07/16/14

Colossians 2: Not Philosophy; Not Legalism; but Purity in Christ

Colossians 2:  NKJV 

 

Not Philosophy but Christ

 

 

2 For I want you to know what a great conflict I have for you and those in Laodicea, and for as many as have not seen my face in the flesh, that their hearts may be encouraged, being knit together in love, and attaining to all riches of the full assurance of understanding, to the knowledge of the mystery of God, both of the Father and[a] of Christ, in whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge.

Now this I say lest anyone should deceive you with persuasive words. For though I am absent in the flesh, yet I am with you in spirit, rejoicing to see your good order and the steadfastness of your faith in Christ.

As you therefore have received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in Him, rooted and built up in Him and established in the faith, as you have been taught, abounding in it[b] with thanksgiving.

Beware lest anyone cheat you through philosophy and empty deceit, according to the tradition of men, according to the basic principles of the world, and not according to Christ. For in Him dwells all the fullness of the Godhead bodily; 10 and you are complete in Him, who is the head of all principality and power.

 

 

Not Legalism but Christ

 

 

11 In Him you were also circumcised with the circumcision made without hands, by putting off the body of the sins[c] of the flesh, by the circumcision of Christ, 12 buried with Him in baptism, in which you also were raised with Him through faith in the working of God, who raised Him from the dead. 13 And you, being dead in your trespasses and the uncircumcision of your flesh, He has made alive together with Him, having forgiven you all trespasses, 14 having wiped out the handwriting of requirements that was against us, which was contrary to us. And He has taken it out of the way, having nailed it to the cross. 15 Having disarmed principalities and powers, He made a public spectacle of them, triumphing over them in it.

16 So let no one judge you in food or in drink, or regarding a festival or a new moon or sabbaths, 17 which are a shadow of things to come, but the substance is of Christ. 18 Let no one cheat you of your reward, taking delight in false humility and worship of angels, intruding into those things which he has not[d] seen, vainly puffed up by his fleshly mind, 19 and not holding fast to the Head, from whom all the body, nourished and knit together by joints and ligaments, grows with the increase that is from God.

20 Therefore,[e] if you died with Christ from the basic principles of the world, why, as though living in the world, do you subject yourselves to regulations— 21 “Do not touch, do not taste, do not handle,” 22 which all concern things which perish with the using—according to the commandments and doctrines of men? 23 These things indeed have an appearance of wisdom in self-imposed religion, false humility, and neglect of the body, but are of no value against the indulgence of the flesh.

 

 

Footnotes:

 

  1. Colossians 2:2 NU-Text omits both of the Father and.
  2. Colossians 2:7 NU-Text omits in it.
  3. Colossians 2:11 NU-Text omits of the sins.
  4. Colossians 2:18 NU-Text omits not.
  5. Colossians 2:20 NU-Text and M-Text omit Therefore.

 

New King James Version (NKJV)

The Holy Bible, New King James Version Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc.

07/28/13

1 Corinthians 2: The Language of The Spirit

The Language of The Spirit Revised and Updated

 

 Rev. Charlene

 

In the United States we assume that we all speak the same native language. However, there are other languages spoken, some even more original. English predominates, so it is the responsibility of those who wish to communicate with the masses to learn to speak English. Yet it is fast becoming a necessity for those of us who speak English to take on Spanish as our second language. This language must be learned through diligent application, whereas the language of our birth was naturally acquired over time without hardship.

 

 

Those who travel and minister across the world must also learn the languages native to other regions and countries.  This can prove to be an even harder task. The desire to communicate and to spread God’s love is a motivational force that empowers people to learn new ways and new languages.

 

The languages of the world are different from the language of The Spirit. Those who possess God’s Spirit speak another-worldly language that has its origin in heaven, not earth. This language is not our native tongue, but became accessible when we came to Christ. It is through surrender to Christ and the indwelling of His Holy Spirit that we discern this gifted language. Without our interpreter, God’s Holy Spirit, we cannot discern the ways of God, nor can we understand the mysteries of our salvation.

 

 

As Paul writes to the Corinthians:

 

“What no eye has seen,
what no ear has heard,
and what no human mind has conceived[b]
the things God has prepared for those who love him—

10 These are the things God has revealed to us by His Spirit”.

 

Unless you are in indwelled by God’s Holy Spirit you simply cannot hear nor speak the heavenly language. It is a part of your inheritance gifts, just as speaking the spiritual language of the world makes you heir to the degradation of the world. Death becomes your wages, not life. Only Jesus Christ could pay the price for our sins because of His sinless nature, and it is only through The Cross that our sins are forgiven. Jesus knows the fullness of who we can be or are in Him.

 

 “Who has known the mind of the Lord
so as to instruct Him?’[d]

 

 

But we have the mind of Christ”. 

 

 

1 Corinthians 2

New International Version (NIV)

 

 

 1 And so it was with me, brothers and sisters. When I came to you, I did not come with eloquence or human wisdom as I proclaimed to you the testimony about God.[a] 2 For I resolved to know nothing while I was with you except Jesus Christ and Him crucified. 3 I came to you in weakness with great fear and trembling. 4 My message and my preaching were not with wise and persuasive words, but with a demonstration of the Spirit’s power, 5so that your faith might not rest on human wisdom, but on God’s power.

 

 

God’s Wisdom Revealed by the Spirit

 

 

 6 We do, however, speak a message of wisdom among the mature, but not the wisdom of this age or of the rulers of this age, who are coming to nothing. 7 No, we declare God’s wisdom, a mystery that has been hidden and that God destined for our glory before time began. 8 None of the rulers of this age understood it, for if they had, they would not have crucified the Lord of glory. 9However, as it is written:

 

   “What no eye has seen,
   what no ear has heard,
and what no human mind has conceived”[b]
   the things God has prepared for those who love him—

 10these are the things God has revealed to us by his Spirit.

   The Spirit searches all things, even the deep things of God. 11 For who knows a person’s thoughts except their own spirit within them? In the same way no one knows the thoughts of God except the Spirit of God. 12 What we have received is not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit who is from God, so that we may understand what God has freely given us. 13 This is what we speak, not in words taught us by human wisdom but in words taught by the Spirit, explaining spiritual realities with Spirit-taught words.[c] 14 The person without the Spirit does not accept the things that come from the Spirit of God but considers them foolishness, and cannot understand them because they are discerned only through the Spirit. 15 The person with the Spirit makes judgments about all things, but such a person is not subject to merely human judgments, 16for,

 

 

   “Who has known the mind of the Lord
   so as to instruct Him?”[d]

   But we have the mind of Christ.

Footnotes:
  1. 1 Corinthians 2:1 Some manuscripts proclaimed to you God’s mystery
  2. 1 Corinthians 2:9 Isaiah 64:4
  3. 1 Corinthians 2:13 Or Spirit, interpreting spiritual truths to those who are spiritual
  4. 1 Corinthians 2:16 Isaiah 40:13

 

Scripture Credits:  Holy Bible. New International Version. BibleGateway.com

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06/5/12

June 5, 2012 The Tempting In The Wilderness Parts 1 & 2 Matthew 4 Expounded

What Is The Purpose of Temptation, Testing, and Trial?

 

Part 1

 

Temptation, Testing and Trial are gifts from GOD placed in your life to help you to mature and to give you solid foundation for the implementation of GOD’s work. As GOD tested His son in the wilderness–he also tests us, his sons and daughters, in our own wilderness–the wilderness of life. Since the Fall, even with the redemptive sacrifice of Jesus Christ to provide salvation, mankind tends to follow the beat of the wrong drummer. This results in wrong decisions, mistakes, and an unclear path through the wilderness. While seeking to focus on the correct path–there will be numerous trials to endure, and temptations of every sort will be placed in front of you by the Tempter to trip you and make you fall. It is up to you to seek direction from GOD to order your steps and to keep you on the right path once it is gained.

 

Now, supposing that you are a willing worker for Christ–discerning His will for your life and the special vision that He placed inside of you many years ago. This vision was shared by your partner in ministry, and even though time has passed since the prophecy came forth–time did not invalidate the prophecy; people invalidate prophecy.

 

How is this Done?

 

Prophecy is timeless. GOD determines the season of fulfillment based upon our growth and understanding. Many times we are called to support another’s vision for a season. This is good in the sight of GOD, but there comes a moment when you realize that the vision placed on your heart-line so long ago is starting to give birth. This vision may have been thwarted at some point or perhaps the laborers were too few or too immature.and the vision faded for a season. Whatever the reason for the delay–this is where you now stand.

 

Obviously this becomes subject to interpretation, especially on the part of those whom you have labored with and for through many years. They would rather have you support their vision as all things do point to GOD. I agree that this is logical, however, even within the realm of visions, there is not one vision or visionary, except Christ, who reigns over all. GOD can plant seeds in many of His servants, water them, then watch them either stagnate, sprout and die,  or sprout and flourish. Read ‘Parable of The Sower’ Mark 4: 1-32.

 

The timing of fruition or produce is in the food and provision. Spiritual food is different from physical food. Physical food is designed to feed the cells of the body; to nourish and stimulate more growth of our physical shell–because that is what the body is. The physical acts as a repository (a place where non-material things are placed or stored) for our spiritual being, and, if we are saved, the home of the Holy Spirit, for He is within us. Spiritual food has a different natural make-up and function. Spiritual food is designed by our Creator to feed our souls and spirits, and without this spiritual food, we are doomed to die from lack of nourishment. A baby fed with physical food but denied physical touch and comfort of their spirit will die. Jesus said, “it is written, Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of GOD.’   Matthew 4: 4

 

Seeking GOD at this time of prophetic revealment is crucial. The noise of living can crowd GOD’s voice out and make it difficult to hear. Sadly, we can become so busy that we are performing works, not Kingdom building.

 

Part 2

 

How Do We Seek?

 

The Holy Bible is our inspirational guide. It was written by GOD’s Holy Spirit through divinely inspired men. If we seek GOD’s Word where He may be found our understanding will be Blessed and we will have the spiritual necessities to press into GOD’s Holy Spirit and thus His saving work. Only through His leading are we able to transcend the ways of this world and emerge victorious on the other side. The present world weighs us down with the cares and anxieties of life. No longer is life simply work, church, and home–our present lives are full of temptations from a vast amount of sources. The entertainment industry bombards our homes and resources as we purchase Computers, TVs , DVDs, Blu-Ray, CDs,  and any other technology and its support technology presented to the masses. Large portions of our income are absorbed into this field alone. Mankind loves to be entertained, but with that entertainment comes influence that, if not discerned and checked, will result in backsliding and spiritual loss.

 

I recall being told as a child that a Christian should not be seen going into a bar or a house of ill-repute (brothel). As I have progressed spiritually and in my Christian understanding, I realize that those brave souls who do venture into such places with the intent of trying to rescue the lost, do so only in the strength of their convictions. They emerge unscathed only through the support and intervention of The Holy Spirit who keeps their minds and bodies free from temptation. This is accomplished through prayer and supplication before GOD prior to entering the establishment. Asking Jesus to be with you as your Intercessor and The Holy Spirit as your Guide and Comforter will enable you to enter places that would swallow you whole in your own strength.

 

It is only through seeking the Trinity that we can overcome the temptations ever-present in this world. Father, Son, and Holy Spirit work as three-in-one to help us to be overcomers.  Galatians 5: 16-25 NIV states:

 

“So I say, live by The Spirit , and you will not gratify the desires of the sinful nature. For the sinful nature desires what is contrary to the Spirit, and the Spirit what is contrary to the sinful nature. They are in conflict with each other, so you do not do what you want. But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under law.

The acts of the sinful nature are obvious: sexual immorality, impurity and debauchery; idolatry and witchcraft; hatred, discord, jealousy; fits of rage, selfish ambition, dissensions, factions, and envy; drunkenness, orgies, and the like. I warn you, as I did before, that those who live like this will not inherit the Kingdom of GOD.

But the fruit of The Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law. Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the sinful nature with its passions and desires. Since we live by The Spirit, let us keep in step with The Spirit. Let us not become conceited, provoking and envying each other”.

 

 Jesus came to earth for many reasons, primarily to bring salvation and redemption for mankind–but He also came to gve us example of what to do and what not to do. He taught the way to overcome temptation by example. Jesus showed us the way to deal with the devil and his works by living a blameless life that enabled Him to call upon GOD’s Spirit to endure and to accomplish the work. We should be inspired by Jesus’  example–it is the only example that will ensure eternal life. We gain heaven not through the law of man but by the law of The Spirit. Romans 8: 1-4 NIV says:

 

“Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus, because through Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit who gives life has set you free from the law of sin and death. For what the law was powerless to do because it was weakened by the flesh,God did by sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh to be a sin offering.And so he condemned sin in the flesh, in order that the righteous requirement of the law might be fully met in us, who do not live according to the flesh but according to the Spirit.”

 

Go In Christ and if tempted know that GOD the Father, GOD the Son, and GOD the Holy Spirit are with you and will bear you up.  Rev. Charlene

 

All scripture quotes retrieved from the world-wide web [www.biblegateway.com] and the Zondervan Publishing House NIV Version 1984 

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04/3/10

Easter Greetings To All: Revisited

 Easter Revisited  for March  31, 2013

 

 

Once again, Easter, the celebration of the Resurrection of our LORD and SAVIOR is here. This is the season of recognizing the sacrifice that Jesus the Christ made for each of us to have access to eternal life. Through intercession, Jesus paid the price for all of ours sins committed and not yet committed. That we are not worthy of such unconditional love has been covered by His blood shed for the remission of sins. We are all loved beyond our own comprehension.

 

 

A striking portion of scripture that epitomizes this love is found in John 21: 1-25. Jesus had prepared hot coals and was cooking fish for the disciples as they struggled for a catch. Just as when they had first met, Jesus told them to “throw your net on the right side of the boat and you will find some. When they did, they were unable to haul the net because of the large number of fish”. This was representative of the many “fish” or followers of Christ yet to be caught for the Kingdom of GOD.

 

As we contemplate the true meaning of Christ’s sacrifice we should focus on the “Great Commission”. First of all, Easter is for everyday and everyone. That the holy day is celebrated once a year does not detract from the fact that Easter’s message applies each day. We are as Christians to fish for others to gather them into the Body of Christ. GOD’s Holy Spirit guides our fishing methods as all are not the same. However, each method should contain the same message and yield the same result. Why make Jesus’ sacrifice and love nil? To give His act meaning is to spread the Word and the Joy of Salvation. Then we may partake of the Lord’s Supper just as Jesus shared bread and wine with His disciples before His death, and then shared bread and fish with them after His resurrection.

 

 

Easter should continue long after the calendar appointed time of its celebration. In a world and a time when men do not want to hear the Word of GOD, let us as followers of Christ continue to study, teach, preach, and spread the news of the gift above all gifts–Salvation.

 

 

                                                                          A Joyous Easter, Charlene

 

 

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