Misguided? Or totally depraved?

We had a discussion in our Sunday School Class yesterday (7/31/16).  We discussed the atrocity of three hoodlums entering a Catholic Church and killing an 86 year old priest by slitting his throat.  The reaction of the Catholic Church was that we should pray for “Misguided Souls.”  I believe that to merely say that these people are “misguided souls” is to miss the mark by a wide margin.

That they are misguided, there is little doubt; but that doesn’t come near to the term “totally depraved,” which is the definition most Christian thinkers give to the description that the Apostle Paul (by inspiration of the Holy Spirit) gives to the human condition in Romans 3:9-20.  “What is wrong with someone who would do such a terrible thing,” we well may ask?  Why, they are lost souls, not merely misguided; and to define them as “misguided” is to miss the mark considerably.

What is my purpose in making this distinction?  It is this:  Let us define things as God defines them in His Holy Word!  Let us realize that we need to get back to Biblical thinking, and stop trying to be wiser than God.  Let us realize that apart from reconciliation to God through the work of Jesus Christ on the cross that mankind is undone!  We are a people of unclean lips, and we all dwell in the midst of a people of unclean lips.  Without Jesus Christ, we are no better than savage beasts, as is evidenced in the killing of that elderly priest, and the many others who are murdered every day.  Yes, those who are in the clutch of Satan are undoubtedly “misguided;” but it goes far beyond that.  They are without Christ! They don’t believe in Him, and love the darkness rather than the light.

So let’s stop attempting to be politically correct in our definitions!  Let’s get back to thinking, living, and speaking Biblically!  People may be misguided in many things; but when they do murder, it’s because they are without Christ, reprobate, and children of the Devil.  Read the New Testament!  Jesus Christ has defined these things for us in His teaching.  We do Him an injustice  when we try to be wiser than He!

As ever, with love from a sinner saved by grace,

Bill

 

Misguided? Or totally depraved?

A MESSAGE ABOUT PRAYING GOD’S WORD BACK TO HIM!

“The word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword.  Piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow; and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart (Hebrews 4:12).

SURRENDER TO GOD

When I awake each morning, I pray God’s promises back to Him, e. g., (From Romans 12:1,2) “God my Father, I present myself as a living sacrifice to you.  This is holy and acceptable to you, and it’s my reasonable service.  I pray that I may not be conformed to this world, but transformed by the renewing of my mind; that I may prove what is that good and acceptable, and perfect will of God.”

PRAYER FOR GUIDANCE

I thank you Father, for your promise in Isaiah 41 :10, “Fear thou not, for I am with thee: be not dismayed, for I am thy God.  I will strengthen thee: yea, I will help thee; yea, I will uphold thee with the right hand of my righteousness.”  Father, I claim this promise in the Name of Jesus, now; and I pray that you will, “Instruct me and teach me in the way that I should go, and  guide me with your eye (Psalm 32:8).”

PRAY WITHOUT CEASING

As you continue on through the day, pray for the people you meet, the people who pass by you, for absolutely everyone.  Read the Psalms: Pray as David and the other psalmists prayed.  Read the Gospels: Pray as Jesus prayed.  Read the Epistles: Pray as the Apostles prayed.  Be innovative, go through the Bible, and pray as the Old Testament saints prayed. As you can see, there’s no limit to Biblical resources.

“O God, Most Holy, bless my friends and me as we seek to please you, and pray as you would have us to pray: to honor You, our Heavenly Father, and God, the Son, our blessed Lord Jesus, and God, the Holy Spirit, our blessed comforter.  We ask this in the Name of Jesus,  Amen!

From a sinner saved by God’s irresistible grace!

Bill

A MESSAGE ABOUT PRAYING GOD’S WORD BACK TO HIM!

A SHORT MESSAGE FOR THE LOST SHEEP WHO BELONG TO JESUS!

Jesus loves you, and longs for you to come home (John 6:37): All that the Father gives me shall come to me; and he that cometh to me, I will in no wise cast out.”

Are you ready to come now?  Do you believe that Jesus is the Son of God?  Do you believe that you are among those for whom He died?  Will you come in repentance, agreeing with God’s Word that you are a sinner, to God the Father, and by faith to Jesus Christ, asking Him to be your Savior (Acts 20:21)?

He wants you to come to Him!  He says in Matthew 11:28: “Come to me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.  Take my yoke upon you and learn of me.  For I am meek and lowly in heart and you shall find rest unto your souls, for my yoke is easy and my burden is light.”  When you come to Jesus, there will be rejoicing in Heaven.  The angels and those who have gone on before you, whether you knew them or not, will all rejoice.

Why, indeed, should you try to hold on to that which you can’t keep, when in Jesus Christ you may have that which will be yours for eternity?

From a friend in Christ,

Bill

A SHORT MESSAGE FOR THE LOST SHEEP WHO BELONG TO JESUS!

WE MUST WORK OUT WHAT GOD WORKS IN!

(Philippians 2:12-13) “Wherefore my beloved, as ye have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling.  For it is God which worketh in you, both to will and to do of his good pleasure.”

When we come by faith to the Lord Jesus Christ, acknowledging Him as Lord and Savior, He gives us, immediately upon our heart belief in Him, the gift of salvation.  We are then His, and He is ours; but, it doesn’t end there.  God has many children, chosen by Him before the foundation of the world, who must hear the gospel, effectually believe in Jesus Christ, and be saved.  There are many poor out there, barely having enough food to keep them alive, and even then, perhaps not for long – who eventually, and inevitably, will die of starvation.  There are many in jails and prisons who need someone to have compassion on them, and visit them, taking to them the gospel, a kind word, and a willing-to-listen ear.  There are many sick, who need to know that someone cares about them,  enough to visit them and pray, with, and for them.

As I said before, it doesn’t end when we are saved; that is merely the beginning.  When God works into us, into our innermost parts, the gift of salvation, He expects us, and will help us, to work our salvation outward for His glory, and for the sake of the lost, the  sick, the poor, the imprisoned, and the disenfranchised; i. e., those whom worldly society thinks are sub-standard human beings.  In all of this remember:  It is God who is “working in us, to will and to do of His good pleasure.”

Personally, I must come in repentance, and confess to God, “that working out what God works in,” has not heretofore been a priority in my life.  I’ve been a Christian for a long time; but my thoughts and contemplation has been mostly in my own behalf, not fully realizing (or perhaps ignoring the fact) that God expects us to care for people: physically (in regard to food and clothing, and shelter); kindly, in terms of friendship, and spiritually, in terms of their need to know Jesus Christ.  That is what it means to open the entire gift of salvation, and to share it with those with whom we come in contact.

As ever, with love, from a sinner saved by grace,

Bill

 

WE MUST WORK OUT WHAT GOD WORKS IN!

The Most Important “What if”-ever!

Matthew 16:26, “For what is a man profited if he should gain the whole world, and lose his own soul, or what shall a man give in exchange for his soul?”

We live in an interesting time.  According to polls (although I’ve never been polled) more people say they’re “born again,” than not.  In fact the number has been said to be as much as 80% in the USA.  Yet crime, i. e., homicides, burglaries and robberies, fraud and extortion, are greater than ever in the history of our country, at this present time.  How can it be that we have such a high percentage of “born again Christians,” as the pollsters say, in the light of all the atrocities?   Logically, we must conclude that the pollsters are wrong.  Somehow, they’re missing the boat, or perhaps they’re not asking the right questions, or perhaps they’re not interpreting things right, due to their own ignorance of what it really means to be “born again.”

MISINTERPRETATION

Personally, I believe the problem to be misinterpretation.  The pollsters aren’t realizing that the gospel (good news from the Bible), as it’s emphasized today, is no longer that which the Lord Jesus Christ and the apostles preached, i. e., the gospel that was, “Once for all delivered to the saints” (Jude 3).  The gospel that is basically taught now in the “mega-churches,” is drastically watered down from the gospel preached by the apostles, and by Bible believing Christians throughout history since the resurrection of Christ, and by the reformers.

BASICS OF THE TRUE GOSPEL

There are two basic elements in the true gospel that are (at best) superficially addressed by those involved in the ecumenical movement of our day.  The two elements are: mankind’s sin, and God’s righteousness.  They are, at best, brushed off, or replaced by mere extrinsic representations of God’s Holy Word.

Mankind’s sin is defined in the following way, first in Psalm 14; repeated in Psalm 53; and, again in Romans 3:10-17, as Paul writes by inspiration of the Holy Spirit:  “As it is written, there is none righteous, no not one:  There is none that understandeth, there is none that seeketh after God.  They are all gone out of the way, they are all together become unprofitable:  There is none that doeth good, no, not one.  There throat is an open sepulchre:  with their tongues they us deceit:  the poison of asps is under their lips:  Whose mouth is full of cursing and bitterness:  Their feet are swift to shed blood:  Destruction and misery are in their ways:  And the way of peace they have not known:  There is no fear of God before their eyes.”  This is God’s description of humankind without the Lord Jesus Christ.   The mega church, and those involved in the present ecumenical movement take a “Yes, humankind is somewhat bad” approach to the sin problem, barely scraping the surface in regard to the total depravity  of man depicted in Romans 3:10-17.  Consequently, their knowledge and opinion of the complete redemption purchased by the blood of Jesus Christ, is also quite inadequate.

BORN AGAIN

Being born again entails a change.  We become “new creatures.”  My contention is this:  If 80% of the people in the USA were born again, would we still have all of the crime and wickedness that is presently extant in our country?  I think not!

THE SOLUTION TO OUR DILEMMA

Surely, this isn’t that hard to figure out, nor is it that hard to resolve.  We who are born again by God’s Holy Spirit must pray for a spiritual revival that encompasses the entire world.  That is what God said to Solomon in 2 Chronicles 7:14:  “If my people, who are called by my name humble themselves and pray and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and heal their land.”  Is your church involved in praying for such a spiritual revival?  Then make it your priority to stir up such a notion within your church.  This is what I intend to do in mine.

Now what God says in 2 Chronicles 7:14 is a promise; and, unless I’m terribly deluded, God want us to claim His promises, and hang on to them like bulldogs.  You may tell me, “That was a promise to Solomon, not to you.”  Well, it’s mine now, because I just claimed it!  Join me.  We can’t go wrong trusting the True and Living God!  Let’s get back to being God trusting, and promise claiming Christians!

With love in the Lord Jesus, from a sinner saved by grace,

Bill

 

The Most Important “What if”-ever!