Posts Tagged ‘study’

Caution Work in Progress

 

Today, points are shared on the human process and works that establish Christian believers in salvation.  In faith, many will speak “things that be not as if they already are,” and the sacred process is one of behaving consistently to act on and bring about what we have declared.  Thus, in the same way a complex chain of action/reaction follows a divine word of promise and prophecy, a believer may utter a word of forgiveness that will require years of change and growth before it is completely displayed and fulfilled throughout all their actions and attitudes.  Also, many are surprised and dismayed to find that conflict and disagreements continue to appear within the body of Christ, the church.  What they have to realize is that the meaning, purpose, and value of what seems strange and unwelcome behaviors are very different than that within the world.  Along with showing humility, piety, and reverence among themselves as believers, there are needs and settings that require Christians to be aggressive, critical, decisive, and practical (“wise as serpents, gentle as doves”).  Correctly understood, then, salvation is not a “one-time” event, nor is it only a divine operation that miraculously appears in the blink of an eye.  Salvation also means accepting and enduring judgment with correction now, continuing the exposure of error and sin as well as the faithful execution of commitment to the Gospel as a new creation through Jesus Christ.  One of the fighters at “Yahoo! Answers” using the ID “Anonymous” (no profile information shared) posted the following:

 

What constitutes a REAL Christian?

My parents run a bible study group thing where people from their church come over once a week and discuss Christian related stuff.

However, they spend a significant portion of the time bitching about certain people, pointing out their flaws, putting them down and being very judgemental.

Can they really be called Christians if they have this much disregard for what the bible teaches?

 

THE GOLDEN ARROW:  Dare any of you, having a matter against another, go to law before the unjust, and not before the saints?  Do ye not know that the saints shall judge the world? and if the world shall be judged by you, are ye unworthy to judge the smallest matters?  Know ye not that we shall judge angels? how much more things that pertain to this life?  If then ye have judgments of things pertaining to this life, set them to judge who are least esteemed in the church.  I speak to your shame. Is it so, that there is not a wise man among you? no, not one that shall be able to judge between his brethren?  But brother goeth to law with brother, and that before the unbelievers.  Now therefore there is utterly a fault among you, because ye go to law one with another. Why do ye not rather take wrong? why do ye not rather suffer yourselves to be defrauded?  Nay, ye do wrong, and defraud, and that your brethren.  Know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived:  neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind,  Nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall inherit the kingdom of God.  And such were some of you:  but ye are washed, but ye are sanctified, but ye are justified in the name of the Lord Jesus, and by the Spirit of our God.  (1st Corinthians 6:  1-11, King James Version, KJV)

 

THE DOUBLE DAGGER:  Divine Wrath Against Sin? (10/17/2017); We Are His Children (10/16/2017); Becoming Joined To GOD (10/13/2017); Transformation Not Obedience Alone (07/02/2017); Salvation Takes A Lifetime (04/06/2017); Believers Are To Love (12/07/2016); Good Christians and Church? (10/19/2016)

 

“Anonymous”, Christian believers are now engaged within the process of their own divine judgment, such that, when Christ will appear, they will be “clear” to join him in eternity.  Our transformation to exist as immortal, incorruptible companions of divinity has already begun, and will be completed soon.  In the same way life for a new born must unfold over the course of an indefinite period of time (a month, years, decades? We say, a lifetime), spiritual growth for those reborn as followers of Jesus Christ is an extended process of discovery, acquiring sacred knowledge and undergoing countless permanent changes in ones character, makeup, and spirit content that, once begun, continues for eternity.  Like diamonds that are produced by heat and pressure, or gold and silver that are purged and refined as ore and rough rocks within a burning furnace, sinners must be altered through multiple sacred operations that include baptism (death and burial of ones inborn spirit, and rebirth from divine DNA, so to speak), meeting life challenges on the earth, enduring “growing pains,” and suffering.

Those who are “born again” also must “grow up again,” and become emotionally, psychologically and spiritually ripe (mature) for harvest when they will meet the Lord in the air (we say, the Advent, the Rapture, the Second Coming).  To outsiders looking on, the church as a household of faith often will appear to be filled with conflict, disappointment, enmity, friction, and misunderstanding.  The salvation we speak of is anchored in Jesus dying on the cross, and believers receiving atonement and propitiation for sin through his blood.  Even so, for developing believers salvation also is a dynamic, interpersonal life process.  Yes, there are giving, performing good works, prayer, and study of the holy writings; however, these (behind the scenes) demand edification for such competence and special skill as balance, listening, forgiving, persevering, respect, restraint, waiting, weighing, and yielding. 

All Christian believers are to become vessels of divine spirit imparted from the makeup of GOD.  Included are faith, forbearance, holiness, joy, longsuffering, lovingkindness, wisdom, and wrath against sin.  Even so, there are numberless differences among believers:  All are not the same age, gender, nationality, or race; all are not on the same level of maturity; all do not have the same duties and responsibilities.  Believers are required to support one another by sharing admonition, counsel, critique, and guidance.  Through practice, growth, reflection, and unselfish service, all become equally able to realize that, through Jesus Christ, they now are endowed with a fullness of divinity within (we say, oneness without sameness) that continues under the authority of the Father.  Consider again the following that uses language from the Bible:

(1.)  Galatians 2:  8-18, King James Version (KJV):  8 (For he that wrought effectually in Peter to the apostleship of the circumcision, the same was mighty in me toward the Gentiles:)  9 And when James, Cephas, and John, who seemed to be pillars, perceived the grace that was given unto me, they gave to me and Barnabas the right hands of fellowship; that we should go unto the heathen, and they unto the circumcision.  10 Only they would that we should remember the poor; the same which I also was forward to do.  11 But when Peter was come to Antioch, I withstood him to the face, because he was to be blamed.  12 For before that certain came from James, he did eat with the Gentiles:  but when they were come, he withdrew and separated himself, fearing them which were of the circumcision.  13 And the other Jews dissembled likewise with him; insomuch that Barnabas also was carried away with their dissimulation.  14 But when I saw that they walked not uprightly according to the truth of the gospel, I said unto Peter before them all, If thou, being a Jew, livest after the manner of Gentiles, and not as do the Jews, why compellest thou the Gentiles to live as do the Jews?  15 We who are Jews by nature, and not sinners of the Gentiles,  16 Knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law, but by the faith of Jesus Christ, even we have believed in Jesus Christ, that we might be justified by the faith of Christ, and not by the works of the law:  for by the works of the law shall no flesh be justified.  17 But if, while we seek to be justified by Christ, we ourselves also are found sinners, is therefore Christ the minister of sin? God forbid.  18 For if I build again the things which I destroyed, I make myself a transgressor.

(2.)  Matthew 18:  15-20, KJV:  15 Moreover if thy brother shall trespass against thee, go and tell him his fault between thee and him alone:  if he shall hear thee, thou hast gained thy brother.  16 But if he will not hear thee, then take with thee one or two more, that in the mouth of two or three witnesses every word may be established.  17 And if he shall neglect to hear them, tell it unto the church:  but if he neglect to hear the church, let him be unto thee as an heathen man and a publican.  18 Verily I say unto you, Whatsoever ye shall bind on earth shall be bound in heaven:  and whatsoever ye shall loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.  19 Again I say unto you, That if two of you shall agree on earth as touching any thing that they shall ask, it shall be done for them of my Father which is in heaven.  20 For where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them.

There is far more to be said, correctly examined, and spiritually apprehended.  (For example, (3.)  2nd Peter 1:  2-12, KJV:  2 Grace and peace be multiplied unto you through the knowledge of God, and of Jesus our Lord,  3 According as his divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness, through the knowledge of him that hath called us to glory and virtue:  4 Whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises:  that by these ye might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust.  5 And beside this, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue; and to virtue knowledge;  6 And to knowledge temperance; and to temperance patience; and to patience godliness;  7 And to godliness brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness charity.  8 For if these things be in you, and abound, they make you that ye shall neither be barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.  9 But he that lacketh these things is blind, and cannot see afar off, and hath forgotten that he was purged from his old sins.  10 Wherefore the rather, brethren, give diligence to make your calling and election sure:  for if ye do these things, ye shall never fall:  11 For so an entrance shall be ministered unto you abundantly into the everlasting kingdom of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.  12 Wherefore I will not be negligent to put you always in remembrance of these things, though ye know them, and be established in the present truth.)  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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Today, reply centers on agreement of essential doctrine and teachings in the church with a believer’s personal expression of faith.  There are many Christian believers who dismiss instruction, study of the Bible, church history and policy in favor of their own heartfelt experiences and sacred discoveries.  Some do so because they want to deny what they do not understand.  Others seek a surrender of the self to GOD by their own immersion in the shared practices and teachings.  Doctrine appears through preaching and formal presentations that should articulate, explain and reveal the workings of faith that is a spirit content from the makeup of GOD.  Faith is made up only of faith, and is inseparable from other aspects of divinity such as forbearance, forgiveness, holiness, joy, longsuffering, loving-kindness, meekness, righteousness, wisdom, and wrath against sin.  Faith should acknowledge and initiate practical expressions of doctrine and teachings that make visible the active presence who is GOD.  “Faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of GOD,” thus, faith is built upon doctrine that provides order and structure for cooperative interaction.  The correctness, fullness and perfection of doctrine are to be sought as a necessary focus and exercise of faith.  One of the fighters at “Yahoo! Answers” using the ID “anonymous” (Level 2 with 306 points, a member since December 27, 2016) posted the following:

 

Must I believe that the Holy Ghost impregnated Mary to be a Christian?

 

THE GOLDEN ARROW:  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,  I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.  Let us therefore, as many as be perfect, be thus minded:  and if in any thing ye be otherwise minded, God shall reveal even this unto you.  Nevertheless, whereto we have already attained, let us walk by the same rule, let us mind the same thing.  Brethren, be followers together of me, and mark them which walk so as ye have us for an ensample.  (For many walk, of whom I have told you often, and now tell you even weeping, that they are the enemies of the cross of Christ:  Whose end is destruction, whose God is their belly, and whose glory is in their shame, who mind earthly things.)  For our conversation is in heaven; from whence also we look for the Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ:  Who shall change our vile body, that it may be fashioned like unto his glorious body, according to the working whereby he is able even to subdue all things unto himself.  (Philippians 3:  13-21, King James Version, KJV)

 

THE DOUBLE DAGGER:  Obstacles To Developing Believers (07/24/2017); Operations of Christian Faith (04/28/2017); Benefits of the Rosary (02/14/2017); The Mother of GOD? (12/09/2016); Can A Church Not Be “Religious”? (07/27/2016); Sadducees and The Cross? (03/13/2016); Is Mary A Goddess? (08/25/2015)

 

“anonymous”, prophecy is a process of GOD that relies on spirit.  The wholeness of sacred truth that declares the Creation of heaven and earth by GOD requires acknowledgement of spirit (we say, breath, life essence, word) that can not be apprehended relying on finite intellect, logic, and carnal reason.  It is important for Christian believers to understand the Incarnation of GOD as one of the many sacred operations whereby the fullness of divinity is being made knowable, known, “visible”, and accessible to all created beings and living creatures.

The divine fullness (we say, the three persons of the GODhead, the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit) is a single Deity who has put forth all that exists, all that live, and the settings for their continued duration.  To communicate, exchange and interact with GOD do require elements and features that are flesh and blood, material, secular and social, yet, to fully comprehend divinity is impossible without the elements and features put forth as spirit content from the makeup of GOD.  In addition to authority, power, and sovereign will are such divine provisions as covenant relationship, election, sacred law, miracles, prayer, priesthood, divine promise, repentance, sacraments, and sacred knowledge.

Sinners are to become developing believers who are gradually built up and transformed to exist as companions to immortal, incorruptible divinity.  The same oneness without sameness appearing within the GODhead should be seen in assemblies and communities of faith.  There may be great diversity; and only occasionally will all display the same level of commitment, knowledge, maturity, or zeal.  Believers are called into dependency and self-government under the dominion of Christ that sometimes is mistakenly called “free will.”  All are to be grounded and operate on the basis of their own endowment of faith.  Where the imparted spirit from GOD is the primary endowment for unity, the secondary mechanism for accord and agreement is the fixed, unchanging doctrines and teachings from GOD.

There is far more to be said and correctly examined in order to gain the blessings to be had through the full fabric of Christian belief.  (For example, the birth of Jesus Christ pertains to eternal purposes of GOD, the suspension of time and space as obstacles to the action and movement of divine spirit, the fulfillment of sacred promises, the restoration of prophecy, and the completion of things begun before the foundation of the world, and are not merely a matter of human appetites, sexual excitement, and animal reproduction.  Yes, all Christians should acknowledge that, through operations of the Holy Spirit, Jesus is the child that would be given birth through Mary.)  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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Today, the value of logic and other finite tools for knowing are considered.  The appropriate human tools required to process assumptions, recorded data, observations, propositions, and secular knowledge include intelligence, carnal reason, critical thinking, and recall.  When asked to share sacred knowledge and to impart spirit content to others the appropriate tools to be used by Christian believers include divine law, doctrine, parables, enduring principles, promises, prophecy, proverbs, personal testimony, warnings, and texts from the holy writings.  One of the fighters at “Yahoo! Answers” using the ID “Anonymous” (no profile information appears) posted the following:

 

Why don’t christians use their own logic instead of parroting what their pastors tell them?

I’ve never met a Christian that can use their own logic to prove that God exists.

 

THE GOLDEN ARROW:  Grace and peace be multiplied unto you through the knowledge of God, and of Jesus our Lord,  According as his divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness, through the knowledge of him that hath called us to glory and virtue:  Whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises: that by these ye might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust.  And beside this, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue; and to virtue knowledge;  And to knowledge temperance; and to temperance patience; and to patience godliness;  And to godliness brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness charity.  For if these things be in you, and abound, they make you that ye shall neither be barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.  But he that lacketh these things is blind, and cannot see afar off, and hath forgotten that he was purged from his old sins.  Wherefore the rather, brethren, give diligence to make your calling and election sure:  for if ye do these things, ye shall never fall:  For so an entrance shall be ministered unto you abundantly into the everlasting kingdom of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.  (2nd Peter 1:  2-11, King James Version, KJV)

 

THE DOUBLE DAGGER:  On Being Too Smart (04/30/2017); How To Know GOD? (12/12/2016); (09/13/2016); The Best Starting Point? Possible For Intelligent People? (02/07/2016); The Correct Prescription? (11/19/2015); Knowing? (05/24/2015); Believers and Evolution? (02/02/2015); GOD in Schools? (12/20/2012); Naaman the Leper (12/21/2012)

 

“Anonymous”, your statement is illogical; do not be surprised that non-Christians and sinners can not think and perform like Christians.  In effect you have shared a flawed syllogism like saying, “All cats are felines.  Lions and tigers are felines.  I’ve never seen a kitten that roars like a tiger.”  In the same way we are to accept ABCDEFG “by definition” and as a fixed pattern in existence that also includes XYZ, sinners and those outside the system of Christian belief first must accept that GOD is an “active presence” who displays person and eternal purpose, and has put forth everything described as being in existence.  Saying this another way, GOD is a breath (life essence, spirit, word), who is immortal, incorruptible, and invisible and must be known on the basis of one own spirit substance.  The process from mathematics that uses theorems, corollaries, and precise calculations for demonstrating what we call “proofs” can not be transferred to the Social Science of Theology.  Similarly, Aristotelian logic and discursive thought are not the primary tools in the operations for knowing GOD, or for acquiring sacred knowledge. 

To eventually function as mature Christians, the living must experience growth and permanent changes in their awareness and self-will by receiving inseparable spirit content from the makeup of divinity.  Included are faith, holiness, hope, longsuffering, lovingkindness, wisdom, and wrath against sin.  Faith is made up only of faith, holiness only of holiness, wisdom only of wisdom, etc.  Where one appears all are present, however, not always in the same distribution, measure and proportion (so to speak, “you can’t separate the wet from the water”).  Thus, there is a dynamic of balance, exchange, interaction, movement, and reconfiguration among these aspects of divinity.

Correctly understood, self-promotion is never the objective of a Christian whether sharing in the public forum or in private.  The believer is to display the heart, mind, and spirit of Jesus Christ.  The most correct responses for those sharing Christian belief will center in admonition, doctrine, instruction, ministry, and personal testimony (i.e., eye-witness accounts and verbal statements shared under oath that have weight as evidence in judgment as a full manifesting of the speakers integrity).  Consider again the following that uses language from the Bible:

(1.)  2nd Timothy 3:  16-17, King James Version (KJV):  16 All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness:  17 That the man of God may be perfect, throughly furnished unto all good works.

(2.)  2nd Timothy 2:  14-16, KJV:  14 Of these things put them in remembrance, charging them before the Lord that they strive not about words to no profit, but to the subverting of the hearers.  15 Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.  16 But shun profane and vain babblings:  for they will increase unto more ungodliness.

(3.)  Psalms 119:  98-101, KJV:  98 Thou through thy commandments hast made me wiser than mine enemies:  for they are ever with me.  99 I have more understanding than all my teachers:  for thy testimonies are my meditation.  100 I understand more than the ancients, because I keep thy precepts.  101 I have refrained my feet from every evil way, that I might keep thy word.

(4.)  1st Corinthians 1:  9-10, KJV:  9 God is faithful, by whom ye were called unto the fellowship of his Son Jesus Christ our Lord.  10 Now I beseech you, brethren, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that ye all speak the same thing, and that there be no divisions among you; but that ye be perfectly joined together in the same mind and in the same judgment.

There is far more to be said, correctly applied, and spiritually apprehended.  (For example, (5.)  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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Today, reply is made to the error that Christian belief primarily is intended for those who are simple-minded.  The good news of salvation is to be proclaimed even to those who are despised and poor; however, in no way are we to dilute the message or “dumb-it-down.”  The greater growth will be seen among those having faith and humility above those having title and secular knowledge.  Rather than on the basis of academic achievement, scholasticism, and intellectual sophistication, salvation in Christ is granted on the basis of divine grace, the desperate need of created beings and living creatures to be in a new relationship with divinity, and the willingness of sinners to respond to the Incarnate ministry of GOD.  Direct, plain and unadorned speech are most correct for delivering and marking instruction as  godly and sanctified, and as derived from a consecrated Spirit instead of from the flesh (i.e., appetite, sensation, emotion, imagination).  The  divine message may be simple because its power to change the makeup, nature and substance within the living is profound.  One of the fighters at “Yahoo! 7 Answers (Australia)” who uses the ID “Anonymous” and refuses to share profile information, posted the following:

 

CHRISTIANS – Jesus hated intellectualism, saying that His message could only be received by the simple-minded. Is this because of the flaws?

Updatehttp://strangenotions.com/top-10-tips-when-atheists-for-engaging-christians/

 

THE GOLDEN ARROW:  But what think ye? A certain man had two sons; and he came to the first, and said, Son, go work to day in my vineyard.  He answered and said, I will not:  but afterward he repented, and went.  And he came to the second, and said likewise. And he answered and said, I go, sir:  and went not.  Whether of them twain did the will of his father? They say unto him, The first. Jesus saith unto them, Verily I say unto you, That the publicans and the harlots go into the kingdom of God before you.  For John came unto you in the way of righteousness, and ye believed him not:  but the publicans and the harlots believed him:  and ye, when ye had seen it, repented not afterward, that ye might believe him.  (Matthew 21:  28-32, King James Version, KJV)

 

THE DOUBLE DAGGER:  On Being Too Smart (04/30/2017); Genuine Spiritual Discernment? (03/27/2017); Knowing What’s In Man (03/15/2017); Abstractions, Atheism and I.Q. (08/18/2016); The Cross and Critical Thinking? (04/13/2016); Academic Language? (12/10/2015); Knowing? (05/24/2015)

 

“Anonymous”, Christianity is one of the most challenging systems of belief and thought that has ever existed.  Many who disbelieve, and count themselves as “atheist” or “scientific” do so thinking they have higher intelligence, and that Christian belief is anti-intellectual.  More correctly understood, Christianity does not condemn exploration, growth, and learning.  Rather, Christian belief opposes death, hypocrisy, ignorance, pretension, presumption, exaggerated pride, and pseudo-intellectualism.  Along with the idolatry that appears when secular knowledge is exalted as equal or superior to sacred knowledge, many who follow human error will display self-promotion that denies the authority and ongoing operations of divinity.  They do not grasp the simple truth that sin does not exist as a material or physical thing, yet, sin has direction, effect, and presence.  The operations of sin may dominate awareness and self-will in living creatures and created beings.  By promoting annihilation and non-existence, sin opposes the continued existence of divine law, the divine Law Giver, and the divine order that exists as the universe.  The notion that GOD prefers those who are emotional, ignorant or submissive is promoted only by those lacking discernment and their own integrity as born-again believers.  Consider the following from the holy writings:

(1.)  1st Samuel 2:  2-4, King James Version (KJV):  2 There is none holy as the LORD:  for there is none beside thee: neither is there any rock like our God.  3 Talk no more so exceeding proudly; let not arrogancy come out of your mouth:  for the LORD is a God of knowledge, and by him actions are weighed.  4 The bows of the mighty men are broken, and they that stumbled are girded with strength.

(2.)  Matthew 23:  13, KJV:  13 But woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye shut up the kingdom of heaven against men:  for ye neither go in yourselves, neither suffer ye them that are entering to go in.

(3.)  2nd Timothy 2:  12-16, KJV:  12 If we suffer, we shall also reign with him:  if we deny him, he also will deny us:  13 If we believe not, yet he abideth faithful:  he cannot deny himself.  14 Of these things put them in remembrance, charging them before the Lord that they strive not about words to no profit, but to the subverting of the hearers.  15 Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.  16 But shun profane and vain babblings:  for they will increase unto more ungodliness.

(4.)  1st Timothy 6:  17-21, KJV:  17 Charge them that are rich in this world, that they be not highminded, nor trust in uncertain riches, but in the living God, who giveth us richly all things to enjoy;  18 That they do good, that they be rich in good works, ready to distribute, willing to communicate;  19 Laying up in store for themselves a good foundation against the time to come, that they may lay hold on eternal life.  20 O Timothy, keep that which is committed to thy trust, avoiding profane and vain babblings, and oppositions of science falsely so called:  21 Which some professing have erred concerning the faith. Grace be with thee. Amen.

There is far more to be said, correctly applied, and spiritually apprehended.  (For example, (5.)  Ecclesiastes 12:  12-13, KJV:  12 And further, by these, my son, be admonished:  of making many books there is no end; and much study is a weariness of the flesh.  13 Let us hear the conclusion of the whole matter:  Fear God, and keep his commandments:  for this is the whole duty of man.)  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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Today, focus is on the place of Jesus Christ in our youth becoming complete, mature, and spiritual persons.  The most balanced, competent, and well-adjusted people we meet are also well-rounded persons who are well-grounded persons.  Only through individual commitment, effort, and perseverance can we acquire adult knowledge and life experience.  While our careers and professional lives seem to require only the mastery of information and skills that are academic, secular, and technical, there must be specific spirit content for finite human makeup that comes only from divinity.  GOD must be in the life as more than abstraction, conjecture, speculation, and theorizing.  The lasting contentment, prosperity, and satisfaction in life are established primarily through godly communication, interaction, and continuing relationships.  One of the fighters at “Yahoo! Answers” using the ID “Anonymous” (no profile information appears) posted the following:

 

Why is it important for me to accept Jesus? Can’t people just pray me out of Hell?

I am a college graduate with a Bachelor’s degree. I just recently received a contract with one of the top international schools in the world in Barcelona. I will be moving to Spain in September and I am just so excited to be moving there for a couple of years.

This is the best thing that’s ever happened to me, that nothing else matters or is important right now.

So why should I make room for Jesus in this newfound life? He can’t possibly be more exciting or amazing than this…….

 

THE GOLDEN ARROW:  Grace and peace be multiplied unto you through the knowledge of God, and of Jesus our Lord,  According as his divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness, through the knowledge of him that hath called us to glory and virtue:  Whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises:  that by these ye might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust.  And beside this, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue; and to virtue knowledge;  And to knowledge temperance; and to temperance patience; and to patience godliness;  And to godliness brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness charity.  For if these things be in you, and abound, they make you that ye shall neither be barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.  But he that lacketh these things is blind, and cannot see afar off, and hath forgotten that he was purged from his old sins.  Wherefore the rather, brethren, give diligence to make your calling and election sure:  for if ye do these things, ye shall never fall:  For so an entrance shall be ministered unto you abundantly into the everlasting kingdom of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.  (2nd Peter 1:  2-11, King James Version, KJV)

 

THE DOUBLE DAGGER:  Acorns Become Oak Trees? (02/09/2017); Plantings of the Lord (02/10/2017); Benefiting From Your Childhood? (11/18/2016); As Newborn Babes…. (10/13/2016); Learning From A Spirit? (08/25/2016); Abstractions, Atheism and I.Q. (08/18/2016); The Cross and Critical Thinking? (04/13/2016)

 

“Anonymous”, to have salvation every man or woman must engage Jesus Christ in ongoing relationship.  Apart from the direct operations of divinity, the instruction of clergy, our parents, and other caretakers do not result in our becoming mature spiritual persons.  Correctly understood, their efforts center on meeting our carnal, material, and social needs, and supporting us as we take our first “baby steps” to our own personal relationship with GOD.  The culture of the young as they are growing and learning emphasizes and encourages diversity, excitement, individuality, and novelty.  However, minor children all reach a stage where the remainder of their lives will be spent as adults, and there can be no “do over” of childhood.  Multiple shifts must occur as they prepare to enter the adult world of work, sexual challenges, and life companionship through marriage as well as what it means to manifest honor, integrity, respect, and trustworthiness.  Crucial lessons must be shared on succeeding as a team, recovering from losses, making unselfish sacrifice, and displaying restraint and self-discipline.  The terms for adult accomplishments and life relationships are always described by such features as accountability, commitment, duty, and responsibility.  Thus, ones goals are framed as contentment and satisfaction (instead of celebrity, fame, wealth), and are achieved by displaying balance, consistency, stability, and thoroughness (attention to detail).  As created beings and living creatures on the earth, all men and women must encounter disappointments, “growing pains,” frustrations, and the challenges of sin.  (The finite human tools of intellect, logic, philosophy, and science can not eliminate sin; and so there also are sinners who hold Ph.D. degrees and Phi Beta keys.)  For men and women to become complete persons who express faith, and may become productive serving GOD as priests and kings through Jesus Christ, they must receive a fresh endowment of spirit content from the makeup of Deity.  Then, their spirit as “new creations” will be nourished through fellowship with other believers, observing sacred practices, and continuous study of the holy writings.  Consider the following points using language from the Bible:

(1.)  1st Peter 2:  1-5, King James Version (KJV):  1 Wherefore laying aside all malice, and all guile, and hypocrisies, and envies, and all evil speakings,  2 As newborn babes, desire the sincere milk of the word, that ye may grow thereby:  3 If so be ye have tasted that the Lord is gracious.  4 To whom coming, as unto a living stone, disallowed indeed of men, but chosen of God, and precious,  5 Ye also, as lively stones, are built up a spiritual house, an holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices, acceptable to God by Jesus Christ.

(2.)  Malachi 3:  13-18, 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.

(3.)  Matthew 16:  24-27, KJV:  24 Then said Jesus unto his disciples, If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me.  25 For whosoever will save his life shall lose it:  and whosoever will lose his life for my sake shall find it.  26 For what is a man profited, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul? or what shall a man give in exchange for his soul?  27 For the Son of man shall come in the glory of his Father with his angels; and then he shall reward every man according to his works.

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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Today, whether there is a need for other authentic holy writings with the Bible is considered.  One of the most important ways the Holy Spirit is imparted and received is by prayerful study of the Scriptures, and the anointing from GOD is not only by breathing from the Savior, by falling as at Pentecost, or laying on of hands.  The Scriptures have not been provided for amusement and entertainment, argument and debate, or intellectual competition and philosophizing.  They supply frameworks for spiritual awareness and increase that include covenants, family, godly government, judgments, divine law, parables, proverbs, salvation, and eternal life.  The fighter at “Yahoo! Answers” using the ID “Dan” (Level 4 with 3,089 points, a member since March 20, 2015) posted the following:

 

If all scripture is god-breathed, why doesn’t the bible contain all scripture, and why don’t you search for extra-biblical scripture?

I mean if ALL scripture is god breathed, I don’t understand how anyone could be satisfied with just the bible when it does not contain everything ever said or dictated by god. What about the book of Enoch? what about the gospel of mary? what about lilith? What about the dead sea scrolls? If ALL scripture is from god and is good for “teaching” like 2nd Tim 3:16 says, shouldn’t the bible contain ALL scripture? I mean if you don’t care about the non-biblical gospels, then your faith is but in the ancient self-righteous priests who decided (based on their own values, not god’s will) what went into the bible and what didn’t. Your faith is not in your god if the ideas of ancient people are more important to you than the words of god himself.

 

THE GOLDEN ARROW:  I Jesus have sent mine angel to testify unto you these things in the churches. I am the root and the offspring of David, and the bright and morning star.  And the Spirit and the bride say, Come. And let him that heareth say, Come. And let him that is athirst come. And whosoever will, let him take the water of life freely.  For I testify unto every man that heareth the words of the prophecy of this book, If any man shall add unto these things, God shall add unto him the plagues that are written in this book:  And if any man shall take away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part out of the book of life, and out of the holy city, and from the things which are written in this book.  He which testifieth these things saith, Surely I come quickly. Amen. Even so, come, Lord Jesus.  (Revelation 22:  16-20, King James Version, KJV)

 

THE DOUBLE DAGGER:  The Bible and Salvation (09/14/2016); The Best Starting Point? (09/13/2016); Learning From A Spirit? (08/25/2016); Order Your Conversation Aright (07/12/2016); To Him That Hath… (07/08/2016); On Transmitting Sacred Truth (05/06/2016); To Study the Book of Judges (09/09/2015); Anointed? (04/28/2014); No More “Mr. Nice Guy”? (04/29/2014)

 

“Dan”, salvation turns on how much faith more than on how much knowledge and scripture, for where there is faith prophecy, signs, and tokens from GOD are more than enough.  Mature Christian believers generally agree that the holy writings are a special appearance of spirit substance (we say, breath, life essence, word) from the makeup of GOD.  Divinity is revealed (i.e., made knowable, known, and “visible”) through use of a form or incarnation recognizable to created beings and living creatures.  The living must engage divinity by using their own inborn deposits of spirit, rather than by relying upon finite and limited tools such as emotion, intellect, logic, philosophy, carnal reason, and science.  Thus, inseparable aspects of divinity must be in place that include faith, holiness, joy, longsuffering, meekness, wisdom, and wrath against sin.  The permanence and unchanging nature of sacred knowledge, sacred events (we say, miracles), sacred practice (we say, sacraments), experiences of godly presence, and diverse sacred operations are rarely “one-time” events because, in fact, they are continuous, eternal, immutable, and unchanging.  The sufficiency of divine grace establishes their duration and their standing as having authority and power from the imparted, indwelling Spirit.  Those sinners who require their own experience of what was granted to those who traveled with Moses (manna, truth, and water from the rock) are answered through the Holy Ghost.  Through their consciousness and the correct operations of their self-will, every believer will be an “eye-witness” to the star over Bethlehem, the train of animals that entered the ark, and the conclusion of the shepherd boy’s battle against Goliath.  Consider again the following:

(1.)  John 3:  11-12, King James Version (KJV):  11 Verily, verily, I say unto thee, We speak that we do know, and testify that we have seen; and ye receive not our witness.  12 If I have told you earthly things, and ye believe not, how shall ye believe, if I tell you of heavenly things?

(2.)  Matthew 13:  10-16, KJV:  10 And the disciples came, and said unto him, Why speakest thou unto them in parables?  11 He answered and said unto them, Because it is given unto you to know the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven, but to them it is not given.  12 For whosoever hath, to him shall be given, and he shall have more abundance:  but whosoever hath not, from him shall be taken away even that he hath.  13 Therefore speak I to them in parables:  because they seeing see not; and hearing they hear not, neither do they understand.  14 And in them is fulfilled the prophecy of Esaias, which saith, By hearing ye shall hear, and shall not understand; and seeing ye shall see, and shall not perceive:  15 For this people’s heart is waxed gross, and their ears are dull of hearing, and their eyes they have closed; lest at any time they should see with their eyes and hear with their ears, and should understand with their heart, and should be converted, and I should heal them.  16 But blessed are your eyes, for they see:  and your ears, for they hear.

(3.)  Matthew 17:  14-21, KJV:  14 And when they were come to the multitude, there came to him a certain man, kneeling down to him, and saying,  15 Lord, have mercy on my son:  for he is lunatick, and sore vexed:  for ofttimes he falleth into the fire, and oft into the water.  16 And I brought him to thy disciples, and they could not cure him.  17 Then Jesus answered and said, O faithless and perverse generation, how long shall I be with you? how long shall I suffer you? bring him hither to me.  18 And Jesus rebuked the devil; and he departed out of him:  and the child was cured from that very hour.  19 Then came the disciples to Jesus apart, and said, Why could not we cast him out?  20 And Jesus said unto them, Because of your unbelief:  for verily I say unto you, If ye have faith as a grain of mustard seed, ye shall say unto this mountain, Remove hence to yonder place; and it shall remove; and nothing shall be impossible unto you.  21 Howbeit this kind goeth not out but by prayer and fasting.

There is far more to be said, correctly applied, and spiritually apprehended.  (For example, (4.)  Romans 8:  5-10, 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.  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.

THE BLACK PHOENIX
Washington, DC

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Today, focus is on making the transition to adult Christian belief through study of the Bible.  Agreeing with the Scripture from Solomon (Ecclesiastes 11:  9-10, King James Version (KJV):  9 Rejoice, O young man, in thy youth; and let thy heart cheer thee in the days of thy youth, and walk in the ways of thine heart, and in the sight of thine eyes:  but know thou, that for all these things God will bring thee into judgment.  10 Therefore remove sorrow from thy heart, and put away evil from thy flesh:  for childhood and youth are vanity.), many condemn childhood as a period that does not bear spiritual fruit, and is vain (i.e., lacks spirit substance from GOD).  Rather than deny and despise the life lessons from childhood, born again believers are encouraged to receive added benefit from their own past by “seeing with new eyes.”  The foundation from childhood should include some sacred knowledge, however, more than this there also will have been charity (unselfish love), gentleness, gratitude, faith, humility, patience, resilience, respect, and trust.  Christ who presents the image of immortal, immutable, unchanging divinity has been given as the model for created beings and living creatures to be in personal relationship with the Father.  Diversity, inconsistency, and the many differences among their levels of achievement and growth make it that believers apart from Christ are not sufficient as standards for one another.  The fighter at “Yahoo! Answers” using the ID “JohnnyBravo” (Level 2 with 600 points, a member since November 17, 2010) posted the following:

 

How do I avoid letting the childhood indoctrination creep on back as I attempt to read the bible cover to cover?

I’m trying to end this chapter of my life. I need to read the bible through from beginning to end to give myself closure.

Update: I notice as I read Genesis that I’m slipping back into old Christian ways of reading the bible. I start to make excuses for why God does what he does, etc. It happens automatically.

 

THE GOLDEN ARROW:  For other foundation can no man lay than that is laid, which is Jesus Christ. Now if any man build upon this foundation gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, stubble;  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.  If any man’s work abide which he hath built thereupon, he shall receive a reward.  If any man’s work shall be burned, he shall suffer loss:  but he himself shall be saved; yet so as by fire.  (1st Corinthians 3:  11-15, KJV)

 

THE DOUBLE DAGGER:  Choice, Duty, and Obligation? (11/17/2016); Birth, Self-will and Sin? (11/13/2016); Unguarded Chocolates? (11/07/2013); Jesus Rose? (11/08/2013); How Children Learn (11/09/2013); Issues for Children’s Church (04/06/2013); Outgrowing Childhood Prayers? (04/07/2013); Confessing Only to GOD? (04/08/2013)

 

“JohnnyBravo”, in Christ there is only one truth for both young and old, child and elder, that may be presented in multiple ways to fit their level of growth and maturity.  When Moses assembled the people at Sinai to hear GOD proclaim his law for covenant, even babes in arms and the sucking child were called.  Adult Christian believers ought not abandon their earliest lessons; they are to build upon them, and continue to grow acknowledging their foundation from GOD.  The key to having a fresh experience of the ancient truths recorded for us in the holy writings is to acquire during our own times a fresh endowment of spirit content from the makeup of GOD.  Finite tools of carnal reason, intellect, logic, and science may not be relied on.  Sinners who become “born again” will receive deposits of divine Spirit through baptism as well as by gathering in fellowship with other, more mature believers (church attendance); praise, prayer, and sacred practice (we say, observing sacraments); private study of the Scriptures; and unselfish service to benefit others.  Even as born-again believers, members of the church must “grow up again” and encounter the “growing pains” of life experience before they can be fully mature.  All believers are to gradually become ripe for harvest at the coming of Jesus, and display the same inseparable aspects of divinity that appeared within Jesus Christ upon the earth.  Included are faith, gratitude, holiness, joy, longsuffering, meekness, eternal purpose, wisdom, and wrath against sin.  Consider again how some of this is stated using language from the Bible:

(1.)  Romans 8:  5-9, King James Version (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.

(2.)  Romans 12:  1-3, KJV:  1 I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service.  2 And be not conformed to this world:  but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.  3 For I say, through the grace given unto me, to every man that is among you, not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think; but to think soberly, according as God hath dealt to every man the measure of faith.

(3.)  1st Peter 3:  4, KJV:  4 But let it be the hidden man of the heart, in that which is not corruptible, even the ornament of a meek and quiet spirit, which is in the sight of God of great price.

(4.)  1st Corinthians 13:  8-13, KJV:  8 Charity never faileth:   but whether there be prophecies, they shall fail; whether there be tongues, they shall cease; whether there be knowledge, it shall vanish away.  9 For we know in part, and we prophesy in part.  10 But when that which is perfect is come, then that which is in part shall be done away.  11 When I was a child, I spake as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child:  but when I became a man, I put away childish things.  12 For now we see through a glass, darkly; but then face to face:  now I know in part; but then shall I know even as also I am known.  13 And now abideth faith, hope, charity, these three; but the greatest of these is charity.

There is far more to be said, correctly applied, and spiritually apprehended.  (For example, (5.)  Romans 8:  25-28, KJV:  25 But if we hope for that we see not, then do we with patience wait for it.  26 Likewise the Spirit also helpeth our infirmities:  for we know not what we should pray for as we ought:  but the Spirit itself maketh intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered.  27 And he that searcheth the hearts knoweth what is the mind of the Spirit, because he maketh intercession for the saints according to the will of God.  28 And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.)  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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