November 19, 2011

I Believe God – Don R. Patton

Posted in Uncategorized at 8:42 pm by sranderson0103

“Therefore, keep up your courage, men, for I believe God that it will turn out exactly as I have been told,” Acts 27:25.

Most people in America believe in God and most say they believe the Bible. According to a recent Gallup Poll (July 10, 2011), 49% of Americans say the Bible is the inspired word of God. However, only 30% of respondents agreed that “the Bible is absolutely accurate and should be taken literally word for word.” There is a big difference between the 49% say they believe the Bible is God’s Word and the 30% who believe that it means what it says. To put it in everyday parlance, many “talk a good game” but when it comes down to specific applications, “where the rubber meets the road,” we see a lot of “crawfishing.”

I believe the same kind of inconsistency can be seen in those who say they have faith in God. Sure, many believe there is a God — but it’s a different thing altogether to believe God! And our text makes it clear that believing God simply means believing what He says, “that it will turn out exactly as I have been told.” Paul spoke these words at the height of a terrible storm at sea, when it appeared certain that “all hope of our being saved was gradually abandoned,” Acts 27:20. But God had spoken otherwise, and Paul believed God rather than adopting the fears of those around him. Abraham, “the father of all who believe” (Romans 4:11), had set the example. “With respect to the promise of God, he did not waver in unbelief but grew strong in faith, giving glory to God, and being fully assured that what God had promised, He was able also to perform,” Romans 4:20-21.

God does not speak to us audibly today as He did to Abraham and Paul, but He does speak far more comprehensively to us through His written Word, and we have even less excuse for unbelief than they had. It is a terrible offense against our Creator to question His Word. This, indeed, was the very sin that led the fall of Adam and Eve.

God said “All Scripture is given by inspiration of God (literally, is “God-breathed,” II Timothy 3:16), and thus should be fully believed and explicitly obeyed, for “…the one who does not believe God has made Him a liar,” I John 5:10.

But what about those Scriptures that many modern scientists claim to be wrong? “Shall their unbelief make the faith of God without effect? God forbid: yea, let God be true, but every man a liar,” Romans 3:3-4. “For the word of the LORD is right, And all His work is done in truth…” Psalm 33:4.

The same is true regarding those scriptures that religious leaders say they believe to be God’s word but refuse to acknowledge that they mean what they say.

 “Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God?  Do not be deceived; neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor homosexuals, nor thieves, nor the covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers, will inherit the kingdom of God.” I Cor.6:9-10

“THE LORD WILL JUDGE HIS PEOPLE.”  It is a terrifying thing to fall into the hands of the living God.” Heb.10:30-31.

 “And God is able to make all grace abound unto you; that ye, having always all sufficiency in everything, may abound unto every good work:” II Cor. 9:8.

 “…eight persons, were brought safely through the water. Corresponding to that, baptism now saves you…” I Peter 3:20-21.

Adapted from the late Henry Morris

 

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November 5, 2011

Competent To Counsel – Don R. Patton

Posted in Uncategorized at 11:56 pm by sranderson0103

Not long ago I received a call from a faithful sister who had witnessed one of my marriage counseling sessions a few years ago. A divine institution, a home had split and she saw the power of divine wisdom put it back together. Now, some of her kinfolk are experiencing similar problems and she has been asked to help (no outsiders allowed). She called asking for advice.

Many would respond, telling her she was not qualified. She needed an expert. I did the opposite. I told her that she had a wonderful opportunity to accomplish unimaginable good and that she was absolutely capable of solving this problem. She has divine wisdom at her disposal, the “mind of Christ,” (I Corinthians12:16).
Paul expressed this kind of confidence in the brethren at Rome when he said, “And concerning you, my brethren, I myself also am convinced that you yourselves are full of goodness, filled with all knowledge and able also to admonish one another,” (Romans. 15:14).

The word original word translated “admonish” is from a Greek word which means “to counsel about avoidance or cessation of an improper course of conduct, admonish, warn, instruct,” according to the lexicon, Brown, Driver, Arnt & Gingrich. In this passage Paul is saying that brethren with “the mind of Christ” are competent to counsel.

Actually, this point is usually the first thing that needs to be taught to those desperate enough to ask for help with their marriage problems. They have, no doubt, tried and failed. They are hurting, despondent, and not at all sure that solutions exist. They need hope and we have very good reason to assure them that hope is justified. Peter assures us that we have “everything pertaining to life and godliness, through the true knowledge of Him who called us…” In other words, we have all the answers!

The suffering couple needs to know this and that they are justified in expecting a wonderful marriage as God designed it, if they are willing to follow God’s plan.
Now what’s the problem? Rest assured, God has provided the answers.