the Holy Spirit

May 31, 2014

John 7:39

New American Standard Bible (NASB)

39 But this He spoke of the Spirit, whom those who believed in Him were to receive; for the Spirit was not yet given, because Jesus was not yet glorified.

 

Before Christ was crucified, buried and resurrected; the Holy Spirit did not permanently dwell in the believer. One of the many benefits of salvation and the work on the cross of Christ was that for the first time in history the Spirit of God would dwell in the hearts of men in a permanent way.

 

John 14:16

New American Standard Bible (NASB)

Role of the Spirit

16 I will ask the Father, and He will give you another Helper, that He may be with you forever;

 

The Greek term Paraklēgtos, used of the Holy Spirit, is peculiar to John. It can be translated “comforter” or “advocate,” signifying one who is “called alongside” (para, “alongside,” klēgtos, “called”) to give help and advice, and especially to give counsel for the defense. John also refers to Jesus as a Paraklēgtos in 1 John 2:1.

In order to summarize the biblical teaching on the Holy Spirit, three indispensable truths must be affirmed, namely: (1) He is a Person, (2) He is God, and (3) He has specific functions in the economic triunity of God. Because He is represented by the symbols of fire, a dove, oil, and water, and because the Greek word pneuma (meaning “breath” or “wind”) is neuter, the Holy Spirit is sometimes misconstrued to be a power or an influence and not a person. But the references to Him attest to One who has intellect, emotion, and will, and He is designated by personal pronouns (v. 17; 15:26; 16:7, 13).

Christ refers to Him as a Comforter like Himself (note the word “another,” implying another of the same kind).

He is the Spirit of truth (16:13) and the Paraclete or Comforter (v. 16, 26; 15:26; 16:7) whom Jesus and the Father will send into the world. Because He is a Person, He can be grieved (Eph. 4:30), and sinned against (Mark 3:29). He reveals, searches, and knows (1 Cor. 2:10, 11).

He evaluates situations (Acts 15:28) and inflicts punishment (Acts 5:3, 5). None of these verbs could rightly be used of a mere impersonal power or influence. Not only is He a Person; He is God. He is specifically called God (Acts 5:4; 1 Cor. 3:16; 2 Cor. 3:17, 18). God’s attributes are present in Him (truth, 16:13; eternity, Heb. 9:14; omnipresence, Ps. 139:7–10; life, Rom. 8:2).

 

He is associated as One with the Father and the Son in the baptismal formula (Matt. 28:19), in a Pauline benediction (2 Cor. 13:14), and in the administration of the church’s gifts (1 Cor. 12:4–6). His word and His works are considered the word and works of God (Gen. 1:2, 26; Job 33:4; Acts 28:25–27; Heb. 3:7–9). The ministry or work of the Holy Spirit is not as visibly prominent as that of the Father and the Son, because His work is never to call attention to Himself (16:13, 14).

Some of His specific works include teaching (v. 26), reproving and convicting (16:8–11), regenerating (3:5), praying and interceding (Rom. 8:26), comforting (v. 16), renewing (Titus 3:5), guiding into all truth (16:13), empowering (Matt. 28:19, 20), and testifying (15:26).

The Holy Spirit Himself inspired the prophets and the writers of the Scriptures (Num. 11:29; Ezek. 2:2; 2 Tim. 3:16; 2 Pet. 1:20, 21). His presence in the believer constitutes a seal, a guarantee of salvation (Eph. 1:13; 4:30), and an initiation into the body of Christ (1 Cor. 12:13). In the Christian’s daily life, the Holy Spirit is the source of virtues (Gal. 5:22, 23), the dynamic for a life pleasing unto God (Rom. 8; Gal. 5:16), and is the equipper for service (cf. the gifts of the Spirit in Rom. 12:3–8; 1 Cor. 12:7–11; Eph. 4:7, 11–13).

Although the baptism by the Holy Spirit is the initial experience of all believers, it is commanded that Christians keep on being filled (“controlled”) by the Spirit (Eph. 5:18).

 

God bless from scumlikeuschurch@gmail.com

The greatest cause of famine and its attendant diseases in the world is not poor agricultural practices or poor economic and political policies. Nor is the root problem lack of scientific and technological resources or even overpopulation. Those problems only aggravate the basic problem, which is spiritual.

 

Those parts of the world that have no Christian roots or heritage invariably place a low value on human life. The great poverty and starvation in India, for example, may be laid at the feet of Hinduism, the pagan religion that spawned a host of other religions, including Shintoism and Buddhism. Those religious systems and similar ones spiritually enslave much of the Eastern world.

 

Where ever the value of human life is low, where you can trade someone for a carton of cigarettes, where an animal has more rights than humans, suffering will be a daily occurrence.

 

The blessings we take for granted here in America will slowly fade away, as multi-culturalism, and humanism spread. We can’t say we own pets, we parent them. (seems someone forgot that the bible says we have dominion over the earth). A salamander put one of the largest catfish farms out of business, because it’s protected; and we could write volumes on the crime of abortion.

 

We now have a president who says there is nothing special about America or our values. Veterans die because of the waiting lines in our VA hospitals. In some states there are more people on welfare than there are people working.

 

That’s where tolerance and a lack of shame has brought us. As we worship the created more than the Creator we will continue to slide into this dismal abyss of ruin.

We need more people praying for a true revival in our country, and we as Christians need to be as outspoken and militant as any liberal group.

 

Stand up, stand out, carry your bibles with you, let people think you are strange. Here’s the challenge; every time you eat out read your bible in public (not your iPad or kindle), be peculiar, it’s biblical.

 

Continue to pray for Anne, as she fights an viral infection and pray for her soul, she has not accepted the Lord, yet.

 

God bless from scumlikeuschurch@gmail.com

the real life

May 29, 2014

Living a life that contrasts sharply with the lifestyle of the world provides a sound basis for the other aspect of our relationship to the world: effective evangelism. First Peter 3:15 incorporates these two aspects in one passage: “Sanctify Christ as Lord in your hearts [separation from the world], always being ready to make a defense to everyone who asks you to give an account for the hope that is in you [evangelism], yet with gentleness and reverence [the Christian attitude as contrasted with the cosmic attitude of pride and arrogance].

 

The believer separates himself from the world in two major areas: in word and in deeds. The epistles of the New Testament emphasize how a believer is to think and believe and then how to live in accordance with that doctrine. This is what is meant by not being conformed to the world but being transformed by the renewing of our mind (Rom. 12:2). The New Testament is full of teachings that describe how the believer is to think and live based on the dynamics of the Christian life provided by the Holy Spirit. If a believer loses his interest in doctrine and godly living, he is in serious trouble because he has no other effective basis to combat the world.

 

God bless from scumlikeuschurch@gmail.com

shine baby shine

May 28, 2014

Many New Testament passages command separation from the world. Some of them include the following injunctions: “Do not be conformed to this world” (Rom. 12:2); “instructing us to deny ungodliness and worldly desires” (Titus 2:12); “keep oneself unstained by the world” (James 1:27); “friendship with the world is hostility toward God” (James 4:4); “escaped the corruption that is in the world” (2 Peter 1:4); “escaped the defilements of the world” (2 Peter 2:20); “do not love the world” (1 John 2:15).

 

The New Testament teaches that we accomplish true separation from the world by conforming to our new relationship to God and to the world. This conforming can be done only by changing the thinking in our soul to conform to God’s way of thinking. Only by changing our thinking first will we see an internal transformation that produces a substantive change on the outside.

 

The standard is the Word of God, which provides the basis for interaction with unbelievers and allows us to live before them such that they will see a difference in our attitudes and actions. Christ said in the Sermon on the Mount, “Let your light shine before men in such a way that they may see your good works and glorify your Father who is in heaven” (Matt. 5:16).

 

God bless from scumlikeuschurch@gmail.com

 

Pray for Anne Lee, 92 years old and just got home from the hospital, her spinal cord did not fracture as the doctor feared. Pray for her as she is pondering her spiritual fate.

recycle your theology

May 27, 2014

Here’s why your personal Christian theology should include a belief that Christ’s promise to return is real.

 

The topic of Baptism, only mentioned 20 times in the N.T.

 

The New Birth mentioned only 9 times

 

Repentance mentioned 70 times.

 

The Return of Jesus as Lord of All, mentioned 380 times in the N.T.

 

One out of 25 verses of the entire bible O.T. and New, are about the Coming of the Lord a Second time.

 

Regardless of how people may scoff or say it’s not literal, it is the most prominent theme of the New Testament.

 

God bless from scumlikeuschurch@gmail.com

Adoption

Romans 8:15 Ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father.

Among the Greeks and Romans, when a man had no son, he was permitted to adopt one even though not related. He might, if he chose, adopt one of his slaves as a son. The adopted son took the name of the father, and was in every respect regarded and treated as a son.

Among the Romans there were two parts to the act of adoption: one a private arrangement between the parties, and the other a formal public declaration of the fact. It is thought by some that the former is referred to in this verse, and the latter in verse 23, where the apostle speaks of “waiting for the adoption.” The servant has been adopted privately, but he is waiting for a formal public declaration of the fact.

 

After adoption, the son, no longer a slave, had the privilege of addressing his former master by the title of “father.”

 

Galatians 4:7

Living Bible (TLB)

Now we are no longer slaves but God’s own sons. And since we are his sons, everything he has belongs to us, for that is the way God planned.

 

God bless from scumlikeuschurch@gmail.com

 

Pray for Bobby whose wife just filed for divorce; Cynthia who has to travel and is fearful of flying, Jason who wants prayer for business concerns and Veronica who recently divorced and went a little wild and is trying to get back to normal.

Love boat sinks

May 25, 2014

This is our last in the series on Apostates, I hope it was a blessing and that all of us take it seriously, that there are those within the church that want to destroy it. I’ve enjoyed preaching this series and God bless The Gospel Tabernacle for having me fill in for their pastor while he was away on his missionary jaunt.

 

Would you be able to recognize an apostate? The book of Jude provides five word pictures describing an apostate.

“These are spots in your feasts of charity, when they feast with you, feeding themselves without fear; clouds they are without water, carried about of winds; trees whose fruit withereth, without fruit, twice dead, plucked up by the roots. Raging waves of the sea, foaming out their own shame; wandering stars, to whom is reserved the blackness of darkness forever.” (v. 12-14)
These five graphic descriptions create a portrait of the apostate to hang in the gallery of our mind with the warning “Beware.”

A Dangerous Sunken Rock

“These are spots in your feasts of charity.”
  (v. 12)
The word used here for “spot” is found in Scripture only once and literally means a sunken rock.  Apostates are hidden rocks beneath the surface. A rock above the water line is not nearly so dangerous. You can say, “Hey, there’s a rock. Be careful.” Not so a rock just beneath the surface. Have you ever been out in a boat when it’s gone aground? I have. You’re so happy, having a wonderful time skimming along, and suddenly there’s a horrible sound and a lurch. You look down and your feet are getting wet. Water is coming in. A rock has ripped the belly out of the boat.

Why does Jude say apostates are rocks in your feast of love? The early church would meet together for what they called an agape feast, a wonderful time in God’s love boat, just sailing along, everyone so happy. Love and fellowship — everything seems so blessed. Then suddenly, a grinding halt — a horrible, rending sound. The old Ship of Zion is wounded in her side. What happened? Some devilish apostate has become a rock in the river of love, dividing that he might destroy the fellowship of God.

The thing that holds us together is our love for Jesus Christ and our unity in the great truths we preach. Destroy that, and you’ve destroyed the church. The Devil hates the love, unity and fellowship of the church. He’ll put a rock in the river of love that our ship of fellowship might go aground. We must earnestly contend for the faith because apostasy is dangerous — like a hidden rock.

A Deceptive Waterless Cloud

“Clouds they are without water carried about of winds.”
 (v. 12)
In the Middle East, rain is vitally important. How terrible to see a waterless cloud overhead, driven by the wind, bringing not one drop of rain. Apostates are bags of wind, promising much but producing little. “Who so boasteth himself of a false gift is like a cloud and wind without rain”(Proverbs 25:14).

This Sunday, people will sit in an apostate church hearing an apostate preacher — a pompous religious windbag — a cloud without water. No Holy Spirit, no Bible truth, no conversion, no joy, no victory in Jesus there. Many will not even know something’s missing.

A Dead, Fruitless Tree

“Trees whose fruit withereth. Without fruit, twice dead, plucked up by the roots.”
 (v. 12)
A Christian is to “be like a tree planted by the rivers of water that brings forth his fruit in a season, his leaf also shall not wither…” (Psalm 1:3). But an apostate is a dead tree taking up space in the garden.

Dead trees are plucked up by the roots because they are twice dead — dead because they don’t produce any fruit and dead when they’re thrown into the fire. Jesus said, “I’ve chosen you and ordained you that you should go and bring forth fruit and that your fruit should remain.”There’s no fruitfulness in the life of an apostate. He can imitate Christianity, but he cannot bear fruit.

A Disturbed, Raging Sea

“Raging waves of the sea, foaming out their own shame.” 
(v. 13)
A seething sea of discontent, the apostate’s heart knows no peace with himself or God.
“The wicked are like the troubled sea, when it cannot rest, whose waters cast up mire and dirt.  There is no peace, saith my God, to the wicked”(Isaiah 57:20-21). When he comes into a church or denomination, he’ll be a troublemaker.

From his heart’s murky caverns, the apostate is a raging wave. Before long, he will spew his foam — unrest and disquiet — leaving it on the beach of humanity. He’s not at peace with himself and he doesn’t want to be at peace with you…another reason apostates are so dangerous.

A Doomed, Wandering Star

“…wandering stars, to whom is reserved the blackness of darkness forever.”
 (v. 13)
A wandering star has no orbit. No longer held by the sun’s gravitational pull, it goes wandering out into the blackness of space, into some black hole forever — what the Bible would call a bottomless pit. That’s what Hell will be like for the apostate. “The mist of darkness is reserved for them forever” (2 Peter 2:17). Can you imagine? Everlasting blackness and darkness.

Our hearts should be broken for apostates. How we should pray for them! The more I read the Word of God, the more I’m convinced it’s almost impossible for an apostate to be saved. Having known the truth, they refused, ridiculed, and blasphemed the truth, and many of them stand in pulpits.

 

God provides us with this portrait so we’ll be able to recognize an apostate and in these last days earnestly contend for the faith, once for all delivered to the saints.

God bless from scumlikeuschurch@gmail.com

 

Pray for Tony who had a small stroke and is mad at his wife, because he’s a practical joker and she didn’t believe him and drove away in the golf cart, thinking he was clowning around. I had dinner with them tonight and now their laughing, but it is still tense.

some like it hot

May 24, 2014

In these “last days” before the return of our Lord, how will we recognize an apostate? Jude 12-13 gives us the portrait of an apostate. He is a spiritual felon, a spiritual criminal, someone who is dangerous and whom you must be able to recognize. Five clear, graphic word pictures of the marks of an apostate can be found in this passage.

 

“These are spots in your feasts of charity, when they feast with you, feeding themselves without fear; clouds they are without water, carried about of winds; trees whose fruit withereth, without fruit, twice dead, plucked up by the roots. Raging waves of the sea, foaming out their own shame; wandering stars, to whom is reserved the blackness of darkness forever.”

Understand, the devil is not against religion. No, he’s immersed in religion and uses religion! It was a religious crowd that crucified the Lord Jesus Christ. Most people don’t need more religion. They need to turn from religion to Jesus Christ.

When we say “earnestly contend for the faith which was once delivered to the saints,” the phrase “earnestly contend” contains the word we get “agonize” from. We’re to agonize for the faith. Some call us narrow and bigoted. But today, once-great churches, denominations and schools are honeycombed with apostasy and liberalism. It is heartbreaking.

An apostate is not someone in a false cult or just an unbeliever. Those people may be lost, but they are not “apostates.” Apostasy means “to fall away from.” This is someone who has known the truth, then turns his back on and opposes the truth. He has received, then rejected, the truth. An apostate begins to ridicule the truth, then tries to replace the truth. A survey once taken at a meeting of the National Council of Churches revealed that of the pastors and laymen present, only half believed in the deity of Christ! Only 1 in 4 believed in His miracles, 1 in 3 said Satan doesn’t exist, and 1 in 3 believe there is no life after death.

Unfortunately, the apostate doesn’t just leave and start his own church. He comes back through the side door (Jude says, “They have crept in”) to undermine the work of the Lord Jesus Christ in the church.
Not only do you need to learn how to recognize an apostate, but you also need to know where the great battles are…those areas of truth under attack today.

Six Foundational Areas of Truth

These six fundamental doctrines must be anchored in your heart and soul.

The virgin birth of the Lord Jesus Christ (Isaiah 7:14). Your eternal destiny hinges upon it. If Jesus Christ was not born of a virgin, He was as sinful as you are. If He was sinful as you are, there could be no blood atonement because a Holy God would not accept an unholy sacrifice. No blood atonement, no salvation. No salvation, no regeneration. No regeneration, no Heaven for you. And, my dear friend, without the virgin birth of the Lord Jesus Christ, you are lost without hope.

The full deity of Christ. Jesus was not just a great leader, a religious figure, a prophet. He was God. In Jesus Christ, God was manifest in the flesh. “The Word was with God and the Word was God…The Word was made flesh and dwelled among us” (John 1:1,14).

The blood atonement. Jesus “died for our sins according to the scriptures” 1 Corinthians 15:3).  “The blood of Jesus Christ, God’s Son, cleanses us from all sin” (1 John 1:7). The doctrine of substitutionary death, the blood atonement of the Lord Jesus Christ on the cross for our sins, is especially repugnant and abhorrent to the liberal and the apostate.

The bodily resurrection of the Lord Jesus Christ — that He literally came out of that grave. Apostate theologians talk about the “deathless spirit of Christ that goes marching on,” fuzzy concepts like that. Oh, my friend, I want to tell you that the faith that we preach and believe in is the faith of an empty tomb. Never minimize the resurrection of Jesus Christ.

The second coming of Jesus Christ — His literal, visible return. He is coming back to earth, actually, bodily, physically.

Lastly, the authority of the Word of God — its inerrancy, infallibility, immutability, and impeccability. The Bible is God’s inerrant, infallible Word.
Apostates do not like these bedrock truths. You need to be able to recognize an apostate when you see one. To do that, you need to know what the great fundamentals of the faith are.

These are not all the things we believe, nor are they all of the fundamentals of the faith. But having these six basics in your head will help you recognize an apostate when you meet one.

 

Part three tomorrow,

 

God bless from scumlikeuschurch@gmail.com

 

Again I have to say how moved I am at all the folks emailing and calling about praying for those on the prayer list, such love and devotion is so great to see; God bless you all.

 

Pray for Don that took a hit today, life stings. Pray for Joe and his back and his children that are missionaries, pray for larry who just found out his 6 year old daughter is terminally ill with cancer and is given maybe 5 months to live.

 

It’s the beginning of the Memorial Day weekend, as a Veteran I ask you to pray for our soldiers, past and present. Semper Fi.

scatterbrain (me)

May 23, 2014

for those of you that noticed yesterday’s devotion was a little frenetic, i apologize, i was in a hotel, working on a strange computer and it was later then usual. i especially want to thank again all the folks that have emailed about their prayer support for those we have listed for prayer.

Prayer for Wilma that has fallen again on Wednesday and found out she is allergic to neosporin.

so here we go;

vocabulary, it’s important as mentioned yesterday there are terms we should be familiar with. one of these is the difference between the word, ‘prostate’ and ‘prostrate’.  it’s seems people will argue over this without realizing the mistake.

Prostate, without two “r’s” is a gland; Prostrate, is a position as defined by the following;

to worship prostrate

v. — to prostrate oneself in the presence of the divine or supernatural as a sign of deference and worship.

And the twenty-four elders and the four living creatures fell down and worshiped God who was seated on the throne, saying, “Amen. Hallelujah!”

Revelation 19:4

In our modern-day church culture, we have properly incorporated the New Testament injunction to worship in Spirit. But sometimes I wonder if our focus on the internal aspects of worship have downplayed the external aspects that Scripture also portrays. For example, in our verse for today, the context demonstrates that the worship took place after “falling down.” The elders and the creatures were on the ground, and in that manner they began to worship God. Context like this is helpful in determining the semantics of a word like worship. What does it mean to worship? Well, for the elders and the creatures, it meant humbling oneself on the ground before the Creator of the universe.

 

God bless from scumlikeuschurch@gmail.com

 

 

 

lying eyes

May 22, 2014

We are getting some great questions lately and I’m thinking about doing a few days of just answering the questions here instead of just replying by email to the individual.

so here was the first question, are there heretics today in the church. the answer sadly enough is yes there is.
so what makes someone a heretic, and in this case a christian heretic. first base to cover is they are not christians.
They are called heretics because they deny a basic part of christian faith, in today’s world it usually falls into one of the following categories.

A; they don’t believe the bible is inerrant, or infallible, and inspired. (we will cover all those terms tomorrow)
B; they deny the deity of Christ, meaning they don’t believe He is eternal, part of the Triune God, (three in one), always existed, equal to God.
C; that salvation is through the redemption only of Jesus and His completed work. (i.e. all roads lead to heaven and you are going by means of something other than His death on the cross for you.

that is a rather simplistic look at what a heretic is, but yes they do exist and the sad part are they more plentiful than you’d believe and have more influence than you would ever think possible.

They are often best selling authors, world wide on the radio and tv and have great charisma.

I would whole hardily recommend you read ‘Christianity in Crisis’ by Hank Hanegraff to read of specific people and what the specific lies they are spreading.

Scripture says we are to test what is being taught and we are to mark those that distort the true message of God’s word.

I want to thank everyone that has been faithfully praying for our list of people, it means a great deal to them as for the most part they are without a church home because of age or infirmities.

God bless from scumlikeuschurch@gmail.com