Posts Tagged ‘John’

eraseHow many times have you done something you know was wrong, but you justified it by just saying, “God will forgive me?” If you’re like most Christians, you’ve done it more than once, but most people will publicly deny it. So this morning we’re not going to ask for a public admition, we’re just going to take a look at why it’s so wrong, and he Bible says about it.

So what’s the problem with asking for forgiveness after you’ve committed an act you knew was wrong? The biggest issue with repetitive sin is that is shows that we have a lack of the Holy Spirit. If our walk with the Lord is the way it should be, then our desire to sin is either easier to resist, or it doesn’t happen as often. Now this doesn’t mean we’re beyond hope, it means that we need to ask Jesus to point out the areas in our lives that need spiritual attention. We need to ask the Holy Spirit to come into that black part of our heart that still craves the sinful nature, and to replace it with the healing and love of the Lord. When that part of our heart is replaced, it becomes easier to resist the sins that the flesh finds so enjoyable.

I’m sure there will be people who look at this blog and start thinking about people they know who are guilty of repetitive sin. To those people, I say to look into your own lives first. Romans 3:23 says that we have ALL sinned and fallen short of the glory of God, so we need to examine our own lives, because I can almost guarantee that all of us commit some sort of repetitive sin.That doesn’t make us beyond the point of no return, it means that we are all sinners, yet eligible for forgiveness because Jesus gave His life so that we could have a second chance.

This blog isn’t aimed at anyone but myself. I woke up this morning and the Lord laid it on my heart to discuss this issue that is so seldom talked about, but incredibly important in our Walk with the Lord. He laid it on my heart that I need to search my soul and Him to replace the dark spots I’m trying to hide, and replace it with His love. It’s a hard thing to do, but I encourages us all to give it a try… Let me know how it works out for you…:)

 

Below are some great scriptures and how they can help you understand and get over repetitive sin.

 

1 John 3:6-10 No one who abides in him keeps on sinning; no one who keeps on sinning has either seen him or known him. Little children, let no one deceive you. Whoever practices righteousness is righteous, as he is righteous. Whoever makes a practice of sinning is of the devil, for the devil has been sinning from the beginning. The reason the Son of God appeared was to destroy the works of the devil. No one born of God makes a practice of sinning, for God’s seed abides in him, and he cannot keep on sinning because he has been born of God. By this it is evident who are the children of God, and who are the children of the devil: whoever does not practice righteousness is not of God, nor is the one who does not love his brother.

 

Romans 7:15-25 For I do not understand my own actions. For I do not do what I want, but I do the very thing I hate. Now if I do what I do not want, I agree with the law, that it is good. So now it is no longer I who do it, but sin that dwells within me. For I know that nothing good dwells in me, that is, in my flesh. For I have the desire to do what is right, but not the ability to carry it out. For I do not do the good I want, but the evil I do not want is what I keep on doing. …

 

Hebrews 10:26-27 For if we go on sinning deliberately after receiving the knowledge of the truth, there no longer remains a sacrifice for sins, but a fearful expectation of judgment, and a fury of fire that will consume the adversaries.

 

1 Corinthians 10:13 No temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man. God is faithful, and he will not let you be tempted beyond your ability, but with the temptation he will also provide the way of escape, that you may be able to endure it.

 

1 John 1:9 If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.

 

  1. John 3:16: For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.
  2. Jer 29:11: For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.
  3. Rom 8:28: And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.
  4. Phil 4:13: I can do everything through him who gives me strength.
  5. Gen 1:1: In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.
  6. Prov 3:5: Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding.
  7. Prov 3:6: in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight.
  8. Rom 12:2: Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.
  9. Phil 4:6: Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.
  10. Matt 28:19: Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.
  11. Eph 2:8: For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God—
  12. Gal 5:22: But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness,
  13. Rom 12:1: Therefore, I urge you, brothers, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God—this is your spiritual act of worship.
  14. John 10:10: The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.
  15. Acts 18:10: For I am with you, and no one is going to attack and harm you, because I have many people in this city.”
  16. Acts 18:9: One night the Lord spoke to Paul in a vision: “Do not be afraid; keep on speaking, do not be silent.
  17. Acts 18:11: So Paul stayed for a year and a half, teaching them the word of God.
  18. Gal 2:20: I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.
  19. 1 John 1:9: If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.
  20. Rom 3:23: for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God,
  21. John 14:6: Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.
  22. Matt 28:20: and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”
  23. Rom 5:8: But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.
  24. Phil 4:8: Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.
  25. Phil 4:7: And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.
  26. Josh 1:9: Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be terrified; do not be discouraged, for the LORD your God will be with you wherever you go.”
  27. Isa 40:31: but those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.
  28. Eph 2:9: not by works, so that no one can boast.
  29. Rom 6:23: For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.
  30. Gal 5:23: gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.
  31. Isa 53:5: But he was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was upon him, and by his wounds we are healed.
  32. 1 Pet 3:15: But in your hearts set apart Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect,
  33. 2 Tim 3:16: All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness,
  34. Matt 6:33: But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.
  35. Heb 12:2: Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.
  36. 1 Pet 5:7: Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.
  37. Eph 2:10: For we are God’s workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.
  38. 1 Cor 10:13: No temptation has seized you except what is common to man. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can stand up under it.
  39. Matt 11:28: “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.
  40. Heb 11:1: Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see.
  41. 2 Cor 5:17: Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come!
  42. Heb 13:5: Keep your lives free from the love of money and be content with what you have, because God has said, “Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you.”
  43. 2 Cor 12:9: But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me.
  44. Rom 10:9: That if you confess with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.
  45. Isa 41:10: So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.
  46. Gen 1:26: Then God said, “Let us make man in our image, in our likeness, and let them rule over the fish of the sea and the birds of the air, over the livestock, over all the earth, and over all the creatures that move along the ground.”
  47. Matt 11:29: Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.
  48. John 16:33: “I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.”
  49. Acts 1:8: But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.”
  50. 2 Tim 1:7: For God did not give us a spirit of timidity, but a spirit of power, of love and of self-discipline.
  51. Isa 53:4: Surely he took up our infirmities and carried our sorrows, yet we considered him stricken by God, smitten by him, and afflicted.
  52. 2 Cor 5:21: God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.
  53. Rom 15:13: May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.
  54. John 11:25: Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in me will live, even though he dies;
  55. Heb 11:6: And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him.
  56. John 5:24: “I tell you the truth, whoever hears my word and believes him who sent me has eternal life and will not be condemned; he has crossed over from death to life.
  57. Jas 1:2: Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds,
  58. Isa 53:6: We all, like sheep, have gone astray, each of us has turned to his own way; and the LORD has laid on him the iniquity of us all.
  59. Acts 2:38: Peter replied, “Repent and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. And you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.
  60. Eph 3:20: Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us,
  61. Matt 11:30: For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.”
  62. Gen 1:27: So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them.
  63. Col 3:12: Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience.
  64. Heb 12:1: Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us.
  65. Jas 5:16: Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous man is powerful and effective.
  66. Acts 17:11: Now the Bereans were of more noble character than the Thessalonians, for they received the message with great eagerness and examined the Scriptures every day to see if what Paul said was true.
  67. Phil 4:19: And my God will meet all your needs according to his glorious riches in Christ Jesus.
  68. John 1:1: In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.
  69. 1 Cor 6:19: Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own;
  70. 1 John 3:16: This is how we know what love is: Jesus Christ laid down his life for us. And we ought to lay down our lives for our brothers.
  71. Ps 133:1: How good and pleasant it is when brothers live together in unity!
  72. John 14:27: Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.
  73. Heb 4:12: For the word of God is living and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.
  74. John 15:13: Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends.
  75. Mic 6:8: He has showed you, O man, what is good. And what does the LORD require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God.
  76. Rom 10:17: Consequently, faith comes from hearing the message, and the message is heard through the word of Christ.
  77. John 1:12: Yet to all who received him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God—
  78. Jas 1:12: Blessed is the man who perseveres under trial, because when he has stood the test, he will receive the crown of life that God has promised to those who love him.
  79. Jas 1:3: because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance.
  80. Rom 8:38: For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers,
  81. Rom 8:39: neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.
  82. Heb 10:25: Let us not give up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but let us encourage one another—and all the more as you see the Day approaching.
  83. 2 Pet 1:4: Through these he has given us his very great and precious promises, so that through them you may participate in the divine nature and escape the corruption in the world caused by evil desires.
  84. Phil 1:6: being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.
  85. Ps 133:3: It is as if the dew of Hermon were falling on Mount Zion. For there the LORD bestows his blessing, even life forevermore.
  86. Heb 4:16: Let us then approach the throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.
  87. Ps 37:4: Delight yourself in the LORD and he will give you the desires of your heart.
  88. John 3:17: For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him.
  89. Acts 4:12: Salvation is found in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given to men by which we must be saved.”
  90. Isa 26:3: You will keep in perfect peace him whose mind is steadfast, because he trusts in you.
  91. 1 Pet 2:24: He himself bore our sins in his body on the tree, so that we might die to sins and live for righteousness; by his wounds you have been healed.
  92. Josh 1:8: Do not let this Book of the Law depart from your mouth; meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do everything written in it. Then you will be prosperous and successful.
  93. Matt 28:18: Then Jesus came to them and said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me.
  94. Col 3:23: Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for men,
  95. Matt 22:37: Jesus replied: ” ‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’
  96. Ps 133:2: It is like precious oil poured on the head, running down on the beard, running down on Aaron’s beard, down upon the collar of his robes.
  97. Matt 5:16: In the same way, let your light shine before men, that they may see your good deeds and praise your Father in heaven.
  98. Isa 55:8: “For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,” declares the LORD.
  99. Heb 4:15: For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we are—yet was without sin.
  100. John 13:35: By this all men will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.”

Jesus went with his disciples to a place called Gethsem-ane, and he said to them, “Sit here while I go over there and pray.”—Matthew 26:36

Before Jesus began his earthly ministry, he spent forty days alone in the wilderness (Matthew 4:1-11). On the night of his arrest he also spent time in solitude. In the Garden of Gethsemane he withdrew from most of his disciples to pray, taking only three of them with him. Then he withdrew from those three to be completely alone in silence with his Father.

The beginning and end of Jesus’ ministry were characteristic of everything in between. Seeking silence and solitude was Jesus’ lifelong pattern.

Before he chose his disciples, Jesus spent an entire night alone in the hills (Luke 6:12). After Jesus heard the news that John the Baptist had been killed, “he withdrew by boat privately to a solitary place” (Matthew 14:13). Then, a bit later, after feeding more than five thousand people through a miracle, Jesus dismissed the crowd and “went up on a mountainside by himself to pray” (Matthew 14:23).

If the Son of God regularly withdrew to meet with his Father, then surely we may (and ought to) do the same. If Jesus needed silence and solitude, then how much more do we need to develop that same discipline!

Prayer

Father, you long to meet us in the stillness. Help each of us, like Jesus, to seek solitude with you. Thank you for desiring to share your love and grace with us. Amen.

Imagine a family of mice who lived all their lives in a large piano. To them in their piano-world came the music of the instrument, filling all the dark spaces with sound and harmony. At first the mice were impressed by it. They drew comfort and wonder from the thought that there was Someone who made the music–though invisible to them–above, yet close to them. They loved to think of the Great Player whom they could not see. Then one day a daring mouse climbed up part of the piano and returned very thoughtful. He had found out how the music was made. Wires were the secret; tightly stretched wires of graduated lengths which trembled and vibrated. They must revise all their old beliefs: none but the most conservative could any longer believe in the Unseen Player. Later, another explorer carried the explanation further. Hammers were now the secret, numbers of hammers dancing and leaping on the wires. This was a more complicated theory, but it all went to show that they lived in a purely mechanical and mathematical world. The Unseen Player came to be thought of as a myth. But the pianist continued to play. God continues to play in our lives on a daily basis.

Bible verses on belief

John 14:12-14 “Truly, truly, I say to you, whoever believes in me will also do the works that I do; and greater works than these will he do, because I am going to the Father. Whatever you ask in my name, this I will do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son. If you ask me anything in my name, I will do it.

John 3:16For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.

John 20:29 Jesus said to him, “Have you believed because you have seen me? Blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed.”

Job 2:3 And the Lord said to Satan, “Have you considered my servant Job, that there is none like him on the earth, a blameless and upright man, who fears God and turns away from evil? He still holds fast his integrity, although you incited me against him to destroy him without reason.”

Colossians 3:17 And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.

Romans 10:9-10 Because, if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For with the heart one believes and is justified, and with the mouth one confesses and is saved.

Mark 16:15-16 And he said to them, “Go into all the world and proclaim the gospel to the whole creation. Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned.

“Here is a boy with five small barley loaves and two small fish, but how far will they go among so many?”—John 6:9

When Elisha received twenty barley loaves and some grain, he saw that by God’s power the food would feed a hundred people (2 Kings 4:42-44). Jesus took five barley loaves and two fish and fed a crowd of five thousand. At both meals there was so much that there were leftovers.

As in the days of Elisha, the Lord often did miracles to help with the personal needs of his people. Jesus, the bread of life, is concerned that we have not only food for our souls but also our daily bread. Sometimes we don’t appreciate how much God cares about our day-to-day needs.

But notice that Jesus does not feed the people by himself—he uses the disciples to distribute the bread and serve the people. As Jesus’ disciples today, we should expect the same—Jesus will use us to share in his many ministries of compassion. He is eager to bring us into his work. He not only wants to feed us but also wants us to help him feed others.

Of course, like the disciples, we will look at our resources and wonder how we can make any difference. Our supplies will seem small and inadequate.

But Jesus doesn’t care about that. Our call is to offer what we have to him and to trust that it will be enough. We are to stand by, ready to serve and to be surprised by what he does with the resources we have.

We often hear the term “denominationalism” in reference to various religions of our world today. In every city you will see differing churches with differing names. Some denominational churches wear the name, Baptist, Methodist, Presbyterian, Lutheran, Pentecostal, etc. Some worthy questions to consider are: is God the author of denominationalism? Is God the founder of any of these religions? Is He the founder of them all or did He build only His church? In this article, we will discuss the concept of denominationalism, then look at some distinguishing characteristics of the Lord’s Church.

The Concept

The concept of denominationalism can be represented by a one dollar bill and the different coins that are fractions or a denomination of a dollar–a penny, nickel, dime, quarter, and half-dollar. In the right combination, these coins can make a complete dollar, which is the total or whole. Many in the denominational world represent the differing “faiths” as fractions of the whole, with the whole being what is often called the “Christian religion,” or “Christendom.”

The Lord’s Church

The Lord’s church is very different when compared to any denominational church. As each denominational church is distinct, so is the Lord’s church. Hence, if any denominational church is different in founder and name, beginning time and place, doctrine and practice, and organizational structure than the Lord’s church, then it follows that that church is NOT the Lord’s church as described in the New Testament. Please consider the following:

The Lord’s church has the right builder and head and wears His name! The Lord’s church was built by Christ and NOT man! In Matthew 16:18 Jesus said, “…upon this rock (that rock being Christ the son of God and not Peter) I will build my church and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.” Notice that Christ did not promise to build His CHURCHES or DENOMINATIONS. The Lord’s church (in the universal sense) was purchased with the blood of Christ (Acts 20:28; Eph. 5:25) hence the church belongs to the Lord and HE does the adding to it (Acts 2:47). In Romans 16:16, Paul referred to congregations of the Lord’s church (NOT denominations) when he use the term “churches of Christ.” Here he is denoting a plurality of local congregations of believers who belong to the Lord. Christ is the head of the church which is his body (Eph. 1:22, 23; Col. 1:18). Therefore, to be of the Lord’s church or body, we must submit to the authority of Christ and wear the name of Christ (see Acts 11:26; 26:28; 1 Peter 4:16; 2 Tim. 2:19) for Christ has been given “…all power (“authority”– ASV) …in heaven and in earth…” (Matt. 28:18). That leaves none for any man!

The Lord’s Church has the right beginning time and place! The promise was made that the Kingdom would come “with power” during the lifetime of the apostles (Mk. 9:1) and that “repentance and remission of sins” would begin to be preached at Jerusalem (Lk. 24:47). In Acts 2 we find that the Apostles, being filled with the Holy Ghost (the promised power), preached “repentance and remission of sins” to the Jews assembled in Jerusalem on the first Pentecost after the resurrection and accession of Christ. In Acts 2:41 we read: “Then they that gladly received his word were baptized: and the same day were added unto them about three thousand souls.” But, to what were they added? Verse 47 tells us that the saved (or the believers who were baptized, cf. vs 38) were added to the church by the Lord. There is no record of anyone being added to the Lord’s church prior to this day, the FIRST Pentecost after the resurrection of Christ. Therefore, we can know that the Lord’s church had its beginning on the first Pentecost after the resurrection of Christ at Jerusalem!

The Lord’s church has the right doctrine and practice! The church in the first century was instructed to abide in the doctrine revealed by the apostles. John, in 1 John 1 spoke of the things they (the apostles) declared. In order for one to have fellowship with the apostles, the Father and His son Jesus Christ, one must obey and abide in the revealed (declared) will of God. When one does this, he is “walking in the light” (1 Jn. 1:7). John speaks of the importance of abiding (staying in) the “doctrine of Christ” (2 Jn. 9-11). Contrary to the belief of many in the religious world, to abide in his doctrine means to live according to his commandments (1 Jn. 2:3), and not limited to only accept the fact that Jesus came in the flesh! Walking in the light necessitates believing the facts that are divinely revealed and recorded and obeying the commands of God. Therefore the Lord’s church teaches and abides in the divine facts and commands, “teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you…” (Matt. 28:20):

First, the Lord’s church of the first century engaged in evangelism; sounding out the word by sending and supporting preachers who preached the gospel to the lost. The proper terms of admission were proclaimed and practiced resulting in believers being added to His church. When a careful study is made of the cases of conversions in Acts, it is evident that during the first century the gospel had to be preached so sinners could be brought to Godly sorrow (Acts 2:1-37; Rom. 10:17); penitent sinners in the first century heard and gladly received or believed the gospel message and placed their faith in Christ (Acts 2:47; Rom. 10:17); sinners in the first century were commanded to repent of their sins (Acts 2:38; 1 Cor. 6:9-11; Col. 3:1-7); sinners of the first century were commanded to confess their faith in Christ before men (Acts 8:37; Rom.10:10); and sinners in the first century where commanded to be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ (by his authority – Matt. 28:19; Mk. 16:16) “for (in order to obtain) the remission of sins” (Acts 2:38; 22:16, see also Acts 8:26-39; 10:48; 16:14, 15; 16:30-33; 19:1-5).

Second, the Lord’s church in the first century engaged in worship to God that was “in spirit and in truth” (Jn. 4:24). They “continued steadfastly in the apostles’ doctrine and fellowship, and in breaking of bread and in prayers” (Acts 2:42). Briefly, this involved commemorating the Lord’s death on the first day of the (every) week (Acts 2:24; 20:7); singing praises to God (Eph. 5:19; Col. 3:16); giving of ones means or laying by in store on the first day of the (every) week according to individual prosperity (1 Cor. 16:1; 2 Cor. 8:6, 7); praying (Acts 2:42); preaching, teaching and abiding in the doctrine of Christ and his apostles (Act 2:42; 20:7; 2 Jn. 9-11).

Third, the church of the first century was involved in edification–building up the knowledge level of the members of the Lord’s body in “the faith which was once delivered” (Jude 3) and warning the saints to “abstain from fleshly lusts which war against the soul” (Eph. 4:11-13; Acts 20:32; 1 Cor. 6-10; Gal. 5:19-21; 1 Pet. 2:11).

Fourth, the Lord’s church of the first century did the work of benevolence–helping needy saints and only need saints (Acts 2:44, 45; 6:1-6; 11:27-30; 1 Cor. 16:1, 2; 1 Tim. 5:16).

Fifth, the Lord’s church of the first century was commanded to discipline members who walked disorderly. In Paul’s letter to the saints of Thessalonica he wrote, “Now we command you, brethren, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that ye withdraw yourselves from every brother that walketh disorderly, and not after the tradition which he received of us” (2 Thess. 6, 7 & 11). Further, Paul commanded the Corinthian brethren “in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ” to “put away” the brother involved in an incestuous relationship (1 Cor. 5). Paul illustrated using the concept of “leaven” that to ignore sinful conduct of this type the result would be the pollution of other member and the local church as a whole. Hence, for a congregation claiming to be the Lord’s church to avoid having their candlestick removed (Rev. 2:5), then, discipline of wayward members is expected by the Lord.

The Lord’s church has the right organizational structure! The Lord’s church in the universal sense is not organized. The universal church is the body of all the saved or “called out” and was built, loved, purchased and sanctified by Christ. The universal church is the body we are baptized into (1 Cor. 12:13; Gal. 3:27). Local churches or congregations were composed of brethren or saints (believers). The local church at Philippi was scripturally organized and was composed of bishops (a plurality of elders meeting the divine qualifications – 1 Tim. 3:1-7), deacons (servants – meeting the divine qualifications of 1 Tim. 3:7-13), and saints (Phil. 1:1). Each local congregation was autonomous (self governing in congregational affairs, but governed by the Lord in doctrine and practice) and overseen by the elders that were among them (Acts 20:28; 1 Pet. 5:1-4). Congregations in the first century did not report to, nor were they governed by, any one man or governing board of men. They were overseen by their own elders.

Denominational churches have the wrong builder and they wear the wrong name! The denominations we have already mentioned – Baptist, Methodist, Presbyterian, Lutheran, Pentecostal, and many others that could be mentioned where founded by a man and wear a name that is NOT a Bible name. Christ said in Matthew 16:18: “I will build my church.” Christ did not build churches with differing names, heads, origins, doctrines and creeds. He built His church! The result of man’s tampering with Gods plan is the confusion created by denominationalism. The apostle Paul said: “For God is not the author of confusion, but of peace” (1 Cor. 14:33).

Denominational churches have the wrong beginning time and place! For example, the Roman Catholic religion was founded in 606 by Boniface III in Rome; the Lutheran religion was founded in 1520 by Martin Luther in Germany; the Episcopalian religion was founded in 1534 by Henry VIII in England; the Baptist religion was founded in 1607 by John Symthe in Holland; the Mormon religion begin in 1830 by Joseph Smith in America; the Jehovah’s Witnesses religion begin in 1872 by Charles T. Russell in America. These and all other man-made religions have the wrong NAME, the wrong BEGINNING TIME AND PLACE, the wrong BUILDER and therefore are NOT the Lord’s church, contrary to their claims. Denominations (false religions of man) will be rooted up and cast away by the Lord in the last Great Day (Matt. 15:13; 7:21-23).

Denominational churches have the wrong doctrine and practice! To mention a few, some denominations practice sprinkling or pouring for baptism and some even “baptize” infants. The Bible teaches that sinners are to be “buried in baptism” (Rom. 6). Some use mechanical instruments of music in the worship, when the New Testament authorizes only singing (Eph. 5:19; Col. 3:16). Some commemorate the Lord’s death quarterly, or semi-annually or only on the traditional “Easter Sunday,” even though the Bible teaches that the saints in the first century commemorated the Lord’s death on the first day of the week, each and every week (Acts 20:7). Some denominations have women “preachers” and in their “clergies” even though Paul taught that the woman is are to keep silence in the church and not to usurp authority over the man (1 Cor. 14:34). Some have “ordained” homosexual “pastors” in their “clergies,” even though the clergy system is man-made and the inspired apostle Paul condemned moral impurity, which includes homosexuality (Rom. 1:21-32; Gal 5:19-21). Many teach the false doctrine of the one thousand year reign of Christ on the earth, better known as the doctrine of Premillennialism, which pivots on perversions of Revelation 20. Many denominational clergy members have their distinctive clerical dress such as the Roman collar, even though Christ condemned this practice when he denounced the dress of the scribes and Pharisees in Matt. 23. Denominations have their entertainment including plays, food feeds, recreational gymnasiums, fellowship halls and all manner of schemes used to satisfy the lusts of human desire. Did Christ die for His church or an entertainment hall and recreational program? Paul opposed such activity in the Corinthian church and pronounced a divine apostolic condemnation when he wrote: “What? have ye not houses to eat and to drink in? or despise ye the church of God, and shame them that have not? What shall I say to you? shall I praise you in this? I praise you not” (1 Cor. 11:22).

Denominations have their man-made creeds and manuals! The Baptists have their Standard Baptist Manual, the Presbyterians have their Book of Order and Book of Confessions, the Pentecostals have their manual stating their “Articles of Faith, Constitution, Judicial Procedure, and Position Papers,” the Methodists have their Discipline; the Mormons have their Articles of Faith and Book of Mormon. It is not difficult to see that denominationalism places the doctrines and commandments of men ABOVE the authority of Christ and the Bible. This practice was condemned by Christ during his personal ministry and His apostles during the first century and renders denominationalism and its worship vain (Matt. 15:9; 1 Cor. 4:6).

Denominational churches have unscriptural organizational structure! In denominationalism you will find governing boards, district councils, ruling bishops over a diocese, the pope, cardinals, synods, and universal ruling bodies of men who rule and reign over a plurality of churches. No such organizational structure is found in the New Testament! The head of the Lord’s church is Christ (Eph. 1:22, 23; 4:12; 5:23) who is now reigning and will continue to reign until all enemies are under his feet, the last enemy being death (1 Cor. 15:25, 26).

Conclusion

With this short comparison of the Lord’s church and denominationalism, it is evident to any honest person that denominationalism originated from man, and NOT from God! The Hebrew writer sums up well the truth that we must live by concerning true religion when he wrote in Hebrews 8:1, 2: “Now of the things which we have spoken this is the sum: We have such an high priest, who is set on the right hand of the throne of the Majesty in the heavens; A minister of the sanctuary, and of the true tabernacle, which the Lord pitched, and not man.” Are you a member of the church built by the Lord, or are you a member of a denomination built by a man? Which?

The above article was submitted by Glendol McClure, and I thought it was awesome. 

imagesHow many times have you done something you know was wrong, but you justified it by just saying, “God will forgive me?” If you’re like most Christians, you’ve done it more than once, but most people will publicly deny it. So this morning we’re not going to ask for a public admition, we’re just going to take a look at why it’s so wrong, and he Bible says about it.

So what’s the problem with asking for forgiveness after you’ve committed an act you knew was wrong? The biggest issue with repetitive sin is that is shows that we have a lack of the Holy Spirit. If our walk with the Lord is the way it should be, then our desire to sin is either easier to resist, or it doesn’t happen as often. Now this doesn’t mean we’re beyond hope, it means that we need to ask Jesus to point out the areas in our lives that need spiritual attention. We need to ask the Holy Spirit to come into that black part of our heart that still craves the sinful nature, and to replace it with the healing and love of the Lord. When that part of our heart is replaced, it becomes easier to resist the sins that the flesh finds so enjoyable.

I’m sure there will be people who look at this blog and start thinking about people they know who are guilty of repetitive sin. To those people, I say to look into your own lives first. Romans 3:23 says that we have ALL sinned and fallen short of the glory of God, so we need to examine our own lives, because I can almost guarantee that all of us commit some sort of repetitive sin.That doesn’t make us beyond the point of no return, it means that we are all sinners, yet eligible for forgiveness because Jesus gave His life so that we could have a second chance.

This blog isn’t aimed at anyone but myself. I woke up this morning and the Lord laid it on my heart to discuss this issue that is so seldom talked about, but incredibly important in our Walk with the Lord. He laid it on my heart that I need to search my soul and Him to replace the dark spots I’m trying to hide, and replace it with His love. It’s a hard thing to do, but I encourages us all to give it a try… Let me know how it works out for you…:)

 

Below are some great scriptures and how they can help you understand and get over repetitive sin.

 

1 John 3:6-10 No one who abides in him keeps on sinning; no one who keeps on sinning has either seen him or known him. Little children, let no one deceive you. Whoever practices righteousness is righteous, as he is righteous. Whoever makes a practice of sinning is of the devil, for the devil has been sinning from the beginning. The reason the Son of God appeared was to destroy the works of the devil. No one born of God makes a practice of sinning, for God’s seed abides in him, and he cannot keep on sinning because he has been born of God. By this it is evident who are the children of God, and who are the children of the devil: whoever does not practice righteousness is not of God, nor is the one who does not love his brother.

 

Romans 7:15-25 For I do not understand my own actions. For I do not do what I want, but I do the very thing I hate. Now if I do what I do not want, I agree with the law, that it is good. So now it is no longer I who do it, but sin that dwells within me. For I know that nothing good dwells in me, that is, in my flesh. For I have the desire to do what is right, but not the ability to carry it out. For I do not do the good I want, but the evil I do not want is what I keep on doing. …

 

Hebrews 10:26-27 For if we go on sinning deliberately after receiving the knowledge of the truth, there no longer remains a sacrifice for sins, but a fearful expectation of judgment, and a fury of fire that will consume the adversaries.

 

1 Corinthians 10:13 No temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man. God is faithful, and he will not let you be tempted beyond your ability, but with the temptation he will also provide the way of escape, that you may be able to endure it.

 

1 John 1:9 If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.