These are your responses this past month of November 2012 to both our new posts and those existing posts with new comments! We pray these will spur us all on to love and good works.
First, we show the link to the individual post, then followed by your comments and our replies. Every grace to you all today, dear one! And thanks for writing…
Thanks for sharing the thoughts. I sent a copy to all of our congregational members and then also had a brief open discussion of it in our church service.
Many blessings to you.
Thx dear brother…let us know their thoughts if you will…
WHO IS THE ” harlot “? Challenged is where we should always be in a WORKING relationship ! Complacency CAUSES a drifting apart. (of course my own opinion )
BRILLIANT ARTICLE ! I am a white ” Africa ” living in Canada. I see this as a WORLD state. Africa and Canada and everywhere I’ve been ….
Great work Marc. Keep it up _ love ur site !
Thx marcelle — keep up the work in His vineyard!
Hello David, I love your writing, and your teaching, there is much that I share and respond to. This one has me thinking…and I’d like to share. I do not believe that WE are the Bride of Christ. Revelation 3:12 tells me that the Bride of Christ is New Jerusalem. When your student put the “worldly” question as to if the church is a business, then wouldn’t that business or church, or body be a prostitute?
Well, if we are God’s Children, and Jesus is our Brother, how can we “legally” be the Bride of Christ? Wouldn’t that be incestuous? God is my FATHER. Jesus IS my BROTHER. To marry Him would be against all legalisms, correct? I think that this is a new teaching that most Christians revolt because they feel they are the Bride, and do not want to have that stolen from them. But if we are going to take God’s Word literal, and live by it, like we DO, then how can we marry our brother? We can’t. I take God’s promises very literal. I take them as if they are meant just for me, and that when I call Him on a promise He cannot answer that promise.
A prayer, if it’s in His Will is different…but He promises us if we BELIEVE we WILL have what we ask. We can ask for our 100 year old grandmother to get well, but that’s not something that in this world is always real. Our bodies wear out. We cannot pick and choose what parts of the Bible we are going to take as real or not real, or literal or not literal.
If America made the church a business which it has, and is very lucrative because of it, then I believe that marrying my brother is just as bad as being a prostitute. I am curious as to what you think? Thanks for listening. This is a very controversial teaching. But it makes perfect sense to me. I have a very intimate relationship with my Father, and my Brother. I don’t expect to marry either one.
Geri – good to hear from you – this was a re-post from David..and your comment are heart inspired – thanks so very much. But beware of taking non-literal passages in the Word literal. Plucking out our eye or moving actual mountains are but two examples of hyperbole, or extreme exaggeration. The bride is the New Jerusalem is the headquarters that contains the saints…you and I.
Sort of like when He wept over Jerusalem, He was weeping over the people, the Judeans (Jews). So, it’s not an either-or but a both (this)-and (this). Jesus also said His mother was His brother, etc. It’s a rhetorical style to get our attention that He really means business here!
Thank you very much for your healing and bible messages. i really love the messages. may God bless you
Thanks so much for the encouragement! Pray for us that God gives us continued strength and to overcome all the opposition to the truth..
She was wrong, because she confused tribulation that we have on earth with the wrath of God. We go through more or less suffering now, depending on where the Lord has placed us, but that comes from other people and is only permitted by God. After the church is removed, God himself will be unleashing his wrath on those who dwell on the earth.
Oliver – no, I don’t she’s far from the true truth. There’s a convincing argument that we have misunderstood the wrath of God and the remaining believers during the great tribulation. In any event, the pre-trib view is very very weak and was never embraced by the early church!
Thank you for sharing the words of that dear saint. Here are some other Scriptures that reinforce her message.
2 Thess. 2:1-4: “Concerning the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ and our being gathered to him, we ask you, brothers, not to become easily unsettled or alarmed by some prophecy, report or letter supposed to have come from us, saying that the day of the Lord has already come. Don’t let anyone deceive you in any way, for that day will not come until the rebellion occurs and the man of lawlessness is revealed, the man doomed to destruction. He will oppose and will exalt himself over everything that is called God or is worshiped, so that he sets himself up in God’s temple, proclaiming himself to be God.”
Our being gathered to him will not take place “until after the rebellion occurs and the man of lawlessness is revealed.”
Revelation 12:11b: “They did not love their lives so much as to shrink from death.”
Matt – good point – this is a tough call for any of us…but the pre-trib case seems to be the weakest of all!
Although I agree with most of Corrie’s message, I believe in a pre-tribulational rapture. The proof-text at the beginning is widely misinterpreted: Matt 24:31 is referring to the re-gathering of Israel after the Battle of Armageddon. It would have been obvious to the disciples hearing Jesus, as the language parallels many OT passages. (See Isa 66:18-24). Many confuse rapture prophecies with 2nd coming prophecies. They are two different events. I wish we could get together sometime and go over all this. God bless you!
Brother Hugh – any of this is a tough call! Why do you suppose the earliest church leaders closest to the time of Jesus never even talked about the pre-trib view and preached the post-trib view? thx for writing…
This is a topic I know a little about. I don’t so much study the poor, I live among them. Yancey either states or hints at two big blessings that the poor have over those of us who have more advantages.
1) they don’t pretend to be virtuous. None of us are virtuous (by our own efforts), but middle and upper class people pretend to be. If you don’t believe it, just go to church on Sunday and watch and listen closely, starting with the preacher.
Poor people know who they are – needy people.
2) they are primed for redemption. Needy people know they need to be rescued. Less needy people go out of their way to pretend that they are good enough, capable enough, sufficient enough to redeem themselves. The poor don’t suffer from such illusions.
Those of us in the west who are already rich in goods have little understanding. But with God all things are possible…even going through the eye of the needle. Praise God – and thanks again for your usual insight dear brother.
You are blessed for touching on this topic. Blessings.
Thx brother Dennis! It is one where it’s swept under the rug in almost all groups.
I used to hate how he would cause a fight, yell at me, never ask forgiveness and then demand sex! At the point I least felt prepared for such a ‘holy’ act and yet if I refused the madness only got worse.
The last thing he said to me that killed any desire in me to want to stay in such an ungodly nightmare was that he was no longer attracted to me…yet what I know is that his psychosis medication can cause a loss of libido…yet he thinks I’m the problem
Anyway, we survive and as you said…”pray like crazy!”
One thing I would like to mention here is that dominating theme of cause and effect you used throughout your article. In my domestic violence class I learnt that for every abuser there are also many standing with the abuser who will then also victimize the victim and in religious groups this is very prevalent.
When a woman is blamed for her husbands poor behaviour you can guarantee you are only adding to her despair. Here are something’s that victimizers will say to the women:
‘You must have provoked him’
‘You are hysterical’
‘You deserve it’ – this is very subtle when a pastor is guilt tripping the wife for her ungodly behaviour in response to his, basically saying that we deserve the punishment our sin brings. Maybe God is like that…
‘You should try harder’
He is sick and needs your help’
‘It’s good for you, keeps you in line.’
Every woman should know whose boss!’
‘You are his wife, it’s YOUR duty to please him.’
‘There must be something wrong with you.’
‘You should stay and fix it for the sake of the children.’
And I could keep listing the many comments thrown at a woman who is powerless over her husbands behaviour.
In each of your addresses to both partners you were also saying that their behaviour must change purely so the other person changes. Rarely was eithers behaviour addressed in regard to their own salvation.
We are commanded to walk in love…like Christ…and when He does it He never honed in on anyone’s multiple sins of the flesh, he never gave a long list of behaviour modifications they must make in order to cause another to change…He spoke of His Father’s House and a Kingdom not of this world and the kingdom this world is under and how we are not to judge by the flesh because only God knows the heart. Jesus approached people with ‘true justice’ which is mercy and compassion for the captivity we are under. He came with patience toward all, kindness toward all, long suffering toward all etc….the ministry that brought death was the law and it unveils our sinful nature and yet at the same time it unveils Our Redeemer.
We love because He loved us first, a man and a woman must first be allowing Christ to live His love in them and for them and only then can The Spirit overflow to the other in them spiritual songs of joy you spoke of…they come spontaneously in response to the love Christ is pouring forth within.
Most couples know that we demand from our spouse what only Christ can give because we too believe that if God dwells in our spouse then they bloody well should act like God…and fail to see we do.
we’re so so sorry to hear about your suffering in this. I’ve modified the article to be clearer on seeking help if he is an abuser, even if getting him to move out for a while is the best move.
Demonic deliverance is a must for both parties. And be certain you’re fulfilling your sexual role in keeping this part squeaky clean in your relationship. My heart goes out to you, dear one…do you have other Christian folks you can be accountable to at this time?
Thank you very much for the message. God bless you all.
Sister Felicia — you’re so very welcome. If you have any add on’s to this, please write and let us know!
So true, we are one day closer to the day without end. To live in the kingdom of God, is to live by the Spirit within you. Every day we are given, is to please Christ. How do we please Him? live the very life given to Him by the Father.
Father is seeking those who will worship Him in Spirit and in Truth. Holy Spirit teaches Christ & Christ teaches the Father. to live by the Spirit, is favor with our king.
Filling the Kingdom, that’s what God wants, and God wants us to bear fruit, His fruit of His Righteousness. Glory to God the fruit, are more souls set free and redeemed back unto God. so the fruit from the ONLY TRUE SEED, is Christ Jesus, now reproduce that about 7 billion times or so a kingdom worthy of the rewards
Jesus the Living Christ. One day closer to Home! YES AMEN!!!
Yes, dear brother! The true seed and one day closer…
interesting. A while back I asked God to define for me what holiness means – I heard “separation unto Me”. Jesus said that we should be perfect, even as our Father in heaven is perfect. How may we be perfect or perfected or perfectly please the Father, as Jesus did? We are made perfect in LOVE – and in LOVE is the fulfillment of every righteous requirement of the Law. Paul wrote in Romans 8 that there is therefore now NO CONDEMNATION (the law of condemnation) to those who are IN CHRIST – and in verse 9, “However, you are NOT IN THE FLESH if so be that the Spirit of God dwells in you”.
12. And we testified to you that you should strive according to what pleases God, He who called you to His Kingdom and glory. Victor Alexander Aramaic Trans.
So, what is it that “pleases” God? It is our fulfillment in Love and His fulfillment in us. This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased – which is the original idiom is “In whom I am fulfilled”. Jesus perfectly pleased the Father by HAVING THE FAITH OF GOD and DOING NOTHING EXCEPT THAT HE FIRST SEE THE FATHER. He imitated His Father, as we ought to imitate Him as children.
To put it simply, this type of faith is not made manifest except by prayer and fasting – and prayer is NOT communication WITH God, it is the communication OF God and the expression and manifestation of His will. If our will is fully submitted to God’s will, then it is God’s will which shall be done, as in heaven, so in the earth, and we shall ask what we will (which is God’s will) and it shall be done, having already been done in heaven.
The joy of the Lord is our strength or our fulfillment – our strength is the joy of the Lord – and in our weakness or yielded-ness, we are made most potent, as he fills us with Himself as we become conformed to His image.
Only Jesus is able to make all stand before Him, and all shall be made to stand before the podium of Christ. The way we read the scriptures is so often conditioned by culture, by tradition (and we know what that does to The Word of God) or by doctrines of devils. The only safe way is to ask Jesus where we have been leavened by conditionality and burdened by Pharisees and diverted from the simplicity which is in Christ and prevented from entering in to the kingdom. Did you get that?
It is the burdening of believers with conditionality which prevents them entering in and seeing God, and without separation from this, no man shall see or perceive God – you are the blind led by the blind, stumbled by the Sanhedrin. Oh foolish Galatians, this is what Paul was talking about! It is the leaven of the Pharisees which is hypocrisy – Paul was saying be single-minded and not hypocritical and do what is pleasing to God the Father, which is to do nothing except that you see Him do it first. What pleases God is that we should love, one to another, even as he first loved us, from the beginning, a New Commandment, not graven in tables of stone by in our hearts. And that is good preaching.
22. And Jesus replied and told them, “You should have faith in God.
23. “For, amen, I am telling you, that whoever tells this mountain here, ‘take
up and fall into the sea,’ and he does not doubt (divide) in his heart, except he believes
that what he says shall happen, he shall have what he says.
24. “Because of this, I am telling you, that whatever you pray and ask for, believe that you will receive, and it shall be given to you.
25. “And when you stand to pray, forgive (release) what you have against people, so that your Father in heaven shall also forgive your foolishness.
26. “However, if you do not forgive, neither will your Father in heaven forgive (release) your foolishness.”
thx brother Ian – as always, a well thought out post from the heart! we love the fact you turn to the scriptures to make your points. He did do what He saw and heard from the Father – was in John 8 this very AM…Prayer is communication with God as well – ie give us this day our daily bread, forgive us our sins, etc. be blessed dear one – one day closer to Home and Him!
I am a man of unclean lips What can anyone reply to such wise words. Amen brother.
Blessed are the pure in heart for they shall see God!
Marc, I totally agree with your points above. I just don’t believe that not voting is the answer. I would love to have a true Christian candidate..but I don’t. Shouldn’t Christians be involved in civic things? How will we be a light in the darkness if we don’t take the responsibility seriously? God is indeed in control. He also does work through us often.
Sister Penny —
Your heart is as big as Texas dear one as you yearn to help make the darkness light. Was Paul or the other apostles involved in civic things? No…and that’s a bitter pill to swallow for those of us steeped in American history.
Let’s do what the early church and apostles did…praying, fasting, evangelizing, discipling, admonishing…the clear things we’re commanded to do thru the Spirit’s great power. Jesus will lead the way. America is like the Titanic – sinking, lost…the kingdom of God is growing and that’s our rightful place.
Take care and thx for commenting…
I’d be interested in your comments on voting for local civic governance, school boards, and the like. Any area where the representation is still regarded as more administrative in nature.
For myself and my family, as much as we might be interested in voting (less “wanting” given the crop of candidates at state and federal level)–that option has been taken away by moving and technical troubles getting in absentee forms. So… praise God for his provision!
I’ve already promised not to whine about politics for four years, as I think is right for any that do not vote. It’s also more appropriate for believers in the God-appointed environment of political leadership.
Brother Jonathan –
great question! in the area of local civic voting, my wife and I will vote for the various amendments – except one that deals with the public school system – we are dead set against the agenda of the new agers and globalists who control the school system – we’re supporters of home school and higher education from home or local Godly sources – we also propose that current home schoolers help single moms who must work to take their kids in to their own homes during the week..
I like to say God is a macro-manager, not a micro-manager. Plus context determines meaning, and to take a verse out of the middle of its context is one of the worst sins that any bible teacher or Christ-follower can make.
as a true bible teacher you know the meaning of accuracy and the weight of correct interpretation on the teachers. thx for your unswerving loyalty to the Master and His Word!
Marc, another example is ( God would have -all- men be saved and come to a knowledge of the truth). This is Gods primary will, however mans freedom of will disrupts Gods heartfelt desire by rejecting his redeemer and saviour.
a very good example…he desires none to perish!
I believe that “all”, unless otherwise stated, means “all.” Jesus, in fact, DID do “ALL” things through His abiding relationship with His Father. Any failure on our part to do “all” things lies not with God but in our failure to trust in His power and abide.
Brother Jeff — good point. God is flawless in “all” things! and we can be perfectly mature as commanded.
The question is not what “all” means, but what “in Christ” means.
hi chip – I’ve followed and enjoyed your work for years now – thx for your work in His vineyard — not sure how to take your comment here – I agree that in Christ is a key to life in the Spirit – but that was not my point here other than a short post on correct exegesis. we have much lacking in our culture and combined with the hyper fierce independent Corinthian spirit we attempt to inject teaching to help all on the christ – I assume you’re trying to correct me here – so it’s not and either-or but a both-and — blessings dear brother.
In my frustration with the dead and apathetic Western church, I often wonder how many of my fellow believers feel the same way? I believe there are many who long for a deeper experience with God, but who are lukewarm because all their brethren are also lukewarm.
I remember David Wilkerson’s testimony in “The Cross and the Switchblade.” One day he asked God: “What would happen if I prayed two hours every night instead of watching TV?” His ministry took a dramatic turn after that! We should all examine ourselves and how we spend our time. I know I am. Thanks for reminding us, brother!
Thx as always for your thoughtful and provoking response. let’s begin praying together dear brother – we can do it!
see also http://walkworthy.org/2012/04/americas-church-critiqued-by-american-missionary-leader-dear-brethren-8/
So true! Oh that the LORD would raise up voices like this in every nation.
Yes indeed…Paris didn’t even recall what he had said so the story goes. The Spirit was hitting the nail on the head…thx so much for writing. Let’s catch up soon by phone.
Powerful message, powerfully told, convicting.
Rarely have we heard such a message to us all from the Holy Spirit — I, for one, have fallen into the trap of preaching the humanistic gospel for way too long. No more with God’s help…it reminds me of a letter I received from a cross cultural missionary from America a few years ago…AMERICA’S CHURCH CRITIQUED BY AMERICAN MISSIONARY LEADER [DEAR BRETHREN 8] http://walkworthy.org/?p=2642
This was very needed. Thank you, Marc, for this posting, as well as you own words.
We appreciate your enCOURAGEment for fight on! This message is timeless and needs to be told — keep presssing on dear one for we’re all one day closer to Home and Him!
We do need to get really real, obedient, serious, repent of things I should have done not only sins I have committed. Pray for each other, and become living vessels, God’s hands extended. I never want to hear, “I never knew you” Holy Spirit cleanses me, use me, direct me, what is it you would have me do in these last days. Amen
Thx for your comments here…God is, yes, very serious about our obedience to Him and His law of Christ – It’s the only way we can prove our undying love for Him and His Son! thx again..
Saints, we’re one day closer to Home, and Him! Love Him wholeheartedly!
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