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Close to Home

Photo by: Jon Tunnell

As so many of us find ourselves inspired by the competition of the Summer Games, my thoughts have also gone to one of the most amazing performances the world has ever seen.

His name was Saul, and his deadly game had echoes of his namesake, the first king of Israel. As King Saul raged through the Judean Wilderness in an all out effort to eliminate his competition in a shepherd soldier by the name of David, Saul of Tarsus waged his own war against followers of the Way.

The New Testament record of Acts shows us how much Saul hated Jesus and the Jewish countrymen who believed the teacher from Nazareth was the long awaited Messiah of Israel (Acts 8:1-3; Acts 9:1-3). Saul feared their influence on his nation and religion, and they were afraid of him (Acts 9:10-16).

Then Paul’s threats suddenly stopped. A few years later he resurfaced to defend and support the people he had once hated. To understandably suspicious readers, he began writing friendly letters and signed them with his Roman name of Paul.

What amazed his generation still inspires those who read his story and letters today. Paul’s change of name reflected a world class change of heart. He went from being the most fearsome persecutor to one of the most persecuted (2Cor 4:8-11; 2Cor 6:4-10).

He wrote one of the most inspiring descriptions of love the world has ever read (1Cor 13:1-13).

He prayed one of the most important prayers the world has ever heard (Eph 3:14-21).

By the pain he suffered, the letters he wrote, and the example he left us, Paul did more than win credibility. He reminds us that Jesus not only died in our place, but rose three days later to live his life through us.

While admitting that he was no Jesus (Rom 7:14-21), Paul shows us what it means to be in Christ, and for Christ to be in us. He knew that his super human ability to endure everything that his enemies threw at him did not reflect his own strength but rather the grace and spirit of Christ working in him (1Cor 15:10).

Seems to me that the point is not for us to compare our performance with Paul’s. We haven’t been asked to compete with him, or with anyone else (2Cor 10:12). We haven’t been asked to do, in kind, what he did. Yet in principle, he’s showing us the way. Who can deny the significance of one who shows us the extent to which the Spirit of Christ can replace our fear and anger–over things out there, with the love and trust we need– right now…so close to home?

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205 Responses to “Close to Home”

  1. SFDBWV says:

    If you look up Christianity in the dictionary you find this explanation; “The Christian religion based on the Old and New Testament.” “The state of being a Christian.”

    If you look up Christian in the dictionary you find this explanation; “A person professing Jesus as the Christ or in the religion based on the teachings of Jesus.”

    If you look up Christ in the dictionary you get this explanation; “The Messiah whose appearance is prophesied in the Old Testament. Jesus of Nazareth, regarded by Christians as the realization of the Messianic prophesy: originally a title (Jesus the Christ) later used as part of the name Jesus Christ.”

    What is closest to home is what do you believe and what or who have you placed your faith and trust in?

    If you are like me you believe Jesus of Nazareth to be the promised Messiah. To understand what that means you have to be knowledgeable concerning the Old Testament or Torah.

    In order to be made aware that the Messiah came, His testimony is recorded in the 4 Gospels and furthered by the writings of Peter, John, James, and Paul.

    These two Testimonies called the Old and New Testaments are what is known of as the Bible.

    The Bible is to be the most important document ever written and presented to mankind.

    Either you believe the writings contained within its pages or you don’t. There is no room for gray areas when believing all that is contained within the Bible.

    If you center on the gray areas of your belief and acceptance of Scripture, then you have no faith only curiosity.

    Paul shows us all what we all can be capable of when we turn our lives over to Jesus of Nazareth the Christ.

    Like the good Disciple he was he presented the teachings of his Master to all who would listen and offered them the same opportunity to become as was he. A slave and follower of Jesus; a Christian.


  2. foreverblessed says:

    Right this morning I had been reading Colossians again. Such encouragement, how Paul tells us to live in Christ, not only that. that it is Jesus who circumcised us, He took away our sinful nature. Colossians 2:9-10,11,12. I am so thankful for all the teaching of Paul. The Gospels are great, but what would I miss the added explanations of Paul if they were not there.
    This is what Paul wanted: Colossians 1:28-29
    This verse has been very important to me too Col 1:27

  3. confeticat says:

    Well, whaddua know. I thought this was my daily Close To Home cartoon. You’re not plaguearising, are you Mart?

  4. confeticat says:

    My son David’s business trip was through Charlotte to Cincinnati, where he spent Tues. night and was supposed to leave for Philadelphia yesterday. But the plane sat on the runway and never took off. So they rerouted him through Charlotte to Newport News/Williamsburg, where he is today. he will return to Asheville through Charlotte.

  5. phpatato says:

    I don’t understand the word plaguearising. Did you mean “plagiarising”? or did you mean to separate the word as “plague arising” because if so, surprise surprise, I agree with you. On here lately, there is one.

  6. remarutho says:

    Good Morning Mart & Friends!

    I am “soaking” in a rather old daily devotions book by E Stanley Jones this year. Since we’re at a moment of confessing what we take in first thing as the sun rises, I share ESJ’s prayer: “O God, I would let down this central stress, which wears me down and wears me out, by turning myself over to Thee and doing it completely and forever. I know when you have me you have my stress too.” Jones bases his comments upon Philippians 2:5, 6, 7, 8, 9. The writer asserts that when he struggles to “believe” and “obey the law,” he has held the reins of his life in his own white-knuckle grasp. He has not surrendered everything – every thing – to the Lord. This is the central stress of the life we live being in the world but not of the world. (1 John 2:15, 16, 17) on our own power.

    Mart, you asked:

    “Who can deny the significance of one who shows us the extent to which the Spirit of Christ can replace our fear and anger–over things out there, with the love and trust we need– right now…so close to home?”

    This yielding and complete surrender of ego and pride and self-determination does not come easily to any person. Paul taught 1 Corinthians 2:12, 13, 14. But, the internal transformation brought by the Spirit of God was mentioned long, long ago (Deuteronomy 30:10, 11, 12, 13,14). Insightful commentary, by the way, is not the same as rudeness!


  7. plumbape says:

    just a quit note to let my friends know I don’t have a enternet servervice or a fast enough computer for awhile now. I do still have the love of the Lord in my heart, and have taken brother Steve”s advice about seeking some help for my future exwife ( kidding ) and my self. Keep checking in when I can. It’s all good Here though, I still exhaust the Book and use a notebook computer Only it’s a paper notebook that I actually write on with a ink pen or pencil in a pinch. Jesus is the living Gid and the Holy Spirit is in my heart working everyday!!!! Love you guys and any new people , Thank You for prayers that I can actually almost feel sometime. The Lord is Mighty Awesome, Amen

  8. confeticat says:

    phpotato – I don’t have spell chek.

  9. plumbape says:

    Living God, oops, lol…..

  10. poohpity says:

    Ooooh, hi Indy ape!! It has been soooo long. Very, very good to hear from you. :-)

  11. confeticat says:

    Paul’s Fifty Shades of Grey do not belong in the Bible. Paul said it himself (II Cor. 11:14). Paul preached the Kingdom of God through Acts, if you can believe Acts with the first chapter fiasco. So what happened? Jesus said no one who puts his hand to the plow and turns back is fit for the Kingdom of God (Luke 9:62).
    His inspirational chapter on love is doing it the hard way. Have you obeyed every point? Have you even remembered every point? When a crisis arises, which they often do, you need love at your fingertips. It has to already be in you, not in some platitudes somebody wrote. The worst thing Paul said there though is I Cor. 13:11, putting away childish things. Jesus is looking for children to come to him (Luke 18:16,17).

    As for the prayer in Eph 3:14-21, again don’t be fooled by the loftiness.
    v. 14 – some of us can’t bow our knees, makes no difference to God
    v. 15 – every family may take the name ‘father’, but God is not the Father of the whole family. He is only Father to those who have come to him through his Son.
    v. 16 – strengthened. How much strength does a child have? (Luke 10:21)
    v. 17-19 – Christ cannot dwell in your hearts or fill you with the fullness of God because he is an imaginary person. He is not the Messiah. Although Jesus will accept the faith of a child, he never said anything about “Come into my heart, Lord Jesus.” He wants to dwell in all of our being and us in him the way he dwells in the Father (John 17:21).
    v. 20 – the Holy Spirit doesn’t work in every Christian because he is not IN every Christian (John 14:15,16).
    v.21 – Jesus has not been glorified through the Church in any generation. Jesus said, “Woe to you, lawyers! (experts in the Mosaic law which Paul claimed to be) For you have taken away the key of knowledge; you yourselves did not enter, and you hindered those who were entering” (Luke 11:52).

  12. poohpity says:

    confeticat thanks for sharing a little more about you, you are a dad and a proud dad at that.:-)

    We can not compare our performance with anyone because we are not them and they are not us. Others do not experience our unique life but all who experience Christ living in them know the change that He alone can bring to our lives. We can not change others while try with all our might to do so because we can not even change our own with any success especially our heart condition. Being in Christ and Him in us over time can change even the most hardened heart.

    Some change can be immediate but most of the change is a process. The more it seems we seek out the Lord we come to know and understand about Him the more of Him we want in us so that He can live out his life through us. Amazingly that is the same in all of us but can only be done in each a unique way. All the same but different. Paul can not be Peter and John can not be Paul but each bring a unique personality to the table with the same goal and purpose in life and that is to be all that God created us to be and do for His Kingdom.

  13. poohpity says:

    There is only One who could live out the love chapter and that is not a representation of our love but the Love God has for us.

  14. poohpity says:

    And who better than Paul to describe the Love he experienced through Christ Jesus. That same love we have all experienced and what we do in our human strength is in no way comparable.

  15. confeticat says:

    Why Pooh, you can be as lofty as Paul! You don’t get more of the Lord in you as time goes by. Either he’s in you or he isn’t. Jesus came to seek and to save those who are lost (Luke 19:10). You don’t have to keep seeking him -he’s there. These are Christian cliches.

    And as I just pointed out, Paul was not doing it for the Kingdom.

  16. confeticat says:

    Your last two emails – more Christian cliches. Paul meant for us to live out the love chapter, God didn’t need it written out for him.

  17. remarutho says:

    Thanks Plumbape!
    Your gracious words are like a long, tall drink of cool fresh water on a blistering hot day!

  18. poohpity says:

    confeticat, how can any of this make sense to you? Only a person who has accepted Jesus Christ as their personal Savior can understand and apply His Word. Without that the Word makes no sense and therefore that person will only take out parts with out understanding the whole. No matter how much it is explained without the foundation it all just falls apart and is meaningless.

  19. phpatato says:

    …..”The worst thing Paul said there though is I Cor. 13:11, putting away childish things. Jesus is looking for children to come to him (Luke 18:16,17).”……


    Is it wrong to grow and mature? Are you saying that we are to keep reading children’s books like Dr. Suess’ Green Eggs and Ham, watching childish tv like Sesame Street and playing outside on a tricycle for the rest of our lives? I would like to believe that Jesus expects as we grow older, to “graduate” to more adult things like being able to drive a car or especially by being challenged more in our thinking…you know putting away childish things. I packed up my Barbie doll ages ago. I love drinking coffee in the morning. Are you saying that you believe we should be drinking milk from a sippy cup still?

    The Bible points for us to grow and mature by seeking to increase our wisdom and knowledge in Jesus. We should however, keep that child wide-eyed innocence which is lacking in complexity because being a know-it-all adult who likes to confuse and complicate things is not what Jesus is seeking from us.

    Are you, perhaps, one that takes what you read literally because that may be very helpful in understanding what you think?

  20. confeticat says:

    It makes perfect sense to me, because the Holy Spirit is my Teacher. I “accepted Jesus Christ as my personal Savior” long ago but I had no knowledge of this.

    Paul laid his own foundation (I Cor. 3:10) which he said people could build on in different ways and you’d better be careful which way you build on it. Then in the next verse he turns around and says no man can lay a foundation other than the one which is already laid – Jesus Christ. So what was he doing laying another one?

    If that isn’t confusing enough, in Eph. 2:20 he says the foundation is the apostles and prophets, and Christ Jesus himself the corner stone. Jesus said he alone is the corner stone prophesied in the Old Testament (Isa. 28:16;Luke 20:17).

  21. confeticat says:

    phpatato – I’m maturing too. I’ve read all seven Harry Potter books.

  22. BruceC says:


    “v. 17-19 – Christ cannot dwell in your hearts or fill you with the fullness of God because he is an imaginary person. He is not the Messiah. Although Jesus will accept the faith of a child, he never said anything about “Come into my heart, Lord Jesus.” He wants to dwell in all of our being and us in him the way he dwells in the Father (John 17:21).”

    I am reading this part of your post correctly or am I mistaken? Are you really saying that Ghrist is an imaginary person and that He is not the Messiah??

    If that is what you truly meant you need to be very careful and examine your heart.

    Soli Deo Gloria!

  23. poohpity says:

    Gee, I thought you said that the Messiah and Christ are 2 different people? Then you say you, “I accepted Jesus Christ as my personal Savior”. Did you not say that Christ is made up and imaginary? Gosh if there is confusion with the Greek name for Messiah, Christ then what is it that you truly believe? One moment it is one way then the next minute it is another. Then on top of it all childish behavior like name calling and talking about in appropriate things gives us all a clue that the Lord does not in fact rule in one’s heart. Gosh I for one wish you would make up your mind because it seems to be tossed to and fro while bits of truth appear then in the next breath it disappears so there the problem lies. Which is it with you or do you even know yourself what you believe?

  24. poohpity says:

    My hunch is you may be a child and it is your dad who is traveling rather than the other way around.

  25. confeticat says:

    Yes, Bruce, I’m really saying that. I’ve gone into more detail on that in earlier posts. The Church was not content with the word ‘Messiah’ so they had Christ inserted, even in the Gospels before they were called Christians in Antioch (Acts 11:26).

    But you bring up a new issue here – examining ourselves, (I Cor. 11:28;II Cor. 13;5,6). Can we really trust ourselves to examine ourselves honestly? (Psalm 17:3; Psalm 139:23; I John 3:18-20).

  26. dayspring says:

    Father help us all

  27. dayspring says:

    D problem is we r tryin 2 understand d bible ourselves instead of lettin Holy Spirit do the teachin. 1 cor. 13 is a continuatn of chapter 12. Paul was tellin d corinthians d best way 2 work 2gether in d faith – with Love. N dat’s bcos it is selfles. Y DO U THINK THE CHRIST IS IMAGINARY EVEN WHEN YOU HAVE ACCEPTED HIM?

  28. confeticat says:

    Pooh, if you’ll read carefully I said I “accepted JC as my personal Savior” long ago, when I was a child. It was what you did if you were a fundamentalist Christian. It was what you were taught, we didn’t know any better. It was error but even in doing that, God looked at our hearts.

  29. dayspring says:

    The main purpose of the Bible is not to accumul8 data about God bt 2 encounter Him as our living God. 2 communic8 with him

  30. confeticat says:

    Dayspring – Do U stand by everthing you’ve done in YR life or have U made mistakes like d rest of us?

  31. dayspring says:

    I hav made many mistakes but accepting Him has been is the best decision I hav eva made.

  32. confeticat says:

    Then you must be talking about Jesus of Nazareth.

  33. dayspring says:

    Yes. N He is the Christ which is the same as the Messiah which means the sent one or the anointed one

  34. confeticat says:

    Matt. 5:29; Luke 11:34,35

  35. SFDBWV says:

    Another benefit of having a heart attack is finding new friends; I have two, both doctors. Matt and I are off at 3 to visit one of them.

    Also a benefit of turning 65 is that even though you have good medical insurance you are coerced into taking Medicare and penalized by having to pay for it out of your Social Security.

    Wow penalized for getting older.

    Now there is a vast difference between getting older and maturing.

    From mature older people we find wisdom, from older people who act and sound like children we find foolishness.

    In reading this string of comments I am reminded of how Balaam beat his *donkey* because Balaam could not see the truth.

    In a turn of events here in this conversation (if you can call it that) it is the *donkey* who can not see the truth and no matter how much it is beaten it only gets more stubborn.

    We Christians get our source from the written Word of God and from the indwelling of the Holy Spirit.

    Confeticat states he gets his source from voices he hears in his mind that he attributes to being Jesus.

    This voice directs him not to believe the written Word of God, but to only listen to his voice.

    This is a serious psychosis and one not to be taken lightly or toyed with.

    I pray for Confeticat and hope that he seeks the proper help he needs. I will say nothing further to or of him and chance continuing to feed his sickness. Sorry to be blunt.


  36. Bob in Cornwall England says:

    Test the spirits.
    Those that are of God will always acknowledge Jesus of Nazareth as the Messiah (Christ) and that He lived in the flesh on earth, died, rose again and ascended into heaven and is seated at the right hand of the Father.

    Be careful which voice you listen to as many will be deceived in the last days.

  37. phpatato says:


    You have not answered any question I posed to you which proves to me only one thing. You enjoy being childish by playing silly cat and mouse games. Any question asked of you, you divert completely or answer with a foolish immature response. Childish or intelligent. I prefer to say childish. So I will be like the rest who have chosen to scroll past your name to avoid the dribble you write. My definition of dribble in that sense is: A weak, unsteady stream – of words. I will no longer indulge in your foolishness; to give you the stage that you seeking. It’s become pathetic.

    Unfortunately for you, my dear, I suspect that you will soon be talking to yourself. Sad really because should you post something that is thought-provoking, it will be completely missed. You liking the childish world, ever heard of the little boy who cried wolf? Nobody paid attention to him.

  38. poohpity says:

    For this reason I bow my knees before the Father, from whom every family in heaven and on earth is named, that according to the riches of his glory he may grant you to be strengthened with power through his Spirit in your inner being, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith—that you, being rooted and grounded in love, may have strength to comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and depth, and to know the love of Christ that surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled with all the fullness of God.

    Now to him who is able to do far more abundantly than all that we ask or think, according to the power at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, forever and ever. Amen! Eph 3:14-21

    That prayer is in fact a wonderful prayer showing that were are now saints because of what Christ Jesus has done for us. All honor, glory and power are in the One we love because He first loved us.

    Typical with cults that use the Bible to support its position is a host of interpretive errors:

    1. Taking verses out of their immediate context.
    2. Refusing to read verses in the entire biblical context.
    3. Inserting their theological presuppositions into the text.
    4. Altering the Biblical text to suit their needs.
    5. Latching onto one verse to interpret a host of others.
    6. Changing the meanings of words.
    7. Proclaiming some passages to be figurative when they contradict their doctrines.
    8. Adding to the Word of God.

    Understanding that brainwashing from different cults can over take a person and that their requirements to attend what they call bible studies is mandatory. We who love the Lord desire to go, we are not demanded to attend anything or demanded to believe anything. Seeking the Scriptures is done from desire not from demand not performance based but from a heart that desires to know about our Lord and no one can take that away from us. It is so very obvious the differences and that should prompt us to push on to know the our God and the Bible better and better so none are lead astray. God is the only one that can penetrate brainwashing and we all can join together in prayer for the one that the Lord has brought into our midst that has suffered from that brainwashing.

  39. confeticat says:

    I’m sorry you’ve had a heart attack Steve but be thankful for Medicare.

    Instead of Balaam’s donkey I would like to be the donkey in Luke 19:30-31,32-33,34-35 that no one has ever ridden, because the Lord needs it. I would like to give him a ride where he can be seen, and honored.

    You are right that there is a vast difference between getting older and maturing. Heb. 6:1,2 tells us to leave the elementary teaching about The Christ, and go forward to AN ADULT UNDERSTANDING . Don’t lay over and over again the foundation truths, and it names some, like repentance from dead works, believing in God and the resurrection. How many Christians go over and over the same things like a broken record. Don’t become wise in your own eyes, stay like a child, but understand like an adult. Many Christians try to be adult but understand like a child, in other words, they get it backwards and don’t understand much of their faith.

    The Word of God is not written, the Word is Jesus (John 1:1,2-3,4-5). This is why a person can read his Bible over and over and not get much out of it. I never said I get my source from voices I hear in my mind! lol That sounds crazy! I don’t hear any audible voices, and certainly not in my mind! Jesus has many ways of speaking to his children, including but not exclusively the written word. He can speak to you through anything, even the daily news and secular books and even Paul’s epistles although they are not Scripture. If you have the Holy Spirit you know when he’s speaking. “The indwelling of the Holy Spirit” sounds so sanctimonious, why don’t you drop stuff like that.

  40. confeticat says:

    phpatato – I’ve gotten behind, but maybbe you scrolled past the answer to your question.

  41. phpatato says:

    I will keep him in my prayers Pooh but I will not be reading what he has to say.

    Here’s another thought that crossed my mind:

    What better place for satan to attack than a CHRISTian internet blog. he has an army of demons at his beck and call to disrupt and deflect what’s being said. I will not be guilty of “entertaining” those who deny The Christ. I prefer instead to shake the dust from my feet.

    Victim or villain?

  42. poohpity says:

    Yes God can and does speak through whatever means He chooses but if it does not go along with what is written then it is not the voice of God. God never goes against Himself and His Word has withstood the test of time. There are those bibles however that have been tainted by human assumptions that do not match what has withstood for centuries for instance “The New World translation” that changed scripture to suit their philosophies. This was written from those who will not even mention their names but have taken the bible in the middle of the twentieth century from a KJV and altered words and meaning to match their over- powering desire to control broken people to deny their worth and meaning. To elevate themselves like gods in the guise of submission.

  43. poohpity says:

    All I can say as the blog police that the comment guidelines are for a reason and it is obvious why.

  44. confeticat says:

    I wasn’t talking about getting your beliefs from other places. i was talking about Jesus speaking to you in daily conversation. Mart doesn’t use the New World translation. I doubt that anyone here does but you never know. Just because one of the verses said “new world” you got that idea somehow.

  45. poohpity says:

    Pat I have found that when someone is alienated they seem to take it as persecution rather than an attempt to point out a false teaching or inappropriate behavior which in turn makes them feel that they are really doing the will of God. That is the negative about all the put downs, name calling and other negative responses. You know like “oh wow this is what persecution feels like I must be doing what God wants”. It looks like persecution so we have to make sure we keep principles above personalities so they know it is not persecution for the sake of Christ but because they are putting themselves the place of Christ.

  46. poohpity says:

    confeticat, He does speak to me in daily conversations and I hope that is true for all of us who believe. That is His desire to daily, moment by moment be part of our lives.

  47. poohpity says:

    I try and weed through the things you say and some are so enlightened then there comes these other times where I wonder where on earth did that come from.

  48. confeticat says:

    I know! Isn’t it wonderful?!

  49. poohpity says:

    I really just want to understand where you got that type of teaching? Help me understand simply because I get confused easily so maybe 10 words or less. I really do not feel you came up with the Christ confusion on your own but I could be wrong. No it is not wonderful. You on the other hand are wonderful ;-)

  50. Bob in Cornwall England says:

    How do we know any of us are real?
    All these words could be a clever FAQ type web page that responds to our comments with “intelligent” responses.
    Or maybe it is just Mart talking with himself.
    Perhaps we should have our pictures attached or just chat on Facebook to be sure that we are virtually real.


  51. confeticat says:

    It wasn’t in the third heaven, I can tell you.

  52. poohpity says:

    Hey Bob, I will chat on facebook, I did not know you had a page. Friend me. I tried to look you up but did not have all the right info. You know my first name and Johnson is my last.

  53. poohpity says:

    You can also see Rocky, Glenna, Peg, Saled, bubbles on the beenthinking page.

  54. poohpity says:

    Well confeticat, then where? I sure hope you do not find yourself in the position to experience a dear death phenomenon as Paul did.

  55. confeticat says:

    You got your 10 words already, sorry.

  56. poohpity says:

    I understand what it will feel like when we all get to heaven and how the rejoicing will be I just got to meet Bob and I feel that in my heart as it was when I meet several others from here. I am so excited. Yea!!!

  57. confeticat says:

    Someone last night said you all are the elite, vetted people. Do you agree with that?

  58. confeticat says:

    Looked it up. It was yesterday morning.

  59. poohpity says:

    Us all? I guess if one considers washing feet an elitist profession. There is nothing elite about being a servant to the many. I would ask whoever said that what they meant by it rather than asking us all. I would say their ego has got the best of them.

  60. confeticat says:

    It was your friend Bob. He was talking about all of you regulars on here.

  61. phpatato says:


    I understand where you are coming from. That cry of “I’m being persecuted because” comes from every corner these days, not only Christians.

    I tend to be a peacemaker. I am known to give people second and third chances in order to come to some sort of common ground understanding. It would bother me if I didn’t try my best at meeting someone in the middle on things that cause disharmony. In this case, it was particularly hard because the other position that was being taken goes against the very core of all I believe and hope in, and there comes a time in everyone’s life where they must draw a line. Today I drew the line. Several friends on here attempted to gain understanding and find a common ground in which to work from. Instead of doing the same, he chose instead to play silly immature mind games one day or being outright rude on others. And as today went on, it again became very evident that his position is to trash the Bible – in particular the Gospels as well as all of Paul’s writings – but more importantly, Jesus Christ as being fake. That to me constitutes blasphemy and is blatantly dishonouring God. To me, there are some things that are non-negotiable, while to others, everything is negotiable. Disrespecting my Lord and Saviour is one thing I cannot tolerate. I have given him ample opportunity to meet me or even others here halfway.

    I believe the time has come – for me – to stand up and be counted for Christ. I will scroll past his name so that I don’t get, first Angered and second Hurt by his continued slanderous attacks on what should be every Christian’s core belief. I don’t appreciate him aiming criticism at those I consider friends here either.

    Woo him all you want, count me out.

  62. confeticat says:

    How do you know I’m aiming criticism? I haven’t expressed an opinion on this one way or the other.

  63. poohpity says:

    Wow, I am trying to treat him like I would want to be treated if that is bad then, “I’m bad”. But thank God I only answer to the Lord and trust that God can handle blasphemy or any other sin it is not my job but it is my job to show grace and mercy to others just like I have been shown. I know what it is like to suffer alienation and personal attacks from the people on this blog and it hurts and does nothing to benefit what we say we believe. People on here have said horrible hurtful things to me many, many times and I just wanted to let confeticat know that not all of us are the same. I care about him/her as a person even though I do not share the same beliefs that means I trust God enough to take care of the rest.

  64. confeticat says:

    That’s what I was wondering. You say you’re not all the same, but he seemed to speak for all of you, which made me think you had a Christian click going and what have I gotten into?

  65. poohpity says:

    You have gotten into a bunch of sinners saved by the grace of God! And trust me we all fall short many times and in many ways but hopefully people will not look to us but to our Lord and Savior. He still has much work to do in me and it is not my job to look at others because I have walked away from my mirror.

  66. phpatato says:

    Please don’t get upset Pooh. I didn’t mean for you to take offense. I am simply saying, I am closing the book on him. If he were saying horrible hurtful things to me, it would not be as big an issue. But he isn’t. He is saying horrible hurtful things about the Bible and Jesus Christ. That, to me, is just not acceptable. I’m sorry but that’s how I feel. I didn’t think or mean for you to take it personally. I am just trying to keep my principles above his personality.

    Please don’t let him put a wedge between us. :-(

  67. poohpity says:

    Bob said, it “seems”, “seems” being the most important word. Then the rest had to be keep in “context” to be able to understand what he was saying. Although it would be a good thing to ask him what he meant but the rest “seemed” to explain it. Context is very important.

  68. His Sparrow says:

    Hi Confecticat

    I was wondering if you could share with us, your answer to the question above –

    “Who can deny the significance of one who shows us the extent to which the Spirit of Christ can replace our fear and anger—over things out there, with the love and trust we need-right now…so close to home?

    And then share your answer to a modification of that question that came to my mind…
    who can replace our fear and anger over things out there, with the love and trust we need-right now…so close to home?

    You are brilliant thinker, quick witted and an accomplished journalist it is really interesting to read your posts.

    Thank you for you response to these questions.

    I have noticed that when one becomes “significant” (could uses synonyms like famous, notorious, etc.) like movie stars, star athletes, presidents, serial killers, et al, there is an isolation factor that gets activated.

    I wonder if it was true for King Saul, King David, Saul of Tarsus and Paul the apostle. Famosity (is that a word?) drove people away and drew people in.

    It sure happened to me when I started living my faith…gets lonely at times. The last cat I had was named “Boxcar” because she looked like a toy train box car when she first wobbled out of the nest…but she had those eyes that were only for me…unless a bug was flying by.

    Or we were significant and then something changed (age, health, employment, title, someone beat our record, my kids grew up, divorce etc.) and the isolation factor is activated or reactivated. I experience that lonely. Are you lonely Confeticat?

    His Sparrow

    p.s. Family…please don’t beat him up for his response-thank you

  69. poohpity says:

    That will not happen Pat!!! ;-)

  70. confeticat says:

    Pooh and Pat: I will probably ask Bob what he meant. But here’s what Jesus meant.

    Luke 18:13,14

  71. confeticat says:

    His Sparrow – There’s no such thing as the Spirit of Christ. i think you know the answer to the second question is Jesus. Like your cat, he wants you to have eyes only for him (but ignore the bugs).

    I can honestly say I have never been lonely since I’ve known Jesus.

  72. poohpity says:

    I understand that, do you?

  73. His Sparrow says:

    Ancient kings went to battle on horses. They came home on donkeys. Horses were symbols of power-especially those chariots!

    And the donkeys, I don’t remember exactly, but I think they represented a type of peace. What was unusual about the animal The Master had need of was, it’s youth and inexperience–it hadn’t been ridden yet. Horses buck and run, and will respond to you… donkeys do stuff like…lay down, stand still, stand still, don’t move, don’t pay attention, look at you, stand still.

    But Created knew His Creator and submitted itself to His Master because of that “knowing of being loved and the Master was trustworthy.” I know the Lord wouldnt’ve chosen me THAT day because I didn’t trust Him. I too would like to be the kind of donkey that carried Jesus on “Palm Sunday.” I got a ways to go in the trusting!

    There are horses and riders in Olympic competition. The horses are athletes too and have their own Olympic stardom in the equine world.

    Horses and people are alike. When I train a horse, he learns by trial and error. My job as a trainer is to reward him for trying…not ‘cause he got it “right.” Reward stimulates the desire to try, and if I’m kind to the horse-i.e. trustworthy- he will try to please me, from his “heart.” Eventually the horse can be defined as “trained.” Endless repetition, punishments, restraints and gimmicks only tire, hurt the horse and cause rebellion.

    Once this pattern is established-coach and coached-Olympic accomplishments are attainable. It isn’t even important to get a medal-read it in many of the relationships of Olympians and their coaches. If you could ride one of the horses that were trained even close to the level of Olympic team, you would have a joyful experience.

    Anyway, I learn by trial and error with my God, my Coach. He lets me fail…he keeps the rewards going for my try-alls.; I experience this from reading His Word and the spiritual connection we have.

    I said all this to say that it was the Christians who live their faith-the Pauls, if you will, that just kept encouraging me, even when we both knew I was being a donkey, helped me understand my Savior loves me, He is trustworthy and He is the true “Olympic Medal.”

    I love all my RBC family.

  74. confeticat says:

    So you train horses, His Sparrow. That has given you many good insights and I’m glad you shared them. Obedience – another word for training, is the key to the Kingdom of God. And none of us become obedient without trial and error. i went through a lo–oo-oo-ng period of that (donkeys aren’t as smart as horses)and it seemed it was going to last forever, but I came through it and now all I need is a nudge now and then.

    There is no medal other than Jesus that is worth the paces I was put through. Any “encouragement” I got from “the Pauls” was really them as stumbling blocks in my path which God used in the process. i suspect that the ones that really helped me were really sheep in wolves’ clothing.

    I’ll leave the “joyful experience” on the horse to you! The only horse I ever rode ran away with me.

  75. confeticat says:

    In Idaho, a plan is being put in motion that could decimate up to two-thirds of wolves inhabiting the Lolo District of Clearwater National Forest. The stated reason for this proposed aerial wolf killing program is a misconception that wolves are responsible for a recent reduction in elk populations. In fact, studies show elk herds began to shrink when suitable habitats declined, Even in the face of reason, this unsound, unscientific plan to slaughter wolves may go forward–funded by your tax dollars!

    Join Defenders of Wildlife’s efforts to inform President Obama of the situation and ask for his assistance in denying Idaho the federal aid necessary for such a blatant wolf massacre.

  76. SFDBWV says:

    If we make a study of the OT looking for Messianic comments or prophesy we get two separate stories.

    One an innocent Lamb sacrificed for all of mankind’s sin as an appeasement to God, once and for all.

    The second is a conquering King who restores Israel defeats His enemies and sets up His Kingdom that is to last forever.

    The OT ends with Israel looking for its King and Messiah.

    An argument can be made that presents the writings found in the OT concerning the Messiah to be contradictory; that is unless you have faith enough to believe God and are humble enough to realize that His ways are not our ways.

    The NT tells the story of the arrival of the Messiah. How strange and wonderful that the author of Scripture weaves truth upon truth and fact upon fact layered and hidden for all to discover who seek the Truth with a humble heart listening to that still small voice in our hearts.

    When Jesus was 8 days old Simeon heard His cry and recognized this little baby to be the promised Messiah, but warned His mother that trouble lay ahead for her. Simeon knew this because he understood OT Scripture.

    The Magi came to worship the arrival of the Messiah, because they were students of knowledge and through the study of the story of His coming from their own sources as well as the prophetic writings found in the ancient Hebrew texts, they knew when and where to find Him.

    John the Baptist has his own supernatural birth story, and was recognized by his countrymen to be a prophet, he prepared the way and proclaimed Jesus to be the Lamb of God, but even he was confused as time went on.

    I will stop here for now, as I have time restraints and will pick this up later this morning for further explanation.


  77. cherielyn says:

    Speaking of “Close to Home” I find myself often wishing that there was a Bible study group close to home. Due to a fixed income & the cost of gas, which is rising again, in Wisconsin, I am only able to attend Sunday morning services at my church which is 15 miles one way. I long to join my church family for Sunday & Wednesday evenings, but it is financially impossible.

    There used to be a home Bible study group in my area, years ago, but the pastor, whose wife led it, moved on & the group ended up disbanding for lack of a leader. One by one, those who had been attending moved to different areas further away.

    Mart, the blogs are so challenging & enlightening to me.

    Steve & poohpity, I find your contributions help me to see things from another perspective. Often, just when I think I have a good grasp on a Bible passage or concept, you share something that gives it a whole new meaning. I am almost 66 & was born-again when I was 9 years old. In spite of all those years of soaking up the truths of the Bible, I am constantly learning something new that I hadn’t seen before. It is so amazing how God’s Word is always the same, never changing, and yet ever new each time I read it.

    The only thing lacking is the face to face dialog. Often the full meaning or intention of posts are not fully comprehended because of not being able to observe the facial expressions of the one who is “speaking” in the posts.

    I look forward to the glorious day that we will all meet in person and all of the believers here will be “Close to Home” because we will be AT HOME with out Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ!

  78. remarutho says:

    Good Morning Mart & Friends!

    I appreciate your teaching on Messiah (Hebrew)/Christ (Greek), Steve. I look forward to another telling of this amazing Life among humans!

    I was given a gift last Christmas by a dear friend that is an image I have loved for years: the lion lying down with the lamb. This image has become universal as the symbol of true peace, peace on earth, the reconciliation of humankind with the source of all power, the bringing of nature into harmony – salvation.

    This is a statuette that has a place of honor in my home. You wrote:

    “If we make a study of the OT looking for Messianic comments or prophecy we get two separate stories.

    One an innocent Lamb sacrificed for all of mankind’s sin as an appeasement to God, once and for all.

    The second is a conquering King who restores Israel defeats His enemies and sets up His Kingdom that is to last forever.”

    The great wonder of the will of God – “to seek and to save the lost” (Luke 19:10) – requires the appearance in the flesh of the God-man, Jesus of Nazareth – witnessed in the Holy Scriptures and attested in history. He is the Lamb known before the foundation of the world (1 Peter 1:20, 21). He is also the King of the universe (Revelation 19:15, 16).

    My appreciation of this seemingly contradictory image brings to mind and holds together the immense divine intention that our hope, our consolation, our cleansing, our joy – appears in a person, Jesus Christ of Nazareth, Messiah.


  79. Bob in Cornwall England says:

    Thanks Maru,

    Never put that together before.
    I know Jesus as The Lamb.
    I know Jesus as The Lion of Judah.
    In Revelation Jesus is The Lamb that was slain and also the King of Kings.
    Truly one day The Lion & The Lamb will sit forever on the throne of David.
    In that day the Hebrew Nation will know that The Lion of Judah (Messiah) is also The Lamb of God that was Slain.


  80. SFDBWV says:

    As we read on in the NT Gospels; Jesus was 30 years old before He began His public ministry, after being baptized by John He went straight away into the wilderness to be tempted.

    All of these actions have immense symbolism as well as an accounting of Jesus’ life.

    The symbolisms are found all throughout scripture, if you look and ask, the Holy Spirit will reveal them to you. But where is it found? Written and hidden in Scripture and revealed in the writings of the NT, because the author of Scripture both Old and New is the Holy Spirit.

    Jesus opened the eyes and ears of all who heard Him speak of God and of the purpose of His coming, yet many still did not know what to expect.

    Many still thought that with the coming of the Messiah all of Israel’s enemies would be crushed and Israel would emerge as the top nation in the entire world with their King fully in control.

    But Jesus brought a different message then what they expected or wanted to hear. He talked about service, sacrifice, loving even their hated enemies.

    Jesus even said that He came not to unite but to divide; where do we see another division of peoples? Hidden everywhere from Genesis on and shown dramatically in the wilderness between those who followed after the golden calf and those who stood with Moses.

    Scripture is the story of Messiah and Jesus the personage God revealed Himself through, just as through Messiah all things were created. Messiah and God are one; Jesus said this clearly and is recorded for our eyes to read in the Gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke and John as well as to hear from those who have come to believe.

    Sorry I will continue this later, as I am able.

    Thank you Maru and Cherielyn for your kind words and love.


  81. confeticat says:

    The “contradictory Messiahs” Steve is talking about, the Jews found so much so that they expected two Messiahs. The first was the suffering Messiah, Messiah ben Joseph. Of course Jesus fulfilled that in his first coming. The other is Messiah ben David, conquoring King, which he will fullfill the next time he comes.

    Cherielyn, be thankful there is no Bible study group for you. These are where you get as many opinions as there are people there. You need to be taught by the Holy Spirit. Face-to-face may be helpful in understanding what another person means, but if that person isn’t taught by the Holy Spirit it will not help you.

  82. Bob in Cornwall England says:

    “confeticat says:
    August 2, 2012 at 6:18 pm
    Someone last night said you all are the elite, vetted people. Do you agree with that?”


    When I wrote that I knew it would come across differently on your side of the Atlantic.
    I was actually trying to make a point that, as in the Olympics, it is a tremendous privilege to take part.
    The athletes are the elite in their fields and are vetted before they can partake in the games.
    My thought was that there are billions of “Christians” on this planet but so few partake here on this blog.
    Is it due to lack of interest or are we very privileged to be allowed to take part.
    Being so “privileged” then it is our duty to take part and compete/comment in a civilized and “sportsman like” manner. Not to argue and bicker or try and anger one another.
    In the same way the Badminton teams were disqualified for not playing the game properly and trying to gain tactical advantage in the playoffs, we also run the risk of being disciplined or “banned” if we keep on abusing the privileges we have on this blog.
    I have been guilty of getting personal, nationalistic, angry and of many other offenses on this blog but have been lucky that the umpire has been looking the other way or chosen not to take action.
    Jesus said “Many are called but few are chosen”
    Think on His words!


  83. confeticat says:

    Working my way down the scroll, the lion lying down with the lamb will be in the millennium, Jesus’ 1000-year reign on earth.

    The God-man is a hoax. i first encountered it called that when I took an ‘Evangelism Explosion” course, where they taught you to memorize their little spiels and visit in homes and spread the infection all over town. I memorized it, then thought to myself, why am I saying this? I don’t believe that.

    We all thought we had to prove in some way or another how Jesus could be sinless and have human blood. Mart’s grandfather was also a medical doctor and he wrote a book called The Chemistry of the Blood back in 1943. I still have it. His belief was based on the current but little-known medical knowledge of that day and what he essentially said was (correct me if I’m wrong, Mart, it‘s been a long time since I read it) that a baby only receives it’s blood through the father, not from the mother, and he applied that to Jesus being sinless. That theory has since been proven wrong but it was certainly a logical conclusion at that time, and it had weight coming from a doctor.

    It’s really not a problem at all because Jesus was not human. He was 100% God. He came in human flesh and Mary was his surrogate mother, but he was conceived of the Holy Spirit.

  84. remarutho says:

    “For us and for our salvation he came down from heaven, was incarnate of the Holy Spirit and the Virgin Mary and became truly human.” The docetic heresy was proved to be in error at Nicea, Confeticat. Blessings Always, Maru

  85. confeticat says:

    Thanks for clarifying what you said, Bob. I was about to issue a CHRISTIAN CLICK ALERT! – ha.

  86. confeticat says:

    Maru – It wasn’t proven to me.

  87. remarutho says:

    John 4:6 :o)

  88. confeticat says:

    Jesus in a human body experienced the same things we do, yet without sin (Heb. 4:15; Heb. 2:14,15).

  89. remarutho says:

    Jesus, the man, Jesus the Son of God, teaches: Matthew 5:48. It’s about love. Yours in Christ, Maru

  90. confeticat says:

    Yes, and the only way to be perfect is to be in Him who is perfect. It’s not about us gritting our teeth and trying to be like him in Heb. 4:15, we’ll never achieve perfection that way.

  91. remarutho says:

    Yes, Confeticat. Something must die — nailed to the cross of Jesus Christ — never to rise in the glorious resurrection. Knowledge will pass away. “Knowledge puffs up, but love builds up, and 1 Corinthians 8:2, 3.

  92. confeticat says:

    I would take I Cor. 8:2 with a grain or two of salt.

    Dying is more like Luke 17:33. Our life is not nailed to his cross. Jesus said take up YOUR cross daily and follow me (Luke 9:23).

  93. remarutho says:

    The word is right here and now—as near as the tongue in your mouth, as near as the heart in your chest. (Deuteronomy 30:14 The Message) I believe you and I agree. Blessings, Maru

  94. remarutho says:

    Our glorious Lord, Father, Son and Holy Spirit is so “close to home”!!!

  95. confeticat says:

    I don’t know about you, Maru, but I can’t do the written word. John 1:14

  96. poohpity says:

    Steve, it seems that is the same misconception that the disciples had about 2 different stories. Jesus explained it in parables so that they would understand that it was not 2 stories but one they just tried to understand it with human reasoning rather what it really was. The disciples still did not get it until after the Pentecost even though they spent time with Jesus and witnessed His miracles. Although it does have a future aspect but primarily it was all what Jesus came to do so in fact it is all one story. Jesus brought the kingdom to earth in His body and then will bring us to His kingdom in eternity. He confronted the misconception that He was a conquering earthly King by explaining His Kingdom was not here on earth.

  97. remarutho says:

    Hello Confeticat –

    If I am understanding you, with reference to John 1:14, then you are searching for the incarnate Word, or the Word made flesh. I pray daily to seek after the Lord while he may be found. (Isaiah 55:6) The long relationship between the Creator God and his people (who at first did not know they were his people) is a life-giving story – and covering that ground – or traveling that road with Abraham, Isaac and Israel and the rest is my life’s pursuit.

    The cross is not a piece of architecture – bolted to a massive wall or driven two feet in the ground into half a ton of concrete. Rather it is more like the javelins being thrown today in London. It is a power that entered the world at just the right moment – aimed from heaven by a sure arm – penetrating the ground outside Jerusalem. The cross-beam of that cross still broadcasts the most heart-felt call of a loving and gracious God to whoever will listen: Matthew 11:28, 29, 30.

    I do not know how to pursue Reality without searching the written Word – the evidence of God’s working in the world he made and loves forever.


  98. SFDBWV says:

    We read in the OT that God had brought the people Israel out of bondage to the Promised Land by mighty miracles and wonders, but they rejected it. He punished them and made them live out their lives in the wilderness and gave the Promised Land to another generation.

    The Hebrew people once again rejected God and ask for a King, God punished them by giving them what they ask for.

    When Jesus came He taught the people what it meant to be a part of the Kingdom of God; what was expected of them if they were to be a part of it and how to enter into it.

    Just as was the habit of their ancestors, the Jewish leadership once again rejected God, for a false idea of what they wanted God to be and do for them. So Jesus began teaching in parables, so that in order to understand it, prayer, study and meditation was required.

    One such parable explained that no matter when in your life you decide to accept Jesus as Messiah and begin the work He has for you; you are given the same wages as another who may have been doing the work for Him longer. What are those wages? Salvation!

    Another parable explains that each worker is given a certain amount of potential, but that each worker will be rewarded differently for how they handled this personal amount of potential. Jesus used the concept of money in order to explain it.

    Point being the Kingdom requires workers.

    On the night of Jesus’ arrest at the Passover meal He spoke plainly and directly to His friends and explained that He has to go away so that the Holy Spirit can come.

    Until this time, the Holy Spirit came upon people or was given to certain people for God’s purposes. Jesus explained He was establishing His Church and it began there with Him and His Disciples. It was to expand from there and even after His death and resurrection He gave the Disciples the “Great Commission” to go into the whole world and spread the good news that salvation is offered to all because of the sacrifice of one.

    Jesus also gave comfort to His friends that He would not leave them alone; the Holy Spirit will lead them into all truths and remain with them.

    Jesus came into the world in order to be the sacrificial Lamb, and it became the purpose of His followers to proclaim that to the world.

    Jesus in a most dramatic fashion chose His most stoic adversary to carry the message of salvation to the Gentile world.

    Notice it was Jesus who chose him.

    And it was Jesus who would equip Paul for all Jesus would require from him.

    If you think that you can do any good for the Kingdom of God without first being called and equipped by He who called you, you are fighting against a life of frustration.

    Paul shows us the “way” it is done as we live out our lives awaiting the return of the “King”.

    Paul was a good worker for our Lord, how good are we?

    Sorry to have been so long both in content and in ability to write.


  99. phpatato says:

    As always Steve, well worth your precious time and effort. Thank you! Great reading!

  100. phpatato says:



  101. confeticat says:

    Just got back from lunch and find the whole ball of wax dumped in my lap! These things fit together and the challenge is to find out how.

    First the written word, of course we need it and believe it. But to live it requires knowing and being in Jesus, the Living Word. Steve mentioned the Torah earlier. ‘Law’ is a poor translation of the Torah. It means a lot of things, more than could be told here, but basically instruction, “to point out as aiming the finger.” It is not just the first five books of the Bible but all of Scripture. Although Yeshua/Jesus is the Living Torah, the Torah itself was never meant to be a means of salvation for God’s people. More to follow.

  102. confeticat says:

    i really don’t care what the cross was made of. It was an instrument of torture to my Lord and not something I want to worship or put on my wall. I did not see the movie “Passion of the Christ” because I will not glory in the cross.

  103. poohpity says:

    I wonder if we are given the great commission to do and God’s Word to read then why is it not done? How many who say, “from Genesis to Revelation” have even read it from Genesis to revelation. Some really convicting things to think about.

    How many times in the OT are we shown the grace of God? Many, many times continually to a prideful rebellious people. It is no different now, shouts from the roof listen to me and I will explain rather than spend time daily with God and in His word living out the faith given to us. Doing things to show we are living out our faith rather than talking about things that we do not even do ourselves. We are given special gifts and abilities to use to bring people to knowledge of the Living Word but how many are secure enough to even give the salvation message?

    I will learn from those who have the gift of teaching who have spent much, much time in the Word and even learned about the nuts and bolts instead of giving generalized statements that are basics of our faith. We have to learn and be teachable before we can teach.

  104. poohpity says:

    You do not have to glory in the Cross, that was His Glory. The Cross is a sign of our salvation, redemption and restoration. The Cross is not to be worshiped it was what was done on it. Mormons think of the Cross that way.

  105. confeticat says:

    What Steve said about God punishing the people Israel and not allowing them to enter the Promised Land, is still true today. “For none of those I first invited will even get the smallest taste of my banquet” (Luke 14:24). God is not going to keep begging the same people over and over when there are others who have never heard. Can one blind person lead another? Won’t they both fall into a ditch? (Luke 6:39). Some who were first have a degree in theology but they will not understand Jesus’ parables and take them to heart.

    I’m not sure Jesus chose Paul at all. And if he did, for what? It sure wasn’t to teach the truth. Like Israel wanting a king, God gave the Church what they wanted.

  106. confeticat says:

    The Church didn’t begin with Jesus and his disciples OR at Pentecost. The church was born at Mt. Sinai on what was called the Day of the Assembly (Deut. 18:16; Deut. 9:10; Deut. 10:4). The word for church (ekklesia) means ‘assembly’ and corresponds to the Hebrew word “kahal’. It was a mixed multitude of people.

    There is not an Age of Law and an Age of Grace. God’s grace/mercy runs all through the Old Testament and his Torah in the New Testament Scriptures.

  107. Bob in Cornwall England says:

    Just read read the topic again, as we tend to stray when we get this far down the blog.
    Seems The two Sauls were similar in how they behaved.
    King Saul lost the anointing of the Holy Spirit because he disobeyed the prophet and did not wait.
    The anointing was moved by God to David and King Saul knew this and reacted by trying to kill him.
    Saul/Paul knew the scriptures and prophets and could see the anointing had passed from the Jews and been given to this new generation of Jesus followers.
    Saul reacted by killing these new blessed disciples.
    He was stopped in his tracks on the road to Damascus and his first reaction was to ask “Who are you, Lord?” I think he always knew Jesus was God but through fear was hitting out. “I AM Jesus. Whom you are persecuting” was the reply.
    Paul was then commissioned to something King Saul could never do for David(Jonathon did), that was to take this new anointing of the Holy Spirit to the gentiles.
    Three years later and after a lot of soul searching,teaching and self sacrifice, he was ready to do so, even to a point of correcting Peter about the need of circumcision.
    God had moved His blessing from Israel to the Gentiles. You no longer had to become a Jew to receive Gods anointing Holy Spirit.
    Jesus Chose Paul because He knew Paul would listen and, unlike King Saul, his heart was not too hard to change.
    That is why Jesus said He would turn our hearts of stone into hearts made of flesh because flesh can be molded and changed like the potters clay but stone is set hard and can only be chipped away by hard knocks.

    If we could all live humble lives like Paul, turn around , repent and become like Jesus, then the millennium reign would have already started.


  108. confeticat says:

    I’ll say you tend to stray!

    The anointing never passed from the Jews. God never divorced Judah, even though she was disobedient, because of his promise to David. He divorced the house of Israel which included gentiles and the church! Salvation includes restoring a person back to Israel and the houses of Israel back together because they have been split since after the time of Solomon.

    The hearts of stone into hearts of flesh was a prophecy of the Kingdom.

    The millennial reign can’t start until Jesus returns. He IS the peace.

  109. davids says:

    It is hard for us too understand how the disciples misunderstood Jesus’ mission. But in their time, Israel was occupied territory. The people longed for a military deliverance. One of Jesus’ disciples was even a zealo: a rebel.

    For them to see the Messiah’s (Christ’s) mission in peaceful terms was difficult. In the same way it is difficult for many today to see Christ’s return in violent, conquering terms.

    A word to the wise.

  110. remarutho says:

    Good Afternoon Mart & Friends!

    Had to be away from the conversation a while today. Steve, you wrote:

    “If you think that you can do any good for the Kingdom of God without first being called and equipped by He who called you, you are fighting against a life of frustration.”

    Saul/Paul of Tarsus certainly illustrates this in his life! Not that we, as Mart says, should compare ourselves to Paul — and especially not to Jesus — but Paul needed to encounter the living Christ/Messiah before his work amounted to anything for the kingdom of God. In fact, he was working against Jesus until he (suddenly) connected the dots between Messiah in tradition and Messiah Jesus in the flesh.

    Paul came so far in his understanding that he could see the work of God’s grace in him (1 Corinthians 15:9, 10)


  111. poohpity says:

    I remember when I first accepted the grace of God my heart felt like it would bust from all the things I had done and I was forgiven. Oh my, I was so very grateful. Then I went through a stage where I thought of myself as taking it for granted and seeing that in how I treated others. Now daily I understand more fully just exactly how much grace I am shown every day and I pray that I never take it for granted again.

    I admire the tenacity, strength and endurance of Paul. The Holy Spirit helped him through some terrible circumstances that not many would make it and come out on the other side with such a gentle, loving and compassionate spirit. If anyone could justify becoming bitter and angry it would be Paul.

  112. confeticat says:

    I want you to know that not everything I told you was direct revelation to me. Some of it was “lifted and sifted” from someone else who filled in where I lacked and whom I recognized to be filled with the Spirit of God. Eddie Chumney’s book has mistakes in it and a big humdinger right on the cover, saying the house of Israel is Christianity. But keeping in mind Jeremiah’s admonition to take the precious from the vile, I figure if you don’t have to throw away more than you keep that’s a pretty good ratio. Also he wrote his book 13 years ago, and I’m sure he’s had more revelation since then. Then too, I read it while I was still in Paul’s camp, which means I need to read it again from a new prospective. But I learned a lot about Israel from him.
    Another I might use is a Rabbi with a long name I can’t pronounce, I just call him Rabbi K. Had just told some people about him when he ups and decides to take another wife! Good grief! He was thrown off the website he’d been on. But he has some deep teaching, definitely the Holy Spirit. I just have to ignore a few Pauline references thrown in. And oh yeah, his polygamy.
    Luke 9:35

  113. foreverblessed says:

    As the topic is still going on, here is some to read if you want too: In the devotion of God-calling to the two listeners, Jesus was talking directly to these women.
    August 4 – Eternal Life

    -Oh Jesus, we love Thee so and long to serve Thee-

    My children, you are both to do mighty things for Me. Glories and wonders unfold. Life is one glorious whole.

    Draw into your beings more and more this wonderful Eternal Life. It is the flow of the Life Eternal through spirit, mind, and body, that cleanses, heals, restores, renews youth, and passes on from you to others, with the same miracle-working power.

    “And this is Life Eternal that they may know thee. . . and Jesus Christ, whom Thou has sent.” So seek by constant contact to know Me more and more.

    Make Me the one abiding Presence of your day of which you are conscious all the time. Seek to do less and to accomplish more, to achieve more. Doing is action. Achievement is successful action.

    Remember that Eternal Life is the only lasting life, so that all that is done without being done in the Power of My Spirit, My Life, is passing. All done in that Spirit-Life is undying.

    “I give unto to them eternal life, and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of My hand.” So Eternal Life means security too, safety. Dwell increasingly in the consciousness of that security, that safety.

    He that hath the Son hath life; and he that hath
    not the Son of God hath not life. 1 John 5:12

    end of quote

    These are such encouraging words. And one thing the apostle Paul did, was telling the christians that being a christian means having a life of discipline, (Colossians 2:6-7) like this word says:
    “So seek by constant contact to know Me more and more.”
    That seeking of contact is something we do ourselves, and if our heart is full of love for our Saviour, that would not be hard to do, it is something we want to do.
    As Pooh wrote somewhere above: When she realised how much she was forgiven, how big her love for her Saviour was.

    Paul had been forgiven much, and Paul knew that, as he had been a vicious persecutor of the followers of Jesus. That’s maybe why his love for Jesus was so big, that all he did in his life was proclaiming Jesus and the cross, suffering a lot under persecution, he wouldn’t complain about it. It is love that is the motivating factor, love for the one who saved us from this dark world into His kingdom of the son He loves, Col 1:13-14

  114. SFDBWV says:

    Somewhere out there among us is someone who has the number, but this morning I was wondering how many churches and or congregations there are in the world.

    Someone may also have a good estimate as to how many souls have been saved because they heard the Gospel.

    Knowing that it all began there in Jerusalem with a small number of people some 2012 years ago, there were no internets or TV or radios or even newspapers.

    Jesus could have appeared to every person on the planet in the same fashion as He did Paul, or appear in their dreams, or walk along the road with them as He did on the way to Emmaus and I won’t say that He hasn’t for some, but God has His way of changing the world and doing so one person at a time and using people to accomplish His goals.

    There is also information available to us that give us the history of each Disciple after the events in Jerusalem that are separate from Scripture.

    We know already that James was killed by the sword and Stephen stoned to death because the Scriptures record those two events, but what of the others and of the others they converted.

    Here in West Virginia there is a stone monument written in ancient Celtic that attests to the virgin birth of the Savior of the world. Written by an unknown missionary who had traveled far into the New World taking the Gospel to the unsaved world as instructed to do so.

    I have read that the Polynesian peoples of Hawaii welcomed their European discoverers thinking they were the promised return of the Savior of the world, what a shock to them when they discovered the truth.

    Point is that Jesus gave the Disciples the responsibility of spreading the good news. History has recorded how well that has been done.

    Paul was successful in establishing a string of churches that established a string of believers that established more churches and so forth. Establishing believers in Rome meant that Romans would take the message to the far reaches of the world.

    Paul did more than just establish churches; he nurtured them and helped them to stand alone.

    Paul’s successes are his credentials, the spreading of the Gospel and the establishment of the Church was ordained by God and Paul succeeded only because it was God’s will for him to.

    Mart has made a nice tribute to Paul here and I can only repeat history and fact that agrees with the fact that Paul was led by the Holy Spirit and did indeed run the good race to get as much done for Christ as he could in the time given him to do so.

    Paul was and remains a good follower of Jesus the Messiah/ Jesus the Christ/ Christ Jesus/ Christ.


  115. cherielyn says:

    The whole Paul bashing issue got me to get out my Bible and read the book of Acts – written by Luke – to refresh my memory of the conversion of Saul of Tarsus. I believe I was lead to read it by the Holy Spirit.

    I have seen the book of Acts in a whole new light. As I said in another post. “It is so amazing how God’s Word is always the same, never changing, and yet ever new each time I read it.”

    While reading, Acts 11:26(KJV) popped out as if it were in bold, highlighted and typed in an extra large font!

    “………….And the disciples were called Christians first in Antioch.” Acts 11:26 (KJV)

  116. cherielyn says:

    Luke’s words, not Paul’s!

  117. cherielyn says:

    Correction: God breathed Words given to Luke to pass on to the rest of the world through His Word!

  118. remarutho says:

    Good Morning Mart & Friends!

    Our Daily Bread for today has such an encouraging word. I always imagine Paul, travel-weary and seeking out the synagogues and home-churches where he might bring his wonderful knowledge of God’s Word as a help and an encouragement to the peoples of the Roman empire. Today’s Scripture reading in ODB is Isaiah 41:8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14) How helpful!

    I am touched that almost a hundred years ago Eric Liddell’s sister, Jenny, sent a word of encouragement to him — and that it arrived at just the right moment in his life of faith! Not a moment too soon today either!


  119. SFDBWV says:

    Cherilyn I have told this story before and I apologize if you have heard it before, but here goes; I do not recall the name of the movie and if I make an effort I may be able to find it, but long ago I watched a movie about a man who had been adopted by a wealthy Egyptian couple.

    He would be their only child and was loved and adored by his adopted parents.

    They gave him the best education they could attain at that time and he became what would be the equivalent to a physician today.

    The problem was that he became infatuated by a beautiful woman that siphoned off all of the resources he had and when he ran out of money he took from his parents until they too were ruined and bankrupt.

    His parents took what little money they had left and arranged for their burial and committed suicide.

    He began a journey as a defeated and remorseful man roaming about and looking for some way to reconstruct his life and find forgiveness from himself for wasting so much.

    Then he met a man who would change his life forever, a man who told him of the way to find forgiveness and peace, the way to salvation and rescue.

    The man he met was Paul and our wayward physician Luke. Luke would become the companion of Paul and because of his education able to write and aid Paul in documenting all that we have come to know in scripture.


  120. cherielyn says:


    I had not heard that story before. Thank you, so much, for sharing it!

    Would love to see the movie. Let me know if you ever remember the title. Was the movie based on facts?

  121. cherielyn says:

    Oops! Typo. That should have been a comma after Steve, not an N. Incidentally, we named our youngest son Steven Mark, but we call him Steve.

  122. SFDBWV says:

    That’s ok Cherielyn my name is also Steven.


  123. confeticat says:

    I’ve wondered too how many congregations there are in the world. No one would dispute Paul’s success in establishing churches. The question is not, was he a man of success, but was he a man of value? His credentials are tarnished. He steered his churches, even the Jewish ones, away from their Jewish roots. Jesus did not come to start a new religion (John 10:10).

    I’ve heard that all the disciples, with the exception of John, were martyred. Many down through the ages have been martyred. But what did they die for? For the Church and so that many could be converted to the Christian religion. Many of them thought they were doing it for Jesus and some no doubt were. But John called himself “the disciple whom Jesus loved” and he loved Jesus so much that he reclined against him. He died at a ripe old age of natural causes, after giving us the book of Revelation. There’s a lesson there.

    And the gospel that Paul spread was not the complete Gospel. It was just half the story. It’s like someone has good news to tell you but they don’t tell it all. They leave out the most important part. Your child was in a bad car wreck and died. But they don’t tell you that it was later discovered your child is not only alive, but wasn’t injured and has made a full recovery. So that while many were saved, they were as it were left dangling thinking they were all right with God and that they were going to heaven. I will give you that Paul remains a good follower of Christ. But a good follower of Jesus the Messiah – no!

    Luke wrote a factual account. Then he may have become the greatest novelist of all time. But nice try, Steve.

  124. poohpity says:

    Normally those old movies are not accurate. Luke they say for sure was a doctor in Col 4:14 and Greek Historian from Luke 1:1-4 who hooked up with Paul on his 2nd missionary journey from Acts 16:10 the term we is used and the author of Acts was Luke. The only movie I found so far that was biblically accurate was “The Passion of the Christ”. Most of those old movies have taken a lot of freedom in creativity to make it a good movie which most aren’t anyway, lol.

  125. poohpity says:

    confeticat, you may try and reread if you even have Paul’s letters there is nothing in them that goes against any of the Gospels. Luke was a Gentile and the only one to write a gospel. All the letters in the NT are people’s testimonies of what they saw and heard being with Jesus. No contradictions and no religion is taught. Paul’s letters were to different people in different towns that were bringing in different philosophies from their cultures and trying to blend them with the Good News/Gospel.

  126. phpatato says:


    Was it a tv movie or one you saw in a theatre?

  127. confeticat says:

    Well, this comes as BIG news! There is no religion in the NT letters. You know, maybe some of those philosophies would not have done as much harm as Paul did.

  128. SFDBWV says:

    Cherielyn, as of this writing I would have no way of knowing whether the movie I mentioned had any historical facts concerning Luke.

    It was an entertaining movie with a good connection to actual people and events and I enjoyed its twist.

    Luke’s emphasis was always on facts surrounding Jesus and the ensuing events that followed the crucifixion and development of the Church. He didn’t have much to say about himself; another person I can take the lead from.


  129. SFDBWV says:

    Pat I seen it on TV.


  130. confeticat says:

    i think I saw that movie too, maybe on the History channel.

  131. poohpity says:

    lol!! As if you know what Paul did. Read the whole book of Colossians then come back and we will talk. I will know if you read it or not.

  132. confeticat says:

    Give me a break – Colossians is probably my least favorite of his books. Not that i have a favorite.

  133. poohpity says:

    Your a goof. Thanks for the smile to begin my day.

  134. confeticat says:

    You’re welcome!

  135. poohpity says:

    I bet it is your least favorite because it disproves everything you say. lol

  136. remarutho says:

    Dear All —

    I have not come across the movie you mention about the life of Luke, Steve, but I can recommend an old mini-series called A.D. It follows the story line of the Acts of the Apostles. It also contains the story of the caesars — and a historical fiction story about a Jewish family and their interraction with two Roman families.

    It shows Luke as a young doctor who begins to hear Paul preach in the synagogues — and then comes for baptism, and begins to travel with Paul. I just completed a weekly meeting in my home where we read Acts and watched some of the movie together.


  137. poohpity says:

    There are a set of movies that take you through the book of Matthew in the NIV word for word. I also believe they put out one on the book of Acts as well word for word NIV.

  138. poohpity says:

    Mart, did you step down from being the President of RBC?

  139. confeticat says:

    Did you ever notice that Paul’s letters decrease in size all the way through? The longest is first and then they keep shrinking. They’re not in the order they were written. Was someone trying to tell us something?

  140. poohpity says:

    My Utmost For His Highest is most excellent for today.

  141. poohpity says:

    When you write to someone are all your letters the same size? It depends on what you have to say to the person you are writing to. I guess not many send hand written letters any more but emails. Each of those letters were written with an intent for example Romans was an introduction of Paul, by Paul to the people in Rome. Then first letter to the Corinthian believers was to identify problems within their group, to offer solutions and to teach what living for Jesus looks like in a corrupt society.

  142. confeticat says:

    I was talking about how they are arranged.

  143. confeticat says:

    That’s nice.

  144. poohpity says:

    None of the Bible is in chronological order.

  145. phpatato says:


    I’ve exhausted my searching abilities to try and find the tv movie you watched. Sorry. I’ve sent my sister an email to ask if she’s possibly seen it. If anybody I know has come across it, it would be her. I’ll let you know.

    It sounds interesting.

  146. confeticat says:

    Pooh – one of your posts didn’t get posted and now it is compost.

  147. poohpity says:

    Oh well, as if what I say is important, lol.

  148. poohpity says:

    If it did not get posted how do you know it was even there to begin with?

  149. SFDBWV says:

    Maru, I have AD it is an excellent series.


  150. remarutho says:

    Yes, it is very absorbing, since you also get to see how nutzo the Roman caesars were! Whew! Of course, the caesars don’t remind me of anybody in particular…

    I am interested in the word-for-word NIV Acts, Pooh.
    I will look for it. I have the Gospel of John word-for-word in the Good News Bible. It is wonderful!


  151. SFDBWV says:

    Before Matthew ended up house bound I owned only a few *Christian* movies. One is “Jesus of Nazareth” another long movie in series format. I loved that movie and still watch it if I get a string of six hours I can fit in over a few days.

    When that movie first came on TV as a made for TV special, I was engrossed by it and enjoyed it very much. However it was trashed by certain Christian denominational leadership even before in was broadcast and some friends of mine were told by their Pastors from the pulpit not to watch it.

    How sad that some people can’t enjoy a story or a movie by attempting not only to compare it to Scripture, but compare it as they want Scripture interpreted.

    After Matt and I were to spend so much time at home and with the TV I began buying lots of movies and quickly amassed a nice library of Christian movies.

    Another one I enjoy and actually went to the theater with my mother to see when it first came out is “The Ten Commandments” with Charlton Heston. The amazing thing about that rendition of the Exodus is that it also was trashed by many as being too “Hollywood” and once again not Scripture enough for its critics.

    Oddly if you look at the story of Moses from Josephus, the “Hollywood” version is more accurate than later versions; which I also have such as with Ben Kinsley as a stuttering bumbling Moses.

    Another one I can recommend is “Peter and Paul” with Anthony Hopkins as Paul.

    I also have two series from the Visual Bible collection; Matthew and the Book of Acts. They quote scripture in a dramatic movie format.

    I have many others, but none replace the Bible. It is where I gain my information and insight, the movies are for relaxation and entertainment and not meant to, as Mart said of Paul and us, be something to compare.

    I too have been searching for the movie I spoke of earlier, when I find it you all will be the first to know.

    Today I watched an Olympic runner from South Africa with no legs from his knees down come in second in, I think, a 400 meter race, I cried.

    It has been a good day for us today; I pray it has also been a good day for all of you as well.


  152. confeticat says:

    Anthony Hopkins is perfect to play Paul. Silence of the Lambs.

  153. phpatato says:

    Sorry Steve. My sis hasn’t heard of it but is interested to find out the name so she can watch it too.

  154. poohpity says:

    Maru, you can get it on Amazon I think it is referred to as “Visual Bible: Book of Acts”. Great bible study tool. It is not Hollywood and but is true to Scripture. I see you are fitting right in after your move.:-)

    The old movies about bible topics are poorly acted out except for a few made in Hollywood. I would never tell someone not to watch other than they are poorly made and very bad quality. Most people do not even know they are inaccurate but it is entertainment and not meant to learn the bible. I grew up watching “Ten Commandments”, “The Bible”, “The Robe” and “Ben Hur” all Hollywood but they touched my heart to want to know more.

  155. bratimus says:

    2 Peter 3:15-16

  156. poohpity says:

    I think Hollywood stopped making them because they were drawing more people to God.

  157. poohpity says:

    Very good scripture verses, bratimus and very appropriate.

  158. confeticat says:

    Peter was giving us a coded message that “Paul’s scriptures” are separate from the other Scriptures.

  159. poohpity says:

    2 Peter 3:15-16 NIV Bear in mind that our Lord’s patience means salvation, just as our dear brother Paul also wrote you with the wisdom that God gave him. 16 He writes the same way in all his letters, speaking in them of these matters. His letters contain some things that are hard to understand, which ignorant and unstable people distort, as they do the other Scriptures, to their own destruction.

    What other Scriptures are a coded message? Gee, maybe we should not trust any of them to be truth. Shhh, it is a conspiracy to take our hearts to live lies!

    I have not learned yet how to pick and choose. My hope is that I never find that kind of heart toward any of the Bible as I have never found any of it not to be truth. Not one little bit.

  160. confeticat says:

    “He knew their thoughts, so he said, “Any kingdom divided by civil war is doomed…If Satan is divided and fighting against himself, how can his kingdom survive? (Luke 11:17,18,23).

  161. poohpity says:

    yep, so Paul and Peter were on team Christ Jesus just like many of us on this site. They were not divided just as we are not divided with our beliefs either.

  162. poohpity says:

    Oops taking things out of context again as well as misquoting. A sure sign of what Peter was referring to and a very good example of that truth.

  163. confeticat says:

    Luke 15:8,9

  164. poohpity says:

    Are you that lost coin confeticat? Would you like to ask Jesus Christ into your heart as your personal Savior and believe that he died on the Cross for your sins, was raised from the dead on the third day, so that you can join Him in heaven?

  165. remarutho says:

    Truly the finest offer in the whole universe, Poohpity!
    The lost coin, the lost sheep — the wayward son returning to the Father…Thank you!

  166. SFDBWV says:

    I read a report this week of a couple who were stoned to death for adultery in one of the Islamic controlled countries.

    It is just unimaginable for people of this day and age reverting to such cruelty and ignorance as that.

    Yet that is exactly the fate of Stephen recorded in the Book of Acts, and what was his crime against his accusers; blasphemy (Acts 6: 11). What was it that stung the mob into murder?

    Stephen told them the truth and it exploded in them into a rage (Acts 7: 54).

    These *witnesses*, I must come to understand as being the false witnesses that had accused Stephen, took off their restrictive clothing and laid them at the feet of Saul for safe keeping (Acts 7: 58) and murdered a man whose only offense had been telling the truth (Acts 7: 59, 60).

    Saul became the person whom the religious leaders used to arrest imprison and I would suppose exact Mosaic Law to all offenders. Not alone, as he needed muscle, but he was the leader of this band of religious police. Thinking all the time that he was doing God a great service (Acts 8: 1, 3) (Acts 9: 1, 2).

    However God had use of Saul and it wasn’t enforcing the Law of Moses, it was a very different job. It begins with at the apex of Saul’s confidence that he was doing exactly God’s work while on his way to Damascus.

    If I may be allowed to inject a little dramatic license here and imagine that while riding along with his companions Saul’s mind was filled with plans and the pride of hearing the echoes of flattery and kudos for his efforts.

    At this moment, Saul was surrounded by a blinding light (Acts 9: 3) and Jesus speaks to him (Acts 9: 4, 5, 6).

    Saul begins his journey of becoming Paul and since he wanted to be a warrior and champion for God, God blesses his misdirected love for Him by giving him a life, only moments before, he could never have imagined.

    I thank God for Paul and for showing me that God will use anyone to exact His will, even His enemies as well as His allies.


  167. Mart De Haan says:

    Deb, in response to your question. Yes, about this time last year I began transitioning to my present position of Senior Advisor. I presently oversee the content of RBC ministries along with a deeply committed group of co-workers.

    My brother Rick has been appointed by our board to lead the ministry. He had been overseeing the administrative needs of RBC for many years as well as working with Albert Lee to coordinate our 34 regional offices outside of North America.

    This transition clarified leadership, freed us up to help one another out of our areas of strength, and resolved some succession issues as I turned 65.

    I don’t have any desire to retire and am hoping to contribute content and counsel in the days ahead– as well as supporting our vision of seeing the ministry increasingly reflect the diversity of the global body of Christ.

    Have enjoyed following the discussion above. I’ll try to have something new for us to kick around tomorrow.

  168. Mart De Haan says:

    Steve, I think I was writing as you were. Interesting comments about Saul and evidence that stoning is still used as a way of enforcing group think.

  169. Mart De Haan says:

    More often, words are used as stones with results much more lethal than we imagine.

  170. confeticat says:

    Gosh, Mart, you don’t look 65. How old ARE those Day of Discovery tapes?

  171. confeticat says:

    Not only are people still stoned to death in Muslim countries, people are also “stoned” or discriminated against in this country!

    When Paul Zilber went to visit his partner in New Jersey’s Saint Barnabas Behavioral Health Center, he expected to be able to spend quality time with him. But the shocking discrimination he experienced there left him heartbroken.

    Demand an explanation from Saint Barnabas immediately. »

    Paul was so incensed by his treatment that he sponsored a petition with us. He writes:

    As Christian’s grandparents hugged and kissed him goodbye for the evening, I started to do the same, when suddenly two nurses yelled: “No contact, that is inappropriate!” When I questioned the fairness of their orders, I was promptly removed from Christian’s visitors list and was unable to have any communication with him until he was released. You can read more of Paul’s story here.

    Not only was this a cruel and inhumane action, but it clearly goes against President Obama’s 2010 mandate to The Department of Health and Human Services prohibiting discrimination against gay couples hospital visitation rights.

    Paul deserved to be able to visit Christian without fear of consequences. The idea that he wasn’t able to comfort the person he loves makes my blood boil.

    Stand with Paul and Christian. Ask Saint Barnabas to adjust their policy immediately.

  172. cherielyn says:

    Revelation 22:18,19(KJV) – I have often wondered if these verses apply ONLY to the book of Revelation, or if they apply to the Bible as a whole, since the Bible is the Book of Books and Revelation is it’s conclusion.

  173. cherielyn says:

    Revelation 22:18-19 (KJV)- Above shown as ESV so trying again.

  174. confeticat says:

    Go ahead, Cherielyn, change the subject and shrug off your responsibility.

  175. confeticat says:

    There is some irony in the stoning of Stephen. His sermon was a run-through of the Old Testament, and he called what Moses received on Mt. Sinai “living oracles”, or life-giving words. But it was some of those same words, misapplied, that put Stephen to death after the sermon.

  176. confeticat says:

    Stoning was of course in the law of Moses. Before we call it cruelty and ignorance, God instituted that law. And this is where Muslims get it from. You could be stoned for everything from adultery and murder, to breaking the Sabbath, being a medium or a spiritualist, cursing, touching Mt. Sinai for which your ox could also be stoned, although as an animal lover I am relieved to know you could also be stoned for mistreating your animal.

    But human nature being what it is, stoning became used for anyone those in charge didn’t like or other ulterior motives. For example, Jezebel wanted Naboth’s vineyard so she had him stoned. As Stephen was not guilty of the above sins, looks like he was stoned like Naboth for the wrong reasons.

  177. confeticat says:

    Acts 6:13 calls them “lying witnesses”. They feared that the law of Moses would be done away with and the Temple would be destroyed and their customs changed (Acts 6:13,14). But Stephen called Moses’ words life-giving, and Peter in his sermon at Pentecost was not speaking to the Church but to the house of Israel (Acts 2:36)of their Messiah.

    Acts 8:2 says a great wave of persecution swept over the church that day, but neither Peter or Stephen were talking about the Church.

  178. confeticat says:

    Excuse me, it is Acts 8:1.

  179. SFDBWV says:

    Mart, Jesus said to the Pharisees that they were a generation of vipers and went into a lengthy oration in an attempt to expose their incorrect thinking that He called “corrupt fruit”. (Matthew 12: 31-37) and in Matthew 23: 1-39 Jesus scolds and lays out the truth of the scribes and Pharisees in a blistering oration.

    Do you think He was throwing stones?

    In Acts 2: 11 all were in accord and were *one*.

    They stepped out of the upper room and began to testify for Jesus as being the Christ (Acts 2: 14-36) and warned as well as offered correct thinking to all those who were within ear shot of them and had adversaries right away to contend with (Acts 4: 1, 2, 3).

    That group thinking that stoned Stephen was led by another motive other than the group thinking that emerged from the upper room.

    The group thinking here on this blog reflects as best we can that same oneness in Christ Jesus.

    And when we open the wounds and expose the incorrect theology and “corrupt fruit” of another it is not throwing stones, but leading as exampled by the Head of our Group Jesus of Nazareth the Christ.

    The Holy Spirit can be offended, and I would be in error not to expose the error of another that leads to such an offence.


  180. foreverblessed says:

    Confeticat, you were talking about this pastor whom you heard say: this is my beloved son, and then you followed what he had to say, he was a key in your turning of your beliefs. Was this pastor the man who took a second wife? I am just curious, because anyone who is a christian pastor, who takes a second wife, to me is not to follow. Not that we have to throw stones at him, but calling him a spiritual leader would make me shudder. Jesus told us all, that from the beginning it was to be one man one woman. Amen. One God, one body of believers too.
    (It is the Holy Spirit that shows us our sins) and the Holy Spirit will not throw stones, but retreats slowly and quietly, when we do not follow Him.

  181. His Sparrow says:

    I needed a “world class” change of heart after riding my “high horse” for most of my life-even after acdepting Jesus Christ (contraction of Jesus the Christ.)

    God allowed me to experience a lot of “fallings-off” but it just made me mad at Him not self-centered me.

    I wanted His salvation-but never gave the reins over to Him.

    As time passed, the horses got higher (19 hh warmbloods and draft crosses-19 hands and over a ton) But thinking I was living for God ’caused me to be more legalistic, sarcastic and super-critical of others…believeing I was “right” about what the bible “says.”

    There’s more to the effect of the words in the bible than the syntax, metaphors, figurative and literal speech, and any other semantical, grammatical, connotative, denotative or linguistic rocks I wanna throw.

    When I got up from the last high horse, stunned by my blindness, I finally could say, You and not me, Lord. I had peace; and the zeal to get to Damascus died. It was replaced with Love.

  182. confeticat says:

    There’s too much group thinking going on here. Stoning is next.

  183. foreverblessed says:

    Confeticat, God bless you, God showers you with His love, with His assurance, with His wisdom, may you be blessed in all your ways.

  184. poohpity says:

    Mart, I was just surprised to see another name on my donation receipt. When someone displays as much maturity in the Lord as you do I am so glad that all that wisdom will not be retired. I can only speak for myself but it would be sorely missed. It is evident that the lord has found a rich heart to call home and filled it with much wisdom and above all else His love which comes pouring out through your words.

    A lot of people do not understand that their words are stones that cause such damage and harm. They pick up those stones and throw them not realizing that their own sin has not been dealt with yet. He/she who is without sin cast the first stone. 1 John 1:8, 9, 10 NIV
    That is also true of those who accuse others of not understanding God’s word when we all have so much to learn because it is evident in how it is lived or written out. What is in a person’s heart comes out in their words. I pray that our words show the amount of grace we have been given but whoa to those who do not realize how bankrupt they are in that area.

    confeticat you did not answer my question regarding asking Jesus into your heart, would you like to? I would be happy to write to that place about the hugging issue.

  185. poohpity says:

    There is a big difference in teaching and putting others down and that difference being the amount of love when speaking. If the words are done in anger and a feeling of superiority then it is throwing stones and love is not to be found. If it is done by trying to guide on into truth without attacks on the person that is teaching. There is also a difference in confronting words or thoughts while still loving the person by being patient, gentle, and kind.

  186. poohpity says:

    We have a very good example in how Paul talked to the Greeks at Mars Hill. He listened first then presented his case without attacking them on a personal level. The ones who wanted to hear more asked him back. The results were left in God’s wonderful, amazing hand. No stone throwing at all. Very good example to follow. I wonder if that had anything to do with how Paul used to be before Christ and how much grace God showed him. The change from Saul to Paul was displayed in his actions by understanding that amazing grace, he then showed it to others. Those who have been forgiven much, love much. Those who do not think they have a lot of need for forgiveness become righteous in their own eyes.

  187. confeticat says:

    Just stepped out to Sam’s Club awhile to avoid the stoning, and i think one of my emails went missing so I’ll answer again. Forever Blessed was confused about a certain pastor at 9:54 and it’s a good thing I came back to straighten things out. The pastor was a widower and married his wife’s sister. She hadn’t bothered to get a divorce because her husband was missing and she figured he was dead. I don’t know whether she had him bumped off or not.

    The rabbi was the one who married a second wife while his first wife was still living. He had come across where Paul said a pastor should be the husband of one wife (I Tim. 3:2;Titus 1:6) and wondered if that meant he has to be married, or one wife for life, or one wife at a time. He threw up his hands and went back to the time of David where he could have as many wives as he wants.

    I hope I have cleared that up.

  188. Mart De Haan says:

    Sorry for the misunderstanding. As I wrote, I wasn’t thinking of stone throwing (harmful words) to enforce group think on this blog. Nor would I have a good basis for taking issue with strong words lovingly spoken– as certainly was the case when Jesus challenged religious leaders.

  189. confeticat says:

    Pooh, if I am going to accept Jesus Christ as my personal Savior, I am going to be watching that person. It’s not going to be someone who does their alms before men or sounds a trumpet (Matt. 6:1,2).

  190. Bob in Cornwall England says:

    I read your name a minute ago and the word counterfeit came to mind.

    I am not throwing “word stones” here but please be careful of false doctrine and counterfeit “truth”.
    Your quote about hidden warnings from Peter about Paul is worrying when The Holy Spirit in my heart witnesses a differently.


  191. Bob in Cornwall England says:

    sorry, meant to say “witnesses differently”

  192. confeticat says:

    Bob, we have had another shooting here in America. It was in a sikh (seek) temple. The Jews have been without a temple since 70 AD. We were discussing earlier today the fact that Peter and Stephen in their sermons were talking to the house of Israel, not the Church.

  193. poohpity says:

    Gee confeticat, my understanding of that verse is for folks who do things like tithing then tell everybody how much they gave so the glory goes to the person and not to God as with anything else we do for God to get attention rather than God, like blowing your own horn. That in no way means that we do not make a public profession of our faith in Jesus Christ.

    It was just a simple yes or no thing. No need to bloviate.

  194. narrowpathseeker says:

    I’m sorry. I have tried to shake the thought that there is a person on here with several names for the sake of pridefully promoting self. In attempts to avoid that unpleasant thought I just click off the site. Unfortunately, everytime I come back the thought just gets stronger. If I’m wrong, shame on me, if I’m right I hope that person realizes their transparency and repents. However, right or wrong, please pray for me because that thought is very tormenting.

  195. poohpity says:

    Peter was speaking to the body of believers. Stephen was telling Israel how they have always rebelled against God and went on to explain that God can not be contained in a temple but was calling Israel on their hypocrisy. Acts 7:1-47, 51-53 reference to the Temple is Acts 7:48,49,50

  196. confeticat says:

    Bob, you may feel your heart witnesses differently because Paul has told you that you are the temple of God. (I Cor. 3:126,17;I Cor. 16:19; II Cor. 6:16.) Jesus is the temple (John 2:21).

    The Messiah Yeshua is the only True and Faithful witness in the earth today. Any other witness for the Father is a false witness. We who are actually born again (not Church born again) are Yeshua’s witnesses. All power has been given to him (Matt. 28:20). He is the True and Faithful witness. We proclaim the Father’s name, but we are Yeshua’s witnesses. The Father is the only one who doesn’t require multiple witnesses to establish his Truth in the earth.

    So you don’t need to trust my witness and I don’t need to trust yours, if we are in Yeshua.

  197. poohpity says:

    When a person asks Jesus into their life/heart that is being born again of the Spirit. Then Jesus dwells in our hearts thus we are His temple. Power is given to us by God through Jesus’ death on the Cross to go and be His witnesses into all the world. A witness is one who tells what difference Jesus has made in their life. Yes we do need to be able to trust those we listen to by comparing what they say to the Word which is inspired by God Himself but those who say that only parts of the Word are correct need to explain which ones are not correct. There is no part of the Bible that contradicts any other part. There is no difference in what Paul taught than those who were with Jesus or what Jesus Himself taught because Jesus appeared to Paul as well that is why Paul believed and asked Jesus into his heart.

  198. remarutho says:

    Good Evening Mart & Friends!

    This conversation has its moments, but what has stayed with me throughout the day today is that there was something new going on in the heart of Saul/Paul of Tarsus. He was a major proponent of the Word of God. That is something that did not change in his life. But who he shared his knowledge with – how he went about the whole matter of obedience to God made a huge shift, beginning on the road to Damascus. (Acts 9:3, 4, 5)

    Saul had in his heart the Old Testament promise of God: “No, the word is very near you; it is in your mouth and in your heart so you may obey it.” (Deuteronomy 30:13, 14, 15)

    When he wrote to the church in Rome, Paul spoke not of “obedience” so much as witness: “But what does it say? ‘The word is near you; it is in your mouth and in your heart,’ that is, the word of faith we are proclaiming…” (Romans 10:7, 8, 9)

    I simply reflect upon “Close to Home” as the day and the topic come to a close…Paul was, as any true preacher must be, chained to the Word of God. He did not cease from reading and meditating upon Torah and the Prophets. As I review this Sabbath, I must ask myself, “How have you witnessed to your Savior today? Have you been true to Jesus and to the Word?” I believe the Lord can measure faithfulness in Sabbaths. By Sabbaths God determined the 70 years of Israel’s exile. (Jeremiah 25:11; 2 Chronicles 36:20, 21)


  199. foreverblessed says:

    Thanks Maru,
    Narrowpathseeker, it is the narrow path you have chosen. I will pray for you, and for all of us here. Because there is still some ugliness deep inside us, and someone odd can trigger it. That is good, that it is triggered, otherwise we would not see that it was still there in us.
    This is going to be a long comment, but it is at the end of the topic.
    It took me more then 10 years to see, that the other one who triggers it, does not need to be changed (as yet), we need to hand over our bad parts to Jesus. But mostly we focus on the wrong in the other, in our country, and we get really nasty about it. Grumpy. Where does the saying go: Remain in Me John 15:4.
    And Jesus saying: loose your own life, then you will gain it. We loose our old ugliness, and get His righteousness. It means: Get rid of the irritation, give it to Jesus, It is a load we were not meant to carry.
    Jesus carried all the sin of that person on the cross. As He did carry mine, while I was still unaware of it. And yet Jesus loved me. It is that love that we look for. His love, and joy. Jesus was full of joy for the salvation of my soul. And so I can be full of love and joyful for the salvation of the other one’s soul. Yes, that is the path I want to trod, in His love in His joy.
    Paul is saying the same thing about losing our life, the old man, or the flesh, it is done in Jesus cross, It is Christ who circumcised our hearts Colossians 2:9-10,11-12
    and often he says: Kill the old man as if we have to do it ourselves, but we can only do it in the power of the resurrected Christ. Col 3:8,1-2,3-4
    Anyway, it has been a long road for me to learn this: do not focus on the bad in others, focus on Jesus instead. My life would have been easier if I had learned that sooner. Col 3:1-2,3-4

  200. foreverblessed says:

    Pooh, while reading these comments, do you see that you can read the bible and get anything out of it as you want to? The bible is so often misinterpreted. But one thins, as long as we want to seek the truth, I believe God will open up our hearts one day. I was wrong myself in many scriptures, when I was younger, but an honoust seeker of following God. He led me through some crisis, and then I found Jesus. For a few years I could no tread the bible, as the wrong interpretation would spring up as soon as I opened it. Many verses of Paul were not good to read, the one I just mentioned above, Col 3:5 would make me exhausted, as if I had to do it all by myself, but this verse must be connected with Col 2:11
    It is Grace that called us, and I should remember that everyday, in His grace I stand today.

  201. cherielyn says:

    Reading your last post made me wonder the same thing for awhile, but it is hard for a person to change the style of their writing (unless they have multiple personalities). Over a long period of time we have gotten to “know” each other and their styles of writing and I think we can definitely identify the wolf among the sheep.

    foreverblessed, your last two posts brought to mind another couple scripture references:

    “Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.” Philippians 4:8 (KJV)

    Also: “Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee: because he trusteth in thee.” Isaiah 26:3 (KJV)

    I think we are very “Close to Home” and thinking on that, I read through Revelation yesterday to refresh my mind of what we, as believers, will be spared from after the rapture.

    Today’s ODB is so appropriate to the subject of “Close to Home” because we have the blessed hope of what we have in Christ and our ultimate eternal destination.

  202. narrowpathseeker says:

    Foreverblessed, thank you, you are right on target as usual. I find that narrow path often but somehow I forget to focus on where I am walking and I wander off, get lost, and have to start seeking it all over again. I tend to fall into one pit or another on the way back as well. More than once you have shared your good sense of direction with just the right scripture as well as first hand experience in the matter and have helped me more than you know. I am just very mixed up this morning. God Bless you for all the help you give us with your sharing and loving concern.

    Cherielyn, I thank you as well. My memory is pretty bad and I need to be reminded of Phil 4:8 often. If I remembered to do that I do not think I would wander off the path so frequently. However, I also believe I recognize wolves in sheep’s clothing, but I can’t remember what to do about the wolves.

    Unlike the gambler, I don’t know when to hold em, fold em, or when to walk away or when to run. I get very mixed up sometimes and my mind goes blank in the space where I am trying to sort things out and I can’t recall what I think I know I am supposed to do. While I know that we are not supposed to stay fixed on the negative, I think I know we are not supposed to ignore it, but I seriously can’t remember right now. It has taken me well over an hour if not two to write this because I couldn’t remember what I was writing from one minute to the next. I’m going to the river to pray about this but wanted to thank you and Foreverblessed and ask for prayer that I am not losing my mind for real.

  203. cherielyn says:


    Oh my! Thank you for sharing so openly. I am VERY CONCERNED for you and will earnestly uphold you in my prayers.

    What you have shared sounds……..well, very scary. Have you seen a doctor? If not, please do asap. Perhaps there is something going on that needs attention that a doctor could possibly be helpful with.

  204. poohpity says:

    forever, no, I only find that with those who only read snit-its and not the whole because many take things out of context to prove points but even when they use those scriptures it normally does not even fit what they are saying anyway. Yes and those who seek after God to find the truth, will. God knows the heart of those who seek and knock then the door is opened to understanding and wisdom.

  205. His Sparrow says:

    You are in my prayers today; I, too, hope that you will not neglect to get medical attention.
    His Sparrow

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