September 17, 2017

I Also Send You – Don R. Patton

Posted in Uncategorized at 5:00 am by sranderson0103

By Don R. Patton

“So when it was evening on that day, the first day of the week, and when the doors were shut where the disciples were, for fear of the Jews, Jesus came and stood in their midst and said to them, ‘Peace be with you.’ And when He had said this, He showed them both His hands and His side. The disciples then rejoiced when they saw the Lord. So Jesus said to them again, ‘Peace be with you; as the Father has sent Me, I also send you.’” (John 20:19-21)

The apostles had been closely associated with Jesus throughout the years of His teaching. They heard what He taught and eventually came to understand much of it. They participated in His work of teaching and trying to influence their Jewish brethren to follow God’s will in their lives. “[T]hey left everything and followed Him,” (Luke 5:11).

They had witnessed all kinds of reactions; ridicule, elaborate determined attempts to refute and undermine His work by the most influential among the Jews, as well as acceptance and adoration. They had seen a close trusted friend overcome by greed and betray Jesus into the hands of murders. They watched the dominating Roman army arrest Him. They were terrified and fled. They saw Him delivered to a spineless leader who yielded to the hatred and envy of their hypocritical religious leaders. They saw His agony, His horrible death and with it they saw the defeat of all their efforts, the end of their goals, the excitement and glory long anticipated.

Days later, most of them had come together “because they were afraid of the Jewish leaders.” (John 20:19 NET). They weren’t just disheartened; they had good reason to think they would die. The ones who killed Jesus would likely try to stamp out His following.

I doubt that we can realistically imagine what went on in their disillusioned, fear filled minds when “Jesus came and stood in their midst…an showed them both His hands and His side…” (John 20:19). Scripture often expresses the most overwhelming ideas with stunning understatement. “The disciples rejoiced when they saw the Lord,” (John 20:20).

Now, the effectiveness of His message became absolute. His claim to be the Son of God is true. He has the authority to comfort, reassure and redirect, absolutely. Now, we can appreciate the power of the force behind His words, “as the Father has sent Me, I also send you.”

Satan had done his worst and failed. Yes, he will come after you, but, “so what?” His best efforts are pitiful, compared to God’s overpowering providence now, and certainly in light of eternity. “The worst thing Satan ever did is the best thing that ever happened to us.”

You know better than to be afraid. You know that I know what I’m talking about. My peace and my Holy Spirit will guide you with infinite wisdom, assuring your ultimate victory.

“So Jesus said to them again, ‘Peace be with you; as the Father has sent Me, I also send you.’ 22 And when He had said this, He breathed on them and said to them, “’Receive the Holy Spirit,’” (John 20:21-22).

The one proved to be God’s son said to His apostles, “I also send you.” Then, guided by the Holy Spirit, they also have sent us.

“The things which you have heard from me in the presence of many witnesses, entrust these to faithful men who will be able to teach others also.” (II Timothy 2:2)

Hardship, persecution? Sure. But, following the example of the one who endured much more and was triumphant, realize you also have been sent on a divine mission. Just like Jesus and those He sent, we also expect persecution, peace, power, and victory.

Adapted from an article by John Morris

 

 

Advertisements

September 10, 2017

The Dependable Creationist Forecaster – Don R. Patton

Posted in Uncategorized at 5:00 am by sranderson0103

This is being written as hurricane Irma is bearing down on many dear friends, directly in its path. Predictions indicate that by the time this article will be read by most, Florida will be being pummeled by fierce winds of over one hundred miles per hour. The highways are now packed with fleeing Floridians. We are told that six million people are evacuating.

Right now, while this impending disaster is threating, perhaps we are in a position to appreciate and relate to a “difficult to imagine” tragedy about which Jesus urgently warned His disciples, over two thousand years ago. He instructed them to look for specific “signs” that were to trigger their urgent evacuation from Jerusalem. History records the horrible reality that precisely fulfilled Jesus’ forecast. In September of A.D.70 the two year siege of Jerusalem began, resulting in the agonizing deaths of about two million residents of Jerusalem. Those who listened and heeded Jesus’ forecast, evacuated. They escaped the horrors of the siege, while their friends perished.

“…those who are in Judea must flee to the mountains. 15 “The one who is on the housetop must not go down, or go in to get anything out of his house; 16 and the one who is in the field must not turn back to get his coat. 17 “But woe to those who are pregnant and to those who are nursing babies in those days! 18 “But pray that it may not happen in the winter. 19 “For those days will be a time of tribulation such as has not occurred since the beginning of the creation which God created until now, and never will.” (Mark 13:14-19)

The supernatural forecast of Jesus was one of many demonstrations of the validity of His claims, which including not only being able to speak from God but to be the divine Son of God.

Consider that in this supernatural forecast, the Son of God referred to “the beginning of the creation which God created,” affirming the Biblical doctrine of supernatural, sudden creation. He ought to know. He created.

“…His beloved Son, in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins. …For by Him all things were created, both in the heavens and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities — all things have been created through Him and for Him. He is before all things, and in Him all things hold together.” (Col.1:13-17)

In the pagan world of His day, evolutionism was dominant. The Epicureans were atheistic evolutionists. The Stoics, Gnostics, Platonists, and others were pantheistic evolutionists. Few of the philosophers of His day believed in a God who created all things, including even the universe itself.

But Jesus was a creationist, and the much maligned “scientific creationists” of today are following His example and teaching. He even believed in recent creation, for He said (speaking of Adam and Eve) that “from the beginning of the creation God made them male and female” (Mark 10:6). Most pagans believed in an eternal cosmos, but Jesus said it had a beginning, and that man and woman were a part of that beginning creation.

He also believed that the so called “two accounts” of creation (Genesis 1 and 2) were complimentary, not contradictory, for He quoted from both in the same context.

“Have you not read that He who created them from the beginning MADE THEM MALE AND FEMALE, [from Genesis 1], and said, ‘FOR THIS REASON A MAN SHALL LEAVE HIS FATHER AND MOTHER AND BE JOINED TO HIS WIFE, AND THE TWO SHALL BECOME ONE FLESH’?” (from Genesis 2)(Matthew 19:4–6).

Jesus explicitly taught that Genesis is God-written real history, including the murder of Abel (Luke 11:51), Noah’s ark and flood (Matthew 24:37-39; Luke 1726-37), Abraham’s life (John 8:56-58), the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah (Matthew 10:15), including the stern warning, “Remember Lot’s wife” (Luke 17:28-32).

Jesus said, “Scripture cannot be broken” (John 10:35). Jesus believed that what Scripture says is what God says. This same dependable forecaster predicts another coming disaster for some, the judgment.

“Then He will also say to those on His left, ‘Depart from Me, accursed ones, into the eternal fire which has been prepared for the devil and his angels;… “These will go away into eternal punishment…” (Matthew 25:41, 46)

That day is coming and evacuation won’t help. There will be no escape. Submission now is the solution.

 

 

September 3, 2017

Great Swelling Words – Don R. Patton

Posted in Uncategorized at 6:00 am by sranderson0103

Most Bible students understand that God brought the destroying judgment of the flood on His created world because He, “…saw that the wickedness of man was great on the earth, and that every intent of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually,” (Genesis 6:5). Righteous Enoch saw this disastrous downward trend. He was “in the seventh generation from Adam,” (Jude 14), and was Noah’s great-grandfather, (Genesis 5:21-29). Enoch courageously spoke out against the evil conduct of his day and warned that the Lord was coming, “to execute judgment upon all, and to convict all the ungodly of all their ungodly deeds which they have done in an ungodly way, and of all the harsh things which ungodly sinners have spoken against Him.” (Jude 15).

Consider his description of those who influenced that world.

“These are grumblers, complainers, walking according to their own lusts; and they mouth great swelling words, flattering people to gain advantage,” (Jude 16 NKJV).

The New English Version renders his description as follows: “These people are grumblers and fault-finders who go wherever their desires lead them, and they give bombastic speeches, enchanting folks for their own gain.” (Jude 16 NET)

The bolded words above are translated from the Greek word, ὑπέρογκος, which is defined: “(…‘of excessive size, puffed up, swollen’) also haughty, pompous, bombastic…” BDAG.

Have you ever listened to “swollen” words? This picturesque term accurately describes words often heard from opponents of the truth. I have watched audiences bombarded by great swelling, bombastic words, words used with dogged, vicious determination to destroy truth. Unfortunately, the method very effectively sways many; not evidence or reason, but puffed up, swollen, haughty, pompous, bombastic lies. It works with too many.

I am reminded of the show put on before the kings of Israel and Judah. A host of 400 prophets loyal to Ahab unanimously opposed the warning of God’s prophet Micaiah.

“…all the prophets were prophesying before them. Then Zedekiah the son of Chenaanah made horns of iron for himself and said, ‘Thus says the LORD, ‘With these you will gore the Arameans until they are consumed.’” All the prophets were prophesying thus, saying, ‘Go…” (I Kings 22:10-12)

The force of these intimidating, swollen, pompous, bombastic lies was brought to bear on Micaiah.

“Behold now, the words of the prophets are uniformly favorable to the king. Please let your word be like the word of one of them, and speak favorably. But Micaiah said, ‘As the LORD lives, what the LORD says to me, that I shall speak.’” (I Kings 22:13-14)

How should we respond to “great swelling words”? Micaiah shows us how.

False teachers may sound very intellectual. Their word and demeanor may be exceptionally charismatic. They are often skilled in the use of the tools of their trade.

“By covetousness they will exploit you with deceptive words;” (II Peter 2:3)

“While they promise them liberty, they themselves are slaves of corruption;” (I Peter 2:19).

“they mouth great swelling words, flattering people to gain advantage” (Jude 16),

Yes, they sound impressive, but it is a deadly mistake to follow them. We are commanded to test, to make sure the words taught, no matter how sweet the sound, are words of truth.

“Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits, whether they are of God; because many false prophets have gone out into the world …He who knows God hears us; he who is not of God does not hear us. By this we know the spirit of truth and the spirit of error,” (I John 4:1, 6).

August 27, 2017

God Numbers Everything – Don R. Patton

Posted in Uncategorized at 6:00 am by sranderson0103

By Don R. Patton

“Does He not see my ways And number all my steps?” (Job 31:4)

I always found math interesting but was going to preach and foolishly considered it irrelevant. When eventually I began to focus on a science education, I found myself far behind and working hard to catch up. Once I did I found a fascinating new world.

I began to appreciate that God is the ultimate source of all mathematical concepts. All the intricacies of structure and process of His fascinating ordered cosmos are capable of being described mathematically, and it a critical goal of science to do just that. This astoundingly precise intelligibility of the universe inevitably points to a marvelous intelligence as its Creator.

We thought we had a pretty good rough estimate of the number of stars that exist in the heavens. Then, a report in the Astrophysical Journal, last October, demonstrated that our arrogant guesstimate was ridiculously silly.

“The ‘observable’ universe contains 10 to 20 times as many galaxies than previous estimates. That raises the total to somewhere between one and two trillion galaxies, which is up from the previous best estimate of 100 billion galaxies. Consequently, this means we also have to update the number of stars in the observable universe, which now numbers around 700 sextillion (that’s a 7 with 23 zeros behind it, or 700 thousand billion billion).”

Then, with a little more humility they add…

“The researchers say there must be a further 90 percent of galaxies in the observable universe that are too dim and far away for us to see using current telescopes.”

If that doesn’t boggle your mind, you are un-boggleable. But, while you are trying to get your mind around that, remember that God has counted and identified each one!

“He counts the number of the stars; He gives names to all of them. Great is our Lord and abundant in strength; His understanding is infinite,” (Psalm 147:4-5).

We wonder, “Why such an unfathomably vast creation?” David explains that the heavens are designed to give us a glimmer of insight into His glory.

“The heavens are telling of the glory of God; And their expanse is declaring the work of His hands. Day to day pours forth speech, And night to night reveals knowledge,” (Psalms 19:1-2).

Jesus makes a similar point from the opposite direction:

“…the host of heaven cannot be counted and the sand of the sea cannot be measured,…” (Jeremiah 22:33).

God has also created… “an innumerable company of angels” (Hebrews 12:22 NKJV).

The shepherd, David, spent a lot of time looking at the heavens. He saw and comprehended more than the foolish, atheistic astronomers with multimillion dollar telescopes.

“Many, O LORD my God, are the wonders which You have done, And Your thoughts toward us; There is none to compare with You. If I would declare and speak of them, They would be too numerous to count.” (Psalm 40:5).

Job’s faith expresses the practical application of these concepts.

“Does He not see my ways And number all my steps?” (Job 31:4)

If He has numbered each hair on our heads, and counted every star, we can be certain He numbers our steps along the way, and guides them all.

“The steps of a man are established by the LORD, And He delights in his way.” (Psalms 37:23).

Adapted from an article by Henry Morris

 

August 20, 2017

Our Relentless Enemy – Don R. Patton

Posted in Uncategorized at 6:00 am by sranderson0103

“The LORD said to Satan, “Where have you come from?” And Satan answered the LORD, “From roving about on the earth, and from walking back and forth across it.” (Job 1:7 NET)

Would you like to hear a conversation between God and the devil? What would they have to say to each other? Bible students know all about at least one such conversation. The book of Job records it and reveals an amazing picture of Satan at work. It illustrates the fact that the devil opposes God and His work at every opportunity. It depicts Satan’s constant, relentless determined effort to obstruct and defeat. It indicates that he never rests.

The Devil is not a divine, like God. He is super-human, as angels are; a finite (though very powerful and brilliant) created being. To accomplish his goal, therefore, he persistently keeps going from place to place, back and forth, working deception after deception, bringing everyone he can under His influence.

“Be sober and alert. Your enemy the devil, like a roaring lion, is on the prowl looking for someone to devour.” (I Peter 5:8 NET)

He does his best work undercover. “…Satan disguises himself as an angel of light.” (II Cor.11: 14). The same is true of the demons who have followed the devil in his rebellion against God, the ones James describes, who know the truth about Christ. “…the demons also believe, and shudder,” (James 2:10). These deceptive demons influence men to serve as “deceitful workers” (II Cor.11:13). Paul says they are “his servants,” who “disguise themselves as servants of righteousness.”

Sadly, many foolishly think Satan and his servants have laid down and gone to sleep or have forgotten their most effective tactics, such as deceitful disguises, appearing to be servants of righteousness, and the relentless drumbeat of claims about sincerity. Far too many smugly insist on accepting all religions. Satan is thrilled that so many have determined to be “Pluralistic” and tolerant of the “blasphemy by those who say they are Jews and are not, but are a synagogue of Satan,” (Revelation 2:9); “those of the synagogue of Satan, who say that they are Jews and are not, but lie…” (Revelation 3:9).

John knows better and warns of the terrible danger of those who don’t teach the truth.

“Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, because many false prophets have gone out into the world.” (I John 4:2).

John commands that we test and specifies the “how to.”

“We are from God; he who knows God listens to us; he who is not from God does not listen to us. By this we know the spirit of truth and the spirit of error.” (I John 4:6).

By inspiration, John says we can know truth from error. Does it conform to what God has revealed or not. If the word contradicts, look out. The roaring lion has his mouth open. and his servants are “on the prowl,” “roving about on the earth…walking back and forth across it.” Ironically, their continual, relentless conduct is like the eternal state of those who yield to the deceit. “…they have no rest day and night…” (Revelation 14:11).

True rest is found only in Christ, with His forgiveness, cleansing, and guidance:

“Come to Me, all who are weary and heavy-laden, and I will give you rest. “Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and YOU WILL FIND REST FOR YOUR SOULS.” (Matthew 11:28-29).

Adapted from an article by Henry Morris

 

August 13, 2017

Word of His Grace – Don R. Patton

Posted in Uncategorized at 6:00 am by sranderson0103

“And now I commend you to God and to the word of His grace, which is able to build you up and to give you the inheritance among all those who are sanctified.” (Acts 20:32)

Paul was leaving his beloved brothers in the faith, likely never to see them again. He would not be there to chase away the wolves, but they would not be left without protection.

God would always be with them. Paul uses the same expression Jesus used on the cross when He placed His spirit into His Fathers hands. To “commend” to God is to place them into His care and keeping.

And, they had God’s Word. Was that enough? If they would fill themselves with it, they would be strong. It had the power to protect them, to strengthen them, to build them up, to guarantee their inheritance, to secure their place among all those who are sanctified, set apart for God’s service. Wow! Yes, that is enough, “that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work.” (II Timothy 3:17).

Paul had done all he could do. Now they would be able to stand on their own, by the power of God administered through the “word of His grace.”

It is interesting and instructive to consider the expressions the Holy Spirit uses to describe the crucial role and the powers of God’s word.

Jesus was the expression of the will of God and He, Himself, is called “the Word of life (I John 1:1).

Christians at Philippi were told that they, themselves, “appear as lights in the world, holding fast the word of life,” (Philippians 2:15-16).

Jesus explains the role of Scripture in the parable of the sower, describing it as theword of the kingdom,(Matthew 13:19).

Paul speaks of the nearness of God’s Word when he called it, theword of faith, which we preach,” (Romans 10:8).

Paul established the fact that Christians today are the “children of promise,” by means of theword of promise, (Romans 9:9).

Paul speaks of the marvelous work of God, reconciling the world to Himself,” which our Calvinistic friends attribute to the direct operation of the Holy Spirit, relegating the Word to relative irrelevance. Paul indicates it accomplished by means of the “word of reconciliation” (II Corinthians 5:19).

Similarly, asserting the role of “the word of truth,” in salvation, he equates it with “the gospel of your salvation;” (Ephesians 1:13).

The writer of Hebrews referred to the admonitions of his inspired epistle as the “word of exhortation,” (Hebrews 13:22).

The Lord Jesus described the faithful church at Philadelphia as those who had “kept My word, and have not denied My name.” He promised them “Because you have kept the word of My perseverance, I also will keep you from the hour of testing,” (Revelation 3:10).

The metaphor of our text is also found when Paul was “speaking boldly with reliance upon the Lord, who was testifying to the word of His grace, granting that signs and wonders be done by their hands.” (Acts 14:3).

Grace is the grand theme of the New Testament. It’s great significance warped the pendulum thinking of Calvin and Luther, who swung from the Catholic error of salvation by works, all the way past the truth to salvation without responsible accountability to conditions specified in the Word. Would that their followers, and all Christians today, learn to appreciate the great significance, the central, primary role of “the word of His grace.”

 

 

 

July 30, 2017

A Fiery Serpent – Don R. Patton

Posted in Uncategorized at 5:00 am by sranderson0103

“Then the LORD said to Moses, “Make a fiery serpent, and set it on a standard; and it shall come about, that everyone who is bitten, when he looks at it, he will live.” (Numbers 21:8)

“And Jehovah saith unto Moses, ‘Make for thee a burning [serpent],…” (Numbers 21:8, Young’s Literal Translation)

The Hebrew word translated “fiery serpent” ( שָׂרָ֔ף) (seraph), according to Brown Driver Briggs Hebrew and English Lexicon, fundamentally means “burn.” It is used in a wide variety of ways; making bricks, destroying houses and chariots. It is never used for burnt offerings but is used of burning a red heifer (to produce ashes for purification). Under Roman numeral I, we read, “fiery serpent, usu. venomous; a flying serpent, or dragon.” Roman numeral II lists the plural form and defines: “seraphim — in OT. majestic beings with six wings, and human hands and voices, …”

So, now we know what Moses put on the pole??? Wow. Bible study is not always easy. There are several good words for “snake” in the Old Testament besides or in addition to this one. I have to wonder if the prejudice produced by evolutionists against dinosaurs, close-mindedly rejects the possibility of a fire-breathing dragon (which we see depicted only hundreds of years ago in sculptures and paintings around the world).

Proud Job is humbled by a consideration or God’s wondrous creation, the Leviathan in Job 41:21-34.

…Will you be laid low even at the sight of him? …“Who can open the doors of his face? Around his teeth there is terror. “His strong scales are his pride,… ““When he raises himself up, the mighty fear; Because of the crashing they are bewildered. The sword that reaches him cannot avail, Nor the spear, the dart or the javelin. “He regards iron as straw, Bronze as rotten wood. …“Nothing on earth is like him, One made without fear. “He looks on everything that is high; He is king over all the sons of pride.””

Then we read…

Out of his mouth go burning torches; Sparks of fire leap forth. “Out of his nostrils smoke goes forth…”

Isaiah appears to speak of a similar phenomenon.

“…for out of the serpent’s root shall come forth an adder, and his fruit shall be a fiery flying serpent.” (Isaiah 14:29)

“The burden of the beasts of the South. Through the land of trouble and anguish, from whence come the lioness and the lion, the viper and fiery flying serpent,…” (Isaiah 30:6)

So what afflicted the Israelites in the wilderness and what did Moses put on the standard? I’m not sure, but it would certainly ramp up interest in the Biblical account if it referred to a fire-breathing dragon (dinosaur). If it refers only to poisonous serpents, it still is an incredible story, but…it was confirmed by none other than the Lord Jesus Himself:

“As Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of Man be lifted up; so that whoever believes will in Him have eternal life.” (John 3:14-15)

A plague of threatening creatures had terrorized the camp of Israel, sent as a divine judgment because of their complaints and ingratitude, and many people had died. When they confessed their sin and Moses prayed for their deliverance, God in His grace prescribed this unique remedy.

There is, of course, no naturalistic process that can heal a poisonous bite merely by a look. Neither, of course, is there a naturalistic explanation for the salvation of a sin-poisoned soul merely by looking with faith upon the crucified Son of man. Both are mighty miracles, with the first being beautifully designed by God to be a prophetic foreshadowing of the other.

The symbolism is striking. The brass image impaled on the pole represented slain creatures, but it also spoke of “that old serpent, which is the Devil, and Satan,” eventually cast forever into the lake of fire (Revelation 20:2, 10).

The symbols foreshadow and help communicate God’s eternal plan, the real deliverance which required a real Christ to die on a real cross.

“… even so must the Son of Man be lifted up; so that whoever believes will in Him have eternal life.” (John 3:14-15)

(Adapted from an article by Henry Morris)

 

 

 

July 23, 2017

Nullifying The Word – Don R. Patton

Posted in Uncategorized at 5:00 am by sranderson0103

“Thus you nullify the word of God by your tradition that you have handed down. And you do many things like this.” (Mark 7:13 NET)

“…You have nullified the word of God on account of your tradition.” (Matthew 15:6 NET).

The original Greek word ἀκυρόω,” translated “nullify” in the above verse, is defined by Thayer’s lexicon to mean, “ to render void, deprive of force and authority,…”

Louw & Nida’s Greek lexicon give the following definition.

“to refuse to recognize the force or power of something — ‘to invalidate the authority of, to reject, to disregard.’ … In both Mt 15:6 and Mk 7:13 the emphasis is upon the fact that people had regarded traditions as having greater authority than the word of God.”

Jesus uttered these sharp words of rebuke to the scribes and Pharisees, men who professed great loyalty and respect for God’s Word. Jesus taught that their claim of respect was hypocritical when they ignored the simple, straightforward teaching of Scripture with numerous “interpretations” which enabled them to “nullify” the ideas that they just “knew” could not be true.

Comments from Baker’s Exegetical Commentary may help us understand the Jewish tradition that Jesus condemns.

“…it had come to refer to items removed from common use and dedicated to God, including funds pledged to the temple… Evidently, such funds were not transferable to others, such as one’s parents, but were still available to the one who pledged them. One could claim inability to meet a charitable obligation because one’s resources had already been pledged to God, when in fact no money had yet changed hands. In Matt. 15:4–5 Jesus juxtaposes God’s word and human traditions and concludes in 15:6 that the human traditions have cancelled or rendered void God’s word. Jesus twice refers to the tradition as “your” tradition (15:3, 6). He does not view these traditions as having authority on a par with the written Torah.”

When the Lord accepted and taught exactly what the Scriptures said, He found himself condemned by the dominant forces of religion of that day. Those who follow Jesus’s example today should not be surprised to find themselves in the same situation.

On another occasion, Jesus responded to slanderous accusations with an argument based on David’s poetry in Psalm 82. He called the quotation from the Psalms “Law” and hammered his conclusion home with the forceful statement, “the scripture cannot be broken” (John 10:5). Jesus thought because Scripture said it, that should be the end of the matter. The Son of God taught that every word of God’s revelation was true and authoritative.

Today’s skeptics (poor Bible scholars) stumble foolishly over apparent contradictions in the Bible, evolutionists ridicule its historical account of creation, and self-willed sinners determine to wriggle around its moral constraints, often denying what it plainly says, but the Son of God says, “the Scripture cannot be broken.

They say, “You are not my judge.” Jesus said, “The one who rejects me and does not accept my words has a judge; the word I have spoken will judge him at the last day.” (John 12:48 NET)

Jesus’ frequent quotations from the Scriptures indicate complete confidence in and conviction that this was the Word of God. His own words in following passages demonstrate.

“For just like the days of Noah were, so the coming of the Son of Man will be. For in those days before the flood…” (Matthew 24:37 NET)

“For just as Jonah was in the belly of the huge fish for three days and three nights, so the Son of Man will be in the heart of the earth for three days and three nights. The people of Nineveh will stand up at the judgment with this generation and condemn it, because they repented when Jonah preached to them–and now, something greater than Jonah is here!” (Matthew 12:40-41 NET)

“He answered, ‘Have you not read that from the beginning the Creator made them male and female,’” (Matthew 19:4)

Jesus, Himself is the living Word of God, and we dare not tamper with the written Word inspired by the Holy Spirit. The Son of God never questioned their accuracy, and neither should we.

Nevertheless, many modern “Christian” intellectuals are following in the example of the Pharisees, rather than that of Christ, just as they did in Peter’s day.

the ignorant and unstable twist to their own destruction, as they also do to the rest of the scriptures.” (II Peter 3:16).

God has spoken plainly in His Word. It is our responsibility to believe and do just what He says.

Adapted from an article by Henry Morris

 

 

 

July 16, 2017

His Holy Arm – Don R. Patton

Posted in Uncategorized at 5:00 am by sranderson0103

The LORD has bared His holy arm In the sight of all the nations, That all the ends of the earth may see The salvation of our God.” (Isaiah 52:10)

Reference is often made in the Bible to the human arm in order to symbolize spiritual strength or power. The first instance is in Jacob’s dying prophecy concerning his cherished son Joseph: “But his bow remained firm, And his arms were agile, From the hands of the Mighty One of Jacob,…” (Genesis 49:24). The source of strength for children of God is in their father, the almighty God, so it is not surprising to find at least forty biblical references to the Lord’s powerful “arm” or “arms.” In the passage quoted above, Isaiah promises that when God “bares his arm” for His great work, whether freeing from the bondage of Egypt, or the oppression of the Babylonians, the whole world will see His salvation. Contrary to the common misconception about approved faith, it is not blind. Biblical faith is the result of an honest evaluation of the facts. There is always abundant, sufficient evidence demonstrated by God so that unbelievers are inexcusable.

“When Israel saw the great power which the LORD had used against the Egyptians, the people feared the LORD, and they believed in the LORD and in His servant Moses.” (Exodus 14:31)

“For the Scripture says to Pharaoh, “FOR THIS VERY PURPOSE I RAISED YOU UP, TO DEMONSTRATE MY POWER IN YOU, AND THAT MY NAME MIGHT BE PROCLAIMED THROUGHOUT THE WHOLE EARTH.” (Romans 9:17)

“Lift up your eyes on high And see who has created these stars, The One who leads forth their host by number, He calls them all by name; Because of the greatness of His might and the strength of His power, Not one of them is missing.” (Isaiah 40:26)

“…He cried out with a loud voice, “Lazarus, come forth.” The man who had died came forth… Therefore many of the Jews who came to Mary, and saw what He had done, believed in Him.” (John 11:43-45)

“The crowds with one accord were giving attention to what was said by Philip, as they heard and saw the signs which he was performing.” (Acts 8:6)

“…that which is known about God is evident within them; for God made it evident to them. For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes, His eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly seen, being understood through what has been made, so that they are without excuse.” (Romans 1:19)

The ultimate demonstration of His power is seen in delivering us from bondage to Satan and sin and death by raising Jesus from the dead. There is a real sense in which “His holy arm” is Jesus Christ. It did not depreciate His power when the world rejected the Messiah. Rather He demonstrated the power of His mighty arm when He foresaw and predicted the rejection through Isaiah. Who has believed our message?

And to whom has the arm of the LORD been revealed? …He was despised and forsaken of men, …” (Isaiah 53:1, 3).

Most rejected, but some honest hearts responded in faith; first, before He was born, His own mother.

And Mary said: “My soul exalts [“magnificat] the Lord, … “He has done mighty deeds with His arm;…” (Luke 1:46, 51)

This confession of faith is the first use of “arm” in the New Testament and refers to the saving arm of God, the Lord Jesus Christ.

Isaiah reminds Israel (to whom he had just pronounced the doom of Babylonian captivity) that His arm is not only mighty to save, but will authoritatively reign and judge.

“Behold, the Lord GOD will come with might, With His arm ruling for Him…” (Isaiah 40:10)

And we can have confidence that this same powerful arm lovingly provides for those who will submit and follow.

“Like a shepherd He will tend His flock, In His arm He will gather the lambs And carry them in His bosom;” (Isaiah 40:11)

The idea for this article came from Henry Morris

 

 

July 9, 2017

No, Lord … By Don R. Patton

Posted in Uncategorized at 5:00 am by sranderson0103

No, Lord!” Peter said. “For I have never eaten anything common and ritually unclean!” (Acts 10:14 Holman)

Impetuous Peter. Words fly out of his mouth unrestrained. Just a little thoughtful consideration would have helped him avoid this foolish self-contradiction. He affirms Jesus is his Lord and then, in the same breath, refuses to submit.

His words remind us of an old quote. “Make sure your brain is engaged before putting your mouth in gear.” Farmers Almanac

Peter could have used this wisdom at the Transfiguration when he made a similar blunder, bringing a rebuke directly from God.

“Then Peter answered and said to Jesus, “Rabbi, it is good for us to be here; and let us make three tabernacles: one for You, one for Moses, and one for Elijah”— because he did not know what to say, for they were greatly afraid. And a cloud came and overshadowed them; and a voice came out of the cloud, saying, ‘This is My beloved Son. Hear Him!’” (Mark 9: 5-7 NKJV)

J B PHILLIPS translation says…

“Peter burst out to Jesus, “Master, it is wonderful for us to be here! Shall we put up three shelters—one for you, one for Moses and one for Elijah?” He really did not know what to say, for they were very frightened. Then came a cloud which overshadowed them and a voice spoke out of the cloud, ‘This is my dearly-loved Son. Listen to him!’”

Peter had observed the Jewish dietary restrictions all his life. We are all designed so that habits become ingrained and “second nature.” There is a positive advantage in not having to think about such conduct. It happens automatically. However, changing this conduct becomes extremely difficult. Peter reflexively resisted and told the lord, “No!” It took another rebuke from heaven (actually three more) together with coordinated, providential circumstances to produce Peter’s righteous response.

Submission is difficult, for multiple reasons. The result is that many Christians who have called Jesus their Savior and Lord, question or disregard His Word. Sometimes they say ‘No!”

Faithful Christians may legitimately discuss and question different interpretations of the Word, but there is never justification for questioning the authority of our Lord (Matthew 28:18), regardless of our familiar, habitual practices or pressures from society.

Our Lord himself asked the stinging question, “Why call ye me, Lord, Lord, and do not the things which I say?” (Luke 6:46).

It was Peter again, who demonstrated inconsistency when Christ told of His imminent crucifixion. “Peter took Him aside and began to rebuke Him, saying, “God forbid it, Lord! This shall never happen to You. (Matthew 16:22). The Lord new the difficulty Peter was having and responded with a severe rebuke.

“Get behind Me, Satan! You are a stumbling block to Me; for you are not setting your mind on God’s interests, but man’s,” (Matthew 16:23).

It was not Peter’s prerogative, nor is it ours, to question the Word of the Lord, to challenge His authority, even when we don’t yet understand it.

A failure to learn this lesson can have deadly, eternal consequences. Jesus warned disobedient disciples who professed His Lordship.

“Many will say to Me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, …“And then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you; DEPART FROM ME, YOU WHO PRACTICE LAWLESSNESS,’” (Matthew 7:22-23).

Peter learned his lesson. He was soon teaching Cornelius regarding Jesus Christ, “he is Lord of all” (Acts 10:36). The life he lived thereafter, demonstrated much greater consistency with that eternal truth. Later, he spoke of the practical effect of Jesus as Lord. He assured that Christians would be “…neither useless nor unfruitful in the true knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ,” (II Peter 1:8).

Likewise, Paul speaks plainly of the eternal consequence of failing to acknowledge with our lives that Jesus is Lord.

“Lord Jesus will be revealed from heaven with His mighty angels in flaming fire, dealing out retribution to those who do not know God and to those who do not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus.” (II Thessalonians 1:7-8)

Have you obeyed, are you obeying your Lord?

 

 

Next page