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© 2017 James Daniel - Overture and Doctrinal
Now before we continue, let me draw your attention to the biblical term "church of Christ." Allow me to simply explain how the Bible uses the term church, and how we should use it, with all due respect. When it comes to answering this, we need to start with a generic first, and then a Bible specific. For example, in Mattew 7:2121. Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven., we read the words of Christ, wherein, "Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven." The primary concern in conveying the correct terminology, is that, most people are so accustomed to denominationalism, that when they hear the term "church of Christ," they think of it as another denomination amongst many. Therefore, for us to better understand the Lord's words we must look to what the Bible says, rather than what men think. Paul wrote, "For the husband is the head of the wife, even as Christ is the head of the church: and he is the saviour of the body." Now notice the noun "body." The definition of body refers to the structure of something, such as, the composition of a man. In New Testament terminology, the body usually refers to the church, bar the odd exception. Paul said that Christ was the saviour of the body. The terms "church and body" are interchangeable, which means, they are essentially the same thing. Both terms refer to a number of people. More importantly, a sanctified people - Hebrews 2:11-1211. For both he that sanctifieth and they who are sanctified are all of one: for which cause he is not ashamed to call them brethren, 12. Saying, I will declare thy name unto my brethren, in the midst of the church will I sing praise unto thee., and numbered with those that have obeyed the gospel call to repentance and water baptism - Acts 2:3838. Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.. Now to sanctify something is to set it apart or declare it as holy. Mind you, the Lord is the only one who does the adding to that number, so there's no way around it only to do what the Lord has instructed. After all, it's the Lord's word that will judge us in the last day - John 12:4848. He that rejecteth me, and receiveth not my words, hath one that judgeth him: the word that I have spoken, the same shall judge him in the last day..
In fact, no one will ever reach the point of salvation in any church outside the church of Christ. Now that's not saying that every church that calls itself a church of Christ rests on the foundation of Christ. Indeed it's well known that several Pentecostal churches refer to themselves as churches of Christ, or churches of God. All it serves is to cause confusion, and if anything, hinders the gospel. You see, the whole concept of denominations is divisive, and nothing more than a means of propagating complex and spurious systems of belief, and the foolishness of personal beliefs. The inspired text mentions no such thing as a church derived from the minds of men, nor indeed, the choosing of men. On the contrary, the New Testament church had its origins from the mind of God - Ephesians 1:4-64. According as he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before him in love: 5. Having predestinated us unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ to himself, according to the good pleasure of his will, 6. To the praise of the glory of his grace, wherein he hath made us accepted in the beloved.. Let's draw our attention to the terms "in him, predestinated, and in the beloved" mentioned in verses 4-6. It's important for us to understand those terms. In him, refers to in Christ. So how do we get in Christ? Well, the same way we get in the beloved, which is, to obey the gospel of the beloved Son of God - Matthew 3:1717. And lo a voice from heaven, saying, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.. That brings us to the word predestinate. The past participle predestinate means, to foreordain, predetermine, or preelect something. Past participles show something that started in the past, and continue until now. In God's case, predestination was determined upon foreknowledge. Now that in no way suggests that God is a respector of persons - Acts 10:3434. Then Peter opened his mouth, and said, Of a truth I perceive that God is no respecter of persons:; but rather the contrary. God has determined that all who believe and obey the gospel of Jesus Christ to predestination, inasmuch, as God would to have all men saved - 1 Timothy 2:44. Who will have all men to be saved, and to come unto the knowledge of the truth.. This is proven in the fact that we see men obey the gospel at all, because God never forced anyone against their will. The gospel is the determining factor. It's how men handle the gospel that will determine the outcome. Yet the reality is that only few will be saved. Now why is that? Well the obvious answer is that most don't even heed the gospel, let alone, give ear to it. In fact, very few will even tolerate listening to the gospel nowadays. It seems that the foolish things of this world are more important to some, and therefore, spiritual things carry little weight. Now I often wondered why that was. Then I learned the inconvenient truth. Sin is always present. Now notice in the spelling of SIN, that "I" is at the centre. You see, when we sin, we sin of ourselves, as in, me, myself, and I. Excuse the euphemism. You know, God is going to hold each of us accountable for our sin. All sin is against God, whether we sin against each other or not, we sin against God first. How is that? Well Paul said, every creature is mainfest in the sight of God. That means, nothing is hidden that God cannot see - Hebrews 4:1313. Neither is there any creature that is not manifest in his sight: but all things are naked and opened unto the eyes of him with whom we have to do.. Paul said, "All things that are reproved are made manifest by the light" - Ephesians 5:1313. But all things that are reproved are made manifest by the light: for whatsoever doth make manifest is light.. You see, when sin is brought to light, the majority would rather ignore any kind of admonishing than to acknowledge wrong doing. Such a characteristic is common to mankind. However, just because the majority have a tendency to agitate from responsibility doesn't make it right. The thing is, who wants to be told that their doing something wrong? Paul said, that no chastening for the present seemeth to be joyous, but grievous: nevertheless afterward it yieldeth the peaceable fruit of righteousness unto them which are exercised thereby - Hebrews 12:1111. Now no chastening for the present seemeth to be joyous, but grievous: nevertheless afterward it yieldeth the peaceable fruit of righteousness unto them which are exercised thereby.. In fact, every man is right in his own eyes according to the proverb - Proverbs 21:22. Every way of a man is right in his own eyes: but the Lord pondereth the hearts.. Indeed the Holy Spirit spake by the mouth of Paul, in that, blessed is the man to whom the Lord will not impute sin - Romans 4:88. Blessed is the man to whom the Lord will not impute sin.. When men obey the gospel (as they ought), and their trespass has been forgiven; then the Lord will add them to the number of the saved (who are the sanctified), which is the church. They are the same that hear the word of God, and keep it - Luke 11:2828. But he said, Yea rather, blessed are they that hear the word of God, and keep it.. My friend, there's no two ways about it.
Now the Bible is punctuated with explicits and definitives with regards to what the church is, and who the church are. There's no emasculating the fact that the church of Christ is of Christ, hence the preposition of, in relation to Christ. One would imagine the whole thing was made up only for the Holy Spirit spake, of Christ. Yet the God haters and religionists of today would have us to believe something else, that is, if we didn't have God's word to fall back on. You know, God commanded Moses to write in a book for a record - Exodus 17:1414. And the Lord said unto Moses, Write this for a memorial in a book, and rehearse it in the ears of Joshua: for I will utterly put out the remembrance of Amalek from under heaven., inasmuch as, Paul's writing to the church at Rome is also for a record, and for our learning - Romans 15:44. For whatsoever things were written aforetime were written for our learning, that we through patience and comfort of the scriptures might have hope.. This is how the system of salvation is preserved through the generations. We have the record of the Bible to touch on. It's such a pity that the vast majority who claim to be Christian fail to acknowledge this fundamental principal. Moreover, it's now a matter of proving what is acceptable unto the Lord - Ephesians 5:1010. Proving what is acceptable unto the Lord., cf. 1 Thessalonians 5:2121. Prove all things; hold fast that which is good.. Now as touching what Paul said earlier; we read in Ephesians 4:44. There is one body, and one Spirit, even as ye are called in one hope of your calling;, that there is only one body. That's the same as saying there's only one church. You know, things which equal the same thing also equal one another. Church or body, either way, are the same thing. Denominations don't even come close. The very existence of denominations suggests that Christ has more than one body. Such a notion contradicts scripture in every way. The church of Christ and denominations have always been mutually exclusive, in that, they are not the same thing. In fact, they are polar opposite in everything that pertains to the Godhead. Moreover, the so called Christian church and religious Christendom in general, are so far removed from what the Bible teaches; that they serve another purpose, and of a measure impossible to satiate, wherein, they lead the multitudes on their merry way to hell - Matthew 15:1414. Let them alone: they be blind leaders of the blind. And if the blind lead the blind, both shall fall into the ditch.. You see, from Roman Catholicism and her sectarian progenies, with the likes of Protestantism, the Baptist church and her own begats, Methodism and the Pentecostal churches; are all collectively in opposition to the will of God with their edicts and cleverely devised religious strategems. Yet not one of them can account for even one saved soul. Why? Because none of them are of God. They all serve their own daddy, the Devil, and not the God of heaven. Nor do they honour the begotten of God who is the Son of God. My friend, the math is not difficult. Just open the Bible and see it for yourself. It's also interesting to note, that if the Bible didn't exist; neither would Islam, nor any of the multitudes of denominations we have today. I guess that's a subject matter for another lesson. Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof - Matthew 6:3434. Take therefore no thought for the morrow: for the morrow shall take thought for the things of itself. Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof.
So what is an evangelist? Well, an evangelist is a gospel preacher, and/or a public teacher of the scriptures. An evangelist is a God appointed office, and open only to men. Mind you, not all men, and that speaks for itself - Ephesians 4:11-1211. And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers; 12. For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ:. Now some may well point the finger of misogyny, in that, I speak as the oracles of God in matters pertaining to men, and only to men. However, that is not the case, and indeed, more often that not, a misguided and ignorant conclusion. Now if God has determined the order in situ; well that settles the matter, does it not? You see, the sad fact, is that, not all women are willing to comply with "...thus saith the Lord." I always thought that God had the final say in matters that pertain to salvation, and the religion of Jesus Christ? In any case, the decision to appoint men to those roles rests with God. Therefore, any problems need to be taken up with God. Why? Because man has absolutely no authority to alter one jot of tittle pertaining to the testament of Jesus Christ. Now of course, there are certain women that claim to do the work of an evangelist regardless of who says what; but they do that of themselves, and not of God. Now make no mistake in that wilful ignorance and wilful contempt is answerable to God.
When we disobey God's word, we are essentially refusing to acknowledge the authority of God through his word, and therefore commit sin against the word of God. What's more, to sin against God's word is to be counted as transgressors. To transgress something is to violate, or go beyond. In other words, to disobey. Now it goes without saying, that there must be law for one to be counted as a transgressor. How can one be a transgressor if there's nothing to transgress? Paul said, sin is not imputed when there is no law - Romans 5:1313. (For until the law sin was in the world: but sin is not imputed when there is no law.. The same applies to the law of Christ - Galatians 6:22. Bear ye one another's burdens, and so fulfil the law of Christ.. As I said before, law is a system of rule that governs our conduct. Just read the New Testament and see how many conditions you find. Actually, there are over 600 individual commands in the New Testament. Now if that's not law, then what is? James, the brother of Jesus in the flesh, said, Be ye doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving your own selves - James 1:2222. But be ye doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving your own selves.. To be doers of something requires instruction. Law is made up of instructions. Needless to say then, that law can only be administered by means of authority. As for the Christian and the church, they are subject to Christ in all things by the authority of God. That's why scripture often refers to itself as the word of God. This effectively accentuates whose authority we are dealing with. God's authority. Not the authority of men. In saying that, the Bible teaches that sin is a transgression of the law of God. You see, when God says to do something, therein, is the explicit. An explicit is something that is stated clearly and in detail, leaving no room for confusion or doubt. An explicit can either be positive or negative. For example, thou shalt not do wrong, or thou shalt do what is right. An explicit can also take the form of a condition. A condition is something that limits or restricts something else; a qualification: you may enter only under certain conditions. Either way, law determines an outcome, inasmuch, as authority determines law. Did you know that there was 613 individual laws under the law of Moses? Well, as I said before, the law of Christ has well over 600 individual commandments. Paul calls them the law of Christ. Remember the words of Jesus, when he said, "Why call ye me, Lord, Lord, and do not the things which I say?" In John 12:4848. He that rejecteth me, and receiveth not my words, hath one that judgeth him: the word that I have spoken, the same shall judge him in the last day., we read that God's word will be the measure of judgement in the last day. In other words, the contents of the New Testament is going to be the measure by which we will be judged. You see, too many so called Christians, nowadays, go about as if there's no such thing as rule and authority, let alone, Bible authority. Men like that don't need the Bible. They're a law unto themselves. Nevertheless, the sum total is accountability for each and every one of us. There is nothing that is hidden from the watcher of mankind. All things are open and naked before him with whom we have to do. And as Moses once said, "Be sure your sin will find you out.
For reference: 1 John 3:44. Whosoever committeth sin transgresseth also the law: for sin is the transgression of the law., 1 Timothy 2:1212. But I suffer not a woman to teach, nor to usurp authority over the man, but to be in silence., cf. 1 Corinthians 14:3434. Let your women keep silence in the churches: for it is not permitted unto them to speak; but they are commanded to be under obedience as also saith the law., Luke 6:4646. And why call ye me, Lord, Lord, and do not the things which I say?, Numbers 32:2323. But if ye will not do so, behold, ye have sinned against the Lord: and be sure your sin will find you out., and Galatians 6:22. Bear ye one another's burdens, and so fulfil the law of Christ..
Post: June 2017 - A brief synopsis to further study already available.
Now there are those that assume that all of the Old Testament was law, and that all of the New Testament is grace. Their claim, is that, law and grace are mutually exclusive; but that's not what the Bible teaches. Therefore, we need to establish the law that Paul was referring to, not to mention, the works of faith, by which, the law of grace has determined that we should walk therein. We need to ask the question, what law was Paul referring to, when he said, "I suffer not a woman to teach, nor to usurp authority over the man? Now Paul said it was law in - 1 Corinthians 14:3434. Let your women keep silence in the churches: for it is not permitted unto them to speak; but they are commanded to be under obedience as also saith the law.. Therefore, we need to determine what law? Was it the law of Moses? or a cultural law? or a law specific to the Christian dispensation? For us to appreciate a better understanding, we need to learn the terminology of the dispensations; including the laws specific to those periods of time. A dispensation is what is termed as a period of time and law. The Bible has been divided into three of those periods of time, known as, the Patriarchal, the Mosaic, and the Christian (church, or last days). With regards to Paul's admonishing to the church at Corinth, and to Timothy, our answer is found in - Galatians 6:22. Bear ye one another's burdens, and so fulfil the law of Christ.. We also need to learn, that God is the one who gave the law in each of those dispensational periods. The Bible does teach that God is the one lawgiver - James 4:12There is one lawgiver, who is able to save and to destroy: who art thou that judgest another?. Indeed, for us to better understand the terminology of the dispensations of Biblical history; we need go back to the origins of mankind, to Adam and Eve, and the Patriarchal dispensation which spanned from Genesis to the giving of the law of Moses.
The Patriarchal system, was a social and religious system, governed by men, such as, in the time of Abraham. This period of the history of mankind continued through until the Mosaic dispensation (as in, the giving of the law of Moses on Mt. Sinai in Arabia) - Galatians 4:2525. For this Agar is mount Sinai in Arabia, and answereth to Jerusalem which now is, and is in bondage with her children.. The law of Moses was binding upon Jews only. It was not given to Gentiles, inasmuch, as all non-Jews are Gentiles. Its also noteworthy to meniton, that the Jewish nation of ancient Israel was governed under a theocratic system. Theocratic means, God dealing directly in the affairs of men, as in, Moses receiving the ten commandment on Mt.Sinai. Now as far as law goes, the three dispensations now culminate with the Christian, or church dispensation, which we live in. This clearly shows us that the law of Moses is no longer in effect. In fact, no one is subject to the law of Moses since the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ - Colossians 2:1414. Blotting out the handwriting of ordinances that was against us, which was contrary to us, and took it out of the way, nailing it to his cross;. That puts an end to, or decimates, the doctrine of Sabbath keeping in the current dispensation. Man is now accountable to the gospel of Jesus Christ, and if obeyed; binds him to the law of Christ, that is, until he dies. Salvation was always conditional, inasmuch, as obedience is conditional. Therefore, law is conditional. For example, the "ifs" which are punctuated throughout the New Testament represent condition. The conjunctive "if" introduces a conditional clause. As the Lord once said, "Observe and hear all these words which I command thee, that it may go well with thee..." You can read that in Deuteronomy 12:2828. Observe and hear all these words which I command thee, that it may go well with thee, and with thy children after thee for ever, when thou doest that which is good and right in the sight of the Lord thy God.. I don't think anything has changed in that regard. You see, all authority (as in power), belongs to Christ - Matthew 28:1818. And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth.. The church, who are the saved (people); are subject to Jesus Christ in all things. The church, in, and of itself, is not the authority, nor does it have the authority to make itself authority. Now that's not to say that God has not placed certain men in positions of authority, namely, that of oversight - again Ephesians 4:11-1211. And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers; 12. For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ:. For example, elders (plurally speaking), have the responsibility of the oversight of God's heritage, which is the church - 1 Peter 5:1-31. The elders which are among you I exhort, who am also an elder, and a witness of the sufferings of Christ, and also a partaker of the glory that shall be revealed: 2. Feed the flock of God which is among you, taking the oversight thereof, not by constraint, but willingly; not for filthy lucre, but of a ready mind; 3. Neither as being lords over God's heritage, but being examples to the flock.. They administer God's authority by reason of the scriptures. The same goes for a preacher. He preaches by the authority of God's word - 1 Peter 4:1111. If any man speak, let him speak as the oracles of God; if any man minister, let him do it as of the ability which God giveth: that God in all things may be glorified through Jesus Christ, to whom be praise and dominion for ever and ever. Amen.. You see, no man hath authority at any time over things that pertain to the Godhead, and that includes the church.
For us to fully appreciate what the sacred texts teach with regards to works of faith, opposed to our own works; we need to determine what is meant by works. For example, personal works, are those kind of works that we decide of our own volition, and free will. However, there is another kind of works that all of us are answerable in terms of accountability to God. James, the brother of Jesus (in terms of the flesh), said, "But wilt thou know, O vain man, that faith without works is dead? Was not Abraham our father justified by works, when he had offered Isaac his son upon the altar? Seest thou how faith wrought with his works, and by works was faith made perfect? Ye see then how that by works a man is justified, and not by faith only - James 2:20-22, 2420. But wilt thou know, O vain man, that faith without works is dead? 21. Was not Abraham our father justified by works, when he had offered Isaac his son upon the altar? 22. Seest thou how faith wrought with his works, and by works was faith made perfect? 24. Ye see then how that by works a man is justified, and not by faith only..
To better define the works of faith, we look no further than to the Bible for our answer. Jesus said, that faith (as in, belief) was a work of God - John 6:2929. Jesus answered and said unto them, This is the work of God, that ye believe on him whom he hath sent.. That means, God has determined that even belief itself is a work. The opposite of course, would be, to not believe, which is a work of unbelief, as in, a work of unrighteousness. Either way, they are works. What's more, Paul said, "...without faith it is impossible to please him (God)." Read - Hebrews 11:66. But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.. A work of belief, which is faith, requires, that we use our inherent mental faculties. God has given us the power of will, or volition, that is, to choose at liberty, that thing of our choosing. Now depending on the choices we make, in one way or another, they will determine an outcome. You can read that in - Galatians 6:77. Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap.. You see, with freedom of choice comes responsibility, and accountability. Without freedom of choice is the antithesis of faith, inasmuch, as unbelief is the antithesis of faith. All unrighteousness is sin - 1 John 5:1717. All unrighteousness is sin: and there is a sin not unto death.. Unrighteousness means, not right. Wrong choices are never right, are they? Well, we can make them right by repenting of them. Now a change of heart doesn't always mean a change of circumstances. Sometimes we have to bear the burden of wrong choices in this life. That's just a fact of life, and the Bible tells it no different.
You know, Paul said, that faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God - Romans 10:1717. So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.. So what does that mean? Well, where else do we learn what to believe; but in the inspired and sacred texts of the Bible. Therefore, both to learn, and to believe, are works of faith. How can one believe, unless he learns what to believe? That's why we have the Bible. Where's the difficulty in that? God has graciously given us the Bible, which contains the written record of his word. We can be thankful that we don't have to rely on earthen vessels nowadays, and especially so, given all the false teaching that's circulating the ranks of so called Christendom. Christendom is what religious Christianity (not Biblical Christianity) terms, as the worldwide body or society of Christians. Now it's one thing to call yourself a Christian, and another thing to be a Christian, which we will go into more detail in another lesson.
So what is meant by "the church of Christ?" Well, the church of Christ is a biblical term found primarily in - Romans 16:16Salute one another with an holy kiss. The churches of Christ salute you.. The statement itself denotes ownership. When something is of someone; it implies that it came from someone, or had its origins with someone, as in, a founder, or an originator. The church of Christ was found (or established) by Christ the Son of God. This is one of the many absolutes that seperate the church of Christ from all other churches. Christ is also the preeminent in every part of that which he founded - Colossians 1:18And he is the head of the body, the church: who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead; that in all things he might have the preeminence.. That means, Christ has first place in everything that involves the church, and the Christian's personal life; hence the term "Chrisitan," which means, follower of Christ, or Christlike. That's a far cry from the likes of Roman Catholicism, and the head of their church at Rome. Utterly unlike the church of Christ; the Catholic church have to replace their head, the Pope (a mortal man), every time one dies. Paul said, that the head of the church of Christ lives forever - Hebrews 7:25Wherefore he is able also to save them to the uttermost that come unto God by him, seeing he ever liveth to make intercession for them.. In saying that, the Catholic Pope assumes the place of Christ in their church. The thing is, he's not Christ, nor is the Catholic church of Christ in its present state. This should serve to warn us about blasphemy, and the consequences of apostasy. Now I'd encourage you to read what the Bible has to say about those things before you speak ought against those that testify according to the truth. If more people would read the Bible for themselves; they might well have less to say. Moreover, what the Bible teaches came from the Holy Spirit. To speak against the Holy Spirit is blasphemy - Mark 3:2929. But he that shall blaspheme against the Holy Ghost hath never forgiveness, but is in danger of eternal damnation.. All churches outside the Lord's church are found on the precepts of men. Teaching for doctrines the things that do not save. You see, substituting any part of the inspired doctrine is blasphemous. That will guarantee your place in hell, that is, if you continue in that thing which is contrary to what God said. God has only to say something once for it to be conditional. False teachers, as in the baser sort, have their foundation established on every wind of doctrine - Ephesians 4:1414. That we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive;. They deny the truth by means of pseudo-reasoning, and hollow arguments. They deny that salvation by grace is conditional. Anyone that can do that can do anything. They only hear what they have to say, and everything else is cast asunder. Now despite their dubious claims; is that the church of the Bible exists by virtue of the faith of Christ. The faith of Christ is the faith that saves. James the brother of Jesus said, "Be ye doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving your own selves." Read James 1:2222. But be ye doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving your own selves..
Furthermore, the church that the Bible teaches is of the seed of the word of God - Luke 8:11Now the parable is this: The seed is the word of God.. Like any seed; when it is planted, it will either grow, and produce what was intended, or it will die. Therefore, and in like manner; what the Bible teaches, and men put into practice, will produce what God intended. However, if the seed of the word of God fails to take root in the hearts of men; then it won't produce what God intended. It will produce something; but not the church that God intended. In other words, all other churches that claim to be Christian are of the seeds of the words of men. This is proven in the fact that they exist at all. To simplify this, is when men follow the teachings of men; it produces what the teachings of men intend. Have you not read - 1 Corinthians 2:1616. For who hath known the mind of the Lord, that he may instruct him? but we have the mind of Christ.? My friend, there is no alternative to the church of Christ, that is, if you want to be numbered amongst the saved. Moreover, the scriptures declare that the record of the faithful is kept in heaven - Revelation 20:15And whosoever was not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire.. Who can change that?
© 2017 James Daniel - Overture & Doctrinal - Series 1
Now before we go any further; I want you to know that I'm a King James only advocate, and for very good reason. I am completely convinced that the King James Bible is God's preserved word in the English language. That doesn't bode well for everyone; but what of that! I'm not in the business of following the crowd; for the sake of following the crowd, and what have you? In retrospect, I never considered myself a "men-pleaser," nor am I known to be one, thank God - Ephesians 6:66. Not with eyeservice, as menpleasers; but as the servants of Christ, doing the will of God from the heart;, cf. Galatians 1:1010. For do I now persuade men, or God? or do I seek to please men? for if I yet pleased men, I should not be the servant of Christ..
Definition: Men-pleaser (archaic, not obsolete). One who is motived to please men, or the world; rather than God.
In saying that, there are some issues that need our undivided attention, namely; that most, if not all modern preachers, have a curious tendency to differentiate the Hebrew word "Gehenna," and the Greek word "Hades," as if, they were two separate meanings; though they are separate words. Critics of the King James Bible, and there be many; claim that the translators mistranslated two Greek words “αδης (Hades),” and “γεεννα (Gehenna),” as hell. The problem with this, is that, both words are not Greek. Gehenna is Hebrew, and Hades is Greek. Both the Greek and Hebrew words have the same meaning; but obviously in different languages. Moreover, Paul never used the word "Gehenna" in any of his letters to the Greek-speaking Gentiles. It appears that James 3:66. And the tongue is a fire, a world of iniquity: so is the tongue among our members, that it defileth the whole body, and setteth on fire the course of nature; and it is set on fire of hell. is the only exception outside the gospels, in that, it was addressed to Jews. Nearly every American preacher in the Lord's church, bar a few, criticize the "hell" translation in the King James. And no marvel, my friend, because American English is as rendered as you will find. Now I say that with all due respect, even though it remains problematic. Paul said, in his letter to Timothy; with regards to committing to faithful men, and teaching others; not to strive about words to no profit - 2 Timothy 2:1414. 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., cf. Titus 3:99. But avoid foolish questions, and genealogies, and contentions, and strivings about the law; for they are unprofitable and vain.. Well I think it's a bit late for that now, don't you? The present distress is nothing more than a manifest token of dissimulation. What's more, brought on by a flagrant disregard for the authority of the scriptures, let alone, the simplicity that is in Christ - 2 Corinthians 11:33. But I fear, lest by any means, as the serpent beguiled Eve through his subtilty, so your minds should be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ.. You have to wonder with the King James having stood the test of time for over 400 years, as to whether God is in control? Now I say that in relation to all the fuss, and pseudo-maelstrom that modern dissimilists advocate. It's better to leave the providential handling of God's word with God. He's the one in control, isin't he? It's interesting to note Proverbs 30:5-65. Every word of God is pure: he is a shield unto them that put their trust in him. 6. Add thou not unto his words, lest he reprove thee, and thou be found a liar., in that, every word of God is pure. The adjective "pure" in verse 5, means, not mixed, or adulterated with any other material, as in, free from contamination. The same cannot be said of the modern Bible versions we have today. Changed words, my friend, means changed meanings. In saying that, they have every right to coexist alongside the likes of the Muslim Qu'ran, the Queen James Bible, the Satanic Bible, and all the rest, because they are not of God. They are nothing more than diabolical renditions, and works of misplaced literature.
Now hell is hell, and that's all there's to it. What you need to know is that you don't want to go there. Yet the Bible tells us that the majority are on their way to hell - Matthew 7:13-1413. Enter ye in at the strait gate: for wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat: 14. Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it.. One of the first principals of the oracles of God is to save us from going to that place. The Bible reveals the wisdom of God in saving men, and men would do well in taking to heart what the Bible says. Therein is salvation in Christ - Acts 4:124. Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.. However, when you have men that will not rest until they are deceived by the deceptions of mishandling the word of God, and thereby, damning themselves, and those that would to be damned by them, and what have you? - 2 Corinthians 4:22. But have renounced the hidden things of dishonesty, not walking in craftiness, nor handling the word of God deceitfully; but by manifestation of the truth commending ourselves to every man's conscience in the sight of God.. The Lord said to Saul, "It's hard to kick against the pricks" - Acts 9:59. And he said, Who art thou, Lord? And the Lord said, I am Jesus whom thou persecutest: it is hard for thee to kick against the pricks.. The same could be said for the King James Bible. Now I'm sure it's unfortunate for some, that the King James Bible is the most read book in the world; but what of that? The point is that God is in control, not us. Furthermore, we must acknowledge the fact that the word "hell" in the English language is near universally understood by all nations and tongues. You can't say that for any other language. I'm not surprised when I see the works of Satan attempting to undermine the simplicity of fundamental Bible doctrine, even that. Why even some of our own assist the efforts of the Devil in their trespass of dissipation and confusion. No wonder the world is in a shambles concerning the religion of Jesus Christ.
Moreover, there appears to be some confusion over the use of the English word "hell." Let's take for example, the parable of the rich man and Lazarus. In Luke 16:23-2423. And in hell he lift up his eyes, being in torments, and seeth Abraham afar off, and Lazarus in his bosom. 24. And he cried and said, Father Abraham, have mercy on me, and send Lazarus, that he may dip the tip of his finger in water, and cool my tongue; for I am tormented in this flame., cf. Luke 16:19-31 (King James Bible), we read of the rich man being in torements in a flame. Bear in mind, that this account refers to the now, and not some time in the future; such as, the lake of fire - Revelation 21:88. But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death., which is the second death. It's noteworthy to mention - Revelation 20:13-1513. And the sea gave up the dead which were in it; and death and hell delivered up the dead which were in them: and they were judged every man according to their works. 14. And death and hell were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death. 15. And whosoever was not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire., where death and hell delivered up the dead which were in them, and were cast into the lake of fire; which is the second death. This is future tense, and has not yet happened. The Bible can be divided into three parts; namely, past, present, and future tense. The present tense applies to the now. For example, God said, by the mouth of Paul, now is the accepted time; behold, now is the day of salvation - 2 Corinthians 6:22. (For he saith, I have heard thee in a time accepted, and in the day of salvation have I succoured thee: behold, now is the accepted time; behold, now is the day of salvation.). Furthermore, a parable is a story used to illustrate a moral or spiritual lesson. A story is an account of imaginary or real people, and events. In the story of the rich man and Lazarus, Jesus used specific words to show us whether the story was true, or just to illustrate. He said, "...a certain rich man (verse 19), and a certain beggar (verse 20). The word certain is defined as sure, or beyond doubt. Therefore, the story was true, and real. The rich man lived, and died, and is now in torement in hell; awaiting the final (or official) judgement, on the day of judgement - Revelation 20:11-1511. And I saw a great white throne, and him that sat on it, from whose face the earth and the heaven fled away; and there was found no place for them. 12. And I saw the dead, small and great, stand before God; and the books were opened: and another book was opened, which is the book of life: and the dead were judged out of those things which were written in the books, according to their works. 13. And the sea gave up the dead which were in it; and death and hell delivered up the dead which were in them: and they were judged every man according to their works. 14. And death and hell were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death. 15. And whosoever was not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire.. However, for us to better understand hell, we need to understand the realm of the dead. Where the spirit goes after it departs the body at death. Remember the account of the thief on the cross? Jesus spake of a place called "paradise." You'll read that in - Luke 23:4343. And Jesus said unto him, Verily I say unto thee, Today shalt thou be with me in paradise., or just hover you mouse pointer over any of the verses quoted.
Furthermore, the translation of the King James Bible was not influenced by liberal theologies, evolutionism, political-correctness, and the horrid ecumenicalism we see today. That alone, speaks for itself, and serves as a warning. In fact, God's words of the Old Testament were preserved by the Levitical priests who faithfully copied them over the centuries. Therefore, a more excellent manuscript, which was used by the King James translators, was the "Ben Chayyim" text. As for the New Testament, there is no doubt that God preserved his words through his faithful disciples from Antioch of Syria - Acts 11:2626. And when he had found him, he brought him unto Antioch. And it came to pass, that a whole year they assembled themselves with the church, and taught much people. And the disciples were called Christians first in Antioch. to the Vaudois people of the French Alps in around A.D. 120, or thereabouts. From roughly 150 A.D. on, they circulated an old Latin Bible, known as, "The Common Bible, or Vulgate" throughout Europe, England, and Ireland. Their Bibles were considered so accurate that they were used in the translation of the King James Bible. The Vaudois' Old Latin Vulgate is what brought the gospel of Jesus Christ to Europe. On the other hand, the Roman Catholic Vulgate is a completely different publication. The Catholic Vulgate has its origins from the perverted Alexandrian Greek Old Testament, Apocrypha, and New Testament texts.
Well, to answer that simply, is no. I'll say no again for the sake of emphasis. Nor indeed did Catholicism come from the Bible. The Catholic church tried to take credit for what the Lord did without their help, not to mention, there was no such thing as Roman Catholicism in the first century. The Lord's church was well established long before the church at Rome began to apostatize. Actually, the church at Rome was originally a faithful church of Christ. However, that all changed with the passage of time. Now Roman Catholicism, in, and of itself, is what the Bible calls the falling away - 2 Thessalonians 2:3-43. Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day shall not come, except there come a falling away first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition; Who opposeth and exalteth himself above all that is called God, or that is worshipped; so that he as God sitteth in the temple of God, shewing himself that he is God., cf. Hebrews 6:4-64. For it is impossible for those who were once enlightened, and have tasted of the heavenly gift, and were made partakers of the Holy Ghost, 5. And have tasted the good word of God, and the powers of the world to come, 6. If they shall fall away, to renew them again unto repentance; seeing they crucify to themselves the Son of God afresh, and put him to an open shame.. The church at Rome began to separate from the apostles doctrine (or Bible authority) from around 200+ A.D. onwards. They began to employ idolistic worship, such as, the worship of Mary (supposed crowned Queen of Heaven), and idol worship, wherein, all kinds of symbols, images, and relics, were, and are being used.
They further digressed when they began to employ a new system of church government, such as, popes, priests, and all the rest. Yet John said, that scripture cannot be broken - John 10:3535. If he called them gods, unto whom the word of God came, and the scripture cannot be broken;. That means, nothing was to be added, nor indeed taken, from what was written. You see then, why Roman Catholicism refers to the Bible as a serpent that threatens them? Ref. Roman Catholic Jesuit meeting in Cheri, Itlay in 1825. Why would the Roman Catholic church produce a book that contradicts their traditions and beliefs? To think that the Catholic church produced a book that condemns them in every way sounds absolutely absurd. That alone should serve to prove that the Bible did not come from Catholicism. The Bible and Roman Catholicism are mutually exclusive in every way. The Bible teaches men to become Christians, whereas, Roman Catholicism teaches men to be Catholics. Catholic and Christian are not the same thing. Catholic means, all-embracing, or universal. In other words, anything goes. There's no difficulty in proving how digressive Catholicism is. A Christian, on the other hand, is a follower of Christ. A follower of Christ adheres only to the teachings of Christ. My friend, the only place you'll find the teachings of Christ is in the Bible. Therefore, you need the Bible to teach you how to become a Christian. If you want to be a Catholic then you don't need the Bible. In saying that, you cannot call yourself a Christian if your a Catholic because there's no such thing as a Catholic Christian. The Bible teaches that the disciples were first called "Christians" at Antioch - Acts 11:2626. And when he had found him, he brought him unto Antioch. And it came to pass, that a whole year they assembled themselves with the church, and taught much people. And the disciples were called Christians first in Antioch.. It's also worth mentioning that the church at Antioch was the first time when both Jews and Gentiles worshipped God together. Collectively they were called Christians. The same cannot be said of Catholics because they don't even worship God.
The doctrine of purgatory is another false teaching of the Catholic church (where they teach that a soul must burn until it's sins have been purged). The major problem with such a concept is the outright contradiction of scripture. The Bible teaches that Christ was once offered to bear the sins of many - Hebrews 9:2828. So Christ was once offered to bear the sins of many; and unto them that look for him shall he appear the second time without sin unto salvation., cf. 1 Peter 3:1818. For Christ also hath once suffered for sins, the just for the unjust, that he might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh, but quickened by the Spirit:. If Christ paid the price for our sins, that is, the sins of those that have confessed their faith in Christ, and obeyed the gospel; then where does purgatory have a say? What of Abraham and Isaac? Did not Abraham answer his son Isaac, when he said, God will provide himself a lamb for a burnt offering - Genesis 22:7-87. And Isaac spake unto Abraham his father, and said, My father: and he said, Here am I, my son. And he said, Behold the fire and the wood: but where is the lamb for a burnt offering? 8. And Abraham said, My son, God will provide himself a lamb for a burnt offering: so they went both of them together.? Is not the same true of Christ the lamb of God - John 1:2929. The next day John seeth Jesus coming unto him, and saith, Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world.? If even such a place as purgatory existed at all, the Bible would have mentioned it. The reality is that the Catholic purgatory is just another name for hell. If you go there you'll certainly be purged, that is, from everything pertaining to salvation and the glory of God; but not from your sin. Only the blood of Jesus Christ can cleanse us from our sins - 1 John 1:77. But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin.. You see then, the concept of purgatory? is nothing more than a Catholic invention that milk's on the ignorance of unlearned men. The sole discourse of Roman Catholicism is to extirpate the doctrine of Jesus Christ and any hope of salvation.
To make matters worse, the Catholic mass was designed to prevent the Lord's supper. You can rest assured that didn't come from above. Paul said, that Christians are to observe the keeping of the commandments of God - 1 Corinthians 7:1919. Circumcision is nothing, and uncircumcision is nothing, but the keeping of the commandments of God., cf. 1 John 5:33. For this is the love of God, that we keep his commandments: and his commandments are not grievous.. And this is the commandment - Matthew 26:26-2826. And as they were eating, Jesus took bread, and blessed it, and brake it, and gave it to the disciples, and said, Take, eat; this is my body. 27. And he took the cup, and gave thanks, and gave it to them, saying, Drink ye all of it; 28. For this is my blood of the new testament, which is shed for many for the remission of sins., cf. 1 Corinthians 11:23-2723. For I have received of the Lord that which also I delivered unto you, that the Lord Jesus the same night in which he was betrayed took bread: 24. And when he had given thanks, he brake it, and said, Take, eat: this is my body, which is broken for you: this do in remembrance of me. 25. After the same manner also he took the cup, when he had supped, saying, this cup is the new testament in my blood: this do ye, as oft as ye drink it, in remembrance of me. 26. For as often as ye eat this bread, and drink this cup, ye do shew the Lord's death till he come. 27. Wherefore whosoever shall eat this bread, and drink this cup of the Lord, unworthily, shall be guilty of the body and blood of the Lord.. Morevoer, the Lord's supper is for a memorial - 1 Corinthians 11:2626. For as often as ye eat this bread, and drink this cup, ye do shew the Lord's death till he come.. Yet Catholics are taught that mass is the continual sacrifice of Jesus Christ. Furthermore, the Holy Spirit spake by the mouth of Paul, in that, Christ was once offered - Hebrews 9:2828. So Christ was once offered to bear the sins of many; and unto them that look for him shall he appear the second time without sin unto salvation.. Since when did once become more than once, as in, perpetual? You have to wonder what on earth goes on in the minds of some men. Have they no fear of God and the judgement that's coming? The Bible furnishes us with numerous warnings with regards to tampering with any of the inspired texts. Mind you, Paul said, to prove all things - 1 Thessalonians 5:2121. Prove all things; hold fast that which is good.. The Bible teaches one God - James 2:1919. Thou believest that there is one God; thou doest well: the devils also believe, and tremble.. So how can Roman Catholics claim to worship the one God of the Bible when they virtually ignore what the Bible teaches, not to mention, what the Bible teaches in regard to what is acceptable worship of the one God? Now in saying that, they do worship a god - 2 Corinthians 4:44. In whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them.; but not the God of the Bible.
Whats more, the inventiveness of false deities, such as, Santa Claus, have taken preeminence over Christ in the Catholic religion - Colossians 1:1818. And he is the head of the body, the church: who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead; that in all things he might have the preeminence.. Historical evidence suggests the origins of the fictitious Santa Claus to be somewhere around the 4th century. Moreover, there's not one shred of evidence to suggest that the Catholic St. Nicholas (Santa Claus) ever existed as a man; but rather a pseudo-Christianized variant of the various pagan gods of that time. For example, the Greek god Poseidon, the Roman god Neptune, and the Teutonic god Hold Nickar. In the early days of Roman Catholicism, many of the pagan gods they embraced were made saints. Even more alarming is the fact that parents allow their children to believe in such a creation as Santa Claus at all. Parents that do this, are in essence, teaching their children to believe a lie. In fact, they are teaching their children to lie. What's more, Santa Claus has virtually replaced Jesus Christ as the main figure of the Catholic Christmas which was originally intended to highlight the birth of Christ. In saying that, the whole concept of Christmas contradicts the biblical facts. A similar nativity celebration for pagan gods was observed around the winter solstice in both Egypt and Syria. Roughly, some 400 years before Christ, the Mithraic religion, which centred on the Persian sun god Mithras, provided the foundation for the Christmas celebration we see today. The Mithraic religion became very popular throughout the Roman Empire, and to this day many aspects of its worship continue in Roman Catholicism.
The reality is, the whole persona of "Santa Claus" is based on the precepts of pagan origin, and of course, a Catholic deception. Creepier still, is the fact that Santa Claus is taught to have the same characteristics as God. The Bible teaches that God is omnipresent. Omnipresent means, everywhere at the same time. For those of the pernickety persuasion, omnipresent is not a Bible word; but rather, a generalization of a fundamental principal, and also Bible doctrine. The fact that Santa Claus can visit millions of children in one night sounds more like Satan's attempt to be Godlike. Santa is also taught to be omniscient. Again, that's to say, he knows everything about all the children he visits. The Bible teaches, that God alone is the omniscient one. In other words, the all knowing. You have to wonder why the so called Santa is exalted to the same status as God?
In actual fact, the Bible came from the Jews, and not the Gentiles. That rules out any claim of Roman Catholicism in matters that pertain to God, and his church. The concept of Roman Catholicism is based purely on the precepts of a reprobate gentile system. In other words, a dead religion.
It's also worth noting; that the scriptures were produced by men of God (men moved by the Spirit of God), for the church, and not by the church. You see, Roman Catholicism had, and has, only one objective, and that is, to destroy true Christianity, and the Bible. Therefore, that wisdom might abound in exposing the craftiness of the wiley Satan; who, after all, is the hidden god of Catholicism.
What is meant by faith, or more importantly, a saving faith? Let's look at this another way. There are many faiths (or beliefs); but only one saving faith. Now that saying doesn't rest well with everyone; but what of that? The Bible teaches no such thing as multiple faiths concerning the salvation that is found in Christ. Let's take Roman Catholicism for example. They claim to be Christian, yet what teach is so far removed from the teachings of Christ, one can only wonder at the apparent disparency that exists between the Catholic "catechism" and the gospel. Now you have to wonder who does the saving according to the Catholic church? As we mentioned earlier, they claim that some will be saved by virtue of purgatory. The thing is, the Holy Spirit never mentioned that in the Bible. But if he did, there would then exist a contradiction in the system of salvation. That in itself would be a fatal flaw in terms of biblical inerrancy, that is, if it was true. Thank God it's not. You see, the Bible teaches that salvation is found in no other, for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved - Acts 4:1212. Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.. Yet Catholicism teaches multiple ways to heaven, which contradicts the Lord who is in heaven. The methodology of the Roman Catholic church was always to keep men ignortant of salvation. Now someone says, your just trying to destroy the Catholic religion, and force your beliefs on others. In part that answer is true, in that, Roman Catholics claim to be Christian when nothing is further from the truth. However, when it comes to accusations of forcing one's beliefs on others; then the accusation deserves to be answered. Peter, who the Catholic church claim to be their first pope, said in 1 Peter 4:1111. If any man speak, let him speak as the oracles of God; if any man minister, let him do it as of the ability which God giveth: that God in all things may be glorified through Jesus Christ, to whom be praise and dominion for ever and ever. Amen., "...that if any man speak, let him speak as the oracles of God." So where do we find the oracles of God, but in the Bible of course. Why then does the Catholic church claim to be Christian and not teach the Bible? The answer is simple. The motives of Roman Catholicism do not involve Christ, nor the salvation of the souls of men; but rather, the interdependency of power, prestige, and wealth. Mind you, they've done a good job in accomplishing that thing, and no wonder, when most of their infrastructure was built on the backs of the poor. Now when I say poor, I'm referring to both instances, namely, physical hardship and spiritual deprivation.
You'll find no such thing as a saving faith in any of the religions of men. The Bible teaches that there is one faith, inasmuch, as there is one God - Ephesians 4:4-64. There is one body, and one Spirit, even as ye are called in one hope of your calling; 5. One Lord, one faith, one baptism, 6. One God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all.. If you believe the Bible is the word of God; then you must believe what the Bible teaches is the word of God. God gave us the Bible for a reason. You see, men have the freedom of volition above all of God's creation. Therefore, man is accountable for how he administers the word of God. Now the term Bible means books, and number a total of 66. There are 39 books in the Old Testament (from the Jewish Torah - law, prophets, and writings), and 27 books in the New Testament. The first four books of the New Testament are the gospel accounts of Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John. They all declare one gospel; but obviously to different groups of people. The gospel of Matthew was for the Jews, whilst Mark was written to the Romans. Luke obviously wrote to the Greeks, whereas, John's account acts as a supplement to the others. You also have to wonder at the chronological order of the gospels, as to whether God had a hand in that too. John said, for salvation is of the Jews - John 4:2222. Ye worship ye know not what: we know what we worship: for salvation is of the Jews.. No doubt Matthew was writing to a Jewish audience being the first of the four accounts of the gospel, and confirmed by John, when he said, "...for salvation is of the Jews." When you hear men babbling on about four gospels, what you are really hearing is their ignorance of the scriptures. There is one gospel, one Jesus, one Holy Spirit, one Father, one baptism, one faith, one church, inasmuch as there is one God, and so on.
Now unfaithfulness, or to be unfaithful, is what we observe amongst those that keepeth not the commandments of God - 1 John 2:4 He that saith, I know him, and keepeth not his commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him.. Also read - Romans 2:8But unto them that are contentious, and do not obey the truth, but obey unrighteousness, indignation and wrath,. In other words: If you are a member of any other church, save the church of Christ; then you are no better off than if you were an unbeliever. Now you have to wonder, when you hear someone trying to water down scripture in an attempt to justify their sin, or the sins of others. Sin is sin, and nothing will ever change that. I heard a woman, who was a baptist, say, in defense of a friend who supposedly had homosexual tendencies; that just because the Bible mentions it, doesn't give people the right to condemn it. Well, it goes to show how wilfully ignorant some people are with regards to God's condemnation of sin. As for the woman from the Baptist church; she was either blindsighted to the fact of what she had just said, or she just didn't give two hoots about who she was contradicting. Either way, it is woe unto her. If the Creator says something is sinful, well, that settles the matter! When a man is not in Christ; such things carry little weight with regards to the authority of scripture. Anything goes, and usually does. Out with the Spirit, and in with the Devil. I've seen this happen too many times; even to some of our own brethren. Remember what Paul said about examining ourselves, whether we are in the faith - 2 Corinthians 13:5Examine yourselves, whether ye be in the faith; prove your own selves. Know ye not your own selves, how that Jesus Christ is in you, except ye be reprobates??
If where you supposedly go to worship involves the use of musical instruments, first century gifts of the Spirit, such as, speaking in tongues, or pastorial oversight in the form of one man, or even a woman, presiding over a congregation, or more than one congregation; then you do not have God. If where you attend worship condones homosexuality, allows for women preachers, same sex marriage, the unmarried living together, smoking, alcohol consumption, and gambling; then you do not have God. If the church you attend Sunday service teaches salvation apart from obeying the gospel; such as, proxy salvation which is no salvation at all; then you do not have God. The Devil has more men preaching from the Bible than God. This is provable in the fact that religious Christendom survives at all. I say "Christendom" because that's what they call it. The Bible doesn't call it that. It calls it the falling away - 2 Thessalonians 2:1-21. Now we beseech you, brethren, by the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, and by our gathering together unto him, 2. That ye be not soon shaken in mind, or be troubled, neither by spirit, nor by word, nor by letter as from us, as that the day of Christ is at hand. 3. Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day shall not come, except there come a falling away first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition;. That's what you see when you have the likes of Roman Catholicism, Protestantism, and Pentecostalism all claiming to bear the cross of Christ. Don't be deceived by the outward appearance. None of them are of God. Not by a long shot.
On the other hand, if you obey the gospel, and live faithful in Christ; then you have both God, and the promise of God - Matthew 25:34Then shall the King say unto them on his right hand, Come, ye blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world:. If you follow the traditions of men - Mark 7:7-8Howbeit in vain do they worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men. For laying aside the commandment of God, ye hold the tradition of men, as the washing of pots and cups: and many other such like things ye do., and expect to receive the same of God; then you are thoroughly mistaken. The Bible determines, that God is under no obligation to save men. Man is the one who does the sinning. Therefore, man must seek forgiveness of his sins if he is to resume fellowship with his Creator. Man is saved by grace which is unmerited favour - Ephesians 2:8For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:. The Bible teaches that grace is applied through the faith of Jesus Christ - Acts 4:12Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved., John 14:6Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.. What that means, is when we demonstrate a readiness of heart to take God at his word, and do those things which are required of faith, that is, contained within the word of God; then we have God. This is when the cross of Christ takes effect. The blood of Jesus Christ was shed at the cross. He was once offered to bear the sins of many - Hebrews 9:2828. So Christ was once offered to bear the sins of many; and unto them that look for him shall he appear the second time without sin unto salvation.. However, for us to benefit of this; there are certain conditions in which we must observe, namely, our obedience to the first principals of the oracles of God. Faith, that is, to take God at his word, is vital. The Bible teaches, that its impossible to please God without faith - Hebrews 11:66. But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.. Faith includes, confession of faith in Christ, repentance, and baptism for the remission of sins. That is to obey the gospel, even Christ, who is the author and finisher of our faith - Hebrews 12:22. Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.. Then the Lord will add you to "his" church - Acts 2:4747. Praising God, and having favour with all the people. And the Lord added to the church daily such as should be saved.. That is what the Bible teaches. Who are you going to believe?
As for those who say that one can be saved in any church, well, let them prove it unequivocally from scripture. The simple answer is, they can't. The Bible teaches no such thing as choosing the church of your choice. That's not what the church is supposed to represent. The church is the saved, the sanctified, and those who are set apart as God's heritage. Those that have obeyed the gospel unto repentance and baptism. In case you haven't read what the Bible teaches; is that the church belongs to God, and God alone does the adding to the church. Now as we all know well, there are many churches, and many ways to join those churches. However, the problem with that is that the Bible does not teach that kind of system, let alone, tolerate tampering with God's word. Few seem to understand that the church is standalone, and not several church types incorporated by means of varying doctrines. That kind of system wars against the Spirit of the letter of the truth. Mind you, it's more fashionable nowadays to turn one's back on God than to obey the truth. The term is salvation by proxy which is no salvation at all. You've heard it said, every seed after its own kind. Well, Roman Catholicism produces Catholics, inasmuch as Mormon's produce Mormon's, and what have you? Now many denominations take things a step further in that they refer to themselves as "born again Christians." My friend, the Bible teaches no such thing as a "born again Christian," let alone, any other kind of Christian, bar what the Bible teaches - Acts 11:2626. And when he had found him, he brought him unto Antioch. And it came to pass, that a whole year they assembled themselves with the church, and taught much people. And the disciples were called Christians first in Antioch.. Only when that form of doctrine which is found in the Bible is obeyed from the heart will God save that soul, and count that one who has obeyed the gospel, as seperated and sanctified, and numbered amongst those of the household of God, which is the church. The word "church" comes from the Greek word "Ekklesia," or the latin "Ecclesia," which means, called out, or seperated (sanctified). The terminology "called-out" refers to turning aside the pattern of this world. In other words, a change of direction, or forsaking the first principals of humanism. Humanism is man before God. Humanism teaches the beggarly elements; such as, materialism, fame, fortune, and those things that are common to sinful mankind. Humanism and God will always be at odds.
Now concerning unity in the faith. Well, there is no such thing as division in Christ, be it religion, doctrine, or whatever you want to call it; else it is not in Christ. Is there unity in spiritual whoredom, and adultery? In no wise. Those that obey not the truth are causers of division. Those that lack understanding of the scriptures are causers of division. Those that wrestle the simplicity that is in Christ are causers of division. The majority of modern Bible versions are causers of division. The religions of men are causers of division. Division is divisive, and not of God. You see, God haters are those that know not, and do not the truth - 1 John 1:66. If we say that we have fellowship with him, and walk in darkness, we lie, and do not the truth:. Only those that obey what the Bible teaches have the right to be called Christian. As I've said before, not just any Bible will do. I've even heard it said by some of our own brethren, that we can get something from all of the Bible versions. It sounds like they are saying that we need all the Bible versions to get the full counsel of God? Paul didn't mention that in - Acts 20:2727. For I have not shunned to declare unto you all the counsel of God.. The vast majority of modern Bible versions are spiritually dangerous. What I'm trying to put to you, is that, rendering any part of God's word is anti-Christ. Man has absolutely no authority to remove even one jot or tittle from the inspired revelation. Man has no right to meddle in anything that pertains to the Godhead. Any man that hath part, or say, in that which exalteth itself against the knowledge of God shall in no wise escape judgement, that is, unless he repents of course - 2 Corinthians 10:55. Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ;. If it's piece of mind your after, my friend, then do yourself a favour, and find yourself a King James Bible.