My husband did a phenomenal job publishing a video recently – April 3, I think. And I wanted to share it because I always am intrigued to learn about the history, theory, and faith differences found between Catholics and Protestants in light of salvation.
The study of the beliefs and doctrines concerning salvation in any specific religion, as well as the study of the subject of salvation, is called “soteriology”. This is cool!
Please click on the statement, Catholics, Protestants, and Salvation – its a hyperlink 🙂
It is very important to understand that the way to get peace with God, hear back from God, and have rest in your spirit, is to repent. I don’t think that any element of Christianity is more needed, yet more forgotten. It’s not about having the correct words like a mantra, but it is so necessary to hit some key points when the process for repentance is taking place. It’s more than just saying, “Sorry, Lord,” and not giving another thought to what you’ve done, at the least – we must look at what we’ve done. You need to keep asking God for forgiveness until you’ve specifically said that you were wrong, and asking God to help you make it right. So, since I’ve sinned numerous sins, and made more mistakes than I can remember, I have learned at least how to say, “Lord, forgive me,” to the point where I can get my conscience clean. Here is some of the process of how to find moment-to-moment rest over specific and general sins. I suggest that this be done as much as needed, repenting during the day, before bed, or when you wake up, or when you get a moment to reflect. But, for your own good, I suggest that it occur as much as possible: when you honestly think you have sinned, and can find proof that whatever the sin is,that it is a sin based on the Bible, or the infringement of conscience based on personal conviction, that is reasonable and good.
1. Acknowledge God somehow, that God is your God, and the Father, and that Jesus is the Son. You must have a recollection (or realization by thinking about topic for a while) that a specific sin, as defined in the Bible, is indeed a sin. For example, if you had lied to someone and told false information, or been dishonest, you would remember where the Bible speaks against lying. You could pray like this: “Lord, I sinned when I lied because Your Word speaks against lying lips.” Mark 8:22: “(out of men’s hearts come) greed, malice, deceit, lewdness, envy, slander, arrogance, and folly.” Deceit is dishonesty; and so I repent of the lie in Jesus’ name.
2. Actual repentance: “Forgive me Father, by the blood of your Son, Jesus, for my lying, or dishonesty.” When you pray this, have invisible faith that your sins are forgiven, and that the blood of Jesus has washed you clean. It’s not enough to feel or believe in God, without acknowledging Him as Lord. Similarly, it’s also not enough to have conviction of sin and not ask for forgiveness. It literally takes 15 seconds to do so! If there is something you need to repent for, do it and get it over with. Acknowledging it is the hard part, and all that’s left is getting rid of it. Then it is erased forever, gone, and even if there are repercussions for the sin that can’t be avoided, in God’s eyes you are no longer accountable for it at all, because it disappeared completely off your record.
3. Now you can ask God to help you, and think for yourself also, on how to do the opposite of the wicked thing. For example, if it is a difficult sin that needs overcoming by much prayer, you can ask God to give you Holy Spirit power to overcome it. Like if you are repenting for cussing, something that you could do to prevent yourself, is stop listening to music riddled with profanity. If it is a sin, not easily overcome like lustfully looking at the opposite sex, or getting drunk with addiction to alcohol, ask God over and over if you have to–until the door of Heaven is broken, and you overcome it. Fasting can REALLY help with certain demons, and I imagine, the more powerful ones.
Matthew 17:21, NKJV: “This kind does not go out except by prayer and fasting.”
I suggest praying something like, “I thank You God in the name of Jesus, that by Your power I’ve overcome and shown repentance by “not getting drunk on wine but being filled with the Spirit” (Eph. 2:18). Or again, “I thank You God in Jesus’ name that I’ve shown true repentance by “loving my wife” or “not looking at a woman lustfully in my heart” (Eph. 5:25; Matt. 5:28). Find a verse that states doing the opposite of the wicked thing, and pray according to that Scripture that you will do the righteous thing. We need the application of Jesus’ blood for forgiveness as we ask for it, but just as importantly, we need the power of the Holy Spirit to resist a billion temptations that will come our way in this life. So, ask for help!
Here are some examples:
1. The Sin of Gluttony. Repent of gluttony as it is mentioned in the Bible.
Ezekiel 16:49: “Now this was the sin of your sister Sodom: She and her daughters were arrogant, overfed and unconcerned; they did not help the poor and needy.”
Proverbs 23:2: “Put a knife to your throat (figurative) if you are given to gluttony.”
Ask God to forgive you by the blood of Jesus. Pray, “I ask You God in Jesus’ name that by your Spirit You will help me prove true repentance by…
…practicing the fruit of the self-control as a fruit of the Spirit” (Galatians 5:22-23).
…taking care of my body as a temple of the Holy Spirit” (1 Corinthians 6:19).
…acknowledging that my stomach is not my god” (Philippians 3:19).
The verse references are put into the form of Scriptural prayers. I don’t think God requires us, per se, to use Bible verses when we pray, but do what you think is right.
2. The Sin of Pride. Repent, in Jesus’ name, of being prideful, unyielding to God, and stubborn, in the way that pride is mentioned in the Bible.
Ask God to forgive you by Jesus’ blood for the specific sin of pride. Pray, “I ask You God, in Jesus’ name, that by Your Spirit, You’ve helped me to prove truly repentant by…
…submitting myself to God, and resisting the devil, so that he will flee” (James 4:7).
…not being proud, but humble, to find favor with God” (James 4:6).
…humbling myself before the Lord, so that He will lift me up” (James 4:10).
So, it’s easy. Acknowledge that you are guilty. Repent of specific sins in Jesus’ name. Pray according to the righteousness available to us, by grace in Jesus, as it is shown in the Bible.
These are examples of sins that easily beset us or hinder us from going forward. There are so many sins in the world and so many demons, real literal demons, like the bible talks about. Ask God for wisdom every day that you can and regularly reflect on your actions, thoughts, words, dreams, etc. to see if you are in the wrong or in the right. God will bless you in this and give you continuing revelation. Don’t be so preoccupied with a list of sins, so that you feel like if you forget something, then you’ll be sent to Hell, because the grace of God and the blood of Jesus is much bigger than that; and we have no need to be that anxious. The Lord will even remind you of what you need to hear, to get yourself clean and flowing in His Spirit, with goodness and light all around you.
Here are some good verses that help with acknowledging sin, repenting of sin, and overcoming sins by His blood.
Hebrews 12:1: “Since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us.”
John 16:8: “And when He (the Holy Spirit) is come, He will reprove the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment.”
Hebrews 10:26: “If we deliberately keep on sinning after we have received the knowledge of the truth, no sacrifice for sins is left.”
1 John 1:9: “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.”
1 John 3:4: “Whoever commits sin transgresses also the law: for sin is the transgression of the law.”
Psalms 32:5: “I acknowledged my sin to You, and my iniquity I did not hide; I said, ‘I will confess my transgressions to the Lord’; and You forgave the guilt of my sin.”
Psalm 139:24: “See if there is any offensive way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting.”
1 Corinthians 11:31-32: “If we judged ourselves rightly, we would not be judged. But when we are judged, we are disciplined by the Lord so that we will not be condemned along with the world.”
Jesus still saves! That’s good news! He can make us live free if we will be honest and accept forgiveness, by confessing our sins and our need of His holy help!
There are some dangerous pretensions (or arguments) that I have had to overcome in my walk with the Lord. The Bible tells us that we wage against dark powers, against the devil, against the spiritual forces of evil. We are taught and reminded in 2 Corinthians 10:5: “We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.” The pretensions that have come at times to bombard my mind; and the minds of other Christians everywhere in the Church are:
1. Trying Harder Means I Will Be Spiritually Prideful. “If I make a harder effort to be in perfect standing with the Lord, then I’ll probably look down on others in a pious or ‘I’m-super-righteous’ attitude.” That is a total lie. The deception that being righteous automatically equals being proud is backward and false. When I look at God the Father, Himself, I see the most upright, creative, good, and just God. But He is such a gentleman that not even He will force Himself or His will upon a person. If He were truly proud and arrogant, He would not let us make our own choices so we could learn like children the consequences of our choice. He is similar to us in that. He is humble enough to ask us to seek Him, ask Him to be our Lord, and dwell in our spirits. So also, we see that Jesus, who was as meek and mild as a Lamb; and yet was so righteous, blameless, and without sin. The Almighty Lord Jesus, the same one, who is to come on the clouds with a holy army of angels, and cast down the dragon into the pit, and rid the Earth of sin once and for all. He is the very same Lord who came to Jairus’ daughter and healed her, and then mildly asked everyone to keep the healing a secret. That doesn’t sound so proud to me. We learn humility probably best by being humiliated (for Christ), but it can be learned! If there is a righteousness of God to seek in an area of life, then we are commanded to seek it, hunger after it, and thirst after it.
Matthew 6:33: “But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added unto you.”
Matthew 5:6: “Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled.”
When Jesus said, “Blessed are those who hunger and thirst after righteousness,” that verse was written for sooooo much more than our first belief in Jesus as Lord. When we are first justified, saved from Hell and sin by Jesus’ sacrifice for us, that is our first decision towards righteousness; but now Jesus is telling us to take our sustenance from His righteousness. If we are hungering and thirsting in our spirits, like our bodies do in the natural, it sounds to me like our spirits have to be kept alive through a diet of righteousness, not a one-time deal, but daily rationing. All of this making the Christian life much LESS boring.
2. Well…Nobody’s Perfect. This in regards to a person blowing it, or failing, or falling short of the mark. That’s a nice thought and all, and does have an appropriate place sometimes; but I’ve wondered just how many times this “tolerance” idea has been used as an excuse to excuse oneself from obeying what they know to be right, producing apathy, complacency, etc. Yes, it is true, no matter how “good” we are doing with the Lord, at the end of the day we all still need Jesus’ blood to cover us, just the same to get into Heaven. But we are also judged according to our deeds on Judgment Day, and in this life too. “I the Lord search the heart and examine the mind, to reward each person according to their conduct, according to what their deeds deserve” (Jeremiah 17:10).
Luke 23:41: “We are punished justly, for we are getting what our deeds deserve. But this man has done nothing wrong.”
Hebrews 9:27: “Just as people are destined to die once, and after that to face judgment.”
This concept is stated many times in the Old AND New Testaments.
Revelation 20:12: “I saw the dead, great and small, standing before the throne, and books were opened. Another book was opened, which is the book of life. The dead were judged according to what they had done as recorded in the books.”
If the thought ever remained, “Oh, it’s okay to sin, because God is just going to forgive me automatically,” we’ve already lost the battle in the fight against sin. If we continue on that path, we will also lose our souls. Jesus combats that way of thinking when He says, “Be perfect, therefore, as your Heavenly Father is perfect” (Matthew 5:48). In another place, 2 Corinthians 7:1, we are encouraged to develop holiness: “Therefore, since we have these promises, dear friends, let us purify ourselves from everything that contaminates body and spirit, perfecting holiness out of reverence for God.” There are many other Scriptures about becoming perfect and the process of perfection in Christ. Many are the passages that speak to us about having a whole lot of righteousness, not of ourselves, but of our good works. Our robes are to be without spot, our hearts fervent, and our motives correct. Sadly, many are thinking at this late hour in the church, that grace is a license for sin, that grace is a means to lawlessness. Paul said that those who felt so deserved fully their own condemnation. Grace should always lead us into righteousness.
Titus 2:11-14: “The grace of God has appeared that offers salvation to all people. It teaches us to say ‘No’ to ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright and godly lives in this present age,while we wait for the blessed hope—the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior, Jesus Christ,who gave Himself for us to redeem us from all wickedness and to purify for Himself a people that are His very own, eager to do what is good.”
In Matthew 7:21, the Lord says,“Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of Heaven, but only the one who does the will of my Father who is in Heaven.” When an antinomian (anti-law) notion sets in, which can often occur if we aren’t vigilant, we may think we can purposely disobey God’s laws. This is not the intention of heart that Jesus died for! Jesus died for the removal of our sins; a daily removal. If we are so bold to think that God is too forgiving to care, God scoffs at us. If the Son of God is willing to forgive, and of course He is, it would be safe to say that God honors true repentance. Hebrews 6 speaks of a falling away where we can become hardened, and can’t come back to repentance; it is impossible for those “who have fallen away, to be brought back to repentance. To their loss, they are crucifying the Son of God all over again and subjecting Him to public disgrace” (Heb. 6:6). It is good to desire to always be able to come back to repentance! If we go from having Christ in our hearts to excusing, justifying, or even condoning our sins, we can become darkened in our consciences, and have a self-righteousness that is much more rude and vicious than a non-Christian. You’ll see that in practicing Pharisees.
So, where the understanding may be that “we are not under law any longer” is present in Christian circles, we are still not excused from obeying the law that is to be written on our hearts. “They show that the requirements of the law are written on their hearts, their consciences also bearing witness” (Romans 2:15). Our sins will be revealed to our consciences over time for our subjective convictions. The rules of the New Testament for holy living are still obligations to us by the Spirit; and also the teachings of Jesus should be what a Jesus follower are bound to. The concept of “not being under the law” anymore, because of the blood Jesus, as best as I can tell, applies to ceremonial laws from the Old Testament, and the traditions of men that don’t come from God.
Hebrews 8:13: “By calling this covenant ‘new,’ He has made the first one obsolete; and what is obsolete and outdated will soon disappear.”
Colossians 2:14: “Having canceled the charge of our legal indebtedness, which stood against us and condemned us; He has taken it away, nailing it to the cross.”
Jesus does INDEED do away with all that as He becomes our full salvation!
All of this is given to us for edification, exhortation (rebuking), comfort, and encouragement. We MUST be strong like our Lord was strong. We MUST brace ourselves and fight like soldiers, because the world will see the difference. Then they will see the light. As we proclaim the name of Jesus and walk uprightly, some will be saved! Finally:
Hebrews 12:2: “Fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before Him He endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.”
When a believer starts to make some ground in prayer, one of the first obstacles that there is to overcome pride inwardly. There is a great drive for people of prayer to want to find appreciation in the fact that have gotten somewhere in prayer. However, a deeper dive into prayer is what they need at that time. True it is, that when you have prayed in secret, the Lord can and will reward you openly. But that reward is supposed to be like a pat on the back, a thumbs up, and a boost to “get back to work”. Lol. The Lord knows that the deepest of treasures is found in the knowledge of Himself and of yourself in Himself. In the family of Christ, we will see ourselves and our good qualities (and bad qualities) reflected or shown when we are together. There may be a comment or a prophetic word, a word spoken like a word of knowledge in prayer, a coincidence shared by a friend that you had need of hearing, a comment made about a memory that tied you to being with another person, etc. It takes a long time to cultivate humility, years and years, and miles and miles talking to Jesus, and the greatest threat to keeping humility is self-praise. The devil thrives on pride and having his pat on the backs continually. The devil was thrown out of his place in Heaven because of discontent and now wanting God to have all the glory. So, it is a sure thing, that if we can tackle the beast of pride as Christians, it will keep us in Heaven’s view, keep us out of trouble, keep us in His joy, and keep our soul. “For they loved human praise more than praise from God.” John 12:43 This is because all the devil’s glory is on this earth and in heavenly reams with spiritual battles. Sure, the devil gets a mere 6000 years of glory on this crooked earth, but when the Lord returns that 6000 years will look like a spec of dust compared to Jesus’ eternal reign. The Lord’s people are to be as meek as a lamb, as mild as a babe in a manger, as lowly as a persecuted and blistered Lord. If we get back to that state of humiliation, of being childlike in truth, of relying on the Lord in the face of all our fears, we will have His mantle of revelation to guide us in all our ways. When we have made it to a height in prayer, it will take more prayer to get back into prayer, and more prayer to pray after that, and more prayer to stay humble. The Lord’s river does not ever run dry but flows from the throne of God living and full and rich and plenty-to-go-round for all. The insidious demons of pride stand at the door as you try to enter the gate to a new wavelength with the Lord. The demon of pride also is seen quite frequently with other demons of conceit, insincerity, and deception, which is dishonesty. A great feat it is to be able to “stay in your own lane” while in prayer. When you are around others is when you are tested the most, because pride feeds on the presence of others. Not many people struggle near as much with patting themselves on the back time after time when they are alone, I don’t think. When you are praying around others or not, don’t “look up” from where you are in prayer so that others can “see” you. There are several teachings of Jesus about doing things privately: giving prayer in private, giving to others in secret, and the mysteries of God taught by Jesus are even referred to as “secrets” told in privacy, another theme of a humble gospel. What I mean is, don’t check to see if others can see what such a great job you are doing in the Lord. Don’t be distracted from the Lord in prayer by checking to see if anyone can see how holy you are. And especially if it does happen, don’t ever let it continue. Just acknowledge privately that you were prideful, because if the spirit of pride proceeds a thought-no matter how holy- it has no firm foundation to stand. It doesn’t matter if anyone ever sees you because our connection is to be to God and His Spirit. Up and up and up. Stay in your own lane and keep your eyes on your own prize. Mind your own business and you’ll be good to go! 1 Thessalonians 4:11a “Stay calm; mind your own business; do your own job.” MSG version
I had realized the other night when talking with John that there are several ways in which I knew for sure that I was born again in 2005, when the event occurred, and though it occurred during a season, I had several different factors that made me totally sure of my salvation having occurred then. The several main reasons that I found to be the indicators were:
I heard an eternal call what John (husband) calls a “saving call” where I could see that Jesus alone was the Lord and – could then hear from the Lord as my own Lord.”Consequently, faith comes from hearing the message, and the message is heard through the word about Christ.” Romans 10:17 Before hearing a word deep in my spirit, which is something mysterious and supernatural I can’t adequately explain (but will try), I always seemed to see God from afar off, like when I would try to pray to sing to the Lord, I didn’t seem to understand or grasp what I was saying to Him, and especially not hearing anything back. Consequently, faith comes from hearing the message, and the message is heard through the word about Christ. Romans 10:17 I had had it told to me a million times the story of Jesus on the cross, but faith had not been initiated in me, that is real faith that could be felt. I heard an eternal word through Jim Nesbit and the Lord had started dealing with me personally through the end of 2004 and beginning of 2005. No longer was Jesus someone who was far away, but I could actually within myself see that Jesus the Lord was the real Lord, the Lord of all things. I could hear from Heaven so clear as if there had been a trumpet to alarm me to war. I could not discern Jesus before but once realizing His grace to me, I felt such joy that I hadn’t experienced ever before! My spiritual eyes were opened, and my understanding was enlightened. There was a feeling of completion, a feeling like I had finally arrived to a point where I could find God and realize that He was right there for me. Mark 4:9 9 Then Jesus said, “Whoever has ears to hear, let them hear.”
Jesus is the Christ – I realized that when I got born again, I felt like I could see Jesus as actually being my Lord. Not just in the general belief sense like I believe that He existed, but in the sense of Him being the King, the pinnacle of all things, and the achieved peace of my soul! I remember when people would ask me over the year about salvation, or when I found myself talking to them about it, I would say out loud something that just came out of my spirit, and that was one of the indicators to me that I knew Jesus was God. I actually had an inkling in myself that I needed to share my testimony with everyone that I could. This impulse was something that no one told me to do, it must have been put there by God by His deposited Holy Spirit. I had not ever felt an impulse as such that I knew was put there by God. No one gave me the idea to tell the entire college campus through their emails that I had found Jesus. I just knew I had to do it, because I felt compelled. I had not seen anyone do that before, so I don’t think it would have come in my mind any other way but by revelation and conviction from God himself.
Thoughts of a man’ spirit within Him – I Corinthians 2:11 “For who knows a person’s thoughts except their own spirit within them? In the same way no one knows the thoughts of God except the Spirit of God.” When I found Christ in 2005, or when He rather found me, I started to be able to find Him i my thoughts and also I found that I could realize what I was thinking. For 18/19 years I had been so blind to the thoughts of my heart, not 100% – but for the most part. There were a few times where I can look back to my years growing up and see where conviction was playing a part. I would know that I should or shouldn’t do something because of a social, morality understanding of right and wrong (growing up prior to college) and others telling me, but I started to see within myself upon turning 19 that my heart had bad feelings, thoughts, and sins coming out of it. I also saw that there were things in my heart that were revealed in prophecies that were secrets laid bare that helped me to understand who I was, what God wanted, why I did the things I did, etc. Prophecy is all about knowing the thoughts, the future, and the secrets, and symbolisms, etc. Karrie Frith prophesied over me some things that God alone would know, and afterwards, she could not remember any of the things she had said, which was a sign to me that could couldn’t have made it up even if she wanted to.
When I realized more about the thoughts within myself, and put them alongside Scripture to see what was right, I found that God was definitely more interested and involved with me that I ever realized before. Like I said before, I had seen things peripherally for years and years, always wanting to be “in “ with God, but never realizing He was there all along, it was just my understanding that needed changing. When I would open the Bible, which happened to be so much more often because I had a craving desire to learn from God, the Words on the page were like what I could see as coming straight from Heaven, meant for me – Rebekah Lucas, at that time. I had been to so many services, church trips, conferences, youth camps, but I was so distracted by things around Jesus and the Bible that I never got still enough to realize how near God could be. I’m sure there are people mad at me for not ever vocally reconciling what had happened to me prior to college, compared with my “new found testimony”, and I should have had the sense to communicate it, but I didn’t and for that I am sorry. I have thought about it several times sense, and feel that all that I had experienced prior to be 18 and 19 was preparing me for new birth, some theme of prevenient grace or something. I had even had some experiences of crying out to God from the base of my spirit, but then days later would be found in my idolatries again. Upon really being born again, I saw that I had to be born again to see the kingdom of God. Born from Heaven above. Not saying a prayer, signing a card, telling having someone else counsel me, but having a spiritual birth just like 19 years earlier, I had a physical one. The born again experience: “But what does it say? “The word is near you; it is in your mouth and in your heart,” that is, the message concerning faith that we proclaim:” Romans 10:8 I was born from above, and thus so, conflicted with what many others believed or did NOT believe in.
4. Seeds along the path – When I thought I was saved before, I remember the word of God not getting very far in me. I had the “worries of this life, the deceitfulness of wealth, and the desire for other things” clouding my view and blocking me from getting further. I mainly majored in the “worries of this life” and the “desires for other things” part. Mark 4:19. I had so much concern from what others thought of me and I remember this from like 8 or 9 years old and upward. I also wanted other things, popularity, social status, softball, to prove myself to others in sports or music or anything but God, etc. I had had a general and goodly desire for God, but never realized just how pertinent it was that I really heeded and paid attention more closely to what God was saying. I also seemed to have very little “root” in what Jesus was saying and what the BIble was saying. Mark 4:6.6 “But when the sun came up, the plants were scorched, and they withered because they had no root.” I had not let the Word of God take root in me as it seemed to do in Regina and others around me when I was younger. I wanted to have God but I wanted to have all my stuff too for my whole upbringing, but God wanted me to have ALL things in HIs Son Christ Jesus instead of everything else. I realize looking back that there were many many times the Lord Jesus grabbed my attention, but every time I got distracted by a million other things the moment I walked out of the church door. I was convicted of sin and “saved” a million times, so called, but then I became idolatrous, distracted, worried about what others thought, desiring of other things besides God whether it be reputation, some random desires, or a guy, or just selfishness. So, the story of the sower and the seed hits home in clarity that though Jesus would call to us as many times as He has patience for, if we don’t let the word take root it doesn’t matter how many respond half-heartedly, we must get the Word in deep to the core to hear eternity.
5. Blind, but then I saw – light versus dark – When the light shone on my heart and my eyes were opened, I had the clear picture of what sin was versus what righteousness was. I was blessed to have grown up with Scriptures around me in church and influence, but when my spiritual eyes were opened, I could see the day from the night, the dark from the light, and the wrong from the right. Just as the man who was born blind was healed said, I was blind, but now I see. See, beforehand, I had some small amount of understanding that kept me from getting drunk, having sex before marriage, using profanity, – basic general requirements of morality, but when I was born again, I had a new idea of righteousness not only being the above things, but now the right living would be birthed from my heart and then influencing my actions. Instead of living by righteousness outside-in, I found righteousness inside-out. In the chapter of John 9, I find myself similar to the man born blind. I was born in darkness in my sins, and it was like Jesus had put mud on my eyes, and then healed my sight, my spiritual sight. The church leaders were convinced that the man who converted me was a sinner and persecuted him and made sure he was thrown out. But, nonetheless, they could not tell me that I could not see with spiritual eyes. I was blind, but now I see! – just like this man born blind. And, yes, I do believe that the man who was responsible for healing me is a prophet.
God teaches us addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division:
“But seek his kingdom, and these things will be given to you as well.” Matt 6:33 KJV Jesus will add to you all you need for life in Him and life itself.
“For he was a good man, and full of the Holy Ghost and of faith. And a large crowd was added unto the Lord.” Acts 11:24 KJV The Lord will add to
Heaven the number of the redeemed.
“Nevertheless, more and more men and women believed in the Lord and were added to their number.” Acts 5:14 NIV God adds to the numbers of His church.
“Another angel came and stood at the altar, holding a golden censor; and much incense was given to him, that he might add it to the prayers of all saints upon the golden altar which was before the throne.” Revelation 8:3 NASB Jesus uses angels to add incense to the prayers of saints to give back to God.
“To your knowledge, add self-control; to your self-control add endurance; to your endurance add godliness;” 2 Peter 1:6 Good News Translation The qualities of God are added to us as we grow in our faith.
“The next day John saw Jesus coming to him and said, “Look, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world!” John 1:29 NIV God gives Jesus to subtract our sin(s).
“So are the ways of everyone that is greedy for gain; which taketh away the life of the owners thereof.” Proverbs 1:19 KJV God warns that greed for gain will rob you of your life.
“Give to everyone who asks of you, and whoever takes away what is yours, do not ask it back.” Luke 6:30 Jesus asks us to give freely to those who subtract from us.
“Some people are like seed along the path, where the word is sown. As soon as they hear it, Satan comes and takes away the word that was sown in them.” Mark 4:15 NIV Jesus teaches that sometimes the devil steals the word from hearers right after they’ve received it.
“Every branch in me that does not bear fruit, He takes away; and every branch that bears fruit, He prunes it so that it may bear more fruit.” John 15:2 NASB Jesus cuts of the branches (us) and subtracts them if they are unfruitful.
“Then he said “ ‘ BEHOLD, I HAVE COME TO DO YOUR WILL.’ “He takes away the first in order to establish the second.” Hebrews 10:9 NASB God subtracts the Old Covenant and enforces the New Covenant in Christ!
“As for you, be fruitful and increase in number; multiply on the earth and increase upon it.” Genesis 9:7 NIV God gives us the mandate of multiplying souls and increasing in fruitfulness of labor.
“There the fire will consume you, the sword will cut you down–they will devour you like a swarm of locusts. Multiply like grasshoppers, multiply like locusts! Nahum 3:15 God pokes fun in judging Ninevah, and at their futile attempts to increase in power by number.
“And I will harden Pharoah’s heart, and multiply my signs and wonders in the land of Egypt.” Exodus 7:3 KJV God’s multiplies His signs to show that He is the all powerful and only true God.
“And God blessed them, saying, Be fruitful, and multiply, and fill the water and the seas, and let fowl multiply in the earth.” Genesis 1:22 KJV God not only gave the mandate for the animals. to be in the oceans and skies, but he gave them the holy responsibility of multiplying themselves.
“And fools multiply words. No one knows what is coming-who can tell someone else what will happen to them.” Ecclesiastes 10:14 Simple enough. God tells us not to talk to much, not to multiply our words, and to look out for others that do.
“And God blessed and his sons, and said unto them, Be fruitful, and multply, and replenish the earth.” Genesis 9:1 KJV The Lord gave the earth another chance after the great flood and told Noah and family to multiply and repopulate the earth over again.
“Bring out every kind of living creature that is with you–the birds, the animals, and all the creatures that move along the ground–so they can multiply on the earth and be fruitful and increase in number on it.” Genesis 8:17 NIV After the flood (and perhaps after the dinosaurs were wiped out also), the Lord commanded Noah to bring the animals out of the ark so they can multiply to fill the earth again.
“Now he that ministereth seed to the sower both minister bread for your food, and multiply your seed sown, and increase the fruits of your righteousness.” 2 Corinthians 9:10 KJV Just as the Lord provides harvests from the earth for us to enjoy and live by, so also will He multiply the fruits of our righteousness in His time.
“Saying, I WILL SURELY BLESS YOU AND I WILL SURELY MULTIPLY YOU.” Hebrews 6:14 NASB God swore to Abraham that he would bless him with multiples of physical and spiritual descendants to outnumber the stars in the sky.
“Do you think that I came to bring peace on earth? No, I tell you, but division.” Luke 12:51 NIV No patty-cake with Jesus in regards to the world, but rather understanding that light versus dark will always result in division as long as the world exists.
“So that there be no division in the body, but that its parts should have equal concern for one another.” 1 Corinthians 12:25 NIV Jesus teaches us that division has no place in the body, but that just as a person’s body parts should work together in the physical, so should it be in the spiritual body. Division will not bring about the love of God required for each member of the body towards one another.
“His divisions number 74.600.” Numbers 2:4 NIV Nahshon son of Amminadab: records in the Old Testament are revealing groups of divisions of camps of Judah. Number, numbers, numbers :).
From when I was first saved and all the way up to present day, the Lord has given me the sense and the strength to choose a road of hope and faith. Where I would have times of fear of worrying about things were going to turn out in a situation, I would somehow hold out a belief/notion that God would ultimately take care of things. I remember that I would have anxiety over a friend’s salvation (when I was first saved) because she had a lot of oppression and religious spirits attacking her. It was moments that I saw her crying out to God in desperation that caused me to be propelled into hope for something better. I would stay strong and positively reaffirm God’s truths, even when it took all faith to be certain of what I could not see or feel at all. I chose to believe the devil would not have victory her when I saw her in agony. In 2008, I was so made aware of the seriousness and gravity of my salvation state. This was because I had uncovered in myself, deep in my soul, some rebellion that I had not put out before. It was a new kind of rebellion that was insidious and felt horrid in me. It let to guilt and shame. This revelation or realization of my own depravity, more severe than ever before, put me in like a spiritual state of shock. Others would not have noticed so much what was going on inside of me when I would feel it. What would happen is that the Spirit would attest to the truth inside me, and I would turn myself inwardly against that truth. Hard to explain, but it was more a feeling than using words like prayer. When this would happen, I could feel myself perishing. It was a strange feeling that came over my body – not a good one. I knew I would really, truly die if I persisted against all good conscience in that evil feeling. If I stayed in God and thought positively, however, I had chance at real life in God. And to come back to God so willingly and desperate for my life brought me great joy at every turn! In addition to staying in obedience, I now had need more than I could realize of choosing Heaven vs. Hell and that truth would reign. I really do feel that if I had chosen the negative path of rebellion, I would be dead literally by now – long time ago, too. But I chose the non-negative/positive path of having hope when everything around seems like a failure. Positivity also means to me that instead of trying to envision Hell, demons, fire, eternal separation from God, I meditate on more pleasant things – envisioning Jesus on the cross, repentance, musing over Scriptures praying for others, etc. If I were to focus energy on contemplating Hell, I would not be healthy not having hope, or constantly feeling like I couldn’t make it to Heaven. I do think that some measure of thinking about Hell is necessary, when converting to Jesus. I believe nurture always comes first with the Lord to bring us to repentance (Romans 2:4), but right away the Fear of the Lord should be there to grab your own soul up from the flames. As for me, I am weak in the sense I am not mature enough to think upon Hell real often, unless my sinful flesh or the Lord remind me that that place is what I deserve. So as for my view in this Christian life, I must stay on the hope side of the gospel. That through Jesus, I “might be saved” John 3:17b. 🙂
When we step back and take a look at what it means to “keep the demands of God’s covenant” – Psalms 25:10 “All the ways of the Lord are loving and faithful for those who keep the demands of His covenant.”, we see that those “obligations” we have to the Lord are very important. Not because God is not lenient to us and gracious when we do not follow His statues or when we break His laws, old and new testament, but because the idea of keeping God’s rule over us is what should guide us. His Old Testament laws are not completely null because much of the Old Testament speaks of direct obedience to God in so many aspects of life. However, the Old Testament regulations that are not based on morality are not binding to us anymore. In the New Testament, we are bound to all God’s commands in the hopes that we will obey them fully. His “rules” are the result of His “rule”. Antinomianism may teach that we are not bound to obey rules from God, but only concern ourselves with the spirit of what the rules would say. This could not be more in error. Matthew 5:19 says “Whosoever therefore shall break one of these least commandments, and shall teach men so, he shall be called the least in the kingdom of heaven: but whosoever shall do and teach them, the same shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven.”
And again in Luke 17:2 “It would be better for him if a millstone were hung around his neck and he were cast into the sea than that he should cause one of these little ones to sin.”
The definition of Antinomianism: relating to the view that Christians are released by grace from the obligation of observing the moral law.
Antinomianism may teach that the laws from God given to us in the Bible, the commands and precepts, and rules for living do not apply to us but are written to give us a guide and are for those people who are law breakers. But the truth is that Jesus said anyone who breaks the least of the commandments and teaches others to do the same will be least in Heaven. The attitude should be that of keeping God’s laws, even if we know we won’t get it flawlessly done until we get to Heaven. Each Christian should apply the rule of God and the rules of God with common sense and with the honest attitude of keeping every part of the law. Jesus said “I did not come to abolish the law and the Prophets but to fulfill them.” Matthew 5:17 Jesus came to bring the heart back into the law, so that we would see our need for Jesus’ ruling over us and giving us the strength to follow the law in the way of perfection as shown in Scripture, that is keeping it more completely, willfully. If a teacher of the Bible or preacher or minister of Jesus would in anyway tell you that you do not have to obey God’s commands, I would get away from that person as soon as possible. You will be held accountable on the day of Judgment for having knowledge of what the Word says and doing otherwise, even if you were “following directions” from a teacher or one in a place of spiritual authority over you. Woe to those who honestly think that breaking God’s commands on purpose is tolerable or justified. Don’t worry if you find yourself taught the wrong way- those who teach will be judged more severely in this life and the next. Just worry about yourself.
The attitude of rebellion against the Word of God is not what Jesus had in mind when He spoke of living by the spirit and “not under law”. As so many Antinomians love to quote. Galatians 5:18 But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law. How about looking at verses 19-21? There you will find all the works of the flesh, the sinful nature. And that those who continue in such things will not go to Heaven at all. (Galatians 5)
19Now the deeds of the flesh are evident, which are: immorality, impurity, sensuality, 20idolatry, sorcery, enmities, strife, jealousy, outbursts of anger, disputes, dissensions, factions, 21envying, drunkenness, carousing, and things like these, of which I forewarn you, just as I have forewarned you, that those who practice such things will not inherit the kingdom of God.
Also food for thought:
For sin shall no longer be your master, because you are not under the law, but under grace.
Galatians 5:16 What I say is this: let the Spirit direct your lives, and you will not satisfy the desires of the human nature.
God, please give us grace so that we will be propelled into righteousness, joy, and peace – not unrighteousness, shame, and confusion.
It truly is in our best interests to follow Jesus’ commands and keep in the Way.