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"...if anyone makes the assistance of grace depend on the humility or obedience of man and does not agree that it is a gift of grace itself that we are obedient and humble, he contradicts the Apostle who says, "What have you that you did not receive?" (1 Cor. 4:7), and, "But by the grace of God I am what I am" (1 Cor. 15:10). (Council of Orange: Canon 6)

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  • « So You Fell? So What? Run Christian, Run! | Main | Without Excuse »

    Understanding John 5:39,40

    Pastor John, I have a friend (who is a Christian) who warns me about studying the Bible too much. He says the Pharisees spent all their time studying the Bible and Jesus had very strong words of condemnation for them. My friend says, "Look at John 5:39,40. The Pharisees loved the Bible but were not even saved. Don't become like them." I still believe I should study the Bible but his words ring in my ears as a constant dampener on the joy I feel when I look into God's word. Is he right?

    "You search the Scriptures because you think that in them you have eternal life; and it is they that bear witness about me, yet you refuse to come to me that you may have life." - John 5:39, 40

    I seek to provide an answer here. - JS

    Posted by John Samson on November 22, 2011 01:38 PM

    Comments

    John,

    Haven't read your response yet (going to in just a moment), but obviously anyone who says don't study your bible too much is way off base. We need a constant diet of God's Word so that we can renew our minds (Rom 12:2) and be enabled by the power of the Holy Spirit to not be conformed to this world. The only other choice is to walk in the counsel of the ungodly and be vunerable to the attacks of Satan who loves to work through ignorance and constantly bombards us with age old question, "Hath God said?"

    Additionally, Jesus chided the Sadducees for not knowing the scriptures well enough, " "Are you not therefore mistaken, because you do not know the Scriptures nor the power of God?"

    " But his delight is in the law of the Lord, And in His law he meditates day and night." Psalm 1:2

    "You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your strength. 6 "And these words which I command you today shall be in your heart. 7 You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, when you walk by the way, when you lie down, and when you rise up." Deut 6:5-8

    " Oh, how I love Your law! It is my meditation all the day. 98 You, through Your commandments, make me wiser than my enemies; For they are ever with me. 99 I have more understanding than all my teachers, For Your testimonies are my meditation. 100 I understand more than the ancients, Because I keep Your precepts. 101 I have restrained my feet from every evil way, That I may keep Your word." Psalm 119:97-101

    "But He answered and said, "It is written, 'Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God.' " Matthew 4:4

    We need God's Word more than our daily food,


    Alan Wuest

    ECCLESIASTICAL STAIN-GLASS SPECTALCES REMOVED!

    “It is written!”
    Unmentionable Verses in the Bible
    In Revelation 22:19, it says "And if any man shall take away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part out of the book of life..."
    There are more ways to cut out passages we don't like from scripture than simply taking scissors to a Bible. A first characteristic of a cult of Christianity is that it emphasizes only those passages which seem to uphold its errors, while omitting emphasis or even mention of those which do not. Authentic Christianity, however, confidently teaches from every verse.
    2 Timothy 3:16
    King James Version (KJV)
    16All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness:
    I guess I could call this article, “Comics & Bibles”!
    It seems that I am reading a completely different Bible than most Fundamentalist Christians; but I believe that they are reading a Comic version of the Bible. Take for instance what happened in Acts 5 between Peter and Ananias and Sapphira:
    Acts 5:1-11
    Ananias and Sapphira
    1 There was a man named Ananias. His wife’s name was Sapphira. Ananias sold some land he had, 2 but he gave only part of the money to the apostles. He secretly kept some of the money for himself. His wife knew this, and she agreed with it.
    3 Peter said, “Ananias, why did you let Satan fill your mind with such an idea? You kept part of the money for yourself and lied about it to the Holy Spirit! 4 Before you sold the field, it belonged to you, right? And even after you sold it, you could have used the money any way you wanted. How could you even think of doing such a thing? You lied to God, not to us!”
    5-6 When Ananias heard this, he fell down and died. Some young men came and wrapped his body. They carried it out and buried it. And everyone who heard about this was filled with fear.
    7 About three hours later his wife came in. Sapphira did not know about what had happened to her husband. 8 Peter said to her, “Tell me how much money you got for your field. Was it this much?”
    Sapphira answered, “Yes, that was all we got for the field.”
    9 Peter said to her, “Why did you and your husband agree to test the Spirit of the Lord? Listen! Do you hear those footsteps? The men who buried your husband are at the door. They will carry you out in the same way.” 10 At that moment Sapphira fell down by his feet and died. The young men came in and saw that she was dead. They carried her out and buried her beside her husband. 11 The whole church and all the other people who heard about this were filled with fear.
    I would have interjected from the very beginning and told Peter,
    “He that is without sin, cast the first stone” (John 8:7)
    And don’t forget Peter that YOU denied our Lord Jesus Christ cursing and swearing (Mark 14:71) and you seem to forget what the Lord Jesus Christ told YOU about forgiveness:
    Matthew 18:21-35
    A Story About Forgiveness
    21 Then Peter came to Jesus and asked, “Lord, when someone [a] won’t stop doing wrong to me, how many times must I forgive them? Seven times?”
    22 Jesus answered, “I tell you, you must forgive them more than seven times. You must continue to forgive them even if they do wrong to you seventy-seven times. [b]
    23 “So God’s kingdom is like a king who decided to collect the money his servants owed him. 24 The king began to collect his money. One servant owed him several thousand pounds [c] of silver. 25 He was not able to pay the money to his master, the king. So the master ordered that he and everything he owned be sold, even his wife and children. The money would be used to pay the king what the servant owed.
    26 “But the servant fell on his knees and begged, ‘Be patient with me. I will pay you everything I owe.’ 27 The master felt sorry for him. So he told the servant he did not have to pay. He let him go free.
    28 “Later, that same servant found another servant who owed him a hundred silver coins. He grabbed him around the neck and said, ‘Pay me the money you owe me!’
    29 “The other servant fell on his knees and begged him, ‘Be patient with me. I will pay you everything I owe.’
    30 “But the first servant refused to be patient. He told the judge that the other servant owed him money, and that servant was put in jail until he could pay everything he owed. 31All the other servants saw what happened. They felt very sorry for the man. So they went and told their master everything that happened.
    32 “Then the master called his servant in and said, ‘You evil servant. You begged me to forgive your debt, and I said you did not have to pay anything! 33 So you should have given that other man who serves with you the same mercy I gave you.’ 34 The master was very angry, so he put the servant in jail to be punished. And he had to stay in jail until he could pay everything he owed.
    35 “This king did the same as my heavenly Father will do to you. You must forgive your brother or sister with all your heart, or my heavenly Father will not forgive you.”
    Footnotes:
    a. Matthew 18:21 someone Literally, “my brother.”
    b. Matthew 18:22 seventy-seven times Or “seventy times seven,” a very large number, meaning there should be no limit to forgiveness.
    c. Matthew 18:24 several thousand pounds Literally, “10,000 talanta” or “talents.” A talent was about 27 to 36 kg (60 to 80 pounds) of gold, silver, or copper coins.
    And YOU also forget what the Lord Jesus called you:
    Matthew 16:21-23
    Jesus Says He Must Die
    21 From that time Jesus began telling his followers that he must go to Jerusalem. He explained that the older Jewish leaders, the leading priests, and the teachers of the law would make him suffer many things. And he told his followers that he must be killed. Then, on the third day, he would be raised from death.
    22 Peter took Jesus away from the other followers to talk to him alone. He began to criticize him. He said, “God save you from those sufferings, Lord! That will never happen to you!”
    23 Then Jesus said to Peter, “Get away from me, Satan [a]! You are not helping me! You don’t care about the same things God does. You care only about things that people think are important.”
    Footnotes:
    a. Matthew 16:23 Satan Name for the devil meaning “the enemy.” Jesus means that Peter was talking like Satan.
    And I have this to say to those Fundamentalist Christians, who take issue with my diction:
    Matthew 7:3
    3 “Why do you notice the small piece of dust that is in your friend’s eye, but you don’t notice the big piece of wood that is in your own?
    Based on the Word of God, I declare that God and I are:
    “singing from the same hymn sheet”!
    THE PENIS OF A DONKEY

    Ezekiel 23:19-23
    GOD’S WORD Translation (GW)
    19She remembered how she had been a prostitute in Egypt when she was young. So she took part in even more prostitution. 20She lusted after her lovers, whose genitals were like those of donkeys and whose semen was like that of horses.21So she longed to do the sinful things she did when she was young in Egypt, when young men caressed and fondled her breasts.
    22“Oholibah, this is what the Almighty LORD says: I’m going to stir up your lovers against you. They are the lovers you turned away from in disgust. I will bring them against you from every side. 23I will bring men from Babylon and from all Babylonia, men from Pekod, Shoa, and Koa, as well as all the Assyrians. They are desirable young men, governors and commanders, military officers and important men. All of them ride on horses.
    Death to Adulterers

    Leviticus 20:10-11
    Amplified Bible (AMP)
    10The man who commits adultery with another's wife, even his neighbor's wife, the adulterer and the adulteress shall surely be put to death.
    11And the man who lies carnally with his father's wife has uncovered his father's nakedness; both of the guilty ones shall surely be put to death; their blood shall be upon their own heads.
    Mark 10:11-12
    11He answered them, “Whoever divorces his wife and marries another woman is committing adultery. 12If a wife divorces her husband and marries another man, she is committing adultery.”

    Few Christians today consider death as a punishment for adultery; no doubt because so many Christians divorce and remarry themselves, and practice sexual liaisons with other people's spouses.

    Old Testament VIAGRA etc

    "Come, my beloved, let us go forth into the field; let us lodge in the villages. Let us get up early to the vineyards; let us see if the vine flourish, whether the tender grape appear, and the pomegranates bud forth: there will I give thee my loves. The mandrakes give a smell, and at our gates are all manner of pleasant fruits, new and old, which I have laid up for thee, O my beloved." (Song of Solomon 7:11-13)

    The poetry of the Songs of Solomon give Scriptural testimony for love, sex and the beauty of the female body, a rare and usually ignored portion of the Bible by many fundamentalist Christians.

    The mandrakes mentioned here describe a Mediterranean herb of the nightshade family of plants. To this day in the Middle East, people believe it overcomes impotence in men and acts as a powerful aphrodisiac. Even the roots have a decidedly phallic appearance. Ancient physician, Galen, wrote that pomegranate possessed anti-fertility properties. Many women in ancient days used pomegranate, (as well as other plants) for birth control, with little interference from religious or political authorities. Studies in the 1930s showed that pomegranate reduced fertility in laboratory animals, much as modern contraceptive pills do. [Archaeology, March/April 1994]

    Genesis 30:14
    GOD’S WORD Translation (GW)
    14During the wheat harvest Reuben went out into the fields and found some mandrakes.[a] He brought them to his mother Leah. Rachel said to Leah, “Please give me some of your son’s mandrakes.”
    Footnotes:
    a. Genesis 30:14 Mandrakes were considered a source of fertility for women.
    Cooking With Human Feces!

    Ezekiel 4:12-13
    12Eat the bread as you would eat barley loaves. Bake the bread in front of people, using human excrement for fuel.”
    13Then the LORD said, “In the same way, the people of Israel will eat unclean[a] bread among the nations where I scatter them.”
    Footnotes:
    a. Ezekiel 4:13 “Unclean” refers to anything that Moses’ Teachings say is not presentable to God.

    Ezekiel 4:14-15
    GOD’S WORD Translation (GW)
    14I answered, “Almighty LORD, I have never dishonored myself. From the time I was young until now, I have never eaten an animal that died by itself or was killed by other wild animals. No unclean meat has ever entered my mouth.”
    15He said to me, “I will let you use cow manure in place of human excrement. Bake your bread over it.”
    Eating Dung And Drinking Piss

    2 Kings 18:27
    King James Version (KJV)
    27But Rabshakeh said unto them, Hath my master sent me to thy master, and to thee, to speak these words? hath he not sent me to the men which sit on the wall, that they may eat their own dung, and drink their own piss with you?
    Any mention of eating dung and drinking piss in any secular writing would get considered obscene and sick by any self-righteous minded Christian. Then why should it not receive the same consideration if found in a bible? Might we ask what artistic or social value this verse presents?

    Isaiah 36:12
    King James Version (KJV)
    12But Rabshakeh said, Hath my master sent me to thy master and to thee to speak these words? hath he not sent me to the men that sit upon the wall, that they may eat their own dung, and drink their own piss with you?
    Expose Her Breasts!

    Nahum 3:5-6
    5“I am against you, Nineveh,” declares the LORD of Armies.
    “I will lift up your dress over your face.
    I will show nations your naked body and kingdoms your disgrace.
    6I will throw filth on you.
    I will make you look like a fool.
    I will make you a sight to be seen.
    Nahum 3:5-6
    The Message (MSG)
    5-7"I'm your enemy, Whore Nineveh—
    I, God-of-the-Angel-Armies!
    I'll strip you of your seductive silk robes
    and expose you on the world stage.
    I'll let the nations get their fill of the ugly truth
    of who you really are and have been all along.
    I'll pelt you with dog dung
    and place you on a pedestal: 'Slut on Exhibit.'
    Everyone who sees you will gag and say,
    'Nineveh's a pigsty:
    What on earth did we ever see in her?
    Who would give her a second look? Ugh!'"
    Some think these verses describe a genius of a poet. If judged as such, it can only come from its sharpness and vividness. But it also describes vulgarity and hatred, even if it aims against the harlotry of the city of Nineveh.

    Few scholars today believe that these verses come as a direct quote from God. But a fundamentalist who believes every word of the Bible, must also accept these words as Godly.

    Malachi 2:2-3
    GOD’S WORD Translation (GW)
    2If you won’t listen and if you won’t consider giving honor to my name,” says the LORD of Armies, “then I’ll send a curse on you, and I’ll curse the blessings you give. Yes, I’ve already cursed them because you don’t carefully consider this.
    3“I’m going to punish your descendants. I’m going to spread excrement on your faces, the excrement from your festival sacrifices. You will be discarded with it.
    Fatal Orgasm

    Genesis 38:7-14
    7 But Er, Judah's firstborn, was wicked in the LORD's sight; so the LORD put him to death.
    8 Then Judah said to Onan, Have sex with your brother's wife and fulfil your duty to her as a brother-in-law to produce offspring for your brother.
    9 But Onan knew that the offspring would not be his; so whenever he had sex with his brother's wife, he ejaculated his semen on the ground to keep from producing offspring for his brother.
    10 What he did was wicked in the LORD's sight; so he put him to death also.
    11 Judah then said to his daughter-in-law Tamar, Live as a widow in your father's house until my son Shelah grows up. For he thought, He may die too, just like his brothers. So Tamar went to live in her father's house.
    12 After a long time Judah's wife, the daughter of Shua, died. When Judah had recovered from his grief, he went up to Timnah, to the men who were shearing his sheep, and his friend Hirah the Adullamite went with him.
    13 When Tamar was told, Your father-in-law is on his way to Timnah to shear his sheep,
    14 she took off her widow's clothes, covered herself with a veil to disguise herself, and then sat down at the entrance to Enaim, which is on the road to Timnah. For she saw that, though Shelah had now grown up, she had not been given to him as his wife.
    The term "onanism," from the name Onan, has come to stand for masturbation which has evolved to have a meaning far different from its original usage.

    Dictionaries define onanism as "male masturbation" or "Uncompleted coitus." According to interpretations of the Bible, Onan removed his penis from his partner's vagina before he ejaculated so that his seed fell onto the ground. This displeased God so much that he killed him! Onanism has also received another definition of "self pollution" which has caused misery throughout the centuries. God killed Onan because, rather than to impregnate his brother's wife-- thus extending his line, Onan chose to interrupt his coitus before he could impregnate Tamar. Onan had a logical reason for doing so, one that involved Jewish law of those ancient days. During Biblical times, any child born to the wife of the eldest son died without heirs - and if his wife had no children sired by a relative of her dead spouse - then the dominance would pass to the second son. Onan stood to lose a great deal if he complied with his father's order. Had he been asked to marry his brother's wife, thus transferring her to his possession, he no doubt would have completed the act. Then the resultant child would have been his, legally as well as physically.

    Some time during the centuries, the character of the sinful act was changed. Instead of being recognized as a seldom performed interrupting of coitus, it became accepted as any form of self-stimulation that resulted in orgasm, and the entire character of the deed became altered. Onanism came to mean a sinful act of masturbation!

    Fecal disposal

    Deuteronomy 23:13-14
    New International Version - UK (NIVUK)
    13 As part of your equipment have something to dig with, and when you relieve yourself, dig a hole and cover up your excrement.
    14 For the LORD your God moves about in your camp to protect you and to deliver your enemies to you. Your camp must be holy, so that he will not see among you anything indecent and turn away from you.
    These verses ask us to believe that God has concern for fecal waste disposal outside a military camp because God personally wishes to walk within the camp.

    Howl and Strip Naked

    Micah 1:8
    New Living Translation (NLT)
    8 Therefore, I will mourn and lament.
    I will walk around barefoot and naked.
    I will howl like a jackal
    and moan like an owl.
    The minor prophets felt influenced from Isaiah and these words of Micah indicate that he would imitate Isaiah's nudist actions as an adjunct to his prophesying.

    Picture in your mind a religious man of today stripping and running around totally nude and prophesying in public, wailing and hooting at the top of his lungs. No doubt the police would snatch him up in a second while citizens stare in embarrassment. It just goes to show how far we have demeaned ourselves and our bodies as shameful.

    Isaiah 20:2-4
    New Living Translation (NLT)
    2 the LORD told Isaiah son of Amoz, “Take off the burlap you have been wearing, and remove your sandals.” Isaiah did as he was told and walked around naked and barefoot.
    3 Then the LORD said, “My servant Isaiah has been walking around naked and barefoot for the last three years. This is a sign—a symbol of the terrible troubles I will bring upon Egypt and Ethiopia.[a] 4 For the king of Assyria will take away the Egyptians and Ethiopians[b] as prisoners. He will make them walk naked and barefoot, both young and old, their buttocks bared, to the shame of Egypt.
    Footnotes:
    a. Isaiah 20:3 Hebrew Cush; also in 20:5.
    b. Isaiah 20:4 Hebrew Cushites.
    1 Kings 14:10
    King James Version (KJV)
    10Therefore, behold, I will bring evil upon the house of Jeroboam, and will cut off from Jeroboam him that pisseth against the wall, and him that is shut up and left in Israel, and will take away the remnant of the house of Jeroboam, as a man taketh away dung, till it be all gone.
    Although the unsanitary practice of urinating on walls might have caused serious erosion of the mud walls, bringing evil appears excessive punishment for such a minor offense.

    Note, the word 'pisseth' translates from the Hebrew word 'shathan' [shaw-than'] which means to make water, i.e. urinate, or piss.

    (See also I Kings 16:8-11, I Kings 21:21, and II Kings 9:8-10.)

    Pisseth Against Walls

    1 Kings 16:11
    King James Version (KJV)
    11And it came to pass, when he began to reign, as soon as he sat on his throne, that he slew all the house of Baasha: he left him not one that pisseth against a wall, neither of his kinsfolks, nor of his friends.
    Consider that many Christians tell us to believe the entire Bible; must we also include this vulgar language as the inspiration of God?

    (See also I Kings 14:10, 21:21; II Kings 9:8.)

    Deuteronomy 23:1-2
    Amplified Bible (AMP)
    1HE WHO is wounded in the testicles, or has been made a eunuch, shall not enter into the congregation of the Lord.
    2A person begotten out of wedlock shall not enter into the assembly of the Lord; even to his tenth generation shall his descendants not enter into the congregation of the Lord.

    THE RAPE OF THE CONCUBINE

    Judges 19:25
    Easy-to-Read Version (ERV)
    25 But those evil men would not listen to the old man. So the Levite took his slave woman and put her outside with them. They hurt her and raped her all night long. Then, at dawn, they let her go.

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