Do you have any fear of the Lord? I can tell you according to Scriptures God says we should fear Him. This is a problem for many people. Many don’t think it’s right to fear the Lord because why would a loving God bring fear to their children?
Fear of the Lord is something different than just being scared of Him or fearing for your life or feeling terror…it’s having respect and reverence for Him as our Lord. I love Him and respect Him and I know He is a just God and He rewards and punishes those He loves and having fear of the Lord is right and holy and it’s fear that keeps me humble and keeps me seeking Him. Hebrews 12:28–29~Therefore let us be grateful for receiving a kingdom that cannot be shaken, and thus let us offer to God acceptable worship, with reverence and awe, for our God is a consuming fire.
Another verse Proverbs 1:7~The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge; fools despise wisdom and instruction.
I have joy and peace in the Lord and when I sin there is a degree of separation from God for a time that I fear. I instantly know I’ve stepped out of His will that has protected me and I feel the separation of his presence. Isaiah 59:2~But your iniquities have made a separation between you and your God, and your sins have hidden his face from you so that he does not hear.
It brings shame, guilt and I can even feel nauseous. He knows what I’ve done or didn’t do, said, thought, or felt that brings me so much sadness. The separation hurts because you know He can’t be with you when you are in sin and all you feel is regret and disappointment in your own self. Then as always, Scriptures remind you of how loving and forgiving God is because He offers repentance. God will not leave or forsake Christians that do sin. We experience separation from our Lord as a form of discipline to grow us. Those that don’t believe in God don’t have a fear of Him or His judgment which only leads to the worst separation of all, the eternal separation from God.
People that read the Bible, attend a Biblical church, and bear the name Christian should have no excuse to not fear the Lord. In my last article, I spoke on how short life is and where people may spend eternity. I spoke of several that were shown mercy by God and saved such as the blind man and the thief on the cross. Both were able to understand their need for forgiveness and salvation when they met Jesus and didn’t reject Him. However, there are people that claim to be Christians and believers in Christ that write books and hold studies and even serve as Pastors that live without fear of the Lord. They teach others a false God and blaspheme His character and tag God’s name on teachings that are NOT Biblical at all. These teachings are done without having fear of the Lord or the fear of consequence in any way for going against God. They don’t seem to be worried about the false teachings they spout that God never taught. They didn’t seem to show any concern that they put more faith in their own feelings than the truth in what God actually tells us in the Scriptures.
The deaths of a well know man and woman come to mind with this subject. The first one is Billy Graham. He died on February 21, 2018, at the age of 99. He seemed to have changed his belief from his younger years as one that believed the only way to heaven was through Jesus, compared to his later years of believing there were many ways to heaven. In an interview with ‘Robert Schuller, Graham is asked, “What’s the future of Christianity”. Graham says, “The body of Christ that comes from all the Christian groups from around the world or outside the Christian groups from around the World I think everybody that loves Christ, or knows Christ whether they are conscious of it or not, they’re members of the body of Christ. And that is what God is doing today, He’s calling people out of the world for His name, whether they come from the Muslim world, or the Buddhist world, or the Christian world, or the non-believing world, they are members of the body of Christ because they have been called by God. They may not even know the name of Jesus but they know in their heart they need something that they don’t have, and they turn to the only light that they have, and I think that they are saved and that they’re going to be with us in heaven.
Ok, lots to unpack here. If people can be saved without knowing God or knowing the Gospel then why does God tell us to go out into the world to find those that “don’t know God” and preach the gospel? Graham believed people who are outside the Biblical Christian groups are saved, meaning they are not Christian and are non-believers. This doesn’t sound like the Gospel of Christ as written in the Scriptures. Let Scriptures reveal the truth to you, read Matthew 7:21-23 where we are told not everyone who calls on Him will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only those who do the will of the Father. They are to know God’s will, which means they need to know God. In Mark 16:15-16, we are commanded togo into the entire world and preach the gospel to everyone,“He who believes and is baptized will be saved, but he who does not believe will be condemned.” This clearly points out you can’t be an unbeliever and be saved. It’s just not going to happen. John 14:6~“Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” 1 Corinthians 1:17~ “For Christ did not send me to baptize but to preach the gospel, and not with words of eloquent wisdom, lest the cross of Christ be emptied of its power.”
These verses explain why people can NOT find their way to God in any other way except through knowing and believing in Jesus Christ. We cannot be Muslim, or Buddhist, or a non-believer and still, be saved. How can a non-believer be of the body of Christ if they don’t believe in Jesus? If a person is truly saved, they would only claim to be a believer in Christ. Remember, “He who does not believe will be condemned.”Graham’s words and God’s words contradict each other.
Graham says that “They may not even know the name of Jesus so they turn to the only light they have and will be in heaven.”
Ok, so let’s think about this…How can we believe in something we don’t believe in? How can you love or even know something you are not conscious of? How can we be aware of something we aren’t aware of? How can we know something we didn’t know? Scriptures even tell us in Romans 10:14~ “How then are they to call on Him in whom they have not believed? How are they to believe in Him whom they have not heard? And how are they to hear without a preacher?” Good question! We all know that Graham was a preacher but he wasn’t saying what people needed to hear. Graham should have been bold and said that if they don’t know Jesus and are a non-believer or practicing Buddhists, or Muslims then they are not saved. All kinds of false religions say they believe in God but their god is not the God of the Bible. You can’t go to heaven believing in a different God like the god of Buddha or the god of the Muslims or the god of “Everyone can get to heaven without believing in Jesus” god.
In Deuteronomy 6:14 and Jeremiah 25:6 we are warned not to go after other gods.Isaiah 44:6 says “besides me, there is no god.” With Graham being a pastor it’s very strange that he credits a “light” to salvation when he says, “they turn to the only light they have.” Salvation is through Jesus, not through having a light. If they are turning to the only light they have yet it’s not from Jesus, then it’s not of God, and if it’s not of God, it’s not the true light they need. Their light is counterfeit and weak. I might also add that Satan is “LIGHT” too! 2 Corinthians11:14~“And no wonder, for Satan himself, masquerades as an angel of light.”
In another interview, Larry King asks Billy if God loves Satan, all he said was, “Well, he created him as Lucifer. In the 22nd of Ezekiel, it tells us about it, and he must love him, but the end of Satan is hell. Hell was created for the devil and his angels, or his demons, not for men.” Then King asked if he thought homosexuality is a sin. Graham says he believes marriage is between a man and a woman. Then King says, “If homosexuality isn’t a choice, it can’t be a sin. Right?” Graham says, “Well, maybe. God will make that judgment, not me. I’m not deciding who’s a sinner and who is not.” King says, “How about abortion?” Graham says, “Same thing.” King asks him if he is against it totally and Graham says, “yes but I won’t get involved in it.” King asks if he believes it’s the taking of a life and Graham says yes, he does. King says, “But to protect the life of a mother you would permit it, right? I think you said that.” Graham says,“Oh, yes.”
(you can find both links to these interviews at bottom of this article)
With Graham being a preacher, his job is to warn the sheep of dangers and keep them safe. Doesn’t that mean for him to warn when something is sin and that Jesus is the ONLY way? Anyone that teaches the Word of God needs to be careful in handling God’s Word, and be very respectful of it, don’t you think? As Christians, we should know what sin is yet every time King asks Graham if something was a sin Graham never just says, yes, it’s a sin. He just gave what appears to be his opinion on things and then tells the viewers that God judges, not him and that he’s not deciding who’s a sinner and who is not. He had a platform in which to speak the truth and point people to Christ but doesn’t. Oh, I understand his fear, I’ve been there and it’s not easy. I’ve upset many but you do it anyway. We either have a fear of man or we have a fear of God. Obviously, Graham had more of a fear of man because he doesn’t speak the truth. Graham makes the statement that Christians don’t judge. So, how are we to discern God’s commands if we are not allowed to judge sin or discern right from wrong? Having discernment means knowing right from wrong according to the law of God. If God says not to commit adultery, to keep the marriage bed pure, do not murder then to do any of that as a Christian or preacher or pastor means to know it’s a sin. Graham should have exposed the sin and said, yes, homosexuality is a sin, yes abortion is murder and murder is sin. Graham taught that he doesn’t judge sin and everyone goes to heaven. What’s troubling is Graham did teach some good things so it makes him look good but then turned around and contradicted God’s own Scriptures. When Graham says “God must love Satan because God made him” makes light of Satan. Satan is evil, why would God love evil? He doesn’t. Psalm 11:5~ The Lord tests the righteous, but his soul hates the wicked and the one who loves violence.
Psalm 5:5~ The boastful shall not stand before your eyes; you hate all evildoers.
There is a perfect answer to this simple question with the following link below, “No, God does not love Satan, and neither should we. God cannot love that which is evil and unholy, and Satan embodies all of that. He is the enemy (1 Peter 5:8); the evil one (Matthew 6:13); the father of lies and a murderer (John 8:44); the accuser of God’s people (Revelation 12:10); the tempter (1 Thessalonians 3:5); proud, wicked and violent (Isaiah 14:12-15); a deceiver (Acts 13:10); a schemer (Ephesians 6:11); a thief (Luke 8:12); and many more evil things. He is, in fact, everything that God hates. The heart of Satan is fixed and confirmed in his hatred of God, his judgment is final, and his destruction is sure. Revelation 20 describes God’s future plan for Satan, and love for Satan has no part in it.”
There is a very popular yet unbiblical saying that goes around in the Christian community, “God loves the sinner and hates the sin”. Although that seems loving for a God to love, love, and love some more and love everyone even if you live in sin, it’s just not biblical. We need to understand that it’s the sinner that is thrown into Hell, not the sin.
Sadly, Graham is still leading people astray today with those videos and interviews even though he is gone. Where was Graham’s fear of the Lord? Saying those things should have convicted him instantaneously. I noticed when King asked a question about a certain sin; Graham never truly addressed it or called it sin or quotes Scriptures of what God says about it. He just gently reminds the viewers that God forgives whatever sin you have. Nothing is said about them needing to repent and ask for forgiveness. Many will see it as they don’t need to repent because God loves the sinner and automatically forgive us.
Next, the woman I referred to is Rachel Held Evans, she died May 4, 2019, at the age of 37, and left behind a husband and two children. She died so young and so suddenly it was a shock to many people. She wrote books, had blogs and many believed in her teachings to be good. None of that is wrong until you look at what it was she actually taught. Long story short, she taught that God is not a ‘dude’ (her words) and has referred to God as a woman and mother at different times. She supports LGBTQ causes and contradicts what God says women’s roles are in the church and denies and rejects the authority of God’s Word and teachings.
I know many believe that talking ill of the dead is wrong and disrespectful but I say it’s downright evil to speak ill of the Lord and make Him out to be something He’s not. Rachel has disrespected God and His teachings in the things she has said about Him. It’s out of respect for God and His Truth that I speak of her false teachings because we should not hold our tongue when it comes to exposing lies and sharing the truth of the Scriptures. According to God, we are to warn of false teachings and that’s more important than respecting someone’s death. I’m sure people could say she was a nice person but the deception and poison she taught to the thousands of her followers are very concerning and wrong. What is more concerning for her is if she never repented of them, God will hold her responsible for every careless word she spoke and taught. Matthew 12:35–37~“The good person out of his good treasure brings forth good, and the evil person out of his evil treasure brings forth evil. I tell you, son the day of judgment people will give account for every careless word they speak, for by your words you will be justified, and by your words, you will be condemned.”
I knew nothing of Rachel until a few days after she died. I saw pictures of her posted on Facebook by several different people and became curious about who she was and why so many were posting about her. I discovered many things about her beliefs but it was an article by Pastor Gabriel Hughes that shocked me most and showed where she stood just weeks before she died. I was disheartened by the deadly teachings she spewed just shortly before her last breath. She defended her beliefs in her comments to the very end of her write-up to Pastor Gabriel which was concerning a video he made titled, “Is God a Woman?”, below
Gabriel says, “Though I will never have another opportunity to address Rachel, what she taught continues to damage the souls of countless thousands of people, and will do so for many more years. What I had prepared to say to her, I say now for the sake of those misled by her teaching.”
Her beliefs were so disturbing but my heart truly hurts for her. I found it surprising that not knowing anything of her before; I would now suddenly find my heart so sad concerning her. I then started thinking of those who are still being fed her books and teachings. Sadly, and unfortunately, there is no more we can do for Rachel. No one can try to reach out to her and help her see her unbiblical ways; no one can help her know the truth of who God is. It’s too late. What time we Christians do have should be to fight for the faith, to fight for the Truth. Her very last act as a living, breathing human being was to take that dark stand and completely destroy the truth of who God is, and then suddenly, just 3 short days after that she became seriously ill and put into the hospital with the flu and infection. She died about 3 weeks later. No one knows if she could have been aware enough to even repent of all that. She could have, but no one knows. Even if she did repent, she left behind teachings that many will still be hurt by today and will cause some to doubt God for years to come. Rachel Held Evans is described as a progressive Christian author but I don’t think of her as a Christian because she taught a different God and a different Bible and she had no fear of the Lord even up to her last posts with Pastor Gabriel.
Above is an article written by Tami Dykes, Gina and Tami write Through the Narrow here at Tulips & Honey Hub. They’ll be posting articles every other Tuesday. Both are published authors, you can find Tami’s book here, and Gina’s book here. We’re blessed to have them apart of our team, and pray their writing will be as edifying to you as it is to us. – Lauren Hereford
While waiting in the E.R. my youngest brother says to me, “Tami, I’m dying.” This was already understood by the whole family but he had never said those words before. After a few seconds, I broke the silence with, “Well, we are all dying, none of us get out of this life alive.” I know that probably sounded insensitive but it was true. But I also desperately wanted my brother to think deep and hard about the statements we were both making. I then asked him if he got right with God and repented of his sins. Our conversation pretty much fizzled out after he said, “Yes, I did. “ I so needed him to understand that he did need to repent for the sin in his life, he wasn’t innocent, none of us are. The conversation was awkward, to say the least, but awkward was the word of the day it seemed. You could cut the air with a knife it was so obvious I was offending him. He was in constant pain and organs were failing, I had to try and wake him up before it was too late.
You see, according to my brother he was saved and didn’t need to worry about his judgment day because just a few years earlier he was in a church that had an altar call in which the person next to him said, “Do you want to go to the front?” The look on his face said, no way, as he just stood there silently watching it all but the person was so persistent, they took him by the arm and lead him to the front of the church. He seemed to go reluctantly so as not to call attention to himself but they shouldn’t have done that to him, it needed to be his choice, not theirs. Besides, I didn’t agree with the whole alter call farce in the first place. https://www.gotquestions.org/altar-calls.html
My brother followed through, repeated a sentence, and they said he was saved. He walked away that day believing that was all it took. My brother continued in the same old ways he did before and I never did see a change in him in the years that followed. He never expressed a desire to even talk about God or what the Scripture said. In fact, he hated it whenever I did, which was all the time. Many times, he would humor me and listen briefly until he became exhausted with it and changed the subject. He claimed he didn’t need to talk about Jesus anymore because he was saved. One time he said, “Tami, I know Jesus, stop worrying about me” but I replied, “Satan knows Jesus, but that means nothing.” Anyone can claim they know Jesus but do they really? Just because they go to church, just because they pray at a meal or talk about Him means nothing. It’s not just knowing of Jesus that makes someone a Christian but desiring to know about Jesus and living our lives for Him that brings about change in us and gives us hope for our eternity. My brother didn’t live a life that reflected Jesus or salvation. I say this because God says in Matthew 7:16-20~ “You will recognize them by their fruits. Are grapes gathered from thornbushes or figs from thistles? So, every healthy tree bears good fruit, but the diseased tree bears bad fruit. A healthy tree cannot bear bad fruit, nor can a diseased tree bear good fruit. Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. Thus you will recognize them by their fruits.”
This means we can know a person by how they live, what kind of character they have; do they live as a Christian and show evidence of salvation? This can give us an idea of their spiritual life and if they truly are living as a person that is saved. Any one of us could look at a friend or loved one and judge by how they live if they know ‘OF’ Jesus or really ‘KNOW’ and love Jesus. If your best friend never goes to church and has a record of cheating and lying, then just because they say they know Jesus and are a Christian means nothing. At the same time, this doesn’t mean that when that person dies, they can’t turn to Christ in the very last hour of their life and be forgiven and saved, as the thief on the cross did. Luke 23:39-43 talks of a thief nailed to a cross for his crimes and as he hung next to Jesus he repented and acknowledged Jesus as his Lord. Jesus tells us he went to paradise with Him. Remember salvation isn’t based on how perfect you are but on our faith in Jesus as the perfect sacrifice. The thief was lost one moment, found the next, what a celebration!
Just as the thief got a chance to know Jesus, in John 9 a blind man also gets to know Jesus. When Jesus meets the blind man, He explains that the man was born blind so that God’s works might be displayed in him, and then Jesus heals him. The Pharisees brag to the blind man that God speaks to Moses and they are disciples of Moses but Jesus is a sinner and they don’t know where he comes from. The blind man says in John 9:31, 33, “You do not know where he comes from, and yet he opened my eyes. We know that God does not listen to sinners, but if anyone is a worshiper of God and does his will, God listens to him. If this man were not from God, he could do nothing.” In John 9: 35-38 Jesus asks the blind man if he believes in the Son of Man and the man asks, “And who is he, sir, that I may believe in him? Jesus said to him, You have seen him, and it is he who is speaking to you. He said, Lord, I believe, and he worshiped him. The Pharisees ask Jesus, Are we also blind? But Jesus answers, If you were blind, you would have no guilt; but now that you say, ‘We see,’ your guilt remains.”
It’s important to understand that the blind man comes to know who Jesus truly is because he was given the gift to understand and comprehend through his sight. After Jesus heals him, he realizes that Jesus was from God and proclaims his ignorance of who Jesus is and his need to see spiritually so he could worship Him. The Pharisees on the other hand had the gift of sight but were spiritually blind because they had the opportunity to see the truth. They claimed to know God yet wrongfully accuses Jesus of being a sinner and not from God. They willingly remained in sin and rejected the truth to not believe in Jesus, making them guilty.
Now, I do not think Jesus is saying that blind people don’t have the ability to know Him, because they do. They can hear the stories of Jesus in the Scripture today and be presented with the Gospel but back then Jesus was making a point that the blind man didn’t have the same opportunities as the Pharisees. He couldn’t read, no one shared with him the knowledge of who Jesus was, he couldn’t ‘see’ the works of God’s creation to be without excuse as explained in Romans 1:19-20 but that people can be guilty of sin when they have opportunities to know the truth as the Pharisees did but then reject it.
We can read more on the meaning of that verse here, “Barnes’ Notes on the Bible~ “If ye were blind – If you were really blind and had no opportunities of learning the truth. If you were truly ignorant and were willing to confess it and to come to me for instruction. No sin – You would not be guilty. Sin is measured by the capacities or ability of people, and by their opportunities of knowing the truth. If people had no ability to do the will of God, they could incur no blame. If they have all proper ability, and no disposition, God holds them to be guilty. This passage teaches conclusively: 1) that people are not condemned for what they cannot do. 2) That the reason why they are condemned is that they are not disposed to receive the truth. 3) That pride and self-confidence are the sources of condemnation. 4) That if people are condemned, they, and not God, will be to blame. We see – We have knowledge of the law of God. This they had pretended when they professed to understand the law respecting the Sabbath better than Jesus, and had condemned him for healing on that day. Your sin remaineth – You are guilty, and your sin is unpardoned. People’s sins will always be unpardoned while they are proud and self-sufficient, and confident of their own wisdom. If they will come with humble hearts and confess their ignorance, God will forgive, enlighten, and guide them in the path to heaven.”
Saying we know Jesus just doesn’t mean much if we turn from Him in our lives as the Pharisees did. The criminal and blind man came to faith but the ones that were seen as a religious sect that accepted the Old Testament as inspired by God didn’t. When I talk about the thief, the blind man, and the Pharisees these were men that didn’t know Jesus and when presented with the truth, they were all given the opportunity to believe in Jesus. So, what about people that don’t have the ability to understand the truth when presented to them such as babies and the mentally disabled? What happens to them at death.
In 2 Samuel 12:22-23, we read about the death of David’s infant son, “He answered, “While the child was still alive, I fasted and wept. I thought, ‘Who knows? The Lord may be gracious to me and let the child live.’ But now that he is dead, why should I go on fasting? Can I bring him back again? I will go to him, but he will not return to me.”
This shows that David had found comfort knowing he will see his child again but only by going to the same place his child went. We can only assume he believes the child is in heaven. He was in such sorrow while the child lay sick but after his child passed away David appears to have peace about where he believes his child to be and he stops fasting, cleans up, worships, and eats. David knows about God’s mercy and grace and believes the Lord will show his mercy and grace on his child and they will be together in heaven someday.
It’s always heartbreaking when a baby passes but looking at the story of David can bring us comfort as well. It’s common for people to wonder where babies go when they die or even the mentally disabled. How can we know for certain? Babies, and mentally disabled don’t know any better and don’t understand even what a sinner is, or why they need to repent, and even more so, know who Jesus is. You could explain the gospel to them a dozen times and they would never have the ability to understand it. That’s the difference, the blind man was given the opportunity to know the truth and he understood it yet with babies and mentally disabled they can’t comprehend the truth even if they were presented with the opportunity. Scriptures don’t specifically talk about where babies or the mentally disabled go after death. The only thing we have to go on to gain any knowledge from is within the Scripture’s accounts that speak of those that have died and by knowing the character of God such as in the story of the thief, the blind man, and David. Unfortunately, some faiths add to or take away from Scriptures to fit their own man-made beliefs such as infant baptism. Baptism is biblical but infant baptism is not. Some believe infants should be baptized so if they die, they go to heaven. Biblically, baptism doesn’t save babies or anyone, instead, it is a profession of faith, and a baby can’t profess faith in Jesus not to mention, Jesus wasn’t even baptized till he was an adult, which should tell us something. Baptism illustrates Christ’s death, burial, and resurrection and is done publicly of one’s own choice in a desire to express their love for Christ in the washing away of sins and believing the old life has died and a new life begins. It represents the dying of our flesh by fully being submerged in water (just as people that die are completely buried in the ground and not just sprinkled with a handful of dirt). Then when we rise from the water, we are a new person through Christ and have the hope of resurrection and eternal life. A new believer often shows evidence of their salvation by the desires for a biblical baptism. A lost person normally wouldn’t desire that at all. So, basically, baptism is pointless to a baby or someone that is mentally disabled because they are not capable of understanding the meaning behind it.
Matthew 18:1–6, and Matthew 19:13–15, are comforting examples of how God loves children and says for believers to be like children. He speaks of them being the greatest in the kingdom and that the kingdom of heaven belongs to them. I think of all the small children and infants that have died through abuse, abortion, and sicknesses and are in heaven now. God’s character is shown through such gentle words that bring much peace.
The reality of how short life is becomes painfully clear when a child dies. Life is short no matter what because the moment we are born we start to die, some faster than others. Job 14:1~“Man who is born of a woman is few of days and full of trouble.” Compared to eternal life it is but a blink which is why God commands us to share the gospel to help people know the Lord and find salvation before they die. Once a person dies there are no more chances to get right with the Lord. Although God does the saving and ordained us before birth to be sealed for salvation, we are still called by God to point people back to Christ and His Word and share the gospel. We will never know the true outcome of anyone we share the gospel with but we just need to be obedient, reach out to the lost, and speak the truth.
Unlike the thief on the cross spending his life as a criminal yet becoming heaven-bound in his last moments with Christ, there are people that live their whole life as Christians doing good works on a daily basis yet will be Hell-bound without Christ. The word ‘Christian’ is a title that anyone can claim and anyone can fake but one thing’s for certain, they can never deceive the Lord. Anyone can say they read the Bible and know Jesus, remember, Satan knows Jesus! The question we need to ask is, does the Lord know us? Well, of course, our Lord knows everyone, but that’s not what I’m getting at. If you don’t have faith in Jesus and desire to seek after truth, even though you defiantly have the opportunity to you won’t know the Father’s will and instead, you will believe in things not of God. Then He will declare to you He NEVER knew you. Matthew 7:21-23~“Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. On that day many will say to me, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and cast out demons in your name, and do many mighty works in your name?’ And then will I declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from me, you workers of lawlessness.’”
This is stating that they are not identified as true believers. They believe in a different god, a different Jesus. They may seem like a good Christian when they brag about doing good deeds like prophesying, casting out demons, and doing many good works in the name of God but that will not get them into Heaven because God sees right through them and knows their hearts.
When a person dies, no number of good deeds spoken at their funeral will get them into Heaven either. In fact, normally people speak about the deceased as a good person who’s in Heaven with Jesus now and suggest they are no longer suffering. I can only assume people say these things because they don’t know what else to say and they desire to comfort those in pain. There isn’t anything bad in what they say except biblically it’s misleading because we don’t know where they are. Sure, in some cases, there are people who do go to Heaven but not everyone. When people die, they ARE with Jesus but for the purpose of being judged, Hebrews 9:27~ ”And just as it is appointed for man to die once, and after thatcomes judgment,”Revelation 20:11–15tells us that the dead stand before the throne and are judged according to what they had done and if anyone’s name was not found written in the book of life, he was thrown into the lake of fire. Matthew 7:13–14 speaks of the difficulty in going to Heaven and says it’s a narrow gate and only a few will find it but many will go to the wide gate that will lead to Hell. Doesn’t seem like very good odds. When anyone dies, they are judged; they stand face to face with God but will they remain in His presence or be cast out? I’d like to challenge you that for every funeral you go to, remember these verses. This should cause you great concern for the lost. It shouldn’t be easy to assume everyone you know is Heaven bound because the truth is more people will go to Hell. This is why the saying, they aren’t suffering anymore, isn’t true for everyone either. For those that are condemned to Hell, it is a place of torment and pain. In the Bible, even the rich man in Hell wanted to warn his family about it but couldn’t. One of the more disturbing phrases I’ve heard at funerals is, “they are looking down on you” or “they are watching over you.” For many, this also means the dead are active or invested in the lives of the living somehow. Unexplained activity is often blamed on dead loved ones suggesting the dead are ghosts. Ghosts are not real, but demons are and they are not to be messed with. Turn to the Lord, ask for forgiveness, and pray, for He is the only one they fear. Just as people believe the dead watch over them, some believe Saints in Heaven are a bit different because they are seen as holy and will come to watch over us if we pray to them. They have been credited with helping people find lost articles and even selling houses, none of which is biblical.
After someone dies, they do not remain on earth or come back from Heaven or Hell because in 2 Corinthians 5:8, the Bible tells us that when we are absent from the body, we are present with the Lord. Hebrews 9:27 says man dies once then judged. Revelation 20:11–15 tells us the dead are judged and if they are not in the book of life they are thrown into the lake of fire.
So, it’s apparent that the only one that watches over us is our Lord. Psalm 121:7-8~ The LORD keeps you from all harm and watches over your life. The LORD keeps watch over you as you come and go, both now and forever. It is also written in 1 John 5:18 that Jesus holds us securely, and the evil one cannot touch us. Jeremiah 1:19 says the Lord rescues. Psalm 3:5 says the LORD was watching over His children. Psalm 31:23 says “the LORD preserves those who are true to him, but the proud he pays back in full.” If God is watching over us, then why would we want anyone else doing that? What makes us think our loved ones in Heaven want to watch over us when they are in a place that is so wonderful? I’m thinking I wouldn’t waste my time watching over anyone on Earth when I have all the wonders of Heaven to explore. Those in Hell wouldn’t be able to either or care because sadly they are suffering. Nowhere in Scriptures do we read the dead in Heaven or Hell are able or even unable to watch over us. But we can be sure that if they are watching us, they will be in complete agreement with the Lord’s dealings on earth. Those in Heaven are changed to have perfect understanding and complete peace with God’s will. There is a time where those in Heaven will follow Christ into battle and witness the wrath of God taking place as He kills and destroys everyone who’s evil.
My heart ached so badly when my brother died because all I knew of him was his fruits and they were not good fruits. Sure, there were times he was kind and had ways of bringing laughter to people but again being nice doesn’t get you to Heaven, it’s having faith in Jesus and being transformed in the mind and heart through salvation. You hate sin and desire to live a righteous life. The only thing I can hope for is that my brother had a ‘thief on the cross’ moment that was truly genuine and humble just before he died. God shows us an act of love in giving us the ability to repent and be forgiven but only while we live.
1 John 2:2~“He is the propitiation for our sins, and not for ours only but also for the sins of the whole world.” God provides THE way to the Father through Jesus; we can’t find Him in any other way. God is also so merciful to forgive but we mustn’t forget that God is also just, which means our sins must be punished. In order for us to escape punishment, Jesus must cover us with His blood and if we deny that gift then we pay for our sins apart from Jesus. Someday God will come calling for us all and you will either stand guilty before the throne of God or you will stand covered by the blood of Jesus and forgiven.
Everyone’s days are numbered and no one knows when God has appointed us to take our last breath. But think for a moment when we do, what is going to be the last thing we leave behind? What will be the last words from our lips? Are we going to leave something that honors God or will shame God? What will people say about you?
I know I deserve hell because I’m a wretched person but I am also grateful and thankful that God called me to be saved and Jesus has covered my sins and I will someday be in the presence of God for eternity. Not because of any good deeds I did or because I’m a swell person-I’m not. I can only brag that Jesus was the reason I was saved, changed, and forgiven at all. I don’t deserve any credit or a “Well done good and faithful servant”.
Do you have the assurance of salvation? “1 John 5:11–13, “And this is the testimony: God has given us eternal life, and this life is in his Son. He who has the Son has life; he who does not have the Son of God does not have life. I write these things to you who believe in the name of the Son of God so that you may know that you have eternal life”. Who is it that has the Son? It is those who have believed in Him (John 1:12). If you have Jesus, you have life. Not temporary life, but eternal.”
Above is an article written by Tami Dykes, Gina and Tami write Through the Narrow here at Tulips & Honey Hub. They’ll be posting articles every other Tuesday. Both are published authors, you can find Tami’s book here, and Gina’s book here. We’re blessed to have them apart of our team, and pray their writing will be as edifying to you as it is to us. – Lauren Hereford
There are millions of people in the world that do some amazing things. People such as firefighters, police officers, doctors, nurses, EMT’s, just to name a few. Millions of people go into careers like these and are often called heroes for saving lives all the time. However, there are some that are even more unique to the world that comes along very rarely. Have you ever seen a movie when the main character becomes famous when they discovered they have a special talent or gift? Maybe a movie about a genie granting three wishes? How about a movie where someone gets superpowers or where someone was chosen to save the world? It’s all focused on that one person and how it’s up to them to do something great. This one person finds out that they were chosen for something special.
With all these are movies, it makes people walk away secretly wishing they were the hero of their own story in life. How exciting. Strangely enough, I do hear people talk as if they do have real unique abilities and they speak of it on a daily basis. They will speak of being someone special, someone with powers, someone that tells stories about their own moments in life that cause others to be in awe of them. Well, allow me to explain more. My first experience with this was with others close to me. They talked of some pretty special, even bizarre abilities and experiences they personally had on many different occasions. Stories that just seemed too bizarre but had just enough “what if” to intrigue me and kept me captivated every time something new happened. They would say God spoke to them all the time. I remember thinking about how it was so cool that they got to hear from God…God!!! I mean think about that. He’s the creator of all things and He chooses to talk to ‘them’ about stuff. However, the stories they told intrigued me but of course today I look back and don’t see God in them at all. One story was how God called them to do something “unfamiliar” and it would make people upset but it was for this person to have faith and trust in what was to happen. This thing God had them to do was something not Christian at all. They were told to get a person’s attention by cussing at them, and another time God gave them the ok to steal something. One time they said God wanted them to cast out a demon in a person and it took several people and they spoke of how strong the demon was in fighting so many at the same time. I remember it sounding like a battle between good and evil, kind of like superheroes.
I remember another time how they discussed how many people they saved and then asked me, “How many people have you saved?” They spoke in tongues which I found amazing because I couldn’t do it and they talked of healing people. Sadly, this eventually caused me to think I too could be like them someday if I was found worthy enough.
I wasn’t mature in the Word of God to even know the truth and they weren’t teaching me Biblical truth either and that was harmful to my faith. I was being fed deception left and right. I just remember thinking, is there some kind of greatness inside all of us or is it just some? How come they could hear from God and do those powerful things and I couldn’t. Are there just some that are special? Or is everyone special? Although, if everyone is special, then truly no one is, right? I was left with so many questions and so confused but I knew I wanted to be like them. Now, that was a problem for me but I didn’t realize it at the time. My desire to be like them was sadly poisonous because it dismissed God completely. It wasn’t that I wanted to be saved because I desired God in my life but because I wanted to be seen as worthy enough to hear God speak to me and heal people and speak in tongues, and look important. Yeah, not good! It was all a very selfish place to be. When people become false converts it’s often because they want to get something not because they have been changed by God. I’ve heard many famous bible teachers do this such a Priscilla Shirer when she preached to her audience about getting saved; that they could get to a place where they were in tune with God and could hear Him speak. People would quickly and joyfully approach her stage to be saved because they believed they would get something amazing in return. You can read the article here: https://biblicalbeginningsblog.wordpress.com/2019/11/26/through-the-narrow-priscilla-shirer-wants-more-by-tami-dykes/
Now to be fair there are some true stories of real individuals that have been picked just for special times and purposes in the world such as the 12 Apostles or Noah, Moses, and Mary and Joseph even in the future God calls the 144,000 Jews. All of these people were not anything special outside of God though. They had no powers and no unique ability that was unheard of. Yes, God did call them to do some really great and powerful things but they were done by God, not them. God used them to showcase His powers. God had a reason for using those people, even though He could have done it Himself faster. Even as He used them, they were scared and uncertain and had feelings of doubt. We read, however, that in the midst of all the fear and doubt they felt, they were willing and obedient. God used their patience, kindness, and obedience and taught us through His Word the importance of good character and being obedient.
So you can see how people in the churches today twist how God works. A false convert may be false because they bought into a lie another person told them about God. They may say something was said by God but if they research what they were being told they would obviously see it’s not the God of the Bible that person is talking about. The God they speak of is of their own making. The false convert sees this person’s life and special abilities and desire it in their own life and hear that all they need to do is accept Christ into their life and they will be special too. They will gain a supernatural connection with a powerful entity that will use them in an extraordinary way. They will be given special messages or visions or power. Yeah, that sounds amazing!
What they need to understand is, God uses us whether we are a believer or not, whether we know it or not. We are the ones that are lost without Him, we need Him not the other way around. We can’t save ourselves or anyone else, only God has that power.
Many uneducated believers argue that our feelings are important when we worship God because when God speaks to us, we can feel Him in some way. I’ve heard that God may give us a chill or the hair on the back of our neck stands up or we feel strongly in our hearts about something good or bad. Is it all about our feelings, all about us doing special things?
It truly amazes me that the “feelings” phenomenon is so hard to break when dealing with people that believe in an Almighty God who created the Universe. If our feelings were so in tune with God, wouldn’t God tell us this in His Word? Wouldn’t God tell us to follow our hearts and listen to our thoughts on things or our gut or trust in our self when we get that shiver down our spine? I realize it seems I’m being repetitive and I know I have a habit of doing that, but being repetitive does help us to learn and remember. Jesus repeated many things in the Bible and many books in the Bible had the same stories in them as well, just worded differently.
So, ask yourself again, why point people to a human feeling and promptings or new revelations that came from our own interpretation? Is it to look good, or to get what we want? Have you ever been deceived by your own feelings? I have many times. Have you been deceived by your own heart? God even says our hearts are deceitful, Jeremiah 17:9~ The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately sick; who can understand it?
Feelings CAN’T be trusted or reliable because they deceive us. But the Bible IS reliable AND trusted. God gave us the Bible and God tells us it’s Him and His Word that is “perfect” and “complete” for all our needs.
So, if we can’t save ourselves or anyone else and we can’t hold certain supernatural abilities what is it we are to do as a Christian? What is important to God? We are to test, research, and get an understanding of who God is and what He wants by reading His Word and obeying it.
Revelation 1:3~ “Blessed is the one who reads aloud the words of this prophecy, and blessed are those who hear it and take to heart what is written in it because the time is near.”
God says in 2 Timothy 3:15–17~ “how important His Word is in helping us stay wise…..” how from childhood you have been acquainted with the sacred writings, which are able to make you “WISE” for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus.”“All Scripture is given by inspiration of God and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, that the man of God may be COMPLETE, thoroughly equipped for every good work.”
It literally means we need nothing more, no feelings, no listening to our hearts just God’s Word. We are “complete” with the doctrine of Scriptures. We are absolutely “thoroughly equipped”. It doesn’t say “kind of equipped”, it doesn’t say a “little bit equipped”. God says we are “Thoroughly” equipped when we read His Word. Other translations say “PERFECT”, thoroughly furnished”. You can’t get better than perfectly furnished with the Word of God.
Romans 12:2~ “Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.”
Look back at where it says, “that by testing”, do we understand what that means? How do you test something to make sure it’s the will of God? Well, it’s by reading the Bible of course. God points us right back to His Holy Word, we test things to the Bible, we hold it up to Scriptures.
In the next verse, it says, “This Book“.
Joshua 1:8~ “This Book of the Law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do according to all that is written in it. For then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have good success.”
The verse tells us to do what is “written in it”. It points out that God’s desire for us is to “read His Words” day and night. When it says, “Book of the Law”, what’s that mean? It’s the Bible! When it says, “be careful to do according to all that is written in it.” This is reminding us the Bible is important, and it’s not about having personal messages, visions, or hearing an audible voice from God but instead, obeying the written Word.
Psalm 1:1-2~ “Blessed is the man who walks not in the counsel of the wicked, nor stands in the way of sinners, nor sits in the seat of scoffers; but his delight is in the law of the Lord, and on his law he meditates day and night.”
What’s the Law of the Lord? The Bible! So many verses of God pointing us to Scriptures and telling us that He wants us to study His Word and take what we read very seriously. We are called to love His Word and be obedient to it. Not strive to look special by saying God gave me a special message. We shouldn’t think we can stand in the place of God and claim we did anything supernaturally, and certainly not presume we could ever hear God speak apart from Scriptures. It should cause great concern to anyone that would be told to believe a prompting or someone’s personal message from the Lord because all that does is point to ourselves or glorifies “people”, instead of God.
1 Timothy 6:3–5~ “If anyone advocates a different doctrine and does not agree with sound words, those of our Lord Jesus Christ, and with the doctrine conforming togodliness, he is conceited and understands nothing; but he has a morbid interest in controversial questions and disputes.”
2 John 9–11~ “Anyone who goes too far and does not abide in the teaching of Christ, does not have God; the one who abides in the teaching, he has both the Father and the Son. If anyone comes to you and does not bring thisteaching, do not receive him into your house, and do not give him a greeting; for the one who gives him a greeting participates in his evil deeds.”
1 Corinthians 4:6~ “Now, brothers and sisters, I have applied these things to myself and Apollos for your benefit, so that you may learn from us the meaning of the saying, do not go beyond what is written. Then you will not be puffed up in being a follower of one of us over against the other.”
When it says, “learn from us the meaning of the saying”, “Do not go beyond what is written” and people say they have new revelations from God (not what is written in the Bible), well, they are going beyond what is written. People follow a certain teacher that isn’t teaching what is written but going beyond it. People that go to Bible studies listen to one person’s personal teaching and not to God’s teaching because they want more or they want something AMAZING and they want a wow factor in their studies are going beyond what is written. The first teacher I thought of is Beth Moore!
Hebrews 4:12~ ”For the word of God is alive and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.”
The Bible which is a living book (the word of God) is alive and active. The Word gives us wisdom and instructs us and equips us, strengthens us and protects us, even convicts us, and judges our thoughts, and attitudes which should bring fear when we tend to drift in the direction of feelings. The law of God commands us to grow spiritually with the truth of Scriptures.
Romans 15:4~ “For whatever was written in earlier times was written for our instruction, so that through perseverance and the encouragement of the Scriptures we might have hope.”
Here again, it’s talking of Scriptures, not feelings, voices, hearts, or promptings. God is pointing back to the Bible and that is where we find instruction for our life’s choices.
Deuteronomy 4:2~ “You shall not add to the Word which I am commanding you, nor take away from it, that you may keep the commandments of the Lord your God which I command you.”
Deuteronomy 12:32~ “Whatever I command you, you shall “be careful” to do; you shall not add to nor take away from it.”
Revelation 22:18~ “I testify to everyone who hears the words of the prophecy of this book: if anyone adds to them, God will add to him the plagues which are written in this book.
Proverbs 30:4-6~ “Who has gone up to heaven and come down? Whose hands have gathered up the wind? Who has wrapped up the waters in a cloak? Who has established all the ends of the earth? What is his name, and what is the name of his son? Surely you know! “Every word of God is flawless; he is a shield to those who take refuge in him. Do not add to his words, or he will rebuke you and prove you a liar.”
Above are 4 different verses that are talking of God’s “written” Word, the prophecy of Scriptures, not our prophecies or others. We are also repeatedly warned by God not to add or take away from what He says in His Holy Word. I’m thinking this is a big deal and the warnings are serious and it should cause us to check ourselves to keep us from violating God’s commands.
Matthew 4:1-12~ “Then Jesus was led up by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil. And after fasting forty days and forty nights, he was hungry. And the tempter came and said to him, “If you are the Son of God, command these stones to become loaves of bread. But he answered, “it is written man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that comes from the mouth of God. “
Here we read that Jesus points to the authority of God’s written Word. The verse continues…
“Then the devil took him to the holy city and set him on the pinnacle of the temple and said to him, “If you are the Son of God, throw yourself down, for it is written, “‘He will command his angels concerning you,’ and “‘On their hands they will bear you up, lest you strike your foot against a stone.’”
Interesting how Satan catches on to Jesus’ teaching and says “It is written” because he sees how important Jesus makes obeying the Word. Satan thinks saying this will be convincing to Jesus somehow by using the word, “written” to point to the authority of Scriptures to Jesus in hopes to tempt Him. However, Jesus continues on with His point to teach us how important it is to trust His Word not our feelings or our own desires. I’m sure Jesus had many feelings that would have swayed anyone else to give in. Jesus was hungry, tired, and weak. But Jesus stands firmly on the Scriptures and not His feelings and emotions. In these verses, Jesus points us back to the “WRITTEN” Scriptures and its authority.
“Jesus said to him, “Again it is written, ‘You shall not put the Lord your God to the test.’” Again, the devil took him to a very high mountain and showed him all the kingdoms of the world and their glory. And he said to him, “All these I will give you, if you will fall down and worship me.” Then Jesus said to him, “Be gone, Satan! For it is written, “‘You shall worship the Lord your God and him only shall you serve.’” Then the devil left him, and behold, angels came and were ministering to him.”
Jesus said in John 14:16, He would send the Spirit to us to be our “Helper”, “Comforter”, and “Guide”. “And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Counselor to be with you forever”.
Believers in Christ will receive the Holy Spirit and He will “guide” them however there is nothing in the Scriptures that says we will know when that happens. The best response I’ve ever heard was from John MacArthur when he said, “One of the follies of the Charismatic movement is to say, “The Holy Spirit is leading me,” or “directing me.” You have no way to know that. I have no way to know that. I don’t have a red light on my head when it’s the Holy Spirit and goes off when it’s just me. I have no mechanism of understanding when it’s the Holy Spirit or just me. All I know is I can experience the result of His moving in my life. And it started when I was saved.”
When we become saved the Holy Spirit lives within us believers. The Holy Spirit speaks to us through the “Word” that we read and study. God is sovereign and works in our lives without us knowing anything of what He does, this is where we exercise our faith. We believe God is in control and accept it. There is nothing we can do to change God’s plan or spoil God’s plan in our lives. Not long ago when I was pointing out the false teachings of Priscilla Shirer, someone said to me, “Be careful that you do not hinder God’s work.” They did not like that I was warning about and calling out a false teacher who they must have looked up to but I found their response to me interesting. Their comment made God seem powerless against our choices. If I needed to be careful not to hinder God’s work, that meant God’s will could be interfered by my will, doesn’t it? Is God at the mercy of what people do? In which case makes God seem less of an authority. God will do whatever He wants to do and nothing I do will change it or stop it. I am not that powerful and never will be. We only need to read His Word, have faith, believe it, and obey it. We only need to look to the Scripture to learn of God’s authority, and that no one, not even Satan can alter it. The “God told me” fad is said by many out of ignorance because they don’t know God and they don’t understand the severity of those words yet at the same time people hear a preacher at the pulpit or well-known bible teachers who should know better say God told them a message. They like to make themselves look good by making others believe they actually hear directly from God Himself. They are quick to manipulate others and say, “God told me this or that,” when He didn’t tell them anything. That is a serious offense in God’s eyes as said in Deut. 5:11~ “You shall not misuse the name of the LORD your God, for the LORD, will not hold anyone guiltless who misuses his name.” People are quick to put God’s name to their stories or testimonies or reasons to do whatever in life because then who could argue? God said it, right?! No one could tell them they are wrong. How do we know its truth? We don’t! I remember several years ago my daughter came home from college to tell me that a guy said that God told him he was to marry her. She very confidently said, “Then why wouldn’t God tell me that too?”
Matthew 12:36~”I tell you, on the day of judgment people will give account for every careless word they speak.”
Matthew 16:24~”Then Jesus said to his disciples, “Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me.”
The hardest thing for us to do is deny ourselves and our desires which is our flesh. We are commanded not to obey the flesh, but to slay it. Following our prompts, feelings, or what we “feel God wants us to do” is obeying our flesh. We are going with our own idea and voices in our minds. Instead, we are to slay all that and point ourselves back to the Scriptures.
Deuteronomy 13:1-5~ “If a prophet were a dreamer of dreams rises among you and gives you a sign or a wonder and the sign or the wonder comes true concerning which he spoke to you saying let us go after other gods, let us serve them, you shall not listen to the words of that prophet or that dreamer of dreams, for the Lord your God is TESTING you to find out if you love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul. You shall follow the Lord your God and fear Him. And you shall keep His commandments, listen to His voice, serve Him and cling to Him. But that prophet, or that dreamer of dreams shall be put to death because he “has counseled rebellion” against the Lord your God who brought you from the land of Egypt and redeemed you from the house of slavery, to SEDUCE YOU FROM THE WAY IN WHICH THE LORD YOUR GOD COMMANDED YOU TO WALK so you shall purge the evil from among you.”
Basically, it’s saying if a prophet comes to you preaching good things, and even if the prophet does things that seem unbelievable or says things that come true, be warned because they will lead you away from God’s truth. God says they are rebellious and against Him.
2 Peter 1:19–21~ “We have the prophetic word made more sure, to which you do well to pay attention as to a lamp shining in a dark place, until the day dawns and the morning star arises in your hearts. But know this first of all, that no prophecy of Scripture is a matter of one’s own interpretation, for no prophecy, was ever made by an act of human will, but men moved by the Holy Spirit spoke from God.”
“The last three words here make the point that God says all along. Yet Peter goes on to say that even what he heard with his own ears and saw with his own eyes was not as authoritative as the eternal Word of God contained in Scripture. Peter is not saying that his eyewitness testimony makes the “prophecy of Scripture” more sure. He is saying that the written Word of God by its very nature is more sure than his own experience. This is confirmed by Peter’s argument in verses 20–21, where he establishes the authority and divine origin of every “prophecy of Scripture. The Greek word order in verse 19 also supports this as the true meaning of the text: “We have more sure the prophetic Word.” More sure than what? More sure than experience—even the valid, genuine, eyewitness experience of the apostles. Peter is saying that the written Word is an even more reliable source of truth than his own experience. To paraphrase Peter’s message to his readers, it is this: “James, John, and I saw Christ’s glory firsthand. But if you don’t believe us, there is one authority even more certain than our testimony: the written Word of God.” Scripture tells us that the Devil masquerades as the light. If the Devil can deceive so many of God’s heavenly angels, then the Devil can and will deceive us mere humans. That’s why we need to rely on the Scriptures, it’s the only thing we know as solid truth and that we can trust because the Word is God
The Ironsmith uses his tools every day, heating them up and fashioning the iron, shaping it with his hammers and fire, and his own strength.
The Carpenter measures and marks and cuts down trees using his tools and his own strength to build. They work long hours and becoming worn down, and tired. To keep up their strength they take breaks to eat and hydrate. They are limited by their own abilities and they are reliant on fire to keep them warm, and on the plants they eat. So many elements of nature help them stay healthy.
They know that fire fueled with wood or coal helps them stay warm and also helps cook their food. God is good to them in so many ways because He has provided all they need to live. God has grown the trees they use to build homes and furniture. God has grown the plants they eat and provided the water they drink. God made the iron to make the tools they work with and pots they cook with.
Yet, they craft statues to worship out of the same trees they make fire with to stay warm and to cook their food. They craft idols out of the same iron they use to make tools, weapons, and pots.
These statues can’t talk, see, hear or walk but are seen as powerful and people bow down to them asking it for help and to keep them safe.
If men can’t save themselves how is it, they believe they can carve and fashion out of a piece of rock, wood, or iron statues to save them?
If they themselves don’t have powers to do what they are asking a statue to do, then how can it have power? How is it they don’t realize they are being helped and saved by the very things they already use that God has created and grown for them?
If my tiny story sounds familiar it is because we read it in the Scriptures.
Isaiah 44: 9-20
9 All who make idols are nothing, and the things they treasure are worthless. Those who would speak up for them are blind; they are ignorant, to their own shame. 10 Who shapes a god and casts an idol, which can profit nothing? 11 People who do that will be put to shame; such craftsmen are only human beings. Let them all come together and take their stand; they will be brought down to terror and shame.
12 The blacksmith takes a tool and works with it in the coals; he shapes an idol with hammers, he forges it with the might of his arm. He gets hungry and loses his strength; he drinks no water and grows faint. 13 The carpenter measures with a line and makes an outline with a marker; he roughs it out with chisels and marks it with compasses. He shapes it in human form, human form in all its glory, that it may dwell in a shrine. 14 He cut down cedars, or perhaps took a cypress or oak. He let it grow among the trees of the forest, or planted a pine, and the rain made it grow. 15 It is used as fuel for burning; some of it he takes and warms himself, he kindles a fire and bakes bread. But he also fashions a god and worships it; he makes an idol and bows down to it. 16 Half of the wood he burns in the fire; over it he prepares his meal, he roasts his meat and eats his fill. He also warms himself and says, “Ah! I am warm; I see the fire.” 17 From the rest he makes a god, his idol; he bows down to it and worships. He prays to it and says, “Save me! You are my god!” 18 They know nothing, they understand nothing; their eyes are plastered over so they cannot see, and their minds closed so they cannot understand. 19 No one stops to think, no one has the knowledge or understanding to say, “Half of it I used for fuel; I even baked bread over its coals, I roasted meat and I ate. Shall I make a detestable thing from what is left? Shall I bow down to a block of wood?” 20 Such a person feeds on ashes; a deluded heart misleads him; he cannot save himself, or say, “Is not this thing in my right hand a lie?”
I’m not saying it’s a sin to make art or carve or design things. What is wrong is to carve things to worship as if they are gods. I am a freelance artist and I enjoy working with my hands and making art for others and for my own home. I have worked with many media such as drawing, painting, carving, and jewelry. I believe that my art is a gift from God and everything I do with it is my gift to Him.
What I want to point out is even after thousands of years humans are still trying to make idols, and make their gods out of simple slabs of rock or wood made by human hands. There is nothing I can carve or paint or draw that can become so powerful that it has the ability to save me or to help me in anything I do. Only God can do that.
Sadly, many people today still believe praying to statues is beneficial in helping us in our daily lives, such as the statue of Joseph.
Joseph is considered to many Catholics as the saint of workers and fathers and he possesses statues made from plastic to be used to sell your home.
Almost a year ago we sold our house. It was on the market for some time and an acquaintance of mine shared with me the secret to selling our home. They said, “You need to bury a statue of Joseph in your yard and you will sell your house fast.” Of course, I laughed because I don’t believe in that stuff, but apparently, they did because they did it for their house and seen great results. So many do this when selling their homes and most stories I’ve heard have had positive results even if you’re not a believer. I just want to point out that the Scriptures say that Satan masquerades as the light and can make things happen that you want as well. Jesus was tempted in the desert by Satan in Matthew 4:8-10~ “Again, the devil took him to a very high mountain and showed him all the kingdoms of the world and their splendor. “All this I will give you,” he said, “if you will bow down and worship me.” Jesus said to him, “Away from me, Satan! For it is written: ‘Worship the Lord your God, and serve him only.”
This should teach us that when we pray to a statue and your desire comes true such as selling your home, it’s not the statue that did it. the Statue isn’t alive. Maybe Satan did it, maybe he wants you to believe the statue honored your desire so that you will keep praying to those statues and false gods because that means your focus is OFF of God and on a statue or idol. Give glory to God for your house selling.
Below is a link that talks about how to sell your home by burying a statue of Joseph. Very mind-blowing.
After reading this link I think it’s extremely morbid if anyone believes that Joseph will work harder to sell your house if they bury him upside down because he doesn’t like being buried upside down. Supposedly, it’s a reward to Joseph to be dug back up if he sells your house quick enough and put in a place of honor in your house. So, is this how people treat their idols of worship? How odd! If a statue has the power to help you why would you treat it so badly? If people honestly believe that a statue doesn’t like being buried upside down, then how horrible of them that they would be ok with doing that. To me, it’s demented to think, “Do what I want Joseph, or I’m gonna beat you or torment you by burying you upside down.” However, these same believers have also turned to Saints and pray to them and worship them if the Saints help them.
Here is the prayer they pray to Joseph: “Dear Saint Joseph, I know you would do this for me out of the goodness of your heart and in your own good time, but my need is very great now and so I must make you hurry on my behalf.”
“Saint Joseph, I am going to place you in a difficult position with your head in darkness and you will suffer as our Lord suffered, until this [house/property] is sold. Then, Saint Joseph, I swear before the cross and God Almighty, that I will redeem you and you will receive my gratitude and a place of honor in my home. Amen.”
Ok, that prayer is just wrong in all kinds of ways but the part that is troubling is where it says the person, they “swear” to a plastic statue? What? They swear to the cross and God? That just sends a frightening chill up my spine. People this is demonic and evil. Do not do this! It’s not biblical in any way. That statue was made by weak humans that have no power to give it. Don’t make it your idol.
Romans 1:25~“They exchanged the truth about God for a lie, and worshiped and served created things rather than the Creator—who is forever praised. Amen.”
Exodus 20:4–5~ “You shall not make for yourself a carved image, or any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth. You shall not bow down to them or serve them, for I the Lord your God am a jealous God.”
Many people in the RCC also pray to many dead people such as dead loved ones and dead people in the Bible and people that become Saints, and even angels but the most famous one is Mary, Jesus’ mother. The reasons they pray to Mary or any so-called Saint are many. One is that they teach Mary is our mother too and God told us to honor our mother in the 10 commandments.
Yes, we honor our mothers but we do not pray to them after they have passed. Also, just because Mary was the mother of Jesus doesn’t mean she is to be prayed to or worshiped. We can honor our parents but we do not pray to them or try to communicate with them after they have passed away. When you start talking to or communicating to the dead then it’s not honoring anyone but instead disobeying God and showing worship of another. God saysin Deuteronomy 18:10-11~ “Let no one be found among you who sacrifices their son or daughter in the fire, who practices divination or sorcery, interprets omens, engages in witchcraft, or casts spells, or who is a medium or spiritist or who consults the dead.”
Take note of the bold words “or who consults the dead”. Consulting the dead is basically talking to the dead. Talking to the dead is equivalent to casting spells or witchcraft in God’s eyes or he wouldn’t have put them in the same paragraph.
Revelation 4:11 ~ “Worthy are you, our Lord and God, to receive glory and honor and power, for you created all things, and by your will they existed and were created.”
Deuteronomy 17:2-6 ~“If a man or woman living among you in one of the towns the Lord gives you is found doing evil in the eyes of the Lord your God in violation of his covenant, and contrary to my command has worshiped other gods, bowing down to them or to the sun or the moon or the stars in the sky, and this has been brought to your attention, then you must investigate it thoroughly. If it is true and it has been proved that this detestable thing has been done in Israel, take the man or woman who has done this evil deed to your city gate and stone that person to death. On the testimony of two or three witnesses a person is to be put to death, but no one is to be put to death on the testimony of only one witness.”
We are to only worship the Lord and He makes that very clear. God is worthy of our worship because all things have been created by Him. The sun, moon, stars, the whole universe, yet people still look at these objects and think they have power and continue to worship them… even the dead.
In this verse, God is saying if anyone has been caught transgressing any of His covenants like worshiping any heavenly host then it’s an abomination to God, and He says to kill them. Any heavenly host pretty much means worship of anything god other than the true God, then he feels it’s better for them to die. Now thankfully we don’t have to stone anyone today because Jesus died for us and we only need to repent and turn from the evil deed. But what we need to see is any time we turn to Saints or Mary or angels in prayer then we are indeed worshiping them and that is a serious behavior.
Isaiah 8:19-20~ “When someone tells you to consult mediums and spiritists, who whisper and mutter, should not a people inquire of their God? Why consult the dead on behalf of the living? Consult God’s instruction and the testimony of warning. If anyone does not speak according to this word, they have no light of dawn.”
Another idea people believe as to why Mary should be worshiped is, she is the mother of all people.
That’s not correct because the Bible doesn’t say that she is, plus if we look further back than Mary, we read the bible says Eve was the mother of all the living first. Genesis 3:20~“Adam named his wife Eve, because she would become the mother of all the living.”
In Luke 11:27 we read, “One time when Jesus was speaking, a woman in the crowd proclaimed, “Blessed is the womb that bore You and the breasts at which You nursed”. Now, this was a great time for Jesus to speak up and honor Mary as his mother and teach us how worthy she is of our worship and praise if we were to truly worship her. However, Jesus responds quite differently by saying, “Blessedrather are those who hear the Word of God and obey it.” Luke 11:28.
The lesson here was for us to see that Mary should not be focused on but instead for us to be obedient to God’s Word.
Also, when we look at Scriptures in how Jesus addressed Mary, we see he doesn’t refer to her as mother but instead, woman.
Mark 3:32-35~ “A crowd was sitting around him, and they told him, “Your mother and brothers are outside looking for you.” “Who are my mother and my brothers?” he asked. Then he looked at those seated in a circle around him and said, “Here are my mother and my brothers! Whoever does God’s will is my brother and sister and mother.”
Jesus is telling everyone that his mother wasn’t his concern at that moment as much as teaching them something about God. Jesus used that opportunity to show them that those that do the will of God are those that are His family.
John 2:3-5~ “When the wine was gone, Jesus’ mother said to him, “They have no more wine.” “Woman, why do you involve me?” Jesus replied. “My hour has not yet come.”
John19:26~ “When Jesus saw his mother there, and the disciple whom he loved standing nearby, he said to her, “Woman, here is your son,” and to the disciple, “Here is your mother.” From that time on, this disciple took her into his home.”
Now, Jesus wasn’t being disrespectful in calling her woman because ‘Got Questions’ explains that in the original language and culture of that time Jesus was using it as a different meaning such as how we would use the word, ma’am. Scriptures don’t explain this but we just need to understand that Jesus was more concerned in doing the will of His Father in Heaven just as in John 2:3-5 when Jesus tells Mary his time hasn’t come yet. Jesus was meaning that God hasn’t allowed it yet. Of course, we read that Jesus does turn the water into wine but He wouldn’t have if God didn’t allow it. Luke 2:47-49~“Everyone who heard him was amazed at his understanding and his answers. When his parents saw him, they were astonished. His mother said to him, “Son, why have you treated us like this? Your father and I have been anxiously searching for you” “Why were you searching for me?” he asked. “Didn’t you know I had to be in my Father’s house?”
I can speak about my parents that died and still honor them in my conversation by speaking good about them but when I start speaking to them like they can hear me or praying to them then I am worshiping them not honoring them. Does Jesus or anyone else in Scriptures ever instruct us to praise, glorify or worship Mary? In Luke 1:42-44, when Elizabeth, (Mary’s relative) praised Mary when Mary was pregnant, Elizabeth’s praise was because of the blessing Mary had of giving birth to the Messiah…and Mary was very much alive at the time.
We are told in Scriptures that God forbids us from talking, speaking, praying, worship, or communicating with the dead in any way. The story below tells us how seriously God takes it when anyone consults the dead.
1 Samuel 28:8~“So Saul disguised himself, putting on other clothes, and at night he and two men went to the woman. “Consult a spirit for me,” he said, “and bring up for me the one I name.”
1 Samuel 28:16~ “Samuel said, “Why do you consult me, now that the LORD has turned away from you and become your enemy?”
A King named Saul becomes fearful of the Philistines making war with him and because God doesn’t answer him, he decides to go to a medium to consult the dead for advice which he knows goes against God’s commands. The dead person King Saul consults is a dead friend of his. Although we know that no one (even Satan) can truly summon up Gods people from the dead, it’s obvious God allows Samuel to appear to King Saul to show His mighty power and to give Saul the message that he will die the following day because he has disobeyed Gods commands.
1 Samuel 28: 18-19~ “Because you did not obey the Lord or carry out his fierce wrath against the Amalekites, the Lord has done this to you today.19 The Lord will deliver both Israel and you into the hands of the Philistines, and tomorrow you and your sons will be with me. The Lord will also give the army of Israel into the hands of the Philistines.”
What do we know? We are told to Pray to God… only ask God for help, not a statue, not the dead, not the angels, not the sun or moon…approach God in prayer…present your requests to God…. when you pray; pray to your Father. There is only one mediator between God and men and that is Jesus…Timothy 2:5~“For there is one God, and one mediator between God and mankind, the man Christ Jesus.” (One intercessor)
Jesus says “You may ask Me for anything in My name, and I will do it,” Christ Jesus is at the right hand of God and Him and Him only intercedes for us.
1 John 5:14-15~”This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us. And if we know that he hears us – whatever we ask – we know that we have what we asked of him.”
Philippians 4:6-7~”Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”
Matthew 6:6~ “But when you pray, go into your room, close the door and pray to your Father, who is unseen. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you.”
John 14:13-14~“You can ask for anything in My name, and I will do it, so that the Son can bring glory to the Father. Yes, ask me for anything in my name, and I will do it.”
Romans 8:34~“Who then is the one who condemns? No one. Christ Jesus who died—more than that, who was raised to life—is at the right hand of God and is also interceding for us.”
Hebrews 7:25~“Therefore he is able to save completely those who come to God through him, because he always lives to intercede for them.”
Jeremiah10:2-16~“Thus says the Lord: “Learn not the way of the nations, nor be dismayed at the signs of the heavens because the nations are dismayed at them, for the customs of the peoples are vanity. A tree from the forest is cut down and worked with an axe by the hands of a craftsman. They decorate it with silver and gold; they fasten it with hammer and nails so that it cannot move. Their idols are like scarecrows in a cucumber field, and they cannot speak; they have to be carried, for they cannot walk. Do not be afraid of them, for they cannot do evil, neither is it in them to do good.” There is none like you, O Lord; you are great, and your name is great in might. Who would not fear you, O King of the nations? For this is your due; for among all the wise ones of the nations and in all their kingdoms there is none like you. They are both stupid and foolish; the instruction of idols is but wood! Beaten silver is brought from Tarshish, and gold from Uphaz. They are the work of the craftsman and of the hands of the goldsmith; their clothing is violet and purple; they are all the work of skilled men. But the Lord is the true God; he is the living God and the everlasting King. At his wrath the earthquakes, and the nations cannot endure his indignation. Thus shall you say to them: “The gods who did not make the heavens and the earth shall perish from the earth and from under the heavens.” It is he who made the earth by his power, who established the world by his wisdom, and by his understanding stretched out the heavens. When he utters his voice, there is a tumult of waters in the heavens, and he makes the mist rise from the ends of the earth. He makes lightning for the rain, and he brings forth the wind from his storehouses. Every man is stupid and without knowledge; every goldsmith is put to shame by his idols, for his images are false, and there is no breath in them. They are worthless, a work of delusion; at the time of their punishment, they shall perish. Not like these is he who is the portion of Jacob, for he is the one who formed all things, and Israel is the tribe of his inheritance; the Lord of hosts is his name.”
Brothers and sisters, please let this be a reminder of how seriously God takes the worship of other gods and consulting the dead. No one has the power the Lord does and no one deserves the glory our Lord God does. Warn others of this because even after thousands of years we still see this practiced today. How is it we can’t understand statues are not alive, the dead have no powers and neither one should take the place of our Almighty Father and Creator?
Above is an article written by Tami Dykes, Gina and Tami write Through the Narrow here at Tulips & Honey Hub. They’ll be posting articles every other Tuesday. Both are published authors, you can find Tami’s book here, and Gina’s book here. We’re blessed to have them apart of our team, and pray their writing will be as edifying to you as it is to us. – Lauren Hereford
These false teachers zone in on people in their hometowns and spread their unbiblical beliefs where they can such as women shelters, homeless shelters, jails, and one of the popular places they like to target is the colleges. They invite students to their churches or even to Bible studies on the campuses.
Are They in Your Hometown?
Everyone knows there are well known false teachers everywhere such as Beth Moore, Priscilla Shirer, Christine Caine, Joel Osteen, Bill Johnson, Steven Furtick, etc. but we also need to be aware that there are small-time false teachers locally in our own hometowns.
It’s those preachers and teachers that teach the same kinds of stuff that we have heard from the well-known Bible teachers about prosperity, name it-claim it, mysticism, revelations outside Scriptures, on and on but live in the same town we do.
These false teachers zone in on people in their hometowns and spread their unbiblical beliefs where they can such as women shelters, homeless shelters, jails, and one of the popular places they like to target is the colleges. They invite students to their churches or even to Bible studies on the campuses. Many college students are from out of town and they leave their homes where they had friends and family to rely on for spiritual guidance and so they are looking to reconnect with new Christian friends, looking for a place to worship, and maybe find a church to go to. Some don’t know enough of how some preachers or teachers can deceive them and probably were never taught to test them by comparing what they are being told to God’s Word. Some never went to church and don’t know God at all. So, please, if you have a kid going to college, warn them. Have them do some research on wherever they go to church or for a bible study. They need to be discerning and not to just blindly start attending any Bible group without researching them first.
Just because a group calls themselves Christian doesn’t mean they are. Just because a place of worship calls themselves a church doesn’t mean they are a Biblical church. It’s important people do their homework! We need to be aware of all the unbiblical churches and ministries around our towns because they will work just as hard as any to convert your kid and as many as they can. I’ve seen many times local ministries or churches push the community to attend unbiblical events that many people in different denominations go to.
These groups will not reveal themselves right off the bat. They normally start off with an introduction on enrollment day handing out pamphlets and drawing students by inviting them to cookouts on campus. Student get to know each other at the cookout and begin to become friends which draw them even more because they like who they are meeting, and they have fun. After a few visits through the weeks, everything seemed good and students are enjoying meeting new people and learning about God and they feel comfortable there.
It’s not long till they slowly introduce their teaching to the students by approaching one at a time, telling the student that God just spoke to them and they have a message for them. In some cases, it might be that God told the leader the student isn’t saved, or they don’t have faith in Jesus or that God told them their childhood was bad.
I had learned that the ministry in our hometown told a young student that they needed to take the next step in becoming “no longer a sinner”. This leader told the student they could get to a place where they would no longer be a sinner ‘if’ they would live in faith with the Holy Spirit.
Wow, there is so much wrong with this statement. To start with….None of those students could test what that leader said about hearing a message from God because it’s in their own mind. So those leaders were aware the students didn’t know much of what was Biblical or not. Tagging God’s name on such a message is wrong because God tells us we learn from His Word not from what other people think, feel, or hear in their own head. They are false teachers claiming things about a young student that isn’t true, God didn’t tell them that.
My thought is this: If they believe, “when you are saved and have the Holy Spirit, you are no longer a sinner” then why would the Scriptures teach us we still struggle with sin even though we are saved? Such as these Bible verses.
1 John 1:7-10~ “But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus, his Son, purifies us from all sin. If we claim to be without sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness. If we claim we have not sinned, we make him out to be a liar and his word is not in us”.
Jesus tells Peter in Matthew 26:41~”Watch and pray that you may not enter into temptation. The spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak.”
Paul says in Romans 7:15-24~”I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate I do. And if I do what I do not want to do, I agree that the law is good. As it is, it is no longer I myself who do it, but it is sin living in me. For I know that good itself does not dwell in me, that is, in my sinful nature. For I have the desire to do what is good, but I cannot carry it out. For I do not do the good I want to do, but the evil I do not want to do—this I keep on doing. Now if I do what I do not want to do, it is no longer I who do it, but it is sin living in me that does it. So I find this law at work: Although I want to do good, evil is right there with me. For in my inner being I delight in God’s law; but I see another law at work in me, waging war against the law of my mind and making me a prisoner of the law of sin at work within me. What a wretched man I am! Who will rescue me from this body that is subject to death?”
If those leaders claim to prophesy a Word from God, and hear personal messages from God, then they better be sure it was from God. Scriptures warn people about this type of practice. God does not speak audibly anymore because the cannon is closed (Hebrew 1:1-2). To tell people that God speaks to us today is adding to His Word (Proverbs30:5-6, Deuteronomy 4:2, 12:32). If people claim they hear a Word from God, then it’s to be treated Holy and that means the Bible isn’t closed and it also means that these new revelations are not written in the Bible because they were just spoken which means the Bible isn’t authoritative because they can’t be proven. However, a ministry like this has proven they are false because the teacher had tagged God to her own words and said, “God told me that you had a bad childhood”, do you believe God really said that? God didn’t say that in His Word to that student, they gave an untrue revelation that discredits them as Bible teachers.
Justin Peters says: “God cannot speak less authoritatively on one occasion than He does on another. Friends, if God is speaking, God is speaking, and whatever He says carries the exact same authority as does John 3:16 or Romans 10:9 and 10.” So, when others claim, “God said”, it should be added to the Bible.
Again, let me give you a word of warning, we also need to remember God tells us NOT to take anything away from Scripture or add anything to Scriptures because it has harsh consequences. (Deuteronomy 4:2; Revelation 22:18–19)
When people claim new special revelations today, they are adding to God’s Words. Deuteronomy 18:20~But the prophet who presumes to speak a word in my name that I have not commanded him to speak, or who speaks in the name of other gods, that same prophet shall die.’
This ministry also teaches our local students that if you are saved, you can still lose your salvation. So, let’s think about this.
If one can lose salvation, then WHY do they also teach you can become “no longer a sinner”??? How does that work? If you’re no longer a sinner then you are perfect, correct? So how can you have any chance of losing your salvation if you are perfect? The two cannot exist together because they contradict each other in every way. Scriptures say that salvation is God’s work, not ours.
It says in John 10:28-29~ “I give them eternal life, and they will never perish, and no one will snatch them out of my hand. My Father, who has given them to me, is greater than all, and no one is able to snatch them out of the Father’s hand.”
Titus 3:5~ “He saved us, not because of righteous things we had done, but because of his mercy. He saved us through the washing of rebirth and renewal by the Holy Spirit”.
There is nothing we can do that’s good enough to get us to heaven and there is nothing we can do that can undo God’s salvation. If salvation is given to us as a free gift by faith in Christ which makes us a new creation, it’s sealed salvation. The old has gone, the new has come. If we were bought at a price with the blood of Christ how can we then lose the new creation?
“For a Christian to lose salvation, God Himself would have to revoke His purchase of the individual for whom He paid with the precious blood of Christ.” (Taken from gotquestions.org)
To lose salvation, the person that is a new creation would have to be turned back into the old self somehow. However, God told us at salvation the new has come and the “old is gone”. So, how would we be able to return to what God has said is gone? To lose salvation, the new creation would have to be destroyed
Basically what they believe is when we lose our salvation the new us, that was “born” as a new creation, bought by God with the blood of Christ is….revoked by God and you become unborn? Or undone? Or destroyed? Or something like that. Then apparently we return to the old self that God tells us is gone or passed away. See the confusion?
Christians I hope you know that this isn’t true. We can’t return to the old self because the old self died instantly in our salvation as said in the following verse.
Colossians 3:2-3~“Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things. For you died, and your life is now hidden with Christ in God”.
It’s important to also know that some Bible study teachers aren’t truly saved either. They can talk the talk and sound like they make great points at times, but God knows the truth. God even tells us that we can know when He says, “You will know them by their fruits” (Matthew 7:16). In other words, you’ll see they aren’t truly Christians by their lifestyle, how they talk, what they do, what they teach, etc. They never became that new creation.
If we just look at how they approach the students they think are lost, they didn’t even share the gospel with them. All they do was tell them
*they are not saved.
*If they believed, they would no longer be a sinner.
*They would pray for God to come into their life.
So, how is any of that helpful to those students if any of them were truly lost???? Where’s the gospel? If a person is lost and doesn’t know Christ, did they even help them know who Christ was or why they need Him? All they did was say, “Let’s pray for God to come into your life” but would an unbeliever even understand that? Is that how God saves people? Is that the gospel? We are told in Scriptures to preach the gospel…Mark 16:15~ And he said to them, “Go into all the world and proclaim the gospel to the whole creation.
The unsaved person first needs to recognize they are a sinner not told they can get to where they are no longer a sinner. The unsaved person needs to know why they are a sinner. Maybe they don’t think they are a bad person. We have to tell them that no matter how great we think we are, we all sin and need Jesus. They need to see they are hopelessly lost without Christ. Why do they need Christ? Well, because they need forgiveness for their sins. Romans 3:23 tells us, “For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.” The reality of a person’s sin needs to be acknowledged in order for them to realize they need to repent. Why do they need to repent and turn to Jesus? Because their sins have made a separation between them and God and they need to understand the consequence of their sin. They need to see that that consequence is death. (Romans 6:23). They need to understand the only way we get saved from Hell is through Jesus. They need to know that Jesus died for our sins otherwise we’d go to Hell because we can’t pay for our own sins. We aren’t perfect enough. Without this understanding of truth, it doesn’t make sense to just pray for God to come into their life. How would that save them? Sin against a perfect God requires a perfect sacrifice. Jesus was that perfect sacrifice and the only one that could pay for our sins and remove the sting of death. It cost Jesus His life to save us, but Jesus offers His salvation to us as a free gift (Romans 5:15; 6:23), (Ephesians 2:8–9). Does an unbeliever know it’s a free gift or do they think they have to work for it???
(From: ‘Grace to You’)
“Once people see Scripture as less than the final, complete, infallible authority for faith and practice, it has opened the doors to theological chaos. Anyone can claim to be speaking God’s revelation—and almost anything can be passed off as divinely revealed truth. And make no mistake; some of the best-known charismatic leaders have abused their people’s trust by claiming they are receiving new truth from God when what they are really teaching are lies and fabrications.”
I just want to warn people with kids that just because your kid is a college student doesn’t mean they are smart enough to see through that stuff. As a parent, I did my own homework on our local ministries I found so many things that disturbed me. I ended up in an online conversation with two ladies in the ministry.
This same ministry believes in being “slain in the spirit“. Now, if you don’t know what that is then you’re blessed, but I’ll explain just so you know how unbiblical it is.
When a person is slain in the spirit what you will see is a person will collapse to the floor, ‘supposedly’ overcome by the power of the Holy Spirit.
If you study your Bible you will learn that being slain in the spirit is not biblical at all in any way. They say it’s the Holy Spirit, but it truly isn’t! Don’t believe it! The Holy Spirit lives within us at the point of true salvation and repentance of sin. The Holy Spirit glorifies the Lord Jesus Christ, it doesn’t throw people to the ground making them unaware of what is going on around them or making them behave like they are ‘OUT OF CONTROL’ to the point of shaking or mumbling on the ground. (Galatians 5:22-23).
When we submit to the Bible as sufficient and as the final revelation of God’s Word, then there is no need for being “slain in the spirit”. If you are a discerning Christian, then you wouldn’t want anything to do with “being slain in the spirit”. No thanks! The whole scene of a person falling down on the ground, becoming stiff as a board, and some foam at the mouth or even shaking as if they are a fish flopping around is quite scary. Some people don’t speak and some just babble but most start doing very odd things.
Now, I’m NOT saying that what a person experiences when they are supposedly “slain in the Spirit” is fake. I’ve heard how some people claim they feel energy or a feeling of some kind that overcomes them and cause them to fall back and do these very odd things. However, what I am saying, is it’s something else and not of God. I don’t believe it’s the result of the Holy Spirit. They probably are feeling something of some kind of force rushing through them but from reading the Scriptures it sounds more demonic to me. Such as when I read this verse :
Mark 9:17-18~ A man in the crowd answered, “Teacher, I brought you my son, who is possessed by a spirit that has robbed him of speech. Whenever it seizes him, it throws him to the ground. He foams at the mouth, gnashes his teeth and becomes rigid.
And this one as well: Galatians 5:22–23~ “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law.” Did you catch that?????? Self-control!!
If ‘self-control’ is a fruit of the Spirit of God, how can uncontrollable falling down or uncontrollable shaking or uncontrollable passing out also be a fruit of His Spirit? I think they should explain to those students what it is because some have never seen it before and that can be a little disturbing, to say the least, to see someone do that.
This ministry also practices what they believe to be “speaking in tongues” for today.
The purpose of tongues throughout the early church was indeed biblical and given as one of the gifts from God. However, true biblical tongues require each and every time an interpreter. The interpreter translates to everyone listening to what is being said. If someone is just speaking gibberish with no interpreter, then they are not truly speaking in tongues and defiantly not being biblically correct.
Speaking in tongues also is a real language that is spoken somewhere in the world. Speaking in tongues means you speak a different language that you have never spoken before such as Arabic, Japanese, Russian, Navajo. It’s for the benefit of a person that doesn’t know your language and needs to know the Gospel. They can preach the Gospel to them or give a message from God through tongues (through the lost person’s own language). So, if someone is speaking anything that is not intelligible it’s not true tongues and is not biblical.
1 Corinthians 14:9,16,17,19,22~ 9″So it is with you. Unless you speak intelligible words with your tongue, how will anyone know what you are saying? You will just be speaking into the air.”
16 “Otherwise when you are praising God in the Spirit, how can someone else, who is now put in the position of an inquirer, say “Amen” to your thanksgiving, since they do not know what you are saying? 17 You are giving thanks well enough, but no one else is edified”.
19 “But in the church I would rather speak five intelligible words to instruct others than ten thousand words in a tongue“.
22 “Tongues, then, are a sign, not for believers but for unbelievers”.
So it’s probably safe to say, no one needs to speak in tongues in the church of believers. If a church or ministries have people speaking in tongues and everyone speaks the same language then it’s unbiblical.
They have personally told me that God is NOT in control and they publicly teach this belief. They continued to tell me, “God wants to be in control but needs our permission first.”
I was shocked they said that. Wow, if God’s not in control then I’M AFRAID and you should be too!! Because that means He is not sovereign. That comment makes God look very weak cuz if He WANTS to be in control but can’t…….UNLESS we let Him then he’s not God. Their words teach that because Gods not in control, we are. We are more powerful than Him because God can’t overpower our wants. So, does this mean God doesn’t have the ultimate authority? Where is His authority? Where is His power? That’s not the God of the Bible that I know, it’s a whole different god and it’s not my god. Here are just a few verses that say otherwise.
Proverbs 19:21~Many are the plans in the mind of a man, but it is the purpose of the Lord that will stand.
Proverbs 16:9 ~The heart of man plans his way, but the Lord establishes his steps.
Jeremiah 29:11~For I knowthe plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope.
Psalm 115:3~Our God is in the heavens; he does all that he pleases.
This ministry is not biblical and it’s just wrong and gives empty harmful beliefs. Ministries talk to college students, addicts, people in jail, the homeless shelters, and women shelters but they are not leading them to God’s Word correctly but instead leading them astray with all this foolishness. If a lost person doesn’t understand salvation then they are only saying empty words that hold no water, it doesn’t mean anything.
We are told in Scriptures to warn people about false teachers. Mark them and expose them. Ephesians 5:11~ ”Take no part in the unfruitful works of darkness, but instead expose them.”Romans 16:17-18–Paul said, “I beseech you, brethren, mark them who cause divisions and offenses contrary to the doctrine which ye have learned; and avoid them. For they that are such serve not our Lord Jesus Christ but their own body, and by good words and fair speeches deceive the hearts of the innocent.”
These Ministries are dangerous because they claim to be from God and to speak for God.
2 Corinthians 11:13-15~ ”For such men are false apostles, deceitful workmen, disguising themselves as apostles of Christ.”
I pray for those lost and want desperately to know the truth of God’s Word.
Above is an article written by Tami Dykes, Gina and Tami write Through the Narrow here at Tulips & Honey Hub. They’ll be posting articles every other Tuesday. Both are published authors, you can find Tami’s book here, and Gina’s book here. We’re blessed to have them apart of our team, and pray their writing will be as edifying to you as it is to us. – Lauren Hereford
People honor Me with their lips, but their heart is far from Me
What do Mark Batterson, Nancy DeMoss, and Priscilla Shirer have in common?
They have all taught people to draw circles, stand inside and pray for something. Now, I’m not going to rehash all the articles about circle making because I believe the word has gotten out about how very unbiblical Circle Making is, so your welcome. The fad wore off soon after true biblical brothers and sisters started addressing the subject.
Just to quickly recap for those that may not have ever heard of Circle Making, it’s the practice of many Christians by making a circle on the ground by drawing it in the dirt or using tape or whatever and then stand inside the circle and ask God for something.
I mentioned above 3 people that have held teaching on Circle Making and I would like to point out how they teach it and why.
Now, to start off with I want to explain how Mark Batterson was the first in modern days to write about Circle Making.
I’ll quote from this article titled, “The Origins and Evolution of Prayer Circles”,
“In his book, Batterson states that it was Gipsy Smith who inspired him to write the book, which is a retelling of the story of Honi the Circle Maker, a Jewish miracle worker. According to the legend, a group of Jews came to Honi and asked him to pray to God to make it rain and end the drought they were experiencing. Honi prayed, but the rain did not come. So Honi drew a circle on the ground and stood within it and prayed again. This time a very light rain started. Honi was not satisfied so he prayed again to God, saying, “This is not that rain that I prayed for! I prayed for rain that will fill the cisterns!” Then it began to rain very, very hard. Again, Honi stood in his circle and prayed to God, saying, “I did not pray for such a hard rain, but a good rain!” and then it began to rain moderately. One of the Israelites then said to Honi, “You entreat God, and He performs your will!”
“Batterson has taken the pagan ritual of Gipsy Smith, and the legend of Honi the Circle Maker, and thrown in a dash of prosperity gospel to create his various “Circle Maker” books which have sold well throughout the Church, influencing hundreds of churches and Christians. One of the more influential followers of Batterson’s false “Circle Maker” teaching is Anne Graham Lotz, the daughter of evangelist Billy Graham. Lotz is so enamored with Batterson’s teaching that she has threatened to shut down at least one website that called for her to repent of it.”
So, you’ll see how the newest fad of modern times of Circle Making came from Batterson’s book.
I have to say though the section where the man named Honi seems to push his own weight around with God is a bit cringe. He speaks to God as if he himself is God’s Boss. For example, the first time Honi prayed and it rained he sounds a bit annoyed that God got it wrong. It says in the write-up that he prayed again to God, saying, “This is not that rain that I prayed for! I prayed for rain that will fill the cisterns!”.
I just feel as if this is a correction to God as if Honi is saying God messed up. So, the second time Honi prays again… “Then it began to rain very, very hard. Again, Honi stood in his circle and prayed to God, saying, “I did not pray for such a hard rain, but a good rain!” and then it began to rain moderately.” This appears to really frustrate Honi and he again corrects God. I find this very disrespectful for Honi to talk to the Lord in such away. Honi is not calling the shots, God is, so who is he to address a Holy and Righteous God the Creator of all the living in such a way that makes him look like a spoiled child.
Why would Batterson not see how disturbing this guy’s attitude towards God is?
So shortly after Mark Batterson’s book, you can see how others start practicing circle making and bringing it into their life.
Mark says you can draw a circle with chalk 3 times, stands inside, and prays for any situation you are facing. In his book review, it asks “what impossibly big dream is God calling you to draw a prayer circle around?”
Answer: Nothing! God does not call us to draw circles around any dream or situation we have.
Take note that there are two different men involved in the making of this very old story that Mark talks about, Honi and Gipsy Smith. Honi is the man that was asked to pray for rain and then Gipsy Smith the man that follows in Honi’s footsteps teach it as a place to pray for revival.
Next we have Nancy DeMoss, she’s a woman that picked up Circle Making after it became popular and introduced it into her women conferences. Nancy DeMoss tells the same story on the very first night of her conference about the man named Gypsi Smith that made a circle and stood inside it and prayed.
An article titled, “Nancy Leigh DeMoss Endorsing Chalk Circles? Mercy” quotes this: “Nancy Leigh DeMoss also spoke at a True Woman Conference in September 2012, and according to an article on the True Woman website, chalk circles were drawn throughout the conference room, and participants of the conference were encouraged to utilize these circles for prayer. And as a clever little marketing tie-in, the participants were sent home after the conference with little goody bags containing, that’s right, chalk, so that they could all go home and perform their own pagan rituals, umm, prayer circles.”
Quotes from it say, “Nancy (conf): And to step inside that circle and say, “Lord, would You send revival to my family? Would You send revival to my church? Would You send an awakening to our nation, to our world? We desperately need it. But oh, Lord, would You start the revival inside this circle? Let it begin in me.
Janet: So let me tell you what happened for me as a speaker when I stepped into that circle. I was under very strong conviction. David said, “My sins are ever before me.” That’s what I felt when I was in that circle. I thought, “Lord, I’m not here to teach these women. I’m here to seek Your face.”
Janet (conf): The point here is Jesus. He’s defying convention. He’s moving deeper into the life of a woman who had some pretty dark secrets, and she’s more thirsty than she can even imagine or knows herself. So Jesus responds. And He says, “Everyone who drinks this water [referring to the well] will be thirsty again. But whoever drinks from the water I give him will never thirst. Indeed the water I give him will become in him a spring of water welling up to eternal life.” What a message! What a Teacher!
Janet: And standing in this circle I am very aware of my own sins. And what I want more than anything is to walk away from this experience saying, “Lord, I’ve had a wash, rinse, and spin cycle. My sins have been blotted out. I have a fresh start and a new beginning, and I want to seek Him as Nancy was teaching us. Not once every five years but moment by moment every single day. That’s the only way I can keep my ledger short. That’s the only way I can constantly say “Lord, if there’s going to be revival, I want it so desperately to begin with me. Revive my heart. Change me, Lord. Let me be aware of what You’ve done in my life.”
They are saying being inside the circle “you will feel something“, “you are in the circle to seek God“, “you are asking God to revive you and change you in the circle“.
Now, none of that sounds bad but what I want to ask everyone is, do we seek God in a circle on the ground or do we seek God in His Word? Are we supposed to be led by our feelings and how we “feel” in the circle or by the Truth of God’s Word? Do we change our hearts by standing inside a circle and asking God to revive or change us or do we change our hearts by reading God’s Word?
It seems to me, that the focus is on circle making not praying and asking God for something.
I truly believe the focus solely needs to be on God and His Word. We can pray for revival but don’t make it a ritual or action to get something.
The next teacher I mentioned was Priscilla Shirer (You can see her in the picture with Nancy DeMoss) and, in the video of Priscilla, she tells her audience she got the teaching from Nancy DeMoss. Priscilla tells the same exact story as Nancy did but Nancy gives the name of the man ‘Gipsy Smith’ and Priscilla doesn’t. She just says he’s a preacher yet Mark tells the story from Honi. So, what I’m trying to say is we see all of them teach circle making just a bit different to their audience but all of them still point to the circles as the focus in order to bring God’s blessing.
The only other place I’ve seen “Circle Making” was in witchcraft.
Witches practiced these rituals for protection or whatever they needed at the time but instead of calling it “Circle Making”, they call it the “Circle of Protection” or “Magic Circle”. In an article on circles, they explain a little of how witches do this practice. The link below says, “One of the most basic devices used in ancient pagan spirituality is the “circle of protection.” You find it everywhere from the Eastern mystery religions to modern witchcraft. The circle of protection was commonly used in old Gypsy magic, as it was thought to create an impenetrable barrier of protection around those in which it was created. This “magic” circle, spiritual in nature, could be something physical, such as lines drawn in the dirt or sand, or even a sprinkling of salt. But they could also be imaginary.”
Just like what Mark, Nancy, and Priscilla teach, we can see that witches also require making a circle on the ground, getting inside it, and doing something to get something like protection.
You should know Circle Making does NOT come from the Scriptures. You can look but you will not find God teaching it anywhere in the Scriptures.
As I researched this subject one of the many articles, I read that I felt makes excellent points was Tim Challies’ article called, “Don’t Pray in Circles “. Simply put he discuss circle making as… Extra-Biblical, Un-Biblical, and Anti-Biblical.
Oddly enough at the very end of his article, he does make a point to tell his readers that he is only talking about Mark Batterson and not Nancy DeMoss. I found that to be very odd. You can read the article in this link below.
Now, because Priscilla learned it from Nancy then people believe Priscilla shouldn’t be lumped in with the review that Challies said about Mark either.
So, I wonder if Priscilla even has a problem with Mark’s teaching of it. I am very troubled by the fact that Tim Challies felt he should make that statement.
Am I the only one that thinks what they all teach is the same? Believing that circles make a difference in your prayer life to receive answered prayers. Mark believes it makes the impossible happen in your life, Nancy believes it gets us revivals and awakenings to the World and Janet says she felt something when she stepped inside of it and it changes you. Priscilla talks of what God wants to do through us and to pray in the circle for a revival of our hearts of the things of God.
But doesn’t this sound like they are practicing man-made traditions? They are all following the lead of a man long ago. God says in Mark 7: 1-13~” Now when the Pharisees gathered to him, with some of the scribes who had come from Jerusalem, they saw that some of his disciples ate with hands that were defiled, that is, unwashed. (For the Pharisees and all the Jews do not eat unless they wash their hands properly, holding to the tradition of the elders, and when they come from the marketplace, they do not eat unless they wash. And there are many other traditions that they observe, such as the washing of cups and pots and copper vessels and dining couches.) And the Pharisees and the scribes asked him, “Why do your disciples not walk according to the tradition of the elders, but eat with defiled hands?” And he said to them, “Well did Isaiah prophesy of you hypocrites, as it is written, “‘This people honors me with their lips, but their heart is far from me; in vain do they worship me, teaching as doctrines the commandments of men.’ You leave the commandment of God and hold to the tradition of men.” And he said to them, “You have a fine way of rejecting the commandment of God in order to establish your tradition! For Moses said, ‘Honor your father and your mother’; and, ‘Whoever reviles father or mother must surely die.’ But you say, ‘If a man tells his father or his mother, “Whatever you would have gained from me is Corban”’ (that is, given to God) then you no longer permit him to do anything for his father or mother, thus making void the word of God by your tradition that you have handed down. And many such things you do.”
This is a great example that God shows us about how man loves to have traditions of things passed down form long ago. Even just washing hands or pots is seen as man-made traditions that God doesn’t care for or call all us to practice. God says people honor Him with their lips, but their heart is far from Him. That should cause great concern in the things we practice even something as simple as circle making or hand washing.
Priscilla has even written a reply to her fans about the photos they have sent to her showing her the circles they made. Many have used very different things to make the circles. In the link below it shows pictures of women inside circles made of socks, chalk, balls, and even kids (the circle was made from the kids laying down, head to toe with other kids while the mom stood inside to pray). Now that seems to be someone that is very sold on the idea otherwise, she’s making light of the practice that Priscilla has taken seriously or she wouldn’t have taught it.
Now, I wouldn’t say that making a circle is wrong or standing in a circle is a bad thing or even washing hands or a pot are taboo. It’s when they put a lot of focus on them and connect it to God. They are causing people to feel there is an importance to this action.
Many people miss the danger of this practice because they make it sound so good and biblical. People have said things like, “the circle is a reminder to youto ask God to start by helping you”, sound good, doesn’t it? What about this, “the circle helps people to start by looking at their own lives“, yeah this sounds good too. The circle teaches a good biblical principle on how to pray”, or “The circle thing is only a way of drawing attention to revivals“. How do any of those sound bad? They don’t but when you stop to truly think about what it is, they are teaching you and what they are asking you to do it should cause you to worry, especially when it’s not in Scriptures.
What I would like to point out is how easy it is to be deceived by false teachers that use slick words or actions to get you to believe in and participate stuff like Circle Making. How have others gotten caught up in it? Well, from their carefully spoken words. In Priscilla’s reply to her followers, she tells them that, “you have made it priority to create a circle in which to stand and pray”.
“Your circle – no matter what it looks like, how long it has stayed intact or who has gotten into it with you – matters!”
She so subtly speaks to the women that because they make the circles priority and telling the women the circles matter it makes them feel special. Mark, Nancy and Priscilla all know how to convince people to believe in this just by how they talk. They say things that are exciting like do this or that and wonderful things will happen, God is going to do great things through you. This is why they all tell the story about the man that prayed on the outskirts of town and got what he prayed for so why not you?
If you find yourself in a conference like that then just ask questions about the things they are saying. Do you think circles make a difference in your prayers? Do you believe they matter? Do they make God realize how serious you are? Do we need reminders like that? Are they reminders or just acts of works? If I do this then God will answer kind of belief. After all, isn’t that what Honi did as he prayed for rain?
I just have to say, NO! We shouldn’t be making circles, or squares, or ovals priority at all. Priscilla Shirer is wrong; God needs to be priority in our lives, not Circle Making. And NO, Priscilla, Circle Making doesn’t matter. What matters is our salvation, the condition of our hearts, and our desire for the Lord and for His Word and Truth, not circles.
All any of those teachers taught their audience is how to either pray for rain, a dream, a revival, and that it is a priority and that it matters. Where’s the Word of God? Did God teach us to pray this way? How does Circle Making bring us closer to God, or even help us know the Gospel or convict us to repent of our sins? You see, false teachers know how to “talk the talk” because they know how to speak as a seasoned scholar and knows all the right words to use. They can quote scriptures better than most people you know but we need to realize just because a person can quote scriptures doesn’t mean they are biblical because Satan knows the Bible better than anyone on earth and he’s working on us just like he did with Jesus. Satan used scriptures to try and tempt Jesus and he will do it to tempt and deceive us too. This is why we must test, test, test!
1 Thessalonians 5:21 ESV~ But test everything; hold fast what is good.
So we see how Mark, Nancy, and Priscilla say to pray but how does God tell us to pray?
The Bible says in Luke 5:16 that Jesus often went away to be by Himself and pray. Matthew 6:5-6 says ~“When you pray, go into your room. Close the door and pray to your Father, who can’t be seen. He will reward you. Your Father sees what is done secretly.” Matthew 6:9-13~ “This, then, is how you should pray: “‘Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name, your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us today our daily bread. And forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one.”’
Growing up I always heard the saying “Don’t mix religion and politics”. I never understood that much till I became older but even as a grown adult I notice how people tend to avoid mixing the two. In school, we could learn all about politics but not so much religion but I found it most interesting that many people that are religious will not speak very freely of their views on politics. You might hear a Christian speak about it a little if they felt it wasn’t a hot topic or maybe only to a few people they trusted but to me it’s been so obvious that even I kept tight-lipped about my views for many years until I questioned why I felt this way. Why did I feel I wasn’t supposed to be open about my political views? What’s so wrong with talking about them? Is it because it’s not proper for a woman to do so or was it because I’m a Christian and it’s never proper for any Christian to talk about politics? I still don’t understand why I feel its taboo to speak of politics as a Christian but I started voicing my opinion anyway. As I spoke out on why I believed something to be bad or good for our country, I learned quickly that many are either not willing to talk about it or they are and they go at it very aggressively. There are only a few people that will engage in a conversation with me whether they agree or disagree. I prefer to keep respectful of each other and talk nicely even when we don’t agree but maybe that’s why so many are tight-lipped. Some just get too angry and can’t be respectful allowing people to have different opinions. As a Christian, we cannot forget Col 4:6~ “Let your speech always be gracious, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how you ought to answer each person.” Getting in discussions is not a bad thing; it’s when we get in heated arguments that might lead to hurt feelings. Just keep in mind that it shouldn’t be about our voice but about God’s truth, not about our opinions in government politics but what God says about His laws and teachings on those subjects. My truth is not important but His truth is and that needs to be what guides us Christians and keeps us speaking in love. There isn’t any reason that can’t happen. If no one is convincing the other then it shouldn’t matter in the end. Speak in love and move on.
I have also had discussions with people who claim to be Christian who holds to very unchristian lifestyles or beliefs. This causes great concern for me about them and drives my desire to hopefully point them back to Christ. I’ve read articles where a person will say they are a Christian but they don’t believe God cares if they cuss because it’s just words or that they feel they can be Christian and support abortion – stuff like that.
My goal of this article is not to tell Christians who to vote for or to get into a heated debate with them but simply to point the Christians back to Christ when trying to face all the worldly emotions and trials of today and remind them what’s right in God’s eyes.
First, let me warn you as a Christian you will be persecuted for your love of Christ and your beliefs. I’ve heard many people say, who weren’t Christian, how they lost friends just because they support something a friend of theirs didn’t and so it destroyed their friendship. If today’s policies are a dividing line that even non-Christians are being bullied on or losing friends over then we as Christians will be judged on that and more because we love Christ. So, brace yourself and chose today who you will serve God or man?! You will lose friends, friends you’ve been close to for years but they are showing their true colors if they make you choose between God or the world. I’ve been told because of my preferred choices with policies that I’m hateful and not Christian because I don’t support something they do. They see something as loving and good to support when I discern it as sounding loving only on the outside or in name only but underneath all the fuzzy feelings is a disguised agenda of something very wrong and dark. As you look into them, we can find the truth of what some groups are about.
What is a Christian to do and what’s our role in voting? Well, we all need to vote but you need to do your research on the policies and on the candidates. Look into them and see what they push for and if it’s proper for a true Christian to support and vote in favor of.
Let’s start with the purpose of government? Did God ordain government? Yes, He did!
Romans 13:1–2~ “Let every person be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and those that exist have been instituted by God. Therefore whoever resists the authorities resists what God has appointed, and those who resist will incur judgment.”
1 Peter 2:13–14~ “Be subject for the Lord’s sake to every human institution, whether it be to the emperor as supreme, or to governors as sent by him to punish those who do evil and to praise those who do good.”
So what does this mean for a Christian? It means recognizing Biblical rolls in politics for God-ordained governing authority, instituted by God to stand up for the innocent and persecuted.
God created those authorities to rule over us and as Christian, we are to obey them. In a perfect world, we would have a government that would rule over us yet be fair to all but even if they aren’t fair, we are still called to obey them. The only reason not to obey would be if the government wanted us to go against our Christian beliefs and if the government made it law to practice something that goes directly against God. An example that comes to mind is the story of “Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego”. Because they refused to bow down and serve and worship the golden image of a god the King had made, King Nebuchadnezzar sentenced the three to death in the furnace. We are to be obedient to the governing authority and yet can refuse when they command Christians to do things that make us go against our faith and love for Christ.
So, what is God’s purpose in politics? Plainly put, to accomplish His perfect will for the world. God can work through all governing bodies whether good or bad to do what He wants in government. Knowing this we still should not rely on the government for our happiness but to rely on God and His Word. We can not kid ourselves and think politics are as equally important as Christian values. Politics isn’t how Christians change hearts but only through God’s precious Word do we reach the lost. However, God has and does use those in the government to reach others through His words for His purpose such as in the Book of Daniel when God allowed Daniel to interpret the kings’ dream.
Daniel 2:48-49~ “Then the king gave Daniel high honors and many great gifts, and made him ruler over the whole province of Babylon and chief prefect over all the wise men of Babylon. Daniel made a request of the king, and he appointed Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego over the affairs of the province of Babylon. But Daniel remained at the king’s court.”
Daniel always knew it was God that ruled and was never afraid to say so.
Daniel 2:21~“He changes times and seasons; he removes kings and sets up kings; he gives wisdom to the wise and knowledge to those who have understanding;”
Is it ok for Christians to voice their belief on certain elect leaders who best demonstrate good moral principles? Yes!
Voicing our beliefs is good when pointing out the strong points of a candidate. Some Christians think because God is in control of the government we don’t need to vote. No, that doesn’t mean we don’t vote. As Christians, we have a responsibility to exercise our right to vote and to do what we can to bring into power perhaps the most moral person who adheres to more of the biblical principles. We should vote for those policies and leaders that reflect good values. If they are not ashamed to pray and speak about God then this is something to keep in mind. We also need to be praying for them to be God-fearing leaders.
1 Timothy 2:1–4~ ”First of all, then, I urge that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings be made for all people, for kings and all who are in high positions, that we may lead a peaceful and quiet life, godly and dignified in every way. This is good, and it is pleasing in the sight of God our Savior, who desires all people to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth.”
The world has been influenced by sin and suffering and when we don’t stand up for the things that are Biblical then we will suffer. If we don’t stand against bad leaders then we will suffer as said in these following verses.
Proverbs 14:34~ “Righteousness exalts a nation, but sin is a reproach to any people.”
1 Samuel 12:13–16~ “And now behold the king whom you have chosen, for whom you have asked; behold, the Lord has set a king over you. If you will fear the Lord and serve him and obey his voice and not rebel against the commandment of the Lord, and if both you and the king who reigns over you will follow the Lord your God, it will be well. But if you will not obey the voice of the Lord, but rebel against the commandment of the Lord, then the hand of the Lord will be against you and your king. Now, therefore, stand still and see this great thing that the Lord will do before your eyes.”
So many people today do not want anything to do with God and this goes for many leaders as well. When more people vote that don’t care about God then godly morals will not be a priority to them. They will be ok with voting for someone that could violate the Bible’s commands in all areas. When Christians don’t speak up about the rights and wrong of policies and don’t vote then we really can’t complain. We need to make sure to vote and be good examples to others and warn others of policies that go against Biblical principles. Whatever leader is voted in will have the power over our freedom which means we as Christians could someday find ourselves at the mercy of a leader that wouldn’t allow us to worship or share the gospel. Many countries don’t have the freedom to worship and Christians in those countries are being persecuted but we are blessed for now because we still have the freedom to worship and pray in our churches.
Hopefully, Christians don’t need to be told this but I’ll say it anyway, we do not look at or judge a candidate by the color of their skin or their gender but by their heart, morals, and polices. John 7:24~ “Do not judge by appearances, but judge with right judgment.”1 Samuel 16:7~ “But the Lord said to Samuel, “Do not look on his appearance or on the height of his stature, because I have rejected him. For the Lord sees not as man sees: man looks on the outward appearance, but the Lord looks on the heart.” Skin color and gender isn’t what make neighborhoods safer or brings in more jobs. It’s the condition of the person’s heart, and desire to do something about those things and accomplishing it.
God desires that the government enforcing laws to practice justice and to be fair and He has allowed the leaders of the government to have authority and hold order in society over the people in a Godly way (Romans 13:1-7).
It’s truly not about just supporting this party over that party or voting for Republican or Democrat out of the devotion of one over the other but instead WHAT agenda they are pushing for. We need to look at the Bible to see what God says about the political issues on the ballets.
One issue that is on the ballot every 4 years it seems is the issue of “LIFE”. Not just any life but that of the unborn baby created by God. God has a lot to say about that. Would God want us Christians to support abortion? Of course not! We must realize abortion is not about the woman’s body. The baby isn’t part of her body but instead, the baby is “IN” her body. It isn’t about her right to choose because if she wants to choose then she should have chosen not to have sex if she didn’t want children. In the horrible case of rape, the choice was forced on her and if she becomes pregnant is she allowed to kill the fetus? Well, is it because something horrible happened to her it’s moral now? What’s that mean for the baby? In many cases it means death. Evil brings on evil in the case of rape and abortion. Abortion is seen as getting a tooth pulled, make the pain go away, no big deal but for the baby, it becomes life or death. Instead, we need to point to God and teach the truth of what abortion means. In a case of rape, we need to show how to forgive and not act on fear or hate but love for life. https://www.gotquestions.org/Planned-Parenthood.html
Any time there is talk of abortion the name “Planned Parenthood” is always mentioned. Many think that Planned Parenthood is a health department of sorts but it is not exactly providing the type of health care most people think.
Should Christians support Planned Parenthood? No, Proverbs 6:16–19~ “There are six things that the Lord hates, seven that are an abomination to him: haughty eyes, a lying tongue, and hands that shed innocent blood, a heart that devises wicked plans, feet that make haste to run to evil, a false witness who breathes out lies, and one who sows discord among brothers.”
There just can’t be any reason for Christian to support an organization that profits from the killing and murder of unborn babies. God is the one that creates all life. This organization is so evil and practices such as horrifying radical procedures that they perform abortions in every stage, even up to the day they are born.
Recently there was a Bill that was trying to be passed called “Born Alive Bill”. It says: “Born-Alive Abortion Survivors Protection Act: This bill establishes requirements for the degree of care a health care practitioner must exercise in the event a child is born alive following an abortion or attempted abortion. A health care practitioner who is present must (1) exercise the same degree of care as reasonably provided to another child born alive at the same gestational age, and (2) immediately admit the child to a hospital. The bill also requires a health care practitioner or other employee to immediately report any failure to comply with this requirement to law enforcement.” So far, the bill has not been able to pass which means that if a baby does survive an abortion the doctors are not to assist it. This is just evil. https://www.congress.gov/bill/116th-congress/senate-bill/130
Continuing on in the Planned Parenthood subject, we find the selling of baby parts. Below is a 2020 video of the U.S. Federal District Court of Northern California “PLANNED PARENTHOOD TESTIMONY ON SELLING BABY PARTS UNSEALED, NEW VIDEOS RELEASED”.
We have heard over and over the justification of how abortion is NOT killing a baby because it’s not a life yet and instead it’s just a mass of cells or a blob as I’ve heard it put, so why do they say they harvest body parts if it’s not a baby? They have prices on body parts such as lungs, brain or hearts, etc.
Another disturbing undercover video that has been done concerning the Planned Parenthood was one in which a man was undercover as a pimp or trafficker of women and children asking those at Planned Parenthood if he could get his “sex workers” medical help and told them that some were not from this country and some were underage. Now, by law, Planned Parenthood should have reported this activity to the authorities to provide those women and children protection but they didn’t do it but instead helped the pimp hide the crimes. The link to the video is below.
Let’s move on to the policies that a candidate may have about “Black Lives Matter”. Is this something a Christian should support? No! I knew even before I researched BLM that it wasn’t biblical or Christian. How they talked and the things that angered them told me the truth of who they were. They got very upset along with followers of the movement every time someone said, “All lives mattered”. I myself was reprimanded for saying that by people that called themselves Christian. I was privately told by a person that I wasn’t being a very loving Christian and being hurtful by expressing that I couldn’t support BLM. Also two different women I knew on two different occasions, felt it necessary to go onto my own personal page and apologize to any black friends on my list that I might have offended for not supporting BLM. I did delete their comments because I believe I am being as loving as I know to be by warning others of what this movement is truly about and sharing truth. Nothing I said was hurtful or mean, just truth and sometimes people don’t like the truth.
BLM isn’t something Christians should support. We cannot and should not support the BLM movement. I’m sure there are those out there reading this wondering why it’s not Christian to support BLM. Well, let me just first say that God couldn’t care less about our skin color or appearance but instead, He cares about what is in our hearts. 1 Samuel 16:7~ “But the Lord said to Samuel, “Do not look on his appearance or on the height of his stature, because I have rejected him. For the Lord sees not as man sees: man looks on the outward appearance, but the Lord looks on the heart.”
What IS in the hearts of the BLM people? All I’ve seen has been hate and destruction and murder by them.
On the Black Lives Matter website, I found these statements!
~”We disrupt the Western-prescribed nuclear family structure requirement”
~”We foster a queer‐affirming network. When we gather, we do so with the intention of freeing ourselves from the tight grip of heteronormative thinking, or rather, the belief that all in the world are heterosexual”. Patrisse Cullors the Executive Director and Board President of BLM identifies as queer.
~In a 2015 interview, Patrisse Cullors stated that she and another co-founders “are trained Marxists.”
Black Lives Matter has been falsely claiming that cops are purposely hunting down black men and killing them, not true. Sense George Floyd’s death, crime has skyrocketed because BLM has been saying to get rid of law enforcement which has sparked much hate and destruction and riots all over the U.S which in turn has led to attacks and killings of police, burn down of buildings, and the murder of innocent children.
Fox News has reported that “June 29 to July 5, there were 85 shooting incidents and 27 murders in Chicago alone, with most occurring on the city’s predominantly African American South Side. Over the 28-day period ending July 5, there were 388 shootings in Chicago citywide — an increase of 76 percent compared to the same period in 2019 — and 95 murders. Over the July Fourth holiday weekend, 44 people were shot in New York City and at least eight were killed. When the number of police on the streets is reduced — a consequence of defunding or the even more absurd abolition of police departments — it’s inevitable that more Black and other lives will be lost as a result of increased crime.”
Black Lives Matter promotes a lot of violence and so many of their own supporters have killed other people because they disagree. We all see it on TV of the mob rioters wearing Black Lives Matter shirts. They are mad about the deaths of black men by cops but they completely ignore the deaths of so many others including children that have died as a result of their protests. One lady in Indiana was shot by a BLM supporter for just saying, ‘All Lives Matter’, and a man in a pro-Trump rally was gunned down and killed in the street of Portland by BLM supporters.
Fox News: “In Atlanta, there were 31 confirmed shooting victims and five deaths over the holiday weekend, including an 8-year-old girl named Secoreia Turner. She was killed while riding in a car with her mother by a “group of armed individuals who had blocked the entrance” to a parking lot, police said.”
Black lives matter also wants to completely abolish prisons, jails, and police. Why? We need a God-ordained governing authority, instituted by God to stand up for the innocent and persecuted. I will not kneel for BLM because that’s showing devotion and solidarity to them. Why would I do that? I can’t agree with what they stand for or the actions they have taken. I can’t devote myself to them and kneel as if they are my king or my God. I will only bow to my Lord Jesus Christ. BLM support Marxists. I’ve had someone ask, “What’s wrong with being a Marxist, so what? Well, before you dismiss this title they claim to be, you best do yourself a favor and look it up. What are Marxists?
“Marxism teaches that the best system of government is one in which wealth is distributed equally, there is no private property (ownership of productive entities is shared by everyone), and every citizen gives selflessly to the collective. The purported goal of Marxism is a government-run utopia in which the needs of each individual are always provided for. Ideally, the strong work hard, the inventive create technological marvels, the doctors heal, the artists delight the community with beauty, and anyone who is weak or poor or in need can draw on society’s combined resources as their needs demand. When this idealistic model is attempted in the real world, it is called “socialism,” “communism,” “statism,” “liberalism,” or “progressivism,” depending on the degree to which the model is explored and implemented.”
“Thus far, Marxism has never worked in real life—and, without exception, in the places where Marxism has been the governmental model, Christians have been persecuted. That’s because there’s a foundational difference between Marxism and Christianity, a deep divide that cannot be bridged. There are several aspects of Marxism, as a philosophy, that put it at odds with the Christian faith.”
“The Bible assumes the existence of private property and issues commands to respect it: injunctions such as “You shall not steal” (Deuteronomy 5:19) are meaningless without private property. The Bible honors work and teaches that individuals are responsible to support themselves: “The one who is unwilling to work shall not eat” (2 Thessalonians 3:10). The redistribution of wealth mandated by Marxism destroys accountability and the biblical work ethic. Jesus’ parable in Matthew 25:14–30 clearly teaches our responsibility to serve God with our (private) resources. There is no way to reconcile Marxism with the parable of the talents.”
“Marxism is ultimately about material things; Christianity is ultimately about spiritual things.”
“There’s a reason why, in Marxist states such as Communist China and Vietnam and the old Soviet Union, Christians are always persecuted—the ideas espoused by Marxism are antithetical to the teachings of Jesus Christ. The differences are irreconcilable.”
Christians, again, do your homework and start looking into it. I will not ever support a foundation that wants to disrupt the nuclear family. Why do they want that? Asks yourself, how is that a humble goal for families to support and shoot for? I will not support queer affirming networks that are against heterosexuals. Why would I support that? It goes against God’s design for marriage between a man and a woman! It’s a disgusting insult and violation of God’s law. It also goes against who I am personally along with millions of others.
In the link below is a video of a man that goes through audio made between the founder of BLM Patrisse Cullors is a zoom conversation with another woman named Melina Abdullah, Co-Founder, BLM Los Angeles. They both discuss what is believed to be witchcraft.
Melina says they “become very intimate with the spirits”
Patrisse says “I started to feel personally connected and responsible and accountable to them, both from a deeply political place but also from a deeply spiral place. In my tradition, you offer things that you’re loved one who passed would want, whether it’s things like honey or tobacco, things like that.” “It’s a very important practice. Hashtags for us are way more than a hashtag. It is literally almost resurrecting spirits so they can work through us to get the work that we need to get done”,
(I notice she says the words “literally almost” together. I find this interesting because “literally is equal to exactly” and “almost is equal to not quite”. To put them side by side in a sentence that talks of ‘resurrection of spirits’ makes me wonder if she wasn’t sure she should just come out and say they are conjuring up demons. Just something that crossed my mind.)
Melina says, “The first thing we do when we hear of a murder is, we come out, we pray, we pour out libation”. (libation: a drink poured out as an offering to a deity. Deity means, a god.)“When we say the names, we speak their names, we say their name we do that all the time. You kinda evoke that spirit and those spirits actually become present with you.
They are discussing how saying the dead person’s name, was an appeal to that spirit of the deceased to rise up and work through them. I remember hearing them constantly say the phrase at protests, “Say their names, say their names” when speaking of the black people that died by the hands of cops. I never thought anything about it till now.
I want to make something clear to Christians out there that may not know this because maybe you are new to the faith or coming out of a false religion that teaches this stuff but these ladies are not talking to people that died. They are not conjuring up spirits of those ancestors long ago and they are not asking those killed by cops to come and work in them. They are calling on demons and messing with the dark forces of evil. God doesn’t allow spirits of dead people to pop in and out of living people. The demons can do this to the unsaved and have and if these ladies are crossing over into black magic and witchcraft then they are messing with demons that will destroy their lives both physically and spiritually. Christians need to run as far away as they can from any support of BLM. Videos of the ladies below if you want to fact check.
Christian, if you want kindness in our country and people to care about the country then vote for people that love the country. Vote for the person that respects and helps veterans that fought for the USA. Vote for the person that wants to improve our country by making it stronger. When people start burning flags and shaming our country those people will vote for leaders that will also want to destroy it too and we will lose the land of the free. We may not have a candidate that’s a Christian to pick from but we need to look for one with good morals. Do they show kindness and love to others or are they supporting violence and encouraging people to chase others out of restaurants and stores that have opposing views? I read about protesters getting so angry, physically hurting, and attacking others for wearing a shirt or hat or waving a flag or sign supporting a different candidate and it’s so disturbing, that’s not something I would want to be connected to. Those people have every right to publicly support who they choose. As for us Christians, we do not hurt others like that. What party is the party of freedom and the party of kindness?
If you want the freedom of speech then vote for the candidate that wants it too and not someone that thinks it’s ok that you get beat for saying “All Lives Matter” or for fining or firing people for saying the wrong pronoun or even being arrested for making a Facebook post. Freedom of speech is good and we need it even though there are those that exercise it in the form of hate speech. This means others will have the right to say what they want (as cruel or hateful as it might be). Without a free country, we do not have freedom of speech. Without freedom of speech, we can’t be free to say what we know to be true. Oddly enough freedom of speech is already being attacked here in some states. One teacher lost her job for refusing to call a student by their preferred pronoun. We all know about the baker that was taken to court and sued for refusing to bake a gender wedding cake that went against his religion and beliefs. We even have a first grader that was sent to the principal’s office for accidentally calling a friend by the wrong pronoun. The child didn’t know the other kid changed their gender over the summer.
Then we have the subject of the freedom to worship, freedom of religion. In many countries, they do not have the right to worship how they want. Many Christian are persecuted for their faith. Pay attention to each candidate, do they tell us no church? Do they say we will be fined or have jail time if we worship? Do they themselves make a point to take God out of the Government? The link below shows John MacArthur being targeted by the State of California for having worship serves when they have told him to shut down. https://www.facebook.com/watch/?v=2639426876374527&extid=t78Wkcvlka3dPbTS
As a Christian, should we be against open borders? Well, this can sound mean if we say yes but let me explain. It’s not that we don’t want foreigners coming to our country we just don’t want them coming in illegally. It seems those who don’t want to follow the law and go through the proper channels are the criminals. The criminals know they will be caught so this is why they want open borders. It’s way easier to sneak in. When we keep them from coming in just anytime, they want then we also keep our country safe from unwanted gang members, drugs and sex trafficking, and even viruses. This is also why we need strong military and police.
As Christians should we be for war or against the war when it is needed? Well, we should never just want war but shouldn’t be against it when we need to defend ourselves. God speaks of war many times in the Bible. God has said when He commands war in the Bible against wicked people that His people are to go and “completely destroy those wicked people” and make war until they are completely wiped out (1 Samuel 15:18). God is not against war and has called for it Himself on many occasions. We as Christians should pray for our country to be at peace but if it’s not possible because we are being attacked and harmed then we should pray that the Lord help us, guide us and go before us in that war. Below are several verses that show God commanding war and providing protections and telling His people not to fear. However, we need to also see that God doesn’t mess around in war either. We read that in these battles He commands some incredibly harsh actions to be taken but even more so there will be some very disturbing battles at His second coming. The second coming will be extremely violent.
Numbers 31:1–7~ “The Lord spoke to Moses, saying, “Avenge the people of Israel on the Midianites. Afterward, you shall be gathered to your people.” So, Moses spoke to the people, saying, “Arm men from among you for the war, that they may go against Midian to execute the Lord’s vengeance on Midian. You shall send a thousand from each of the tribes of Israel to the war.” So, there were provided, out of the thousands of Israel, a thousand from each tribe, twelve thousand armed for war. And Moses sent them to the war, a thousand from each tribe, together with Phinehas the son of Eleazar the priest, with the vessels of the sanctuary and the trumpets for the alarm in his hand. They warred against Midian, as the Lord commanded Moses, and killed every male.”
Deuteronomy 20:1–4~ “When you go out to war against your enemies, and see horses and chariots and an army larger than your own, you shall not be afraid of them, for the Lord your God is with you, who brought you up out of the land of Egypt. And when you draw near to the battle, the priest shall come forward and speak to the people and shall say to them, ‘Hear, O Israel, today you are drawing near for battle against your enemies: let not your heart faint. Do not fear or panic or be in dread of them, for the Lord your God is he who goes with you to fight for you against your enemies, to give you the victory.’
1 Samuel 15:3~ “Now go and strike Amalek and devote to destruction all that they have. Do not spare them, but kill both man and woman, child and infant, ox and sheep, camel and donkey.’ ”
Joshua 4:13~ “About 40,000 ready for war passed over before the Lord for battle, to the plains of Jericho.”
There are many in the world today that want to get rid of authority. They want to get rid of the military, cops, and make people bound to them such as BLM and Antifa. The law enforcement and military are God-ordained and put in place for a reason but Christians already know that God is our ultimate authority. This next verse even says how we need to show submission to the authorities that are appointed by God and those who resist will incur judgment and wrath. So, be respectful for the sake of conscience but mostly to avoid God’s wrath.
Romans 13:1-7~ “Let every person be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and those that exist have been instituted by God. Therefore whoever resists the authorities resists what God has appointed, and those who resist will incur judgment. For rulers are not a terror to good conduct, but to bad. Would you have no fear of the one who is in authority? Then do what is good, and you will receive his approval, for he is God’s servant for your good. But if you do wrong, be afraid, for he does not bear the sword in vain. For he is the servant of God, an avenger who carries out God’s wrath on the wrongdoer. Therefore one must be in subjection, not only to avoid God’s wrath but also for the sake of conscience. For because of this you also pay taxes, for the authorities are ministers of God, attending to this very thing. Pay to all what is owed to them: taxes to whom taxes are owed, revenue to whom revenue is owed, respect to whom respect is owed, honor to whom honor is owed.”
Got Questions say: “Therefore, a Christian involved in law enforcement or police work is doing a good and godly thing. The police officer who enforces the just law of the land should consider himself or herself God’s servant and, toward the lawbreaker, an agent of God’s wrath sent to keep the peace. One of the most important jobs of every police officer is the restraint of evil in society—a dangerous career, a noble calling, and a profession congruent with a biblical desire for justice and righteousness.”https://www.gotquestions.org/Christian-law-enforcement.html
How should Christians view the right to bear arms? Is this a biblical issue? Well, there is nothing unbiblical in owning a gun but the Bible does not outlaw or condone the possession of weapons. The believers in the Word do have the right to defend themselves and loved ones when threatened. In the verse below we see Jesus tells them to sell their cloak to buy a sword. For Christians, we should always consider the Lord’s laws in what is right and wrong and strive to glorify the Lord in our actions. (1 Corinthians 10:31).
Luke 22:35–38~ “And he said to them, “When I sent you out with no moneybag or knapsack or sandals, did you lack anything?” They said, “Nothing.” He said to them, “But now let the one who has a moneybag take it, and likewise a knapsack. And let the one who has no sword sell his cloak and buy one. For I tell you that this Scripture must be fulfilled in me: And he was numbered with the transgressors.’ For what is written about me has its fulfillment.” And they said, “Look, Lord, here are two swords.” And he said to them, “It is enough.”
It just seems there is just no standard of right or wrong anymore, and bad behaviors with no accountability. Today we see so much hatred, destruction, and yes, even murder on the streets. Christians, stay focused on God and don’t be pulled into the emotions of all those that are doing these things. I will end with this verse and say, be kind to others.
Titus 3:1-11~ “Remind them to be submissiveto rulers and authorities, to be obedient, to be ready for every good work, to speak evil of no one, to avoid quarreling, to be gentle, and to show perfect courtesy toward all people. For we ourselves were once foolish, disobedient, led astray, slaves to various passions and pleasures, passing our days in malice and envy, hated by others and hating one another. But when the goodness and loving kindness of God our Savior appeared, he saved us, not because of works done by us in righteousness, but according to his own mercy, by the washing of regeneration and renewal of the Holy Spirit, whom he poured out on us richly through Jesus Christ our Savior, so that being justified by his grace we might become heirs according to the hope of eternal life. The saying is trustworthy, and I want you to insist on these things, so that those who have believed in God may be careful to devote themselves to good works. These things are excellent and profitable for people. But avoid foolish controversies, genealogies, dissensions, and quarrels about the law, for they are unprofitable and worthless. As for a person who stirs up division, after warning him once and then twice, have nothing more to do with him, knowing that such a person is warped and sinful; he is self-condemned.”
Now, the first thing you should know is, I’m no Scientist or Scholar so just remember that when reading this. I am going to take you through my own research in studying the questions that I’ve had about the creation of the World.
I got to pondering God’s work in creation and what some of the writers might have been wondering. How could ancient writers of the Bible know so much about creation if they were just ordinary men? How could they have written about them in such detail and accuracy without the aid of the Lord truly telling them what to write?
We can look around and know there is a God that created all that we see but the details in which the ancient writers describe things can only be known because God told them.
In Romans 1:20~ For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature—have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that people are without excuse.
Psalm 19:1 ~ The heavens declare the glory of God, and the sky above proclaims his handiwork.
After reading that, I wondered, did any of the writers of the Bible ever think that what they were writing sounded crazy? Maybe they were a tad confused about the facts on certain stories and didn’t grasp what they were writing down, like in Genesis, with the creation of the Earth? How could they know the Earth was round or flat? Could they have been writing things down and thinking, “Uummm, this can’t be right”.
They had no way of testing many things to prove it right or wrong. No one could have known back then if the Earth was round or flat. I decided to do some research on all this and see how many things were described in Scriptures that were proven true only in recent years.
*Is the Earth Round?
So, what about the Earth being round or flat? Click on this link below we see it’s been a lifelong belief for centuries.
‘The flat Earth model is an archaic conception of Earth’s shape as a plane or disk. Many ancient cultures subscribed to a flat Earth cosmography, including Greece until the classical period, the Bronze Age and Iron Age civilizations of the Near East until the Hellenistic period, India until the Gupta period (early centuries AD), and China until the 17th century.”
“The Israelites also imagined the Earth to be a disc floating on water with an arched firmament above it that separated the Earth from the heavens. The sky was a solid dome with the Sun, Moon, planets, and stars embedded in it.”
The image above is an Imago Mundi Babylonian map, the oldest known world map, 6th century BC Babylonia
“Curiously, many astronomy textbooks credit Pythagoras (c. 570–500 B.C.) with being the first person to assert that the earth is round.1 However, the biblical passages are older than this. Isaiah is generally acknowledged to have been written in the 700s B.C. and Job is thought to have been written around 2000 B.C. The secular astronomers before the time of Pythagoras must have thought the Bible was wrong about its teaching of a round earth, yet the Bible was exactly right. It was the secular science of the day that needed to be corrected.”
This video above talks of the earlier beliefs of a flat Earth and how the idea grew to become around Earth. Although this is not a video that is based on Christian views or writings it does show how many believed the Earth thousands of years ago to be flat and then later changed the belief it to be round. God described how the Earth was round but 1,000 of years ago the world described how it was flat.
In Ray Comforts’ book, “How to Know God Exists,” Ray says, “The Book of Isaiah was written between 740 and 680 B.C. This is at least 300 years before Aristotle suggested, in his book, “On the Heavens”, that the earth might be a sphere. It was another 2,000 years later (at a time when science believed that the earth was flat) that the Scriptures inspired Christopher Columbus to sail around the world.”
Even though many started to believe the Earth was round back then they still had no way of proving it till resent years.
Isaiah 40:22 says, “It is he that sits upon the circle of the earth”.
Now, some that believed in the flat Earth believed that this verse was talking of a flat circular Earth, kinda like a frisbee.
Again in Ray Comforts book, “How to know God Exists”, Ray talks of the earth floating in space: “At a time when it was believed that the earth sat on a large animal or a giant (1500 B.C.), the Bible spoke of the earth’s free float in space: “He…hangs the earth upon nothing” (Job 26:7)“.
Ray points out how Scriptures say the Earth floats in space when most believed odd ideas of something holding it up. It is clear today Scriptures is correct and the Earth is in fact just floating in space and “hangs on nothing”, just as the Bible teaches. We’ve proven it true through technology and inventing rockets to go into space and take pictures to show it is not propped up or carried by any animal and most importantly that it is a circle (a spiracle orb).
We see further that Genesis hints to spherical Earth in this following verse because it says “light separates day from the night”.
In Genesis 1:4~ And God said, “let there be light in the expanse of the heavens to separate the day from the night. And let them be for signs and for seasons, and for days and years,”
Imagine for a second, if the Earth was flat and floating like a frisbee in water, slowly floating in a circular motion, to my understanding we wouldn’t have both day and night but we would just have day forever or night forever. Flat Earthers believe that we have night because the sun goes behind the mountains. Today, we know that’s not true just simply by flying in an airplane far above the mountains. For example, staying within the borders of America, flying just a few states away, shows how we can start out flying in the daytime and it turns dark after a couple of hours because the obvious happened, it became night time not because a mountain was in the way of the sun and blocked it and not because the flat Earth flipped upside down but because it’s an orb and it rotated away from the sun.
Revelation 7:1~ After this I saw four angels standing at the four corners of the earth, holding back the four winds of the earth…”
Revelations talks of four corners of the Earth which became another reason to cause many to believe the Earth to be flat, with corners. However, in examining this verse closer we see that John was only using symbolic speech to describe the “four directions” just as we see on maps and compasses with north, south, east, and west. It’s not much of an argument though in proving the Earth to be round in my opinion.
As I pondered the directions mentioned, another verse came to mind, the verse that talked about God’s forgiveness because that one talks of directions as well. I looked it up and realized this verse makes the point of a round Earth…for me at least. The verse Psalm 103:12 uses two of the cardinal directions. It reads, “as far as the east is from the west, so far does he remove our transgressions from us.”
When we look at that verse it is speaking of a span of distance that is infinite. North and south only go so far till it stops. If you start out flying from the North Pole southward and just keep flying south eventually you would reach the South Pole and once there all of a sudden you would be flying north until of course, you reach the North Pole again. However, if you were to travel east going around the Earth and keep going in that eastward direction you would always be going east. It would never stop and the same with the west, you will forever be going west and it would never stop.
The purpose of that verse is to show us that the forgiveness of God is forever, it doesn’t stop which is why in His infinite wisdom He chose to say, “as far as the east is from the west” and not “as far as the north is from the south”. This way we can know for certain we have been restored to the Lord.
Now, looking at this verse to support whether the Earth is round or flat we see that because God uses the directions to make the case for how far He removes our transgressions from us, then it does make a strong case for a spiracle Earth. If the Earth was flat then saying “as far as the east is to the west” wouldn’t be very far because it would eventually stop at the edge of the Earth just as the other directions would. With a flat earth, you can obviously see by the image below that for God to tell us that He forgives us as far as the east is to the west would not make much sense.
It wasn’t until modern times that we could know for sure the Earth was round because we were able to send rockets into space and see it was in fact round and see that it rotated, and see that nothing was holding it up. The Bible was right.
*The Creation of Light on The Earth
Genesis 1:3-5~ And God said, “Let there be light,” and there was light. And God saw that the light was good. And God separated the light from the darkness. God called the light Day, and the darkness he called Night. And there was evening and there was morning, the first day.
Take note here that God hadn’t created the Sun, Moon, or Stars yet until the 4th day. The darkness was mentioned from the start of creation (in Genesis) as God says, “The earth was formless and void, and darkness was over the surface of the deep.” Nothing is said about where the light was brought from or anything about the darkness even, only that God spoke light into existence and then separated it from the darkness.
In Job 38:18-20, God Challenges Job… “Have you surveyed the extent of the earth? Tell Me, if you know all this. Where is the way to the home of light? Do you know where darkness resides, so you can lead it back to its border? Do you know the paths to its home?”…of course Job couldn’t have known any of this.
I can’t help but imagine how confused the writer was when writing this because God had them record as one of the first things created was light yet when they write about the fourth day God sounds like He repeated Himself and talks of light again. This time saying, “let there be lights in the expanse to separate the day from the night”. Here God is explaining that the light will come from the Sun and the Moon.
So, my thought is, did they ever wonder where the light came from on the first day? They knew God spoke and said, “let there be light” but from where did it come from? Or in God’s Words, as God questions Job by saying, “Where is the way to the home of light?” The answer: From God Himself. For the first three days of creation, He was the light just as it says in John 8:12~ “Again Jesus spoke to them, saying, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will not walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.”
God will also be the source of light for the new Earth as well, as said in Revelation 22:5~ “There will be no more night. They will not need the light of a lamp or the light of the sun, for the Lord God will give them light. And they will reign forever and ever”
*The Creation of Stars
Genesis 1:14-19~ “And God said, “Let there be lights in the expanse of the heavens to separate the day from the night. And let them be for signs and for seasons, and for days and years, and let them be lights in the expanse of the heavens to give light upon the earth.” And it was so. And God made the two great lights—the greater light to rule the day and the lesser light to rule the night—and the stars. And God set them in the expanse of the heavens to give light on the earth, to rule over the day and over the night, and to separate the light from the darkness. And God saw that it was good. And there was evening and there was morning, the fourth day.”
When we look into the night sky depending on if it’s a clear night or not, we can only see so many stars with our naked eye. With a telescope we are able to see much more however the people back then didn’t have telescopes. Telescopes weren’t invented yet as this link below explains.
“The telescope traces back to early makers of eyeglasses and lenses. In the 1400s, glasses were used widely across Europe. These lenses were not powerful, not polished, and not clear. Due to their imperfections, they were not useful for astronomic observation.”
Psalm 147:4 tells us that “He counts the number of the stars, He calls them all by name.”
How great is God to be able to count the stars and name them, what fear that should produce in us out of respect and aw?
I can just see them looking up at the night sky counting as many stars as they possibly could (which some claimed the human eye can view about 1,000 ) and then looking at the sand and knowing they couldn’t possibly count each piece of sand and that there were way more sand particles than what they saw in stars. When compared to each other, the two probably don’t even seem equal. Did that make any sense to them? Today we could see the planets and galaxies and so many other billions of stars and comets and other things through telescopes. I’m sure, for them, knowing that Scriptures say in Jeremiah 33:22, “host of heaven can’t be numbered, or the sand of the sea measured” made them wish they had a way of seeing all those stars.
Another interesting fact God points out about stars is in 1 Corinthians 15:41 ~ “There is one glory of the sun, and another glory of the moon, and another glory of the stars: for one star differs from another star in glory”
This verse uses the example of stars all being different. I’m sure this had to be perplexing for them as they looked at the stars from Earth, all the stars look like sparkly spots in the sky, without a telescope, how could they have known the stars could be so different in size or color? But it’s recorded in Scriptures and again this wasn’t a known fact until modern times.
*The Wind Having Weight…
Scriptures tell us wind has weight in Job 28:25~ “When he gave to the wind its weight…”
Barnes’ Notes on the Bible explains Job 28:25 this way: “To make the weight for the winds – That is, to weigh the winds and to measure the waters – things that it would seem most difficult to do. The idea here seems to be, that God had made all things by measure and by rule. Even the winds – so fleeting and imponderable – he had adjusted and balanced in the most exact manner as if he had “weighed” them when he made them. The air has “weight,” but it is not probable that this fact was known in the time of Job, or that he adverted to it here. It is rather the idea suggested above, that the God who had formed everything by exact rule and who had the power to govern the winds in the most exact manner, must be qualified to impart wisdom.”
When this was written in Job it was not discovered or understood yet how wind or air had weight.
*Creation of Water in Scriptures
We read about another question that God asks Job 37:16 ~ “Dost thou know the balancing of the clouds, the wondrous works of him which is perfect in knowledge?”
Good question! Did Job know how the clouds balanced in the sky? Probably not. I wonder what they knew about the clouds as far as how the clouds held water? Clouds can look so different from one day to the next but, just like what we see today, I’m sure they understood rain came from clouds but how it worked was probably a whole different question. Did they understand that very small droplets of water make up clouds and when they remain small, they float but if they join together with other droplets, they get heavier and become rain? Did they know that wind and temperature play a part in the reason it rains a lot or a little? They didn’t have the technology we do today so I’m sure that they had questions about it.
Genesis 1:6-8 tells us: “God said, “Let there be an expanse in the midst of the waters, and let it separate the waters from the waters.” And God made the expanse and separated the waters that were under the expanse from the waters that were above the expanse. And it was so. And God called the expanse Heaven. And there was evening and there was morning, the second day.”
firmament—an expanse: a name given to the atmosphere from its appearing to an observer to be the vault of heaven, supporting the weight of the watery clouds. By the creation of an atmosphere, the lighter parts of the waters which overspread the earth’s surface were drawn up and suspended in the visible heavens, while the larger and heavier mass remained below.
So how could they have understood any of this back then? I’m guessing they didn’t. The balancing of the clouds was not known until modern times when we had the ability and equipment to study it.
* Springs of The Sea
Genesis 1:9-13~ “And God said, “Let the waters under the heavens be gathered together into one place, and let the dry land appear.” And it was so. God called the dry land Earth, and the waters that were gathered together he called Seas. And God saw that it was good.
Job 38:16-18~ “Have you journeyed to the springs of the sea or walked in the recesses of the deep? Have the gates of death been shown to you? Have you seen the gates of the deepest darkness? Have you comprehended the vast expanses of the earth? Tell me, if you know all this.”
We see here that God asks if Job ever journeyed to those places and if he comprehends everything God has done and if Job even knows of all those things. I guess it’s possible some of those things Job could have known about or read about because it was talked about in Genisis with the flood such as the phrase “springs of the deep” but there is no way he could have seen it with his own eyes to verify it, there is no way he could have walked in the “recesses of the deep” or went to see the “springs of the sea”. Most everyone knows today the ocean is very deep and very dark. Job didn’t have any way to go to any of them. It wasn’t as if he could swim down to the ocean floor to investigate it because he wouldn’t be able to hold his breath very long to go all the way to the seafloor. Also, the floor of the ocean is extremely dark so how could he even see the floor or observe anything down there once there. Not to mention the pressure at the bottom of the sea is deadly to humans, Job would not have been able to survive that alone. It’s only been just recently that humans could explore the seafloor thanks to a specially made submarine and confirm that there are springs in the seafloor but even then, we still do not know all there is to know about the sea. Back in Jobs day, there was no way for Job to have experienced any of that personally, it would have been impossible. So, I just wonder again how odd this must have sounded for Job.
*The Earth Will Not Be Moved
Psalm 93:1~ The Lord reigns; he is robed in majesty; the Lord is robed; he has put on strength as his belt. Yes, the world is established; it shall never be moved.
I will end with these scriptures below where God tells us the Earth will not be moved. I know the Earth moves…it turns on its axis as it rotates around the sun. Again, we know this to be true because we have the technology and pictures that show it does but I still just wonder what the writers thought about these verses. God is saying in these verses that nothing is going to happen to the world we live on and noting will cause it to fall apart or knock it out of orbit. This should be comforting to us because when I was much younger my fear was that someday a meteorite could hit us and knock the Earth off its axis sending it flying through space or shake it so badly that we would stop rotating or something to that effect. Yeah, the imagination of a young kid! Below I have scriptures and meaning of each of the verses I quote that shows that God is telling us the Earth is securely in place.
(Barnes’ Notes on the Bible explains Psalm 93:1~ “The world also is established – Is firm; is on a solid foundation. It cannot be shaken or destroyed by natural convulsions, or by the power of man. That it cannot be moved – Moved out of its place; overthrown; destroyed. This seems to have been spoken in view of some impending calamity as if everything were to be swept away. The psalmist consoles himself with the thought that the world was firmly established; that no storm or tempest could be so violent as to remove it out of its place. The ground of consolation is the essential stability of what God has ordained.”)
*Psalm 104:5~ He set the earth on its foundations so that it should never be moved.
(Benson Commentary on Psalm 104:5~ Who laid the foundations of the earth who hath founded the earth upon its own bases, or foundations, that is, upon itself, or its own center of gravity, by which it is self-balanced, and by which it stands as fast and immovable as if it were built upon the strongest foundation imaginable, which is a most stupendous work of divine wisdom and power; that it should not be removed — Out of its proper place; forever — Or, till the end of time, when it must give way to the new earth.)
*Psalm 96:10~ Say among the nations, “The Lord reigns.” The world is firmly established, it cannot be moved; he will judge the peoples with equity.
(Barnes’ Notes on the Bible explains Psalm 96:10~ The world also shall be established … – Under the reign of God. The meaning is that the world is fixed or immovable. It has its place, and it cannot be moved out of it. The government of God is fixed and stable. It is not temporary, changing, vacillating, like the dynasties of the earth, but is steadfast and abiding, and is well represented by the earth – so fixed and firm that nothing can move it from its place.)
*Ecclesiastes 1:4~ A generation goes, and a generation comes, but the earth remains forever.
(Gill’s Exposition of the Entire Bible explains Ecclesiastes 1:4 ~… “but the earth abideth for ever; for a long time, until the dissolution of all things; and then, though that and all in it will be burnt up, yet it will rather be changed than destroyed; the form of it will be altered, when the substance of it will continue; it will not be annihilated, but renewed and refined.”)
God makes sure we know the Earth’s foundation is so strong and solid that nothing can move it. What I found interesting was this video below that shows how Jupiter serves as a shield against danger to Earth. It says, “Without a massive gravity rich planet like Jupiter nearby to draw away asteroids, Earth would be more like an interstellar dartboard”. Not saying Jupiter is the only reason Earth is stable because we know God does this but it’s just amazing how God designed it all to have the planets where they are. I suggest you watch this 5 min video below that shares why the Earth that God created is so amazing and even overwhelming.
I hope this causes others to seek God more and to see His glory in all of His creations. To stand in Aw with respect to God in all that He has done. I realize that there are those out there that just don’t believe or have faith in God. With that said, there is still no excuse for them because everyone is shown God’s invisible attributes and power in all that has been created. It boils down to faith.
Romans 1:19-20~ since what may be known about God is plain to them because God has made it plain to them. For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature—have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that people are without excuse.
Christians have been lied to about the devil and Hell.
We have been told over and over that Hell is Satan’s dwelling place. He lives there and just comes around to bother us sometimes or sends his demons to mess with us. It has been suggested that the devil spends time with those that are in Hell tormenting them and allowing demons to torment them as well.
The link below is from the movie “War Room”, and we see where the wife (played by Priscilla Shirer) decides she’s had enough of the devil and goes after him. She becomes mad enough about the devil messing things up in her life that she gives the devil a firm scolding and yells at him for a good while.
She starts out with her explaining to him, “I don’t know where you are, devil, but I know you can hear me.” Well, the devil is not omnipresent and he cannot be everywhere at once as God can. I don’t know about you but to me, that seems like a frightening thought to think about, out of all the places on earth the devil chooses to be to cause destruction, he chooses you and your house to do it. Yikes!
But because he can only be in one place in time how does she know she is talking to him and that he hears her? Her assumption makes her believe that he is there and can hear her and yet she goes about scolding him as if she’s an authority to him and he might just be standing in shock that she’s on to him now. She says, “You have played with my mind and had your way long enough. No more. You are done. Jesus is the Lord of this house and that means there is no place for you here anymore.” thinking it’s something he wouldn’t know unless she announces it and now that she has he can’t play those games anymore and has to leave. She seems to think that Christians stand in some devil proof zone and they are promised no more demonic attacks or problems. The problems aren’t the same after salvation, but they are still going to come. The devil still tempts and causes deception in the lives of both the lost and saved; this is why we need to stand on the Word of God. We do not become free from the devil’s lies and destruction the minute we are saved. In fact, we can expect it just as much as a Christian, just as Job was targeted by the devil.
She then appears to chase him out of her house as she storms outside. She continues to remind him that he can’t have her marriage, daughter, or husband. We learn quickly, “when reading the Word” that marriage was designed by God and God does have set rules for the husband and set rules for the wife. God gives clear instructions on how we are to be in a marriage and the devil seeks to divide the husband and wife and destroy the marriage. Christian marriages are not off-limits to the devil.
The devil can cause trouble with anyone, and anything the devil does is always known by God. God can choose to allowed or not allowed the devil to play with people but it’s always for His own glory and purpose. At the same time we see it is God that can provide the protection and keep the devil at bay if He sees fit, just as it was done for Job in Job 1:10~ “Have you not put a hedge around him and his house and all that he has, on every side? You have blessed the work of his hands, and his possessions have increased in the land”.
In the movie the lady character tells the devil he is done (although, in reality, the devil will never be done or stop till our Lord throws him into the lake of fire) and she storms back into the house only to come back out a few seconds later to talk more to the devil. Here was where I’m like, “Serious, she’s gonna keep talking to him.” She comes back out and says, “And another thing…” like the devil is still standing outside all wide-eyed and in shock. Just so you all know, the devil couldn’t care less what you have to say or that you’re mad at him.
She ends up telling the devil to “Go back to Hell where he belongs”. The problem with that is the devil didn’t come from Hell as if it was his personal apartment where he lives and besides, it contradicts the Word of God.
That’s a very unbiblical teaching and a most ridiculous belief about the devil and Hell that there is. As I’ve mentioned the devil does not live in Hell or control it how he wishes. Instead, the devil is going to be the one tormented in Hell, not in charge of it, because it is God that is in charge of Hell.
What we learn from Scriptures is that God created Hell and it’s only God that has the AUTHORITY to put Satan in Hell, not us. In Matthew 25:41 and 2 Peter 2:4, God says that Hell was prepared for the devil and his angels. It’s God that cast demons into Hell and committed them to chains of gloomy darkness to be kept until the judgment.
Scriptures also, say that the demons cry out in fear of the Lord and do not want Him to torment them. Matthew 8:29~ And behold, they cried out, “What have you to do with us, O Son of God? Have you come here to torment us before the time?”
Luke 12:5~But I will warn you whom to fear: fear him who, after he has killed, has authority to cast into hell. Yes, I tell you, fear him!
Matthew 10:28 says, “And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.”
Proverbs 14:27~ The fear of the Lord is a fountain of life, that one may turn away from the snares of death.
That tells me that we should fear God because He is the Authority overall.
But common sense says that even if it’s true that Christians can command and send the devil to Hell then who is letting him out or how is he getting out? If people all over the world are practicing this and they believe they are sending the devil “back” to Hell then he is being sent there over and over by different people all the time. Not to mention that most people will say, “In Jesus’ name.” So does this mean saying “in the name of Jesus” isn’t strong enough to keep the devil in Hell?
It says in 1 Peter 5:8 “the devil prowls around seeking someone to devour”. In Job 1:7 it tells us when God asked where the devil was and he told God he was going to and fro on the earth and walking up and down on it. This devil isn’t in Hell seeking to devour people; he’s on earth seeking to devour people.
Another thing that should be obvious is we should never address the devil ever! Why do people insist on talking to the devil when things go wrong? Because they were taught to do that. It’s not biblical and so very dangerous.
Addressing Satan is the worst thing you can do and yelling at him does nothing.
But ask yourself, “Why in the world would I want to address the enemy of God anyway or any demon for that matter?” That’s just giving the devil what he wants, YOUR attention!! Your attention is off of God and on him and now he is robbing you of your time spent with God. Think about it, something goes wrong and we start talking to the devil about how mad we are or how hurt we are and how he is not going to have control anymore. Does this make sense? Your time could be spent praying to God and asking Him for help but instead, it’s spent yelling at the devil.
God tells us in James 4:7-8 to “submit to God and resist the devil“.
We all need to be in prayer for all things but when we are addressing Satan then you have stopped your prayer and turned your back on God to talk with Satan. This movie teaches people they can address Satan and that’s wrong.
In the part of the movie where the wife (played by Priscilla Shirer) losses her cool and starts getting upset and yells at the devil and it appears that she is chasing him outside, I want to know, how does she know she got him outside? How does she know that her yelling did anything? But the worst part is that anyone would be talking to God one day and then the next start talking to Satan? Seems to me that would be an insult to God. Think about that, we pray to our Lord for many things. We go to God for help, to praise Him, to thank Him but one day you feel you are being spiritually attacked so instead of going to God (who has the power to help you and protect you) we start talking to the devil instead like we are his parent and he’s in trouble. Why? He doesn’t care what we think. He isn’t going to all the sudden become remorseful and sad because we yelled at him. The devil isn’t going to be afraid of you and apologize for upsetting you. He is getting exactly what he wants, your attention off of God, and getting you all stressed and angry. We shouldn’t address the devil at all, ever. We only need to address God.
Satan is very active and he does prowl around and he will until the 1000 year reign of Christ where an angel (the warrior archangel Michael) binds him and he will be thrown into the bottomless pit as said in Revelation 20:1–3~ “Then I saw an angel coming down from heaven, holding in his hand the key to the bottomless pit and a great chain. And he seized the dragon, that ancient serpent, which is the devil and Satan, and bound him for a thousand years, and threw him into the pit, and shut it and sealed it over him so that he might not deceive the nations any longer until the thousand years were ended. After that, he must be released for a little while.”
The word archangel means “angel of the highest rank.” Michael binds the devil, not a human. The archangel Michael has spiritual combat with the devil during the millennial reign of Christ. The Bible also speaks of Michael protecting people as well, in Daniel 12:1 so if we are so tough that we think we can bind Satan and kick him out of our house on our own, why would God need angels protecting us, ministering to us and guiding us?
That we humans are weaker than angels and below them in power and knowledge. (2 Peter 2:11, Jude 1:9) so there is no way we can take on Satan and his demons and there is no way he stands in fear of us. That’s just pride-fullness.
Binding Satan is not within our power. Scriptures say in Acts 19:13-16~ “Some Jews who went around driving out evil spirits tried to invoke the name of the Lord Jesus over those who were demon-possessed. They would say, “In the name of the Jesus whom Paul preaches, I command you to come out.” Seven sons of Sceva, a Jewish chief priest, were doing this. One day the evil spirit answered them, “Jesus I know, and Paul I know about, but who are you?” Then the man who had the evil spirit jumped on them and overpowered them all. He gave them such a beating that they ran out of the house naked and bleeding.”
This from Got Questions:
“Jesus had earlier given His apostles specific authority over demons (Mark 3:15). Paul, as an apostle, had received that authority as well (see 2 Corinthians 12:12).”
“..Demons recognize valid authority, and they fear God (see James 2:19). It’s important to note that the authority over demons belongs only to Jesus (see Luke 8:28, 31) and to those to whom Jesus gave it. The demon in Acts 19 says that it knows Jesus and Paul (one of Jesus’ chosen apostles). It refused to recognize any other authority in Ephesus. The demon’s question “who are you?” is chilling in its implications to the seven sons of Sceva and their total lack of authority.”
This is what God wants us to do instead in Eph 6: 10-18~ Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the schemes of the devil. …13 Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you maybe able to withstand in the evil day and having done all, to stand firm.
James 4:7-8 says “Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. Draw near to God, and he will draw near to you.”
That being said, there was one part in the move I agree with and that was when the old woman named Miss Clara says to the wife, “Do your fighting in prayer.” That’s exactly what we need to do. Not address the devil but address God in prayer. Not yell at the devil but run to God in prayer. Not send the devil back to Hell but bring God into it and let God fight the battle. We can’t!
Turning away from God to speak to the devil just because you feel you are strong enough and more powerful than the devil is unbiblical. Just because someone told you that you could do that because you are a Christian is a lie. God is the only one that can fight the devil and protect you. Just stay with God and don’t waste your time talking to the devil.
We all need to stop talking to him, stop yelling at him, stop commanding him to go back to Hell, and don’t give him any more of your time.
I had heard the argument that women should NOT have authority over men and preach inside a church because of 1 Timothy 2:11-14 however, if it’s outside a church setting, it’s ok.
The belief is that women are not to speaking or have authority over men because of this verse, 1 Timothy 2:11-14~ “A woman should learn in quietness and full submission. I do not permit a woman to teach or to assume authority over a man; she must be quiet. For Adam was formed first, then Eve. And Adam was not the one deceived; it was the woman who was deceived and became a sinner.”
Then following that up with 1 Tim 3:14-15~ “I tell you this so you know how to conduct yourself in the house of God.”
Then saying it’s referring to how we are to be inside a church….not outside the church. So, inside a church, women and men are told how to conduct themselves but outside a church it’s different. To my understanding, this verse is supposed to prove as long as it’s NOT in a church setting women should be okay to preach to men because Priscilla did with her husband outside the church.
So the question is, why women couldn’t do the same as Priscilla today with others as long as it’s outside the church like at conferences or other buildings. Women that preach to crowds that are not associated with a church is no different than Priscilla preaching in their tiny group of three. Can’t it be any number of people? Why is a small group okay in the Bible but more than that it’s not?
I made the statement that it was in their home privately not publicly and just because Priscilla was helping explain things to Apollos isn’t a reason for women to preach outside a church. To use this weak argument regarding Pricilla can’t possibly be an example of preaching to groups with men because she didn’t preach to groups of men. She privately counseled one-man alongside another man. She was helping to explain Christ with her husband, under her husband’s authority, that’s all. There was no position of authority in that situation for Priscilla. She has no leadership over Apollos. God made it clear that a lady is not to preach the Word and act as a leader of the body of Christ.
To prove further that this is not just my understanding of these verses I’ll point out some web sites and individuals that I believe are sound and biblical and teach the same things.
Michelle Lesley: In this link, she says: “When people try to use her (Priscilla) as an argument for female preachers, teachers, and authority, they usually go to Acts 18:26 which says that she and her husband took Apollos aside and fully explained the gospel to him. This was a private meeting among the three of them, likely in their home over a meal or other casual circumstances, not preaching or teaching in the church. Additionally, the Bible makes absolutely no mention of how much, if any, of the actual “explaining” Priscilla did. It’s quite possible she just sat by as Aquila did the majority of the explaining and contributed only here and there or when Aquila forgot something.”
(We cannot assume women can preach to an assembly of men just because Priscilla helped alongside her husband with one individual man understand the Gospel better. If so, that would mean Priscilla could’ve then got up onto a platform somewhere and started preaching God’s Word to a group of men and women. Her preaching to a mixed audience as the authority of God’s Word is not the same as her going alongside her husband and helping another man understand God’s Word.)
Also from Michelle Lesley: “Would the Holy Spirit have led Paul in Romans 16 to praise women who were rebelling against His word in 1 Timothy 2? Have you ever known God, anywhere in Scripture, to praise people who unrepentantly break His word?”
“Would it make any sense, logically, for Paul to praise in Romans 16 women who were habitually and rebelliously disobeying his instructions in 1 Timothy 2?”
“The “church” is the gathered body of believers for “worship” and “biblical instruction”.
“So whenever believers are gathered for those purposes – whether we call it Sunday School or worship service or a Christian conference, and whether it’s in a sanctuary, Sunday School classroom, or conference center – that’s the church, and the Scriptural mandate for women not to teach or hold authority over men applies.”
(This tells me that it’s not the building that’s the focus here. Michelle points out that It’s what’s taking place with the person preaching. The Bible isn’t saying that only in the church building we can’t allow women to preach or have authority over a man, but outside the church building as well. It’s the preaching of a sermon to the congregation anywhere, it’s being the leader over the body of believers, and it’s the leading of worship and giving biblical teachings to a mixed group. That is what is forbidden for women to do whether in a church building or a religious conference in a hotel. If they are Christian in the family of God then they are to behave as such 24/7 no matter where they are.
When we are in a mixed Bible study group women can speak up to give a thought, ask a question, or read a scriptures verse that’s ok because they are not leading the study. They are not the authority but instead, a man leads the study. The Bible doesn’t say women can’t share inside a Bible study but we are not to publicly hold spiritual authority over a man in the church as a leader. We can share the gospel to the lost and are called to share the gospel but that’s ministering to them that are lost, not holding authority over them as their leader. Everyone is called to share the gospel.)
Got Questions: “In this case, Paul seems to be saying that the ekklesia—the body of believers, “the church”—is the structure that holds up and holds forth the gospel to the world. For that reason, the conduct of the body and its selection of leaders is critically important.”
“So, in 1 Timothy 3:15 Paul is NOT referring to “the church” as the source of truth or the creator of truth. He’s saying “the church” is what holds up and holds firm the truth in the world.”
“The church,” that is, the entire population of Christian believers, bears the earthly responsibility of holding up the truth of the gospel. The ultimate basis of that truth is Christ, not the proclamations or infallibility of members of that body. Paul is calling on believers to care for the structure that “supports” or “props up” our message to the world. First Timothy 3:15 cannot be taken to mean that the church itself is the source or standard for truth.”
(So, I learn here that we as Christians in the family of God are to keep truth no matter where we are and what we are doing. We hold to the truth, “prop up” the truth to the world.
Our Christian conduct is to be consistent with who we are and whose name we bare no matter if we are in church service in our church or a conference an hour away or if we are at a family reunion or grocery shopping we are to demonstrate the pillars and foundation of truth. We are the family of God at all times not just “in” church.)
Click on the link below for the meaning of the verse.
*”‘The household of God‘ refers to all who have been saved by grace through faith in Christ”
*”The household of God are the believers who make up the Body of Christ”
*”The household of God is the men and women who are positioned in Christ”
John MacArthur: He is talking on 1 Timothy 3:15~ “if I delay, you may know how one ought to behave in the household of God, which is the church of the living God, a pillar and buttress of the truth.”
“The word “house,” look at that in verse 15, is Oikos. It could be translated “house,” because it can refer to the building itself. But here it is best to understand it as “household.” It is not speaking of a building; it is speaking of a family. We take it that way because it’s used three other times in the chapter; and in each case, it’s used that way.”
“In verse 4, “one that rules well his own house” doesn’t mean he rules the mud and the brick and whatever it was that made the house, it doesn’t mean that. It means he rules the people in the house in the substance of the family. Verse 5, the same word is used again, “rule his own house,” and it refers to his household, his people, his possessions. In verse 12, it is used again of the deacon who rules their children – who rule their children and their own houses. And again, it’s the idea of the house as a household, as a family, as a group of people. Second Timothy 1:16, Titus 1:11 uses the same word in the same way.”
“So, we can assume then, basically, pretty safely, that Paul uses Oikos, not in the metaphor of a building here, but the metaphor of a family. And what he is saying is, “You need to know how to behave yourself as a member of the household of God. You belong to the divine family, and that places upon you a tremendous responsibility for conduct when you look at yourself as belonging to God.” These things are for Timothy, but not just for Timothy. That’s why chapter 4:11 says, “These things, Timothy, you are to command and to teach.”
“So the whole epistle then is instruction on how to behave as the family of God: proper Christian behavior in the family. And order starts with the leadership, that’s why he specifically identifies Timothy. Verses 14 to 16 are written like a personal note to Timothy, just like verses 18 to 20 in chapter 1 were. He ended the first section, chapter 1 discussion of the false teaching, with a personal word to Timothy. He ends the second section, chapters 2 and 3, with another personal word to Timothy, calling Timothy to accountability to follow through on what he has just instructed. And first of all, he says, “You have to know how to conduct yourself so that everyone else can know how to conduct themselves in the matter of living in the family of God.”
“Now that puts Christian conduct and Christian behavior at a high level, doesn’t it? We are called to this kind of behavior to be consistent with who we are. You remember Ephesians 5:1 says, “Walk in love as dear children of God.” We are dear children of God, and so we are to walk as Christ who is God walked, and He walked in love. We are to behave in a way consistent with our family identification.”
“The second thing he says, and this is so interesting, verse 15, we are told how it is necessary to behave oneself in the household of God, and then it says, “which is” – and I want to give you the proper Greek translation – “the living God’s church,” – and I translate it that way for a better emphasis consistent with the text – “the living God’s church.” There is not a definite article with the church, so “the church of the living God” adds a word. But it is the living God’s church. And any time the article is not there, we look for stress on the character or nature of something. And so, it is a church which by nature is the living God’s church. We are then, note this, not only the household of God, but we are the living God’s church. We are His family. We are His assembly. Ekklēsia means His group of called-out ones.”
(We are His assembly! This teaches us that women are not to have “spiritual authority” over men in church publicly or anywhere in the gathering body of believers. Not just in your church are women not to have spiritual authority over a man but also in other settings of religious worship and teachings as well.
A public religious conference with a mixed audience holds the same rules because we are “in the family of the living God” all the days of our lives everywhere we go.
If a woman is advertising to the public that she is holding a Bible study or religious assembly in a park or large hotel. The people that attend go to study her book or learn the Word of God from her then she has placed herself as an authority to the gathering body of believers)
Also, from MacArthur:
“And somebody else says, “Well, what about missions? What about missions? We need missionaries, what would we do without women missionaries?” God bless women missionaries, but I don’t think women being on the mission field necessarily have the right to violate the Word of God. Paul was a missionary. He had a lot of missionaries traveling with him. And if ever there was a great need for the expanding church to have leadership, it was then, and the pragmatic argument, if it ever was valid would have been valid there, and Paul would have thought, “Well, we don’t have many men but a great host of women keep coming to faith, so maybe we’ll just kind of stick those women in there till we get some men. Wouldn’t be bad to have a few women teachers and preachers and elders.” But no, I mean, look at it this way, God wrote on a wall a message to Belshazzar, but it isn’t His pattern to use walls. God doesn’t do that. God doesn’t violate His principles for expediency’s sake. People say, “What about the shortage of men?” Well if there’s a shortage of men, Jesus gave us the answer, “Pray the Lord of the harvest to send forth,” what? “Laborers into His harvest.”
“Elisabeth Elliot, who most of us know as a marvelous instrument of God in the expansion of the Kingdom, the wonderful wife of the martyred Jim Elliot. After the massacre of her husband and the several other missionaries in Ecuador, she was the only biblically trained person left who could speak the Auca language, the only one left. But so convinced was Elizabeth Elliot in her heart that she could not violate the Word of God that she took one of the Auca men and weekly taught that man a sermon so that he could preach it in the church on the Lord ’s Day. Much like Aquila and Priscilla, she would not step up to the preaching but she did not mind instructing the preacher.”
“The word ‘teach’, “διδάσκω,” according to Thomas Schreiner, has in mind the public teaching and involves the authoritative transmission of tradition about Christ and the Scriptures (1 Cor. 12:28-29; Eph. 4:11; 1 Tim. 2:7; 2 Tim. 3:16; James 3:1). “
“While women are permitted to discuss biblical theology in a mixed group setting such as a Sunday school class, women teaching children or other women (Titus 2), or in a private setting such as with Apollos’ instruction that was gleaned from meeting with Priscilla and Aquila—biblical teaching, when among the church as a whole or a mixed audience should be led by men. It seems clear that Paul was addressing an issue that was taking place in the life of the church and needed to be corrected.”
“When it comes to teaching men in our present day, we have the conference culture that often stretches these complementarian boundaries. This is a dangerous practice since conferences are designed to strengthen the church and to in many ways model what the local church should be promoting in their local assemblies—ie., expository preaching, sound biblical theology, and other important, if not essential, practices. Therefore, to have women stand and open the Bible and teach a group of men in a conference setting is not beneficial to the Church represented in the conference from many different local churches. Such stretching of the boundaries is a common practice in our day and we should be cautious when we see women teachers invited to speak to a mixed audience.”
“The last thing that we should do in the local church is to discourage women who have the gift of teaching to suppress their gifts. They should labor to teach, explain, and expound the meaning of the Bible on an ongoing basis in the life of the church and the context of religious conference settings—but there are still boundaries to observe in the process. The Church of Jesus Christ needs faithful women who bloom with the glory of God’s design for women and teach, instruct, and make disciples. Paul never suggested that women should not teach, but that they should merely refrain from teaching men and having authority over them.”
(This discusses the practice of women teaching scriptures in conferences. Known today as the conference culture women think it’s completely fine to preach the message to a mixed audience because they are officially not in a church building. Again it’s not the building that’s the church, it’s the people.
But as was pointed out in the write-up and worth repeating is that in Christian conferences it should be understood that the conferences are done to strengthen the church and should display what that local church encourages in the gathering of believers. No matter where we are, we need to behave as believers and stand on the truth in and outside the church. We don’t stop being Christian the minute we leave the church building.
My children don’t stop being my children when they leave our house. They are always my children no matter where they are. We are family always and they should behave in ways that represent who they are in our family. Believers are the family of God at all times. )
Bible study tools:
“Church” is the translation of the Greek term ekklesia, and is used in the New Testament to identify the community of believers in Jesus Christ. It means “assembly,” “congregation,” or “meeting.” A similar term was used in the Old Testament referring to experiences such as “the day of the assembly,” “the Lord’s congregation,” or “meeting before the Lord.”
“Thus, when Jesus declares: “I will build my church” (Mt 16:18), it did not come as something unfamiliar to the common listener. Shortly after, in the New Testament, the word is confined strictly to refer to the congregation of believers in Jesus Christ.”
“It is worth mentioning that in the New Testament, no synagogue, temple, chapel, tabernacle, building, or any other meeting place was ever called a “church.” The term always referred to the Christian assembly and, in the New Testament, it was used for both the local community of believers and the overall collection of Christians.”
(So, from the link above if we use the words they give as a church in a sentence we will understand what God is meaning. “Church” literally means “assembly,” “congregation,” or “meeting.”
Women are not to preach or teach in the “church”…women are not to preach or teach in “assemblies”…women are not to preach or teach in “congregations”…women are not to preach or teach in “meetings”. It wasn’t talking about a building or a location but the group of people that was being preached to. Women cannot preach as the authority of a conference or of an assembly of people or a meeting of believing people. Women shouldn’t even be included as a lineup of a group of preachers advertised for a Christian seminar to give a message from the Word of God. They will still be standing in authority over men but in this case, it’s just standing in authority with other men. They are still violating God’s Word.)
Susan Heck says: “It has nothing to do with culture but with the order of creation.”, “There is nothing wrong with a man learning from a woman but not in the local assembly.”
1 Timothy 2:8-15~ Therefore I want the men everywhere to pray, lifting holy hands without anger or disputing. I also want the women to dress modestly, with decency and propriety, adorning themselves, not with elaborate hairstyles or gold or pearls or expensive clothes, but with good deeds, appropriate for women who profess to worship God. A woman should learn in quietness and full submission. I do notpermit a woman to teach or to assume authority over a man; she must be quiet. For Adam was formed first, then Eve. And Adam was not the one deceived; it was the woman who was deceived and became a sinner. But women will be saved through childbearing—if they continue in faith, love, and holiness with propriety.
1 Corinthians 11:3~ But I want you to realize that the head of every man is Christ, and the head of the woman is man, and the head of Christ is God.
1 Corinthians 11:7-9~ For a man ought not to cover his head since he is the image and glory of God, but woman is the glory of man. For man was not made from woman, but woman from man. Neither was man created for woman, but woman for man.
2 Corinthians 11:3~ But I am afraid that as the serpent deceived Eve by his cunning, your thoughts will be led astray from a sincere and pure devotion to Christ.
(These verses make it very, very clear in why women are not to preach in public assemblies to a mixed audience. Susan Heck points out so many verses in her woman’s study that helps us women understand why a woman is not the head, she is not the authority, and she is not the master of men when it comes to preaching inside or outside the church.)
“From the very beginning, women fulfilled a vital role in the Christian church (Acts 1:12–14; 9:36–42; 16:13–15; 17:1–4, 10–12; 18:1–2, 18, 24–28; Rom. 16; 1 Cor. 16:19; 2 Tim. 1:5; 4:19), but not one of leadership. The apostles were all men; the chief missionary activity was done by men; the writing of the New Testament was the work of men, and leadership in the churches was entrusted to men.”
“Although the Apostle Paul respected women and worked side by side with them for the furtherance of the gospel (Rom. 16; Phil. 4:3), he appointed no female elders or pastors. In his letters, he urged that men were to be the leaders in the church and that women were not to teach or exercise authority over men (1 Tim. 2:12). Therefore, although women are spiritual equals with men and the ministry of women is essential to the body of Christ, women are excluded from leadership over men in the church.”
(It’s not hard to understand that in the Bible men are to be the leaders in the church, but also the leaders of their household at all times no matter where they were and that women were not to teach or exercise authority over men (1 Tim. 2:12). )
May this give women great peace about their role and allow them to learn what God has designed us to do. It’s a great responsibility to be the leader of the body of believers and we as women can be thankful, we are not carrying that huge responsibility.