Posts Tagged ‘merchandise’

the-widow-with-two-coins-by-emily-mineo

The Widow With Two Coins by Emily Mineo

 

Today, reply is on giving and the use of money to establish and maintain relationship within the church as a sanctified body. The blood of Jesus Christ is the only acceptable offering or sacrifice Christians may make for the remission of sins; therefore, bequests, financial donations and gifts of money to the church are only for maintenance of physical facilities; mission and outreach programs; services; and wages to clergy and other staff. Believers make no money offerings, or sacrifices for sin. The purchase of a sinner’s life, so they may accomplish repentance and be accounted as returned to correct relationship with divinity, requires that the blood of Jesus Christ be applied for atonement and propitiation of sin as well as receiving inseparable aspects of his spirit substance from the makeup of GOD (we say, the Comforter; the Holy Ghost; the Spirit of Prophecy; the Spirit of Truth). Developing believers acknowledge the divine provisions that supply focus, order, and eternal purpose for their new life by dedicating their own flesh, skills, talents, and their belongings to be shared through praise, unselfish service, and worship. A fighter in the “Yahoo! Answers” Religion and Spirituality public forum using the ID “Skittles” (Level 3 with 1,520 points, a member since May 12, 2012) posted the following:

 

Do you have to pay money to have a relationship with God?

 

THE GOLDEN ARROW: Thus saith the LORD, Let not the wise man glory in his wisdom, neither let the mighty man glory in his might, let not the rich man glory in his riches: But let him that glorieth glory in this, that he understandeth and knoweth me, that I am the LORD which exercise lovingkindness, judgment, and righteousness, in the earth: for in these things I delight, saith the LORD. (Jeremiah 9: 23-24, King James Version, KJV)

 

THE DOUBLE DAGGER: Blessed In Our Deeds (05/29/2018); Jesus Paid It All (04/04/2018); Not A Financial Transaction (01/28/2018); Giving, A Divine Discipline? (10/09/2017); Fundraising A Sacred Practice? (01/01/2017); Are All Debts Forgiven? (10/11/2016); A $1,000 Dollar Seed? (11/02/2015); Money Is No Object? (10/14/2015)

 

Skittles”, among mature Christian believers, money is regularly used for unselfish offerings and sacrifices that continue accountability, commitment, shared responsibility, and the expression of love by members within a congregation or community of faith. Divine forgiveness, salvation, and eternal life are only available through the ministry of Jesus Christ, and may not be bought and sold. The blood and body of Jesus is offered by divine fullness (we say, divinity; the Godhead; the Father, the Son, the Holy Spirit) for the atonement of sin, and is shared among the members of the church through the emblems of bread and wine (we say, Holy Communion; the Eucharist; the Lord’s Supper). More than this, baptism and rebirth that are gifts from the makeup of GOD, are provided only within the church so that full members may exist as the offspring of GOD, joint heirs with Christ, and the new creation. Repenting sinners are to receive imparted, indwelling, inseparable aspects of spirit from the makeup of GOD that include faith, forbearance, holiness, longsuffering, lovingkindness, oneness without sameness, personhood, righteousness, wisdom, and wrath against sin. The things set apart as sacred (we say, sanctified) are never to be regarded as ones personal possession, private property, or a reward for ones own achievements, hard work, and merit. Similarly, innocence, purity, and sacred knowledge provided by the church are not to be taken as fruits of the flesh, rather, they should be acknowledged as provisions from the Spirit. Consider again the following that uses language from the holy writings that speak to the use of money and ones substance at the Temple in Jerusalem and within the early church:

1. Proverbs 3: 9-10, King James Version (KJV): 9 Honour the LORD with thy substance, and with the firstfruits of all thine increase: 10 So shall thy barns be filled with plenty, and thy presses shall burst out with new wine.

2. Mark 12: 41-44, KJV: 41 And Jesus sat over against the treasury, and beheld how the people cast money into the treasury: and many that were rich cast in much. 42 And there came a certain poor widow, and she threw in two mites, which make a farthing. 43 And he called unto him his disciples, and saith unto them, Verily I say unto you, That this poor widow hath cast more in, than all they which have cast into the treasury: 44 For all they did cast in of their abundance; but she of her want did cast in all that she had, even all her living.

3. 1st Peter 5: 2-4, KJV: 2 Feed the flock of God which is among you, taking the oversight thereof, not by constraint, but willingly; not for filthy lucre, but of a ready mind; 3 Neither as being lords over Gods heritage, but being ensamples to the flock. 4 And when the chief Shepherd shall appear, ye shall receive a crown of glory that fadeth not away.

There is far more that should be said, correctly examined, and spiritually apprehended. (For example, 4. Acts 8: 14-22, KJV: 14 Now when the apostles which were at Jerusalem heard that Samaria had received the word of God, they sent unto them Peter and John: 15 Who, when they were come down, prayed for them, that they might receive the Holy Ghost: 16 (For as yet he was fallen upon none of them: only they were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus.) 17 Then laid they their hands on them, and they received the Holy Ghost. 18 And when Simon saw that through laying on of the apostles’ hands the Holy Ghost was given, he offered them money, 19 Saying, Give me also this power, that on whomsoever I lay hands, he may receive the Holy Ghost. 20 But Peter said unto him, Thy money perish with thee, because thou hast thought that the gift of God may be purchased with money. 21 Thou hast neither part nor lot in this matter: for thy heart is not right in the sight of God. 22 Repent therefore of this thy wickedness, and pray God, if perhaps the thought of thine heart may be forgiven thee.) Even so, I trust this fragment will be useful. Be it unto you according to your faith.

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THE BLACK PHOENIX

Washington, DC

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Today, some thoughts are shared on prostitution and the Great Whore who appears as a symbol and type within the Bible.  Sin may dominate awareness and self-will in created beings and living creatures.  The revelation of divine righteousness and wrath against sin is demonstrated in judgment by GOD, who demands exclusive devotion, and whose name, therefore, is Jealous.  Devotion to carnal pleasure, false gods, and man-made idols are to be understood as corruptions and perversions of human creativity and “the World” that should emerge from the endowment of divine love and indwelling spirit imparted to mankind at Creation.  Unlike Christian believers who strive to be known as faithful, persevering, steadfast and trustworthy, whores must be exposed by the provisions of GOD because they are actors and hypocrites who do not love, and they lack faith imparted from divinity, yet, may convincingly feign affection, commitment, and zeal.  A fighter at “Yahoo! Answers” using the ID “Adam” (Level 4 with 3,124 points, a member since April 25, 2011) posted the following:

 

So is the idea behind the great whore in christianity someone who accepts everyone?

 

THE GOLDEN ARROW:  How weak is thine heart, saith the Lord GOD, seeing thou doest all these things, the work of an imperious whorish woman;  In that thou buildest thine eminent place in the head of every way, and makest thine high place in every street; and hast not been as an harlot, in that thou scornest hire;  But as a wife that committeth adultery, which taketh strangers instead of her husband!  They give gifts to all whores:  but thou givest thy gifts to all thy lovers, and hirest them, that they may come unto thee on every side for thy whoredom.  And the contrary is in thee from other women in thy whoredoms, whereas none followeth thee to commit whoredoms:  and in that thou givest a reward, and no reward is given unto thee, therefore thou art contrary.  Wherefore, O harlot, hear the word of the LORD:  Thus saith the Lord GOD; Because thy filthiness was poured out, and thy nakedness discovered through thy whoredoms with thy lovers, and with all the idols of thy abominations, and by the blood of thy children, which thou didst give unto them;  Behold, therefore I will gather all thy lovers, with whom thou hast taken pleasure, and all them that thou hast loved, with all them that thou hast hated; I will even gather them round about against thee, and will discover thy nakedness unto them, that they may see all thy nakedness.  And I will judge thee, as women that break wedlock and shed blood are judged; and I will give thee blood in fury and jealousy.  And I will also give thee into their hand, and they shall throw down thine eminent place, and shall break down thy high places:  they shall strip thee also of thy clothes, and shall take thy fair jewels, and leave thee naked and bare.  They shall also bring up a company against thee, and they shall stone thee with stones, and thrust thee through with their swords.  And they shall burn thine houses with fire, and execute judgments upon thee in the sight of many women:  and I will cause thee to cease from playing the harlot, and thou also shalt give no hire any more.  So will I make my fury toward thee to rest, and my jealousy shall depart from thee, and I will be quiet, and will be no more angry.  (Ezekiel 16:  30-42, KJV)

 

THE DOUBLE DAGGER:  The World and The Cross? (04/19/2016); A $1,000 Dollar Seed? (11/02/2015);  Incest? (10/29/2015); Money Is No Object? (10/14/2015); A Kindness to Mary? (04/21/2013); When GOD Controls? (04/22/2013); Pornography from the Bible? (11/26/2012); More Than Salvation (11/27/2012)

 

“Adam”, may I share some thoughts, here?  Mature Christian believers depend upon the holy writings to explain the various figures, symbols, and types that appear, especially where they have been provided to put forth admonition, prophecy, and revelation.  The Great Whore is described directly only within the Book of Revelation, and is a representation of commerce, enterprise, and trade; and may be regarded as corruption of both “the Flesh” and “the World.”  The carnal, material and social mechanisms and processes that may dominate human life are called “the flesh.”  Included are appetite (e.g., hunger, thirst, sexual craving), sensation (e.g., hearing, seeing, tasting, touching), emotion/mental functions  (e.g., anger, fear, imagination, recall).  In the same way the earth is the creation of divinity to maintain life for mankind, “the World” has been the creation of mankind for communication, exchange, life experience, and its own  survival.  Through the operations of sin that oppose the continued existence of divine law, the Law Giver, and the Creation established on a platform of sacred law, “the World” has become corrupt, defiled, and spiritually unclean.  Thus, the Great Whore can be seen as a mix of idols and images mistakenly exalted and worshiped among men that include the City, Mammon, the lingam, the mother, the yoni, and even marriage that is the counterfeit of holy matrimony.  Throughout the holy writings, prostitution and whoredom are used to identify sin that is otherwise hidden and disguised to be favor from “god”.  Those who offer themselves to false gods and idols do so by “hiring” and “paying for intimacy” with abominations.  The concepts of blessing (we also say, gifts) and grace from GOD are despised.  Those who “lust after” the Great Whore do so seeking to selfishly profit from, and make merchandise of the things from GOD (e.g., atonement, forgiveness, instruction, redemption, salvation).  They display to their chosen idol(s) the offerings and sacrifices properly due only to the true and living GOD.  Sacred law exposes sin as destructive, empty, ugly, and vain (i.e., without divine content).  In the same way, many have erred supposing they may consult a prostitute for instruction about sexual matters, and do not understand they are submitting themselves to fornication and life patterns that generate further emotional, psychological and spiritual confusion, the disciples of Christ have been warned that many will covet the inheritance of the church, become deceived and submit to “worship” of the Great Whore.

THE BLACK PHOENIX
Washington, DC

New Disclaimer

 

Today, Scriptures are shared as counsel to a writer who was asked to relinquish a family heirloom Bible that he has purchased.  In stating the dilemma, the personal and spiritual value of the Bible was not addressed; and the new owner is uncertain how to respond to the possibility of  legitimate claims by the heirs.  Even within ones home and family circle, when the holy writings are treated as private property or something costly, precious, a relic, and untouchable, the Bible may become another idol and source of spiritual confusion.  Superstition and occult belief become attached to the Scriptures when commitment to acquire sacred knowledge is not supported by fellowship with experienced believers, observing sacraments, prayer, and careful application of study.  A “Yahoo! Answers” member using the ID “jeremy” (Level 1 with 88 points, enrolled February 16, 2015) posted the following:

 

Should I return the old bible to the descendants?

I bought an old bible. Through genealogies and online ancestry information, I found the descendants. I contacted her and told her I can scan the genealogies pages and send to her because I think her familly members might be interested in their early ancestors. However, now she is asking for the actual bible. What should I do? I am not willing to give this bible or sell it to her. How to respond? Does she has legal right to claim this bible? The bible is almost 200 years old.

 

THE GOLDEN ARROW:  Hear another parable:  There was a certain householder, which planted a vineyard, and hedged it round about, and digged a winepress in it, and built a tower, and let it out to husbandmen, and went into a far country:  And when the time of the fruit drew near, he sent his servants to the husbandmen, that they might receive the fruits of it.  And the husbandmen took his servants, and beat one, and killed another, and stoned another.  Again, he sent other servants more than the first:  and they did unto them likewise.  But last of all he sent unto them his son, saying, They will reverence my son.  But when the husbandmen saw the son, they said among themselves, This is the heir; come, let us kill him, and let us seize on his inheritance.  And they caught him, and cast him out of the vineyard, and slew him.  When the lord therefore of the vineyard cometh, what will he do unto those husbandmen?  They say unto him, He will miserably destroy those wicked men, and will let out his vineyard unto other husbandmen, which shall render him the fruits in their seasons.  Jesus saith unto them, Did ye never read in the scriptures, The stone which the builders rejected, the same is become the head of the corner: this is the Lord’s doing, and it is marvellous in our eyes?  Therefore say I unto you, The kingdom of God shall be taken from you, and given to a nation bringing forth the fruits thereof.  And whosoever shall fall on this stone shall be broken:  but on whomsoever it shall fall, it will grind him to powder.  (Matthew 21: 33-44, KJV)

 

THE DOUBLE DAGGER:  The Nature of Scripture (03/27/2014); Divine Sleep (03/28/2014); Why Bother to Read? (10/31/2013); GOD Speaking Through Songs? (11/01/2013); The Bible and Genealogy (09/10/2013); Why GOD Does Not Tell All (09/11/2013); My Brother’s Keeper (04/05/2013); Issues for Children’s Church? (04/06/2013); Prosperity Destroys Fools (09/25/2012); Life and Death (09/26/2012)

 

“jeremy”, I heard your question as, Should I change my attitude, behavior, intent and purpose?  For you that Bible appears to be a snare:  something secular to be coveted and desired, merchandise, and another person’s inheritance.  Here are a few things that also should be weighed in the balance that are still being shared with those that desire salvation from GOD, and will undergo permanent change and transformation:

(1.)  Matthew 6:  19-21, KJV:  19 Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt, and where thieves break through and steal:  20 But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through nor steal:  21 For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.

(2.)  Luke 14:  25-27, KJV:  25 And there went great multitudes with him:  and he turned, and said unto them,  26 If any man come to me, and hate not his father, and mother, and wife, and children, and brethren, and sisters, yea, and his own life also, he cannot be my disciple.  27 And whosoever doth not bear his cross, and come after me, cannot be my disciple.

(3.)  Luke 3:  7-9, KJV:  7 Then said he to the multitude that came forth to be baptized of him, O generation of vipers, who hath warned you to flee from the wrath to come?  8 Bring forth therefore fruits worthy of repentance, and begin not to say within yourselves, We have Abraham to our father:  for I say unto you, That God is able of these stones to raise up children unto Abraham.  9 And now also the axe is laid unto the root of the trees:  every tree therefore which bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire.

(4.)  Ezekiel 14:  19-21  KJV:  19 Or if I send a pestilence into that land, and pour out my fury upon it in blood, to cut off from it man and beast:  20 Though Noah, Daniel, and Job were in it, as I live, saith the Lord GOD, they shall deliver neither son nor daughter; they shall but deliver their own souls by their righteousness.  21 For thus saith the Lord GOD; How much more when I send my four sore judgments upon Jerusalem, the sword, and the famine, and the noisome beast, and the pestilence, to cut off from it man and beast?

(5.)  Proverbs 20:  20-22, KJV:  20 Whoso curseth his father or his mother, his lamp shall be put out in obscure darkness.  21 An inheritance may be gotten hastily at the beginning; but the end thereof shall not be blessed.  22 Say not thou, I will recompense evil; but wait on the LORD, and he shall save thee.

There is far more to be said, correctly applied, and spiritually understood.  For example, (6.)  Matthew 7:  12, KJV:  Therefore all things whatsoever ye would that men should do to you, do ye even so to them:  for this is the law and the prophets.  Also,  Romans 13:  7-10, KJV:  7 Render therefore to all their dues:  tribute to whom tribute is due; custom to whom custom; fear to whom fear; honour to whom honour.  8 Owe no man any thing, but to love one another:  for he that loveth another hath fulfilled the law.  9 For this, Thou shalt not commit adultery, Thou shalt not kill, Thou shalt not steal, Thou shalt not bear false witness, Thou shalt not covet; and if there be any other commandment, it is briefly comprehended in this saying, namely, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself.  10 Love worketh no ill to his neighbour:  therefore love is the fulfilling of the law.)  Even so, I trust this fragment will be useful.  Be it unto you according to your faith.

THE BLACK PHOENIX
Washington, DC

A brief Scripture study is shared, today, focused upon the reason for our peculiar hopes as Christian believers.  While this blog is a personal acknowledgement of GOD, and a special instrument intended to nourish spiritual life in others, I am not affiliated with any incorporated ministry, and I do not solicit donations or gifts.  Therefore, trusting that it is no one’s intent to make merchandise of the holy writings, and that this is a correct, respectful, and “fair use” of copyrighted materials, I present selected verses from the Internet site BibleGateway.com online presentation of the New International Version (NIV) [Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.®]. 

SOME THOUGHTS ON

15 But in your hearts revere Christ as Lord.  Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have.  But do this with gentleness and respect,  (1st Peter 3:  15, NIV)

1st Chronicles 29:  11-15 (NIV)  11 Yours, Lord, is the greatness and the power and the glory and the majesty and the splendor, for everything in heaven and earth is yours.  Yours, Lord, is the kingdom; you are exalted as head over all.  12 Wealth and honor come from you; you are the ruler of all things.  In your hands are strength and power to exalt and give strength to all.  13 Now, our God, we give you thanks, and praise your glorious name.  14 “But who am I, and who are my people, that we should be able to give as generously as this?  Everything comes from you, and we have given you only what comes from your hand.  15 We are foreigners and strangers in your sight, as were all our ancestors.  Our days on earth are like a shadow, without hope.

Job 4:  4-8 (NIV)  4 Your words have supported those who stumbled; you have strengthened faltering knees.  5 But now trouble comes to you, and you are discouraged; it strikes you, and you are dismayed.  6 Should not your piety be your confidence and your blameless ways your hope?  7 “Consider now:  Who, being innocent, has ever perished?  Where were the upright ever destroyed?  8 As I have observed, those who plow evil and those who sow trouble reap it.

Job 5:  8-16 (NIV)  8 “But if I were you, I would appeal to God; I would lay my cause before him.  9 He performs wonders that cannot be fathomed, miracles that cannot be counted.  10 He provides rain for the earth; he sends water on the countryside.  11 The lowly he sets on high, and those who mourn are lifted to safety.  12 He thwarts the plans of the crafty, so that their hands achieve no success.  13 He catches the wise in their craftiness, and the schemes of the wily are swept away.  14 Darkness comes upon them in the daytime; at noon they grope as in the night.  15 He saves the needy from the sword in their mouth; he saves them from the clutches of the powerful.  16 So the poor have hope, and injustice shuts its mouth.

Job 8:  8-15 (NIV)  8 “Ask the former generation and find out what their ancestors learned,  9 for we were born only yesterday and know nothing, and our days on earth are but a shadow.  10 Will they not instruct you and tell you?  Will they not bring forth words from their understanding?  11 Can papyrus grow tall where there is no marsh?  Can reeds thrive without water?  12 While still growing and uncut, they wither more quickly than grass.  13 Such is the destiny of all who forget God; so perishes the hope of the godless.  14 What they trust in is fragile; what they rely on is a spider’s web.  15 They lean on the web, but it gives way; they cling to it, but it does not hold.

Job 11:  17-19 (NIV)  17 Life will be brighter than noonday, and darkness will become like morning.  18 You will be secure, because there is hope; you will look about you and take your rest in safety.  19 You will lie down, with no one to make you afraid, and many will court your favor.

Job 17:  13-15 (NIV)  13 If the only home I hope for is the grave, if I spread out my bed in the realm of darkness,  14 if I say to corruption, ‘You are my father,’ and to the worm, ‘My mother’ or ‘My sister,’  15 where then is my hope—who can see any hope for me?

Psalms 25:  1-9 (NIV)  1 In you, Lord my God, I put my trust.  2 I trust in you; do not let me be put to shame, nor let my enemies triumph over me.  3 No one who hopes in you will ever be put to shame, but shame will come on those who are treacherous without cause.  4 Show me your ways, Lord, teach me your paths.  5 Guide me in your truth and teach me, for you are God my Savior, and my hope is in you all day long.  6 Remember, Lord, your great mercy and love, for they are from of old.  7 Do not remember the sins of my youth and my rebellious ways; according to your love remember me, for you, Lord, are good.  8 Good and upright is the Lord; therefore he instructs sinners in his ways.  9 He guides the humble in what is right and teaches them his way.

Psalms 69:  13 (NIV)  13 But I pray to you, Lord, in the time of your favor; in your great love, O God, answer me with your sure salvation.

Romans 5:  1-5 (NIV)  1 Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ,  2 through whom we have gained access by faith into this grace in which we now stand.  And we boast in the hope of the glory of God.  3 Not only so, but we also glory in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance;  4 perseverance, character; and character, hope.  5 And hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us.

2nd Corinthians 1:  9-11 (NIV)  9 Indeed, we felt we had received the sentence of death.  But this happened that we might not rely on ourselves but on God, who raises the dead.  10 He has delivered us from such a deadly peril, and he will deliver us again.  On him we have set our hope that he will continue to deliver us,  11 as you help us by your prayers.  Then many will give thanks on our behalf for the gracious favor granted us in answer to the prayers of many.

2nd Corinthians 3:  9-12 (NIV)  9 If the ministry that brought condemnation was glorious, how much more glorious is the ministry that brings righteousness!  10 For what was glorious has no glory now in comparison with the surpassing glory.  11 And if what was transitory came with glory, how much greater is the glory of that which lasts!  12 Therefore, since we have such a hope, we are very bold.

Ephesians 1:  18-23 (NIV)  18 I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in his holy people,  19 and his incomparably great power for us who believe.  That power is the same as the mighty strength  20 he exerted when he raised Christ from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly realms,  21 far above all rule and authority, power and dominion, and every name that is invoked, not only in the present age but also in the one to come.  22 And God placed all things under his feet and appointed him to be head over everything for the church,  23 which is his body, the fullness of him who fills everything in every way.

Ephesians 2:  11-13 (NIV)  11 Therefore, remember that formerly you who are Gentiles by birth and called “uncircumcised” by those who call themselves “the circumcision” (which is done in the body by human hands)—  12 remember that at that time you were separate from Christ, excluded from citizenship in Israel and foreigners to the covenants of the promise, without hope and without God in the world.  13 But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far away have been brought near by the blood of Christ.

1st Thessalonians 5:  7-9 (NIV)  7 For those who sleep, sleep at night, and those who get drunk, get drunk at night. 8 But since we belong to the day, let us be sober, putting on faith and love as a breastplate, and the hope of salvation as a helmet. 9 For God did not appoint us to suffer wrath but to receive salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ.

2nd Timothy 2:  24-26 (NIV)  24 And the Lord’s servant must not be quarrelsome but must be kind to everyone, able to teach, not resentful.  25 Opponents must be gently instructed, in the hope that God will grant them repentance leading them to a knowledge of the truth,  26 and that they will come to their senses and escape from the trap of the devil, who has taken them captive to do his will.

1st Timothy 4:  8-10 (NIV)  8 For physical training is of some value, but godliness has value for all things, holding promise for both the present life and the life to come.  9 This is a trustworthy saying that deserves full acceptance.  10 That is why we labor and strive, because we have put our hope in the living God, who is the Savior of all people, and especially of those who believe.

There is far more to be said, properly shared, and spiritually understood.  Again, readers are asked to add any verse or passage from Scripture that they would like to share in the comments area (see below).  Even so, I trust this fragment will be useful.  Be it unto you according to the workings of the Spirit of Prophecy, the Spirit of Truth, and the Testimony of Jesus in you.  Grow in grace.

Make every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace.  There is one body and one Spirit, just as you were called to one hope when you were called;  one Lord, one faith, one baptism;  one God and Father of all, who is over all and through all and in all.  (Ephesians 4:  3-6, NIV)

THE BLACK PHOENIX
Washington, DC