Posts Tagged ‘tests’

Today, points are shared on life challenges, provoking divinity and self-discovery as well as divine judgment and revelation.  The fighter at “Yahoo! Answers” using the ID “Red ray 47” (Level 6 with 20,748 points, a member since August 23, 2009) posted the following to question the sovereignty of GOD:

So it’s ok for God to test humanity while it’s a sin to test God? Where in the bible does it says like that?

THE GOLDEN ARROW:  And it came to pass after these things, that God did tempt Abraham, and said unto him, Abraham:  and he said, Behold, here I am.  And he said, Take now thy son, thine only son Isaac, whom thou lovest, and get thee into the land of Moriah; and offer him there for a burnt offering upon one of the mountains which I will tell thee of.  And Abraham rose up early in the morning, and saddled his ass, and took two of his young men with him, and Isaac his son, and clave the wood for the burnt offering, and rose up, and went unto the place of which God had told him.  (Genesis 22:  1-3, KJV)

THE DOUBLE DAGGER:  Is Sin a Matter of Temptation? (04/22/2015); Continuously Tested (12/31/2013); Chosen To Serve As Prophets (01/01/2014); Stronger Tests for the Strong? (10/22/2013); Sacrificial Relationships? (10/23/2013); On Testing GOD (06/20/2013); GOD Grants License? (06/21/02013)

“Red ray 47”, divine instruction and process to reveal spirit substance often appears arbitrary, disloyal, and unpleasant.  Just as divine judgment resolves disputes by applying sacred law, judgment examines spirit content within the living, and then acknowledges and assigns eternal value.  The language speaking about temporal “temptations”, “tests” and “trials” generates spiritual confusion when held to mean “being pushed to the breaking point of ones will power,” “becoming overwhelmed by pressure to sin,” “being stripped of ones integrity and self-control,” “being drawn into wickedness,” or “having ones appetite aroused, or manipulated.” More correct, there are life challenges, opportunities for development of character, and regular courses of development that see increasing accountability, demands, knowledge, skill and privilege.  Believers are shown that affliction, hardship and suffering within the material and social spheres of the living can not eliminate or remove the hope, joy, divine love, and other aspects of power and strength imparted to believers as gifts and new life from GOD.  Believers learn to “praise their way through.”  Here are a few points from the Bible that are shared among Christian believers who now experience an intimate relationship with Deity as sons, daughters, and heirs:

(1.)  James 1:  12-14, King James Version (KJV):  12 Blessed is the man that endureth temptation:  for when he is tried, he shall receive the crown of life, which the Lord hath promised to them that love him.  13 Let no man say when he is tempted, I am tempted of God:  for God cannot be tempted with evil, neither tempteth he any man:  14 But every man is tempted, when he is drawn away of his own lust, and enticed.

(2.)  Deuteronomy 8:  1-3, KJV:  1 All the commandments which I command thee this day shall ye observe to do, that ye may live, and multiply, and go in and possess the land which the LORD sware unto your fathers.  2 And thou shalt remember all the way which the LORD thy God led thee these forty years in the wilderness, to humble thee, and to prove thee, to know what was in thine heart, whether thou wouldest keep his commandments, or no.  3 And he humbled thee, and suffered thee to hunger, and fed thee with manna, which thou knewest not, neither did thy fathers know; that he might make thee know that man doth not live by bread only, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of the LORD doth man live.

(3.)  Deuteronomy 13:  1-4, KJV:  1 If there arise among you a prophet, or a dreamer of dreams, and giveth thee a sign or a wonder,  2 And the sign or the wonder come to pass, whereof he spake unto thee, saying, Let us go after other gods, which thou hast not known, and let us serve them;  3 Thou shalt not hearken unto the words of that prophet, or that dreamer of dreams: for the LORD your God proveth you, to know whether ye love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul.  4 Ye shall walk after the LORD your God, and fear him, and keep his commandments, and obey his voice, and ye shall serve him, and cleave unto him.

(4.)  2nd Chronicles 32:  30-31, KJV:  30 This same Hezekiah also stopped the upper watercourse of Gihon, and brought it straight down to the west side of the city of David. And Hezekiah prospered in all his works.  31 Howbeit in the business of the ambassadors of the princes of Babylon, who sent unto him to enquire of the wonder that was done in the land, God left him, to try him, that he might know all that was in his heart.

(5.)  Proverbs 24:  11-12, KJV:  11 If thou forbear to deliver them that are drawn unto death, and those that are ready to be slain;  12 If thou sayest, Behold, we knew it not; doth not he that pondereth the heart consider it? and he that keepeth thy soul, doth not he know it? and shall not he render to every man according to his works?

(6.)  2nd Peter 2:  9, KJV:  9 The Lord knoweth how to deliver the godly out of temptations, and to reserve the unjust unto the day of judgment to be punished:

There is far more to be said, correctly understood, and spiritually apprehended.  (For example, (7.)  1st Corinthians 10:  13, KJV:  13 There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man:  but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it.)  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

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Today, points are shared on the meaning of “temptation” and the origin of sin.  The single word, temptation, is used to describe (1) testing that establishes endurance and permanence as well as (2) pressure to commit sin that comes against ones character, discipline, personality and righteousness.  Thus, the workings of admonition, challenge, and exhortation are in line with divinity, revelation, and salvation (temptation 1), while covetousness, envy, and lust are associated with the devil, sin and spiritual confusion (temptation 2).  The writer at “Yahoo! Answers” using the ID “Ryan” (Level 1 with 23 points, a member since May 20, 2013) posted the following:

 

Where does the temptation to sin come from?

Satan was the first one who tempted Adam and Eve to sin. Also, Satan tempted Jesus for 40 days. Furthermore, Satan is called the tempter in the Bible. Does this mean all temptation to sin comes from Satan? Or, does it come from ourselves because we’ve fallen ever since the original sin?

 

THE GOLDEN ARROW:  Blessed is the man that endureth temptation:  for when he is tried, he shall receive the crown of life, which the Lord hath promised to them that love him.  Let no man say when he is tempted, I am tempted of God:  for God cannot be tempted with evil, neither tempteth he any man:  But every man is tempted, when he is drawn away of his own lust, and enticed.  Then when lust hath conceived, it bringeth forth sin:  and sin, when it is finished, bringeth forth death.  Do not err, my beloved brethren.  Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning.  (James 1:  12-17, KJV)

 

THE DOUBLE DAGGER:  Power Against Sin? (04/12/2015); The Testing of Job? (10/06/2014); Knowing the Spirit is Inside? (10/07/2014); Continuously Tested (12/31/2013); Chosen To Serve As Prophets (01/01/2014); On Testing GOD (06/20/2013); GOD Grants License? (06/21/2013)

 

“Ryan”, some of the clearest, most useful points shared among Christian believers include the following:

(1.)  Sin is not a living organism, and has not been created by divinity.  Sin does not contain spirit matter that resides in the person of Deity as do created beings and living creatures upon the earth, and within the celestial presence (we say, heaven).  While sin is no material or tangible thing having measurable dimensions such as height, shape, length or weight, sin has direction, effect, and presence.

(2.)  Sin appears to be an artifact or by-product of created organisms being separated from divinity to exist as independent life forms.  Sin may dominate awareness and self-will within the living; however, the will of GOD does not become subject to sin.  Both for carnal beings (we say, mortals, those in flesh) and spirit beings (those neither mortal nor immortal such as angels and the sacred beasts of heaven) sin is a foreign influence experienced as a natural and normal expression of life essence (we say, spirit). 

(3.)  Sin opposes the continued existence of divine law, the Law Giver, and all order generated or maintained through sacred law.  Sin does not operate as having benefit, consciousness, preference, or purpose.  Thus, sin appears as abstract, impersonal, mechanical, and self-destructive.  Because our language centers in describing human vulnerability and accountability, we speak of sin using terms that suggest sin has, or is power to draw, engage, entice, fascinate, and seduce. 

(4.)  Mechanisms within the living that respond to sin include appetite (e.g., hunger, thirst, sexual craving), sensation (e.g., hearing, seeing, tasting, touching) and emotional/mental functions (e.g., anger, desire, fear, imagination, recall).

There is far more to be said, correctly applied, and spiritually understood.  (For example, (5.)  Perhaps sin is most clearly visible as attacks upon truth (we say, lies), arrogance, defiance of authority, false claims of power, rebellion, pride, usurpation, and violence.  Through baptism (death and burial of ones inborn spirit, and rebirth having divine DNA, so to speak), born-again believers can operate with a fresh endowment of spirit content from the makeup of GOD.  However, they must gradually grow and mature meeting the same life challenges upon the earth as all others.  Sin can not be correctly detected, eliminated, or resisted using only finite tools such as intellect, logic, mathematics, philosophy and science.)  Even so, I trust this fragment will be useful.  May your prayers ever be answered according to your faith.

THE BLACK PHOENIX
Washington, DC

Today, I share an anecdote (intended to serve like a parable) cautioning believers to focus upon the meaning, purpose, divine content, and spiritual value of human events, rather than their appearance, fashion, and form.  Some of our most difficult and necessary life lessons as Christian believers come to us in the appearance of day to day life experience.

THE BATTLE AXE:  On Youth Doing Enough (02/06/2014)—Like other young people dwelling in the earth, Christian youth all will face challenges, disappointments, times of uncertainty, and “growing pains.”  Yet, they will be continually supplied with tools from GOD that make possible lasting victory over confusion, fear, frustration, and weakness.  While growth, learning and preparation to serve will be a shared duty throughout the entire experience for those who are followers of Christ, new believers and youth often must be given added encouragement and support suited to their levels of maturity and understanding.  So to speak, the eternal life of a believer begins at their baptism; and there is only one truth for all the children of GOD, no matter what their ages.  Even so, genuine authority vested in children often is not properly acknowledged and obeyed without conflict, and unpleasantness.  Moreover, those in such roles as apprentices, beginners, disciples, and students often require added guidance, nourishment, and support.  Usually, minor children, teenagers, and young adults are not called to perform independently or without adult supervision in the vital offices and work whereby congregations and faith communities are initiated, organized, and maintained as worship assemblies.  Within a body of believers, consecration, intercession, pastoral counseling, and many other sacred tasks require continuous and full-time attention that would result in imbalance for young people still in stages of development that are not yet stable and complete.  Scripture reports that, at twelve years old (the age of bar mitzvah), Jesus was eager to begin service to GOD the Father when he visited the Temple at Jerusalem.  However, the Lord had to practice restraint and self-discipline until the time year later that was appointed for his appearing in public ministry.  See again, Luke 2:  40-52, King James Version.

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.  For scarcely for a righteous man will one die:  yet peradventure for a good man some would even dare to die.  But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.  Much more then, being now justified by his blood, we shall be saved from wrath through him.  For if, when we were enemies, we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, being reconciled, we shall be saved by his life.  (Romans 5:  1-10, KJV)

THE DOUBLE DAGGER:  That We Might Know (01/07/2014); Unguarded Chocolates? (11/07/2013); Jesus Rose? (11/08/2013); Why Jesus Used Parables (11/03/2013); Denying Baptism to Others (11/04/2013); Issues for Children’s Church? (04/06/2013); Outgrowing Childhood Prayers? (04/07/2013); GOD in Schools? (12/20/2012); Naaman the Leper (12/21/2012)

Yesterday, I shared an anecdote with my neighbor and his visiting friend.  A question came up regarding companies that provide automobile insurance, and the discounted costs their customers must receive.  I talked about my time as a driving instructor, here, in the District of Columbia.  I could not find work at that time in my chosen fields of management consulting and college level teaching, so I decided I would put pride aside, and respond to a newspaper advertisement for teachers at a driving school in nearby Silver Springs, Maryland.  My older sister had worked for this same firm, and I was sure it would be a solution for me, at least for a short while.

The company advertised that it would provide training to licensed drivers.  Having eight years as a licensed vehicle operator (and miscellaneous experience behind the wheel as a “renegade”), I was given two in-vehicle orientation sessions (in a car filled with four other instructor candidates), and challenged to apply for an instructors permit in the District of Columbia.  This meant taking the same written test given to new license applicants (that I aced), and passing a commercial driver’s “road test” (the same one—Oh happy day!—given to beginners).

Much to my surprise, I flunked the first road test, and was embarrassed.  I flunked the second, and was shocked.  I flunked the same test a third time, and began to panic (that the license I already had would be revoked; and I would not be accounted as fit for the necessary job).  Upon taking the test the fourth time, I realized that this was the “training” new drivers were to receive.  I was shown that I had become comfortable driving by feeling, habit, and instinct; and I was not relying upon knowledge and a commitment to safe driving.  Like others in the driving public at large, I conformed to patterns of the cohort (groups of cars moving at the same speed, and in the same direction).  I was not responding correctly to the markers (on the ground), the signals (electronic indicators), and signs (postings above ground).  I passed the test, understanding that I had become aware of every mistake that beginning drivers usually make.

On one occasion, I was dispatched to the home of a new driver, whom I was told was an older person who wanted only a few lessons that would fit her for an already scheduled road test.  When I arrived to her home for her first lesson, she opened her door, and fainted.  I was stunned!  I did not know what to do.  She fell against the door, shutting the door in my face.  I thought she might be dead from a heart attack!  At first I hesitated—I did not want to have to touch a cadaver—and I was sure, if I opened her door, I would be liable for breaking and entering (a person can end up in trouble for trying to help somebody!)  Finally, I decided I should check and see, and perhaps call for help.  Somewhat revived, she insisted she be given her one hour lesson.  So, on our way to the car, and before she could step completely out of her door, she fainted again—this time, into my arms!  I was stunned at the thought of what it looked like—me, with my hands and arms all over this woman on her front porch, and in her doorway!  Scandalous!

This lady insisted (who had only a learner’s permit) it was her right to take the city’s exam, and that I prepare her for her coming road test.  She introduced me to her husband (and insisted he be allowed in the car as her passenger during her lessons).  So, I decided I would spend the hour parked in front of her home describing the features of the vehicle, and the startup procedure.  No, no, no, no, no, no!  We must go out on the street; surely, the two steering wheels and dual brake system were all she would need for safety!  Reluctantly, I  submitted; and we went out to intersection at the end of the block (that happened to be one of the major arteries of the city).  Turning into a safe position, I told her to merely guide the car in it’s lane.  However, being in the left-most lane, when she saw the oncoming traffic, she threw up her hands, and covered her eyes.  I went off!  What are you doing!  Don’t you ever take your hands off the steering wheel!  How dare you cover your eyes when you are the driver of the car!

Thinking that, I have to accept my responsibility to my company, I figured I must acknowledge:  We are in this for the money!  After two or three sessions (she refused to pay for more), she legitimately insisted we assist her in taking the road test by escorting her to her appointment.  I counseled her that she was not ready.  Again, she insisted that she had a right to try, and to do her best. 

Once in a second vehicle with the examiner (one owned by the school I work for, however, not having the dual brakes and steering systems), the examiner directed her to start the vehicle, go up the ramp to the street, and make a left turn onto the thoroughfare.  I had been careful to caution this student that most beginners flunk their test at this very point.  Two stops are required:  one before entering or crossing the pedestrian lane (the sidewalk), and one before entering the vehicle traffic lane (the street).  By these two stops, the speed of ones vehicle is controlled, and the likelihood of collision is reduced.

To my surprise, this student acknowledged both these necessary cautions.  Even so, she flunked her test; and the examiner (the same one who had been my “instructor”) came down on me like a ton of bricks.  Mr. Jackson returned the vehicle to the test lot in less than 45 seconds!  Her left turn had been into the oncoming traffic lane, and she had exposed them both to the most fatal form of automobile casualty—head on collision!  Officer Jackson exploded on me:  How dare you put my life, the property and lives of others at risk!  How dare you bring this person here, knowing she was not ready, or able to safely compete the road test!  He was right, and I felt like dirt.

Just as the mechanics and processes of driving a car requires more than the application of feeling, instinct and intuition, becoming and serving as a mature Christian believer requires more than arrogance, audacity, presumption, and self-confidence.  Believers must be instructed in and practice divine truth as provided through the sacred writings, the performance of sacraments, and the pronouncements of fellow believers continuing with us in fellowship.  To teach beginners, believers all must think like beginners, yet, not continue in the errors of starting believers.  Also, experienced believers must be prepared to accept that all are not on their same level; and no one has a right to have more and receive more of the things given by GOD simply because they have desire or need.  More important are balance, commitment, contrition, conviction, faith, integrity, meekness, sobriety, and trust.

There is far more to be said, properly shared, and spiritually understood.  Even so, I trust this fragment will be useful.  Be it unto you according to your faith.

He that followeth after righteousness and mercy findeth life, righteousness, and honour.  (Proverbs 21:  21, KJV)

THE BLACK PHOENIX
Washington, DC

Happy New Year, everyone!  Today, focus is upon the duty and privilege of prophecy.  Also, there is more on being tested.  A writer at “Yahoo! Answers India” using the ID “King” (Level 2 with 430 points, a member since 09 October 2013) posted the following:

What are the qualities one should possess so that god choose him as prophet?

Or prophets are self declared?

THE BATTLE AXE:  Continuously Tested (12/31/2013)—(5.)  Christian believers must encounter the same difficulty or success as all others alive upon the earth.  However, by applying spirit substance, and continuously focusing upon the spirit content and value for things, believers transform their awareness, and all things are experienced in terms of their divine purpose, and eternal benefit.  Saying this another way:  A believer’s certainty of divine love and the holy presence of GOD becomes completely understood and visible for them as they use their own power from GOD to endure, overcome, persevere, and triumph.  Making life choices for ourselves, on behalf of loved ones, and in devotion to the Almighty transforms affliction (we say, hardship).  Obstacles become stepping stones; burdens become tools for achieving strength; and the things we once cursed and swore about using profanity become the cause and source for gratitude, joy, praise, and giving of thanks.  Indispensable spiritual focus and insights are acquired    See John 16:  33, Psalms 119:   67, 71, and 75; Colossians 3:  12-13, Galatians 5:  13-26, 1st Peter 4:  14-16, 1st Peter 5:  6-11 and 1st John 5:  1-6, King James Version.

THE GOLDEN ARROW:  And Moses went out, and told the people the words of the LORD, and gathered the seventy men of the elders of the people, and set them round about the tabernacle.  And the LORD came down in a cloud, and spake unto him, and took of the spirit that was upon him, and gave it unto the seventy elders:  and it came to pass, that, when the spirit rested upon them, they prophesied, and did not cease.  But there remained two of the men in the camp, the name of the one was Eldad, and the name of the other Medad:  and the spirit rested upon them; and they were of them that were written, but went not out unto the tabernacle:  and they prophesied in the camp.  And there ran a young man, and told Moses, and said, Eldad and Medad do prophesy in the camp.  And Joshua the son of Nun, the servant of Moses, one of his young men, answered and said, My lord Moses, forbid them.  And Moses said unto him, Enviest thou for my sake? would God that all the LORD’S people were prophets, and that the LORD would put his spirit upon them!  (Numbers 11:  24-29, KJV)

THE DOUBLE DAGGER:  Why Jesus Used Parables (11/03/2013); Denying Baptism to Others (11/04/2013); GOD Speaking Through Song? (11/01/2013); Why Not One Bible? (11/02/2013); Moses Killed? (09/23/2013); Salted with Fire? (09/24/2013); Jesus and the Pharisees (07/14/2013); How Could Angels Fall? (07/15/2013); Recognizing True Prophets (05/02/2013); Jesus, A Party Animal? (05/03/2013)

“King”, here are a few points shared among Christian believers you should also consider:

(1.)  The role of “prophet” (an appointed individual who serves as a spokesperson for GOD) began with Adam, was continued through the Patriarchs such as Enoch, Noah and Abraham, and was powerfully demonstrated through Moses, Samuel, Huldah (a woman), Elijah, and many others.  Their life experience as carnal, material, and social beings did not prepare them for their sacred work so much as their experience of, and participation in sacred events initiated and started by GOD, or divine responses to displays of extreme need (we say, cries for deliverance, despair and desperation) as well as human actions that revealed humility, love and unselfishness.  Included, then, were such events as fasting, meditation, miraculous birth, offerings and sacrifices, prayer, and angelic visitations.

(2.)  To submit to GOD is to allow and embrace permanent changes in ones inner makeup that then continuously appear in their consciousness, their routine functioning (e.g., attitudes, behavior, conduct), and their sense of purpose (goals, intent, motives, objectives).  Through baptism, a believer is “born again” as if having divine DNA.  Substance from GOD is imparted, and operates within the awareness and self-will of the believer.  Rebirth is instantaneous, however, the believer must learn, grow and mature over time, and by continuing to meet life challenges and “growing pains.”

There is far more to be said, properly shared, and spiritually understood.  (For example, (3.)  All who receive the Holy Spirit through the ministries of Jesus Christ, and become anchored in the holy writings, are endowed with knowledge and power that equips them to serve as spokespersons of GOD.  The Spirit of Prophecy (also called the Comforter, the Holy Ghost, the Spirit of Truth) works throughout the full body of believers, and does not reside only in church officials, clergy, and special officers.)  Even so, I trust this fragment will be useful.  Grow in grace.

If any man will do his will, he shall know of the doctrine, whether it be of God, or whether I speak of myself.  (John 7:  17, KJV)

THE BLACK PHOENIX
Washington, DC

The many temptations, tests, and trials that seem to be from GOD are the topic, today.  Also, there is more on fear and GOD.  A writer using the ID “Mathan” posted the following comment at “Yahoo! Answers India” (Level 1 with 155 points, a member since 16 November 2007):

 

I believe in god and I know that I’m here for a test. But my question is why I’m continuously tested?

 

THE BATTLE AXE:  Fear & GOD? (12/30/2013)—(4.)  The process of GOD for salvation in the earth is one of divine love, rather than one of  removing resistance by use of overwhelming force.  The products of threats and violence are bitterness, bruises, injuries, resentment, and scars, never affection, commitment, faithfulness or understanding.  Like repentance, fear of the Lord and right knowledge of divine person come by revelation, and are the work of the Holy Spirit.  Balanced and complemented by holy boldness, love, mercy, and truth, the wrath of GOD against sin is not the cause, or source for fear of the Lord.  Fear of the Lord is associated with wisdom.  Curiously, it is self-awareness as finite and separate from GOD that establishes created beings and living creatures in genuine personal relationship with the Creator, carrying us beyond the status of objects and things.  Godly fear that continues right reverence is therefore of one of the highest benefits from the ministry of the Risen Lord.  See Job 28:  28, Psalms 111:  1-10, Proverbs 1:  7, Isaiah 11:  1-5 and Isaiah 33:  5-6, King James Version.

 

THE GOLDEN ARROW:  Blessed is the man that endureth temptation: for when he is tried, he shall receive the crown of life, which the Lord hath promised to them that love him.  Let no man say when he is tempted, I am tempted of God:  for God cannot be tempted with evil, neither tempteth he any man:  But every man is tempted, when he is drawn away of his own lust, and enticed.  Then when lust hath conceived, it bringeth forth sin:  and sin, when it is finished, bringeth forth death.  Do not err, my beloved brethren.  Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning.  (James 1:  12-17, KJV)

 

THE DOUBLE DAGGER:  The Head Not The Tail? (10/21/2013); Stronger Tests for the Strong? (10/22/2013); Sacrificial Relationships? (10/23/2013); On Testing GOD (06/20/2013); GOD Grants License? (06/21/2013); Origin of Baptism (06/22/2013); Saved in Childbearing? (10/31/2012)

 

“Mathan”, here are a few points to consider that are based on Bible teachings that go along way to make things clear for many Christian believers:

(1.)  Existence for created beings and living creatures is not “a test” from our Creator intended to show the Almighty how much we know, or what actions we are capable of.  Life experience is a process of change and movement where there are many preset patterns for flow and fulfillment; and many of the challenges, difficulties, and problems encountered are in the nature of discovery, “growing pains”, and transition.

(2.)  At Creation, GOD breathed into mankind divine substance that established such features as awareness, existence, person, presence, and self-will.  The original spirit content of mankind has been altered by operations of a nonmaterial, non-spiritual influence we call “sin”.  Sin appears as a “byproduct” of separation from GOD, and may be known as an “object” of focus; however, sin has no measurable dimensions, and is not something a person may hold in their hand, or slip into their pocket.  Nonetheless, sin has direction, effect, and presence.

(3.)  Sin has not been created by GOD; and opposes the continued existence of divine law, of the Divine Law Giver, and of all things created throughout the universe of GOD.  Having no spirit content or form from GOD, sin in the living cannot be eliminated without upheaval of all divine order.  A broad array of sacred provisions are now in place to counteract and outweigh sin that include atonement, death, forgiveness, incarnation (GOD appearing in flesh), judgment, rebirth, resurrection, and sanctification. 

There is far more to be said, properly shared, and spiritually understood.  (For example, (4.)  In making things and preparing them for use (let’s say a sword) it is necessary to test (some say, “try”) them in order to discover hidden and unseen flaws.  More than this, testing is used to establish their permanent strength.  The tests provided mankind by life upon the earth do serve to clarify to us our human and spirit needs; and our life tests further give form to our personal relationship with GOD.  However, because sin may dominate awareness and self-will in all created beings and living creatures, sin cannot be immediately recognized as contrary to our own existence.  Through the ministries of Jesus Christ, fresh endowments of divine will are received by believers that equip the living to resist, and overcome sin by a new lifestyle that includes sacred practices.)  Even so, I trust this fragment will be useful.  Grow in grace.

Know ye that the Lord he is God: it is he that hath made us, and not we ourselves; we are his people, and the sheep of his pasture.  (Psalms 100:  3, KJV)

THE BLACK PHOENIX
Washington, DC

Today, response is made to the notion that offerings and tithes are made in payment for salvation.  Also, there is more on tests for those who are strong.  The “Yahoo! Answers” writer using the ID “IFollowEvidence&Facts” (Level 2 with 502 points, a member since October 26, 2012) posted the following originally asked on Yahoo Answers United Kingdom:

 

If salvation is free what is the point of giving tithes and offering?

 

THE BATTLE AXE:  Stronger Tests for the Strong? (10/22/2013)—Born again, the believer must “grow up” again by meeting challenges that often seem like tests or GOD “picking on” you, however are only normal aspects of ones new life.  Included are becoming free of false assumptions, fantasies, and vain hopes generated by the flesh and the world; disappointment when prayer seems to go unanswered; jumping to the conclusion that family, Satan, and various unbelievers are attacking, opposing and persecuting when they are not; and failing to realize ones own accountability for painful circumstances and problems (see Proverbs 24:  16 and Psalms 34:  18-19, KJV).  Even as Christians, many of us do not take constructive action, change and grow until challenged and pressured by crisis, imbalance, and severe need.  The principles for everyday Christian growth and witness insist that all will be held accountable for their own peculiar actions and responses to the various situations that will arise; there is to be shared responsibility for spiritual duties; those having are to share with those who need; and the strong are to serve the weak (see Romans 14:  10, 2nd Corinthians 5:  10, Acts 20:  35 and Romans 15:  1, KJV).  Many receive these and similar truths as tests, trials or even suffering imposed upon themselves, rather than necessary labor that supplies opportunities to give in service that will please and glorify GOD.  It is the human predicament that many unpleasant and unwanted events are shared conditions and life experiences that touch us all, however, not in the same way, or with the same power.  In addition to bereavement, disease, gay and lesbian sexuality, natural disasters, problems with money, and violence, the many elements of sin and spiritual confusion overtake most of us at some time during the course of our growth.  It remains that a single standard for salvation exists for all; yet, those who are strongest in love, are usually those strongest in faith, industry, longsuffering, patience, unselfishness, and zeal.  (See Luke 7:  36-50, 1st Corinthians 10:  13 and Luke 12:  43-48, KJV.)

 

THE GOLDEN ARROW:  Wherefore David blessed the LORD before all the congregation:  and David said, Blessed be thou, LORD God of Israel our father, for ever and ever.  Thine, O LORD is the greatness, and the power, and the glory, and the victory, and the majesty:  for all that is in the heaven and in the earth is thine; thine is the kingdom, O LORD, and thou art exalted as head above all.  Both riches and honour come of thee, and thou reignest over all; and in thine hand is power and might; and in thine hand it is to make great, and to give strength unto all.  Now therefore, our God, we thank thee, and praise thy glorious name.  But who am I, and what is my people, that we should be able to offer so willingly after this sort? for all things come of thee, and of thine own have we given thee.  For we are strangers before thee, and sojourners, as were all our fathers:  our days on the earth are as a shadow, and there is none abiding.  O LORD our God, all this store that we have prepared to build thee an house for thine holy name cometh of thine hand, and is all thine own.  I know also, my God, that thou triest the heart, and hast pleasure in uprightness.  As for me, in the uprightness of mine heart I have willingly offered all these things:  and now have I seen with joy thy people, which are present here, to offer willingly unto thee.  O LORD God of Abraham, Isaac, and of Israel, our fathers, keep this for ever in the imagination of the thoughts of the heart of thy people, and prepare their heart unto thee:  (1st Chronicles 29:  10-18, KJV)

 

THE DOUBLE DAGGER:  A Lid on Love? (09/27/2013); Dying in Terror and Joy (09/28/2013); Salted With Fire? (09/24/2013); A Halo Upon Jesus? (09/25/2013); A Relationship not Just Knowledge? (06/25/2013); Lost Without GOD? (06/26/2013); Quoting Scripture to GOD? (04/24/2013); Illusion? (04/25/2013); The Love of GOD (03/03/2013); Our Need for a Son (03/04/2013); Unless You Repent (03/05/2013)

 

“IFollowEvidence&Facts”, here are a few more points to consider that are important for full understanding among many who hold with GOD through Jesus Christ:

(1.)  Sacrificial blood (we may say, life essence, or spirit) is necessary for atonement and sanctification that fit believers for intimate relationship as the children of GOD.  Blood is not life, however, blood conveys what we call “the breath of life” containing the very substance of GOD that supplies awareness, existence, person, and self-will to created beings and living creatures.  At Creation, inseparable aspects of divine make-up were imparted that include faith, forgiveness, gratitude, holiness, joy, longsuffering, love, truthfulness, wisdom, and wrath against sin.  Through the operations of sin, the original endowment has been altered and diminished.  Through the ministry of Jesus Christ, believers are “born again” as though having divine DNA:  They all receive a fresh deposit of divine content.

(2.)  Sin opposes the continued existence of divinity, of divine law, and of hallowed person.  Sin is not a spirit, is not created by GOD, and is no material or physical thing having dimension.  Sin cannot influence the will of GOD; yet, sin may dominate awareness and self-will in created beings and living creatures.   Holy convocation for acknowledgment (we may say, worship) of GOD is broken off, defiled, profaned, and made unclean through sin.

There is far more to be said, correctly understood, and spiritually apprehended.  (For example, (3.)  Gather my saints together unto me; those that have made a covenant with me by sacrifice (Psalms 50:  5, KJV).  Offerings and sacrifices to GOD laid upon a holy table (we say, altar, cross) replicate aspects of the creation of Adam, and bring together flesh and spirit allowing the removal of all imperfection by the application of holy fire.  Atonement is thus the furtherance of Creation as well as the continuation of ongoing judgment.  The fulfillment of “formative judgment” (we say, reviewing your work as you go along) must go before “harvesting the earth” and final judgment.)  Even so, I trust this fragment will be useful.  Be it unto you according to your faith.

Grow in grace

THE BLACK PHOENIX
Washington, DC

 

New Disclaimer

Spiritual tests are the topic, today, and there is more on how believers are exalted by GOD.  The “Yahoo! Answers” Top Contributor using the ID “Mysterious” (Level 7 with 74,343 points, a member since August 17, 2012)  posted the following originally asked at Yahoo Answers Canada:

 

Are your tests more difficult if you are spiritually strong?

Why would God punish those who are strong?

Additional Details

Puffin: Dito, really I do get it.

 

THE BATTLE AXE:  The Head And Not The Tail? (10/21/2013)—All believers are cautioned that suffering is a common experience for those following Christ (see 2nd Timothy 3:  1-12, 1st Peter 4:  12-19 and Titus 2:  11-13, KJV).  Even so, believers in Christ are the head, and not the tail.  Men may become unfit for sacred service through hardships, indebtedness, the loss of financial stability, and poverty.  Similarly, men become unfit to fulfill their divine anointing through avarice, covetousness, gluttony, greediness, stinginess, and wastefulness.  Emotional and psychological challenges and obstacles that arise may become permanently implanted totally disrupting the believer’s balance, clarity, discernment, spiritual focus, and peace of mind.  A believer, who is visible, is provided with every necessary tool to successfully demonstrate the active presence of unseen Spirit.  As priests and kings, believers may serve as stewards and those who must manage money; however, the tool of money is to ensure political and social independence (we say, religious liberty), rather than ease, ostentation, pretension and self-indulgence.  More than this, money permits giving and other recognizable material expressions of concern, affection and respect (see Deuteronomy 28:  1-14, Romans 6:  16-22, Philippians 4:  11-13, KJV).

 

THE GOLDEN ARROW:  He that is faithful in that which is least is faithful also in much: and he that is unjust in the least is unjust also in much.  If therefore ye have not been faithful in the unrighteous mammon, who will commit to your trust the true riches?  And if ye have not been faithful in that which is another man’s, who shall give you that which is your own?  No servant can serve two masters:  for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other.  Ye cannot serve God and mammon.  And the Pharisees also, who were covetous, heard all these things:  and they derided him.  And he said unto them, Ye are they which justify yourselves before men; but God knoweth your hearts:  for that which is highly esteemed among men is abomination in the sight of God.  (Luke 16:  10-15, KJV)

 

THE DOUBLE DAGGER:  On Testing GOD (06/20/2013); GOD Grants License? (06/21/2013); The Spirit is Willing (10/20/2012); Spirit Matter (10/21/2012); Blessings, Curses and Woes (10/03/2012); After We Die? (10/04/2012); Struggling? (05/11/2012); Through Much Tribulation (05/12/2012)

 

“Mysterious”, your question calls forth a full blown book, however, here are a few points many Christian believers will find useful:

Tests (we say, temptation) are not punishments.  Correctly understood, tests are (1) assessments to clarify and show us our needs, and the genuine level of our commitment as well as to further draw created beings and living creatures to GOD, (2) demonstrations and displays of divine power from the spirit content that resides in those serving as agents of GOD, (3) events to reveal divine anointing and sacred presence, and (4) trials wherein a person must exercise spirit lessons, powers, and skills in order to fully internalize them, and make them continuous and permanent aspects in their living.

As with final judgment, temptations to examine and edify believers are not focused only upon such features as attitudes, behavior, conduct, endurance, patience, and stamina so much as upon their spirit substance.  Strength of spirit is paramount in place of force, physical prowess, and vigor.  Inseparable aspects of divine person should appear such as faith, forbearance, forgiveness, gratitude, holiness, joy, longsuffering, righteousness, truthfulness, wisdom, and wrath against sin.

There is far more to be said, correctly understood, and spiritually apprehended.  (For example, many times the tests a believer endures are a source for their growth and strength that otherwise would not come into their experience.  They acquire insights, skills, and understandings that fit them for greater accomplishments, and for higher levels of ministry to others.  The test is needed to make them strong.)  Even so, I trust this fragment will be useful.  Be it unto you according to your faith.

Grow in grace

THE BLACK PHOENIX
Washington, DC

 

 

New Disclaimer