Enjoy, With Godliness and Contentment

Monday, September 26, 2016

“Charge them that are rich in this world, that they be not highminded, nor trust in uncertain riches, but in the living God, who giveth us richly all things to enjoy” (1 Timothy 6:17 KJV).

Enjoy life, friends, with godliness and contentment!

Some Christians, seeking the title “The Epitome of Simplistic Living,” consider pleasure a sin. (Supposedly, the more basic one’s lifestyle is, the “holier” he or she is!) Eating at a nice restaurant—NO! Wearing makeup and nice clothing—NO! and NO! Watching television shows and movies—NO! (“Christians should remain home and avoid the world!”) Or, maybe their life’s goal is to scrimp and stash spare change in their pockets, and collect every last penny on sidewalks. They “stash” it underground for “Jesus’ glory!” (Ignoring, “God, who giveth us richly all things to enjoy.”) Furthermore, although they have taken great precautions to hold to that wealth, something bad will eventually happen—another person may find and keep it, the economy may collapse, or they just may die!

Other Christians know nothing but pleasure. They love entertainment wherever they go… at home, at school, at work, at church, and so on. They too have trusted in “uncertain” riches. Life for them is all about how much they can spend and sport—bigger homes, faster cars, beautiful spouses, highest-paying jobs, educations, and so on. They have a God-shaped vacuum in their hearts, and they are desperately trying to fill it with everything but sound Bible doctrine.

Dear friends, God wants us at neither extreme. We need to strike a balance. Today’s Scripture says, “Nor trust in uncertain riches… but in… God… who giveth us richly all things to enjoy.” Contrary to popular belief, it is not a sin to “enjoy” life by owning nice possessions. If we can afford what we want, we may purchase it—“The rich ruleth over the poor, and the borrower is servant to the lender” (Proverbs 22:7)! Yet, let us not trust in those “uncertain” riches. Remember, “But godliness with contentment is great gain. For we brought nothing into this world, and it is certain we can carry nothing out. And having food and raiment let us be therewith content” (1 Timothy 6:6-8).

Our latest Bible Q&A: “Who, crucified on Calvary, mocked Jesus?

How to Paddle Upstream!

Thursday, September 8, 2016

I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service. And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God (Romans 12:1,2 KJV).

Will you let the course of the evil world system sweep you away?

River-water finds the shortest, quickest route (course) to the lowest elevation. So, to reach higher ground via a rowboat, you must do some mighty fast paddling! Without constant effort, you will be swept downstream. Now, think about Christian living.

Positionally, we have been justified (declared righteous) in Christ. Furthermore, we did not make ourselves holy. Father God sanctified us when we trusted Jesus Christ as our personal Saviour. We share His identity (chapters 3-8). Now, will our practice (daily living) match our position? Our choice! We can act like who we are in Christ (only logical). Or, we can act like who we were in Adam (ridiculous, since we are no longer in Adam!).

Most people today are in Adam. Dead in their trespasses and sins, they are alienated from God’s life (Ephesians 4:17-19). They do not have eternal life; they cannot live like God because they do not have God’s life in them. The course of this world is to flow toward Satan—his thinking, behavior, goals, et cetera. As Christians, we are instructed to “paddle” the other way, applying sound Bible doctrine so our identity in Christ becomes real in our life. The Holy Spirit will work in us if we believe sound Bible doctrine. If ever we are distracted from that doctrine, focusing on the course of this world, we will drift backward, away from “the fruits of righteousness, which are by Jesus Christ” (Philippians 1:11). “Going with the flow” is much easier, so most Christians give in—living more like Satan and less like God intended. Absurd!

After all Father God has done for us (previous eight chapters), friends, we should honor Him to the fullest extent. We follow today’s Scripture by faith—allowing His Word to transform how we think, rather than letting the world conform us to its course! 🙂

Their Loss Not Ours!

Thursday, January 21, 2016

“Fret not thyself because of evil men, neither be thou envious at the wicked; For there shall be no reward to the evil man; the candle of the wicked shall be put out” (Proverbs 24:19,20 KJV).

What great advice—to Israel or to us!

A Christian sister recently browsing social media grew angry. (We can all relate.) She had drifted onto the webpages of certain people who had greatly wronged her in the past. Her stirred-up emotions, not having a mind of their own, had caused her to (wrongly) believe the past was ongoing. She had kept perusing to see more text and additional pictures of their “success,” “popularity,” and overall “nice” outward appearance. Everyone had “flocked” to them—she was the outcast, even after all those years trying to do right. The anger gradually escalated. My advice to her was simple: “Get off! Move on! Get off!”

Brethren, let today’s Scripture sink into your hearts and minds. This is as close to “heaven” as lost people will get. Let them heap to themselves as many “friends” as possible on Earth—there are no “friends” in hell! Let them heap to themselves as many “pennies” as possible on Earth—there are no “riches” in hell! Let them heap to themselves as much “nice outward show” as possible on Earth—there is no “beauty” in hell! Let them live it up now. Except they die in Jesus Christ, here is as good as it will ever get for them. Once their “candle” is “put out”—their house is darkened because they have died—we certainly do not want to envy them at that point! Most certainly, they gained the whole world temporarily and lost their soul eternally (Matthew 16:26)!

Today’s Scripture is actually God the Holy Spirit encouraging believing Israelites (poor, destitute of goods, rejected, despised, imprisoned, bereaved) not to look at their unsaved Jewish brethren who are prospering materially and socially for following the Antichrist, yet future (Revelation 13:15-17; cf. Psalm 37). Why? The unsaved… when death comes, they lose their fortunes, their friends, their lives, and finally their souls. My, how we pray earnestly for their eternal salvation in Jesus Christ before it is too late. Without Him, it is their loss, not ours!

Glorious Freedom #1

Sunday, October 5, 2014

“In whom we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of his grace” (Ephesians 1:7 KJV).

The first verse of Haldor Lillenas’ classic 1917 hymn “Glorious Freedom” highlights today’s Scripture.

“Once I was bound by sin’s galling fetters;
Chained like a slave, I struggled in vain.
But I received a glorious freedom,
When Jesus broke my fetters in twain.”

Prior to becoming a saint by faith alone in Jesus Christ, the sinner was “bound by sin’s galling fetters;” sin’s chains or shackles held the individual to the point of chafing or irritation. Once religiosity (religious works) and secularism (worldly works) were exposed as equally filthy in God’s sight, the sinner understood that they had nothing to pay to free themselves from their sins of the spirit and their sins of the flesh.

Whether struggling in a religious system (faithful giving, water baptism, prayers, church attendance, confessions, et cetera) attempting to gain God’s acceptance; or engaging in drunkenness, fornication, swearing, theft, and lying attempting to gain the world’s acceptance; one must perform to receive favor. The sinner finally realizes they know that the ultimate blessing is to be freed from such bondage, liberated from such a system of failure and misery, for they can neither fully gain God’s acceptance nor the world’s acceptance.

In John 8:34-36, Jesus told the Pharisees: “[34] Verily, verily, I say unto you, Whosoever committeth sin is the servant of sin. [35] And the servant abideth not in the house for ever: but the Son abideth ever. [36] If the Son therefore shall make you free, ye shall be free indeed.” The Pharisees needed to be freed from their sins, especially their hypocrisy and works-religion!

By the riches of God’s grace (His work on our behalf), through faith alone in Jesus Christ’s shed blood, we can be crucified with Christ and “redeemed” (set free; today’s Scripture), for “he that is dead is freed from sin” (Romans 6:7). Verse 18 says, “Being then made free from sin, ye became the servants of righteousness.” We are alive and free in Christ—not to live for ourselves, but to choose to live as the living dead people we are, saints alive with Jesus Christ’s resurrection life!

Upside Down and Right-Side Up

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

“And when they found them not, they drew Jason and certain brethren unto the rulers of the city, crying, These that have turned the world upside down are come hither also; Whom Jason hath received: and these all do contrary to the decrees of Caesar, saying that there is another king, one Jesus” (Acts 17:6,7 KJV).

We find ourselves in a similar “trial” today!

When the Holy Spirit first preached the Gospel of Grace through the Apostle Paul and his ministry coworkers, the pagans said Jesus Christ’s ministers had turned the whole world “upside down” (today’s Scripture)—technically, right-side up! The Gospel of Christ had rippled through the cultures of the Roman Empire. Untold hundreds had abandoned heathen beliefs, practices, and temples, and were now rejoicing in God’s grace to them in Jesus Christ.

Today, since the last few decades, but particularly the last 10 years, the dominant Christian voice has become increasingly suppressed here in our beloved United States of America. Nowadays, pagan culture is infiltrating us—the reverse of the first century. What was right-side up because of Christianity is now returning to upside-down (pagan religion and culture).

Bible-believing Christians, we should be concerned, but let us not lose hope. If the Word of God prospered in a pagan world as it did throughout the book of Acts, it will surely prosper here as our culture slips into paganism. Despite all the persecution—the imprisonment, torturing, and execution—of believers, we read, “And the word of God increased…” (Acts 6:7). “But the word of God grew and multiplied” (Acts 12:24). “So mightily grew the word of God and prevailed(Acts 19:20). No matter what happens, God’s Word will never return to Him void/empty; it will prosper wherever He sends it (Isaiah 55:11).

While my generation and younger ones are distracted in the world, we should still proclaim the King James Bible rightly divided, for it contains the solutions to the problems they will face in the coming decades. As long as we get God’s Word out there, it will take care of itself (it has for 2,000 years). Let us be faithful stewards of God’s precious words now, that the future faithful remnant perpetuate them (2 Timothy 2:2).

Our latest Bible Q&A: “Could you please explain Romans 2:14?

Solace for Circumspect Students

Thursday, June 5, 2014

Wherewithal shall a young man cleanse his way? by taking heed thereto according to thy word(Psalm 119:9 KJV).

To our readers who are now high school graduates, I send my personal congratulations!

A major chapter in your lives has thus concluded, and another has already begun. You have reached early adulthood; you are in your final seven or eight years of forming the worldview that will govern your belief system and behavior (most probably) for the remainder of your earthly lives (so, make wise decisions now regarding what to believe!).

In the near future, you will probably pursue a higher education of some sort—college, trade school, et cetera. Human “wisdom” (philosophy) so heavily dominates these institutions of “higher learning,” so be sure that you have your King James Bible in hand, in head, and in heart. Amidst all the foolish notions you will hear in your higher-learning experience—I have been hearing them for eight years now myself in my scientific training!—you can guard your mind and heart from the deprecating, blasphemous, deceptive, vile, ridiculous information Satan’s evil world system and its participants parade most shamelessly under the guise of “higher learning.” You can attend the classes while disagreeing with the information discussed.

“Let no man despise thy youth; but be thou an example of the believers, in word, in conversation, in charity, in spirit, in faith, in purity” (1 Timothy 4:12). Having trusted Jesus Christ’s finished crosswork alone as sufficient payment for your sins, you as a Christian student can utilize your higher-learning experience to your benefit. You can inform yourself about the world’s vanity, thus better understanding where they are coming from, how desperately they need the only true God and Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ, and His Word, the only true wisdom! You can be God’s vessel, radiating His spiritual light in the midst of ignorance and darkness.

While many will not be open to God’s truth (I speak from experience), rest assured they will respect you for being “different” (I speak from experience). If I can ever be of any assistance to you during your higher-learning experience—answering Bible objections, especially creation/evolution science issues—I am more than eager to help you (my email address is arcministries@gmail.com).

*You can also refer to our studies, “A Higher Education” and “The Spirit-Filled Student.”

Holding Fast the Faithful Word

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Holding fast the faithful word as he hath been taught, that he may be able by sound doctrine both to exhort and to convince the gainsayers(Titus 1:9 KJV).

What does “holding fast” mean in the Scriptures?

Let us briefly survey other Bible passages that shed light on the concept:

  • The Lord Jesus said, “No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon” (Matthew 6:24; cf. Luke 16:13).
  • Paul instructed us to support the weak” (1 Thessalonians 5:14).
  • God speaks to Satan of Job’s holding fast his integrity” (Job 2:3), and Job said, “My righteousness I hold fast, and will not let it go” (Job 27:6a).
  • Before Jerusalem’s destruction, the LORD asked through the Prophet Jeremiah, “Why then is this people of Jerusalem slidden back by a perpetual backsliding? they hold fast deceit, they refuse to return” (Jeremiah 8:5).

As we see, God’s definitions for “holding fast” are “refuse to return,” “hold to,” “support,” “not let it go.”

Satan, as his Hebrew name suggests, is “adversary,” and he has an arsenal of weapons he uses against God and His people. God the Holy Ghost wrote the Holy Bible with the intention of educating us at to what He is doing in the heaven and the earth, and what Satan is doing to frustrate His purpose and plans.

Therefore, in today’s Scripture, one of the characteristics of the bishop (frequently called “pastor”) is that he should not relinquish the rightly divided Word of God that he was first taught in his earlier years as a Christian. He should hold firm God’s Word, dispensationally studied, understood, and believed, that he may save others from Satan’s policy of evil and its deception (1 Timothy 4:16). The bishop will face intense opposition and criticism (today’s Scripture), but he must not surrender his rightly-divided Holy King James Bible for “easy-to-read” perversions and denominational systems.

Saints, let us always be mindful of the faithfulness of our King James Bible rightly divided, that it is worthy of our trust. May we “not let it go!” 🙂

Tips to Timid Timothy to Tolerate Troubling Times #4

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

“For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind” (2 Timothy 1:7 KJV).

We have often heard the expression “timid Timothy,” but have you ever wondered why he was timid?

Let us read today’s Scripture in its context (Paul writing to Timothy): “Greatly desiring to see thee, being mindful of thy tears, that I may be filled with joy; when I call to remembrance the unfeigned faith that is in thee, which dwelt first in thy grandmother Lois, and thy mother Eunice; and I am persuaded that in thee also. Wherefore I put thee in remembrance that thou stir up the gift of God, which is in thee by the putting on of my hands. For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind. Be not thou therefore ashamed of the testimony of our Lord, nor of me his prisoner: but be thou partaker of the afflictions of the gospel according to the power of God” (verses 4-8).

Timothy was a young man when he trusted Jesus Christ alone as his personal Saviour. His grandmother and mother had educated him in the Scriptures (cf. 2 Timothy 3:15). Before Paul first met him in Acts 16:1-3, Timothy had a respectable testimony among other Christians. Thereafter, Timothy faithfully served with Paul in his ministry amongst the Gentiles: Paul had ordained Timothy to function in that ministry as a “secondary” apostle (“the gift of God, which is in thee by the putting on of my hands;” 2 Timothy 1:6). In the context of today’s Scripture (see previous paragraph), Paul is reminding Timothy of his ordination (which he evidently forgot because of his dire circumstances).

Timothy is now ashamed: he wants to surrender to the opposition. The persecution, the false teaching, his young age, and now Paul’s imprisonment, have distracted Timothy (Satan’s goal). He is not thinking like God has designed a Christian to think, and today’s Scripture is the key to him handling the opposition as a mature Christian….

Impressionable Minds and Effectual Doctrine

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

“All things are lawful for me, but all things are not expedient: all things are lawful for me, but all things edify not” (1 Corinthians 10:23 KJV).

In light of Halloween tomorrow, we learn a simple lesson from Scripture today.

Innocent children arrayed in costumes going door-to-door and exclaiming, “Trick-or-treat!,” have never been taught that this “innocent looking” holiday is rooted in the spiritually toxic soils of Celtic paganism, devil worship, and superstition.

The “Harry Potter” franchise and Halloween downplay the gravity of devil worship. Our younger generations are receiving mixed messages from the Church the Body of Christ. Christians, rather than speaking against these atrocities, have become permissive regarding the activities that God hates. They remain silent, greatly reducing their impact on the world, and allowing the world to impact them! Ephesians 5:14-17 exclaims, “Wake up, O sleeping Christians, Wake up!”

God clearly forbade witchcraft in Israel (Exodus 22:18; Leviticus 20:27; Deuteronomy 18:9-14; Micah 5:12). Witchcraft is sin, according to Galatians 5:20. God wanted Israel, His earthly people, to not participate in Satan’s policy of evil. They were not to mingle with the works of darkness. God wants the same for us, the Church the Body of Christ. Note how the Ephesians burned their spell books in Acts 19:19.

There is no law “Thou shalt not celebrate Halloween,” yet notice today’s Scripture. Although they are not explicitly forbidden, some activities harm others and ourselves. They are inconsistent with our identity in Jesus Christ. Thus, we avoid those activities. If an activity does not bring glory, praise, and honor to God Almighty (the Lord Jesus Christ), it is devil worship. Satan wants you to worship something other than the one true God.

We desperately need our young people to realize the weightiness of sound doctrine, especially regarding the occult, witchcraft, et cetera (and its most subtle forms like Halloween and Harry Potter). God Almighty instructs us to educate them with sound Bible teaching. We know that God’s Word will “effectually work also in [them] that believe” (1 Thessalonians 2:13). God’s Word will reach their minds, we just need to plant and water, sowing it into their minds, and let God take care of the rest.

*Excerpted from a larger Bible study with the same name, which can be read here.

Wave Not the White Flag

Saturday, June 15, 2013

“Save that the Holy Ghost witnesseth in every city, saying that bonds and afflictions abide me. But none of these things move me, neither count I my life dear unto myself, so that I might finish my course with joy, and the ministry, which I have received of the Lord Jesus, to testify the gospel of the grace of God” (Acts 20:23,24 KJV).

In today’s Scripture, our Apostle Paul was certainly not hopeless….

Today, the average Christian looks at the world, throws up his or her hands in despair, and sighs, “I give up! This world is hopeless!” Beloved, indeed, it is so much easier to just sit back, close the Good Book, and “go with the flow.” After all, “everybody else is doing it!”

The Christian soldier is never called to surrender. Yea, it is senseless to capitulate when “God be for us” (Romans 8:31). As someone who has trusted in the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ as the sufficient payment for your sins, it really makes no difference who your enemy is!! In fact, your enemy is the devil himself, and yet, even he will eventually be subdued and bound in an everlasting lake of fire (Revelation 20:10).

A spiritually mature Bible-believing Christian—that is, one who is firmly grounded in the dispensational layout and study of Scripture—understands that God is not restoring earth today unto Himself (He will do that with His earthly people, Israel, as Exodus 19:3-6 declares, once our dispensation closes). We are not called to change the whole world system. As members of the Body of Christ, we are simply here to “Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all longsuffering and doctrine” (2 Timothy 4:2). We share scriptural truths with those who want to hear them; we waste not our time with those who do not want to hear.

Regardless of the situations Paul faced, and did he suffer for the Gospel’s sake (2 Corinthians 11:23-27), it did not “move” (trouble, disturb) him. He ran the Christian race and undertook the Christian ministry, ending them with joy, undistracted by the evil world system. Let us follow our Apostle in that regard. 🙂