An Alternative to Inherited Sin

Religion resized

Original sin is defined as “that sin and it’s guilt that we all possess in God’s eyes as a direct result of Adam’s sin in the Garden of Eden”. Original sin basically is the sin passed on from Adam’s fall to us, seeping in the very nature of who we are, and as some often say, our ‘sin nature’. Thus when we are born, we are born sinners, set on a path to sin – a path of destruction.

Now there are different perspectives and extents to which original sin is applied, from the Armenian perspective to that of the Calvinist. In fact, it is quite common for Baptist churches to teach it, as I myself was taught by the leaders at my church (strong and mighty men of God). But there is problems with this doctrine, this belief, this idea. And despite the many problems it brings, it’s not the impact of it’s belief (that is the questions it brings or the doctrines it supports), but rather that it veers away from the simplicity and truth of scripture.

Now don’t get me wrong, I don’t think this is a fundamental to split a church over or even biblically separate from others, but it has huge consequence and impact in the personal life of a Christian, how they see themselves in relationship to God, and more so, who God is.

Re-statement of Problem:

So just to be clear, original sin is that sin passed on from Adam, as a result of the fall, and it’s impact is felt in these thoughts:
We are born in sin (at conception, in the womb we are in sin).
We thus have a sin nature (thus our tendency by design would be to sin)
Inadvertently then, if we are born in sin, and have a sin nature, how did we get it? From Adam? Really? Adam’s sin had to be super-naturally passed on by God for it to become a part of each of us.

It also beg’s other questions like:
When babies die where do they go?
When Jesus was born, was He not born in sin? He’s father may not have been Adam, but He still was descended from a ‘human’. It only takes care of the half the problem – his mother was Mary.
If we are born in sin, have a sin nature are we truly to blame to our failures and choices? Are we not products of our design?

Approach:

The list of questions can go on, but the fundamental principle we care about is, Does the bible teach that we have inherited sin from Adam’s fall? Remembering prior to Adam’s fall he was made perfect, so we cannot argue that it was part of his design and thus ours. So again the key question; Does the bible teach that we inherited sin from Adam’s sin in the garden?

So let’s go to scripture, and find the answer we looking for in Romans 5.

Context of Romans 5:

Romans 5 is about two primary things, the blessings of justification in Christ, and the basis for that justification (the explanation). We come to this portion of scripture 5:12-21 because it is perhaps the strongest argument for original sin. In fact if you reference John MacArthur and Warren W Wiersbe commentaries you will find that both address ‘original sin’ and MacArthur goes as far as to call this portion of scripture the “Imputation of SIN”.

This portion when read with the perspective of original sin seems to tie in quite nicely and hence the doctrine is believed today, and held by great men of faith. Not that they should be looked down upon, but only that our eyes would be opened to see the truth, and have our lives changed for the Glory of God.

For further context, this portion of scripture is a contrast of Christ and his justification with Adam and his fall. You will continuously read ‘as by one man’. That is a key term to which we need to ask which man – Christ or Adam.

Expository (detailing the counter position):

12, Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned:

Part(a): The Misinterpretation

This is one of the great supporting verses for original sin, but sadly misinterpreted and ever so literally. It is often quoted to clearly indicate “as by one man sin entered in the world” to mean sin fell upon men. But notice it doesn’t say that, it just says – in a world where there was no sin, there now was sin. Perhaps the “world” is all men, ah, but read on.

The Word of God then goes on to state what ‘passed upon all men’ (not the world) – “and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men”. Note the simplicity of the verse, and quite the obvious. Sin entered into the world, and that sin resulted in death, which was the judgement upon all men. So if the question in your mind is, if we don’t hold to a position of original sin, then what did pass onto men instead, it’s as we just read – “death”.

An Account of What Took Place In the Garden:

Let us remember in Genesis we saw God promise them, that if they eat of the tree of good and evil, that they would surely die. So prior to that they were living with eternal life. How do we know? After their sin they were removed from the garden and prevented from eating the tree of life, which as we know and see even in Revelation was used for healing the nations. The bible doesn’t given enough evidence as to whether the “tree of life” actually provided eternal life to Adam and Eve, but one thing is clear – that their lives after the fall, were now numbered.

Spiritual death vs. Physical Death argument:

So many men and women steer immediately at this point to the figurative instead of the literal, by making this “death” not be a physical dying of the body, but spiritual death. If that were the case, how God would have given them command (not to eat from a tree – a physical don’t do) and then made the punishment metaphysical, that is ‘spiritual death’. If you run the 300+ references on death, the majority of it’s usage revolves around physically dying, mortality.

As we know the easiest way to misinterpret the bible is to take something figurative instead of literally. So yes, there was judgement, and that judgement unto all men was DEATH. For further affirmation one only need read Genesis 5, with the remarkable repetition and emphasis from God, it’s the chapter of death, as it goes on to accord the descendants of Adam, but repeatedly mentioned “he died” (8 times to be precise).

This portion of scripture says it clearly – and so “death” passed upon all men. From that day, the human race would toil, and face age-ing and ultimately the end of their mortality.

Part (b) Would God really pass down sin to us all?

The next part of the verse “for that all have sinned:”, lends itself to original sin, because “all have sinned”, meaning because Adam sinned, God now has imputed that all men have “sinned”. How can we have sinned, we were not even born yet? Does it sound like our just and glorious God to pass down “sin” to all his creation? To ascribe to sin to us as a race, as individuals seems a far stretch. Sure condemning the human race with ‘physical death’ is one thing, that’s just since we all face it, but condemning human nature to a sin nature, and then judging them for it, sounds truly unfair, and smells like Calvinism.

So how do we explain this part of the verse “for that all have sinned”?
Adam and Eve sinned, and God by way of judgement applied “death to them”. But not only to them, but to every human that was to follow them. Nowhere in this portion of scripture or even in the verse does it say, sin was passed as judgement to all men, but rather “death” in the literal.

Why did God apply “death to us all” – Foreknowledge and perfect environment

Why did God apply “death” to us all, why not to just Adam and Eve? Because God in his foreknowledge is able to foretell that even in a perfect environment – where man has but one command, he is unable to adhere to it when tempted. And so God passed judgement unto us all, that death would fall on us all.

God put us in the same lot as Adam and Eve, that of “sinner”

And so too here, God passed the judgement of death unto all of man to come, and for that, he put us in the same lot as Adam and Eve, and treated us the same, and that of “sinner”. For God knew we would all sin – and for that reason “all have sinned”.

Analogy: Time in South Africa where was no roads or rules of the road (RESIDENTIAL)

Perhaps, it’s still boggling the mind, but consider a time in South Africa where there was no roads or rules of the road, and imagine that construction just started across a single province, the Western Cape. Now assume as more and more roads were being built particularly in residential areas accidents started occurring, and serious ones too, were others were killed innocently due to the negligence of others speeding. More and more cases were brought to court, for culpable homicide – until the government the decided to lay down a legislature, a rule, a judgement that states, that 60 km/h is the maximum speed limit in a residential area, and if not adhered to, a person will be fined, or prosecuted to the full extent of the law when causing harm to others as a result.

The injustice to those who do drive safely

Now the citizens that do drive safely shout and complain that while they were being courteous and driving safely, they are now under a “blanket ruling” to which they have to abide too. But for the road to be safe, a ruling has to applied to all, and all treated the same within that law. And that is what happened here; God saw that Adam sinned, in a perfect environment, and to prevent us from living eternal lives (sinning and sinning), God past a universal judgement onto us all, and for that reason, we are treated as sinners, lumped in with Adam, and all face mortal life.

The punctuation is key, a “colon” – context ADAM to MOSES

Further more, let us not miss the obvious. There is a colon at the end of this second part of the verse, which means what is to follow is the definition, explanation of what was just said. This “for all have sinned”, has a context and that is from Adam to Moses. Let’s read on.

13, (For until the law sin was in the world: but sin is not imputed when there is no law.

Context: Adam to Moses, but sin was not ‘imputed’

“For until the law sin was in the world;” – this is basically saying that from the beginning up to the law (Exodus 20 – Moses) – sin was in the world, and bringing the second verse, but was not imputed, ascribed to men. That’s weird, how can sin not be ‘ascribed to men’.

Definition of “Imputed” (example. Going to buy something from shop, imputed tax)

Firstly let’s understand ‘imputed’. Imputed means to ‘ascribe’ as you would have heard me say. But for anything to be ascribed, accounted to you, your first have to do something that accredits it to you. For example; when you go to the shop and you pay for something, tax is imputed; ascribed automatically. But if you don’t go the shop and buy something, no tax is imputed.

Did they not sin? (example. Highways not built)

So what are we saying here then, that men did not sin up until the law? Of course they did, part (a) of the verse says so “sin was in the world”. The later part simply means that because there was no clear law, men and women were unable to define what sin was/is. Using the previous example of a time in our country when there is no known visible road law. Highways are now being built, but there no signposts on the road to dictate speed limit of 90, and automatic jail sentence. The law has not been communicated. There you are driving down the road of this country, sticking to what you believe to be a valid speed limit of 120, and then suddenly you are pulled off the road by a cop, arrest and taken to prison. Unless the law is visible to men, there is no absolute truth, and thus you cannot label “sin” nor label something sin. You need the law, and you need someone to transgress it. Don’t get me wrong, God judged the people prior to the law, but individually and by different measure.

Running the verses on “imputed” (only applies when there is transgression)

An important point before we depart to the next verse, “imputed” only applies when there is transgression. If you run the references for “impute” or “imputed” you will see, that there was a direction action taken by some party that resulted in something being imputed, ascribed and accounted to them.

14, Nevertheless death reigned from Adam to Moses, even over them that had not sinned after the similitude of Adam’s transgression, who is the figure of him that was to come.

Again we see scripture being more than clear, “death reigned from Adam to Moses”, not sin. Not inherited sin. No God passing judgement onto humanity in the form of “sin”. Note this verse follows on even further how we were lumped in as sinners with Adam ( by way of judgement), because some had not sinned in the same manner as Adam, but death fell on them too.

15, But not as the offence, so also is the free gift. For if through the offence of one many be dead, much more the grace of God, and the gift by grace, which is by one man, Jesus Christ, hath abounded unto many.

* (free gift is not an offence, like Him who was to come)

The beautiful contrast of Adam and Jesus

Again we see scripture being more than clear, by the offence of one many be dead. The bible interchangeably at times uses “many” to mean “all”. The beauty of the contrast here friends is simple, while Adam brought condemnation to humanity, Jesus brought salvation.

The balanced scale of action prior to imputation

It’s interesting to note, that as we know that were there is no law, sin cannot be transgressed. So to with salvation in Jesus Christ, as much as salvation is free and Christ has died as the atonement for the world, that atonement is only available through faith in Him. So in following with this biblical contrast of the “free gift” of salvation which requires an action (not a work), and action on the part of the person. How then can we even consider for the moment that God would give us a “sin nature” without the individual transgressing the law???

16, And not as it was by one that sinned, so is the gift: for the judgment was by one to condemnation, but the free gift is of many offences unto justification.

The First Sin, and then the washing away (beautiful verse)

This verse is simply beautiful, we clearly see here that God is saying, that the sinning of Adam labelled us all sinners, and brought the judgement of death. That is one transgression, one specific sin of not heeding God’s word in the garden and eating from the Tree of Good and Evil. That sin condemned us. But how amazing is the Saviour, Jesus Christ, the stark contrast to Adam, whose justification through the cross, not only resolved the ‘original sin’ but also justified every sin, every offence that followed to them that “believe”. There’s power in the blood!

17, For if by one man’s offence death reigned by one; much more they which receive abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness shall reign in life by one, Jesus Christ.)

Again, without blowing the horn, scripture again says, “death reigned by one” – not sin, not inheritance of sin, not the original sin, death.

18, Therefore as by the offence of one judgment came upon all men to condemnation; even so by the righteousness6 of one the free gift came upon all men unto justification of life.

A look at the word ‘judgement’ and ‘condemnation’

In verse 18, we get even more clarification, that the single offence brought “judgement” upon all men to “condemnation”. The judgement being “death”, and the condemnation is a mortal life. How can one even apply that to “imputed or inherited sin”. Imputing sin throughout all humanity is not a “JUDGEMENT”, and does not meet the definition in vs.18. Even if it were true, then it would be a cruel and unjust god who would have to do it.

Is it not unfair that we all received ‘death’? God did it for us.

So why was death passed, is that not unfair? No, “for all have sinned”. That is God in His foreknowledge knows we all would sin, and passed a judgement to protect us, to protect us from each other.

19, For as by one man’s disobedience many were made sinners, so by the obedience of one shall many be made righteous.

Righteousness was not imputed, how can sin be?

Again we see the balance of the scales, disobedience of one man led to death, obedience by another man leads to righteousness. But on both accounts, for one to be disobedient, you have to disobey something. For one to be righteous, one has to believe Jesus Christ by faith. Righteousness is not imputed here! So how can we then consider that sin is too when Adam fell?

20, Moreover the law entered, that the offence might abound. But where sin abounded, grace did much more abound:

Cannot label it sin, until we have a law to apply it too, and for there to be a transgression of that law

This feeds back to the earlier point that until the law was revealed, there was no visible way to understand the offence of Adam, SIN and it’s implications to all.

21, That as sin hath reigned unto death, even so might grace reign through righteousness unto eternal life by Jesus Christ our Lord.

Note again the clear emphasis of scripture, sin through Adam hath brought death, but grace through Christ hath brought eternal life. This is the last verse, and it says it clearly.

Conclusion: Application for Us

I believe scripture is very clear the inherited sin is a misnomer, and hopefully this message has helped you either draw closer to that truth. There is quite a lot of chew on here, and some takes time to process and understand. Hopefully it has helped you.

But what does this mean for you the Christian?

1. Knowing that we don’t have ‘inherited sin’, that we don’t have a “sin nature”, allows us:
2. To understand that our choices to sin, are off our own free volition, not because that’s they way we are designed.
3. Yes our flesh desires ease, comfort and a host of lusts, it’s the mechanics of physical bodies (not our spiritual souls). But in Christ, the power of the flesh (not our nature, our souls, our inner men) is overcome through spiritual circumcision and the indwelling Holy Spirit. (Read Romans 6)
4. It also refutes Calvinism. With Calvinism all 5 points are inter-linked, knock down one point and all the dominoes fall of TULIP. Original sin uplifts election! Believing that “death was passed as sin” uplifts free will and the Holiness of God.
5. It helps us navigate life better, knowing that we are not the product of our design, but the product of our free will.

PS. Too state the obvious – I don’t believe the bible teaches ‘sinless perfection’, that is someone can walk this earth without falling into sin. If you would like further detail, please leave a comment.

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Can I be of use to God?

Hope For Tommorrow

 

The immediate answer to the question without any further reading is YES!

In our lives in general, there is a broader question – do I provide value? That is, am I valued by others by the contributions I make. This may be indiscreet or subtle, but at the heart of it, that is innately each and every person’s desire. Because if there is no purpose, if there is no value add, then why LIVE? That sounds cruel, but that is not the scenario, particularly for a born-again Christian.

Understanding our motives, leads to the next part, and that of maturity. That is walking circumspectly on this earth, not to the effect that we can be valued or recognised or given glory, but rather through us, Christ is reflected and revealed to which He get’s the glory. That’s true purpose – that’s effectual, permanent and eternal. Yet often times as Christians in our local churches or by reading books of missionaries or even some good-old bible preaching at a church meeting, we find ourselves overwhelmed or even paralysed as to how WE, or how I, or how you can be effectual for Christ our God in relation to these aforementioned things. The burden becomes to large to bear. Why? Because the natural aspirations and accomplishments of so-called ‘more noble’ men and women call us to a higher way, a narrower road and so it should. But these things should never prompt us to be “SOMEONE ELSE”, it should never prompt us to live like “SOMEONE ELSE”, it should never force us to run the Christian race as “SOMEONE ELSE”. No! It should only show us, how great God is, and what can be accomplished by a surrendered vessel. A vessel pretending to imitate another vessel is not surrendered, merely confused.

Through this short article, we will gain some insight as to how God values us, and can use us DESPITE – whatever placeholder you want to put here!

 So the immediate question should be but where is your evidence biblically?

Let us consider Adam? The first man, created by God’s very literal own hand – yet, this man so richly blessed and divinely made would sin and alter God’s intent for him and his wife. Given so much power and dominion yet would fall and heed the words of the imperfect and created god satan. Adam nonetheless was not killed by God (though punishment did fall upon him), but still lived out his God intended purpose to be fruitful and multiply. Perhaps that is not worth considering as fulfilling one’s purpose, but one only need understand ‘free will’,  Cain chose to kill Abel, Lot slept with his daughters and so it goes on. Adam could have ‘freely’ chosen to reject God now knowing ‘good and evil’. He had a choice despite his failing, and it was still God (Genesis 3, 1 Tim 2:14). Lesson: God can still use you despite your worst FAILURE

Another man worthy of consideration is Moses. Born in the home of mighty Pharaoh became nothing but a murderer. In fact for forty years he was sent to the backside of the desert to farm and live life as a nobody. Not only was he a murderer and rejected by Pharaoh but had a speech impediment. Yet this was the very man that God would call (flawed, meek,murderer) to set his people free from the tyranny of Egypt and be the voice of God. I repeat there was a period of stillness in his life, while he was in the backside of the desert for 40 years where he wasn’t living out his initial call to set God’s people free. But God has his timing with men, his moulding and his purposes (Exodus). Lesson: God will use you even though you appear to be in the desert and without any purpose. Don’t let today, dictate the opportunity that may come tomorrow.  

Lastly, and there are so many examples in scripture, but let us consider David. Considered to be the man after God’s own heart. That’s not a light statement (Acts 13:22) but we need only consider David’s life, how he had an affair with Bathsheba (2 Samuel 11), and then killing her husband to secure her. How sick and how ruthless! This by a man who God hand picked to take the role of King of Israel. This man who was blessed with so much, yet here he is committing such a heinous act. That’s one of many, he also disobeyed God by numbering the people when he was not supposed too (2 Samuel 24). Lesson: Other’s may say you out, but a repentant heart find’s a loving God. God decides who He uses, not MEN, despite their pomp, rank or title!   

The summation of it all friends, is that God uses men and women, in different times, in different ways, despite their failings and despite what others may or may not think. We fail as Christians, as servants, as children to our Father, when we perceive our inabilities as hindrances, when we interpret our past sins as stumbling blocks and when we heed others direction as to how, where, when God should use us!

By the grace of God,

Dane



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God’s Word: Some Basics

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How is the Bible divided?

Simplistically the Bible is the WORD of God – that is, it is preserved and God-breathed to be perfect and to withstand the ages. The King James Bible is divided into two main divisions; Old Testament and New Testament.

The Bible is made up of 66 books – the Old Testament consists of 39 books, broken down into the Pentateuch (first 5 books written by Moses), History of Israel, their Kings, theirs Major Prophets and their Minor Prophets (ending at Malachi). The Old Testament is written TO the Jews (Israel) and about the nation of Israel.

The New Testament is made up of 27 books – starting at Matthew, and covers 4 gospels of Jesus Christ, moving onto the forming of the Church in Acts, to the Pauline Epistles (books that Paul wrote), to the last book that speaks prophetically of things that were, are and yet to come (Revelation). The New Testament is TO the Church and covers our Christian living and understanding of Jesus. Altogether 66 books!

Please note, though the Old Testament is FOR us, but not written to “us”. That is, if I write you a letter about ‘How to Build’ something. Though it’s TO you (it’s got your name on it, and some personal details), you can however pass it on to someone else to gather information or learn from it. The Old Testament is thus, written FOR us to learn, understand God more; but it’s not written TO us, but rather to Israel (God’s Chosen People). That means – when God Promises something or says something, it’s primarily to Israel.

Who Is Israel?

Israel is God’s people, sons of Jacob (Genesis 29) and their descendants – and they are known today, as modern day Jews. In the Old Testament, God had given to them the LAW (that is the Ten Commandments etc) and many either laws (social, civil and moral – Exodus 20-24).

However, despite God working with them through the ages, endearing them with love and mercy to follow after Him and be obedient to His commandments, they rejected Him their Messiah (Jesus Christ), and as such He then put them aside for a TIME (Romans 8-10). God then directed His focus towards the Gentiles (or the non-Jews) – which is us; the Church or the Body of Jesus Christ (1 Corinthians 12:13). Anyone who believes Jesus Christ, is now part of that “Body”.

A Key To Understanding the Bible:

Firstly, a Bible believer must distinguish between the Old Testament and the New Testament, and TO whom those Books are written. Why? Because you may take something God said in the Old Testament and believe it for yourself – when it’s NOT meant for you. For example, in Exodus 21-24, we see God give instruction on how one should behave and what laws he or she are to follow. In there it refers too – offering sacrifice to God for sin, it speaks off what one should eat; and how one should repay injustice with death. Clearly reading the context, you can see that it is no written to the Church, but rather for Jews. However we can ‘learn’ some truth from it!

THIS IS VERY IMPORTANT to understand, and is the reason why there is so much division in Churches today, and why there are such things as cults.

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What He Did…

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Up on a tree, placed they the King of Majesty,

Up on His hands and feet, they raised our Lord, beat;

Up He pulls to grasp some air, there laid Jehovah all things bare;

Up He cries, why do you forsake me, I’m a man of no lies?

 

Across His face, the blood marks a man not spared any grace,

Across His head, the thorn crown now painfully wed,

Across His back, torn flesh, from incessant attack.

Across His side, a spear is pierced inside!

 

Down into the depths He plunges and dies; searching out the woeful heart cries;

Down into the heat damned eternal, he descends into satan’s cursed home infernal;

Down amidst the pain and anguishing screams; stands a “preacher” with the gospel of heavenly “dreams”;

Down amidst the saints He tells the story, and marches back up unto ‘Heavenly Glory’.

 

Up into the heavens, he doth ascend, followed by those so dear as a “friend”,

Up into the sky , and way up high, stands the Lord near the God, Adonai!

Up in the heavens, He approaches the throne, and places the blood that will ever atone;

Up in the heavens begins a “shout of glory”, for herein begins a “beautiful story”.

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God’s Word: The Bible

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God’s Word: The Bible

 

Question:Why do we have a Bible? 

 

Answer:Simple answer – so we can “know” Him, but not just by the WORD of someone else, but by the very breath of God. That’s what the Bible is – it’s GOD’S WORDS to us!

 

History in all it’s truth – though having much “fact” bends over time and becomes corrupt. It’s kind of like the game “Broken Telephone”. I tell you something secretly, and you tell someone else secretly, and the further the message is passed on, the further it is corrupted, that is, the message changes. And for that very reason – I believe, God gave us HIS WORD in the form of a Bible – to be PERFECT and WITHSTAND corruption. Imagine God’s Word, or the truth of salvation resting in the hands of men to be passed on from generation to generation; I think that might result in some serious corruption and abuse. Isn’t it wonderful to know, that if someone says something to you, that you can pick up a Bible and find the answer for yourself? Now that’s wonderful!

 

Many have tried to disprove the Bible, it’s truth, its reliability and they have every time failed, or made an argument that lacks context or understanding for the Bible’s truth. The Bible has in fact proved history, and not just proved it – but made predictions about history, and those things have come to pass. There are about 2500 prophecies in scripture, of which 2000 have reliably come to pass, with 500 yet to be fulfilled.

 

The Bible is Perfect!

Now that’s a statement, yes that’s right, the Bible is PERFECT! Without error, unquestionable, without corruption. How can I say that? Through basic logic; why would God leave behind His Word, that has error’s in it? Consider judgement day, a man about to be cast into hell, and there he claims “..but God, your Bible said this and this; and so I followed it, and now you want to cast me into hell?”. God could never do that! By God’s very own nature, we know Him to be HOLY, PERFECT and JUST (else He would not be God); and thus HIS WORD, His instructions to us, have to be PERFECT as HE Himself is perfect. How can you trust or bet your life on something that is “unreliable”? You can’t!

 

“In the beginning was Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God” Jhn 1:1

“And the Word was made flesh and dwelt among us”.  – John 1:14

Wonderful! Here we see Jesus Christ being likened or equated to the “WORD”, that is, the WORD of GOD, which is our Bibles.  (Past)

 

“And there are three that bear witness in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost; and these three are one”  – 1 John 5:7

Here we see the Holy Trinity, the God Head, and again we Jesus being likened or called the “WORD” of God. Another reference to our Bibles. (Present)

 

“And he was clothed with a vesture dipped in blood; and his name is called the WORD of GOD” – Revelation 19:13  (Future – Jesus at His second coming in the context)

This is the third time, that Jesus Christ is directly linked to the WORD of GOD (our Bibles), in three tenses; past, present and in future! So if we say our Bible is corrupt, in actual fact, we are saying; SO IS JESUS! But that could never be true and so our Bible must be PERFECT and without error! The Bible friend, is God’s WORD, and we can trust it, for there is nothing on this earth as pure and as reliable!


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The King Shall Come

1 Thess 4:13-18

Across the earth voices cry, 

oh when will precious justice reign? 

When will He, the God of all eternity, 

dwell with me.

 

The heathen mock and rage,

 spit and curse that Holy Name,

Yet Christian martyrs still His Name Avail.

Stay the storm brothers, till that blessed coming reign.

 

Oh the anguish, trials and sorrows our hearts oft cry,

But there is hope, there is hope I say.

For the King of Glory shall come again, 

Look up High, His splendour draweth nigh!

 

For on a horse, justice rides,

For He gathers against the fallen tides,

And in a swift voice and powerful cry,

Shall he vanquish the prince of demonic lie.

 

Down from the heavens and through the clouds He’ll descend,

Bearing all His saintly brethren friend,

And as we shout, exclaim and proclaim that Holy Name,

Our King would have surely come again.

 

And on that day joy and peace will come our way,

For in His presence we shall live day by day.

Yes I say,

Our Lord is coming back soon

 

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Understanding Election: Part 1

1. Introduction

Good Read

Calvinism is quite simply a distraction to churches or even the Christian walk. I’ve personally spent hours trying to come to an understanding of what it is and how to defend against it. Sadly, in looking at different books, in speaking to even “mighty men” of God, they to themselves struggle to explain it, or rather succinctly for understanding. That being said, I found it then necessary to write a document, to the intent and purposes that I first myself would use it to remember and rekindle the thoughts and avenues I went through to come to grips with a topic that everyone has an opinion on and a different approach.

What the reader must bare in mind, that the topic is not meant for carnal Christians or babes in Christ, if it is, then it is likely that you are seeking head knowledge, instead of “getting God”. Further added, sometimes in trying your best to understand something, you will fail time and time again, and it will appear all to complex, and that’s simply because, a certain maturing by the LORD is required for you to get there. Imagine trying to explain a car engine to a 2 year old, not quite! But as he get’s older, maybe 10 you explain cars and their basic function. As he grows older, you teach him to change a tyre, perhaps do some basic maintenance. As he applies “theory” (faith) and practice, the result is COMPREHENSION. I hope you get the point.

Now let’s get down to understanding the nature of the beast. One thing before I do, Calvinism debated outside of “scripture” is folly – to further elaborate, logic by nature though sound and reliable is sometimes flawed. Say for example, there are 3 kids in a room, and I leave 3 chocolates on a table and walk out, instructing the 3 kids not to eat them. Upon returning I find that the three chocolates have now disappeared, surely logic would dictate that each child in the room was responsible for a missing chocolate. Ah, not true, there could have just been one rebellious child who he himself took all 3 chocolates, refusing to share and ate them all. There are many areas of failed logic, for example, fallacy of division – if a car is blue, and then the engine must be blue. Fallacy of cause and effect – when the rooster crows, the sun rises. Therefore the sun rises because the rooster crows. I make this point to show you, that the only authority is scripture, the only logic (if I can call it that) that is sound, is from the Word of God, and thus our arguments either within ourselves or outside(with others), should be on verses in the bible and not philosophical. A basic assumption, but one all too easily made.

In this part. we will look at Unconditional Election, not following the exact order, but dealing perhaps with the one that’s most prevalent.

2. Unconditional Election

Get One Now :)

The most important lesson you can learn is that in your King James Bible, a word read is often times not it’s meaning. No, I am not being cryptic, nor am I emphasizing a need for the Greek, but what I am stating, is that often times words to us, take “societal” or “traditional” slants, and this is predominantly the case with the word “Election”. Immediately because of Calvinism, the word “Election” means – those ‘chosen’ by God either by His foreknowledge or by His own “random” desire.

However an assessment of the word through scripture, mentioned 6 times in the New Testament, reveals, a “choosing” by God according to a purpose, and speaks nothing about “salvation”. Not only that but every time it is used, in relation to the church, it is always speaking about a “saved believer”. 

For example:

Romans 9:11 (For the children being not yet born, neither having done any good or evil, that the purpose of God according to election might stand, not of works, but of him that calleth;)

God chose Jacob over Esau to bring forth the birth of Israel as a nation, as God’s elect people, that is, the people to reveal the glory of God and to show forth His purposes, according to His will. It is important to remember three things, 

  1. When the statement is made in scripture, by way of timing, as this can help explain the verse far better and give it context. Paying attention to this can give the “Election” (choosing) context for when it happened, as opposed to always assuming it happened before the foundation of the world.
  2. That when “Election” is used in relation to Israel, it has nothing to do with salvation, but God choosing to bless Israel, and reveal more of Himself through a group of people.
  3. If you do go through the six verses (Rom 9:11, 11:5, 11:7, 11:28, 1 Thes 1:4, 2 Peter 1:10), you will find election within an election. Take Rom 11:5, God chose Israel to be His special people (Election 1), but not all believed by faith, and some went straight to hell. However in seeing the hearts of men, God elected (chose) a remnant who by their own “faith” would believe on Him (Election 2). This is so critical to understand, as it shows that “Election” has zero, zilch, nothing to do with “salvation”.

A better explanation sticking to the point of “Election” meaning choosing unto a purpose of God and for God; look at the following example:

Acts 9:15 But the Lord said unto him, Go thy way: for he is a chosen vessel unto me, to bear my name before the Gentiles, and kings, and the children of Israel: 

There is no reference to salvation here, only the purposes to which Paul was called, to be a minister and servant of the Lord Jesus Christ, to the furtherance of the gospel and more importantly his apostleship.

If you struggle to believe these two words are interchangeable, look up the following references; John 6:70, Luke 6:13 (not the timing as mentioned in point (a) above), John 15:16, Mark 13:20,Luke 10:42, Acts 1:24, John 15:19, Acts 6:5,Acts 13:17.

One more important point to deal with and that is of Ephesians 1:4-6, this is a verse used a pivotal form of defense for Calvinists, yet they refuse to just read the plain historical grammatical King James Bible, 

Ephesians 1:4 According as he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before him in love:

Ephesians 1:5 Having predestinated us unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ to himself, according to the good pleasure of his will.

Ephesians 1:6 To the praise of the glory of his grace, wherein he hath made us accepted in the beloved.

Let me rewrite that with some added emphasis:

Ephesians 1:4 According as he hath chosen us IN HIM before the foundation of the world, that WE SHOULD be holy and without blame before him in love:

Ephesians 1:5 Having predestinated us unto the ADOPTION of children BY JESUS CHRIST to himself, according to the good pleasure of his will.

Ephesians 1:6 To the PRAISE of the glory of his grace, wherein he hath made us accepted in the beloved.

Two main themes in these verses, how are people chosen and the purpose of their being “chosen”.

 How are people “elected” or chosen then? Simple – by believing IN Christ, by being IN Christ (Ephesians 1:1-3; pay attention to the wording “in Christ”) and thus are they chosen. They are not set apart before the foundation of the world, no rather, sinners who call upon are the name of the Lord by their own free will, are now “predestinated” and “chosen” of God, to be “adopted” into His family, and destined for Glory (glorification). This is God’s elect – and their purpose to PRAISE Him! Again, he is talking to “saved believers” and not the unsaved.

Remember, “foreknowledge” always precedes “election” or “pre-destination”. God knew the paths that man would take by His foreknowledge of them all, and made a way through Jesus Christ that they might have salvation. He made a way, not chose a certain of the populous to be saved; what kind of God would He be then? We are not robots who are saved and sanctified in eternity; nor is God playing a game with those He did not “elect” (in the traditional sense of the word); where they are offered the gospel but can never accept it!!!! Again, what kind of God would He be?

Hope that helps. Bless you.



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Revelation Chapter 5 Notes

Question:

  1. What do we believe in? Post-tribulation, Pre-tribulation Rapture?
  2. Give a verse to support? (1 Thess 5:9, 1 Thess 1:5-10)

Revelation 5:

The Redemption Plan: (v1-3)

  1. A 7 Sealed Book: A scroll (writing material made of pages, sewed together into a roll) is called a book (Ezek 2:9-10). Customary to place melted wax on the closed roll, making an impression with an official seal (sometimes a ring). This assured the privacy of material. Daniel received some of these events but was asked to seal it until the end (Daniel 12:8-9). The Seventh Seal book – is a book of God’s wrath and judgement upon the earth, and the seven seal judgements at each breaking of the seal commences from Chapter 6:1-19:21 (where the last seal is broken).
  2. Three Phase Redemption Plan of God
  • Jesus Redeemed the Soul at Calvary (1 Peter 1:18-23)
  • Jesus will redeem the body at the Rapture (1 John 3:12)
  • Jesus will redeem the earth and all creation during the time of the removal of the Seven Seals (Rom 8:18-23)
  1. Among these three, there are three laws in Scripture:

(a)The Law of Redemption Concerning a Wife

– Wife died, husband’s brother was to take his widow, so that his name would not die. But he must first be able to support the brother’s widow. Jesus with His own blood “redeemed” the Bride

(b)The Law of Redemption Concerning a Slave

– If a man lost all he had, could not pay his bills, he would be taken by his creditors as a “slave”. Adam lost all when he sinned, and became a slave to “sin”.

(c)The Law of Redemption Concerning Land

– Lev 25:23-25; if a man loses or sells his property, his “kinsman” can come to redeem the land. Adam lost that which was his, the land, the property and it was taken over by satan.

  1. Further added the qualifications for a “kins man” redeemer:
  1. He must be a “kin” (near) to the one who lost the property. He could not be a DISTANT relative, He had to be near
  2. He must be willing to act as a redeemer; not coerced, but by his own free will. It must be done with a heart of willingness and love.
  3. He must have financial backing to prove that he was able to redeem the lost possession. The Lord had all the riches in the world, but the LORD used the richest of them all, His own blood.
  1. This is why Jesus Christ alone was worthy? He is the only one that can “redeem” His Bride, He is the only one that can redeem us as “slaves”. He is the only one who can redeem the earth; Him and Him alone. Great Reference (Jeremiah 32:6-15)
  2. It is here now – that the kinsman (the Lamb) comes on the scene to “redeem” that the “land” – to take the seal, that Great Lamb of God. This is the extent of Christ’s love for His bride, this is the extent of Christ’s heart, this is the extent of our Lord’s passion.

vs. 4 – Was this book important? Of course, how important; note that “John” wept. Would he weep over just any book; no, this was the book that was going to unfold the events for the re-claiming, the redeeming of the land, to set up the Kingdom. What is scripture about?  Scripture’s height is not the fall, scriptures height is not Israel, scripture height is not the redemption of the Church; scripture is time and time again, about “whose got the Kingdom?”. Whose ruling and reigning; and right through scripture – we see the battle for the Kingdom of Heaven, the battle of the Kingdom of God; and the final battle, till Christ rules and reigns on this here earth.

vs. 5 Lion of the Tribe of Judah (Gen 48:8-10) – Judah was one of the 7 tribes and this speaks to the Redeemer being born out of the Lineage of Judah. But secondly, He is also the “Root Of David” – As God (Isaiah 11:1,10). He is both the beginning and the end. Note this is what makes Him worthy; being born in the lineage of man, though a God.

vs. 6 Is this not a picture; one can only imagine the Remembrance this brought to God the Father; as He pictured His Son, the Lamb as He was slain. Others around the throne, can only be brought to remembrance of this Great Work of Christ, but also the pain, suffering and temptation He faced in “prevailing” Truly if there was ever a great victor, if there was ever a soldier who went into battle and won the war it was our LORD Jesus. Friends, though at times, in this life we may feel defeated; never ever forget who is the VICTOR, never ever forget who is in control, and never ever forget that He is coming back soon, to Redeem His Bride. PS. Note who is centered in all the events of heaven; it is Christ!

vs. 7 Here we see Jesus claim the book out of the “right hand of him that sat upon the Throne”. Let us not be confused, both God and Christ are on the Throne. Christ is on the right hand of Father. Heb 1:1-3

vs. 8 The Vials full of Odours, are the prayer of the saints. Friend, if you want to be pleasing to the “nose” of our Lord; how much are you praying? Quotes on Prayer:

“Prayer is not getting man’s will done in heaven, but getting God’s will done on earth”.

“There is too much working before Men and too little waiting before God”.

“On His knees the believer is invincible”.

vs. 9 We remember the previous song sung in Heaven by the 4 Beasts; “Holy, Holy, Holy, Lord God Almighty, which was, and is, and is to come.” (Rev 4:8) was on Christ’s Holiness. But note, when the Church (24 elders) see this, they also break out in song “Thou art worthy, O Lord, to receive glory and honour and power; for thou hast created all things, and for thy pleasure they are and were created”. Note their focus was on Christ the “Creator” (Elohim). But now the song has changed; “Thou art worthy to take the book, and to open the seals thereof; for thou wast slain, and hast redeemed us to God by thy blood out of every kindred, and tongue, and people, and nation, (vs.10) and hast made us unto our God kings and priests: and we shall reign on earth”. This is again confirmation that the Church will be heaven, prior to the judgement that is too fall upon the earth.

vs. 11-12 Note that a third group break out, and this time it’s the Angels, and the lead everyone else into singing “Worthy is the Lamb that was slain to receive power, and riches, and wisdom, and strength, and honour, and glory and blessing”. Right before the Eve of God’s Wrath; comes a Procession of Recognition; of all of Heaven; for Christ. And it’s not just one sect, but everyone, everyone group – all acknowledging that Christ is “worthy”. There is no dispute here. Note their focus, is on Christ receiving the power and glory due to HIM. This world continues to mock Christ, and at this present moment, God has chosen to rule the Kingdom of Heaven (that is on earth); but at the LORDS defeat of satan and His casting of Satan into the “lake of fire” – Christ shall physically rule and reign on this EARTH. In the Kingdom that was originally His to begin with.

vs. 13 If that wasnt enough, now every Creature beings to say “Blessing and Honour, and Glory and Power, br unto him that sitteth upon the throne, and unto the Lamb for ever and ever. They then turn around and praise both God the Father and the Lamb. From 5:1 – refers to God the Father on the Throne, from who Jesus Christ comes and takes the 7 sealed book.

vs. 14 Its biblical to say “Amen”. Sometimes we get so stuck in our seats, our hearts bubble over, and we fail to express out excitement. The problem with that is that we have “allowed” the world, to dictate to us what Church service should be like. Perhaps it’s Christians themselves who have treated the “church service” with such reverance and formality, that the people themselves have become nothing more than the chosen frozen. If there was ever a “shadow”, a like manner to follow, is that of the Throne of Heaven; surely out of all places; where God lives, that would be the place that would best speak to how we should conduct ourselves; and yet we see different groups of people, angels and creatures; sing praises out to God, from sheer excitement; there is no one telling them you go now, as if it’s some synchronized EVENT. They just let rip! Yet we think in our seats that we are far the better, far the more privileged when we it tingles inside, and the truth is being spread abroad in our hearts, or when we get excited to not “shout” AMEN unto the LORD. Are we any better?

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