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Archive for May, 2012

Wed night

Good morning!

Last night was just wonderful! I felt at times that I just didnt’ know what to do with my body because the wonderful feelings of God were so alive that I just couldn’t hold it in. I woke up this morning, and these were the first words that came to my mind:

I will praise your holy name with my whole heart.
And sing praises unto Thee for your lovingkindness and your truth.

It just makes me want to cry because of the thankfulness I feel for what God has done for us. Whew. Just wonderful. God has blessed us and I love passing it on!

Donna
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Hi Pastor John

I just wanted to write to tell you how much I enjoyed meeting tonight. Jesus knows just what we need and when! I told Amy F. today I felt like Jesus just wrapped her and Richard up and brought them to my door! I really needed that visit, and then to feel such sweet feelings tonight, I feel so loved! Watching my brothers and sisters feeling the spirit just made me smile. I’m so thankful for Jesus, my family, and the sweet life that Jesus has given me. He is truly a sweet sweet Saviour!

Love y’all!
Michelle

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Human Nature – Vince

John,

After listening to the short audio that Token sent out, what is really beginning to stand out to me is that Jesus truly did divest himself and take on the nature of man. If he had an inside track or a “head start”, as I think Token put it, it wouldn’t have been a test at all, and it doesn’t seem like it would have taken him 40 days to overcome anything. He had to overcome that flesh just as we do. And he now had the same means to overcome it as we do. It seems like the only “advantage” that Jesus had was that he had plenty of faith to believe that anything was possible through the life from God that he now had in that fleshly body.

I have a question: Would Jesus, the man, have been considered a sinner before he was baptized in the Jordan? When Peter, or Paul, or John said that “in him, there is no sin”, were they only referring to Jesus after the Son of God came to his earthly temple? It’s hard to think of Jesus being a sinner at any time, but then without the Spirit of God dwelling in him, wasn’t it in his nature to sin just as any other human being?

Vince
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That’s a question I asked my father many years ago. I said, “Was Jesus sinless from the time he was born in Bethlehem, or just from the time he was born again at the Jordan River?” He said, “It doesn’t matter what Jesus was or did before the Spirit came. The only thing that matters is that he was without sin from that time on because what God made him that day was what was offered to God for sin.”

jdc

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human nature

Pastor John

I listened to the F&S audio that Token sent out. I felt like a fly on the wall. 😉

I know I have God’s spirit, but hearing this is like I have had a seed that has been buried and you have given it food and it opened up in my soul. So when Jesus over came the flesh in the wilderness he no longer had the nature of a human. The feeling are way more than I can put in an email.

Natalie
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John,

Jesus completely conquered the nature of the flesh in 40 days… He broke/overcame/went beyond the law/rules of nature of the flesh. He has made us “more than conquerers through him that loved us”! Wow… The thoughts from Father and Son book are not from this planet!

Bess

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Sandy – whew!

Bro. John:

I could not read the line from your email, below*, without thinking of what the Lord told me several years ago when I was listening to my mother go on about her past and the bitterness I felt coming from her concerning her past life. I remember silently telling Jesus that I did not want to be like that when I got older, carrying all that old stuff from the past around in my heart. No sooner had my heart reached out to him when I tenderly heard, “You are not a product of that (earthly) union anymore“. Whew! Talk about a liberating feeling! I floated home in the arms of Jesus that day. That was when he showed us that we have a “new past” and to live in it! Oh, to believe in who we are and not struggle against something we are not. Whew! It is good, good, good!

*”You’re struggling against something you’re not, not against something you are.”

Sandy 🙂

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Good morning John,

I have been dwelling on the thoughts you sent out about a new kind of creature. It is overwhelming how God is revealing so much to us through you with the Father and Son book. I have new thoughts and new feeling every time I read what you send us about what you are seeing and receiving from the Spirit about this new creature he has make us.

One thing that really stuck out to me was this part: “The ‘flesh wars against the Spirit’ within us because the Spirit brings with it the nature of God, and it is contrary to the kind of bodies we have.”

I have always thought of my body as working together with the Spirit to live right in God, that the Spirit came in and made my body submit to the will of God and transform to his will.

When in essence, we let the new creature take over, it keeps this body into subjection while the new creature dwells in it here on this earth. It is a war, but one that has already be won and made possible for us to win if we let the new creature that he put in us live. Wow!!!! John this is good stuff, life changing if we grasp it and take it in. Thank you, John

Stuart

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Wonderful dream

Bro. John!

I want to share with you a wonderful dream I had last night. It was short but so absolutely defining of who our God is. And how much we need Him.

In the dream, we were singing and dancing around with our hands in the air. It was a scene likened unto the Old Testament people praising God with dance and timbrels. We were thanking Him and praising Him for all the things He was and what He had done and what He had saved us from. When I woke up, I could not remember all the things we had praised Him for in song, except for one significant line:

“He saves us from delusionary thinking”

I looked up the meaning of “delusion”: Something that is falsely or delusively believed or propagated (to cause to spread out and affect a greater number)

I also saw that the opposite of delusion is TRUTH!

It was so sweet to my soul this morning – – “He saves us from delusionary thinking” Realizing that HE is the reason we believe what we believe. That it is HIM saving us from the lies of Xty affecting this whole world. It is HE who is saving us daily from the deceit. Oh, how desperately we need to be saved from our own thoughts and ways! As the Spirit spoke through Sister Lou several years ago: “The whole world is deceived.”

I am so thankful that the Lord comes to remind us that it is HE who is keeping us, and not we ourselves. Our Creator, our Shepherd, and our Savior!

Mmmmm, what a great start to the day! I feel all wrapped up in Jesus!

Sandy 🙂

Let them praise his name in the dance: let them sing praises unto him with the timbrel and harp.” Psalm 149:3

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F&S responses

Hi everyone:

After this morning’s session on the father and Son book, I am beginning to really wonder if I will ever get all this written down.
Here are some thoughts to consider, in case it takes me a long time to get it all down. Maybe some of the folk here with me will add to these thoughts, from what they remember:

(1) In this Creation, every creature’s nature is determined by the kind of body it possesses. If you had the body of a fish, you would have the nature of a fish. If you had the body of a tree, you would have a tree’s nature. If you had the nature of an angel, it would only be because you had the body of an angel.

(2) Jesus Christ was the first of a new kind of creature; one whose body did not determine what kind of nature he had.
The nature he had from the Father was a divine nature, but his body was made of flesh. My father’s mentor in Christ once told him that sinners cannot be tempted because it was their nature to sin. That is the kind of thing I am saying. The “flesh wars against the Spirit” within us because the holy Spirit brings with it the nature of God, and God’s nature is contrary to the kind of bodies we have.

(3) Nobody with a body that is different from his nature belongs in a universe where one’s body determines what kind nature he has. To prepare a place for His children to live, who are now living in a fleshly body with His nature inside it, God has prepared a new heaven and new earth. He will destroy this heaven and earth, where creatures belong are bound to act according to the nature of their bodies, and give us glorious bodies to match our divine natures.
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It will be a great relief to get a new body that matches what we really are inside. No more “war”, but we will enter into a “final” rest and peace.

Gary
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Rob read this out loud to us all this morning. Wonderful! I like it just like it is! 🙂  I never even understood the words “the temptation” much less what was going on!

Donna
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Wow. “This is big yall!”
Most of Xnty teaches that even after you are “born again” you will still sin, that everyone HAS to sin, because they can’t help it, or because of the devil or… And if their version of being born again doesn’t involve spirit baptism (with evidence by tongues, then their doctrine is true. Without God’s spirit, there is nothing to war against the flesh, and the flesh is sinful by its nature.

Another thought – that’s why on the new heaven/earth, there will be new bodies that belong with the new nature.
Big! Whew!

Richard
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Wow! We just read this out here on the porch in Boone. Whew is right!

Rob
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Ha! Wow! Just copy and paste that into the book somewhere. So good!
Aaron

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Wow John, this is something. It helps to understand better now why the “flesh wars against the Spirit” as it does. God sure is pouring out some good new thoughts on us…. Keep working. 🙂

Lou
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Wow. I’ve been thinking this week about the shame I feel at times just from having this fleshly body (I don’t quite know how to put this), and the war it is constantly waging against the Spirit. I feel like my spirit is clean (though God is the judge of that), but the flesh is always hanging around, ready to “muddy the waters”, or whatever, and it makes me feel ashamed at times, when I haven’t done anything wrong (again, I don’t know how to put it). Thankfully(!), as you put below, we won’t have to live forever with that “conflict”. That is REALLY something to look forward to.

This reminds me years ago when I finally realized I had the holy ghost (in that meeting in Henderson when I was turning flips, really drinking it in, etc.) and Sandy said something about the flesh just getting in the way, or not lining up, when we were rejoicing (or however she put it), and I blurted out, “Ain’t that the truth!!” I remember marveling that night (when I was VERY young in the Lord, not knowing anything) of how the flesh was still there the whole time, warring against what was going on.

This is a wonderful thing to think about.

Thanks.

Taylor
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I have been thinking lately, about the shape of the Spirit that entered Jesus’ fleshly body. The shape was like a dove. If Jesus shared the life of his Father, then the Spirit that came in the shape of the dove, tells me a lot about the Father. Jesus said that he and the Father was one. Then, if God’s life is dwelling in us, then what kind of spirit are we suppose to have?

Billy M
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A glorified body is free, Billy. It is not bound to any particular body form, though there is a basic one that is “in the likeness of God”. John saw the Son of God in Revelation, first as a brilliant, majestic figure. But later, when John was caught up into heaven, he saw the Son of God as a lamb that had been slaughtered. The Son is “free indeed”, body, soul, and spirit, and he passes that freedom to everyone who believes in him.

jdc
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This is wonderful. Perfect.

I have observed several debates on FB between Xns; some are Calvinist and some are vehemently opposed to the [evidently] Calvinist doctrine of “original sin.”

You must know, from your seminary days, about Calvin’s beliefs. I do not. I have not taken the time to analyze them to see whether they are biblical or not, and how Calvin arrived at his beliefs, to compare them with other Xn claims. Forgive my confusion, John. . . would you clarify it in simple terms? This segment from your chapter indicates that all men, women and children are sinners by nature. That is my understanding, from Bible study, as well. How is it that many Xns embrace the belief that men choose to sin, but are not sinners by nature; not “born sinners” because of Adam’s fall in the garden? Again, forgive me if my question if a dumb question. I am just looking for insight as to how they arrive at their doctrine, and claim they are biblically accurate.

Brad

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I can’t tell you how Christians come to teach any of their confusing doctrines, except it be they they are confused to start with and, so, their doctrines will reflect that. But to answer your question….

Every human being who has lived since Adam has sinned, just as Paul wrote, “All have sinned and come short of the glory of God.” From that, we can believe that every one of the billions of people who have lived on earth had an option to be holy but chose to sin (what an amazing co-incidence!), or we can believe that every one of those billions of people has sinned because it is human nature to do so. Now, what do you think? 🙂

Thanks for the question, Brad.

jdc

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Lake of Fire

Pastor John:

Ok, bear with me on this.

So if Lake of Fire was created for the devil and his angels, would that mean every human had their name in the book of life to start with, and that after their bad deeds, they had it removed? Because God wants everyone to make it in the end … right? or is it like Damien said, the Book of Life is only the people who are going to receive the holy ghost?

SW
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Hi SW!

Whew! Thoughtful question.

Without pretending to know what was in God’s mind from before the beginning, let me just point out this reality: There are more followers of Satan than the angels who were cast out of heaven with him. The devil has a huge crowd of human followers, such as the men whom Jesus called “sons of the devil”. They are the ones who, having learned the truth, are not faithful to it, but pursue their own ways instead. Jesus said that Satan “did not abide in the truth”, and Paul said that he has made himself out to be an “angel of light”. Those who do not abide in the truth are like him:

2Corinthians 11
13. For such men are pseudo-apostles, deceitful workers, masquerading as apostles of Christ.
14. And no wonder, for Satan himself disguises himself as an angel of light.
15. Therefore, it is no great thing if his ministers also disguise themselves as ministers of righteousness, whose end shall be according to their works.”

Such men are human “angels” of Satan, and they will spend eternity where their father, the devil, does. God know who they were from the beginning, just as Jesus knew from the beginning which of his disciples would betray him. Hope that helps a little.

Pastor John

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Translation Question

Pastor John:

Is this translated correctly? When we started reading Hebrews last night, you said that Melchizedek was the greatest Old Testament figure. But then, this scripture came to mind:

Matthew 11:11

Verily I say unto you, among them that are born of women there hath not risen a greater than John the Baptist; notwithstanding, he that is least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he.”

Wendell

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Good question, Wendell. Others asked me that question last night. Yes, that verse is translated correctly.

The author of Hebrews never actually made the statement that I made; to wit, “Melchizedek was the greatest Old Testament figure.” So, your question is more directed at what I said than what he said.

The main point of the book of Hebrews is that Jesus Christ, the Son of God, is the greatest figure of all time. The author takes pains to compare Jesus to angels, to Moses, to Abraham, the Levitical priests, and finally, to Melchizedek. Even the men and women in Chapter 11 can be seen as a list of people who are not as great as the Son of God. As great as they all were, the Son of God is understood, by that point in the book, to be greater.

The author of Hebrews probably made the effort to point out the superiority of Melchizedek because of the way the Jews looked at Abraham. All of Israel in Jesus’ time would have considered Abraham, “the friend of God”, to be the father of their faith and of their nation, and being the father of the faith and nation, he was greater than anyone who was his descendant. The author of Hebrews uses that logic in 7:9-10. When he showed that Melchizedek was greater than father Abraham, many Jewish readers must have been stunned at the thought that anyone could be greater than Abraham. And so, if Melchizedek was greater than Abraham, Melchizedek must be the greatest Old Testament figure, according to the thinking of the Jews at that time and the logic of Hebrews. The author of Hebrews didn’t mention John the Baptist, and so, neither did I, and I believe that the statement I made accurately reflects what Hebrews teaches.

Now, if you asked the author of Hebrews about Matthew 11:11, he would probably say something like, “Well, yes, Jesus was right, of course, but my point was….” At least, that is what I will say, and leave it at that.

Thanks, Wendell.

Pastor John

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Stuart and revelation

Hi John,

I noticed that a man in a recent correspondence wanted you and us to leave off “revelation” when it came to reasoning about the things of God, and just read the Bible and figure it out. As you have told us many of times in the past, and will tell us many more times in the future, you can take the scriptures and make them line up with whatever doctrine you want. Without revelation from the the Father and the Son, whatever someone believes about anything is just as good as whatever someone else believes. It is just an opinion, and a delusion in our own minds.

Revelation is what Jesus said he would build his congregation on: He said to them, “But you, who do you think I am?”

16. Simon Peter answered, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.”
17. Jesus answered him, “You are a blessed man, Simon, son of Jonah, for flesh and blood did not reveal this to you but my Father who is in heaven.
18. And I say to you that you are Peter, and upon this rock I will build my assembly, and the gates of Hades shall not prevail against it.

Without revelation, all we have is words. They could be true and they could a lie, but when the revelation comes from God through his spirit, that is the Word and that is truth. I am so thankful, John, that we are taught by the spirit and revelation, and not by the letter. Gods people need to know where their help comes from, and it is from on high, at the ready to help whoever is in need and to teach us all about our Father and the Son, and who we are. Thank you John I am so glad you are my pastor.

Stuart
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Hi Brother Stuart!

Revelation from God is the only thing that can possibly rescue us from human opinion. If Jesus doesn’t teach us, we are hopelessly lost. I am so thankful he has spoken to us.

jdc

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Br. John,

The “cult reponse” thing went through my mind after reading that email someone sent to you this morning, and immediately the next thought was, “Moses had ‘cult followers’, too.”  Christians don’t call following the 10 commandments a “cult response” because 1) it’s been recorded in the Bible & 2) Moses is dead now.  I believe the events in our lives and in Preacher Clark’s lifetime are “Bible-worthy”, and in the future, those things may be recorded and reverenced as holy.  But what did evil-hearted or ignorant people say while those events were happening in Moses’ time?  If people really believe God and have real faith, they have to believe that there is someone to follow because God has always given us help.  Yes, He gave us His spirit, and when we follow it, it leads us to fellowship with others who are following it.  And that leads us to the government of God and His leadership and protection that He has always had for His people!

Just sayin’

Cris

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Historically, even in the Old Testament, faithful children of God, not to mention the prophets and apostles, and Jesus himself, were ridiculed and ostracized by the equivalent of the “good Christians” of their time.  That is standard.  It is our responsibility to make certain that both we ourselves and what we are doing are acceptable to God.  As the old saying goes, “The dogs bark, but the caravan moves on.”  Let’s move on, humbly, with the Lord.

Pastor John

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