Archive for the ‘Devil / Satan’ Category

You can/should be thankful if you grew up in a loving home with a father and mother and where Christ was honored and your parents modeled His love and the other parts of the “Fruit of the Spirit” (Galatians 5:22, 23). But sadly, many people never experienced this. You may have been verbally, physically, or sexually abused. You in turn may have mistreated your children or others as you were mistreated. Are you doomed to hell? Do you have to repeat this vicious cycle or can a change take place in your life and the lives of others? What does God’s Word tell us we need to do?

Forgiveness. We’ve all sinned [to a greater or lesser degree] and have come short of the glory of God (Romans 3:23). As such, we all deserve to be eternally separated from God in the lake of fire with the devil and his angels/demons (Romans 6:23; Matthew 25:41, 46; Revelation 21:9). But because God the Son, the Lord Jesus Christ, took our place and died for our sins…and rose again bodily on the third day, we can be judicially forgiven the moment we trust in Christ alone to save us (Ephesians 1:7; 2:8, 9; Titus 3:5). The only unforgivable sin today is unbelief in the Lord Jesus Christ as one’s personal Savior (John 16:8-11). Have you placed your faith in Christ alone to save you? If not, why not trust Him now? Don’t boast about tomorrow (Proverbs 27:1; James 4:14).

Sin. What is sin? Among other things, it is lawlessness (1 John 3:4; Romans 14:23; James 4:17; 1 Corinthians 6:9-11). What should all unsaved sinners do? “Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, who died for our sins…and rose again bodily on the third day, and you will be saved” (Acts 16:31; John 3:16, 18, 36; 1 Corinthians 15:3, 4)? What penalties are associated with sin? Physical and spiritual death (Romans 6:23; 13:1-7). What kind of people end up forever in the lake of fire? “But the cowardly, unbelieving, abominable, murderers, sexually immoral, sorcerers, idolaters, and all liars shall have their part in the lake of fire which burns with fire and brimstone, which is the second death.” (Revelation 21:8). “…fornicators, idolaters, adulterers, homosexuals, sodomites, thieves, covetous, drunkards, revilers, [and] extortioners.” Do you fit into this group? Many of us did. Is there any way for us to get out of the devil’s family and into God’s family and be judicially forgiven (John 8:44; 1 John 3:9, 10; Colossians 1:13; Ephesians 1:7). Yes! We can be when we get washed, sanctified, and justified in the name of the Lord Jesus and by the Spirit of God (1 Corinthians 6:9-11). Has this happened to you?

Action. What should a Christian who has sinned against God and other people do if he/she wants to receive family forgiveness and be well pleasing to God (2 Corinthians 5:9; John 15:1-10)?

  1. Honest confession must be made to God first (1 John 1:9; Psalm 32:1-5; 51:1-19). Keep in mind that doing this may not keep a person from the penalty of the civil government (Romans 13:1-7). The government doesn’t always do what is right but they are accountable to God (See James 3:1; Romans 14:12; Matthew 23:13-36; Isaiah 1:26; 5:20; 10:1; 2 Timothy 4:8; Daniel 4:17, 25).
  2. Then, if possible, one needs to go to the offended party and seek forgiveness from that person (James 5:16). The offended party may or may not grant forgiveness to the perpetrator. But a Christian should forgive someone who asks for forgiveness (Ephesians 4:32; Matthew 18:22). If we don’t, we sin by yielding to the temptation from the devil to have an unforgiving and bitter spirit that will damage us (2 Corinthians 2:1-11; Hebrews 12:15; Matthew 18:34, 35).
  3. The perpetrator (i. e. the sinning Christian) should realize that even though God promises to forgive him when he makes honest confession, God doesn’t forget what he’s done because He is omniscient (Isaiah 46:10; John 2:24, 25). But God won’t hold the sins he’s confessed against him (See Ezekiel 18:22; 33:16). Sometime in the future He will allow that person to be tempted in the same area to see how he/she will respond to temptation (1 Corinthians 10:13). The question is, Does the Christian love God more than the sinful pleasures of sin (James 1:12; Hebrews 11:25; 1 John 2:15-17)? Yes, there are pleasures to sin. Otherwise we wouldn’t engage in them.
  4. A Christian needs to learn how to overcome the sinful temptations that come from the devil (Ephesians 6:10-17), or from his/her own sin nature (Galatians 5:16-25; 1 John 1:8), or from the present world system (1 Corinthians 7:31; 1 John 2:15-17). There are different tactics that must be used with each enemy. (See https://kelseypeach.wordpress.com/category/spiritual-enemies/).

The abused person. A believer who has suffered unjustly because of the sin of another person can/should commit his/her soul (emotions) to God and trust Him to work out a bad situation and bring something good from it (1 Peter 4:19; Romans 8:18, 28). Consider what God did for the patriarch Job after he was viciously mistreated by the devil and his friends (Job 1:1-2:13; 42:10-16). Notice how Joseph responded to his brothers who sold him into slavery (Genesis 50:20). Think about Christ’s suffering at the hands of cruel men that made our salvation possible (Acts 2:23). God holds you and me responsible for His death too (Acts 4:27). Our sins put Him on the cross (1 Corinthians 15:3; Isaiah 53:6). Perhaps you didn’t know this. If you’ve been wronged, you should go to the perpetrator (if he/she is a believer) and inform that person of the injustice that you believe has been committed against you. If reconciliation doesn’t take place this way, you should take two or three other believers with you and try to resolve the issue. If this doesn’t work, the matter should be brought before the local church and appropriate action taken (Matthew 18:15-35; 1 Corinthians 5:1-13). By all means you should leave vengeance to God (Romans 12:19). God is just/righteous and will not allow sin to go without consequences that may seem severe to some people (See Hebrews 12:5 ff). We can count on Jesus, who will be the Judge of all men (John 5:22), to do what is right on judgment day (2 Timothy 4:8; Revelation 20:11-15). Furthermore, the civil government may also take action against certain crimes. It has authority from God to take another person’s life in some cases (See Genesis 9:6; Romans 13:1-7) Capital punishment is a deterrent to crime.

Unbelievers. These people, who rejected God’s offer of salvation (John 1:11, 12; 3:16, 18, 36), and natural revelation (Psalm 19:1; Romans1:18 ff) will be judged one day according to their works, not to determine their entering into heaven or not, but to determine the degree of suffering they will undergo in the lake of fire forever (Revelation 20:11-15; 21:8; Matthew 25:30, 41, 46). No human being needs to go there. Christ’s death made provision for all men/women to be saved (1 John 2:2; 1 Timothy 4:10). It is God’s desire for sinners to be saved (1 Timothy 2:4). Sadly, most people will reject His offer of deliverance because they love darkness more than light (John 3:19). Have you received by faith the gift of eternal life from God (Romans 6:23; John 3:16, 18, 36)? If not, why not today?

Help. If this article has helped you, we’d like to hear from you. To receive future articles as they come out, click on “Follow.” Please share what you’re learning with teachable people who are willing to change (2 Timothy 2:2, 15). Join us on Facebook Live and on Youtube for Bible studies.

Clear Gospel:  http://www.cleargospel.org/wp-content/uploads/English-Display-Pkg-2014.pdf

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“Getting To Know God Better”

As you may or may not know, I grew up in Japan for 14 years straight as a missionary kid right after World War II.  My maternal grandparents went to Japan in 1906 and our family had a presence there for over 100 years with the exception of the war years.  My younger brother and I attended the Japanese Peer School for a couple years with the current emperor’s younger sister.  Then we went to a missionary kids’ school where the buildings used to be part of the emperor’s dairy barns (That’s what we were told. It was quite an experience for us.)

Outreach. My father, Timothy Pietsch wanted us to learn Japanese and English so we could be more effective in reaching Japanese people for Christ.  So at our meal times we began by holding hands, singing a hymn in English or Japanese and then we prayed and gave thanks for our food.  During the meal time we learned Bible verses in English and Japanese.  We also had a map of Asia on the wall and had to learn some geography too.  I’ll never forget the capital of Afghanistan.  Do you know what it is?

Memorize. One of the verses our dad taught us is found in Jeremiah 9:23, 24.  It says, “Thus says the LORD: ‘Let not the wise man glory in his wisdom, Let not the mighty man glory in his might, Nor let the rich man glory in his riches; But let him who glories glory in this, That he understands and knows Me, That I am the LORD, exercising loving kindness, judgment, and righteousness in the earth.  For in these things I delight,’ says the LORD.”

Bragging. We all have a tendency to brag a little about ourselves, don’t we?  We think we’re pretty smart, at least “street smart” in some areas.  Others think that they are pretty strong.  It’s interesting how little children can manipulate their parents and get what they want by threatening them or putting on a scene in the store.  And then there are some rich people who think that they can practically get anyone to do what they want them to do if they are paid the right price.  You’ve heard the saying, “Every man has his price.”

Understanding. But rather than our boasting about ourselves, God wants us to understand and know Him and that He exercises loving kindness, judgment, and righteousness in the earth. God’s adversary, the devil want’s us to believe otherwise and constantly slanders God and His children.

Study. For us to discover more about Him, we need to study His Word (the Scriptures) to show ourselves approved to God, so we can be His workers who need not be ashamed and who handle His Word correctly (2 Timothy 2:15).  He wants His children to be prepared to give an answer to those who ask us about our faith.  This needs to be done with meekness and fear (1 Peter 3:15).

Discovery. Would you like to find our more about the true and living God?  If you’re going to brag, brag about God.  We glorify Him when we make Him known to others (See 1 Corinthians 10:31).  The god of the unbelievers is the devil (the slanderer) who wants to discredit God and make Him out to be that which He is not (2 Corinthians 4:4; See Job 1:6; Revelation 12:10; Zechariah 3:1).  He loves to slander God’s children too.

Worship. By our knowing Him for who He really is, we will be able to worship Him in spirit and truth (John 4:24) rather than worshiping ourselves or some other human being.  He alone is worthy (Revelation 4:9-11; 5:12).  One day every knee will bow and every tongue will confess (admit) that Jesus is Lord (i. e. the God-man) to the glory of God the Father (Philippians 2:9-11).  This is not teaching the heresy of universal salvation.

Deliverance. To be delivered from the lake of fire that was prepared for the devil and his angels/demons, and to enter heaven, we must believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, who died for our sins…and rose again bodily on the third day (Acts 16:31; 1 Corinthians 15:3, 4). Have you done this yet? Do you have assurance of your salvation? Do you believe that there is anything that a true believer can do or fail to do that would cause him to lose his salvation? If so, what would it be?

Help. If you need additional spiritual help, please contact us. If this article has helped you, please let us know and share it with others (2 Timothy 2:2). To receive future articles as they come out, click on “Follow.” Join us on Facebook live and on Youtube for audio/video studies of the Word.

Outline:  http://kelseypeach.com/Bible_Basics/The_Godhead.pdf

Attributes of God: https://kelseypeach.wordpress.com/2017/11/17/a-caricature-of-god/

Clear Gospel:  http://www.cleargospel.org/wp-content/uploads/English-Display-Pkg-2014.pdf

 

“A Caricature Of God?”

Several years ago when our late son, Bill came to visit us in California, we took him to the Fisherman’s Wharf in San Francisco.  While we were walking around we came across an artist who was drawing caricatures of people for a few dollars.  So we had a caricature drawing of him made.  It didn’t take long for the artist to finish his work and we still have a humorous memento of our late son.

Self Portrait.  Unlike that caricature of our son, God gave us a self portrait of Himself in the pages of the Scriptures.  Within it’s pages we also have His autobiography.  By careful study of His Word, we can come up with a pretty good picture of God as to who He is and what He is like.  It wouldn’t be like the picture that the little boy was drawing at school.  When the teacher asked him what he was drawing, he said, “It’s a picture of God.”  The teacher replied, “But Billy, no one really knows what God looks like.”  To which the boy responded by saying, “They will know what He looks like when I am done.”

Viewpoint.  When you think about God, what comes to your mind?  As A. W. Tozer said in his book, The Knowledge Of The Holy, “What comes into our minds when we think about God is the most important thing about us.” Believe it or not, our perception of God will have a big part in the way we think, feel, act, and react.  Are you open to getting a better view and understanding of God?

Attributes.  In our last article we considered who God is.  We pointed out that the Scriptures tell us that He is the Creator and Sustainer of all things (Genesis 1:1; John 1:3; Colossians 1:16, 17).  In His Word God tells us that He is good, righteous, omniscient, omnipotent, truth, holy, and love.  God’s adversary, the devil would like for us to believe that these things that God says about Himself are not true.

Good.  He Himself is happy and delights in the happiness of others (Mark 10:18; Matthew 19:17; Luke 18:19).  The devil told Eve that God was withholding something good from her by forbidding her and Adam from eating the fruit from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil (Genesis 3:1-6). After all, if they ate this fruit, they would be like God knowing good from evil.  This was true.  But the part about their dying wasn’t true.  If they ate of this fruit they wouldn’t have to bother God anymore each day by asking Him what would be beneficial (good) or detrimental (evil) to their well being.  His words appealed to her and she made the choice to eat the fruit and then she gave it to her husband, Adam and he ate the fruit too.  But rather than it’s being something that resulted in their happiness, it brought on them sadness and eventually physical death as they came to realize that they had been stripped and became aware of their nakedness (Genesis 3:7).  Violating God’s command resulted in not only their physical death but also their immediate spiritual separation from fellowship with God.  Furthermore, it caused their nature to become a sinful nature (disposition).  This sinful nature has been passed down to all of us through a stream of flesh (Romans 5:12).  None of us is exempt from this sinful nature.  We’re all born with one (Psalm 51:5).  No one has to tell a child to be bad.  It’s automatic.  This is why Jesus told the religious leader, Nicodemus that he needed to “be born again from above” if he wanted to have eternal life (i.e. God’s quality of life – John 3:1-15).  Do you have “eternal life” as a present possession (1 John 5:11-13)?  Do you have “abundant life” (John 10:10)?  Do you know how you can have these qualities of life?  If not, we’re here to help you secure them.

Righteous.  God always does what is right (Psalm 71:19; 112:10; 119:142; 145:17 ).  The devil would have us believe that God is fickle, vindictive, cruel, and unstable.  No, God is righteous and has given clear instructions as to what He wants His creatures to believe and do in each dispensation (See our “Dipsensations Chart”).  If we violate the rules there are serious consequences. “The wages of sin is death” (Romans 6:23; See Genesis 2:17).  The God-man, the Lord Jesus Christ is not only the Savior who provided salvation for all mankind (Matthew 1:21; John 1:29; l Timothy 4:10; 1 John 2:2), but He is also the righteous Judge (John 5:22; 2 Timothy 4:8).  Someday everyone of us will stand before Him to have our works evaluated to determine our degree of pleasure in God’s presence or our degree of suffering forever in the lake of fire (Hebrews 9:27).  The devil would like for people to believe the lie that man can become a god (Romans 1:25; 2 Thessalonians 2:11), and that heaven and hell aren’t real places to which people go. Some of his false teachers want people to believe in another Christ and another gospel that involves the universal salvation of all men (2 Corinthians 11:4, 13-15; 2 Peter 2:1 ff). Consider the heresy that is taught in John Lennon’s song “Imagine there’s no heaven or hell….”  It saddens my heart that so many people have fallen for this lie from the devil. Have you?

Omniscient.  God knows everything.  There is nothing hidden from Him.  He knows the end from the beginning (Isaiah 46:10).  He knows the number of hairs on our heads, when the sparrow falls, and the names of all the stars He created (Matthew 10:28, 29; Psalm 147:4).  He knows the hidden motives we have (1 Corinthians 4:5:Hebrews 2:14).  This truth can be scary to those who are doing evil but pleasant to those who are suffering unjustly (2 Timothy 3:12), knowing that God will do the right thing in the end and take just vengeance on evil doers (Romans 12:19, 20).  The devil would have people believe that God doesn’t know everything because, they say, that would violate man’s free will.  This heresy is known as “the open view of God” and is being taught in some churches today.  It glorifies man (humanism) and diminishes God (Romans 1:25).

Omnipotent God is all powerful and can do anything He determines to do except those things that would be contrary to His nature and essence (Genesis 18:4; Jeremiah 32:17, 27; Revelation 1:8; 4:8; 11:17).  God can’t/won’t make a rock too big for Him to move.  God’s power was displayed to the spirit beings when He created the heavens and the earth (Job 38:7; Psalm 8:3; Genesis 1:1).  But the greatest demonstration of His power was displayed when He raised Jesus Christ bodily from the dead (Philippians 3:10).  By His bodily resurrection from the dead, God the Father let mankind know that He was satisfied with God the Son’s payment for all our sins (Romans 4:25; 1 John 2:2; 4:10).  The devil would like for us to think that we can thwart God’s decree – His determinative will (Ephesians 1:11; John 6:37).  We can’t.  But we can and often do resist His desirous will for our lives to our own detriment.  We can grieve and quench God the Holy Spirit (Ephesians 4:30; 1 Thessalonians 5:19).  Are you doing these things?  If you are, don’t be surprised if you life is in shambles.  “There is a way that seems right unto a man, but the end is the way of death” (Proverbs 14:12).  Are you trying to fool others and deceiving yourself (2 Timothy 3:13)?

Truth God always speaks and tells the truth about Himself and about His creatures – spirit beings and human beings (John 14:6; 17:17; 1 Thessalonians 1:9; Titus 1:2).  His Word records the lies that the devil and men utter and many of the evil deeds that His creatures do.  Some of this truth about man’s vial character and deeds have caused some folks to relegate His Word to a class of literature that is inappropriate for some people to read, especially children.  The devil challenged the truthfulness of God’s Word when he said to Eve, “Has God indeed said, ‘You shall not eat of every tree of the garden’ (Genesis 3:1-5)?”  Did He really mean what He said?  He was the first one who interpreted God’s Word allegorically and tried to deceive Eve into believing him rather than God?  Have you fallen for the devil’s lies?  Do you have a distorted, caricature view of God, yourself, the devil, and mankind in general?  What method do you use to interpret the Scriptures – the normal or the allegorical method?

Holy.  God maintains His moral excellence and demands of others a moral excellency identical to His own (Leviticus 11:44; Psalm 145:21; Isaiah 6:3; Hebrews 7:26; 1 Peter 1:16).  Mankind naturally pursues the sinful desires that come from his sin nature.  All the “works of the flesh” are perversions of something good (Galatians 5;19-21).  Even after a person is saved and participates in the divine nature (2 Peter 1:4), he/she still retains their sinful nature and has the potential to engage in these sinful practices (1 John 1:8; Romans 7:15-25; 1 Corinthians 5:1 ff).  The Christian who tries to carry out a life of sin will have his/her physical life terminated prematurely (James 5:19, 20; 1 John 5:16, 17).  God usually takes other disciplinary measures before terminating His rebellious child’s physical life (Hebrews 12:5 ff; 1 Corinthians 10:30).  He can’t/won’t take His eternal life from His child (John 10:28, 29; Romans 8:35-39).  Are you His child or still the child of the devil (John 8:44; 1 John 3:9, 10)?  The devil would have us believe that God doesn’t really know or care how we live as believers (Psalm 10:11).  He wants us to believe that God will overlook our sinful behavior.  But the Scriptures tell us that “whom the Lord loves, He chastens, and scourges every son whom He receives” (Hebrews 12:5 ff).  If a “professing Christian” seems to get by without discipline when he/she sins, this one is illegitimate and not a true child of God (Hebrews 12:8).  What about you?  Don’t presume on the mercy and grace of God (Romans 3:8; 6:1)?

Love.  God seeks the highest well being of the objects of His love (1 John 3:16, 17; 4:8; John 3:16; 1 Corinthians 13).  His love for sinful mankind was demonstrated when One of the equal members in the Godhead volunteered to come down to this earth (John 3:16; Hebrews 10:7, 9), to add to His deity a true human nature and a real body (Philippians 2:5-11), to live a sinless life (Hebrews 4:15; John 8:46), and then to die as a substitute for our sins and rise again bodily (1 Corinthians 15:3; 1 Peter 3:18).  The devil and his crowd would like for us to believe that God was/is a dirty bully for sending His Son, the Lord Jesus Christ to die for our sins.  But Someone in the Godhead needed to do this so mankind wouldn’t have to be eternally separated from God in the lake of fire (John 3:16-18; Matthew 25;41, 46).  Have you responded to God’s love, mercy, and grace and placed your faith in the Lord Jesus Christ exclusively as the One who died for your sins, who was buried for three day, and then who rose again bodily on the third day?  Are you relying on Him alone to save you or are you relying on your good works or your faith plus your good works to save you (Ephesians 2:8, 9; Titus 3:5)?  Do you have assurance of your salvation (1 John 5:13; Romans 8:16)?  Is there anything you could do or fail to do that would cause you to lose your salvation?  If so, what would it be?  How secure are you? The devil doesn’t mind your knowing the truth about God and His love for you and His offer of salvation. But he’ll tell you have plenty of time to believe on the Lord Jesus Christ to be saved. The Scriptures tell us that our lives are like a vapor that appears for a little while and then it’s gone (James 4:14). “Do not boast about tomorrow, for you do not know what a day may bring forth” (Proverbs 27:1).

Test.  What is your honest perception of God?  Be honest.  Does it line up with the Scriptures or have you come up with an idol in your mind that is unworthy of the true and living God?  Are you trusting in the wrong Christ (Matthew 24:5)? By adjusting your thinking to God’s perspective (Isaiah 55:8, 9), you will be well on your way to a better quality of life if you respond properly to God and receive the gift of eternal life from Him by faith (John 1:12; 14:1-3).  You may choose to reject the Lord Jesus Christ as your personal Savior to your eternal regret and sorrow.  Unbelief in Him is the only unforgivable sin today (John 16:8-11; Acts 26:28). You cannot ignore Jesus without suffering dire consequences (John 3:18, 36: Revelation 20:11-15; 21:8).

Help.  We’re here to help those who are teachable and willing to change (2 Timothy 2:2, 15).  If this article has helped you, we’d like to hear from you.  If you have questions, we’ll try to answer them if we can.  “If you continue to think as you’ve always thought, you’ll continue to get what you’ve always got.  Is that what you really want?”  To receive future articles as they come out, click on “Follow.”  We’re also on Facebook live and on Youtube where we have audio/visual presentations for the glory of God and for the your good (1 Corinthians 10:31; Galatians 6:10).

Outline:  http://kelseypeach.com/Bible_Basics/The_Godhead.pdf

Clear Gospel:  http://www.cleargospel.org/wp-content/uploads/English-Display-Pkg-2014.pdf

I salute the brave, American NFL player, Benjamin Watson for his comments on one of the cable networks, even though they cut him off short for saying what he did.  He just happens to have skin that is darker than mine.  He said that the problem in the world today involves sin, not one’s skin color. He’s right. (Please refer to the article at the end.) Let’s talk about the problem called “racism.”

Image. Adam and Eve were created in the image of God (Genesis 1:26). That image was tainted when they ate the forbidden fruit (Genesis 3:6-11). It won’t be restored to be like God’s until the time of the Rapture of the true Church (1 Corinthians 15:49; 1 John 3:3). Do you know the difference between the image of God and the likeness of God?

Slaves. Many people, throughout human history, have been involuntary slaves to other people. This problem still exists in many countries, including our own in perhaps a different form. (One example: Human trafficking) The Jews were slaves in Egypt for hundreds of years (Deuteronomy 6:21; 28:68; Acts 7:19). Even after they got into the land that was promised to them as an everlasting possession (Genesis 15:18-21), they became the slaves of their enemies whom they allowed to continue to live in the land. God had told them to get rid of them when “the iniquity of the Amorites was complete” (Genesis 15:13-16; Leviticus 33:52).

Judgment. God used the Jews to punish the wicked, diseased, and immoral Canaanites who were living in the land that was promised to the Jews forever. Many years later God used the wicked Babylonians to punish the rebellious Jews for violating God’s laws and the Sabbatical years (See Daniel 1:1, 2; Deuteronomy 28:15-68; Leviticus 25:4; 2 Chronicles 36:21; Jeremiah 25:12-14; 29:10).

Opposition. God is opposed to man’s efforts to create a one world government and a one world religion. But He will allow a man (antichrist) to have control over it for seven years just before Christ returns to rule and reign over the earth for 1,000 years (Isaiah 9:6, 7; Revelation 20:1-7). If God let man have control over the earth longer than seven years, no one would survive on earth (Matthew 24:22). During this time, over one half of the world’s population will die (Revelation 6:8; 9:15). When Christ returns, He will be the King of kings, and Lord of lords (Revelation 19:16). These days may come a lot sooner than most people think. What about you? Are you living in the light of Christ’s imminent return (John 14:1-3; 2 Timothy 4:8)?

The Devil. He’s a cruel taskmaster and wants to take as many people as he can to hell with him. There is no salvation offered to him or his angels/demons. Christ only died for the sins of mankind (John 3:16; Romans 5:8; 1 John 2:2). This includes all men, not just a select few (1 Timothy 4:10). We don’t believe in “limited atonement.”

Voluntary Slavery. When people in the Old Testament times were enslaved to other Jews to pay off their debts, some of them found their masters to be kind and generous. When the time came for them to be set free, some of them chose to remain as slaves. To demonstrate their voluntary submission to their master, they had their ears bored with an awl. This left a scar that identified them as someone’s slave (Exodus 21:6).

Employment. In our country we usually have the freedom to choose for whom we will work in exchange for pay. Some people have good employers and others don’t. Regardless of what kind of boss you have, a Christian employee is supposed to do what the boss wants done so his product and/or service will bring in customers who will be willing to pay for them. The masters/owners/employers of the business also have responsibilities and are accountable to God (Ephesians 6:5-9). Every Christian is called upon to present his/her body to God as a living sacrifice so that God can use them for His glory and their happiness (Romans 12:1, 2). If you’re a believer, have you done this? If not, why?

Pride. There is the pride of race, place, and face. Believe it or not, there is just one race – the human race (Acts 17:26). We all go back to Adam and Even (Genesis 1, 2) and then through Noah and his three sons and their wives who didn’t die in the universal flood (Genesis 7, 8). The ethnic groups began to take shape after the flood when the Lord came down and changed their one language into many languages. Thus the work of building the Tower of Babel came to an end (Genesis 11). This is also the time when the continental shift began to take place and the topography of the earth changed (Genesis 10:25; See Isaiah 40:4). As the people with the same languages spread out, they began to intermarry and certain traits began to develop. Some people are proud of own accomplishments and their place/station in life. Still others are proud of their bone structure and facial features. All such pride is an abomination to God (Proverbs 6:16; 8:13). Learn about Lucifer’s problem with pride in Isaiah 14:11-15 and in Ezekiel 28:17. After all, what do you have that you didn’t receive (1 Corinthians 4:7)? “God resists the proud, but gives grace to the humble” (James 4:7).

Flesh. We all have a sin nature (disposition) that we inherited from our parents (1 John 1:8; Psalm 51:5). No parent has to teach his/her child to be bad. It comes naturally. It causes us to distort good things into evil things that can lead to a premature, physical death (James 5:19, 20; 1 John 5:16). Are you committing the “sin unto death” (1 John 5:16)​​? Do you know what it is? Hatred of other people can lead to murder as it did in the case of Cain and Abel (Genesis 4). But the Christian who is filled by the Holy Spirit (Ephesians 5:18) and who walks by the Spirit can’t/won’t fulfill the strong desires (lusts) of the flesh/sin nature (Galatians 5:16-25).

Conquer. Strife and unscriptural divisions are works of the flesh (Galatians 5:19-21; See 2 Corinthians 6:17). The devil can take advantage of this to destroy people and nations. He hates God and His people, the Jews and the true Christians. Don’t confuse these two groups (1 Corinthians 10:32). God is dealing with the true Church now, but His time clock with the Jews will begin again when the man of sin (antichrist) signs a 7 year peace agreement with the Jews after the true church has been raptured (See Romans 11:25; Daniel 9:27; 1 Thessalonians 1:10; 5:9; Revelation 3:10). We hope you won’t be “left behind.”

Anarchy. Today lawlessness (sin) abounds everywhere (1 Timothy 4:1-5; 2 Timothy 3:1-5). It’s going to get worse until Christ returns after the Seven Year Tribulation (Daniel 9:27) when 21 judgments are poured out on the inhabitants of the earth (Revelation 6-19). He will put an end to it when He comes and crushes His enemies with a rod of iron (Psalm 2:9; Revelation 19:11-16). His love for mankind (John 3:16, 18, 36) doesn’t keep Him from displaying His righteous anger and wrath toward wicked people, the devil, and his angels/demons (Revelation 6:16; 19:20, 21; 20:1-6).

Interpretation. We take God at His word. We believe that God means what He says and says what He means. Most Bible commentators take the Old Testament and the prophecies that were made about Christ’s first coming literally. But when it comes to Bible prophecy, many of them interpret it allegorically and twist the Scriptures (2 Peter 3:15). We believe that this is dishonest and makes God out to be a liar. He can’t/won’t lie (Titus 1:2; John 14:6; 17:17). We are not free to change the normal rules of interpretation just because we don’t like something that goes against our thinking or feelings. All of God’s attributes are in harmony with each other.

G.W.T. The Great White Throne judgment will be for all unbelievers. They will stand before Jesus, the righteous Judge (John 5:22; 2 Timothy 4:8). He will judge each one according to his/her works to determine his/her degree of suffering in the lake of fire forever (Revelation 20:11-15; Matthew 10:15; 25:30, 41, 46). We hope that you won’t be one who will be separated from God forever.

Gospel. The Good News that leads to salvation is that Christ died for our sins…and rose again bodily on the third day (1 Corinthians 15:3, 4). Anyone who believes on Him alone will be saved (Acts 16:31). We’re not saved by our good works lest anyone should boast (Ephesians 2:8, 9; Titus 3:5). We don’t believe in the universal salvation of all men and the devil and demons.

Final Solution. The injustice of “racism and slavery” won’t come to an end until Christ returns to this earth to rule as the King of kings, and the Lord of lords (Revelation 18:13). There is coming a day when all mankind will admit that Jesus is Lord (the God-man) to the glory of God the Father (Philippians 2:11). This verse does NOT teach “universalism” and that everyone will eventually be saved. “Now is the day of salvation” (2 Corinthians 6:2). Are you truly saved? Do you have assurance of your salvation? You can.

Help. We’re here to assist those who are teachable and willing to change (2 Timothy 2:2, 15). We can be reached through our website: www.kelseypeach.com. If this articles has helped you, we’d like to hear from you and ask you to share it with someone else. To receive future articles as they come out, click on “Follow.”

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Recently, while trying to put a water hose away, I was stung by some bees. They had been feeding on some flowers nearby. I invaded their territory and must have threatened them. Their stings hurt badly. Bees take a dim view of being stepped on and they have an effective way of letting us know about it.

Pain. “[It] can be a wonderful teacher. It’s just a pity that while we quickly learn to avoid bees, we tend to learn more slowly regarding sin. Yet the truths of the Bible, the testimony of the prophets, the teachings of Christ – all point to the same time-proven principle: Sin hurts. Yet how often we repeat even the sins which cause us – or those we love – damage.

Patience. “God’s patience at last ran out toward [some Jewish people in the Old Testament] who simply wouldn’t learn, people who continually hurt themselves and damaged each other by indulging in the same ways.” – Your Daily Walk, Walk Thru the Bible, p. 269

Consequences. Sin often has long term natural consequences even though we’ve confessed our sins to God.  Consider the life of King David.  Let’s learn from his and the mistakes of others (1 Corinthians 10:6). 

Victorious Living.  Would you like to learn how to be victorious over your sin nature, the devil, and the present world system? You can live victoriously if you learn how to walk by means of the Holy Spirit to overcome the lusts (strong desires) of the flesh/sin nature (Galatians 5:16), put on the whole armor of God when it’s needed to resist and overcome the devil’s temptations (Ephesians 6:10-17), and refuse to love the present world system that is passing away (1 John 2:15-17).

Chastening. Should you, as a child of God, act defiantly toward your heavenly Father, and resist God the Holy Spirit, and refuse to confess your sins to God (1 John 1:9; See James 5:16), you could be chastened and scourged by God the Father in a variety of ways (Hebrews 12:5-11). Because the carnal Corinthian Christians were participating in the Lord’s Supper in an unworthy way, they were chastened with weakness, sickness, and some even died prematurely (1 Corinthians 11:30).

Potential. We have potential years and actual years. At the time of our salvation, we were made to participate in the divine nature (2 Peter 1:3), but we still have a sinful nature (1 John 1:8; Romans 7:14-25). We also have the potential to engage in the works of the flesh that are perversions of good things (Galatians 5:19-21).

Quote. “Without exception, every one of [the works of the flesh  Galatians 5:19-21] is a perversion of something which is in itself good. Immorality, impurity, licentiousness are perversions of the sexual instinct which is in itself a lovely thing and part of love. Idolatry is a perversion of worship, and was begun as an aid to worship. Sorcery is a perversion of the use of healing drugs in medicine. Envy, jealousy, and strife are perversions of that noble ambition and desire to do well which can be a spur to greatness. Enmity and anger are a perversion of that righteous indignation without which the passion for goodness cannot exist. Dissension and the party spirit are a perversion of the devotion to principle which can produce the martyr.  Drunkenness and carousing are the perversion of the happy joy of social fellowship and of the things which men can happily and legitimately enjoy. Nowhere is there better illustrated the power of evil to take beauty and to twist it into ugliness, to take the finest things and to make them an avenue for sin. The awfulness of the power of sin lies precisely in its ability to take the raw material of potential goodness and turn it into the material of evil” (Flesh and Spirit by William Barclay, page 39).

Value. Among other things, the Old Testament serves as a negative example for us not to engage in the same sins the Jews did lest we be judged as they were (1 Corinthians 10:6, 11). Our discipline, as Christians, is limited to this life because we won’t be condemned later with the unsaved people of this world (1 Corinthians 11:32; See John 3:18, 36).

Stinger. “’O Death, where is your sting? O Hades, where is your victory?’ The sting of death is sin, and the strength of sin is the Law. But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ” (1 Corinthians 15:56, 57).

Deliverance. If you’re not a Christian, “Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, who died for your sins…and rose again bodily on the third day, and you will be saved [from eternal condemnation]” (Acts 16:31; 1 Corinthians 15:3, 4; Matthew 25:41, 46; John 3:16, 18, 36).

Help. If you need additional help, we can be reached through our website: www.kelseypeach.com.  We’d like to know if this has helped you. To receive future articles as they come out, click on “Follow.”

 

 

 1 Peter 5:8, 9

When it comes to the subject of the devil, two mistakes are often made by many people, including Christians. Some folks joke about him while others ignore him. Both of these responses are dangerous positions to take.

Warning. The Apostle Paul warned Timothy that in the latter times some people would depart from the faith and give heed to deceiving spirits and doctrines of demons. They would speak lies in hypocrisy, having their consciences seared with a hot iron. They would tell people not to marry and abstain from foods which God created to be received with thanksgiving by those who believe and know the truth (1 Timothy 4:1-5; See Acts 10:14, 28). He told Timothy to preach the word with authority and to be ready in season and out of season because many people would seek to follow teachers with itching ears who would tell the people what they want to hear (2 Timothy 4:1-4).

Ignorance. The Apostle Peter, having given in to a temptation from the devil to play the role of a coward (Luke 22:31, 32; Matthew 26:74), was well aware of Satan’s tactics. They seem to be intensifying in our day and we need to know the truth about him so we who are true Christians can resist and overcome him (James 4:7; 1 Peter 5:8, 9; 1 John 4:4) after we have put on the whole armor of God (Ephesians 6:10-17). Let’s not be ignorant of his tactics (2 Corinthians 2:11).

Satan’s Activities

Independence. He seeks to provoke believers to rely on themselves rather than on God (See John 15:5; 1 Corinthians 4:7; Philippians 4:13). As a result of King David’s yielding to Satan’s solicitation to number and rely on his troops rather than on God Himself, 70,000 Israelite men died (1 Chronicles 21:1). The leaders of the world have made and will make decisions to engage in unjust wars and in the future billions of people will die. Do you know how many people will die during the seven years of the Tribulation when the devil, the anti-Christ, and the false prophet are in charge? It will be over ½ of the world’s population (Revelation 6:8; 9:15). If God allowed them to have power for more than seven years, no one would survive (Matthew 24:22). By the way, not all wars are unjust and some have been ordered by God Himself (Deuteronomy 20:17-20). God gave the wicked nations in the land of Canaan 400 years to repent but they didn’t (Genesis 15:16; Leviticus 18:24). God is long suffering and wants people to be saved (2 Peter 3:9; 1 Timothy 2:4). But there will come a day when He will judge the unrepentant and unbelievers (John 5:22; 2 Timothy 4:8). You and I can cause great harm to others too if we act like the heathen and the Israelites who sacrificed their live babies to the pagan god Molech (Leviticus 18:21; Jeremiah 32:35). Can God forgive the sin of murder and other sins (Exodus 20:13; 1 Corinthians 6:9-11)? Yes! He forgave King David, King Manasseh, and the Apostle Paul (2 Samuel 12:9; 2 Chronicles 33:1-20; Acts 8:1-3).

Victims. He roams the world to find victims to overwhelm (1 Peter 5:8). He’d like for believers to become bitter and have an unforgiving spirit (Hebrews 12:15; 2 Corinthians 2:10, 11) and get them to curse God and die for not protecting them from harm and danger (Job 2:9). The patriarch Job was an upright man and became the object of Satan’s abuse. He was allowed by God to strip Job of his children, his wealth, and his health (Job 1, 2). He became a prime example of our need to trust God even when things are going badly (Proverbs 3:5, 6; 1 Thessalonians 5:18). Do you do this?

Blindness. The Scriptures talk about three kinds of spiritual blindness: Natural blindness. This keeps all unbelievers from understanding many things in the Scriptures or think of them as simply being foolish (1 Corinthians 1:18-25; 2:14; 3:19). Satanic blindness. He spiritually blinds the minds of unbelievers to prevent them from understanding the power of the Gospel to save Jews and non-Jews (2 Corinthians 4:4; Romans 1:16, 17). Judicial blindness. This was imposed on the Jewish people because of their rejection of their promised Messiah (Romans 11:25; Matthew 27:25). Only God Himself can remove these three blinds from people’s spiritual eyes after the Gospel has been presented to them by a human agent (1 John 4:4; Romans 1:16).

Darts. Satan has in his arsenal 14 fiery, mental darts that he directs at a believer’s mind but only if God allows it (Ephesians 6:10-17). Disappointment, discouragement, doubt are very effective tools he uses to bring Christians down and cause them to lose their power from God (Philippians 3:10; 4:13). Do you know what the other 11 temptations are and how to overcome them? They are not to be confused with the temptations that come from our old sin nature (Galatians 5:19-21; See 1 john 1:8) or from the present world system (1 John 2:15-17; 1 Corinthians 7:31; Genesis 4:17-24).

Hinder. Whenever he can, he tries to hinder those who are engaged in the work of evangelizing the lost with the Gospel of Christ (1 Corinthians 15:3, 4) and the edification of believers (1 Thessalonians 5:11) for their work of service (1 Thessalonians 2:18; 1 Peter 4:10). He encourages and promotes greedy, false teachers who do his bidding (Ephesians 2:2; 2 Timothy 3:1-9). Beware of the “health, wealth, and happiness preachers” (2 Peter 2:15; Jude 1:11; Revelation 2:14).

Doubt. He undermines the Word of God by casting doubt on it (Genesis 3:1). He often uses false teachers to twist the Scriptures (2 Peter 3:16). Many of them use the allegorical rather than the normal, historical, grammatical method of interpreting the Scriptures (Matthew 13:19; Genesis 3:1).

Angel. Believe it or not, he can transform himself into an angel of light so as to try to deceive other good angels (2 Corinthians 11:14). He drew 1/3 of the angels with him in his rebellion against God (Revelation 12:4). They became demons and are destined for the eternal lake of fire (Matthew 25:41, 46). This Biblical teaching stands in sharp contrast to the false teachers who teach and promote the “universal reconciliation” (salvation) of all of God’s creatures in the end.

Satan’s Future

Abyss. After the seven years of the tribulation (Daniel 9:27; See Jeremiah 30:7; Matthew 24:15ff) the devil will be captured by a low ranking angel and will be bound in the Abyss for 1,000 years while the Lord Jesus Christ rules on/over the earth (Revelation 20:1-6; Isaiah 9:6, 7). But when the 1,000 years are over the devil will be released from the Abyss for a brief time. He will gather to himself those who inwardly rebelled against Christ during His 1,000 year reign on earth (Revelation 20:7-9). Then Christ will cast the devil, his angels (demons) and the unbelievers into the lake of fire where they will suffer forever (Revelation 20:10). God is a righteous and holy God and must/will sentence the unbelievers to that awful place. There are no second chances to be saved once a person dies (Hebrews 9:27). Don’t be misled by false teachers who teach otherwise. God cannot lie (Titus 1:2). His Word is truth (John 17:17).

Conclusion: Therefore, if you still are a child of the devil (John 8:44; 1 John 3:9, 10), you need to be “born again from above” (John 3:3-6) so you can become a child of God by faith in the Lord Jesus Christ who died for your sins…and rose again bodily on the third day (Acts 16:31; 1 Corinthians 15:3, 4). Believers need to “Be sober, be vigilant; because our adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour. [Having submitted yourself to God, and having put on the whole armor of God], resist him, steadfast in the faith, knowing that the same sufferings are experienced by your brotherhood in the world” (1 Peter 5:8, 9; James 4:7; Ephesians 6:10-17).

Help. If this article has helped you, we’d like to hear from you. You may contact us at 805-238-3549 or through our website: www.kelseypeach.com. If you’d like to receive future articles as they come out, click on “Follow.”

     “What comes into our minds when we think about God is the most important thing about us…Were we able to extract from any man a complete answer to the question, ‘What comes into your mind when you think about God?’ we might predict with certainly the spiritual future of that man.  Were we able to know exactly what our most influential religious leaders think of God today, we might be able with some precision to foretell where the Church will stand tomorrow…The man who comes to a right belief of God is relieved of ten thousand temporal problems…The essence of idolatry is the entertainment of thoughts about God that are unworthy of Him.” – The Knowledge Of The Holy, by A. W. Tozer, Harper and Rowe, Publishers. Chapter 1.

There is no doubt about it.  “The Shack” (the book and the movie) by William Paul Young, and his book “Lies We Believe About God” have a lot of people talking and wondering.  Are the things he says in his books and the movie biblical or diabolical?   What should we use to evaluate them?  What does he believe and teach about the true and living God of the Scriptures?  Does the way he portrays the members in the Godhead differ dramatically from the way the Scriptures portray God?  What does Paul Young really believe and teach about man, salvation, and his future destiny?  What about sin and the way it affects man?  Do the Scriptures teach universal reconciliation and the ultimate salvation of all men including the devil and demons?  What’s the big deal anyway?  What relationship did Dr. James B. DeYoung, who wrote “Burning Down The Shack” once have with William Paul Young?  Is the movie anti-Christian, anti-family, and anti-American?

David Steele writes, “Paul Young has shared openly and honestly about some of the hurts in his life. Pain and suffering, while inevitable in this life are regrettable realities. The dark night of the soul will likely affect most of us. And so we sympathize with Young and his Great Sadness and pray that God will minister in deep and abiding ways. But no amount of personal tragedy or loss can excuse the propagation of false views of God.”

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