Friday, January 31, 2014


In Romans 5:12 to 14 and 20, we learn that sin entered by Adam, that death reigned during the 2500 years from Adam to Moses, and then the law of the ten commandments was added.

In Galatians 3:6 to 9 we learn that during the period designated “from Adam to Moses” (430 years before Moses received from God the Ten Commandments) Abram was justified in uncircumcision. (Romans 4:9 to 12).

During that same period, “from Adam to Moses”, we learn in chapters six to nine, in Genesis, that God, with a flood, destroyed all creatures on earth who were not in Noah’s Ark. That was about 850 years before Moses received the Ten Commandments and about 1650 years after Adam was driven from Eden, and about 420 years before God called and justified uncircumcised Abram.
And we read in Genesis 7:6 that Noah lived 600 years before the flood; before he entered the ark.
In Genesis 9:28 we learn that Noah lived 350 years after he came out of the ark.

In Genesis 1:29 and 30 we read that God gave fruits and herbs for man’s food.

In Genesis 9:3 God gave animal flesh for man’s food and instituted the government of man by man in Genesis 9:5 and 6.

In Galatians 3:19 we read that 430 years after Abram left Ur of Chaldees God gave the law; that the law of sin and death might abound (Romans 5:20).

Adam lived in innocency before he sinned and then Adam knew good and evil (conscience)—(Genesis 3:5 - Romans 2:15 - and Romans 1:20).

So Adam lived first in the “Dispensation of Innocence” and then in the “Dispensation of Conscience.”

This was under “the law of sin and death” reigning “from Adam to Moses.” Under this dispensation and reign God sent Noah into the ark and the rest of the human race to destruction.

Noah came out under the “Dispensation of Human Government.”

Again, about 1900 B. C. God gave up the Gentiles (Romans 1:18 to 28) and made a covenant of promise with Abram.

Thus began the “Dispensation of Promise.”

When Moses was eighty years old (Exodus 7:7) God remembered His promise to Abram and delivered Israel from Egypt (Exodus 2:24), by the hand of Moses; and then God made with Israel a new covenant at Sinai, the law covenant.

The law was added till Christ came (Galatians 3:19). So for 1500 years Israel was governed by the “Dispensation of Law.”

While Peter and the Eleven were on earth with the Son of Man preaching the gospel of the kingdom to Israel (Matthew 4:17 - Matthew 4:23 - Matthew 10:6 to 8), they ministered under the law. We might, however, think of the earthly ministry of Christ and the Twelve as the “Dispensation of the Son of Man.”

Christ committed to Peter the kingdom keys used on the day of Pentecost, and with the household of Cornelius. Peter lived before and after the death of Christ.

Then to Paul was committed a new dispensation, the “Dispensation of Grace.” (II Corinthians 5:17 - I Corinthians 9:15 to 17 - Ephesians 3:1 to 4). In Paul’s “grace” Epistles we have the revelation of the new creation and the one new man. (II Corinthians 5:17 - Ephesians 2:15).

Paul ministered before and after the fall of Israel. Here we learn that all of these servants of the Lord lived before and after, that is, in two different dispensations.

There are other ages and dispensations: which will follow this one; as the time of Jacob’s trouble is to be followed by the millennium.

A statement by Coverdale in 1500

  “It shall help you to understand Scripture if you mark not only what is spoken, or written, but ask yourself of whom, to whom, with what words, what time, where, to what intent, with what circumstances, considering what goes before and what follows.”

 How God Saves Men
Believing Christ DIED, that’s HISTORY.
Believing Christ DIED for YOU SINS and Rose again that’s SALVATION.
Read Romans 1:16, Romans 10:9-10 and 1. Corinthians 15:1-4

Posted By Cecil  and Connie Spivey 

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The Hope...- By John LaVier

The Hope of the Sinner

In Ephesians 2:12 the unregenerate man is described as "having no hope." However, though the unsaved man is hopeless, yet there is hope. But his hope of heaven and eternal life is not in some fancied worth or work of his, but is found alone in the Person of the Lord Jesus Christ.

Many have a false hope. Some trust to their character, morality, honesty or good deeds, but none of these will suffice, for God says, "We are all as an unclean thing, and all our righteousnesses are as filthy rags; and we all do fade as a leaf; and our iniquities, like the wind, have taken us away." The man who hopes to find favor in the sight of God because of any merit of his own is doomed to disappointment.

Others realize in some measure their sinful condition, but turn to some system of religion to afford them a standing before God. To Israel of old God said, "And Lebanon is not sufficient to burn, nor the beasts thereof sufficient for a burnt-offering." To all who trust in any religious effort, or put confidence in anything other than the blood of Christ, God still says, "Not sufficient." A man may perform a multitude of rites and ceremonies; he may be baptized, partake of the bread and wine, and observe holy days and Sabbath days; he may hope that any or all of these will save his guilty soul, but all is to no avail. The Word declares: "Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to His mercy He saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost" (Titus 3:5)

There is only one hope for any sinner, and that is in the One who died on Calvary's cross for the sin of humanity, Who was buried and rose again, Who now lives as the one and only Saviour at God's right hand. If the sinner will trust in Jesus Christ and rely alone on His precious blood and finished work, then he will have a hope. The hope of the believing sinner is "the Man Christ Jesus, who gave Himself a ransom for all, to be testified in due season." All that the sinner needs is Christ. Nothing more than Christ is needed, but nothing less than Christ will suffice. "Neither is there salvation in any other: for their is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved" (Acts 4:12

The Hope of Israel

We see Israel today as a people scattered and peeled, but is there yet hope for this once-favored nation? Romans 11:1 provides the answer. First comes the question, "Hath God cast away His people?" This question is followed by the divine answer, "God forbid." Then comes the statement of the following verse: "God hath not cast away His people which He foreknew." Though now for a season they have been blinded and forsaken of God, there is still for them a glorious future.

Israel's hope is expressed in the words of the Spirit-filled Zacharias, who prophesied, saying, "Blessed be the Lord God of Israel; for He hath visited and redeemed His people, and hath raised up an horn of salvation for us in the house of His servant David ... that we should be saved from our enemies, and from the hand of all that hate us; to perform the mercy promised to our fathers, and to remember His holy covenant; the oath which He sware to our father Abraham" (Luke 1:68-73

The above words of Zacharias were uttered by him at Christ's first coming. The nation, though, did not receive Christ. Therefore, the fulfillment of Israel's hope was postponed, and now awaits the second coming of the Christ. When He appears again the second time He will come as Israel's Deliverer, to save them from their enemies and from the hand of all that hate them. "There shall come out of Zion the Deliverer, and shall turn away ungodliness from Jacob" (Rom. 11:26 All Israel will then be saved. They will be planted again in their own land, and Christ Himself will be in their midst on David's throne ruling and reigning in righteousness.

The hope of Israel is the kingdom of the heavens established upon earth, with Israel in a place of supremacy. The nations today are in confusion because they are headless, but when the kingdom is here Israel will be at the head, and no longer the tail, and Israel's Messiah will be King over all the earth.

No fact is more clearly taught in the Scripture than that of Israel's regathering and restoration. "Hear the word of the Lord, O ye nations, and declare it in the isles afar off, and say, He that scattered Israel will gather him, and keep him, as a shepherd doth his flock" (Jer. 31:10 Just as surely as the scattering was literal, so surely will the gathering be literal. Israel will be gathered out of all the nations whither the Lord has scattered them, and will yet dwell in the land promised by God to Abraham and his seed after him.

Israel must first go through the awful time of great tribulation foretold by the Saviour, during which God will purge out their dross. Thus they will be prepared for the place of headship and responsibility which is to be theirs in the kingdom. They will be saved out of this time of Jacob's trouble when Christ returns as the Rider on the white horse. They will then look on Him whom they pierced and the nation will be converted. Israel's conversion will result in the conversion of the world. All nations will be blessed through Israel. "In those days it shall come to pass, that ten men shall take hold out of all languages of the nations, even shall take hold of the skirt of him that is a Jew, saying, We will go with you; for we have heard that God is with you" (Zech. 8:23) Then the fulfillment of the prophetic Word: "Arise, shine, for thy light is come, and the glory of the Lord is risen upon thee ... And the Gentiles shall come to thy light, and kings to the brightness of thy rising." This is Israel's hope.

The Hope of the Church

While Israel's hope awaits fulfillment, God is calling out the Church, the One Body of Christ. Israel has the hope of the coming kingdom, its center to be Jerusalem and its King the coming Messiah, and even beyond that they have the better hope of the heavenly city, the New Jerusalem, with the names of the twelve tribes on the gates thereof. There is, however, reserved for the Church an even more glorious hope. Already God sees us, as members of the One Body, seated in the heavenlies in His Son. "He hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus." We are already there insofar as God is concerned. We are there positionally in Christ our Head, and some day we will be there actually. "For our citizenship is in heaven; from whence also we look for the Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ: who shall change our vile body, that it may be fashioned like unto His glorious body." We look for the Saviour, and to be conformed to His image; to have a glorious body like unto His, a body sinless, deathless, incorruptible, clothed with beauty and splendor. This is the hope of every saint of God: "Christ in you, the hope of glory."

In the opening verses of Colossians 3 we are told: "Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth." Israel's hope is in things on the earth. The Church's hope is in things above. We have been blessed with all spiritual blessings in the heavenly places in Christ, and these heavenly places are "far above all principality, and power, and might, and dominion, and every name that is named, not only in this world, but also in that which is to come."

The Church is "looking for that blessed hope, the glorious appearing of the great God, our Saviour Jesus Christ." We wait to hear His voice, to be caught up to meet Him, to be like Him, to be for ever with Him. When Christ our life thus appears, we shall appear with Him in glory. Who can tell what is in store for the Church, then all glorious, and without spot, wrinkle, or any such thing? Then we shall be with Christ far above, at God's right hand where there are pleasures for evermore. Then in the ages rushing toward us, and to worlds as yet unborn, God will show forth in us, the Church, the exceeding riches of His grace. We will have an eternity of bliss in which to magnify His Name and to be to the praise of His glory. Even now as we contemplate the realization of our hope, it should make us sing above all the trials of life, knowing that any sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us.

Now blest in heavenly places,
In Christ at God's right hand;
And filled with all His fullness,
Complete in Him to stand.
Sing to the praise and glory,
Of Him who thus hath shown,
Such gracious love and mercy,
To call us for His own.

Also Read
Israels Future - John D. LaVier

Recovery Of Truth - O'Hair - YouTube

How God Saves Men
Believing Christ DIED, that’s HISTORY.
Believing Christ DIED for YOU SINS and Rose again that’s SALVATION.
Read Romans 1:16, Romans 10:9-10 and 1. Corinthians 15:1-4

(A 10 Minute Video)

 Posted By Cecil and Connie Spivey

E-mail this BIBLE STUDY to all your friends 

Thursday, January 30, 2014

The Haves and the Have Nots - By R. B. Shiflet

Almost all societies throughout history have been divided between the "Haves" and the "Have Nots." Efforts have been made to eliminate the distance between the two, but no one has been successful, including the Founding Fathers of our own republic.

We have heard the story (probably apocryphal) of Marie Antoinette, wife of Emperor Louis XVI, who during the dark days of the French Revolution was told the people had no bread. She allegedly replied, "Let them eat cake." In more modern times, Imelda Marcos, "First Lady" of the Philippine Republic, openly boasted of her closets full of shoes in the Malacanan Palace, while her fellow citizens walked bare footed down the streets of the Islands. More recently, we have read that federal monies designated to help the unfortunate flood victims in New Orleans, have in some cases been used for frivolous cosmetic surgery.

Unfortunately, there are the "Haves" and the "Have Nots" in the spiritual realm also. 1 John 5:11 says:

"This is the record, that God hath given to us eternal life, and this life is in His Son. He that hath the Son hath life; he that hath not the Son of God hath not life."

It is easy to see the "Haves" and the "Have Nots." If we have the Son, we have life. If we have not the Son of God, we have not life.

But how do we know we have the Son? Not by religion or ritual; not by works of the Law nor by our attempts to live holy lives. "These things have I written to you who believe in the name of the Son of God that ye may know that ye have eternal life." If we are trusting Christ and Christ alone for salvation, we are the "Haves" and we can know it. It is a sad fact that many who are "Spiritual Haves" do not have the assurance of their salvation. How wonderful to have eternal life; how sad to have it and not know it. Let us rest in the assurance of our eternal life (See John 5:24; 10:28,29; Philippians 1:3-6; 2 Timothy 1:12; Ephesians 28,9; Colossians 2:9-13). We can also be very sure that we have God's complete revelation today. We do not need Science and Health With Key to the Scriptures; we do not need the Book of Mormon, nor any of the other false "additions" to God's complete revelation. God gave the Apostle Paul the revelation of the mystery to "fulfill (complete) the Word of God."

To God be the Glory!

 How God Saves Men
Believing Christ DIED, that’s HISTORY.
Believing Christ DIED for YOU SINS and Rose again that’s SALVATION.
Read Romans 1:16, Romans 10:9-10 and 1. Corinthians 15:1-4

(A 10 Minute Video)

Posted By Cecil  and Connie Spivey 

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The One Essential Thing - by Pastor Cornelius R, Stam

The One Essential Thing

by Pastor Cornelius R. Stam

The place of the Word in the life of the believer is settled once and for all in the inspired record of one of our Lord’s visits to the home of Mary and Martha (Luke 10:38-42).

Commentaries on this passage generally point out that both Mary and Martha had their good points! This, of course, is true, but if we limit ourselves to this observation we rob the account of its intended lesson, for our Lord did not commend both sisters for their “good points.” He reproved Martha and commended and defended Mary with regard to one particular matter.

What, exactly, was Mary commended for? How often she has been portrayed as an example to us to spend more time with the Lord in prayer! But this is missing the point of the passage. Mary was not praying; she “sat at Jesus’ feet, and HEARD HIS WORD.” She just sat there, drinking in all He had to say. This was “the one essential thing” which Mary had “chosen” and which our Lord said was not to be “taken away from her.” Thus, while prayer and testimony and good works all have their importance in the life of the believer, hearing God’s Word is “the one essential thing” above all 

others. Indeed, let this “one thing” be given its rightful place and all the rest will follow naturally.
It is granted, of course, that we must study the Word prayerfully and with open heart, or it will have disastrous, rather than beneficial results, but this only goes to place still further emphasis upon the supreme importance of the Word of God, which we seek, by sincere and prayerful study, to understand and obey.

Video Archive - Les Feldick Bible Study

How God Saves Men
Believing Christ DIED, that’s HISTORY.
Believing Christ DIED for YOU SINS and Rose again that’s SALVATION.
Read Acts 16L31 Romans 1:16, and 1. Corinthians 15:1-4

(A 10 Minute Video)

 Posted By Cecil and Connie Spivey

E-mail this BIBLE STUDY to all your friends 

Wednesday, January 29, 2014


Be sure to read the Scriptures listed.

Between the death and ascension of the Lord Jesus Christ He gave what is called “the Great Commission.” “Disciple all nations.” (Matthew 28:19 and 20).
After He gave this commission the twelve apostles asked of Christ, “Wilt Thou at this time restore again the kingdom to Israel?” (Acts 1:6). So they knew nothing concerning the Joint-Body of Ephesians 3:6.

If this “disciple all nations” is God’s program for “the dispensation of grace” (Ephesians 3:1 to 4) all during the period of grace, during which period God is building-up the Body of Christ (Ephesians 4:9 to 13), and is to continue till the day of the rapture of the Body (I Thessalonians 4:13 to 18), why then the revelation of Galatians 1:11 and 12?

Why did Paul, in Acts 13:46, say what he said about twelve years after Christ gave the great commission? Paul said that the Word of God had to be preached FIRST to Israel, and then because they blasphemed and resisted the Holy Spirit (the unpardonable sin of Matthew 12:30 and 31 - Acts 7:51 to 56), and put the Word of God from them, he, (Paul), turned to the Gentiles. Read Acts 13:45 and 46. Read one of the most important key verses in the Bible - Romans 11:30.

Did Matthew 28:18 and 19 authorize the apostles to preach twelve years to the Jews, with the understanding that if they did not accept the gospel, the apostles were to turn to the Gentiles and disciple all nations because the Jews refused to be discipled? If so, what would have happened if Israel had received the Word of God? The Gentiles were saved because Israel fell. (Romans 11:11). What if they had not fallen? Do not hurry away from this question. Christ was raised to be Israel’s Saviour. Acts 5:30 to 32 - Acts 13:30 to 36). Israel received Him not. (John 1:10). Israel would not receive Christ in incarnation. (Matthew 21:42). Then Christ in resurrection was offered to Israel. But again Israel received Him not, but received blindness from God. (Romans 11:5 to 11). Then Christ turned Paul, with the gospel of grace, to Gentiles, (Romans 11:30 - Romans 11:15).

Some day all Israel will be saved and then again many Gentiles will turn to the Lord, as did Cornelius when Peter used the keys to the kingdom. (Romans 11:26 - Isaiah 62:1 to 4 - Ezekiel 36:22 to 34).

Israel will rise again and the gospel of the kingdom will be preached as a witness among all nations (Matthew 24:13 and 14).

But now Israel is fallen and the gospel of the grace of God is being preached to Gentiles because of Israel’s fall and unbelief. (Romans 11:11 and 30). Gentile salvation in the Bible must be studied with the rise and fall of Israel.

Paul received the grace gospel not from Peter and the Eleven, nor from the great commission, but by revelation from Christ. (Galatians 1:11 and 12). Compare Matthew 28:19 and 20 with Ephesians 3:1 to 4.

When Israel was cast away, God had a “new creation” program, with the new commission, the ministry of reconciliation. (Romans 11:15 - II Corinthians 5:16 to 18). Read these Scriptures. God did not turn from Israel at the time they crucified Christ, but later. (Acts 3:26 - Acts 5:30 to 32).

Because of God’s radical change from the great commission of Matthew 28:19 and 20 to the “reconciliation” commission of II Corinthians 5:18 to 20, we have the double “henceforth” of II Corinthians 5:16 and the “henceforth” of Acts 18:6. Read these verses and know the truth of Romans 11:30 to 32.

Then follows the record of the new program in this language: “For this cause I Paul, the prisoner of Jesus Christ for you Gentiles, If ye have heard of the dispensation of the grace of God which is given me to you-ward:” Ephesians 3:1 and 2.

God’s Word is “test things that differ.” The great commission and Peter’s keys of the kingdom of heaven are quite different from Paul’s dispensation of the grace of God.

 How God Saves Men
Believing Christ DIED, that’s HISTORY.
Believing Christ DIED for YOU SINS and Rose again that’s SALVATION.
Read Romans 1:16, Romans 10:9-10 and 1. Corinthians 15:1-4

(A 10 Minute Video)

Posted By Cecil  and Connie Spivey 

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The Great "I AM"- By Gregg Bing

The Lord Jesus used the expression, "I am," throughout the Gospel of John in referring to Himself: "I am the bread of life" (John 6:35 "I am the light of the world" (John 8:12 (John 10:9 "I am the good shepherd" (John 10:11 "I am the resurrection and the life' (John 11:25 >), "I am the way, the truth, and the life" (John 14:6 "I am the true vine" (John 15:1 etc. There is so much to be learned from these wonderful statements concerning our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, but in this lesson, we want to focus on the significance of these first two words: "I AM."
When God appeared to Moses in the burning bush and called him to lead the children of Israel out of the bondage of Egypt, Moses questioned God, "Indeed, when I come to the children of Israel and say to them, 'The God of your fathers has sent me to you,' and they say to me, 'What is His name?' what shall I say to them?" (Exo. 3:13 God's answer to Moses was, "I AM WHO I AM. Thus you shall say to the children of Israel, 'I AM has sent me to you'" (Exo. 3:14 The expression "I AM" is from the Hebrew "haya," the verb "to be." It is closely related to the Hebrew "Yahweh" or "Jehovah," a title for God which is found over 5000 times in the Old Testament. According to Strong's Enhanced Lexicon, this name "Jehovah" means "the existing one" or "the self-existent one." The Theological Wordbook of the Old Testament (by Harris, Archer, and Waltke) says, "It seems beyond doubt that the name (Jehovah/Yahweh) contains the verb haya 'to be.'" God's response to Moses, "I AM WHO I AM," might also be translated "I AM HE WHO IS," for it speaks of God's eternal existence. Thus, the words, "I AM," God's name for Himself, are very powerful words.
When Jesus used the expression, "I AM" in reference to Himself, He was, in effect, claiming to be God! He was declaring Himself to be equal with Jehovah, the eternally existent God. Those who deny the deity of Jesus Christ, assert that Jesus never actually claimed that He was God. They question that Jesus' use of the expression "I AM" was really a declaration of His deity. We have mentioned the more well-known uses of the expression, "I AM," found in John's gospel, but there are others that make it clear that Jesus was, in fact, asserting His equality with God.
In John 8, we find Jesus teaching in the temple (John 8:20 He began by saying, "I am the light of the world. He who follows Me shall not walk in darkness, but have the light of life" (John 8:12 In verses 13-19, the Pharisees disputed with Him regarding His testimony. Following this, we read, in verses 21-24,
"Then Jesus said to them again, 'I am going away, and you will seek Me, and will die in your sin. Where I go you cannot come.' So the Jews said, 'Will He kill Himself, because He says, 'Where I go you cannot come'?' And He said to them, 'You are from beneath; I am from above. You are of this world; I am not of this world. Therefore I said to you that you will die in your sins; for if you do not believe that I am He, you will die in your sins.'"
Please notice Jesus' statement in verse 24: "If you do not believe that I am He, you will die in your sins'" The expression "I am He" is more literally translated, "I AM," for the word "He" is in italics, meaning it is not found in the original text. In this verse, Jesus gets to the very heart of His ministry to Israel: the person of Christ. They must believe that Jesus is, in fact, the great "I AM," the eternal God, or they will die (spiritually) in their sins (cf. John 20:31

The Jews, in verses 25-28, questioned Jesus concerning who He was. Jesus' response in verse 28 was, "When you lift up the Son of Man, then you will know that I am He (or literally 'I AM')." The finished work of Christ on the cross also demonstrated that Jesus was the great "I AM." The many prophecies that were fulfilled (Acts 3:18 Jesus' humility and obedience to the Father's will (Phil. 2:5-8 the darkness that covered the land the last 3 hours before Jesus died (Matt. 27:45 the veil of the temple being torn from top to bottom, the great earthquake that occurred (Matt. 27:51 plus, the powerful testimony of Jesus' resurrection from the dead, all testified to the deity of our Savior.
The thief that was crucified with Jesus saw and believed Jesus was the great "I AM," calling Him, "Lord" (Luke 23:42 The centurion who superintended Jesus' crucifixion saw and believed that Jesus was the great "I AM," declaring, "Truly this was the Son of God!" (Matt. 27:54 Yet, the Jewish leaders of Jesus' day-the priests, scribes, and Pharisees-refused to acknowledge Him, clinging, instead, to their traditions, their religious system of good works (legalism), and their self-righteousness. They, like so many today, would not believe in the person of Jesus, even after He had finished His work on the cross of Calvary. What did Jesus say? "If you do not believe that I AM He, you will die in your sins." It was true then, of the Jewish leaders; it is still true today, of all who do not believe on Him!
As the confrontation between Jesus and the Jews continued in John 8, we find His deity brought into focus again. In verses 33-47, the Jews laid claim to Abraham as their father. Though they may have been Abraham's physical descendants, they were certainly not his children spiritually. Jesus boldly told them, "You are of your father the devil" (John 8:44 In the Jews' answer to Jesus, they asked Him, "Who do You make Yourself out to be?" (John 8:53 In His response to them, Jesus stated, "Your father Abraham rejoiced to see My day and he saw it and was glad" (John 8:56 "Then the Jews said to Him, 'You are not yet fifty years old, and have You seen Abraham?' Jesus said to them, 'Most assuredly, I say to you, before Abraham was, I AM'" (John 8:57-58

Jesus was saying, "Before Abraham ever existed, I AM!" He was clearly claiming His eternal existence, His deity. The Jews certainly understood this to be His claim, for "they took up stones to throw at Him" (John 8:59 believing His statement to be blasphemy.
The power of who Jesus is was also seen in John 18:1-9 when Judas led the soldiers to Gethsemane to arrest Him. As they approached Him, Jesus asked, "Whom are you seeking?" They answered Him, "Jesus of Nazareth." Jesus said to them, "I am He." When Jesus said to them, "I am He," or literally, "I AM," they drew back and fell to the ground. Why? They were moved by the power and majesty of the person of Jesus and of His glorious name: "I AM."
Jesus is not just another religious leader, as most of the world views Him today. He is not like Buddha, or Mohammed, or Abraham, or Moses. Jesus is, indeed, the great "I AM"-the eternal God, Jehovah! As He said in John 10:30 "I and My Father are one." He did not just mean that they were in agreement with one another, but that they were one in person.
Do you believe this wonderful truth? Do you believe in the person of the Lord Jesus Christ? Do you believe in His death on Calvary for your sins? Do you believe in His glorious resurrection from the dead? Or, are you, like the religious leaders of Jesus' day, clinging instead to the traditions of men, religious systems, and your own self-righteousness and good works? If so, it is just as Jesus said, "you will die in your sins."

 How God Saves Men
Believing Christ DIED, that’s HISTORY.
Believing Christ DIED for YOU SINS and Rose again that’s SALVATION.
Read Romans 1:16, Romans 10:9-10 and 1. Corinthians 15:1-4

(A 10 Minute Video)

Posted By Cecil  and Connie Spivey 

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A Faithful God in An Unpredictable World By Steve McVey

Jennifer and Paul were discussing personal problems they were having one day. Jennifer said, "I can't make sense out of life. You do your best. You trust that God will work everything out. Then life falls apart anyway. It seems like what I do makes no difference."

I understood her frustration. I've felt the same way at times. Believing that I've covered all the bases, I've found myself sometimes bewildered, sometimes depressed, and sometimes even feeling resentment toward God when things didn't unfold as I had expected. We often expect life to fit within our sense of human justice, but it often doesn't work out that way.

G. K. Chesterton said that one problem he had with Christianity has to do with cause and effect. He observed that ninety percent of the time life works on the basis of cause and effect, but the other ten percent it didn't. That troubled him.

When I read his comment, I thought how I'd be okay with the 90/10 percentages he observed. My life hasn't seemed to work that way. It has seemed to me that things haven't worked out according to cause and effect more often than they have. I've noticed the same with others.

A family I knew reared their children in the same way. One grew up to be a responsible Christian with a professional position. The other ended up in jail for selling drugs. One Christian lady I know prayed for her husband to bust Christ, and he miraculously was converted. Another friend faithfully prayed the same prayer for her husband. One day he came home and announced he wanted a divorce to marry the younger woman he had been having an affair with for two years. One friend I have was healed of a life-threatening disease. Another gifted friend who was an author, a preacher, and an intellectual, died far too young, in my opinion.

How are any of us supposed to get through such an unpredictable life? How do we remain at peace in a world where everything can suddenly change in a moment? Martin Luther embraced a verse that answers that question. It is the verse that ushered in the Reformation.

"The just shall live by faith." It's that simple. We must choose to walk by faith in God. We have reason to know that our Father is a loving God, so nothing happens in our lives that He doesn't permit. He is a sovereign God, so nothing happens that He can't control. He is an omniscient God, so nothing happens that He didn't already know about in advance.

The question is, "Will we trust Him?" Some Christians think that faith means if we believe hard enough, things will turn out the way we want. Their faith is in faith. It's an approach to problems that combines a mix of secular positive thinking with a religious flair.

Authentic faith isn't intense, religious positive thinking that is intended to produce a certain outcome. Biblical faith means that we trust in God. Period. Not in a particular result. Not in a happy ending. Faith simply means that we trust Him, knowing that whatever the outcome may be, life will still be okay because He is in control.

Are you facing situations that make no sense? If so, relax. God is in control. He loves you and will always work all things in your life together for good. Don't mistake wishful thinking for biblical faith. Faith means that we rest in the fact that we are one with Christ - that a loving Abba is our Father who controls it all --- that the Holy Spirit will sustain us no matter what happens. Your life isn't a result of cause and effect. Your life is Christ. He has it all planned already. So let go of your attempt to control your own destiny and trust Him. He will guide you safely home.

 How God Saves Men
Believing Christ DIED, that’s HISTORY.
Believing Christ DIED for YOU SINS and Rose again that’s SALVATION.
Read Romans 1:16, Romans 10:9-10 and 1. Corinthians 15:1-4

(A 10 Minute Video)

Posted By Cecil  and Connie Spivey 

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Tuesday, January 28, 2014

The Grace of Our Lord Jesus Christ By Gregg Bing

The Grace of Our Lord Jesus Christ Gregg Bing

What is grace? The typical definitions given include: "a gift we don't deserve," "unmerited favor," "God doing for us what we can't do for ourselves," etc. These are all true statements and valid definitions, but sometimes it helps us to look at examples from the Scriptures of what the word "grace" really means. One of the greatest examples we have is found in 2 Corinthians 8:9.
"For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though He was rich, yet for your sakes He became poor, that you through His poverty might become rich."
The "grace" of our Lord Jesus Christ centers on the fact that, "He became poor" for our sakes. What does this verse mean when it speaks of "His poverty?"

He Became Poor

Our first thought might be of Jesus' physical poverty as He lived here on earth. He was born in a small town in Judea called Bethlehem (Micah 5:2, Luke 2:4). His birth place was a lowly stable, where He was laid in a manger (a feeding trough for animals) (Luke 2:7). He was born to poor parents, Mary and Joseph, a man who was a simple carpenter (Mark 6:3). Their poverty was evident in the type of offering they brought when Jesus was presented to the temple at eight days old (Luke 2:24, Lev. 12:8). He was raised in Nazareth in Galilee, a small town with a poor reputation (John 1:46). He lived His life in material poverty, as it says in Matthew 8:20, "the Son of Man has nowhere to lay His head." He had to borrow garments, ships, a boy's lunch, a donkey, an upper room, even a tomb to be buried in.

Yet, this material poverty was only a part of the "poverty" the Lord Jesus Christ experienced for our sakes. The fact that Jesus lived a life of material poverty is not what made it possible for us to "become rich."He Became Flesh

When we speak of Jesus' conception and birth, we use the term "incarnation." This is not the term used for a normal conception and birth. Normally, a person's conception and birth constitutes their initial existence. By "incarnation" we mean that an existing person takes on a body of flesh. We read of the Lord Jesus Christ that,
"Inasmuch then as the children have partaken of flesh and blood, He Himself likewise shared in the same, ..." (Heb. 2:14)
John described it this way, "And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth." The "Word" refers to the Lord Jesus Christ, who has always existed "with God" and has always existed as "God" (John 1:1-2). This eternal person, God the Son, "became flesh and dwelt among us." This, in itself, is another aspect of the poverty He experienced. This humiliation or humbling of our Lord is described in Philippians 2:5-8.
"Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus, who, being in the form of God, did not consider it robbery to be equal with God, but made Himself of no reputation, taking the form of a bondservant, and coming in the likeness of men. And being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself and became obedient to the point of death, even the death of the cross."
Though He existed in heaven in the form of God, the Lord Jesus Christ did not consider it "robbery," that is something to be seized or held onto, to be "equal with God." Just think of the riches and the glory of this position He had in heaven with His Father. The Psalmist describes it in this way, "In Your presence is fullness of joy; at Your right hand are pleasures forevermore" (Psalm 16:11). The Lord Jesus Christ was willing to "make Himself of no reputation." This expression literally means that He "emptied Himself," not of His deity or of the attributes of deity, but of the glorious form and position He had with the Father in heaven.

The Lord Jesus Christ took upon Himself "the form of a bondservant," "coming in the likeness of men." He came in "the likeness of sinful flesh" (Rom. 8:3), yet "without (separate from) sin" (Heb. 4:15). He was "born of a virgin" (Isa. 7:14), thus He was not "in Adam" (1 Cor. 15:22) and He had no sin nature. He lived a perfect, sinless life on this earth. The Scriptures tell us: He "committed no sin" (1 Pet. 2:22); He "knew no sin" (2 Cor. 5:21).

Consider this aspect of Christ's poverty. The eternal God, God the Son, "became flesh." C.S. Lewis, the famous English author, compared it to "us becoming a slug." Such a step down from the glory and riches of heaven to become a Man and live on this earth is simply beyond our comprehension.

Yet, even this was not the full extent of Jesus' poverty. We could never become rich just because the Lord Jesus Christ "became flesh" and lived on earth as a Man.

Why then? Why did the Lord Jesus "become flesh?" As we read further in Philippians 2:8, we find that He "became obedient to the point of death, even the death of the cross." Jesus "became flesh" so that He could die; not just an ordinary death, but "the death of the cross." What does this expression mean, "even the death of the cross?"

We will seek to answer this question next month as we look at the third aspect of Jesus' poverty.

We saw last month that "grace" is often best defined by looking at an example from the Scriptures. The best example is that of our Lord Jesus Christ, as stated in 2 Corinthians 8:9.
"For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though He was rich, yet for your sakes He became poor; that you through His poverty might become rich."
The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ centers on this fact, that "He became poor" for our sakes. What does this mean? In one sense, Jesus' poverty speaks of His physical poverty as He lived here on this earth, but it goes beyond this. We see also that "He became flesh." The God of glory emptied Himself of the glorious form and position He had with His Father in heaven to become a Man and to live on this sin-cursed earth. (Phil. 2:5-8).

Yet, this was not the full extent of Jesus' poverty. We could never become rich just because the Lord Jesus Christ "became flesh" and lived a life of material poverty here on this earth. Why did the Lord Jesus "become flesh?" The writer to the Hebrews tells us:
"But we see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels, for the suffering of death crowned with glory and honor, that He, by the grace of God, might taste death for everyone." (Heb. 2:9)
The Lord Jesus Christ became a Man so that He, "by the grace of God, might taste death for everyone." Philippians 2:8tells us that He "became obedient to the point of death, even the death of the cross." Jesus "became flesh" so that He could die; not just an ordinary death, but "the death of the cross." What does this expression mean, "even, the death of the cross?"

Jesus' death on the cross was painful for Him in several different ways. The physical sufferings Jesus went through were terrible. He was slapped, beaten, crowned with thorns, scourged (whipped), and then crucified. Crucifixion was one of the cruelest forms of capital punishment ever devised by men. It was a slow, agonizing death (Jesus Himself was on the cross for six hours), the physical effects of which are described in vivid detail in Psalm 22:14-17. The public shame, the humiliation of Jesus' death, was horribly degrading (Heb. 12:2).

Crucifixion was a punishment reserved for the vilest of criminals: thieves, murderers, leaders of political insurrection; men such as Barabbas. Our Lord was spit upon, mocked, marched through the crowded streets as a common criminal, stripped of His clothing, and then taunted by the crowds who stared at Him there on the cross.

The personal sorrow Jesus experienced must have been excruciating for Him as well. He was "rejected" by His own creation, His own people (John 1:11)—those whom He dearly loved (Eph. 5:2). Even the twelve apostles, who were closer to Jesus than His earthly family, "forsook Him and fled" when He was arrested in Gethsemane (Matt. 26:56).

Yet, all of these sufferings were nothing in comparison to the period of silence that Jesus endured on the cross of Calvary. We read in Matthew 27:45-46:
"Now from the sixth hour until the ninth hour there was darkness over all the land. And about the ninth hour Jesus cried out with a loud voice, saying, Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani? that is, My God, My God, why have You forsaken Me?"
For three hours, from noon until 3:00 P.M., there was darkness over all the land. I believe that it was during this three hours that Jesus "bore our sins in His own body on the tree" (1 Pet. 2:24). This was the third and most difficult aspect of the poverty of our Lord Jesus Christ, that

He Became Sin

"For He (God) made Him (Jesus) who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him." (2 Cor. 5:21)
During those three hours, as Jesus bore our sins, He also bore the full wrath and judgment of God, all "for us" (Rom. 8:3). This is why we hear Jesus' cry out, "My God, My God, Why have You forsaken Me?" The word "forsaken" means "completely and utterly forsaken." The Son of God, who, up to this point, had close, continual fellowship with His Father, endured three hours of painful silence, being separated from God the Father, and His cry was, "Why?" The answer to this anguished cry is found in the prophecy of Psalm 22.
"My God, My God, why have You forsaken Me? Why are You so far from helping Me, And from the words of My groaning? O My God, I cry in the daytime, but You do not hear; And in the night season, and am not silent. But You are holy, Enthroned in the praises of Israel. Our fathers trusted in You; They trusted, and You delivered them. They cried to You, and were delivered; They trusted in You, and were not ashamed. But I am a worm, and no man; A reproach of men, and despised by the people." (Psalm 22:1-6)
The reason the Father had to completely forsake His Son is found in verses 3 and 6 of this Psalm. Verse 3 says, "You (God) are holy," and verse 6 declares, "But I (Christ) am a worm and no man."

Here is the ultimate step of Christ's poverty. During those three hours on the cross, Jesus was destitute, empty, completely alone. He had nothing. He had no one. He was rejected by His own, deserted by His closest friends, and completely and utterly forsaken by His Father. All that the Lord Jesus had on that cross was our sins! He went through all this "for our sakes."

Why would Jesus do this for us? Love!
"As Christ also has loved us and given Himself for us, an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweet-smelling aroma." (Eph. 5:2)
He loved us unconditionally, while we were still sinners (Rom. 5:8), and gave Himself "for us" an offering and sacrifice to God; an offering which was, to God, "a sweet smelling aroma." Jesus willingly went through these terrible sufferings for us, "that He might bring us to God" (1 Pet. 3:18).

Having endured these three hours of darkness, Jesus then cried out, in a loud voice (Matt. 26:50), "It is finished!" (John 19:30). Our debt to God was "paid in full" there on that cross. The payment weowed to God, "the wages of sin," was death (Rom. 6:23). When Jesus died for our sins, God was satisfied with His payment. He was pleased with the offering of His Son. God's holy and righteous requirements were fully met, thus God's gift of eternal life (Rom. 6:23b) was now available to all who would simply believe in the Lord Jesus Christ as their Savior (John 3:16).

Did you deserve this? Did I? Did anyone? No! This is grace! The "grace" of our Lord Jesus Christ is that "He became poor, that you, through His poverty, might become rich;" that you might become "the righteousness of God in Him" (2 Cor. 5:21). Yes, grace is "a gift we don't deserve," but now we see the terrible sufferings Jesus Christ went through to provide that gift for us. Yes, grace is "unmerited favor," but now we see the extent of the favor that God bestowed upon us. Yes, grace is "God doing for us what we couldn't do for ourselves," but now we see why He alone could do this work.

Do you, personally, "know" the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ? Have you trusted in Him and the finished work He accomplished for you on the cross of Calvary? Have you received His wonderful gift of eternal life? If you have not, you can do so, today, this very moment. You don't have to join a church, go through any ordinances, go down front and shake a preacher's hand. You don't have to "do" anything, except "believe in the Lord Jesus Christ" (Acts 16:31); believe that He "died for your sins ... and that He was buried ... and that He rose again the third day according to the Scriptures" (1 Cor. 15:3-4). If you simply trust in Him to save you from your sins, He will, the very moment you believe. This is grace!

Video Archive - Les Feldick Bible Study

How God Saves Men
Believing Christ DIED, that’s HISTORY.
Believing Christ DIED for YOU SINS and Rose again that’s SALVATION.
Read Acts 16L31 Romans 1:16, and 1. Corinthians 15:1-4

(A 10 Minute Video)

 Posted By Cecil and Connie Spivey

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Monday, January 27, 2014

The Fragrance of Christ - By Gregg Bing

The sense of smell, which is sometimes taken for granted, affects several different areas of our lives, sometimes positively, sometimes negatively. The difference is often indicated by the word that is used to describe the smell. For instance, the words odor, stench, and sometimes even the word smell itself, have a negative connotation. On the other hand, the words aroma, fragrance, and scent are almost always used in a positive way.

 One thing affected by the sense of smell is our sense of taste. For instance, the smell of freshly baked bread can almost make ones mouth water for the taste, while a person who has a stuffy nose and cannot smell a thing, will often say that most foods seem to have no taste at all.

 Another thing that smell can affect is mood or attitude. The perfume industry depends on this, for their aim is to design, market, and sell fragrances that can evoke feelings of romance or attraction.

 Smells can even affect our actions. For example, some odors are so strong and so disgusting that they can make people sick to their stomach.

 In 2 Corinthians 2, the apostle Paul is led of the Holy Spirit to use the concept of smell or fragrance to illustrate how the testimony of believers can affect the lives of others.

 Furthermore, when I came to Troas to preach Christ's gospel, and a door was opened to me by the Lord, I had no rest in my spirit, because I did not find Titus my brother; but taking my leave of them, I departed for Macedonia. (2 Corinthian 2:12-13)

 Paul first makes reference to a time of stress in his life. He had come to Troas to preach the gospel and, though the Lord provided an opportunity for ministry, Paul found no rest in his spirit. He had hoped to see Titus there, but the young man, whom Paul described as a true son in our common faith, never arrived. Though Paul was disappointed and somewhat distressed about this situation, he emphasized that there is always triumph in our Lord Jesus Christ.

 Now thanks be to God who always leads us in triumph in Christ, and through us diffuses the fragrance of His knowledge in every place. (2 Corinthian 2:14)

 The illustration Paul uses here is that of a Roman triumphal procession; a parade to honor Roman generals who won great victories in battle. The victorious general, when he returned home, led a procession through the city streets, riding in his golden chariot. The procession was followed by the conquered captives, most of whom were destined to die in the arena. During the parade the Roman priests would burn incense. The aroma of the incense paid tribute to the victorious general and his army.

 Paul thanks God for the triumph that we have in Christ; the victory that He won over sin, over death, and over Satan through His sacrificial death and His powerful resurrection from the grave (1 Corinthian 15:57). Because of His finished work on the cross of Calvary, the Lord Jesus Christ always leads us in triumph at all times, even in times of distress or disappointment. Not only that, but we can thank God that through us He diffuses the fragrance of His knowledge in every place.

 It is truly amazing to realize that God chooses to work through us, mere sinners saved by His grace. Even though we live in earthen vessels (2 Corinthian 4:7), God can fill and use these vessels as instruments for His service (Romans 6:13).

 Paul speaks of God using us to diffuse the fragrance of His knowledge in every place. The word diffuse literally means to make manifest or known. Like the aroma of the incense burned by the Roman priests bore testimony to and honored the triumph of the victorious general, so our lives are to bring glory and honor to our victorious Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ. The fragrance we are to diffuse is that of His knowledge, or, more literally, the knowledge of Him. This knowledge is found in Gods Word. This is why, as Gods children, we are told to: Preach the Word! (2 Timothy 4:2).

 For we are to God the fragrance of Christ among those who are being saved and among those who are perishing. (2 Corinthian 2:15)

 Believers are, to God, the fragrance of Christ. The word fragrance means a good smell or a sweet smell. The idea is seen in Leviticus chapter 1, where we read of the burnt offerings the children of Israel were to bring to the Lord. As the sacrifice was burned on the altar, the smoke that rose up from the fire carried a sweet aroma to the Lord (Lev. 1:9). As the burnt offering was a sweet aroma to the Lord, so Christ's death on the cross for our sins was an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweet-smelling aroma (Ephesians 5:2). God was propitiated (satisfied) through Christ's finished work on the cross for our sins (Romans 3:25-26). His holy and righteous requirements being satisfied, we can now be accepted in the Beloved (Ephesians 1:6). When we trust Christ as Savior, God places us in Christ by the baptism of the Holy Spirit (1 Corinthian 12:13). When God sees us, He sees us in His Son, and, we are, to Him, the fragrance of Christ a sweet smell of satisfaction.

 God also sees us as the fragrance of Christ in our testimony to others, among those who are being saved and among those who are perishing. Just as certain smells can affect people, the fragrance of Christ can affect people in an even more powerful way. We are to manifest the fragrance of His knowledge to other people. The fragrance we manifest is the same to everyone, the knowledge of Christ and His finished work of redemption, but the response is not always the same.

 To the one we are the aroma of death leading to death, and to the other the aroma of life leading to life. (2 Corinthian 2:16a)

 Some respond to the fragrance of Christ like the crowds who welcomed and cheered the Roman general as he led the victory procession. To them the aroma of the incense burned by the priests was a wonderful smell, a smell of great triumph, not just for the general, but for them as well. Likewise, to those who hear the Word of God and believe it, trusting in Christ as their Savior, the fragrance of Christ is truly a sweet smell. It is an aroma of life to them, and embracing it as such, it leads them to life eternal and to great triumph in Christ.

 Others respond to the fragrance of Christ like the conquered captives, the slaves who were on their way to die in the arena. To them the smell of the burned incense was not a sweet smell at all, but an odor of impending death. Thus, to those who hear the Word of God, but reject Christ as Savior and Lord, the fragrance of Christ has no attraction for them. It is nothing more than a smell of death, and they remain in their sinful state, perishing.

As believers, we must realize that we cannot control a persons response to the Word of God. As much as we want people to believe and be saved, we cannot force them. We can only diffuse the fragrance of His knowledge in every place we go. We can proclaim the truth of Christ and Him crucified. We can share with people the wonderful gospel of Gods saving grace. We can show people the joy and the great triumph we have in our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. What a tremendous service and responsibility this is! This leads us to question, as Paul did:

 And who is sufficient for these things? (2 Corinthian 2:16b)

 The answer to this question is given in 2 Corinthians 3:5: Not that we are sufficient of ourselves to think of anything as being from ourselves, but our sufficiency is from God. We must not make the mistake of thinking that we are sufficient, in ourselves, to do anything for the Lord. Our ability to serve the Lord comes from Him, and from Him alone.

 For we are not, as so many, peddling the word of God; but as of sincerity, but as from God, we speak in the sight of God in Christ. (2 Corinthian 2:17)

 Many in Paul's day (and in our day too) were peddling the Word of God, not preaching for the glory of God, but for their own dishonest gain (1 Timothy 6:5). Men like this have no concern for the truth and accuracy of Gods Word and will often twist and corrupt the Word if they feel it will be more profitable for them.

 Paul emphasizes that true ministry stands in stark contrast to these peddlers. We are to speak in sincerity, not for our own selfish gain, but for the glory of the Lord. We are to speak as from God, or literally out of God. We must remember that the message we have been entrusted with is the Word of God. It is not to be corrupted or handled deceitfully, but presented for what it is the Word of truth (2 Corinthian 4:2). It is also vital that we realize our dependence upon the power of God in our lives, yielding to His Holy Spirit to work in and through us. Finally, when we speak, we are to speak in the sight of God, being concerned with pleasing Him and not with pleasing men (Galatians 1:10).

 What about you? Are you manifesting the fragrance of Christ among the people you come in contact with each day? Or, is your life diffusing a different kind of smell an indistinct smell, maybe even a foul odor? God desires to diffuse the fragrance of His knowledge through you, a fragrance that will certainly have an impact on the lives of those around you. What type of impact will your life have?

Mp3 Studies By Pastor Gregg Bing

Ephesians - 06 - The Fullness of the Times

 How God Saves Men
Believing Christ DIED, that’s HISTORY.
Believing Christ DIED for YOU SINS and Rose again that’s SALVATION.
Read Romans 1:16, Romans 10:9-10 and 1. Corinthians 15:1-4

(A 10 Minute Video)

Posted By Cecil  and Connie Spivey 

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