GWR01
Introduction

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GWR02
Paradigms

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GWR03
Religious Attributes

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GWR04
Religion Divides

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GWR05
Denominations Empires

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GWR06
It is Finished

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GWR07
Clergy & Laity

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A Hidden Gospel?

Gospel of the Kingdom


Paradigms Affect Understanding


Litmus Tests of the Gospel

Understanding the Gospel

AUTHOR'S VIDEOS ON YOUTUBE

Author's Brief Testimony

 


 Charles Pinkney

"You CAN access the life of God 
without being sidetracked  by religious tradition."


Is There A Hidden Gospel? 

The Gospel of the Kingdom

The Missing Piece: The Power of God Extended Through "Grace"
The Gospel of Grace is generally addressed in terms limiting the gift of God to "Saving Grace." Salvation is the primary and indispensible first chapter to the knowledge of God's great gift. Any sinner may turn to Jesus finding forgiveness and being born into the kingdom of God. In sermons we hear phrases like 'unmerited favor' that describe this introductory Gospel of Grace.

The mnemonic, G.R.A.C.E. "God's Riches at Christ's Expense" gives clarity to the essential doctrine of salvation through Messiah. Expressed another way, the power of the cross of Jesus has paid the dept for the sins of all and is available to all who will acknowledge it. But this is but the intitial introduction of the "gift of God" as grace means free gift. A deeper study leads us to understand that Jesus' gift is a gift that continues giving. We were saved; we are being saved; and we shall be saved. Grace is all that our Lord, the Messiah, has done, is doing and shall continue to do on our behalf.

Now remembering that we are saved by grace simply through believing and not as an award for doing any good works or righteous efforts. We advance further toward the principle of "all things are of God... and, "We can do nothing of ourselves, (by self effort.)" "Unless God builds the house we labor in vain to build it."


The Christian life progresses as we grow through a constant supply of grace. As we are called to be disciples each of us is nurtured by the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit is our mentor in all things pertaining to Truth and godliness. The Holy Spirit takes those virtues of Christ and purposes to nurture these in us. All things are of God and we are exhorted to live by the power of God. The Holy Spirit is the Power that God provides to enervate and empower every Spiritual pursuit. The "rest of God" spoken of in Hebrews 4 (vs.9-10) speaks about this "rest" which is to experience heavenly enablement and supply through the Holy Spirit. The Spirit literally comes along side to be our helper.

The key to the whole gospel (full gospel) is that Christ's gift pervades throughout all the continuing chapters of our maturing as a disciple in the Body of Christ. Every good gift comes from the Father of Light. The nine gifts of the Spirit are enablements of the Holy Spirit, also called grace gifts. (1 Corinthians C.12) These are given for the purpose of ministering the God blessings to others. The statement "I can do nothing of myself, it is the Father who does the work -" (John 4:30)Jesus describes his own dependancy on God (His Father) for direction and enablement as the son of man.

The Kingdom of God (Kingdom of Heaven) was manifested when the disciples were sent to the cities of Israel. At this time the living Messiah provided the authority for all the miracles that were described in Mark C.6. The birth of the church happened at Pentecost, fifty days after Jesus' resurrection. Disciples were equipt with the "promise of the Father." This was the next phase in enacting the Kingdom of heaven. The disciples inquired whether the Kingdom of God (the millenial reign) would then begin. Jesus told them, no, it will be at a later time.

Now the church age had begun and the manifestation of the power of God to change the vary nature of a human being. The church age of the called has continued since that day and the required enduement has not been changed for it was required to continue the ministry of Jesus.

The great commission was announced by the resurrected Messiah. It was to make disciples and empower these disciples with the Power of the Holy Spirit. To repeat, this empowerment enables us to accesses the things that belong to Jesus and makes them available to us. Any teachings that the Holy Spirit is limited to the days of the first apostles is promoting a false and anti-christ doctrine. The gospel is the Power of God. It was then and it is today.

Extending Christ's Gospel

The Christian life begins with an encounter with God through the experience of being "born again" (John 3.3). This refers to the supernatural regeneration of the dormant human spirit, literally reborn from above. This is a distinctive supernatural event, not just an emotional moment nor a mental assent to a belief or ideology. It is a divine transformation in which ordinary persons are begotten by God through the gospel. 

What I call the hidden gospel is almost absent from most traditional churches. Though it is clearly described in scripture, most main line denominations have side-stepped the emphasis of making disciples and equipping them to replicate the ministry of the Kingdom of God with the same power and authority that Jesus demonstrated and taught. "The promise of the Father," (Luke 24,29) required the activation and enablement that equips a child of God to be able to deal with spiritual understanding, and ministry encounters with others.

Spiritual Enablement
It is through the enablement by the Holy Spirit that we are able to communicate with God and receive from Him. We are able for the first time to understand Scripture that was once veiled and of little interest to us. After this we grow and are built up through revelations of the Holy Spirit. According to prophetic lore, we have God's law written in our heart(Jeremiah 31;33). Our worldly view point is exchanged for God's view of us and the world. After a disciple is "born" we are expected to grow in the knowledge and the character of God as we exercise the gifts provided both for communication with God, worship and ministry to others. 


Believers are empowered to act just as did the disciples in the book of Acts.
Some sects teach that this provision is not available today. This is sad and diminishes the Kingdom of God experience. God has not changed his methodology or purposes. We eventually become aware that we are to do the work of Christ, which is simply put; to continue "to destroy the works of Satan (the devil.) Thus the work of the Kingdom is that which deals with forces of this world and the evil powers which are exalted in it.
 

Summarizing: The hidden gospel goes beyond salvation that provides the "redemption" of a lost soul who becomes a purchased child of God. The gospel is the "Extension" of Christ's ministry. As a disciple we learn the Word and become one who does the work of Christ in the world. A "son of God" is one who follows the direction of the Holy Spirit, hears the Shepherd's voice and follows those leadings.
Those called to partake in the Gospel of the Kingdom are expected to grow up following the pattern and mission of Jesus, reconciling the fallen world to the Father.

Churches today are living with a religious Christianity overburdened by tradition, an institutionalized religion with written and unwritten doctrinal rules and formalities. The original Church, called out ones of God, bore little resemblance to Christianity today. First century believers had a fresh knowledge and witness to the Risen Jesus. They were directly connected to the apostle's doctrines and the purposes and power (dunamis) of the Holy Spirit which made them witnesses. The Hidden Gospel connects us to the family and fellowship of Jesus who came so we too could call God "Abba" Father, for truly, before the Resurrection and the commissioning of a believer to become a Disciple and a Son or Daughter of God, we were in fact cut off to the fellowship of God, the fellowship of Israel. We had no access to the God the Father Almighty. The Hidden Gospel is the Gospel of The Apostles, The Hidden Gospel is the Gospel of the Kingdom the rule of the present and future King of the Heavens and the earth. That king presides over the affairs of the whole earth and has been given The Name and the authority above all gods and all human authority. The authority of his name and his position in heavenly places has been given to all those who believe. Not just a select individual or body of religious authority.

In this Hidden Gospel Jesus is ever present. He promises to work with and through us. The Lord is directly involved with the lives of his adopted Brothers and Sisters who have been called to be children of the most high. (He is the first born of many brethren.) The familiar and traditional Gospel is for the most part, the Gospel of "Redemption." We were redeemed or bought with a cost. This became our reconciliation to God through Grace (God's mercy.) With redemption, we become an adopted child of God.

The Hidden Gospel expands the the role of God's sons and daughters who now inherit the same role in this world as Jesus himself in his earthly ministry. This is what I call the Gospel of "Extension." It extends the hand of God through each believer. The great commission extends Christ's authority to all who believe. Intimacy of being in the Father and in Christ, is allowed for all who believe.

The authentic Christian life that is modeled by the Scriptures, can only begin with an encounter with God through the experience of being born again or born from above. This is a supernatural event not an emotional moment. Nor is it A mere mental acceptance of a belief. 

Following this beginning, we face three alternatives: We can either continue to grow toward the fullness of Christ, as we learn of him through the word of God; we can sidetracked into religious traditions and formalities of one variety or another; or, a third possibility is that we can be seduced back into the world from which we were delivered.

The Gospel of the Kingdom

We are told by the Gospel writers that Jesus, Yeshua of Nazareth, came teaching and preaching the Gospel of the Kingdom. The Lord frequently made references to the "Kingdom of God" and the "Kingdom of Heaven." I was always intrigued about the double usage and found it confusing. With the Kingdom of Heaven being at hand it was clear that God's Kingdom was being demonstrated and experienced with results of a special divinely empowered kind: The blind were healed, the lepers cleansed and the good news was taught to the poor. (Isa. 61:2) The disciples had been sent out by twos to the people of Israel and were to declare, "The Kingdom of heaven has come to you." The sent disciples were acting under the command and authority of the King, the Messiah of Israel. It is this Messiah who came unto his own but was not received by them. The King was in their midst.

On that day we commemorate as Palm Sunday, the children heralded Jesus as Messiah. His coming was prophesied by Daniel and could be calculated to the very day he made that triumphant entry into Jerusalem, seated meekly on the foal of an ass. The religious authorities, panicked at the sight of the multitude waving palm fronds which symbolized the acclaim to a ruling dignitary. The rulers of the Jews panicked at hearing the laud and acclaim that the people offered Jesus. They acted with alarm to hush and settle the crowds. The Roman authorities must not be led to believe that a political revolt might be brewing. It was a week of fateful decision for Israel and Jerusalem.

Jesus already had foreseen what the outcome of that week would be. He wept deeply at the destiny that lay ahead for Jerusalem, and for Israel. He knew what the future would hold. Jesus knew that His Day would eventually come. The King would not be entering meekly seated on a donkey but would come in a blaze of heaven's power and glory. Old Testament prophecy is filled with the time of the "Second Coming." This long awaited day will preceed the arrival of the King of Kings who will return with fiery judgment over all evil and destroy all that offend. Then he will take his seat upon the throne of David. The "Meshiac David" will come in glory and power as the conquering Lord of Sabbaoth. We do not have an inkling of the immensity of that power which will be deployed against the proud and defiant idolators who hold on to their last moments of receiving the honor of men and oppressing the simple. Satan's character which infused the earth for six thousand years is about to be extinguised.

Praying for the Great Day of God's Kingdom to Come

Each day Christians are asked to pray, "Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven." Who knows that we are actually adding our petition for Jesus' return and his kingdom rule to be hastened. Do you have this urgency in your heart? Have you had enough of crime and immorality? Have you had enough of lies and deception? Have you had enough of political corruption and intrigue and the tyrannical rule of despots? Are you growning within yourself yearning for the day that evil will be vanquished forever from the face of the earth? Then you have God's heart when you pray the prayer Jesus asked all of his disciples to pray. How sad it is to imagine that some are so connected to this present life and its pleasures that it is only this world's life style they long to preserve. (Remember Lot's wife! Luke 17:32,33.)

The Kingdom of God, at the present, has been given to us only as a token, a down payment. It is a token of better things to come. We await a day when righteousness shall reign and peace shall be the heritage of every child in every nation. We are seeing through a darkened lense but soon that darkened view shall be replaced by the glory and splendor or our complete redemption. Then we shall know even as we are known.


THE GOSPEL IS ABOUT ONE MAN

Jesus and Salvation Come from the Jews

Jesus is the Promised Messiah,

The Son of David, Jesus Christ the Son of God

Jesus submitted to the Father's Will

Jesus Christ, The Word Made Flesh

Reincarnation or Resurrection?

No Resurrection means no Gospel!

Jesus Was the Lamb of God

Abraham's Faith to Sacrifice his Only Son

Jesus Blood purchased our Souls

Blood bought the Provisions of the Gospel

Notable Encounters with Jesus

Liberty to the Children of God


A New priesthood, A New Form of Leadership


 
 

THE GOSPEL IS ABOUT ONE MAN Jesus of Nazareth, The Jesus of the Gospel  It seems that in the course of living a "religious" life, we tend to lose ight of some of the most basic essentials of Christianity, essentials which contain within them foundational truths and indispensable revelation. Among these essentials truths is the fact that the Christian faith is built upon a man, one man who is the only begotten son of God. Who is this man and what makes him special? Did he come to teach about love? Did he come to model a moral lifestyle? Did he come to found a religion replete with ritualistic protocols? Who do men say that I am?, Jesus asked his disciples. If we do not get the correct answer to that question, you can not avail yourself of the 'gift of God' which he brings. 

There is a simple African hymn-tune that states:
God loved the world and sent a savior, That we might live with Him forever, If you believe, if you receive, You can be born again.  
Jesus was born a man, but he was more than a man. His name in Hebrew is Yeshua. Yeshua (equals Jesus) and it was only after his ministry, death and resurrection that he became known as the Christ. Christ was not his last name. Christ (Greek Kristos) is the equivalent title for the Hebrew Mashiach (Messiah), the Anointed One, the Son of God. 
Jesus name in Hebrew, Yeshua, means Jehovah is Salvation. Angels were sent to announce the miraculous birth both to Mary and to Joseph, in the gospel accounts. The angels told them what his name was to be, You shall call His name Jesus (Yeshua) for he shall save his people - -(Matthew 1:21; Luke 1:31).  Prophecy foretold the Messiah's birth in detail. Prophecy is the testimony or witness of Jesus Christ. (Revelation 19:10.) It began in the earliest verses of the Book of Genesis and continues through the books of the law, the psalms, and the prophetic books of the first covenant, (old testament.) There is an unbroken line of scriptural promises and scriptural fulfillment attesting to the birth of Jesus. In addition Jesus Christ was portrayed metaphorically as a foreshadowing type, throughout all of the Old Testament. In a sense the whole Bible is a composite picture which, when constructed shows the fullness of God in one Man, the Son of God, Jesus Christ. 

Prophetic words spoken and recorded hundreds of years in advance, describe the birth, life, and death of Jesus Christ in perfect detail. His birth was to be at a certain place, at a certain time, under certain circumstances. With the birth of Jesus, God affirmed that Word of prophecy with precision. precisely in perfect timing. Jesus's life continued on its prophetic course, as sure as hands on fine clock, from the time of Jesus matured and was presented to the public, to his being received as the messiah (by some) rejected, tried, and crucified. All of these events followed a precise time-line recorded in advance.

Since the Spirit of Prophecy is the testamony of Jesus, (Rev.19) God's prophets were afforded no misses in their predictions. A prophet who missed only 10% of the time was declared a false prophet and subject to death by stoning.  There are many interesting books and commentaries which biblical scholars have written which detail the hundreds of specific prophetic scripture and their fulfillment pertinent to the life of Jesus. Though the study of prophecy per se goes beyond the scope of this writing, it is important to note that the birth, ministry and death of the Messiah was foretold by God. 

Jesus and Salvation Came Through the Jews 

The Jews were the people that God elected and fashioned to bring forth the Messiah. God chose a man, (Abraham) made a covenant with him with the singular purpose of having a people for His own special treasure and pleasure. The same people whose way was foreknown through Moses and the prophets, through trials, through captivity and deliverance, a people to nurture and prepare His man, His seed, His king, His savior. 
It was God's Wisdom, to construct this Way, in such a manner as to make the working impossible in man's eyes and in man's reasoning, so that He could prove the excellency of His own power. When God chose and man (Abraham,) he chose one as good as dead, old in years and whose wife (Sarah) was far past the age of child-bearing and nurturing.  When He chose a king, He chose a shepherd boy, (David). When He chose a woman to bear the Messiah He chose a virgin. When Jesus Christ chose his disciples he chose unlearned fishermen or workmen. When He chose how to establish a kingdom he chose a king who would forego an earthly crown and die the death of sinful man upon a cross. 

God chose the way of faith 

Faith is essentially a way of being persuaded by believing rather than by observation and reasoning. God chose to make reason and human smartness a pitfall to believing His word and His promises. 

Jesus Came as The Jewish Messiah and will Return as the Jewish Messiah 

The Anointed One, The prophesied Son of David. This Meshiach David, is destined to sit upon the throne of an earthly kingdom. The day will come that he will yet sit upon the throne of an earthly kingdom. He will at the end of this age put a total end to all opposition and rebellion against God's purposes. This end time event is described prophetically as The Day of Vengeance (Day of Wrath) or the Day of the Lord. The Day of the Lord is a time promised in scripture, when all unbelief, unrighteous, and rebellion will be addressed and overcome by God himself. It will not be accomplished through negotiation or compromise; it will not be accomplished with reasoning, negotiation, nor with political bargaining, nor with treaty making. Rather, God will exercise supernatural power, all of the forces of heaven and earth against all the nations and peoples who stand in rebellion against the Kingdom of Jesus Christ. 
The Messiah of the Gospels will return in majestic glory revealed in the skies. He will not be that charismatic politician winning over the peoples of the earth. He will rule with the force and authority of the name of God Almighty. And one more very important attribute, lest you should be deceived; He is the one who carries the imprint of the nails in His hands! (Zechariah 13.6.) 

Who is Jesus?  The Son of God
Jesus was conceived by the Spirit of God. This makes him the only begotten son of God. He is the seed of the woman who is mentioned in Genesis 3:15. It is important to understand that the father's blood line of Jesus' parental inheritance is that of God himself who was and is sinless and undefiled. Yet within the human seed is the nature of humanity, weaknesses, want and human emotion. 
The life that Jesus lived was a life lived within the limits of the human condition. Yet scripture states that He knew no sin, and though he was tempted in all areas just as we are. He remained undefiled and separate from the sin nature which is particular to all of the natural born human race. (Hebrews 4:15, 7:26)  He was a man, but certainly unlike humanity in a special way. The human race according to the bible, has an Adamic hereditary line or genealogy, descended from the line of Adam. Since Adam the human race is under a curse. The fall and the curse is portrayed in the first chapters of Genesis. At the moment, you may not believe in Adam or in any kind of curse, but for the time being, set that argument aside. God can work that issue out with you at a later time. It is necessary to believe that the Bible is not a fable or fiction. To argue against the Bible is to lose the blessing of believing in it, both in small questions and in larger questions. 

Jesus submitted his will to God the Father 

The Jesus of the Gospels demonstrated meekness, submission and servant-hood. He did not present himself as a worldly leader, nor a member of the religious establishment. 
Jesus did not demonstrate God-like powers at will from his infancy onward, though some apocryphal tradition stated this. Scripture indicates he did no miracles until his baptism in the Jordan river by the prophet who announced and made the way for Jesus' ministry, John the Baptist. After his baptism at the age of 30 the Spirit of God came upon him and filled him with the necessary endowment of miracle-working power. Even with supernatural spiritual endowments there were times when Jesus himself was not able to heal or do mighty works, this was owing to the belief or unbelief of those he ministered to.  While Jesus did not flaunt God-hood it would be an error to say that he did not know of his DIVINE nature or of his divine calling. He spoke of being about his Father's business even as a child. Jesus was filled with grace and wisdom, both of which are spiritual enablements given by God. Jesus was the Logos (the Word, the whole counsel of God) made flesh.  A movie which came out a few years ago, The Last Temptation of Christ, portrayed Jesus as mostly human and flawed with the worst of human weaknesses, dark passions, indecision and unbelief. It is a depiction of a Jesus with no apparent divine or supernatural attributes, whose only vision was of some kind of vague personal sacrifice. Though this is interesting fiction it is blindly ignorant of the real person of Jesus Christ, his transcendent divinity or his sinless nature. The true Jesus was a perfect lamb for a perfect sacrifice for impacting humanity with eternal consequences. 

Jesus Christ, The Word Made Flesh 

The Son of God, the Word was made Flesh. He was born into human form but he also had pre-existence with God. This can not, however, be said of the rest of the human race. Jesus spoke of His own glory which he had with the Father before the world was in his prayer recorded in John chapter seventeen. From this it can be stated with certainty that Jesus of Nazareth, the Son of God was also God. This becomes one awesome mysteries of the nature and person of God. I find it beyond my ability to comprehend but I expect that it will be revealed to my understanding at another time. 
Because Christ was pre-existent some may conclude that we all pre-existed. The question is appealing in some ways, curious and interesting at least. It is argued as a reality by those who have received spurious, demonically inspired revelation. But let it be said by a person who once thoroughly believed in reincarnation, that I have set that belief aside in favor of the bibleís teaching. It is appointed unto man to die once, and after that the judgment.(Hebrews 9:27).  The three natures of God have always been associated from the beginning of time. Three agree in heaven, The Father, The Word, the Spirit.

Reincarnation or Resurrection? 

The doctrine of resurrection which is taught in the Bible excludes the possibility of reincarnation. One life is promised, one body, followed by eternal judgment for that one life at some time in eternity. The resurrection of Jesusí own physical body from the dead, will be replicated for every living human soul, both the good and the bad, righteous and unrighteous.
Jesus was called, ñthe first fruits of they that sleep (1Corinthians 15:20.) 
The doctrine of the resurrection is given so much attention in the New Testament especially in the epistles that I could quote texts by the dozens, but at this reading it would be beyond the scope of this writing. Yes, it is unreasonable to the rational mind, to assert that a body which is dead or has even returned to dust can be brought forth alive out of the dust. But that is in fact the teaching of scripture from the prophet Daniel to Jesus, and restated by the apostle Paul in particular.  The man Jesus, will be presented as he was already presented to the disciples in Gospel accounts, alive in the flesh, bearing the same nail scars and the same spear wound in the side. As he left in a physical body ascended into glory, he will also return in a physical body. As he departed from the Mount of Olives he will also return in glory to that same spot to begin his reign. 

No Resurrection, Without it There is No Gospel

The doctrine of the resurrection is the proof-test and the cornerstone of the Gospel. Jesus had to rise again, having defeated death, alive with the keys to hell and the grave. The gospel which the apostle Paul presented stated this, If Jesus Christ is not risen from the grave, then all of our preaching, is for nothing and our faith is for nothing; furthermore our futures would hold only misery. (1 Corinthians 15:17-19 paraphrased) 
We could not have a supernatural Gospel without a supernatural Christ. We could not derive supernatural spiritual benefits from believing in a Gospel presented by a mere man, even if he was a great man! If this were the gospel we followed, the best we could do would be to try to live an honest and moral life with the limited powers of our own willpower, but we could not have received total acceptance by God without Jesus Christ's sacrifice. Because he was the Lamb of God How many churches could exist and perform their programs perfectly well without a resurrection?


Who is Jesus Christ? The Lamb of God

A sacrifice is made, The price is paid.
I believe that if Christian religious traditions have shorted us on any one thing, it is the knowledge and understanding of Jesus Christ's sacrifice as the Lamb of God and the legacy of blessing that His sacrifice brings to change the life and circumstances of every soul on earth. The sacrificial death of Jesus, God's only begotten, is the reason that Jesus came. It is the cornerstone of the Good News, the Gospel of Jesus Christ.  This same good news is not an option for possible consideration. The Lamb's gospel is established in the very heavens and every person on the earth will be held to account for it. For, the earth is the Lord and everything that is in it. (Exodus 9:29 Psalm 24:1)  The sacrifice of the lamb of God is a better sacrifice than any of the First Covenant, where bulls and goats were killed and the blood of those offerings was applied to the sin of the nation. These offerings could not touch the innate sin nature of the people themselves, but were only a temporary fix, a covering over for the sin of the people. The Book of Hebrews goes into detail about the new covenant and the nature of the sacrifice which Jesus made on our behalf. It compares the First and Second covenant and the provisions of the new which transcend the original.

 

The lamb of God was pre-figured in the sacrifice which Abraham was prepared to make of his own son
Isaac, the son of God's promise. Abraham took Isaac to the mountain and as he prepared to put him to the knife, said to his son, God himself will provide the lamb. (Genesis 22:8).  The lamb of God was described prophetically in the Book of Isaiah, chapters 52 and 53. He was led as a lamb to the slaughter and as a sheep before the shearer is silent, he did not open his mouth. (Isaiah 53:3-9).  The description of the purification of the priests who prepared to bring offerings into the Holy of Holies is a depiction of Jesus Himself. It was His blood that would purify and sanctify the mercy seat It was blood that was sprinkled seven times upon heaven's altar.  Jesus' Blood: Shed for Us  ( Was shed, when He sweat drops blood in the Garden of Gethsemene, gripped with the terror of separation from his Father, who turn from him, abandoning to death; and the prospect of being made a Curse separated from God by the sins of the world.  - -Was shed, when the servant of the high priest smote him upon the face.- - Was shed, when the Roman soldiers ridiculed him, mocked him, stripped him, buffeted him and torn out His beard. - - Was shed, When he was flogged with the Roman flagellum, the deadly scourging with the lash, Each of the nine strands were tipped with an object which cut or wounded.  - - Was shed, when the crown of thorns was plaited upon Jesus' head.- - Was shed, when Jesus hands and feet were penetrated by the spikes which would hold him suspended above the earth upon a Roman cross (the curse of hanging on a tree.) - - Was shed, when the Roman officer pierced his side with a spear and blood and water flowed out upon the ground.

Blood Purchased the Provisions of the Gospel 
Discussing the blood of the lamb may strike you as something primitive, strange  or disgusting but it is the fact that it is the living blood which makes a sacrifice spiritually effectual. From the writings of Moses we learn that the Life is in the blood. Blood is the life of the soul and holds potential for both blessing and for defilement. Innocent blood is said to cry out from the earth. The blood of victims of war and of violence cry out with a certain voice from the earth. 
Jesus' blood was blood untainted by sin or by the curse or death. It was/is 100 per cent imbued with the power of life. This blood has within it perfect eternal life; it still has, in the present, perfect eternal life. That blood that sprinkled the earth from the Mount of Olives, to Pilate's hall of judgment, to the via Dolorosa, to the hill called Golgotha, is still nurturing the whole earth. As Jesus was dying the death of crucifixion upon a cross, he declared the sentence which his blood would continue to enforce, Father forgive them, they do not know what they do. Jesus blood purchased the price for our sins, sins past, sins present, and sins future. Father forgive them, Among the last words spoken by Jesus upon the cross is the legacy which any person whose soul is in want can appropriate as his or her own personal blessing and legacy, eternal life. Shaman, witch doctors of primitive cultures understand the power of blood in their own rituals but these draw upon the dark side of Satan's world.

Who is Jesus?(Aside from being the Son of God)
Jesus was a perfect man, in word and deed
without sin. It is written in the law of Moses that we should make no graven image. Among all of the ten commandments this one may not lend itself readily to application although the first references seem to figure in the question of idolatry. I think, however, it has much more to apply to our present knowledge or lack of knowledge about God. One of the characteristics of human nature is to draw inferences and conclusions based upon things we see with the natural eye.  Throughout the nearly two thousand years of Christian tradition we become the victims of iconography, Icons which in some manner or another depict God or the Son of God. Any of us who have ever been to a major museum have seen depictions of Jesus Christ created during different historical eras. The characteristics of portrayal is to make a presumptuous statement about the personality, the humanity or the divinity of the subject that is being portrayed. Iconography has colored our interpretation of who Jesus is. Some of these images are very static with a very narrow portrayal. A sense of Jesus Christ's humanity was not apparent for centuries. When he was depicted by the first Christian artists there was not a trace of life or humanity. For the period from the 4th century until the 14th, he was no more than an stylized icon, lacking any features which would make him like us. Later, after the fifteenth century, he was portrayed as very human in works by Rembrandt, or Caravaggio, Rubens, and others. The point that I am making is in respect to narrowness and misunderstanding of who Jesus was. Religious traditions sometimes portray Jesus in such a narrow light that we can not associate him in all of his attributes, human and divine. 

The human quality of Jesus needs to be preserved. I think the phrase "Jesus was a super nice guy who loved everybody" may strike a negative tone for some who are religious and formal. But though it doen't tell the whole story, I say it for a reason. We need to de-mystify Jesus and make Jesus accessible to people, especially in the now of the Gospel rather than the then of religion. He was the friend of sinners, seeking to save, the gentle shepherd. The Lord is not someone who placed himself out of the reach of humanity. Through his death he would destroy the works of the enemy.

Jesus had his enemies. The religious authorities who resisted Jesus' saw him as a a blasphemer and a person who threatened the orthodoxy of Judaism. They had the Law and the Prophets but could not discern that it was these that spoke of him. He came to his own but they did not receive him. The formalized religion of Jesus' time searched the scripture but missed the essence of the Truth that was found there.
 

To think of Jesus as only a friendly, loving and kindly person does not interfere with his divinity nor his sovereignty. 
There are other aspects to Jesus too. He has 52 name titles found thoughout the Bible. They are found depicted by the the Hebrew names of Jehovah: Nissi, Tsidkenu, Rapha, Shama, Jireh, Sabaoth, Jehovah Shalom, and numerous others, as well as: The Jealous God, 'Righteous Judge', the 'Captain of the Army of God', or as the 'Ancient of Days', and many other powerful and illuminating titles.

One day, we will all fall before Christ, the Righteous Judge. But for now Jesus still offers to bring us gentle compassion, forgiveness, restoration and blessing to those of us with a need. He is extending a hand of friendship to those who need a friend.  Jesus' friendly and compassionate personality is described as a friend to sinners, one who went out of his way to meet and have fellowship with those that the religious community had excluded (Matthew 9:10-13.) Jesus was known to have been in the middle of fun and frolic where there was feasting and drinking. He said of himself, that he was accused of being a glutton and a wine bibber, but in spite of this Jesus, declared that wisdom is known by her offspring. (Matthew 11:19 paraphrase).  Stories are numerous where men or women who were considered 'the wrong sort,' received mercy from the Lord's hand of compassion and acceptance:

Bible stories of people who encountered Jesus
Zaccheus the publican; (described in Luke 19:2-10)The Samaritan woman at the well of Sychar; (John 4:5-30).The woman taken in adultery  (John 8:4-11).Mary, a former prostitute anointed Jesus feet at the house of Simon the leper; (Luke 7:37-47).Jesus who came to the grave side of Lazarus and wept; (John 11).Jesus who consoled the man healed of blindness after the church council expelled him; (John 9) At a certain miracle feast Jesus served and fed all those attending, (Luke 12:37).Plus all of the disciples, plus all of the un-named disciples - - called the 500.Plus the commissioned seventy, Luke 10. Plus the demoniac who was delivered of a host of demons, Plus all of the multitudes he healed and taught. And of course there were the religious authorities who wanted him silenced. Finally there is me, and countless others like me!


The friendship factor as it pertains to the person of Jesus is something that must not be lost. There is a proverb that states, There is a friend that sticks closer than a brother. (Proverbs 18:24) This is the love and friendship of Jesus Christ. 
There are so many who are deeply hurting inside, there are many who are bruised, and there are many needing a friend. The love and power of the Spirit of Christ Jesus can supply this. It is a kind of supernatural miracle that anyone who who needs, and asks believing, can receive. 

 

LIBERTY OF THE CHILDREN OF GOD
"Where the Spirit of the Lord is There is Liberty"
Questions pertaining to liberty tests our insights.
What is this liberty? How is this liberty to be expressed in the new testament church?
What is its implication in terms of headship or leadership?
When is it evident that Christian liberty is impeded or has been violated?


God grants and imparts a particular kind of liberty.  It is in accord with His nature, His Word. What ways is this liberty expressed? "And I will walk at liberty: for I seek thy precepts." ( Psalms 119:45)
God's desire for his people is freedom from bondage or liberty is announced by His prophets.

"This is the word that came unto Jeremiah from the LORD, after that the king Zedekiah had made a covenant with all the people which were at Jerusalem, to proclaim LIBERTY unto them;"    (Jeremiah 34:8) "But ye turned and polluted my name, and caused every man his servant, and every man his handmaid, whom he had set at LIBERTY at their pleasure, to return, and brought them into subjection, to be unto you for servants and for handmaids."   
(Jeremiah 34:16)
Jesus announces God's desire for his people is freedom from bondage or LIBERTY.

"The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he hath anointed me to preach the gospel to the poor; he hath sent me to heal the brokenhearted, to preach deliverance to the captives, and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty them that are bruised," (Luke 4:18
).

Jesus criticizes the scribes and Pharisees for their placing burdens upon the shoulders of the people.
"For they bind heavy burdens and grievous to be borne, and lay them on men's shoulders; but they themselves will not move them - -."    ( Mat 23:4 The Apostle Paul addresses the matter of LIBERTY, frequently. "Because the creature itself also shall be delivered from the bondage of corruption into the glorious liberty of the children of God." (Rom 8:21) Is it only freedom from following religious laws or does it pertain to the expression in worship and fellowship also?)
"Conscience, I say, not thine own, but of the other: for why is my liberty judged of another man's conscience?" 
(1 Corinthians 10:29)  "Now the Lord is that Spirit: and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty." 
(2 Corinthians 3:17)
False Brethren began to place the children of God into bondage again.
What is the nature of this bondage?

"And that because of false brethren unawares brought in, who came in privately to spy out our LIBERTY which we have in Christ Jesus, that they might bring us into bondage:" (Gal 2:4) "To whom we gave place by subjection, no, not for an hour; that the truth of the gospel might continue with you."  (Gal 2:5) "Stand fast therefore in the liberty wherewith Christ hath made us free, and be not entangled again with the yoke of bondage." (Gal 5:1)
Peter addresses liberty in his epistle, evidently having learned some lessons from Paul.
 
"As free, and not using your LIBERTY for a cloak of maliciousness, but as the servants of God." (1 Pet 2:16)
Burden bearing is ministering to people so that the yoke is made easier. "Bear ye one another's burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ." (Gal 6:2) Self exaltation is a spiritual deception which causes certain people  to suppress others.  "For if a man think himself to be something, when he is nothing, he deceives himself."  (Gal 6:3) "But let every man prove his own work, and then shall he have rejoicing in himself alone, and not in another."  (Gal 6:4)

 "For I say, through the grace given unto me, to every man that is among you, not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think; but to think soberly, according as God hath dealt to every man the measure of faith." (Rom 12:3)  "Let us not be desirous of vain glory, provoking one another, envying one another." ( Gal 5:26)  "With all lowliness and meekness, with longsuffering, forbearing one another in love;"    ( Eph 4:2 "Endeavoring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace."  (Eph 4:3)


Where does edification come from in the new testament church?

Is it from the teachings or preaching of a single authority?
The body provides a variety of gifts in the person of other believers for the mutual gain and edification of all.
 "Wherefore receive ye one another, as Christ also received us to the glory of God." (Rom 15:7
.)
"For as we have many members in one body, and all members have not the same office:" (Rom 12:4)
"Having then gifts differing according to the grace that is given to us, whether prophecy, let us prophesy according to the proportion of faith;"    ( Rom 12:6 "Or ministry, let us wait on our ministering: or he that teaches, on teaching;" 
(Rom 12:7) "Or he that exhorts, on exhortation: he that giveth, let him do it with simplicity; he that ruleth, with diligence; he that shows mercy, with cheerfulness."  (Rom 12:8)
 The body of believers comes together for mutual edification. This is how Paul describes this gathering and its purpose: "How is it then, brethren? when ye come together, every one of you hath a psalm, hath a doctrine, hath a tongue, hath a revelation, hath an interpretation. Let all things be done unto edifying." (1 Corinthians 14:26)

"Let us therefore follow after the things which make for peace, and things wherewith one may edify another."
(Rom 14:19) "Let every one of us please his neighbor for his good to edification." (Rom 15:2)
Apostolic leadership is focused toward edification and liberty in the apostolic doctrine which is correct doctrine.

"For though I should boast somewhat more of our authority, which the Lord hath given us for edification, and not for your destruction, I should not be ashamed:" What is it that brings forth edification? Love.

The purpose of the gifts of ministry described in Ephesians 4:11:  "For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ:" (Eph 4:12) "From whom the whole body fitly joined together and compacted by that which every joint supplies, according to the effectual working in the measure of every part, makes increase of the body unto the edifying of itself in love."    ( Eph 4:16) Every part's participation and every part's increase  causes the body to grow.

Kingdom Leadership according to Jesus, should not be like that of the rulers of the gentiles, (worldly rulers) scribes or Pharisees. These "Lord it over" or dominate their subjects. Rather, true leaders are to recall the principle of gentleness and meekness and servanthood. " - -They who would be great in the Kingdom shall be the servants of all. Churches today assume different degrees of control over the membership. Great leaders remember that they are not the source of truth but one of the gifts whose purpose is to facilitate the growth of the body toward maturity and ministry.

 "For it seemed good to the Holy Ghost, and to us, to lay upon you no greater burden than these necessary things;" ( Acts 15:28.
"And when I was present with you, in want, I was chargeable to no man: for that which was lacking to me the brethren which came from Macedonia supplied: and in all things I have kept myself from being burdensome unto you, and so will I keep myself."- - 2 Corinthians 11:9.
" - - I myself was not burdensome to you? forgive me this wrong."    ( 2 Corinthians 12:13 
- -"Behold, the third time I am ready to come to you; and I will not be burdensome to you: for I seek not yours, but you: for the children ought not to lay up for the parents, but the parents for the children."    ( 2 Corinthians 12:14 (Speaking as a spiritual father to provide necessities for the children.)

- -"But we were gentle among you, even as a nurse cherisheth her children:"    ( 1 The 2:7

 
 
"Knowledge makes arrogant, love edifies."

 
 
 
 

Jesus' Blood: Shed for Us

( Was shed, when He sweat drops blood in the Garden of Gethsemane, gripped with the terror of separation from his Father, who turn from him, abandoning to death; and the prospect of being made a Curse separated from God by the sins of the world.

- -Was shed, when the servant of the high priest smote him upon the face.

- - Was shed, when the Roman soldiers ridiculed him, mocked him, stripped him, buffeted him and torn out His beard.

- - Was shed, When he was flogged with the Roman flagellum, the deadly scourging with the lash, Each of the nine strands were tipped with an object which cut or wounded.

- - Was shed, when the crown of thorns was plaited upon Jesus' head.

- - Was shed, when Jesus hands and feet were penetrated by the spikes which would hold him suspended above the earth upon a Roman cross (the curse of hanging on a tree.)

- - Was shed, when the Roman officer pierced his side with a spear and blood and water flowed out upon the ground.

Blood Purchased the Provisions of the Gospel

Discussing the blood of the lamb may strike you as something primitive, strange  or disgusting but it is the fact that it is the living bloodwhich makes a sacrifice spiritually effectual. From the writings of Moses we learn that the Life is in the blood. Blood is the life of the soul and holds potential for both blessing and for defilement. Innocent blood is said to cry out from the earth. The blood of victims of war and of violence cry out with a certain voice from the earth.

Jesus' blood was blood untainted by sin or the curse or death. It is 100 per cent imbued with the power of life. This blood had within it perfect eternal life; it still has, in the present, perfect eternal life. That blood that sprinkled the earth from the Mount of Olives, to Pilate's hall of judgment, to the via Dolorosa, to the hill called Golgotha, is still nurturing the whole earth. As Jesus was dying the death of crucifixion upon a cross, he declared the sentence which his blood would continue to enforce, Father forgive them, they do not know what they do. Jesus blood purchased the price for our sins, sins past, sins present, and sins future.

Father forgive them, Among the last words spoken by Jesus upon the cross is the legacy which any person whose soul is in want can appropriate as his or her own personal blessing and legacy, eternal life.
Who is Jesus? (Aside from being the Son of God) Jesus was A Really Nice Guy

It is written in the law of Moses that we should make no graven image. Among all of the ten commandments this one may not lend itself readily to application although the first references seem to figure in the question of idolatry. I think, however, it has much more to apply to our present knowledge or lack of knowledge about God. One of the characteristics of human nature is to draw inferences and conclusions based upon things we see with the natural eye. The life of God draws its strength, faith, through not relying on the eye to inform or validate our understanding. Portraits of God or Christ become in a real sense a kind of icon. This icon restricts our knowledge of God's reality.

Throughout the nearly two thousand years of Christian tradition we become the victims of iconography, Icons which in some manner or another depict God or the Son of God. Any of us who have ever been to a major museum have seen depictions of Jesus Christ created during different historical eras. The characteristics of portrayal is to make a presumptuous statement about the personality, the humanity or the divinity of the subject that is being portrayed. Iconography has colored our interpretation of who Jesus is. Some of these images are very static with a very narrow portrayal. A sense of Jesus Christ's humanity was not apparent for centuries. When he was depicted by the first Christian artists there was not a trace of life or humanity. For the period from the 4th century until the 14th, he was no more than an stylized icon, lacking any features which would make him like us. Later, after the fifteenth century, he was portrayed as very human in works by Rembrandt, or Caravaggio, Rubens, and others. The point that I am making is in respect to narrowness and misunderstanding of who Jesus was. Religious traditions sometimes portray Jesus in such a narrow light that we can not associate him in all of his attributes, human and divine.

The human quality of Jesus needs to be preserved. I think the phrase "Jesus was a nice guy," may strike a negative chord among some who are religious and formalize so much of Christian life into liturgy. But I say it for a reason. We need to de-mystify Jesus and make Jesus accessible to people, especially in the now of the Gospel rather than the then of religion. The Lord is not someone who placed himself out of the reach of humanity.

To think of Jesus as a friendly, loving and kindly person does not interfere with his divinity nor his sovereignty.

There are other aspects to Jesus too, as depicted by the Hebrew names of Jehovah: Nissi, Tsidkenu, Rapha, Shamah, Jireh, Sabaoth, and numerous others, as well as: the 'Righteous Judge', the 'Captain of the Army of God', or as the 'Ancient of Days', and many other powerful and illuminating titles. One day, we will all fall before Christ, the Righteous Judge. But for now Jesus is still bringing gentle compassion, forgiveness, restoration and blessing to those of us with a need. He is extending a hand of friendship to those who need a friend.

Jesus' friendly and compassionate personality is described as a friend to sinners, one who went out of his way to meet and have fellowship with those that the religious community had excluded (Matthew 9:10-13.) Jesus was known to have been in the middle of fun and frolic where there was feasting and drinking. He said of himself, that he was accused of being a glutton and a wine bibber, but in spite of this Jesus, declared that wisdom is known by her offspring. (Matthew 11:19 paraphrase).

ENCOUNTERS WITH JESUS

Stories are numerous where men or women who were considered 'the wrong sort,' received mercy from the Lord's hand of compassion and acceptance:

Zaccheus the publican; (described in Luke 19:2-10)

The Samaritan woman at the well of Sychar; (John 4:5-30).

The woman taken in adultery; (John 8:4-11).

Mary, a former prostitute anointed Jesus feet at the house of Simon the leper; (Luke 7:37-47).

Jesus who came to the grave side of Lazarus and wept; (John 11).

Jesus who consoled the man healed of blindness after the church council expelled him; (John 9).

At a certain future day when Jesus will be the host at a great feast and serve all of those attending. (Luke 12:37).

The friendship factor as it pertains to the person of Jesus is something that must not be lost. There is a proverb that states, There is a friend that sticks closer than a brother. (Proverbs 18:24) This is the love and friendship of Jesus Christ.

There are so many hurting, there are man who are bruised, and there are man needing a friend. The love and power of the Spirit of Christ Jesus can supply this. It is a kind of supernatural miracle that someone who needs and asks believing can receive.
LITMUS TESTS TO TEST CHRISTIAN DOCTRINE
Your Religion May Not Meet these Criteria!
 

There are some indicators which we can use in testing Christian beliefs and doctrines. Use these to gauge when in doubt? Perhaps these are a little like the saying, "trust your gut."
 
If we feel driven rather than led we can be pretty sure in is not in accordance with the Gospel. It is not God's nature to drive us.
If we feel condemned rather than loved, we can be pretty sure it is not God for God is merciful and full of compassion. If we feel fearful rather than peaceful, we can be pretty sure this is not God, for God has not given us the spirit of fear.
If we feel threatened with consequences rather than encouraged, we can be pretty sure it is not God, for God did not send His son to condemn the world but to save it.
. Since we are promoting a doctrine which is based upon Jesus the Messiah, Church Doctrine needs to conform to foundational Biblical standards, and not a system of human understandings or philosophy, it would be appropriate and good to go back to the ministry which he himself practiced and defined. What kind of ministry was it? How was it enacted or exercised? If we need a point of reference, we need to compare the person to person ministry and relationships to people that Jesus modeled, for these are the model not only of spiritual fellowship, but also loving service.
The universal view that God is in every person and only needs to be actualized, is not Biblical. Man is not a divine race but a fallen race. All Human lives require the work of redemption through faith in the Redeemer.False Prophets in the Last Days

Matt.7:15  Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves. 16  Ye shall know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles?

Matt 24:11  And many false prophets shall rise, and shall deceive many.

I think it is time to tune up our discernment as the final days approach. It has always been a quirk of human nature to be misled. Charismatic leaders both Christian and Non Christian rise up and deceive many. The problem with making judgments is that we have our eyes on Religion, men or ministries more than our eyes upon Jesus who is the author and finisher of our faith. 2Cor11:19,20
Paul Addresses the problem of false prophets and apostles "( For ye suffer fools gladly, seeing ye yourselves are wise.  "For ye suffer, if a man bring you into bondage, if a man devour you, if a man take of you, if a man exalt himself, if a man smite you on the face."

Evangelicals are typically guarded toward anything that expresses a "spiritual" manifestation, for fear that it is demonic or out of order. They "resist the Holy Spirit" as Stephen declared to the Religious leaders who stoned him calling him an apostate. Their discernment was totally inaccurate!

Charismatics, on the other hand, may allow Spiritual manifestation but have difficulty discerning that which is Soulish and that which is Spirit. High emotion or energy has come to become itself an indicator of Spirituality. However, Spirit is not of the mind or emotion though it may be viewed as very emotive.

THE CHARACTER OF JESUS IS THE GAUGE OF AUTHENTICITY
 1. Meekness of Character:

Jesus and the True Apostles must always be the role model and the rule of character. Paul's letter to Ephesus, in Chapter 4 indicates that we one day grow and mature into a perfect man in the exact facsimile of Jesus Christ. This is a key Scripture!. Jesus declares in
Matthew 11:29, 29  " ( Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart:' and " 10:1  Now I Paul myself beseech you by the meekness and gentleness of Christ, who in presence am base among you, but being absent am bold toward you:" 2Cor 10:1

2. Denying self and taking up the cross:

Any person who becomes a big name or a superstar, a kind of spiritual idol is quickly on the road of becoming a false prophet or false teacher. Jesus corrected the early disciples who he sent to minister in "his name" they came back full of self exaltation, Luke 10:20  Notwithstanding in this rejoice not, that the spirits are subject unto you; but rather rejoice, because your names are written in heaven. Jesus took the focus off themselves. They had learned their lesson by the time Peter and John met the crippled man at the Gate: Acts 3:12  And when Peter saw it, he answered unto the people, Ye men of Israel, why marvel ye at this? or why look ye so earnestly on us, as though by our own power or holiness we had made this man to walk?

3: Selling out to the world and FAME (The error of Balaam

was a false prophet who "sold out" to the pagan world system. He was willing sell his gift for gain and bring a curse to the people of God. NT writings remind of this danger. Peter, (2Peter 2:15)Jude and the Revelation
Jude 11  Woe unto them! for they have gone in the way of Cain, and ran greedily after the error of Balaam for reward, and perished in the gainsaying of Core. Revelation 2:14 " (  But I have a few things against thee, because thou hast there them that hold the doctrine of Balaam, who taught Balac to cast a stumbling block before the children of Israel, to eat things sacrificed unto idols, and to commit fornication.

Gainsaying of Core refers to a leader of Israel who always contended for Moses' leadership. Moses, was called 'the meekest man on earth' and Core probably assumed that he was much more dynamic and qualified for leadership. He contended for authority that was not given to him.  He finally was swallowed up by Hell.

4. False prophets bring in Doctrines of Demons

Any of the varieties and flavors of worldly behaviors or motivations which are not governed by the meekness and gentleness of Christ and Jesus' selfless love of . There is a list of behaviors called the works of the flesh probably* are demonically inspired. Galatians 5: 19  Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are these; Adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness,
20  Idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies,

21  Envying, murders, drunkenness, reveling, and such like: of the which I tell you before, as I have also told you in time past, that they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God.

*James 3:14, 15 (14  But if ye have bitter envying and strife in your hearts, glory not, and lie not against the truth. 15  This wisdom descends
not from above, but is earthly, sensual, devilish -demonic-.)

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