CHAPTER ONE: YE MUST BE BORN AGAIN, WISDOM, REPENTANCE, JESUS-THE WORD OF GOD, PERFECT?, OVERCOME!
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CHAPTER THREE CHAPTER
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CHRISTIAN FORUMS-PRAYER REQUESTS-QUESTIONS-COMMENTS!
EXCEPT A MAN BE BORN AGAIN, HE CANNOT SEE THE KINGDOM OF GOD
First John 4:6, “We are of God; he that knoweth God heareth us; he that is not of God heareth not us. Hereby know we the spirit of truth, and the spirit of error.” The Bible never made sense to me before I was born again, but you must be born again to enter into the Kingdom of God and see or understand the spiritual realm that is all around us in this world. John 3:1-8, “There was a man of the Pharisees, named Nicodemus, a ruler of the Jews: The same came to Jesus by night, and said unto Him, Rabbi, we know that thou art a teacher come from God; for no man can do these miracles that thou doest, except God be with Him. Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, except a man be born again, he cannot see (eido-understand-behold-perceive) the Kingdom of God. Nicodemus saith unto Him, How can a man be born when he is old? Can he enter the second time into his mother's womb, and be born? Jesus answered, verily, verily, I say unto thee, except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the Kingdom of God. That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit.
Marvel not that I said unto thee, Ye must be born again. The wind bloweth where it listeth, and thou hearest the sound thereof, but canst not tell whence it cometh, and whither it goeth: so is every one that is born of the Spirit.
Nicodemus answered and said unto him, How can these things be? Jesus answered and said unto him, Art thou a master of Israel, and knowest not these things? Verily, verily, I say unto thee, we speak that we do know, and testify that we have seen; and ye receive not our witness. If I have told you earthly things, and ye believe not, how shall ye believe, if I tell you of heavenly things?”
I have been born again twice. The first time I was eighteen and had no man to teach me about receiving the Holy Spirit and the second time was on October 18, 1983 at 3PM as I unknowingly obeyed Acts 20:21, “Repentance toward God, and faith toward our Lord Jesus Christ.” and God placed me in a church that would take a month and teach on nothing but the Holy Spirit. I determined in my heart to do things God’s way and was born again at work on October 18, 1983 at 3PM and received the Holy Spirit on November 26, 1983 at about 11PM driving on I-10 east just past downtown Houston. If you haven’t been born again you will not understand what God is trying to say from this point onward.
Stop right now and talk to God and tell Him you want to do things His way and ask Him to open your understanding so that you can understand His Word and become profitable for the Master’s use. Luke 24:45, “Then opened He their understanding, that they might understand the scriptures.” Second Timothy 2:19-21, “Nevertheless the foundation of God standeth sure, having this seal, The Lord knoweth them that are His. And let everyone that nameth the name of Christ depart from iniquity. But in a great house there are not only vessels of gold and of silver, but also of wood and of earth; and some to honour and some to dishonour. If a man therefore purge himself from these, he shall be a vessel unto honour, sanctified and meet [euchrestos-profitable] for the Master's use, and prepared unto every good work.”
THE BORN AGAIN PROCESS
Life is a spiritual journey. From the minute we enter our mother’s womb until our spirit being returns to God we are on a spiritual journey and that spiritual being in a body of flesh is dead and can’t get anything done until it is born of the Spirit. Ephesians 2:5, “But God, who is rich in mercy, for His great love wherewith He loved us, even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ” Definition of quickened is to reanimate conjointly with, to make one alive together. Definition of reanimate is 1. To restore to life; resuscitate. 2. To give fresh vigor, spirit, or courage to. 3. To stimulate.
Over the years I have heard many versions of being born again and mine is based on my testimony and the Word of God. Revelation 12:11, “And they [the brethren] overcame him [satan] by the blood of the Lamb, and by the word of their testimony; and they loved not their lives unto the death.” One of the few things that I knew when I was a sinner was that Jesus died on the Cross and took away the sins of the world. John 1:29, “The next day John seeth Jesus coming unto him, and saith, Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world.” I also needed to know, Ephesians 2:4, “But God, who is rich in mercy, for His great love wherewith He loved us even when we were dead in sins.” and John 3:16-17, “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life. For God sent not His Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through Him might be saved.”
I needed to know that even as a sinner that God loved me and gave His only begotten Son for me and was waiting with open arms for me to come to Him.I was confirmed in the Methodist Church in 1952, walked the aisle of a Church of Christ in 1958 and walked the aisle of a large charismatic church in 1980, but I was not born again until October the 18th, 1983 at three pm and since that time I have cried out to God on a variety of subjects and asked Him “why.” God loves to answer questions and I have kept Him quite busy in the last 31 plus years answering my questions. I feel like anytime God reveals something to us, He wants us to share what He reveals to us with anyone that will listen and I would like to take this opportunity to share what He has taught me with you and see if we, as Christian’s, can find a way to come into one accord on being born again and becoming a Christian.
On October the eighteenth 1983 at 3 pm, I knew for a fact that I was a different person, because I was a sinner for 43 years and I used to be very unhappy if I didn't get to sin and I would even brag about my sins. After I was born again I would tell people I was born again and they would just look at me and say, “What about all that stuff you did?” I didn't know, but I knew I was born again. What happened when I was born again to make me know I was different? I didn't know what had happened but just like a gust of wind will blow your hat off I knew I was changed.
John 3:1-8, “There was a man of the Pharisees, named Nicodemus, a ruler of the Jews: The same came to Jesus by night, and said unto Him, Rabbi, we know that thou art a teacher come from God; for no man can do these miracles that thou doest, except God be with Him. Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, except a man be born again, he cannot see (eido-understand-behold-perceive) the Kingdom of God. Nicodemus saith unto Him, How can a man be born when he is old? Can he enter the second time into his mother's womb, and be born? Jesus answered, verily, verily, I say unto thee, except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the Kingdom of God. That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit.
Marvel not that I said unto thee, Ye must be born again. The wind bloweth where it listeth, and thou hearest the sound thereof, but canst not tell whence it cometh, and whither it goeth: so is every one that is born of the Spirit.”
Jesus was telling Nicodemus that he must be born again to see and enter the Kingdom of God. Nicodemus didn't understand this and in verse four he says, “How can a man be born when he is old? Can he enter a second time into his mother's womb and be born?” The word Jesus was using that was translated “born” is from the Greek word “gennao” and it means, “to procreate (properly of the father, but by extension of the mother); figuratively to regenerate:-bear, beget, be born, bring forth, conceive, be delivered of, gender, make, spring.”
It was a single word that contained the three-fold process of the natural physical birth, conception, development, and delivery. To Nicodemus Jesus was literally saying that he had to be physically born again and in verses 5 and 6 Jesus explains, “Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the Kingdom of God. That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit.” Jesus was telling Nicodemus that we all have to be born of the flesh, or a natural birth, plus we all must be born of the Spirit, or a spiritual birth.
THE BORN AGAIN PROCESS THROUGH THE PARABLE OF THE SOWER
Throughout the pages of Christian Unity Through God’s Starter Kit By Jesus we will use “The Parable of the Sower” as found in Matthew 13:3-9 & 18-23, Mark 4:3-9 & 14-20 and Luke 8:5-8 & 11-15 to illustrate various stages of spiritual growth, such as, born again, truth, righteousness, peace with God, faith, prayer life, healing, financial prosperity, our marriages, our ministries, etc., etc and can be used at any time in our Christian walk to determine our spiritual condition. We are going to use Mark 4:1-20 as the scripture basis to illustrate the born again process.
Mark 4:1-20, “And He [Jesus] began again to teach by the sea side: and there was gathered unto Him a great multitude, so that He entered into a ship, and sat in the sea; and the whole multitude was by the sea on the land. And He taught them many things by parables, and said unto them in His doctrine, Hearken; Behold, there went out a sower to sow.
And it came to pass, as he sowed, some fell by the way side, and the fowls of the air came and devoured it up. And some fell on stony ground, where it had not much earth; and immediately it sprang up, because it had no depth of earth: But when the sun was up, it was scorched; and because it had no root, it withered away. And some fell among thorns, and the thorns grew up, and choked it, and it yielded no fruit. And other fell on good ground, and did yield fruit that sprang up and increased; and brought forth, some thirty and some sixty and some an hundred.
And He said unto them, he that hath ears to hear, let him hear.
And when He was alone, they that were about Him with the twelve asked of Him the parable. And He said unto them, Unto you it is given to know the mystery of the kingdom of God: but unto them that are without, all these things are done in parables: That seeing they may see, and not perceive; and hearing they may hear, and not understand; lest at any time they should be converted, and their sins should be forgiven them.
And He said unto them, Know ye not this parable? And how then will ye know all parables? The sower soweth the word. And these are they by the way side, where the word is sown; but when they have heard, satan cometh immediately, and taketh away the word that was sown in their hearts.
And these are they likewise which are sown on stony ground; who, when they have heard the word, immediately receive it with gladness; And have no root in themselves, and so endure but for a time: afterward, when affliction or persecution ariseth for the word's sake, immediately they are offended.
And these are they which are sown among thorns; such as hear the word, and the cares of this world, and the deceitfulness of riches, and the lusts of other things entering in choke the word, and it becometh unfruitful.
And these are they which are sown on good ground; such as hear the word, and receive it, and bring forth fruit, some thirtyfold, some sixty, and some an hundred.”
There are four stages of spiritual awareness in the parable of the sower. We see in verse fourteen that the sower soweth the Word. The sower can be any medium that God chooses to show you the truth of His Word such as, the Bible, a preacher, a family member, a friend, a co-worker, a donkey [Numbers 22:21-35], me, you,etc.
Stage one is found in verse 15, “And these are they by the wayside, where the Word is sown; but when they have heard, satan cometh immediately, and taketh away the Word that was sown in their hearts.”
Stage two, verses 16 & 17, “And these are they likewise which are sown on stoney ground; who, when they have heard the Word, immediately receive it with gladness; and have no root in themselves, and so endure but for a time: afterward, when affliction or persecution ariseth for the Word's sake, immediately they are offended.”
Stage three, verses 18 & 19, “And these are they which are sown among thorns; such as hear the Word, And the cares of this world, and the deceitfulness of riches, and the lust of other things entering in, choke the Word, and it becometh unfruitful.”
Stage four, verse 20, “And these are they which are sown on good ground; such as hear the Word, and receive it, and bring forth fruit, some thirtyfold, some sixty, and some an hundred.”
The people in the parable of the sower are people that are receiving the Word, but three out of every four have the Word stolen by the devil, succumb to persecution or let the cares of this world choke the Word and are never born again and stay in the developmental stage. Matthew 7:14, “Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it.”
As I look back over the spiritual course to my being born again it fits into the parable of the sower quite well. I entered “stage one” when I was “confirmed” in the Methodist church at the age of twelve and I can remember feeling grown-up for the first time as we went through a time of preparation before our confirmation. But, just like Mark 4:14-15 says, satan came immediately and stole the Word out of my heart. I remember in Sunday school that we would tear the little decorative balls off the window shades and throw them at each other and “cutting” Sunday school to ride around in the city park where we lived.
I entered “stage two” when I was 18 and was attending my Aunt Benny Lynn's Church of Christ. We were having a “revival” and had an evangelist conducting the services. I don't remember what he was preaching, but it was powerful enough to get somebody that intensely disliked getting up in front of a small group to walk down a church aisle in a crowd of about 200 and I was baptized that same night. I can remember going through about a year of “being good” which was a turnabout for a boy of eighteen that had been arrested four times and had his driver’s license suspended. But, I never read a Bible, didn't attend Sunday school and probably didn't attend church real regularly and like Mark 4:16 & 17 says, I received the Word with gladness, but I had no roots and endured but for a time which was about a year and we will discuss that later in the baptism of the Holy Spirit.
During the next 22 years I had two experiences that stand out in my mind that made me cry out to God. The first was in 1973 when I did something that was totally out of character for me. [I feel like the churches of today make way too much out of public confession. If you sin against a person, confess to that person. If you sin against the church, confess to the church. And if you sin against God, confess to God. This was a sin against God and He has forgiven me and the only way I will confess my sins to you are if I feel like that is what God wants me to do for your benefit.] I cried out to God and asked Him why, why God, why? I have since learned that God has big ears to match His heart and is constantly listening for a repentant heart and He heard my cry and at that moment put the wheels in motion to answer my question, but unfortunately, because of me, not Him, it took 14 years.
Another thing that made me cry out to God concerned my son when I decided to start jogging in 1974. I hadn't exercised at all in about 10 years and got extremely sore and every evening after supper I would take a walk to try to work out the soreness from jogging and this day my son, Michael, who was about two and could easily keep up with me, was walking with me. I looked over and noticed that he was trying to put his finger in his pants pocket just like I had mine in my pants pocket and I immediately cried out to God and said “Oh no Lord! He wants to be like me!” I didn't want him to grow up to be like me.
Twenty-two years after I had walked down the aisle at the Church of Christ I entered “stage three” as God began to draw me to Him. I was getting my hair cut and the young lady that was cutting my hair had a MasterCard sign that said let the Master take charge of your life. I asked her where she went to church and decided to attend the next Sunday. I was not attracted by her, but her boldness for Jesus and I feel like God used this to draw me closer to Him.
The church she attended was a very large charismatic church of about 4,000. I sat toward the back and when the pastor invited anyone that didn't know what would happen to them if they died in the next ten seconds to raise their hand for prayer I did, because I didn't know. He asked us to stand and I didn't, because I don't like getting up in front of a lot of people. When he asked us to step out in the aisle and come down front I was not about to with all those people. An usher came over and encouraged me and I reluctantly went down front.
I don't remember a word the pastor said at the altar because of being so self-conscious. I just knew all 4,000 pair of eyes were staring straight at me. We all had a counselor and went to an enclosed area in the corner of the church and as we talked I told my counselor that I felt like I needed to do this every Sunday. He told me that God forgives sin, First John 1:9, “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” We will find out as we go along that he was telling me a half-truth, because First John 1:9 wasn’t applicable in my relationship with God at this point. The scriptures should have been John 3:1-12, First Peter 5:6-7, “Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you in due time: Casting all your care upon Him; for He careth for you. Acts 20:21, “Repentance toward God, and faith toward our Lord Jesus Christ.” Colossians 1:12-13, “Giving thanks unto the Father, which has made us meet [qualified] to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in light: Who hath delivered us from the power of darkness, and hath translated us into the kingdom of His dear Son.” and Romans 10:9-11, “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised Him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation. For the scripture saith, Whosoever believeth on Him shall not be ashamed.” and then lead me in a sinners prayer based on these scriptures.
Such as; Dear Heavenly Father in the Name of Jesus I come to You today and humble myself under Your mighty hand and confess that I want to do things Your way and learn to have faith in Jesus Christ-the Word of God-the Son of God. As I learn to stay humbled under Your mighty hand you will begin to fill me with wisdom and revelation and show me the unique plan that you have for my life. I thank you Father that I am delivered from the power of darkness and am now Your child and have been translated in to the Kingdom of Your dear Son. Amen!
I bought a necklace with a cross and two Bibles I never read, one to carry to church and another for the coffee table and took notes in church that I never studied and also bought two wall plaques with Jesus on them when I found out someone had committed suicide in my house, but I still continued to enjoy fornication, drinking, clubbing and anything else I had always done and just like Mark 4:18-19 says, the cares of this world, the deceitfulness of riches, and the lust of other things entering in choked the Word and it became unfruitful. Matthew 7:21-23, “Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of Heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in Heaven. 22Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works? 23And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity.”
Note: As we read the Bible from the book of Romans through Jude we see where there is much teaching exhorting Christians not to do everything that I was doing and we will find that we are in a battle, a wrestling match, warfare and that we must contend for our faith and sometimes we lose a battle and we must, as a body, realize this and fulfill Galatians 6:1-3, “Brethren, if a man be overtaken in a fault, ye which are spiritual, restore such an one in a spirit of meekness; considering thyself, lest thou also be tempted. Bear ye one another's burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ. For if a man think himself to be something, when he is nothing, he deceiveth himself.” Generally, if you are happy sinning and not crying out to God on a daily basis you are not born again.
During the next three years I would usually attend church on Wednesday or Sunday night and when they would give the altar call I would raise my hand when they asked if you were saved, but I knew in my heart that I was still lost. I would be driving on the freeway by the church on Sunday morning on my way home from spending the night with my girlfriend and I could feel the Lord drawing me to stop and go to church. I know a lot of you probably don't believe that, but I could feel Him drawing me. John 6:44, “No man can come to Me, except the Father which hath sent Me draw him: and I will raise him up at the last day.” He's an all forgiving God of unconditional love and He had seen me step into the aisle at the charismatic church and He knew I was sincerely seeking Him.
I was attending church one Sunday night in July of 1983 and the preacher made the statement during the course of the evening that God would turn His back on somebody if they weren't careful. I remember leaving that evening and walking to my car with my head down and knowing that was what had happened to me. I now know better! Praise God forever! All I had to do was turn around. I had my back turned to Him and had been looking for love in all the wrong places and was afraid I would miss out on something.
The next Wednesday night I decided to try it one more time since I didn't have anything better to do and he did a complete turnabout and preached on the armor of God as found in Ephesians 6:10-18, “Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of His might. Put on the whole armour of God that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.
Wherefore take unto you the whole armour of God that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand. Stand therefore, having your loins girt about with truth, and having on the breastplate of righteousness; and your feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace; Above all taking the shield of faith, wherewith ye shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked. And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the Word of God: Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, and watching thereunto with all perseverance and supplication for all saints.”
I often wondered whether the preachers wife or the Holy Ghost got on him about the earlier sermon and he was trying to make up for it [I now realize that God had him preach both sermons just for me], but it was exactly what I needed to hear and I never dreamed God has armor for us. In the next three months I can't say I really prayed, because I didn't know how, but I know I talked at Him a whole lot and He must have heard me, because He began to make a way for me to become His child so He could take over my life.
On October the 18th, 1983, at 3 pm as I stood in front of a sink at my place of employment in the laboratory of the Exxon refinery in Baytown, Texas I determined in my heart to do things God's way and at that instant I was born again and entered “stage four” of the parable of the sower and Romans 2:4 became reality, “Or despisest thou the riches of His goodness and forbearance and longsuffering; not knowing that the goodness of God leadeth thee to repentance?” and Second Corinthians 5:17, “Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.”
I was spiritually conceived sometime in my childhood in the Methodist church and then went through a long spiritual pregnancy or developmental stage and after a twenty-eight year pregnancy, the labor pains really began in 1980 when I stepped into the aisle at the charismatic church. Delivery took place on October 18, 1983 at 3 pm as I stood in front of a sink at my place of employment at the Exxon Baytown Refinery Laboratory in Baytown, Texas. My obstetrician was the Holy Spirit, my pediatrician was Jesus-The Word of God, and the proud Papa was my heavenly Father and all of a sudden I had a whole host of brothers and sisters. And from that moment on this has been my story and my song:
Blessed assurance, Jesus is mine! Oh, what a foretaste of glory divine! Heir of salvation, purchase of God, Born of His Spirit, washed in His blood. This is my story; this is my song, praising my Savior all the daylong; This is my story, praising my savior all the day long.
Like I said earlier, on October the eighteenth 1983 at 3 pm, I knew for a fact that I was a different person, because I had been a sinner for 43 years and I used to be very unhappy if I didn't get to sin and I would even brag about my sins. After I was born again I would tell people I was born again and they would just look at me and say, “What about all that stuff you did?” I didn't know, but I knew I was born again. I, unknowingly, was obeying Acts 20:21, “Repentance toward God, and faith toward our Lord Jesus Christ.”
I tried three times to become a child of God by joining churches. I have heard church after church give an altar call and tell people to make Jesus the Lord of their life or to give their heart to Jesus. What did I do that caused me to know I was born again? In the book of Mark the first words Jesus speaks are in 1:15, “The time is fulfilled, and the Kingdom of God is at hand: repent ye and believe the gospel.” Peter spoke by the inspiration of God in Acts 2:38. “Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the Name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.” Acts 20:21, “Repentance toward God, and faith toward our Lord Jesus Christ.” When I repented toward, or to, God to be born again I determined to do things God’s way and I didn’t have the slightest idea what repentance toward God or faith toward our Lord Jesus Christ meant. As I drew closer to God and the Holy Spirit began to teach me then I could have faith toward our Lord Jesus Christ and make Him my Lord. God’s Starter Kit by Jesus starts with repentance toward God and then we learn to have faith in our Lord Jesus Christ-the Word of God as we read the God’s Word.
Second Corinthians 7:10, “For Godly sorrow worketh repentance to salvation not to be repented of; but the sorrow of the world worketh death.” This was repentance to salvation and I would never have to repent of my past life again. There are two kinds of repentance. The word repented in Second Corinthians 7:10 is the Greek word “ametameletos”, which means “irrevocable: without repentance, not to be repented of.” and the word repentance in this same scripture is the Greek word “metanoia”, which means “for guilt, including reformation; by implication, reversal of decision:-repentance.” I had to first “ametameletos” and then I could take First John 1:9, “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” and “metanoia.” “Metanoia” is an ongoing process that every Christian must do and we will discuss it in the renewing or transforming of the mind in chapter two.
When we are spiritually delivered or born again, we are delivered out of satan's kingdom into the Kingdom of God. Colossians 1:12-13, “Giving thanks unto the Father, which has made us meet [qualified] to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in light: Who hath delivered us from the power of darkness, and hath translated us into the kingdom of His dear Son.” I am continually amazed that I am born again and I thank God for delivering me out of satan's kingdom and now I was ready to use First John 1:9 and “metanoia”, First John 1:7-10, “But if we walk in the light, as He is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanseth us from all sin. If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. If we say we have not sinned, we make Him a liar, and His Word is not in us.” The blood of Jesus that cleanses us from all sin is the same blood of the Lamb we overcome by in Revelation 12:11, “ And they [the brethren, us] overcame him [satan] by the blood of the Lamb, and by the word of their testimony; “
Second Corinthians 5:17-18, “Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature, old things are passed away; behold all things are become new. And all things are of God.” Romans 6:6-11, “Knowing this, that our old man is crucified with Him, that the body of sin might be destroyed, that henceforth we should not serve sin. For he that is dead is freed from sin. Now if we be dead with Christ, we believe that we also live with Him. Knowing that Christ being raised from the dead dieth no more; death hath no more dominion over Him. For in that He died, He died unto sin once: but in that He liveth, He liveth unto God. Likewise reckon ye also yourselves to be dead indeed unto sin, but alive unto God through Christ Jesus our Lord.” First Peter 2:24, “Who His own self bare our sins in His own body on the tree that we, being dead to sins should live unto righteousness.”
I had become dead to sin and no longer wanted to sin. Before I was born again I purposed in my heart to sin and I was disappointed if I didn't sin, but after I was born again I purposed in my heart to serve God and I am disappointed when I do sin and immediately cry out to God and ask for forgiveness and cleansing through the blood of Jesus. The change I experienced was because of what Jesus did, not because of anything I did. Ephesians 2:1-10, “And you hath He quickened [made alive], who were dead in trespasses and sins, Wherein in time past you walked according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that now worketh in the children of disobedience: Among whom also we all had our conversation in times past in the lust of our flesh, fulfilling the desires of the flesh and of the mind, and were by nature the children of wrath, even as others.
But God, who is rich in mercy, for His great love wherewith He loved us, even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace ye are saved,) and hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus: That in the ages to come He might show the exceeding riches of His grace, in His kindness toward us, through Christ Jesus. For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast. For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God before ordained that we should walk in them.”
Many people are waiting to get “good” before they come to God and as long as we are willing to change God will help us become what He has ordained through His workmanship through Christ Jesus unto good works because we have been delivered into God’s Kingdom from satan’s kingdom by the works of the cross and the difference we feel is because we have become dead to sin. I still have the ability to sin, but not the desire to sin.
In my born again experience there was several key things that had to take place for the miracle to take place:
One, I had believed in Jesus all my life and that He was God’s only begotten Son born of a virgin and was crucified, buried and resurrected for my sins and to give me eternal life.
Two, I had to want to change. I was tired of doing things my way.
Three, I determined in my heart to do things God's way although I didn't know what that entailed, but I was ready for Him to take over because I had failed all my life. To some in the world I may have been considered a success, but you can never truly succeed without doing things God’s way.
Special note to people that belong to, or were raised around a religion that does not believe Jesus was the Son of God, born of a virgin and sent into this world to give us eternal life: Just do two and three or just three and keep reading.
To become a vessel of honor and profitable for the Master’s use we need wisdom which is the first piece of “God’s Starter Kit by Jesus.” Acts 20:21, Repentance toward God, and faith toward our Lord Jesus Christ.” Wisdom is the beginning of “Faith toward our Lord Jesus Christ.”
Jesus told Nicodemus in John 3 that you had to be born again to see and enter the Kingdom of God. There is no way God could have shown me His Kingdom and I understand it and function within it, without being born again and that is why Nicodemus did not understand and the world won't listen to us, they have never determined to do things God’s way and been born again.
John 3:9-12, “Nicodemus answered and said unto Him, How can these things be? Jesus answered and said unto him, Art thou a master of Israel, and knowest not these things? Verily, verily I say unto thee, we speak that we do know, and testify that we have seen; and ye receive not our witness. If I have told you earthly things and you believe not, how shall ye believe if I tell you of heavenly things?”
First John 4:6, “We are of God; he that knoweth God heareth us; he that is not of God heareth not us. Hereby know we the spirit of truth, and the spirit of error.”
First Corinthians 1:30, “But of Him are ye in Christ Jesus, who of God is made unto us wisdom.” and is what Nicodemus needed and how we can begin to read our Bibles and begin to be filled with the knowledge of His will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding. Colossians 1:9-10, “For this cause we also, since the day we heard it, do not cease to pray for you, and to desire that you be filled with the knowledge of His will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding; That ye might walk worthy of the Lord unto all pleasing, being fruitful in all good work, and increasing in the knowledge of God.” James 1:5, “If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth [rebukes] not; and it shall be given him.” Don't be afraid to ask for wisdom, because God's way is the best way and might not be what we want to hear, but it is still the best way.
JESUS-THE WORD OF GOD-THE SON OF THE WORD, GOD
First Peter 2:1-2, “Wherefore laying aside all malice, and all guile, and hypocrisies, and envies, and all evil speakings, As newborn babes, desire the sincere milk of the word, that ye may grow thereby: If so be ye have tasted that the Lord is gracious.”
As we begin, we need to understand that the Word of God is our source of the truth and strive to have what we believe line up with the Word of God and the Word of God only. If the message we hear or read doesn't line up with the Word, discount it. Romans 10:17, “So then faith [what we put our trust in] cometh by hearing and hearing by the Word of God,” but unfortunately many times we allow our opinion or someone else’s opinion to guide us in our spiritual life. John 4:23-24, “But the hour cometh, and now is, when the true worshippers shall worship the Father in spirit and in truth: for the Father seeketh such to worship Him. God is a Spirit: and they that worship Him must worship Him in spirit and in truth.”
“Second Timothy 3:16-17, “All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: That the man of God may be perfect, thoroughly furnished unto all good works.” Second Timothy 2:15, “Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.”
Revelation 22:18-21, “For I testify unto every man that heareth the words of the prophecy of this book [The Bible], If any man shall add unto these things, God shall add unto him the plagues that are written in this book: And if any man shall take away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part out of the book of life, and out of the holy city, and from the things which are written in this book.” This is the reason I don’t like Bible versions, because all of them add or take away from the original King James Version.
In the book of Acts chapter 2 there is unified Christianity and now there are 38,000 “Christian” denominations worldwide and 1,500 in the United States. From my travels observing various churches (and religions) everyone was started by disobeying Revelation 22:18-21 by adding or taking away something from the Word of God.
Try to imagine when the armed forces of any country go into battle what would happen if their naval, air and ground forces all went in to battle with a different plan totally separate from each other as Christians are doing today. One denomination will witness to someone to become a Christian and tell them one thing and then another denomination comes along and tells them another and then another denomination another, on and on and on. When people see no unity in Christianity they get discouraged and seek many varied and diverse answers to their spiritual needs, but God never intended for Christians to be divided.
One of the reasons we have so many different Christian denominations are the unbelievable amount of versions of the Bible that are available today. I don’t see how we are to all speak the same thing. I use the King James exclusively and it is the only version that I read, but I have been reading it for thirty-one years and am used to the King James. I have a friend from Venezuela that said he got confused when he read the King James so I bought him a King James in English with a parallel of Spanish and he said that was much better. Whatever works, but the King James Bible is a literary masterpiece and if God could get a donkey to deliver a message in Numbers 22:21-35, He could certainly get King James and his 46 scholars to write His version of the Bible so that His children can be prepared for every good work.
Second Timothy 3:16-17, “All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: That the man of God may be perfect, thoroughly furnished unto all good works.” We need inspiration, but our inspiration must come from fully understanding God's Word, because the correct information can be a tremendous inspiration.
First Timothy 1:3-7, “As I besought thee to abide still at Ephesus, when I went into Macedonia, that thou mightest charge some that they teach no other doctrine, Neither give heed to fables and endless genealogies, which minister questions, rather than godly edifying which is in faith: so do.
Now the end of the commandment is charity out of a pure heart, and of a good conscience, and of faith unfeigned: From which some having swerved have turned aside unto vain jangling [mataiologia-foolish, empty talk.]; desiring to be teachers of the law; understanding neither what they say, nor whereof they affirm.”
Titus 3:9, “But avoid foolish questions, and genealogies, and contentions, and strivings about the law; for they are unprofitable and vain.”
John 6:28-71, “Then said they unto Him, What shall we do, that we might work the works of God? Jesus answered and said unto them, This is the work of God, that ye believe on Him whom He hath sent. They said therefore unto Him, What sign showest thou then, that we may see, and believe thee? What dost thou work? Our fathers did eat manna in the desert; as it is written, He gave them bread from Heaven to eat. Then Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Moses gave you not that bread from Heaven; but my Father giveth you the true bread from Heaven. For the bread of God is He which cometh down from Heaven, and giveth life unto the world. Then said they unto Him, Lord, evermore give us this bread. And Jesus said unto them, I am the bread of life: he that cometh to me shall never hunger; and he that believeth on me shall never thirst. But I said unto you, That ye also have seen me, and believe not. All that the Father giveth me shall come to me; and him that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out. For I came down from Heaven, not to do mine own will, but the will of Him that sent me. And this is the Father’s will which hath sent me, that of all which He hath given me I should lose nothing, but should raise it up again at the last day. And this is the will of Him that sent me, that every one which seeth the Son, and believeth on Him, may have everlasting life: and I will raise him up at the last day.
The Jews then murmured at Him, because He said, I am the bread which came down from Heaven. And they said, Is not this Jesus, the son of Joseph, whose father and mother we know? How is it then that He saith, I came down from Heaven? Jesus therefore answered and said unto them, Murmur not among yourselves. No man can come to me, except the Father which hath sent me draw him: and I will raise him up at the last day. It is written in the prophets, And they shall be all taught of God. Every man therefore that hath heard, and hath learned of the Father, cometh unto me. Not that any man hath seen the Father, save He which is of God, He hath seen the Father. Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me hath everlasting life. 48I am that bread of life. Your fathers did eat manna in the wilderness, and are dead. This is the bread which cometh down from Heaven, that a man may eat thereof, and not die. I am the living bread which came down from Heaven: if any man eat of this bread, he shall live forever: and the bread that I will give is my flesh, which I will give for the life of the world.
The Jews therefore strove among themselves, saying, How can this man give us His flesh to eat?
Then Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Except ye eat the flesh of the Son of man, and drink His blood, ye have no life in you. Whoso eateth my flesh, and drinketh my blood, hath eternal life; and I will raise him up at the last day. For my flesh is meat indeed, and my blood is drink indeed. He that eateth my flesh, and drinketh my blood, dwelleth in me, and I in him. As the living Father hath sent me, and I live by the Father: so he that eateth me, even he shall live by me. This is that bread which came down from Heaven: not as your fathers did eat manna, and are dead: he that eateth of this bread shall live forever. These things said He in the synagogue, as He taught in Capernaum.
Many therefore of His disciples, when they had heard this, said, This is an hard saying; who can hear it? When Jesus knew in Himself that His disciples murmured at it, He said unto them, Doth this offend you? What and if ye shall see the Son of man ascend up where He was before? It is the spirit that quickeneth; the flesh profiteth nothing: the words that I speak unto you, they are spirit, and they are life. But there are some of you that believe not. For Jesus knew from the beginning who they were that believed not, and who should betray Him. And He said, Therefore said I unto you, that no man can come unto me, except it were given unto him of my Father. From that time many of His disciples went back, and walked no more with Him.
Then said Jesus unto the twelve, Will ye also go away? Then Simon Peter answered Him, Lord, to whom shall we go? Thou hast the words of eternal life. And we believe and are sure that thou art that Christ, the Son of the living God. Jesus answered them, Have not I chosen you twelve, and one of you is a devil? He spake of Judas Iscariot the son of Simon: for he it was that should betray Him, being one of the twelve.”
John 1:1-2, “In the beginning was the Word and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. The same was in the beginning with God.” God and Jesus-The Father and the Son are the same-The Word of God. John 1:4, “In Him [The Word] was life and the life was the light of men.” John 1:12, “But as many as received Him to them gave He power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on His Name [Jesus-The Word Of God].” John 1:14, “And the Word [Jesus] was made flesh and dwelt among us full of grace and truth.” John 3:16-17, “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son [Jesus], that whosoever believeth in Him [The Word of God] should not perish, but have everlasting life. For God sent not His Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through Him might be saved.” Sometimes we will read something in the Word and then feel condemned. The Word of God was not given to us to condemn us but to save us when we are born again and put our trust in the Word of God. We should feel conviction, not condemnation.
One day I was reading the Bible and got to the book of Revelation. I would usually practice my speed reading when I read Revelation, because I didn't understand much of the book. As I was reading in Revelation 19, verses 11-16 the Holy Ghost showed me something that changed the way I read the Bible. In these verses John is describing what he is seeing. “And I saw Heaven opened, and behold a white horse; and He that sat upon him was called Faithful and True, and in righteousness He doth judge and make war. His eyes were as a flame of fire, and on His head were many crowns, and He had a name written, that no man knew, but He Himself. And He was clothed with a vesture dipped in blood: And His Name is called The Word of God. And the armies which were in Heaven followed Him upon white horses, clothed in fine linen, white and clean. And out of His mouth goeth a sharp sword, that with it He should smite the nations; and He shall rule them with a rod of iron: And He treadeth the winepress of the fierceness and wrath of almighty God. And He hath on His vesture and on His thigh a name written, KING OF KINGS AND LORD OF LORDS.”
Almost three years after I had been born again I realized that my Lord was literally The Word of God. Up until that day I would tell people that I had Jesus in my heart and that Jesus was my Lord, but I really didn't know what it meant. John chapter 6 never made sense to me until I realized that Jesus was The Word of God. We must learn to consume the Word of God and make it a part of us. John 6:63, “It is the spirit that quickeneth [make alive]; the flesh profiteth nothing: the words that I speak unto you, they are spirit, and they are life.’
When I realized who Jesus is, the Word of God, the Bible took on a new importance and became a solution to anything as long as I would believe. I could then take Romans 10:9-11, “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised Him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation. For the scripture saith, Whosoever believeth on Him shall not be ashamed.” and use this scripture to claim God’s promises in His Word. That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Word of God and shalt believe it in thine heart for with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.
Salvation is the Greek word's “soteria” and “soterion.” The combination of the meanings is rescue or safety (physically or morally):-deliver, health, salvation, save, saving. Defender or by implication defense:-salvation. The Word of God is our defense and is what we use to build our Shield of Faith, Ephesians 6:16, “Above all, taking the shield of faith, wherewith ye shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked.”
God longs to have fellowship with us and hear us speak His Word. First John 1:1-7, “That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we have looked upon, and our hands have handled, of the Word of life; (For the life was manifested, and we have seen it, and bear witness, and show unto you that eternal life, which was with the Father, and was manifested unto us;) That which we have seen and heard declare we unto you, that ye also may have fellowship with us: and truly our fellowship is with the Father, and with His Son Jesus Christ. And these things write we unto you, that your joy may be full.
This then is the message which we have heard of Him, and declare unto you, that God is light, and in Him is no darkness at all. If we say that we have fellowship with Him, and walk in darkness, we lie, and do not the truth: But if we walk in the light, as He is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanseth us from all sin.”
Revelation 12:11, “And they overcame him [the devil] by the blood of the Lamb, and by the word of their testimony, and they loved not their lives unto the death.” Our testimony is very important to help others overcome the works of the devil when we combine it with the works of the cross where Jesus shed His Blood for us and the Word of God. First John 3:8, “For this purpose the Son of God was manifested, that He might destroy the works of the devil.”
IT IS WRITTEN
Matthew 3:13-17 tells us, “Then cometh Jesus from Galilee to Jordan unto John, to be baptized of him. But John forbad Him, saying, I have need to be baptized of thee, and comest thou to me? And Jesus answering said unto him, Suffer it to be so now: for thus it becometh us to fulfil all righteousness. Then he suffered Him.
And Jesus, when He was baptized, went up straightway out of the water: and, lo, the heavens were opened unto Him, and He saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove, and lighting upon Him: And lo a voice from Heaven, saying, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.”
When we are filled with the Spirit of God, God’s Holy Spirit, and the Word of God, like Jesus, we are to defeat the works of the devil exactly like our risen Lord did in Luke 4:1-14, “And Jesus being full of the Holy Ghost returned from Jordan, and was led by the Spirit into the wilderness, being forty days tempted of the devil. And in those days did He eat nothing: and when they were ended, He afterward hungered.
And the devil said unto Him, If thou be the Son of God, command this stone that it be made bread. And Jesus answered him, saying, It is written, That man shall not live by bread alone, but by every Word of God. [This is Deuteronomy 8:3]
And the devil, taking Him up into an high mountain, showed unto Him all the kingdoms of the world in a moment of time. And the devil said unto Him, All this power will I give thee; and the glory of them: for that is delivered unto me; and to whomsoever I will give it. If thou therefore wilt worship me, all shall be thine. And Jesus answered and said unto him, Get thee behind me, satan: for it is written, Thou shalt worship the Lord thou God, and Him only shalt thou serve. [This is Deuteronomy 6:13 and 10:20]
And he brought Him to Jerusalem, and set Him on a pinnacle of the temple, and said unto Him. If thou be the Son of God, cast thyself down from hence: For it is written, He shall give His angels charge over thee, to keep thee: And in their hands they shall bear thee up, lest at any time thou dash thy foot against a stone. [This is Psalms 91:11-12] And Jesus answering said unto him, It is said, Thou shalt not tempt the Lord thy God. [This is Deuteronomy 6:16]
And when the devil had ended all temptations he departed Him for a season. And Jesus returned in the power of the Spirit into Galilee.”
And we can do the same thing and is why it is so important that we read and study our Bible every day. We need to be ready to speak scripture over any situation that may arise. Second Corinthians 10:3-5, “For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war after the flesh; (For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal; but mighty through God [The Word of God] to the pulling down of strongholds ;) Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God [The Word of God], and bringing every thought into the obedience of Christ [The Word of God].” Mark 11:22-26, “And Jesus answering saith unto them, Have faith in God. [The Word] For verily I say unto you, That whosoever shall say unto this mountain, Be thou removed, and be thou cast into the sea; and shall not doubt in his heart, but shall believe that those things which he saith shall come to pass; he shall have whatsoever he saith. Therefore I say unto you, What things soever ye desire, when ye pray, believe that ye receive them, and ye shall have them.
And when ye stand praying, forgive, if ye have ought against any: that your Father also which is in Heaven may forgive you your trespasses. But if ye do not forgive, neither will your Father which is in Heaven forgive your trespasses.” How can we speak to the mountain if we don’t know what the Word of God says? Hebrews 11:1-3, “Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen. For by it the elders obtained a good report. Through faith we understand that the worlds were framed by the Word of God, so that things which are seen were not made of things which do appear.” We need to learn to frame our world by speaking the Word of God over our situation. John 15:7-8, “If ye abide in me, and my words abide in you, ye shall ask what ye will, and it shall be done unto you. Herein is my Father glorified, that ye bear much fruit; so shall ye be my disciples.”
Luke 12:8-9, Jesus speaking, “Also I say unto you, whosoever shall confess Me [the Word of God] before men, him shall the Son of Man also confess before the angels of God. But he that denieth Me [The Word of God] before men shall be denied before the angels of God.” We need to be careful what we choose to believe. If part of the Word of God doesn't suit our lifestyle or doesn't line up with what we have been taught or believe, many times, we are quick to try to find a church or teaching that does, but we need to have what we believe line up with the Word of God and when we are studying spiritual things we must make sure the conclusions we reach are based on the Word of God. If the message we hear or read doesn't line up with the Word, discount it.
First John 4:1-6, “Beloved, believe not every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of God: because many false prophets are gone out into the world. Hereby know ye the Spirit of God: Every spirit that confesseth that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is of God: [Does the message agree with the Word of God.]
And every spirit that confesseth not that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is not of God: and this is that spirit of antichrist [A spirit that does not agree with the Word of God], whereof ye have heard that it should come; and even now already is it in the world.
Ye are of God, little children, and have overcome them: because greater is He [The Word of God-Jesus] that is in you, than he [satan-the antichrist] that is in the world. They are of the world: therefore speak they of the world, and the world heareth them. We are of God; he that knoweth God heareth us; he that is not of God heareth not us. Hereby know we the spirit of truth, and the spirit of error.”
Romans 10:17, “So then faith [what we put our trust in] cometh by hearing and hearing by the Word of God.” and only the Word of God. Titus 1:2 and Hebrews 6:18 tell us that God cannot lie. If He wrote it, believe it. Matthew 12:36-37, “But I say unto you, That every idle word that men shall speak, they shall give account thereof in the day of judgment. For by thy words thou shalt be justified, and by thy words thou shalt be condemned.” To me, idle words are words that don’t agree with the Word of God.
I was talking to a lady one day and I made the statement that we must have absolutes in our lives and that was one of the reasons I liked the Bible because it had absolutes that you could depend on. She then made the statement that an absolute is subject to interpretation and that is true, but that will never change the absolute. We can argue an absolute from now until never and the absolute will always be an absolute. The Word of God will remain forever and Jesus said in Matthew 24:31, Mark 13:31 and Luke 21:33, “Heaven and Earth shall pass away, but My Words shall not pass away.” Don't be afraid to stand on the Word of God. Acts 1:2, talking about Jesus, “Until the day He was taken up, after that, He through the Holy Ghost, had given commandments unto the apostles whom He had chosen.” Remember, all scripture is given by the inspiration of God, Second Timothy 3:16-17, “All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: That the man of God may be perfect, thoroughly furnished unto all good works.” and Second Timothy 2:15, “Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.”
Isaiah 55:8-12, “For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the LORD. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are My ways higher than your ways, and My thoughts than your thoughts. For as the rain cometh down, and the snow from Heaven, and returneth not thither, but watereth the earth, and maketh it bring forth and bud, that it may give seed to the sower, and bread to the eater: So shall My Word be that goeth forth out of My mouth: it shall not return unto Me void, but it shall accomplish that which I please, and it shall prosper in the thing whereto I sent it. For ye shall go out with joy, and be led forth with peace: the mountains and the hills shall break forth before you into singing, and all the trees of the field shall clap their hands.”
Philippians 4:19, “But my God shall supply all your need according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus.”
WE ARE SPIRITUAL BEINGS IN A BODY OF FLESH
Reason number one to eliminate racism through Unified Christianity: In Genesis 1:26 & 27, “And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness;,,,,So God created man in His own image, in the image of God created He him; male and female created He them.” What is the real image of God, the God that gave His only begotten Son so that we could be set free from our sins? John 4:24 says, “God is a Spirit.” Colossians 1:15 says, that Jesus is the image of the invisible God and as long as we are in this realm He is an invisible God. Deuteronomy 33:27 and many other scriptures tell us that God is eternal or immortal, “The eternal God is thy refuge.” First Timothy 1:17, “Now unto the King eternal, immortal, invisible, the only wise God, be honour and glory forever and ever. Amen” God is an invisible, immortal Spirit and since God created us in His image we are invisible, immortal spirits also. John 4:23-24, “But the hour cometh, and now is, when the true worshippers shall worship the Father in spirit and in truth: for the Father seeketh such to worship Him. God is a Spirit: and they that worship Him must worship Him in spirit and in truth.”
When we combine Genesis 1:26 & 27 with Genesis 2:7 it completes the picture as to who we are, “And the Lord God formed man of the dust of the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul.” Until that day man was a spirit creature. We were created invisible, immortal spirits in the image of God, who is also an invisible, immortal Spirit, and then placed into a body of flesh so we could become a living human being with a body and a unique personality or soul that sets us apart from each other not only physically, but spiritually. Psalm 100:3, “Know ye that the LORD He is God: it is He that hath made us.”
In Genesis 2:21-23 God created a helpmate for man. “And the Lord God caused a deep sleep to fall upon Adam, and he slept: and He took one of his ribs, and closed up the flesh instead thereof; and the rib, which the Lord God had taken from man, made He a woman, and brought her unto man. And Adam said, This is now bone of my bones, and flesh of my flesh: she shall be called woman, because she was taken out of man.”
First Corinthians 15:44 says, “There is a natural body, and there is a spiritual body.” Second Corinthians 5:1-9, “For we know that if our earthly house of this tabernacle were dissolved, we have a building of God, an house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens. For in this we groan, earnestly desiring to be clothed upon with our house which is from Heaven: If so be that being clothed we shall not be found naked. For we that are in this tabernacle do groan, being burdened: not for that we would be unclothed, but clothed upon, that mortality might be swallowed up of life. Now He that hath wrought us for the selfsame thing is God, who also hath given unto us the earnest [guarantee] of the Spirit. Therefore we are always confident, knowing that, whilst we are at home in the body, we are absent from the Lord: (For we walk by faith, not by sight:) We are confident, I say, and willing rather to be absent from the body, and to be present with the Lord. Wherefore we labour, that, whether present or absent, we may be accepted of Him.” James 2:26, “For as the body without the spirit is dead, so faith without works is dead also.” John 6:63. “It is the spirit that quickeneth [zoopoieo-make alive, give life]; the flesh profiteth nothing:” The flesh cannot live without the spirit and once the flesh dies the spirit no longer has a body and will leave to be present with the Lord.
I was in church one day and the preacher said that one day when his flesh died he would step out of his body and go on to his eternal reward and I didn't fully understand this until I read, Luke 8:41-42, 49-56, “And, behold, there came a man named Jairus, and he was a ruler of the synagogue: and he fell down at Jesus’ feet, and besought Him that He would come into his house: For he had one only daughter, about twelve years of age, and she lay a dying. But as He went the people thronged Him.” “49 While He yet spake, there cometh one from the ruler of the synagogue's house, saying to Him, Thy daughter is dead; trouble not the Master. But when Jesus heard it, He answered him saying, Fear not; believe only, and she shall be made whole. And when He came into the house, He suffered no man to go in, save Peter, and James, and John, and the father and mother of the maiden. And all wept, and bewailed her: but He said, Weep not; she is not dead, but sleepeth. And they laughed Him to scorn, knowing that she was dead. And He put them all out, and took her by the hand, and called, saying, Maid, arise. And her spirit came again and she arose straightaway: and He commanded to give her meat. And her parents were astonished: but He charged them that they should tell no man what was done.”
Someone asked me once where her spirit was while she was dead. Matthew 18:10, “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.” Don’t know for sure where her spirit was, but I bet God was in charge and she was being comforted by her angel. Luke 23:39-43, as Jesus was on the Cross between two thieves, “And one of the malefactors which were hanged railed on him, saying, If thou be Christ, save thyself and us. But the other answering rebuked him, saying, Dost not thou fear God, seeing thou art in the same condemnation? And we indeed justly; for we receive the due reward of our deeds: but this man hath done nothing amiss. And he said unto Jesus, Lord, remember me when thou comest into thy kingdom. And Jesus said unto him, Verily I say unto thee, today shalt thou be with me in paradise.”
WE ARE ONE IN CHRIST JESUS
Reason number two to eliminate racism through Unified Christianity: Our spirit beings, regardless of gender, race, nationality or social status, are one with Christ Jesus when we are born again and baptized into Christ, Galatians 3:26-29, “For ye are all the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus. For as many of you as have been baptized into Christ have put on Christ. There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female: for ye are all one in Christ Jesus. And if ye be Christ’s, then are ye Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise.” Philippians 4:19, “But my God shall supply all your need according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus.” Regardless of what sex or race you are or where you live, if you are baptized into Jesus Christ and are a child of the most high God, the creator of the universe, everything in the Bible, all the promises of God, are yours too and He will supply all of your need. When you take someone by the hand and pray with them you pray the same Word of God whether they are black, Hispanic, Asian, Native American, white, etc. Everything you read in this book applies to you no matter who you are or where you come from.
We have just learned we are invisible, immortal spirits created in the image of God and now let’s destroy the separation between the races. I don’t deny that there are white, black, Hispanic, Asian, etc., but God never intended for that to divide us. That was satan’s plan to divide man by race and religion and the Christians by denominations. First Corinthians 1:10, “Now I beseech you, brethren, by the Name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that ye all speak the same thing, and that there be no divisions among you; but that ye be perfectly joined together in the same mind and in the same judgment.” As far as division is concerned; Revelation 22:18-21, “For I testify unto every man that heareth the words of the prophecy of this book [The Bible], If any man shall add unto these things, God shall add unto him the plagues that are written in this book: And if any man shall take away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part out of the book of life, and out of the holy city, and from the things which are written in this book.”
When we were born again each and every one of us were delivered from the power of darkness and translated into the Kingdom of God’s Son as Colossians 1:12-14 tells us, “Giving thanks unto the Father, which hath made us meet [qualified] to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in light: Who hath delivered us from the power of darkness, and hath translated us into the Kingdom of His Dear Son: In whom we have redemption through His blood, even the forgiveness of sins:” and received “A Starter Kit” of truth, wisdom, righteousness, sanctification, justification, glorification, holiness, remission, redemption, mercy, grace and peace with God, so we can take that “Starter Kit” and become wise, righteous, sanctified, just, trustworthy, holy, washed in His Word, redeemed, merciful, compassionate peacemakers.
ONE NEW MAN-ONE BODY BY THE CROSS
Partition is the Greek word phragmos- Strong’s 5418-1) a hedge, a fence 2) that which separates, prevents two from coming together. Ephesians 2:11-22, “Wherefore remember, that ye being in time past Gentiles [Anyone that is not a Jew] in the flesh, who are called Uncircumcision by that which is called the Circumcision in the flesh made by hands [Jews]; That at that time ye were without Christ, being aliens from the commonwealth of Israel, and strangers from the covenants of promise, having no hope, and without God in the world: But now in Christ Jesus ye who sometimes were far off are made nigh by the blood of Christ.
For He is our peace, who hath made both one, and hath broken down the middle wall of partition between us; Having abolished in His flesh the enmity, even the law of commandments contained in ordinances; for to make in Himself of twain one new man, so making peace; And that he might reconcile both unto God in one body by the cross, having slain the enmity thereby: And came and preached peace to you which were afar off [Gentiles], and to them that were nigh [Jews]. For through Him we both [Jews and the Gentiles] have access by one Spirit unto the Father. Now therefore ye are no more strangers and foreigners, but fellowcitizens with the saints, and of the household of God; And are built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ Himself being the chief corner stone; In whom all the building fitly framed together groweth unto an holy temple in the Lord: In whom ye also are builded together for an habitation of God through the Spirit.”
God broke down the walls of prejudice and hatred between the Jews and everybody else on the Earth through the works of the Cross and the constant battle between the Jews and Christians with the Muslims and whites, blacks, Hispanics, Asians and men and women or anybody else is nothing but the devil and his demons stirring up trouble and keeping the world from living in peace with one another. Of course, the key is being one in Christ Jesus and humbling ourselves under the mighty hand of God so that He can teach us His ways and we can make Jesus, the Word of God, the Son of God, who is also the Word, our Lord and Savior. Always remember that Gentiles are anybody that is not a Jew and there are only a little more than 13 million Jews. Make a list and start with the Middle East and go from there and if God said He has broken down the wall of partition or separation between gentiles and Jews He has broken down the wall of partition between gentiles and Jews through Christ Jesus. First John 2:1-2, “My little children, these things write I unto you, that ye sin not. And if any man sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous: And He is the propitiation for our sins: and not for ours only, but also for the sins of the whole world.” Propitiation is an expiator. According to Webster’s expiator is “To make amends or reparation for (wrongdoing or guilt); atone for. To pay the penalty of; suffer for.” Hallelujah! It says for the WHOLE world. Not just our little world but Jesus died and rose again for everyone on all seven continents.
FOR THE BODY OF CHRIST IS NOT ONE MEMBER BUT MANY
Ephesians 1:19-23, “And what is the exceeding greatness of His power to us-ward who believe, according to the working of His mighty power, Which He wrought in Christ, when He raised Him from the dead, and set Him at His own right hand in the heavenly places, Far above all principality, and power, and might, and dominion, and every name that is named, not only in this world, but also in that which is to come: And hath put all things under His feet, and gave Him to be the head over all things to the church, Which is His body, the fulness of Him that filleth all in all.” God has put all things under the feet of Jesus and He is the Head of the church which is His body and all born again believers that have determined to do things God’s way are members of the church which is the body of Christ. No matter who you are or where you live you are a born again member of the body of Christ.
“First Corinthians 12:12-27, “For as the body is one, and hath many members, and all the members of that one body, being many, are one body: so also is Christ. For by one Spirit are we all baptized into one body, whether we be Jews or Gentiles, whether we be bond or free; and have been all made to drink into one Spirit.
For the body is not one member, but many. If the foot shall say, Because I am not the hand, I am not of the body; is it therefore not of the body? And if the ear shall say, Because I am not the eye, I am not of the body; is it therefore not of the body? If the whole body were an eye, where were the hearing? If the whole were hearing, where were the smelling? But now hath God set the members every one of them in the body, as it hath pleased Him. And if they were all one member, where were the body? But now are they many members, yet but one body. And the eye cannot say unto the hand, I have no need of thee: nor again the Head to the feet, I have no need of you. Nay, much more those members of the body, which seem to be more feeble, are necessary:
And those members of the body, which we think to be less honourable, upon these we bestow more abundant honour; and our uncomely parts have more abundant comeliness. For our comely parts have no need: but God hath tempered the body together, having given more abundant honour to that part which lacked: That there should be no schism [schisma-break, divide, division, rent] in the body; but that the members should have the same care one for another. And whether one member suffer, all the members suffer with it; or one member be honoured, all the members rejoice with it.
Now ye are the body of Christ, and members in particular.”
WE ARE ALL THE DESCENDANTS OF GOD, ADAM AND NOAH
Reason number three to eliminate racism through Unified Christianity: Genesis 5:28-32, “And Lamech lived an hundred eighty and two years, and begat a son: 29And he called his name Noah, saying, This same shall comfort us concerning our work and toil of our hands, because of the ground which the LORD hath cursed. 30And Lamech lived after he begat Noah five hundred ninety and five years, and begat sons and daughters: 31And all the days of Lamech were seven hundred seventy and seven years: and he died. [Five years before the flood] 32And Noah was five hundred years old: and Noah begat Shem, Ham, and Japheth.”
Genesis 6, “And it came to pass, when men began to multiply on the face of the earth, and daughters were born unto them, 2That the sons of God saw the daughters of men that they were fair; and they took them wives of all which they chose.
3And the LORD said, My spirit shall not always strive with man, for that he also is flesh: yet his days shall be an hundred and twenty years.
4There were giants in the earth in those days; and also after that, when the sons of God came in unto the daughters of men, and they bare children to them, the same became mighty men which were of old, men of renown. 5And God saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually.
6And it repented the LORD that He had made man on the earth, and it grieved Him at His heart. 7And the LORD said, I will destroy man whom I have created from the face of the earth; both man, and beast, and the creeping thing, and the fowls of the air; for it repenteth me that I have made them.
8But Noah found grace in the eyes of the LORD. 9These are the generations of Noah: Noah was a just man and perfect in his generations, and Noah walked with God. 10And Noah begat three sons, Shem, Ham, and Japheth.
11The earth also was corrupt before God, and the earth was filled with violence. 12And God looked upon the earth, and, behold, it was corrupt; for all flesh had corrupted his way upon the earth.
13And God said unto Noah, The end of all flesh is come before me; for the earth is filled with violence through them; and, behold, I will destroy them with the earth. 14Make thee an ark of gopher wood; rooms shalt thou make in the ark, and shalt pitch it within and without with pitch. 15And this is the fashion which thou shalt make it of: The length of the ark shall be three hundred cubits, the breadth of it fifty cubits, and the height of it thirty cubits. 16A window shalt thou make to the ark, and in a cubit shalt thou finish it above; and the door of the ark shalt thou set in the side thereof; with lower, second, and third stories shalt thou make it.
17And, behold, I, even I, do bring a flood of waters upon the earth, to destroy all flesh, wherein is the breath of life, from under Heaven; and everything that is in the earth shall die. 18But with thee will I establish my covenant; [God’s first covenant] and thou shalt come into the ark, thou, and thy sons, and thy wife, and thy sons’ wives with thee. 19And of every living thing of all flesh, two of every sort shalt thou bring into the ark, to keep them alive with thee; they shall be male and female. 20Of fowls after their kind, and of cattle after their kind, of every creeping thing of the earth after his kind, two of every sort shall come unto thee, to keep them alive. 21And take thou unto thee of all food that is eaten, and thou shalt gather it to thee; and it shall be for food for thee, and for them.
22Thus did Noah; according to all that God commanded him, so did he.”
Genesis7, “And the LORD said unto Noah, Come thou and all thy house into the ark; for thee have I seen righteous before me in this generation. 2Of every clean beast thou shalt take to thee by sevens, the male and his female: and of beasts that are not clean by two, the male and his female. 3Of fowls also of the air by sevens, the male and the female; to keep seed alive upon the face of all the earth. 4For yet seven days, and I will cause it to rain upon the earth forty days and forty nights; and every living substance that I have made will I destroy from off the face of the earth.
5And Noah did according unto all that the LORD commanded him. 6And Noah was six hundred years old when the flood of waters was upon the earth. 7And Noah went in, and his sons, and his wife, and his sons’ wives with him, into the ark, because of the waters of the flood. 8Of clean beasts, and of beasts that are not clean, and of fowls, and of every thing that creepeth upon the earth, 9There went in two and two unto Noah into the ark, the male and the female, as God had commanded Noah. 10And it came to pass after seven days that the waters of the flood were upon the earth.
In the six hundredth year of Noah’s life, in the second month, the seventeenth day of the month, the same day were all the fountains of the great deep broken up, and the windows of heaven were opened. 12And the rain was upon the earth forty days and forty nights.
13In the selfsame day entered Noah, and Shem, and Ham, and Japheth, the sons of Noah, and Noah’s wife, and the three wives of his sons with them, into the ark; 14They, and every beast after his kind, and all the cattle after their kind, and every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth after his kind, and every fowl after his kind, every bird of every sort. 15And they went in unto Noah into the ark, two and two of all flesh, wherein is the breath of life. 16And they that went in, went in male and female of all flesh, as God had commanded him: and the LORD shut him in.
17And the flood was forty days upon the earth; and the waters increased, and bare up the ark, and it was lift up above the earth. 18And the waters prevailed, and were increased greatly upon the earth; and the ark went upon the face of the waters. 19And the waters prevailed exceedingly upon the earth; and all the high hills, that were under the whole heaven, were covered. 20Fifteen cubits upward did the waters prevail; and the mountains were covered.
21And all flesh died that moved upon the earth, both of fowl, and of cattle, and of beast, and of every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth, and every man: 22All in whose nostrils was the breath of life, of all that was in the dry land, died. 23And every living substance was destroyed which was upon the face of the ground, both man, and cattle, and the creeping things, and the fowl of the heaven; and they were destroyed from the earth: and Noah only remained alive, and they that were with him in the ark. 24And the waters prevailed upon the earth an hundred and fifty days.”
Genesis 8, “And God remembered Noah, and every living thing, and all the cattle that was with him in the ark: and God made a wind to pass over the earth, and the waters asswaged; [Receded] 2The fountains also of the deep and the windows of Heaven were stopped, and the rain from Heaven was restrained; 3And the waters returned from off the earth continually: and after the end of the hundred and fifty days the waters were abated.
4And the ark rested in the seventh month, on the seventeenth day of the month, upon the mountains of Ararat. 5And the waters decreased continually until the tenth month: in the tenth month, on the first day of the month, were the tops of the mountains seen.
6And it came to pass at the end of forty days, that Noah opened the window of the ark which he had made: 7And he sent forth a raven, which went forth to and fro, until the waters were dried up from off the earth. 8Also he sent forth a dove from him, to see if the waters were abated from off the face of the ground; 9But the dove found no rest for the sole of her foot, and she returned unto him into the ark, for the waters were on the face of the whole earth: then he put forth his hand, and took her, and pulled her in unto him into the ark. 10And he stayed yet other seven days; and again he sent forth the dove out of the ark; 11And the dove came in to him in the evening; and, lo, in her mouth was an olive leaf plucked off: so Noah knew that the waters were abated from off the earth. 12And he stayed yet other seven days; and sent forth the dove; which returned not again unto him anymore.
13And it came to pass in the six hundredth and first year, in the first month, the first day of the month, the waters were dried up from off the earth: and Noah removed the covering of the ark, and looked, and, behold, the face of the ground was dry. 14And in the second month, on the seven and twentieth day of the month, was the earth dried.
15And God spake unto Noah, saying, 16Go forth of the ark, thou, and thy wife, and thy sons, and thy sons’ wives with thee. 17Bring forth with thee every living thing that is with thee, of all flesh, both of fowl, and of cattle, and of every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth; that they may breed abundantly in the earth, and be fruitful, and multiply upon the earth. 18And Noah went forth, and his sons, and his wife, and his sons’ wives with him: 19Every beast, every creeping thing, and every fowl, and whatsoever creepeth upon the earth, after their kinds, went forth out of the ark.
20And Noah builded an altar unto the LORD; and took of every clean beast, and of every clean fowl, and offered burnt offerings on the altar. 21And the LORD smelled a sweet savour; and the LORD said in his heart, I will not again curse the ground any more for man’s sake; for the imagination of man’s heart is evil from his youth; neither will I again smite any more everything living, as I have done. 22While the earth remaineth, seedtime and harvest, and cold and heat, and summer and winter, and day and night shall not cease.”
Genesis 9:1-19, “And God blessed Noah and his sons, and said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth. 2And the fear of you and the dread of you shall be upon every beast of the earth, and upon every fowl of the air, upon all that moveth upon the earth, and upon all the fishes of the sea; into your hand are they delivered. 3Every moving thing that liveth shall be meat for you; even as the green herb have I given you all things. 4But flesh with the life thereof, which is the blood thereof, shall ye not eat. 5And surely your blood of your lives will I require; at the hand of every beast will I require it, and at the hand of man; at the hand of every man’s brother will I require the life of man. 6Whoso sheddeth man’s blood, by man shall his blood be shed: for in the image of God made He man. 7And you, be ye fruitful, and multiply; bring forth abundantly in the earth, and multiply therein.
8And God spake unto Noah, and to his sons with him, saying, 9And I, behold, I establish my covenant with you, and with your seed after you;[We are his seed] 10And with every living creature that is with you, of the fowl, of the cattle, and of every beast of the earth with you; from all that go out of the ark, to every beast of the earth. 11And I will establish my covenant with you; neither shall all flesh be cut off any more by the waters of a flood; neither shall there anymore be a flood to destroy the earth.
12And God said, This is the token of the covenant which I make between me and you and every living creature that is with you, for perpetual generations: 13I do set my bow in the cloud, and it shall be for a token of a covenant between me and the earth. 14And it shall come to pass, when I bring a cloud over the earth, that the bow shall be seen in the cloud: 15And I will remember my covenant, which is between me and you and every living creature of all flesh; and the waters shall no more become a flood to destroy all flesh. 16And the bow shall be in the cloud; and I will look upon it, that I may remember the everlasting covenant between God and every living creature of all flesh that is upon the earth. 17And God said unto Noah, This is the token of the covenant, which I have established between me and all flesh that is upon the earth.
18And the sons of Noah, that went forth of the ark, were Shem, and Ham, and Japheth: and Ham is the father of Canaan. 19These are the three sons of Noah: and of them was the whole earth overspread”.
Genesis 9:28-29, “And Noah lived after the flood three hundred and fifty years. 29And all the days of Noah were nine hundred and fifty years: and he died.”
And in chapters 10 and 11 were all the begats of Shem, and Ham, and Japheth. Man has looked at the begats and has seen not that these were all the descendants of Noah, but division, race, people of different color. Nowhere in the Bible have I seen skin color only that all men descended from Noah, who descended from Adam, who descended from God. Luke 3:36-38, “Noe, which was the son of Lamech, 37Which was the son of Mathusala, which was the son of Enoch, which was the son of Jared, which was the son of Maleleel, which was the son of Cainan, 38Which was the son of Enos, which was the son of Seth, which was the son of Adam, which was the son of God.”
A co-worker said that he thought that the ark was impossible to get all those animals on board. I reminded him it took 100 years to build and had three stories, but what I saw was that there were only 8 people left on the face of the Earth and that we all descended from Noah. Noah is our whatever great Paw-Paw. As we go along we will begin to learn about satan, the deceiver of the whole world that keeps us divided. Revelation 12:7-9, 17, “And there was war in Heaven: Michael and his angels fought against the dragon; and the dragon fought and his angels, 8And prevailed not; neither was their place found any more in Heaven. 9And the great dragon was cast out, that old serpent, called the devil, and satan, which deceiveth the whole world: he was cast out into the earth, and his angels were cast out with him.,,,,,,, 17And the dragon was wroth with the woman, and went to make war with the remnant of her seed, which keep the commandments of God, and have the testimony of Jesus Christ.”
UNITED, BUT UNIQUE PLAN AND PURPOSE
Reason number four to eliminate racism through Unified Christianity: God has a unique plan and purpose for every person that He has sent into this world and one thing we know for sure is that God’s plan and purpose and calling is not to hate others because of gender, race, nationality or social status but to love one another as He commanded, John 15:12-13, “This is my commandment, that ye love one another, as I have loved you. Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.”
Jeremiah 1:4-5 says, “Then the word of the LORD came unto me [Jeremiah], saying, Before I [God] formed thee in the belly I knew thee; and before thou camest forth out of the womb I sanctified thee, and I ordained thee a prophet unto the nations.” If God knew Jeremiah from the womb He knew each and every one of us since it is He that has made us. God has a plan and a purpose for every person that has ever been born anywhere on the earth as Romans 8:28-30, “And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to His purpose.
For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren. Moreover whom he did predestinate, them he also called: and whom he called, them he also justified: and whom he justified, them he also glorified.” And those plans are for good and not evil, Jeremiah 29:11, “For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the LORD, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end.” And we can expect to fulfill God’s plan for our lives in the end. Second Timothy 1:9, “Who hath saved us, and called us with an holy calling, not according to our works, but according to His own purpose and grace, which was given us in Christ Jesus before the world began,”
And a plan for His church where our unique purposes will blend as we become one, Ephesians 4:11-16, “And He gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers; For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ: Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ: That we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive; But speaking the truth in love, may grow up into Him in all things, which is the Head, even Christ: From whom the whole body fitly joined together compacted by that which every joint supplieth, according to the effectual working in the measure of every part, maketh increase of the body unto the edifying of itself in love.” First Corinthians 12:27-28, “Now ye are the body of Christ, and members in particular. And God hath set some in the church, first apostles, secondarily prophets, thirdly teachers, after that miracles, then gifts of healings, helps, governments, diversities of tongues.” I will conclude with James 3, “My brethren, be not many masters, knowing that we shall receive the greater condemnation. For in many things we offend all.
If any man offend not in word, the same is a perfect man, and able also to bridle the whole body. Behold, we put bits in the horses’ mouths, that they may obey us; and we turn about their whole body. Behold also the ships, which though they be so great, and are driven of fierce winds, yet are they turned about with a very small helm, whithersoever the governor listeth.
Even so the tongue is a little member, and boasteth great things. Behold, how great a matter a little fire kindleth! And the tongue is a fire, a world of iniquity: so is the tongue among our members, that it defileth the whole body, and setteth on fire the course of nature; and it is set on fire of Hell.
For every kind of beasts, and of birds, and of serpents, and of things in the sea, is tamed, and hath been tamed of mankind: But the tongue can no man tame; it is an unruly evil, full of deadly poison. Therewith bless we God, even the Father; and therewith curse we men, which are made after the similitude of God. Out of the same mouth proceedeth blessing and cursing. My brethren, these things ought not so to be. Doth a fountain send forth at the same place sweet water and bitter? Can the fig tree, my brethren, bear olive berries? Either a vine, figs? So can no fountain both yield salt water and fresh.
Who is a wise man and endued with knowledge among you? Let him shew out of a good conversation his works with meekness of wisdom. But if ye have bitter envying and strife in your hearts, glory not, and lie not against the truth. This wisdom descendeth not from above, but is earthly, sensual, devilish. For where envying and strife is, there is confusion and every evil work.
But the wisdom that is from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, and easy to be intreated, full of mercy and good fruits, without partiality, and without hypocrisy. And the fruit of righteousness is sown in peace of them that make peace.”
I am now going to include a prayer based on Ephesians 1:16-21 and Ephesians 3:14-21. Pray this prayer over anyone you choose like individuals, groups and don’t forget you, because if you don’t pray for yourself, sometimes nobody will or they may not know how to pray for you.
KJV-[Dear Heavenly Father, in the Name of Jesus Christ, putting satan and his demons aside ,]16I Cease not to give thanks for ___, making mention of ___ in my prayers; 17That the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give unto ___ the spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of Him: 18The eyes of ___ understanding being enlightened; that ___ may know what is the hope of His calling, and what [are] the riches of the glory of His inheritance in the saints, 19And what is the exceeding greatness of His power to us-ward who believe, according to the working of His mighty power, 20Which He wrought in Christ, when He raised Him from the dead, and set Him at His own right hand in the heavenly places, 21 far above all principality, and power, and might, and dominion, and every name that is named, not only in this world, but also in that which is to come:
14For this cause I bow my knees unto the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, 15Of whom the whole family in Heaven and earth is named, 16That He would grant ___, according to the riches of His glory, to be strengthened with might by His Spirit in the inner man;[Baptized with the Holy Ghost] 17That Christ may dwell in ___ hearts by faith; being rooted and grounded in love, 18May [we] be able to comprehend with all saints what is the breadth, and length, and depth, and height; 19 and to know the love of Christ, which passeth knowledge, that ___ might be filled with all the fulness of God. 20Now unto Him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that worketh in us, 21Unto Him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus throughout all ages, world without end. Amen.
The reason that God teaches us through His Word is so that we can become perfect. Perfect! What do you mean perfect? Matthew 5:48, “Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in Heaven is perfect.” Second Timothy 3:16-17, “All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: That the man of God may be perfect, thoroughly furnished unto all good works.” The perfect, “artios”, in Second Timothy 3:17, is complete, sufficient, completely qualified, one with all the parts which are complete, whole, what they are supposed to be so that they might serve their destined purpose. The perfect in Matthew is “telelos”, adult, full-grown, of full age as opposed to little children, mature. Perfect in the Biblical sense just simply means to be able to see the Kingdom of God the way God sees it and the Bible is our window to the spiritual realm so that we can see everything that is happening in the invisible [to us] world around us from God’s vantage point through His Word. He wants us to be able to see what He sees so that we can become one-united, and hopefully we will be able to see more and more of the spiritual realm as we go along.
OPEN OUR UNDERSTANDING
The Bible teaches us in 2nd Corinthians 4:3-4, “But if our gospel be hid, it is hid to them that are lost, in whom the god of this world [satan] hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them.” Mark 4:14-15, “The sower soweth the word. And these are they by the wayside, where the word is sown; but when they have heard, satan cometh immediately, and taketh away the word that was sown in their hearts.” I can remember before I was born again going to church and being amazed that I could never tell you what was said afterwards. I also know that until we, as born again Christians, get light on a subject we can be blinded on any subject and we will study this closer when we get to faith. We need to ask God to open our understanding like He did for the disciples in Luke 24:45, “Then opened He their understanding, that they might understand the scriptures.” Ephesians 1:17-18, “That the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give unto you the spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of Him: The eyes of your understanding being enlightened; that ye may know what is the hope of his calling, and what [are] the riches of the glory of His inheritance in the saints,”
BINDING AND LOOSING AND AGREEING IN THE NAME OF JESUS AND ANGELS
King James Version
Living Bible Version
Mark 3:27, No man can enter into a strong man’s house, and spoil his goods, except he will first bind the strong man; and then he will spoil his house.
Mark 3:27, [satan must be bound before his demons are cast out], just as a strong man must be tied up before his house can be ransacked and his property robbed [taken].
Jesus is telling His disciples in Matthew 18:18-20, “Verily I say unto you, Whatsoever ye shall bind on Earth shall be bound in Heaven; and whatsoever ye shall loose on Earth shall be loosed in Heaven. Again I say unto you, That if two of you shall agree on earth as touching anything that they shall ask, it shall be done for them of my Father which is in heaven. For where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them.” Mark 16:17, Jesus speaking, “And these signs shall follow them that believe; In My Name [Jesus] shall they cast out devils;” Hebrews 1:14, speaking of angels, “Are they not all ministering spirits, sent forth to minister for them who shall be heirs of salvation.” Anytime you begin to have difficulty reading or understanding what is written here bind satan and his demons in the Name of Jesus from hindering you from learning what God wants you to learn and loose your ministering angels to go forth in the Name of Jesus to keep anything from hindering you from learning what God wants you to learn.
Dear Heavenly Father in the Name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth I thank you for your Word which tells us that whatever we bind on earth will be bound in Heaven. Dear Heavenly Father we now bind satan and his demons from blinding our minds to the truth of your Word and from stealing it out of our hearts and we loose angels to go forth and minister in our behalf to keep anything from hindering us from learning what you are trying to teach us through your Word. We thank you for your Word and ask that you open our understanding to be able to grow to be perfect as you are perfect and to know the hope of your calling. Amen.
To be a vessel of honor we must learn to overcome. First John 2:14, “I have written unto you, fathers, because ye have known Him that is from the beginning. I have written unto you, young men, because ye are strong, and the Word of God abideth in you, and ye have overcome the wicked one.” Overcome, “nikao”, to subdue (lit. or fig.) conquer, overcome, prevail, to get the victory. “Born” is from the Greek word “gennao” and it means, “to procreate (properly of the father, but by extension of the mother); figuratively to regenerate:-bear, beget, be born, bring forth, conceive, be delivered of, gender, make, spring.” Salvation is the Greek word's “soteria” and “soterion” and is different from born again, “gennao.” The combination of the meanings is rescue or safety (physically or morally):-deliver, health, salvation, save, saving. Defender or by implication defense:-salvation. Salvation is more than being born again, it is learning how to defend ourselves against the wiles of the devil. Ephesians 6:10-13, “Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might. Put on the whole armour of God that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places. Wherefore take unto you the whole armour of God that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand. Stand therefore,” Romans 8:37 says, “In all these things we are more than conquerors through Him [Jesus-The Word of God] that loved us.”
We must be born again [gennao] to learn to overcome [nikao] and obtain salvation [soteria and soterion] and become profitable for the Master’s use.
Second Timothy 2:19-21, “Nevertheless the foundation of God standeth sure, having this seal, The Lord knoweth them that are His. And let everyone that nameth the name of Christ depart from iniquity. But in a great house there are not only vessels of gold and of silver, but also of wood and of earth; and some to honour and some to dishonour. If a man therefore purge himself from these, he shall be a vessel unto honour, sanctified and meet [profitable] for the Master's use, and prepared unto every good work.” Iniquity is the Greek word, “adikia”, moral wrongfulness (of character, life or act):-iniquity, unjust, unrighteousness, wrong. We will learn more about God’s plan to help us “depart from iniquity” and “purge ourselves” as we go along.
THE GREAT COMMISSION
We must endeavor to learn all we can about the spiritual realm so that we can be used of God to fulfill the great commission that is found in Mark 16:15-18, “And He [Jesus] said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature. He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved, but he that believeth not shall be damned. And these signs shall follow them that believe; In my Name [Jesus] shall they cast out devils; they shall speak with new tongues; They shall take up serpents; and if they drink any deadly thing, it shall not hurt them: they shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover.”
We must know everything we can about what God did for us at Calvary so we can be effective ambassadors for Jesus. All born again Christians can fulfill Second Corinthians 5:18-20, “And all things are of God, who hath reconciled us to Himself by Jesus Christ, and hath given to us the ministry of reconciliation; To wit that God was in Christ, [We will find out later that God is now in us just like He was in Christ] reconciling the world unto Himself, not imputing their trespasses unto them; and hath committed unto us the word of reconciliation. Now then we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God did beseech you by us: we pray you in Christ's stead, be ye reconciled to God.”
TREASURE IN HEAVEN
We can begin to lay up treasure in Heaven as soon as we are born again. Matthew 6:19-21, “Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt, and where thieves break through and steal: But lay up for yourselves treasures in Heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through nor steal: For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.” Our treasure in Heaven will be the people we have helped to become saints of God and the ones we have prayed for, witnessed to or in some way helped them obtain salvation by overcoming the spiritual battle and become profitable for the Masters use. Ephesians 1:18, “The eyes of your understanding being enlightened; that ye may know what is the hope of his calling, and what [are] the riches of the glory of His inheritance in the saints,” We and everyone we help to be born again are God’s greatest treasure, His inheritance in the saints. We are the apple of His eye and He thinks about us all day every day.
Onward to the "Keys of the Kingdom of Heaven."