Hypnotic Agony of Envy

A Top 10 Video Cast

An epidemic of envy permeates our culture today. We want what others have and plot how to get it or its equal.

Image courtesy of alexisdc at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Image courtesy of alexisdc at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Men and women alike quiver at envy’s potential. In a thousand ways we justify our greedy obsessions with little or no thought of its pitfalls.

Aaron and Miriam, Moses’s brother and sister, obsessed with envy over his position. They devised a plan for their replacement of his leadership. They did not consider the dangers of their plot.

This Top 10 Video cast describes the implications and God’s response to their plans from Numbers 12.1-16. You can view it at this link.

 

 

Prominent Controversy: Sodom’s Dirty Secrets

8 Reliable Perspectives To Reclaim

What happened that night when the men of Sodom confronted Lot? How does the Bible characterize Sodom?

Image courtesy of nongpimmy at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Image courtesy of nongpimmy at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Do Sodom and Gomorrah exemplify the sin of homosexuality? Has the homosexuality community interpreted the Bible correctly? Should you accept the LGBTQ(1) version?

Though many attempt to reconcile homosexuality with the Bible, such efforts fail. You cannot reconcile truth with error.

The battle to legitimize homosexuality began with an all-out attack upon the Biblical record of Sodom. This assault changed the story of homosexuality in Sodom to lack of hospitality in Sodom. Homosexuals misinterpret other references to Sodom similarly.

When LGBTQ cannot alter the clear meaning of a Biblical text that refers to homosexuality, they simply reject it as irrelevant to the issue. In essence, they remove any passage of Scripture that remotely describes the sinfulness of homosexuality.

These misinterpretations and denials developed into an accepted error. They form the foundation of the homosexual movement. The LGBTQ community believes that the Bible legitimizes their behavior.

In fact, many professing evangelicals accept and promote these errors, too. Consequently, it appears that the Bible not only fails to condemn homosexuality, it actually permits it.

These questions deserve a response. The Bible provides ample confirmation of God’s attitude toward homosexuality. In particular, the Bible describes what occurred that night in Sodom. It makes it an example throughout all of Scripture. A comparison of Bible texts confirms the Bible’s stance on Sodom and homosexuality, which contradicts the version promoted by the LGBTQ community.

Roots of Homosexuality

The proper understanding of the events in Sodom actually begins many chapters before the record of Sodom in Genesis 19. It begins before the flood as recorded in Genesis 6. As God viewed the world before the flood, He described mankind’s wickedness and the total corruption of humanity. (2)

This awful wickedness included the full range of sexual immorality: fornication, incest, and homosexuality, even homosexual marriage. (4) The practice of homosexuality predates the flood.

After the flood, the Bible records another homosexual event. After Noah and his family departed from the Ark, Noah planted a vineyard. He drank too much of the fruit of the vine and became drunk.

The wickedness of Ham ensued. Ham uncovered the nakedness of his father, whom Ham saw lying drunk on the floor of his tent. (4) This description sounds innocent. But, when Ham saw his father, it literally means that he gazed with satisfaction upon his nakedness. (5) His look occurred with purpose and intent, not accidentally or harmlessly. (6)

When the Bible says that Ham uncovered the nakedness of his father, it describes sexual immorality. (7) Rabbinic exegesis of this passage indicates that Ham’s gaze turned into homosexual rape of his father. (8)

After the incident between Ham and Noah, Ham delightedly told his brothers what he had done. With great care, his brothers covered their father without observing his nakedness.

After Noah awoke from his drunkenness, he learned of Ham’s behavior toward him. Then, because of Ham’s wicked act, Noah cursed Ham’s son, Canaan. (9)

Homosexuality In Sodom

The effects of Ham’s wicked act upon Noah and Noah’s curse upon Canaan do not appear until Genesis 13. This chapter records the split between Abram and his nephew Lot. Abram gave Lot the first choice of land, which allowed Lot to separate from Abram and to take his family and herds to a new location. Lot chose the Plain of Jordan and moved his family toward Sodom in the Plain of Jordan.

The Canaanites, Canaan’s offspring, occupied Sodom. (10) Genesis 13.13 describes the people of Sodom as “…wicked and sinners before the Lord exceedingly.”

Adam Clarke, in his commentary upon this passage, said that it describes persons breaking the established order of things, openly before God. Radically evil, they sought satisfaction in sensual gratification with depraved, shameless, out of order passions. (11)

Not long after Abram and Lot separated, God appeared to Abram in the form of three persons. As the three men rose up to depart, they told Abram of their plan to visit Sodom. They told him that they had heard the outcry of Sodom, because of their grievous sin. (12)

In fact, the practice of homosexuality permeated the Canaanite peoples long before the record of Sodom. Canaan’s offspring, the Canaanites, became noted for their sexual perversions, including homosexuality.

The Mesopotamian, Middle Assyrian, and Hittite peoples (descendents of Canaan) openly practiced homosexuality in those days. Eventually, this wicked practice became commonplace in Grecian and Roman cultures. (13)

Two of the three men who visited Abram continued on their way to visit Sodom, knowing its wickedness. At Lot’s insistence, they did not stay out in the city square at night as planned, but went into Lot’s house. The men of Sodom came to Lot and demanded that he release the men to them in order that they might know them.

The two men protected Lot by sending blindness upon the men of the city. In the morning, the two men dragged Lot, his wife, and his two daughters out of the city and then destroyed it. (14)

In contradiction to the LGBTQ version of these events, the Bible clearly depicts the homosexual wickedness of Sodom, which began many years previously. This passage contains several key elements that require explanation.

The context in the Bible and nonBiblical records delineate the homosexual behavior of Sodom. A proper understanding begins with the meanings of key words in the text.

  • Key Words: The men of the city

The LGBTQ community has diminished the emphasis of this phrase. They describe it merely as a delegation of men who came to see Lot. Yet, the text clearly states “…all of the men of the city, including young and old, from every part of the city, came to Lot’s house.” (15)

They did not come to Lot’s house to welcome his guests into the city nor to interrogate them. All of the men of the city came with one purpose: to have homosexual sex with Lot’s two visitors.

  • Key Words: Know

The intent of the men of the city comes clear with the proper use of the word know. This word has different functions in the Bible. Therefore, the context of its use provides insight to its meaning within the text.

The context for the meaning of this word in this text begins early in Genesis. On three previous occasions, it appears as a euphemism for sexual intercourse. (16)

In the immediate context, the conversation between Lot and the men of the city show that Lot understood their meaning as sexual intercourse. He called their demands wicked. Further, he offered his virgin daughters to them in an immoral attempt to satisfy their sexual desires. When he did, he described them as virgins who had not known man. (17)

Lot did not misunderstand the men’s demands as a request for an interview with his guests. Nor does understanding of the text hinge upon the failed interpretation of inhospitality by the men of Sodom. Lot understood their evil, sexual demands and rejected them, hoping he could persuade them to satisfy their passions upon his daughters.

The wicked behavior identified with Sodom and the surrounding peoples confirms this interpretation. Even Egyptian texts and traditions use know to describe sexual intercourse. (18) The LGBTQ community fails in its attempt to distort the true meaning of this term to support their agenda.

Key Passages In Reference To Sodom

The Bible offers numerous references to this occasion and confirms its homosexual application. A brief review of these passages will verify it. Many passages use it as an example of how God detests wickedness and judges it. Sodom provides a vivid illustration.

  • Isaiah 1.1-9, 3.8-9, 13.19, Jeremiah 23.14, Zephaniah 2.8-11, etc.

From these and other references, the LGBTQ community attempts to interpret them as itemized lists of the sins of Sodom other than homosexuality. They attempt to bypass the descriptions that identify homosexuality as the sin of Sodom. However, these references simply list the sins of Israel and warn it of impending judgment as God brought to Sodom.

  • Ezekiel 16.48-56

In particular, the homosexual community uses this verse as their trump verse. It does list the sins of Sodom. The last sin in the list, abomination, does not serve as a summary of the previous list of sins. A singular noun, it identifies a separate sin in addition to those previously listed. The Bible calls homosexual behavior an abomination, describing it as sexually perverse behavior. In this text, abomination describes Sodom’s sin of homosexuality. (19)

  • 2 Peter 2.1-8

Peter refers directly to the wickedness of Sodom and God’s judgment upon it. Here he calls the inhabitants “wicked” with “filthy conversation,” and their acts “unlawful deeds.”

In verses 1-3, Peter warns his readers about false prophets and teachers. In the next five verses, he identifies three specific examples of God’s judgment upon those who followed the sinful ways of false leaders, the last one Sodom and its sister city Gomorrah.

The “filthy conversation” of the people of Sodom does not refer to their speech habits. It means their manner of life, “…(the) sensual conduct of the wicked.” (ESV) Their behavior lacked moral restraint, and they practiced sexual licentiousness. (20)

Peter’s description does not call their lawlessness as “lusts for angels.” The men of Sodom experienced defiling desires and sexual lusts for Lot’s visitors. (21)

  • Jude 1.7

Jude mentions Sodom in his warning of judgment upon the wicked. He described their sin as “fornication” and going after “strange flesh.”

The word “fornication” describes sexual immorality of any type and kind, including, incest, bestiality, and homosexuality. (22)

The phrase “strange flesh” does not refer to angels. It describes the practice of unnatural uses. They did not content themselves with sexual intercourse with their wives or other men’s wives. The men of Sodom sought perverted homosexual sex. (23)

Summary

Contrary to popular error, Sodom exemplifies the sin of homosexuality. When all of the men of Sodom attacked Lot’s house, they demanded that he release his two visitors to them so that they could indulge their homosexual passions.

In other texts, the Bible reverberates this same understanding of those events. The LGBTQ community and many professing evangelicals misinterpret the Bible’s declarations of Sodom’s wickedness. Christ followers must reject the homosexual community’s Biblical interpretation of their behavior and accept God’s explanation of their sinfulness.

God made provision for sinners like you and me. He gave His son, Jesus Christ, as a substitute for sinners. Jesus took the punishment that people like you and I deserve.

His resurrection completed the task that God sent Him to fulfill on behalf of sinners. Jesus Christ will reconcile to God every sinner who turns from self-trust and trusts Christ as his/her substitute.

God gives new life to those who come to Him through faith in Jesus Christ. For those who come to Him, He washes away the sin and guilt of their past regardless of its wickedness, forgives their sin, and makes them new creatures.

I recall the day that I first trusted Christ. He truly made me a new creature, and I know many others with the same testimony. If you have never trusted Christ in this way, I pray that God by His Holy Spirit will bring you to experience it today.

References

  1. LGBTQ: lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer/questioning
  2. Genesis 6.5-12.
  3. Wold, Donald J. Out Of Order: Homosexuality In The Bible And The Ancient Near East. Baker Books, Grand Rapids, MI 49516; 1998; p. 66-76.
  4. Genesis 9.20-22.
  5. QuickVerse 10 Bible Software. WORDsearch, Corp. “The Genesis Record.”
  6. Leupold, H. C. Exposition of Genesis. DeWard Publishing Company, Ltd., Chillicothe, OH 45601; 2010. p. 214-215.
  7. QuickVerse. “Wilmington’s Guide To The Bible” @ Genesis 9.20f.
  8. p. 66-76.
  9. Genesis 9.24-27.
  10. Genesis 13.7.
  11. QuickVerse. “Adam Clarke’s Commentary Upon The Old Testament” @ Genesis 13.13.
  12. Genesis 18.16-21.
  13. Wenham, Gordon. “The Old Testament Attitude to Homosexuality.” Expository Times102 (1991):L 259-363.
  14. Genesis 19.1-25.
  15. Genesis 19.4.
  16. Genesis 4.1, 17, 25.
  17. Genesis 19.5-8.
  18. p. 77-89.
  19. Leviticus 18.22; 20.13; Gagnon, Robert A. J. “Why We Know That The Story Of Sodom Indicts Homosexual Practice Per Se.” Available at this link: http://www.robgagnon.net/homosex7thDayAdvArticleSodom.htm Accessed online at 6/25/15.
  20. Logos Bible Software. “Louw and Nida” @ “sensual.”
  21. Gagnon
  22. Logos Bible Software. “Louw and Nida” @ “immorality.” Also “New International Dictionary of New Testament Theology” @ “immorality.”
  23. Logos Bible Software. “Word Pictures” @ “unnatural.” Also “Louw and Nida” @ “unnatural.”

© Thomas P Hill. Website: www.masterministries.org.

 

Popular Belief: Bible Approves Homosexuality

Unlock 5 Astonishing Biblical Truths on Homosexuality

 

How many Americans think society should accept homosexuality?

If you guessed 50%, you missed it. A recent Pew Research Poll revealed that 60% of Americans believe that society should accept homosexuality. (1)

Less than 3% of American society caused a significant impact upon our culture with an astonishing weapon: the Bible. Yes, they turned a potential enemy to “support” their viewpoints.

Image courtesy of digitalart at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Image courtesy of digitalart at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Numerous books and articles attempt to prove that the Bible does not prohibit homosexuality. These authors comment upon several Biblical passages that address same sex issues.

In every case, they deny that these Biblical references had any anti-homosexual or LGBTQ concepts in them. These writers reinterpret the references and assume that they have clearly proved that the Bible does not prohibit current homosexual practices.

The Bible does not support homosexuality in any form, even current practices, in spite of the monumental effort of same-sex advocates to prove otherwise.

Proper Biblical Interpretation

Proper analysis of the Bible begins with a clear understanding of its message. In it, God reveals Himself to mankind, in addition to His self-revelation in creation and Jesus Christ.

God’s self-revelation in the Bible discloses His plan for His creation, including humans. The entire contents of the Bible came from God to humanity through human instruments as directed and inspired by the Holy Spirit.

That makes the Bible inerrant and infallible in all matters to which it speaks. It gives us the wisdom of God as well as His commands for His creatures. The Bible describes His plans and purposes for people like you and me.

Therefore, you cannot interpret the Bible like a cafeteria menu, choosing what you like, and rejecting what you do not like.

A proper interpretation of the Bible and the interrelationship of one section with another must consider its overarching metastory.

Otherwise, misunderstandings and misinterpretations of the Bible occur. As a result, critics who attempt to reinterpret the Bible to their liking fail to achieve their conclusions, in part, because they fail to follow the Bible’s metastory.

Means of Biblical Understanding

Because of its self-attesting nature, the Bible stands above human criteria for its veracity. God used it as one of His means of self-revelation along with creation and Jesus Christ.

Therefore, it, and it alone, sets the standard(s) by which mankind must live in relationship to God, to creation, and to other humans. (2)

Because all humans possess a sinful nature, we cannot understand Biblical truths with our own capacities. They appear foolish to us, since the natural human cannot know its meaning.

God has provided His Holy Spirit to reveal His message to mankind. We gain understanding only by revelation to us by God’s Spirit.

As Paul wrote to the Corinthians,

“Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the spirit which is of God; that we might know the things that are freely given to us of God.

Which things also we speak, not in the words which man’s wisdom teacheth, but which the Holy Ghost teacheth; comparing spiritual things with spiritual.

But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned. (3)

God’s self-revelation makes Him plain to humanity. But, our inherited ungodliness and unrighteousness cause us to suppress the truth of God.

“For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who by their unrighteousness suppress the truth. For what can be known about God is plain to them, because God has shown it to them. For his invisible attributes, namely, his eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly perceived, ever since the creation of the world, in the things that have been made. So they are without excuse.” (4)

Thus, mere human attempts to interpret the Bible result in error. The writings of the Apostle Paul provide a vivid example.

Example Of The Apostle Paul’s Writings Against Homosexuality

Currently, the homosexual community declares that the Apostle Paul did not denounce homosexuality in his writings.

In their minds, their interpretation of Paul’s comments confirms their attempts to legitimize homosexuality, even Biblically. Despite extraordinary efforts, their attempts fail.

Paul wrote three different passages in which he commented on homosexuality, a prominent practice in his day. The following sections evaluate Paul’s same sex teachings.

  • Romans 1.26-28

“For this cause God gave them up unto vile affections: for even their women did change the natural use into that which is against nature: And likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust one toward another; men with men working that which is unseemly, and receiving in themselves that recompence of their error which was meet. And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a reprobate mind, to do those things which are not convenient…”

  • Interpretation

To refute Paul’s statements on homosexuality, the LBGTQ (5) community bases their arguments on the meaning of the words “natural” and “unnatural.”

The gay society says that the word “natural” describes what comes naturally for a given person. Here, homosexuals assert their different orientation, same sex attraction, as their normal desire and behavior.

Therefore, for a person with same sex attraction, heterosexual behavior turns into unnatural sexual practice. They conclude that when Paul condemned unnatural behavior, he endorsed homosexual desires and conduct.

In support of its position, homosexuals fail to provide textual, contextual, or linguistic evidence to authenticate it. They rely upon their interpretation of these words to explain Paul’s comments, which eliminates what appears as Paul’s obvious condemnation of homosexuality.

A plain reading of the text reveals the true meaning of the words “natural” and “unnatural.” In verse 27, Paul described the unnatural exchange that men made when they abandoned the natural sexual intimacy between a man and woman and, instead, burned with lust for men.

The word “likewise” links this description of homosexuality back to the exchange of the natural for the unnatural that women of that day practiced with other women. In both instances, it describes homosexuality as the unnatural activity contrary to nature. (6)

Natural sexuality expresses the created order that God established when he created man and woman, and thus sexual intimacy between a man and a woman.

In fact, nowhere does the Bible approve of homosexuality or describe it as natural. God always describes same sex intimacy as unnatural and against His divinely established order.

  • Culture of Paul’s Era

Contrary to the LBGTQ community’s assertions, the culture of Paul’s day did interpret same sex relationships as “homosexual orientation” and they did not condemn it, as God did.

Paul’s society included those who believed what the same sex people of today call homosexual orientation. Some in that day chose homosexuality to express their love for others of the same sex. (7)

In fact, prior to Paul, Plato’s Symposium discussed these beliefs of homosexuality (orientation and loving homosexual relationships). (8)

Further, the Stoic and Hellenistic Jewish traditions of Paul’s era included definitions of natural and unnatural. They based their meanings upon the same ones expressed in God’s created order. (9)

When God created man and woman, He designed them to fulfill His purpose for sexual intimacy together through heterosexual marriage.

Therefore, when Paul addressed homosexuality in this text it included every expression of it in his culture, including but not limited to men with men, women with women, men with boys, and sexual orientation. To interpret it otherwise twists Paul’s intent, redefines words, and neglects the realities of culture at that time.

  • 1 Corinthians 6.9-11

“Know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind, Nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall inherit the kingdom of God. And such were some of you: but ye are washed, but ye are sanctified, but ye are justified in the name of the Lord Jesus, and by the Spirit of our God.”  

  • 1 Timothy 1.9-10

Knowing this, that the law is not made for a righteous man, but for the lawless and disobedient, for the ungodly and for sinners, for unholy and profane, for murderers of fathers and murderers of mothers, for manslayers, For whoremongers, for them that defile themselves with mankind, for menstealers, for liars, for perjured persons, and if there be any other thing that is contrary to sound doctrine…”

The LBGTQ community attacks these references from Paul’s writings in a similar fashion as with the previous passage from Romans. They attempt to reinterpret the key words. In essence, it boils down to the interpretation of two Greek words translated “effeminate,” “abusers,” and “them that defile themselves with mankind.”

Paul, they say, did not know about sexual orientation or inversion. Additionally, they attempt to distinguish homosexual acts from orientation, as if Paul condemned homosexual acts but not orientation. (10)

In writing these texts, Paul relied upon the LXX, the Greek translation of the Old Testament. He referenced Leviticus 18.22 and 20.13, which clearly addressed same sex activity and God’s condemnation of it. In both of these passages from Paul’s writings, he merged the Greek words employed in the LXX passages from Leviticus for homosexual behavior. (11)

Summary

When Paul addressed homosexuality, he included every expression of it in his culture, including but not limited to men with men, women with women, men with boys, and sexual orientation. To interpret otherwise twists Paul’s intent and neglects the realities of culture at that time.

Contrary to the LBGTQ people, the records of nonBiblical writings prior to Paul and in his era confirm the presence of the full spectrum of homosexuality. This wide spread behavior included transvestism, cross dressing, homosexual propensities and orientation, and love between same sex partners. This refutes the argument presented that Paul did not know of homosexual orientation as currently defended to justify it. (12)

The arguments by the homosexual community against Paul’s statements on homosexuality fail. They interpret Scripture inaccurately. They neglect or ignore the nonBiblical sources that describe the prevalence of homosexuality and the orientation of those who practiced it in Paul’s day.

Paul condemned homosexuality without reservations. At the same time, he also reported the victories experienced by some who previously indulged in same sex relations.

And such were some of you: but ye are washed, but ye are sanctified, but ye are justified in the name of the Lord Jesus, and by the Spirit of our God. “ (13)

Some found forgiveness and relief from their disobedience against God’s law regarding homosexuality. The Holy Spirit convicted them of their sin and pointed them to trust Jesus Christ to save them. In faithfulness to His promise, Jesus reconciled them to God who forgave them and accepted them as His children.

You may have already trusted in Christ and know of His saving power as these people did. If you have not yet trusted Him, trust Christ today. Trust His promise to accept all who come to Him.

I pray that the Holy Spirit will give you new life and bring you to faith upon Jesus Christ, God’s gracious provision to reconcile people like you and me to Himself. Only the Holy Spirit can enable you to turn from your sinful lifestyle and renew your life.

References

  1. Pew Research Center. You can view the poll results at this link: http://www.pewglobal.org/2013/06/04/the-global-divide-on-homosexuality
  2. Bahnsen, Greg L. Presuppositional Apologetics, Stated and Defended.The American Vision, Inc., Powder Springs, GA, and Covenant Media Press, Nacogdoches, TX. 2008
  3. 1 Corinthians 2:12-14.
  4. Romans 1:18-20 (ESV)
  5. LGBTQ: lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer/questioning.
  6. Piper, John. “The Other Dark Exchange: Homosexuality, Part 1.” Available at this link: http://www.desiringgod.org/sermons/the-other-dark-exchange-homosexuality-part-1
  7. Bahnsen, Greg. Homosexuality. Kindle Version, Loc. 951.
  8. Bahnsen, Ibid., Loc. 951.
  9. Schreiner, Thomas. “A New Perspective On Homosexuality.” Available at this link: http://s3.amazonaws.com/tgc-documents/journal-issues/31.3_Schreiner.pdf
  10. In the main, four writers espouse these views: O. Sherwin Bailey (Homosexuality and the Western Christian Tradition; Longman Green, London; 1975); John Boswell (Christianity, Social Tolerance and Homosexuality;University Press, Chicago; 1980); Robin Scroggs (The New Testament and Homosexuality; Fortress, Philadelphia; 1983); and W. L. Peterson (“Can ARSENOKOITAI Be Translated by Homosexuals? 1 Corinthians 6.9; 1 Timothy 1.10”; VC 40; 187-91; 1986).
  11. Schreiner, Ibid.
  12. DeYoung, James B. “The Source And NT Meaning Of ARSENOKOITAI, With Implications For Christian Ethics and Ministry.” TMSJ 3/2 (Fall 1992). 191-215.;Adddtional references on this issue: David F. Wright. “Homosexuals Or Prostitutes?”. Vigillae Christianae 38. 1984. 125-153. E. J. Grill, Leiden.; Mark L. Strauss and Peter T. Vogt. “A Biblical Perspective On Homosexuality.” Available at this link: http://people.bethel.edu/~pferris/ot101/a-Biblical-perspective-booklet.pdf
  13. 1 Corinthians 6.11.

© Thomas P Hill. Website: www.masterministries.org.

 

The Necessity of Revival

 A Top 10 Emailed Podcast

Will God do it again? Throughout history, God has intervened in the affairs of mankind with a significant spiritual revival: Jacob at Bethel, King Hezekiah, Pentecost, The Great Awakening in early America.

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The world stands at a crossroads…Only a heaven sent revival will reverse the tumultuous decline…Listen to this podcast that calls for the needed revival. Listen…

Revolutionary Breakthrough: Jesus’ Unconditionally Loving Homosexuals?

Image courtesy of Serge Bertasius Photography at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Image courtesy of Serge Bertasius Photography at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

A Controversial Response To This Popular Belief

 

I never imagined that less than 3% of the U. S. population could bring this nation to its knees. One group, the LGBTQ (1) people, did it. Their demands force us into unconditionally loving them and approving them.

Photo by Serge Bertasius Photography

Photo by Serge Bertasius Photography

Mark Sandlin, an admired leader in this movement, wrote “Clobbering ‘Biblical’ Gay Bashing” in defense of homosexuality. (2) In it, Sandlin emphasized the necessity of unconditionally loving homosexuals.

The Unconditionally Loving Attitude of Jesus

To highlight his point, Sandlin used Jesus as an example of unconditionally loving everyone.

“Time and time again, Jesus made it clear that we should not put ourselves in the place of playing God and that, unlike far too many humans, God welcomes and loves us all equally. Period.” (3)

Sandlin then stressed the lack of an unconditionally loving attitude demonstrated by Christians toward homosexuals in contrast to Jesus’ unconditionally loving attitude to everyone.

“Many Christians have lost their way in this twisty, turny maze of how to practice (their) faith. (They) would much rather reinforce the things (they) want to believe than believe the sometimes difficult teachings of Jesus.” (4)

Sandlin assumed that Jesus’ unconditionally loving individuals included unconditionally approving their behavior, too. He did not and does not. This widely accepted fallacy contradicts the Biblical revelation of Christ’s treatment of sinners.

Jesus’ Unconditional Loving Treatment of Sin

Jesus loved individuals but He did not accept or approve of their sin. Take, for example, his encounter with a rich, young man. (5)

This young man came to Jesus with a question:

“Good Master, what shall I do that I may inherit eternal life? “ (6)

Jesus replied by quoting several provisions from God’s law as recorded in Exodus 20.1-17:

Thou knowest the commandments, Do not commit adultery, Do not kill, Do not steal, Do not bear false witness, Defraud not, Honour thy father and mother.” (7)

The young man said that he had kept each of those laws from his youth. Jesus looked at him, loved him, and replied,

“One thing thou lackest…” (8)

Jesus told the young man what he lacked, exposing his sins, and demanded that he forsake them and follow Him. The rich man departed Christ, because he did not want to forsake his sins.

Jesus’ unconditionally loving this man did not prevent Him from confronting the young man’s sins. In fact, it proved Christ’s love for the man.

On other occasions, Jesus combined compassionate love for people and correction for their sins.

  • He did not condemn the woman taken in adultery but warned her, “ go and sin no more.” (9)
  • Jesus met a man at the Pool called Bethesda and healed him. “ Afterward Jesus findeth him in the temple, and said unto him, sin no more, lest a worse thing come unto thee.” (10)
  • Jesus loved his disciples and often rebuked them for their sins, even saying to Peter, “Get thee behind me, satan.” (11)
  • Jesus used harsh words in His judgments upon sinners:
    • To a Syrophenician woman who requested a miracle: “…it is not meet to take the children’s bread, and to cast it unto the dogs.” (12)
    • In the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus called those who misjudged others, “Thou hypocrite, first cast out the beam in thine own eye…” (13)
    • In Matthew 23, Jesus used multiple punitive words to describe people:
      • “…blind guides…fools…” (14)
      • “…whited sepulchers (white washed tombs…)” (15)
      • “Ye serpents, ye generation of vipers…” (16)
    • His most severe statement, “Ye are of your father the devil…” (17)

When crowds gathered, Jesus identified their sins and called them to repentance. Jesus loved sinners but never approved of their sins. He always rebuked them for their sins and called them to forsake them. Jesus proved true love when He reproved sinners.

Christians’ Responsibilities on Unconditionally Loving Individuals

The Bible instructs Christians and the spiritual leaders of the Church to adopt the pattern of Christ. Christ followers must unconditionally love sinners. At the same time, we must rebuke and reprove sin in love and compassion.

The same way that good parents correct their children from harmful practices, the Church and Christ followers must demonstrate true love to sinners, including homosexuals, by admonishing them for their sins.

However, homosexuals reject the rebuke for their sins. They want the Church and Christians to unconditionally love them and approve of their sins, too.

Contrary to what the homosexual community proclaims, the Bible declares by the example of Christ and by exhortation to Christians the need for unconditionally loving sinners and rebuking their sin.

Conclusion

This combination does not come easily. It results from a life completely committed to Jesus Christ in reliance upon the Holy Spirit for enablement to fulfill these difficult terms.

Christ followers have a difficult responsibility to love others as Christ loved people. We must seek God’s supernatural ability to treat all people, not just those in the homosexual community, as Christ loved them and compassionately corrected them.

To those readers who long to experience the love of Christ as He demonstrated it, I urge you to respond to His call to you today to trust Him.

“For God so loved the world that He gave His only Son; that whosoever believed upon Him, would not perish but have everlasting life.” (18)

Jesus called those in distress to come unto Him and they would find comfort and rest. He promised relief from their burdens and sins to all who come to him.

“Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls.” (19)

References

  1. LGBTQ: lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer.
  2. To view Mark Sandlin’s article, use this link: http://www.thegodarticle.com/faith/clobbering-biblical-gay-bashing
  3. Sandlin, Ibid., p. 1, #4.
  4. Sandlin, Ibid., p. 2, #2.
  5. Mark 10.17-22.
  6. Mark 10.17.
  7. Mark 10.19.
  8. Mark 10.21.
  9. John 8.11.
  10. John 5.14.
  11. Matthew 16.23.
  12. Mark 7.27.
  13. Matthew 7.5.
  14. Matthew 23.16-17.
  15. Matthew 23.27.
  16. Matthew 23.33.
  17. John 8.44.
  18. John 3.16.
  19. Matthew 11.28-29.

© Thomas P Hill. Website: www.masterministries.org.

 

Monumental Perspectives on The Church’s Destiny

A Top 10 Sermon Transcription

Bible Text: Isaiah 59:1-2

In times of trouble, we frequently say, “I can see the light at the end of the tunnel.” I quoted that saying to a friend who cautioned, “The light at the end of the tunnel might be the light of an oncoming train.”

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We do not like to think about trouble ahead. Failure to discern accurately the present circumstances can produce surprises. Presently, the Church enjoys popularity. But, warning signs demand attention. Christians must evaluate monumental perspectives on the Church’s destiny.

Mankind rejects the idea of the wrath of God against sin. They say that it does not fit God’s character.

They distinguish between the God of the Old Testament and the God of the New Testament. The tribal God of the Old Testament was indeed an angry God, vengeful and punishing of sin.

But, they say, that description of God conflicts with the One they find in the New Testament. He is a God of love, compassion, and mercy.

Consequently, they hold no fear of God today for their sins. They show no concern for their transgressions against God.

The Church of Jesus Christ and believers reject this belief today, too. They show little concern for their transgressions against God and His discipline against sin.

This conclusion reveals itself in two ways: the diminution of sin and the elimination of God’s punishment against sin.

Believers diminish the significance and presence of sin in their lives in several fashions. Because it has become an abomination to Christians, they deny its reality in their behavior.

To many believers, it insults them to even suggest that sin lies at the doors of their lives. So it has become nonexistent to numerous Christians.

Other believers defend their sinfulness and that of others. They explain apparent offenses as the product of psychological or emotional distresses.

In addition, Christians excuse sinful behavior as the result of medical problems or the ever-reliable reliance upon “my constitution.” “That’s just the way I am,” they say.

Further, believers today defeat the naming of sin by denouncing past taboos as from an- other culture and time.

Besides that, believers define it in new terms. They call it a mistake or error. If all else fails, Christians eliminate the concept of the chastisement of God against sin in believers.

In support of their contention, they indicate the attributes of God that suggest relief of penalty.

For example, they:

  1. rely upon the grace of God and His compassion.
  2. rest upon the forgiveness of God for sin.
  3. recount Scripture references that seem to indicate that God does not judge the child of God (a favorite reference comes from Romans 8.1).

For these reasons, believers today conclude that they can sin without punishment, pen- alty, or harm from God.

Despite these claims, however, sin always has its consequences. As a result, the Church of Jesus Christ and Christians suffer the consequences of their unbelief.

  1. The Church lacks spiritual power and God’s manifest presence.
  2. Mankind is deified, and they deny glory to God. Their Christianity centers upon

self, not God.

  1. They degrade the death of Christ, which saves sinners from their sins.
  2. They grieve and quench the Holy Spirit, so He withdraws His presence and power

from them.

This erroneous doctrine reveals an ignorance of God’s word or a rejection of the Bible’s plain teaching. In either case, it causes unbelief and disobedience. It exposes the drastic need for spiritual revival in the Church and in believers.

The Church and the followers of Christ face a crossroads. They can continue to follow a fallacy, with its certain ruin, or they can correct their path with repentance unto spiritual renewal.

The cure will come as the result from an examination of the Scriptures for the truth fol- lowed by belief and obedience to it.

Virtually every book of the Bible discloses the truth concerning this important issue. God has not changed. He does, indeed, serve punishment upon believers for their evil actions.

One passage in particular confirms this truth. It is recorded in Isaiah 59:1-2:

“Behold, the LORD’S hand is not shortened, that it cannot save; neither his ear heavy, that it cannot hear: {2} But your iniquities have separated between you and your God, and your sins have hid his face from you, that he will not hear.”

From this passage, I want to examine some particular absolute truths about God’s disci- pline and punishment of sin and how it applies to the Church of Jesus Christ and your life today.

I pray that the Holy Spirit will clarify for you the truth, convict you of its need in your life, and correct you to bring a spiritual revival in you.

I pray that it will lead to the outpouring of the Holy Spirit in your life that will revolution- ize and transform you.

The objects of punishment

God first issued this message to His chosen people, Israel. It plainly identifies God’s an- ger and discipline against the Church in the Old Testament.

They had chosen a path of evil and rejected God. They made idols like unto their neighbors’ idols and worshipped them.

In the midst of their sinful practices, they continued to fast and to seek God. They tried to mix their offenses with true worship.

The evil behavior of God’s people caused Him to judge them for it. True to His nature, He punished them for their sin, as He always does.

This passage gives a picture of God’s response to the New Testament Church, too. He directed this correction to His people, not the heathen.

In like manner, the New Testament reveals God’s reproof of believers. Consider the Lord’s letters to His people recorded in Revelation 2-3.

In these two chapters, John set down the Lord’s evaluation to seven churches. In five of them, He clearly identified their evil and issued severe warnings of pending punishment. They could avoid it only by repentance from their sin.

In addition, recall Hebrews 12. This chapter, from verses 3-13, describes God’s chasten- ing of His children. Indeed, God does punish His chosen people for their sin.

Granted it does not include eternal condemnation. The substitutionary death of Christ on the cross paid that penalty for His people. Yet, He metes out punishment for believers’ unbelief and disobedience, too.

Sadly, many Christians reject this truth. Without a doubt they suffer punishment as a re- sult. Others endure it out of ignorance. In either case, the believer can find relief in the blood of Jesus Christ, the Advocate (1 John 2.1).

The cause of punishment

Another reading of the passage in Isaiah will identify the cause of God’s punishment of believers’ sins. He mentioned two different kinds of failures.

First, He cited their iniquities. This type of evil describes perversion or crooked behavior. It results from a purposeful distortion of the heart from right to wrong.

Second, God disclosed their sins. As you may know, the word “sins” has its roots in archery. It simply means to miss the mark.

It, then, describes evil behavior as small as a false step in faith or practice and as large as departure from the path of duty and right.

With these two words, God includes every sin from A to Z. It encompasses simple sins, even those done ignorantly. It consists of more severe evil behavior, deliberately prac- ticed. He finds no sin acceptable, no matter how innocent it seems.

These two words clearly identify God’s attitude toward sin. He does not condone it. Evil practices anger Him, including those by believers.

The kinds of punishment

Now take notice of the manner of God’s punishment for the unbelief and disobedience of His people. The passage identifies four distinct penalties for their evil.

First, He said,
“Behold, the Lord’s hand is not shortened, that it cannot save…”

This statement says that God withdrew from them. Because of their sins, they experienced attacks from enemies that they could not repel. They fell prey to their enemies who afflicted them.

In their distress, they longed for God’s mighty intervention on their behalf. But it did not come.

In mocking charge against God, some of His people blamed Him for His inadequacy. He could no longer exert feats of strength, they reasoned.

His power had waned. Or worse yet, they believed that it no longer applied to them. “He can’t or doesn’t act that way any longer,” they charged.

Still others, who believed that He could save them, cried out to Him for help. But, He gave them none.

To these conditions, God responds with His explanation. He has not changed. He is still omnipotent. He does not have a withered arm, nor has He ceased acting in power.

He can still defend His own, avenge their enemies, and bring salvation. He can rescue, deliver, and preserve His people. His ability has not declined nor ceased.

Their sins prevented His acting on their behalf with His mighty power. He withheld His omnipotence from them as a punishment for their sin.

He held back His defense. He removed His protection, and left them to their own abili- ties, mentally, emotionally, and physically. God refrained from intervening on their be- half.

Many believers today encounter this same condition. Although they desperately need God’s power on their behalf, they do not experience it.

They seek it in vain for the same reasons that the children of God in Isaiah’s time lacked it: iniquity and sin in their lives.

Second, the prophet reminded them,
“…neither his ear heavy, that it cannot hear.”

He disregarded their prayers. He refused to listen to their cries. He rejected the calls for help from His people and ignored them. He closed His ears to them.
In their defeat and despair, God’s people had accused Him of deafness. Since He did not answer their pleas, He must have become dull of hearing.

They concluded that He simply did not answer prayer any more. In fact, however, God had not become deaf but rejecting.

Isaiah told them that God’s disdain for their prayers resulted from their sin. His failure to answer came not from a lack of interest or inability. Nor had He ceased answering prayer. The prophet identified the root of the problem, their iniquities and sins against God.

Unanswered prayer plagues Christians today, too. The failure to repent from sin gives rise to God’s silence. As in Isaiah’s day, God disregards the prayers of His chosen ones because of the presence of iniquity and evil in believers’ lives.

Third, their sins separated them from fellowship with God. God was divided from His people. It did not mean that God had suddenly lost His omnipresence.

David answered this dilemma in Psalms 139:7-12:

“Whither shall I go from thy spirit? or whither shall I flee from thy pres- ence? {8} If I ascend up into heaven, thou art there: if I make my bed inhell, behold, thou art there. {9} If I take the wings of the morning, and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea; {10} Even there shall thy hand lead me, and thy right hand shall hold me. {11} If I say, Surely the darkness shall cover me; even the night shall be light about me. {12} Yea, the dark- ness hideth not from thee; but the night shineth as the day: the darkness and the light are both alike to thee.”

True, God’s presence is everywhere. Yet, He does not manifest and reveal Himself eve- rywhere and on every occasion.

Simply stated, sin breached the fellowship between God and His chosen people. Fre- quently, He withdrew His manifest presence from the Children of Israel because of their evil practices.

The New Testament confirms this truth. On the Road to Emmaus after His resurrection, Jesus kept the two travelers from recognizing Him (Luke 24.16). Again, in 1 John 1.5-7, the Holy Spirit reveals that God Who is light cannot fellowship with darkness.

Believers assume that His omnipresence guarantees His manifest presence. It does not.

That is why the Scriptures warn Christians against grieving, quenching, and resisting the Holy Spirit (Ephesians 4.30; 1 Thessalonians 5.19; Acts 7.51).

The lack of God’s manifest presence characterizes the Church of Jesus Christ today, per- haps even your life. Sin breaches the fellowship between God and His Church.

The presence of unconfessed sin permeates the Body of Christ and produces an anemic and apathetic Church.

We lack His supernatural authority and ability. Like the Israelites, we explain His ab- sence by saying He does not act that way any more. When in reality, our sins and iniqui- ties have separated us from His manifest presence.

Fourth, God hid His face from them. The statement in Isaiah 59.2 literal describes one who places a veil over his head to conceal his face.

In preparation of their entry into the Promised Land, God had warned the Children of is- rael that He would hide His face from them, if they turned away from Him into sin (Deu- teronomy 31.17-18; 32.30).

More than once He did exactly what He had promised. The reign of evil kings in Judah and Israel and their ultimate banishment to Babylon confirms it. Their constant problems with their enemies as recorded in Judges verify it, too.

He did not turn His face back to them until they repented. When they turned from their evil ways, He turned His face toward them again.

In like manner today, God has turned His face from the Church because of Her sins. The signs of self-dependence arise everywhere.

  1. The increased dependence upon mechanisms, methods, and manpower illustrate it.
  2. The lukewarm Church fights for survival.
  3. Spiritual weakness and Biblical relativity characterize the current Church.

He will not turn His face toward His people until we repent.

How will you respond to these truths? You can reaffirm them; reject them; or ignore them.

I pray that God’s Spirit will apply them to you today. I pray that you will find relief through Christ’s blood by repentance from sin. He will revive and transform your life.

© Thomas P Hill. Website: www.masterministries.org.

 

 

Revolutionary Perspectives on Mega-Church Controversies

A Top 10 Sermon Transcription

Charles Haddon Spurgeon(1834 – 1892), a powerful and effective English Baptist preacher, faced in his day the same modern mega Church controversies and Church growth proposals advocated today.

He stood staunchly against them and preached against them. This short article contains a few of his replies to these unBiblical, evil schemes. I pray that the Holy Spirit will use this article to reveal to you the truth and apply it in your life.

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Feeding Sheep or Amusing Goats?

An evil is in the professed camp of the Lord, so gross in its impudence, that the most shortsighted can hardly fail to notice it. During the past few years, it has developed at an abnormal rate, even for evil. It has worked like leaven until the whole lump ferments.

The devil has seldom done a cleverer thing than hinting to the Church that part of their mission is to provide entertainment for the people, with a view to winning them.

From speaking out, as the Puritans did, the Church has gradually toned down her testimony, then winked at and excused the frivolities of the day. Then she tolerated them in her borders. Now she has adopted them under the plea of reaching the masses.

My first contention is that providing amusement for the people is nowhere spoken of in the Scriptures as a function of the Church. If it is a Christian work, why did not Christ speak of it? “Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature” (Mark 16:15).

That is clear enough. So it would have been if he had added, “and provide amusement for those who do not relish the gospel.” No such words, however, are to be found. It did not seem to occur to him.

Then again, “He gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers…for the work of the ministry” (Ephesians 4:11-12). Where do entertainers come in?

The Holy Spirit is silent concerning them. Were the prophets persecuted because they amused the people or because they refused? The concert has no martyr roll.

Again, providing amusement is in direct antagonism to the teaching and life of Christ and all his apostles. What was the attitude of the Church to the world? “Ye are the salt” (Matt. 5:13), not the sugar candy-something the world will spit out, not swallow.

Short and sharp was the utterance, “Let the dead bury their dead” (Matt. 8:22). He was in awful earnestness! Had Christ introduced more of the bright and pleasant elements into his mission, he would have been more popular when they went back, because of the searching nature of his teaching.

I do not hear him say, “Run after these people, Peter, and tell them we will have a different style service tomorrow, something short and attractive with little preaching. We will have a pleasant evening for the people. Tell them they will be sure to enjoy it. Be quick, Peter, we must get the people somehow.”

Jesus pitied sinners, sighed and wept over them, but never sought to amuse them.

In vain will the Epistles be searched to find any trace of the gospel of amusement. Their message is, “Come out, keep out, keep clean out!” Anything approaching fooling is conspicuous by its absence. They had boundless confidence in the gospel and employed no other weapon.

After Peter and John were locked up for preaching, the Church had a prayer meeting, but they did not pray, “Lord grant unto thy servants that by a wise and discriminating use of innocent recreation we may show these people how happy we are.”

If they ceased not for preaching Christ, they had not time for arranging entertainments.

Scattered by persecution, they went everywhere preaching the gospel. They “turned the world upside down” (Acts 17:6). That is the only difference! Lord, clear the Church of all the rot and rubbish the devil has imposed on her, and bring us back to apostolic methods.

Lastly, the mission of amusement fails to effect the end desired. It works havoc among young converts. Let the careless and scoffers, who thank God because the Church met them halfway, speak and testify. Let of the heavy-laden who found peace through the concert not keep silent! Let the drunkard to whom the dramatic entertainment had been God’s link in the chain of the conversion, stand up!

There are none to answer. The mission of amusement produces no converts.

The need of the hour for today’s ministry is believing scholarship joined with earnest spirituality, the one springing from the other as fruit from the root. The need is Biblical doctrine, so understood and felt, that it sets men on fire.

 

 

 

 

You Shouldn’t Always Follow Popularity

A Top Ten Podcast

Temptations to follow popularity arise every day. The Church poses no exception. Churches follow popularity in their selection of leaders, a foolhardy practice. The Apostle Paul warned Timothy to avoid this temptation.

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How does Paul’s warning apply to the church today? Take a few minutes and listen to this solid Biblical message for today’s Christians.

 

Revolutionary Papal Errors to Reject

A Top 10 Blog Article: 55,000 Page Views

 

Pope Francis stunned the world again. Since he became Pope, he created frequent controversies with his statements. His comments on political commentary, evolution, and belief in God provoked Vatican dismay.

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One time, Pope Francis even misapplied the Bible. He joined politicians and religious leaders in a new wave of Bible thumpers. Like others, the Pope attempted to use the Bible to support his reform agenda.

To the astonishment of many, those who reject the Bible as true and authoritative for life and ban it from public forums, quote Jesus to reinforce their arguments and influence approval of their programs. Jesus rides a new wave of popularity!

The Pope’s recent use of Jesus’ quotes exploits Christ and His message. Pope Francis’ inaccuracies developed these revolutionary Papal errors to reject.

The Story Behind the Story

Pope Francis used the story of Zacchaeus from Luke 19.1-10 to suggest “legitimate redistribution” of money to the poor. (1) A brief explanation of the story changes the erroneous use of this story by Pope Francis.

Zacchaeus belonged to a profession called publicans. According to Roman Law, publicans could tax Jews as they chose. They levied exorbitant taxes by frequent use of fraud and extortion, angering the Jews. (2)

Luke described the time that Jesus visited Zacchaeus’ hometown of Jericho. Jesus invited Himself to Zacchaeus’ home when He saw him sitting in a tree to get a good view of Jesus.

As a result of their meeting, Zacchaeus repaid those whom he had cheated. In addition, he gave substantial funds to the poor.

Pope Francis’ Misuse of the Bible

In part, Zacchaeus repaid his victims as retribution according to Biblical Law. He provided the other gifts to the poor out of concern for their lot.

At no point in the account does Luke indicate coercion or requirement from the government for him to make his payments to those whom he defrauded or to the poor.

Further, nowhere does the Bible direct government to assume these responsibilities. In fact, God warned Israel, when they desired a king, that the king would extract taxes from them, contrary to God’s plans. (3)

Pope Francis’ misinterprets this story to support his call for the government to redistribute wealth from the rich to the poor. The facts of the story reveal revolutionary Papal errors to reject.

God’s Plan to Care For The Poor

Similar to Pope Francis, many misinterpret and misapply sayings of Jesus when they relate to care for the poor.

The Bible explains God’s plan on how to care for the poor. He commands families to provide for their family member’s needs (not wants).

When the poor cannot receive sufficient help from their families, the Bible teaches that other individuals and the Church express their love for God by contributing to their needs.

This story conforms to the Biblical pattern of personal responsibility in financial matters and care for the poor. Zacchaeus met his obligations to those whom he defrauded and to the deprived.

Christians and the Church neglect Biblical mandates to care for the poor. However, two wrongs do not make it right. The Church and believers must assume their accountabilities for the unfortunate.

Effects of Biblical Misuse

The misuse of Biblical texts always leads to false conclusions, twisting the truth of the totality of the Bible. A text out of context distorts its true meaning. Another abuse twists the sense of a statement from its clear significance.

Misuse of Biblical texts leads to hypocrisy in the lives of those who dare to use the Bible to support their personal agendas. While they put words into Jesus’ mouth for their positions, they discard His clear directions on others.

Jesus did make commands for all people to follow, which the Pope and others overlook or reject. One cannot pick those parts of the Bible that appear to support a personal plan and reject those that they do not like.

For example:

  • Jesus condemned sexual immorality of all kinds, including homosexuality. (4)
  • Jesus vilified hypocrisy in those who feigned belief in the Bible. (5)
  • He outlined marriage between a man and a woman. (6)

Those quick to take words from the Bible and Jesus out of context reject these and other clear statements from the Bible.

Jesus presented Himself as the only Savior for sinners. He offered eternal life, His life, to all who would believe upon him. (7) He confirmed His offer by saying that He would accept everyone who came to Him. (8)

Millions of people, including me, have taken Jesus at His word and trusted upon Him. We have found Him faithful to His promises.

Perhaps, you have never heard of Jesus’ offer for people like you and me. Or, maybe you have accepted the popular but inaccurate interpretations of the Bible and Christ’s message. It results in the misapplication and misuse of them to your eternal detriment.

In any event, you can begin a new life today. I pray that God’s Holy Spirit will come to you today, give you that new life, and enable you to trust the clear statements of Jesus.

References

  1. See this link for further information on Pope Francis’ comments: http://ncronline.org/blogs/distinctly-catholic/pope-francis-zacchaeus-and-un
  2. WORDsearch Bible Software v. 10. “International Standard Bible Encyclopedia: “Tax; Taxing.”
  3. 1 Samuel 8.1-18.
  4. Matthew 15.19-20.
  5. Matthew 23.
  6. Matthew 19.3-6.
  7. John 3.16; 5.24.
  8. John 6.37.

© Thomas P Hill. Website: www.masterministries.org.