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 1 
 on: Today at 07:43:58 AM 
Started by Soldier4Christ - Last post by Soldier4Christ
The Opened Heavens

“And I saw heaven opened, and behold a white horse; and he that sat upon him was called Faithful and True, and in righteousness he doth judge and make war.” (Revelation 19:11)

This is the final climactic reference in the Bible to God’s opened heavens. Sometimes, as in this verse, heaven is opened in judgment; sometimes in blessing. Sometimes it is the atmospheric heaven that is open; sometimes the heaven of heavens where stands the throne of God.

The first such mention refers to the world-destroying Flood of Noah’s day when “the windows of heaven were opened” (Genesis 7:11). The second mention, however, speaks of blessing. God had “opened the doors of heaven, And had rained down manna upon them to eat” (Psalm 78:23-24). The windows of heaven rained down the waters of death, while the doors of heaven rained down the bread of life! Ezekiel also saw the heavens opened in judgment (Ezekiel 1:1), but God told Malachi, “Bring ye all the tithes into the storehouse . . . and prove me now . . . if I will not open you the windows of heaven, and pour you out a blessing, that there shall not be room enough to receive it” (Malachi 3:10).

At the baptism of Jesus, the heavens were opened and men heard the great testimony of the Father concerning His beloved Son (Matthew 3:16; Mark 1:10; Luke 3:21). Jesus promised Nathanael, “Hereafter ye shall see heaven open” (John 1:51), and Stephen and Peter actually saw the heavens open (Acts 7:56; 10:11).

Finally, the apostle John reported that “a door was opened in heaven” (Revelation 4:1), and he saw the Lord on His throne—12 specific references (four in the Old Testament, eight in the New) to the opened heavens. HMM

 2 
 on: May 21, 2018, 05:07:37 PM 
Started by nChrist - Last post by nChrist
Mind Your Words!
From Timeless Grace Gems
Francis Bourdillon, 1873



        "The tongue has the power of life and death!" Proverbs 18:21

        Many people seem to think that words signify little. They must not do what is wrong—but they may say what they please. So they seem to think.

        Is this right? No, it is quite wrong. What we say signifies as much as what we do. As much good or harm may be done with the tongue, as with any member that we have—perhaps more.

        What harm an angry word may do! If one person says an angry word, it often leads the other to do the like; and then the first is more angry still, and that provokes the other further, and so they go on until they end in cursing or even in fighting! And all from one angry word. Perhaps until that word was spoken, they were friends.

        But what good a kind word may do! One angry word does not always lead to another. Sometimes a man has grace to return a kind answer, like Him "who, when He was reviled, did not revile in return; when He suffered, He did not threaten." This does wonders in cooling an angry man. He can hardly go on storming at one who gives him nothing but kind words in return, and often he will own that he has been wrong and ask pardon for what he has said. "A soft answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger" (Proverbs 15:1).

        Again, how much good a kind word may do to one in trouble! A friend coming in at such a time and speaking kindly and leading our thoughts to God—does us more good than if he brought us a rich present in his hand. And yet he has given us nothing but words. But they were good words, his heart speaking by his lips; and we feel the better for them long after he has gone.

        The Bible does not make light of words. Our Lord said: "I say unto you that for every idle word that men may speak, they will give account of it in the day of judgment. For by your words you will be justified, and by your words you will be condemned" (Matthew 12:36-37).

        Now words are often spoken hastily and forgotten as soon as spoken. But then a strict account will have to be given of all. Every lie, every oath, every unclean word, every bitter speech—must then be accounted for to God. They will all be found written in His book, not one left out, not one forgotten. Is not this a solemn thought?

        Do not think lightly then of words! They may do much harm—or they may do much good. God does not think lightly of them. They are written in His book, and men will be judged by them at the last day.

        Sins of the tongue, like all other sins, need the blood of Jesus to wash them away. Ask God, for Christ's sake, to forgive you for all your bad words and to give you His Holy Spirit, that you may sin with your tongue no more. When you feel angry with anyone, do not speak until you have prayed. Here is a prayer that will just suit you: "Set a guard, O Lord, over my mouth! Keep watch over the door of my lips!" (Psalm 141:3).

 3 
 on: May 21, 2018, 05:05:56 PM 
Started by nChrist - Last post by nChrist
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Series on Grace - Part 4
Undiluted Wrath and Undiluted Grace


by Pastor Cornelius R. Stam

WHAT THE GOSPEL IS

The foregoing should help us to understand more fully what the gospel of the grace of God is. It is not a promise that God will be lenient with our sins, or that He will forgive if we are deeply sorry for our sins, or if we repent, or pray, or pay, or say, or do anything whatsoever to make amends for our wrongdoing. It is rather the good news that the infinite penalty for our sins has been paid by Christ at Calvary. In Romans 1:16 the Apostle Paul declares:

    “I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ, for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth….”

We believers have experienced the blessed truth of this statement, but why is the gospel “the power of God unto salvation”? Wherein lies its mighty power to save? The answer to this question is found in the next verse:

    “For therein is the righteousness of God revealed…” (Ver. 17).

You say: “I thought that the love of God was revealed in the gospel,” and you are right. For this the apostle expresses his gratitude again and again. But what made him so amazed about the gospel is the fact that it tells how Christ died to pay the just penalty for our sins, and therein is the righteousness of God revealed. He could now, “at this time,” declare “His righteousness,” as well as His love, in dealing with sin, “that He might be just, and the Justifier of him that believeth in Jesus” (Rom. 3:26). And to these words he appropriately adds: “Where is boasting then? It is excluded” (Ver. 27).

This is why the apostle was so careful “lest the Cross of Christ should be made of none effect” by “wisdom of words” or by the addition of a religious work once required for salvation (See I Cor. 1:17).

    “For the preaching of the Cross is to them that perish foolishness, but unto us which are saved it is the power of God” (Ver. 18.).

It is because the Cross demonstrates the righteousness of God in dealing with sin, that the apostle declares:

    “God forbid that I should glory [boast], save in the Cross of our Lord Jesus Christ” (Gal. 6:14).

Paul had nothing to boast of 3—except what our blessed Lord had accomplished at the Cross in dealing justly and completely with the sin question. This is why he calls his message “the preaching of the Cross” (I Cor. 1:18,23).

As we follow Paul in this, thank God, we too can tell the vilest sinner with profound pride: “The sin question has been justly and fully dealt with by the death of Christ at Calvary. All that remains for you to do is to acknowledge Him as your Lord and Savior, accepting eternal life as `the free gift of God.'”

GOD’S GRACE INFINITE

We have already seen that God is infinite in all His attributes, simply because He is infinite. Thus His grace too is infinite in character, scope and extent. This is why Paul’s epistles have so much to say about God’s lavish dealings with believers, whether from among the chosen race or from among the Gentiles whom He had previously “given up” (Rom. 1:24,26,28.).

    “For there is no difference between the Jew and the Greek: for the same Lord over all is rich unto all that call upon Him.

    “For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved” (Rom. 10:12,13).

Thus we read in Ephesians 1:7 that even now, in this present life, we may rejoice that,

    “We have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins according to the riches of His grace.”

And in Ephesians 2:7 the apostle looks forward into the distant future and declares that it is God’s purpose:

    “That in the ages to come He might show the exceeding riches of His grace in His kindness toward us through Christ Jesus.”

It must always be remembered that this present “dispensation of the grace of God” is not mentioned in the prophetic Scriptures. In Ephesians 3 the apostle distinctly states that it was a “mystery” (Vers. 2,3), which “in other ages was not made known” (Ver. 5) and that it was first revealed to him, the chief of sinners saved by grace.

This is why he exults in Verse 8 of the same chapter:

    “Unto me, who am less than the least of all saints, is this grace given, that I should preach among the Gentiles the unsearchable riches of Christ.”

This too, is why he refers in Colossians 1:26,27 to “the mystery which hath been hid from ages and from generations, but now is made manifest to His saints” and declares that,

    “God would make known [to His saints, Ver. 26] what is the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles; which is Christ in you [Gentiles] the hope of glory.”

How unspeakably sad that so few of God’s people have any real conception of this “mystery” and its “riches of glory,” when God emphatically declares that He would have us understand it!

GOD’S GRACE UNDILUTED

But as God’s grace in dealing with sin is infinite in scope and extent, it is also undiluted and must, in the nature of the case, remain so. It cannot be mixed or watered down with religion or works. Acknowledging our utter depravity and unworthiness, we must accept salvation as the gift of God’s grace alone, and not try to pay Him for it. The apostle is very emphatic about this in Romans 4:5, where he does not merely say that justification is not to him that worketh, but that it is “to him that worketh not.”

    “To him that worketh not, but believeth on Him that justifieth the ungodly, his faith is counted for righteousness.”

This means that to be saved we must stop trying. We must come to the end of ourselves and trust in Him alone to take care of the whole matter for us. This is brought out again and again in the epistles of Paul.

As God still lingers in mercy, we pray that He will convict His saints of the importance of proclaiming the pure, powerful “gospel of the grace of God,” as it is found in His Word, rightly divided. Also, we urge those who have not yet accepted salvation by grace, through faith in Christ, to do so without delay. We close this article with a few passages from the Word itself, praying that the Spirit will apply them to each heart. Note as you read, that God’s grace is never mixed with human merit or religion or works. It is always presented to us pure and undiluted.

    “If by grace, then it is no more of works: otherwise grace is no more grace. But if it be of works, then it is no more grace: otherwise work is no more work” (Rom. 11:6).

    “I do not frustrate the grace of God, for if righteousness come by the law, then Christ is dead [has died] in vain” (Gal. 2:21).

    “Who hath saved us, and called us with an holy calling, not according to our works, but according to His own purpose and [His own] grace, which was given us in Christ Jesus before the world began” (II Tim. 1:9).

Finally, in Ephesians 2 the apostle, by the Spirit, sums it all up beautifully. Making it clear that we were the “full grown sons” [Gr., huios] of disobedience, 4 and therefore “the children [Gr., teknon, born ones] of wrath, even as others” (Vers. 2,3) he goes on to say:

    “But God, who is rich in mercy, for His great love wherewith He loved us,

    “Even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ (by grace ye are saved),

    “And hath raised us up together and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus:

    “That in the ages to come He might show the exceeding riches of His grace in His kindness toward us through Christ Jesus.

    “For by grace are ye saved, through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:

    “Not of works, lest any man should boast” (Eph. 2:4-9).

Notes:

1    The Apostle Paul, “in all his epistles,” writes of “these things” (II Pet. 3:15,16).
2    Judgment and war are the exact opposite of “grace and peace,” the benediction with which the Apostle Paul opens all the epistles signed by his name.
3    Indeed, he repeatedly mentions those sins of which he is ashamed, freely acknowledging his own unworthiness.
4    I.e., we did not act innocently. We sinned knowingly, wilfully.

 4 
 on: May 21, 2018, 05:04:51 PM 
Started by nChrist - Last post by nChrist
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Series on Grace - Part 4
Undiluted Wrath and Undiluted Grace


by Pastor Cornelius R. Stam

GOD’S WRATH UNDILUTED

But God’s wrath against sin is not only revealed every day, and at the Cross and in the lake of fire; it will also be revealed historically in His dealings with men here on earth. This coming time of God’s wrath will mark the end of the day of man, described in Daniel 2:31-43, and the beginning of “the day of the Lord,” so often referred to in prophecy, and will follow soon after the close of the present “dispensation of the grace of God.”

First God will allow man, with his “clever solutions,” to bring his own troubles to a head, as it were. Man will have his Antichrist (see John 5:43; II Thes. 2:3-12) and seemingly all will go well, until it becomes evident what he has done to them. Then God will begin to intervene directly. Both the prophet Daniel and our Lord described this period of time as one of unprecedented trouble.

    “And there shall be a time of trouble, such as never was since there was a nation even to that same time” (Dan. 12:1).

    “For then shall be great tribulation, such as was not since the beginning of the world to this time, no, nor ever shall be” (Matt. 24:21).

These are only two of many Scripture passages on this subject which indicate that the coming “great tribulation” will mark the total collapse of civilization. As we consider the present world-wide spirit of lawlessness and rebellion, and the unbelievably fast pace at which great nations are falling before the forces of evil—as we consider all this, does it not appear that the world is even now racing recklessly toward this very time when God, in His wrath, will finally intervene?

It is the Book of the Revelation, principally, that describes, often by signs and symbols, this dreadful day of God’s wrath. If anything is clear, as we study this book, it is the fact that God does not take sin lightly, especially presumptuous sin. He does not give sin a slap on the wrist, so to speak. Rather, those who have lived on in sin, resisting God’s love and grace, will then have to suffer His undiluted wrath here on earth, long before they are called to appear at the “Great White Throne.”

“Because they received not the love of the truth, that they might be saved,” says II Thessalonians 2:10, they will be given over to Antichrist, who will deceive them with “power and signs and lying wonders,” and they will “believe a lie,”

    “That they all might be damned [Lit., judged] who believed not the truth but had pleasure in unrighteousness” (II Thes. 2:12).

Let us see what we find as to this when we turn to the Book of the Revelation.

In Revelation 6:15-17, which describes the conditions existing more than one thousand years before the judgment of the “Great White Throne” (See Rev. 20:6-12), we read these terrible words:

    “And the kings of the earth, and the great men, and the rich men, and the chief captains, and the mighty men, and every bondman, and every freeman, hid themselves in the dens and in the rocks of the mountains;

    “And said to the mountains and rocks, Fall on us, and hide us from the face of Him that sitteth on the throne, and from the wrath of the Lamb:

    “For the great day of His wrath is come, and who shall be able to stand?”

This phrase, “the wrath of the Lamb,” is most significant. Our Lord died as a lamb for our sins, but He arose again and, “rejected of men,” ascended to the Father’s right hand, where the Father welcomed Him with these words:

    “Sit Thou at My right hand, until I make Thine enemies Thy footstool” (Psa. 110:1 cf. Acts 2:32-38.).

For nearly 2,000 years now the Son has remained a voluntary Exile, sending His ambassadors forth in grace to offer reconciliation to His enemies. 1But this will not go on forever. One day, who knows how soon, our Lord will recall His ambassadors and the day of grace will be brought to a close. Then, not many years after, He will be “revealed from heaven with His mighty angels, in flaming fire, taking vengeance on them that know not God and that obey not the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ” (II Thes. 1:7,8.).

It is solemnly significant in Revelation 6:15-17 that even as men see this event approaching they will cry to the rocks and mountains to “fall on them” and hide them from “the face of Him that sitteth on the throne, and from the wrath of the Lamb.”

Fearful as all this is to contemplate, it is but a foretaste of the sufferings that the worshippers of Antichrist will have to endure. In Revelation 14:10 we read of every such worshipper:

    “The same shall drink of the wine of the wrath of God, which is poured out without mixture into the cup of His indignation.”

In that day it will be clear to all that it is not enough merely to be religious, or to “have faith in something or someone,” as we are so often told. Indeed, in Revelation Chapters 16-18 we find God dealing with Babylon, the headquarters of the great ecumenical Church that will emerge after the true Church has been taken to glory. This Church will be composed largely of professed, but apostate “Christians,” who never knew Christ and will then be red-ripe for the worship of Antichrist. Our Lord calls this Church, not “the Bride,” but “the harlot” and “the mother of harlots,” and in Revelation 16:19 we read:

    “And great Babylon came in remembrance before God, to give unto her the cup of the wine of the fierceness of His wrath.”

It makes one shudder to read the full account of the fall of Babylon, and to see how God will force the leaders and constituents of this false Church of the future to drink the cup of His wrath.

Let us not suppose, then, that it is enough to belong to some church. The true Church, which will be caught away before this awful time of wrath, is made up solely of those who have been reconciled to God through faith in Christ as their personal Savior from sin.

Finally, in Revelation 19:11-15, we have the actual return of Christ to earth. The symbolism is most expressive.

This time He does not come “meek and lowly,” and “sitting on an ass’s colt.” Rather He appears on “a white horse,” to “judge and make war” 2 (Ver. 11), and the armies of heaven follow Him (Ver. 14). This time He does not go submissively to Calvary. Rather He returns from Calvary with “a vesture dipped [drenched] in blood” (Ver. 13). This time He does not go about in compassion, preaching good news and healing the sick and afflicted. Rather His eyes are “as a flame of fire,” and on His head are “many crowns” (Ver. 12).

    “And out of His mouth goeth a sharp sword, that with it He should smite the nations; and He shall rule them with a rod of iron: and He treadeth the winepress of the fierceness and wrath of almighty God” (Ver. 15).

Thus, as the Mosaic dispensation demonstrated historically the total depravity of man and his utter inability to obey God’s law, and as the Pauline dispensation demonstrated historically the infinite grace of God to sinners, so the day of God’s wrath, coming before the kingdom reign of Christ, will demonstrate historically that God does not tolerate sin. His wrath against sin is not diluted by leniency, tolerance or indulgence. Men are either “justified freely by His grace, through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus” (Rom. 3:24) or they must suffer the just consequences of their sins.

 5 
 on: May 21, 2018, 05:03:48 PM 
Started by nChrist - Last post by nChrist
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Series on Grace - Part 4
Undiluted Wrath and Undiluted Grace


by Pastor Cornelius R. Stam


In the new evangelicalism that has become so popular in Christendom, two vital elements are lacking: 1) a consistent emphasis on God’s wrath against sin, and 2) the conviction of sin that follows such an emphasis. This is important, since it is doubtful that anyone was ever saved who was not first convicted of his sin and his need of a Savior.

JUDGMENT TO COME

    “And as he [Paul] reasoned of righteousness, temperance, and judgment to come, Felix trembled…” (Acts 24:25).

Judgment to come is declared in Scripture to be one of the “first principles” of its doctrine (Heb. 6:1,2). In our day, however, this fact is held in general disregard and often made light of. Worldly performers sing and joke about “the Judgment Day.” Many humorous motion pictures and plays have been written about it. Few men tremble as Felix did, at the thought of judgment to come, probably because few men preach it as Paul did.

Too many Christians even, failing to understand Paul’s great message of grace, think of God only as a Being of infinite love, who gave His Son to die for man, forgetting that it was His infinite justice that demanded so terrible a price for sin, and that the lake of fire is but the expression of God’s hatred of sin, and His righteous indignation at man’s rejection of His love and grace. Christians are also prone to put the mildest possible construction upon those passages which deal with the coming judgment of the believer’s conduct and service, as though this were nothing more than a joyous handing out of rewards at the close of life’s race.

But this is all wishful thinking. The Governor Felix was at least more realistic in his thinking—as Paul was in his preaching. Acts 24:24 tells how Felix called Paul before him and “heard him concerning the faith in Christ.” HadPaul been one of our modern neo-evangelicals he would have told Felix how wonderful Jesus is, how willing to solve our problems, how ready to forgive our sins, if only we are willing to “make our commitment” to Him! But Paul told the governor nothing of the kind. Rather, as we have seen above, “he reasoned of righteousness, temperance [self-control], and judgment to come,” and “Felix trembled.” Felix’s sudden adjournment of the hearing does not alter the fact that Paul’s approach was the right, the Scriptural approach in this instance.

This writer had a similar experience some years ago in the city of Milwaukee. As I sat in a barber’s chair, the barber used such foul language and used the Lord’s name so profanely, that I finally stopped him in the midst of his work and asked: “Aren’t you afraid to be talking like this? Don’t you know that God’s Word says: `The Lord will not hold him guiltless that taketh His name in vain’?” At this he cursed and said: “I’m my own God.”

I replied: “Some God! If you don’t die suddenly or soon through some accident or disease, one thing is certain: You will get old, and shrivel up, and die. Then they will dig a hole in the ground and bury your body in it. God’s Word says that `it is appointed unto men once to die,’ and you know that this much of the Bible is true. But do you know what the rest of that verse says?” “What?” he snapped. “Well, it’s found in Hebrews 9:27, and this is how it reads: `It is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment.’ You may hope that this is not true, but you can’t be sure, can you? All you can do, if you let yourself think about it, is wonder and worry. And you should worry, for the Bible is full of this. It says again and again that `every one of us shall give account of himself to God.'”

Strangely and suddenly this man’s bravado was all gone. His chin began to quiver. His voice faltered. And then, of course, I had the great pleasure of breathing into his ears the wonderful gospel of the wonderful grace of God.

GOD’S WRATH REVEALED

Before men can truly appreciate the grace of God they must recognize the wrath of God.

    “For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who hold [Lit., restrain, or suppress] the truth in unrighteousness” (Rom. 1:18.).

Just a casual look at the facts will confirm to us this declaration from God’s Word. His wrath against ungodliness (spiritual wrong) and unrighteousness (moral wrong) is revealed in many ways. Not only does God’s Word say that His anger is kindled against sin, but He visits it, even here and now, with trouble and misery, sorrow and death. Moreover the conscience, when awakened, can so trouble the sinner as to make him completely miserable though no one but he and God know about his sins. So unbearably wretched have some men become about their hidden sins that they have been driven to confess them even though faced with long imprisonment or death.

But God’s wrath against sin is most clearly and solemnly revealed at Calvary’s Cross and in the “lake of fire.”

At Calvary a just and holy God unsheathed His sword and smote even His own beloved Son, as He took our sins upon Himself. The Cross was at the same time, however, the crowning demonstration of God’s mercy and love to sinners, and those who reject or ignore this love will suffer the sorrows of “the second death,” the “lake of fire.”

Regarding the essential nature of the lake of fire, Dr. Joseph A. Seiss has said: “What that `lake of fire’ is, I cannot tell, I do not know, and I pray I may never find out.” One thing, however, is clear. It is an expression of divine anger over love spurned. Here those who have rejected God’s gracious payment for sin will have to pay the price themselves—and take an eternity to do it.

GOD’S WRATH INFINITE

We are aware of the fact that many people, even many religious leaders, reject the Bible doctrine of everlasting punishment, but their arguments are not valid.

First they fail to recognize the infinite character of sin. If I smite a stranger unprovoked I have committed a grave sin. If I smite a friend, my sin is much more grievous. If I smite my brother, still more so; if my mother, it is multiplied again; if the ruler of my nation, it is multiplied still further and I stand guilty of unspeakable wrongdoing. Yet the stranger, my friend, my brother, my mother, and the ruler of my country are all themselves poor, finite, sinful, dying creatures. It immediately becomes evident, then, that sin against a holy and infinite God takes on infinite proportions, and warrants an infinite penalty.

But second, those who deny eternal punishment fail to recognize the infinite character of God. Strangely, unbelievers are glad to acknowledge that God is infinite in everything except in His wrath against sin. They know He must be infinite in wisdom and power. All one needs is a microscope and a telescope to see that. Generally they also readily agree that He is infinite in love and mercy. But if this is so, must we not conclude that He is infinite and that therefore He must be infinite in every respect and in all His attributes: in wisdom and power, in love and mercy and grace—and in His wrath against sin?

If God’s grace is beyond our finite comprehension, does it not logically follow that this must be equally so with respect to His wrath? Is it not altogether fitting that as we stand amazed at God’s grace, so we should stand aghast at His wrath? Should we revel in His infinite mercy and love, but tone down His wrath to fit our finite notions? Should we rejoice that “God is love,” but ignore the fact that “our God is a consuming fire”? (See I John 4:16; Heb. 12:29).

Does some reader object that in writing thus we are departing from our God-given calling to preach grace? We reply that it is impossible to truly proclaim the grace of God apart from the wrath of God. It is Paul, the apostle of grace who, commenting on a list of sins, warns:

    “Let no man deceive you with vain words, for because of these things cometh the wrath of God upon the children of disobedience” (Eph. 5:6).

This he repeats in Colossians 3:6 and elsewhere, while in Romans 2:5 he declares that those who are hard and impenitent as to sin “treasure up to themselves wrath against the day of wrath.”

 6 
 on: May 21, 2018, 05:02:15 PM 
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The End of the Ten Commandments
by Pastor Ricky Kurth


Perhaps you heard about the Sunday School teacher who was teaching her class the ten commandments. After discussing the command to “honour thy father and thy mother,” she asked the class, “Is there a commandment that teaches us how to treat our brothers and sisters?” To which one boy replied, “Thou shalt not kill?”

If you are wondering why we’ve entitled this article “the end of the ten commandments,” the answer to that question has to do with the Apostle Paul’s words in I Timothy 1:5:

    “Now the end of the commandment is charity…”

If you are thinking, “But that verse speaks about the end of the commandment, not the end of the ten commandments,” consider what James wrote about the ten commandments:

    “…whosoever shall keep the whole law, and yet offend in one point, he is guilty of all. For He that said, Do not commit adultery, said also, Do not kill…” (James 2:10,11).

You see, as far as God is concerned, the ten commandments are one commandment. You break one, you break them all! So in speaking of “the commandment,” Paul is talking about the ten commandments.

But in speaking of the end of the ten commandments, Paul isn’t thinking of a time when it would ever be acceptable to kill someone or dishonor your parents. He is rather talking about the purpose or the goal of the ten commandments. We use the word “end” that way when we ask someone, “To what end are you doing what you are doing?” That is, we are inquiring about the purpose of what’s being done.

So in speaking about “the end of the commandment,” Paul is addressing the purpose or goal of the ten commandments, a goal that he identifies as “charity,” one of the Bible’s words for love. And that makes sense, if you think about it. If you love God, are you going to take His name in vain, or have some other God before Him? If you love your neighbor, are you going to lie to him, steal from him, commit adultery with his wife, kill him or covet his things? I don’t think I have to tell you, that is not the way love behaves!

This explains why Paul says that “he that loveth another hath fulfilled the law” (Rom. 13:8 cf. 9,10), and that “all the law is fulfilled in one word, even in this; Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself” (Gal. 5:14). You see, “the end of the commandment,” the purpose or goal of the law, “is charity.”

In closing, we have to add that while it is true that “charity” is a Bible word for love, don’t change the word charity here to love. Love is a feeling. Charity is an action. Charity is the action that expresses the feeling of love. So when Paul says that the end or goal of the commandment is charity, he’s not saying that God’s goal in giving the ten commandments was to get you to have some warm fuzzy feelings of love for others. He’s saying that the goal of the ten commandments was to get you to put those feelings in action by treating God and your neighbor with the respect that the ten commandments were designed to bring out in us.

 7 
 on: May 21, 2018, 05:00:35 PM 
Started by nChrist - Last post by nChrist
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From Grace Gems:
Very Old - But Beautiful and Timeless Treasures.
Everything is FREE and Public Domain.
http://www.gracegems.org/19/literature.htm
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Let us abhor the very idea of play-acting and mask-wearing in our Christianity!

(J.C. Ryle, "The Gospel of Luke" 1858.)

Let us observe how abominable hypocrisy is in the eyes of Christ. We are told that in the presence of all the people, Jesus said unto His disciples, "Beware of the teachers of the law! They like to walk around in flowing robes--and love to be greeted in the marketplaces and have the most important seats in the synagogues, and the places of honor at banquets. They devour widows' houses--and pretend to be pious by making long prayers in public." Luke 20:46-47

This was a bold and remarkable warning. It was a public denunciation, we must remember, of men who were the recognized teachers of the Jewish people.

No sin seems to be regarded by Christ as more wicked, than hypocrisy. None certainly drew forth from His lips such frequent, strong and withering condemnation, during the whole course of His ministry.

He was ever full of mercy and compassion for the chief of sinners. "Fury was not in Him" when He saw Zacchaeus; the penitent thief; Matthew the tax-collector; Saul the persecutor; and the sinful woman in Simon's house.

But when He saw Scribes and Pharisees wearing a mere cloak of religion, and pretending to great outward sanctity, while their hearts were full of wickedness--His righteous soul seems to have been full of indignation. Eight times in one chapter (Matthew 23) we find Him saying, "Woe unto you, Scribes and Pharisees! You hypocrites!"

Whatever else we are in religion--let us be true. However feeble our faith, and hope, and love, and obedience may be--let us see to it that they are real, genuine, and sincere. Let us abhor the very idea of play-acting and mask-wearing in our Christianity. At any rate, let us be genuine.

The hypocrite will have the lowest place in Hell! "You snakes! You brood of vipers! How will you escape the damnation of Hell?" Matthew 23:33

 8 
 on: May 21, 2018, 04:57:09 PM 
Started by nChrist - Last post by nChrist
________________________________________
The Patriot Post Digest 5-21-2018
From The Federalist Patriot
Free Email Subscription
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Hugo Chavez was elected in 1998 and established his reign by altering the nation’s constitution, dissolving the democratically elected congress and the nation’s supreme court. Calling for a revolution of popular democracy and equitable distribution of revenues, Chavez consolidated power to himself and to the state rather than restoring the voice to the nation’s citizens as advertised.

Not only did the dictator eliminate term limits and take control of all aspects of the government and the military, Chavez terminated property rights in his self-described “revolutionary socialism.” Private companies were expropriated by the corrupt congress in the name of public interest. Chavez declared his commitment to “the elimination of capitalism” and defined his view of property rights as the ability for individuals to have “their personal belongings, but not control of the means of production.”

Oh, and don’t miss the law implemented in June 2012 that allowed only government officials to own weapons and ammunition.

How does this relate to the current dictator, Nicholas Maduro? He was a bus driver. He became a union leader and Chavez loyalist who was elected to the puppet congress and ultimately appointed foreign minister and vice president.

In his own words, Maduro has declared to the suffering people of Venezuela, “We’re all children of Chavez!”

Given yesterday’s dreadful voter turnout of about 17%, in contrast to over 60% in years past, the 21 million registered voters of Venezuela clearly understand that their votes don’t count. The system has been criminally and corruptly rigged with a system of government that destroys their ability not just to achieve, but to survive.

Keep that in mind when you hear the laughable statements from jabbering parrots of failed policy like comedian John Oliver on his HBO “news” show, “Last Week Tonight.” Oliver, like more serious Leftmedia counterparts, claims that the reason we’re watching our South American neighbors languish is because the greatness of socialism just needs a new manager. No, it’s not “epic mismanagement” killing political foes or holding more political prisoners than China and Cuba. It’s socialist thugs.

American Democrats created the great Nanny State, birthed with Lyndon Johnson’s “Great Society28.” He knew that replacing the family and the dignity of work and wealth would corral votes to those who promised the goods. After the “fundamental transformation of America” failed miserably with eight years of Barack Obama, Democrats are now peddling the “goodness” of Bernie Sanders — guaranteed jobs, a basic income without work, free college, free health care … and the list goes on and on.

But make no mistake: Socialism fails. Socialism sucks the life out of its citizens and empowers corruption and squalor. Socialism has never worked, and it should be rooted out in the United States. Don’t be fooled or lulled into inaction. It’s an election year. Beat back the policies that fail and defend Liberty.

https://patriotpost.us/articles/56073-another-win-for-socialism-in-venezuela

MORE ANALYSIS FROM THE PATRIOT POST

    America’s Corrupt Collaborative Leftmedia31 — Last week, a trio of news stories reminded Americans that the Leftmedia is fundamentally corrupt.
    Saturday was Armed Forces Day32 — We remain the land of the free because of Patriot Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen, Marines and Coastguardsmen.
    Video: My Strained Relationship With Facebook’s Algorithm33 — YouTube humorist JP Sears has some fun talking about how Facebook keeps changing the rules.
    Video: Laurel, Yanny or…?34 — The White House had a unique take on the Laurel vs. Yanny debate. Trump hears…

BEST OF RIGHT OPINION

    Kay Coles James: Make Congress Prove It Can Curb Its Out-of-Control Spending Habit35
    Hans von Spakovsky: It’s Past Time for the Mueller Probe to Wrap Up36
    Tony Perkins: Trump’s New Regs Move Tax Dollars Away From Abortion37
    Ken Blackwell: President Wants Market Reforms to Reduce Drug Prices38
    Joe Bastardi: More Reason for a Climate Ambulance Chaser Watch: Summer39

For more of today’s columns, visit Right Opinion40.

OPINION IN BRIEF

Kay Coles James: “What if the total amount the federal government could spend in a given year was directly linked to how well our economy was doing? We could forge that connection if the government’s total budget (including all spending and special-interest tax loopholes) was limited to a fixed percentage of the nation’s wealth (defined as gross domestic product, or GDP). Under such a model, the government could only spend more money if the economy grew. And if the economy didn’t, the government would have to cut back on its spending. That’s the way my family operates, and I bet it’s how yours does too. … Now imagine that if the government ever spent more than was allowed (except in cases of declared economic or military emergency), across-the-board cuts would be imposed — with one important difference: Instead of starting with cuts to the programs we as citizens use, the cuts would begin with the salaries of the president, the vice president, and every member of Congress. That, too, is how the rest of America lives. After all, who among us gets paid if they don’t do their job? Under this model, our elected representatives would face the same workplace pressures those of us with a job do every day — perform or get no pay. … These procedural reforms may seem like a stretch but, as I said earlier, we’re the creditors here. If Americans were to demand such changes, they would happen.”

SHORT CUTS

The Gipper: “Speech delivery counts for little on the world stage unless you have convictions and, yes, the vision to see beyond the front row seats.”

Braying Jenny: “[Abortion] is a right that was established for women in this country more than 40 years ago, and if people don’t support abortion, they don’t have to have one.” —former Planned Parenthood president Cecile Richards to anyone who opposes $500 million in taxpayer funding for the abortion mill

Belly laugh of the week: “We are going to take back the country we love.” —Hillary Clinton on the misogynist and “deplorable” country she detests

Dezinformatsiya: “Let me say for the billionth time: Reporters don’t root for a side.” —CNN’s Chris Cillizza, which prompted this response from Michelle Malkin: “Let me say for the billionth time: LOLOLOLOL.”

Gun grabbers: “It’s time for America to find the courage to take on the powerful and fight for our own safety. We can’t wall ourselves off from the threat of gun violence — it doesn’t work. Nor can we simply arm ourselves against one another — that makes it more dangerous still.” —former Rep. Gabrielle Giffords

Gun grabbers II: “Congress must … act now to ensure that no other community or family must endure the unthinkable horror of gun violence. Our children deserve real leadership: a vote to prevent gun violence now.” —Nancy Pelosi

Alpha Jackass: “Let’s call it like it is: the horrifying inaction of Congress, slaughter after slaughter, has become a green light to would-be shooters, who pervert silence into endorsement.” —Sen. Chris Murphy

Non Compos Mentis: “What if no children went to school until gun laws changed to keep them safe?” —former Obama Education Secretary Arne Duncan

Late-night humor: “A lot of celebrities [went to] the royal wedding this weekend, like Serena Williams and the Spice Girls. But Yanni had to RSVP no. He said, ‘I think I got the invitation by mistake. This envelope was addressed to Laurel.’” —Jimmy Fallon

https://patriotpost.us/articles/56078-monday-short-cuts

Join us in daily prayer for our Patriots in uniform — Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen, Marines and Coast Guardsmen — standing in harm’s way in defense of Liberty, and for their families. We also humbly ask prayer for your Patriot team, that our mission would seed and encourage the spirit of Liberty in the hearts and minds of our countrymen.

Semper Vigilans Fortis Paratus et Fidelis

Nate Jackson, Managing Editor
Mark Alexander, Publisher

 9 
 on: May 21, 2018, 04:55:47 PM 
Started by nChrist - Last post by nChrist
________________________________________
The Patriot Post Digest 5-21-2018
From The Federalist Patriot
Free Email Subscription
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The Patriot Post® · Mid-Day Digest

May 21, 2018 · https://patriotpost.us/digests/56085-mid-day-digest

IN TODAY’S EDITION

    Trump calls for a probe of the probe, which about sums up the whole thing.
    China says it will buy more American stuff. That’s a start.
    Venezuela’s “election” Sunday highlights again what Democrat policies will do.
    The Leftmedia’s narrative in three glaring stories.
    Daily Features: Top Headlines, Memes, Cartoons, Columnists and Short Cuts.

THE FOUNDATION

“I know no safe depository of the ultimate powers of the society but the people themselves; and if we think them not enlightened enough to exercise their control with a wholesome discretion, the remedy is not to take it from them, but to inform their discretion by education. This is the true corrective of abuses of constitutional power.” —Thomas Jefferson (1820)

IN BRIEF

Trump: Time to Probe FBI’s Collusion Probe1


Thomas Gallatin

In the wake of recent reports alleging that Barack Obama’s FBI had a secret informant2 within Donald Trump’s 2016 election campaign, Trump has called for a new investigation. On Sunday, the president stated, “I hereby demand, and will do so officially tomorrow, that the Department of Justice look into whether or not the FBI/DOJ infiltrated or surveilled the Trump Campaign for Political Purposes — and if any such demands or requests were made by people within the Obama Administration!”

Seemingly recognizing the seriousness of Trump’s charge, Justice Department Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein quickly responded by requesting that Inspector General Michael Horowitz expand his current probe of the FBI/DOJ’s handling of the Hillary Clinton investigation to include the agency’s surveillance of the Trump campaign. Rosenstein released the following statement: “If anyone did infiltrate or surveil participants in a presidential campaign for inappropriate purposes, we need to know about it and take appropriate action.” It remains to be seen, however, if Rosenstein’s actions fully meet Trump’s demands. The obvious question here is whether the DOJ can be trusted to objectively investigate itself.

Meanwhile, more information has surfaced narrowing the description of the alleged FBI informant within the Trump campaign. The New York Times published3 the following three key details:

    The informant is an American academic who teaches in Britain.
    The informant sent a “curious message” to Trump campaign volunteer George Papadopoulos, offering to pay him $3,000 to write a research paper on “a disputed gas field in the eastern Mediterranean Sea”; the informant also offered a paid trip to London so they could meet.
    The informant sent Papadopoulos an email on September 2, 2016, writing: “I understand that this is rather sudden but thought that given your expertise it might be of interest to you.”

The Daily Caller claims4 to have identified the individual in question as Stefan Halper, a retired professor who had interactions with both Carter Page and George Papadopoulos. While not naming names, The Washington Post’s reporting5 seems to corroborate both the Caller’s and Times’ stories. A source for The Daily Wire notes6 that the DOJ and FBI appear to be leaking information to the Post and the Times rather than giving it to Congress, “all for the purpose of spinning an embarrassing story.” The irony here is that the reason the agencies have given Congress for refusing requested documents and information is concern over putting a source at risk.

In short, the trickle of information keeps these stories alive, for better or worse.

https://patriotpost.us/articles/56079-trump-time-to-probe-fbis-collusion-probe

Trade War Ceasefire?7

Nate Jackson

From the beginning, we argued that President Donald Trump’s planned tariffs8 were a negotiating chip with China. That became even more clear over the weekend, as China announced that it would buy “significantly” more U.S. goods and services. According to a White House statement9, that will include “meaningful increases in United States agriculture and energy exports” with the goal being to “substantially reduce the United States trade deficit in goods with China.” Let’s hope it also brings back some American jobs10.

Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin declared that the U.S. was “putting the trade war on hold” as negotiations continue, but U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer insisted tariffs remain on the table if needed to “protect our technology.” Good cop, bad cop.

Keep in mind that trade is tied together with negotiations over the nuclear weapons program of China’s puppet, North Korea11. The upcoming June 12 summit between Trump and Kim Jong-un is crucial, and sorting things out on the trade front with China is key. Hence other chess moves like canceling12 a planned training exercise with South Korea.

In short, this isn’t nearly as simple as the mainstream media sometimes portrays. Trump’s negotiations are all part of a long game.

https://patriotpost.us/articles/56081-trade-war-ceasefire

Top Headlines13

    Obama’s DNI: If FBI spied on Trump, it was a “good thing” for America (The Daily Wire14)
    Pompeo: U.S. will implement “strongest sanctions in history” against Iran (National Review15)
    Europe plotting to undermine new U.S. sanctions on Iran (The Washington Free Beacon16)
    U.S. scrapped training exercise with South Korea involving B-52s (The Wall Street Journal12)
    Russia makes bold move to try to solidify control over Crimea (The Daily Signal17)
    Trump names Robert Wilkie for VA (CBS News18.)
    House rejects farm bill19 as conservatives revolt (The Hill20)
    Maduro wins as rivals call for new Venezuela elections (AFP21)
    Obama’s former Ed Secretary propose nationwide school boycott until for gun control (The Washington Times22)
    Texas high school murderer may have had specific targets in mind (The Resurgent23)
    Policy: No, we have not failed in Afghanistan. Here’s why the U.S. should stay. (The Daily Signal24)
    Policy: With the delusion of U.S.-Iran harmony now over, what’s possible? (The Weekly Standard25)

For more of today’s news, visit Patriot Headline Report26.

https://patriotpost.us/articles/56084-monday-top-headlines

FEATURED ANALYSIS
Another ‘Win’ for Socialism in Venezuela27


Robin Smith

Venezuela held its national “elections” Sunday, and we’re shocked — shocked — to report that President Nicolas Maduro remains in office.

Food shortages. Parents leaving their children at orphanages to be fed. Military monthly pay at $10. No medicine. No toilet paper. Inflation estimated to by 653% with currency that is virtually worthless. Electrical blackouts. Add to this list a rigged election to keep a corrupt tyrant in power and you have the poster child of socialism’s failure: the country of Venezuela.

Why should Americans care about the implosion of this South American nation whose population of 30 million is smaller than that of California? That simple: Venezuela is the result of the policies pushed by American Democrats.

Since 1999, two million Venezuelans have fled. Crime is soaring as the masses suffer overwhelming poverty. The only people who have protections and provisions are those in power.

Venezuela remains rich in one particular resource: oil. But even that’s in serious trouble. In December 2017, America was importing 475,165 barrels of crude oil daily from Venezuela’s state-run oil company, PDVSA. That had fallen from almost 800,000 barrels daily just one year earlier. Venezuela is a nation with a capacity for vast wealth. But corruption metastasized and its government structure is killing this nation and its people.

How does a nation holding the world’s largest volume of oil reserves, as ranked in 2017 by OPEC and the U.S. Energy Information Administration, have such an impoverished people and unstable government?

When that question is posed to American Leftmedia outlets, the answer is “mismanagement” by its leaders. But these “reporters” are purposefully glossing over the real reason. Venezuela is on the verge of collapse due to the disease of collectivism. The Washington Post apologetically defends “a socialist system plagued with mismanagement,” but we can see the proof of failure in the very same piece. It catalogues 7,778 blackouts in three months, the surge of malaria, diphtheria, measles and tuberculosis, and rampant inflation that leaves a dozen eggs costing 480,000 bolívares — the equivalent of almost one week’s salary.

 10 
 on: May 21, 2018, 07:37:53 AM 
Started by Soldier4Christ - Last post by Soldier4Christ
God's Sovereignty

“And the LORD said unto him, Who hath made man’s mouth? or who maketh the dumb, or deaf, or the seeing, or the blind? have not I the LORD?” (Exodus 4:11)

This divine rebuke to Moses was occasioned when Moses complained of his inability to speak eloquently for God before Pharaoh. It is also a rebuke to each of us who would dare question God’s wisdom in making us as we are—even with all our innate defects and handicaps. With our very limited knowledge of God’s purposes and our very short-range view of eternal priorities, we are ill-equipped to prejudge His ways with us.

To those who questioned why a man should be born blind, for example, Jesus answered: “Neither hath this man sinned, nor his parents: but that the works of God should be made manifest in him” (John 9:3). As another example, when certain believers complained about the lethal illness of a loved one, Jesus replied: “This sickness is not unto death, but for the glory of God, that the Son of God might be glorified thereby” (John 11:4).

The steadfastness of Stephen’s faith as he was stoned to death led to Paul’s conversion, though at the time it must have seemed difficult for his Christian brethren to understand and accept. In another context, but stating a principle highly relevant to such questions, Jesus reminds us, “What I do thou knowest not now; but thou shalt know hereafter” (John 13:7). God is not capricious, but He is sovereign. Whatever He does is right, by definition, and whatever He allows is for a holy purpose. “Shall the thing formed say to him that formed it, Why hast thou made me thus?” (Romans 9:20).

It should be enough for now to know that He knows, and that when suffering comes for His sake, it is “for our profit, that we might be partakers of his holiness” (Hebrews 12:10). HMM

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