Welcome to Speaking the GospelOne of the reasons for this website is to help you better grow in the word of God. The articles written on this site take an honest and straightforward approach towards God's word. It is my hope that in reading the articles presented will not only challenge you but also gain a deeper and greater understanding towards God's Word in your life. I take the studying of the word of God very serious, as I will be held accountable before God for what is taught here, Galatians 1:9. As we have already said, so now I say again: If anybody is preaching to you a gospel other than what you accepted, let them be under God's curse!The articles come from a personal bible study, and it is my joy to be able to share these with you. The first article is on "examining yourselves "I have placed it at the beginning, as a way of introduction, because we all have a certain concept about the "faith" we are walking in, and many times we take for granted that what we are being taught is really based on the word of God. But what if what is being taught is not in line with the word of God, would we be able to discern if it is God's word or not. It is important to understand that what we believe may well be denying the power of God's work in us. If the gospel we present is just a reflection of a worldview which is not based on the word of God but rather on phycology which those who need to hear the gospel already have, than what does the gospel have left to offer them. The message of the gospel is not popular and it never was or will be, our calling as Christians is not to edit the message, to suit the hearer, but to deliver it in truth.
This is a study concerning the holy spirit. There is much debate on this subject . In my studying of this topic from both sides of the issue, I came to understand why there is so much confusion, I came to see that "the opinions of men have been clouding the whole issue". Both sides want to be right and use the word of God to give support to their point of view, one side claims that the holy spirit is a person because of the many references in the word of God about having a "personality" the other side claims that it is just a "force" used by God. I came to ask myself, can the word of God be divided on this issue, the clear answer to that is NO, both can’t be right, that leave’s two other options, both are wrong, or, only one is right.
Some have even gone as far as to insist that one must believe that god is a trinity in order to be saved, but that teaching does not measure up to the word of God. Yes, how we view the holy spirit will effect us in understanding God's plan of Salvation. A person’s salvation is founded on the belief and faith that Christ is the Son of God, not whether God is a trinity. But in order for us to walk in truth we need to know the truth. I believe and will prove that there is a very clear biblical teaching about this issue in the word of God. It is the goal of this study to present from God’s word what the holy spirit is, and is not, and what role it has in mankind’s relationship with God and Christ. Before any meaningful understanding of the holy spirit of God can be made we need to begin with a clear understanding of the term “spirit.” in the Old Testament and in the New.
Spirit Of God" In The Old Testament
In the Old Testament, the Hebrew word for "spirit" is Ruach(pronounced) roo-awkh its primary meaning is "breath." or more specifically, a breathing out. The word "breath" may not make sense as a way of expressing the meaning for spirit, but when we learn from God's word that breath represents life we can make the
connection. When it is put in proper context, the word Ruach (spirit or breath,) as used in scripture, as is relates to God, speaks of God as (the spirit of the holy or divine one) put another way, (the spirit which belongs to the Holy One,) to be very clear the word Ruach, is not a word that is expressing a different entity distinct from God, but an aspect or characteristic of God.
We read in Genesis 1:2-3"The earth was without form and void, and darkness was on the face of the deep; and the Spirit ( roo-awkh,) "breath"of God was hovering over the face of the waters, Then God said, "Let there be light"; and there was light. When reading these opening verses we clearly see that the Spirit of God is moving over the surface of the waters before the beginning of God’s creative words spoken in verse 3 "than God said." We come to understand also that there is no other instance in the Old Testament where (roo-awkh) means anything other than "the spirit of God or "the wind of God." So when we read "And God said," in the Genesis account, we are being introduced to each creative movement of God as creator.
Genesis 2:7 "And the Lord God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed ( roo-awkh,) into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living being." Without the breath of God there is no life.
The "Spirit Of God" In The New Testament
Now we come to the New Testament, the Greek word translated as "spirit" in the term "Spirit of God" is (new-mah) and means the exact some thing as in the Old Testament discussed above, “breath”, but has a more profound usage. In the Old Testament the word Ruach is generally being used to refer to the creating of physical life, while in the New Testament the word is used to refer to the creative power that will, in due time, create eternal life. We read this in 2 Corinthians 1:22"who also has sealed us and given us the Spirit (new-mah) in our hearts as a guarantee,"(a future event) . Ephesians 4:30And do not grieve the Holy Spirit (new-mah, "breath") of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption."( a future event).Matthew 3:16-17 " When He had been baptized, Jesus came up immediately from the water, and behold, the heavens were opened to Him, and He saw the Spirit (new-mah, "breath") of God descending like a dove, and alighting on Him; and suddenly, a voice came from heaven, saying, "This is My beloved Son, in Whom I am well pleased."
Let me ask you the reader a question. If individuals wish to insist that the holy spirit is a "personality", then would not we be forced to conclude from, Matthew 3:16-17 that the Spirit is really a male dove (a bird with wings, ) for does not the word of God clearly states in Luke 3:22, that the Spirit has the bodily appearance of a bird specifically a dove. “And the Holy Spirit descended in bodily form like a dove upon him, and a voice from heaven which said, "You are My beloved Son; in You I am well pleased." Even in the book of Genesis 1:2 the Spirit is described as "hovering over the waters" just like a bird would do, so can we conclude that the spirit is indeed a bird?
If these descriptions about the spirit mentioned in Matthew and Luke are simply symbolic (which they certainly are) then we would not be led astray into believing the Spirit actually is a bird that we call a dove. On the other hand, if one insist that the Holy Spirit is indeed a personality and that the verses are literal, then we have effectively created a "bird god" like the ancient Egyptians and heathen societies have done.
1 Corinthians 2:10-12 "But God has revealed them to us through His Spirit. For the Spirit searches all things, yes, the deep things of God. For what man knows the things of a man except the spirit of the man? Even so no one knows the things of God except the Spirit of God. Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit who is from God, that we might know the things that have been freely given to us by God."
In verse 11, What Paul is drawing is an analogy between the spirit ("heart" or "mind") of man and the Spirit of God. The teaching that Paul wants us to understand is that the holy spirit is really God's Mind. To demonstrate this, he makes a comparison between the human spirit and God's Spirit. Paul tells us that only the spirit ("mind") within a man understands the thoughts of man. Paul then goes on to say that only the Spirit ("Mind") of God knows the thoughts of God. The connecting phrase that Paul uses is"even so" what Paul wants us to contrast is that of the human spirit or mind, in the first part of the verse, with God's Spirit or Mind in the final part. What Paul wants us to understand is that unless God's (mind) combines with our human (mind), man cannot or will not be able to understand the things of God from a Godly perspective. But when God gives us His Spirit, (mind, or understanding ) we begin to comprehend what He is doing and why He is doing it.
We have now come to clearly see from the above verses of 1 Corinthians 2:10-12 that the expression "the spirit of man" corresponding with "the Spirit of God, provides us the most clear, and simple ways of understanding the subject of God’s Spirit. Just as people have a "spirit," (breath of life that comes from God) so does God.
Romans 8:14"For as many as are by led by the Spirit (new-mah, "breath") of God, these are sons of God. The meaning of this verse in Romans,should become even much clearer in it’s meaning when we compare it with Psalm 51:11, where David prays in penitence to the Lord, "Do not cast me away from Your Presence, and do not take Your Holy Spirit from me!
David knew that if God took away His spirit (to understand the things of God and to help him walk with God) he would no longer have the kind of relationship with God he was having. This is what Adam and Eve lost when they disobeyed God and ate the fruit, and they died that very day, God took away his spirit of understanding from them.
It is also interesting to note, that in the Jewish tradition the holy spirit referred to in the Hebrew Bible is not taken to be the third person of the "Trinity," The Jewish view is that "the spirit of God referred to in the Bible speaks to His energy, Isaiah 40 :13 "Who has directed the spirit of the Lord, Or as His counsel has taught Him?"Zechariah 4:6. "So he answered and said to me: This is the word of the Lord to Zerubbabel: Not by might nor by power, but by My spirit, Says the Lord of host. Although the "spirit of God" is of divine origin, this does not mean that there is a "holy spirit" as a separate divine person. We see in reading Isaiah and Zechariah, that the holy spirit is a mode of the one and only God, that is the self-expression of God in both word and action. It is this self-expression in word and action such as (the spirit of truth, bear witness, guides, reproves, speaks) that God uses, and are found in many New Testament scripture’s in reference to the holy spirit, that is being used and taken out of context by individuals to prove the distinct personality of the spirit. But the fact is the Holy Spirit is God’s very own mind set being expressed and preformed upon mankind and creation as a whole. God is revealing himself, by the work of His Spirit, and through His Son Jesus so that we can see Him, know Him, understand Him and worship Him.
Let us see what Christ has to say about what the spirit is. InJohn 3:8. Christ described the holy spirit as being something like the wind. "The wind blows where it lists, and you hear the sound thereof, but can not tell whence it comes, and whither it goes: so is every one that is born of the Spirit" Christ says in John 4:24 "God is spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth." In the word of God we read that God is Holy, and God is Spirit, so God is a Holy Spirit. The holy spirit is a quality of the mind of God; and where it proceeds from Him for the accomplishment of His purpose, it is His power or influence. And where holy spirit is within the believer, it renews the mind after the pattern of Christ, through the word of God. Contrary to what is believed about John 1:1-2 the "word" is not Jesus, but the Fathers spoken words that created and sustains all life. Scripture itself is called the "word" does that make scripture a God as well? Jesus Christ is the "word" in the flesh, Scripture is the "word" in writing. Its that simple.
Let me ask you a serious question, if the holy spirit is a personality like the Father and Christ as the trinity doctrine states, what is that relationship? Is he our brother like Christ is to us? Is he the Fathers son as Christ is? Is he the second born son, since Christ is the first born? If the holy spirit was a third member of the Trinity why was it omitted in favour of the angels, who indisputably are of lower status? Here, to add weight to this argument, are two comparable passages where reference to the holy spirit is lacking but one to the angels included.
Would a 'God the Holy Spirit' be absent from the scenes described here?: Luke 9:26"For whoever is ashamed of me and of my words, of him will the Son of man be ashamed when he comes in his glory and the glory of the Father and of the holy angels"
Revelation 3:5."I [Jesus] will confess his name before my Father and before his angels"
What about Christ’s conception and birth? Do not the Scripture says that it was the holy spirit which caused Christ to be conceived and placed in the womb of Mary (Matt 1:18), it was only through the creative power of God’s Spirit, that Christ was conceived through Mary. If God can create the entire universe, would it be too difficult for Him to use the same birth process he made at the beginning of creation to impregnate Mary with a sperm that he created as He did with all of His Creation ? God did not need Josephs help. I believe that was the case.
When we understand the Holy Spirit as being the creative power that the Father uses to accomplish His purposes throughout the universe, we can come to better understand how God can be everywhere in the universe. Ps, 139:8-10. "If I ascend up into heaven, You are there: if I make my bed in hell, behold, You are there. If I take the wings of the morning, and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea; even there Your hand shall lead me, and Your right hand shall hold me"
We are also told in Psa.139:7"Where can I go from Your Spirit". It is God’s Spirit, which pervades the totality of the universe. God,(as a personality and as an individual ) is in one place at one time and He is not located everywhere at the same time throughout the universe. But if the Spirit is simply the creative, expressive, power of God to accomplish his purposes, that Spirit can encompass at all times the totality of the universe. Consider also that if the holy spirit was a separate identity, it would not be God according to Christ.
Matt. 11:27 tells us: "All things have been delivered to me by my Father, and no one knows the Son except the Father, Nor does anyone know the Father, except the Son and the one to whom the Son wills to reveal Him." So, according to Jesus, the holy spirit does not fully know either the Father or the Son, unless the Son were to teach the holy spirit. Why would anyone have to teach the holy spirit anything if the holy spirit were a God? If the doctrine of the Trinity were true, (we would have three gods not one)there could not be anything known by the Father that the Son and the holy spirit did not also know. Another scripture to consider is in Matt. 12:31
"Therefore I say to you, Every sin and blasphemy will be forgiven men, but the blasphemy against the spirit will not be forgiven men. Anyone who speaks a word against the Son of man, it will be forgiven him; but whoever speaks against the Holy Spirit, it will not be forgiven him, either in this age or in the age to come."
If the trinity doctrine were true, if the holy spirit were actually a "person," separate from the Father and Son, and all three were God, according to what Jesus says here, the holy spirit would in some way rank even above the Son, since sin against the holy spirit would not be forgiven. What’s more, if the holy spirit were a person and God, these words of Jesus would destroy the trinity doctrine and place the holy spirit as "God" higher than both the Son and the Father, since “every sort of sin and blasphemy” would also include that against the Father too. Yes I do know that the trinity teaches that God is one in three, and not three separate persons, so that would make Christ all three at the same time, for the teaching states that they are indivisible. Which goes against the word of God. The trinity teaching causes confusion, and God is not the author of confusion.
In Revelation 21 and 22, we read about the Kingdom of God being setup on earth, we see that both God the Father and Jesus Christ are prominently featured. In Rev. 22:1 we read that "a pure river of water of life, clear as crystal, proceeding from the throne of God and of the Lamb." Each is sitting on his throne. But there doesn’t seem to be a throne for "the holy spirit". If the holy spirit is a "co-eternal" member of a triune Godhead, it is not strange that He seems to have no seat of authority on the final throne. The reason for this is simple, the biblical truth is that there is one God, the Father, and one Lord Jesus Christ, and no such separate person known as “the Holy Spirit.
Is it also not strange that in the opening of their New Testament epistles, the writers identifies himself with God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ, but not one give’s any acknowledgement to "the Holy Spirit.”"One has to ask, were they ignorant of the truth of a "tri-personal" God, a truth that supposedly constitute the foundation of the Christian faith. If so then their apostleship was incomplete, and at worst they were teaching error. Their failure to clearly teach a three person Godhead proves the assertion that the doctrine of the tri-personal God and a third person in an eternal Godhead was not believed or practiced by the Apostles. Since it was not believed nor practiced by the apostles, and the apostles were commissioned by the Lord Jesus himself, then the doctrine was not believed or practiced by the Lord Jesus either.
In fact, the doctrine of the trinity was not codified until the fourth century in the Athanasian creed
Most Christians today believe that the Spirit is the third person in a divine trinity. However, this teaching we have come to see is not scriptural. The doctrine of the trinity is only the speculations of men (sadly by church leaders). John 5:26 "For as the Father has life in Himself, so he has granted the Son to have life in himself." Jesus received his life from God. God received his life from no one. He is eternally self-existent.
One final note, here are just a few New Testament scriptures where the Apostles had opportunity to mention that the holy spirit was part of a trinity, but never brings it up, why is this?
1 Paul, an apostle of Christ Jesus by the will of God, to the saints who are in Ephesus and who are faithful in Christ Jesus: 2 Grace and peace to you from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.
1 Paul, an apostle—not sent by men nor through any man, but sent by Jesus Christ and God the Father, who raised him from the dead—(2) and all the brothers who are with me, to the churches of Galatia: (3) Grace and peace to you, from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ
1 Paul and Timothy, servants of Christ Jesus, to all the saints in Christ Jesus who are at Philippi, together with the elders and deacons; (2) Grace and peace to you from God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.
The New Testament writers never meant for the phrase ‘Son of God’ to just mean ‘God.’ Yet evangelicalism today insists on that equation if one is to be considered a Christian!
To fully understand Christ's preexistence (in Gods Plan) ought better to be understood on the analogy of the pre-existence of the Torah, indicating the eternal divine purpose being achieved through him, rather than pre-existence of a fully personal kind. The seed of Trinitarian doctrine was planted in the thinking of Justin Martyr, the second century Christian apologist who "found in Platonism the nearest approach to Christianity and felt that no break was required with its spirit and principles to pass into the greater light of Christian revelation. Also read What Jesus Christ accomplished as Savior for a deeper understanding of this topic.
Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a workman who does not need to be ashamed and who correctly handles the word of truth.
Now the Bereans were of more noble character than the Thessalonians, for they received the message with great eagerness and examined the Scriptures every day to see if what Paul said was true.
The various topics that are covered in this study are by no means complete, rather, they are more of an introduction to an aspect of the word of God. It is my hope that in reading the topics covered within these pages, it will spark a desire in your heart to do a deeper search of the Scriptures so that a fuller and deeper foundation of God’s word may become a part of your life.
I would like to ask you a personal question, are you willing to be hated for being a follower of Christ?
If we only want to seek the approval from those around us such as family and friends, those we come in contact with, at work, at the expense of representing Christ, are we really living godly lives in Christ Jesus? Are we willing to suffer persecution? I am in no way saying that we deliberately go around seeking to be hated. It is good that we live our lives with graciousness, kindness and a servant-heart attitude, as we speak the truth to others. But one thing we must remember about the good news (gospel) and that is that it does involve the giving of some very bad news about our human sinfulness, and it is this part of God’s word that makes the cross an offense to others, and creates a negative resonance towards us. Why? Because of the current ideology in the world of what is considered "hate speech" or not in line with "political correctness". There is now a censorship on truth.
The truth is, its not easy for you or I to be labeled in a negative way, I know I don't like when it happens to me, and it is not something I mark in my calendar by saying "today I plan on being hated by x number of people" nor plan to be called ignorant or intolerant or anything else that is meant to degrade because I decided to speak the truth. We must however be careful as Christians that we don’t fall in to the trap of following what is considered the social norm, or political correct speech at the expense of not standing up for truth, even at church. I believe that there is a healthy balance in how we are to present the word of God. We willing stand up for truth not to seek the approval of our culture, but for God the Father and Savior. The standards that our culture views as “right” or “good” are in fact contrary to God’s ways. It is sad that even among Christian leaders the modern concept of evangelism is little more than be nice to your neighbor and loan him your hedge clipper and somehow through that act of kindness he will come to Christ without you actually having to say the words of the gospel which may run the risk of him thinking you’re weird. Our examples of good acts are important, but it’s not sufficient. Let us take what Paul is asking of us in 1 Corinthians to heart.
1 Corinthians 15:1-6. 15 Now, brothers and sisters, I want to remind you of the gospel I preached to you, which you received and on which you have taken your stand. 2 By this gospel you are saved, if you hold firmly to the word I preached to you. Otherwise, you have believed in vain. 3 For what I received I passed on to you as of first importance: that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, 4 that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures, 5 and that he appeared to Cephas, and then to the Twelve. 6 After that, he appeared to more than five hundred of the brothers and sisters at the same time, most of who are still living, though some have fallen asleep.
When it comes to the speaking the gospel to others let us, instead of the world, set our agenda and the ground rules of what we can and can’t say, lets take the timeless examples from God’s word and teach the message of the gospel to people. How can we properly do what we are asked in Matthew 28: 19 of teaching to others and making them disciples as we have become, if we let ourselves fall into the trap that many have already and alter the contents of the gospel to make it something everyone can easily agree with.I’m sorry but that approach is not the truth about the word of God.
Hebrew 4:12-13 12 For the word of God is living and active and sharper than any two-edged sword, and piercing as far as the division of soul and spirit, of both joints and marrow, and able to judge the thoughts and intentions of the heart. 13 And there is no creature hidden from His sight, but all things are open and laid bare to the eyes of Him with whom we have to do. Do we truly understand the depth of God's word from what we read in Hebrews 4:12-13? We must never forget this one point, we as Christians, are also being judged by the very word of God we preach or teach. 1 Peter 4:17 For it is time for judgment to begin with the household of God; and if it begins with us first, what will be the outcome for those who do not obey the gospel of God?
If the gospel we present is just going to be a reflection of a worldview that is not rooted on the word of God, but rather on phycology, which those who need to hear the gospel already have, than what value does the gospel have to offer them? No the message of the gospel is not popular and it never was or will be. But our calling as Christians is not to edit the message, to suit the hearer, but to deliver it in truth.
Don't be afraid of those who call themselves believers yet stand ready to defend what they call a new definitionof the word of God as to what it means to be a good Christian, holding to the view that your beliefs must be held privately, and must not in any way challenge those who publicly share beliefs that dishonor Christ, and avoid controversy at all costs lest we be perceived as “those kind of Christians” who hate gays, oppose abortion etc. Do we want the world to love us that we would be willing to distance ourselves from a true Christian faith, from biblical doctrine? If we end up doing that, are we not ourselves becoming indistinguishable from the rest of the world, and therefore have nothing of value to offer the world?
The Word of God speaks just as strongly to us who have been called as it does to those who are being called by the gospel. 2 Corinthians 6:14-18 Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? and what communion hath light with darkness? And what concord hath Christ with Belial? or what part hath he that believeth with an infidel? And what agreement hath the temple of God with idols? for ye are the temple of the living God; as God hath said, I will dwell in them, and walk in them; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people. Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you. And will be a Father unto you, and ye shall be my sons and daughters, saith the Lord Almighty.What is our reaction to these word’s to us?
As Disciples of Christ it’s not our job to be popular. He’s the King, He tells us how we are to conduct ourselves with His word, not we Him. We are His ambassadors. So let’s represent Jesus, as portrayed in the Word of God. Let us not bow down to the culturally acceptable one. Discernment means learning the difference between revealed truth and pagan, philosophical teachings which originated outside the Bible yet affected what is now called "orthodoxy."
There is nothing new about the gospel turning some people off. That has always been a truth in every generation, just as it’s always been true that some are longing to hear it and will deeply appreciate it.
Let us never forget what Christ said to us. “All men will hate you because of me.” Mark 13:13 and, “If the world hates you, keep in mind that it hated me first.” John 15:18
May you all grow in the grace and understanding of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
Are you willing to be hated for Speaking the Gospel.
Please note: Any links to other websites provided from this site does not necessarily mean that I endorse every doctrine laid out on these websites. I provide these links as a way to give weight to a topic discussed. I advise you therefore; to please be careful and discerning as you read what is being presented in these linked sites. And remember the words of Jesus, "Take heed that no man deceives you."
Is the Gospel teaching about salvation really something that is hard for us to understand? Are there ministers who stand behind the pulpit presenting the word of God in a way that robs it of its power and making it ineffective? Have some willingly held back the most vital truths, simply to advance their own cause?
These are very important questions that we need to ask, our very salvation may be at stake. But before going on there is something that needs to be made clear concerning our understanding of 2 Corinthians 13:5 this verse has been expressed in two ways. (1) Paul is asking us to examine ourselves to see if we are indeed in the faith. (are we really saved or not, this view is the one most often used in sermons) (2) Paul is asking us to confirm to ourselves what he already knows about those who have chosen to follow Christ, that we are in the faith because we believe in the gospel he is teaching.) When we examine 2 Corinthians 13:5 we come to see that our second answer is the accurate one, Paul is telling the Corinthians, as well as us today. (Do you not realize that Christ Jesus is in you.) Paul is confirming their salvation, and He is concerned that they are now being led astray by another gospel.
The focus Paul has in mind in 2 Corinthians 13:5 is not him asking the Corinthians to engage in self-examination as a proof of their salvation, rather he is asking them to find in their salvation a proof of his apostleship.Is he teaching the truth? Either Jesus Christ was in them, because Paul was teaching the truth, and their belieif in that truth, or he and they were disqualified, because he was teaching a lie. Since Paul knew that Christ was in them because of his teaching, he was very concerned that they were losing sight of this fact and were being lead astray by false teachings that started to influence them. The focus for my writing in relations to 2 Corinthians 13:5 is to encourage us to stay alert, and stay rooted in the faith, and not be moved by every wind of doctrine.Is what we are being taught (the truth of God's word) building up our faith so as to be on solid ground, or are we allowing our faith ( by teachings of men) to be high jacked? There are many false teachers in the world today, who are more interested in a following for monetary gain than to speak the truth, these false teachers will accuse those who speak the gospel truth of being the ones deceived and lying.
2 Corinthians 13:5Examine yourselves to see whether you are in the faith; test yourselves. Do you not realize that Christ Jesus IS IN YOU unless, of course, you fail the test? When it comes to the question on our salvation, this statement in 2 Corinthians should be taken seriously, one we need to take to heart, the answer we come up with, will tell us whether we pass or fail, are we allowing our faith to be high jacked by those who profess to be men of God teaching the truth, but are really wolfs in sheep's clothing? This was the question that Paul was confronting the Corinthians with, because he deeply cared for them. This is my challenge to you.
Paul is asking us to examine ourselves to see whether we are in the faith.( in this context "the faith" ) means "what you believe" ( concerning the gospel, is what you are being taught inline with God's word? ) The faith being referred to here by Paul does not just apply to our believing something to be true, but to the object of our belief, what is it that we really believe? Is our salvation the result of Christ living in us, or because of the works we think we must do to earn salvation? No one is saved because of works, but saved because they confess that Jesus is the only Name that saves. But it takes more than just saying one believes, one must trust for "Thou believest that there is one God; thou doest well: the devils also believe, and tremble" (James 2:19). Devils believe also but tremble knowing their fate. Do we truly trust God to save us, through Jesus?
Examining ourselves involves more than just checking to see if we are reading the word of God, praying, etc. The emphasis being placed on each one of us as individuals, is to examine ourselves to see whether Jesus is still a reality inside of us, and to be careful that we have not and are not slowly and unknowingly being led away from the truth, by what is being taught to us as the gospel. We read in 2 Corinthians 11:13-15:"For such are false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves into the apostles of Christ. And no marvel; for Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light. Therefore it is no great thing if his ministers also be transformed as the ministers of righteousness; whose end shall be according to their works"Are we being careful that we don’t develop an attitude of "it's not going to happen to me" or " I can trust everything that is being taught me, because he is a man of God" Many may feel they are in the faith just because they go to church on a regular bases, are involved with church activities, are giving offerings, singing praises to God, say they believe in Jesus. Is this really what Paul is talking about? Is Paul really asking us how faithful we are in church attendance, how well we offer grace at the meal table, or does he ask us how much Bible knowledge we have. No, Paul is asking us the most fundamental of questions, "Are we still standing in the faith in which Jesus Christ called us to or have we begun backsliding?" How can you tell? Paul's message is to believers not non-believers.
Examining ourselves is not as easy as we may think, it first involves that we be rooted in the truth. For example, we are warned concerning the teaching of a false gospel in Galatians 6:7,8: "Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap. For he that soweth to his flesh shall of the flesh reap corruption; but he that soweth to the Spirit shall of the Spirit reap life everlasting." This is a very serious warning to all of us in this day of free-believism, such as the false doctrine of our never-dying souls. This lie is being preached on a large scale. What does God's word say on that matter. We read in Ezekiel 18:20 The soul that sinneth it shall die. Who are we to believe man or God. What this false teaching is doing is it is teaching justification in Christ alone, at the expense of holy living; and those hearing this one-sided gospel are being left in the dark as to God’s requirement of the necessity of a holy life. God’s grace has been turned into lasciviousness; "A little sin won’t hurt-I’m just a carnal Christian’ you know, and besides, doesn’t grace cover it all?" Let me state here that there is no such thing as a carnal Christian.
There are far to many individuals that attend a church and take for granted that what is being taught is the true gospel.Are you one of them? Many are currently being influenced by Gnostic and mystical teachings within the various assemblies, and are unaware that philosophical, mystical ideas have invaded the church (true followers of Christ) that the apostles died for, from the second century onwards via the "Church Fathers," who were themselves steeped in pagan philosophy and were the ones who laid the foundation of the creeds now called "orthodox." " make no mistake, the forces which operated to change apostolic doctrine were derived from paganism, The habits of thought which the Gentiles brought into the church, explain the corruptions of apostolic doctrine which began in the post-apostolic age." I ask you not to just take my word but to prove the things I say for yourself, is not your salvation worth it?
So ask yourself, what if what is being taught is not in line with the word of God, would we be able to discern if it is God's word or not? Would someone be walking in truth? There are many ministers today who stand behind pulpits using the name of Jesus Christ, proclaiming they speak the word of God in truth, but are nothing but lies. Would you or I know the difference? Does it really matter whether we believe the truth or not? What about the teaching on the trinity, (see next article) is it the truth. What are we to do in such a situation, lets read 2 Timothy 3:5Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away. Ministers who teach a false doctrine are trying to cause us to lose the power that the true gospel has on us. Let us never forget that Satan is very clever in the way that he works, he is able to present himself as a minister of light and he is hard at work to get us to walk according to the flesh rather than the spirit.
Let us test ourselves to make sure we are solid in the faith and not drifting along taking everything for granted. Let’s give ourselves regular check-ups. You and I need firsthand evidence, not mere hearsay that Jesus Christ is still in us. Remember the one goal that Satan has is to lead you and I away from Christ, and false teachings can do just that. Test it out. If you fail the test, do something about it. The book of Hebrews is an excellent book to read, it was written to encourage believers to stand true in the faith.
The approach that this writing is taking as to what we can learn from this chapter is from the perspective that God sees everything laid out before Him, and that the life of Jesus should be viewed from the prospective that indicates the eternal divine purpose being achieved through him, rather than pre-existence of a fully personal kind, as part of God the Fathers overall plan for establishing a Kingdom here on earth. According to Peter the Messiah himself was foreknown, not just his death for our sins but the person Messiah himself 1 Pet. 1:20. Peter uses the same word to describe the "existence" of the Son of God in God’s plan as he did to describe the "existence" of the Christian church (v. 2). Though the Messiah was foreknown (not known, but foreknown, as was Jeremiah before his birth, Jer. 1:5,)he was manifested by being brought into actual existence at his birth Luke 1:35. To view Christ in this manner (as a man) does in no way take away from his honor, but adds light to the way of understanding God’s purpose for mankind. He (God) executes the Plan at the appropriate time. Roman 4:17
The Son of Man is found in the book of Daniel. He "preexists" only in the sense that God grants us a vision of him in His Plan for the future. The Son of Man is a human being (that is what the words mean.) Thus what John wants us to understand is that the human Messiah was in heaven before his birth (in God’s Plan,) and was seen in Daniel’s vision of the future Dan. 7; John 6:62.
It is important to note that Jesus at his ascension went up to the position which had been previously prepared for him in God’s Plan.No text says that Jesus went back (upostrepho) to God, though this idea has been wrongly imported into some modern English translations to support "orthodoxy."
"During the days of Jesus' life on earth, he offered up prayers and petitions with loud cries and tears to the one who could save him from death, and he was heard because of his reverent submission. Although he was a son, he learned obedience from what he suffered and, once made perfect, he became the source of eternal salvation for all who obey him"
The Truth about Christ that is taught in the word of God is that Jesus had to walk a course of faith and obedience in order to achieve perfection. By achieving perfection, Jesus “became” the source of eternal life. It is also important to note that the verse states that Jesus prayed to his Father, now if he was God why would he need to delivered from death? Also read what this verse says concerning Jesus, (save him (Jesus) from death.) Now why would God the Father have to save Jesus from death, if as it is claimed, Jesus is God?
There’s more than just a healing at the sheep gate.
1 Some time later, Jesus went up to Jerusalem for one of the Jewish festivals. 2 Now there is in Jerusalem near the Sheep Gate a pool, (It is interesting to note the connection that Jesus healed a man at the sheep gate).(sheep were used in sacrifice, and Jesus being the Lamb of God that takes away the sins of the world.) which in Aramaic is called Bethesda (Bethesda=Merciful,God is merciful )and which is surrounded by five covered colonnades. Here a great number of disabled people used to lie—the blind, the lame, the paralyzed. One who was there had been an invalid for thirty-eight years. When Jesus saw him lying there and learned that he had been in this condition for a long time, he asked him, “Do you want to get well?” (it was not the water of the pool that was able to heal, but faith in God that he would heal, this event teaches us about having faith in the one who could save us, Jesus did not put the man in the water, which was something that the man thought would happen, rather Jesus just healed him, The apostle John focused on this event to give witness of who Jesus was, the prophesied savior.)
7 “Sir,” the invalid replied, “I have no one to help me into the pool when the water is stirred. While I am trying to get in, someone else goes down ahead of me.”
8 Then Jesus said to him, “Get up! Pick up your mat and walk.” 9 At once the man was cured; he picked up his mat and walked.
The day on which this took place was a Sabbath, 10 and so the Jewish leaders said to the man who had been healed, “It is the Sabbath; the law forbids you to carry your mat.”
11 But he replied, “The man who made me well said to me, ‘Pick up your mat and walk.’ ”
12 So they asked him, “Who is this fellow who told you to pick it up and walk?”
13 The man who was healed had no idea who it was, for Jesus had slipped away into the crowd that was there.
14 Later Jesus found him at the temple and said to him, “See, you are well again. Stop sinning or something worse may happen to you.” 15 The man went away and told the Jewish leaders that it was Jesus who had made him well.
Whenever we read the word of God, old or new testament we many times lose site of the fact that it is a writing that is describing the work that God our creator is doing in bringing about his plan to establish a kingdom on earth. If we have read the above verses, and see only the fact that Jesus healed a man, than we, I believe have missed the true intent of why John wrote down this event for us. The healing event is important, but the true focus is on Christ, John is showing us by this event that it is he (Jesus) that is the prophesized Messiah.
The Authority of the Son comes from the Father
16 So, because Jesus was doing these things on the Sabbath, the Jewish leaders began to persecute him. 17 In his defense Jesus said to them, “My Father is always at his work to this very day, and I too am working.” ( God has never taken a day off from fulfilling his plan) 18 For this reason they tried all the more to kill him; not only was he breaking the Sabbath,(from their prospective, not God’s) but he was even calling God his own Father, making himself equal with God. ( Yes Christ called God his Father, as we can, but it was the Jewish leaders that assumedthat by that comment Christ was saying he is equal with God, and many today make the same mistake and believe Christ to be god himself. But let us read on and see if we can understand what Jesus was really saying.
19 Jesus gave them this answer: “Very truly I tell you, the Son can do nothing by himself; he can do only what he sees his Father doing, because whatever the Father does the Son also does. (Jesus is confirming that he by his own power he can’t do anything that only the Father can do) 20 For the Father loves the Son and shows him all he does.(God is showing Jesus what He is working on through him, and Jesus is willing to bring about his Fathers will) Yes, and he will show him even greater works than these, so that you will be amazed. ( I understand this as referring to the resurrection) 21 For just as the Father raises the dead and gives them life, even so the Son gives life to whom he is pleased to give it. 22 Moreover, the Father judges no one, but has entrusted all judgment to the Son, 23 that all may honor the Son just as they honor the Father. Whoever does not honor the Son does not honor the Father, who sent him.( v 21-23 I understand this to be referring to a future time when Jesus is resurrected, and not during his physical life, for when he resurrected Lazarus, we read that he prayed to the father for this witness, he did not as yet have that ability on his own, as we read in v 19.)
24 “Very truly I tell you, whoever hears my word and believes him who sent me has eternal life and will not be judged but has crossed over from death to life.(read that again…If we believe what Christ is telling us about who he is (the son of God) and believe that God the Father has brought to life Jesus to fulfill His plan through him, we will bypass judgment, and enter eternal life. 25 Very truly I tell you, a time is coming ( a future resurrection) and has now come when the dead will hear the voice of the Son of God and those who hear will live.(Those who are alive now and will believe the gospel) 26 For as the Father has life in himself, so he has granted the Son also to have life in himself. ( Christ will be given eternal life, he did not have it as some claim)27 And he has given him authority to judge because he is the Son of Man. (v 26-27 is not referring to Jesus having these things at the time he lived on earth, but what the Father will give him once he has resurrected him.
28 “Do not be amazed at this, for a time is coming when all who are in their graves will hear his ( the Father ) voice 29 and come out—those who have done what is good will rise to live, and those who have done what is evil will rise to be condemned. 30 By myself I can do nothing; I judge only as I hear, and my judgment is just, for I seek not to please myself but him who sent me.
31 “If I testify about myself, my testimony is not true. 32 There is another who testifies in my favor, and I know that his testimony about me is true.
33 “You have sent to John and he has testified to the truth. 34 Not that I accept human testimony; but I mention it that you may be saved. 35 John was a lamp that burned and gave light, and you chose for a time to enjoy his light.
36 “I have testimony weightier than that of John. For the works that the Father has given me to finish—the very works that I am doing (Referring to Hebrew 5:7-9) testify that the Father has sent me. 37 And the Father who sent me has himself testified concerning me. You have never heard his voice nor seen his form,(God the Father has always done his work through a representative, such as angels, or men.) 38 nor does his word dwell in you, for you do not believe the one he sent. 39 You study the Scriptures diligently because you think that in them you have eternal life. These are the very Scriptures that testify about me, (Scripture testifies that Jesus was a servant of the Father, not God himself come down from heaven )40 yet you refuse to come to me to have life.
41 “I do not accept glory from human beings, 42 but I know you. I know that you do not have the love of God in your hearts. 43 I have come in my Father’s name, and you do not accept me; but if someone else comes in his own name, you will accept him. 44 How can you believe since you accept glory from one another but do not seek the glory that comes from the only God.
45 “But do not think I will accuse you before the Father. Your accuser is Moses, on whom your hopes are set. 46 If you believed Moses, you would believe me, for he wrote about me. 47 But since you do not believe what he wrote, how are you going to believe what I say?”
May we grow in the grace and understanding of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
Deuteronomy 4:6 "Hear O Israel, The Lord our God, The Lord is One"
Can you truthfully answer this question? "Who is Jesus Christ?" The right answer is essential to our faith. By wrongly dividing God’s Word on this subject, or any other, one will arrive at an error, which after time, becomes doctrinal error. This is exactly what has taken place in the church today.
By isolating a handful of Scriptures, teachers have decided that it is ok to "guess" at what God’s Word is saying, yet God strictly forbids us doing that. 2 Peter 1: 20 “Knowing this first, that no prophecy of the scripture is of any private (one's own) interpretation.” Why is private interpretation forbidden and unnecessary? 2 Peter 1: 21“For the prophecy (the Word of God) came not in old time by the will of man: but holy men of God spoke as they were moved by the Holy Spirit.” It is God that reveals the truth of His word to man, not man revealing what they say is the truth of God's word.
Ephesians 5: 13“But all things that are reproved (discovered) are made manifest by the light: for whatsoever doth make manifest is light." All this division in church today is because false teachers are deciding what is truth. False teachers say that "Jesus Christ is God the Son" Yet Gods word teaches us that "Jesus Christ is the Son of God" these two statements mean two very different things. These false teachers have made a gospel of their own to fit the first statement, if one carefully studies the word of God and then listens to what these men or women teach when giving a sermon, one can hear many contractions. The second statement is for those who choose, by their own free will, led by the spirit to believe what is written in the Scriptures, not what man’s traditions and religious ideologies support.
2 Corinthians 2: 17 “ For we are not as many, which corrupt [water down] the word of God: but as of sincerity, but as of God, in the sight of God .
Let me ask you false teachers this question, if Gods word tells us that "Jesus Christ is the Son of God" and you want to change it to "Jesus Christ is God the Son" to support your false teachings, than you must also change the words “children of God” to “God the children” John 1:12-13“But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, even to those who believe in His name, who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God.”
You see, believers do not come from a physical birth, but a spiritual birth, like Jesus, if than Jesus is considered “God” because of the circumstances of His birth, we as believers were born the same way, “not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God.” should that not qualify us then in the eyes of you false teachers to change “children of God “ to “God the children”?
Job 2:1“Again there was a day when the sons of God came to present themselves before the Lord, and Satan also came among them to present himself before the Lord”. So I ask you who teach a false gospel if you say “ God the son” when referencing Jesus, should not you apply the same principal here? And if these were “Gods “ was Jesus among them?
1 John 3:1-2 "See what great love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God! And that is what we are! The reason the world does not know us is that it did not know him. Dear friends, now we are children of God, and what we will be has not yet been made known. But we know that when Christ appears, we shall be like him, for we shall see him as he is. Where in your false teaching does this verse fit in? If has you claim Jesus is God, and “we shall be like him” How then shall we be like Him, will we also be Gods?
1 John 5:1-2“Whoever believes that Jesus is the Christ is born of God, and whoever loves the Father loves the child born of Him. By this we know that we love the children of God, when we love God and observe His commandments.” So tell me those of you who believe that Jesus is God the son, If I believe “that Jesus is the Christ, and am born of God” does not that make me God like Christ.
Luke 20:34-36"Jesus said to them, "The sons of this age marry and are given in marriage, but those who are considered worthy to attain to that age and the resurrection from the dead, neither marry nor are given in marriage; for they cannot even die anymore, because they are like angels, and are sons of God, being sons of the resurrection.
Galatians 3:26 "So in Christ Jesus you are all children of God through faith,
Romans 8:16"The Spirit Himself testifies with our spirit that we are children of God,"
There are 50 Scriptures that clearly point out that Jesus Christ is the son of God. There are Scriptures that are misunderstood, taken out of context, or deliberately forged to teach the lie that Satan wants you so badly to believe – and that is that Jesus Christ is God. Even evil spirits, in the gospels, referred to Jesus Christ as the Son of God! Jesus Christ is the son of God and not God the son. Jesus Christ is the only begotten Son of God. The term "only begotten son" simply means that Jesus at this time and until such time as the first resurrection is the only begotten (resurrected) son of God in the family. Jesus was the First fruits. 1 Corinthians 15:20-28“But now is Christ risen (by God) from the dead,and become the first fruits (the firstborn son upon resurrection, (not birth to Mary/Joseph) of them that slept. For since by man (Adam) came death (The law of sin and death), by man (Jesus the Second Adam, Another man not God had to pay for the sins of mankind that came through Adam) came also the resurrection of the dead. (The law of sin and death has been defeated) For as in Adam all die, (being held to account for the decrees in the Law), even so (those who abide) in Christ shall all be made alive. (begotten by God as sons through resurrection). But every man (of the sons of God) in his own order (after Jesus the eldest son) : Christ the first fruits; (first and only at this point of the sons to be resurrected),afterward they that are Christ's at his coming. (First resurrection when the rest of the sons will be begotten). Then cometh the end, when he shall have delivered up the kingdom to God, even the Father; when he shall have put down all rule and all authority and power. For he must reign, till he hath put all enemies under his feet. The last enemy that shall be destroyed is death. For he hath put all things under his feet. But when he saith all things are put under him, it is manifest that he is excepted, which did put all things under him. And when all things shall be subdued unto him, then shall the Son also himself be subject unto him that put all things under him, that God may be all in all. God the Father has put Christ in charge “till he hath put all enemies under his feet” than Christ will humbly give up his authority that his Father gave Him (then shall the Son also himself be subject unto him that put all things under him)
You see, the term begotten is the key. “Begotten of God ” means a resurrected birth not human birth. It is specifically talking about only one resurrected son until he returns to resurrect the rest of the family of God.
Jesus is not the only son, just the only begotten from the grave at this point. Adam and David, and indeed all of us are declared sons of God We too, shall be sons of God begotten by the same power of the Spirit of Holiness upon resurrection just like Jesus brothers to the first born:
Luke 20:36 for they cannot even die anymore, because they are like angels, and are sons of God being sons of the resurrection. The distinction between Jesus and the rest of the sons of God is that Jesus is the eldest and heir to all things as the firstborn of the resurrection through inheritance. We too will follow Jesus and be begotten as sons of God through a resurrection. We will take our place as Priests, Judges, and Kings under the authority of the first born and King of Kings and High Priest.
We put everything else first before God’s Word. Those that do not rightly divide the Word of God, continue to teach that Jesus Christ is God, which stems from heathenistic beliefs from the ancient city of Babylon. We are now accepting lesbianism and homosexuality as acceptable alternative lifestyles while the Word of God warns us in Romans 1: 26, 27 about the deadly consequences of such actions. We’ve got mediums and spiritualists (wrong spirit) performing devilish acts on national television. They deceive many into believing the dead are alive. You false teachers please explain why in the world would Jesus Christ come back to raise the dead if they are already up there? What utter nonsense, but people who have their Bibles covered with dust on the shelf believe it, many in church do not even open a bible but just take what they hear as the true gospel. You need to realize that the true God is just, and He is even just to the Devil. The reason Jesus Christ existed and still exists was to redeem us (buy back), on legal grounds. I Corinthians 15: 21“For since by man came death, by man came also the resurrection of the dead. “
You false teachers, the truth of God’s word is that Jesus Christ had to be a man to justly redeem us. If Jesus Christ was God, there is nothing, but eternal confusion and the Bible no longer makes any sense. You false teachers are spreading confusion. I Corinthians 14: 33“For God is not the author [a God] of confusion, but of peace, as in all churches of the saints.”
How many Gods are there? The Bible teaches that there are two . One is the God and Father of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ and the other god is the present god of this world. Everything originates from one of two sources. So, if confusion is not of the true God, then it must come from the counterfeit god of this world.
2 Corinthians 4: 4“In whom the god of this world 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.”
Which one are you going to believe? The doctrine of "three Gods in one" is one of the devil’s greatest deceptions reflecting his organized confusion along with the subject, the other deception is “the dead are alive now in heaven”
May we grow in the grace and understanding of our Lord and Savor Jesus Christ
Deuteronomy 4:6"Hear O Israel, The Lord our God, The Lord is One."
As a result of a lack of knowledge of the accurate Word of God due to wrong teaching and wrong believing, unbelievers have deliberately forged Scriptures to support the confusing and erroneous devilish doctrine of God the Son. They did this by purposely tampering with manuscripts and by false translations. The truth of Jesus Christ the Son of God was deliberately forged into the doctrine of God the Son. The seeds of the teaching that Jesus Christ as God the Son were planted and sprouted long ago, during the apostle Paul’s lifetime and continued to grow during Timothy's lifetime and flourished shortly thereafter, reaching full bloom for all future creeds by 325 A.D.
I Timothy 4: 1“Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils;” As hard as it is for some to believe, we are living in “the latter times” there are many denominations professing to, and in the body of Christ yet they have polluted the word of God, and have caused some to “depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils;” The truth of the doctrine that Jesus Christ is the Son of God was twisted to make people now believe that Jesus is God the Son, this decree was never taught by the Apostles, but came about by worldly and ecclesiastical powers. Thus, the error of the trinity was introduced and ultimately people came to believe it to be the truth. Christianity became in essence like Babylonian heathenism, with only a veneer of Christian names. For anyone who might argue that spiritual deception cannot happen to the Christian, just consider how often the New Testament warns against spiritual deception. A reading of a few verses, such as Matthew 24:4-5 "And Jesus answered and said unto them, Take heed that no man deceive you.( Jesus is talking to believers) For many shall come in my name, saying, I am Christ; and shall deceive many." (false doctrine will lead believers away from the truth). Luke 21:8"And he said, Take heed that ye be not deceived." (Yes followers of Christ can and have been deceived)
2 Thessalonians 2:3“Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day shall not come (unless you let it) except there come a falling away first,(by believing a lie) and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition”. (Someone who is counted as "one of us" but works for Satan). Who opposeth and exalteth himself above all that is called God, or that is worshipped; so that he as God sitteth in the temple of God, (the Church) showing himself that he is God.'(showing himself that he is "like God" and exalting himself to a position where he should not be) Where is there a man today that gives absolution of sin that is something that God alone can do? In order for us to protect ourselves from the enemy it is important for us know who the enemy is and to gain some knowledge of the tactics that are being used to make us move away from the truth,or keep us from the truth. In the mind of the enemy (satan) we are the prey. 1 Peter 5:8“Be sober-minded and alert. Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour”.
1 Corinthians 3:18“Let no man deceive himself. If any man among you seemeth to be wise in this world (wise with respect to worldly wisdom and being puffed up with pride) let him become a fool, that he may be wise.” (renounce carnal wisdom, and submit to the doctrine of the gospel, which the world considers foolish, mere human wisdom is in itself worthless for spiritual purposes.
So what is this gospel all about that individuals have been and still are willing to die for it. Read 1 Peter 1:1-25. Peter, an apostle of Jesus Christ, “To God’s elect, exiles scattered throughout the provinces of Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia and Bithynia, who have been chosen according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, through the sanctifying work of the Spirit, to be obedient to Jesus Christ and sprinkled with his blood:"
Grace and peace be yours in abundance.
Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! In his great mercy he has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, and into an inheritance that can never perish, spoil or fade. This inheritance is kept in heaven for you,( not we go to heaven to receive it, as some claim, but God keeps a record of who will receive that inheritance which is given at the resurrection) who through faith are shielded by God’s power until the coming of the salvation that is ready to be revealed in the last time.(the resurrection) In all this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while you may have had to suffer grief in all kinds of trials. These have come so that the proven genuineness of your faith of greater worth than gold, which perishes even though refined by fire may result in praise, glory and honor when Jesus Christ is revealed. Though you have not seen him, you love him; and even though you do not see him now, you believe in him and are filled with an inexpressible and glorious joy, for you are receiving the end result of your faith, the salvation of your souls.
Concerning this salvation, the prophets, who spoke of the grace that was to come to you, searched intently and with the greatest care, trying to find out the time and circumstances to which the Spirit of Christ in them was pointing when he predicted the sufferings of the Messiah and the glories that would follow. It was revealed to them that they were not serving themselves but you, when they spoke of the things that have now been told you by those who have preached the gospel to you by the Holy Spirit sent from heaven. Even angels long to look into these things.
Therefore, with minds that are alert and fully sober, set your hope on the grace to be brought to you when Jesus Christ is revealed at his coming. As obedient children, do not conform to the evil desires you had when you lived in ignorance. But just as he who called you is holy, so be holy in all you do; for it is written: “Be holy, because I am holy.”
Since you call on a Father who judges each person’s work impartially, live out your time as foreigners here in reverent fear. For you know that it was not with perishable things such as silver or gold that you were redeemed from the empty way of life handed down to you from your ancestors, but with the precious blood of Christ, a lamb without blemish or defect. He was chosen before the creation of the world, but was revealed in these last times for your sake. Through him you believe in God, who raised him from the dead and glorified him, and so your faith and hope are in God.
Now that you have purified yourselves by obeying the truth so that you have sincere love for each other, love one another deeply, from the heart. For you have been born again, not of perishable seed, but of imperishable, through the living and enduring word of God. For, all people are like grass, and all their glory is like the flowers of the field; the grass withers and the flowers fall, but the word of the Lord endures forever.” And this is the word that was preached to you.” (the work of Christ is to redeem man “He was chosen before the creation of the world, but was revealed in these last times for your sake.“ God the Father had from the beginning planned to save man with a “sacrificial lamb” (this decision was made before the creation) a man, not a God-man as the doctrine of the trinity teaches. The Trinity doctrine comes from the teaching of men, not from the word of God. Let’s take a look at some historical, documented occurrences as to how the belief in the trinity originated and support some of these incidences with the Word of God.
After the death of the Apostles, false doctrines had gained a stronger foot hold in the church, Matthew 24:4-5And Jesus answered and said unto them, Take heed that no man deceive you For many shall come in my name, saying, I am Christ; and shall deceive many." The end result of Matthew 24;4-5 is the result over time of the two church councils, that gathered, one drafted the Nicene Creed, which was formulated by A.D. 381, held at Nicea, located in what is now Turkey, in A.D. 325 and has been recited at every Sunday mass since the 11th century: Jesus is “eternally begotten of the Father, true God from true God one in being with the Father.” The second was the Council of Chalcedon in A.D. 451 which refined this further, decreeing that Jesus Christ had two natures, divine and human, which were merged without confusion or change in one person of the Trinity. This teaching came about by carnal wisdom. 1 Corinthians 3:18“Let no man deceive himself. If any man among you seemeth to be wise in this world (wise with respect to the things of this world only and being puffed up with pride) let him become a fool, that he may be wise.” (renounce carnal wisdom, and submit to the doctrine of the gospel, which the world considers foolish, mere human wisdom is in itself worthless for spiritual purposes.) These so called church councils is a perfect example of private interpretation or "guesswork” as it relates to Gods word, which turned “son of God, into “God the son”, And people have been believing this lie to this day.
2 Corinthians 5: 19 “know this, that God was in Christ, reconciling the world unto himself, not imputing their trespasses unto them; and hath committed unto us the word of reconciliation.” This is a verse that is used by false teachers as one of their prove text that Jesus is a God-Man.
What this verse is teaching is that God was working within the man Jesus just as God is working within all true believers right now, and if Christ is in a person, then that person has Christ in them spiritually. That spirit originates from God Almighty. It is the spirit of God within a person, working in that person. That doesn’t mean they are God, That is the type of reasoning that borders on insanity and comes from the originator “the god of this world” – the devil. Ephesians 2: 22“In whom ye also are builded together for an habitation of God through (in) the Spirit.
God taught Jesus Christ everything, and Jesus Christ always did the Father’s Will. That’s why the verse says God was “in “Christ, God was working in the mind of Jesus Christ to carry out God’s will and that’s just what Jesus Christ did.
A Scripture that is very often taken out of context by false teachers in a feeble attempt to prove their false doctrine of the trinity is, John 10: 30 “ I and my Father are one.” This verse is using a figure of speech, referring to unity of purpose. Jesus Christ always did the Father’s will, so he made the statement to the Judeans that he (his purpose) and God’s purpose were the same. Again, it is a figure of speech.
Another verse used with a private interpretation to support the trinity doctrine is, Matthew 26: 63 The high priest asked Jesus if he was the Son of God. He didn’t ask him if he was God. “But Jesus held his peace. And the high priest answered and said unto him, I adjure thee by the living God, that thou tell us whether thou be the Christ, the Son of God” It was the high priest who asked Jesus whether he was the Christ, the Son of God. The high priest never asked Jesus if he was God. He asked if he was the Son of God.
Because Jesus said he was the Son of God, and the high priest believed that this statement was blasphemy. Again, the high priest said it was blasphemy because Jesus said he was the Son of God. Had Jesus Christ, said, "I am God," they would have considered him insane. Even at the cross they according to Matthew 27: 40, "If thou be the Son of God, come down from the cross." They didn't say, "If you're God, come down from the cross." Here is the record from John:
John 10: 31 - 33“Then the Jews took up stones again to stone him. Jesus answered them, Many good works have I shewed you from my Father; for which of those works do ye stone me? The Jews answered him, saying, For a good work we stone thee not, but for blasphemy; and because that thou, being a man, makest thyself God.” They accused Jesus Christ of blasphemy because they said he said he was a man who made himself a god, not the God.
According to Biblical culture, a son is referred to as being equal to his father. When Jesus Christ said that God was his Father, he put himself as equal with God. It did not make him God, but it gave him many of the same privileges. Similarly, a son born into the family of a king has many of the same basic privileges as his father, yet the king represents the greater of the two. The father is always greater than the son, yet their privileges are many times equal because of the father's power and position to make them so for his son. God is superior to Jesus Christ.
John 5: 18-19 “Therefore the Jews sought the more to kill him [Jesus Christ], because he not only had broken the sabbath, but said also that God was his Father, making himself equal with God. Then answered Jesus and said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, The Son can do nothing of himself, but what he seeth the Father do: for what things so ever he doeth, these also doeth the Son likewise.”
Thus, "equal" by no stretch of the imagination can mean Jesus Christ was God.
What the Judeans were arguing was that Jesus, by making himself the Son of God, made himself agree with God, or like God, in the sense of the figure of speech, simile. The Judeans, believing that Jesus Christ was an imposter and not the Messiah, became very disturbed.
The Judeans never even considered the possibility of Jesus Christ being God. They knew the Messiah would not be God, thus a man claiming to be God wouldn't have agitated them for they would have recognized such a person as being mentally ill. But a person claiming to be the Son of God was disturbing because according to Judaic doctrine that was a possibility. They simply rejected Jesus Christ as that promised Messiah.
Philippians 2: 8“And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross.”
The word "fashion" is the Greek word schema, Scheme is a plan, a blueprint. When Jesus Christ was found in fashion like a man, it was the plan, the blueprint, the scheme.
Philippians 2: 9“Wherefore God also hath [has] highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above every name:” Then how could God highly exalt Jesus Christ if Jesus Christ is God?
Looking at the scheme or blueprint of Christ being a man and studying Hebrews, we see the following:
Hebrews 1: 3“Who being the brightness [effulgence] of his glory [God's glory], and the express [express is not in the text and should be deleted] image of his person, and upholding all things by the word of his power, when he had by himself purged our sins, sat down on the right hand of the Majesty on high; “
The word "express" is not only superfluous; it is not in the text. "Image" is the Greek word charakter, meaning "the thing impressed," or the "stamp" - Jesus Christ, being the effulgence of God's glory, the stamp of God, meaning God's Son because he was conceived in the womb of Mary by God's creative ability.
The word "person" in Hebrews 1: 3 is the Greek word hupostasis, which means "standing under." It is that which is underneath, substructure, that which is out of sight, but is still there. Jesus Christ being the effulgence, the brightness of God, is in essence like "he that hath seen me hath seen the Father." Jesus Christ is the image, the impress, the stamp of God, God's only begotten Son. Jesus Christ is the "image" of God because God was underneath holding up and supporting Jesus Christ. That, again, agrees with the word which states that God was in Christ reconciling the world unto Himself. 2 Corinthians 5: 19 “To know, that God was in Christ, reconciling the world unto himself, not imputing their trespasses unto them; and hath committed unto us the word of reconciliation.”
Need more proof?
Luke 18: 18, 19 “ And a certain ruler asked him, saying, Good Master, what shall I do to inherit eternal life? And Jesus said unto him, Why callest thou me good? none is good, save one, that is, God.”
Clearly Jesus Christ is not God and never claimed to be.
John 14: 28 (end of verse) -- . . . “for my Father is greater than I.” If Jesus is God he must be equal with God not less than.
John 17: 22“And the glory which thou gavest me I have given them [the disciples]; that they may be one, even as we are one:”
In Jesus' prayer to his Father about his disciples, the last word, "one" “even as we are one” - the trinitarians say this means Jesus is God. If that is true, then the word "one," referring to the disciples in the earlier part of verse 22, makes the disciples God also!!! Yet, Jesus Christ, when he was in a severe controversy with the Judeans, exclaimed the following:
John 10: 29“My Father, which gave them me, is greater than all;”
If three equals one, and one equals three, the mathematics of theology must be a mysterious thing, and the trinitarians are always insisting on the mystery of the trinity. It is not a matter of mystery; it's a matter of deliberate lying and of contradicting, privately interpreting, and guessing at what the Scriptures mean.
In the days of Jesus Christ, they crucified him for being the Son of God according to the gospel of John.
John 19: 7“The Jews answered him, We have a law, and by our law he ought to die, because he made himself the Son of God.”
Trinitarians abolish the "Son of God" and crucify God the Son. There is absolutely no mystery concerning the trinity because there is no trinity.
The trinitarians have made void the law of God, not merely by their tradition, but by deliberate forgery. Their trinitarian doctrine humiliates God under the pretense of honoring Jesus Christ. They don't want to understand. Satan has blinded their eyes and given them a spirit of slumber.
John 17: 3“And this is life eternal, that they might know thee the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom thou hast sent.”
Jesus Christ thus establishes his Father as the true God. The trinity forgery is continuing to be pushed on individuals and nations. Today we do it by the pen or by the tongue, while previously and originally, it was done by the sword of a Roman emperor. How futile and weak is an argument when its proponents have to resort to such methods to perpetrate and perpetuate it.
Yet to this day, one of the greatest forgeries still is being propounded in the following verse:
I Timothy 3: 16“ And without controversy great is the mystery of godliness: God [which] was manifest in the flesh, justified in the Spirit, seen of angels, preached unto the Gentiles, believed on in the world, received up into glory”.
The word "God" is a deliberate forgery and is still quoted by clergymen who know better. Many revisers have corrected the forgery as far as English is concerned. The correct word used in the text in place of ‘God’ is "WHICH".
Colossians 2: 9“For in him dwelleth all the fulness of the head God bodily.”
Jesus Christ’s' body was not the body of the Holy Ghost. Jesus Christ was not God the Son; he was the Son of God and the Son of man. He was the Son of God because of divine conception, the Son of man because he was born of woman.
God is supreme. Jesus Christ is subordinate, for he is God's only begotten Son. And to him God said, "Sit thou on my right hand" God, commanding His Son's obedience. The Son prayed, but God never prays. The Son said, "Now, Father". If Jesus Christ's nature were divine, if he were God, he could not have had a father. The mystery of the trinity is in the creeds of men, not in the Word of God, the Scriptures.
The trinitarians call themselves orthodox and everybody else – heretics -- those who differ with them on the subject. They consider themselves the custodians of evangelical truth when they are the authors of a very well organized lie.
The early Church taught, with emphasis, one God; but the trinity was forced on the world by the sword of Roman power. The early Christians had no conception of the doctrine of the trinity as it is now taught.
John 20: 30, 31“And many other signs truly did Jesus in the presence of his disciples, which are not written in this book: But these are written, that ye might believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God; and that believing ye might have life through his name.”
John did not say Jesus Christ is God. To the Judeans, even Jesus Christ as the Son of God was a stumbling block – a blasphemer. Even today, it is still similar to the day of Elijah in the Old Testament who called people back to the truth of God’s Word. He was considered a problem by the unbelievers just as Christians today are considered a problem by the trinitarians who continually accuse the true believer of disseminating dangerous views. Endeavoring to sustain a doctrine disproved by human intellect and by the integrity of the Word of God is putting forth a great deal of effort in trying to believe a lie. Anyone questioning the settled dogma of the trinity is advised not to do so because it would upset the orthodoxy relative to the doctrine of the trinity, which was established by the sword, by persecution and by cruel oppression, until the Church, which was corrupted by statesmen and ecclesiastical hierarchy in a civilized world, became only an imitation of heathen religions using Christian names. All this teaching of the trinity and the unification of the declaration thereof is concealed from the average student who is not told that it was unified by persecution. It is concealed from the student that Theodosius the Great in the latter part of the fourth century made, by force, the trinity the official doctrine of the Roman Empire.
The first commandment states:
Exodus 20: 3"Thou shalt have no other gods before me."
Another great truth in the Word says:
Deuteronomy 6: 4 " Hear, 0 Israel: The Lord our God is one Lord:"
2 Corinthians 11:13-15“For such are false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves into the apostles of Christ. And no marvel; for Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light. Therefore it is no great thing if his ministers also be transformed as the ministers of righteousness; whose end shall be according to their works.”
Nearly all Christians believe Jesus is God. That is what the institutional church has always taught. Christians professedly rely strongly on the Bible for this belief. Yet there is not a single Bible verse which states unequivocally, “Jesus is God,” or the like. Moreover, the New Testament gospels have no statement by Jesus in which he identifies himself as God. In fact, there are many Bible verses which indicate Jesus cannot be God by declaring that only the Father is God or by distinguishing Jesus from God. First, and foremost, is one of Jesus’ sayings recorded only in the Gospel of John. The setting is the Last Supper, right before he was arrested and crucified. He prayed for his disciples, saying, John 17:3“Father,… This is eternal life, that they may know You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom You have sent”. So, Jesus tells the Father that he is “the only true God” and then distinguishes himself from that one God. Both of these points clearly indicate that Jesus himself cannot also be God.
Another text that implicitly has Jesus indicating he is not God is Mark 12.28-34. It tells of a scribe asking Jesus about what the greatest commandment is.
Jesus answered by quoting the Shema, saying, “The first is, ‘Hear, O Israel; the Lord our God, the Lord is one.'” That is how any good Jew would answer, that God is numerically one. We read next, “Then the scribe said to him, ‘You are right, Teacher; you have truly said that “he is one, and besides him there is no other.”‘” So, the man made clear that Jesus said God is numerically one. That was so important since it is what distinguished Hebrews/Jews from the religiously polytheistic nations. We soon read, “When Jesus saw that he answered wisely, he said to him, ‘You are not far from the kingdom of God.'” So, Jesus clearly accepted the man’s explanation of the Shema, that God is numerically “one.”
Most Christians in the world today believe in the Trinity which is the union of the three divine persons -- Father, Son, and Holy Spirit -- into one Godhead.
Many Christians don’t see themselves in a battle—perhaps they feel secure and safe in their large lively churches week after week. They may take their Bibles to church and even give regular offerings. But if their loyalty is toward a man, a movement, or a denomination, God is not impressed. God is looking for hearts 1 Samuel 13:14, “after His own heart” wholly devoted and loyal to Jesus Christ and the Word of God.
May we grow in the grace and understanding of our Lord and Savor Jesus Christ