Text Size: Zoom In

A Time to Speak

DSC01506Some of us have been around long enough to see that the Bible we treasure has been used to multiply the pain of racial minorities, women, the poor, the mentally ill, the divorced, abused, addicted, unemployed, and prisoners.

This past week I attended an event that showcased the stories of people who have repeatedly heard the Bible used to tell them they are going to hell, even if they believe in Jesus.

The event was, in my opinion, courageous, painful, messy, controversial, and heartbreaking.

What came out so clearly in the personal stories told is how many of these persons, young and old, are convinced that they did not choose their path.  They told of childhood suicidal fears of being found out, personal loss, a desire to change, prayers to change and their desire to be counted among those who love Jesus because of what he has done for them.

DSC00577-5_SnapseedI came away more convinced of what we all know–that Jesus had far more issues with self-righteous followers of Moses than he did with anyone who saw their need for him.

Unfortunately, we can’t change a history of misusing the Bible to unintentionally drive hurting people into hellish silence and torment. But with God’s help we can stop being the kind of people who are once again, unwittingly using the Bible to do to others what we would never want done to ourselves—or to anyone we love.

Vote on whether you think this post is something you'll be thinking about:
Vote This Post DownVote This Post Up (+35 rating, 36 votes)

99 Responses to “A Time to Speak”

  1. BruceC says:

    Very good Mart. I will comment later; but for now I would just say that just about anything can be misused and in doing so cause harm. Both intentionality and unintentionally. The Bible is no exception to this. The Word comes with responsibility.

    Soli Deo Gloria!

  2. SFDBWV says:

    The Bible is the Word of God, the Word of God is a two edged sword (Ephesians 6:17) and in the prophesy of Revelation we see Jesus with a sharp two edged sword coming out of His mouth (Revelation 1:16).

    No one with a tender and forgiving heart wants to hurt other people or see them hurting or suffering. In their suffering we can see torment and have compassion for them.

    The same can be said of a serial killer or child molester, that they commit their crimes because of pain or torment in their souls, but that doesn’t make their crimes ok nor does the Word of God say that they are not given forgiveness from God if they repent of their sins and ask for it.

    It is written that the wages of sin are death, but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord. (Romans 6:23)

    I for one am not going to beat up people for trying to live a holy and righteous life. I know as do they that they can’t, but I also know that they should do the best they can relying on their acceptance of Jesus to cover their errors along the way.

    John the Baptist told Herod of his sin of taking his brothers wife, it cost him his life.

    We did a subject some time back titled “The Toxic Truth”. Sometimes the truth is just that, painful and difficult to hear, but never the less still the truth.

    If we use Scripture to expose sin, we should also use Scripture to expose the pathway to forgiveness and the rebirth of a new spirit. It should be used in balance and for the benefit of any we quote it to.

    The point of the OT Law was to expose the sin that none of us escape from, the purpose of the NT message is that there is forgiveness through Jesus of Nazareth for *all* who ask for it.


  3. swwagner says:

    This is such a timely subject…and one that resonates with some very painful personal experiences. It is a new idea for me to consider that some of the “bully preaching” in my past may have been unintentional and misguided. I will be mulling this over for awhile.

  4. remarutho says:

    Good Morning Mart & Friends —

    Able to log in after about 24 hours.

    This is a topic which must be faced by institutional religious bodies — because the rigid structure has reached the tipping point.

    Jesus spent time in the temple — but more in the courtyards and Solomon’s Porch — yet more in the streets and roadways of Galilee, Judea and Samaria.
    So should we do also. The message is that all who are weary and bearing heavy burdens can come to Jesus because he gives us rest. We will have to live down the condemnation that has been offered in previous generations.

    Only the blessed Holy Spirit can woo a soul to follow Jesus — and leave behind a life of sinning.


  5. oneg2dblu says:

    Good topic Mart…We all are livnig in the church age today, and also in the Age of Grace that preceeds the Rapture, and then the coming Tribulation.
    This current age is our last chance for the church as we know it today to preach the word to the lost world around us and within our churched ranks.
    But,if we are so concerned about offending others or not being politically correct that we can’t even teach the entire word as written, we are as deceived as those who have never known Christ.
    Sorry, according to the word we are actually worse off for doing so, if we have ever known Him.
    Yes, go to the streets, to the porches, to the churched and to all the lost, but do not waterdown the message through deceptive loose teaching which would not be biblical, or even dangerous their very souls.
    Remember that the bible already says the half of all those who now waiting for the wedding party, the ten virgins, will not even get in the door, because they have failed to do their part in preparing themselves.
    So yes Bruce, we live just like those virgins todat, anticipating, expecting, in our age of responsibilty
    as well.
    If we don’t make that part of every message as well, then those we are teaching or trying to save will never know the proper fear of the Lord or accept that fact that they must also be a responsible and be doing their part in their own salvation.
    It is soo hard to keep all those worms in one can or one message.
    Sowing and reaping will always part of the work of our actions revealed in our eternity.
    Those fields are ripe for Harvest right now.
    Pray to the Lord of the Harvest that His workers won’t avoid the hard work, or a giving it their all by teaching only the easy parts.
    Satan often does such as he only issues well crafted words the appeal to the flesh, as he avoids telling the whole truth.
    Just a thought…

  6. poohpity says:

    Using the Bible, that statement alone makes me quiver. It is a powerful book when I apply it to my life. It seems to be almost impossible to apply it to the lives of others but many try. Here let me force this down your throat so that you totally live like I am unable to do. A source of oppression and more than anything in the life of women on the top of the list. But let me list Native Americans or any other culture that is different to mold them into the person who is controlling the another.

    The Pharisees seemed to do that exact thing oppression of those who needed the touch of the Savior; Matt 5:20; Matt 9:11-13; 12:2-8; 12:10-14; 15:2-9. The Pharisees were wanting people to be like them and turning them away from God, Matt 23:15; following traditions instead of God’s word, Matt 23:16-22; being involved in insignificant details while neglecting the importance of justice, mercy and faith, Matt 23:23,24; looking good on the outside while the heart is corrupt and acting spiritual while covering sin, Matt 23:25-28. That is just a sample of the great lengths Jesus went through to address the self-righteous followers of Moses.

    I can not stop others from doing these things because I have found that I have done them while not intentionally trying to hurt, it has, of that I am greatly remorseful. Even when going to a brother/sister who is sinning it has to be done in such away that is humble in nature and kind with the purpose of restoration but it takes such care.

    Jesus did not use much care when addressing the religious leaders but I am not Jesus and He had every right to call them hypocrites, white washed tombs, etc. because they were leading people away from Him. The Pharisees did not recognize Jesus because their hearts seemed to be so far away from wanting a relationship with God, they wanted to be god to those around them.

  7. remarutho says:

    Good Afternoon All —

    After a conference on a difficult topic is a good time to think about and speak of how we follow Jesus day by day. E. Stanley Jones said, “We are created to be thermostats, not just thermometers.” Faith in God is world-changing. Mart, you wrote:

    “I came away more convinced of what we all know–that Jesus had far more issues with self-righteous followers of Moses than he did with anyone who saw their need for him.”

    Careful words and scrupulous personal transparency are the way of cross, it seems to me. Sharing the Scriptures as positive, encouraging teaching — in my opinion — allows the hearer to make decisions, choices and judgments without condemnation or shame.

    Resurrection life is freely given to even the most undeserving of — as we surrender to Jesus Christ.


  8. poohpity says:

    There is nothing holy or righteous about looking down on those who struggle with alcohol or drugs, have been divorced, are in poverty, who have different colors of skin, different religions or differences of opinions. (Matt 9:11-12; Luke 5:30-32 NLT) notice that it says those who “think” themselves already good enough or righteous. Bottom line is how much damage is done by those who “think” they are holy and righteous. I pray one day for those and that includes myself that we will learn to love. Especially those that need to experience the love of the Savior rather than pointing out failings but to show mercy, grace and love which seems to be more important.

  9. foreverblessed says:

    That is a tough subject, and yes, in years past I was more of the phariseeic type, live according to God’s rules, and if you don’t, sorry, but what you sow is what you reap. I am very sorry for that, now I see that it is through the grace of God that I live in Jesus, nothing to do with me trying hard to keep the law, I will keep the law, if I in faith follow Jesus, through grace.Yes, this is such a hard subject for the pharisee Christian, like I was. Such a hard thing to get: living out of Grace, and the result is: having a gracious heart towards those who are still struggling.
    God help us all,
    I know that in those years I often prayed the verses of Ephesians 1:17-18,19-20
    and thank God, He was faithful to hear that prayer and work on me.

  10. BruceC says:

    This topic is familiar to my wife and I. Her every-Sunday-go-to-Mass mom is the one who said “God is punishing you for leaving the RC Church. That’s why you can’t have children”. Yet not once did she say it was because she had taken DES. I am not expecting her to take the blame; but state the facts. Nope.
    A woman in a church we attended said to my wife that God had told her she was going to give birth. When she miscarried she said my wife either had sin her life or didn’t have enough faith. Wow!
    My wife has a learning disability and some problems that stem from a chemical imbalance that sometimes causes depression. Didn’t get much understanding from many at the churches we attended. Usually the “Oh, that’s just an excuse” type of reply. Much of the modern church in the West is reflecting the culture more and the love of Christ less. And that in MHO is why the Word is used as a weapon by far too many. If only we could get the simple faith of those in third world nations that suffer horrible persecutions; while many of them cannot even read or own a Bible. Some just meet as a group and pray. We care to study to show ourselves approved. Are we approved when we beat people with the Word instead of showing His love?
    Sorry for the rant.

    Soli Deo Gloria!

  11. remarutho says:

    Good Afternoon All —

    Thank-you, Forever, for bringing in the awesome hymn to Jesus from Ephesians 1! We haven’t done a thing except believe Jesus for our deliverance, have we?

    Paul writes: “…with the eyes of your heart enlightened, you may know what is the hope to which he has called you,
    what are the riches of his glorious inheritance among the saints,
    and what is the immeasurable greatness of his power for us who believe,
    according to the working of his great power.”
    (Eph 1:18, 19)

    We believe by his power (the Holy Spirit giving us grace) and we are transformed by his power. (Eph 1:20, 21)

    NT Wright quoted a cab driver who told him: ‘The way I look at it,’ he said, ‘is this: if God raised Jesus Christ from the dead, all the rest is basically rock’n’roll.’ (Dr. NT Wright, Easter Sermon 2010)

    God made the resurrection — Jesus the Son was raised to New Life — and the Holy Spirit gives us grace to believe God for all of it. Isn’t that the best news in the universe for everyone who calls out to God?

    “Amazing grace, how sweet the sound that saved a soul like me — I once was lost — but now am found — was blind but now I see.” The only difference between a sinner and a saint is Jesus.


  12. kingdomkid7 says:

    Is it self-righteous to kindly and gently tell someone what the Bible says, if to tell them it may make them feel uncomfortable or otherwise experience conviction of sin? I guess I don’t think so.
    The truth spoken in love is not self-righteous. When I tell my Muslim brother that I do not believe in his prophet because I believe in Jesus, he is a little bit offended. [Put aside for the moment my own feelings that I wish he would stop preaching to me (ironic, huh?) about the prophet.] But I do tell my brother that what the Bible says about Jesus is very different from what Islam says about Him. To me, I am simply speaking the truth to someone I love who is — by my sights– misguided. Love is the key. I am not going to water down the truth to make my brother feel better. But I am going to pray for the wisdom, strength and guidance to be loving when I do tell the truth. As far as I can tell, God does not give us the option of remaining silent when people are “preaching” to us and what they preach is contrary to His Word.

  13. Mart De Haan says:

    BruceC, I don’t hear a rant. It happens.

  14. poohpity says:

    kingdomkid7, do Muslims believe they have to earn the favor of Allah? Does your brother ever ask about the differences?

  15. remarutho says:

    Good Evening All –

    Mart, you wrote:
    “…with God’s help we can stop being the kind of people who are once again, unwittingly using the Bible to do to others what we would never want done to ourselves — or to anyone we love.”

    Appreciate your optimism concerning the transformation of our hearts. It seems to me the Lord always wants to do a new thing in the world. And, many are not looking forward to it being “courageous, painful, messy, controversial, and heartbreaking,” as you put it.

    Change is here – and the rigid, established forms are being shaken. What has been triumphal will be brought low – what has been lowly and ashamed will be lifted up. (Luke 3:5, 6) Love is the final word. (1 John 3:1, 2, 3)


  16. oneg2dblu says:

    I do not know if we can biblically mix skin color into the salvation equation at all, but some will try anything to prove their point., or support their doctrine.
    A man can not choose or change his color any more than a zebra can change his stripes.
    So to me, God is colorblind when it comes to that kind of tripe.

    Skin color is clearly not a “behavioral condition,” and should not be on the list of those things that can affect one’s future salvation, like disobedience and unbelief.

    Nor does one have to look down to see others living unholy misdirected destructive lives, one can look well up the corporate ladders, up into the lofty churches, and on to the Hollywood venues, or even dismiss looking at all if we choose, but that does not change what the bible clearly labels as wrong living, and God is clearly not blind to those things which are written in His word.

    If fact, as I read the list again, one’s skin color is not on the list of behaviors that will exclude one from entering the kingdom of God, but many other changeable behaviors are, and they are there for a reason.

    But to defiantly choose to remain in a lifestyle of constant recurring sin, avoiding the reality that those listed things label as being part of the human condition which can be changed, is where Satan finds a victory and has won over another soul through wrong teaching and the resulting wrong belief.

    Just ask God or read it for yourself in His Word just what the scriptures actually say about the renewing of the mind, and the change of one’s heart, which to me, must take place in every person who claims to be a born again Christian, or they are deceiving both themselves and the ever darkening and so supporting world around them.

    That is why I do not believe there are any true born again Christians who are still serial killers and already forgiven, or still child molesters and already forgiven, nor are any of those behaviors listed as to be a continuously remaining behavior in any Child of God.

    If we are to truly, “Die to self and live for Christ,” then who would we be serving, if we remained helplessly addicted in our old ways, or now making allowances for all others and their continuous evil living?

    He died for us while we WERE still sinners, but not to embolden others to remain as sinners.

    That is a false teaching and a wrongly taught doctrinal belief system that will send many who now feel safe in their sins and exempt from all those clearly well written warnings, on to their eternal destruction.

    You can not claim to be a Spiritually Awakened serial killer, any more than you can continuously serve the evil deeds of the flesh and His Spirit at the same time.

    Saints don’t rape little children, but sinners?

    Jesus is not in control of the heart, or the mind, or the spirit of any child molester, but through doctrinal deception we will make allowances for just about anything.

    Especially if our doctrine says, there is no longer any need to truly Fear of the Lord, because you are already forgiven from any sin, past, present and future.


  17. swwagner says:

    BruceC, you said:

    “Didn’t get much understanding from many at the churches we attended. Usually the “Oh, that’s just an excuse” type of reply.”

    This has been my experience as well. I have chronic illness and I can’t keep the pace of what most churches like for their membership. I am very lucky if I am able to attend church, must less serve on a committee or teach a class. Since most active members in the church feel that consistent service in the church prove that the fruits of the spirit and therefore salvation, those that can’t “keep up” are looked down on as back sliden at the least and dismissed as lost at the most.

    I am glad for the church to be able to have programs for children, and youth, and adults as well…but some of it is “busy work”. I believe that God is not pleased when programs or man made rules are held up as the standard of righteousness instead of God’s word.

    I believe that many programs and rules have their roots in God’s word and I praise God for the ones that have stayed true to their original calling.

    As with all things, balance is necessary. Some may need to be yelled at and hit over the head with God’s word (Jesus cleansing the temple)but most people I know need that sweet one-on-one conversation (the woman at the well)that gently draws us into the Master’s fold.

  18. billystan454 says:

    His love is great,
    Ours is weak.
    He loves all,
    We love few.

    We kneel at His cross,
    Then stab our brother in the back.
    We felt not a loss,
    We act like we’re boss,
    Our crimes will torture all who lack.

    His love is great,
    And sweetly meek.
    He’ll let us fall,
    And love us too.

    Remember Friends Jesus told all of us to make disciples, to baptize and to teach. (Matthew 28:19-20) When we teach there are times when the only way to get the lesson across is to boldly take a stand and speak the Truth. Jesus is Truth!
    billystan 454
    I apologize for my long absence, and will do my best to stay in closer contact. I deeply enjoyed your messages and hope to hear more from all of you.

  19. swwagner says:

    I too believe that the word of God is a sword that divides the righteous from the unrighteous. I believe that we are not to mince words about what the Bible says about sin, salvation, or God’s love. I do believe that the old life is left behind at salvation and that our behavior is to change and reflect our “walk in newness of life”. I believe that we are called to be a “light on a hill” and to correct, admonish, and declare God’s truth to all of mankind. We DO NOT have the liberty to change God’s truth to fit our own needs by watering it down, or beefing it up with rules.

    We all fall far short of His glory by our very nature. We are to “wise as serpents and harmless as doves”…in other words we must be discerning and have the best interests in mind of the world around us. Like Mart has said, maybe our points of view and our passions have caused unintentional harm to others whether we err on the side of being too soft or too harsh.

    May we all look only to Christ, who is the author and finisher of our faith…the GREAT I AM.

  20. kingdomkid7 says:

    Pooh, the answer to your first question is yes. Muslims are works-driven. Praying when they are supposed to pray, studying and memorizing the Q’uran, making the pilgrimage to
    Mecca . . . it is a very long list. They are definitely trying to earn God’s favor and want to be “good Muslims.”

    Unfortunately, my brother does not ask many questions, but he tries hard to convince me and my Christian siblings that Muslims admire and like Jesus — while they do not see Him as a Saviour.

  21. bubbles says:

    I was in full time Christian service for many years. The entire time I was there, I never fit in because: 1. I attended a secular college. That made me less “spiritual” than those who attended Christian college, especially a very well known, large school in the southeast. 2. I did not have children. That made me less than a woman than they were.

    When I was young, I remember the story of Hannah in Sunday School. I remember thinking how silly the other wife was criticize Hannah, and knowing that did not happen today. Boy, was I wrong.

    Another friend at church was childless, and the women were meeting for a Bible study. The pastor’s wife told my friend that she was welcome to come, but it would not intrest her because it was about being a wife and mother.

    I think many women look down on those who are not the “little wife” with several children trailing along behind. Women in many “Christian” circles are held in higher esteem if they have both husband and children.

    What verse says this is acceptable behavior?

    Very “Christian” of them.

  22. poohpity says:

    Gary, I guess you were not around when all the racial prejudges happened due to skin color and still do even in this day and time. Those doing it were in their eyes, good ol’ Christians who felt they were better, holy and righteous. Their salvation would be another question all together, it would not seem like they were ever saved to me.

    kingdom, do they think of Jesus as a prophet?

    To all, I really do not know to many people who ever changed getting hit over the head with God’s Word but have seen how gentleness, kindness, love, grace, mercy and care have given people reason to ask about what we believe and shows who we believe in because does that not show trust in God and His ways?

  23. kingdomkid7 says:

    Burning a little midnight oil here. Yes, Pooh, Muslims think Jesus is a prophet, but they believe Muhammad is the greatest prophet and certainly greater than Jesus. They affirmatively disbelieve the resurrection and say God has no Son.
    I was using this situation with my Muslim family members (who actually currently outnumber the Christians) just as an example of how Christians cannot afford to compromise what we know is truth because it interferes with what someone else thinks is “more” true. Or, in today’s relative parlance: “true for them.”
    Beating people over the head is not generally effective — unless concussion is the goal. On the gay issue, though, I feel that I as a Christian am being beat over the head to accept something — asked to fully approve of it and endorse it — even though the Bible tells me it’s not God’s plan. I’ll just speak for mysef on that, though. My experiences may be different from others. A few years back, I was asked to sign a statement at work basically approving of homosexuality, which I refused to sign. That, to me, was “beating me over the head,” with a political ideology that interfered with my Christian values and beliefs. Would it have been loving of my gay brothers and sisters for me to sign the statement? Absolutely not, in my opinion. It would have just been plain wrong. I admit these are not easy times, and we need the Holy Spirit to guide us through. He leads us in truth, and I think it takes courage for us to maintain that truth, and to continue to walk in it.

  24. BruceC says:


    My wife has gone through what you described. Years ago she would not attend service at church on Mother’s Day or Father’s Day for that matter. (I have to admit; deep down inside it bothers me some too, never having a son or daughter) She asked me a few times why we never heard a sermon on a barren woman or a father without children and how God can use them. Good question. I didn’t have an answer. The church we have attended the last several years has not had a Mother’s or Father’s Day sermon, although they do honor them at the start and then get on to the sermon topic. She has learned to deal with it over the years. So we both know what you experienced.

    When I think of misusing God’s Word sometimes I think of the Inquisition of the Dark Ages, The Salem Witch Trials, and even the Nazi use of the phrase “God With Us” that was engraved on some of their daggers. Reminds one of how Satan likes to twist God’s Word.
    Sometimes we need a little “beating over the head” so-to-speak. Maybe not face-to-face as some may enjoy doing, but in sermons and studies. We need to feel convicted sometimes; do we not? My wife said that something is wrong if a sermon doesn’t convict you at times. They may be the candy-coated or feel-good type that some pulpits preach all the time. On the other hand you can go the other way to the extreme also. Leaving listeners and students with the idea that salvation is so works based that it cannot be attained.
    Balance is needed.

    Soli Deo Gloria!

  25. BruceC says:


    You are right on target with that issue. Many churches have liberalized and caved into political correctness instead of Biblical correctness for fear of losing a “following”. A “church” not far from mine has just about an “anything goes” attitude. You know; the “I’m okay, you’re okay” type of atmosphere. A tickling of ears. We can defend our position in a kind, Christian manner or we can beat them over the head. Which would Christ do? I think we all know. He would love the sinner and hate the sin. But many of the unbelieving crowd either can’t see that difference or don’t want to because the light can be blinding. The good moral people that think they are okay with God without Christ are sinking in the same ship that the “obvious” and other sinners are.

    Soli Deo Gloria!

  26. remarutho says:

    Good Morning Mart & Friends —

    It seems to me until praying Christians engage with those who are wounded — living in or near the community of faith, we really cannot claim a right to speak from high moral ground. Jesus acknowledges every heart that cries out to him.

    Mart, you wrote of your recent conference experience:

    “They told of childhood suicidal fears of being found out, personal loss, a desire to change, prayers to change and their desire to be counted among those who love Jesus because of what he has done for them.”

    Those in the turmoil of identity crisis cannot be lumped together and spoken of as “them.” Is not every human tempted to act out when they feel weak? The desire to change and prayers to change, in my opinion, are key to staying with individuals as well as their families and friends. The issues of identity are profound, and no two persons respond to the issues the same way. Is contempt the appropriate response?

    Am not understanding the difference between “obvious” and “un-obvious” sins, Bruce. It seems to me the true followers of Jesus hold one another personally accountable for thinking and behavior. That is usually the fork in the road where submission to one another is counted as an affront or too costly — and we part ways with one another — because it is so uncomfortable.

    Very few of us answer for our spiritual health to a small group of trusted friends on a weekly basis — and count it a privilege to do so.

    Yours in Christ,

  27. narrowpathseeker says:

    Good Morning All….I have very FEW minutes, but would like to throw in my two cents…. After my trip and listening to my own voice on the videos I took, I think my times to speak should be very limited, so being too busy to post here is more than likely a good thing for me as well as for all of you…;-)

    I still believe that there is a very short window in righteousness and unrighteousness…the narrow path that I seek and find only briefly daily…..too far to the left or right and I am off to unrighteousness…

    While I saw some of God’s most beautiful creation, I also learned something about a family member I have known all my life and NEVER saw the negative side that others saw and have defended this person always…never had a negative thought of her… apparently because I was too pathetic for her to treat badly so I just didn’t see it. Seeing first hand that I have been greatly blessed seems to have changed all that in this person and I was devastated to fall victim to someone I have always respected and admired and I am still trying to sort it out.. I finally asked, WHY she was treating me that way and she apologized and said it must have been a carryover of the way she treats another relative(one which I always thought was twisting and exaggerating the truth)…so once again I was wrong about someone my entire life!! I can not trust myself to KNOW anything for certain… as difficult as this discovery has been, I find myself even MORE dependent on the Lord to bring me through this time on earth as I learn daily that I know nothing on my own… and thus I am blessed again…

  28. foreverblessed says:

    Welcome Narrow, and God bless you and lead you, and comfort you.
    Billystan, thanks for joining again, God bless you too.
    Maru, isn’t Eph 1 a beautiful prayer indeed? It helped me, thanks to Gods mercy in changing me.

    Kingdomkid, I had something familiar, with one of my in-laws, 2 women married, and they wanted me to say I was approving their wedding, but they were not asking a signature, I gladly did not have to do that. But had to find a way to avoid blessing their marriage. I bless them, but not what they do. But I am listening to what God tells me to say, and if He is not clearly saying anything to me, neither do I, even if it is very apparant that this is not what God marriage is about.

    We need inspiration of how to communicate with others. Jesus had supernatural knowledge about the woman at the well, that’s why our church gatherings should be Spirit filled, that people who come in new, are touched at heart when something spoken is something only known to their own inner heart. That is the gesture of what Paul wrote in 1 Cor 14:22-23,24-25.

    People of other religion- how does God want it done.
    Let me give an example, I went to a music night with Ruth Fazal, the singer songwriter, and there she was telling her story, she now lives in Jerusalem, God wanted her there. He told her to go to holocaust survivors in their homes and play the violin for them, to comfort them. Nothing in big concert halls. (the day of small things) so that is God clearly wanting comfort for His people.
    God also told her just to listen to them, and let them tell their stories. So terrible, even after all these years. And He told her to sing with them, and sing what they sing, songs of praise to God.
    But the most amazing thing is that God told her: do not mention the name of Jeshua, (Jesus)!
    Isnt that something?

    But I must say, that we, as His children often interfere with His plan, we talk too easily, we use words too soon, and don’t wait for the right time, when we clearly hear the Spirit speak, most of the time we just speak, because we know the Law of God, only saved through Jesus, or no same sex marriages. But is that the way to the heart of the people God wants to save?
    God, through the Holy Spirit is the architect, the leader the one who leads.
    We ofthe forget that there is also work done in the heart, love that works for years to soften the heart, before the seed can fall in, just as in the vegetable garden.

  29. narrowpathseeker says:

    Foreverblessed, thank you for the blessing. I also had a similar experience with a homosexual friend many years ago. When she was dying, I was trying to talk to her while her partner lay next to her stroking her hair. I was very uncomfortable but pleaded with her that when she stood before God to PLEASE don’t argue right and wrong with Him but to ask for mercy. I didn’t want to attend her funeral because it was being done by a homosexual minister, so I stayed back and babysat the children of out of town relatives coming in for the funeral. KNOWING the right thing to do(for me anyway) is as difficult as actually doing it!

  30. SFDBWV says:

    I have been pondering this subject, its possible directions and which one I might center on for it can be split in different subtopics.

    What law does a follower of Jesus fall under?

    The only law I know of directed at Gentile’s is mentioned in Acts 15:29. Jesus adds a new commandment in John 13:34 for everyone. Does Jesus making a commandment make it a law?

    Jesus never said that the law was abolished; he added to it and gave in Matthew 19:17, 18, 19 a quick overview of the Law to someone wanting to know how to have eternal life, adding Matthew 19:21.

    In Mark 12:28, 29, 30, 31, Jesus explains *the* commandments.

    Paul in Romans 13:8, 9, 10 again outlines the Law.

    By the way in answer to my above ask question; my stance is that any commandment Jesus of Nazareth gave is on a par with all the Law, for it was He the Great I Am who spoke from the burning bush and He who gave the original law including the one and original Law in the Garden of Eden He being God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit.

    Sometime back we discussed diplomacy and I stood against its concept as a view of its being dishonest.

    I think there may be a better word for tenderly and gently with all concern for feelings in the utterance of telling the truth to someone who needs to hear it.

    Where would I get my authority to tell another that their lifestyle may be in conflict to the desires of God for them and should I?

    I get my authority from the *One* who sent me and my instruction from His Word.

    It is not given to me to condemn anyone to hell, so I have no authority there, only the authority to lead a person to the *One* who can offer them rescue from their sin.

    It is written that the Keys of the Kingdom of Heaven are given to the Church, not the keys to hell (Matthew 16:18, 19) that distinction is given to Christ (Revelation 1:18).


  31. remarutho says:

    Yes Forever!

    We don’t out-think God! Even old Balaam, who would apparently do anything for money and prestige, said:

    “God is not a human being, that he should lie, or a mortal, that he should change his mind. Has he promised, and will he not do it? Has he spoken, and will he not fulfill it?” (Num 23:19)

    I also strive to let God be God. As you say, Narrow, we all teeter between righteousness and unrighteousness. (Isaiah 55:8, 9, 10, 11) Holiness is not something to be grasped, it seems to me.


  32. Mart De Haan says:

    Have we ever noticed how hard the Apostle Paul could be on sin (Romans 1:32)? And have we also noticed what Paul felt the strongest about (Romans 2:1)? Who was he thinking of (Romans 2:2-3)? And what about God did Paul call attention to so as to move his readers to a different frame of mind (Romans 2:4)?

    To follow Paul’s logic, would it be helpful to exchange the word “Christian” for Jew (Romans 2:17)? Were Paul’s national and religious countrymen the only ones who didn’t live up to their own moral standards (Romans 2:18-23)?

    Was the effect that Jewish moralists had on their generation different from the effect that we are having on our own (Romans 2:24)?

    I’m guessing that it might help if some of us could become non-believers for awhile so that we could hear what we sound like to those who are quite sure that they can see our sins as clearly as we think we can see theirs’.

    Wouldn’t it be a whole different picture if a watching world could see that we were so focused on the One that has forgiven us all of our sins, that all we want is for them to see him too?

    I really doubt that campaigns of moralistic “prohibition” have ever done more good than harm to the cause of Christ… or to those for whom he died.

  33. poohpity says:

    Mart, I do not think many will understand that last statement about moralistic “prohibition”. It is easy for Christians to come to arms over homosexuality for instance because most do not practice that or to look at abortion they may not do that one either nor steal etc. but how about feeling morally superior to others, pride, so many do that one without blinking an eye or anger or lying. Picking out the sin that another does because they may not do that one while totally neglecting the condition of our own hearts and the areas they fall so short. How can one teach about moralistic “prohibition” when self reflection is a concept that eludes many.

    What would happen if folks saw us Christians living out our faith without imposing standards we choose to live on others when most of the time there is nothing that draws others in to want to know why we believe as we do because there is nothing wonderful, merciful, grace filled and loving about us. Could it be we are not asked about why we believe as we do because no one sees anything they want from the lives we live?

    Anyone can admire the beauty of nature and speak flowery words about that but what about a person who has lost their way rather than saying hate the sin but love the sinner, that is all just words to point a finger at the life of another. Do not say it, do it. Walk what we believe then people will ask about what is different in our lives until then say nothing let our actions speak so much louder than our words.

    Shout from the roof tops all that I say I have faith in then when I come off the roof I live a life that negates everything I shouted. Causing harm isn’t that sin? Looking at all peoples as those whom Christ died, all of them. Comparing ourselves to others one has no time to compare themselves with Christ. Look within and compare who I am with Christ and be silenced and become grace filled and thankful that that act he did for me was done WHILE I WAS A SINNER. It is because of that act were have found favor with God. Live that out then people will ask.

  34. poohpity says:

    Paul argued that some preach Christ out of envy, strife and selfish ambition and some out of goodwill but he seemed to rejoice in the fact that Christ was preached. Phil 1:15-18

  35. SFDBWV says:

    Mart who are you arguing with? Is it I?

    I am not sure whether or not to respond to your remarks from the view you disagree with me or are just speaking to all who may hear, my response would have to then come from one of those beginning points.

    Do you Mart hold or have a moral standard by which you live? If so why do you? Do you think others should share your view of morality and if they do not how then do you feel about their view?


  36. poohpity says:

    Steve, I think what Mart wrote was more of a self awareness exercise for all of us and did not seem to exclude himself.

  37. Mart De Haan says:

    Whoops. Thanks pooh. I was writing as you were. Yes, I’m including myself and all who tend to read Romans 1 apart from chapters 2 and on… (below is what I was writing :-)

    Steve, no, I was not thinking of you personally when I wrote my last comment. But I think your question about whether I was thinking of you– may illustrate the point.

    We tend to go into fight or flight mode when we suspect that others who don’t know or care for us, are judging us negatively.

    Most of us know that even Jesus said that he came to judge no one.

    We may think we are not being judgmental. But would those who over hear us talking to one another agree?

  38. wolverine1 says:

    foreverblessed, your earlier comments hit me right between the eyes:

    “But I must say, that we, as His children often interfere with His plan, we talk too easily, we use words too soon, and don’t wait for the right time, when we clearly hear the Spirit speak, most of the time we just speak, because we know the Law of God, only saved through Jesus, or no same sex marriages. But is that the way to the heart of the people God wants to save? God, through the Holy Spirit is the architect, the leader the one who leads. We often forget that there is also work done in the heart, love that works for years to soften the heart, before the seed can fall in, just as in the vegetable garden.”

    Your comments make me think of our limited understanding of “speaking the truth in love”…We have this idea that speaking the truth in love is mostly about those few moments or minutes we actually speak truth to someone…that it’s simply about being kind, polite and gentle as we speak…It is that, for sure, but I’m learning that it actually encompasses so much more…it also includes first taking the time to be a Christ-like friend who doesn’t condemn or fix people who struggle with issues and sins we don’t. It takes being the sort of friend who shows by words and deeds that we truly care about them as a fellow image beare. (In our hearts, it’s also about being a Christ-follower who humbly and regularly looks to recognize his or her own struggles with sin). This type of friendship may take months and years to build before we begin “speaking the truth” to another person…It is what some have called “upfront love.” Without it, I’ve found that even our sincerest of efforts to speak to the truth in love are more likely to be taken as judgment and not love.

  39. kingdomkid7 says:

    I want to walk in the liberty for which Christ died to make me free. That means I will live a life where others can overhear me and are free themselves to decide that I am being judgmental. Because they think something about me doesn’t make it true. I cannot change what people think about me. Sometimes they will think the worst even when I have done nothing against them in thought, word, or deed. We are all imperfect people who worship a perfect God. I suggest we just do the best we can from a heart purified by regular repentance and keep on pushing. People-pleasing is as much a sin as anything else.

  40. poohpity says:

    forever and wolverine1, Amen!!

  41. poohpity says:

    Hopefully our words and actions will be what is pleasing to God. Then a question I may ask myself is do I know God well enough to know what is meant by God pleasing? Am I angry about the sin in someone else but excuse my own because I have not allowed the word to penetrate my being and walk away from that mirror to be self righteous as I am a moral watchdog for others. James asks us to look into our own lives not the lives of others in James 1:19-26 NLT

  42. brettatbta says:

    This is a great message.

  43. oneg2dblu says:

    kingdomkid7… I truly get your take, on how pleasing people can be a sin.
    Realizing we just can’t please them all, unless we are willing to also throw out the harder words of God, and then remain silent, for their itching ears will not tolerate His truth, especially where His truth does not suit their desires.
    Who then do we please? Gary

  44. kingdomkid7 says:

    Amen, Gary.

  45. oneg2dblu says:

    Pooh… are you holding the church accountable for racial prejudice?
    I can’t quite do that because the church I was brought up in was a Northern multi-racial church and we were taught that God was colorblind.
    But, we were not taught about the crusades, or how silent the church was during the holocaust?
    So, maybe we can blame those attrocities on the church instead.
    However, I can tell you this, when the church is ready to speak the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth, even if it would risk it’s hallowed tax status being taken away, then, I believe it will also be free and ready to speak the whole truth to those in the pews.
    Until then, even the church is partially self-silenced on many levels and with certain issues and has to watch what is says.
    Big brother is listening you know, and the church today really fears this Big brother, and sometimes more than God if we only aim to please the government, all people, and all parties.
    You may call the love, but I can’t, because,
    Never making a stand for anything, to me, is like standing on shifting sand, and then falling for everything.

  46. poohpity says:

    No, Gary, I am not holding the church accountable for racial prejudges, I was simply recounting history and what was done by those who said they were Christians while they displayed their hearts which were full of evil and hatred as shown by their actions. Are you saying what they did was OK because they were standing up for what they believe?

  47. oneg2dblu says:

    pooh… I believe Good Christians should be standing up for godly principles, or they will fall for anything.

    I do not believe that hearts full of evil and hatred as displayed in their actions, or in the crusades, are displaying true godly principles.

    So, I’m saying that standing up for anything, and not standing for godly principles, should never be supported by the church, or the word of God.

    I know that we must use the word of God to prove whether godly principles were in play or not, or if the fruit of that spirit is from God.

    Like the mis-guided Muslims today who want to stop every Christ believing heart because they can not see the Divinity of Christ, so Christ and Christias are of no value to them, and that to me, proves that what “they believe” is not from God, or a godly principle.

    I believe all the living creation, all human life, is god-breathed and is therefore precious to Him.
    But, like you say about history, and what I’ve read in His Story, both tell of a God who will at some point use His wrath against those who are unbelieving and disobedient. He will not be mocked!

  48. poohpity says:

    I must be confused again I thought we were talking about Christians not those who have yet to believe. When one takes matters of judgement and condemnation into their own hands is that not mocking God and His Word?

  49. SFDBWV says:

    At sea, in a fog or what ever adage you choose the topic quickly morphed and as I try to catch up this morning it leaves me wondering where we got so far away from what we were talking about.

    I thought the subject was using Scripture to condemn and whether or not that was the *Christian* thing to do?

    Sorry Mart I only ask if you were arguing with me because I had no idea who you seemed to be arguing with. And you didn’t answer my other questions as to whether or not you yourself have a moral standard by which you live? And if so why do you? Followed then by this question; Do you think others should share your view of morality and if they do not, how then do you feel about their view?

    Personally I think people judge others all the time. No one can escape having an opinion and there is a very thin line between having an opinion and making it a judgment.

    It is what you do with your opinion then that may separate us. What difference is there in believing that homosexuality is a sin and keeping that thought silent in your heart; or telling someone you know who is into homosexual behavior that it is a sin?

    I am only using homosexuality here as a discussion subject because it has already been broached.

    I have a moral responsibility to tell a person who may not know that their actions are contrary to the morality of God that they are in danger of judgment from *Him* not me, and lead them to the *One* who can keep them from that judgment.

    Where do I get my *right* to tell them? From what the *Word* says.
    Now back to the original topic; when is it “A Time To Speak” and when is it a time to remain silent.


  50. SFDBWV says:

    Back when I first began participating here Mart you stated that you personally were offended by people who thought themselves morally superior to others.

    This is in of itself an act of judgment from you. Now I do not disagree with your stance, in fact I would agree that moral snobbery is an offence and one that Jesus Himself spoke to.

    There was a person at the time also participating on the blog who not only felt superior to the rest of us, but was down right insulting in her words. I confronted her because though she was right about what she shared Scripturally, she was in my opinion crossing a line in actually feeling that she was special and we not even in her league.

    In time she tired of being confronted for her attitude and left the blog.

    Now what was the difference between my feeling toward her offence and my confronting her?

    Had I kept silent my feelings would not have changed. Jesus says that what is in our hearts are the same as if we act upon these feelings.

    So if in my opinion someone is living in sin and I say nothing to them, in my heart I have already made a judgment and can not escape that.

    Here lay the trappings of deceit and hypocrisy in diplomatic and tactful action. If I say nothing, I still harbor an opinion secretly hidden from the offender, if I speak and expose my opinion I am being honest with myself and to the person I feel is in sin.

    They may not like the message, but they should know I am honest in my actions toward them.

    When to speak is always about *timing* as I also believe there is a time to speak and a time to remain silent.

    I want always to be led of the Holy Spirit concerning that discernment, but knowing I am human at times I error and for that I am sorry and usually pay a price for it and hopefully learn from it as well.


  51. BruceC says:

    We live in a very confusing and mixed up world. When I was in grammar school prayer was banned and then Bible reading. Now we have agenda driven LGBT pushing there way into that same public school system to try to get their lifestyle justified and force people to accept it. Make no mistake….that is what it is all about. It is only natural that many people who do not want this taught to their children or forced upon the public as a whole would speak out; is it not? That is not condemning the person but the life style. Why do some see them as the same? Why is that referred to as hate in some circles?
    True; all of us deal with sin and are no more than sinners saved by the grace of God through faith in Christ. But cannot we who are of the Body speak out about what see in what claims to also be the Body?
    I too am also a bit confused on just who this topic speaks to. Individuals, the Church, the culture, or all of the above?
    I have almost resigned myself to the fact that regardless of warnings or push-backs; things will spiral downward in the direction they are heading. Reading through the prophets in my daily reading I see how warnings were received by Israel and Judah before Babylon swept in. I can see a parallel between that and our world today. As all of this goes on we can detest the reason for the ship sinking while still try to rescue as many passengers as we can before it goes to the bottom. If the world calls that hate, intolerance, or bigotry; so be it. In Babylon Daniel prayed for his people while confessing that the nation was judged rightly by God and refused the warnings given by the prophets. Even he knew of the sin in his heart also. But he lamented the sins Israel and Judah committed as a nation against God.

    Soli Deo Gloria!

  52. remarutho says:

    Good Morning Mart & Friends –

    Have taken BTA as an invitation to “think together.” I believe you, Mart, have invited whoever drops by the site to comment upon topics you introduce. This occasion (“A Time to Speak”) derives from a recent event in your life and ministry. The event was a presentation or conference on people’s stories – and you have generously invited us to come along side you as you seek to absorb what you saw and heard.

    You wrote:
    “This past week I attended an event that showcased the stories of people who have repeatedly heard the Bible used to tell them they are going to hell, even if they believe in Jesus.”

    There is no denying the Bible will tell people they have the possibility of eternal existence apart from God’s grace – Sheol, Hell, the outer darkness. It seems to me, however, that the vast majority of the words of Scripture describe God’s love and compassion and mercy toward people. There is a strong case that God’s love is the reason for the act of creating the universe – our world – and all the creatures in it.

    Just working from the quote above, Mart – your description of what the story-tellers have heard others warn them concerning what the Bible says: My take on what the Bible says is not that people who believe in Jesus are going to hell – but rather that those believers have every hope in Jesus’ love – the sacrificial gift he has made on behalf of all creation – and an open door to a relationship with the very Son of God here and now and for eternity.


  53. kingdomkid7 says:

    I am guessing that the people Mart is describing are gay and actively practicing homosexual lifestyles, and they are being told they are going to hell if they do not renounce the homosexual behavior. I’m also guessing that they are being told their belief in Jesus is not manifesting in them having changed lives. Further guessing that they have been dealt with in very un-Christian ways. Am I off track in these assumptions?

  54. SFDBWV says:

    Kingdomkid7 I think you are right on target and is one of those things where honest discloser is best said up front. However as I said way earlier the subject has many directions it can take and I think has.

    One of the directions is just how tolerant of sin should Christians be?

    Homosexuality is a subject all of it own and if it is that we are going to take it up then we need the involvement of psychiatrists, doctors, behavioral science experts and most importantly homosexuals from both genders to join in the conversation.

    Not sure where to go from here as the matter is volatile and will evoke emotion.


  55. oneg2dblu says:

    Time to speak… it is my opinion that the best way to shut up what you are intolerant of hearing is to blame the other side for their position of intolerance.
    If you can label their speech as hateful, they will be less likely to keep on speaking.
    If you can label them as pridefilled, judgmental, or unloving, you are setting the oldest trap there is to try to silence them.
    I feel that those who can not tolerate what the Word of God says about their behaviors are probably living outside the word of God.
    Human nature does not inherantly like to change its position, habits, or lifestyle choices, because human nature wants what it wants and does not want to be told they must change.
    The terrible 2’s of normal childhood developement found in the selfish discovering of “I, or Mine” can last a lifetime for those who will only serve their flesh…
    So, if we try to confuse the spirit within as the longings of the flesh which lie outside the guidelines approved through the word of God as the guiding light of our lives, we can not also be surrendered and serving God.

  56. Mart De Haan says:

    We may never understand ourselves until we see the pain caused by our words, and looks, in the eyes of hurting people who mean more to us than life itself.

  57. kingdomkid7 says:

    True, Steve. That topic is creating a lot of emotion everywhere. But I have trouble tiptoeing around it right now, especially when it seems to be at least on the corner of this table. Someone said earlier that it takes time to be able to really speak truth in love, and I totally agree with that. I build relationships with gay people in my little corner of the world and show them the love of God. His kindness is what leads to repentance, if they are going to repent.

    Here is the but: I have been told that the Bible is hate speech by gay activists, and I wasn’t even quoting it. This leads me to agree with what Gary seems to be saying. Call your perceived opponents intolerant and hateful, and maybe they will never, ever mention that pesky little Bible again.

    I’ve never told anyone they are going to hell, nor would I. My Muslim brothers said it to me many, many times when I was younger. It hurt — and it turns out, they were dead wrong.
    In the end, I am left with the view that we just have to follow the leading of the Holy Spirit. Speak sometimes. Remain silent sometimes. Only He knows best when to do either.

  58. oneg2dblu says:

    To address another point made here about our not changing because someone else told you you were wrong in your behavior, as not ever going to work…
    It seems to me, the entire educational process and our basic parenting skills about what is right behavoir needs to change then, if we can’t tell a child what is the expected protocol for thier behavior should be.
    How else do we get the message out to them?
    Modeling is great, but parents can’t ride on the bus to school every day and model. Parents can’t be at every street corner crossing to properly model, or correct every word coming out of childs mouth either.
    I say we keep on telling them right from wrong until the message sinks in to their suburn self absorbed being.
    “Preach the word and use words if you have to!”

    The very fact the we have the “written word” of God available to us today is a testimony about how effective words can be.

    If we remain silent or avoid the hard words, what then do we have left to teach when we can’t be there to model?

    “Sit down and shut up,” does work quite well, even though it may offend a few in its delivery.

    At least you’ve laid out the guidelines and those who can tolerate it, will then model for the others.

    Unfortunately today, where anything goes, we are using the wrongs models and many are confused.

    How about the elementary school that required their little ones to cross dress one day a year?

    What was actually being “modeled” in that type of teaching?

    At least the word of God says what it means, and means what is says.

    The underlying message is, we all need a new heart and mind, which is found in following Christ as our model, which is one that will obediently follow God’s plan.

  59. oneg2dblu says:

    Mum’s the word? I think not!

  60. Mart De Haan says:

    What some of us might be missing is what so confused those people of the Book who called for Jesus’ death.

    Those religious leaders and defenders of Moses didn’t yet see that the written word was laying the groundwork and pointing to the crucified Living Word, who would then give meaning, heart and perspective to all that had been written.

  61. remarutho says:

    Good Morning All —

    How different I would be — we all would be — the world would be — if we only moved or spoke or kept silent at the prompting of the Holy Spirit, Kingdomkid. It seems to me the friendship factor is the most important part of the mix, as you say.

    The church crowd is keeping reconciliation with God separate from the transforming power of God. In my humble opinion that is an artificial way of seeing the work of the Good News in hearts, minds and lives.

    When the Holy Spirit invades us — body, mind and spirit — we are accepted and we are changed. God is always about the business of gently and lovingly conforming hearts to God’s divine will. He has always desired to draw us close — that is going to require being purified.

    I can only walk with my gender-ambiguous friend. None of that divine work — invasion or purification — is within my ability. Friendship is the best I can do. Where does judgment fit in the finished work of Christ?
    Just asking.


  62. foreverblessed says:

    Gary, thanks for your advice (a few topics ago) to drink 2 cups of water at the very onset of a headache, I think it works!
    Time to speak, is also: when to speak , and when not to speak, as Kingdomkid and Steve mentioned.

    I have another story about a christian, Rees Howells, a preacher who was part of the Wales Revival a century ago.
    There is a book about him, by Nroman Grubb. When he is called during the Revival by God, he then was trained by the Holy Spirit, he could hear Him speak to him very clear. It was like being a disciple, one of the things he had to do was to go out in London without a hat on, just to learn not to be impressed what people might think of him, and also to learn not to look at the outside of people. (At that time it was considered inappropriate to be outside without a hat on, I didn’t know that, since that time when I look at older pictures and I see all the hats, hmmm, so they had to do that, it was a shame not to wear them)

    Anyway, the first thing he had to do, was to accompany a homeless alcoholic man. The Holy Spirit told him not to preach at him, just to keep him company, and learn the man that there are people who are to be trusted. He had to show him love.
    And the second thing about this is this: it took months and months, (maybe more than a year, I gave the book ton someone else, and can find it now) just keeping him company.
    Now I would like to ask you, could you do that, and not tell the man that is was not good to be drunk?
    Do we really hear what the Holy Spirit wants to tell us?

    Reminds me of a verse in the bible: Hosea 10:11-12
    plough the ground.
    Rees had to plough the ground of this man’s heart, and it took time. It is love that makes a heart soft, and love will break up an unploughed ground.
    We need to ask for wisdom, when to speak, when to remain silent. It is a good thing we know that godly Love is always good, when speaking or not speaking.

    If we believe that the sin of the person is upon us, when we do not warn about the sin, then we have a problem, If that is how we view all the sins that other people have, then we must always speak up.
    So we need wisdom here!

    And besides, Steve, we do not bring people to a morally good life (even though we do it anyway as a side effect), we bring people to Jesus, and so bring them in contact with Him and His power to break the bonds of sin that tie them. What is the use of telling a man he should not drink, give him the power to break the sin. What is the use to tell a man not to be sexual immoral if he is hooked to it?

    He needs to be brought to a life of faith in Jesus, and so bring him to the Changing Power of Jesus Christ, the selfsame power that was exerted when He rose from the dead , that is the power that can work miracles in a believing heart!
    or in other words: Eph 1:19

    The drunkard friend of Rees Howell, I think he finally came to his church and became a christian.
    Now think of what work of the Spirit might have been destroyed by Rees trying to get this man alcohol free before the time was right to do so? Do we hinder the Holy Spirit or do we work with Him?

  63. oneg2dblu says:

    Mart… “We may never understand ourselves until we can see the pain caused by our words and looks in the eyes of hurting people who mean more to us than life itself?”

    That is a tragedy of epic proportion!

    Unfortunately, we live in a world of hurting poeple, naked, blind, hurting people, “but,” and there is always a but, if we are using God’s word’s to reach out to them, and they feel convicted I rejoice, because that may well be their first step in their coming to the Lord, or coming back to the Lord.
    Having said that, I don’t stand on the street corner with a sign saying, “Hell is your place”, or shout it from the roof tops.
    But, if we are living in a mostly broken world where proper guidelines are so blurred, then I speak out and trust that the Holy Spirit will give me the right words to say at the right time.
    I don’t have a coined speech ready, I don’t carry tracs or a sign around placing them in peoples faces, but I do carry the word within me, and when I feel directed, out it comes.
    Do I stand up in a church service and scream at the pastor for making a clearly misused verse to drive home his point? “No.”
    But, if what is being preached does not line up, I’m out of there and seeking another place to be taught.

    I will also be thanking God for showing me that discernment is still based on lining up with His word, and not feeding on my unmet needs and feelings.

    I do have compassion, and pray for more, but I also have limits on what I will tolerate as being truth, for both myself and the wellbeing of others.

    So, my silence is sometimes very warranted, and my speaking out as well.

  64. poohpity says:

    Gosh again it is so easy to point out the sin in others and neglect it in our own. That was what Jesus spoke of in Matthew 7:1-5 NLT; Luke 6:37-42 NLT then Paul goes on to say the same thing in Romans 2:1-3 NLT as Mart mentioned. Then in Micah 6:8 God said what he wants from us to be fair, just and merciful obviously most have determined what is just and fair but so often over look what being merciful in our speech and actions is. If we trust God to be the enforcer of his Word then that leaves us with another calling to do good. Is it doing good to cause hurt for those who are already hurting?

    Treating others like we want to be treated! Do you really want someone who is telling you all the wrong things you do all the time while not helping you to do good and be better like Jesus does with us. Some want to be the convicter for God and over look the grace found in Jesus. Justifying bad behavior by pointing out the bad behavior in others never accepting that ones mouth is pushing people away from Christ rather than to Him.

    I just really thought that this topic was a means to take another look deep within to see if how I am acting and speaking is a deterrent rather than a help to bringing people to know and learn about the grace of God.

    How many people have you lead in the sinners prayer? How many people have asked you where did you get all that love and kindness from? How many have asked you how you can forgive so quickly? What is that light they see in your eyes? How many ask about Jesus because of who you are? What is it that is so appealing about you that people are drawn to Christ? Do they see you living out your faith or do they see hatred, anger, malice and self righteousness? For me this topic has called me to take another look within to see if my without says anything about Jesus.

  65. BruceC says:

    One of things that needs to be mentioned is prayer when we deal with people. The Holy Spirit will direct and give us wisdom. When to speak, when not to.
    We can speak wrongly by “Bible beating” someone. Or we can keep silent wrongly too; as sometimes that is an unspoken nod of approval. While a Deputy, the Undersheriff used to hold monthly patrol meetings. At the end he asked if there were any complaints. He also said if we had one and didn’t speak up he would take that as an “Everything’s okay”.

    Mart you said,

    “We may never understand ourselves until we see the pain caused by our words, and looks, in the eyes of hurting people who mean more to us than life itself.”

    I know that I have hurt others. Even my wife, or family members at one time or another. Or friend, or fellow Christian. Is there anyone here who hasn’t? What it makes me realize is that I still haven’t become as Christ-like as I need to. I wonder why it seems that we cannot completely avoid causing hurt, or being hurt. And then realize that our fallen nature is the root of it all. Sometimes pain is caused unintentionally also. Some are just easily offended and look for someone to agree with them and are hurt when that someone does not.
    I once heard a person state that they didn’t believe in hell. They said a loving God would never send anyone there. They didn’t want to hear that a loving God loved them enough to die for them and not leave them where they were and to show them the way to salvation. That was in my wife’s family. My wife was kind and truthful with them but they did not want to hear it.
    One thing is for sure. Most people don’t want to admit they are wrong, be told they are wrong, or that they need to change. That is just fallen human nature. But first you must be told you are wrong before you realize you are wrong and that is the starting point. And that telling must be done with the power of the Holy Spirit and in a attitude of love.
    Even in the Word we see how God acts and deals with us differently. The prophets told them of God’s punishment. Jesus told them of God’s love and forgiveness. And he also told them the result of not believing in Him. Some preachers of old preached “hell fire and sin”. Some preached love, grace, and mercy. Did not both messages come from God; and did He not use both to touch hearts and convert? In this day and age we need to careful due to a lot of “Christian-blaming” going on. It may not be based in fact and have unseen roots. And on the other hand. we as a Body need to realize our need for improvement within. Balance and wisdom.

    Soli Deo Gloria!

  66. poohpity says:

    Can you imagine what the world would be like if we used introspection, soul searching, self scrutiny as a major principle in our lives before we even attempt to scrutinize anyone else. If we could just see the heart of other people and not neglect the condition of our own. That is why it seems so wise to hold off on any judgment of another.

    Then when we are confronted on what someone sees in us that is not kind or loving we take the time to reflect on what they say rather than retaliation, defensiveness, distraction by changing the subject or diversion by accusing back. Solomon says that when you confront someone and they listen they will love you all the more if they are wise. (Proverbs 9:8-9 NLT) Jesus put it another way in addressing the hypocrisy in judgement. (Matt 7:6 NLT)

  67. foreverblessed says:

    Many of you already can see where things went wrong: the essence of my being was keeping the Law.
    And I would point people to the Law.

    This is what Jesus said, if I have a beam in my own eye, how can I get a splinter out of someone elses eye.

    The beam had to go out of my own eye: that we are not saved by keeping the Law, we are to be brought to a Person: Jesus, and in a living relation with Him we would be cleansed, and live in the Law of the Spirit.
    Not living according to Law, but in faith in Jesus, this was something I could not understand. This looked impossible to me.

    So how could I in that state lead people to Christ?
    I couldn’t. So my use of the bible verses did not help one bit. I missed the essential part of the bible, that we are saved by the Cross of Jesus, and in faith live in Him. “Christ in you”. Not that I peached to many, but the way I thought of them was not that of Grace, but of the law.

    I was like the older brother in the paralbe of the lost son. The younger brother came to a deeper understanding of what a child of God is like, a life of a deep loving relation with our Father through Jesus Christ.

    In that period I think I have pointed people to how they ought to behave: morally right behavior.
    But I didn’t lead them to Jesus as their Savior.
    I am so thankful that God used a crisis to let me come to my senses.
    Now I live in faith in Jesus, He being my Master. And I pray I can hear the Holy Spirit better, hear Him more and more, that I could hear what to say, and not my own interpretation of the bible. Because all these bible verses are still in my head, but what does the Holy Spirit want to say to the other person, and if I do not clearly hear anything I just love the other, try no to be irritated at their behavior, ask God for patience, ask for grace (these gifts of the Spirit). Yes living in faith is possible! Praise be to God our Father in heaven who sent His Son to help us out where the law was of no help, becasue the law is like a lazy husband sitting on the couch pointing out what all chores have to be done in the house but who himself would not move a finger to do anything.
    Jesus empowers us and gives us strength for the day, and gives us all the gifts of the Spirit, and this is what I now do: ask for more of His

    It is the Living Word, Jesus Himself in my life, every day less of me and more of Him!

  68. foreverblessed says:

    this is the first part of the above comment:

    Indeed Pooh, this was to be a survey of our own inner being.
    Let me tell my story, I was raised in a law abiding church, a christian church, but Jesus was not mentioned too often.
    We were taught to obey the 10 commandments, and when we had sinned forgiveness through the cross of Jesus. We asked the Holy Spirit to help us keep the commandments, but as we could read for ouselves that the commandments were we were well capable of leading a respectable good moral life
    How would I treat nonbelievers, by how well they obeyed the law of God. They needed to know what the Law of God was.

  69. poohpity says:

    Steve, that one you speak of may have left the blog but it is funny that another one who is worse than she was and does not even realize it even though being challenged with their contempt for the blog host and his words completely ignores those challenges and justifies their behavior. That is what makes what is written in Romans 2:1 so truth filled.

  70. Mart De Haan says:

    My reading of the Bible is that the law was given to bring us to Christ…

    So that when law is used to push people away from their only hope– something is wrong about the way the law is being used.

    It’s pretty clear that there will be on going disagreement in the church and society about many issues. So I hope we can agree that, if it is our desire to not only trust in Christ– but to live in his Spirit, then we have every reason to disagree in the kind of love that Paul describes in 1Corinthians 13:1-13; with the kind of spirit he shows in Galatians 5:22-23; and with the kind of wisdom he expresses in James 3:17-18.

    In that light, I just listened to 20 minutes of a radio interview and debate (on what the Bible says about same-sex relationships) between a very tired Rob Bell and a gracious British pastor. In my opinion, both men illustrate the kind of spirit and thoughtfulness that need to characterize followers of Christ in the countless kinds of disagreements about the Bible and modern life that we encounter. If this link is not active here, I think you should be able to copy and paste it into your browser. http://tinyurl.com/mda2a52

  71. SFDBWV says:

    Mart thank you very much for the link to the Rob Bell interview; it must have hurt you to see him in such a condition and under attack, he being a friend.

    I agree with you that this subject of homosexuality is a very divisive issue and one that for many is a litmus test on where to draw a line on tolerance. I think *as* volatile is also the abortion issue for the same reasons.

    I would say if I have to be on either side of the issue that I will stay with the whole of Scripture and say that sin is sin and not tolerated by a Holy and Righteous God.

    Jesus is God and whatever is said in the OT concerning sin is said by that same God whether speaking from the burning bush or from the cross, the same God the same heart of God.

    Jesus took on the sins of the world as a means of God remaining Holy and righteous because man just can not be fully righteous and is incapable of living a sinless life.

    Jesus’ sacrifice is not meant to abolish sin from the world; rather His sacrifice allows those of us who are guilty of having sinned to be forgiven and so not judged at the end of the story.

    Because God has said that sodomy/homosexuality is an abomination to Him it seems to have a place above all other sins as its being a worse sin, even above murder, though not mentioned in specifics in the original 10 commandments.

    That being said there is only one sin mentioned as being unforgivable, that being the blasphemy of the Holy Spirit.

    However the underlying issue here is whether we as people should concern ourselves with obeying the commandments of God concerning *right and wrong*. Whether that even matters *now* to God.

    The obedience to righteous living will not save me, Jesus’ sacrifice does that, however how I live then for Jesus is either seen as using that sacrifice to do whatever I want or striving to be like Him as always pleasing His Father.

    Sin of any kind does not please the Father and if we continue in sin we haven’t been changed at all from our acceptance of Jesus to be Lord of our lives.

    We become as the demons mentioned in Scripture who also believe *in* Jesus but continue to do their dirty work of enslaving men to sin.

    A lot more to say and a lot more to think about.


  72. foreverblessed says:

    Boy, Mart that was hard to watch! But good to see the heart of the man, Rob Bell, both men, but this is difficult.
    Holiness, growing in grace in God, it is God’s work in a man.
    I remember our friend in Cornwall, when he was at first a christian, God was telling him, you will be alright, we will work on the homosexual side. God took in consideration who he was. And he now lives a life of celibacy.
    Like people who are smoking, it is very destructive to smoke, it ruins your lungs, but when is it time to stop.
    Sin is sin, and what is more sin than another sin. I always thought it was a sin for a man to have more then one woman, even in the old testament. I find it very degrading for a woman that she has to share her husband with other women. But yet God allowed it at that time. I am so thankful that Paul explicitly tells men to have only one woman. That settles it.
    And what about a monogamous marriage, but the sex is out of lust.
    And what about: sex that is only permitted to create new life, and not otherwise?
    And what about the slaves? It was allowed in the old testament, isn’t it a sin to tie people down.
    Anyway, we are talking of what is sin and what is not.
    and what God allows and what not.

    But we are saved by the life of Jesus Christ, in faith, and if in faith His life grows in us.
    I am trusting God that if a person fully is surrendering his life to Jesus, that step by step everything that is unholy in a person will come to light step by step.

    In one way I agree with Rob, we make a big issue on same sex, but let people be addicted to computers, blogs, eating lots of sugar (big cokes, ice cream etc), negative thinking, thinking evil of each other.

    Well let me focus on Jesus, He is my goal, and He is in charge.

  73. wolverine1 says:

    poohpity, earlier you made some great points and asked some great questions that are worth repeating:

    “Gosh again it is so easy to point out the sin in others and neglect it in our own. That was what Jesus spoke of in Matthew 7:1-5 NLT; Luke 6:37-42 NLT then Paul goes on to say the same thing in Romans 2:1-3 NLT as Mart mentioned. Then in Micah 6:8 God said what he wants from us to be fair, just and merciful obviously most have determined what is just and fair but so often over look what being merciful in our speech and actions is. If we trust God to be the enforcer of his Word then that leaves us with another calling to do good. Is it doing good to cause hurt for those who are already hurting?

    Treating others like we want to be treated! Do you really want someone who is telling you all the wrong things you do all the time while not helping you to do good and be better like Jesus does with us. Some want to be the convicter for God and over look the grace found in Jesus. Justifying bad behavior by pointing out the bad behavior in others never accepting that ones mouth is pushing people away from Christ rather than to Him.

    How many people have asked you where did you get all that love and kindness from? How many have asked you how you can forgive so quickly? What is that light they see in your eyes? How many ask about Jesus because of who you are? What is it that is so appealing about you that people are drawn to Christ? Do they see you living out your faith or do they see hatred, anger, malice and self righteousness (and I would add hyprocrisy)? For me this topic has called me to take another look within to see if my without says anything about Jesus.”

    Amen poohpity!!!…Yes, there are times to speak, but only after have we have shown that we are safe people like Jesus was!

    What was it about Jesus that prompted the woman in Luke 7 to bust into the dinner party at Simon the Pharisee’s home, wash Jesus’ feet with her tears, dry his feet with her hair, and anointed them with a costly perfume (Luke 7:36-39). Why did she step in (at great risk to herself) and defend Jesus who was being treated so rudely by the people who had invited him to dinner? A little background: It was the custom of that day to greet guest with a kiss and give them a little water and oil to wash their feet and hands before dinner. In this story, Jesus got none of that, and it was a huge slap in the face. Again, why did this woman intervene? What had she been seeing in Jesus that would cause her to be drawn to him and respond like this? As I read the Gospel accounts of Jesus, it seems that what she saw (and didn’t see) is what poohpity was getting at.

  74. foreverblessed says:

    Wolverine, thank you for your comment on June 4, reacting on what I wrote, and what Pooh wrote, is it the burning love in us, that people are attracted to? Well, there I have some goal to come to. The eyes of Jesus must have been full of love. Even if He is the One who is also very Holy, but He sees the lost people, people who do things that are not for their good, but He knows the way to save them. Only thorugh the Life of the Risen Christ. I liked what the other pastor said, Jay, we die to our old life when we start a new in Christ, but isn’t it true that the dying is step by step. I just now see unholy things in my inner being that I wasn’t aware of 15 years ago.
    The Holy Spirit convicts me of sin.
    It is easy for me to see the sins in others, but is it the time of the Holy Spirit to speak up, or does He wait till the time has come to its fullest to act.

  75. SFDBWV says:

    Mart I also agree with you in that the Law is meant to expose our sins and bring us to a need for forgiveness.

    Sin is disobedience to the desires and rules God has placed upon us; sin is a condition of the heart and our decision to act upon it.

    In order for God to remain a holy and righteous God sin can not be tolerated and its consequences are punishment.

    This is true in Genesis and remains true in Revelation.

    However, God made a way for Him to remain Holy and Righteous not by tolerating sin, but by giving Himself as a sacrifice for the sins of man, by taking on the punishment man deserved for his decisions.

    How now do I honor His sacrifice? By obeying His commandment that is summed up as loving your neighbor as yourself, showing compassion and forgiveness when needed and even giving up your own life for the benefit of others.

    None of that abolishes sin nor does it erase it from our eyes, however what it does do is make us look at the sinner with compassion not with punishment in mind.

    Most importantly we can see clearly right from wrong and have not only a clearer view of which way to choose, but the indwelling of the Holy Spirit to aid us in our decisions.

    Before the coming of Christianity to the pagan world they had no direction of right and wrong in place, they all did what they thought of as right and wrong. With the coming of Christianity into the pagan world and culture their world came into conflict with the correct understanding of right and wrong given by God.

    Their culture changed because people changed and people changed because they accepted Jesus into their hearts and were adopted into the culture of God’s view of right and wrong.

    What do we do now say, that God’s view of right and wrong has evolved with the changing of the date on a calendar?

    If the law is meant to lead us to Christ, why then are we now supposed to not use that same law to lead others to Him as well?


  76. remarutho says:

    Good Morning All —

    Great program link, Mart! For some reason, one of Andrew’s questions entered my mind like an arrow and will not be dislodged: “Doesn’t God have the right to say what is sin and what is not?”

    My only answer at this point, just having watched the radio interview, is Yes! God has the right to — it is in God’s very character as Creator – Redeemer – Sustainer – to see, judge and deal with sin. Where is God’s law applied? Who applies God’s law – and who is the enforcer? This leads me into the whole series of questions in Job chapters 40 and 41.

    These issues of God’s Shalom must be faced squarely and forthrightly — and humbly, in my opinion. What is the specific action of a brother or sister in Christ that will be the deal-breaker for me? When will I refuse to take the bread and wine with another? The Lord is always mindful of my heart.


  77. Mart De Haan says:

    Abomination is an often misunderstood word that the Bible uses of all sin including Mosaic ritual infractions. A partial list includes:

    Unclean things (Lev. 7:21)
    Sins of men (Ps. 14:1; 53:1)
    Cheating (Mic. 6:10)
    A proud look (Pro. 6:16-17)
    A lying tongue (Pro. 6:17; 12:22)
    Feet that are quick to sin (Pro. 6:18)
    A false witness that speaks lies (Pro. 6:19)
    A sower of discord (Pro. 6:19)
    A false balance or scale (Pro. 11:1)
    The proud of heart (Pro. 16:5)
    Dishonest standards of measure (Pro. 20:10)
    Eating flesh of peace offerings on the 3rd day (Lev. 7:18)
    Any Idolatrous practices (Dt. 12:31; 13:14; 17:4; 18:9; 20:18; 29:17)
    Offering an imperfect animal to God as a sacrifice (Dt. 17:1)
    Re-marriage of former companions (Dt. 24:1-4)
    Cheating others (Dt. 25:13-16)
    Incense offered by hypocrites (Isa. 1:13)
    Eating unclean things (Isa. 66:17)
    Robbery (Ezek. 18: 6-13)
    Oppression of others, particularly the poor or vulnerable (Ezek. 18: 6-13)
    Breaking vows (Ezek. 18: 6-13)
    Lending with interest to a brother (Ezek. 18: 6-13)
    Hardness of heart (Ezek. 18: 6-13)
    Injustice (Ezek. 18: 6-13)
    Things highly esteemed by man (Lk. 16:15)

  78. swwagner says:

    The radio interview is a good example of how to have a civil conversation about a difficult topic.

    We can have all of the puny opinions and ideas we want, but God will have the final say. One of these days we will see clearly…won’t that be a glorious time!

  79. oneg2dblu says:

    Steve… you last several posts are spoken with so much wisdom I can’t read them enough without coming away about God being that same God from Genesis to Revelation, Unchanging and Forever!
    Light and darkness is always defined by God first, we should never forget that.
    His word comes with the highest unchangeable authority first, then second in power, light and darkness come by nature with the rising and setting of the sun, and lastly, comes our preferred light and darkness as defined today by mankind the bottom feeder, who now sees so poorly and defines his own light and darkness by his very own desires.
    He even changes laws to suit himself, making himself feel as a compassionate god, but in doing so, he then defiles God’s very first words.
    But for God, but for the Law, but for the Commandments, but for the first spoken rule given to mankind in Genesis, and the last spoken rules in Revelation does mankind find his just reward of reaping that which he sows.
    But, foolish man still makes his own poorly lighted, thoroughly unseeing choices, and when they do not line up with God’s Word, that is when man has a great problem, not God!
    God has in store for that disobedient self-ruling man a Great Wrath which He has only shown in part before, and will exercise in its fullness forever in eternity, upon those who act as if they do not Fear Him, or His warnings!
    That is why we have His Word, that is why we have His Law, that is why we have His Commandments, “first given” all provided to show us how to do life right, how to choose the light instead of darkness, but man sees things as he finds fit for himself, and in that light, he finds he still walks in his own darkness.
    But for following His Son, who is light, who does not walk in darkness, who leads the well lighted way, who is the Way, when we obey “His Laws,” today spoken through His Holy Spirit, we then will walk with Him in His light. There is no other way!
    Now, I’ll go and listen to those “other voices” as they bring their light to the table of discussion about those things God has already spoken.
    Be Blessed, Gary

  80. Mart De Haan says:

    What I tried to express in the original post is the need to listen, to try to understand, and above all to love those have been trying to tell us that they did not choose this path for themselves.

  81. remarutho says:

    Proverbs 16:4, 5, 6 (above, Mart 9:07 a.m.)is indeed God’s word at work in our hearts. “He that believeth shall not make haste.”

  82. remarutho says:

    My quote is Isaiah 28:16 – Maru

  83. poohpity says:

    There is proof that when the religious leaders were confronted on their pride filled, self righteous hearts by Jesus some listened. There was Nicodemus, Joseph of Arimathea and after being blinded physically Paul’s eyes were opened spiritually. Paul was famous for seeing the sin in others while believing that what he was doing was right as he harmed people. With Jesus there is hope.

    I guess one will have to make the choice whether their words, thoughts and action will be a healing balm or out for blood and murder the souls of another. (Proverbs 12:6 NLT)

    In an attempt to neglect the abhorrent, cruel, angry, judgmental hearts found within the easiest way to cover that up is to continually focus on others. To belittle them to feel better about one’s self that stops one from dealing with their own shortcomings but there is hope found in Jesus who knew that “ALL” sin and fall short of the Glory of God.

  84. SFDBWV says:

    Mart as I read no one has not said they would not listen or not try to understand and be sympathetic nor have I read anyone say they hated anyone and could not love someone who feels they have no control of their emotions.

    If we are going to talk about the subject we have to talk, have a dialog and an exchange of ideas and positions.

    I am sure that a person who is a homosexual does not want to hear the Bible say they are an abomination. I used the word as is in my Bible for the purpose of showing that for whatever reason God has in mind He is stressing that Sodomy is in particular an especially forbidden sin.

    For that purpose perhaps those who suffer under its bondage are given a trial only they can endure and one you or I may not be able to.

    Should I or anyone ignore those parts of Scripture we don’t want to hear? Should a practicing sinner of what ever sin not hear the truth about their lifestyle and its eternal consequence?

    Who better to hear the truth from but someone who will not condemn them but will love them in spite of their sin and love them enough to show them the way to salvation.

    I really had no time for this post and am rushing it, but wanted to get this said as I won’t be back again until tomorrow morning.


  85. poohpity says:

    Is the scripture found in John 8:7 ignored? I have yet to find the scripture that says it is our job to convict another of sin. I have always believed that was God’s job unless we feel we are god. Talk about picking and choosing scripture. Who better to point out moral failure than from God alone.

    Why is Matt 7:1-5 ignored? Wouldn’t we be better then to not worry about the moral failures in others but to address their needs of compassion, mercy, kindness, patience, love and grace and trust God with the conviction unless we feel He is not able.

    If we stand up for any scripture than stand up for this one Luke 18:9-14 NLT or ignore it.

  86. oneg2dblu says:

    pooh…”I have yet to find the scripture that says it is our job to convict another of sin.”
    I would suggest you read this verse with an open mind.
    James 5:19,20 NKJV
    “Brethren, If anyone among you wanders from the truth, and someone turns him back, let him know that he who turns a sinner from the error of his wai will save a soul from death and cover a multitude of sins.”

  87. oneg2dblu says:

    form his way… :0

  88. oneg2dblu says:

    from his way…:(

  89. remarutho says:

    Let’s read the verse in context: James 5:16, 17, 18 – The Prayer of Faith. Verse 19 is another example of fervent, constant prayer…Maru

  90. phpatato says:

    Good afternoon everyone

    Have been sitting on the sidelines reading and pondering. My computer is on its last legs so I am doing everything in safe mode. A friend of my son is building me a new one. In safe mode, I am not able to view anything with sound so I am unable to watch your link Mart.

    Steve your comments settle in with what I would say on this matter. Forever, your comments, especially you pointing out that it may take years to befriend someone enough to point out bad behaviour – lovingly – to then let the Holy Spirit do His work in convicting, is right on the mark. Kingdom Kid your last comment I fully agree with as well. Good thoughts.

    Mart you said, – “What I tried to express in the original post is the need to listen, to try to understand, and above all to love those have been trying to tell us that they did not choose this path for themselves.”

    Question: Are we to consider that God “made” homosexuals as part of humanity to love, marry and child-rear as surely as a man and wife? That if they did not choose this path for themselves that God did? That their desires for the same sex is “built in”???

    Steve this topic can go in so many directions……..

  91. Mart De Haan says:

    From the beginning, this post has not been about the rightness or wrongness of same-sex relationships, but rather about the heart attitudes of sinners like us toward sinners who we don’t see as being like ourselves.

  92. oneg2dblu says:

    Mart… can this verse then apply?
    Hebrews 3:13
    “Exhort one another, day by day, so long as it is called today; lest any one of you be hardened by the deceitfulness of sin.”

    1 Peter 1:13,14,15
    “Therefore, prepare your minds for action; set your hope fully on the grace to be given you when Jesus Christ is revealed. As obedient children, do not conform to the evil desires you had when you lived in ignorance. But just as he who called you is holy, so be holy in all you do; for it is written: Be holy because I am holy.”

  93. oneg2dblu says:

    Maru… having watched and listened to the actions and dialogue between Mr. Bell and the others, he sadly had to reframe each question to fit his answer first. Unfortunately, when asked directly if he thought man on man sex was considered as written in the scriptures, as taught for centuries by God, by Jesus, and by others in the church, as being considered sin, Bell refused to answer, he refused to follow the context you cited in verse 16, “confess your sins to one another.”
    Mr. Bell instead posed another frame of reference more fitting to his liking, his wanting, his flesh.
    Thus, he was avoiding the intellectual honesty of calling a sin a sin., where to me he then fails the test in doing so.
    But as Steve has so perfectly said, “God is the same God in Genesis through Revelation,” and in the light, nothing “we” would like to add in to cover our shifting cultural conscience when pertaining to God’s word, will ever change anything for the better.
    If fact, it is getting worse day by day as we try supporting our modern day thinking, even verse by verse, as we fail to allow His word to actually change us.
    But, I’m only a sinner looking at another soul who appears tortured, tired, twisted, and thinking that modern man and his ever shifting cultural conscience will somehow change God’s rules, laws, and eternal plans.
    How do you then see what went on in that interview to be a confession of sin?

  94. oneg2dblu says:

    To anyone…How do we pray for the unconfesssed sins of others, and those supposedly already forgiven sins of others, when they themselves hide behind their grand thoughts of love and acceptance without any confession?

    That to me, is putting in a word where words are not found in the context of this Prayer of Faith, or in any of God’s word that I have fallen victim to believe.

    But, I’m still open and learning, I’m still under discipline, and I’m still repenting as the Spirit reveals His truth about my actions, or the sowing upon my flesh as to engage in sin by myself, or how it affects the flesh of others if I were to sin with like thinking others?

    When did this multitude of sin, where a belief in right and wrong used to exist, now become just a right?

    Wherein lays the action of saving another of a multitude of sins?

  95. poohpity says:

    Yepper, one sinner pointing out how bad another sinner is? That is perfect logic.

  96. bubbles says:

    Matthew 7:3-5 tells me that I should be looking at my own heart and life and to not be focusing on what others are doing first of all.

  97. bubbles says:

    This school year I dealt with five students who, when told to stop a certain behavior, would automatically retort with pointing out that another classmate was also engaging in said behavior. They never accepted responsibility for their own behavior once. This lie is as old as time because Adam and Eve engage in this same blame game in the garden when God spoke with them about their sin.

    I wish these students could see themselves from the outside. Blaming everyone else made them look foolish.

  98. remarutho says:

    Dear All —

    Been away this evening. It seems to me James chapter 5 is a fascinating turn in this conversation. It certainly is not unwelcome — just unexpected. Thanks for bringing in James 5:19, 20, Gary. Have always thought of this passage — especially James 5:13, 14, 15 — in terms of prayers for healing. I am always willing to receive prayer for health and restoration and forgiveness.

    James seems to be calling us to an entire life of prayer — and especially a life of personal openness and transparency with one another in the fellowship of Jesus Christ. (James 5:16)

    Gary, you asked:
    “How do you then see what went on in that interview to be a confession of sin?”

    Answer: It seems to me Andrew needed to have Rob agree with him. I also observed that Rob desired a spiritual (not a fleshly) agreement with his fellow minister. (Romans 8:1, 2, 3, 4) Sometimes we prayerfully practice “think and let think.”

    How can I befriend a person of same-sex orientation if I choose to condemn him/her? The opportunity to learn and grow is lost in such a competitive atmosphere — this is what Rob seems to mean when he calls us to the Shalom of God. Is the church a safe place — or is it only a place to be judged and condemned?


  99. foreverblessed says:

    The gracious discussion of these guys is profound.
    What a good example, in all meekness discuss things.
    I shall remember that.
    I got quite upset at the time someone was trying to tell me that it was God’s holy will that I keep a day holy. While I believe in all my heart that I keep Jesus holy, and so I am in a Sabbath rest all the time. That is my deep conviction, but if someone tries to tell me I am wrong, Why am I so angry about it? It is God who is leading me, His Holy Spirit led me on this path. Let the other person live his own live, as he sees it holy in God.
    The great commandment is to love each other, despite the differences in bible verses, with emphasis on: despite
    Can I still eat the bread and wine together with the other person who sees things differently than I do?

Leave a Comment

You must be logged in to post a comment.