One and But One- Part 13

Is there a difference??  Religious division is the norm of the day, people become satisfied with division, tolerate it, and accept it, even some boast the religious division is “healthy competition”!!  Statements like “join the church of your choice,” “it makes no difference what one believes just as long as they are sincere,” or “we’re all going to the same Heaven, we are just going on different paths” express a convenient attitude of toleration  for “allowable differences” that the Word of God condemns and will not tolerate!!  When one meets a friend who belongs to a denomination and attempts to discuss with them the religious differences between that man-made institution and the Church of Christ, many times they meet an indifferent attitude with a convenient attitude of toleration for “allowable differences” who will not engage in a search in the Bible for the truth because they think it “really does not make any difference, God will accept everybody who loves Him.” 

     Is there a right and a wrong??  Our school system these days does everything they can to avoid calling things right or wrong.  One common excuse which allows for differences is “well, that is just your interpretation, and everybody does not interpret the Bible alike” or “I have my own ideas and religion is personal, anyway.”  Left out of all this “human rationality,” this “escape from facing the issues, this “I can’t judge you” religion is God!! and more particularly, God’s Word!!

     Jesus was recorded saying, “I Am the way, the truth, and the life, and no man comes to the Father, but by Me.”  John 14:6   Question: does it matter which WAY one enters on the road to eternal life?  Again, Jesus answers: “Strive to enter in at the strait gate.  For wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leads to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat: because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leads unto life, and few there be that find it.” Matthew 7:13-14   Are these verses subject to interpretation??  There are some things so plain; it takes help to misunderstand them!!  Some respond; “well, it seems right!”  Solomon wrote: “There is a way that seems right to a man, but the end thereof is the way of death.” Proverbs 14:12   “But, they say, I have a clear conscience about my religion.”  To that Paul, by inspiration responds, “I have lived in all good conscience, until this day.” Acts 23:1   Again you hear; “My religion was the religion I grew up on, my Mother and Father belonged to this denomination.”  Again, Jesus responds: “You have not His word abiding in you; for whom He has sent, Him you believe not.  Search the Scriptures: for in them you think you have eternal life: and they are they which testify of Me.” John 5:38-39                     

     Will God accept just any “sincere” expression of obedience??    Jesus answers: “God is a Spirit and He seeks such to worship Him.” John 4:24   “I marvel that you are so soon removed from him who called you by the grace of Christ unto another gospel: which is not another, but there be some that trouble you, and would pervert the gospel of Christ.  But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed.  As we have said before, so say I now again, If any man preach any other gospel unto you than that you have received, let him be accursed.” Galatians 1:6-9   John, by the inspiration of the Spirit writes: “If there come any unto you, and bring not this doctrine, receive him not into your assembly, neither bid him God-speed: For he that bids him God-speed is partaker of his evil deeds.” 2 John 9-10.  They might respond: “Not everyone believes what the Bible says, we have a catechism, others have a creed book, and some have miracles.  God is ALWAYS RIGHT

One and But One- Part 12

Who and what denominational preacher would baptize for the remission of sin?  None, that I know about would willingly or knowingly baptize a sinner, they are ordained to only baptize what they perceive as the “saved.”  I know of only one time it is recorded when a Baptist preacher baptized a close friend of his for the remission of sin!  The story goes; they were out fishing, as they fished they got to talking about the Scriptures.  The friend ask a question; “why do I have to wait to be baptized, can I not duplicate what happened in Acts 8 with Philip and the Eunuch?”  To that the Baptist preacher responded; “I don’t see why not.”   They stopped the boat, the Baptist preacher took the man’s confession, “I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God,” and he baptized him.  They were so elated over this happy event; they could not wait to get back to tell all their church members.  The Baptist deacon board called an immediate meeting.  The sinner could not be a member of the Baptist Church, they do not baptize sinners!!  The Baptist preacher could not explain just WHY he ignored Baptist doctrine and did what the New Testament example taught him (the very idea of such insolence)!!  No members of the Baptism denomination heard this man’s salvation experience and therefore COULD NOT vote on him to let him be a candidate for baptism as the Baptist manual proscribed!!  “What were they to do?”   They called the pastor and his friend to their meeting, told the pastor he would have to baptize the man “after Baptist fashion” AFTER some of them heard his testimony and voted to accept him as a candidate for baptism.  The Baptist pastor agreed to this and 6 weeks after he professed “I believe that God has for Christ sake forgiven me of my sins,” the pastor baptized this man, again.  This time to make him a member of the Baptist Church, allow him to vote on the next preacher, and partake of the Lord’s Supper every first Sunday of the month.  After this all had taken place, they fired the Baptist preacher for violating his oath taken when he had been ordained a pastor in the Baptist faith that he would baptize nothing but saints, NEVER SINNERS!!

You see, my friend, the Church of Christ is the called out, not the scattered among!!  We are not like the Baptist in the purpose of baptism.  We are not like the Baptist on many other things, the frequency of partaking of the Lord’s Supper being an outstanding difference.  The Baptist manual and the Word of God do not teach the same thing!!  Someone is wrong!!  Can you afford that to be you??  How will you be able to explain to the Lord WHY you chose to be baptized for a reason other that the “remission of sins”?!!  There are NO members of the Lord’s Church “caught in the brambles” of denominationalism!!  God wills that His people be exclusively different, unique, and Biblically confirmed, not just religiously, bathed!!  The Church has no value to Christ, unless it is uniquely made up of men and women who have obeyed Him!!  If the Church has NO value, how can you then have the un-mitigated gall to ask some man to give up their Church and join something of NO VALUE?? And Jesus would not have died for something of no value for which He gave His life’s blood!!

Do you think Christ is a polygamist?  How many wives do you think He has??  Since He married the Church of Christ when He died on Calvary’s tree by offering up the purchased price for her, when after His death would He have had time to marry another??  He had been planning His marriage to the Church of Christ for over 4,000 years, just how long was it that He planned for the denomination to which you belong??  Jesus Christ is like any kingly predecessor among the Jews in that He was married more than once.  That Passover He divorced His first wife in 33 D; 53 days later He married the Church!!

One and But One- Part 11

We started last week with the fact that limits and characteristics are what the definition of an individual has that distinguishes them from any other individual.  Fingerprints, teeth, leaves, trees, and many other things created by God have characteristics that are singularly definitive of one entity and but one!!  We also noted that things may be in the same category as other things but that does not make them the same.  They will always be what God’s laws of genetics made them to be!!   Men and women are in the category called human beings, but they are not necessarily interchangeable!! Being in the same category DOES NOT mean one is the other!!  Men and women have not the same sex, this makes the two separate and distinguishable.  The limits of each REAL THING SERVE TO EXCLUDE EVERY OTHER THING FROM ITSELF!!  These limits are definitions established by LAWS from the Creator and cannot change.  A man may have a sex change operation but still he is a man.  He may not respect who and what he is but still he is not and never will be a woman.  He may live all his life in falsity and deceit as to his gender, yet when they make out his death certificate, even if his body is so mutilated it is not recognizable, they will go to his dental records and fingerprints to satisfy his insurance company claim!! Denominationalism may look, sound like, talk like, be in the same category as, and have characteristics like that of the Church of Christ that Jesus brought into this world, but they will never be owned by Jesus Christ when comes back for His bride!!   Almost is not good enough, it has to be exact!!  The Baptist immerse, the Presbyterians may have elders, the Methodist may sing from a hymn book, and the Roman Catholic may have cite prayers BUT, although they are in the same category, may have the some of the identifying characteristics common with the Church of Christ to make them look similar; none of these are the Church of Christ found in the New Testament to whom Jesus Christ is married!!

     To censure, hate, despise something just because it claims to be what you refuse to consider it to be, does not cease to make it exclusive!!  To refuse the fact that Jesus Christ is married to one bride and but one, that she is in a category called religion, and her communicants pray, sing ONLY in its assemblies, puts monies in an offering plate only on the first day of the week, and try to convert everyone they meet to the teachings of the Bible ALONE, DOES mean it’s teachings and practices are acceptable to God!!  This is what Christ brought the church into existence to do!!    This does not make members of the Church of Christ an enemy of a member of the Baptist, Methodist, R. Catholic, Jehovah Witnesses or any of the other 656 denominations in existence; but SOMEBODY has to at least admit all of these cannot all come FROM ONE BIBLE!!  If the Bible is what you are looking to follow, the ONLY Church named, described, talked about, that existed during the time the Bible was written is the Church of Christ!!  You may have thought the Roman Catholic church was the oldest church in existence but that is not true.  Catholicism did not begin until Constantine convened the Council of Nicene in 313 AD and placed himself in the position as papa (the Latin word Pope) over his brand new religious organization that came to be known as the Roman Catholic Church.  If you are looking for the doctrine, catechism, missiles or any other doctrine book of Catholicism don’t waste your time looking in the Bible, it is not there!!  The Bible went to press over 100 years before Constantine was ever heard of or from!!  Constantine could have read the Bible and found what he started was contrary to God’s Law if he had wanted to read the Bible, but he thought He was King.  Christ was never considered!!

One and But One- Part 10

It is pretty easy to understand that A is not B and C is not D and for something to be A it cannot be B by the very fact of its B-ness.  That A EXCLUDES, by fact of its definition as A, everything else!!  It CANNOT be almost like A and be B; it has to be EXACTLY LIKE A to be an A!!

Things may exist in the same category as A, for within certain there are identities, rules and regulations defined, that allows like things to be like, but for things to be exact when definitions exist there is no likeness that will allow A to be a B!!

If it takes the Bible to make the Church of Christ, to use the manual of the Baptist church, the manual of the Baptist church will a Church of Christ not make!!  If it takes the Roman Catholic catechism to make the Roman Catholic Church and its structure, a Bible, which is contrary to the Roman Catholic catechism, a Catholic Church the Bible will not make!!  This will remain true of all denominations of Roman Catholicism, which all denominations are, and prove most validly the subject of our discussion—-there is ONE CHURCH AND BUT ONE started by Jesus Christ, in the city of Jerusalem, 33AD, at 9:00am that Pentecost Sunday morning, mentioned, names as such, and referred to in a book called the Bible inspired by a member of Deity, called the Holy Spirit, written in Koine Greek by one of those men qualified by the name Apostle, solely and singularly authorized by Jesus Christ who came to reveal the Will of His great Father, the Ancient of Days!!  There is NO denomination that exists today that will fit the definition, description, discipline, or approval of God, the Father other than the Church that is defined as the Church of Christ, Church of God, New Jerusalem, or Church of the Firstborn!!

Every real thing has limits and characteristics peculiar to itself!!  This un-mistakable identity makes up distinguishing characteristics from other real things.  A block of lead and a block of wood may have the same dimensions, but they differ in other characteristics and CANNOT be said to be identical!!  Two little boys walking down the street, together, may be walking, have the same kind of shoes, be the same race, both have a mother and a father, but BOTH are singularly and distinctively different human beings.!!  Unlearned man who makes it his business not to look too deep into the Bible, sees different religious organizations that exist in 2010 and thinks (a.) they have always existed since there was Jesus Christ on this planet and (b.) since they are religious, Jesus Christ recognizes them as acceptable and is a part of each of them.  If one of those little boys belongs to you, I will give you some advice; don’t pick up the other man’s child!!

If you are looking for the Church of the New Testament and two church buildings exist on the same block, don’t make the mistake of thinking one is the same as the other, both are started by Christ, both share the fellowship of Deity, or both will get you to Heaven!!

If you will take the advice of Jesus Christ, He said: “the Father himself, which has sent Me, has borne witness of Me.  You have neither heard His voice at any time, nor see His shape.  And you have not His word abiding in you: for whom He has sent, Him you believe not.  Search the scriptures, for in them you think you have eternal life, and they are they that testify of Me…..I Am come in My Father’s name, and you receive Me not: if another shall come in his own name, him you will receive.  How can you believe, which receive honor one of another, and seek not the honor that comes from God, only?” John 5:37-44  When introducing the Lord’s Supper to the disciples, Jesus said: “it’s the Father’s good pleasure to give unto you the Kingdom.”  Kingdom is singular!

One and But One- Part 9

One of the problems one has with man-made religions is that they are always in a state of flux.  What they taught 50 years ago is not what they are teaching, today.  What 50 years ago they taught, they did not teach that doctrine 100 years ago.  What they taught 250 years ago did not exist for they did not exist.  Few are the denominations that existed more than 250 years back and only one exist that goes further than 400 years ago while a 100 have come and gone in the interim.  While this is historically proven, there is a church that teaches today what it taught almost 2,000 years ago, adheres to the same doctrine book, and follows the same practices.  This is the Church of Christ. 

     If men devise other religious systems apart from the inspired Word of God, they have not succeeded in creating a new religion; they have succeeded in creating a false religion!!  IF faith comes by hearing the Word of God and something other than the Word of God is used as a standard for what is believed man has succeeded in making mankind follow man, not the Grand Artificer of the Universe. 

Human religious systems often stress dependence on Christ but are NOT defined in the pages of the instrument that produces faith.  Denominationalism does not compare to the Bible, they do not adhere to the Bible, and therefore they MUST compete with the Bible for the hearts of their adherents!!  Which man among men is smart enough to compete with his Maker??  For any Denomination to exist, then, they HAVE TO/must be completely different from the “faith once delivered” that is from God!!  If they used the Word of God, read and studied its pages, obeyed its commands and edicts they would become exactly what the Bible brings into existence and their denomination would cease to exist!!  What makes the Methodist church exist is not their morality, not their heart-felt love for Christ, and certainly not their dedication to the written Word—what makes the Methodist a Methodist is the Methodist Prayer book written not by inspiration from God, but from the men who first taught her perverted doctrines!!

A,B,C and D are not identical letters.  They may be all letters of the alphabet and a part of a category of things, but they are not the same!!  Religion is a category.  In religions there are Judaism, Buddhism, Shinto’s, and many others INCLUDING Christianity.  Judaism and Christianity are the ONLY religions that were ordained of God!!  Christianity has replaced Judaism which means that the ONLY religion ordained of God, today, is Christianity!! The only being that started a church seated on God’s right hand, living and reigning, is Jesus Christ.  Mohammed, Shinto, Buddha, Luther, Ellen White, nor any Pope will there be found.  Therefore, the conclusion MUST be that the only religion recognized by God, the Father is Christianity.

If New Testament Christianity is represented by the letter A, other religions having other designations are by necessity shown to be non-A’s.  There is an A and there is a non-A.  Any pretense, excuse, or reason to think or allow anything other than A to represent A is dishonest and unprofitable to logic or reality.  A excludes, by fact of definition, everything else.  It cannot be ALMOST LIKE IT, it has to be exactly like it or it is not an A!!  A is not B — it does not matter how your heart feels, your grandmother’s testimony does not relate, nor the country from which you came supports it.  Fingerprints, dental records, and genes describe and define only ONE human being and CANNOT define two.  If God could do that in one arena, He can and does do that in religion.  There is one Church and but One!!  The Bible ONLY makes a Church of Christ—you cannot make a Church of Christ with a Baptist manual.

One and But One- Part 8

     The Church of Christ is exclusive—the special and only realm of the saved on earth—and it cannot be otherwise!!  The Bible teaches there in One faith, Ephesians 4:5.  This is to distinguish it from the Judaic faith that existed before the “faith once delivered” became a reality!!  There are not TWO faiths, Jewish and Christian, says inspiration—there now exist only ONE!!  This faith has “ALREADY, ONCE AND FOR ALL been delivered” by the apostles of Christ, received from the Holy Spirit, as the Holy Spirit directed their writing and speaking!!   They did NOT at the time it was spoken  BELIEVE, understand, or approve this message, themselves!! Acts 2:47; 11:17    There is no other religious document that can make this claim!!  Every religious creed book, manual, prayer book, catechism, written begins with the dead give away: ‘WE BELIEVE’!!  The writings of inspiration started off with a doctrine the apostles DID NTO believe!!  Exclusively, the faith “once and for all and evermore,” Jude verse 3, delivered, written, received by the apostles of Jesus Christ, makes a claim to authenticity that no other doctrine book, creed book, or testimony of faith can claim.  This exclusivity is further evidenced by the fact that it had to be written DURING the lifetime of the apostles to whom Jesus handed the KEYS to His kingdom, Matthew 16:13-20; 18:15-20; Mark 9:1 after He empowered them with the Holy Spirit in baptismal measure on the day of Pentecost, A D 33, at 9:00 am, that Sunday morning unlike the writings of Islam that did not come about until 300 years after Mohammed died!!  Jesus had told them: “In the regeneration (the period called “being born again”), when the Son of Man shall set on the throne of His glory; you shall set upon 12 thrones….” Matthew 19:28      

     This faith that was “once and for all delivered” was clearly delineated and therefore fully recognizable, identifiable, and never contradictable even though NO writings went before a REVIEW BOARD or DOCTRINE BOARD before they were sent into the entire World!!  Paul did not get Peter’s approval for what he wrote and spoke by inspiration, neither Peter, Paul’s!!  In fact Paul had been preaching this “faith once delivered” for about 10-15 years BEFORE he and Barnabas met with Peter, James, and John. Galatians 2: 9.   What a mess we would have been if the Gospel had had to await the Pope, John Calvin, Martin Luther, John Smith, Joseph Smith, or Ellen White’s or any other’s “lying testimony” as approval before it could be sent into ALL THE WORLD!!  Paul, in fact is on record as stating his gospel had been preached to “every creature under heaven” Colossians 1:23 and never checked by human eyes, certifying unto his readers that he received his message “not from man,  neither was taught it by man, but by the revelation of Jesus Christ.”!! Galatians 1:12  The apostles “conferred with NO MAN, NO POPE, NO RELIGIOUS EXPERIENCE, NOR THEIR MOTHER’S RELIGION.  Paul received his message FIRST-HAND, got his message from the Boss, Himself IN THE FIRST CENTURY!!  Find any denominational preacher, church, or holy man who can make such a claim!!  They would have to be 2,000 years old!!  If this is not exclusivity tell what it is??  This is both historically and Biblically accurate.

     If men devise other religious systems apart from “the faith once delivered,” they have not succeeded in producing a NEW faith; they have succeeded in producing NO FAITH!!  If faith comes by hearing the Word of God, producing “a” faith that is separate and apart from, different than, not according to, making distinctions from, separate from the ONLY INSTRUMENT THAT SHOULD PRODUCE FAITH, Romans 10:17, they have not produced the FAITH THAT WAS PRODUCED IN THE FIRST CENTURY!!

One and But One- Part 7

Christ loved the church more tenderly than any man ever loved his own wife!!  Paul writes: “Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ loved the church and gave Himself for it.” Ephesians 5:25   To the Ephesians elders Paul stated: “Feed the church of God which He purchased with His own blood.” Acts 20:28   I submit for your learning the story told of Abraham offering his only begotten son, Isaac. Genesis 22: 1-13   It has been very few men in the ages of time that have given themselves purposely for their brides/wives but one and only one who prophesied He would so do!!  All the Old Testament prophets who foretold of the Messiah, who would come, told of His dieing to purchase His bride, redeeming her with His own blood!!

Abraham was “tested” by God to see if his faith was completely in God.  He was told to sacrifice his only begotten son, Isaac.  The place chosen for this sacrifice was a place then called Mt. Moriah, but in the days of Christ while sojourning on this Earth, it was called in the Hebrew Golgotha and in the Greek, Calvary.  The specific place for Isaac to be sacrificed was chosen (as was the fact God would offer His Son) before it would become a reality.  “Then on the third day Abraham lifted up his eyes, and saw the place afar off.” Genesis 22:4   This place Abraham found was not by a lucky guess, it was the place CHOSEN by Deity for Christ to be offered for the Church of Christ before the foundations of the world!!  When Abraham had prepared Isaac for the rendering of Isaac’s blood, God stopped him: “And Abraham stretched forth his hand, and took the knife to slay his son.  And the angel of the Lord called unto him out of heaven, and said, Abraham, Abraham: and he said, Here am I.  And he said, Lay not thine hand upon the lad, neither do thou any thing unto him: for now I know that thou fearest God, seeing thou hast not withheld thy son, thine only son from Me.” Genesis 22:11-13   It would take a lot of help to miss this type and anti-type.

Christ died ONLY for His Church!!  “For God so loved the world (Church) that He gave His only begotten Son (for the Church, Acts 20:28, Ephesians 5:25) that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.” John 3:16   When you see the word world, the context has to decide what is being mentioned!  For example, in John 1:10, John writes by inspiration of the Holy Spirit these words: He was in the world, the world was made by Him, and the world knew Him not.”  Christ was on this planet (called the world) and the creation (world) was made by Him, Colossians 1:15-18, and the people (the world) to whom He came, the Jew, knew Him not.  Christ came to be a “ransom for many,” Matthew 20:28, but who were the “many?”  As “many” as call on His name.” Acts 2:21  How does one “call upon the name of the Lord?”  Ananias told Saul, “arise, and be baptized, and wash away thy sons, calling upon the name of the Lord.” Acts 22:16    Calling on the name of the Lord, doing what He has commanded, will bring the “forgiveness of sins:”  “In whom we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of His grace.” Ephesians 1:7

No thoughtful Christian would think of lieing about the church, that is also called the  “body of Christ.” There is ONE AND BUT ONE.  Paul writes: “And He is head of the body, the church.” Ephesians 5:25   How many times have you seen two-headed people?  How many times have you seen ONE head on two or more bodies?  Is there not usually one head on one body??  So, with the body of Christ, it has one head and that head sets on ONE body!!  “And He is head of the body, the church: who is the beginning, the first born from the dead: that is all things He might have preeminence.” Colossians 1:18

One and But One- Part 6

If, as we are declaring, Christ has but one Bride, why does God allow the others to continue to exist??  God never stopped man from killing His only begotten Son!!  Just because God does not reach down from the Heavens and snatch denominational preachers out of their pulpits does not mean He is not aware of their mis-deeds!!  Many “feel” that since God has not stopped them, their religion must be alright if for not other reason than there are so many people that are members of their denomination.  I had my dentist tell me the other day; “why, there are 19,000 members of our church,” as if to prove that that makes error alright and disdain for God’s authority acceptable!!  “What if some do not believe, will that make the faith of God of without effect?” Romans 3:3  What if the WHOLE world does not believe, will that stop God from condemning man who has not obeyed His precepts??  When you deny the Law of God, you deny His right to rule over you and diminish His importance as the Law Maker!!  MOCKING GOD is not going to win you any points when you face Him at death!!  Telling Christ that your wife did not agree with His words the apostles wrote down for your learning will not lessen the punishment that on you will be imposed!!

     Earth’s existence became a reality to test and try man, find out which among us is worthy of eternity with God.  We cannot expect to spend eternity with a Being whose Word we cannot respect enough to obey that Word!!  We cannot expect God to reach down from Heaven and pluck denominational preachers out of the pulpit and then God claim impartiality and fairness to those who made the hard choice and “obeyed from the heart that form of doctrine delivered you” which cost them their lives, or maybe their jobs, wife, child, mother or father.  They who loved God enough to “give that last measure of devotion” will stand in the Judgment and demand your destruction, and they will have every right to do so!!  If it made no difference what is taught or believed you will have to get around the complaints of EVERY apostle of Jesus Christ—for it cost everyone of them their lives!!      When God demanded the Israelites to march through the Red Sea, He did not mean it was alright for them to go out and rent a barge to take them across nor cross the Sea 15 miles to the north of the Red Sea at a place known as the Reed Sea!!  If you do not plan on obeying the gospel of Jesus Christ just exactly as He had it written, don’t worry about the curtains in your new home in Heaven!! 

     It is what we have all been use to knowing, a kind and benevolent God, think what “without God” will mean!!  We have all fellowshipped and lived in the sunshine of His love all our lives—what will be worth losing all He has promised??  You think groping in spiritual darkness is hard and unfair—wait till you begin groping in the darkness of eternal Hell!!  He who promised to turn brother against brother, a daughter against her mother, and a child against his or her father will not think twice about condemning they who hold His word in contempt. 

     The hatred God has for sin is seen in the price He was willing to pay to remove it.  Pain and a broken heart for 4,000 years will not allow Him to brush aside His Word in any capricious fashion.  In Genesis 22 we read of the sacrifice of Isaac.  ABRAHAM WAS SPARED, GOD WAS NOT, HE PAID DOWN TO THE LAST MEASURE OF DEVOTION.  Man has never fully been able to appreciate the price God paid, nor will he ever be able to deny the planning and preparation that was demanded of God to bring the Church of Christ into existence.  Denying this did not happen will not Hell comforting!!

One and But One- Part 5

Man tries to rationalize that religion is for him and his appetite.  He wants a religion he likes and makes him feel good about him.  In a sense this is the same as “situation ethics” which teaches as long as it hurts no one and it please me, it is alright!  I hear people all the time tell me they are “looking for a church.”  What they mean is they are looking one they feel comfortable in, preaches a message they approve, has a class of people in it they associate with themselves, and require from its adherents just what they are willing to “put in” to the success of the church as to monies, time, and effort.  Rarely do you find people who are looking for a church God Almighty will approve!!  These  people are looking for a church that teaches ONLY the doctrine taught in the New Testament, taught in the first century, that was taught FIRST, in Jerusalem, that was taught by an inspired apostle of Jesus Christ, and that was the church ALL the apostles of Jesus Christ belonged!!  There is a world of difference between this type of church and the type that will suit man.

     Men are looking for a church where the needs of their children are satisfied and they let the children determine those needs!!  They look for the biggest congregation with children the ages of their children, a playground or gymnasium, fun games and coloring, cookies and ice cream, and one where the most important people in town attend.  They are not spiritually astute enough to look for a congregation that preaches ONLY the New Jerusalem gospel, where its teachers are studied and prepared to teach Bible Classes suitable for their ages and intellect, and where the preaching is Christ-centered, Biblically supported, and in love with Jesus Christ FIRST and the mores and values of men, last!! It is true the children may not have a plethora of friends “at church” and may be the only one their age that attends there their age while learning of Christ, and may not “try out” for the choir or receive their “first communion” like the world, BUT, at the death’s door and the Judgment Bar– their  child will stand all alone and be judged “by the words that shall judge them in the last day” John 12:48, there, they will be glad for that Bible School teacher that insisted on teaching Bible Lessons and the preacher that made sin look like sin and not like  a joke at which to laugh!!  In death and at the Judgment these type parents will be on their knees thanking God their little boy or girl hears: “well done, My good and faithful servant, you have been faithful over a few things, I will make you ruler over many, enter into the joys of thy Lord.”   But the one who will be the most thankful at death and in the Judgment Day will be the child whose parent was spiritually alert enough to make SURE they attended the right congregation!!   What about the child that got to set the standard for which the church they attended and hears: “depart from Me, you wicked and sinful sinner, I never knew you.” 

     My friend, Jesus is coming back some day for His Church!!  I flew into the airport the other day and there were well over 100 women in the terminal, I only was looking for ONE!!  Was I narrow-minded, an elitist, or a cultist??  You see, I am married to as many women as the Lord!!  I have one and but one, she wears my name, has born my children, and satisfies my needs as a man, AND, she is the only woman I left the airport with!!  Does that offend you??

     I sent my children to school. I sent them to the best schools.  I did not care if they wanted to go where it would be easy to “slide by,” where their “friends” attended, where the most students attended, where the biggest gymnasium was or where the best football team played; I wanted them, educationally, prepared to succeed- AND YOU??

One and But One- Part 4

The results of the “insignificant” sin are enormous!!  What man thought irrelevant to his relationship to God proved to be “the stick that broke the camel’s back.”  Knowing right from wrong is not what it is advertised to be.  Satan was not the “father who knew what was best,” but, then again, he never claimed to be the “father” who cared for his offspring, did he?  Unaccountable for the actions he directed, absolutely, NOT!!  Satan might have thought he pulled off the biggest scam in the history of the world, but because of his direction, God “prepared Hell for Satan and his angels,” Satan will one day pay the price all those who follow him will pay.  Some ask the question, “Will he pay, enough?”  Never, my friend, underestimate God!!!  What sin cost man is his/her innocence?  Many do not realize the sheer joy of such a state.  This is the happiest time of man’s existence!! Existence in this state defines Christianity-this is called PEACE.  More can be said on this point, but nothing can restore the loss of innocence but the blood of Christ!!  You and I cannot handle accountability before the righteous and sinless God, the only way we can ever be ready for such a judgment is having the blood of Christ and Christ the older brother and high priest as our advocate and mediator!!

     “It is not within man that walketh to direct his steps.”  We do not know the way home nor do we know how to find that “way”.  This demanded the grace of God.  “I am the way, the truth and the light.  No man cometh to the Father, but by Me;” came from the lips of the only Being to ever walk the shores of life having come from the Father’s presence who returned Home to prepare for us a place!!  Sinless and of the species called God, this Being we know as Jesus Christ.  He will be ‘ABLE’ to present us faultless before the Father. This is pointedly the reason we cannot trust man who has sinned as we have sinned, to lead to the Father!!  There is NO denomination or denominational body of believers who follow implicitly the directions of our Master.  They add to or take from His blood-bought Will or Testament to satisfy themselves, they claim equality with His authority to govern mankind, and those who they find like-minded as themselves, walk confidently, yes, many times boastfully, on their way to eternity.  Like mother Eve, they are satisfied with the religion originated by some man or woman in some other city other than Jerusalem, in some other century than the first century fifty three days after the crucifixion of the Lord of Glory, while the Roman Kings were reigning over the world, assembled in the Temple of Jerusalem on the day of Pentecost, 33 A.D. following a message that will re-turn that peace of innocence all eternity!!

     If man was to start a church that was to be in competition with our Lord’s Church would it not have been shown in prophecy?  Special men born for special times who did special things for the advancement of God’s plan were prophesied!!  Cyrus was mentioned by name years before he was born, Methuselah was named some 600 years before the definition of his name became a reality, and Jacob was chosen before birth to receive the birthright.  If they had the approval from God to start man-made denominational churches, would they not at least been prophesied before they were born? named so none would miss their special position before the Lord?, or at least shown to be allowed special recognition as did men like John the Baptist??  Their plans of salvation they advance, would they not been shown in prophecy as did that of our Lord?  Do you think it a lucky coincidence that baptism was defined thousands of years before it was commanded by Christ??  Were the flood, the Nile, Naaman the leper, and the building of the Tabernacle and Temple, not all connected- showing “water” saves”??