Archive for the ‘Spiritual Gifts’ Category

How To Develop An Evangelistic Lifestyle

Perhaps you’re among those who think that the work of evangelism should be left up to “Clerical George” and his staff. After all, isn’t that what most churches pay him to do? Or is he supposed to teach other Christians how they too can have the joy of bringing spiritual babies into God’s family?

God’s Word makes it plain to us that if we, as Christians, want to bring glory to God, we need to be involved in leading other lost people to Christ so they can be saved from having to spend eternity with the devil and his angels/demons in the lake of fire (Mark 16:15; Acts 1:8; 1 Timothy 2:4; Matthew 25:30, 41 46). “So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word [Gospel] of God” (Romans 10:17; 1:16, 17; 1 Corinthians 15:3, 4).

Andrew led his brother Peter to the Lord (John 1:41, 42). Peter, in turn, led thousands of Jews and non-Jews to the Lord (Acts 2:41; 10; 11). Have you ever led anyone to the Lord to be saved? Would you like to learn how to do that?

Many Christians, especially new converts, would like to have the joy of leading others (perhaps family members, friends, or fellow workers) to Christ, and earning the “Crown of Rejoicing” and other crowns to present to Christ when they see Him at the Bema Seat Judgment (1 Thessalonians 2:19, 20; 2 Corinthians 5:10; Revelation 4:10). What do you know about these crowns and how to earn them?

Sadly, most Christians aren’t taught how to lead others to Christ so they can be saved, or they yield to Satan’s temptation to be timid and fearful (Luke 22:32-34; 56-62; 1 Corinthians 2:3; 2 Timothy 1:7; 1 Peter 5:8). When Jesus ascended back to heaven, He gave “spiritual gifts” to the Church. They included Evangelists and Pastor/teachers (Ephesians 4:11; See also Romans 12; 1 Corinthians 12-14; 1 Peter 4:10). Some gifts were temporary until the Scriptures were completed; others are extant (1 Corinthians 13:8-13). Evangelists (spiritual obstetricians) will be most successful in leading others to Christ for salvation. But they also can be used by God to teach other believers how to do the work of evangelism. Pastor/teachers (spiritual pediatricians) will be most effective in the spiritual growth of new believers.  (If you don’t know what your spiritual gift is, contact us for more information.)

Here are some helpful suggestions from an evangelist for us to consider:

People. We need to see them as Jesus did. They were like sheep without a shepherd (Matthew 9:36; 14:14). As He was finishing up His mission on earth, He looked over the city of Jerusalem and wept over them (Matthew 23:37-39). Have you ever wept over lost people? “He came to His own, but His own did not receive Him. But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become the children of God, to those who believe in His name” (John 1:11, 12). How do you see the people around you – with love or with indifference?

Obey. Too often we make excuses for not doing the things we know God wants us to do. Even some of the great heroes of the faith had their moments of timidity. Negative examples include: Moses (Exodus 3:11); Jeremiah (1:6); Jonah (1:3). But we also have some positive examples to follow: Isaiah (6:8), Peter (Acts 2:14 ff); Paul (2 Timothy 2:8-10).

Prayer. We have eight ways to communicate with God: worship, praise, thanksgiving, supplication, intercession, asking in Jesus’ name, confession, and making vows. Our Lord communicated constantly with His Father. God has opened up many doors and opportunities for us which He wants us to enter (Revelation 3:8; 1 Corinthians 16:9). With the needs of others as great as they are, we should pray for more workers (Matthew 9:37), and that God would stimulate us and other believers to be faithful, available, teachable, flexible, resilient, evangelistic, and enthusiastic (F.A.T.F.R.E.E.).  If you’re a Christian, which of these areas need the most attention? How is your prayer life? Is it limited to “asking and receiving”?

Contact. Wherever we go, we can usually find people in our neighborhood, in the marketplace, or in the workplace. We could/should keep songs like these in our hearts: “Rescue The Perishing” or “Give Me A Passion For Souls.” A Christian who is filled with Holy Spirit will have a speaking, singing, thankful, and submissive heart (Ephesians 5:18-21). How is you heart’s condition?

Be Bold. One of the devil’s tactics is to roar like a lion and to try to intimidate believers (1 Peter 5:8). He overcame the Apostle Peter who denied the Lord three times (Luke 22:31-32, 54-62). But after he got turned around, Peter was instrumental in leading 3,000 Jews to the Lord on the Day of Pentecost (Acts 2:41) and later on many Gentiles too (Acts 10; 11). To overcome this temptation to be timid, we must utilize the helmet of salvation (Ephesians 6:17) and go forth with boldness in the power of God (1 John 4:4; Philippians 4:13; Acts 4:13, 29, 31).

Conclusion: Make no mistake about it, God wants to be glorified through the salvation of unbelievers (Luke 19:10), and by Christians bearing much spiritual fruit (John 15:8). If you’re a believer, will you submit and yield yourself to God daily, hourly, and moment by moment and let Him live out His life through your life (Galatians 2:20; 5:22, 23)? What actions does God want you to take right now (James 1:22; 4:17)? Have you been quenching Him and rendering Him ineffective in your life (1 Thessalonians 5:19)?  If you’re not saved, “Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ alone, who died for your sins…and rose again bodily on the third day, and you will saved” (Acts 16:31; 1 Corinthians 15:3, 4).  We are NOT saved by our good works, or by our faith plus our good works (Ephesians 2:8, 9; Titus 3:5).

Help. We’re here to assist you and others who are teachable and willing to change (2 Timothy 2:2, 15; 3:16, 17). If this has helped you, please let us know how it has, and then SHARE this information with others. We can be reached through our website: www.kelseypeach.com. Download our updated “Understanding The Times Dispensations Chart” book marker and make a few copies to pass out to others.  Click on “Follow” to receive future articles as they come out.

*Portions taken and adapted from Evangelist Dr. Larry Moyer’s book, “How-To Book On Personal Evangelism,” Chapter 1, Kregel Publications, Grand Rapids, MI

Philippians 1:1 (Lesson #6)

We all know that we’ve sinned and have acted lawlessly (1 John 1:8-10; 3:4). This makes us sinners in need of a Savior because we can’t save us ourselves by our good works (Romans 3:10, 23; 6:23; Ephesians 2:8, 9; Titus 3:5). But when the word “saint” is mentioned, what comes into your mind? To some people “The title ‘Saint’ denotes a person who has been formally canonized, that is, officially and authoritatively declared a saint, by the Church as holder of the Keys of the Kingdom of Heaven, and is therefore believed to be in Heaven by the grace of God.” Today Romanists generally believe that a person can become a saint by (1) waiting five years. The process to make someone a saint cannot normally start until at least five years after their death. … (2) becoming a “servant of God,” (3) showing proof of a “heroic virtue,” (4) having performed verified miracles, (5) and then going through cononisation. [1]

But according to the Scriptures, the moment a person believers on the Lord Jesus Christ as the One who died for his/her sins…and rose again bodily on the third day, he/she becomes a saint, a child of God, a royal priest, and a member in the Body of Christ which is the true Church (1 Corinthians 1:2; Philippians 1:1; 1 John 3:10; 1 Peter 2:5, 9; Revelation 1:6; Romans 12:4, 5; 1 Corinthians 12:12-27; Ephesians 5:30). There are many other things that can be said of every true Christian who has been blessed with all spiritual blessings in the heavenly places (Ephesians 1:3). If you’re saved, how many of them could you name? Is your lack of Bible knowledge contributing to your not enjoying the eternal and abundant life that Christ came to give to you (John 10:10)? How much time are you spending in God’s Word and meditating on it (2 Timothy 2:15; 3:16, 17)? Do you need help to understand the Scriptures? If so, ask us about our “Dispensations Chart.” It might help you greatly. Knowing what parts are to you as opposed to what is for you, can make a big difference.

Saints. This word comes from the Greek language (in which the New Testament was written) and essentially means one who has been separated unto God. “Sainthood is not an attainment; it is a state into which God in grace calls men.” – W. E. Vine. It has to do with a believer’s position “in Christ.” Just as a prince is taught and then called upon and expected to behave like a prince, so too all true believers (Christians) are called upon to learn how to live up to the level of their position “in Christ” (1 Peter 1:15, 16). “In the New Testament the word “saint” always refers to a sanctified person, one set apart to God inviolably [incapable of being violated] for His possession and service. (Compare the related Greek words hagios and hagiazo rendered “saint” and “sanctify” respectively.) The aspect of Christian sanctification is positional, based on the atoning blood of Christ (Hebrews 13:12; compare 10:10-14). In this sense, all believers are saints regardless of their progress and growth…” – Taken from Dr. C. I. Scofield’s Study Bible, Romans 1:7 note. [2] “The Apostle Paul was fond of addressing his fellow believers as “saints” (cf. Romans 1:7; 1 Corinthians 1:2; 2 Corinthians 1:1; Ephesians 1:1; Colossians 1:2; 1 Thessalonians 3:13; 2 Thessalonians 1:10; Philemon 5, 7). This title reflects the Christian’s present justified standing before God, though not necessarily his or her present sanctified standing in the sight of other people.” – Dr. Thomas Constable. [3]

“In Christ Jesus.” The term “Christ” can be used to mean (1) “Messiah” (Matthew 16:16, 20), (2) the “resurrected and glorified One” (Acts 2:22-36), or to (3) the “New Man” or the “New Creation” called “The Christ” (Ephesians 2:14, 15; Ephesians 5:32; 2 Corinthians 5:17). The context must determine the meaning. When a sinner believes/trusts in the Lord Jesus Christ alone for his/her salvation (Acts 16:31), he/she is placed (baptized spiritually) into this “New Creation” which includes the spiritual “Body of Christ, which is His Church” (1 Corinthians 12:12, 13; Matthew 16:18). The members include all believers from the “Day of Pentecost” (Acts 2) up to the Rapture of the Church (1 Corinthians 15:51, 52; 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18; John 6:37; Romans 11:25). The Lord Jesus Christ became the Head of His Body, the Church after His crucifixion, death, and bodily resurrection from the dead, on the Day of Pentecost (Ephesians 1:22, 23; 4:8-16; Acts 2). As the Head, Jesus Christ is the One who directs the affairs of the Body through God the Holy Spirit (1 Corinthians 12:4-6). Sadly, many Christians grieve (Ephesians 4:30) and quench Him (1 Thessalonians 5:19) by sinning or failing to follow His leading in their lives (Romans 8:14; 2 Timothy 2:12).

Spiritual Gifts. The activities of the Body of Christ (Christians) are directly related to his/her spiritual gift that is/was given to each and every New Testament believer at the moment of his/her salvation (1 Peter 4:10; Ephesians 2:10). Some of the spiritual gifts were “temporary” until the Scriptures were completed (1 Corinthians 13:8-10), while others are extant (still being given out today). (See our “Bible Basics Docs” on our website for more information.) For a believer to receive crowns, rewards, or praise from Christ at the time of the “Bema Seat Judgment” (1 Corinthians 3:11-15; 2 Corinthians 5:10), these good works must be exercised with love that is produced by God the Holy Spirit in the lives of “Spirit filled” believers (1 Corinthians 13; Galatians 5:13; 22, 23; Ephesians 5:18). Good works done independently of God are like wood, hay, and straw and they will be burned up on judgment day (John 15:5; 2 Corinthians 5:10; Philippians 4:13; Isaiah 64:6). The unbelievers’ day of judgment, called “The Great White Throne Judgment,” will come at the end of the 1,000 reign of Christ (Revelation 20:11-15). It will determine the degree of suffering these people will endure throughout all eternity. There is no annihilation of the wicked dead as some cults teach (Matthew 25:30, 41, 46; Mark 9:44, 46, 48). In which judgment will you participate (Hebrews 9:27)?

Philippi. It was a Roman colony in Europe and a military outpost. The citizens apparently enjoyed autonomous government, immunity from taxes, and treatment as if they lived in Italy. The first Christians and members of this local church were Lydia and jailor and his family (Acts 16). Other people were saved as the new Christians shared the Gospel with others in the community (Acts 1:8). Dr. Luke may have stayed in Philippi for awhile to strengthen the newly established local church after Paul and Silas left there and went to Thessalonica where they also faced persecution (Acts 17).

Bishops. This term relates to an overseer of a local church (1 Timothy 3:1 ff). “Pastor-teacher” is the spiritual gift that a man should have to become an overseer of a church. Being an “elder” tells us that a bishop (overseer) should have a relative degree of spiritual maturity and this takes some time (1 Timothy 3:6; Titus 1:5 ff). He should be involved in feeding, guiding, guarding, and healing God’s flock, the Church (1 Peter 5:1-4; Acts 20:28-31; 2 Timothy 2:2, 15; 3:16, 17; 4:1-5; See Revelation chapters 2, 3 for Christ’s words to the angels/messengers/Pastor-teachers in these seven churches).

Deacons. These men need to be genuinely saved (2 Peter 1:10) and be Spirit filled men (Ephesians 5:18) with God’s wisdom (James 1:5; 3:17, 18) who assist the Bishops, Pastor-teachers so they can give themselves to prayer and the ministry of the Word (Acts 6:3, 4; 1 Timothy 3:8).

Questions? Have you placed your faith and trust in the Christ of the Scriptures alone to save you? Do you see yourself as a necessary member in the “Body of Christ” (1 Corinthians 12:12-31)? If you are saved, are you acting like a Christian should act? Do you know what your spiritual gift is? Do you realize that while we have citizenship here on earth, our most important citizenship is in heaven (Philippians 3:20)? Are you using the “spiritual gift” that God gave to you to edify others within the “Body of Christ” (1 Peter 4:10; 1 Thessalonians 5:11)? What are you doing to magnify and make the Lord Jesus Christ known to other people (1 Corinthians 10:31; Psalm 34:3)? What needs to change?

Help. We’re here to assist you and others who are “teachable” and “willing to change” (2 Timothy 2:2, 15; 2 Timothy 3:16, 17). We can be reached through our website: www.kelseypeach.com. To receive future articles as they come out, click on “Follow.” Join us on Facebook and Youtube for our Bible studies. If this has helped you, please SHARE it with others.

[1] Saints.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Saint

https://www.google.com/search?q=what+comes+to+people%27s+minds+when+the+word+saint+is+mentioned&oq=what+comes+to+people%27s+minds+when+the+word+saint+is+mentioned&aqs=chrome..69i57.19383j0j7&sourceid=chrome&ie=UTF-8

https://www.google.com/search?q=How+do+you+become+a+saint+in+the+Catholic+Church%3F&sa=X&ved=2ahUKEwirhvKQzY7iAhUNSa0KHcSVDXEQzmd6BAgKEAo&biw=693&bih=398

https://www.newsweek.com/how-do-you-become-saint-pope-francis-just-announced-new-path-635376

[2] Dr. C. I. Scofield Study Bible. http://www.cheapestbookprice.com/prices/9780195275520-the-scofield%C2%AE-study-bible-iii-nkjv-indexed

[3] Dr. T. Constable, https://www.planobiblechapel.org/tcon/notes/html/nt/philippians/philippians.htm

The Bad News & The Good News” https://kelseypeach.wordpress.com/2019/04/24/the-bad-news-the-good-news/

The Scriptures teach and we believe that every true New Testament believer was/is given a spiritual gift at the time of his/her salvation (1 Peter 4:10; Romans 12; 1 Corinthians 12-14; Ephesians 4:11). Sadly, many Christians spend their entire lives thinking of themselves as nothing more than “bill payers” or “pew warmers.” They “sit, soak, and sour” because they take in God’s Word but don’t apply it to their own lives and share it with others (James 1:22; 2:18-20; 2 Timothy 2:2). They are like the Dead Sea. Others sometimes think more highly of themselves than they should (Romans 12:3). We need to remember that “God resists the proud, but gives grace to the humble” (James 4:6).

Gifts. After Christ died for our sins…and rose again bodily from the dead on the third day He ascended on high to the Father’s right hand (Acts 1:9-11; Ephesians 1:20). Then He gave some believers the spiritual gifts of evangelists and pastor/teachers to equip the church (Christians) for their work of ministry (Ephesians 4:11-16). These are the good works that God planned for us to do while we’re here on earth (Ephesians 2:10). If you’re a true Christian, do you know what your spiritual gift is and are you using it with love for the glory of God and the good of others (1 Corinthians 10:31; 13:1-13; Galatians 5:13; 6:10)? If not, why not start now? Our crowns, rewards, and praise at the Bema Seat Judgment will be determined by what we do here on earth (1 Corinthians 3:11-15; 2 Corinthians 5:10).

Body. Most of us have taken biology and/or human anatomy in school. We have come to realize that our human bodies are made up of many parts – some visible to others and some internal members that aren’t seen but which are vital to the function of the whole body. Working together they enable us to think, live, move, breathe, walk and talk. “For as the [human] body is one and has many members, but all the members of that one body, being many, are one body, so also is [the] Christ” (1 Corinthians 12:12; 13).

Test. “Have you ever taken an aptitude or vocational interest test? If you have, you know these tests often measure dexterity, vocabulary, and problem solving ability. Their purpose is to identify skills you have as a guide for future education and training. That way you might avoid becoming a square peg in a round hole.

Questions: “Here’s a three question ‘aptitude test’ to help you discover your spiritual gift…for use in your local church:

1. As you examine your church’s ministry, where do you think improvement could be made? (This is probably an area which would involve your gift, as revealed by your sensitivity to need in that area.)

2. What type of ministry do you eagerly anticipate doing?

3. What type of ministry do others compliment you on?” [1]

How To Discover Your Spiritual Gift [2]

by David K. Spurbeck, Sr.

1. Know what the temporary and extant spiritual gifts are. 1 Corinthians 13:8-10

2. Walk by means of the Holy Spirit. Galatians 5:16-25; Ephesians 5:18; Romans 8:14; 1 John 1:9

3. Ask God for wisdom and illumination. Ephesians 1:18; James 1:5; 3:17; 1 John 2:20, 27

4. Be available and patient. Romans 12:1, 2; 1 Thessalonians 5:14; Galatians 5:22, 23

5. Ask for the acknowledgment of other believers. Galatians 2:1-10

6. Does God seem to be blessing your efforts? 2 Corinthians 3:1-3; 1 Thessalonians 2:19, 20

Are you teachable, willing to study, and to change if necessary (2 Timothy 2:2, 15; 3:16, 17)? If you’d like to learn more about “Spiritual Gifts,” go to www.kelseypeach.com and to Bible Basics Docs. For more information, go to https://kelseypeach.wordpress.com/category/spiritual-gifts/ For audio/visual presentations, go to https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NsexvC2jhnk and https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JhgPB5T2OlM

Help. We can be reached through our website: www.kelseypeach.com. Please let us know if this information has helped you discover your spiritual gift. To receive future articles as they come out, click on “Follow.”

Some of this material has been adapted and condensed from [1] “Your Daily Walk” Walk Thru the Bible Ministries, Atlanta, Georgia, Zondervan Publishing House, Grand Rapids, Michigan, p. 386, and from [2] “Spiritual Gift: Which One Is Yours?” by David K. Spurbeck, Sr., Valley Baptist Church, Gaston, OR 97119

Whatever the mind can conceive and believe, it can achieve.” – Napoleon Hill. True or False? If you believe in “humanism” (unlimited human potential), you might think that you can, but there are many things that the mind can conceive without our being able to achieve them. Example – I can conceive in my mind (perhaps in my dreams) that I could grow another 18” and that I could play basketball like Michael Jordan did, but this isn’t going to happen. Jesus said, “Which of you by worrying can add one cubit (18 inches) to his stature” (Matthew 6:27)? Some people believe that they can become gods in this or the next life and repopulate others worlds through multiple wives. They worship and serve the creature rather than the Creator (Romans 1:25).

False Teachers. The “Word of Faith” false teachers have fallen into this lie too just like their father, the devil did (Isaiah 14:14; Genesis 3:5; John 8:44; 1 John 3:9, 10). Some of them claim to be “little gods” who can just speak things into existence with positive thoughts and words. Some of them can be heard demanding God to do what they want done. Without realizing it, they are actually blaspheming God. We don’t demand things from God. Instead we should humbly ask favors from Him according to His will (John 16:13; 15:16). Have you, or has someone you know, come under the influence of the “Health, Wealth, and Happiness” false teachers? Please read 2 Peter 2:19; Jude 1:13.

The Gift. When God saves a person who has put his/her faith in the Lord Jesus Christ, who died for our sins…and rose again bodily on the third day, He gives each one of them a “spiritual gift” and enables him/her to do the work that He pre-planned for him/her to do (Ephesians 2:8-10; Philippians 2:13; 4:13, 19; John 15:16).

Ignorant. The sad part is that most Christians don’t realize that God has given them a “spiritual gift” (1 Corinthians 12:1; 1 Peter 4:10), and so they don’t develop it or use it for God’s glory or the good of others (1 Corinthians 10:31; 12:7; 13:1-13). Sometimes it’s the fault of the Pastor/teacher who doesn’t tell his people about this wonderful truth from God’s Word (Acts 20:27; 2 Timothy 4:1-4), or it may be the believer’s fault for treating this matter lightly after being taught about it (1 Corinthians 3:1-4; Hebrews 5:11-14).

Rewarding. But once you, as a Christian, discover that you have one of these extant gifts and use it with “agape” love (1 Corinthians 13), your life will be much more rewarding and fulfilled (John 10:10). You won’t spend your life engaged in “worthless works” that will be burned up at the “Bema Seat Judgment” (1 Corinthians 3:11-15; 2 Corinthians 5:10).

Temporary. Some of these “spiritual gifts” were given out to some believers until the New Testament was completed (1 Corinthians 13:8-10; John 16:13, 14). These include: apostles, prophets, discerning of spirits, word of knowledge, word of wisdom, tongues, interpretation of tongues, miracles, and healings.

Extant. These are the “spiritual gifts” that God is still giving out today to believers at the moment of their salvation: Evangelists, Pastor/teachers, teachers, helpers, ministers, exhorters, mercy showers, exceptional givers, exceptional faith demonstrators, organizers, and administrators.

Information: Spiritual gifts are (1) for service (1 Corinthians 12:7), (2) sovereignly given (1 Corinthians 12:28; Hebrews 2:4), (3) not natural, developed talents (1 Corinthians 12:12, 13), (4) given to all Christians (1 Corinthians 12:7; 1 Peter 4:10); (5) to be exercised in love (1 Corinthians 13), (6) given to help us determine our priorities (1 Corinthians 12:4-8), (7) not all permanent (1 Corinthians 13:8-13).

Discover. If you’re truly saved, here are some things you might do to discover your “spiritual gift.” (1) Know what the gifts are (1 Corinthians 12:1). (2) Be filled with the Spirit and walk by means of the Holy Spirit (Ephesians 5:18; Galatians 5:16, 25). (3) Ask God to illuminate your mind (Ephesians 1:18). (4) Be available and patient (See Isaiah 6:8). (5) Ask for the acknowledgement of other Spirit filled believers (Acts 13:1-3). (6). Ask, “Does God seem to be blessing my efforts?”

Help. We’re here to assist those who are “teachable” and “willing to change” (2 Timothy 2:2, 15; 3:16, 17). To discover more about “spiritual gifts,” we invite you to go to our website: www.kelseypeach.com and go to the section on “Bible Basics.” To receive future articles as they come out, click on “Follow.” If this has helped you, please share this information with others.

You might want to check out these two articles too:

https://kelseypeach.wordpress.com/category/spiritual-gifts/page/3/

https://kelseypeach.wordpress.com/2010/11/01/whats-a-pastor-to-do/

When is it wrong to do what is right? This may seem like a foolish question and yet there are some times when this is true. “There is a way that seems right to a man, But its end is the way of death” (Proverbs 14:12). After Adam and Eve ate the forbidden fruit from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, and acted independently of God, just as Lucifer did (Isaiah 14:13, 14; Ezekiel 28:12-19), they were immediately separated from fellowship with God and began to die physically (Genesis 2:17; 3:1-7; 5:5). By the way, are you doing the right things independently of God? If you’re a Christian, you should always include God in your plans (James 4:13-17). You should say, “God willing, I will do ….” Wise King Solomon wrote, “Trust in the Lord with all your heart, And lean not on your own understanding; In all your ways acknowledge Him, And he shall direct your paths” (Proverbs 3:5, 6).

Conscience. For about the next 1,600 years, after the fall of Adam and Eve, they and their descendants lived according to their depraved and distorted consciences. (See our Dispensations Chart.) They thought they knew the difference between good and evil, but in the eyes of God “the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and…every intent of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually” (Genesis 6:5). Why? The heart [of mankind] is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: Who can know it” (Jeremiah 17:9). Furthermore, “There is none righteous, no, not one; There is none who understands; There is none who seeks after God” (See Romans 3:10-23). This means all mankind is totally depraved. No, we haven’t been as bad as we could be, but we are as bad off as we can be unless we have the righteousness of Christ put to His account.

Imputation. This takes place when we believe on Christ alone to save us (John 16:10; Romans 4:1-8). It is as though God is saying, “You acted right by dying for your sins in the person of your Substitute, the Lord Jesus Christ.” (See Galatians 2:20; Romans 6:23). Unsaved people don’t have a spark of divinity in them that just needs to be fanned so they can become better on their own without God’s help.

Flood. Since the people before the universal flood were so wicked, (not much different from people today – See 1 Timothy 4:1-3; 2 Timothy 3:1-7), God found it necessary to destroy all mankind off the face of the earth. Noah and his three sons and their wives were exempt from this destruction, because he (Noah) was a just man who walked with God (Genesis 6:9). From these three families God repopulated the earth. We all are descendants of Shem, Ham, and Japheth (Genesis 6:10). The ethnic groups began to take shape after the flood when God came down as the rebels, led by Nimrod (Genesis 10:8, 9), were building the Tower of Babel. He confused their language, so that they didn’t understand one another’s speech (Genesis 11:7).

Sin Nature. In spite of his being a righteous man, Noah and his sons retained their sin natures (dispositions) and passed them down to all mankind (Genesis 9:20-29; Psalm 51:5). Contrary to what some “preachers” are telling people, we don’t lose this sinful nature (disposition) when we are saved and “born again from above” (John 3:3-6; 1 John 1:8; Romans 7:15-25). We will have it until we die physically or the Rapture takes place (Romans 8:23; 1 Peter 1:9). An unsaved person who dies physically in unbelief will carry his sin nature into the next life as he suffers forever in the lake of fire (Matthew 25:30, 41, 46). He will still have all the vile and sinful cravings he had on earth, but he won’t ever be able to have them satisfied (Mark 9:44, 46, 48).

Potential. As Christians, we still have the potential to engage in all the “works of the flesh” (Galatians 5:19-21; See 1 Corinthians 3:1-4; 5:1-13; James 4:1-6). But Christians can live victoriously over the lusts (strong desires) that come from our sin nature if/when we “walk by means of the Holy Spirit” (Galatians 5:16-25). A Christian doesn’t have to keep on giving in to the lusts (strong desires) that come from his/her sin nature, the devil, or the present world system. Each of these three spiritual enemies must be overcome by using three separate tactics. Do you know how to do this?

Divine Nature. All true believers in the Christ of the Scriptures (not the cults) become partakers of the divine nature at the time of their salvation and are enabled to do things that please God (2 Peter 1:4; 2 Corinthians 5:9; Philippians 2:13; 4:13). There is nothing an unsaved person can do to earn his/her salvation or favor with God (Romans 8:8). Salvation is a gracious gift from God that must be received by faith (Ephesians 2:8, 9; Titus 3:5). Have you received it yet? Do other people know about your new life in Christ (2 Corinthians 5:17)? Are you doing God’s work God’s way and according to the rules that He has established (2 Timothy 2:5)? In spite of what many religions believe and practice, “The end doesn’t justify the means.” So why do some people say, “Let us do evil that good may come”? Are you serving God and others with gladness, joy, and with “agape” love or for some other selfish reason (Galatians 5:13, 22; 1 Corinthians 13; 4:5; Psalm 100:2)? God, who is omniscient, knows all about you (John 2:24, 25; See Psalm 10:11).  We will all stand before Jesus, the righteous Judge, someday (John 5:22; 2 Timothy 4:8).  What will His assessment of your works be (1 Corinthians 3:11-15; Revelation 20:11-15)?

Spiritual Gifts. Do you know what your spiritual gift is and are you using it for the glory of God and the good of others (1 Peter 4:10; Romans 12; 1 Corinthians 12-14)? What are you doing that could lead other people to think or believe that you might be a true Christian (James 1:22; 2:18-20)? Are you merely a “professing Christian” or one who “possesses eternal life” right now (1 John 5:12, 13)? Are you living the “abundant life” (John 10:10; See Ephesians 1:3)? This is not “the health, wealthy, and happiness life” that some false teachers are peddling.

Evidence. Abraham was saved when he believed that God would give him a son by his wife Sarah when both of them were very old. That son was Isaac, not Ishmael by Hagar the Egyptian woman (Genesis 16). God told Abraham that he would have numerous descendants (Genesis 15:6). But did you know that other people weren’t aware of the fact that he was a true believer in God for about 20 years or more when he offered up his son Isaac on an altar (See Genesis 22:12; James 2:21)? Are you a “secret Christian” or a “convenient, carnal Christian”? Are you ashamed of Jesus and what He did for you? When was the last time you shared the clear Gospel with someone? “He died on the cross for your sins…and then rose again bodily on the third day” (1 Corinthians 15:3, 4; Luke 24:33-43)? This fact should help you want to resist temptations so you can earn the crown of life (James 1:12).

Beautiful Feet. If you aren’t ashamed of the Gospel of Christ (Romans 1:16, 17) and want to have beautiful feet in God’s sight, then share it with unsaved people so they can have Someone in whom they can believe and be saved (Romans 10:15). If you’ve been saved, have you been baptized by immersion to picture your death, burial, and resurrection with Christ (Matthew 28:19, 20; Galatians 2:20)? Have you presented your body to God as a living sacrifice (Romans 12:1, 2)? It’s the reasonable thing to do. Are you a F.A.T.F.R.E.E. Christian (Faithful, Available, Teachable, Flexible, Resilient, Evangelistic, and Enthusiastic)? If not, what needs to change?

Confession. The unsaved person isn’t required to remember every sin he/she has ever committed and confess them all to God before he/she can be saved. By the way, the only unforgivable sin today is unbelief in Christ (John 16:9; 3:16, 18, 36). The Scriptures don’t talk about“mortal sins” and “venial sins.” When a person believes on the Lord Jesus Christ through the message of the Gospel (Acts 16:31; 1 Corinthians 15:3, 4), he/she receives judicial forgiveness from God (Ephesians 1:7; Romans 8:1). Family forgiveness comes when a Christian repents (changes his/her mind about the sin he/she committed – 2 Corinthians 7:9), and then confesses it directly to God the Father (not to some human priest) by being specific about it and naming it to God (1 John 1:9). God doesn’t forgive us when we generalize or excuse our sins by calling them by some other name. (Example: “God, forgive me of all my sins.”) When you lie, tell God that you lied. If you committed fornication or adultery, or got drunk, you tell Him what you did. Sins, especially unconfessed sins, in the life of a Christian, can lead to a premature, physical death (James 5:19, 20; 1 John 5:16). “But if you are without chastening, of which all have become partakers, then you are illegitimate and not sons” (Hebrews 12:8). But once saved, Christians are called upon to confess their sins to God the Father when the Holy Spirit brings them to our mind (1 John 1:9; See James 5:16). “Sin is lawlessness” (1 John 3:4). “It is refusing to recognize any restrictions or restraints from God and act as though he had none.” – Dr. H. L. Schafer

Action Steps. “What does the LORD require of you but to do justly, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with your God” (Micah 6:8). These words were addressed to the Jews who were living in rebellion against God and violating their conditional covenant (agreement) with Him (Exodus 19:8; 20:1-17; Deuteronomy 28). They were to do what was right in God’s sight, not what was right in their own eyes and what they thought was right (See Judges 21:25). God made man and He makes the rules for us to follow and obey. (See our Dispensations Chart.) Are you defiant toward God? The Jews were to be merciful toward those who were suffering, and to walk humbly before God. He has been merciful and long suffering toward mankind (2 Peter 3:9). How have you responded to God?

Conclusion. Are you doing the right things independently of God? Are you living by your own rules or according to God’s rules? Are you doing the right things with wrong motives? Remember, “There is a way that seems right to a man, But its end is the way of death” (Proverbs 14:12). Make sure that you’re truly saved and doing what you do for God’s glory and the good of others (1 Corinthians 10:31; Galatians 6:10).

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

Dispensations Chart: http://kelseypeach.com/Kelsey.8.pdf

Spiritual Gifts: http://kelseypeach.com/bible_basics.htm

We would like to invite you who read these articles to join us live on Facebook on Wednesdays around 6:45 P.M. Pacific Time as we study the Word of God with others in a small group setting.  We have been posting them on Facebook so others around the world can watch and listen to them at their convenience.

We desire to glorify God by making Him known to others (1 Corinthians 10:31; Psalm 34:3).  To be saved, one needs to believe on the Lord Jesus Christ who died for our sins…and rose again bodily from the dead on the third day (Acts 16:31; 1 Corinthians 15:3, 4).  To grow spiritually a believer needs to start out with the milk of the Word (1 Peter 2:2) and then move on the meat (solid food) of the Word (1 Corinthians 2:1-3; Hebrews 5:12-14).  Then to serve God, every Christian should realize that he/she is a minister (servant) with a ministry (Ephesians 4:12) and has been given a spiritual gift (1 Peter 4:10) that needs to be exercised in love (1 Corinthians 13; Galatians 5:13).  And then, as we have been made to go into the world (Acts 1:8), we are to make disciples (true believers), baptize (immerse) them, and then teach them how to put into practice the new commandment that Jesus gave to His disciples (Matthew 28:19, 20; John 13:34, 35).

When one interprets the Bible normally, he/she will begin to understand the distinctive rules for living called “Dispensations.” [1]  There are some doctrines and teachings in the Scriptures that are merely to be believed and others that are to be believed and practiced (Titus 1:9; 2 Timothy 2:2, 15; 3:16, 17).  All Scripture is for the believer’s understanding but not all of it is addressed specifically to the believer for his/her daily living.  Frustration will be the result of trying to live by the wrong set of rules to come to spiritual maturity (Galatians 3:1-5; 5:1-16).

If these articles or other things we share with you are helpful, we’d like to hear from you and ask that you share them with others too (2 Corinthians 1:3, 4). Together we can reach more people for Christ.

We can be reached at 805-238-3549 or through our website: http://www.kelseypeach.com. To receive future articles, click on “Follow.”

[1] FREE Dispensations Chart: http://kelseypeach.com/Kelsey.8.pdf

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

Clear Gospel – Audio: http://www.duluthbible.org/the-gospel-audiobook/

God’s Simple Plan Of Salvation – (In 24 languages) http://kelseypeach.com/goodnews.htm

God Honoring Music: www.abidingradio.org

 

 

 

John 9:1-14

“For years he sat in the street, a castaway from society, his soul aching for the touch of light and love. And then one day he heard the approaching footsteps of Jesus who, with a touch of compassion, gave him new eyes… Few afflictions are more difficult to bear than blindness. And in Jesus’ day, a blind person held little hope for anything more than a lifetime of begging.” – Chuck Swindoll.  Perhaps you know someone who is blind too. How do you treat him/her?

The Men. This blind man went virtually unnoticed by Jesus’ disciples who, apparently, were enamored more by the magnificent temple itself (Matthew 24:1). In a sense, they were a lot like the priest and Levite who passed by the man who had been robbed by thieves and left for dead (Luke 10:30-37). Jesus, however, was concerned about people. To those who were oppressed by the hypocritical, religious leaders of the day, Jesus said, “Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy and My burden is light” (Matthew 11:28-30).

Jesus.  I’d rather have Jesus as my Shepherd than anything else. He loves me, knows me, knows my future, and gives me the strength to do the things that He wants me to do. He forgives me when I confess my sins and helps me start over again. He will never leave or forsake me. He will reward me for faithful service to Him. He is the God-man (John 1:1-18; Colossians 2:9). King David wrote, “The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want” (Psalm 23:1). My friend, is He your Shepherd? If not, we’d like to introduce you to Him. If He is your Shepherd, do you tend to wander away from Him and get yourself in precarious situations that cause Him a lot of grief (Ephesians 4:3). He wants you to stay close by Him so you will be safe? It’s so much better to stay under His care and let Him lead you (Romans 8:14) than to wander away like the prodigal son (Luke 15:11-31).

Cause And Effect. Seeing the blind man, it was quite natural for His disciples to ask Jesus why this man was blind from birth (John 9:1). Was it due to his own sins or his parent’s sins? Apparently some Rabbis were teaching that it was possible for a baby in the womb to sin by kicking his mother on the Sabbath. Perhaps they concluded that this man’s parents had sinned and thus passed down a curse on him (Exodus 20:5, 6; Jeremiah 32:18). Yes, it’s true. Some parents who take illegal drugs, alcohol, or who have sexually transmitted diseases, sometimes do pass a curse on to their children. Just talk to some Doctors and nurses about such babies.

Jesus’ Diagnosis. “Jesus answered [the disciples’ questions], ‘Neither this man nor his parents sinned, but that the works of God should be revealed in him’” (John 9:3). Jesus was on a mission to glorify His Father by making Him known to humanity (John 17:3, 4). He did everything that the Father wanted Him to do at the right time and in the proper manner. His miracles were designed to prove to them/us that He was/is the promised Messiah/Christ and the Son of God (John 20:31). They validated His person and work (Isaiah 29:18; 35:5; 42:6, 7). Perhaps you didn’t know this but God has some predetermined works for Christians to do too (Ephesians 2:10; 1 Peter 4:10). Sadly, most Christians don’t know very much about the “Spiritual Gifts” that God gave to every Christian at the moment of his/her salvation (See Romans 12, 1 Corinthians 12-14; Ephesians 4:11-16). Which gifts were temporary and which are extant? [1]  Which one do you have?  Are you using it with love (1 Corinthians 13; Galatians 5:13)?

Miracles. The miracles that Jesus performed were conducted in different ways. Sometimes He performed them without a lot of fanfare (John 2:7, 8). He was able to heal the nobleman’s son from a distance just by speaking a word. He told a crippled man to take up his bed and walk (John 5:8). He fed over 5,000 people at one time (John 6:11). He brought Lazarus back to life with a word (John 11:43). But on this occasion Jesus “spat on the ground and made clay with the saliva; and He anointed the eyes of the blind man with the clay. And He said to him, ‘Go, wash in the pool of Siloam’…So he went and washed, and came back seeing” (John 9:6, 7).

Sabbath. It’s interesting that Jesus chose to give this man his sight on the Sabbath (Saturday). The hypocritical, legalistic, religious Pharisees had added all kinds of other requirements to the observance of the Sabbath. Apparently they said it was unlawful for a man to pluck a hair from his head or beard because that involved work. Cutting one’s fingernails was illegal. No medical attention could be administered unless it was a life or death situation. It was unlawful for a man to walk with sandals that had nails in them because that was carrying a burden on the Sabbath. Is it any wonder that Jesus had compassion on the common people who were weighted down with such additional burdens? They missed the whole purpose of the Sabbath. “Apart from maintaining the continual burnt offering ( Numbers 28:9), and its connection with the annual feasts…the seventh day was never made a day of sacrifice, worship, or any manner of religious service. It was simply and only a day of complete rest for man and beast, a humane provision for man’s needs. In Christ’s words, ‘The Sabbath was made for man, and not man for the Sabbath’ (Mark 2:27).” – Dr. C. I. Scofield

Response. Perplexed by what had happened to this blind man, the people asked him about it. Not satisfied with his answer, they took him to the Pharisees for them to interrogate him about his eyesight. With all their knowledge of the Scriptures, they should have made the connection of this miracle to the prophecy that Isaiah had made concerning the Messiah’s giving sight to the blind when He came (Isaiah 29:18; 35:5; 42:6, 7). But they didn’t get it. Things haven’t changed much today either. Liberal theologians refuse to acknowledge that Jesus is the God-man who had/has all the Divine attributes of God. They don’t believe that He came to earth through the virgin, Mary. They don’t believe that He was sinless, and that He went to the cross to die for our sins…and rise again bodily from the dead on the third day. They don’t believe that He’s coming back literally as He said He would (John 14:1-3; Acts 1:11).

Confusion/Unbelief. The Jewish prophet Jeremiah rehearsed the reasons for the Jewish captivity by their enemies. “Hear this now, O foolish people [Jews], without understanding, who have eyes and see not, and who have ears and hear not…But this people has a defiant and rebellious heart; They have revolted and departed…” (Jeremiah 5:21-23). Because most of the Jews rejected their Messiah when He came 2,000 years ago and said, “His blood be on us and on our children” (Matthew 27:25), they have been to this day under Gentile domination and will be until Christ returns after the seven years of tribulation (Daniel 9:27; Romans 11:25). The last 3 ½ years are known as “the time of Jacob’s [Israel’s] trouble” (Jeremiah 30:7). This time seems to be just around the corner. To get the big picture, would you like to receive a free “Dispensations Chart” for your consideration? If so, ask us for one. Do you know what happens to a Jewish person who believes in Jesus as his/her personal Savior today (Romans 1:16; Galatians 3:28; Ephesians 2:11-18)?

Israel’s Future. God hasn’t forsaken the Jewish nation forever as some “Replacement Theology” people believe. [2] A bright future awaits the believing Jewish remnant (Romans 11:26). Those who physically survive the seven year Tribulation will be the ones who repopulate the earth (Matthew 10:22; 24:13). They will inherit all the land that God promised to give to them in an everlasting covenant. During Christ’s 1,000 reign on/over earth (Revelation 20:6; Isaiah 9:6, 7; Daniel 2:44, 45) it will extend from the Mediterranean Sea to the River Euphrates (Genesis 15:18- 21). In eternity future, the believing Jews will inherit a new earth in which they will dwell (Revelation 21:1; Matthew 5:5; Romans 4:13). “Nevertheless we [believers], according to His promise, look for new heavens and a new earth in which righteousness dwells [feels at ease]” (2 Peter 3:13). Don’t let the scoffers intimidate you. They don’t believe that Jesus is returning to earth as He said He would (2 Peter 3:3ff). Are they ever in for a surprise!

Judgment Day. “…it is appointed for men to die once, but after this the judgment” (Hebrews 9:27). Every person who has lived on this earth will face Judge Jesus someday (John 5:22). Do you know the purposes for the different judgments (1 Corinthians 3:11-15; Revelation 20:11-15)? Where will you spend eternity – Heaven or Hell? Have you placed your faith in the Lord Jesus Christ who died for your sins…and rose again bodily from the dead? Are you depending on any of your good works to get you into heaven (Ephesians 2:8, 9; Titus 3:5)? Would you like assurance of salvation (1 John 5:13; Romans 8:16)?

Our True Condition. All of us were born spiritually blind (1 Corinthians 2:14; 2 Corinthians 4:4). We need someone to share the Clear Gospel [3] with us so God the Holy Spirit can open our spiritual eyes and enable us to see the Lord Jesus Christ and believe on Him to be saved (1 Corinthians 15:3, 4; Romans 10:9-16).

Witnesses. If you’ve been saved by God’s grace through faith in the Christ of the Scriptures, you can/should tell others about Him (Acts 1:8). Carnal Christians need to get right with God through confession of their sins to God and others against whom they have sinned or face discipline from God (1 John 1:9; James 5:16, 19, 20; 1 John 5:16; Hebrews 12:5ff).

Help. If you need spiritual help, we can be reached at 805-238-3549 or through our website: www.kelseypeach.com. To receive future articles as they come out, click on “Follow.”

[1] Spiritual Gifts. http://kelseypeach.com/bible_basics.htm

[2] Replacement Theology:

http://www.gotquestions.org/replacement-theology.html

http://www.middletownbiblechurch.org/mevangel/scofield.htm

http://www.middletownbiblechurch.org/reformed/replace.pdf

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