The Paradox and Absurdities of Carbon-Fretting and Rewilding

Herschel Smith · 28 Jan 2024 · 4 Comments

The Bureau of Land Management is planning a truly boneheaded move, angering some conservationists over the affects to herd populations and migration routes.  From Field & Stream. The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) recently released a draft plan outlining potential solar energy development in the West. The proposal is an update of the BLM’s 2012 Western Solar Plan. It adds five new states—Idaho, Montana, Oregon, Washington, and Wyoming—to a list of 11 western states already earmarked…… [read more]

Lessons Learned

BY PGF
7 months, 2 weeks ago

One year ago.

Those known of God should be serious, cataloging what they’ve learned about how the spirit of antichrist moves among the Godless, affecting their minds and every action. Although that lab-created virus was unpleasant and killed like a tough flu strain, even most of those who knew the whole thing was bunk succumbed to the spirit of fear, in one form or another, through adapting to the new normal as evil attempted to impose its will. Make note of it all.

We tend to focus on the people who brought the new normal, but we, born again by the Spirit of God, know they are merely agents. You got to witness firsthand something westerners have not seen since perhaps the Middle Ages; God allowing a grave evil to sweep through the land. You should pray to the Almighty and consider what you’ve seen; moreover, consider your ways in light of what you now know.

Secularists will use the term mass psychosis, but what we saw was that spirit of fear by the devil as the blessings of God are being withdrawn. You witnessed the power of evil through men to affect whole masses to do their bidding. You should now know what it is and how to recognize it.

Sin, and evil thereby, are very real, tangible. These are not philosophical conceptualizations to be pondered in a mountaintop monastery, nor are they ancient lore to be dismissed as the superstitions of our ancestors. You’ve now witnessed it, don’t deny it again.

You, too, should thank God, for that was quite a treat. The enemy gave away battle plans, means, motives, personnel positions and movements, tools, and sources and methods. Yes, it’s a war, and you should understand it as such. The enemy revealed many battlefield tactics. It would be wise to understand what you saw over the last two years in the context of war. God is merciful even in His judgments.

The “supply chain disruptions” should have made you serious about doing things yourself, the local way, among the trusted, moving closer to self-sufficiency. Again, thank God for the warnings, repent and act upon your new knowledge of the enemy.

And it isn’t over. If we read our Bible correctly, the last two years were just a remote storm cloud on the horizon of what’s likely coming. The explosion in depravity is not a sign of God’s judgment; it is God’s judgment. The horrendous and even audaciously flagrant wickedness of governments is not a sign of the judicial determination of God; it’s the result.

Christians Soldiers must know the Word of God. Your life depends upon it, or you will be led astray. If you got taken up in fear or have submitted to evil the last two years, that’s a good thing. Praise the Lord for this also; it’s why God sends warnings to His people in the mercy of His grace by longsuffering. Don’t lament but repent and make ready.

You should know by now where you are supposed to be, with what group of people in common you are to serve God while seeking to make yourself both versed and experienced in hard skills and hands-on doing. Pray for God to raise up a just leader, but you train the next generation, teaching them to be just men and women, righteous in Christ, forsaking all evil. Virtuous women and skilled men will matter most. It’s a separate post perhaps but we’ll mention that men will fight for a civilization populated by virtuous women.

Contact with the enemy has arrived. Please, I beseech you by the blood of Jesus Christ to hear and heed the warnings. Fear not for these two reasons: God is in control, and you were born for this very moment. God is sovereign, all is ordained, and you are here now for a reason. Be the light of Christ to those around you. Shed truth with all those you know. Spread the hope of coming victory for those that are righteous. And train for the other side of the coming conflagration(s). Dear Christian Brothers and Sisters, welcome to the war; it’s a pleasure to serve with you, repent toward God and prepare for the next battle. Pray that you not be deceived again.

It’s a spiritual conflict waged in the heavens played out among nations and men. Seek ye the Lord.

“Evil men understand not judgment: but they that seek the LORD understand all things.” – Proverbs 28:5

If your church leadership tries to shutdown services again, they must be fired immediately. Period. And any other leaders in support should be run off with a cane against their back! Otherwise, you must find a suitable congregation, which you should have already done.

In Chapter 13 of John, our Lord begins discussing how He will depart without mentioning the specifics. This discourse spans John 14, 15, and into chapter 16, with several asides and one possible change of location. It’s instruction to His disciples before His soon passion, resurrection, and ascension.

The notable side points of instruction help illustrate to the disciples Christ’s purposes for this instruction: His departure and the coming of the Holy Spirit. These asides include the Vine and Branch parable (John 15:1-10), an explanation of the unity of the Father and the Son (John 14:10-11), and the indwelling of the Holy Spirit (John 14:16-17). This instruction to His men continues into chapter 16 with the specific functions of the Holy Spirit (John 16:8-11) as we witness for Christ with Him.

Reading this section attentively, one understands what it means to be “in Christ.” We see only partially what the day of restitution of all things will be. When this sinful flesh is entirely and finally put off, we shall fully join this holy communion without that static interference.

There’s more, but those are topics for another day.

Repeatedly, Christ mentions the coming of the Comforter in these chapters; why Jesus calls the Holy Spirit the Comforter is critical instruction. At the outset, plainly, the Holy Spirit is not for your comfort and ease, health and wealth, or to provide emotionally driven fits of excitement and unintelligible babbling. God may bless you, but those blessings serve His purposes; He does not serve you. The Comforter equips men for God’s specific purposes in support of service to glorify Him alone.

Read John 14:16-18, 26, 15:26-27, and 16:13 about the Comforter who is the Spirit of truth. The disciples are troubled by Christ’s leaving. Understandable, for the absence of God is darkness only. These are, generally, the purposes of the Holy Spirit as given here by Christ: to abide with us and in us, to teach and remind us of all things, to testify of Christ as we witness for Christ together with Him, remind us of all things, and guide us into all truth (anything untrue is not of God, but from the father of lies, John 8:44) and for showing things to come.

Read John 13:31 through John 16:16, paying particular attention to the complete sentences that include the cited verses about the Holy Spirit. It’s an extensive study; several key points will draw out the text to guide our understanding. But, we should view it as Christ delivered it, a single focused discussion with several supporting points of instruction that we must act upon. God is the ultimate instructor; the repetition with some variation is masterful indeed.

As a side note, if you won’t study your Bible, there’s nothing for the Holy Spirit to teach and remind you about. What if, and call me a radical, Christians actually did what the Bible says? These four duties in five short posts are the preparatory essential elements of the Christian faith in service of Christ.

This post is going somewhere, but context matters; instruction is fundamental. Christ spent three years teaching His men. Doing what Christ taught is where we fail today.

John 15:16 is the ordination of the disciples to bear fruit (also John 15:8). In verse 17, He immediately says to love one another; this is the first prominent point of this post. In verses 18 through 20, Christ tells them they will be hated and persecuted. Next, we arrive at the second main point: the Holy Spirit testifies of Christ, but not alone, as we also bear witness (John 15:26-27).

If you read the Bible carefully, you’ll note that when Christ speaks of bearing fruit, it’s in the context of establishing His Church by the spread of the Gospel. Notably, to love one another (John 15:17) is often a subtext of bearing fruit. So, bearing fruit is to love the brethren and make more brethren; this conforms precisely with our interim commission (Matthew 28:18-20) to serve in anticipation of His return.

In John 15:26-27, Christ is driving at the purpose of ordaining the disciples and the coming of the Holy Spirit. We must care for one another and make ourselves better Christian soldiers (Hebrews 10:24) because we need each other, not for nothing, but because we are to evangelize the whole world, converting the nations; this will draw persecution. Jesus, in foresight sublime, tells us to stick together and provides the Comforter to witness for Christ through us, even as we also serve and testify about Christ’s Gospel and the mercy God has shown us to all the nations.

Continuing into chapter 16, in verse 1, Christ, citing the things spoken so far, advises them not to be offended by the world rejecting them. How many Christians receive the offense of the world and modify their behavior to fit into the world? This is a major problem in the American church. There’s no way to pretty this up by slapping lipstick on it; it’s disobedience to God and Christ to please men above serving in the love and knowledge of the God who saved you; it’s sin.

For what else is disobedience to Christ by refusing His commandments (John 14:15)? Christ is the Lord our Righteousness, and we are to be priests and kings, but only by submission to His word; otherwise, the kings of this world rule us and look what fruit that’s wrought.

Then, in John 16, verses 2 and 3, he conveys to the disciples specifics about the persecution they would suffer (verse 2) and why (Verse 3). There’s also an important point here. Many claim the Father but not the Son, even today. God goes so far as to call those who deny the Father and the Son an antichrist (John 15:23, 16:3, 1 John 2:22). Reaching these folks with the truth of the Gospel of Jesus Christ should be a priority, for they acknowledge there’s a God without which faith can never come.

Finally, arriving at the point here. The churches failed and accepted the shutdowns because they were not doing as Christ commands. In doing what Jesus says, pressing into the brethren in love and fellowship, and seeking the lost regardless of the hurt that may come, the Comforter is with you. We are to build His Church. Not doing as Christ commands allows a spirit of fear, which is not of God (2 Timothy 1:7), to enter among the brethren and even to cause antichristian behavior.

How often have you heard church teaching about the disciples fleeing (Mark 14:50) with only John and the women at the cross, yet the American church withdrew at the mere whiff of persecution? The whole point of Christianity is to convert the Nations, making them Christian. In America, the churches utterly failed the first test, and it’s not over; more trouble is brewing, even now.

It’s unnatural to forsake your own safety, but serving Christ is as normal as can be because you love Him and keep His commandments, regardless of the consequences. Genuine Christian fellowship and support, coupled with the indwelling Comforter in service of our great King, is how you will not falter again. Peace is not an outward state of men; with God, it’s inward. Peace is in Christ Jesus by the indwelling Holy Spirit. Together, read John 14:10-11, and 14:16-17, and John 15:1-10. Here, we have a clear picture of the operation of God in us and through us for the purpose of bearing much fruit. Without Christ, ye can do nothing (John 15:5).

It seems that Christ has so few true friends (John 15:14). The people in American churches don’t genuinely believe in God. At least not how Christ described and the apostles carried it into the world. The people of God are fractured into single units, but according to Christ, it ought not to be this way. Upon being ordered to cease gathering, your church should have rallied around each other, rejected the kings of this world, and served in the hope of a better home with Him.

In American churches, the folks see each other occasionally; they’re not bonded in the unity of service if they benefit Christ at all. The American church looks like any other organization of common interest instead of an army organized for battle to wield the word. Most of church life is centered on the worldly pursuits of men instead of training men to take Christ’s domains. For these reasons, the church is generally failing, and particularly under the recent persecution. The Church in Europe, if it exists at all, is useless.

Americans must stop intellectualizing the Bible and instead put the instruction into action. Imagine if the apostles, after the ascension (Acts 1:8-9), had said, Well, that was an interesting three years; guess I’ll merely personalize it, internalize it, intellectualize it, and go back to my life and do nothing for God. You know what? One of them did, but Christ came and got him (John 21). How often has Jesus tried to tell you to follow Him in service?

The Church of Jesus Christ should have grown during the shutdowns; that’s what persecution does to Christ’s body: makes it more robust and extensive (Acts, entire book). Until His return, there will be tribulation; even as the Kingdom of God has its historical setbacks, it will continue to grow, but the kings of this world will not go quietly.

Complete peace on earth is a distant dream. The Kingdom of God is designed for spiritual warfare. And by the Comforter coupled with mutual support in fellowship and love with the brethren is the peace of God to attack the darkness, even to assault the very gates of hell (Matthew 16:18) with the truth of the Gospel. In Christ, we overcome the world and the devil; without Him, we fall. Fear not; keep His commandments and be of good cheer; Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.

“These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.” – John 16:33

“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

A Brief Case Study in Discipleship

BY PGF
9 months, 3 weeks ago

“24 And a certain Jew named Apollos, born at Alexandria, an eloquent man, and mighty in the scriptures, came to Ephesus. 25 This man was instructed in the way of the Lord; and being fervent in the spirit, he spake and taught diligently the things of the Lord, knowing only the baptism of John. 26 And he began to speak boldly in the synagogue: whom when Aquila and Priscilla had heard, they took him unto them, and expounded unto him the way of God more perfectly. 27 And when he was disposed to pass into Achaia, the brethren wrote, exhorting the disciples to receive him: who, when he was come, helped them much which had believed through grace: 28 For he mightily convinced the Jews, and that publickly, shewing by the scriptures that Jesus was Christ.” – Acts 18:24-28

This section of Acts is a tightly-knit example of discipleship to us today. View it in this context and not merely as a historical aside.

Introduction.

Not necessarily enjoying character studies from the Bible; nonetheless, we find several important markers in Apollos of a man willing to mature in his faith and serve Jesus Christ. Some folks suspect Apollos wrote the New Testament book of Hebrews. But in any case, he received instruction, verified what he was shown by searching the Scripture, grew thereby, and preached Jesus Christ whithersoever the Lord sent him. That, brethren, is Christianity in a nutshell, as God would lead and have us serve; yield yourself unto God as one who has been made alive from the dead, making yourself an instrument of Christ.

Many are willing to be taught but never verify, with God, the integrity of the instruction. That’s how they end up in Christian-sounding cults. Many are eager to be instructed and do absolutely nothing with what they’ve been taught except enjoy a good feeling. They also err. Worst of all, some folks claim to know all they need, rejecting a love for God’s holy word when they should take it upon their honor to become a lifelong student of the sacred writ.

These few verses from Acts teach us exactly how to grow and serve. You might object, saying that you’re not called to preach, but we are all witnesses for Jesus Christ (Mark 16:15), and how shall you answer the man seeking God except you know His holy word to expound the truth to them more perfectly, as Aquila and his wife did with Apollos? Your faithful service may be the spark by which Holy God raises another Spurgeon, Whitefield, or Edwards! Look at what mighty work Aquila and Priscilla did by spreading the truth of Jesus Christ.

Points of instruction.

First, learn by personal study and seeking sound preaching for the purposes of growing in the faith. Growth is sometimes uncomfortable; get over it; God desires your service, having saved you to walk in the works He has foreordained for you to accomplish, and the kingdom needs you, for what kingdom can flourish with ignorant and slack citizens?

Second, verify in Scripture the accuracy of all teaching, taking no man’s word it, but praying for understanding from holy God alone, searching the Scriptures for yourself. Apollos did, so should you search the Scriptures daily (Acts 17:11); are these things so? He took seriously the public responsibility of carrying the marker Christian with his name.

Thirdly, be a life-long learner of the word of God. Please don’t allow the understanding that you will never comprehend the entire Bible to discourage you. But apprehending the walk of faith rightly, you are blessed never to stop learning, growing, drawing nigh to the throne of God, bringing glory to Christ, and being sanctified for Father God’s great purposes, which we can only see half darkly now, but knowing all will soon be revealed. Apollos learned (Verse 25), and continued to be instructed (Verse 26).

If we knew all the answers, it wouldn’t be faith! It’s an honor to be born again; look at the gift you’ve received, and pray to the Giver that you will walk worthy of your calling in Christ.

Notes from the text.

In verse 24, we find that Apollos is a student of the word of God, mighty in the scriptures. Believing firmly in the providence of Holy God, it seems to us that Apollos was sent to Ephesus for this very reason; to meet and be further trained by Aquila and his wife. The Christian ought to see life as something other than random chance but readily accept the fortuitous meetings that the Lord appoints. And the Lord may also present a negative contact from which to learn. In all these, give thanks unto the Father because He loves you enough to continue enlightening you in the faith. Also, by the foreordination of God, for whatever practical reason Apollos may have perceived he was traveling, the Lord was already making him an evangelist by practice.

Doing what the Lord says is critical for the life of the believer to continue to walk in faith. The whole object of this life in Christ is to live by faith, from initial salvation to serving Him in love and truth, up to the end, in reliance on Him to take us into heaven. Your faith brings glory to the Father through Christ, our Saviour. And your failures prove His will; we often say the will of God is found in the Holy Bible. If you think you’ve heard from God, yet it doesn’t align with Scripture, then be cautious. For Apollos, he was a man of the book.

In verse 25, Apollos is shown as having been instructed yet willing to be further advised and also to teach. Though, being a student of the Old Testament and a disciple of John, he knew that Christ must come, but he lacked complete knowledge of the New Covenant. Sound encouragement for us on this point is found in the duty Apollos took upon himself, and Acts 17:11 also applies.

He had received some formal training, it appears, but as Mark Twain may have said, don’t let your schooling get in the way of your education. Apollos continued to pursue the truth of God’s word, adding more completely to what he had been taught.

Life for the believer is much different on this side of the cross for us, than for the Old Testament saints. We have the historical record of Christ’s death, burial, resurrection, and the gift of the Holy Spirit. And for Apollos, a firm foundation in the Old Testament; though he didn’t have the New Testament, it was being written upon his heart as he received the truth of Jesus Christ from the disciples and apostles. What more excellent advantage have we also to have the New Testament record, yet we do less with it?

We are supposed to share the Gospel with the lost and encourage the saints. Hide the word in your heart that you might not sin against God, but then share it with others that in so doing iron would sharpen iron among the brethren, and sow the seeds of faith by His word among lost souls for they must all hear of Christ our King.

In verse 26, we see again that Apollos is willing to be instructed further, and beyond doubt if he hadn’t heard, Aquila told him that one Jesus of Nazareth was the Christ (1 Corinthians 15:3-4), and the New Covenant had arrived. John 14:1 comes to mind.

These few verses are as much about Aquila and Priscilla as Apollos. They found a man of good faith and taught him in the way of a disciple of Jesus Christ. They did it on purpose with a goal in mind; they took him and expounded unto him the way of God by intentionally training him. It may be that nobody sets about to teach you how to grow in the Lord, but in either case, you must, as Apollos and Aquila did, prepare yourself from Scripture, seek faithful saints from which to learn, and also teach. This section of Acts is a tightly-knit example of discipleship to us today.

Aquila didn’t pursue unwilling subjects to conform them into good little cultural Christians. Sent by God, he found a man, able, willing, and seeking.

In verses 27 and 28, having been converted by grace, Apollos taught and preached with all the more boldness. Even if you only teach a man for a brief season, as Aquila did, or in just a few points of doctrine, you may be setting firm foundations in a future preacher or teacher, missionary, or evangelist. This is serious stuff and oughtn’t to be viewed lightly or pursued haphazardly. All of Heaven desires these things from you, and God will prepare and equip you if, and only if, you will walk by faith, learning from failures as much as from successes, relying on the word of God as your preeminent source and guide.

Conclusion.

Apollos showed publicly, from the Scripture to the lost, that Jesus was the Christ. This requires some things; prayer, knowing the Scripture (study/reading) to present, carrying your bible, and expounding on it to lost souls. Also important is being strengthened and encouraged in the religion by assembling together with other believers. None of this is difficult, but it will take time, commitment, and, most of all, faith.

And so we see the confidence of Aquila, his faithful wife by his side, and Apollos to go where God leads, be taught by others, study the word, and then to go make more disciples of all the nations (Matthew 28:18-20).

Gospel Witness, If Thou Forbear To Deliver Them

BY PGF
1 year ago

Note: Tagged Gospel Witness with the other posts in this series.

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

Herschel mentioned these verses the other day. They caught our attention. Certainly, the correct understanding is the defense of innocent life under the watchful eye of Holy God. A man is also to capture his brother’s ox that is astray and return it (Deuteronomy 22:1), and more so, we are commanded to return even our enemy’s wandering ox or ass (Exodus 23:4). Though He is at enmity with Holy God for his sin, how much more is a man than a beast to the Almighty who has numbered every hair on his head (Luke 12:7)? We must tell all men how to avoid hell, leading them back to their rightful owner who is holy Father God.

Throw a rock in any direction, and you’ll hit a sinner who’s being drawn unto death beneath the curse of sin; the devil has blinded their eyes to the truth, except some man should be their guide. They live in the kingdom of death and hell hopeless without the saving love of Christ, and we, having a saving knowledge of the Master, are duty-bound to warn.

For His Church today, Christ instructs us by parable in the cause of finding the one lost sheep, rejoicing when it is brought again to the ninety-nine (Luke 15:1-7). That parable is about the sinner’s restoration and may apply to those who wander like a sheep that’s gone astray from the truth and those men who have yet to be converted. He says in another place, more to the point; “For the Son of man is come to save that which was lost.” – Matthew 18:11

The spread of the Gospel didn’t stop; it went into all the world as Christ was made the ruler of all the kingdoms on earth after the temple was destroyed, ending the Old Covenant. Under a new, better, everlasting covenant, the Church exploded in number as God built His new heavenly temple. This work is ongoing; we should be deeply bothered by the ebbing in our day, praying for the lost and that Holy God would move whole continents to faith again.

Under the Kingdom of God, a disciple of Him who came to seek and to save should also be about this same divine business of spreading the Gospel. For we are all witnesses (Acts 1:8); the Gospel is to be preached to every creature (Mark 16:15) under heaven until the commission (Matthew 28:18-20) is fulfilled. Whenever you see something in God’s word three times, He is emphatic; you have been commanded thrice to spread the Gospel.

All men must hear the glorious truth of the Christ of God who died for our sins according to the Scripture and rose again the third day according to the Scripture that all might be fulfilled necessary to save God’s lost sheep. If they die, dear watchman on the wall, and you warn them not, their blood is on your head (Ezekiel 33).

Searching and seeking for those Christ would save by His mighty power as life-giver and author of the second birth by the Spirit of God, Christ directs every Christian to this vital task. There are no exceptions and none who may say, “Behold, we knew it not.” You, too, were headed to death and hell for grievous sins against God and His righteous standard, and so is the whole of man.

Jude well says: “21 Keep yourselves in the love of God, looking for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ unto eternal life. 22 And of some have compassion, making a difference: 23 And others save with fear, pulling them out of the fire; hating even the garment spotted by the flesh.”

God does know your heart; there is no day of excuses; all must meet the Maker of heaven and earth. Consider how God ponders the ways of men, for He is the keeper of your very soul. He who issued the breath of life into you, and made Himself sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in Him, doth He not know your frame? Christ will render to every man according to his works. Deny Christ now; He will deny you in heaven before the holy angels of God (Luke 12:8-9).

Sinners are easy to find; we are without excuse. Telling them the truth is simply a matter of forsaking your own will and seeking to accomplish the works for which you are appointed. “For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them.” – Ephesians 2:10

“19 Now therefore ye are no more strangers and foreigners, but fellowcitizens with the saints, and of the household of God; 20 And are built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ himself being the chief corner stone; 21 In whom all the building fitly framed together groweth unto an holy temple in the Lord: 22 In whom ye also are builded together for an habitation of God through the Spirit.” – Ephesians 2:19-22

We are citizens of the Kingdom, raised up with Christ Jesus, fellows with the saints who were mighty men of valor by great acts of faith in deed and service of the Almighty. That same Spirit rules in us; no mountain cannot be brought low, conquered by the will of God in us. Stop doubting; you are of the household of God who is your Father. Why do you fear? Call upon the Lord of the harvest for renewal of the Holy Spirit in you; it’s not by your own power but by His that the love of Christ is broadcast near and abroad.

The foundation is sure, built upon the Rock, which is holy, the prophets and apostles attesting to us daily in the word that all is made sure in Christ, the chief cornerstone of us who, if only we are willing and active to follow after, are laid a sure foundation offering the hope of life everlasting to those who need Him.

When you serve God, you not only work on building the holy temple of the Lord in yourself, but you grow it outward, the Lord adding to His Church daily such as should be saved. God prospers you, fitting you to duty, honor, love, peace, joy, and service of mighty works to His glory, growing together all His saints into that holy temple in Christ our risen Saviour and great High Priest, Just Ruler, the King of all domains.

Salvation is of faith, but so too is the life of the believer; by the Spirit of God in you, walk by faith, not by sight (2 Corinthians 5:7), taking one initial step in the belief that God will save thousands by His word from your mouth and watch God pour out His Spirit upon those being called to His great purposes into the everlasting Kingdom built on the resurrection of Christ and destruction of the defunct old way. It’s a New Covenant in the blood of Christ; your life is not your own; go, making the way of salvation sure to all who hear God under the sound of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

Jesus is given a Kingdom that we are to build with Him sharing the word of God as He draws and calls all men to the foot of the cross, some, sadly unto condemnation, but brothers and sisters in Christ, millions and millions have been reborn by the Spirit already. And many millions more by their faith, and not theirs alone, but ours to tell them what great things our God has done that they might hear and believe. And if the Lord allows, even billions more may be added. How could you do nothing?

In Christ’s Own Words

BY PGF
1 year ago

The book of Romans is often cited as a road to building faith in God and how to believe in the Lord Jesus Christ for salvation. So too, the book of John seems to have as a primary purpose telling of forgiveness for sin through Jesus Christ by faith in His death, burial, and resurrection from the grave. And many example verses and sections of Scripture show the truth about the hopelessness of the works of man’s own doing, the consequences of sin, and the pain of death and hell for men who reject Christ. But what did Christ say about these things, including trusting in Him alone to have faith to enter into life everlasting with the Holy Creator?

“Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me hath everlasting life.” Jesus Christ

Whether building initial faith or as a self-education tool for sharing the Gospel of Jesus Christ, this post is presented to increase men’s faith in Jesus. Faith comes by hearing the word of God, which He has magnified above His own name (Psalm 138:2), so we’ll look at several verses in the word of God, primarily from the book of Luke.

It seems that Luke, though he was a believer, recorded Christ’s time on earth and the times of very early Church history from the approach of a dispassionate observer. Luke, inspired by the Holy Spirit of God, is the penman of the Book of Acts. He also penned down the Gospel According to Luke, from which the verses below are taken.

“For the Son of man is come to seek and to save that which was lost.” – Luke 19:10

This verse sounds very simple at first glance, and you may think it doesn’t apply to you. Jesus is seeking you, but what does it mean to be lost and then saved, and why is Jesus seeking you?

Salvation is from sin, and admitting you are a sinner is often a hurdle. So a lost sinner must understand why corruption from sin is harmful and, most importantly, how it has damaged your relationship with Holy God. And you must know that Jesus is the way to have your sin not only forgiven but removed altogether from the presence of Father God. Without shedding of blood there is no remission. Here is the requirement to enter heaven: having your sins purged by the blood sacrifice of a perfect and sinless living offering to God. There is only one such offering, the Christ of God, Jesus.

A man is lost because he’s wandering alone without God, and Jesus is seeking you to save you from hell, like a shepherd looking for His sheep that’s gone astray.

“4 And I say unto you my friends, Be not afraid of them that kill the body, and after that have no more that they can do.” – Luke 12:4

We were designed to fear death, given an innate desire for life by our Creator God. You can try to prolong your life with great effort, but eventually, your body will expire. Your fears won’t save you, and no amount of wealth, doctors, or good things you’ve done will stop the day from coming. Everyone must die. Death is the result of sin. It stalks every man; we are all sinners. If there was no sin, if you were not a sinner, then you could have no fear of death. But you are a sinner.

“2 For there is nothing covered, that shall not be revealed; neither hid, that shall not be known. 3 Therefore whatsoever ye have spoken in darkness shall be heard in the light; and that which ye have spoken in the ear in closets shall be proclaimed upon the housetops. – Luke 12:2-3

Nothing is covered or hidden from God. There will be a judgment of all men. No sin will be allowed into heaven. All that’s been done in darkness; lying, stealing, cheating, slandering, every word and every evil thought and desire of the heart and lusts of the flesh will be judged.

God knows all your secrets, and everything you’ve attempted to keep hidden from view will be brought to light; there can be nothing private at God’s great judgment. Secrets are kept due to shame of oneself or malice toward another man, all of which God rejects. God is holy, perfect, and sinless; He won’t allow sin in heaven because it would defile His holiness. He won’t have unforgiven sinners in heaven with Him.

It’s excellent that Jesus calls us friends and He teaches us who to fear in the following verse from the Holy Bible. The Bible is God’s holy word; do you trust it to tell you the truth? It shows Christ’s loving kindness and desire for you to know and entrust Him with your soul in eternity.

“5 But I will forewarn you whom ye shall fear: Fear him, which after he hath killed hath power to cast into hell; yea, I say unto you, Fear him.” – Luke 12:5

You know that you have sinned against Holy God, and the judgment of God requires payment for your sin, which is death and hell. You must fear God, understanding that He alone has power and authority over whether you go to heaven or hell, and His decision is final. There is no higher power over you than the Almighty, who created you and gave you life.

You must know that you are a hell-bound sinner, fearing God Almighty. When you meet God, you will finally realize what holy is and how awful your sins have been.

God holds the number of your days in His hand; at the appointed time, you will die. He’s a just judge and will have an accurate accounting, but He’s a merciful God who also wants rest for your soul in heaven. Not only is Jesus your friend who loves you, but God loves you so very much that He knows your name and sent His Son Jesus to warn and to call you to Him. God is warning that there is no other way but Jesus Christ as payment for your sin. Nobody wants to die and go to hell, and with Jesus as your Saviour, you needn’t fear death.

Therefore, we understand, thus far, that all have sinned and come short of the glory of God; none can get to heaven on merit or ability. You will die and face the judgment of God for your sin, which is hell. We’ve hinted at it already, but what can a man do? It’s essential, this thing of avoiding the wrath of God in judgment. Deciding to trust Jesus and serve God is the most pressing decision you will ever make.

Let us now look at two important things that Jesus said.

“I tell you, Nay: but, except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish.” – Luke 13:5

Jesus leaves no room whatsoever for discussion or argument over the matter. There’s no other way; if you do not repent, changing your mind about the sinful condition of your eternal soul and admitting that God is the Judge of the living and the damned, you will perish in eternity, which is eternal death in the damnation hell.

And this next verse, again spoken by Jesus Christ, says that He didn’t come to call the righteous.

“I came not to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.” – Luke 5:32

He didn’t come to call pretty good folks. He didn’t come to call those doing good things for their neighbors, or those following the law, or keeping some religious ceremonies or church rituals. He didn’t even come to call people who’ve kept the Ten Commandments or people being faithful church members.

No, He came not to the righteous man but is calling a sinner like you to repent toward God by putting your faith in the power of Jesus to save you.

So what can you do?

Jesus Christ is the sinless Son of God and lived in bodily form as a man, yet without sin. He, being innocent, accomplished for you what you could not do on your own. Being perfect, Jesus satisfied God’s judgment on the cross against sinners and was raised from the dead.

“Saying, The Son of man must suffer many things, and be rejected of the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be slain, and be raised the third day.” – Luke 9:22

You must believe, by faith, that Jesus Christ was slain; crucified on the cross, Jesus paid your sin debt to Holy God. This sacrifice occurred two thousand years ago and stands good with Holy God today as payment for your sin. And He was buried, but He was raised again on the third day. He proved that He has command over life and death when He rose from the dead. This shows you that He can give you eternal life.

“And when he saw their faith, he said unto him, Man, thy sins are forgiven thee.” – Luke 5:20

What does Jesus say; thy sins are forgiven thee! If you have faith and believe in the power of Jesus to save your soul, God will forgive you eternally, which means forever. He’ll make you a son of God, welcomed into His loving kindness.

And, here comes the best part. Jesus has the power of life and makes the offer of life everlasting to take you to heaven with God for all time. Do you believe it? Jesus can change your life now, and you can meet God and be friends with Him!

It’s all about life everlasting in heaven. If you will follow Jesus in the Kingdom of God and be His disciple above anything else, then pray to Him.

Nobody can tell you what to say to God. It’s between you and God through faith in Jesus Christ. But you have learned the essential things to pray about while reading this discussion; you know what Christ said in the verses above. Pray to God from your heart if you would.

In prayer, seeking to be saved from the offenses you’ve committed against Holy Father God, ask forgiveness from Him; tell Him you’re sorry for your sin. Tell Him you know in your soul that He has the power and authority to save you from hell. Explain that you believe Jesus paid your price for entrance into heaven. And explain to Holy God, in prayer, how you will serve Jesus in the Kingdom of God.

God is faithful and true; He always honors His word. When He makes a covenant, you can count on Him. He says you will receive eternal life in the glories of heaven with Him if you believe.

“I say unto you, that likewise joy shall be in heaven over one sinner that repenteth, more than over ninety and nine just persons, which need no repentance.” – Luke 15:7

There shall be joy in heaven for you who call upon God through faith in Jesus, seeking in prayer everlasting forgiveness and life eternal. You, just one sinner seeking Holy God, bring all of heaven to tremendous jubilation for your trust in Jesus Christ. Salvation is of the Lord.

Authenticity, Integrity, and Authority

BY PGF
1 year, 1 month ago

This post is somewhat incoherent, being about three different random thoughts, but hopefully, it connects together, and somebody will benefit. Christ is the final authority in matters of the State, family, and Church, but this post is only loosely connected to those three domains.

“Whosoever transgresseth, and abideth not in the doctrine of Christ, hath not God. He that abideth in the doctrine of Christ, he hath both the Father and the Son.” – 2 John 1:9

First, God is the final authority on Himself. Second, the Holy Bible is the final authority on all things about God; it’s God’s word. Third, God is also the final authority on you, the individual, and all that men do and say.

Most people have only minor problems with the first statement. Many have issues with the second, but this third drives men to anger, landing them finally in hell. God made everything, and it’s His.

God is holy. You are a sinner. You are made in God’s image.

These three things cannot be simultaneously true. If God is holy, perfect, sinless, and righteous, but we are sinners, how can we be made in His image? Something must have happened that changed or destroyed the original likeness that God created when He made man.

In Luke 5:1-11 Simon (Peter), James, and John, with him, are shown to be professional fishermen. They are experts in all things pertaining to fishing in those waters. For at least two generations, their families had fished that sea. Peter had fished all night to no effect proving the fish were not in that area. Jesus is a carpenter by trade and asks Peter to launch out into the deep and cast his net. In verse five, Peter answers, “Master, we have toiled all the night, and have taken nothing: nevertheless, at thy word I will let down the net.” – Luke 5:5. By faith in the word of God and trusting in His power alone, a great haul is taken up in the net.

Covenants

The word of God are His covenants with men and, indeed, all living things. You should seek to understand these covenants, especially the New Covenant; civilization and your very life hang in the balance of obedience to God by keeping the contract He made with man. Time and again, given as an example to us in the Holy Bible that we might learn to obey Him, men break covenant with Holy God, and a ruinous future proceeds to unfold.

Instruction

To be honest, I would have to say many sections of Scripture bother my conscience deeply, convicting me of God’s righteousness and my helplessness to stop sinning against Him. Sometimes this also happens when I listen to preaching. I don’t like it when that occurs, but it’s true, and I know I need to hear the point being made at that time. It’s my job and yours as adults to adjust to reality or suffer the consequences. It’s a matter of personal integrity before God Almighty.

The situation of Western Civilization, now a godless empire going astray, is not unusual, but adults rejecting reality is historically irregular and deeply problematic to our day. It’s what the judgment of God looks like; everybody is running blindly from the truth. It’s not only an adult’s job but a distinctive marker of human maturity, in general, to adjust to any reality, including the word of God, as set forth in the Holy Bible.

Society is rife with young adults and even middle-aged adults who reject the reality of how life is on earth; they renounce God’s created order and the state of man as violent, wicked, sinful creatures. I fear we’ve been handed over to darkness.

The situation has infected the churches. The young and old alike reject the word of God yet claim salvation. This is a problem of Christian maturity. In every instance, when shown what the Bible says and how they are commanded to serve Christ, they cite feelings, time, cost, or many other excuses to avoid doing the hard work of bringing in the Kingdom of God. A maturing Christian sets his feelings and dislikes aside, mortifying the flesh, and, by faith, follows Jesus through keeping the commanded instruction in the Holy Bible.

“And Samuel said, Hath the LORD as great delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices, as in obeying the voice of the LORD? Behold, to obey is better than sacrifice, and to hearken than the fat of rams.”- 1 Samuel 15:22

Through salvation in Christ, the consequence of eternal damnation for sin is off your shoulders, but if somebody told you that being Christian was easy, I’m sorry, they lied. Crucifying self daily and following Christ to the cross is demanding. In your own strength and spirit, you don’t want to do it.

Maturity in Christ is not a function of physical age; it’s a matter of believing what God says in His word and acting upon that knowledge. A man may not reject His word and claim to be a disciple. God even puts His word above His own name.

And, in reality, we must question the faith of those who won’t pray, read their Bible, serve within the body, and witness to lost sinners; these four duties are the basis and foundation of the New Testament instruction in building the Kingdom of God which brings glory the Father through His Son Jesus Christ.

The maturity problem is so pervasive that the churches have stopped teaching that men are sinners. The people don’t want to hear it because they are whiney little babies with poopy diapers who would rather have a pacifier than coming off the milk onto the meat of the word of God so that they may grow thereby into Christian adulthood. They hate God’s word, and brothers, if you hate God’s word, you hate Him that wrote it! Loving Holy God means trusting His word over your understanding (Proverbs 3:5).

Witnessing

Romans 10:17 explains why we open our Bible and show the lost sinner what the Scriptures say.

“So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.”

Because Christ has been given all power in heaven and in earth, we have the authority to make the kingdoms of the world His kingdoms, as soldiers of our King. In the operation of God in salvation, the Holy Spirit brings conviction as the lost sinner hears and understands God’s word; this builds their faith. As soul winners, we seek to determine if the lost sinner trusts God. Establishing the honesty of God and the integrity of His word is essential to faith and trust in God.

When witnessing, I ask lost sinners, rather starkly and out of the blue, is God a liar? And also ask them, is the Holy Bible true? (Alternately: is what I’m showing you in the Bible true, or do you believe what the Bible says to be true?)

The lost sinner must confess that what they are being shown in the Holy Bible is accurate and that God does not lie. There are verses of Scripture for both of these questions, but demanding to know what the lost sinner says of his own accord, belief by faith is being tested. If the lost sinner is under conviction, they will confess correctly. (This isn’t the only question we ask, and his salvation is with God alone, we are merely witnesses of the truth.)

If the lost sinner does not verbally confess and admit to the integrity of God, they do not believe in His authority as the judge of men or the authenticity of His word. Salvation is to those chosen in Him before the foundation of the world by faith in the atoning death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ, plus and minus nothing.

If a man doesn’t believe the Holy Bible as God’s words, it’s not our job to convince them, and trying to do so may damage the seeds that God is planting and watering in their soul. They are not being saved if they don’t believe, trusting in God by faith. The conversation with the lost man is over if they, sadly, reject the integrity of God.

It may be a wonderfully interesting conversation among believers to discuss the source and authenticity of the Holy Bible, but here’s why I’m not a fan of apologetics as a manner to reach the lost. Weaving specific facts or illustrations into a conversation with a lost man is essential, but it’s not our job to convince people of the genuineness of the Bible. If a man wants to argue the authenticity of the Bible, an important question is whether they have read it.

Those under the influence of the Holy Spirit will seek by faith. A function of the Holy Spirit is to convince men of their sin and that the wrath of hell abides on them and of God’s salvation by grace. A lost man can’t understand the Bible. Convincing him of its historical origins can be a waste of time with a lost sinner when he needs faith.

Most men who argue against the Bible’s authenticity are really saying that they deny God, and if you press them on this, you’ll find it’s true. If somebody, whether they confess belief or not, doesn’t believe the Holy Bible is God’s word, we’re hard-pressed to see how they can be a Son of God. If somebody has read the Bible and doesn’t believe it, share some more Scripture with them, perhaps, or tell them to read the book John praying to God for understanding.

The Problem

God is holy. You are a sinner. You are made in God’s image. As stated at the top, these three things cannot simultaneously exist; how can the likeness of a perfect God be a sinner? Something is logically incorrect, or somehow one of these things became untrue.

“The just man walketh in his integrity: his children are blessed after him.” – Proverbs 20:7

The break happened in the Garden when Adam, given a mind and will of his own by the grace of God, sinned against his Creator. Subsequently, all men became cursed with death and sin for Adam’s disobedience to God’s covenant. Your sin will also affect not just you but your family, church, and nation for generations to come.

That’s what sin does; it destroys our connection in relationship to Holy God. When Adam sinned, he broke the image of God in himself, and when you sin against the Almighty, the person God wanted you to be is also damaged; and it’s too late; you’re a sinner.

Conclusion

God will restore this damage from sin to a far superior condition than Adam in the garden could ever have imagined. The day of the resurrection and judgment is coming. You must belong to Holy God through faith to be entirely remade into the likeness of His dear Son, Jesus Christ. If the Bible troubles your soul, this is an extraordinarily marvelous thing; praise God, for He seeks to speak with you.

Gospel Witness, Handling Lost Sinners Questions

BY PGF
1 year, 5 months ago

Note: Tagged Gospel Witness with the other posts in this series.

If you haven’t read the Gospel Witness posts, start here. You need to learn how to share the Gospel clearly and with purpose. The harder times get, the more people will be looking for answers. If you’re God’s, you’ve got the answers they need.

“Then he called for a light, and sprang in, and came trembling, and fell down before Paul and Silas, And brought them out, and said, Sirs, what must I do to be saved?” – Acts 16:29-30

If the lost sinner asks questions during your talk, that’s usually a good indicator of their involvement. However, it’s not necessarily a bad thing if they don’t. Some come under very hard conviction and receive what the word of God says in short order without much fuss. But some get more involved in the conversation as you explain the shared verses.

What we’re doing is having a directed conversation. We don’t want to get off of our current topic or off point, which has the potential to disrupt the conversation. Remember, the dialogue is between the lost sinner and the Holy Spirit of God. Don’t get distracted. This prevents the lost sinner from also drifting. Stay on topic (1 Corinthians 2:2).

“Jesus answered and said unto her, If thou knewest the gift of God, and who it is that saith to thee, Give me to drink; thou wouldest have asked of him, and he would have given thee living water. The woman saith unto him, Sir, thou hast nothing to draw with, and the well is deep: from whence then hast thou that living water?” – John 4:10-11

The Samaritan woman at the well asks Jesus a great question. It’s both constructive to the conversation and within the context of the immediate discussion. She asks; where is this living water?

If a lost sinner asks questions within the context of that truth being discussed, simply answer the question. It’s a good indication that they understand and want to know Jesus. Good questions will help the lost sinner confess their understanding and need for salvation.

As with questions in context, if a question is somewhat out of context but nonetheless constructive to driving the point of their need for salvation through Jesus Christ on the cross, these questions should also be answered. Questions not out of scope should be answered. This helps the witness build the case for salvation through Jesus Christ our Lord and is an excellent opportunity to drive home the lost sinner’s need for salvation.

If the question doesn’t help the topic at hand, the best thing to do is tell the lost sinner that you’ll come back to that question. You can answer the question after your talk. Regardless of how the conversation goes, bring the topic back up at the end of the discussion.

You can also defer if you don’t know the answer to a question. You will be asked questions that you can’t answer. Stay calm when this happens. It’s important that the lost sinner not lose confidence in the witness. We tell them, again in this case, that you’ll come back to that. After your talk, simply admit that you don’t fully know the answer. You can offer to meet them again or invite them to church with you, where you can provide a researched solution.

Those are the simplest ways to handle the most common situations with questions. It doesn’t matter if they ask you to explain a more profound or different doctrinal truth than is in the verse you’re discussing. And it doesn’t matter if we know the answer or not. And it doesn’t even matter if a question is out of context or not constructive to the case for the Gospel of Jesus Christ. In these several ways, handling a lost sinner’s question can apply to any type of enquiry.

Every question has the potential to be asked again by somebody else. Some questions are common, so we should incorporate that knowledge into how we share the Gospel of Jesus Christ while learning and growing as a Soul Winner.

That’s a clue: when you are asked the same question more than once. We should treat each of the people we contact as also being a messenger to us. When asked about any topic in your talk with a contact, be they lost or saved, there may be at least one of three things happening.

  1. God is demanding that you be able to answer this question. This is the most likely reason. If you are faithful, His purposes in this will be evident to you soon.
  2. Your presentation of this concept is incomplete and needs a supporting verse or a more thorough explanation as you share it.
  3. Holy God is preparing you to be able to share this point later with somebody else that He will save. God will plant a seed in you that is a pivotal truth your next contact needs to hear so that they realize salvation by faith and get saved. You have to see these workings of Holy God to believe them.

The faithful witness is often given things to say and verses to share ahead of time because God has prepared the heart of the next soul that you contact to hear this message and be converted. You can see the Kingdom of God in action firsthand, being part of God’s plan to see souls converted!

Finding correlating verses that support the concept of that truth solves all three potential reasons. Your ability to relate the idea within the question may be used shortly with another lost soul to help that lost sinner make the hurdle of faith in Jesus Christ. Don’t regret forsaking the research that’s needed. Any questions or areas of trouble should be examined that same day. This will have you working with the Holy Spirit as you go to share the Gospel the next time.

Gospel Witness, Suffer Little Children

BY PGF
1 year, 8 months ago

Note: Tagged Gospel Witness with the other posts in this series.

Matthew 18:1-6, 10, 14

“Even so it is not the will of your Father which is in heaven, that one of these little ones should perish.” – Matthew 18:14

In Matthew 18, we find several parables put forth by our Lord Jesus Christ. And, there is the example to the disciples that they should have the humility of a child, the simple faith demonstrated by those little ones that are Christ’s. Indeed, if only we would have such simple, humble belief as a child’s trust toward God; that He is who and what He says.

There is the parable of removing body parts that offend and the parable of the one and ninety-nine sheep. Those are woven through the text in a beautiful display of the grace of God both for salvation and the earnest approach of the believer toward Christ. But, the instruction on treating children in the kingdom is quite valuable and tangible. Jesus sets a small child in the midst and makes several statements for edification about how God views little ones and His expectations for adults in the Kingdom of God concerning children.

It’s not the will of holy Father God that children should perish. We take the meaning to be spiritual death in eternity, although judgment against that generation loomed. There’s not much more significant in the Kingdom of God than showing a little one how Jesus loves them, dying for them that they need not perish, and rising from the grave in majesty, might, and power to be King of all.

Children so readily take to the story, the mystery of the revelation of Christ hidden throughout the ages and to us, blessed beyond measure with life after the cross, and the historical record of the suffering of Christ that we might go free. It’s elementary to create a word picture of Christ the victorious King that little ones will listen to with rapt attention, fascinated. There is no Disney production, no fairy tale, no story of a gallant prince that compares to the level of Jesus Christ fulfilling the thousands of years of prophecies concerning His coming. It’s the best because it’s all true. And to think, as good as the story is now, just you wait until His return!

And so warning, there are the protectors of children to the detriment of the child’s eternal soul. Here’s the problem, the root of the problem is very disturbing in its scope and results among children of the churches; the lack of trust in the Holy Spirit by adults, especially their parents and relatives. We’ve seen several problems manifest from this distrust.

Intensely bothersome are those parents and other relatives that when their child is confronted with the truth of the Gospel, they seek to shield them, petting them, drawing them close as though the Holy Spirit of God or a verse of Scripture were a monster to pollute their mind and corrupt their body. We’ve seen this on too many occasions; it’s painful to watch the ignorance of the adults. The Holy Spirit of God knows exactly what He’s doing. There is no reason to guard children against the sound of the word of God or the story of Christ. On the contrary, these adults risk losing the child to damnation forever.

“It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God.” – Hebrews 10:31

Children are not alone; we all may experience the full range of emotions under the sound of the Gospel, especially the fear that can grip a soul under the pressure of the Holy Spirit about their station in eternal torment.

“But Jesus said, Suffer little children, and forbid them not, to come unto me: for of such is the kingdom of heaven.” – Matthew 19:14

It’s trust, do adults, can they, with their most precious of loves, trust upon unconditional terms that the Holy Spirit knows just the right amount of conviction in each individual child to bring them to Christ? If those children perish in eternity because their parents or loved ones protected them from the fear of God Almighty as the Holy Spirit presses upon them, heaven help them; may their millstone lay lightly (Matthew 18:6).

And we’ve another equally disturbing yet different treatment of children by loved ones. Those convinced beyond the evidence of their child’s salvation, of all ages, but even little ones. As a practical warning, I can coerce a confession and prayer out of just about any child, and so can most adults. Many thousands, perhaps millions of parents, are convinced of the salvation of their loved ones without any basis in fact, prima facie, all evidence to the contrary.

A parent’s hope is Christ indwelling the child. The hope is lovely; hope above measure and never cease to pray, but the reality of the lost child’s soul is what’s paramount if a child remains dead in their trespasses and sin. Please listen to this carefully; children that are saved know they’re saved, and the Holy Spirit in them will confess it, even with reason and evidence, without prompting or help.

Many children, maybe millions, have made a profession of faith, and no man knows their heart; but the Holy Spirit will change them and bear fruit of the Spirit as evidence. The Holy Spirit in the believer continues to convict of sin. This changes the believer’s mind over time; changes their likes, dislikes, and desires of the heart. The believer grows in love and knowledge of Christ, and when it’s genuine, it shows. It’s ridiculous above measure; the proposition that saved children are doing drugs, getting pregnant, watching porn, and going to jail. They’re not saved; they’re just not! People that are in Christ, of all ages, desire the things of God.

How many times have we asked a child how they know they’re going to heaven and gotten blank stares as though they were asked to calculate the proper route of a Mars landing craft? If they are saved, the Holy Spirit in them will testify of Christ, for this is one of His essential functions: He witnesses of Christ through the believer (John 15:26). The Holy Spirit of God knows His own.

Parents, sadly, will begin to prompt their children and coach them to say the right words when the child is obviously lost as a goose. It’s heartbreaking to watch. They’re likely headed to hell. Everybody has a bad day, but consistent ignorance of the knowledge of salvation is – evidence of consistent ignorance of the knowledge of salvation.

Then there is the instance, strange as it may sound, that unless the child gets saved the exact way, under the same verses, circumstances, or prayer as the adult, they are forbidden to come to Christ. It’s weird and hard to understand.

Everybody’s salvation testimony is unique; there are as many stories as saved souls. Why would parents care if the child gets saved at an altar, in Sunday School, at home, in a restaurant parking lot, or hanging upside down from monkey bars at the park? If a verse from Genesis three and not John 3 pricks the child’s heart, why forbid them? The word of God brings faith (Romans 10:17). When the Spirit is hot in pursuit of a lost soul, that is the time to strike at the heart with the extraordinary story of Christ, afresh and anew, while sharing Scripture. It’s God that saves souls under the conviction of the Holy Spirit; it’s not locations, circumstances, a parent’s favorite pet doctrine, or bible story; Christ saves!

The ignorance is astounding in each of these instances. It’s not the will of the Father that these littles should perish, and millions of professing adults are working counter to the will of God for the children in their families. It’s shocking to consider what’s happening in heaven’s throne room while relatives interrupt the sound of the Gospel in favor of their predilections!

“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

If that verse doesn’t bring a tear to your eye, you’re too hard-hearted to reach. What can a preacher, youth pastor, witness, or soul winner do? It makes one want to grab them and scream; your child will burn in hell for eternity, and you’re making it happen! It’s so very frustrating.

“But whoso shall offend one of these little ones which believe in me, it were better for him that a millstone were hanged about his neck, and that he were drowned in the depth of the sea.” – Matthew 18:6

If you have children, tonight, take them one at a time to bed and tell them of Christ; plainly and with love, share the truth of the Gospel and offer to pray with them.

But, there are great moments in the Kingdom of God; we’ve seen obedient parents wait in prayerful silence while their child hears a thorough explanation of the Gospel. That’s always a blessing. There’s no reason to dumb down the Gospel or try to make it less scary for children. It is scary; hell is horrible. The Holy Spirit does the work, leaving the pure word of truth in their soul.

“Whosoever therefore shall humble himself as this little child, the same is greatest in the kingdom of heaven.” – Matthew 18:4

Gospel Witness, Being Organized

BY PGF
1 year, 8 months ago

Note: Tagged Gospel Witness with the other posts in this series.

“Ponder the path of thy feet, and let all thy ways be established.” – Proverbs 4:26

Don’t go soul-winning every day. Don’t burn out on it. You will lead more souls to Jesus Christ over time by regularly going on a consistent schedule that you can maintain. Going once or twice a week is usually sustainable for most Soul Winners, and this will bring more fruit in total to the glory of God. But of course, none of this is to say that you shouldn’t be aware of exceptional opportunities presented to you during your daily activities.

Planning and being organized within your Bible while sharing verses will help you to stay focused on clearly presenting the case for Jesus Christ.

The best way to start marking a Bible is with a pencil. You’ll be glad you used a pencil to mark some verses lightly. As you gain experience and gain confidence by leading lost souls to Jesus, you’ll see that the Lord will use you to share additional verses, or you may need to adjust your approach.

Practicing aids us in not being a hindrance to the Holy Spirit of God.

After marking your Bible verses in pencil, make a plan in your mind of what you’re going to say and what verses you’ll use. And this is going to sound silly, but practice on an empty chair, or spouse, or friend. Go through the verses explaining each of the central truths that a lost sinner must realize. You can even practice in the mirror.

We don’t want to become a distraction to the lost sinner as we share the Gospel. We want the Holy Spirit of God to capture and maintain their attention.

You will be glad that you practiced. It will help you immensely to remember what to say and keep the conversation on track. And practice is a confidence builder. This way, no matter what questions the lost sinner may ask, you already know your plan, have verses marked, and know what the verses mean to explain them well. This ensures that you can answer questions while knowing exactly what verse you’re presenting. Stay focused on the current point of the conversation that you’re having with the lost soul.

Where The Rubber Meets The Road

BY PGF
1 year, 8 months ago

As much as 40 percent of the energy produced by an internal combustion car engine is lost before the point of tire traction, i.e., where the rubber meets the road. It’s easy to start an organization that’s against something. Dozens of would-be good organizations have been created yet failed because they have no goal. Those called Christians, or conservatives, southerners, nationalists, and others with well-meaning intentions are against the things it’s proper to disdain. Still, with no goal, your organization either fails or becomes a small echo chamber idling on a worthy idea, but no torque gets applied to the pavement of accomplishment.

The firearms rights organizations fail for this very reason. Also, Prolife Inc. is not a movement nor pro-life, merely anti-abortion; there’s a difference. The fact that these organizations are professional money-making machines is secondary; what are their stated end goals, and how do they plan to get us there? You should determine these things before giving money. Failing to do so is a mistake we’ve all made. Wayne has those nice suits, though, doesn’t he? Defending freedom by drawing a new line in the sand over and over again is not a plan. If you want to pay somebody to organize folks of like mind, don’t call it anything other than what it is; a club.

The Left, however, is for something. They will kill you all; that is their goal, clear and straightforward. To rule the world is the call; you’re in the way. They are of their father the devil, mocking God’s plan.

Christ gave the mission to – as nearly as possible, until His return – eliminate unrighteousness by the Spirit of God, converting lost sinners to Him. His goal is to rule the world in His righteousness. The Churches have been coopted and hijacked (that’s another post); they too are lost in a sea of goalless money collecting, failing to teach and prepare you for the commission of Christ. That’s why most Christians can’t see the New Order as an affront to God but instead are told it’s all part of God’s plan. But God’s plan is the reign of Christ!

We’re not against groups of fellows in Christ (Proverbs 27:17, Ecclesiastes 4:12), but the purpose must be to do the will of the Father, for what is a disciple but a doer of the word (James 1:22). Organization is essential, but faith in Christ to execute His mission is much more so.

Switching gears: the wrath of God abides on all who hold the truth in unrighteousness (Romans 1:18); the lost are condemned already (John 3:18). They can no more make a just society than any other ungodly man. When fighting them on their terms, you won’t win; you cannot beat them by their rules. Evil does not cast out evil (Matthew 12:26), but if Christ cast out devils by the Spirit of God, then the kingdom of God is come unto you (Matthew 12:28).

Nor can the church fight the Left by any means other than that as specified in God’s revealed law, the Holy Bible. Creating your own project, outside the will of God, will not effectively save our civilization; the Father Hath in these last days spoken unto us by his Son, whom he hath appointed heir of all things, by whom also he made the worlds. He gave us the assignment.

God has provided clear instructions on how this conquest is accomplished (Matthew 28:18-20, Acts 1:8), which is the converted of God sharing the Gospel of Jesus Christ (1 Corinthians 15:3-4) unto salvation with the lost, then teaching the converted to obey all that Christ commands. And He left us a goal, put down all ungodly authority (1 Corinthians 15:25), and He gave two sources of power: The Holy Spirit (John 15:25) and the Word of God (Romans 10:17, Hebrews 4:12). And He gave you, as meager as it is, instruction in how to be a man that serves Christ, leads his family, Church, and the body of Christ to serve the Lord God to this end: take and hold ground for our King; Not by might, nor by power, but by my spirit, saith the LORD of hosts.

You could mock God and attempt to create an organization that mimics His structure or purpose, or you could do what God said. He is the ultimate source of power and the only tangible way to bring about a righteous and just nation that abides in His Law-word.

Or you could idle and wait for the Left, under the prince and power of this world, to thoroughly destroy your civilization, killing millions, or perhaps billions. Then they’ll shrug their shoulders and claim that it wasn’t real socialism. It’s a lie of the devil that politics can save us; that’s why you’re fully immersed in it; you’ve been led astray by the forces of evil.

The mission of Christ is a fight for the soul of the nation and indeed the world, one individual convert at a time. It’s easy to be against something. It’s hard to positively proclaim to be for something and then execute that mission.

Gospel Witness, Jesus Christ our Lord

BY PGF
1 year, 9 months ago

Note: Tagged Gospel Witness with the other posts in this series.

There is a funny story about soul winning. A man asks, how can I be saved and one replies just hold on; God loves you. And another man replies, just let go; God loves you. Then somebody comes and opens their Bible showing the man how to have eternal life in Christ Jesus.

Recently, there was the blessed opportunity to share the Gospel with a lost sinner. They ultimately balked at the idea of serving Holy God. When asked, they flat out said no.

We almost always share 1 John 5:11-13 while discussing the nature of the record (testimony) being set forth. 1 John 5 includes what we know we have, a new life now in Christ and life eternal with the Father.

“11 And this is the record, that God hath given to us eternal life, and this life is in his Son. 12 He that hath the Son hath life; and he that hath not the Son of God hath not life. 13 These things have I written unto you that believe on the name of the Son of God; that ye may know that ye have eternal life, and that ye may believe on the name of the Son of God.” – 1 John 5:11-13

You can know that you have eternal life. Many, sadly, confess to a day when they will stand before Christ and find out; the Holy Bible says you can know now, today!

It’s important to note that when sharing the Gospel, the lost sinner is making their covenant with Christ. It’s also important to note that when sharing the Gospel with a lost sinner, we use evangelistic language and substance, allowing the Holy Spirit of God to bring them under conviction for sin and the realization of the need for salvation from death and hell. Telling lost sinners to stop sinning is mostly a waste of time; they need salvation first.

If you have been blessed to lead souls to Christ but did not discuss the things in this post with them, please don’t think you did something wrong. God saves who He will by the manner He chooses, and no two salvation testimonies are the same. Each salvation is personal, from Nicodemus, to the woman at the well, to the Ethiopian Eunuch. There is no formula for salvation; God leaves the perfect intact truth of His covenant with them in the new convert’s heart as the Holy Spirit begins to grow them. But consider discussing the service of God and the authenticity of what you’re sharing from the Bible.

Depending upon how the discussion goes, we share 1 John 5:11-13 very near the end of the conversation if the lost sinner makes it that far. As John does, we can discuss the record of what we have, why, and how we know. By the time we share these verses, the lost have agreed that they are a lost sinner, that God is the judge of their sin, and that they are headed to death and hell being condemned already. They have agreed that Jesus has authority and power over their eternal destination. They have also stated agreement that Jesus died for their sin and rose again on the third day as the satisfaction of their sin debt and proof of the power of Christ to offer new life now and life eternal.

I don’t preach Lordship salvation when I share the Gospel with a lost sinner. But, we always, in one manner or another, as part of sharing these verses with the lost sinner, tell them that God will begin to change them, giving them new desires from the heart outward, that they will begin to be remade into the likeness of Christ, or a son of God. Part of this change that happens after salvation is that we serve Christ in the Kingdom of God. We can state it just like that, or perhaps as, become a son of God to follow the will of Holy Father God or work in the Kingdom of God keeping all that Christ commands. Some variation of this is essential to share, asking the lost sinner, will you serve Christ? Too many Christians have been saved, they claim, but for what they do not know. Service is what Disciples of Christ do.

You can share 1 John 5:11-13 how you feel led, keeping within the truth while evangelizing Jesus Christ as the only Saviour, sure foundation, and way to the Father in heaven. We review the record that we, the lost and the witness, have made, explaining that what we are doing is making a record before Holy God of all that the lost sinner has confessed about himself as a sinner and the futility of works. And also that the lost sinner has agreed upon the only solution, the power and authority of God by Christ’s death, burial, and resurrection to save their eternal soul.

If somebody is under conviction of the Holy Spirit, they will not hesitate or reject serving God. Their definition of service, being a lost sinner, especially if raised in religion, may be faulty. It’s essential to tell them that we are not talking about religion (though we are, but not as the world perceives and sadly not as most denominations and cults express) and that we’re not talking about a Church or, again, what they may perceive to be the true church of Jesus Christ. Salvation is personal; it’s a relationship with God, through Christ, the Holy Spirit in us. If they are genuinely saved, they will have true religion and be among the body of Christ. This part of the conversation may vary if the person is a regular Church attendee.

So we review the record of all that’s been discussed, clearly stating that salvation means a change of heart and therefore mind, entering into a life of service to bring glory to the Father through Christ.

We usually share this other verse, that’s in Romans, early in the conversation. “For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.” – Romans 6:23. Sin brings death, which is what God owes the sinner (wages) for their works of transgressing God’s Law but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord. Yes, it’s a gift; He’s a wonderful and marvelous Saviour, but Jesus is also Lord, King, and Master of His inheritance, which are the converted sinners one and all, His body, the church. If the lost sinner is under conviction, they will testify about their desire to belong to God, working in the Kingdom, as you discuss these verses.

During your talk, if you have not discussed the authenticity of the Bible while sharing the Gospel, these verses in 1 John 5 (or Romans 10:17, faith by the word of God) are a perfect opportunity to do so. After all, John says, this is the record. The Bible and the passages you share are the basis upon which the lost sinner and Holy God are forming their covenant; if the lost sinner doesn’t believe the Bible, they are not being saved at that time, regardless of what else they may say or desire. If the Holy Spirit is upon them, they will confess that Jesus is real, that the Bible is true, the written record is authentic, and that they want to belong to Him in service.

Remember, we’re having a narrow-scope evangelistic conversation with a lost sinner. However, souls get saved over a Psalm (song) or apocalyptic passages such as Genesis 3 and Revelation 20-21, some of which may include symbolism. The Holy Spirit often uses the fall in the Garden and the resurrection of the damned unto the lake of fire to bring fear of God, a conviction for sin, and the need for the one true Saviour, Jesus Christ. But we also count those passages nonetheless to be the record of sin and eternal damnation that God has given us to bring a desire of life and life everlasting through the only begotten Son of God, Jesus Christ.

The poor fellow who decided against Christ seemed disconcerted and even offended by the conversation and me. He wanted his life cleaned up and straightened out without the pesky bother of a Lord. When they balk, we pray for them, for God to send another messenger, and for the seed to take hold in their conscience that Christ would draw them and call them into His love. It’s important to remember; that we are only the messenger; soul winning is not friend winning. We tell them the truth; their problem is with God if they don’t like it.

You will not win them all, but it’s far and away the better thing to be thorough in showing them the love of God and then let them go away than to make buildings full of lost sinners, some deceived, some falsely converted by easy believism. The object is not ours; the crowns are Christ’s cast at His feet upon the mount of His throne, for the Father is the one that works all in all. God, save that young man’s soul.


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