SHOULD WE PRAY FOR SOMEONE TO BE PHYSICALLY HEALED?

July 29, 2019

Well, at first glance it certainly seems the right thing to do, but the obvious is not always the right choice of action. I am going to make another strange statement, just as you knew I would. I do not believe God wants us to pray for someone to be physically healed.

Yes, I know that I seem to always say something that sounds wrong, but what I say always makes sense to me and if you think about it, I believe it will make sense to you as well.

I am aware that there are verses that say we should pray for the sick. James 5:14-20 is such an example. It seems clear to me that these verses are referring to someone who is spiritually ill, not to someone who is physically ill.

I asked myself, who is really sick and dying? Is it the Christian that is lying in bed with cancer and the doctor said he has only a few days to live? Or is it the athlete that is in perfect health, but does not know God? I would say it is the athlete that is facing death. No, already dead in his sins and will surly die the second death if he doesn’t repent and allow himself to be baptized. We all must die the first death, it is the second death, separation from God, that we have some control over and it is real death.

Here is the way I view the question. First I state the basics to myself. I believe that when I pass from this phase of my existence I will ascend to Heaven where there will be no sickness, worry, or problems that we face now. So, believing this, why would I try to stay here?

A long time ago I used to attend a small Bible study at a large church. One of the members was in charge of visitation. He once told me that some of the patients that he visited, who were very ill, would say to him, “I don’t understand why God doesn’t just take me” and I burst out laughing! You see they buy health insurance, have checkups, take any medicine that the doctor prescribes, have operations, and do anything else that they can do in order to stay here and then say “I don’t know why God doesn’t just take me”! Well, maybe it is because they were fighting like hell to keep Him from it!

(Isa 57:1 NIV) “The righteous perish, and no one ponders it in his heart; devout men are taken away, and no one understands that the righteous are taken away to be spared from evil.”

So, I have to ask myself “Is it right to ask God to heal the physically ill and subject them to more evil, or is it right to just trust in His judgment and not ask?”

I am not perfect so I may start to feel ill and ask God to heal me, because no one wants to feel bad, but I know that what ever happens, it happens for my and your good. May God’s will be done; not mine.

There is an example in the Bible where someone prayed for physical healing and received it, even though it was not the will of God.

Consider Hezekiah, King of Judah. (2 Ki 18:5 NIV) “Hezekiah trusted in the LORD, the God of Israel. There was no one like him among all the kings of Judah, either before him or after him.”

Hezekiah became sick and God sent Isaiah to inform him that he was going to die. Hezekiah, because of his lack of faith in God, had a fit and God heard his prayer and granted him fifteen more years of life on this earth. During those fifteen years Hezekiah showed all of the treasurers of Judah to the envoys of Babylon and they came back, after Hezekiah had died and took those treasurers. They also killed many Jews and made slaves out of those they did not kill.

In those fifteen years Hezekiah also fathered Manasseh who was such a bad king that provoked God so much that He said He would wipe out Judah; and He did.

Hezekiah got what he asked for, but all of Judah suffered because he did! If Hezekiah had just accepted what God said then the Babylonians would not have known about the treasurers of Judah and Manasseh would have never existed.

(Gal 1:3-5 NIV) “Grace and peace to you from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ,” who gave himself for our sins to rescue us from the present evil age, according to the will of our God and Father, to whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen.

To leave this earth is to be rescued from this evil age. To stay here only endangers us as Satan is always trying to thwart God’s plan for us.

I am old now and I am not in perfect health. I have prayed that God would heal me, but I am not going to have a fit. What ever God has in store for me is the best thing for me and for others also. So, do not pray for my physical healing and I will not pray for yours as well. Let us place our faith in God and not in what we want, or what we think is best.


DOES A CHRISTIAN HAVE TO STAND FOR JUDGMENT?

June 14, 2019

Well, I usually have a different understanding than others and this is no exception.

My answer to this question is “No”, because a Christian has already stood before God, pled guilty to sin, and asked for mercy! To stand before God, to be judged for sin again would be “Double Jeopardy”.

Now, there are those who will point to (2 Cor 5:10 NIV) “For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, that each one may receive what is due him for the things done while in the body, whether good or bad.” And again I would say that we have already appeared before the judgment seat and pled guilty. Because we were honest with God and we asked to be forgiven, God has honored His Word, and granted mercy to us.

Others will point to Revelation 20:11-15 and say we must all stand for judgment and again I say “A Christian has already stood before God, pled guilty to sin, and asked for mercy”. These verses do not apply to a Christian, because they say the dead will stand to be judged, but we are not dead. (John 3:36 NIV) “Whoever believes in the Son has eternal life, but whoever rejects the Son will not see life, for God’s wrath remains on him.”

Then there are those who would point to Matthew 10:15 and say that there is only one day when all men will be judged, but it would not be possible to judge all men in one 24 hour day. I believe the day declared in Matthew 10:15 is a day of God’s time and God’s days are defined by what He has set out to accomplish, not by time as man’s days are numbered.

I believe that we are in the morning of the seventh day of God’s time. The day began when Jesus was born. (Mat 4:16 NIV) “the people living in darkness have seen a great light; on those living in the land of the shadow of death a light has dawned.” This is the seventh day, the Day of Judgment, and also the Day of Salvation, the Sabbath Day, the day when no work for salvation can be done, because God has done all of that work. Later this day God will transform this earth and everything will be made perfect, then He will enter His rest.

Consider the story of the beggar named Lazarus in the Book of Luke. The rich man had already been judged and sent to Hell where he was in torment, so his day of judgment had past and yet he asked Abraham to send Lazarus to his brothers to warn them. You see, if there is only one day of man’s time, when all men will be judged, then it would not be possible for the rich man to have been judged and not his brothers.

To sum this up I will say this. God loves me and I do not believe He will make me stand before all of mankind and reveal my sins to them. He would derive no pleasure from humiliating me like that, because I am His child and fathers only want what is best for their children. He doesn’t even want to look at my sin, so it makes no sense that He would want others to view them.


Believe God

May 16, 2019

I am somewhat depressed, because I am surrounded by people that believe in God, but they do not believe God!

What I mean is that my peers believe there is one God and that is the God of the Bible, but even Satan believes that! They say that they believe God, but their actions show otherwise.

Everyone uses guidelines to reach understanding about any subject. Usually those guidelines include common sense and understanding God’s Word is no different. Reaching understanding of the Word of God demands that one first believe God and then one can apply common sense. It is amiss to apply common sense first and think that belief will then be the result.

God must be seen as all knowing, all powerful, and in charge of everything. If one will start their search with those beliefs about God they will come to different conclusions than one who starts their quest with the thought that they can find understanding by their own efforts.

Please, let me illustrate some of the errors I see my Christian brothers and sisters make, because they rely on their own understanding.

A very basic error is praying in public. God says do not pray in public (Mat 5:5&6), but my brothers and sisters, using their own logic, pray in public every chance they get. Instead of believing God and then seeking an answer as to why God said “Go into your room, close the door and pray to your Father”, they say to themselves and anyone that listens “It is right to pray in public”! They do not believe God when He says pray in private, because it makes no sense to them. And it makes no sense because they have not placed God first. They have placed their own understanding before God’s Words! It is really a shame, because they could say “Let us praise” instead of “Let us pray”. It is never wrong to praise God in public and always wrong to pray to God in public.

Then there is the question of who is in charge when it comes to appointing the authorities. I live in the United States and all my brothers and sisters believe that we elect (appoint) the authorities. God says He appoints the authorities (Romans 13:1). Someone is wrong, either God is wrong or we are wrong. If one puts God first, that is to say believes God over their own understanding then it becomes clear who is wrong.

I attend a small Bible Study and one of the phrases that I hear over and over is “Well, we can’t know everything”! However, when I read God’s Word it says that we have received the Spirit of God to teach us “All things” (John 14:26). Again someone is wrong. Who do you think is wrong?

Then there is Tithing. One can give ten percent to the Church, but no one can Tithe. Tithing was based on the increase of the land of Israel. If one was an Israelite and owned no land, then they paid no Tithe. You may throw rocks at me, but I believe that money is the best tool that Satan has and therefore I think a poor Church is much better off than a rich one. I base that on what God says about the wealthy and the poor; not on my own logic.

Then there is the Church service as a whole. God’s word says there should be more than one leader (Cor 14:26-31). However, it is customary in my part of the woods to have only one leader of the service. Therefore, we hear Scripture from only one point of view, one man’s view and no man has a perfect understanding. My brothers and sisters rely on a man for understanding when they have the gift of the Holy Spirit to teach them all things!

Well, I could go on and on, but I am writing this to explain why I am slightly depressed. I write about subjects of God that differ from the normal way that others understand Scripture. Others, believing that they are right, because they see Scripture from a different point of view, do not accept what I say and that is the right way to approach my view of my understanding. However, my peers do not ask the Spirit within them if what I say is true. It seems to me that if others relied on the Spirit to teach them then they would also sound like me.

If God says that He appoints the authorities, then I will believe Him. And if someone or everyone says something different it does not matter to me. I will believe God not man. I have a hard time understanding why someone will say they believe God and then demonstrate by their actions that they do not. It is depressing, because I would like for everyone to believe and understand our Father.

Take everything that I say as a question; not an answer. I am not the Spirit who has all of the answers; along with the ability to teach everything to anyone. Look to man for the questions and to God for the answers. Always start your search for understanding with the basic premise that God is right, not that you are right. But then when you agree with God, you also can be right!


SMALL SINS?

April 22, 2019

There are those who say that God judges on a curve and their sins are two small to condemn them. However, if one applies understanding to that interpretation of what God wants from us, it should be clear that it is not a true insight.

Instead of me trying to explain the understanding that God has given me, let me try to reveal it to you by a story. You may say it is pure fiction, or you may see it as a true description of judgment, the choice is yours.

There was a man, let us call him Dennis, who in his life thought that he had only committed one sin. He lied one time and therefore thought that he only had one sin and a very small sin at that, that God could hold against him.

When Dennis left this world he was called before God to be judged and Dennis was quite sure that he was safe and that God would not condemn him for only one small sin. So he explained that to God and God, being absolutely fair and just, listened to his argument.

Then God spoke. He asked Dennis how did he think that he was to be forgiven for what seemed this small sin. God reminded Dennis that once he had lied, from that point on, he was a liar. How could one believe the words of a liar? He explained to Dennis that there is no way to unlie, or unmurder, or erase any sin.

However, God did affirm that the one lie was not much of a reason to condemn a man forever. It was a small infraction on the part of Dennis, but Dennis did not have the power to forgive any sin, great or small. God reminded him that only He can forgive sin. Therefore Dennis had no way to purify himself for any sin, great or small.

Then God spoke again. He pointed out that the knowledge of good and evil was a gift from Satan; not from Him. He also pointed out that this gift could only be used to judge others. It was not the power to do good and avoid evil, but only the knowledge of good and evil. He reminded Dennis that he had used this knowledge to judge and condemn others; over and over, even though God has told everyone not to judge others. He had made a living pointing out the wrong of others, but he had not really, or accurately, applied the knowledge of good and evil to himself. If he had applied that knowledge to himself he would have understood that he had committed many sins instead of just one.

Then God said, “Even if you had sinned only once and both you and I consider it a small sin, look at the immense pain and suffering that I have done so that you might be forgiven even of such a small sin. Because I cannot die, I came to earth and became a man so that I could die in your place to pay the price for your sin and therefore “prove” my love for you. However, you have such a high opinion of yourself that you do not believe it was necessary for me to die in your place! Look at all of the pain and suffering that I have endured in order that your sin, even though it might be small in both your and my sight, could be forgiven.

When God enters His rest He is going to take His children with Him and His children are those who rely on Him, not on themselves for salvation. His children have a covering for their sins that God can not, or will not look through. There will be no sin in God’s rest. If there were one person in Heaven whose sins were visible then God could not rest. He would always be reminded of sin.

Everyone whose sin or sins are visible will be removed from His presence and those who are left will all live according to the two greatest commandments. (Mat 22:37-40 NIV) “Jesus replied: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.'” This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.”
Jesus said. “Do this and you will live.” (Luke 10:28)


VIEWING SIN FROM THE EYES OF GOD

March 27, 2019

You may think that I am not God so I cannot view sin from His perspective and of course you would be right about the first part: I am certainly not God. However, when I decided to be honest with God, and admit that I was a sinner, and ask for His mercy He not only forgave my sin, He also gave me His Spirit and He gave me His Spirit to teach me all things (John 14:26).

You see, I have the mind of Christ, just as you have. That is if you also have plead guilty and been baptized into the Family of God.

(1 Cor 2:9-16 NIV) “”However, as it is written: “No eye has seen, no ear has heard, no mind has conceived what God has prepared for those who love him”–” but God has revealed it to us by his Spirit. The Spirit searches all things, even the deep things of God. For who among men knows the thoughts of a man except the man’s spirit within him? In the same way no one knows the thoughts of God except the Spirit of God. We have not received the spirit of the world but the Spirit who is from God, that we may understand what God has freely given us. This is what we speak, not in words taught us by human wisdom but in words taught by the Spirit, expressing spiritual truths in spiritual words. The man without the Spirit does not accept the things that come from the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him, and he cannot understand them, because they are spiritually discerned. The spiritual man makes judgments about all things, but he himself is not subject to any man’s judgment: “For who has known the mind of the Lord that he may instruct him?” But we have the mind of Christ.”

As humans our problems began with Adam and Eve. Before they ate from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil they did evil (Gen 2:25) and because they did not know it God did not condemn them. However, as soon as they knew, they died spiritually. They separated themselves from God; or rather their sin separated them from God.

Just as the life that we have came through Adam so also comes the knowledge of good and evil. Because we are not God and therefore cannot see the future, we cannot avoid evil. The knowledge of good and evil can only be used to condemn. In truth, because we know the difference between good and evil, we must condemn ourselves. We know that we have sinned and every now and then we still do sin. We also view others with a critical mind and condemn them also. God says do not judge, but because we know good and evil we judge: we not only judge ourselves, but everyone around us.

When I first started to seek understanding from the Bible I thought it was a good thing for me to know good and evil. I said to myself, “I must know good and evil, so that I can do good and avoid evil”, but that was only the man in me thinking with the logic of a man.

In my mind I completely rejected the knowledge that God did not want mankind to know good and evil. God was very clear when He said, “but you must not eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, for when you eat of it you will surely die.” (Gen 2:17 NIV) I did not understand that He meant die spiritually. Death is separation, the first death is separation from the earth and everything in it and the second death is separation from God, so to die spiritually is to be separated from God. It is our sin that separates us from God and because we have the knowledge of good and evil we cannot plead innocent in the matter.

Knowing good and evil only stands in the way of what our Father wants from us! Our Father wants us to love Him with all of our heart, soul, mind, and strength and then to love everyone else that He has made in His image.

Think about Hitler. Hitler did evil and we know he did, because we have the knowledge of good and evil. Our knowledge causes us to judge and then condemn Hitler, but it is wrong to judge and not our place to condemn anyone. That goes against the grain of any man, because we know good and evil, but when I think about Hitler I have to ask myself, “What did Hitler do to me?”, and the answer is nothing. So, is it right for me to condemn Hitler?

Personally I believe that God chose Hitler and gave him the power to drive the Jewish people back to their land. He is disgusted with Israel and rightly so. He has done everything short of taking their free will from them and making them slaves in order to save them. That is to say He planed a way to save them and then He worked His plan, but they will not accept His display of perfect love. When God decided that it was time for Jews to go back to their land that He gave them, would it be right for God to lead them back to their homeland, or to drive them back?

Just to be as clear as I can, I am not claiming that Hitler is innocent and will not face judgment for his actions. I have the knowledge of good and evil, so I am sure he will face a sentence that will far outweigh his sins. I am sure that God chose Hitler (Rom 13:1), because that is what Hitler wanted to do. God does not “make” one do evil, but if it is in His plan, He will enable those who would do evil to do so.

We are saddled with the knowledge of good and evil, but we must try to avoid practicing it. Instead of condemning those who do evil, we should have compassion for them, because God will condemn them and then they will be thrown out of His presence.

The truth, as I understand it, is they will get what they wanted. They do not want God as their master and God will give them what they wanted.

Pity the sinner that will not be honest with God and do not condemn them. God will punish them. They will want to die to avoid their punishment, but God will not permit it.

Love your enemies (Mat 5:44-48, Luke 6:27-37).

Have you ever thought this way? If someone steals something from you, have they really stolen from you? Doesn’t God own everything, so haven’t they sinned against God, not you? God has only let you use what is His and by stealing from you they have sinned against God’s wishes. Pity them and do not curse them. Do not practice your knowledge.


How I am able to understand Two Gods

March 16, 2019

First I must say that I did not deduce any of this. I only keep asking God for understanding and God, being a God of love, just keeps adding to it.

So, I have an analogy that God has given me so that I might understand verses of the Bible that seem to contradict other verses. Verses that say there is only one God and then verses that say there is a Son of God and which seem to say there is more than one God.

Here is the analogy and then I will try to explain it as best as I can.

I am standing in the middle of a room with people sitting around me. A man bursts into the room with a large, very sharp sword in his hands. Seeing me he runs to me and as I raise my arms to defend myself, with one mighty swing he severs my right arm and then he runs away.

At this time the view of those who surround me can be verbalized as, ‘There stands astudent and his arm is lying on the ground’.

Then God rushes in and seeing my wound He closes it up with flesh, just as He healed Adam when He created Eve. He sees my arm lying on the ground and not wanting any of me to die He closes up the wound in my arm as well.

At this point in time those that surround me still have the same view. That is to say ‘There stands astudent and his arm is lying on the ground’.

Now God knows that my arm will die if it has no heart, or lungs, or brain, which are all of the things that I possess, that helps to sustain my existence. So, He gives my arm a heart, and lungs, and a brain. He gives my arm everything that I have and when He has completed His work, my arm no longer looks like my arm: it looks just like me.

Some of those who surround me, that have seen everything, may say to themselves, “There stands astudent and his arm stands beside him”. Others may have closed their eyes, because of the bloodshed and not seen everything and so they might say, “There stands astudent, God has created a twin of him and his twin is standing beside him”.

Now, let me try to explain how this analogy helps me better understand the Bible.

Both views of the people that surround me are correct from their understanding. That is to say that if they view everything from the very beginning they know that it is my arm that stands beside me. However, if they do not know everything they will say that is my twin that stands beside me. They would be proved right in their own mind when I and my arm go separate ways and do different things, and yet it would still be my arm to those that know the whole story.

All of this can be said about Adam and Eve. Eve is the rib of Adam and can be viewed as such. However, Eve no longer looks like Adam’s rib and is no longer a physical part of Adam. Eve went separate ways and did separate things, but when you understand you know that Eve was formed from the rib of Adam and therefore can always be viewed as such.

As I have said in previous posts, understanding the creation of Eve can be a great help in understanding The Father and His Son.

The Son of God was created from a part of God and therefore can always be viewed as God. So, when a verse refers to the Son of God, as God, it is correct to those who know the beginning. However, it confuses those who do not understand where or how the Son of God came about.

Now, if you do not understand my analogy that is alright. It is my analogy, not yours. That is to say that God gave it to me and not to you. It works for me and so when I read (John 1:1 NIV) “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.” I understand it and I also understand (John 1:18 NIV) “No one has ever seen God, but God the One and Only, who is at the Father’s side, has made him known.”

I am not a teacher. I am only a student. I am quite sure that the Teacher that is one with every believer who has been baptized, does not need any help from me. However Scripture says, (Mat 10:27 NIV) “What I tell you in the dark, speak in the daylight; what is whispered in your ear, proclaim from the roofs.” and the web can be viewed as a high place, such as a roof top, so I am proclaiming this analogy in the hope it will help you with your understanding.

By the way, the arm of the Lord is another name for our Savior (Isa 51:9, 53:1, 59:1, and John 12:38).


IS JESUS GOD?

February 18, 2019

This is a question that every one except an atheist asks. That was my first thought when I decided to give my answer to this question. When I say my answer I mean the answer that God has given me, as I do not believe that I or anyone is wise enough to solve any of the questions that the Bible raises. I just keep asking and eventually God gives me the answers. You can see this by my first statement in this paragraph. That was my first thought, but I stand corrected, because a true atheist has asked this question to himself!

The Bible, both the Old Testament and the New Testament, is the Word of God to all men and women. As such every statement is true and accurate. There can be no false statements in the Bible. If there are statements that seem untrue to you, then you just do not yet understand.

God’s Word says that there is only one God (Isa 45:22) and yet Jesus claimed to be the Son of God (Mat 26:63&64) and to those who do not yet understand this seems like an oxymoron. If you consider humans you can see that there are many humans, because they have had many sons. So, if you consider God and God states that there is only one God, then it seems wrong to say that Jesus is the Son of God, because then it would seem to say that there are two Gods: three if you consider the Holy Spirit.

Again I say that the Bible is the Word of God and every statement is true and accurate: there can be no false statements in the Bible. Remember this as I try to convey the understanding that God has given to me.

God has given us a clue to understanding the Son of God in the creation of Eve. Eve was created, made, born, or any verb that you wish to describe the beginning of Eve, from Adam. God took a rib from Adam and made Eve from it. Eve was not made from anything else. Therefore you can consider Eve as a part of Adam, or in the purest sense Adam, if you look at her from that perspective. You also can, as all people do, view Eve as a separate individual. Both interpretations would be correct, depending on the angle of the one that is viewing Eve at the time. I mean from the prospective they are considering Eve as a separate person or just part of Adam.

This is the same for the Son of God. The Son of God was born of God before anything else was made, even before God created time. Consider John 1:1 (NIV) “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.” If you consider that the Son of God was born, made, or created from part of God, then you can see that He is God: an extension of God, just as Eve can be considered an extension of Adam. Also if you know that the Son of God was born before time began you can understand (John 8:58 NIV) “”I tell you the truth,” Jesus answered, “before Abraham was born, I am!”” One can also understand John 1:1.

I see that God separated part of Himself to teach man that all men are corrupt and not like Him in that way. Then He became a man so that we might be saved from our corruption.
The One became two in order to teach and then the two became one through Jesus to save us from what was taught.

I will add something that seems relevant to me. Eve was made from the part of Adam that covered his heart and I believe that the Son of God was created from the part of God that covers His heart as well.

One can see that there are many names for Jesus. One name is the Holy Spirit. That makes sense, because He was born of God who is Spirit and He is holy, so it is logical to refer to Him as the Holy Spirit. He later became one with the son of David and was named Jesus by God. Jesus is both the Son of God and the son of man. (Again think about Matthew 26:63&64) When He was asked if He was the Son of God and He answered “yes” and then went on to say that they would see the Son of Man coming back to earth. You see that He was/is both the Son of God and the Son of Man.

I wrote this as clearly as I can. So, before you tell me that I am wrong, and many will, ask God to give you understanding of the question “Is Jesus God” and consider what I said before you berate me. Then go ahead and let me have it.