Christian

Changes In Attitude

Or Works vs. Grace

Many have taught that salvation is by grace and not works. This is true. Salvation is the gift of God. Ephesians 2:8-9 KJV says For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: [9] Not of works, lest any man should boast.

But does this belittle works and what exactly are works? Could it cause some people to give up and not even try to please the Lord?

Ecclesiastes 12:13 KJV says Let us hear the conclusion of the whole matter: Fear God, and keep his commandments: for this is the whole duty of man.

Is duty work? It doesn’t have to be. Attitude matters.

Mark Twain once said “Work consists of whatever a body is obliged to do. Play consists of whatever a body is not obliged to do.” Citation

Is it work to not kill? Is it work to not lie, steal, or cheat on your spouse? I think the answer to all of these questions should be no. Character and morals may take years to cultivate, but Jesus told us his yoke was easy and he did not lie. What you once found hard, may become second nature with observance and the Lord’s help.

In the Adventures of Tom Sawyer, Tom is obligated to paint a fence. He turns the situation around by making it appear to be fun rather than work and soon has a handful of boys doing the work for him and even paying him for the opportunity. Young Tom, or at least Mark Twain, understood attitude and ways to affect it.

Just because God provided grace for salvation, oft times defined as undeserved favor, or because even our righteousnesses may appear as filthy rags before the Lord does not mean good works have no value.

On the contrary they are of much value before the Lord and they are of much value upon whom they are bestowed.

I believe God has in store heavenly rewards for our good works. Revelation 22:12. And if you accomplish many good works in your life and don’t even account it work but rather a pleasure, how much greater any later reward for earned favor.

Standard
Christian

IDC

I discussed synonyms in my previous post. Here’s one more for your consideration.

Unconditional Love is another word for IDC. What does IDC stand for?

I don’t care.

Errant and misled preachers are teaching: God loves you no matter what you do or God’s love is unconditional.

There is no such thing as unconditional love. If I don’t care what you do, if I don’t care what you do to me – the honest truth is I Don’t Care.

God is Love.

God cares what you do.

God cares how you treat him and how you treat others.

Since he cares, he created certain conditions or rules for us to follow. These are also known as Commandments. And Jesus said if you love me, keep them.

Standard
Christian

Inescapable Synonyms

In this age of cancel culture, people are trying to redefine biblical words or actions in order to make them undesirable or just plain dirty. What’s the truth?

  • Religion is another word for Duty
  • Legalism is another word for Obedience
  • Fear is another word for Terror
  • Terrible is an adjective used to describe God
  • Holy is another word for Righteous
  • Righteous is another word for Obedient
  • Love is another word for Caring
  • Caring is another word for Affection
  • Condition is another word for Affection

Before you believe those that say this word meant such and such according to recent studies of Greek or Hebrew, learn what it means in English. The KJV is perfect. If you have doubts on the meaning of a word check your Dictionary and Thesaurus before they too get changed or a new and better version comes out.

Standard
Christian, Inspirational

At What Cost

Christ did die on the cross for us. But a dangerous and misleading teaching is that Christ died on the cross so that we don’t have to.

It can be a bit confusing, but it’s important to get it right. Jesus died so that we will not have to die the second death as long as we believe, are baptized , and follow him. The second death is being found unworthy and cast into Hell forever. It is eternal separation from the Lord, where the Bible says our soul is destroyed.

Jesus did not promise us that we should never suffer or die. In fact the opposite is true. John 15:20 KJV says, … If they have persecuted me, they will also persecute you… . Revelation 2:10 KJV says … be thou faithful unto death, and I will give thee a crown of life.

So why is this important. You may have been taught Jesus has already done everything necessary for your salvation or that he died on the cross in our place. The realistic version is that as a Christian you may suffer and you may even be called to give your life for Christ.

To those of you that are called and chosen. Be mindful that one thing yet remains:

Be faithful unto death!

Standard
Christian

Sympathy For The Devil

I am sick of people on religious programs saying God’s love is unconditional. I honestly don’t believe these people know or understand love.

Yet, I must admit I’m finally convinced. God’s love is unconditional. Perhaps I’ve been too harsh in my judgment. He did ask us to love our enemies.

But here’s your choice and it’s a big one: You can be loved by God in the same way He loves Satan or you can be loved by God as he loves Jesus.

I think if you study the Holy Bible you’ll find the only difference between the two is how they dealt with God’s conditions.

Standard
Christian

Placing Membership

Most churches I’ve attended expect you to place membership with them.

There is absolutely no biblical requirement for this.

If you believe and are baptized by immersion in water in the name of Jesus or in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost you have become a member of the family. You are a member of the Church of Jesus Christ.

What you do with that membership is now up to you. Will you learn, follow, and grow in Christ or will you let your membership lapse?

Standard
Christian

Church of Christ Revisited

I stopped attending the Church of Christ because as a denomination they fail to believe in the possibility of modern miracles. The Bible does say to depart from those who doubt or do not believe in the power of God, but perhaps I have wrongly judged. Just because they don’t believe in the availability of miracles in this age doesn’t necessarily mean they believe God is without power.

Also, I miss a few things about the Church of Christ. I miss the fact that they offer communion every Sunday. I believe all churches should do this. I miss the hymnal. New music and musicians can be a great way to worship the Lord, but I miss the classics. I miss hearing them and I miss singing them. I’d like to say women don’t speak in Church to their shame, but some usually want to say hi (inside the building). The good news is they don’t speak in an official capacity, at least upstairs. How hard is it to keep the word of the Lord? 1 Corinthians 14:34-35. Ignorance is not really an excuse. We as adults are all expected to have read the Bible.

Still looking for a more perfect Church, but today I’ll be going back to Land Between the Lakes Church of Christ in Dover.

Standard
Christian

Sound Bites

In my opinion if what a preacher says sounds like a snippet, an attempt at being quotable, or a sound bite it’s often bologna or hog wash.

Let me give you an example, one very popular with preachers who promote giving to get a blessing: Only when you release what’s in your hand, can God release what’s in his.

Another, nothing leaves Heaven until something leaves the Earth.

If it sounds like a sound bite, consider and search the scripture to see if it is in any way supported by what’s in the Bible. Unfortunately in many cases you will find it is not.

Remember, God can do anything and is not bound by man’s words.

Standard
Christian

Definitive

Satan’s plans are nefarious and can at times be very subtle. One of his projects is changing the meaning of various words. If you hear his definitions often enough you might just believe them.

  • Religion is bad
  • Legalism is evil
  • Love is unconditional
  • Male is a sexist distinction
  • Female is a personal distinction
  • Sexuality is a choice
  • Life is after birth and before senility
  • White Lie
  • Half Truth

Changing the meaning of words leads to confusion and confusion leads to sin.

The Bible tells us in Isaiah 5:20 KJV Woe unto them that call evil good, and good evil; that put darkness for light, and light for darkness; that put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter!

But what if you’ve been misled and don’t know the difference?

Standard
Christian, Inspirational

And Now You Know…

The Bible advises us to rightly divide the word in 2 Timothy 2:15.

Part of understanding a verse is context, but part is comprehending all of the words actually written.

There are many today that say God’s love is unconditional. I disagree and here’s why: they are misinformed. Perhaps it is innocent optimism, but I think it is a deceitful lie that causes much more harm than good.

Read John 3:16 KJV 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.

Can you spot the condition? You have to believe to be saved.

Read 2 Corinthians 6:17-18 KJV Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing ; and I will receive you, [18] And will be a Father unto you, and ye shall be my sons and daughters, saith the Lord Almighty.

Can you spot the condition? Touch not the unclean thing and then you will be received as a son or daughter.

Read Psalm 31:24 KJV Be of good courage, and he shall strengthen your heart, all ye that hope in the Lord.

Can you spot the condition? Trick question. I think there are two. With effort on your part be courageous and additionally hope in the Lord and the Lord will strengthen your heart.

Context is important, but in most cases the Gospel applies to us today, just as it did to those living thousands of years ago when it was first given. When you read the Bible don’t cherry pick. Examine the verse to see what it really says in it’s entirety. There’s a blessing of God. Awesome. But look and see if God expects something of you in return.

Don’t miss out cause you’ve heard or latched on to only half of the story.

Standard