Bible Discussion Thread

 
  • Jaz - 1 month ago
    Dear Brothers and Sisters , how do wild animals treat the most vulnerable members of their herd ? The elderly , the sick , the disabled or deformed ? Those that can't function in the usual expected way ? They abandon them to their fate ,or they may even turn on them and kill them themselves , it's called survival of the fittest . Are we just animals , the cleverest evolutionary step on the ladder ? We are not , we are created in the image of our God and we are all His children , even those who don't believe are still His children . We are not to treat the most vulnerable people in the way that animals do to their own kind . This world and the people of it seek to denegrate and dehumanise the most vulnerable in society , accusing them of being worthless scroungers who should be trying much harder to be as useful and productive as everyone else when they are not like everyone else . They are weaker in some way and need our help , they are our brothers and sisters and God is watching us , seeing how we treat our weaker members . Are we like Cain ? Will we reply to God ' am I my brother's keeper ' when He asks us about our treatment of others who are weaker than us ? Would we dare say that to our God ?
  • S Spencer - In Reply - 2 weeks ago
    Ecalarese.

    Part 3.

    Evangelism pleases the Lord. The Christian life must never be lived according to "shoulds." Yet we hear that word often in relation to Bible reading, prayer, church attendance, and other Christian practices. "I should do that, but . . ." The but is a bigger problem than we want to admit. God's children will naturally want to please their Heavenly Father; it is their greatest delight. So our compass is set with God at true north. In everything we do, we feel the magnetic pull toward pleasing God. Even mundane tasks can be completed with joy because we are doing what God has given us to do ( 1 Corinthians 10:31; 2 Corinthians 5:9). Teaching other people how to have a relationship with Jesus is one way to please Him. And in pleasing Him we are most fulfilled ( Galatians 2:20).

    END ARTICLE.

    When we are unequally yoked, they cannot perform the task set before us. Instead of working together, we are at odds with one another.

    Paul's admonition in 2 Corinthians 6:14 is part of a larger discourse to the church at Corinth on the Christian life. He discouraged them from being in an unequal partnership with unbelievers because believers and unbelievers are opposites, just as light and darkness are opposites. They simply have nothing in common,

    just as Christ has nothing in common with "Belial,

    The "unequal yoke" is often applied to business relationships, Marriage ect..

    We are to love everyone as Christ do and share the Gospel but we must understand that unbelievers have opposite worldviews and morals, and decisions made daily will reflect the worldview of one partner or the other.

    In this world we are to be as Daniel in Babylon. He inspired Nebuchadnezzar. See Daniel 4

    God bless.
  • S Spencer - In Reply - 1 month ago
    Thank you Jaz and Brother Ronald.

    I will be going on vacation leaving tomorrow afternoon returning on the 28th.

    And thank you Jaz for bringing up a very important topic that I will like to continue when time permits.

    God bless you all.
  • S Spencer - In Reply - 1 month ago
    Hi Jaz

    Part 1

    Even though there is a distinction between the children of God and the children of the world the scripture says to be kind to all men. Galatians 6:10.

    However, we're not all Brothern.

    John 1:11-12 says "He came unto his own, and his own received him not.

    But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the "sons of God, even to them that believe on his name"

    Jesus also said in Matthew 12:50 "For whosoever shall do the will of my Father which is in heaven, the same is my brother, and sister, and mother.

    Ephesians 2:19 states Now therefore ye are no more strangers and foreigners, but fellow citizens with the saints, and of the household of God.

    So, there is a clear distinction in scripture between God's children and those who haven't received him.

    1 John 3:9-10 covers this well, "Whosoever is born of God doth not commit sin; for his seed remaineth in him: and he cannot sin, because he is born of God.

    In this the children of God are manifest, and the children of the devil: whosoever doeth not righteousness is not of God, neither he that loveth not his brother.

    "Sons of God" emphasizes a natural, internal relationship with God rather than an external adoption. Becoming God's children involves a real change and transformation, not just a change in title or position. We partake in the divine nature.

    All people are not naturally God's children. We must be born again through faith in Christ to become God's children.

    This separates us from Adam.

    We are now joint heirs with Christ. Romans 8:14-17 "For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God.

    For ye have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father. The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God:

    And if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with him, that we may be also glorified together.

    See part 2
  • S Spencer - In Reply - 1 month ago
    Jaz.

    Part 2.

    We are not joined with those outside the body of Christ so, what are we as children of light supposed to do in a lost dark world?

    We are to bare light and that light is supposed to shine on Christ.

    We are his ambassadors in a foreign land.

    We are to display the work of Christ in our lives and the evidence of a new birth bearing fruit. By this all people will know we are his disciples, and the fruit (especially Love for the Brothern) will also Distinguish between a false teaching religion/teachers and spirit filled believers where the spirit gathers and energizes. This is the operation of God by the baptism of the Holy spirit.

    SCRIPTURE REFERENCES; John 13:34-35, Matthew 7:16-20. 1 1John 4:20-21, If a man say, I love God, and hateth his brother, he is a liar: for he that loveth not his brother whom he hath seen, how can he love God whom he hath not seen?

    And this commandment have we from him, That he who loveth God love his brother also.

    We are to Love the unbeliever, witness to them, and treat them with kindness and help them in a Godly way.

    So, in what ways we are not to be unequally yoked with them? Many things can be mentioned but I won't get into that here.

    2 Corinthians 6:14-18.

    "The command implies that a great difference exists between a believer and an unbeliever. Generally speaking, the motivations, goals, and methods of a Christian are incompatible with those of an unbeliever.

    Faith changes the character of a person. A Christian's highest ambition in life is to glorify the Lord Jesus and please Him in all things; an unbeliever is, at best, indifferent to such goals. "

    Again, don't get me wrong here, we are called to minister to them in particular.

    That is the Lords Commission. Luke 4:18.

    It is our Great Commission to spread the Gospel; Matthew 28:16-20.

    We do that with truth! We don't do it with lies and deception.

    How should Christian treat one another?

    See part 3.
  • Ecalarese - In Reply - 2 weeks ago
    Greetings Brother S. Spencer! Your comments here are perfect timing for me as I have a dear friend who is not saved but thinks she is a believer I suppose but her Jesus is the counterfeit Jesus (New Age, crystals, etc... ).

    When you said

    "So, in what ways we are not to be unequally yoked with them? Many things can be mentioned but I won't get into that here."

    Can you elaborate a little bit? I want to always love her no matter what. I do pray to Holy Spirit to guide me with this as it is heavy on my heart.
  • S Spencer - In Reply - 2 weeks ago
    Ecalarese.

    Part 2.

    We should "always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect" ( 1 Peter 3:15). We prepare by studying God's Word for ourselves, listening to sound Bible teachers, and staying in close fellowship with Jesus. Those practices keep our own lives pure so that we are not hypocrites who preach one thing but do another Galatians 6:1.

    Evangelism provides eternal benefits. Jesus encouraged His followers to "store up treasure in heaven" ( Matthew 6:19). That treasure consists of rewards for what we did on earth in His name and for His glory. It is not self-centered to make choices that will ensure eternal treasure for ourselves. Jesus told us to! Our service to Him can be as simple as offering a cup of cold water to one of His own ( Matthew 10:42). The parable of the unjust steward underscores the importance of doing whatever we can to bring people to faith in Christ ( Luke 16:1-13).

    4. Evangelism is an overflow of the "hope that is within us" ( Hebrews 6:19; 1 Peter 3:15). When two people fall in love, they cannot help but let everyone around them know it. Joy shows on their faces; stars glitter in their eyes. They are eager to tell anyone who will listen about the wonderful person they love. So it is when we've fallen in love with Jesus. We cannot help but tell people about Him every chance we get. We think about Him all the time. We're drawn to His Word, to worship services, and to others who love Him. We look for opportunities to share His truth with someone who is far from Him. If Jesus is not at the forefront of our minds, we have a spiritual problem and need to address that first before we can share the "hope that is within us."

    See part 3.
  • Ecalarese - In Reply - 2 weeks ago
    God bless you S. Spencer. Thank you so much for your insight and responses. I'm having a difficult time getting comments approved and I had more to say but it remained on hold for too long, so I removed it.

    I wanted you to know that I appreciate your comments. Thank you.
  • S Spencer - In Reply - 2 weeks ago
    Thank you Ecalarese.

    I am going to continue on this subject of "being unequally yoked" by way of highlighting the opposing spirit between the two, and also the decay of the church.

    God bless.
  • Ecalarese - In Reply - 2 weeks ago
    Thank you - I look forward to it S. Spencer.
  • S Spencer - In Reply - 4 days ago
    Hi Ecalarese.

    As promised I would like to continue our discussion on unequally yoked with unbelievers and we "the church" being separated from the world.

    We've touched on 2 Corinthians 6:14-15

    When we read further down in this chapter we come to verses 17 and 18 it reads "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.

    Paul is telling us to separate ourselves from the world, but to some degree Paul is only telling us what the Spirit of God has already done.

    We are Unequally yoked with unbelievers in this world where lifestyles and morrows clash! Darkness and light cannot coexist.

    A believer baptized with Christ spirit has a new nature that combats the old nature.

    Not just outward sin but we now think different.

    Listen to Paul again talking to the Corinthians in 1 Corinthians 2:14-16.

    "But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.

    But he that is spiritual judgeth all things, yet he himself is judged of no man.

    For who hath known the mind of the Lord, that he may instruct him? But we have the mind of Christ.

    Also, John 15:18-21.

    Notice verse 21? "But all these things will they do unto you for my name's sake, BECAUSE THEY KNOW NOT HIM THAT SENT ME.

    When the Holyspirit causes us to follow Christ and His teachings we're at odds with the world.

    We have "separate" fathers.

    God and Satan!

    Satan has his ministers also. Look at Paul in his day. 2 Corinthians 11:13-15

    Satan appeals to the flesh and worldly wisdom.

    One thing they can't do is bare fruit! Matthew 7:15-18.

    They despise truth and hate the Brothern.

    See 1 John 3:10-15.

    Perhaps more later on a separate thread.

    God bless you.
  • S Spencer - In Reply - 2 weeks ago
    Ecalarese.

    Evangelizing.

    Some seems to prefer to minister to only other believers and have very little to say to unbelievers.

    They are quick to judge and tell them where they are going but don't offer them the only way of escape. The Gospel.

    In John 17:20 we see Jesus praying for our ministering to them.

    "Neither pray I for these alone, but for them also which shall believe on me through their word;

    I once copied an article on Evangelism. Here's how it reads.

    Part 1.

    To evangelize means to share the gospel of Jesus Christ with someone else. Personal evangelism should be the lifestyle of every true Christian. We've been given a great gift, and our Master left us with clear instructions: "Go into all the world and make disciples of every nation" Matthew 28:19. Before we can "make disciples," we must evangelize. There are other reasons, besides Jesus' command, that should also motivate us to share the greatest news in the world with people who haven't heard it:

    Evangelism is an act of love. Love must be the defining characteristic of every follower of Jesus Christ John 13:35; 1 Corinthians 13:1-7. It is a fruit of the Holy Spirit, so anyone who walks in the Spirit will demonstrate love in dealing with people Galatians 5:16, 22-23. We possess the best news in the world, and love propels us to share it with those who haven't heard. Love wants everyone to have a chance to respond to God's offer of salvation. Withholding news that could save someone's life is the utmost cruelty; therefore, those who truly love God will love the people whom Jesus came to save John 3:16-18; 1 John 4:20.

    Evangelism builds our own faith. Nothing helps us learn a subject like teaching it to someone else. When we make a practice of sharing our faith with those in our lives, we strengthen our own beliefs. Regular evangelism forces us to wrestle through the hard questions, find answers for ourselves, and prepare to respond to the questions of others.

    See part 2.
  • S Spencer - In Reply - 2 weeks ago
    Hi Ecalarese.

    I have friends that may be unsaved judging by their testimony, lives, response to certain things such as worldly things and Church things or "Spiritual things"

    I have one friend in particular that has no Spiritual insight, void of peace and have no love for what he calls "Religious people" but he enjoys to dabble in the chaotic ways of the world.

    When we first met I told him I was a Christian. He doesn't go to Church for reasons I won't get into but I don't think he ever knew what Christian means or how to define one.

    However, I believe he found something unique about my way of life and noticed my firm stance for what I believed in.

    He began to watch his steps and began to trust and take counsel from me and left off trying to counsel me with his worldly take on life and his ignorance of God.

    Today he has gained a respect for the word of God.

    Our relationship to the lost world is to introduce Christ.

    We do that "Not by acting out a performance" but by truth, and his word.

    The word and our deeds should align. (That's God's doing).

    TRUTH.

    They'll understand by listening and watching us that we are not perfect but we follow that which is. (Jesus )

    We have a name we must uphold. We can't follow them in this world. "The darkness that it has to offer"

    We are to be a light for them to lead them out of it. We are light bearers that shines light on Christ. We show a lost world that the way to the father is through the Son.

    So to your friend you are here to be a leader and not a follower. Philippians 2:15.

    You are to be a Evangelist to them in some way.

    The Apostles set the foundation and was left here to do this and we are here to build on it.

    John 17:14-21 says it best. We don't separate ourselves from them. We separate ourselves from all aspects of their way of life.

    More on Evangelism.
  • Jaz - In Reply - 1 month ago
    No arguements there , God is the God of all flesh Numbers chapter 16 verse 22 and chapter 27 verse 16 and Jeremiah chapter 32 verse 27 . Every none Christian is a potential Christian and we must treat them as such .
  • S Spencer - In Reply - 1 month ago
    Jaz.

    Part 3.

    How should Christian treat one another?

    We are to be at peace with one another, forgive one another, have mercy on one another.

    Just a few references.

    1 Thessalonians 4:9

    Ephesians 4:32

    Galatians 5:26

    Galatians 6:2

    Matthew 7:12

    1 John 4:7

    However, we don't lie or deceive one another for the sake of peace. The truth hurts sometimes but it promotes spiritual growth providing that the Christ spirit is in the person.

    BELEIVERS SHUNNING OTHER BELEIVERS.

    To shun is to deliberately avoid something or someone. In the Bible, the word shun is applied to evil. Job 1:8, Job 28:28, Proverbs 3:7-8 Proverbs 14:16. So, shunning evil is good.

    There is scripture that promotes excommunication. Matthew 18:15-17; 2 Thessalonians 3:14. but do we do it for harm or Good? What's the intent?

    In any case, it would seem that extreme forms of shunning, such as considering someone "dead," utterly ignoring him, or refusing to acknowledge his existence, go beyond what Scripture commands.

    After all, Jesus said that, when someone is put out of the church, he should be treated as "a pagan or a tax collector" Matthew 18:17. In other words, treat an intractable offender as an unsaved person.

    How are we to treat the unsaved? With love and grace.

    The "pagans and tax collectors" need to be evangelized. We are to love even our enemies ( Matthew 5:44).

    The goal of excommunication and any form of shunning is restoration ( Galatians 6:1).

    The purpose of any type of discipline is to prompt repentance and, ultimately, to reunite our fallen brother or sister with the church body. Being officially ostracized from the church, the sinner might be brought to repentance.

    When the man in the Corinthian church later realized that he had sinned against God, he repented and came back to the church for forgiveness and reinstatement. Fellowship with the Corinthian believers was restored ( 2 Corinthians 2:6-11).

    Isn't it hateful to ignore or shun other believers?

    See part 4.
  • Jaz - In Reply - 1 month ago
    Isn't it hateful to ignore or shun other believers ?

    If done deliberately with malicious intent then yes of course . I'm a member of a very large congregation and I confess that I don't speak to every member regularly and they don't all speak to me regularly . There are only so many hours in the day and it would be impossible for us all to talk to each other , every one of us , all the time .

    Then there are occasions when I get the sense that someone maybe doesn't like me much and that they would rather not speak to me , on those occasions I do them a favour by not foisting myself upon them .

    A brother at my church married out of our denomination and was dis-fellowshipped for a while . His wife eventually joined us and he was re-admitted . However , she was his second wife , his first wife having commited adultery against him and he divorced her . So , he was no longer allowed to hold any office in our congregation because of his second marriage .

    I can't say I agree with that , if your in , your in and a member of the body . But it wasn't up to me , so I have to be quiet and concede to my elders .

    We don't always like everything that goes on in our congregations but if we don't have any power to change things what can we do other than keep silent for the sake of peace ?
  • Jaz - In Reply - 1 month ago
    I wouldn't argue with any of that . It is still true that we are all individual humans and will get on better with some people more than others but as long as we are still loving and respectful to those who we , love less let's put it that way , there shouldn't be a problem . I have six children and I would die for any of them but due to our differing personalities I get on better with some than others . John chapter 13 verse 23 , we can be sure that Jesus loved all his disciples but one is singled out here , chapter 21 verse 20 again one is singled out . It's human nature to be drawn more to some than others , as long as we are kind and respectful to all that's the best we can do . Love to you my Brother in Christ .
  • S Spencer - In Reply - 1 month ago
    Jaz.

    Part 4 and final.

    Clarity on shunning.

    Scripturally, excluding a person from the church is preceded by admonition and counsel; it is only employed in cases of bona fide heresy, obdurate divisiveness, or blatant, unrepentant sin; and it is a last resort. After excommunication, the relationship between the former member and the church naturally changes, and the "shunning command"-not to eat with such a person-may come into play. However, the church still has the responsibility to pray for the one being disciplined and to extend forgiveness when repentance is evident. Shunning, as defined as a refusal to speak to someone or a total severing of all ties, goes beyond what the Bible advocates.

    PARTIALITY.

    This is another evil we see amongst believers.

    The chapter of James 2 covers this. ( James 2:1-26)

    Let's take on just a few verses.

    If ye fulfil the royal law according to the scripture, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself, ye do well:

    But if ye have respect to persons, ye commit sin, and are convinced of the law as transgressors.

    For whosoever shall keep the whole law, and yet offend in one point, he is guilty of all.

    For he that said, Do not commit adultery, said also, Do not kill. Now if thou commit no adultery, yet if thou kill, thou art become a transgressor of the law.

    So, speak ye, and so do, as they that shall be judged by the law of liberty.

    For he shall have judgment without mercy, that hath shewed no mercy; and mercy rejoiceth against judgment.

    James 2:8-13.

    That is all for now.

    God bless.
  • Ronald Whittemore - In Reply - 1 month ago
    Hey S Spencer,

    Thank you brother.

    God bless,

    RLW


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