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Beyond The Four Spiritual Laws

Discussion in 'Christian Newbies' started by Webers_Home, Sep 11, 2017.

  1. Webers_Home

    Webers_Home Well-Known Member

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    141) 2Cor 7:1 . . Since we have these promises, dear friends, let us
    cleanse ourselves from everything that contaminates body and spirit,
    perfecting holiness out of deference to God's wishes.

    The promises in view are those at 2Cor 6:14-18. Compliance with God's
    wishes is the way to go to obtain them.

    Q: If you do what is right, will you not be accepted? (Gen 4:7)

    A: You will be excepted. (John 14:21-24, 1John 1:6-7))

    142) 2Cor 8:11-15 . . If the willingness is there, the gift is acceptable
    according to what one has, not according to what he does not have. Our
    desire is not that others might be relieved while you are hard pressed, but
    that there might be equality. At the present time your plenty will supply
    what they need, so that in turn their plenty will supply what you need. Then
    there will be equality, as it is written : He who gathered much did not have
    too much, and he who gathered little did not have too little.

    That directive is an excellent passage for debunking the so-called Faith
    Promise; which is a popular scheme for tricking church members to pledge
    money they don't have while expecting God's providence will somehow
    provide it. That is not the Lord's wish. By means of Paul, the Lord says to
    give out of what you already have, not what you hope to have later; I mean:
    it is not His wish to copy ENRON's mark-to-market accounting practices
    and/or futures trading with pork bellies and soy beans.

    143) 2Cor 9:7 . . Each man should give what he has decided in his heart to
    give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver.

    I have yet to meet a pressured giver who was cheerful about it. What Paul is
    saying there is that the Lord would prefer you kept your money than give it
    out of reluctance and/or resentment. And that goes for anything else on
    your list of charities. If your heart isn't in it, scratch it off your list.

    Church managers can be very creative when it comes to laying guilt trips on
    their congregations in order to con money out of them. One morning at a
    church I was attending some years ago, a flyer was distributed to all the
    Sunday school classes that pointed to the Israelites in Exodus 35:4-35:7 as
    an example of pious generosity.

    But what the flyer didn't point out is that those very same Israelites
    worshipped a golden calf and indulged in revelry while Moses was up on a
    mountain receiving the Ten Commandments, and also the very ones who
    refused to invade the promised land when God told them to; resulting in
    forty wasted years marching around in that awful Arabian desert till
    everybody over the age of twenty from the original crowd was dead except
    for just two guys: Joshua and Caleb.

    Oh, and one of my very favorite scams is called Saving And Serving. In
    other words; the congregation is talked into loaning their church the money
    for an ambitious building program and promised to be paid monthly
    mortgage payments from the church's budget; which of course is funded by
    the congregation too. (chuckle) If that isn't the most pious of all Ponzi
    schemes ever!

    144) 2Cor 10:7 . . If anyone is confident that he belongs to Christ, he
    should reconsider that we belong to Christ just as much as he.

    It's amazing that any Christian's ego would be so inflated as to think
    themselves holier than an apostle, however, there are some people out
    there with a pretty bad case of conceit who are up to it. I can just hear the
    sneer in their voices as they think to themselves: "What's so special about
    him? He puts his pants on one leg at a time just like everybody else." That's
    the voice of one of the most destructive human passions there is: malicious
    rivalry. It got Abel murdered (1John 3:12) and it got Christ crucified. (Matt
    27:15-18)

    Mark 12:13 . . And they send unto him certain of the Pharisees and of the
    Herodians, to catch him in his words.

    Just look at that! The Lord's enemies actually stalked him, hoping he would
    slip up and say something they could use against him. Who were the "they"
    in that passage? None other than Judaism's religious elite.

    Mark 11:17-18 . . And as he taught them, he said: Is it not written: My
    house will be called a house of prayer for all nations? But you have made it
    'a den of robbers. The chief priests and the teachers of the law heard this
    and began looking for a way to kill him, for they feared him, because the
    whole crowd was amazed at his teaching.

    You know what kind of animal stalks? A predator. So people infected with
    malicious rivalry are nothing in the world but human wildlife: feral beasts.

    145) 2Cor 10:10-11 . . For some say: His letters are weighty and forceful,
    but in person he is unimpressive and his speaking amounts to nothing. Such
    people should realize that what we are in our letters when we are absent, we
    will be in our actions when we are present.

    Next to gossip, I'd have to say that rumors are another very effective
    method for influencing how others think. As Hitler's propaganda minister
    once said: "Repeat a lie often enough, and in time the masses will accept it
    as true". Sad but true: word of mouth oftentimes enjoys more acceptance
    than the facts of a matter.

    The people who made those comments about Paul apparently never met him
    for themselves. They were just going by hear-say and their own imagination.
    That's not love; no, that's malice. Real love is protective; it doesn't seek
    opportunities to hurt someone's feelings, undermine their credibility, malign
    their reputation, find fault, nor denigrate them solely to satisfy a blood lust
    for bringing people down.

    /
     
  2. Webers_Home

    Webers_Home Well-Known Member

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    146) 2Cor 10:17-18 . . But, let him who boasts, boast in the Lord. For it is
    not the one who commends himself who is approved, but the one whom the
    Lord commends.

    It's unfortunate that some of Christ's followers have reached the point where
    the only Bible teachers they will listen to anymore are those with a résumé
    of accolades like doctorate degrees, books published, and positions held; as
    if any of that validates their usefulness to God's purposes. One thing we
    should always remember is that just because somebody is published, or that
    somebody was educated in a seminary, doesn't make them eo ipso right.

    Christians relying solely upon accredited sources are setting themselves up
    for disappointment since it is God's Spirit who selects and empowers His own
    teachers rather than colleges and seminaries.

    1 Cor 12:1 . . But one and the same Spirit works all these things,
    distributing to each one individually: as He wills.

    And sometimes the Spirit selects people to speak for God who seemingly
    have no business speaking for Him at all; for example:

    Amos 7:14-15 . .Then answered Amos, and said to Amaziah: I was no
    prophet, neither was I a prophet's son; but I was an herdsman, and a
    gatherer of sycamore fruit: And Yhvh took me as I followed the flock, and He
    said unto me: Go, prophesy unto my people Israel.

    Christ was a blue collar craftsman; a carpenter; which was a trade
    considered at the level of uneducated society in his day.

    Mark 6:3 . . Is not this the carpenter . . . and they were indignant.

    John 7:14-15 . . Now about the midst of the feast Jesus went up into the
    temple, and taught. And the Jews marveled, saying; How knoweth this man
    letters, having never learned?

    Peter was a commercial fishermen; another profession that required no
    education.

    Acts 4:13 . . Now when they saw the boldness of Peter and John, and
    perceived that they were uneducated ignorant men, they marveled

    It has been my experience that people who rely solely upon accredited
    sources do so because they have no choice; in other words; they're forced to
    because they lack the anointing described below.

    1John 2:26-27 . . The anointing which you have received from Him abides
    in you, and you do not need that anyone teach you; but as the same
    anointing teaches you concerning all things, and is true, and is not a lie, and
    just as it has taught you, you will abide in Him.

    Christians need instruction; in fact instructors are a gift from Christ to his
    church (Eph 4:11-15). But instruction alone cannot condition a Christian's
    intuition to recognize the truth when they encounter it; viz: instruction alone
    cannot give a Christian a feel for the truth, nor can instruction alone break
    down a Christian's resistance to the truth. That's where the anointing comes
    into play. It assists Christians to recognize and to accept the truth when they
    encounter it; and assists them to sort it all out and make it click.

    What that means is; the Lord's sheep should be able to recognize the truth
    and accept it whether it's coming from an accredited Th.D. or a common
    rank and file pew warmer; because the only person who can be safely
    trusted to know the right interpretation anyway is God's Spirit.

    1Cor 2:14 . .The man without the Spirit does not accept the things that
    come from the Spirit of God, for they are absurd to him : neither can he
    comprehend them, because they are spiritually discerned.

    What that's saying is that even if a non-anointed Christian should run across
    a genuine Spirit-endowed teacher, they won't listen to him, no, they will
    reject the Spirit-endowed teacher. They have to reject him because the man
    without the Spirit does not accept the things that come from the Spirit of
    God, for they are absurd to him: neither can he comprehend them, because
    they are spiritually discerned.

    I'm not saying there's something wrong with divinity school. I'm just saying
    that graduation from one doesn't eo ipso recommend somebody's spiritual
    competence since it's the Spirit's sovereign prerogative to select and
    empower the men whom God wishes to represent His son and that's why it
    isn't all that unusual for a man with his collar on backwards to have his head
    on backwards too.

    147) 2Cor 13:5 . . Examine yourselves, whether you're in the faith; test
    your own selves. Don't you know of your own selves, how that Jesus Christ
    is in you, unless you're all reprobates?

    Peers and contemporaries tend to grade themselves on a curve, utilizing
    proprietary standards. I don't think that's what Christ is recommending
    because it's quite possible to be judged a saint by your peers and/or
    contemporaries while judged a devil by God (cf. 1Cor 4:3-5). But actually,
    Paul isn't speaking of conduct; no, he's speaking of something far more
    crucial-- Christ's residency inside one's physical body. His absence is literally
    a life-threatening condition.

    Rom 8:9 . . If any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his.

    The spirit of Christ is also labeled "the spirit of His son" for example :

    Gal 4:6 . . And because you are sons, God has sent forth the spirit of His
    son into your hearts calling out: Abba! Father.

    Abba isn't a name; it's an Aramaic filial vocative. What that means is; when
    I'm out in the garage working alone and my son and his mother are in the
    kitchen talking about me, the noun "dad" merely indicates my son's father.
    But when my son wants to get his father's attention, and he calls out: Dad!
    Where are you? then "dad" becomes a filial vocative.

    What that boils down to is this: the spirit of His son always compels Christ's
    sheep to call out to a father, never to a mother and the reason for that is
    actually quite simple. God's son never prays to his mother; but always to his
    Father; hence those influenced by the spirit of the Father's son will do the
    very same thing.

    That, by the way, is a pretty good litmus test. If somebody is comfortable
    praying to the Lord's mom or to an angel or a patron saint, it's a pretty good
    indicator that the spirit of the Father's son is not in them because His son
    would never do something like that; nor would he ever encourage others to.

    /
     
  3. Webers_Home

    Webers_Home Well-Known Member

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    148) Gal 1:8-9 . . But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any
    other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him
    be accursed. As we said before, so say I now again, If any man preach any
    other gospel unto you than that ye have received, let him be accursed.

    The koiné Greek word for "accursed" in that passage is anathema (an-ath'
    em-ah) which means to ban and/or excommunicate.

    Schools sometimes ban certain books from their libraries because they feel
    that the language and/or the subject matter is inappropriate. Some may feel
    that when schools do that they become a dictatorial throwback to China's
    cultural revolution back in the last century. Be that as it may, bans are
    sometimes for the greater good; e.g. smoking in movie theaters, hunting
    and/or plinking within city limits, and bringing drugs and alcohol to rock
    concerts.

    I think that the people whom Paul targeted with Gal 1:8-9 are speakers
    and/or Sunday school teachers that do not hold to the gospel precisely as
    the apostles taught it. For example: it's amazing the number of "Christians"
    out there who sincerely believe that some of Paul's teachings are not for
    today. Those are the very ones you really have to be on guard against. If it
    is not in your power to get rid of them, then at the very least refuse to lend
    them your ears. That's only common sense.

    Below is an interesting application of anathema.

    1Cor 12:3 . . I make known to you that no one speaking by God's spirit
    calls Jesus accursed.

    I don't know if Paul meant it to be or not; but that is a subtle reference to
    Judaism's refusal to accept Jesus as its long-awaited Messiah. Consequently
    he's officially banned from Judaism's company; which is just the reverse
    of Christianity's ready association with him.

    149) Gal 5:1 . . Stand fast therefore in the liberty wherewith Christ hath
    made us free, and be not entangled again with the yoke of bondage.

    Let's say you tell a lie. Well; if you're covenanted with God to be truthful as
    per Lev 19:11; then the lie will shoot yourself in the foot because the
    covenant is contractual; viz: it obligates God to come down on you with a
    curse for breach of contract (Deut 27:26, Jer 11:3-4). He has to levy a curse
    against you or He himself would be in breach of contract.

    Maybe you're a bit unreliable at honoring your commitments; but I assure
    that God is 110% reliable at honoring His. A cursory review of the last 3,500
    years of Jewish history easily bears that out.

    To view a menu of curse options available to God; just feast your glims on
    Lev 26:3-38, Deut 27:15-26, and Deut 28:1-69. I do not think it wise to
    yoke oneself to those curses.


    FYI: There's basically two categories of commands in the Bible: binding
    commands and non-binding commands.

    The commands in the Old Testament are binding commands; viz: Yhvh's
    people are under contract with God to comply with them; and He is under
    contract with His people to enforce them; which means that when Yhvh's
    people breach the contract by disobeying one of its commands; God is
    obligated to slam them with any and/or all of the covenanted curses listed at
    Lev 26:3-38, Deut 27:15-26, and Deut 28:1-69.

    Christ's commands, on the other hand, are non-binding commands; viz:
    Christians are not under contract with God to comply with them; nor is He
    under contract with Christians to enforce them. So when a Christian
    disobeys one of Christ's commands; God is under no obligation to slam them
    with a curse. They might get slammed with discipline; but never with a
    curse.

    Rom 8:1 . .There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in
    Christ Jesus.

    /
     
  4. Webers_Home

    Webers_Home Well-Known Member

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    150) Gal 5:2-3 . . Listen! I, Paul, tell you that if you let yourselves be
    circumcised, Christ will be of no value to you at all. Again I declare to every
    man who lets himself be circumcised that he is obligated to obey the whole
    law.

    "I, Paul" was one of Jesus Christ's duly authorized apostles; therefore Paul's
    instructions are all the same as his master's. (1Cor 14:37, 1Ths 4:1-2)

    The circumcision spoken of in the passage isn't the common medical kind,
    but the ritual kind where a man converts to Judaism; which of course
    obligates him to comply with the covenant that Yhvh's people agreed upon
    with God as per Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, and Deuteronomy; and not just
    part of the covenant, but all of it from start to finish.

    151) Gal 5:13a . . You, my brethren, were called to be free. But do not use
    your liberty to indulge the base nature;

    Christians are sometimes accused of practicing a religion that gives people a
    license to steal, so to speak. Well; that is very true to a certain extent
    because Christians do have immunity from any, and all, of the curses that
    Israel's covenant imposes on scofflaws as per Lev 26:3-38, Deut 27:15-26,
    and Deut 28:1-69. However, God prefers that Christians not do whatever
    they want; but instead do whatever He wants, In other words: Christ's
    followers have liberty to steal but they don't have a license to steal. (Rom
    6:1-13)

    152) Gal 5:16 . . I say then: walk in The Spirit, and you shall not fulfill the
    lust of the base nature.

    Some years ago, in a boatyard where I was employed on Shelter Island in
    San Diego, I was listening to a young Christian boast of his dedication to
    Christ. So I asked him: What about the command to walk in the Spirit? How
    are you doing with that one?

    Well, the brash, pleased-with-himself youngster admitted he didn't even
    know what that meant, let alone how to do it. (chuckle) In regards to
    "dedication" Mr. Super Saint hadn't even got to first base yet. (judging by
    the fact that was on a third marriage last time I checked, I'd have to say he
    never did get the hang of it.)

    Anyway, there's nothing mystical about this. Walking in the Spirit is just
    simply doing what God wants rather than letting your natural impulses
    and/or your own thinking control your conduct all the time.

    For example: item #1 contains these words: "Abstain from food tainted by
    idols, from promiscuity, from the meat of strangled animals, and from
    blood." When a Christian complies with those instructions; they're walking in
    the Spirit; but when they're ignoring those instructions and eating whatever
    they want and sleeping around without regard for God's feelings about it;
    then they're fulfilling the lusts of the base nature. It's just that simple.

    153) Gal 5:25 . . Since we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit.

    /
     
  5. Webers_Home

    Webers_Home Well-Known Member

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    154) Gal 5:26 . . Let us not be conceited, provoking one another, envying
    one another.

    Webster's defines "conceit" as: excessive self-appreciation of one's own
    worth or virtue.

    There's nothing intrinsically wrong with having strong core values and/or
    believing in yourself, but if you should find yourself somewhat indignant
    and/or resentful when others don't believe in you, or when they think very
    little of your core values; then watch out because that's a symptom of
    conceit, and it will hinder you from obeying the Lord's orders in regard to
    getting along with fellow believers.

    The koiné word for "envy" is phthoneo (fthon-eh'-o) which means: hostile
    toward a rival, or towards someone believed to enjoy an advantage. In other
    words; we're talking about a competitive spirit-- not the good-natured,
    friendly kind but a malicious kind of competitive spirit that resents others
    doing better than itself, or more popular than itself, or more recognized than
    itself, or more admired than itself; viz; it's all about self.

    Rivalry is a very destructive passion. It got Abel slain by his own brother,
    and it got Christ slain by his own people. Rivalry makes otherwise sensible
    people behave contrary to their own better judgment, and gets them
    embroiled in oftentimes unnecessary vendettas; e.g. gender rivalry and
    racial rivalry. Now those two there are very destructive social influences.

    If none of the above describes you; consider yourself fortunate.

    The koiné word for "provoke" is prokaleomai (prok-al-eh'-om-ahee) which
    means to challenge; viz: to get in somebody's face in an obnoxious,
    assertive, confrontational manner; which is a kind of behavior that prevents
    people from deserving identification with God's kin.

    Matt 5:9 . . Blessed are the peaceable: for they shall be called the children
    of God.

    155) Gal 6:1a . . Brethren, even if a man is caught in the very act of any
    trespass, you who are spiritual restore such a one in a spirit of gentleness;

    It's very important to keep in mind that "a man" refers to fellow church
    members rather than the world at large. A big mistake that Christians often
    make is imposing their beliefs and practices on outsiders; and they're too
    often not all that gentle about it either.

    The restoration process is specifically the turf of "spiritual" Christians. In a
    church where people are conceited, assertive, confrontational, and embroiled
    in petty rivalries; the spiritual ones are obviously going to be as scarce as
    California Condors.

    A spirit of gentleness obviously precludes the use of bullying, intimidation,
    rage. yelling, demeaning comments, brow beating, and such. Those kinds of
    behaviors aren't gentle, no, they're cruel.

    The koiné Greek word for "trespass" is interesting. It can refer to willful
    misconduct and/or to unintentional misconduct. Seeing as how willful
    misconduct is dealt with harshly and summarily as per 1Cor 5:1-13 while in
    this situation gently, then I'd say Gal 6:1 is referring to unintentional
    misconduct; which doesn't merit a public flogging; but rather a quiet talk;
    and the more private the better in order to avoid embarrassing the
    unintentional offender.

    /
     
  6. Webers_Home

    Webers_Home Well-Known Member

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    156) Gal 6:1b . . each one looking to yourself, lest you too be tempted.

    The restorers should keep in mind that nobody's perfect (Jas 3:2). Sooner or
    later they themselves will slip up and do or say something stupid; so the
    golden rule is very appropriate in these situations; which reads: "So in
    everything: do to others what you would have them do to you; for this sums
    up the Law and the Prophets." (Matt 7:12)

    157) Gal 6:1-2 . . Bear one another's burdens, and thus fulfill the law of
    Christ.

    That's a tough one because it can be applied any number of ways. I would
    say (broadly) that if you let someone's burden become your burden
    (whatever their burden might be) then the other guy won't feel so alone in
    his bad luck due to no one even caring enough about him to bother
    understanding what he's going through.

    It's human nature to shun people with problems so they don't drag us into a
    world of inconvenience and/or negativity. But that is not what I call fulfilling
    the law of Christ; which reads thusly:

    "A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you
    must love one another. By this all men will know that you are my disciples, if
    you love one another. (John 13:34-35)

    The love that is defined by "As I have loved you" is a kind of love willing to
    suffer inconvenience, shame, humiliation, embarrassment, and disgrace for
    the sake of another.

    Christ's love isn't a fault-finding attitude; it's a supportive virtue: it doesn't
    only feel your pain, it gets involved in your pain. Church can be the loneliest
    place on earth when nobody cares enough about you to get involved in your
    pain; but instead would just as soon not know about it. Sadly, there is about
    as much love for one another in modern churches as there is amongst an
    audience of strangers at the movies.

    158) Gal 6:6 . . And let the one who is taught the word, share all good
    things with him who teaches.

    That directive makes good sea sense in areas that don't have a professional
    clergy. How is a poor preacher to study and prepare his lesson plan, look
    after church business, attend board meetings, do counseling, and visit the
    sick while he's spending most of his time and energy earning a living to
    support himself and his family and to provide a roof over their heads?
    Church members who feel that their pastor and his associates are valuable
    contributors to their spiritual needs should reciprocate and help provide for
    their material needs. It's only fair.

    Americans are so greedy for bail-outs, reparations, stimulus funds, and
    entitlements that they forget that somebody, somewhere has to cough up
    the money for all that. Well, nobody in church is entitled to a Spirit-endowed
    pastor; no, he's a gift from God (1Cor 12:4-11, Eph 4:7-13) and pew
    warmers would do well to show their appreciation to Christ and their pastor
    by chipping in to help support the man and his family. A Spirit-endowed
    pastor isn't a freeloader; no, he's an inspired tradesman who deserves
    compensation. Would you work for free, without wages and benefits? Then
    don't expect him to.

    /
     
  7. Webers_Home

    Webers_Home Well-Known Member

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    159) Gal 6:7-9 . . Don't be deceived into thinking God is a silly old fool. A
    man reaps what he sows. The one who sows to please his flesh, will, of the
    flesh reap corruption; the one who sows to please the Spirit, from the Spirit
    will reap eternal life. Let's not become weary in doing good, for at the proper
    time we will reap a harvest if we don't lose heart.

    The koiné Greek word for "corruption" is phthora (fthor-ah') which means:
    decay; viz: decadence. Without some means to preserve them, meats and
    fruits go bad. The very same thing happens to one's character when
    Christians make a habit of indulging the propensities of their base nature--
    psychological entropy sets in and they become decadent. In other words:
    holiness can't be taken for granted; it has to be nurtured or it'll go bad.

    Is "the one who sows to please the Spirit, will, from the Spirit, reap eternal
    life" saying it's possible to earn one's way into heaven? Answer: No; eternal
    life isn't a location; it's a state of being. What I mean is: eternal life is both a
    power and a nature. It's what causes some Christians to undergo amazing
    personality changes as per Rom 8:11.

    The life spoken of as per Galatians 6:7-9 and Romans 8:11-13, is the fruit of
    the Spirit; which consists of the elements of love, joy, peace, longsuffering,
    gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, and temperance. (Gal 5:22-23)

    Love is from the koiné Greek word agape (ag-ah'-pay) which means:
    affection and/or benevolence. Love is just the opposite of a hard, insensitive
    heart.

    Joy is from chara (khar-ah') which means: cheerfulness

    Peace is from eirene (i-ray'-nay) which means: quietness, calm, at rest,
    content, satisfied, free from mental and/or emotional conflicts; viz: serene.

    Longsuffering is from makrothumia (mak-roth-oo-mee'-ah) which means:
    stable under pressure, composed, not easily disturbed, a disposition to bear
    injuries patiently.

    Gentleness is from chrestotes (khray-stot'-ace) which means: usefulness (to
    others), viz: moral excellence (in character or demeanor) e.g. kindness and
    goodness.

    Faith is from pistis (pis'-tis) which means; persuasion; viz: credence,
    confidence, conviction. A person of faith is also faithful; viz: reliable and
    trustworthy.

    Meekness is an editorial insertion not found in the koiné Greek manuscripts.

    Temperance is from egkrateia (eng-krat'-i-ah) which means: self-control; as
    opposed to incontinence, which Webster's defines as: inability to restrain
    one's carnal appetites.

    Those are all elements of the divine nature; which Christians should,
    according to Peter, make an effort to experience right now, in this life,
    before they expire and pass on. (2Pet 1:2-11)

    But it's important to note that the fruit of the Spirit is supernatural; in other
    words: this is something that God alone controls; viz: it's dispensed rather
    than cultivated. The fruit is compensation for making a conscientious effort
    to please God. One day in heaven, everyone will experience the fruit of the
    Spirit; but in order to do so now, Christians have to guard against becoming
    decadent.

    Eph 5:8-9 . . You were sometimes darkness, but now are ye light in the
    Lord : walk as children of light: for the fruit of the Spirit is in all goodness
    and righteousness and truth.

    /
     
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    Webers_Home Well-Known Member

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    160) Gal 6:10 . . So then, while we have opportunity, let us do good to all
    men, and especially to those who are of the household of the faith.

    Those who are of the "household of faith" are actually kin; viz: siblings; and
    like they say: charity begins at home.

    Some churches have what they call a deacon's fund. What that's for is to
    assist members who are down and out and/or in dire straits. Contributing to
    that fund easily qualifies as sowing to the Spirit; and what I would call a
    "wise" investment.

    And don't overlook your church's senior citizens. Some may be getting up in
    years and finding it difficult to even maintain their own homes and yards
    anymore. Chores may not seem like much of a holy calling; but pitch in
    anyway if for no other reason than that it's neighborly.

    161) Gal 6:11-16 . .Those who desire to make a good showing in the flesh
    try to compel you to be circumcised, simply that they may not be persecuted
    for the cross of Christ. For those who are circumcised do not even keep the
    commandments themselves, but they desire to have you circumcised, that
    they may boast in your flesh.

    . . . But may it never be that I should boast, except in the cross of our Lord
    Jesus Christ, through which the world has been crucified to me, and I to the
    world. For neither is circumcision anything, nor un-circumcision, but a new
    creation. (cf. Acts 15:5-32)

    Some Christians truly believe it's possible to be an adherent of both Judaism
    and Christianity at the same time (e.g. Messianic Judaism). No, that's
    against the rules. Judaism must be abandoned if one is to take up
    Christianity because human sacrifice is illegal under the terms and conditions
    of the covenant that Yhvh's people agreed upon with God as per Exodus,
    Leviticus, Numbers, and Deuteronomy. If you try to take up both religions at
    the same time, the one will invalidate the other.

    162) Eph 2:11-22 . .Therefore, remember that formerly you who are
    Gentiles by birth and called uncircumcised by those who call themselves the
    circumcision-- that done in the body by the hands of men --remember that
    at that time you were separate from Christ, excluded from citizenship in
    Israel and foreigners to the covenants of the promise, without hope and
    without God in the world. But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far
    away have been brought near through the blood of Christ . . Consequently,
    you are no longer foreigners and aliens, but fellow citizens with God's people
    and members of God's household

    Christians are prone to forget; and one of the things they forget is that their
    religion didn't begin with the Roman Catholic Church; no, it was founded by
    Yhvh's people; and the purpose of Gentiles hearing the gospel is not so they
    can replace the Jews as Yhvh's chosen people, but rather, so they can join
    them and share in their blessings.

    Rom 11:17-18 . . If some of the branches have been broken off, and you,
    though a wild olive shoot, have been grafted in among the others and now
    share in the nourishing sap from the olive root, don't boast over those
    branches. If you do, consider this: You don't support the root, but the root
    supports you.

    John 4:22 . . Salvation is of the Jews.

    /
     
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    Webers_Home Well-Known Member

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    163) Eph 4:1 . . As a prisoner for the Lord, then, I urge you to live a life
    worthy of the calling you have received.

    What if a believer neglects to live a life worthy of their calling? Will they be
    lost? No; believers have eternal life, which is a kind of live that cannot die;
    therefore, it's impervious to the wages of sin.

    Rom 6:23 . . The wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life in
    Jesus Christ our Lord.

    People with eternal life have 100% immunity from prosecution.

    John 5:24 . . I assure you, those who heed my message, and trust in God
    who sent me, have eternal life. They will never be condemned for their sins,
    but they have already passed from death into life.

    The reason they will never be condemned for their sins is because Christ was
    raised again for our justification. (Rom 4:25). The Greek word is dikaiosis
    (dik-ah'-yo-sis) which essentially means acquittal-- a legal term that can be
    roughly defined as the act of adjudicating that a person is not guilty, i.e. an
    acquittal is a legal declaration of innocence.

    According to 1John 1:8-10 believers in this life are never 100% sinless; but
    that's no longer a legal issue for Christ's sheep seeing as how according to
    2Cor 5:19 God is no longer keeping a record of their sins to hold against
    them at the great white throne event depicted at Rev 20:11-15.

    164) Eph 4:2 . . Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, putting up
    with another in love.

    Humility is one of those virtues that people love to talk about; but rarely
    ever seem to exemplify.

    The koiné Greek word is a tongue twister. It's tapeinophrosune (tap-i-nof
    ros-oo'-nay) which means: humiliation of mind, viz: modesty; which
    Webster's defines as: free from conceit and/or vanity. I don't know if you've
    seen the movie
    AMADEUS but one thing Tom Hulce's character, Mr.
    Wolfgang Mozart, sorely lacked was modesty.

    Conceit is defined as: excessive appreciation of one's own worth or virtue;
    viz: a too-high opinion of one's self; i.e. a master-race mentality.

    Vanity is defined as: inflated pride in oneself or in one's appearance; viz:
    narcissism and/or self adoration.

    Cosmetics and figure-shaping undergarments don't really qualify as the kind
    of vanity that Paul is talking about; which is a kind of vanity that goes way
    beyond just trying to look your best.

    Sinful vanity is an ugly creature. It's self aggrandizing. Vanity isn't gentle
    either, on the contrary, vanity can be quite cruel, thoughtless, competitive,
    given to rivalry, indifferent, and insensitive; and vanity abhors associating
    with people whose station in life is decidedly below its own; and God forbid
    someone below themselves should have the nerve to correct either their
    conduct or their knowledge.

    Patience is a jewel. It's defined as: the power, or capacity, to endure without
    complaint something difficult or disagreeable. Patient people seem to have a
    predilection for retaining their composure while under stress. These make
    the best leaders because they don't get flustered when everything around
    them is disintegrating into chaos.

    Patience is very useful when it comes to "putting up" with certain kinds of
    rather annoying Christians who seem to have a knack for getting on people's
    nerves.

    During my forty years working as a professional welder, I encountered
    numerous fellow employees whose skills and performance were excellent;
    but nobody could work with them. They were just too difficult.

    God forbid that Christ's followers should ever be "difficult". It is rather to be
    desired that they be civil, courteous, thoughtful, sociable, agreeable, helpful,
    approachable, accommodating, affable, rational, reasonable, temperate, and
    self-controlled. Christians around whom everybody has to walk on egg shells
    all the time, are in sore need of a personality make-over if they're to ever
    have any realistic expectation of associating with God.

    165) Eph 4:3 . . Make every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the
    bond of peace.

    Peace is what everybody wants but seem thoroughly unable to attain; even
    in Christian churches, where you'd think that at least there you'd find peace
    seeing as how it's related to one of Christ's beatitudes.

    Matt 5:9 . . Blessed are the peacemakers; for they shall be called sons of
    God.

    /
     
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    Webers_Home Well-Known Member

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    166) Eph 4:17-19 . . So I tell you this, and insist on it in the Lord, that you
    must no longer live as the pagans do, in the futility of their thinking. They
    are darkened in their understanding and separated from the life of God
    because of the ignorance that is in them due to the hardening of their
    hearts. Having lost all sensitivity, they have given themselves over to
    sensuality so as to indulge in every kind of impurity, with a continual lust for
    more.

    Sensuality and the life of God are diametrically opposed to each other. The
    one is carnal and the other is spiritual, the one is human and the other is
    divine. The one does whatever comes natural, and the other does whatever
    pleases God.

    Paul said that pagans live as they do because of the hardening of their
    hearts which doesn't always refer to ones emotions-- those can be roughly
    defined as one's bowels (e.g. 2Cor 6:12, Php 1:8, Php 2:1, Col 3:12, et al).
    Hardening of the heart takes place at the core of one's being; the very
    attitude of the morrow of their bones; for example the heart of the Pharaoh
    who opposed Moses and Aaron in the book of Exodus.

    Some things are said to be scratch-resistant, fire-resistant, mold-resistance,
    UV-resistant, rust-resistant, and so forth. Well; a hard heart is God
    resistant, really God-resistant. If the highway to Hell could be said paved
    with sensuality, then the substrate upon which the pavement is laid could be
    depicted as hard hearts; for example:

    Zech 7:11-12 . . But they refused to hearken, and pulled away the
    shoulder, and stopped their ears, that they should not hear. Yea, they made
    their hearts as an adamant stone, lest they should hear the law, and the
    words which the Lord of hosts hath sent in his spirit by the former prophets:
    therefore came a great wrath from the Lord of hosts.

    167) Eph 4:20-24 . .You, however, did not come to know Christ that way.
    Surely you heard of him and were taught in him in accordance with the truth
    that is in Jesus. You were taught, with regard to your former way of life, to
    put off your old self, which is being corrupted by its deceitful desires; to be
    made new in the attitude of your minds; and to put on the new self, created
    to be like God in true righteousness and holiness.

    The koiné Greek word for "desire" is epithumia (ep-ee-thoo-mee'-ah) which
    means: a longing.

    Epithumia by itself doesn't indicate sinful desires. The very same word
    describes the Lord's personal longing to dine in the company of his apostles
    just prior to being crucified. (Luke 22:15)

    The kind of longings in view are "deceitful" which is from the koiné Greek
    word apate (ap-at'-ay) and means delusion, which Webster's defines as: a
    persistent false psychotic belief regarding the self, or persons or objects
    outside the self, that is maintained despite indisputable evidence to the
    contrary-- in other words: deceitful longings are delusional longings.

    For example the old saying "The grass is greener on the other side" which of
    course is an unreasonable expectation. Some people sincerely believe that
    they would be happier if only they had more money. Well; sad to say,
    money can be guaranteed to buy you neither love nor happiness. Delusional
    longings get people to chasing after brass rings that may or may not satisfy;
    viz: sometimes the dream is better than the reality. Meanwhile, their life
    clock is winding down while they're in pursuit of those brass rings and they
    are steadily becoming more and more secular and unspiritual. Paul "insists"
    that Christ's followers avoid squandering their time and energy chasing after
    delusional longings; viz: keep their feet on the ground and their heads out of
    the clouds.

    168) Eph 4:25-26 . .Each of you must put off falsehood and speak truthfully
    to his neighbor, for we are all members of one body.

    Lying to outsiders is one thing, but lying to your fellow believers is
    absolutely taboo because it's really no different than lying to Christ because
    his church is his body. (Eph 1:22-23)

    169) Eph 4:26a . . In your anger do not sin.

    Anger isn't eo ipso evil. It's how one handles their anger that matters. Anger
    can be a very useful tool when it's applied by somebody who knows what
    they're doing. For example :

    Mark 3:5 . . And when Jesus had looked round about on them with anger,
    being grieved for the hardness of their hearts, he saith unto the man:
    Stretch forth thine hand. And he stretched it out: and his hand was restored
    whole as the other.

    170) Eph 4:26b-27 . . Do not let the sun go down while you are still angry,
    and do not give the Devil a foothold.

    Ol' Smutty Face is no slouch. You just start holding a grudge, or fly off the
    handle at the inappropriate time, and you and the Devil will be roped
    together on the Eiger where your common goal won't be the summit of a
    mountain in Switzerland; but worse: disunity in the body. No fuming!

    171) Eph 4:28 . . He who has been stealing must steal no longer, but must
    work, doing something useful with his own hands, that he may have
    something to share with those in need.

    Isn't is just amazing that early Christian church members were active
    criminals? Yes, right there in the Ephesian church were thieves. Ironically
    Paul didn't order the Ephesian Christians to not steal, no, of all things; he
    ordered them to stop stealing; and not only to stop stealing, but to stop
    stealing for a living!

    You'd think church would be the one place on earth where you'd be safe
    from crime, but not so. Back in the 1970's I sang bass in the choir of a
    monster Baptist church in San Diego. The 90+ member choir would meet in
    a rehearsal room and the ladies would all leave their purses in there when
    we moved out to be seated in the loft. The room had a very sturdy door and
    was always securely locked when we left the room.

    Well, one Sunday morning when we returned to the room, that Fort Knox
    door and its lock were smashed open and all the ladies' purses were rifled.

    Does cheating on your taxes count as theft? (chuckle) If the Ephesian
    Christians needed to be told to stop stealing, then modern Christians even
    more so; don't you think?

    /
     
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    Webers_Home Well-Known Member

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    172) Eph 4:29 . . Don't use foul or abusive language. Let everything you say
    be good and helpful, so that your words will be an encouragement to those
    who hear them.

    "helpful" is from the koiné word oikodome (oy-kod-om-ay') which means: to
    build up (as opposed to tearing down).

    "foul or abusive" is from the koiné Greek word sapros (sap-ros') which
    means: rotten, i.e. worthless (literally or morally) viz: inappropriate.

    Rom 3:13a . .Their throat is an open sepulcher

    It's not advisable to open a sepulcher seeing as how the contents are no
    doubt going to be quite odious and in a state of decay; especially in locales
    where the remains weren't cremated or treated with formaldehyde.

    173) Eph 4:30 . . Do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, with whom you were
    sealed for the day of redemption.

    The koiné Greek word for "grieve" is lupeo (loo-peh'-o) which means: to
    distress; to make sad. There's a lot being said these days about human
    rights abuses, while very little to nothing is said about abusing God's Spirit;
    which is no doubt far more common. (cf. Gen 6:6-7)

    Seals aren't always a mark or a tattoo or an impression made in wax with a
    signet ring. Sometimes a seal is merely a vocal validation. For example:

    Matt 3:16-17 . . And Jesus, when he was baptized, went up straightway
    out of the water: and, lo, the heavens were opened unto him, and he saw
    the Spirit of God descending like a dove, and lighting upon him: and lo a
    voice from heaven, saying: This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well
    pleased.

    In other words: God vouched for Jesus' credibility by sending His spirit to
    mark him out, and also by a solemn pronouncement. By that method; God
    himself personally sealed Jesus' mission; viz: signed off on it; so to speak.

    John 6:27 . . Do not work for food that spoils, but for food that endures to
    eternal life; which the Son of Man will give you. On him God the Father has
    placed his seal of approval.

    Christ's followers are singled out by the Spirit too; but not with a visible bird
    or an audible voice, but rather; by the Spirit's occupation inside their very
    bodies. Christ's followers can't see the Spirit for themselves of course; but
    God can see it and that's really all that matters anyway in the long run.

    174) Eph 4:31 . . Get rid of all bitterness, rage, anger, harsh words, and
    slander, as well as all types of malicious behavior.

    It wasn't the Lord's wish that Ephesian Christians avoid all bitterness, rage
    and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice; no; on
    the contrary, he wanted the Ephesians to "get rid" of them.

    "bitterness" is from the koiné word pikria (pik-ree'-ah) which means: acrid,
    poisonous, and/or toxic (literally or figuratively)

    Christians like that are nothing in the world but deadly reptiles.

    Rom 3:13b . . the poison of asps is under their lips

    "rage" is from the koiné word thumos (thoo-mos') which means: passion (as
    if breathing hard). Passion is just the opposite of reason; and as everyone
    knows, emotions are incoherent; so it's to be expected an emotional person
    is not acting rationally. This is a kind of conduct that Paul says brings sorrow
    to God's Spirit.

    "anger" is from the koiné word orge (or-gay') which means: desire (as a
    reaching forth or excitement of the mind), i.e. (by analogy,) violent passion,
    ire, (by implication: punishment)

    People overcome by orge typically want some satisfaction; even to the point
    of at least your ruin; if not your death.

    "harsh words" is from the koiné word krauge (krow-gay') which means:
    outcry.

    Out-crying is what protestors do; in other words: assertive, in-your-face
    confrontational complaints and/or demands..

    "slander" is from the koiné word blasphemia (blas-fay-me'-ah) which means:
    to vilify. Webster's defines "vilify" as: (1) to lower in estimation or
    importance, and (2) to utter slanderous and abusive statements against;
    viz: defame, discredit, and/or denigrate.

    A statement need not be false in order to qualify as slander; it need only to
    be unnecessary; viz: you'll often hear people say: Well, I was only telling the
    truth. Were they? No, that's a ruse. In reality, they're insensitive; and they
    don't care who gets hurt by their thoughtless remarks.

    The Lord notices the words people say, and he also takes note of the spirit in
    which they say them.

    Matt 12:36 . . But I tell you that men will have to give account on the day
    of judgment for every careless word they have spoken.

    "malicious behavior" is from the koiné word kakia (kak-ee'-ah) which
    means: badness, i.e. (subjectively) depravity, or (actively) malignity, or
    (passively) trouble:

    Malice usually includes the element of "spite" which Webster's defines as:
    petty ill will, or hatred, with the disposition to irritate, annoy, or thwart.
    Compare that to the koiné word for "persecute" in the eighth Beatitude
    which means, literally: to pursue; viz: to stalk, to hound, to harass.

    Webster's defines "thwart" as: (1) to run counter to so as to effectively
    oppose or baffle; viz: contravene, and (2) to oppose successfully; viz: to
    defeat the hopes or aspirations of; in other words: to deliberately get in
    someone's way; block, discourage.

    Boy I'll tell you, that Ephesian church was as rough-hewn and crude as the
    old logging community of Stump Town (now Portland) out here in the
    Oregon of the 1800's. They cussed, they brawled, they bad-mouthed, they
    held grudges, they were thieves, they were arrogant, they somehow had the
    idea that Jews were below them, they were immodest, conceited, vain, and
    impatient, they walked unworthy of their calling, and they were splintered
    into cliques.

    I've heard more than one expositor boast that the Ephesian believers
    represent Christ's church at its spiritual peak; but I thoroughly disagree.
    Yes, there were some outstanding individuals, but by and large the
    congregation's spiritual condition was decadent, deplorable, despicable, and
    unbecoming.


    BTW: Where is the Ephesian church today? It's gone, just like Christ warned
    it would be.

    Rev 2:5 . . Unto the angel of the church of Ephesus write . . I have
    somewhat against thee, because thou hast left thy first love. Remember
    therefore from whence thou art fallen, and repent, and do the first works; or
    else I will come unto thee quickly, and will remove thy candlestick out of his
    place, except thou repent.

    /
     
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    Webers_Home Well-Known Member

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    175) Eph 4:32 . . Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each
    other, just as in Christ God forgave you.

    (chuckle) that resembles a line from one of Bill And Ted's adventure movies:
    "Be excellent to each other"

    Within the context of the letter Paul wrote and sent to the Christians residing
    in the ancient city of Ephesus; the objects "one another" and "each other"
    are exclusive; viz: the comments refer only to one's fellow Bible-believing
    Christians rather than the world at large. So if you're unwilling to be kind
    and compassionate to outsiders; at least be so with people at church so as
    to help prevent church from becoming a hostile worship environment.

    The koiné Greek word for "kind" is chrestos (khrase-tos') which means:
    employed; viz: useful.

    Chrestos is found in only seven places in the New Testament, and without
    exception implies being beneficial to others for their own good rather than
    using people for a selfish purpose of your own.

    The word for "compassionate" is eusplagchnos (yoo'-splangkh-nos) which
    means: sympathetic.

    Webster's defines sympathy as: 1) an affinity, association, or relationship
    between persons or things wherein whatever affects one similarly affects the
    other, 2) inclination to think or feel alike: emotional or intellectual accord, 3)
    feeling of loyalty: tendency to favor or support, 4) the act, or capacity, of
    entering into or sharing the feelings or interests of another, 5) sensitivity,
    and 6) heart; as in "have a heart".

    Eusplagchnos would make a good substitute for a word found in one of The
    Lord's beatitudes.

    Matt 5:7 . . Blessed are the merciful: for they shall obtain mercy.

    "merciful" is from the koiné Greek word eleemon (el-eh-ay'-mone) which
    means pretty much the same thing as eusplagchnos: compassionate and
    sympathetic.

    In my dad's final months of battling with a terminal cancer back in the late
    1960's, he was in a great deal of pain and discomfort which made it difficult
    for him to sleep. In fact, he couldn't sleep in a bed at all. He sat on a small
    stool and rested face-down with his forehead on a coffee table in the front
    room.

    One day, as we were driving to our week-end ritual of coffee and donuts on
    a Saturday morning, he complained that his third wife (call her Rosa)
    seemed indifferent to his condition. He remarked that he didn't want
    sympathy, just some understanding. Well, I was both perplexed and
    amused; and asked him: Dad, how can Rosa possibly appreciate your
    feelings without being sympathetic?

    Dad was stumped. The problem was, he never knew his own father; and his
    mother abandoned him with relatives when he was just a toddler. My dad
    was a tough, self reliant old ex-Navy farm boy who himself was thoroughly
    unable to sympathize with anybody. In his prime, Dad was a brutal man,
    given to outbursts of rage and purple epithets. He was defensive, combative,
    thoughtless, and quite cruel to animals too. In my dad's mind, sympathy
    was for panty-waists not for "real men" but there he was in old age, dying of
    a terminal cancer; and starving for compassion-- something he'd wanted all
    his life but could never admit.

    It used to be that Boy Scouts and Cub Scouts were trained to be useful to
    others as just simply a matter of good deeds and good citizenship. I don't
    know, maybe they still are; but I've known lots of churchians who were
    totally useless to others because they're infected with an ugly spirit of
    conceit, rivalry, and indifference. Far from being kind and compassionate;
    those Christians are actually sociopathic and don't even know it.

    The word "forgiving" is charizomai (khar-id'-zom-ahee) which essentially
    means: to grant as a favor; viz: gratuitously, i.e. courtesy.

    Webster's defines gratuitous as: 1) given unearned or without recompense,
    2) not involving a return benefit or compensation or consideration, 3)
    costing nothing: free, 4) not called for by the circumstances: unwarranted,
    5) complimentary, 6) gratis, and 7) voluntary. In other words; charizomai
    seeks no reciprocation; it never says "you owe me one"

    Sailors are oft heard to say that the sea is very unforgiving: meaning it
    allows no room for error or weakness. Christians ought not be like the sea.
    We ought to be the most forgiving people on the planet; and not because we
    expect others to reciprocate; but just because we enjoy being gratuitous.
    For some Christians though, courtesy is an effort.

    Eph 4:31-32 isn't easy. What we're looking at there is not just good
    citizenship; no, what we're looking at is something divine in both its nature
    and its behavior.

    Php 2:1-2 . . If there be therefore any consolation in Christ, if any comfort
    of love, if any fellowship of the Spirit, if any bowels and mercies, fulfill ye my
    joy, that ye be likeminded, having the same love, being of one accord, of
    one mind.

    The koiné Greek word for "bowels" is splagchnon (splangkh'-non) which
    means: an intestine. Your gut is the very place where you "feel" pity and/or
    sympathy for others-- that is; if you're capable of those kinds of feelings;
    not everyone is.

    176) Eph 5:1 . . Be imitators of God, therefore, as dearly loved children

    One's dad is probably the most important role model a kid can have, that is,
    if he's a good man; otherwise, he'll just be another bad influence. It's pretty
    kool when a kid can look at its dad and honestly say, from the bottom of its
    heart: "Dad; when I grow up, I want to be just like you".

    In this case, the imitator isn't a pretender; no, he's not a stand-up comic
    mimicking a famous celebrity. What we're talking about here is duplication;
    in other words: God's children shouldn't just act like Him, they should
    reproduce Him; so that when the angels observe God's child at work or at
    play, they can say: "Yep; that kid sure takes after his old man; he's a chip
    off the old block"

    /
     
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    Webers_Home Well-Known Member

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    177) Eph 5:2 . . Live a life of love, just as Christ loved us and gave himself
    up for us as a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God.

    Christ's love goes way beyond just being friendly and helpful. His is a
    sacrificial kind of love; in other words: it's protective and supportive at the
    cost of deep expense to himself.

    178) Eph 5:3a . . Among you; there must not be even a hint of sexual
    immorality

    I've lost count of the number of celebrities I've seen on television talk shows
    shacking up with people and boasting about their babies while in reality
    those children are illegitimate and nothing to be proud of at all.

    When my sister got knocked up by a sailor boyfriend back in the late 1950's
    at the age of seventeen, our parents whisked her off to an aunt out of state
    to avoid the disgrace. My sister gave up her baby to adoption right out of the
    womb and nobody back home was any the wiser; but today, who really
    cares anymore?


    FYI: The illegitimacy rate in the USA during 2013 was almost 41% of total
    births and it's no longer illegitimacy; now it's labeled Non-marital
    Childbearing. (chuckle) a rose by any name is still the same flower.

    My wife once belonged to a woman's group in a mega-church we attended
    back in 1980. One of the ladies was married to an assistant pastor whose
    duties included counseling married couples. She told my wife you wouldn't
    believe the amount of adultery that goes on among married church
    members, and she wasn't talking about your average rank and file pew
    warmers either; no, her husband counseled church members a whole lot
    higher up than that.

    That church was very impressive and had something like 4,000 members on
    the books. It's budget was over $16,000 per week. (The buying power of
    $16,000 in 1980 was comparable to the buying power of roughly $46,000 in
    2017). To look at that church with its buildings, its property, it's programs,
    its membership numbers, its music, its missionary outreach, and its
    whopping budget; you would think it housed the holiest collection of saints
    on earth. But no; behind the scenes, behind the façade, behind the curtain,
    behind the pulpit; there was moral decadence. (cf. Matt 23:27-28)

    Ecc 3:16 . . And moreover I saw under the sun the place of judgment, that
    wickedness was there; and the place of righteousness, that iniquity was
    there. (cf. Matt 23:27-28)

    179) Eph 5:3b . . nor any kind of impurity, or of greed

    It's so easy to assume that naughty fantasies and porn-like behavior are the
    impurities that Paul is talking about; but any behavior associated with sin is
    an impurity. So then, maybe you're an usher in church; but are you
    dishonest? And maybe you sing in the choir, but are you a malicious gossip?
    And maybe you attend mid-week prayer meetings; but do you deny your
    children even common courtesy and their fundamental human rights? And
    maybe you teach Sunday school, but do you go over the speed limit, feed
    parking meters, J-walk, and drift through stop signs? And maybe you even
    stand in the pulpit; but do you have a drinking problem?

    Webster's defines "greed" as avarice; which is an excessive, or insatiable,
    desire for wealth or gain. Greed is associated with biblical covetousness. Just
    simply wanting money isn't sin. It's wanting money simply for the sake of
    accumulating it that's covetousness. Ben Franklin once said a penny saved,
    is a penny earned; but to greedy people a penny saved is a penny
    stockpiled. Were you to ask a greedy person to name the dollar figure that
    would satisfy them, they would likely respond: "more"

    180) Eph 5:4 . . Nor should there be obscenity, foolish talk or coarse joking,
    which are out of place, but rather thanksgiving.

    The koiné Greek word for "foolish talk" is morologia (mo-rol-og-ee'-ah)
    which means silliness; viz: buffoonery.

    Webster's defines a buffoon as: 1) a ludicrous figure; viz: a clown, and 2) a
    gross, and usually ill-educated stupid person; viz: an ignoramus. I think I
    would put gross high on the list of undesirable buffoon-type behaviors. It's
    okay for kids to be gross, but thoroughly unbecoming for a mature adult.

    The word for "coarse joking" is eutrapelia (yoo-trap-el-ee'-ah) which means
    witticism in a vulgar sense; viz: ribaldry. Double entendres would probably
    fall into that category along with suggestive remarks.

    The word for "thanksgiving" is eucharistia (yoo-khar-is-tee'-ah) which
    means: gratitude; viz: grateful language.

    You know "thank you" is not a dirty word. Christ's people should never take
    the attitude that just because somebody is doing their job that they don't
    deserve recognition.

    One of my favorite romantic comedies is "No Reservations" starring
    Catherine Zeta-Jones and Aaron Eckhart. Prior to filming, Catherine took a
    job waiting tables to get a feel for working as a waitress. On several
    occasions, patrons didn't even look up at her nor speak in a cordial tone
    when they ordered. It struck her as remarkable that the people whom she
    was serving had absolutely no inclination to even so much as acknowledge
    her as a fellow human being.

    A believer friend of ours once related to my wife that in the restaurant where
    she worked, a church group would meet once a week. They were noisy, they
    made a mess, they overstayed, and they ordered practically nothing but
    coffee and tea. They never left a tip; not one time. Those churchians were
    just as miserly and ungrateful as cranky old Ebenezer Scrooge in Charles
    Dickens' A Christmas Story.

    Heb 12:28 . . we receiving a kingdom which cannot be moved, let us have
    grace, whereby we may serve God acceptably with reverence and godly fear

    It's not uncommon for people to ask: What is grace? Well; you're likely to
    hear any number of definitions; but we just listed a number of grace's
    aspects: concern for the welfare of others, generosity, morals, marital
    fidelity, clean speech, maturity, gratitude, and a sensible attitude towards
    wealth. Those aspects easily qualify as serving God acceptably with
    reverence and godly fear.

    What is reverence and godly fear? Well, a rough-hewn definition is: having a
    high enough opinion of God's core values to adopt them for your own and
    put them into practice.

    /
     
  14. Webers_Home

    Webers_Home Well-Known Member

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    181) Eph 5:5-7 . . For of this you can be sure: No immoral, impure or
    greedy person-- such a man is an idolater --has any inheritance in the
    kingdom of Christ and of God. Let no one deceive you with futile words, for
    because of such things God's wrath comes on those who are disobedient.
    Therefore do not be numbered among them.

    That directive follows Eph 5:3-4; which lists things that are "improper for
    God's selected people" and "out of place" viz: inappropriate and
    unbecoming. (cf. Rom 12:1-2)

    So then, what if a believer is immoral, impure and/or greedy? Will they be
    disowned and sent off to Hell? No, of course not. Believers have been
    emancipated: they have 100% immunity. Hell is for disbelievers, not
    believers. For beneficiaries of the new covenant, this is actually a non issue.

    According to the literal wording of the new covenant as per Jer 31:31-34,
    God is not keeping a record of sins with which to slam Christ's believing
    followers

    2Cor 5:19 . . God was in Christ, reconciling the world unto himself, not
    imputing their trespasses unto them

    The Greek word in that passage for "imputing" is logizomai (log-id'-zom
    ahee) which means to keep an inventory; in other words: an indictment.

    At the great white throne event depicted at Rev 20:11-15, the dead's
    personnel files will be opened. Well, were one of Christ's believing followers
    to appear before God at that event, their file would contain not one single
    sin: zero; viz: nothing with which to charge them.

    Rom 4:8 . . Blessed is the man whose sin the Lord will never count against
    him.

    John 5:24 . . I assure you; those who listen to my message, and believe in
    God who sent me, have eternal life. They will never be condemned for their
    sins, but they have already passed from death into life. (cf. Heb 8:6-12)

    However:

    Gal 5:13a . .You, my brethren, were called to be free. But do not use your
    liberty to indulge the base nature

    To send a believer to Hell for indulging the base naturel would be
    inconsistent with the principles of redemption; which is from the koiné Greek
    words exagorazo (ex-ag-or-ad'-zo) which means: to buy up; and from lutroo
    (loo-tro'-o) which means: to ransom, and from apolutrosis (ap-ol-oo'-tro-sis)
    which means: to ransom in full.

    Christ sacrificed his life to ransom sinners in full from Hell while they were
    sinners; not after they first cleaned up their act in order to deserve it.

    Rom 5:6-9 . .Very rarely will anyone die for a righteous man, though for a
    good man someone might possibly dare to die. But God demonstrates His
    own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us. Since
    we have now satisfied justice by his blood, how much more shall we be
    spared God's wrath through him!

    When ransomed sinners indulge the base nature; they put themselves at
    risk of discipline (1Cor 10:1-15, Heb 12:5-13) an untimely death (1John
    5:16) loss of reward (1Cor 3:13-15) and the status of yard debris. (John
    15:1-7) but never hell.

    That wayward son in Luke 15:11-32 was maybe out of touch with his father,
    but he never stopped being his father's son. There are some ties that just
    can't be broken.

    Rom 8:15-16 . . For you have not received a spirit of bondage again to
    fear; but you have received the spirit of adoption, whereby we call out:
    Abba! Father. The Spirit itself bears witness with our spirit, that we are
    God's kin.

    Eph 1:4-7 . . He chose us in him before the foundation of the world, that
    we should be holy and without blame before Him in love: having
    predestinated us unto the adoption of sons by Jesus Christ to Himself,
    according to the good pleasure of His will, to the praise of the glory of His
    grace, wherein He made us accepted in the beloved. In whom we have
    redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the
    riches of His grace.

    1Thss 5:9 . . God did not appoint us to suffer wrath but to receive
    salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ.

    Liberated sinners are already citizens of the kingdom.

    Col 1:13 . . He has rescued us from the power of darkness, and translated
    us into the kingdom of His dear son.

    The wages of sin is death (Rom 6:23). However, a higher law overrules the
    wages of sin.

    Rom 8:1-2 . .There is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ
    Jesus, because through Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit of life set me free
    from the law of sin and death

    Rom 8:33 . .Who will bring a charge against God’s chosen ones? It is God
    who acquits us.


    NOTE: An acquittal can be defined as an adjudication of innocence when
    there is insufficient evident to convict. An acquittal is much better than a
    pardon because it leaves nothing on one's record to hold against them at a
    later date; whereas a pardon does nothing to expunge one's record.

    182) Eph 5:8-9 . . For you were once darkness, but now you are light in the
    Lord. Live as children of light (for the fruit of the light consists in all
    goodness, righteousness and truth)

    Some Christians just can't seem to get it through their thick skulls that when
    somebody pins the Christian label on themselves, they're supposed to act
    like one.

    Matt 5:16 . . Let your light shine before men in such a way that they may
    see your good works, and glorify your Father who is in heaven.

    Rom 6:1-2 . . Shall we go on sinning so that grace may increase? God
    forbid! We died to sin; how can we live in it any longer?

    2Tim 2:19 . . Let every one that nameth the name of Christ depart from
    iniquity.

    1John 1:6 . . If we say that we have fellowship with him, and walk in
    darkness, we lie, and do not the truth.

    /
     
  15. Webers_Home

    Webers_Home Well-Known Member

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    183) Eph 5:10 . . Find out what pleases the Lord.

    People depending upon their intuition to know what pleases the Lord are of
    course doomed to failure because the information isn't available like that,
    no, it's something to "find out" which involves learning by means of books,
    sermons, lectures, seminars, radio Bible teachers, Sunday school classes,
    and personal Bible study.

    This particular process of discovery has to include researching the Old
    Testament or one's finding will be incomplete.

    Rom 15:4 . . For whatever things were written before were written for our
    learning

    1Cor 10:11 . . Now all these things happened to them as examples, and
    they were written for our admonition, upon whom the ends of the ages have
    come.

    184) Eph 5:11-12 . . Have nothing to do with the fruitless deeds of
    darkness, but rather expose them. For it is shameful even to speak of what
    the disobedient do in secret.

    For an example of this directive, Genesis is mute about the despicable things
    that the Sodomites lusted to do to the two men lodging at Lot's house. It's
    as if the author drew a curtain over Sodom and said: This is just too
    shocking. I'm not going to spell out what the people of Sodom had in mind
    that night. You will just have to use your imagination.

    Jude simply, and concisely, says that they were utterly unchaste; even to
    the point of having their way with innocent visitors. (Jude 1:7)

    I think it's fair to ask just exactly how one might "expose" shameful deeds
    without at least identifying them and/or describing them to some degree.

    The koiné Greek word for "shameful" is aischron (ahee-skhron') which
    means: indecorum.

    Webster's defines "indecorum" as: impropriety. In other words, despicable
    acts should never be described explicitly in polite company, nor in the
    presence of children; which quite obviously precludes the use of a pulpit for
    explicit descriptions since congregations are an amalgam of men, women,
    wives, husbands, dads, moms, and underage children.

    I don't think the Lord's directive forbids any and all mention of despicable
    acts. In other words, his directive doesn't say that I cannot tell polite
    company that the Bible condemns the conduct of pedophiles, gays, lesbians,
    transvestites, and porn stars just so long as I don't start describing, in all
    their lurid detail, the revolting things they do to, and with, each other in
    private and/or on film or in view of an audience.

    /
     
  16. Webers_Home

    Webers_Home Well-Known Member

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    185) Eph 5:14 . .Wake up, O sleeper! . . rise from the dead, and Christ will
    shine on you.

    Some Christians just don't care. They don't think obedience to their Lord's
    commandments is all that important. They're indifferent, half-hearted, half
    baked, asleep at the wheel, off-reservation, in their heads, in their own little
    world; and totally oblivious that they're being of no use to Christ at all.

    186) Eph 5:15 . . So be careful how you live, not as fools but as those who
    are wise.

    "Wise" of course meaning to live your life in such a way that it counts for
    Christ instead of only counting for yourself and/or counting for the world. For
    example: if you get pulled into the worlds of corporate management and
    political activism; I can just about guarantee that your life is not counting for
    Christ because those are really big distractions and sometimes its players
    have to play dirty to survive.

    187) Eph 5:17 . .Therefore do not be uninformed, but understand what The
    Lord's will is.

    In other words: Christians are not supposed to fly by the seat of their pants,
    but rather, fly by instruments: viz: fly intelligently; and that entails reading
    a driver's manual before attempting to operate a car, so to speak.

    Moses told Yhvh's people that there is no need to go on a special "golden
    fleece" quest to discover what The Lord's will is; either out in space nor
    across the ocean in a foreign land. No, The Lord's will is easily accessible
    between the covers of even the cheapest second-hand Bible on the shelves
    of a thrift store.

    However; no Bible-- no matter how cheap, nor how expensive, nor what
    version-- is of any real use if it's not studied. But even systematic Bible
    study is quite thwarted when the information isn't retained.

    Jas 1:22-25 . . Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive
    yourselves. Do what it says. Anyone who listens to the word but does not do
    what it says is like a man who looks at his face in a mirror and, after looking
    at himself, goes away and immediately forgets what he looks like. But the
    man who looks intently into the perfect law that gives freedom, and
    continues to do this, not forgetting what he has heard, but doing it-he will be
    blessed in what he does.

    188) Eph 5:18 . . Do not get drunk on wine, which leads to debauchery.
    Instead, be filled with the Spirit.

    If more Christians would comply with that decree there wouldn't be so many
    of them in Alcoholics Anonymous. I've heard of studies indicating that some
    eople have a genetic weakness for alcohol. Nevertheless, genetic or not,
    drunkenness is sin and Christians are under orders to subdue it.

    Col 3:5 . . So put to death the sinful, earthly things lurking within you.

    Eph 5:18 doesn't forbid drinking; only getting drunk. Why do people get
    plastered anyway? Isn't it to make themselves feel good and better able to
    cope with life's difficulties? Alcohol therefore could be said to be an antidote
    to one's existence.

    Prv 31:6-7 . . Liquor is for the dying, and wine for those in deep
    depression. Let them drink to forget their poverty and remember their
    troubles no more.

    Some of us seem born with a melancholy disposition but that's really not the
    same. Real depression will literally drive you to suicide. I know because I've
    been there.

    So in that respect, pills and alcohol are a crutch. I'm not saying a crutch is a
    bad thing; I mean, after all, God created Eve as a crutch for Adam so then if
    all crutches are bad, then women are bad too. No, crutches per se are not
    bad; it's one's choice of crutch that matters; e.g. cocaine,
    methamphetamine, alcohol, valium, Prozac, overeating, etc.

    God's Spirit is supposed to be a crutch for believers; but His effectiveness as
    a crutch is found only in something called the fruit of the Spirit.

    Gal 5:22-23 . . The fruit of the Spirit is joy, peace, and self control.

    Two elements of the Spirit's fruit that have a powerful influence on a
    believer's well-being in life are Joy and Peace; which are obtained out of a
    bottle for only a short time; and are actually chemically dependent rather
    than supernaturally dependent.

    But joy and peace come at a price.

    Rom 8:13 . . If you live according to the sinful nature, you will die; but if
    by the Spirit you put to death the misdeeds of the body, you will live,

    In other words; Christ's followers should not expect to obtain the Spirit's joy
    and peace when their conduct is unbecoming.

    189) Eph 5:19 . . Speaking to one another in psalms and hymns and
    spiritual songs: singing and making melody with your heart to The Lord

    That verse is actually pretty good justification for a church choir; but I really
    think it should also be used to justify hymn books in the pews too so the
    congregation can sing together. And make very sure the object of your
    music is Christ and/or his Father rather than other kinds of celestial
    personages; e.g. saints and angels.

    190) Eph 5:20 . . Always giving thanks to God the Father for everything, in
    the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.

    The essential point to note is that Spirit-filled believers give thanks to God
    the Father rather than to Mary the so-called Mother of God (cf. Rom 8:15
    and Gal 4:6) and they give their thanks in the name of The Lord Jesus Christ
    rather than in the name of a patron saint.

    /
     
  17. Webers_Home

    Webers_Home Well-Known Member

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    191) Eph 5:21 . . Submit to one another out of respect for Christ.

    The koiné Greek word for "submit" is hupotasso (hoop-ot-as'-so) which
    means: to subordinate (as a verb) which is just the opposite of dominance,
    equality, and/or rivalry and competition.

    A workable synonym for the kind of submission we're talking about here is
    "deference" which Webster's defines as: (1) respect and esteem due a
    superior or an elder, and (2) affected, or ingratiating, regard for another's
    wishes; viz: honor.

    This isn't about a pecking order. What we're talking about here is a Christian
    social skill; it's about regarding others as not equal to yourself, but actually
    better than yourself; and it pleases Christ to do so; besides being just plain
    all around good manners.

    Matt 18:3-4 . . Whoever humbles himself as a little child is the greatest in
    the kingdom of heaven.

    Little children in that day were minors who had little or no social status at all
    to speak of. If somebody abused a minor; it was just too bad since there
    were no Child Services bureaus to defend them. Minors were typically among
    the ruled rather than among those who do the ruling; and they got like zero
    respect from their elders.

    In other words, an imperious believer-- one that's assertive, bossy, take
    charge, demanding, argumentative, quarrelsome, impudent, conceited,
    domineering, confrontational, manipulative, reactive, independent, non
    negotiable, opinionated, obstinately or intolerantly devoted to their own
    opinions and prejudices, stubborn, and insistent upon their own way --is
    definitely a failure at subordinating themselves to their fellow believers in a
    manner consistent with The Lord's instructions.

    192) Eph 5:22 . .Wives, submit to your husbands as to The Lord.

    The koiné word for "submit" in this verse is the very same one we just
    discussed, and never means that wives take orders from their husbands like
    in some sort of despotic monarchy. We haven't changed the subject; in point
    of fact we're actually being redundant because what we're talking about here
    is deference rather than obedience. An attitude of deference is mandatory
    for Christians on both sides of the gender aisle-- both men and women.

    We should emphasize that these instruction are only for Spirit-filled couples.
    They're not for the average rank and file pew-warming couple, nor for the
    world's couples at large.

    First of all; Spirit-filled wives walk in the fruit of the Spirit; which is love, joy,
    peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, and self
    control. That alone filters out most wives. And they also speak to themselves
    with psalms, hymns and spiritual songs; making music in their hearts to The
    Lord rather than going around with a grumpy disposition all the time with a
    cross look on their face.

    Spirit-filled wives don't strive for equality, nor do they compete with their
    husbands as rivals for supremacy, nor do they have to be right all the time.
    And most importantly, a Spirit-filled wife treads lightly on her husband's
    feelings.

    A wife that's independent, quarrelsome, complaining, fault-finding, chafing,
    hostile, violent, carping, dominating, manipulating, critical, thin-skinned,
    defensive, assertive, aggressive, thoughtless, insensitive, loud, stubborn,
    difficult, cruel, gender-biased, confrontational, always clamoring about
    empowerment, and harboring a "I am woman! Hear me roar!" mentality is
    not The Lord's concept of deference.

    A deferent wife is gracious, cordial, affable, approachable, temperate, genial,
    sociable, ready to turn the other cheek, generous, charitable, altruistic,
    tactful, sensitive, sympathetic; and above all coherent, reasonable, and
    rational rather than incoherent, emotional, and reactive.

    /
     
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    Webers_Home Well-Known Member

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    193) Eph 5:23-24 . . For the husband is the head of the wife as Christ is the
    head of the church, his body, of which he is the savior. Now as the church
    submits to Christ, so also wives should submit to their husbands in
    everything.

    People-- Christians, no less --have tried to circumvent that commandment
    by quoting Paul to refute Paul; for example:

    Gal 3:26-28 . . For you are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus.
    For all of you who were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with
    Christ. There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free man,
    there is neither male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus.

    But if we were to make Gal 3:26-28 a rule in civil affairs; then Christian
    marriages would be same-sex unions; and that, to say the least, is quite
    laughable.

    If a Christian wife cannot treat her husband with the respect due him in
    accordance with Eph 5:21 then she should at least try to treat him with
    respect in accordance with Eph 5:23-24; in other words; treat her husband
    the way she would treat Christ were he the one sharing a home with her.

    Though both husband and wife are equals as believers, and equally Christ's
    subjects, they are definitely not equals as man and wife though they be one
    flesh; just as Christ and his Father are not equals though they be one God.
    A Christian wife who humiliates her husband in any way literally humiliates
    Christ when she does so; and gives herself away that she's neither walking
    in the Spirit, nor filled with the Spirit, nor loyal to the lord and master of
    Christianity.


    NOTE: They say familiarity breeds contempt; and I'm afraid that a good
    number of Christians have gotten so accustomed to thinking of Christ as a
    sibling that they've forgotten he's primarily a monarch.

    Men and women have very different needs as regards to respect. Shaunti
    Feldhahn, author of "For Women Only" relates a survey taken among
    segregated groups of men and women with this question: Given a choice;
    would you rather be disrespected, or would you rather be alone and unloved
    in the world? The majority of the ladies chose disrespect rather than living
    alone and unloved in the world while the majority of the men chose to live
    alone and unloved rather than be disrespected.

    A young bride just starting out, with a head full of feminism and a heart
    infected with contempt for males; not caring how important respect is to
    men, will have no trouble turning her husband's marriage into a living hell
    for him without even half trying.

    So then, what's one thing that every Spirit-filled wife can do to please
    Christ? Simple. Respect her husband. And don't respect him only if he earns
    your respect: no, respect him all the time just as you'd respect Christ all the
    time were he your husband. A wife cannot expect a husband to love her
    unconditionally when she won't make an effort to respect him
    unconditionally.

    A very disturbing display of husband-wife disrespect took place in my own
    home. My wife and I used to baby-sit for a couple at church whenever they
    were away. When they came over one night to pick up their kids, my son
    and theirs were playing a really good Nintendo game. The daddy informed
    the kids it was time to go, and in customary kid-fashion they ignored him
    and kept playing their game. So he became gruff and ordered them out to
    the car.

    His wife then proceeded to come down on him like the wrath of God and
    exclaimed: You're yelling at them in front of the Webers! Well, guess what?
    Mrs. Self-Righteous-Christianette was lecturing her husband in front of the
    Webers; and if you could have seen the look on his face you'd know that her
    husband was not going to get over the effects of his wife's public scolding for
    a long while to come; if ever.

    You know, kids get used to their parents demeaning them in front of others.
    To kids, it's just a fact of life. However, I seriously doubt there's a husband
    on earth who can get used to a wife that demeans him in front of others.

    Prv 14:1 . . A wise woman builds her home; a foolish woman tears her
    home down with her own hands.

    /
     
    Last edited: Nov 13, 2017
  19. Webers_Home

    Webers_Home Well-Known Member

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    194) Eph 5:25a . . Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the
    church

    Love and Like don't necessarily go together. For example: One of my
    favorite lines from a NetFlix series called Downton Abbey goes like this: "As
    my son I love you; but I have tried, and failed, to like you".

    Christ's love for the church is expressed in the grammatical past tense. This,
    I believe, is because it refers to his crucifixion; which is an illustration of the
    kind of love I quoted from Downton Abbey.

    Rom 5:8 . . God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we
    were yet sinners, Christ died for us.

    1John 4:10 . .This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and
    sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins.

    In other words: the benefit of Christ's crucifixion isn't limited to his buddies,
    rather, is extended to the entire human world, both the likable and the
    impossible to like. This is what Eph 5:25a is talking about.

    There are toxic wives out there who do not deserve their husband's
    affections; and in fact have done all in their power to poison them.
    Nevertheless, it is his Christian duty to continue to look after her, and to
    treat her as if she were a buddy in spite of the fact that she is impossible to
    like.

    I can't imagine a sadder or sicker marriage than one wherein a husband is
    nice to his wife out of a sense of duty rather by affectionate feelings.

    195) Eph 5:25b-33a . . He gave himself up for the church to make her
    holy, cleansing her by the washing with water through the word, and to
    present her to himself as a radiant church, without stain or wrinkle or any
    other blemish, but holy and blameless.

    . . . In this same way, husbands ought to love their wives as their own
    bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself. After all, no one ever hated his
    own body, but he nourishes and cares for it, just as Christ does the church--
    for we are members of his body.

    . . . For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to
    his wife, and the two will become one flesh. This is a profound mystery-- but
    I am talking about Christ and the church. However, each one of you also
    must love his wife as he loves himself

    We're not talking about narcissism here. This is about care and concern for
    someone's survival; viz: meeting their needs.

    196) Eph 5:33b . . and the wife must respect her husband.

    This is not about admiration. The Greek verb for "respect" is phobeo (fob-
    eh'-o) which essentially refers to fright; and is used just that way in
    numerous places throughout the New Testament.

    Some translators render phobeo as "reverence" which Webster's defines as
    honor or respect; felt or shown; which means that wives don't especially
    have to like their husbands in order to respect them. A show of respect will
    do in lieu of felt respect. In other words: the Christian wife would do well to
    stifle the disgust she feels for her husband and be civil.

    I overheard a female caller on radio imperiously announcing to Dr. Laura
    that she couldn't respect her husband. So Dr. Laura asked her why. The
    caller responded: Because he hasn't earned my respect. So Laura asked the
    caller: Have you earned your husband's love? The caller retorted: I don't
    have to earn his love. It's a husband's duty to love his wife just as she is.

    So Laura pointed out that the caller was practicing a double standard. She
    demanded that her husband love her unconditionally, while refusing to
    respect him unconditionally. And on top of that; had the despotic chutzpah
    to dictate the rules of engagement regardless of how her husband might feel
    about it.

    That is not The Lord's concept of a Spirit-filled relationship. It doesn't even
    exemplify the Beatitudes and/or the Sermon On The Mount let alone the
    quality of humanitarian love that Christ exemplified on the cross.

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  20. Webers_Home

    Webers_Home Well-Known Member

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    197) Eph 6:1 . . Children, obey your parents in The Lord, for this is right.

    The primary reason given for children obeying their parents is simply that
    it's the right thing to do.

    There's a lot of grown-ups out there who have problems with authority; and
    those problems began very early, right in their own homes. They were
    demon seeds who refused to accept their parents as superiors; and they
    themselves as subordinates.

    The parents of the command are "in The Lord" in other words, this rule
    doesn't pertain to kids with secular parents; which is a good loop hole
    because there may come times for kids to disobey their parents out of
    loyalty to a higher power. (cf. Matt 4:10, Matt 10:37)

    The koiné Greek word for "obey" in that verse is interesting. It's hupakouo
    (hoop-ak-oo'-o) which means to pay attention; viz: to heed; to mind.

    Not only is minding one's parents the right thing to do, but minding has its
    benefits.

    198) Eph 6:2-3 . . Honor your father and mother-- which is the first
    commandment with a promise --that it may go well with you and that you
    may enjoy long life on the earth.

    The koiné Greek word for "honor" in Eph 6:2 is timao (tim-ah'-o) which
    means: to prize; viz: to fix a valuation upon; to revere. The very same word
    is used at Matt 15:4-6 where Jesus related the fifth commandment to caring
    for one's dependent parents.

    Incidentally, have you noticed how little respect parents get from their
    insolent progeny in modern television sit-coms, Hollywood movies, and
    advertising? It's a reflection of modern American culture's attitude towards
    doing what's right. Kids today are encouraged to do what's wrong in their
    homes instead of doing what's right. Modern entertainment trains children
    how to be demonic instead of divine.

    Kids that mind and respect their parents are usually much the happier for it.
    The ones that fight with their parents typically end up living in a home from
    hell; and though they may live long and prosper, life will not go well with
    them, nor will they enjoy it as they might have.

    As kids get older, especially here in tech-savvy America, they tend to regard
    their parents as dunces. That is a fatal error. The Lord's kids have got to be
    on guard against that attitude; not only because it's wrong, but also because
    it hurts parents deeply to be treated as morons by their own flesh and blood.
    Impudent children just won't understand how deeply it hurts until they
    become parents themselves; but by that time; it's too late and the damage
    wrought is permanent.


    FYI: Webster's defines "impudent" as: marked by contemptuous or cocky
    boldness or disregard of others; viz: insolent. In other words: an impudent
    child is a sociopath.

    Let me caution The Lord's kids about something. The one thing you don't
    want to do in this life is accumulate an archive of regrets because as sure as
    you're reading this line, those regrets will haunt you in later years and rob
    you of peace of mind; and one of those ugly little robbers is cruelty. Never
    be cruel to your "in The Lord" parents. It will cost you. Here's a brief list of
    cruelties to avoid:

    Thoughtless remarks, demeaning comments, ridicule, sarcasm, sneering,
    scorn, wiseacre retorts, toxic rejoinders, mockery, fault finding, and name
    calling. Consider those a starter kit.


    BTW: Regardless of a believer's age-- whether a child or an adult --it is
    required that they love their "in The Lord" parents, not as themselves, but
    as Christ loves them (John 15:12). Why? Because a believing child's
    believing parents are fellow lambs and siblings in Christ's sheepfold; that's
    why. So then, Christ's directive to love the other lambs as he himself loves
    them applies to one's "in The Lord" parents too.

    Q: If a Jewish child accepted Christ as the Messiah, against the wishes of his
    Jewish parents, wouldn't that be breaking of the fifth commandment?

    A: I seriously doubt the fifth commandment was intended to prevent one's
    children from making their own decisions. If it did, then where would it end?
    Would it grant a domineering Jewish mother carte blanch to dictate every
    facet of her offspring's life including their spouse, their career, their clothing,
    their friends, the city they live in, the food they eat, their vote, their political
    party, the length of their hair, even how they raise their own kids? In short,
    a carte blanch interpretation of that commandment would rob one's progeny
    of not only their individuality; but also their own personal responsibility.

    Q: You really don't think it's disrespectful for a Jewish child to reject their
    parents' religion?

    A: No, that would be disrespect for the parents' religion, not disrespect for
    the parents. To my knowledge there are no divine commandments requiring
    children to either accept or adopt their parents' core values.

    One's attitude towards their parents and how they treat them is the issue.
    How anyone can come to the conclusion the fifth commandment somehow
    grants parents the powers of tyranny, mind control, and despotism is
    beyond me.

    Matt 10:34-37 . .Think not that I am come to send peace on earth: I came
    not to send peace, but a sword. For I am come to set a man at variance
    against his father, and the daughter against her mother, and the daughter in
    law against her mother in law. And a man's foes shall be they of his own
    household. He that loveth father or mother more than me is not worthy of
    me: and he that loveth son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me.

    Christ drew a line in the dirt with that statement: in other words, who will
    you serve? . . . me or your parents? Nobody's parents, whether Jewish or
    Christian, have the right to demand a child's loyalty over and above their
    loyalty to God.

    Ex 20:3 . . Thou shalt have no other Gods before me. (cf. 1Cor 8:4-6)

    Mark 12:30 . . Thou shalt love The Lord thy God with all thy heart, and
    with all thy soul, and with all thy mind, and with all thy strength. (cf. Deut
    10:12-13)

    Acts 5:29 . .We must obey God rather than men.

    If a conscientious Jewish child sincerely believes their parents' religion is
    wrong, then they have a duty to God and conscience to break with Judaism.
    I'm not saying they should break with the covenant that Yhvh's people
    agreed upon with God as per Deut 29:9-15. No; that's a horse of another
    color.

    Those very same principles all apply to Christian denominations. For
    example: if a child should come to a realization one day that his parents'
    Roman Catholicism is a doctored version of Christianity, then he has a duty
    to God and conscience to seek spiritual guidance elsewhere.

    Rom 14:5 . . Let every man be fully persuaded in his own mind.

    Rom 14:23 . . whatsoever is not of faith is sin.

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