Jeremiah’s Life, our Calling


Jeremiah’s Initiation


Then the word of the LORD came unto me, saying,

Before I formed thee in the belly I knew thee;

and before thou camest forth out of the womb

I sanctified thee,

and I ordained thee a prophet unto the nations.

Then said I, Ah, Lord GOD! behold,

I cannot speak: for I am a child.

But the LORD said unto me,

Say not, I am a child:

for thou shalt go to all that I shall send thee,

and whatsoever I command thee thou shalt speak.

Be not afraid of their faces:

for I am with thee to deliver thee,

saith the LORD.

~ Jeremiah 1:4-8


Scriptural Calling


There are seven inseparable parts in the Lord’s calling on Jeremiah.  

Every part is a needful element, primary to the central idea that is the fullness of Christ in the beauty of the calling that is Christianity.


It is for all,

who have been enlightened,

and have tasted the heavenly gift,

and were made partakers of the Holy Ghost;

And have tasted the good word of God,

and the powers of the world to come.

~ Hebrews 6:4-5


In an earlier post, I stated that we are called to be saints, to walk in faithful obedience, according to all the biblical principles taught by Jesus and His apostles.


The Old Testament supplies us with ensamples and valuable lessons in which we can draw continued inspiration.

The book of Jeremiah is not without its value.


 

The only thing the early church had in written form was the O.T.

Later, many in the church were blessed with letters written and circulated by our apostolic fathers.

We would be wise to incorporate as much as we can from the O.T. in light of N.T. revelation to complement and develop our understanding and calling in Christ Jesus. 

Jeremiah’s call may be unique to Him but the general tenor and purpose is the same for all who are in Christ Jesus.

In a nutshell, our calling is to allow His purifying love to work in and through us according to His goodness and mercy.


Unto the church of God . . .

to them that are sanctified in Christ Jesus,

called to be saints,

with all that in every place

call upon the name of Jesus Christ our Lord . . .

~ 1 Corinthians 1:2

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Concerning his Son Jesus Christ our Lord, 

By whom we have received grace and apostleship,

for obedience to the faith . . .

Among whom are ye also the called of Jesus Christ:

To all that be in Rome, beloved of God,

called to be saints:

~ Romans 1:3, 5, 7


One Life, one Calling 


Below are the seven parts to God’s calling of the Prophet Jeremiah described briefly and applied to those obedient to the Calling of Jesus. 


1.  “Before I formed thee in the belly, “I knew thee.”

Before the foundations of the world, all of humanity was foreknown to God and the plan of salvation was already chosen in Jesus Christ.

We all have a unique and genuine calling to be sanctified, pure, obedient, and blameless before the Lord. It is a merciful and glorious restoration God created before of the fall of man so long ago.

He came down to lift us up. We dare not neglect so great a salvation.

For He was foreknown

before the foundation of the world,

but has appeared in these last times for the sake of you.

~ 1 Peter 1:20

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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:

~ Ephesians 1:4

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More importantly, God wants to know us now, in a living, dynamic, and active way. This requires complete submission; giving our utmost to His Highest.

It is a willful act of our own volition. God provides everything we need, but we must humble accept all He has to offer in order to be obedient in Him. 


2. Before thou camest forth out of the womb“I sanctified thee.”

To be filled with all the fulness of God is the product or goal of sanctification in the life of a Christian. 

What was meant in this context signified was that Jeremiah was completely separated to God. He was severed from any and all earthy or common use and entirely dedicated to God’s service.

Sanctified also means to make holy or pure. In the Christian life, entering into this blessing of grace is part of our calling and a precious gift of love untold.

Interestingly, Jeremiah began to appreciate his calling at the tender age of 17. He was to stand before kings and princes . . . what a high and difficult calling indeed.

His consecration was such that Jeremiah did not marry or have children, for judgment was at hand. This is not unlike the 144,000 Jews set apart during the impending Judgment at the Great Tribulation.

Another interesting fact is the Jeremiah bought a field in Anathoth, his home town, as a symbol of God’s redemption, mercy, and grace.

This is what the Lord Almighty, the God of Israel, says:

Take these documents,

both the sealed and unsealed copies of the deed of purchase,

and put them in a clay jar so they will last a long time.

For this is what the Lord Almighty, the God of Israel, says:

Houses, fields and vineyards will again be bought in this land.

~ Jeremiah 32:14-15


An important element of our calling in Christ is sanctification: a life of consecration and holiness unto the Lord.

We are not to participate or take part in any sin or behavior that is not becoming of a saint.

Know ye not that the unrighteous

shall not inherit the kingdom of God?

Be not deceived:

neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers,

nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind,

Nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards,

nor revilers, nor extortioners,

shall inherit the kingdom of God.

And such were some of you:

but ye are washed, but ye are sanctified,

but ye are justified in the name of the Lord Jesus,

and by the Spirit of our God.

~ 1 Corinthians 6:9-11

Like Jeremiah, we are become dead to sin and this world and dwell in the fulness  of righteousness that is Christ.

We have been set free from sin, set apart, and are dedicated to serve God and God alone.

Our calling is holy and high indeed.


3. “I ordained thee” a prophet unto the nations.

Jeremiah was called to be an envoy, an ambassador of the LORD. Like the Apostle Paul, an ambassador of Christ, we are called according to His purpose:

For those whom He foreknew,

He also predestined to become conformed

to the image of His Son,

so that He would be the firstborn among many brethren;

and these whom He predestined, He also called;

and these whom He called, He also justified;

and these whom He justified, He also glorified.

~ Romans 8:28-30

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Jeremiah’s calling was sure. He was to bring the message of repentance to Israel or they would face a horrible destruction as an idolatrous nation who chose to serve sin.

He was to suffer vicariously as he watched their suffering and demise. He wept, recorded, and pleaded with God for mercy and justice. 

We too are called to preach repentance, justification, and mercy as we watch with sadness an apathetic world dull of God, disregarding their calling, and given over to the delusion that is sin.

Many are on the broad road to destruction because they are hearers of the word and not doers.

But prove yourselves doers of the word,

and not merely hearers who delude themselves.

~ James 1:22

We are ordained to speak the truth in love and walk in the righteousness the Gospel brings.

For my mouth shall speak truth;

and wickedness is an abomination to my lips.

 ~ Proverb 8:7

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How then shall they call on him

in whom they have not believed?

and how shall they believe in him

of whom they have not heard?

and how shall they hear without a preacher?

And how shall they preach, except they be sent?

as it is written,

How beautiful are the feet of them

that preach the gospel of peace,

and bring glad tidings of good things!

~ Romans 10:14-15

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Your calling may not to be a preacher. Nevertheless, we are to be ready always to act toward others in the spirit of truth, kindness, and holiness.

to be obedient, to be ready for every good deed

~ Titus 3:1

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Let your speech be alway with grace,

seasoned with salt,

that ye may know how ye ought to answer every man.

~ Colossians 4:6

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To do good works and to know what those works are: 

For we are God’s handiwork,

created in Christ Jesus to do good works,

which God prepared in advance for us to do.

~ Ephesians 2:10

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Who is wise and understanding among you?

Let them show it by their good life,

by deeds done in the humility that comes from wisdom.

~ James 3:13

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As obedient children,

do not be conformed to the former lusts

which were yours in your ignorance,

but like the Holy One who called you,

be holy yourselves also in all your behavior;

~ 1 Peter 1:14-15

Please refer to this post regarding the importance, definition, and character of one’s calling in Christ Jesus.


4. for thou shalt go to all that “I shall send thee,”

Yea; have ye never read,

Out of the mouth of babes and sucklings

thou hast perfected praise?

~ Matthew 21:16

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Jeremiah complained that he was still a youth and intimated his inability but God reassured him with the last three elements of his calling listed below.

Jeremiah was truly weak and he knew it. He would also appear foolish to those (falsely) representing the elect of God’s nation. 

But God chose the foolish things of the world

to shame the wise;

God chose the weak things of the world

to shame the strong.

~ 1 Corinthians 1:27

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God expected complete submission from Jeremiah just like He expects complete submission of His will in our lives.

He was to go wherever, to whomever, and to do exactly as God directed. The devotion God required of Jeremiah was completely reasonable and we are expected to follow his example.

Therefore I urge you,

brethren, by the mercies of God,

to present your bodies a living and holy sacrifice,

acceptable to God,

which is your spiritual service of worship.

~ Romans 12:1

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We are called to worship God in spirit and truth. To disobey His calling or to live apart from holiness is to deny God of worship, and is unacceptable in His eyes.

But the hour cometh, and now is,

when the true worshippers

shall worship the Father in spirit and in truth:

for the Father seeketh such to worship him.

~ John 4:23

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We (the Apostles) are from God.

Whoever knows God listens to us;

whoever is not from God does not listen to us.

By this we know the Spirit of truth and the spirit of error.

~ 1 John 4:6

Jeremiah was not known for being a Jonah. Jonah was an example of what not to do with God’s calling. 

Jonah was given much grace in his disobedience. We too are given such grace in the calling to sanctification and holiness. Seek God’s abiding love.

Give Him your whole existence.

Let Him overwhelm your spirit and life.

We have a much higher degree of responsibility than Jeremiah or Jonah because we have been given the complete oracles of God through the life of God the Son and the works of His apostles as found in the Bible. 

More importantly, if we are God’s children, we have the Spirit of truth abiding in us, who continually testifies of Jesus. 

But when the Comforter is come,

whom I will send unto you from the Father,

even the Spirit of truth,

which proceedeth from the Father,

he shall testify of me:

~ John 15:26


5. and “whatsoever I command thee thou shalt speak.”

Jeremiah was to speak God’s message, not his own. God was going to teach him what to say and put words of truth into him.

This is how God has always worked in His prophets and how the Father worked in Jesus, and the apostles. We are to listen and obey just like the people of old were.

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But because of their disobedience, they were judged and suffered greatly. There are many degrees of suffering in this life and the next.

This post will not address that complexity but it is something to consider.

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Jeremiah was to simply be obedient to God and allow Him to work through him. This is exactly what we are suppose to do. The following segment of Scripture highlights this.

And when they had brought them,

they set them before the council:

and the high priest asked them, Saying,

Did not we straitly command you

that ye should not teach in this name?

and, behold, ye have filled Jerusalem with your doctrine,

and intend to bring this man’s blood upon us.

Then Peter and the other apostles answered and said,

We ought to obey God rather than men.

The God of our fathers raised up Jesus,

whom ye slew and hanged on a tree.

to Him hath God exalted with his right hand

to be a Prince and a Saviour,

for to give repentance to Israel, and forgiveness of sins.

And we are his witnesses of these things;

and so is also the Holy Ghost,

whom God hath given to them that obey him.

~ Acts 5:27-32

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The Spirit living in us is to transform us in such a way that our obedience to Him in everything we do, “reproves the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment” ~ John 16:8

This is exactly what Jeremiah’s life and many prophets before him proved, often at the price of death. Unfortunately for us today, we are mainly concerned with how this can effect our livelyhood or place in this world.

God clearly states that if we value the world and our position in it to the point where we compromise any element of over the truth of God, and remain in this state, we will pass away because the love of God does not really dwell in us.

Love not the world,

neither the things that are in the world.

If any man love the world,

the love of the Father is not in him. 

For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh,

and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life,

is not of the Father, but is of the world.

And the world passeth away, and the lust thereof:

but he that doeth the will of God abideth for ever.

~ 1 John 2:15-17

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6. “Be not afraid” of their faces: 

Jeremiah was commanded not to be afraid or fear man can do him in everything he did. We too are called to be approved by God by everything we do.

On that note, the command not to compromise our faith and to be completely obedient to the testifying Spirit of God is unquestionable.

We are not to fear what any man or institution can do to us. 

What I tell you in the darkness, speak in the light;

and what you hear whispered in your ear,

proclaim upon the housetops.

“Do not fear those who kill the body

but are unable to kill the soul;

but rather fear Him who is able to destroy

both soul and body in hell.

~ Matthew 10-27-28

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But and if ye suffer for righteousness’ sake,

happy are ye:

and be not afraid of their terror,

neither be troubled;

~ 1 Peter 3:14

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And Moses said unto the people, Fear not:

for God is come to prove you,

and that his fear may be before your faces,

that ye sin not.

~ Exodus 20:20

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Therefore, brothers and sisters,

make every effort to be sure of your calling and election.

For by doing this you will never stumble into sin.

~ 2 Peter 1:10

We must follow the principles defined by God’s word and Spirit rather than the principles defined by the world. 

We often fall into deafening traps of silence when we fail to remain close to God. Te washing of the word, fellowship in prayer, praise by our worshipful life, and faithful obedience to His commandments renews His voice in us.

The renewal of faith obedience of God’s grace keeps us. And this saving faith produces fruit. Without which, our faith becomes dead for it produces not fruit (or works). 

With God working in us, His love begins to cast out fear because we no longer live in such a way that grieves his Spirit.

Namely, we are living in His love and not in our sin.

There is no fear in love;

but perfect love casts out fear,

because fear involves punishment,

and the one who fears is not perfected in love.

~ 1 John 4:18

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If you have been perfected in love, the Spirit of God will attest this in your life. If He does not, continue in His love and strive to enter in to the rest approved by God.

Let us, therefore,

make every effort to enter that rest,

so that no one will perish

by following their (Israel’s) example of disobedience.

~ Hebrews 4:11

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There is no fear in love;

but perfect love casts out fear,

because fear involves punishment,

and the one who fears is not perfected in love.

~ 1 John 4:18

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Finally, brothers, rejoice.

Aim for restoration, comfort one another,

agree with one another, live in peace;

and the God of love and peace will be with you.

~ 2 Corinthians 13:11

Do not bury what God has given you. Root out the things in your life that hide the word of God.

We are constantly given exhortations of peace and love by the disciples of Christ. This reflects the Holy Spirit’s testimony.

Let it be your testimony. Speak it openly without fear. Have faith and God will give it to you, if you abide in Him.

And the peace of God

that surpasses all understanding

will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.

~ Philippians 4:7 

7. for “I am with thee to deliver thee” saith the LORD.

This is the final and greatest element of God’s calling. He will deliver us from all that seeks to destroy us in this world. 

 This is the bigger picture. For sin is what caused us to fall and sin will keep us from Him.

Within deliverance is found the riches and beauty of God’s saving grace. 

Give unto the LORD the glory due unto his name;

worship the LORD in the beauty of holiness.

~ Psalm 29:2

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O worship the LORD in the beauty of holiness:

fear before him, all the earth.

~ Psalm 96:9

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And your testimonies are very trustworthy;

holiness is fitting for your house,

Lord Jehovah, for the length of days!

~ Psalm 93:5

In this life, there is also suffering. Jeremiah suffered greatly watching the judgement of God come like a dry, burning wind upon His people. 

For a clear picture of this, please read the book of Lamentations. 

We too are called to suffer in this world. But fear not, in Christ we can overcome the world, if, we continue in His calling for our life.

By this we know that we love the children of God,

when we love God, and keep his commandments.

For this is the love of God,

that we keep his commandments:

and his commandments are not grievous.

For whatsoever is born of God overcometh the world:

and this is the victory that overcometh the world,

even our faith

~ 1 John 5:2:4

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To whom God would make known

what is the riches of the glory

of this mystery among the Gentiles;

which is Christ in you, the hope of glory:

Whom we preach, warning every man,

and teaching every man in all wisdom;

that we may present every man perfect in Christ Jesus:

Whereunto I also labour,

striving according to his working,

which worketh in me mightily.

~ Colossians 1:26-29


John and Paul stated above that when we love God we will obey him even through the suffering and trials the world brings. His labors of Love permeate His calling in Christ Jesus.


Final Word


Let God have His complete work in you in order to present yourself perfect in Christ at His glorious coming.

This is your calling.

There is non other.

Something smelly in the wilderness


In Hebrews chapter 3, Paul gives us a warning,


Take heed, brethren,

lest there be in any of you

an evil heart of unbelief,

in departing from the living God.


 then a pleading exhortation.


But exhort one another daily,

while it is called To day;

lest any of you be hardened

through the deceitfulness of sin.

For we are made partakers of Christ,

if we hold the beginning of our confidence

stedfast unto the end;


We are called to hold fast our faithful repentance in Christ just as we did in the beginning.

If we fail to to this, we allow sin through disobedience to re-enter our lives and risk our hearts being darkened and hardened, bringing unbelief and eventually separation from the God.

This is not a break in fellowship as some believe but departure from the Living God.


Souls in Peril


While it is said,

Today if ye will hear his voice,

harden not your hearts,

as in the provocation.

For some, when they had heard,

did provoke:

howbeit not all that came out of Egypt by Moses.

But with whom was he grieved forty years?


All but two of the adult Israelites delivered from Egypt perished in the wilderness (figuratively speaking, in sin). The two delivered, Joshua and Caleb, followed the exhortation and did not harden their hearts.

They also had the benefit of an enriched faith, moral uprightness, and godly character.

Either way you cut it, the example God gave us in Hebrews reveals very poor odds for those initially delivered from sin through faith in Christ.

The Israelites knew, saw, and lived with the truth and promises of God. They were fed living water, manna, and were provided for. All these were shadows of what Jesus does for us now.

Why was God grieved with them and why did so many perish?


was it not with them that had sinned,

whose carcases fell in the wilderness?

And to whom sware he

that they should not enter into his rest,

but to them that believed not?

So we see

that they could not enter in because of unbelief.

~ Hebrews 3:12-19


They Perished because they did not heed his voice and obey his word. Rather, they chose return to sin, fell into unbelief, and hardened their hearts.

Instead of entering into His rest, they entered into judgment.

This is our example today. Do not continue in sin, guard your heart, and believe God can change both your heart and your (sinful) nature.

Or, like the Israelites, you run the risk of having your body left rotting in the wilderness only to be fed on by the birds of destruction.


Jesus died so we could live. Here is His exhortation.


Take my yoke upon you

and learn from me,

for I am gentle and humble in heart,

and you will find rest for your souls.

~ Matthew 11:29


We get on our knees before the cross, repent of our sins, believe in Christ. We walk away from our sins and follow His lead preparing ourselves to be obedient to Him and to live, truly live.

Here is Jesus’ warning to His servants who fail to do this.


And that servant, which knew his lord’s will,

and prepared not himself,

neither did according to his will,

shall be beaten with many stripes.

~ Luke 12:47


Let His stripes purify your heart. 

For many will be beaten with many stripes because of hardened and darkened hearts and disobedient unbelief in the knowledge and faith in Christ.


The choice is yours.

The only question is,

What kind of servant are you?


Take His yoke

and learn from Him,

you will find rest for your soul.



Let us therefore fear, lest,

a promise being left us

of entering into his rest,

any of you should seem to come short of it. 

~ Hebrews 4:1

What is Piety?

Piety should be the primary or overriding characteristic of every Christian. Unfortunately, many professing Christians have been taught to disregard or even denigrate terms like piety, religion, religious, or other early biblical principles.

But these terms hold special meaning when we consider them with a pure heart.

According to John Fletcher, piety is, “the knowledge of God and the various relations he stands in to man, which leads us to adore, and obey him, in public and in private.”

Great multitudes of the church today have lost what it means to be pious. All too often, we live lives tainted with hypocrisy.

We worship on Sunday, and lust after sports teams on Monday. Or, are consumed the news of the day, or with routine shopping habits, we may covet a new shiny car or RV. Fill in the blank: I compromise by _____ . Inch-by-inch, it slowly eats away at our ability to humbly and wholeheartedly seek after the Lord.

When the church condones these behaviors, and they do. Just look amongst the churches and see how we choose to devote most of our time and money. Most look no different than the world around them.


Buy and large, we see compromise and tacit approval by those in high positions because of pressure from the pews. There is little difference between how the parishioners and the overseers live. This is antinomianism (the doctrine of compromise: continuing to sin that grace may abound).


Christ prophesied about this in the parables of the mustard seed and leaven. This post here lightly discusses the meaning of the parable.

Piety is the direct opposite and is the effect that a well-rounded, humble, and sincere love of God from the perspective of a  sacrificed life.

Jesus lived a life of piety.

All the Apostles but one, lived this piety. God has given us so many examples of how to walk this way.

Nearly every page alludes to this principle. Yet, I have not heard a pastor utter the word or or describe what it means to be pious in many years; until recently.


Jesus warned of the dangers awaiting for those who choose to continue on a path void of piety –

The light of the body is the eye: therefore when thine eye is single, thy whole body also is full of light; but when thine eye is evil, thy body also is full of darkness. Take heed therefore that the light which is in thee be not darkness. If thy whole body therefore be full of light, having no part dark, the whole shall be full of light, as when the bright shining of a candle doth give thee light ~ Luke 11:34-36;

Darkness is sin my friend.


There is nothing better to keep sin at bay than clinging to the garments of the Lord. We are to teach this to your children by living it –

Only take heed to thyself, and keep thy soul diligently, lest thou forget the things which thine eyes have seen, and lest they depart from thy heart all the days of thy life: but teach them thy sons, and thy sons’ sons ~ Deuteronomy 4:9;


God is fighting for those who love Him with their lives –

Take good heed therefore unto yourselves, that ye love the Lord your God ~ Joshua 23:11;


For we are His temple and are instructed to prepare Him a place to dwell –

Take heed now; for the Lord hath chosen thee to build an house for the sanctuary: be strong, and do it 1 Chronicles 28:10;


If we don’t remain strong in doing this, the warning –

If any man defile the temple of God, him shall God destroy; for the temple of God is holy, which temple ye are ~ 1 Corinthians 3:17;

Sin is the only thing that defiles the temple of God.


God wants us to fear living in iniquity as we work out our salvation –

And he set judges in the land throughout all the fenced cities of Judah, city by city, and said to the judges, Take heed what ye do: for ye judge not for man, but for the Lord, who is with you in the judgment. Wherefore now let the fear of the Lord be upon you; take heed and do it: for there is no iniquity with the Lord our God, nor respect of persons, nor taking of gifts ~ 2 Chronicles 19:6-8;

Wherefore, my beloved, as ye have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling. For it is God which worketh in you both to will and to do of his good pleasurePhilippians 2:12-13;


He wants us to bridle our tongue and sin not –

I said, I will take heed to my ways, that I sin not with my tongue: I will keep my mouth with a bridle, while the wicked is before me ~ Psalm 39:1;

For in many things we offend all. If any man offend not in word, the same is a perfect man, and able also to bridle the whole body. Behold, we put bits in the horses’ mouths, that they may obey us; and we turn about their whole body. Behold also the ships, which though they be so great, and are driven of fierce winds, yet are they turned about with a very small helm, whithersoever the governor listeth. Even so the tongue is a little member, and boasteth great things. Behold, how great a matter a little fire kindleth! 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 ~ James 3:2-6;


We are not to be distracted by this world when God calls us to worship or assemble ourselves together for Him –

thus saith the Lord; Take heed to yourselves, and bear no burden on the sabbath day, nor bring it in by the gates of Jerusalem ~ Jeremiah 17:21;

and let us consider one another to provoke unto love and to good works: not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another: and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching. For if we sin wilfully after that we have received the knowledge of the truth, there remaineth no more sacrifice for sins ~ Hebrews 10:24-26;

Did you know that choosing not attend and participate (to your capacity) in an assembly is a willful sin?

‘He that readership sermons and good books at home to save his pains of going to hear, is a thief to his soul in a religious habit’ ~ William Gurnall.


We are to know that God meets all our daily needs, enabling us to walk in Him –

For they shall eat, and not have enough: they shall commit whoredom, and shall not increase: because they have left off to take heed to the Lord ~ Hosea 4:10;


We are not to seek the approval of men –

Take heed that ye do not your alms before men, to be seen of them: otherwise ye have no reward of your Father which is in heaven ~ Matthew 6:1;


We are to protect all children even the unborn –

Take heed that ye despise not one of these little ones; for I say unto you, That in heaven their angels do always behold the face of my Father which is in heaven ~ Matthew 18:10;


We are to obey only the word of God in order to avoid the deceit of man regarding the Lord’s coming –

And as he sat upon the mount of Olives, the disciples came unto him privately, saying, Tell us, when shall these things be? and what shall be the sign of thy coming, and of the end of the world? And Jesus answered and said unto them, Take heed that no man deceive you. For many shall come in my name, saying, I am Christ; and shall deceive many ~ Matthew 24:3-5;


We need to protect our faith and fear what can happen if we don’t –

Well; because of unbelief they were broken off, and thou standest by faith. Be not highminded, but fear:  for if God spared not the natural branches, take heed lest he also spare not thee ~ Romans 11:20-21.


We are to live our lives in a way that does not cause a weaker brother to stumble and by our liberty cause them to perish –

But take heed lest by any means this liberty of yours become a stumblingblock to them that are weak . . .  and through thy knowledge shall the weak brother perish, for whom Christ died? But when ye sin so against the brethren, and wound their weak conscience, ye sin against Christ ~ 1 Corinthians 8:9, 11,12;


We need to dedicate our life only to the original teachings of the apostles and Jesus –

Meditate upon these things; give thyself wholly to them; that thy profiting may appear to all. Take heed unto thyself, and unto the doctrine; continue in them: for in doing this thou shalt both save thyself, and them that hear thee ~ 1 Timothy 4:15-16.


Those that have come to the knowledge of the glory of the Lord will cast off worldly desires, fleshly doctrines and live a life free the practice of hypocrisy and willful sin.

If you are not doing all the God calls you to do as demonstrated by some of the examples provided above. I exhort you to get on your knees, plead to God for forgiveness, and find a church that practices these.

Very few churches do. If you don’t believe me than then believe Jesus’ words about the leaven (sin) and the fowls (tools of Satan) contaminating most of the church.


I have found that those that practice piety are generally found in holiness churches. There are people who practice piety in other churches but why kick against the pricks?

I have spent 30 years in various churches and this is the conclusion I have come to while seeking God with all my mind, heart, and strength. Now brethren. I love you too. This is why I write here.

My words may be filled with imperfections but please, love me as Christ calls us to love each other.


By works a man is justified, and not by faith only.


Many do not like the title of this post for what it implies, but it is taken directly from scripture and intimated to be as important as faith. For within an active faith are found works to be shown reflective of genuine repentance.

Controversy aside, we are called unto good works as a Christian and commanded to hold fast our profession of faith. We are also told that those who profess Christ but are impure, sinful, and live with unbelief perform works unto eternal punishment.


 

This is why I am posting some of my favorite verses that necessitate a life devoted to God.

They are in no particular order but speak volumes to those willing to listen and obey God’s word and not adhere to a particular doctrine that denies works of righteousness as a necessary part of a disciple’s life.

Our church is drenched in antinomianism and is teaching us to live in the wicked mire of sin. If this doctrine remains in our heart and lives, we will perish in our sin.


Romans 11:21-22

For if God spared not the natural branches,

take heed lest he also spare not thee.

Behold therefore the goodness

and severity of God:

on them which fell, severity;

but toward thee, goodness,

if thou continue in his goodness:

otherwise thou also shalt be cut off.


1 Corinthians 10:1-12

Moreover, brethren,

I would not that ye should be ignorant,

how that all our fathers were under the cloud,

and all passed through the sea;

And were all baptized unto Moses

in the cloud and in the sea;

And did all eat the same spiritual meat;

And did all drink the same spiritual drink:

for they drank of that spiritual Rock

that followed them: and that Rock was Christ.

But with many of them

God was not well pleased:

for they were overthrown in the wilderness.

Now these things were our examples,

to the intent we should not lust after evil things,

as they also lusted.

Neither be ye idolaters, as were some of them;

as it is written,

The people sat down to eat and drink,

and rose up to play.

Neither let us commit fornication,

as some of them committed,

and fell in one day three and twenty thousand.

Neither let us tempt Christ,

as some of them also tempted,

and were destroyed of serpents.

Neither murmur ye,

as some of them also murmured,

and were destroyed of the destroyer.

Now all these things happened unto them

for ensamples:

and they are written for our admonition,

upon whom the ends of the world are come.

Wherefore let him that thinketh he standeth

take heed lest he fall.


2 Peter 2:4-9

For if God spared not the angels that sinned,

but cast them down to hell,

and delivered them into chains of darkness,

to be reserved unto judgment;

And spared not the old world,

but saved Noah the eighth person,

a preacher of righteousness,

bringing in the flood upon the world of the ungodly;

And turning the cities of Sodom and Gomorrha

into ashes condemned them with an overthrow,

making them an ensample

unto those that after should live ungodly;

And delivered just Lot,

vexed with the filthy conversation of the wicked:

(For that righteous man dwelling among them,

in seeing and hearing,

vexed his righteous soul from day to day

with their unlawful deeds;)

The Lord knoweth how to deliver the godly

out of temptations,

and to reserve the unjust

unto the day of judgment to be punished:


Jude 1:5

I will therefore put you in remembrance,

though ye once knew this, how that the Lord,

having saved the people out of the land of Egypt,

afterward destroyed them that believed not.


James 2:14-26

What doth it profit, my brethren,

though a man say he hath faith,

and have not works?

can faith save him? 

If a brother or sister be naked,

and destitute of daily food, 

and one of you say unto them,

Depart in peace, be ye warmed and filled;

notwithstanding ye give them not those things

which are needful to the body;

what doth it profit? 

Even so faith, if it hath not works, is dead,

being alone. 

Yea, a man may say,

Thou hast faith, and I have works:

shew me thy faith without thy works,

and I will shew thee my faith by my works. 

Thou believest that there is one God;

thou doest well:

the devils also believe, and tremble. 

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?

And the scripture was fulfilled which saith,

Abraham believed God,

and it was imputed unto him for righteousness:

and he was called the Friend of God. 

Ye see then how that by works a man is justified,

and not by faith only. 

Likewise also was not Rahab the harlot

justified by works,

when she had received the messengers,

and had sent them out another way? 

For as the body without the spirit is dead,

so faith without works is dead also.


Some are already withering believing their current state is acceptable to God.  Take heed lest ye fall. It is not just belief or faith alone that will save you. We are to:

Bring forth therefore fruits meet for repentance

(John the Baptist)


Whereupon, O king Agrippa,

I was not disobedient unto the heavenly vision:

but shewed first unto them of Damascus,

and at Jerusalem,

and throughout all the coasts of Judæa,

and then to the Gentiles,

that they should repent and turn to God,

and do works meet for repentance

(Paul the Apostle)


God can deliver you if you seek after Him like you do your most precious treasures . . . for in this, He is found.

The Seal of God’s Foundation


Nevertheless the foundation of God standeth sure,

having this seal,

The Lord knoweth them that are his.

And,

Let every one that nameth the name of Christ

depart from iniquity.


The foundation of those that are His is two-fold.

First, it is an intimate relationship with the Father, not a distant or intermittent connection.

‘the Lord knoweth them that are His.’

Christ is the rock on which this relationship is built. We are to have the same mind as Jesus had,

for the fruit of the Spirit is in

all goodness and righteousness and truth

~ Ephesians 5:8-10

————-

Let this mind be in you,

which was also in Christ Jesus

~ Philippians 2:5


Once again,

. . . the fruit of the Spirit is love,

joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith,

meekness, temperance: against such there is no law.

~ Galatians 5:21-13


To ‘knoweth’ is a prolonged verbal form indicating, a coming to know and becoming known. It is a two-way discovery of intimate knowledge and each other’s character.

It is through Christ working in our lives, chastising us, and making us holy that we can identify with Him. In this of our life is under His authority,

every one that nameth the name of Christ depart from iniquity.’


God’s grace teaches us that He will not allow us to become once again subject to sin,

There hath no temptation taken you

but such as is common to man:

but God is faithful,

who will not suffer you

to be tempted above that ye are able;

but will with the temptation

also make a way to escape,

that ye may be able to bear it.

~ 1 Corinthians 10:13


We are sealed to the foundation of God by obedience,

if ye through the Spirit do mortify the deeds of the body,

ye shall live.

Mortify therefore your members

which are upon the earth;

fornication, uncleanness, inordinate affection,

evil concupiscence, and covetousness,

which is idolatry:

~ Colossians 3:4-6


Christ gave us a most precious and priceless gift, purity, freedom from sin, with good works.

who gave himself for us,

that he might redeem us from all iniquity,

and purify unto himself a peculiar people,

zealous of good works.

~ Titus 2:13-15


Our  faith and relationship with God necessitates good works within our salvation,

For we are his workmanship,

created in Christ Jesus unto good works,

which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them.

~ Ephesians 2:5-10

If we fail to to believe with the fruits of obedience, Jesus will cast us aside.

And then will I profess unto them,

I never knew you:

depart from me,

ye that work iniquity.

~Matthew 7:16-27


If our works are filled with willful sin, it does not matter if we,

But those who profess to know God;

have not all obeyed the gospel

but in works deny him,

being abominable, and disobedient,

and unto every good work, reprobate.

~ Titus 1:15-16


Our carnal nature must die. If we have been saved, we have been freed from the corruption  and reign of sin in our life.

 . . . being sober minded. In all things

shewing thyself a pattern of good works:

in doctrine shewing uncorruptness,

gravity, sincerity, sound speech, that cannot be condemned;

that he that is of the contrary part may be ashamed,

having no evil thing to say of you.

~ Titus 2:7-9

We have no other choice as followers of Christ. We must flee sin at all costs in order to avoid the judgement.


Depart, ye that made the doctrine of my atonement a cloak for your sins, or ‘sewed’ it as a ‘pillow under the arms of my people,’ to make them sleep in carnal security, when they should have ‘worked out their salvation with fear and trembling.’

You profess to know me, but I disown you. My sheep I know: them that are mine I know. The seal of my holiness is upon them all: the motto of it, (Let him that nameth the name of Christ depart from iniquity,) is deeply engraven on their faithful breasts, — not on yours, ye ‘carnal, ye sold under sin!
~ John Fletcher


Who dares to stand for iniquity?

Who dares to proclaim this dark principle of sin

seething in the life of a Christian?

The Gospel demands that we stand in God’s light.


Stand with Paul:

What then?

shall we sin,

because we are not under the law,

but under grace?

God forbid.

~ Romans 6:14-16


Let Grace have its perfect work in your soul, and stand!

Antinomianism: The Tares in Today’s Church

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As I read God’s instructions for our life in the New Testament, I recently came to a new realization about modern Christendom. The problem is as old as Cain and also troubled the early church (via Gnosticism).

This included the doctrines of the Nicolaitans and Balaam which, allowed for unbiblical hierarchical church structures, infusion of paganism, and compromising moral values. These doctrines remain with us today. Some of it is subtle, most of it is pervasive, and it would make a great study within the larger context of Church history, but I digress . . .

Nowadays, Gnosticism permeates our church through the influence of Greek manuscripts. The Roman Catholic church (RCC) in an attempt to gain back her lost “reformation children” introduced the Codex Vaticanus and Codex Sinaticus through the 19th century Bible revisionists Westcott and Hort. These manuscripts are now the dominant codices of the Nestle Aland Greek New Testament that are used in all modern Bibles versions and taught in most Christian Bible colleges.

Today we see a slow movement of protestant churches moving toward the RCC through cooperative actions like the pro-life movement, the P.E.A.C.E. plan, and other human rights issues. Don’t get me wrong. I think abortion is murder and these other moral issues are important but we are called to separate from all forms of ungodliness (2 Corinthians 6:16-18). That is the exactly what ecumenism is: uniting religions, mixing paganism, fomenting more antinomianism (ungodliness), and ultimately (IMHO) bringing about the fruition of the Whore of Bablyon. If you would like to read how the RCC uses these movements to validate her position and authority over Christianity and other religions the official page is here.

Antinomianism will play an important role in the falling away of the end-times church and its not just about Catholicism. But what exactly is antinomianism?

With the discerning eye that God calls us to develop and act on (1 Corinthians 5:7, Ephesians 5:11, Philippians 1:9, 1 Thessalonians 5:21), we can observe antinomianism in the emerging church, the Purpose Driven philosophy, the faith/prosperity movement, new evangelicalism, and others areas of modern Christianity. I am finding its influence all over my life: in my priorities, in my household, and what occupies my family’s time.

The following is an excellent explanation of antinomianism from bereanpublishers.com. As you read (it is long) please take your time, pray, and ask yourself how much does this describe you? We are called to become like Christ and not the world.

I pray that you . . . may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God,” Romans 12:2.

Sincerely, Donald Kjellberg

 ANTINOMIANISM

‘Antinomian’ is pronounced [an-ta-nome´-ee-ann].  The word itself can be traced back to the Greek of the New Testament.  It comes from putting two Greek words together: `anti (anti) and nomos (nomos).  The first word “anti” taken by itself means, “over against or instead of”, and corresponds to our English word “anti”, which means “opposed to”.

The second half of the word ‘Antinomian’, which is the word “nomos”, means: (1) a law, rule, standard; (2) a rule of life or moral conduct.  This is the same word that is translated “law” in “Do we then make void the law through faith?  God forbid: yea, we establish the law.”-KJV. Rom. 3:31.  Consequently, when these two Greek words are combined, it gives the meaning: lawlessness; without, opposed to or against laws, standards, or rules of moral conduct.

IS ‘ANTINOMIAN’ A BIBLE WORD?

Yes, it most certainly is (in the Greek Language, that is).  It can be found in the following form 25 times throughout the New Testament.  This time it again comes from taking the Greek word “nomos”, but prefixing it with the negative particle “a” to give the Greek word “anomos”.  The Greek word “nomos” was previously defined as: a law, rule, standard; a rule of life or moral conduct.  When the negative article “a” is prefixed to it, the exact same meaning as our English word ‘Antinomian’ is derived.  The Greek translation for this New Testament word is: lawlessness; the condition of being without law; having contempt for law.

It is usually translated (Strongs # 458, 459) using vague words like ‘iniquity’, ‘wicked’, ‘unrighteousness’ or ‘transgressor’ (in the Authorized Version-KJV).  It’s even more vague in all the newer translations.  Only 6 times was it clearly translated (KJV) as ‘without law’, ‘lawless’, etc., in 3 verses only.  However, understanding this word’s true meaning, brings new meaning and clarity to all verses that contain it.  Even though it is found translated ‘iniquity in Matt. 7:23, the words ‘Antinomian’ or ‘lawlessness’ could rightfully be put there instead.  It would then read, starting at verse 21, “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.  Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name?  and in thy name have cast out devils?  and in thy name done many wonderful works?  And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from Me, ye that work “lawlessness” (Antinomianism).

Other verses that condemn Antinomians to hell are: “The Son of man shall send forth His angels, and they shall gather out of His kingdom all things that offend, and them which do ‘Antinomian(ism)’.”  “And because ‘Antinomians’ shall abound, the love of many shall wax cold.”  “Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship hath righteousness with ‘Antinomians’?  and what communion hath light with darkness?”  “For the mystery of ‘Antinomian(ism)’ doth already work: only he who now letteth will let, until he be taken out of the way.”  “Who gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all ‘Antinomian(ism)’, and purify unto himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works (Matt.13:41; Matt. 24:12; 2 Cor. 6:14; 2 Thess. 2:7; Titus 2:14).  With this in mind, it is interesting to see what men of God have said about it.

WHAT’S ITS BASIC DOCTRINE?

In his late book, Paths to Power, A.W. Tozer defined it this way.  “Fundamental Christianity in our times is deeply influenced by that ancient enemy of righteousness, Antinomianism.  The creed of the Antinomian is easily stated: We are saved by faith alone; works have no place in salvation; conduct is works, and is therefore of no importance.  What we do cannot matter as long as we believe rightly.  The divorce between creed and conduct is absolute and final.  The question of sin is settled by the Cross; conduct is outside the circle of faith and cannot come between the believer and God.  Such in brief, is the teaching of the Antinomian.  And so fully has it permeated the Fundamental element in modern Christianity that it is accepted by the religious masses as the very truth of God.  Antinomianism is the doctrine of grace carried by uncorrected logic to the point of absurdity.  It takes the teaching of justification by faith and twists it into deformity.”

I know there are some (maybe you, dear reader) who might say, “That’s the gospel!  That’s Grace!  That’s what I believe and practice!”  Oh, if we would only take the time to seek God, pray and read the Gospel, unfettered by the “Doctrines of Men”, we would surely find that Antinomianism is ANOTHER GOSPEL (i.e.- not Christianity).

Charles Finney in the 1800′s spoke of it “as the opposite extreme to legalism.  Legalist are all work, Antinomians no work.  Professing to have yielded up their whole agency to Christ, they throw all responsibility upon Him and do nothing.  Under pretense of being led by the Spirit and of waiting for God to reveal His will to them, they give themselves up very much to spiritual indolence (idleness)1.”

Charles Finney

Noah Webster, in his 1878 Dictionary, defined Antinomianism as: “one of a sect who were charged with maintaining that, under the gospel dispensation, the moral law is of no use or obligation.”

1-Webster’s 1878 Dictionary defined ‘indolence’ as “inaction, or want of exertion of body or mind, proceeding from love of ease or aversion to toil; habitually idle.”

A BRIEF HISTORY

Interesting enough, the Church is being plagued today with Antinomianism more than ever.  In fact, it has almost “leavened the whole lump”.  This is not the first time that it’s crept into the hearts of God’s people unawares.  Historically, in Jeremiah’s day when Israel was deeply backslidden and God’s prophets were crying out against their wickedness, Antinomianism was the root cause.  It was also one of the first signs of decay to hit the early Church.  As the Bible teaches, the early Church fathers were well acquainted with what it was, and like Paul, found themselves in an ever present battle against its deadly effects.

By the 1700′s, Antinomianism had established itself so deeply in most of the colleges that produced pastors, that almost anyone simply professing faith in God was considered a Christian.  This condition having spread to this country as well, found heart-motivated morality in the Church almost non-existent.  After much sincere prayer and true repentance, a real ‘Revival’ did come from God during that time through men such as George Whitefield, Jonathan Edwards and others.  This revival reversed the course of Antinomianism but for a short while.  By the start of the 19th. century, Antinomianism had made a strong comeback.  Charles Finney and other Godly persons, who lived during that time, again found themselves facing it’s damning effects.  Although Finney and others succeeded in stamping out numerous strongholds, it didn’t take long for it to make a comeback in this century.

This century has seen a huge rise of those who promise many ‘would be Christians’ liberty, while “they themselves are the servants of corruption” (2 Peter 2:19).  Never before have there been so many who profess Christianity with their mouth, but live like and love the world.  Why?  Because Antinomianism has been the accepted gospel almost universally since the 50′s. 

WHY IS IT WRONG?

The origin for Antinomianism is rooted in a general misunderstanding concerning the difference between what is meant by “conditions” and “works” (earnings/merits).  Many devoted, but spiritually ignorant, religious teachers, in their zeal to explain the truth of our unmerited salvation and our inability to pay the debt for our own sins, have fallen into heresy.

“Heresy!  That’s a pretty strong word”, you say.  Yes, but that’s exactly what it is: “heresy”.  The word “heresy”, from the New Testament Greek word “airesis”, simply means “a taking, school, selection”.  A modern day dictionary defines it as “a school of thought”.  The word represents a popular practice among the religious crowd.  It describes the taking of truth and then selecting one’s favorite part or doctrine contained in it, over-emphasizing that point, and teaching it, usually to the complete negation of the rest of the picture. 

Heresy in the Garden of Eden?

A perfect example of this is in what the devil told Eve in the garden of Eden.  What he said wasn’t entirely wrong.  He just excluded parts of the truth and over-emphasized other parts, to such an extent, that what was said became a lie.  He said, “Ye shall not surely die:” (Gen. 3:4).  This was true in one sense, only he simply left out the rest of the facts.  It was true that they wouldn’t die, right then, probably based on their own vague understanding of death at the time (Bear in mind that up to this time no one had seen death).  But what the devil left out was a big deal.  They would indeed DIE another way, spiritually, right then, according to God’s real meaning.  Their body would also start dying, from that time on as well.  So… not presenting the whole picture, turned that short, partial truth into a huge deception.  Next verse:

“For God doth know that in the day ye eat thereof, then your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be as gods, knowing good and evil.” (Gen. 3:5).  Again, what the devil said was exactly true.  However, if only he had added in the parts that he purposely left out, the whole picture would have taken on an entirely different meaning- a pretty scary, and ugly one at that.  It’s like signing on the doted line without reading the small, fine print, ever!  Considering how the devil’s heresy ruined the human race’s earthly future, does one have to wonder much at the root source of such a heresy as Antinomianism? 

Earning by Works versus Conditions

“Taking” or focusing in on the truth, that we do not “merit” or earn God’s salvation and its attending blessings, has led many into Antinomianism.  Yes, it IS true that we do NOT earn our salvation, nor our relationship with God.  But that does not negate the fact that God DOES HAVE HIS “Conditions” respecting salvation.

Suppose, for instance, I were to read in my newspaper about a free milk giveaway happening at the local dairy.  Let’s say the newspaper states that between the hours of 10 A.M. and 3 P.M. on Thursday, March 16th., the dairy is pleased to give to every person over the age of 18 a fresh gallon of milk, for free.  From such an ad, I’d understand that the milk would to be free, right?  I wouldn’t have to pay for it or earn it.  Also, anyone over 18 years old could receive a gallon if they wanted.  Therefore, it would be fairly clear that there would be NO WAY anyone could earn, merit, pay for or deserve a free gallon of milk.  It is a free gift.

However, at the same time, there are definite “conditions” to receiving the milk such as:

Firstly, one had to be over 18 years of age.

Secondly, they had to be present at the dairy.

Thirdly, only between the hours of 10 A.M. and 3 P.M. on Thursday, March 16th. could it be received.

Meeting Conditions does NOT mean earning by works

By being at the dairy at the required time would not mean that anyone had earned, worked for or deserved the milk.  No one would even be considered if they weren’t present there between the appointed times.  Merit, works and deserving it have nothing to do with it.  It is based totally on grace -i.e. the kindness of the dairy to give it away.  The dairy is giving it away simply because they want to.

On the other hand, there are definite conditions to being able to receive a gallon of milk.  How happy a person is about being able to get the milk makes no difference concerning whether they receive it or not.  Even “faith alone” is not the deciding factor in them receiving the milk directly.  If they don’t make it to the dairy in person as specified, they will simply loose out.  The fact that these conditions have to be followed has nothing to do with anyone earning the milk or whether or not it is a gift.  Having conditions has nothing whatsoever to do with the love, kindness and tender hearts of the dairy owners.

In the same way, parents sometimes have conditions for their children.  Because of LOVE, parents may wish to give or do something for their children.  However, just because they make it conditional, like first having to have either their room clean, face washed, hair combed or such like, doesn’t make the gift any less a gift.  Knowing how children can think, only the mind of an immature child could think they were earning it.  What does this tell us about the level of thought Antinomians use?

An example of salvation’s “conditions” was taught by Jesus in His parable concerning the wise and foolish virgins (Matt 25:1-13).  The primary difference between the wise and foolish was whether or not they had met God’s conditions.

(Side note: some Antinomian teachers, in trying to explain this away, say that the foolish virgins only missed the rapture, etc., but will still have a second chance after the tribulation.  We ask: when does the Bible say they get their “second chance”?  Instead, Jesus said to them “I tell you the truth, I don’t know you”.  In every place where Jesus says He doesn’t know them, the consequences are always disastrous eternally.  So how do these “smooth talkers” get such a conclusion?  Certainly not from the Bible.  I’d hate to teach or base my eternal future on such unscriptural doctrines of men.)

WHY DO ANTINOMIANS EXIST?

Antinomianism is an entire doctrine built on religious confusion, or, more precisely, a complete lack of understanding concerning God’s “Conditions”.  Sad to say, its root cause goes even deeper than misunderstanding “conditions”.  The main battle isn’t really between bumbling heretics and those who understand God’s “conditions” – it’s between humanism and Christianity. 

Humanism

Humanism is summed up as this: the end of all being is the happiness of mankind.  Its focus is on two words: ‘happiness’ and ‘mankind’.  Therefore in humanism, everything a person does is centred around humanity’s happiness here on earth. 

Christianity

Christianity can be summed up as this: the end of all being is the glory of God.  Its focus is on two words: ‘glory’ and ‘God’.  Therefore in Christianity, everything a person does is centred around what pleases God, nothing less!  This is why Jesus could say to his close friend and disciple, “Get thee behind me, Satan: thou art an offence unto me: for thou savourest not the things that be of God, but those that be of men”; and “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” and “If any will come after Me, let him deny himself, take up his cross and follow Me” (Matt. 16:23, 7:21, 16:24).  Do you see?  The entire focus is on God and His glory, not man. 

Let’s Get Together and Make Peace (on earth)

At the root of Antinomianism is humanism with a little Christianity mixed in, for good measure.  How’s that?  Instead of pure humanism, which is focused solely on man’s earthly life, this mixture looks like this: The end of Antinomian “Christianity” is the happiness of mankind both on earth and in heaven.  Notice that it STILL focuses on the same two words that humanism does: ‘happiness’ and ‘mankind’.  The only difference between humanism and Antinomian Christianity is this: mankind’s happiness has been extended beyond the grave.  Does this mean that real Christians aren’t happy?  No!  However, they take their happiness in bringing glory to God, by doing only what pleases Him, never themselves.  This usually goes over the head of an Antinomian.

It shouldn’t be a surprise to learn that in Antinomianism, like humanism, everything the Church does (especially those in leadership) is centred around humanity’s happiness.  This is the root of Antinomianism.  Once we understand this, everything else that puzzles us about ourselves, &/or our Antinomian friends, will disappear: i.e.-the lack of heart motivated obedience to Christ; the struggles against giving up basic, elementary things like TV, worldly videos, sports, dancing, smoking, worldly music, worldly friendships, etc.; the lack of interest in personally reaching the lost; and the strong attachment to, and love for, this present world.  This is why, when the subject of God’s “conditions” for salvation comes up, for an Antinomian, it does not compute.  Because an Antinomian’s beliefs are rooted in humanism, when they hear the real Gospel, they think it’s heresy or some strange “Cult”.

Please remember that humanism is at the heart of
Antinomianism when you read the rest of this article.
 

How Did They Mix Christianity with Humanism?

Imagine this: you’ve enrolled in an Air Conditioning School.  You try very hard to learn air conditioners, but it’s extremely difficult.  You just can’t seem to remember the theory, much less fix anything.  How it all works and fits together is beyond your comprehension.  You and air conditioners simply don’t get along.  You doubt the problem is your lifelong poor mechanical aptitude.  Maybe the school is wrong, so you decide to quit.  After you’re out, you begin to think about a theory of your own.  You go so far as to put down on paper, a whole system for understanding air conditioners, all based entirely on your own misconceptions.  Furthermore, you start your own air conditioning school.  You’ve always been a good talker.  Eventually, several of your students believe your theories, although nothing ever seems to work out quite right.  Nevertheless, they learn to have lots of faith in that coming day when the class’s air conditioners will work correctly.  Besides, they “feel good” about themselves and your simplified rationalizations, and that’s got to be more important.

On the other hand, some of your other students are growing frustrated at your bumbling.  They just can’t accept the fact that nothing in practice works right.  They even go so far as to tell you where they think you’re wrong.  Never mind that these thinking students are the only ones who ever manage to fix any air conditioning problems.  That isn’t what matters to you, so you accuse them of “causing divisions” and “defying authority”.  When they continue to disagree, you have them removed from your school.

Sound crazy?  Well, guess what?  That’s exactly how this doctrine of Antinomianism came about.  Only difference is that since it involves the spiritual, many consider theology mystical, hard to practice and abstract.  Consequently, most never even stop to analyze Antinomianism to see if it actually works like scriptural Christianity.  Instead, too many enjoy being on spiritual “Auto Pilot” because their ears feel good.  True, they might be constantly falling into sin; their lives &/or family’s spiritual lives are a mess, but at least they can “think” they are “saved”, until they die and find out the truth (after it’s too late).

Please dear ones; read your Bibles; study and learn about your heritage.  Is this how the early Christians lived and walked?  No!

Somehow Antinomians see the desire to satisfy God’s “conditions” as trying to earn one’s salvation.  Antinomianism has its entire focus on one piece of the truth – that is: we don’t “earn” (merit) our salvation.  But, the rest of the picture “conditions”, is not only neglected, but actually taught and warned against.  What this means is that perhaps millions are on their way to HELL while believing they are going to heaven.  What a really scary surprise that’s going to be.

Can you imagine reading an ad someday about a new, revolutionary medicine that cures cancer and AIDS completely, instantly?  Imagine hearing about it at special meetings, then going to months of seminars and being taught all about what it does and how to use it.  Only one problem, though.  No one seems to know how or where to actually get this marvelous cure-all.  What would you think?

If you think that’s bad, then neglecting and even discouraging hungry folks from knowing about God’s “conditions” to His blessed gift of salvation has got to be worse!  That’s exactly why Antinomianism is one of the worst and most dangerous heresies going.  God’s “conditions” concerning salvation are more than just “believing” and “accepting” Christ.  Otherwise explain what Jesus meant when He said, “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.” (Matt. 7:21).  Or what about “For the Son of man shall come in the glory of his Father with his angels; and then he shall reward every man according to his works”? (Matt. 16:27).  How about the scene in Matthew 25 with the sheep and the goats?  Both apparently believed in Jesus and answered Him in a way that implied familiarity with who He was.  However, the goats failed to fulfill His conditions as outlined there, no if’s, an’s or but’s about it. 

THE OUTCOME

The fruits of this cancer are readily seen.  Just compare the difference between the witness real Christians had in Wesley’s, Finney’s, Menno Simons’, the Moravian’s and the Apostle’s day to that of today.  Instead, the modern Antinomian comes to believe that they are “free in Christ” -free to do whatever they want, whether it is the will of the flesh or God’s.  ‘A taking’ (heresy) of the Scripture which says, “All things are lawful unto me” (1Cor. 6:12; 10:23) out of context, effectively makes Antinomians a law unto themselves (licentiousness).  Consequently, whatever happens to be the day’s conviction or lack thereof, is the way they live.  Instead of God, they base everything on whether their motives are right.  Instead of God’s will, if they can rationalize something, according to either their own or some respected “believers” example or teaching, they usually feel perfectly at liberty to do whatever they want.  You can hear them say how God “told them” it was okay to do this or that, no matter what the Bible teaches.  They soon become experts in examining the limit to which any of God’s moral laws can be stretched (legalism), while still maintaining a minimum show of Godliness.  Because of this, their lives speak to an unbelieving world and say, “We are delivered to do all these abominations” (Jer. 7:10).

Why did God say in Malachi 2:17, “You have wearied the Lord with your words”?  It was because the Antinomian element was saying, “Everyone that does evil is good in the sight of the Lord, and He delights in them.”  I’ve actually heard pastors preach that we don’t need to obey God unless we want to be used by Him.  I’ve seen teaching tapes offered which explain: “It’s the Heart that counts.  God looks at our hearts NOT at our outward actions.  God knows and sees our intentions and it’s our heart that counts with Him.”  Such theological nonsense must have been similar to what the prophets Malachi and Jeremiah heard.  God, in rebuking the prophets and pastors, said, “I have seen also in the prophets of Jerusalem a horrible thing: they commit adultery, and walk in lies: they strengthen also the hands of evildoers, that none does return from his wickedness.” (Jer. 23:14).  Sounds like today, where sinners are being comforted with, “It’s okay, God accepts you just the way you are.  He knows you want to stop smoking, drinking, chewing, cursing, hating, loosing your temper, coveting, rock and rolling, being worldly minded but He loves you anyway.  Just have faith and everything will turn out al…lll right.”  Maybe my Bible is different for theirs, but I don’t think that’s going to cut it.  There are huge lists in Rom. 1:29-31, 1 Corth. 5:11; 6:9-10, Gal. 5:19-21, Col. 3:5-6, Rev. 21:8, Ez. 18, etc., detailing exactly what will happen to folks who continue in such things.  Oh, Lord, please have mercy on us.

The Antinomians (or as some call them “Carnal Christians”) have been taught how to encourage themselves by imagining that the holy men of old were just as carnal as they are.  “They heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears; and they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables” (2Tim. 4:3-4).  Instead of shock, sorrow and sadness, these religious worldly-ans actually enjoy hearing sermons about David’s adultery, Elijah’s fear of Jezebel, Peter’s denial and Paul and Barnabas’ disagreements.

Some believing that their worldly life-style (death-style) is Christian, have proudly placed a socially acceptable metal fish or bumper sticker on their car amongst their other ungodly, worldly stickers.  With their bumper sticker neatly displayed, they have no convictions about the opposing messages being conveyed to the “lost”.  As they zoom in and out of traffic on the city’s highways, it never occurs to them that they are witnessing to the world in a negative way.  Since they feel “free in Christ”, exceeding the posted speed limits does not bother them in the least.  As it turns out, if you didn’t know them, it would be extremely difficult to tell them from your good ole American carnal sinner.

How can anyone tell the difference?

They essentially act just as impolite and worldly on the highways and in public places as the rest of the world.  Some are not even ashamed to state to the whole world that they are just like everyone else by displaying a “Christians aren’t perfect, only forgiven” bumper sticker.  Instead, Jesus and Paul said, “Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect.”  “I have not found thy works perfect before God.  Remember therefore how thou hast received and heard, and hold fast, and repent.”  “Salt is good: but if the salt have lost his savour, wherewith shall it be seasoned?  It is neither fit for the land, nor yet for the dunghill; but men cast it out.  He that has ears to hear, let him hear.” (Matt. 5:48; Rev. 3:3; Luke 14:34-35).

In his recent article published in the “Herald of His Coming” April ’95′, Elmer Klassen addressed this so aptly with the following:

“Why ask people to trust in Christ when it does not make much difference if they do?  When there are as many divorces within the Church as outside the Church, the habits of the Christians essentially the same as non-Christians, the pleasures of sin just as much enjoyed in the Church as outside the Church, why all this effort of making people Christians?

“The Bible tells us that the Gospel is the power that will stop people from sinning, but if this is not happening in the Churches there is something basically wrong with our preaching.  The Book of Romans does not urge us to prepare for a future heaven but promises a changed life here on earth to the one who will believe the book.  I seldom find someone who does.  To find someone who will confess chapter one as true is hard to find.  And to find someone who will continue to believe the Gospel according to Romans on to chapter 16 becomes even more difficult.

“The Gospel according to Romans promises a completely changed life to whoever will believe it.  But who believes this and confesses the book of Romans to be true in his own life?  Could it be that we are so in the habit of reading the Book in an old style and in such a traditional way that the Book has lost its power to change lives?” (Used by permission) 

F-L-O-D-D C-H-R-I-S-T (pronounced “flawed kris’t”)

Claiming to live by the Spirit, Antinomians have been taught to accept the fact that they don’t know God’s will for their lives, nor really hear His voice.  There is little evidence in their daily conversation to suggest that they are soon to be married to their Beloved, Christ.  No longer is Christianity to the Antinomian a passionate reunion and love affair with their God who died in agony for them.  On the contrary, the Antinomian is one who feels God is just around to protect and help them.  He’s their buddy, “daddy” and after their fun and frolic here on earth is over, they believe they will have a beautiful, ‘private’ split level home in heaven waiting for them.  God is viewed as their servant who on command heals, makes them rich financially, and blesses them with anything their selfish little heart lusts after.  Oh yes, they love to claim all of God’s promises of blessing for Israel in the Old Testament, but turn right around and claim that the New Testament frees them from any wrath or punishment, also promised to Israel for disobedience.  No more are the warnings of Jesus and His followers in the Bible taken at face value.

F-This “Carnal Christian” theology has negated any ‘Fear’ or respect for God and His judgment.  When they’re told something heavy, all they know is how to categorize and systematize it as fitting into this or that doctrinal slot.

L-Antinomians are essentially ‘Lawless’, hence the name, Antinomian.  But God says to them, “He that turneth away his ear from hearing the law, even his prayer shall be abomination.” -Prov. 28:9

The scripture states very plainly “Do we then make void the law through faith?”  That is about as plain as any statement could get.  It asks the question in such clear, precise language that even a child could understand: “Do we” (you know, the very ones who wrote the New Testament; the exact ones who established each and every doctrine in the first Church; the particular ones Jesus had taught concerning the exact meaning of the New Covenant), are they (Paul in particular here) now eliminating the law of God in our lives because of our justification by faith?  The answer: “God forbid (newer versions say “not at all!”, “By no means!”) yea, we **ESTABLISH** the law.”-Rom. 3:31.  To establish something does not mean to put it out back in the wilderness or in a hidden place where no one has to see it or deal with it.  So how do Antinomians come off with such an opposite idea that we aren’t under any obligation or responsibility to obey God’s moral law and commandments?  Answer: It’s simple.  Christianity was only meant to be followed and understood by those who had been born again by the Holy Spirit.  It ONLY applied so that “they which live, should not henceforth live unto themselves, but unto him which died for them, and rose again. (2Cor 5:15).  Bear in mind that Christianity’s atmosphere and environment was only for those who were DEAD to themselves.  So when clever salesmen, in the 4th century down to our present day, started selling the benefits of the Christian life to the masses before they had been duly put to death and buried with Christ, the result was and still is our counterfeit belief system-Antinomianism.

O-As far as ‘Obedience’ is concerned, they view it as optional or only required when they feel “Led“.  Their excuse that they are “not under the law” usually takes care of any conviction for disobedience.

D-Their lives are generally marked by the same ‘un-Disciplined’ life style manifested by any other moral non-Christians.  They live, eat, socialize, entertain, fear, dress, react, play, talk, buy, sell and enjoy just like the world.  Daily life for them is influenced by the world’s circumstances, not by God’s ordered discipline.  They bounce out of bed in the morning without any thought of having a disciplined, ordered spiritual plan throughout the day.  Consequently, their day consists of being “tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine” based entirely on circumstances (Eph. 4:14).  They think it’s natural to set their hearts on worldly goals.

Many Antinomians are easy to spot, because of the following trait:

It is extremely hard, if not impossible, for them to keep their attention on anything meaty or deep spiritually if it’s not exciting and new to them.  They usually won’t read or hear anything that goes beyond their “feel good” attitude and beliefs.  Things like praying for hours, dying to self, teachings against the latest fun spiritual manifestation (however false), sitting still and reading the Bible for hours, or attentively listening to someone’s heavy spiritual thoughts are usually considered boring.  (I wonder how “bored” they’d be, having to live in abject poverty with a leaky roof, in a Communist country).  One gets the feeling that they’d have to be dying before they’d listen to anything sobering.  Most books and tracts (like this) of a serious nature usually collect dust.  If it isn’t fun or “UPLIFTING”, they’re not interested.  They have the same attitude a child does when let loose in a toy store.  They can’t wait to jump from one exciting toy to the next.  While they’re in the store surrounded by toys, they could care less that there is a bottomless pit right outside the entrance waiting for them.

Antinomians are on a spiritual merry-go-round.  One moment they’re “UP”, and the next they’re “DOWN”.  Their spirituality is constantly being “tossed to and fro by every wind of doctrine” or crisis in their life.  It never dawns on them that there is something that they are “DOING” that is responsible for this.  It’s like allowing little Johnnie to sit in front of Television all day long or do as he pleases, and then being surprised that he’s rebellious and ungodly in his teenage years.

What this verse means: “be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap” is beyond the Antinomian, because their understanding has been made “of none effect through” their “traditions”-Antinomianism. (Gal. 6:7; Mark 7:13)

D-They base their acceptance of someone as a Brother/Sister almost entirely on whether this new Brother/Sister’s ‘Doctrines’ line up with theirs.  If this Brother/Sister is in agreement with their own doctrinal statement, then they must be Christians.  This is not to say that doctrines aren’t important.  But these Churchians pay more attention to what comes out of someone’s mouth (words), than the person’s good fruits or lack thereof.  This is very interesting, especially in light of the fact that the “the devils also believe, and tremble”- (James 2:19).

C-Although they profess faith in Christ and His Bible, they usually have no concept of how ‘Convictions’ relate to their everyday life.  I once met a newly arrived pastor who told me all about the new Church he was pioneering.  He told me about his concerns for the town and his hope for the ‘lost’ to get ‘saved’ at his Bible studies.  After spending time on that, he went on to tell me about his upcoming job interview.  He had applied at the local cable television company to be a salesman for their movie channels, just because he heard they were hiring.  Somehow, he saw no connection between his spiritual concerns for the lost and taking a job that helped spread violence, drugs, sex and rock and roll.  Amazingly, he had no concept on how his own convictions respecting his faith translated into his daily life.

God calls such persons “double minded”, which comes with His promise as well- “let not that man think that he shall receive ANYTHING of the Lord” (James 1:7).

Because an Antinomian’s Christianity is focused on fulfilling their own happiness, it is easy to see why their ‘Convictions’ aren’t heart motivated.  They only relate to their ‘Convictions’ (as they call them) whenever circumstances closely coincide with what they’ve been “TAUGHT”.  When a situation comes up that doesn’t closely coincide with their intellectual “rule book”, they aren’t ‘Convicted’ in the slightest.  This is because their ‘Convictions’ are based solely on abstract “beliefs” that are in their mind, not written on the “fleshy tables of the heart”.  This explains why an Antinomian may, one time, feel ‘Convicted’ against helping someone gamble or buy liquor at a Casino or Saloon, but, the next time, will have no ‘Convictions’ whatsoever about buying other items from, or doing work, for a Casino or Saloon.  On the other hand, a true Christian would know, in their heart, that whether they gamble or just buy gasoline from a Casino or Saloon, they are helping to support its ungodliness, and would become “partakers of other men’s sins” (Eph. 5:7; 1Tim. 5:22; Rev. 18:4).

H-Antinomians are constantly trying to re-invent the wheel.  They are grossly ignorant when it comes to knowing early Church ‘History’.  Consequently, they are usually seeking to find some new spiritual truth, experience or doctrine.  Whole Church groups have been formed just because of some ‘new’, revealed truth.  What follows is usually fruitless for God, and sometimes even disastrous.  By simply taking the time to study early Christianity, many would have discovered the tried and true paths.  Jesus and His Apostles laid them down and they’ve never changed.  Whenever the Church has returned to them, they have always produced wonderful fruit for God’s Kingdom.  History confirms this.

R-’Repentance’?  What’s that word?  To the Antinomian, repentance means, at the most, saying they’re sorry for their sin.  As far as it being one of God’s absolute “conditions”, never would such a thought come into their mind.  That would be salvation by works, right?  Wrong!  Although repentance is rarely preached about, it is an absolute necessity to our salvation.  What it means is rarely understood correctly.  Scripture alone makes it crystal clear that without Biblical repentance, there can be NO salvation.  True repentance is NOT just feeling sorry for one’s sin.  It is more than that.  It means a complete change of mind respecting one’s sin and selfish ambitions.  However, whoever heard of someone having a complete change in “thinking” without “seeing” the results in actions.  Interested in the difference between true and false repentance?  Read 2 Corinthians 7:9-11 and Hebrews 12:17 for starters.

I-The Church as a whole, especially in Western Church, is into ‘Idolatry’.  How is that?  By placing their leaders above Christ.  They idolize them, their teachings and authority above God’s Word.  “Well hath Esaias prophesied of you hypocrites, as it is written, This people honoureth me with their lips, but their heart is far from me.  Howbeit in vain do they worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men.” (Mark 7:6-7).

S-One thing can be counted on in regard to an Antinomian, however.  They are fairly consistent in making promises they feel no obligation before God to keep.  To them ‘it’s the thought that counts’, in the heart, not the actions.  They are free to ‘Say’ and not do.  They’ll offer to do all sorts of loving, out of the ordinary caring acts, but if their own needs come in the way, which usually happens, guess what folks?

Instead Jesus, has some black and white words to say about this.  He says, “every idle word that men shall speak, they shall give account thereof in the day of judgment”, and “let your communication be, Yea, yea; Nay, nay: for whatsoever is more than these cometh of evil” or “lest ye fall into condemnation” (Matt. 12:36; Mt 5:37; James 5:12).  Condemnation means going to hell, no matter what your teachers tell you.

T-Their emphasis on ‘Teachings’, seminars, retreats, Bible Schools, etc., take the place of being taught by God, Godly men and spending time with God in prayer and fasting.  Their Christian focus is centred on this pastor’s or person’s teachings.  They are ever going here and there following/attending this or that teaching.  Elaborate sales pitches like “he is such a gifted/powerful speaker/teacher” or “it is such a life changing teaching or principle” are often heard with nary a mention of the Name of Jesus.  I want my life given to Christ Jesus, not some teaching or principle.  Antinomians seem to be “ever learning, and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth.”  After they have ‘matured’ in their (Antinomian) faith, “they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears;” (2Tim. 3:7; 4:3). 

THE CONCLUSION

The Bible gives evidence that the early Church was on it’s guard against such heresy.  In Romans 3:6-8, Paul said that already there were some teaching that he was preaching, “Let us do evil, that good may come”.  He asked, “Shall we continue in sin, that grace may abound?”  His answer was (listen Antinomians!), “Certainly Not!” (Rom. 6:1-2).  And yet I hear, time and time again, so called ‘Christians’ saying, “Of course, we know we will always sin every day, but God forgives us and always will”.  If that’s Christianity, then they better rewrite their Bible to accommodate it!

James was very clear when he said, “I will show you my faith BY my works.” (James 2:18).  However, the Antinomian is deceived into believing that they can live completely different from what they say they believe.  Come on!  We all know actions speak louder than words.  However, when it comes to this point in modern Christianity, reality and logic fly right out the window.

Peter had much to say about those who are “free in Christ” to serve their own desires.  “But chiefly them that walk after the flesh in the lust of uncleanness, and despise government.  Presumptuous are they, self-willed, they are not afraid to speak evil of dignities.  Whereas angels, which are greater in power and might, bring not railing accusation against them before the Lord.  But these, as natural brute beasts, made to be taken and destroyed, speak evil of the things that they understand not; and shall utterly perish in their own corruption (2 Peter 2:10-12)

Reading on through verse 22, Peter makes it quite clear that they weren’t destined simply to miss the rapture, but a real fate worthy of their lawlessness awaits them.

Actually, I must confess that I feel fairly qualified to speak about this subject, having been sucked into it myself years ago.  It does not work!  I now look back on it with shame and a heart felt repentance, for if we have God’s Spirit, we should know better.  I could write a book about this heresy of heresies.  In our day, it usually develops from the “Sloppy Agape”, and “Greasy, Cheap Grace” preaching.  However, God’s Word provides adequate teaching against such easy believism.  If we will but cast off the spiritless logic from some systematic teachings and read the Bible for what it says and means to each one of us personally, then we “shall know the truth, and the truth shall make” us free.

However, I can not help but feel sadness and holy grief for those who would lure new, zealous lambs of God away and into Antinomianism.  I have sadly witnessed many of my friends having their faith shipwrecked, because of it.  Call it Antinomianism, Easy Believism, Grace only or the Carnal Christian doctrine; it doesn’t work!  It’s 180° out of phase with reality and with what God wants, says and is.

In ending, I must be frank in saying that I believe very strongly that the widespread preaching of Antinomianism is the number one reason why the world today sees no reality in Christianity.  If you don’t think that’s what the world thinks, then you haven’t been listening when they talk among themselves.  With so many living and preaching Antinomianism, I believe it is the primary reason “the name of God is blasphemed among the Gentiles” (Rom. 2:24).  The life style of Antinomians is the “reason of whom the way of truth shall be evil spoken of” (1 Pet. 2:2).  Because of it, Christianity has become and still is, from all anyone can see, just a another abstract BELIEF in certain doctrines and truths.  In the end, it is nothing more than just a religious social club, like Rotary or Lions, with morals that, many times, aren’t any higher than the standards of these society clubs.  The world no longer stands in awe of the person who is a “stranger and pilgrim on this earth”.  No longer do they witness those who so love Jesus that they have counted “all things but loss for the excellency of the knowledge of Christ Jesus”.  The words of Jesus “for whosoever will save his life shall lose it: and whosoever will lose his life for my sake shall find it” have no place in the Antinomian’s mentality.  Until Antinomians see what they are doing, having “counted the blood of the covenant wherewith he was sanctified, an unholy thing, and has done dispite to the Spirit of grace”, how can there be a revival?

Too Narrow, too Broad, or Just Right?

I love my new church. Unfortunately like most churches we tend to keep a narrow focus on resources of learning and exhortation. Keeping close to the Bible is what we should do. And honestly, that is all we really need. Fortunately, God has kept and preserved His church since its inception. Since then, many Christians who hold closely to the whole counsel of God that fall outside our local church or our denomination have written some valuable gems. Keeping in perspective, most denominations did not even exist until the reformation of the 16th century. Most pre-reformation writings were destroyed due the the attempted destruction of the God’s church by the Roman Catholic system. Fortunately, with the freedoms that came with the founding of our country, God’s church is free to express her understanding without systematic persecution. There is just so much good exposition and preaching that has been cast upon the bride’s ears that we cannot know it all. Oh, what joy we will find in heaven when God reveals to us his Glory and truth!

The excerpt below was prophetic for the church today. The writer was most likely talking those who completely fall away from the God’s guidance. Unfortunately this falling away has found a new home. It has crept back into the church in the form of new evangelicalism, emergent philosophies, and other fleshly works that are revealed in our church behaviors, appearances, communication, and daily activities. I believe this excerpt accurately depicts the modern church today in how we choose to define what we want from a church rather than have the church kept from these worldly ways.

“A King’s Penknife, Or, Why I Am Opposed To Modernism,” 1929, I. M. Haldeman,
“The only thing recognized in matters of morals, the only standard for the definition and measure of God and things divine will be personal experience. Those who attempt to bind the conscience, direct the soul, and set before it a definite concept of God and a fixed line of conduct in respect to Him and to one another will be looked upon, not only as narrow
bigots, but as intolerable tyrants, as criminal hinderers to all true knowledge . . . The new generation is intoxicated with the rallying cry of ‘self-expression.’ The new generation is letting itself go. If it has any standard, it is the standard of exalted personalism and self-pleasing at any cost to old law and old custom or old manners . . . With the weakening down of law and self-restraint, there is the over-leaping race for material pleasures. This is the inspiration of the ‘get-rich-quick
movement’; get money that may be spent on pleasure and more pleasure . . . No one has time; all are pressed, life is too short to stop and think . . . ’On with the song’ and ‘on with the dance,’ these are the cries, and the music goes faster and more furious, the very sounds of the music are barbaric, appealing to the animal, to the brute sense within, stirring the blood,
adding fuel to the fire till passion is at white heat . . . The life that now is’ forms the horizon of the vast army of young men and women coming out of school and college. All their instruction, all their equipment is for this world . . . Let modernism continue its work of near pantheism, its agnostic attitude concerning the soul and the other side of death, and in a few hurrying years the moral and spiritual ruin of the coming generation cannot be imagined . . . To talk against Modernism and then hob-knob and picnic with Modernists, is not merely individually contemptible, but actual betrayal of the truth . . . There ought to be neither fellowship nor friendship with Modernists . . . How can you be the friend of a man who denies that the Son of God, our Lord Jesus Christ, will come again to this world, and that He will come visibly…? How can you be a friend of the
man who cuts your Bible to pieces…? If you would be loyal to Him and steadfast for the faith committed to you, you can have no toleration for those who under the title of modernist and the disguise of progressive and liberal Christianity betray the Son of God in the house of His friends…’For he that biddeth him God speed is a partaker of his evil deeds.’ (2 John 10, 11). Such an attitude will raise the cry of ‘bigotry’ and ‘bigot.’ The crowd takes that word out to the stone pile and would stone it to death and endless silence. But that same word ‘bigot’ is a very good word . . . This is the meaning of it: ‘By God.’ . . .The men who have achieved most for God, the men whose work has abided, have been men who have been the men who said, ‘by God,’ and knew no other standard . . . ’By God’ is only another way of saying, ‘Thus saith the Lord.’ Another word flung cheaply at those who stand for the integrity of the Bible, not only as a rule of faith, but practice, is the easy epithet: ‘Narrow.’ There are
Christians, even in the pulpit, good enough and wanting to be faithful to their calling, who shiver whenever the word is uttered in their neighborhood . . . But as I recall the preaching of the Son of God, I find it was along the line of a NARROW positivism: It was he who said: ‘Narrow is the way that leadeth unto life.’ . . . To raise a hue and cry against this as ‘divisive;’ to appeal to compromise for the sake of ‘brotherhood’ and ‘Christian charity’ and to talk about LOVE BEING MORE IMPORTANT IN THE CHURCH THAN CORRECTNESS OF DOCTRINE, is emotional weakness and fallacious folly . . . The word ‘toleration’ must be cut out of the church vocabulary. You cannot find it in the Bible. It is not a nice word. It is not to be found in good company. It is a word much used by middle-of-the-road men. It has in it, no matter how much dissimulated, the crawling, creeping movement of surrender . . . Why should the Church tolerate men who no longer tolerate the Bible as God gave it to us…?”

We may not get it ‘just right’ but we can try

We really need to stop shaping the church around our culture in order to bring in ‘unchurched’. Because when we do, we fail to allow the essentials of doctrine to fully transform lives. Love should never trump doctrine. Rather, we should show our love through the doctrines of Christ (Matthew 5:19, 15:9, John 15:10, 1 Corinthians 14:37, 1 Thessalonians 4:2, 1 John 2:3, 5:2, 3) There is no doctrine in the New Testament that is nonessential. The only area we have true liberty in are areas the New Testament are silent in teaching and in those we are to follow Godly principles. Two of these areas are expounded on in Romans 14, food and holy days. All the rest of the teaching of the New Testament we are to follow as commandments from the Lord. We are not given the option of choosing what we like and ignoring what we don’t. One simple, clear, (and easy) example is the teaching of Paul that Christian men should have short hair and women should have long (I Corinthians 11:14, 15). And yes, there are many biblical reasons for this. This is such an easy outward expression of obedience not unlike baptism although different in nature. I am afraid if we as a church cannot be obedient in easy doctrines such as this, how can we allow God to transform and purify His bride in the more meaty ones?

Let us press on seeking obedience in all things Christ. It is one thing to have liberty and be a babe in Christ. It is completely different thing to continue to live that way. We as a church have been chastised for this in the NT by Paul many times (1 Corinthians 3, Hebrews 5:13) for example. Let us not abuse growing in His grace and love as He seeks to shape us, living stones, in the image of Him (1 Peter 2). To do this, we must learn to give up our fleshly desires, allow him to shape our goals, distinguish between our perceived and real needs, and submit everything to Him according to His will.

We have a lot at our disposal to try to get it just right.