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

If you love me (part 1)


If ye love me, keep my commandments.

~ John 14:15


I have found this subject to be so deep, so comprehensive, and so serious that I have been questioning myself whether or not I should write about it.

So much more has come to mind since clicking and saving the first draft. When a scripture moves me as much as this one does, there is no other choice than to explore it.

It is quite possible that this brief but concise statement given by Jesus encapsulates the entire Bible message of God to His children.


Please forgive me if I fall short in my attempt to describe this powerful and important message. Here is the introduction and my understanding why this brief and often overlooked phrase needs much deeper consideration.

Below is one of the many passages that shows why John 14:15 is one of the most critical verses in the Bible. Jesus is telling the Jewish authorities and those willing to listen indirectly why.


Biblical Times


The authorities of Jesus’ day were priests, scribes, Pharisees, Sadducees, etc. Like our churches today, they did not agree on application of biblical content.

There are 613 commandments in the Old Testament divided into civil, ceremonial, and moral law. Some overlap but we are speaking generally here. The commandments were also divided into greater and lesser laws.

The authorities were generally in agreement with the divisions of the greater and lesser laws but were divided about what was most important. 

One Pharisee, conversant in the law maliciously attempted to ensnare Jesus in order to discredit Him. He asked:


Master,

which is the great commandment in the law?


Jesus said unto him,

Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart,

and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind.

This is the first and great commandment.

And the second is like unto it,

Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself.

On these two commandments

hang all the law and the prophets.

~ Matthew 22:36-40


Jesus did not answer the question by telling the crowd which one of the 613 laws was the most important. He answered by giving them two new commandments that encapsulate whole law and all the writings of the prophets.

This addition of two commandments as a clarification of the old laws are given to all who hear. This should speak volumes to us. Jesus was beginning to tell us how to live today. He was beginning to give us His new law the Law of Christ.

He basically told them, ‘the whole Bible is about what I am telling you right now’.  The Jews only had the Old Testament. Today, we have the whole the Bible. This truth of His law should be more clear than ever.

I am afraid that even with the benefits of technology and our ability to decipher scripture and how it all relates: Old Testament to New, in precise detail, we still are falling short.

We are without excuse if we choose to or remain ignorant of what Jesus meant by keeping His commandments. The apostles explained how the church is to function corporately, individually, what the law of Christ is.

Before anyone thinks that, “We are not under the law.” I realize this. I am trying to understand how Jesus, the prophets, and Apostles relate this. Please bare with me as I seek to understand His law and its whole application to our life.

The O.T. supports and provides invaluable details and historical structure to N.T. doctrine. This is why understanding John 14:15 is so important.

It not only speaks of the entire schema* of love as revealed in scripture but specifies what of Jesus’ commandments must be followed in order to demonstrate that love.


The Church Today


We have the same thing happening today that occurred back then. Bishops, pastors, and teachers feed us what they believe is relevant based upon theological frameworks and discredit those who disagree. 

Because of this, some Biblical truths or commands may be glossed over or completely disregarded by many sincere followers of Jesus (examples: Ephesians 4:8).

The Bible says that, All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: ~ 2 Timothy 3:16

So we cannot neglect one word. Our biblical goal is unity in love of Jesus and His truth, the entire truth.


Behold, how good and how pleasant it is

for brethren to dwell together in unity!

~ Psalm 133:1


We are not instructed to live in unity with the world but we are instructed to live in unity with the church. This is not an ecumenical bring all denominations together type of unity but a biblical loving our neighbor in Christ type of unity. (more on this later)


I therefore, the prisoner of the Lord,

beseech you that ye walk worthy

of the vocation wherewith ye are called,

with all lowliness and meekness,

with longsuffering,

forbearing one another in love;

endeavouring to keep

the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.

There is one body, and one Spirit,

even as ye are called in one hope of your calling;

~ Ephesians 4:1-4


The church is called to walk worthy of its calling through the biblical definition of love in 1 Corinthians 13. There is only only church or body of Christ. It consists of those who love Jesus and keep His commandments.

Unfortunately, I hear it or see daily the disregard of scriptural purity and truth from professing Christians. This was the same thing Jesus dealt with from the heart of a people not perfected in love.

I was guilty of for the longest time (28 years) and am just coming out of it. I passed over this and other passages not deemed valuable or important while looking after the things I was taught or argued with others about.

Jesus taught us that everything in the law and prophets was filtered through His words. Later this included all the Holy Spirit’s teaching through the Apostles.


Nothing is to by left unturned.

Nothing is to be ignored.

Nothing is to be disobeyed.


There are serious warnings when we do this and even greater dangers when we teach others to do the same (more on this later).


For I testify unto every man

that heareth the words of the prophecy of this book,

If any man shall add unto these things,

God shall add unto him the plagues

that are written in this book:

and if any man shall take away

from the words of the book of this prophecy,

God shall take away his part out of the book of life,

and out of the holy city,

and from the things which are written in this book.

~ Revelation 18-19


This is why it is so important to understand exactly what Jesus meant in John 14:15. Every time a pastor enters the pulpit, stage, etc. whether he knows it or not, this is the subject he is preaching about. 

This little phrase should be in the forefront of his mind when he speaks. It should be on his thoughts as he sleeps. He should arise, seeking its fulfillment.

A pastor should also ensure that every member or participant in his church clearly knows what the message means and that they are exhorted to follow his lead.


And he gave some, apostles;

and some, prophets; and some, evangelists;

and some, pastors and teachers;

for the perfecting of the saints,

for the work of the ministry,

for the edifying of the body of Christ:

till we all come in the unity of the faith,

and of the knowledge of the Son of God,

unto a perfect man, unto the measure

of the stature of the fulness of Christ:

~ Ephesians 4:11-13


We are to be built up unto a perfect man in the measure and stature of Christ. Once again unity in the church is stressed, not unity of a denomination, only unity of faith and knowledge of Christ

The goal of leadership in church is to bring the flock to faithful perfection in the knowledge of Christ. Our shepherds and sheep need to submit completely to the Spirit’s divine power in order to obey the calling of glory and virtue.

When we seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, God makes sure that everything else is taken care. We must be single-minded obedience lest the lusts of the world steal us away.


according as his divine power

hath given unto us all things

that pertain unto life and godliness,

through the knowledge of him

that hath called us to glory and virtue: 

whereby are given unto us

exceeding great and precious promises:

that by these ye might be partakers

of the divine nature,

having escaped the corruption

that is in the world through lust.

And beside this, giving all diligence,

add to your faith virtue; and to virtue knowledge; 

and to knowledge temperance;

and to temperance patience;

and to patience godliness;

 and to godliness brotherly kindness;

and to brotherly kindness charity. 

For if these things be in you, and abound,

they make you that ye shall neither be barren

nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.

2 Peter 1:3-7


Herein is our love made perfect,

that we may have boldness in the day of judgment:

because as he is, so are we in this world.

 1 John 4:17


We already learned that everything in the Bible substantiates Jesus’ words. One of those events happened in the wilderness over 3,600 years ago; soon after God delivered his people from the sinful oppression of Egypt (the significance of Egypt will be elaborated later).

Before they entered the promised land of Canaan, God gave them a most beautiful commandment that applies to us in the same measure today.


And these words,

which I command thee this day,

shall be in thine heart:

thou shalt teach them diligently unto thy children,

and shalt talk of them

when thou sittest in thine house,

and when thou walkest by the way,

and when thou liest down,

and when thou risest up.

And thou shalt bind them for a sign upon thine hand,

and they shall be as frontlets between thine eyes.

And thou shalt write them upon

the posts of thy house, and on thy gates.

~ Deuteronomy 6:6-9


This was the second writing of God’s commands to the Israelites and was written after 40 years of wandering aimlessly in the Sinai wilderness.

When the Israelites lost faith and rebelled after following the false reports of the 12 spies who entered Canaan, they were punished and perished in the wilderness.

Only the children under 20 plus faithful Joshua and Caleb (at the time of Kadesh rebellion) were allowed to enter the promised land. They were just east of the River Jordan when God gave them Deuteronomy 6:6-9.

Read the story in Numbers 13:30-14:39 if you like.


The Whole Story is for you and me


In the beginning was the Word,

and the Word was with God,

and the Word was God.

The same was in the beginning with God.

All things were made by him;

and without him was not any thing made

that was made. In him was life;

and the life was the light of men.

~ John 1:1-4


God is still giving us this message today. If we are to enter into the promised land, we too must have the Word of God, written in our hearts.

We should teach Him to our children and as we walk in the way. This is the message that must be preached and taught. The message that should be bored deep into our hearts.

Keeping the commandments of the Lord is a preservative against false teachings as we will see in the next post. His word should be a light to our feet and guide each step along His strait and narrow path.


Through thy precepts I get understanding:

therefore I hate every false way.

Thy word is a lamp unto my feet,

and a light unto my path.

I have sworn, and I will perform it,

that I will keep thy righteous judgments.

~ Psalm 119:104-106


During most of my years professing Christianity, I did not learn what it meant to love Jesus and keep His commandments. This was my fault. Mostly because I did not see the need to attend faithfully and chose churches that tolerated my sins.

I heard about Jesus’ love for us but the message was incomplete. I was not taught that we were to be holy as He was holy and that all our behaviors and thoughts were to be so. Now that Jesus has poured His love in my heart, this truth is becoming a reality.


There is so much material in the Bible covering this subject that a post of this nature can miss important details. I have caught myself missing the point in some of my posts.

Nevertheless, we are commanded by God not to teach others to break the least of Jesus’ commandments. So we must stay on track and correct any errors we may find.


Whosoever therefore shall break

one of these least commandments,

and shall teach men so,

he shall be called the least in the kingdom of heaven:

but whosoever shall do and teach them,

the same shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven.

~ Matthew 5:19


I don’t think a post considering the gradations from least to greatest commandments is necessary since we are called unto complete submission to the word of God. This can also lead to the false belief of being under the old law.

But because of the nature of this subject, it will be broken into parts. The first part here being the introduction.

I don’t claim to have a corner on the truth; only to seek Him with all my heart, mind, strength, and soul. Unfortunately, I have heard very little of what John 14:15 means.

Now its time to begin the learning process. So far, it has shown to be very complex and detailed. Breaking this subject into digestible pieces and putting has already shown to help focus my thoughts.

Hebrew and Greek, and Bible (college) study is not feasible right now. Since this subject is so strongly on my heart, this will be a personal study.

May its realization in my heart be true to God’s scriptural counsel. Please feel to correct or clarify any of deficits you may find.

In Christ

~ D


Lay up in your hearts God’s love and preserve it by careful keeping and watching after His holy commandments.

Thereby hoping in eternal, glorious fellowship with the Holy One of Israel.


Next, underlying Greek/Hebrew structure . . .


*Schema: The underlying organizational pattern and conceptual framework which God expresses through the Bible and in our experiences and interactions with Him and the world.

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.

To Live or Die?

That is the question


God is waiting patiently as we continue our tour and probation of life.

Some, or shall is say, most of us, (and I find myself also sometimes in this demise), willingly allow sin to reign in our hearts, mind, and actions.

We lie, cheat, get angry unjustly, murmur and complain, commit acts of coveting, fornication, and idolatry.

Most of all, we live in unbelief. Oh, do we sin in thought, word, and deed!


One future glorious day He will come, not unlike how He delivered the Israelites from Egypt, or Joshua entering the promised land of rest from wandering in the wilderness.

His final work of cleansing the world of sin will come by judgment and a fervent, purifying fire.


Those who have successfully entered into His rest (Hebrews 4:7-9) will be taken home and given eternal joy.

The rest of the inhabitants of the earth? What shall be their rest?

They will be cast down into the Lake of Fire prepared for Satan and his angels (Revelation 20:13-15).


Who will be found wallowing in the mire of sin wandering in the wilderness? Who will be be found striving, marching toward Canaan on that higher path where only those of a pure heart, free from the power and work of sin reside?


While God waits, He longs to redeem, to justify whosoever may believe. Then, He wants to sanctify them wholly so that they may cease from sin, and move onto maturity in Christ.

Without this wonderous work of grace and growth in the Christian’s life, we are unable to teach others to do likewise, and thus fall into more sin and possible judgment. (Hebrews 5:12-14, 12:6-23).


Sanctification

Most churches today do not teach this biblical principle nor do they even know what it means. But it is there, undeniably, in scripture.

I am only learning this precept now after 20 years in and out of Calvary Chapels, living in sin and being taught that it was okay.

I no longer believe there will be any ‘Carnal Christians’ entering into that grand Holy of Holies, Heaven. Please, do not allow yourself to sit in a congregation that fosters the belief that we, can continue to sin in thought, word, and deed and be secure in our salvation.

That I believe is a recipe for sorrow, grief, and eternal suffering (Matthew 7:21-23). Working iniquity (living in sin) is not a practice that should be mentioned about Christians.

Nevertheless, scripture commands us to be sanctified and move on toward maturity, conformed to the image of Christ

(Romans 6: 5-14, 8:28-29).


I am pleading to you reader, if you have not been sanctified, or know what it means, God is waiting for you.

He is watching for you to soften your heart and come to Him. That He may cleanse you from your sinful nature.

As believers, we have imputed righteousness. Then we are called to grow onto holiness (2 Corinthians 7:1). Only when our heart is made pure does this happen.

Will you come to Him? Will you give Him every thought, will, desire, and possession?

Put them all on the alter, give them to Him, and wait on The Lord. He will do what He promised.

He will purify your heart and sanctify your soul.

Some of you know deep inside your heart it calls out for cleansing, for purification

(Matthew 19:16-30).


Here are many scriptures that paint a clearer picture about sanctification and how Christians should live.


The river Jordan is before you. Will you cross over into the promised land or will you stay behind wandering in unbelief (Hebrews 4:6) and carnality (Romans 8:6)?


Scripture is clear, we need holiness and unfeigned love of the brethren as Christians.

“Follow peace with all men, and holiness, without which no man shall see the Lord” (Hebrews 12:14).

Strive diligently to enter into His rest (Hebrews 4:3-5). God does not want you to wander in the wilderness, He wants to bring rest your weary, sin stained soul.

He wants us to grow and mature, moving on from the milk of the gospel of salvation from sin to being completely sanctified, and then onto Christian maturity.

The only thing stopping us is unbelief. It causes staggering (Romans 4:2-29), it causes us to fall (Hebrews 4:11), to lose our salvation (Romans 11:20-24, an evil heart (Hebrews 3:12).

Unbelief in God’s ability to complete His work in our heart is an evil thing.

We are to be pure in heart (Matthew 5:8), to keep our thoughts, words, and deeds clean (Psalms 24:4), to truly love others (1 Timothy 1:5), to avoid lust (2 Timothy 2:22).

A pure heart draws us close to god (Hebrews 10:22) and we cannot do it ourselves (Proverbs 20:9). We must rely and allow God’s grace to finish what He began moving us toward perfection (Ephesians 4:10-13).

This includes assembling ourselves together with like-minded Christians.


This is a succinct example of the fruits of sanctification:

“Seeing ye have purified your souls in obeying the truth

through the Spirit unto unfeigned love of the brethren,

see that ye love one another with a pure heart fervently:

Being born again, not of corruptible seed,

but of incorruptible, by the word of God,

which liveth and abideth for ever.

For all flesh is as grass,

and all the glory of man as the flower of grass.

The grass withereth, and the flower thereof falleth away:

But the word of the Lord endureth for ever.

And this is the word which by the gospel is preached unto you”

(1 Peter 1:22-25).


Life is too short to be playing around with sin and unbelief as a Christian. Find the assurance of salvation that a pure heart brings (Mark 10:15) by faith (Hebrews 11:1) and not one that allows sin and the evils of unbelief (1 Corinthians 6:19-20).

We desperately need the love of God being shed abroad in their hearts by the work of the Holy Ghost. He has the power to obliterate hypocrisy and sin in our heart once and for all!


For further reading on this subject, one paper comes to mind: Holiness in the Book of Hebrews by R. E. Carroll.

May God Bless and purify your soul

~ D

Working out our Salvation

I hear much talk of different isms: Calvinism, Arminianism, Methodism, Catholicism, Baptist(ism), New Evangelicalism, etc. Where does it all comes from? Our carnality. Even so, most “isms” of our day have strayed far from what Paul and Appollos was preaching. Sure there is much truth in some and less in others but; even in our current divisions, there are divers errors that divide us within our errors.


While we work out our salvation with fear and trembling (Philippians 2:11-13), we should consider the verse below. If this applies, there is yet much work to be done on a personal level. No one can work out their salvation on a corporate level, so it doesn’t really matter what your church organization believes. It can’t save you. Only the word of God living and working in you can do that.


“For ye are yet carnal: for whereas there is among you envying, and strife, and divisions, are ye not carnal, and walk as men? For while one saith, I am of Paul; and another, I am of Apollos; are ye not carnal? Who then is Paul, and who is Apollos, but ministers by whom ye believed, even as the Lord gave to every man?” (1 Corinthians 3:3-5).


If we are not working out our salvation with fear and trembling, I plead with you reader, please go back to the Bible and see what was missed . . . because something was.


“Trembling for fear lest you miscarry and come short. Be careful to do every thing in religion in the best manner, and fear lest under all your advantages you should so much as seem to come short . . . Let us labour therefore to enter into that rest, lest any man fall after the same example of unbelief” (Hebrews 4:1,11).


Here is an excerpt from Matthew Henry Commentary that explains this concept further.

I. He exhorts them to diligence and seriousness in the Christian course: Work out your own salvation. It is the salvation of our souls (1 Pet. 1:9), and our eternal salvation (Heb. 5:9), and contains deliverance from all the evils sin had brought upon us and exposed us to, and the possession of all good and whatsoever is necessary to our complete and final happiness. Observe, It concerns us above all things to secure the welfare of our souls: whatever becomes of other things, let us take care of our best interests. It is our own salvation, the salvation of our own souls. It is not for us to judge other people; we have enough to do to look to ourselves; and, though we must promote the common salvation (Jude 1:3) as much as we can, yet we must upon no account neglect our own. We are required to work out our salvation, katergazesthe. The word signifies working thoroughly at a thing, and taking true pains. Observe, We must be diligent in the use of all the means which conduce to our salvation. We must not only work at our salvation, by doing something now and then about it; but we must work out our salvation, by doing all that is to be done, and persevering therein to the end. Salvation is the great thing we should mind, and set our hearts upon; and we cannot attain salvation without the utmost care and diligence. He adds, With fear and trembling, that is, with great care and circumspection: “Trembling for fear lest you miscarry and come short. Be careful to do every thing in religion in the best manner, and fear lest under all your advantages you should so much as seem to come short,” Heb. 4:1. Fear is a great guard and preservative from evil.


Are you working out your salvation with fear and trembling? Or are you already confident? Think about that for a moment. Don’t seek guidance from others (or me for that matter) who will reinforce your confidence or current belief system. Who knows how much ism has already crept in. Rather, seek to understand the whole council of God unencumbered by preconceived bias. I am trying hard to do this and some of what I am coming up with is not popular even among my Christian brethren.

Jesus, John the Baptist, and the Apostles spoke a great deal about why people should have fear and trembling, namely Hell. In the New Testament, the realities of Hell was primarily spoken to the religious, followers of Christ, believers, and those who perceived they were following after God. Hell was not spoken much to unbelievers. That reality in and of itself should cause us to ponder.


The Biblical concept of working out our salvation by implicit definition means; it is not yet complete.

An Invitation to Abide

“I am the true vine, and My Father is the vinedresser. Every branch in Me that does not bear fruit, He takes away; and every branch that bears fruit, He prunes it, that it may bear more fruit. You are already clean because of the word which I have spoken to you. Abide in Me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, unless it abides in the vine, so neither can you, unless you abide in Me. I am the vine, you are the branches; he who abides in Me, and I in him, he bears much fruit; for apart from Me you can do nothing. If anyone does not abide in Me, he is thrown away as a branch, and dries up; and they gather them, and cast them into the fire, and they are burned. If you abide in Me, and My words abide in you, ask whatever you wish, and it shall be done for you. By this is My Father glorified, that you bear much fruit, and so prove to be My disciples (John 15:1-8).


In this passage Jesus is talking to those who have made themselves clean by believing in Him. This audience had become washed by the words of Jesus. Now, He exhorts them to abide (to continue, to endure) in him and bear fruit in order to prove they are His disciples.


Abide means to signify to endure, to adhere to, maintain defend, or stand to, as to abide by a promise, or by a friend; or to suffer the consequences, as to abide by the event, that is, to be fixed or permanent in a particular condition.

When we no longer abide, we leave the place or position we once held. According to Jesus, this is a reality that happens to some of His followers that at one point were washed by His word but did not abide or endure to the end. We see this truth repeated here, here, here, here, and here.


Jesus’ words above are a fulfillment of John the Baptist’ exhortation, “and saying, The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand: repent ye, and believe the gospel.” (Mark 1:15)

To repent means so much more than we sometimes realize. Repentance is an abandoning of our ways, the natural inclinations of our sinful nature; turning away from everything that is not reflecting God’s truth: For most of us this means we have to rip away many things that have become a part of us. Our world before repentance is a wilderness, a beautiful deception. It is void of any sustaining satisfaction and ultimately leads to eternal destruction in the Lake of Fire with the Devil, beast, and the false prophet shall be tormented day and night for ever and ever. Repentance helps us to realize that we are in a wilderness. Repentance causes us to change our heart, to a change in our actions, and to become disciples of Jesus.

When we truly repent, we stop doing that is displeasing to God and start doing what is pleasing to God.


Repentance cannot be separated from abiding in Jesus. If we are repentant of our sins, we are abiding in Him, and He in us. If we are not, He is not.


Telling someone that God loves them and has a wonderful plan for their life without telling them what they need to consider is doing them a great disservice. The reality of discipleship, genuine repentance, and turning away from their sins are all necessary components of saving faith. Without this, knowledge abiding and obedient faith as well as works worthy of repentance may not define their life, which are characteristic of Christ’s disciples.


When we share only the positive or the “appealing” side of the gospel, this is no small error we are committing. In doing this, we are building a house made out of wood, hay, and stubble. It may burn. God forbid, we see some souls who thought they were Christians perish in the Lake of Fire while we enter heaven singed by the smoke of their sulfur because they did not realize the cost of serving Christ. Our foundation as well as those we witness to should be built upon Christ and adorned with gold, silver, and precious stones that will not burn at the final judgment.


Abide in Him, especially when carrying out the great commission of making disciples.

 

There is one thing unconditional about our Salvation, that is: It is conditional.

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 iniquity. Therefore whosoever heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them, I will liken him unto a wise man, which built his house upon a rock: (Matthew 7:21-24)

And ye shall be hated of all men for my name’s sake: but he that endureth to the end shall be saved.” (Matthew 10:22)


And he answered and said unto them, My mother and my brethren are these which hear the word of God, and do it. (Luke 8:21)


Marvel not at this: for the hour is coming, in the which all that are in the graves shall hear his voice, and shall come forth; they that have done good, unto the resurrection of life; and they that have done evil, unto the resurrection of damnation (John 5:29)

 My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me: and I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand” (John 10:27-28) To pluck (harpazo) means a power other than our own here and here. It does not refer to our sin or willingness to walk away. That is under our power.


Or despisest thou the riches of his goodness and forbearance and longsuffering; not knowing that the goodness of God leadeth thee to repentance? but after thy hardness and impenitent heart treasurest up unto thyself wrath against the day of wrath and revelation of the righteous judgment of God; who will render to every man according to his deeds: to them who by patient continuance in well doing seek for glory and honour and immortality, eternal life: but unto them that are contentious, and do not obey the truth, but obey unrighteousness, indignation and wrath, tribulation and anguish, upon every soul of man that doeth evil, of the Jew first, and also of the Gentile; but glory, honour, and peace, to every man that worketh good, to the Jew first, and also to the Gentile: for there is no respect of persons with God.” (Romans 2:4-11)

Therefore, brethren, we are debtors, not to the flesh, to live after the fleshFor if ye live after the flesh, ye shall die: but if ye through the Spirit do mortify the deeds of the body, ye shall liveFor as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God.” (Rom 8:12-14)


Moreover, brethren, I declare unto you the gospel which I preached unto you, which also ye have received, and wherein ye stand; by which also ye are saved, if ye keep in memory what I preached unto you, unless ye have believed in vain.” (1 Cor 15:1-2)

Stand fast therefore in the liberty wherewith Christ hath made us free, and be not entangled again with the yoke of bondage.” (Galatians 5:1) “For in Jesus Christ neither circumcision availeth any thing, nor uncircumcision; but faith which worketh by loveYe did run well; who did hinder you that ye should not obey the truth?” (5:6-7)


Take heed, brethren, lest there be in any of you an evil heart of unbelief, in departing from the living God. But exhort one another daily, while it is called To day; lest any of you be hardened through the deceitfulness of sinFor we are made partakers of Christ, if we hold the beginning of our confidence stedfast unto the endwhile it is said, To day if ye will hear his voice, harden not your hearts, as in the provocation.” (Heb 3:12-15)

(This one is about Jesus), “though he were a Son, yet learned he obedience by the things which he suffered; and being made perfect, he became the author of eternal salvation unto all them that obey him; called of God an high priest after the order of Melchisedec.” (Hebrews 5:8-10)


Whosoever denieth the Son, the same hath not the Father: [but] he that acknowledgeth the Son hath the Father also. Let that therefore abide in you, which ye have heard from the beginning. If that which ye have heard from the beginning shall remain in you, ye also shall continue in the Son, and in the Father. And this is the promise that he hath promised us, even eternal life.”  (1 John 2:23-25)

And now, little children, abide in him; that, when he shall appear, we may have confidence, and not be ashamed before him at his coming. If ye know that he is righteous, ye know that every one that doeth righteousness is born of him.” (1 John 2:28-29)


Fear none of those things which thou shalt suffer: behold, the devil shall cast some of you into prison, that ye may be tried; and ye shall have tribulation ten days: be thou faithful unto death, and I will give thee a crown of life. He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches; He that overcometh shall not be hurt of the second death. (Revelation 2:10-11)

And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb, and by the word of their testimony; and they loved not their lives unto the death. (Revelation 12:11)

Those that overcame often had to suffer pain and torturous death. Surely we can abstain from sin and obey God’s commandments as revealed by Jesus and His apostles. We have not even come close to what they suffered. We live in wealth and prosperity while half of the world lives in abject poverty. Everyone in the church will one day be called to give a report of his or her life either into eternal judgment or God’s Kingdom. Many of those entering judgment will be professing Christians. Will you be ready? Will I? Will Christ find faith on Earth when He returns? I pray He does and I pray for you, reader.


Frankly, I am tired of the pigs.

The Prodigal Son

In Luke chapter 15, Jesus tells us a wonderful story. It speaks of God’s patience, His loving kindness, and willingness to allow us learn from our mistakes however bad they may be.

11 “And he said, A certain man had two sons:”

This sentence hints at how God will be revealing a distinction between two of His children.


12 “And the younger of them said to his father, Father, give me the portion of goods that falleth to me. And he divided unto them his living. 13 And not many days after the younger son gathered all together, and took his journey into a far country, and there wasted his substance with riotous living.”


We see one of the sons is younger, which is an indication of immaturity. He has been identified with the father since he was born, so he is not new child. Just like us, we are identified with God when we are born again. This story is about someone who is immature, not unlike immature Christians who are tossed by the passions of their sinful nature, which still holds power over them.

Immature Christians are distinguished from new Christians. Immature Christian are particularly susceptible to the dangers in this story. They have had time to grow, yet have lingered in their faith allowing Satan to get footholds in different areas of their Christian life. As a result, they have allowed stumbling blocks that hinder their maturity. Rather than growing closer to God their compromise places them at risk of growing cold and falling from grace.

New Christians on the other hand are usually on fire, and eager to learn to grow in Christ. Where they end up later in life is up to how they are obedient to Christ. This story is a warning for all that are not mature in Christ.

What defines an mature Christian? Our Heavenly Father has most generously given us grace to grow in Christ. A Christian that has grown through grace has learned how to subject his thoughts, his body, and his time to holy living serving the Lord and hoping in His return. This is what the younger son had not developed. Like most of us, he was mesmerized by his sinful nature and its attraction to the enticements of the world.


Additionally, the son who knew he had an inheritance and decided to take it all and live his life of liberty; or so he thought. Naturally, when we sin, we go to a place far away from our Father’s presence.

God has given us the gift of eternal life. The moment we believe we are His sons and daughters. We are added as royal family members with untold wealth. Dare we squander such a wonderful inheritance? No we shouldn’t but we can, and we can lose it all!

Prodigal means to squander or waste wealth by living and spending money luxuriously. We as Christians do this everyday. It can be reflected in our lifestyle, our choices, and our fruits. If the average American spent time reading the Bible instead of the TV, they could have read it over 22 times in one year, spread the gospel to countless others, served in love (praying, feeding, etc.) rather than wasting our time with worldly and carnal distractions.


He lived riotously and lost everything . . . his entire inheritance! Let that sink in for a moment, everything his father gave him, not only his wealth, his identity, his home, his citizenship. They were all gone! If he would have died there, he would be forever separated from his father even if he was once his child.


 14 “And when he had spent all, there arose a mighty famine in that land; and he began to be in want.”

When we leave our Father’s presence for the desires of the world we become spiritually poor and the world around us offers nothing in return. Nothing that lasts, nothing that satisfies, nothing but emptiness. If we choose to stay in that land, we will die starving and alone. It istarting to sound kinda like hell to me but through providence the emptiness in our soul, is a calling, a gracious preview of what is to come if we don’t repent and find our way back . . .


 15 “And he went and joined himself to a citizen of that country; and he sent him into his fields to feed swine.”16 “And he would fain have filled his belly with the husks that the swine did eat: and no man gave unto him.”

The son abandoned his Father and became a citizen of another country. We are always a servant to someone, either this world unto sin and death or God, unto peace and life. There is no replacement for God. Not only that, but to the Jew; swine are unclean creatures (symbolic of sin). The boy had to feed and care for (the fruits of his sin). Not only had sin become a stumbling block, he now served it. There is one redeeming factor in sin; it shows us of our emptiness and utter need for God’s glorious redemption.


17 “And when he came to himself, he said, How many hired servants of my father’s have bread enough and to spare, and I perish with hunger! 18 I will arise and go to my father, and will say unto him, Father, I have sinned against heaven, and before thee, 19 And am no more worthy to be called thy son: make me as one of thy hired servants.”

The hollow veil of sin showed the son his destitute nature. He knew his Father was good and hope was refreshed in him. God’s grace is so forgiving. He can make any sinner whole even one who once was a child of God that left his citizenship of heaven for the world. This is the beginning of repentance, salvation, and sanctification: knowing our state as a sinner and a servant of sin.


20 “And he arose, and came to his father. But when he was yet a great way off, his father saw him, and had compassion, and ran, and fell on his neck, and kissed him.”21 And the son said unto him, Father, I have sinned against heaven, and in thy sight, and am no more worthy to be called thy son.”

The son had to act. He had to ask his Father for forgiveness. What is amazing here is that God knows what we are going to do. Even as we ask for forgiveness, it is already done. Did you notice that the Father ran to him? God wants everyone to be saved (we were all once a part of His family in the garden). God does not just wait for us, he helps us along as we come stumbling, starving, and naked. Oh, how we as prodigal neglect so great a salvation that the second Adam has suffered and died for.


 22 “But the father said to his servants, Bring forth the best robe, and put it on him; and put a ring on his hand, and shoes on his feet:” 23 “And bring hither the fatted calf, and kill it; and let us eat, and be merry: 24 For this my son was dead, and is alive again; he was lost, and is found. And they began to be merry.”

There is great rejoicing when a child of God who lost his inheritance returns! We can be restored. Like David, after committing adultery and murder, he repented and the joy of his salvation was restored.


 25 “Now his elder son was in the field: and as he came and drew nigh to the house, he heard musick and dancing. 26 And he called one of the servants, and asked what these things meant. 27 And he said unto him, Thy brother is come; and thy father hath killed the fatted calf, because he hath received him safe and sound.”

Those that remain faithful here on Earth can sometimes be troubled when they see those who live riotously seemingly getting away with their sins. Be not deceived, we all get what is due to us. God rewards and judges us according to our works. This is not the same as salvation, which we cannot earn. Works are a result, a condition of saving faith, and is nonetheless critically important as a child of God.


 28 And he was angry, and would not go in: therefore came his father out, and intreated him. 29 And he answering said to his father, Lo, these many years do I serve thee, neither transgressed I at any time thy commandment: and yet thou never gavest me a kid, that I might make merry with my friends: 30 But as soon as this thy son was come, which hath devoured thy living with harlots, thou hast killed for him the fatted calf.”

The faithful child who does not stray from their salvation may not realize their reward yet. They do things in secret for God, not getting the adoration of man, or immediate gratification. This can try our souls. Grace is suppose to teach us patience and understanding. We all have some maturing to do. That is why we are constantly told to endure, hold fast, and run the race as an athlete trains.


 31 “And he said unto him, Son, thou art ever with me, and all that I have is thine.”

As faithful servants, God wants to give all He has to us. He even wants to serve us, forever! Oh, to realize the glory awaiting our weary souls. We will be changed. God is going to give us a new estate, just wait. Nothing in this world even compares.


 32 “It was meet that we should make merry, and be glad: for this thy brother was dead, and is alive again; and was lost, and is found.”

God and the angels in Heaven are right to rejoice for it is a miracle when someone who was dead becomes alive. God rejoices especially in this parable because one of his children had become lost and was found. If this child would have died in the foreign country, he would have been lost forever and buried by the swine he fed. There are many examples and warnings against losing what God has given us by forgetting the truth and turning back to sin.

Be not deceived: We need to rightly divide the word of God . . . and live it.

To think that you can live in sin and still be a child of God is a deception from the Devil that began in Genesis. It continues in churches today and is spread by evangelists in huge stadiums all over the world. This other gospel is like a train, nearly impossible to stop and in its wake, demons are dragging souls to Hell. Flee this path, cease from sin, avoid every appearance of evil and walk humbly and in holiness to your Father’s house. This life requires dedication and ceaseless commitment. Fear not, He will dress you, feed you, and keep you if you walk in Him.


I once road on this train and lived in a land far away from my God.

Frankly, I am tired of the pigs.

 

How did we get so far away from New Testament church practice?

“Examine yourselves, whether ye be in the faith; prove your own selves. Know ye not your own selves, how that Jesus Christ is in you, except ye be reprobates?” 2 Corinthians 13:5


With verses like this I am at a miss how so much of Christianity can believe in a doctrine that teaches that if we say a prayer to accept Jesus into our hearts we are secure in our salvation. If we choose to continue in sin its okay, because once we said that prayer, we are saved.



Old Testament:

The wicked, through the pride of his countenance, will not seek after God: God is not in all his thoughts. (Psa 10:4)

Wherefore doth the wicked contemn God? he hath said in his heart, Thou wilt not require it. (Psa 10:13)

The Lord trieth the righteous: but the wicked and him that loveth violence his soul hateth. (Psa 11:5)

Upon the wicked he shall rain snares, fire and brimstone, and an horrible tempest: this shall be the portion of their cup. For the righteous Lord loveth righteousness; his countenance doth behold the upright. (Psa 11:6-7)

New Testament (poneros)

So shall it be at the end of the world: the angels shall come forth, and sever the wicked from among the just, 50 and shall cast them into the furnace of fire: there shall be wailing and gnashing of teeth.,” (Mat 13:49-50)

Then his lord, after that he had called him, said unto him, O thou wicked servant, I forgave thee all that debt, because thou desiredst me: (Mat 18:32)

His lord answered and said unto him, Thou wicked and slothful servant, thou knewest that I reap where I sowed not, and gather where I have not strawed: (Mat 25:26)

And he saith unto him, Out of thine own mouth will I judge thee, thou wicked servant. Thou knewest that I was an austere man, taking up that I laid not down, and reaping that I did not sow: (Luke 19:22)

And that we may be delivered from unreasonable and wicked men: for all men have not faith. (2 Thess 3:2)

If there come any unto you, and bring not this doctrine, receive him not into your house, neither bid him God speed: for he that biddeth him God speed is partaker of his evil [poneros] deeds. (2 John 10-11)

(There is much to be learned from these verses about wickedness that has permeated Christianity that deserves further study.)


Paul also calls the church to “deliver such an one unto Satan for the destruction of the flesh, that the spirit may be saved in the day of the Lord Jesus.”

I was taught that this meant the man will physically die and still go to heaven. Can Christians practice sins worse than non-Christians and still go to heaven? [“and such fornication as is not so much as named among the Gentiles“]

That is what I use to think until I Iearned that this man is mentioned elsewhere in Corinthians and it appears that he was restored to the church. Flesh in verse 5 can mean the human body but the Greek word also means sinful nature. I am inclined to believe that Paul meant the man’s sinful nature was put to death since his spirit appears to be saved as he was restored later in 2 Cor 2:5-8,

But if any have caused grief, he hath not grieved me, but in part: that I may not overcharge you all. Sufficient to such a man is this punishment, which was inflicted of many. So that contrariwise ye ought rather to forgive him, and comfort him, lest perhaps such a one should be swallowed up with overmuch sorrow. Wherefore I beseech you that ye would confirm your love toward him.

If this was not the man in 1 Corinthians 5:1, the principle would still stand in light of the context and the New Testament church practice of reflecting God’s holiness and longsuffering in love.

Paul also mentions him in 2 Corinthians 7:12 – “So even though I wrote to you, it was not on account of the one who did the wrong or of the injured party, but rather that before God you could see for yourselves how devoted to us you are.”

Paul also warned against sinning Christians here, “I warn you, as I did before, that those who live like this will not inherit the kingdom of God.” (Gal 5:19-21) and here: But among you there must not be even a hint of sexual immorality, or of any kind of impurity, or of greed, because these are improper for God’s holy people. Nor should there be obscenity, foolish talk or coarse joking, which are out of place, but rather thanksgiving. (Eph 5:3,4)


Our church is already in deep trouble and not in the early stages of falling away. We hardly practice Christianity according to the Bible. There is not one church that I am aware that will purge members for sexual immorality, coveting, idolatry, railing, drug or alcohol abuse, or covetous, or an idolater, or railer, or a drunkard, or an extortioner, and then forgive and comfort one with open arms when he repents of his sins and comes back to live for God, like in 2 Cor 2:7-8. Usually we go on unaware of such sinful behavior because of our apostasy. We are so watered down in doctrine that sin has become rampant in most of our churches today with pastors even practicing these sins. Satan no longer has a foothold in the churches, he has control over many of them.


This concept of becoming spiritually dead after becoming saved is no different than the story of the Prodigal son . . .  for this my son was dead, and is alive again; he was lost, and is found. (Luke 15:24), And they began to be merry. You see here the father began to be merry and celebrate only when his son was found or alive again. The father does not celebrate or take pleasure in a son who is dead and lost. He is not part of his household only those children who are faithful like his other son.


 

Nor is it any different than what Jesus said about Christians that do not have a firm foundation in Luke 8:13, “They on the rock are they, which, when they hear, receive the word with joy; and these have no root, which for a while believe, and in time of temptation fall away.

The good news is we can get right with God if we fall away but we must be willing to live in repentance, abide in the truth, and then nothing will be able to keep us from the love of God. Because sin will not only keep you from church, it can separate you from God.


Brothers and Sisters,

“Everyone who confesses the name of the Lord must turn away from wickedness.” (2 Tim 2:19)

There are eternal consequences for those who don’t.

In love,

Donald Kjellberg

This is not a works salvation. This is the gospel.

Romans 9:14, “Even so hath the Lord ordained that they which preach the gospel should live of the gospel.” This refers to living off the fruits of your ministry. But it means much more. Living the gospel also means that “you practice what you preach.” How I love the depth of God’s word!


Below, Paul describes some things we should consider while pruning our trees with the fruits of the gospel lest we bear bad fruit and God cuts us out from the root as noted in, Romans 11:18-22.

But if thou boast, thou bearest not the root, but the root thee. Thou wilt say then, The branches were broken off, that I might be graffed in. 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. 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.


Below Paul shows us how he is living the gospel and exhorts us to do the same.

“For though I be free from all men, yet have I made myself servant unto all, that I might gain the more . . .  I therefore so run, not as uncertainly; so fight I, not as one that beateth the air: but I keep under my body, and bring it into subjection: lest that by any means, when I have preached to others, I myself should be a castaway.” I Corinthians 9:19, 27

“Examine yourselves, whether ye be in the faith; prove your own selves. Know ye not your own selves, how that Jesus Christ is in you, except ye be reprobates? Finally, brethren, farewell . . . Be perfect, be of good comfort, be of one mind, live in peace; and the God of love and peace shall be with you.” 2 Corinthians 13:5, 11


This is not a works salvation, this is the gospel. Preaching Christ crucified and living all that the New Testament teaches IS the good news. Is it not good news that you can be saved? Is it not good news that you can be free from the bondage of sin? Iis it not good news that God can transform you heart and desires? Is it not good news that through the power of the Spirit of Truth you can do the work of God?

The gospel is the revelation of Jesus Christ. The fruits that come from the Tree of Life come from no other source. God can bring peace and strengthen your heart and mind every day as you submit to His will. This is the fullness of the gospel.


Jesus said, “And because iniquity shall abound, the love of many shall wax cold. But he that shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved. And this gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations; and then shall the end come.” Matthew 13:12-14


Guard your heart from the iniquity in this world and pray God transforms you to His heart’s desire, pure and undefiled. Did you know that you are a living epistle of the gospel? God forbid we show the world how to live by presenting a carnal nature and the ungodly lusts it produces instead of this.

Lastly,

“Ye are our epistle written in our hearts, known and read of all men: forasmuch as ye are manifestly declared to be the epistle of Christ ministered by us, written not with ink, but with the Spirit of the living God; not in tables of stone, but in fleshy tables of the heart. And such trust have we through Christ to God-ward:” 2 Corinthians 3:2-4


So preach the gospel of Christ crucified, more importantly, live it out in your own life.