Friday, April 28, 2017

Vessels, of Honor and Dishonor, in the Great House of God




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Please read 2 Timothy 2:1-26.

In 2 Timothy 2:1, the servant of the LORD is exhorted to be strong in the Grace that is in Christ Jesus.

In 2 Timothy 2:3, the servant of the LORD is exhorted to endure hardness as a good soldier of Jesus Christ.

In 2 Timothy 2:15, the servant of the LORD is expected to study to show himself/herself approved unto God and rightly divide the Word of truth.

In 2 Timothy 2:19, the servant of the LORD is exhorted to depart from iniquity.

In 2 Timothy 4:2-5, the servant of the LORD is told to preach the Word and to do the work of an evangelist.

If the servant of the LORD will faithfully obey these exhortations, he or she, will be a vessel unto honor, sanctified and meet for the Master’s use, prepared unto every good work. 2 Timothy 2:21.

Every Member of the Body of Christ is a Vessel in a House...a Great House. 2 Timothy 2:20.

In 1 Timothy 3:15, the servant of the LORD is told how he should behave in the House of God which is the Church of the living God, the pillar and ground of the truth. Those same instructions are stated in different language in Ephesians 4:1, “That ye walk worthy of the calling wherewith ye are called.”

It is BEYOND human imagination what the Body of Christ, as the pillar and ground of the truth, could do, if members of that Church would be strong in the Grace that is in Christ Jesus, if they would endure hardness as good soldiers of Jesus Christ, if they would rightly divide the Word of truth, if they would depart from iniquity.

Members of the Body of Christ, Which He purchased with His own blood, Acts 20:28, are certainly vessels in a great House. Think of the price that was paid for this House and the glorious future of this House, “...Christ also loved the Church and gave Himself for it; That He might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the Word. That He might present it to Himself a glorious Church, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing; but that is should be holy and without blemish.”

Surely every Christian should desire to be a vessel of honor in this great House, sanc­tified and easily used for the LORD Jesus Christ, Who said, “if any man serve Me, him will My Father honor.” John 12:26.

We read concerning Christ as the Chief Corner Stone in this great House, “In Whom all the Building fitly framed (joined) together groweth unto an Holy Temple in the LORD. In Whom ye also are builded together for a hab­itation of God through the Spirit.” Ephesians 2:21-22. “The Household of God.” Ephesians 2:20.

What an honor to be in this Household, this Temple, this Building! To be “in Christ” in this Age of Grace, means to be a member of God’s Family, a child of God, an heir of God and a joint heir with Christ. Romans 8:15-16. So stop your belly aching, whatever it may be, and LOOK at what you have in Christ!

It is possible to be saved so as by fire and not be a vessel of honor in this great House, sanctified and meet for the Master’s use. 1 Corinthians 3:15. But why not have the very best that God has for us?

If you feel that you have been a failure and consider your case about hopeless, read Jeremiah’s visit to the potter’s house in Jeremiah 18:1-6 and see how God’s prophet saw the potter “remake” the marred vessel. THEN read God’s word; that He could do the same with a marred sinner. God is the Great Potter. We are the vessels. If you are a sinner, let God save you, by His Grace and His Son. If you are a saint, a member of the Body of Christ, let God use you. “Purge yourself from these.” Be a vessel of honour in God’s Great House. Remember 1 Corinthians 15:58 and 1 Corinthians 3:13-15. Our God, THE God, the ONLY God, is a Great God. He gives eternal life to receivers. Then He pays well for service.

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In Ephesians 1:13 the Holy Spirit through the Apostle Paul declares that men are saved and sealed by hearing and BELIEVING the Word of Truth, the Gospel of your Salvation. Therefore, here, now, is declared unto you the Word of Truth, the Gospel of your Salvation: "that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures; and that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures" 1 Corinthians 15:3-4. BELIEVE today. The time is short.

So There You Have it!

Spread this message to everyone you know, far and wide.

Grace be to you and peace, from God: our Father, and The LORD Jesus Christ.

In The LORD Jesus Christ,
The Lion and Lamb Ministry

LLM - Ambassador for Christ in the Ministry of Reconciliation (2 Cor. 5:18-20)

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Determined to be Faithfully Proclaiming the Grace of God




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Some may suppose that it would require little boldness today to proclaim the Grace of God in all its purity. Who is ever persecuted now, at least in free, “enlightened lands”, for preaching God's Grace?

Ah, but do not be deceived. Satan was no less active in his opposition to the truth when Constantine exalted the professing Church to prominence than when his predecessors persecuted the Church and sent its members to death by fire and sword. Indeed, Satan, was doubtless, more successful in Constantine's day than he had been when persecution raged.

Does any believer in the Word of God suppose that Satan has relented in his opposition to the truth today, just because men, at least in this land, are not burned at the stake or thrown to the lions? Do not be misled. Satan's enmity against God and against His Word continues undiminished. His hatred of "the Gospel of the Grace of God," is as bitter, and his opposition to it as determined as it ever was. AND, well does he know that the constant discouragements connected with being in the minority often succeed in silencing those who would stand against physical persecution.

Today Satan uses the new evangelicalism with its highly- organized highly-financed campaigns, and its woeful lack of doctrinal and dispensational teaching of the Word...to neutralize the saints.

Multitudes are attracted to these neo-evangelical extravaganzas, at which the participants are for the most part performers, and those who stand for the truth often feel very small as compared to the vast unthinking majority. But let us never forget that God uses "things that are not" to accomplish His work (1 Corinthians 1:26-29).

Let us, who know and love the truth, then, determine by God's Grace that nothing shall make us unfaithful to our glorious commission; that, whatever the cost, we shall faithfully and boldly proclaim to others the unadulterated Gospel of the Grace of God, "the preaching of Jesus Christ, according to the revelation of the mystery." Romans 16:25

***

In Ephesians 1:13 the Holy Spirit through the Apostle Paul declares that men are saved and sealed by hearing and BELIEVING the Word of Truth, the Gospel of your Salvation. Therefore, here, now, is declared unto you the Word of Truth, the Gospel of your Salvation: "that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures; and that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures" 1 Corinthians 15:3-4. BELIEVE today. The time is short.

So There You Have it!

Spread this message to everyone you know, far and wide.

Grace be to you and peace, from God: our Father, and The LORD Jesus Christ.

In The LORD Jesus Christ,
The Lion and Lamb Ministry

LLM - Ambassador for Christ in the Ministry of Reconciliation (2 Cor. 5:18-20)

Sunday, April 23, 2017

Five Different Groups Addressed from Matthew to Revelation



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Now, it is of the utmost importance, in your study of the Bible, that you all become fully aware and learn of this very important fact...The Fact that from the first chapter of Matthew to the last chapter of Revelation 5, FIVE, different groups or classes of people are addressed.

And here they are:

1) To unsaved Israelites who were under the Law.

2) To saved Israelites who were under the Law before they became members of the Body of Christ.

3) To unsaved Gentiles who were aliens from the Commonwealth of Israel, and not under the Law.

4) To carnal saints and babes who were members of the Body of Christ.

5) To those who were of full age, called "the faithful in Christ Jesus."

The words of the Lord Jesus, in Matthew 15:24 and Matthew 10:5-8, should be self explanatory. Christ definitely declared that He Himself was sent ONLY to the lost sheep of the House of Israel, and instructed the twelve apostles, just as definitely, to go NOT in the way of the Gentiles; but rather to the lost sheep of the House of Israel.

The LORD Jesus Christ, was sent to Israel with a two-fold message; that is, to present "the Kingdom of Heaven" to the Nation with its rulers, and to offer salvation to individual Israelites.

In Matthew 8:12, Christ called the Israelites, both saved AND unsaved, "the children of the kingdom." In John 8:37 He said to the unsaved Israelites, "ye are the seed of Abraham." In Acts 3:25 Peter addressed the unsaved Israelites as "the children of the covenant." In Luke 1:16 and Luke 1:80 we read that John the Baptist appeared to Israel. In John 1:31 we read that John the Baptist baptized with water THAT Christ might be made manifest to Israel, (NOW you know why baptism was introduced, but this has NOTHING to do with the Body of Christ). In Acts 11:1-8 we learn that some of the twelve apostles contended with Peter because he preached to an uncircumcised Gentile, about seven years after Christ died. From all of this and many other Scriptures, we should know the significance of the statement, in Romans 15:8, that Jesus Christ was a Minister of the Circumcision, and should know that, from Matthew 1:1 to Acts 11:18, God's order was "to the Jew only." However, in Acts 11:18 we read that God did something for the Gentiles.

Some of the messages in Matthew, Mark, Luke, John and Acts, were addressed to unsaved Israelites, or Jews, and some of them were addressed to saved Israelites or Jews. Surely we must consider this if we would intelligently interpret and apply these Scriptures, right? For, if we don't we will just continue in the confusion that has resulted in all of the denominations of today.

In Galatians 1:11-18 we learn that the Apostle Paul was chosen by the Risen Christ, by a special revelation from heaven, to preach the Grace of Christ to heathen. The Apostle Paul tells us of his call to go to the Gentiles, in Acts 22:17-21, and Romans 15:16. In many respects the Gospel of Grace message that Paul proclaimed to Gentiles, not under the Law, differed from the Gospel of the Kingdom messages that Christ and the Twelve proclaimed to saved and unsaved Israelites. Therefore, to preach many of the messages of Matthew, Mark, Luke and the first nine chapters of Acts to the Gentiles not under the law, is to pervert God's Gospel of Grace to Gentiles.

In applying the truth of Matthew, Mark and Luke, and the truth in the first nine chapters of Acts to Gentiles, whether saved or unsaved, we must keep in mind the particular group of people that is addressed in the Scriptures we are studying. Many messages which the LORD's servants proclaimed to backslidden Israel are not intended by God to be included in the salvation message of Christ for Gentiles, not under the Law. We should keep in mind the statements, concerning these Gentiles, in many different verses, for instance read the second chapter of Ephesians, as well as Ephesians 4:18. In these verses we learn that the Gentiles, to whom the Apostle Paul preached the Gospel of the Grace of God, were strangers from the covenants, aliens from the commonwealth of Israel, alienated from the life of God, and dead in trespasses and sins.

Surely any preacher who preaches to such people, "bring forth meat for repentance," the message which the LORD gave to John the Baptist for Israel, is out of the will of God. A dead man alienated from the life of God, could not bring forth fruit. But he could be made alive without doing anything. Ephesians 2:4-8. Romans 6:23.

Ok, so, so far we have dealt with the first three classes of people...unsaved Israelites who were under the Law, saved Israelites who were under the Law before they became members of the Body of Christ, and unsaved Gentiles who were aliens from the Commonwealth of Israel, and not under the Law. Now, here are the fourth and the fifth classes.

Group 4

1 Corinthians 3:2-3

"I have fed you with milk, and not with meat; for hitherto ye were not able to hear it, neither yet now are ye able. For ye are yet carnal; for whereas there is among you envying, and strife, and divisions, are ye not carnal, and walk as men?"

Group 5

Ephesians 1:1 and Ephesians 4:13-14

"Paul, an apostle of Jesus Christ by the will of God, to the saints which are at Ephesus, and to the faithful in Christ Jesus." And, "Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ, That we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive."

These Scriptures should convince any student of the Bible that Paul would never have written to the carnal Corinthians what he wrote to the faithful saints in Ephesus. Let us note the last three verses of Hebrews 5, which we quote:

Hebrews 5:12-14

"For when for the time ye ought to be teachers, ye have need that one teach you again which be the first principles of the oracles of God; and are become such as have need of milk, and not of strong meat. For every one that useth milk is unskillful in the Word of righteousness; for he is a babe. But strong meat belongeth to them that are of full age, even those who by reason of use have their sense exercised to discern both good and evil."

Here in this portion of scripture we are told of the two classes, within the Body of Christ: members of the Body of Christ who could take only the milk of the Word, God's truth for babes; and those who were of full age who could understand the deep things or the meat of God's Word.

In 1 Peter 2:2 we learn that the new born babes should have the milk of the Word. Note this verse, "As newborn babes, desire the sincere milk of the word, that ye may grow thereby."

Now, you must keep in mind at all times, the saints in Corinth were just as much saints as were the saints in Ephesus. The difference was, the saints at Corinth were carnal and unable to take the strong meat which we find in the Apostle Paul's messages to the Ephesians and Colossians. Of course the "full-age" saints will feed on the milk as well as on the meat. But strong meat belongeth to saints of full age and carnal saints must limit themselves to a milk diet.

A love for religion, ritualism, or sectarianism (denominations), will keep a saint carnal just as much as a love of the world. Read that sentence over and over again. The Corinthians were sectarians. The Ephesians and Colossians accepted the Divine Truth of Ephesians 4:3-6 concerning the One Body, the One Lord, and the ONE BAPTISM.

***

In Ephesians 1:13 the Holy Spirit through the Apostle Paul declares that men are saved and sealed by hearing and BELIEVING the Word of Truth, the Gospel of your Salvation. Therefore, here, now, is declared unto you the Word of Truth, the Gospel of your Salvation: "that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures; and that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures" 1 Corinthians 15:3-4. BELIEVE today. The time is short.

So There You Have it!

Spread this message to everyone you know, far and wide.

Grace be to you and peace, from God: our Father, and The LORD Jesus Christ.

In The LORD Jesus Christ,
The Lion and Lamb Ministry

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Romans 8:22: Why the Whole of Creation Groans in Pain



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Let us carefully note God’s warnings, “O Timothy, keep that which is committed to thy trust, avoiding profane and vain babblings, and oppositions of science falsely so called.” 1 Timothy 6:20.

The modern theory of evolution, of course, denies the Bible account of the fall of man and, of course, has much to say about "the ascent of man". However, evolution fails to account for, and actually criminally evades, that which lies at the very root of all man's troubles: SIN.

The theory of evolution preaches that man is improving in all ways, but then fails to explain adequately why man finds himself weak, poor, miserable, distressed, corrupt, perishing, and it fails to explain why he is so utterly helpless to lift himself from this state. Not only that, but it fails to explain his inherent sense of blameworthiness; but instead insists he has no cause for a "guilt complex."

"For we know that the whole creation groaneth and travaileth in pain together until now" (Romans 8:22).

Where Evolution leads mankind, can be seen in our day. If man is not made in the image of God, but is only a developed brute, why should he not, as a brute, be killed? Lust and thrill murders are the result of the likes of a Friedrich Nietzsche, who wanted all the weak to be crushed and the superman, the blond beast, to be adored. Nietzsche was a consistent Evolutionist. The struggle for life was with him was simply a dutiful struggle for power. According to this theory Christianity must be destroyed; for numerically and financially, that is the weaker party. According to this cruel theory, euthanasia is perfectly justifiable, because there is no wrong in softly ending the miseries of a highly developed animal. Again, Nudism is just the right thing, for nakedness goes with the beasts of the jungle. Do you not see how Evolution has leavened the nations in our day?

In Genesis 1:12, and Genesis 1:21, and Genesis 1:24-25, we learn that in the vegetable kingdom and in the animal kingdom God’s law is “after its kind.” Plants cannot be changed to fish, fowl or beast. Fish, fowl and beast each propagate and reproduce “after its kind.”

Man was originally created in the image and likeness of the eternal, living, personal Creator. Man did not evolve from some lower order of life. Every theory of evolution has been disproved. At the present time there is not one scientific proof of any evolutionary hypothesis that is being taught in our schools. Improvement of the species is not an evolutionary change of species. Methods of planting corn may change, but the seed corn is the only seed that will bring forth corn.

Every man feels within himself or herself a disorder, a positive dislocation of things, which science, and, certainly the theory of evolution, is utterly unable to explain. Only the Bible account of the fall of man explains it and shows how all man's trouble and distress arise from his OWN nature, which is fallen and corrupt.

"BY ONE MAN SIN ENTERED INTO THE WORLD, AND DEATH BY SIN; AND SO DEATH PASSED UPON ALL MEN, FOR THAT ALL HAVE SINNED" (Romans 5:12).

It is most important, for those who have not yet come to the saving knowledge of the LORD Jesus Christ, to learn this lesson; to learn that it is not merely our sins, but our SIN that makes us unfit for the presence of God; not merely our deeds but our nature; not merely what we have done, but what we would do because we are essentially sinful as the children of Adam.

How profoundly grateful we should be, then, that God loves us despite our sins and our sinful natures, and that, "God commendeth His love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us" (Romans 5:8). "In whom we have redemption, through His blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of His Grace" (Ephesians 1:7).

Therefore, let us carefully note God’s warnings, “O Timothy, keep that which is committed to thy trust, avoiding profane and vain babblings, and oppositions of science falsely so called.” 1 Timothy 6:20. AND, “Beware lest any man spoil you through philosophy and vain deceit, after the tradition of men, after the rudiments of the world, and not after Christ.” Colossians 2:8

***

In Ephesians 1:13 the Holy Spirit through the Apostle Paul declares that men are saved and sealed by hearing and BELIEVING the Word of Truth, the Gospel of your Salvation. Therefore, here, now, is declared unto you the Word of Truth, the Gospel of your Salvation: "that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures; and that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures" 1 Corinthians 15:3-4. BELIEVE today. The time is short.

So There You Have it!

Spread this message to everyone you know, far and wide.

Grace be to you and peace, from God: our Father, and The LORD Jesus Christ.

In The LORD Jesus Christ,
The Lion and Lamb Ministry

LLM - Ambassador for Christ in the Ministry of Reconciliation (2 Cor. 5:18-20)

Wednesday, April 12, 2017

Holy Week Message, Part 3: It All Begins at Calvary



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"For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that CHRIST DIED FOR OUR SINS according to the Scriptures, and THAT HE WAS BURIED, and THAT HE ROSE AGAIN THE THIRD DAY according to the Scriptures" 1 Corinthians 15:3-4.

There were WITNESSES of the Resurrection of Christ, to that there is no doubt. AND in the following passage from 1 Corinthians 15, the Apostle Paul CITES Peter and the eleven apostles who saw the LORD after His resurrection, and then he further states, "After that, He was seen of more than FIVE HUNDRED brethren at once. He was seen of James; then of all the apostles. And last of all, He was seen of me also as one born out of due time" 1 Corinthians 15:5-8.

That Christ was "raised again the third day" is of the UTMOST importance because it is the receipt from God, Himself, that our sins have been paid in full, signed in His own blood, as it were.

Death and Hades could not keep the Son of God in its icy grip. Unlike you and me, the LORD Jesus Christ had no sin, He is "holy, harmless, undefiled, [and] separate from sinners" Hebrews 7:26...and possessing "the spirit of holiness" God "declared [Him] to be the Son of God with power by the resurrection from the dead" (Romans 1:4).

Pay very close attention...The Father raised Christ from the dead. Galatians 1:1. The Holy Spirit raised Christ from the dead. 1 Peter 1:18. The LORD Jesus Christ raised HIMSELF from the dead. John 10:18. In the resurrection of Christ, God shows "what is the exceeding greatness of His power to usward who believe". Ephesians 1:19.
Now, another important point...Christ's appearance to Paul was VERY different than His appearances had been unto all those other saints. The Apostle Paul saw the RISEN, EXALTED, and GLORIFIED, LORD JESUS CHRIST in the glory of His Grace. Listen to Paul's own testimony, "And when I could not see for the Glory of that Light, being led by the hand of them that were with me, I came into Damascus. And one Ananias said, The God of our fathers hath chosen thee, that thou shouldest know His will, AND SEE THAT JUST ONE, and shouldest hear the voice of His mouth" Acts 22:11-14.

So in the Apostle Paul's Gospel when he focuses upon the "crucified" One, 1 Corinthains 1:23, he proclaims "Jesus Christ according to the Revelation of the Mystery" (Romans 16:25). In our endeavors, therefore, to keep our congregations informed of the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ may we NEVER forget that we "who sometimes were far off are made nigh by the BLOOD of Christ". Ephesians 2:13. What love, and what Grace, that should compel our worship, our praise, and our adoration of our wonderful LORD and Savior Jesus Christ. And it all begins at Calvary.

***

In Ephesians 1:13 the Holy Spirit through the Apostle Paul declares that men are saved and sealed by hearing and BELIEVING the Word of Truth, the Gospel of your Salvation. Therefore, here, now, is declared unto you the Word of Truth, the Gospel of your Salvation: "that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures; and that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures" 1 Corinthians 15:3-4. BELIEVE today. The time is short.

So There You Have it!

Spread this message to everyone you know, far and wide.

Grace be to you and peace, from God: our Father, and The LORD Jesus Christ.

In The LORD Jesus Christ,
The Lion and Lamb Ministry

LLM - Ambassador for Christ in the Ministry of Reconciliation (2 Cor. 5:18-20)

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Holy Week Message, part 2: Jesus Knew ALL



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In part 1 of the Lion and Lamb Ministry Holy Week Messages, we learned that the LORD Jesus Christ is NOT divided, and that He is the Good Shepherd, the Great Shepherd and the Chief Shepherd. And, NOW we learn that...

JESUS KNEW ALL

“But Jesus did not commit himself unto them, because he knew all. And needed not that any should testify of man; for he knew what was in man.” John 2:24-25.
To know all is to be omniscient. Let us read the Apostle Peter’s words to the LORD Jesus, “And he (Peter) said unto Him, LORD Thou knowest all things.” John 21:17. Then woman at the well said to the LORD Jesus, “I know that Messiah cometh, which is called Christ: when he is come, he will tell us all things.” John 4:25. Note Christ’s reply, “...I that speak unto thee am he.” John 4:26.
That sinful woman learned that day that Christ needed not that any should testify of woman; for He knew what was in woman. Christ saw Nathanael under the fig tree. But because it was NOT with physical eye-sight, Nathanael cried, “Rabbi, Thou art the Son of God.” Christ assured Nathanael that He would see greater things. John 1:46-51. In John 13:1, Jesus knew that His hour was come that He should depart out of the world, “Now before the feast of the Passover, when Jesus knew that his hour was come that he should depart out of this world unto the Father, having loved his own which were in the world, he loved them unto the end.”

JESUS KNEW FROM THE BEGINNING

“But there are some of you that believe not. For Jesus knew from the beginning who they were that believed not, and who should betray him.” John 6:64. “For he knew who should betray him; therefore said he, Ye are not all clean.” John 13:11.

THE CHIEF SHEPHERD AND SIMON PETER

“This is now the third time that Jesus showed himself to his disciples, after that he was risen from the dead. So when they had dined, Jesus saith to Simon Peter, Simon, son of Jonas, lovest thou me more than these? He saith unto him, Yea, LORD; thou knowest that I love thee, He saith unto him, Feed my lambs. He saith to him again the second time, Simon, son of Jonas, lovest thou me? He saith unto him, Yea LORD; thou knowest that I love thee. He saith unto him, Feed my sheep. He saith unto him the third time, Simon, son of Jonas, lovest thou me? Peter was grieved because he said unto him the third time, Lovest thou me? And he said unto him, LORD, thou knowest all things; thou knowest that I love thee. Jesus saith unto him, Feed my sheep.” John 21:14-17.

Here the chief Shepherd was instructing one of His under-shepherds to feed and tend His lambs and to feed His sheep. The LORD’s Pastors are expected to feed the LORD’s sheep and lambs. Those who are Faithful in this will receive a crown of glory when the chief Shepherd shall appear.

Then the shepherd has another duty; he is to keep the wolves out of the flock. “Take heed therefore unto yourselves, and to all the flock, over the which the Holy Ghost hath made you overseers, to feed the church of God, which he hath purchased with his own blood. For I know this, that after my departing shall grievous wolves enter in among you, not sparing the flock.” Acts 20:28-29. It’s a shame that MANY of today’s Pastors and Preachers are, in fact, the wolves!

The LORD Jesus pictures Himself as the good Shepherd in Luke 15:4, “What man of you, having a hundred sheep, if he lose one of them, doth not leave the ninety and nine in the wilderness, and go after that which is lost, until he find it?”

Then remember the words of the Shepherd-King in Luke 12:32, “Fear not, little flock; for it is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the kingdom.” (Remember, right here the LORD is addressing the Apostles BEFORE His death and resurrection, and BEFORE the direct revelation given to the Apostle Paul concerning the Body of Christ.)

Simon Peter became a Faithful shepherd. He was Faithful unto death. John 21:18-19, “Verily, verily, I say unto thee, When thou wast young, thou girdedst thyself, and walkedst whither thou wouldest: but when thou shalt be old, thou shalt stretch forth thy hands, and another shall gird thee, and carry thee whither thou wouldest not This spake he, signifying by what death he should glorify God. And when he had spoken this, he saith unto him, Follow me.”

WHAT CHRIST KNEW ABOUT THE WOMAN AT THE WELL

In John 4:5-26 is recorded a most interesting story of a sinful woman of Sychar of Samaria. Before the story, we read in John 4:4, “And he must needs go through Samaria.”

Now we see why He must needs go through Samaria. The Savior was wearied with His journey and He sat at noontime on Jacob’s well. “There cometh a woman of Samaria to draw water: Jesus saith unto her, Give me to drink.” John 4:7. The woman was surprised that Jesus should have asked her for a drink “for the Jews have no dealings with the Samaritans.” John 4:9, “Then saith the woman of Samaria unto him, ‘How is it that thou, being a Jew, askest drink of me, which am a woman of Samaria? for the Jews have no dealings with the Samaritans.’” Then the LORD Jesus talked to that poor sinful woman about water that would satisfy her soul. He called it “living water.” John 4:10. “’But whosoever drinketh of the water that I shall give him shall never thirst; but the water that I shall give him shall be in him a well of water springing up into everlasting life.’ The woman saith unto him, ‘Sir, give me this water, that I thirst not, neither come hither to draw.’” John 4:14-15.
Here we think of 1 Timothy 1:15, “This is a Faithful saying, and worthy of all acceptation, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners; of whom I am chief.” Note also Luke 19:10, “For the Son of man is come to seek and to save that which was lost.” The LORD Jesus Christ came to be the Shepherd seeking lost sheep. He came into the world to save sinners.

Almost any person will say, “I am a sinner,” because all of us ARE sinners. But only the LORD Himself can convince the individual that he is not only a sinner, but a LOST sinner. The sinner will not be much concerned about salvation until he realizes that he is LOST.

The LORD went right to that woman’s conscience after He had her interest and attention. He will now get right at her sin. “Jesus saith unto her, ‘Go, call thy husband, and come hither.’ The woman answered and said, ‘I have no husband.’ Jesus said unto her, ‘Thou hast well said, I have no husband: For thou hast had five husbands; and he whom thou now hast is not thy husband: in that saidst thou truly.’ The woman saith unto him, ‘Sir, I perceive that thou art a prophet.’” John 4:16-19. Another moment or two and she learned that she was in the presence of the Messiah, the Christ.

Note what she did, “The woman then left her waterpot, and went her way into the city, and saith to the men, ‘Come, see a man, which told me all things that ever I did: is not this the Christ?’ Then they went out of the city, and came unto him.” John 4:28-30. Note also John 4:39, “And many of the Samaritans of that city believed on him for the saying of the woman, which testified, ‘He told me all that ever I did.’”

She knew that the Messiah could tell all things. Now the Messiah had read her sinful heart. But here we have the confirmation of John 3:17, “For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.” and 2 Cor. 5:19, “To wit, that God was in Christ, reconciling the world unto himself, not imputing their trespasses unto them; and hath committed unto us the word of reconciliation.”

***

In Ephesians 1:13 the Holy Spirit through the Apostle Paul declares that men are saved and sealed by hearing and BELIEVING the Word of Truth, the Gospel of your Salvation. Therefore, here, now, is declared unto you the Word of Truth, the Gospel of your Salvation: "that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures; and that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures" 1 Corinthians 15:3-4. BELIEVE today. The time is short.

So There You Have it!

Spread this message to everyone you know, far and wide.

Grace be to you and peace, from God: our Father, and The LORD Jesus Christ.

In The LORD Jesus Christ,
The Lion and Lamb Ministry

LLM - Ambassador for Christ in the Ministry of Reconciliation (2 Cor. 5:18-20)

Sunday, April 9, 2017

Holy Week Message, part 1: Division Because of Jesus



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"On the next day much people that were come to the feast, when they heard that Jesus was coming to Jerusalem, took branches of palm trees, and went forth to meet him, and cried, Hosanna: Blessed is the King of Israel that cometh in the name of the Lord. And Jesus, when he had found a young ass, sat thereon; as it is written, fear not, daughter of Sion: behold, thy King cometh, sitting on an ass's colt. These things understood not his disciples at the first: but when Jesus was glorified, then remembered they that these things were written of him, and that they had done these things unto him." John 12:12-16

A DIVISION BECAUSE OF JESUS

In the days when Christ was here on earth there was a divi­sion among the people because of Jesus. There was even a greater division after His death and resurrection in the days of the Apostles. There is a still greater division in the world today be­cause of Jesus.

Let us read the following Scriptures...

“Others said, This is the Christ. But some said, Shall Christ come out of Galilee? So there was a division among the people because of him.” John 7:41-43.

“Therefore said some of the Pharisees, This man is not of God, because he keepeth not the sabbath day. Others said, How can a man that is a sinner do such miracles? And there was a division among them.” John 9:16.

“There was a division therefore again among the Jews for these sayings. And many of them said, He hath a devil, and is mad; why hear ye him? Others said, These are not the words of him that hath a devil. Can a devil open the eyes of the blind?” John 10:19-21.

“Suppose ye that I am come to give peace on earth? I tell you, Nay; but rather division: For from henceforth there shall be five in one house divided, three against two, and two against three. The father shall be divided against the son, and the son against the father; the mother against the daughter, and the daughter against the mother; the mother in law against her daughter in law, and the daughter in law against her mother in law.” Luke 12:51-53.

“He that is not with me is against me, and he that gathereth not with me scattereth.” Luke 11:23.

In the John 7, from which chapter we quot­ed the first Scriptures, note the statement concerning the division because of Jesus:

“AND THERE WAS MUCH MURMURING AMONG THE PEOPLE CONCERNING HIM: FOR SOME SAID, HE IS A GOOD MAN: OTHERS SAID, NAY; BUT HE DECEIVETH THE PEOPLE.” John 7:12.

“Much murmuring”, “Some said”, “Others said.” And you know this is still going on today. Who were right, the some who said or the others who said? Some said, “Christ is a good man.” Others said, “Nay, Christ deceiveth the people.” Note in Matthew 27:63 that the “others” continued in their attitude toward Christ, “Saying, Sir, we remember that that deceiver said, while he was yet alive, After three days I will rise again.” Matthew 27:63.

To them Christ was a deceiver. To them Christ performed miracles by Beelzebub, the prince of demons, here note Matthew 11:19, “The Son of man came eating and drinking, and they say, Behold a man gluttonous, and a winebibber, a friend of publicans and sinners. But wisdom is justified of her children.”

They called Him a blasphemer, because, being a Man, He made Himself God. John 10:33.

Today intelligent Jews join with Christians in declaring that the LORD Jesus Christ was a good Man. How good? Better than all the rest. There was a time when prejudiced and ignor­ant men declared that Jesus of Nazareth was deluded. They said He was not mentally sound, therefore, He made some false claims. But today, intelligent Jews, Christians, and non-Christian Gentiles are all agreed that Jesus Christ was the most intelligent man that ever lived on earth, as well as the greatest human bene­factor that the world has ever known.

What is the verdict then? The “some” who said, “Christ is a good Man,” were right. How about the statement of the “others”: “Nay, He deceiveth the people”? Did Christ deceive the people? If Christ really deceived the people, did He thereby prove that He was a good Man? In other words; could a man really be both a good man and a deceiver, especially if he continues month after month, and year after year, to deceive the people?

From the beginning of His earthly ministry until His death, and again after His resurrection, the LORD Jesus Christ claimed that He was God manifest in the flesh, that He was in the beginning in the God-Head, that He came down from heaven, that He had glory with the Father before the world was. Christ received worship as God. Christ proved His claim to Deity by His supernatural power, by His miracles, ACCORDING to the Scriptures.

If Christ declared that He was God from the beginning, that He had glory with the Father, that He came down from heaven, and if He really was NOT what He claimed, then surely He de­ceived the people. Such a deceiver could not be called a good man.

So, we must decide by common sense logic that Jesus Christ was both God and good, OR, He was not God and good. The Modernists who have crept unawares into the Christian church are far more inconsistent than were the Jews who took up stones to kill Christ when He was here on earth. They stoned Him, “because He made Himself equal with God.” John 5:17-20. In John 19:7, we learn why they had Christ crucified. Because He claimed equality with God.

Pay attention, the foolish MODERNISTS who have slithered in among church members, join with religious Jews in expressing great admiration for the man of Galilee, and dote much on the ideal Man, Jesus, with His ideal philosophy and His interpretation of God and true religion. They eulogize Him, quote Him, praise Him, and preach Him to Jews and Gentiles. But with all this they ever SEEK to make Christ, the Holy Spirit, and all the Apostles, LIARS, by saying that Jesus was a very good man, but that He was not born as the Bible de­clares He was born; that He did not come down from heaven; that He did not have Divine authority to forgive sins. He was not God, the Son. He was not God’s foreordained sin-bearer. His body was not raised from the dead. He is not now the resurrected Jesus at God’s right hand, as the Bible claims. And, that Salvation is not by Faith in the shed blood of the LORD Jesus Christ, but by charac­ter, by good behaviour, by actually imitating Jesus, by trying to live up to the RELIGION of Jesus. THIS is an ABOMINATION to God, and contempt for Christ!

Surely you and I agree that these pretenders, who call themselves Modernists, are only Christianized agnostics. They are far less consistent than were the Jews, who in the first century also denied the eternal Deity of the Son of God, and took a decided stand against Him, declaring that He was worthy of death.

Note this law of the Jews in Leviticus 24:16, “And he that blasphemeth the name of the LORD, he shall surely be put to death, and all the congregation shall certainly stone him: as well the stranger, as he that is born in the land, when he blasphemeth the name of the LORD, shall be put to death.” If Jesus Christ was not God, as He claimed time and time again, were not the Jews right when they said to Pilate, “Then Jews answered him, We have a law, and by our law he ought to die, because he made himself the Son of God.” John 19:7? Leviticus 24:16 was the law to which the Jews referred when they spoke the words of John 19:7.

Even the thinking Jews today believe that Jesus Christ was too good to have been a blasphemer. They should accept Him then as God: for God He was. Remember what Thomas said when he was fully convinced “And Thomas answered and said unto Him, My LORD and my God.” John 20:28. Christ did not say, “Thomas, you are mistaken. I am a very good Man, but I am not LORD and God.” He received the worship. And remember His own words in Luke 4:8, “And Jesus answered and said unto him, Get thee behind me Satan: for it is written, Thou shalt worship the LORD thy God, and him ONLY shalt thou serve.”

The pseudo-Christians claim to believe in the historical Jesus. The historical Jesus is the Bible Jesus. So when they decide on the authority of the Bible Record that Jesus was a good man, they must, if intelligent and consistent, acknowledge that by the same Record He was and is God. “JESUS CHRIST THE SAME YESTERDAY, AND TODAY, AND FOR EVER.” Hebrews 13:8. “And he is before all things, and by him all things consist.” Colossians 1:17.

HOUSEHOLD DIVIDED

Note again Luke 12:51, “Suppose ye that I am come to give peace on earth? I tell you, Nay; but rather division.”

Look all about on every side, and see not only nations, cities, and communities divided because of Jesus, but families. If we could only know what is going on in homes where some members of the household are for Christ and some are against Him. Yes, there has been, and there is, a division among the people because of Jesus.

In the eternal ages there will be a division among the people, because of Jesus. Some will spend eternity with the LORD and His redeemed in glory. Some will be in perdition suffering the sorrows of the second death. Christ declared, “he that is not with Me is against Me.” Luke 11:23.

IS CHRIST DIVIDED?

“Now I beseech you, brethren, by the name of our LORD Jesus Christ, that ye all speak the same thing, and that there be no divisions among you; but that ye be perfectly joined together in the same mind and in the same judg­ment.” 1 Corinthians 1:10. “For ye are yet carnal: for whereas there is among you envying, and strife, and divisions, are ye not carnal, and walk as men?” 1 Corinthians 3:3. “For first of all, when ye come together in the church, I hear that there be divisions among you; and I partly believe it” 1 Corinthians 11:18. “That there should be no schism in the body; but that the members should have the same care one for another.” 1 Corinthians 12:25.

Note God’s will; that there should be no “schism”; no “divi­sion.”

What a pity! Christ’s Church so divided that the Apostles asked “is Christ divided?” Since that day divisions and subdivisions have increased, until today there are more than 300 branches of the Christian Church. The LORD said, “that there be no schism (division) in the Body.”

Ephesians 4:3-7, “Endeavoring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace. There is one body, and one Spirit, even as ye are called in one hope of your calling; One LORD, one Faith, one baptism, One God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all. But unto every one of us is given Grace according to the measure of the gift of Christ”

Now, take a look at Romans 12:4-5, “For as we have many members in one body, and all members have not the same office: So we, being many, are one body in Christ, and every one members one of another.”

Then note again Christ’s prayer in John 17:21 and John 17:11, “That they all may be one; as thou, Father, art in me, and I in thee, that they also may be one in us: that the world may believe that thou host sent me.”, AND, “And now I am no more in the world, but these are in the world, and I come to thee. Holy Father, keep through thine own name those whom thou host given me, that they may be one, as we are.”

ONE NEW MAN

When we believers reach heaven perfect unity will prevail, and there we shall learn that God’s purpose in this age is ex­pressed in Ephesians 2:15, “Having abolished in his flesh the enmity, even the law of commandments contained in ordinances; for to make in himself of twain one new man, so making peace.”

One in Christ. In one Body of which Christ is the Head. Again note Galatians 3:28, “There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female: for ye are all one in Christ Jesus.” Now look at 1 Corinthians 12:12-13, “For as the body is one, and hath many members, and all the members of that one body, being many, are one body: so also is Christ. For by one Spirit are we all baptized into one body, whether we be Jews or Gentiles, whether we be bond or free; and have been made to drink into one Spirit”

As the unbeliever looks on and beholds the division, sectarianism, and lack of unity among Christians, he is asking, “Is Christ divided?”

THE OMNISCIENT CHRIST: I KNOW MY SHEEP

“I am the good shepherd, and know my sheep, and am known of mine.” “My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me.” John 10:14, and John 10:27.

We read these words in 1 Timothy 2:19, “Nevertheless the foundation of God standeth sure, having this seal, The LORD knoweth them that are his. And, Let everyone that nameth the name of Christ depart from iniquity.”

The LORD knoweth them that are His. The good Shepherd knows His sheep. He said, “I am the good shepherd: the good shepherd giveth his life for the sheep.” “As the Father knoweth me, even so know I the Father: and I lay down my life for the sheep.” John 10:11, and John 10:15. “My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me: And I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand.” John 10:27-28.

The LORD Jesus knows who is saved and who is unsaved. But God wants the believer to KNOW that he is saved, “These things have I written unto you that believe on the name of the Son of God; THAT YE MAY KNOW THAT YE HAVE ETERNAL LIFE, and that ye may believe on the name of the Son of God.” 1 John 5:13.

We read something more about Christ the Shepherd in Hebrews 13:20-21, “Now the God of peace, that brought again from the dead our LORD Jesus, that great Shepherd of the sheep, through the blood of the everlasting covenant, Make you perfect in every good work to do his will, working in you that which is well pleasing in his sight, through Jesus Christ; to whom be glory forever and ever. Amen.” And in 1 Peter 5:4, “And when the chief Shepherd shall appear, ye shall receive a crown of glory that fadeth not away.”

So we learn that the LORD Jesus Christ is the Good Shepherd, the Great Shepherd and the Chief Shepherd.

***

In Ephesians 1:13 the Holy Spirit through the Apostle Paul declares that men are saved and sealed by hearing and BELIEVING the Word of Truth, the Gospel of your Salvation. Therefore, here, now, is declared unto you the Word of Truth, the Gospel of your Salvation: "that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures; and that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures" 1 Corinthians 15:3-4. BELIEVE today. The time is short.

So There You Have it!

Spread this message to everyone you know, far and wide.

Grace be to you and peace, from God: our Father, and The LORD Jesus Christ.

In The LORD Jesus Christ,
The Lion and Lamb Ministry

LLM - Ambassador for Christ in the Ministry of Reconciliation (2 Cor. 5:18-20)

Saturday, April 1, 2017

The Judgment Seat of Christ



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"We must all appear before the Judgment Seat of Christ; that every one may receive the things done in his body, according to that he hath done, whether it be good or bad. Knowing therefore the terror of the Lord, we persuade men"
2 Corinthians 5:10-11.

TheJudgment Seat of Christ - Author Unknown

When I stand at the Judgment Seat of Christ
And He shows me His plan for me;
The plan of my life as it might have been
Had He had His way, and I see

How I blocked Him here and checked Him there
And I would not yield my will,
Shall I see grief in my Savior's eyes;
Grief though He loves me still?

Oh, He'd have me rich, and I stand there poor,
Stripped of all but His grace,
While my memory runs like a hunted thing
Down the paths I can't retrace.

Then my desolate heart will well-nigh break
With tears that I cannot shed.
I'll cover my face with my empty hands
And bow my uncrowned head.

No! Lord of the years that are left to me
I yield them to Thy hand.
Take me, make me, mold me
To the pattern Thou hast planned.

Author Unknown

***

In Ephesians 1:13 the Holy Spirit through the Apostle Paul declares that men are saved and sealed by hearing and BELIEVING the Word of Truth, the Gospel of your Salvation. Therefore, here, now, is declared unto you the Word of Truth, the Gospel of your Salvation: "that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures; and that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures" 1 Corinthians 15:3-4. BELIEVE today. The time is short.

So There You Have it!

Spread this message to everyone you know, far and wide.

Grace be to you and peace, from God: our Father, and The LORD Jesus Christ.

In The LORD Jesus Christ,
The Lion and Lamb Ministry

LLM - Ambassador for Christ in the Ministry of Reconciliation (2 Cor. 5:18-20)

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