

Mankind’s continued use and keeping of relics may be understood as another demonstration of faith that the proclamations, promises, prophecies, and eternal purposes of GOD concerning mankind’s salvation and eternal life will be fulfilled. Value for the Scripture record is affirmed and acknowledged, and the holy writings are endorsed as a genuine revelation of divine authority, grace, integrity, and righteousness. The hope (i.e., what believers are commanded by divinity to expect) regarding their benefits, gifts, and provisions from GOD emerges through the fresh endowment of spirit substance each believer receives from the makeup of GOD. For overcoming mortality, sin, and the second death, such finite human tools as determination (we say, a made-up-mind; willpower), carnal reason, logic, philosophy, science, technology and worldly wisdom are secondary to godly commitment, discernment, sacred knowledge, and holy vision. Consider again the following that uses language from the Bible:

1. Numbers 17: 6-10, King James Version (KJV): 6 And Moses spake unto the children of Israel, and every one of their princes gave him a rod apiece, for each prince one, according to their fathers’ houses, even twelve rods: and the rod of Aaron was among their rods. 7 And Moses laid up the rods before the LORD in the tabernacle of witness. 8 And it came to pass, that on the morrow Moses went into the tabernacle of witness; and, behold, the rod of Aaron for the house of Levi was budded, and brought forth buds, and bloomed blossoms, and yielded almonds. 9 And Moses brought out all the rods from before the LORD unto all the children of Israel: and they looked, and took every man his rod. 10 And the LORD said unto Moses, Bring Aaron’s rod again before the testimony, to be kept for a token against the rebels; and thou shalt quite take away their murmurings from me, that they die not.

2. 2nd Corinthians 5: 1-10, KJV: 1 For we know that if our earthly house of this tabernacle were dissolved, we have a building of God, an house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens. 2 For in this we groan, earnestly desiring to be clothed upon with our house which is from heaven: 3 If so be that being clothed we shall not be found naked. 4 For we that are in this tabernacle do groan, being burdened: not for that we would be unclothed, but clothed upon, that mortality might be swallowed up of life. 5 Now he that hath wrought us for the selfsame thing is God, who also hath given unto us the earnest of the Spirit. 6 Therefore we are always confident, knowing that, whilst we are at home in the body, we are absent from the Lord: 7 (For we walk by faith, not by sight:) 8 We are confident, I say, and willing rather to be absent from the body, and to be present with the Lord. 9 Wherefore we labour, that, whether present or absent, we may be accepted of him. 10 For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ; that every one may receive the things done in his body, according to that he hath done, whether it be good or bad.

3. 1st Corinthians 3: 11-17, KJV: 11 For other foundation can no man lay than that is laid, which is Jesus Christ. 12 Now if any man build upon this foundation gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, stubble; 13 Every man’s work shall be made manifest: for the day shall declare it, because it shall be revealed by fire; and the fire shall try every man’s work of what sort it is. 14 If any man’s work abide which he hath built thereupon, he shall receive a reward. 15 If any man’s work shall be burned, he shall suffer loss: but he himself shall be saved; yet so as by fire. 16 Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you? 17 If any man defile the temple of God, him shall God destroy; for the temple of God is holy, which temple ye are.

There is far more that should be said, correctly examined, and spiritually apprehended. (For example, 4. Hebrews 9: 11-15, KJV: 11 But Christ being come an high priest of good things to come, by a greater and more perfect tabernacle, not made with hands, that is to say, not of this building; 12 Neither by the blood of goats and calves, but by his own blood he entered in once into the holy place, having obtained eternal redemption for us. 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.) Even so, I trust this fragment will be useful. Be it unto you according to your faith.

 

AN AFTERTHOUGHT: The acceptance of relics is very much a matter of ones faith, rather than doctrine, liturgy, and the practice of sacraments. Due to ignorance, incomplete knowledge of the occult, fascination with the supernatural, and superstition among developing believers, relics often are taken to be keepsakes or souvenirs from sacred events and miracles; objects that allow a person to have control, influence and power over the minds and conduct of others; items that ensure good fortune, luck and prosperity; and even, devices said to have magical properties. The holy writings do contain accounts that appear to describe the workings believed possible for a relic. Consider again the following that uses language from the Bible: 2nd Kings 13: 20-21, King James Version (KJV): 20 And Elisha died, and they buried him. And the bands of the Moabites invaded the land at the coming in of the year. 21 And it came to pass, as they were burying a man, that, behold, they spied a band of men; and they cast the man into the sepulchre of Elisha: and when the man was let down, and touched the bones of Elisha, he revived, and stood up on his feet. Also, it is written: Acts 19: 11-12, KJV: 11 And God wrought special miracles by the hands of Paul: 12 So that from his body were brought unto the sick handkerchiefs or aprons, and the diseases departed from them, and the evil spirits went out of them. In the church, relics are instruments of prophecy (comfort, edification, exhortation), and are associated with healing, miracles, and resurrection.

 

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THE BLACK PHOENIX

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child-baptism.jpg

 

Today, water and fire baptism, practicing the sacraments of the church, and saying “I love you,” to GOD are in view.  One of the fighters at “Yahoo! Answers” using the ID “Anonymous” (no profile information shared) posted the following:

 

Is baptism necessary for salvation?

 

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

 

THE DOUBLE DAGGER:  Salvation Takes A Lifetime (04/06/2017); The Extravagance of Love? (04/02/2017); Receiving The Holy Spirit (12/08/2016); Spirit Content From GOD? (09/26/2016); Sign of Divine Love? (04/14/2016); Modern Communion? (08/11/2014); How Can Christians Believe? (08/12/2014)

 

“Anonymous”, one could ask, Is saying “I love you” necessary?  In accordance with covenant promises and the holy writings, many mature Christian believers argue that water baptism is commanded, non-negotiable, and required for every true disciple and follower of Jesus Christ.  Others acknowledge the sacred practices of the church (e.g., confession, marriage, penance/repentance, prayer) are necessary events because they make visible otherwise unseen operations of the Holy Spirit among those within the full family of believers.  More than simply a ceremony or symbolic rite to extend membership by a closed community and social group, baptism depicts the death and burial of ones inborn spirit, and the replacement of their inherited of Adamic character and nature.  In baptism, a sinner is “reborn” or “resurrected” through deposits of inseparable spirit substance from the makeup of GOD such as faith, holiness, longsuffering, lovingkindness, meekness, wisdom, and wrath against sin.  It is this vital endowment that establishes the believer as a new creation, a son or daughter of GOD, and a joint-heir with Jesus Christ.  At one time in the early church, water baptism was understood as only a cleansing from ones own sins, and receiving the Holy Spirit (fire baptism) was understood as a totally separate event as described by Pentecost and the Upper Room.  Many now practice the model of baptism demonstrated by Jesus Christ that combined his “cleansing”, acknowledgment by the Father, and his anointing (as judge, king, prophet) along with his consecration to the eternal Melchisedec (not Levitical) Priesthood as High Priest.  There continue to be many who hold that practicing the various sacraments is “optional”, like spouses saying “I love you” to one another.  They argue it is a matter of conscience and personal preference, and even a matter of ones “private faith.”  Just as parents who understand their child receives a divine inheritance through circumcision do not sin by establishing their children in covenant with GOD, parents are not at fault when they acknowledge their offspring as part of the household of GOD through baptism.  Consider again the following:

(1.)  Ezekiel 36:  24-26, King James Version (KJV):  24 For I will take you from among the heathen, and gather you out of all countries, and will bring you into your own land.  25 Then will I sprinkle clean water upon you, and ye shall be clean:  from all your filthiness, and from all your idols, will I cleanse you.  26 A new heart also will I give you, and a new spirit will I put within you:  and I will take away the stony heart out of your flesh, and I will give you an heart of flesh.

(2.)  Mark 16:  16, KJV:  16 He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned.

(3.)  Luke 3:  21-22, KJV:  21 Now when all the people were baptized, it came to pass, that Jesus also being baptized, and praying, the heaven was opened,  22 And the Holy Ghost descended in a bodily shape like a dove upon him, and a voice came from heaven, which said, Thou art my beloved Son; in thee I am well pleased.

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

THE BLACK PHOENIX
Washington, DC

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Discernment, humility, and acknowledging divinity that resides within others by providing sacrificial service are themes, today.  No one desires the role as a menial who must clean up after the unpleasantness and vomit of a drunken master.  Yet, by completing their work efficiently, patiently and without complaint, a servant becomes distinguished and set apart as exceptional, indispensable, and priceless.  In the same way every parent becomes further bound emotionally and psychologically to their child by enduring the discomfort, embarrassment, shame and uncleanness of repeatedly having to be in contact with the child’s feces and urine by changing their diapers, Christian believers are further bound spiritually to one another through various ceremonies, patterns and rituals of the church for cleansing, exchange, fellowship, work and shared worship.  The child’s need is for more than simply adornment to hide its nakedness.  The soiled diaper becomes a sack of acid bound to their flesh; and their cries are to be heard as genuine calls for comfort, deliverance, life, relief, and salvation.  A fighter at “Yahoo! Answers” using the ID Kelly (Level 1 with 100 points, a member since March 03, 2013) posted the following:

Why would someone want to wash my feet – foot washing?

I took care of my mother when she passed, both the leading up to and the moments until her death. After she passed my brother asked to wash my feet. (hes a 7 days Adventist)

What does this actually mean? What was he reasons and what was he thinking?

Was he washing my sins away? should i be offended because he felt i did something wrong? and if not why shouldn’t i be worried?

THE GOLDEN ARROW:  Feed the flock of God which is among you, taking the oversight thereof, not by constraint, but willingly; not for filthy lucre, but of a ready mind;  Neither as being lords over God’s heritage, but being ensamples to the flock.  And when the chief Shepherd shall appear, ye shall receive a crown of glory that fadeth not away.  Likewise, ye younger, submit yourselves unto the elder. Yea, all of you be subject one to another, and be clothed with humility:  for God resisteth the proud, and giveth grace to the humble.  Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that he may exalt you in due time:  Casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you.  Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour:  Whom resist stedfast in the faith, knowing that the same afflictions are accomplished in your brethren that are in the world.  But the God of all grace, who hath called us unto his eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after that ye have suffered a while, make you perfect, stablish, strengthen, settle you.  To him be glory and dominion for ever and ever. Amen.  (1st Peter 5:  2-11, KJV)

THE DOUBLE DAGGER:  Prayer Behavior? (04/07/2015); Humility Needed for Salvation? (08/15/2014); False Angels of Light? (08/16/2014); Origin of Baptism? (06/22/2013); Money-changers in The Temple? (06/23/2013); Naaman the Leper (12/21/2012); Did Jesus Know? (12/22/2012)

“Kelly”, foot-washing (called the Ordinance of Humility) is a simple practice among Christian believers having exalted spirit content and focus because it continues the offering of Abraham to divinity in visitation, and is completed through operations of the Holy Spirit like baptism and the Lord’s Supper (some say, Communion).  Foot-washing (1) further reveals and imparts to believers the character and nature within the persons of GODhead; (2) makes visible the elements for eternal relationship with divinity that go beyond obedience to sacred law (e.g., compassion, faith, forbearance, gentleness, humility, longsuffering, love, respect, and righteousness); and (3) establishes the active presence of Christ within the body as well as within the individual awareness and self-will of believers.  Fruitfulness and unity for the body turns upon how we acknowledge and respond to one another as co-laborers under GOD.  Here are a few points from the holy writings that usually help believers understand these ideas:

(1.)  Proverbs 15:  32-33, King James Version (KJV):  32 He that refuseth instruction despiseth his own soul:  but he that heareth reproof getteth understanding.  33 The fear of the LORD is the instruction of wisdom; and before honour is humility.

(2.)  Genesis 18:  1-4, KJV:  1 And the LORD appeared unto him in the plains of Mamre:  and he sat in the tent door in the heat of the day;  2 And he lift up his eyes and looked, and, lo, three men stood by him:  and when he saw them, he ran to meet them from the tent door, and bowed himself toward the ground,  3 And said, My Lord, if now I have found favour in thy sight, pass not away, I pray thee, from thy servant:  4 Let a little water, I pray you, be fetched, and wash your feet, and rest yourselves under the tree:

(3.)  Psalms 19:  12-14, KJV:  12 Who can understand his errors? cleanse thou me from secret faults.  13 Keep back thy servant also from presumptuous sins; let them not have dominion over me:  then shall I be upright, and I shall be innocent from the great transgression.  14 Let the words of my mouth, and the meditation of my heart, be acceptable in thy sight, O LORD, my strength, and my redeemer.

(4.)  Colossians 3:  9-15, KJV:  9 Lie not one to another, seeing that ye have put off the old man with his deeds;  10 And have put on the new man, which is renewed in knowledge after the image of him that created him:  11 Where there is neither Greek nor Jew, circumcision nor uncircumcision, Barbarian, Scythian, bond nor free:  but Christ is all, and in all.  12 Put on therefore, as the elect of God, holy and beloved, bowels of mercies, kindness, humbleness of mind, meekness, longsuffering;  13 Forbearing one another, and forgiving one another, if any man have a quarrel against any:  even as Christ forgave you, so also do ye.  14 And above all these things put on charity, which is the bond of perfectness.  15 And let the peace of God rule in your hearts, to the which also ye are called in one body; and be ye thankful.

(5.)  John 13:  1-6, KJV:  1 Now before the feast of the passover, when Jesus knew that his hour was come that he should depart out of this world unto the Father, having loved his own which were in the world, he loved them unto the end.  2 And supper being ended, the devil having now put into the heart of Judas Iscariot, Simon’s son, to betray him;  3 Jesus knowing that the Father had given all things into his hands, and that he was come from God, and went to God;  4 He riseth from supper, and laid aside his garments; and took a towel, and girded himself.  5 After that he poureth water into a bason, and began to wash the disciples’ feet, and to wipe them with the towel wherewith he was girded.

(6.)  John 13:  6-10, KJV:  6 Then cometh he to Simon Peter:  and Peter saith unto him, Lord, dost thou wash my feet?  7 Jesus answered and said unto him, What I do thou knowest not now; but thou shalt know hereafter.  8 Peter saith unto him, Thou shalt never wash my feet.  Jesus answered him, If I wash thee not, thou hast no part with me.  9 Simon Peter saith unto him, Lord, not my feet only, but also my hands and my head.  10 Jesus saith to him, He that is washed needeth not save to wash his feet, but is clean every whit:  and ye are clean, but not all.

There is far more that should be said, correctly understood, and spiritually taken into account.  (For example (7.)  John 13:  12-17, KJV:  12 So after he had washed their feet, and had taken his garments, and was set down again, he said unto them, Know ye what I have done to you?  13 Ye call me Master and Lord:  and ye say well; for so I am.  14 If I then, your Lord and Master, have washed your feet; ye also ought to wash one another’s feet.  15 For I have given you an example, that ye should do as I have done to you.  16 Verily, verily, I say unto you, The servant is not greater than his lord; neither he that is sent greater than he that sent him.  17 If ye know these things, happy are ye if ye do them.)  Even so, I trust this fragment will be useful.  Be it unto you according to your faith.

THE BLACK PHOENIX
Washington, DC

Today, various actions carried out by the living on behalf of the dead are in view.  In Scripture, the dead are buried or mourned, and there are no mentions of ceremonies and rituals for their salvation.  The living may become anointed, committed, consecrated, dedicated, devoted, and sanctified.  The living may memorialize, respect and venerate the deceased, yet may not change the status of the dead in divine judgment.  Trusting that nothing is impossible with GOD, many have advanced teachings that the Church can issue indulgences and pardons for sins committed by both the living and those deceased (e.g., http://www.theguardian.com › World › Pope Francis The Guardian Jul 16, 2013 – Papal court handling pardons for sins says contrite Catholics may win ‘indulgences’ by following World Youth Day on Twitter.).  Contrary to the serpent’s word, Ye shall not surely die, the dead are not alive in a place of torment where they may receive the ministry of Jesus Christ (suggested by 1st Peter 3:  18-20, King James Version, KJV).  More correctly, focus should be upon faith that is to be seen as an eternal living element of divinity imparted to the living.  Black arts, occult practices, exaggerated remembrances for the dead, and necromancy (communicating with the dead to influence and predict events among the living) are forbidden.  Christians do not accept the account of King Saul calling up the spirit of the Prophet Samuel as a genuine example of operations by GOD; rather, it is spiritualism and witchcraft (1st Samuel 28:  9-19, KJV).  Even so, mature believers firmly hold that the dead in Christ shall be transformed as they are resurrected and lifted up to be with the Lord at his coming to harvest the earth (1st Thessalonians 4:  16-18, KJV).  In his blog A CHRISTIAN VIEW published at WordPress.com, Steve Finnell regularly provides a brief bible-based consideration of issues and questions that pertain to Christian belief.  On Thursday, March 26, 2015 (1:41 AM), Steve shared the following:

 

What is the meaning of baptized for the dead?

1 Corinthians 15:29 Otherwise, what will those do who are baptized for the dead? If the dead are not raised at all, why then are they baptized for them?

I am not the first, nor will I be the last to admit I do not know the meaning of 1 Corinthians 15:29, however, I do know what Paul was not trying to communicate. He was not implying that the dead can be baptized, by proxy, using a living person.

 

THE GOLDEN ARROW:  Ye shall not eat any thing with the blood:  neither shall ye use enchantment, nor observe times.  Ye shall not round the corners of your heads, neither shalt thou mar the corners of thy beard.  Ye shall not make any cuttings in your flesh for the dead, nor print any marks upon you:  I am the LORD.  (Leviticus 19:  26-28, KJV)

 

THE DOUBLE DAGGER:  The Harrowing of Hell? (02/10/2015); The Sin Covered By Salvation? (12/28/2014); Only While We Live? (12/02/2013); Reveal Himself To All (12/03/2013); Those Who Never Heard? (06/07/2013); If You Are Sent…? (06/08/2013); After the Rapture? (11/01/2012); Opportunity to Repent (11/02/2012)

 

“Steve”, I agree with your point that there is no baptism by proxy taught in the Scriptures.  Here are a few points that were stirred by the Spirit within me as I began to reflect upon your testimony:

(1.)  In responding to a question by the Sadducees (regarding a woman married to seven brothers, and whose wife she will be in the resurrection) Jesus declared that the Father is a god of the living.  GOD maintains eternal promise to the dead through their offspring, the living.  Consider again:  Matthew 22:  31-33 (KJV):  31 But as touching the resurrection of the dead, have ye not read that which was spoken unto you by God, saying,  32 I am the God of Abraham, and the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob? God is not the God of the dead, but of the living.  33 And when the multitude heard this, they were astonished at his doctrine.

Isaiah 63:  15-16 (KJV):  15 Look down from heaven, and behold from the habitation of thy holiness and of thy glory: where is thy zeal and thy strength, the sounding of thy bowels and of thy mercies toward me? are they restrained?  16 Doubtless thou art our father, though Abraham be ignorant of us, and Israel acknowledge us not:  thou, O LORD, art our father, our redeemer; thy name is from everlasting.

Romans 4:  12-14 (KJV):  12 And the father of circumcision to them who are not of the circumcision only, but who also walk in the steps of that faith of our father Abraham, which he had being yet uncircumcised.  13 For the promise, that he should be the heir of the world, was not to Abraham, or to his seed, through the law, but through the righteousness of faith.  14 For if they which are of the law be heirs, faith is made void, and the promise made of none effect:

Galatians 3:  6-8 (KJV):  6 Even as Abraham believed God, and it was accounted to him for righteousness.  7 Know ye therefore that they which are of faith, the same are the children of Abraham.  8 And the scripture, foreseeing that God would justify the heathen through faith, preached before the gospel unto Abraham, saying, In thee shall all nations be blessed.

(2.)  While Abraham is said to be alive, David is not; and the curse he incurred appears in Solomon and Rehoboam.  See again Acts 2:  29 (KJV):  Men and brethren, let me freely speak unto you of the patriarch David, that he is both dead and buried, and his sepulchre is with us unto this day.

(3.)  A prayer in the holy writings that was offered by the Prophet Daniel is often respected as a model like that of the Lord’s Prayer.  Daniel’s supplication includes confession of need and sins committed by those already dead.  However, Daniel does not petition on behalf of the dead so much as for the divine Name.  See once more Daniel 9:  16-17 (KJV):  16 O Lord, according to all thy righteousness, I beseech thee, let thine anger and thy fury be turned away from thy city Jerusalem, thy holy mountain:  because for our sins, and for the iniquities of our fathers, Jerusalem and thy people are become a reproach to all that are about us.  17 Now therefore, O our God, hear the prayer of thy servant, and his supplications, and cause thy face to shine upon thy sanctuary that is desolate, for the Lord’s sake.

(4.)  The dead are all given opportunity to respond to the claims of divinity only while alive.  See Psalms 115:  16-18 (KJV):  16 The heaven, even the heavens, are the LORD’s:  but the earth hath he given to the children of men.  17 The dead praise not the LORD, neither any that go down into silence.  18 But we will bless the LORD from this time forth and for evermore. Praise the LORD.

Isaiah 38:  18-20 (KJV):  18 For the grave cannot praise thee, death can not celebrate thee:  they that go down into the pit cannot hope for thy truth.  19 The living, the living, he shall praise thee, as I do this day:  the father to the children shall make known thy truth.  20 The LORD was ready to save me:  therefore we will sing my songs to the stringed instruments all the days of our life in the house of the LORD.

Ecclesiastes 9:  5-6 (KJV):  For the living know that they shall die:  but the dead know not any thing, neither have they any more a reward; for the memory of them is forgotten.  6 Also their love, and their hatred, and their envy, is now perished; neither have they any more a portion for ever in any thing that is done under the sun.

(5.)  Because the acknowledgment of GOD is not dependent only upon the specific statements of doctrine and law that were generated and developed through the covenant of Moses, those who died before Deity appeared upon the earth in the person of Jesus Christ, also have place with GOD through the provisions of the cross.  Salvation is the acknowledgement that their actions, attitudes and behavior continued to display the righteousness that identifies the divine nature.  Consider again Romans 8:  3 (KJV):  For what the law could not do, in that it was weak through the flesh, God sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, and for sin, condemned sin in the flesh:

Acts 13:  38-39 (KJV):  38 Be it known unto you therefore, men and brethren, that through this man is preached unto you the forgiveness of sins:  39 And by him all that believe are justified from all things, from which ye could not be justified by the law of Moses.

1st Peter 4:  3-8 (KJV):  For the time past of our life may suffice us to have wrought the will of the Gentiles, when we walked in lasciviousness, lusts, excess of wine, revellings, banquetings, and abominable idolatries:  4 Wherein they think it strange that ye run not with them to the same excess of riot, speaking evil of you:  5 Who shall give account to him that is ready to judge the quick and the dead.  6 For for this cause was the gospel preached also to them that are dead, that they might be judged according to men in the flesh, but live according to God in the spirit.  7 But the end of all things is at hand:  be ye therefore sober, and watch unto prayer.  8 And above all things have fervent charity among yourselves:  for charity shall cover the multitude of sins.

There is far more to be said, correctly understood, and spiritually apprehended.  (For example, (6.)  The full provisions and teachings for salvation have been revealed gradually over time.  Yet, divinity has remained immutable and unchanging.  See Romans 6:  16-18 (KJV):  16 Know ye not, that to whom ye yield yourselves servants to obey, his servants ye are to whom ye obey; whether of sin unto death, or of obedience unto righteousness?  17 But God be thanked, that ye were the servants of sin, but ye have obeyed from the heart that form of doctrine which was delivered you.  18 Being then made free from sin, ye became the servants of righteousness.  Also Romans 8:  8-10 (KJV):  8 So then they that are in the flesh cannot please God.  9 But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his.  10 And if Christ be in you, the body is dead because of sin; but the Spirit is life because of righteousness.)  Even so, I trust this fragment will be useful.  Be it unto you according to your faith and spiritual maturity.

THE BLACK PHOENIX
Washington, DC

A believer poses a personal question about their own baptism experience, today.  Surely, the only answer to the question “Have you been baptized?” must be a firm “yes” or “no” that will also state ones acceptance of Jesus Christ as their own redeemer and savior.  “I don’t know,” “maybe”, and “perhaps” are totally unacceptable.  The single word used to reply will reveal the measure they contain of such elements as faith, holiness, love, maturity, respect, sacred knowledge, trust, and other spirit content from divinity.  The writer at “Yahoo! Answers” using the ID “Mark” (Level 1 with 46 points, a member since January 16, 2015) posted the following:

 

Is it a sin to get Baptized twice?

I got Baptized about 10 years ago at around the age of 13. My Baptism took place in a Church swimming pool and there was a few of us getting Baptized that night.
Shortly afterwards my Mum told me she thought she saw my nose was above the water during the Baptism.
what does it mean if during my Baptism that my nose was above the water and not beneath it ?
Also if I got re-Baptized is that a sin to god or blaspheming the Holy Spirit?

please answer both my question’s. God Bless

 

THE GOLDEN ARROW:  Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ:  By whom also we have access by faith into this grace wherein we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God.  And not only so, but we glory in tribulations also:  knowing that tribulation worketh patience;  And patience, experience; and experience, hope:  And hope maketh not ashamed; because the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost which is given unto us.  For when we were yet without strength, in due time Christ died for the ungodly.  (Romans 5:  1-6, KJV)

 

THE DOUBLE DAGGER:  To Walk As He Walked? (11/16/2014);  To Continue In His Footsteps (11/17/2014); A Fallen Nature? (09/01/2014); In the Likeness of His Resurrection (09/02/2014); Inseparables? (07/15/2014); On Christians Being Inclusive? (07/16/2014); A Formula for Baptism? (06/30/2014)

 

“Mark”, I bypassed your question before.  However, I now think you truly are concerned and need a sound answer, so I hope you will consider the following points:

(1.)  Water baptism as a ceremony or ritual within a community of faith is an outward display that signals the unseen operations of divinity.  Rightly understood, baptism is a sacred process carried out by the same Spirit that established the firmament of heaven and earth, and was breathed into Adam.  In this sense, baptism does not depend upon human awareness or self-will, the amount of water applied (whether immersed, splashed, or sprinkled), and whether the water was running (as in a river) or standing (as in a pool).  Some argue the differences are important, however, the thought at the core of their thinking is, only running water carries away sin(?)—where a higher idea is needed:  only faith, conviction, and new divine substance establish death and its removal of sin, rebirth, and new life.

(2.)  As one born again, the ideas and understandings of our natural mothers, other family, co-workers and friends must have less influence, because they may still be based upon carnal, material and social truth, rather than upon our own measure of faith.  A new relationship with GOD through Christ must come into effect.  The authority once placed in parents and pastors should now indwell you.  All believers must learn to practice discernment (ability to use their own spirit content to recognize and respond to the divine spirit contained in events, objects and other persons).  Increasingly, ones experiences must be gauged against the standards provided through sacred knowledge, fellowship with other mature believers, and unselfish service.  

(3.)  Believers should not accept baptism without first preparing themselves through prayer and study of the holy writings that will clarify its meaning, purpose, and value.  Many believers understand baptism as an act to cleanse that may be repeated periodically, like foot-washing.  Others believe new baptism is appropriate when one arrives at a new level of spiritual comprehension, and makes a new life commitment.  Still others feel that baptism is like bathing, you get a bath whenever you feel the need.  Such baptisms are a matter of conscience; however, we are warned our conscience can become seared (closed, sealed) allowing nothing to be leaked or lost, yet, allowing nothing to enter.

There is far more to be said, correctly understood, and spiritually apprehended.  (For example, (4.)  Before Jesus was arrested, he washed the feet of eleven apostles after one had gone out.  Peter was outraged that the Lord would debase himself and behave like a servant, and make himself unclean.  Jesus told him, where I do not wash your feet, you have no part with me.  Peter then insisted, Be sure to get my hands and head!  Jesus said, no more is needed than that I wash your feet.  Focus your understanding upon the operations of Christ as our savior.  Willingly receive instruction, however, do not entertain any accusation that comes against your faith.)  Even so, I trust this fragment will be useful.  Be it unto you according to the measure of your faith.

THE BLACK PHOENIX
Washington, DC