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Abraham

Hey John…Qs… 

In reading chapters 12-24, I’m getting the impression that Abraham was an inconsistent patriarch.  While on one hand, a great man of faith and obedience, he was also weak and faithless in some situations…with Sarah…with Pharaoh, and later Abimelech, he stumbled, doubted, hesitated, lied… out of a lack of trusting in God.  What do we conclude about Abraham, overall?

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We should conclude that Abraham is the father of all the faithful, so that every person on earth who has genuine faith is called a child of Abraham by both Jesus and Paul. 

I will caution you, as I have cautioned the congregation here, to avoid condemning Abraham for the errors you mentioned because God did not. If you or I had been in the incredibly difficult, unique situation Abraham put himself in, out of great love for and faith in God, we would have done much worse.  We must all be cautious about assuming we are able to judge any man who is called “the friend of God” (Jas. 2:23).

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Next… in a commentary by brother J. Swaggart, he says that In chap 24, Abraham represented God the Father: Isaac is Jesus, and Eleazar the holy Ghost.  Re: “Will you go with the man?” (v. 58).

Your comments? 

Thanks, 

Brad 

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Brother Jimmy was right.  That story was prophetic of what the Father did through His Son for our sakes.

Pastor John

 

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Catching up with God

John,

I went back tonight and listened to part of Sunday’s meeting.  I wanted to hear the part again about catching up with God’s feelings and thoughts.  It was so good, and it just continued from one wonderful thought to the next.  I wanted to pass along what I heard because it’s worth hearing again!

This is what you said:

“I don’t think we’ve comprehended all together what God has done for us.  I feel myself trying to take it in sometimes.  God showed me many decades ago that what He’s after is to get us to catch up to Him.  That’s where Jesus was.  He had caught up with God.  He knew what God was doing that day.  He knew what God was thinking that moment.  He saw things as God saw them, and he felt things that God was feeling right then.  He wasn’t living looking backwards.”

“We’ve always had to look backwards to find out what God has done for us, but He wants His children to grow up in Him so we know what He’s feeling now so that we can say, ‘God‘s going to do this’ because we know that’s what God’s thinking right then.  That’s what He wants for us, to live in the grace and the full measure of Christ.  Amen!  No longer moved by various winds of doctrine because we’ve caught up with our Father, and we’re walking with Him.”

“John said, ‘Our fellowship is with the Father and the Son’ because He had caught up with Jesus.  He knew the Lord.  That’s why he wasn’t against Paul’s Gospel.  He had caught up with God, and he said Amen to it.”

You can’t even say, Amen to the truth unless it’s already in your heart somewhere, unless God stuck it in sometime when you weren’t looking. You were studying the Bible or doing something else.  Amen!  He just gets it in there.  That’s why David said, ‘Oh God, incline my heart to Your testimonies.  God do something in me that I can’t do.’”

“And God has done something to you that you can’t do if you hear that ‘still, small voice’ of the Spirit guiding you.  He’s done something to you if you love the truth.  He loved you first, and He put love for Him in your heart before you knew it was there.  And then, when you heard His voice, you loved it.  And you’ll be surprised and say, ‘I love this!  What happened to me?’”

“I said a long time ago the truth is a good cancer.  It will eat you up, but that’s a good way to die – to be eaten up with the cancer of the truth. It eats up that old man and his opinions, and catches you up with Jesus and where he is now.”

“Where he is now!  That’s getting to know yourself.  You get to know yourself when you come to know him.  It’s the only time you know the body and who’s who in the body, the only time you know who is in the body and where in the body ‘who’ is.  You don’t know anything until you know him.  All knowledge is hidden in the Son, including the knowledge of yourself and each other.  We know each other in the Lord, but knowing God is the way we came to know each other.  The rest have got secrets here and there, secret opinions, secret feelings.  We get in the Lord together, then I know you. Amen!”

“God, let us catch up with our Father!  Amen!  Because He’s doing things right now.  He’s doing things!  He’s putting things in you right now.  Oh God, put Your will deep in our hearts!  Put Your ways in our mind.  Stabilize our thoughts and feelings!”

John, I’m so thankful that I love the truth.  That he put it in there!  He’s letting it grow and grow.  I want to fully catch up with him and his ways. That’s truly walking with him!

Carrie

 

The Power of God

Hi Pastor John. smiley face

All day I have been soaking in thoughts of the power of God. I can not stop thinking about it and it is so good. Growing up I never heard of the power of God. I heard at times the term “a Higher Power” but never even stopped to think about that term. I just associated it with a reference to God. When Gary and Karlee sang that beautiful song this weekend, the verse “what a powerful name it is” struck me.  Sister Natalie was sitting next to me, and all I could think of was the powerful name of Jesus touching her.  Then brother Greg’s testimony about his dad stopping drinking cold turkey after 40 years.  That is only Jesus.  Only the power of our King Jesus can do that.

I know how it feels to want so desperately to be out from under that consuming burden and not be able to stop.  I know that only Jesus, only the powerful name of Jesus being called out that day, broke that off of me.  I keep thinking most of the world has heard or uses the term “Higher power” never thinking or knowing that there is a power from Jesus that is real.  If they would only sincerely call on that powerful name of Jesus, how everything would change! 

And I am sitting here and I know it.  It takes my breath away.  Since we read Saturday morning, all I keep feeling is that we are so blessed.  We have the answer for every problem that is going to come.  From now until Jesus burns this world up, we have the answer for all of it.  How can that be? I can’t believe Jesus created me for him.  I want to, but how do you take that in?  And really, it all comes back to the order of God–the authority.  It all comes back to getting on your face before Jesus and submitting. For every soul out there today, the answer is the same.  The answer is Jesus.

That is so good to my soul! 

Beth D

Redemption

Bro John, 

This is an interesting thought you sent out, “The redemption of the soul happens now, in this life but the redemption of the body is still to come; that will be salvation.”*

In the Romans scripture, the groaning within ourselves, I mostly think of that as being the holy Ghost groaning as in deep prayer for something, like the scripture (in Romans) that says the Spirit helps our infirmities making intercession with groanings which cannot be uttered. So what you sent today is very good to think on: that we’ve been redeemed by his blood and forgiven of sin when we receive the holy Ghost and that our Spirit groans within us, waiting for the redemption of the body – our new body – salvation. 

Your last Ephesians scripture is so good too. I surely don’t want to grieve the holy Spirit while waiting for that day.   

I loved reading the new thoughts in Revelation too.

Sheila

*To read Pastor John’s entire blog, please follow the link below: 

http://pastorjohnshouse.blogspot.com/2018/04/redemption-in-two-parts.html

 

John, 

I am going through different versions of Rev 12:9, and a question come to mind.

In Verse nine, I looked top the word “devil”, and found the meaning was “false accuser”.  If Satan was a law and order kind of creature, as you have told us, why would he be referred to as a false accuser?

Hope To See You Soon,

Wendell

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Hi Wendell, 

You can forget that definition.  Some Christian scholar made up that meaning to make sure his Readers would not like the Devil.​

“Diabolos” does not mean that.

Satan was a prosecutor in heaven before he was cast out, and he never falsely accused anybody in God’s court.

Pastor John

Diabolos2

“Making It In”

Pastor John, 

Beth and I were able to spend a few hours with Jimmy and Debbie today after our Sunday meeting. Jimmy spoke some about what a new and wonderful thought it was to think that Jesus never spent his time on earth striving to make it in to heaven. As we had lunch, Jimmy asked, “Has anyone here at the table ever had that thought?”  None of us had ever considered it.  It blessed us all to chew on it some more because it reveals more about God.

Jesus never spent a moment of his life worrying about “if I can only make it in.”  That wasn’t even an issue.  He possessed his salvation in doing the will of God.  Salvation was built into it. Everything that he ever needed was contained in doing the will of God.

While you were preaching about that today, about Jesus not spending his time on earth hoping that somehow, he could just make it in, I felt the Spirit of the Lord ask me a question.  And the question amounted to this,  “….and then what?”  In other words, if a person is striving, hoping that they can just make it in to heaven, then what?  Are they hoping to get there and then be free to live different from the way they had been living up to that point?  Are they hoping to get there and then be free to sin, after living a life clean enough to just make it in the door?

I felt like the Lord was asking, Who are you?  Are you someone different from you seem – someone who will be free to finally live after you “make it in”, once “the deal is sealed”, so-to-speak?  It was really a sobering thought, but also one that made it seem absurd to ever try to just “make it in” at all.  Our salvation is contained in our doing the will of God, also.  And it will remain there.

Jesus spent a great deal of time trying to persuade his disciples that it was only lack of faith in their father’s love for them that prevented them from moving mountains!  How much less should they have been concerned with just “making it in”!  Surely, Jesus didn’t die for that.

I love it when God reveals a piece of Himself; it always replaces something that I had been imagining about Him (and didn’t realize it) up to that point.

This weekend was wonderful.

Thank you,

Jerry

 

Free to Obey God

Pastor John,

I was talking to the Lord this morning. I believe this was Him, so I wrote it down, below.

“Your judgment of this world is in how you live your life; it is not in words.”

Jesus didn’t come to condemn the world; they were already condemned.  He came to save souls.

We are not here to condemn the world; they are already in that condition without a word being said.  We are free to use any means to help a soul escape damnation, just as Paul declared: “To a Jew, I am a Jew, to a Gentile I am a Gentile, if by any means I may win their heart to Christ.” 

We are free to do good!

God can’t use you  until you are willing to do anything.

Jerry

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Hi Jerry.

Thanks.  It is true that our lives are what most should condemn the world, not so much our mouths.  That is what the Bible said about Noah.  He condemned the world by building the ark (Heb. 11:7).  He felt free to do the will of God, and look at the result!

Seeing that God uses everybody, even Satan, to accomplish His purposes, I would rephrase your last sentence to say this: “God can’t use you to the fullest degree until you are free enough from superstition to do anything He says.”

Religious fear is superstition, and it stymies our growth in Christ.  But the truth sets us free from all such things so that we may do the will of God gladly, whatever it is.

Thanks again.

Pastor John