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A Center— high and wide

B - 1 (1)Knowing when to settle for our agreements rather than trying to graciously forge through our disagreements requires the art and gift of wisdom.

Beginning with our differences is a non-starter for getting anywhere together. But all too often finding agreement isn’t easy. Pope Francis’ visit to America, like Jesus’ arrival in Jerusalem, is a timely example.

In our conversations today here, at the coffee shop, or in the lunch room at work, we need to decide whether we can honor Jesus-like behavior wherever we see it without jumping to conclusions about one another, or someone else, that God alone is in a position to judge.

For many of us who come to this blog finding a common center in Jesus is a starting place. Our personal experience has brought us that far together. But what we still struggle with is how to handle our differences even about what it means to trust God and love one another.

My guess is that this is one reason the Apostle Paul appealed to brothers and sisters in Christ to take “the high road” that he describes in the 13th chapter of his letter to the Corinthians, and then— “the wide road” that he explains in the 14th chapter of his letter to the Romans.

Who can deny that by looking for and walking these two “high and wide” roads— we can make progress in moving from the agreements that deepen our sense of unity… through and beyond the disagreements that our God alone is in a position to judge?

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186 Responses to “A Center— high and wide”

  1. SFDBWV says:

    I have read many books and stories as well as have seen countless movies that make the message that we are all human beings living together in the only world there is.

    The common ground being that we are all in this together.

    But there is a fly in the ointment.

    We still hate one another and have little or no problem killing each other with bravado and gusto.

    With our Bible as an example, murder began with Cain and as the stories unfolded killing one another only got more involved.

    Oddly you don’t have to hate someone to kill them, you just have to be on whichever side you are philosophically, politically, nationally and sadly religiously to do so.

    With regards to Paul isn’t it amazing that the same fellow who gave us 1 Corinthians 13 is the same fellow who had such an argument with Barnabas that neither spoke to one another again (Acts 15:36).

    Anyone who has lived among other people have come across someone, who no matter what, they just don’t like.

    It is one thing to try and present a Christ-like persona to others, but quite another when it is viewed as phony.

    In my experience there are many “wolves in sheep’s clothing”.

    Jesus got angry with people and even frustrated with some, I cannot expect any better behavior from myself or from others.

    I will always try and show compassion and cordial behavior with people, but there is a limit and when it is reached is when how I respond is decided and each situation may need a different response.

    One may turn the other cheek when insulted time and time again, but there is a time to walk away and quit getting slapped around.

    I will take up this matter with regards to this Blog site when I return.

    45 degrees and very foggy.


  2. jeff1 says:

    History repeats itself we are no different to our forefathers for we have made the same mistakes they did. Thankfully God knew the end as well as the beginning. In Christ we are all equal regardless of what we believe. How we live that out in our lives means we now know how difficult it was for our forefather to get it right.

    What you said Steve about coming across someone you just don’t like. I think discernment is one of the most difficult things, for people are very good at making you believe what they want you to. My mother had a gift for reading people, she could see if somewhat was what she called ‘too sweet to be wholesome’. My father on the other hand only seen the good in people and often got disillusioned when he found out they where not what they appeared to be.

    Until we get to know someone very well we can be duped but I have discovered that I can also dupe myself into thinking I am what I am not. Looking at myself honestly brought me nearer to God but I now have awareness of how deceitful my own heart can be. There is a battle within me which I must get to grips with otherwise the battle around me will shake the foundation that I walk on. I am beginning to understand what Gary is talking about except that it is my obedience I must focus on and not another’s disobedience.

  3. poohpity says:

    Steve, I think you may find that the disagreement between Paul and Barnabas seemed to be about taking John Mark with them into the mission field but they were not enemies. That disagreement did not seem to destroy their friendship. Paul spoke with admiration of Barnabas in other letters. Paul nor Barnabas ever seemed to talk with disdain or ugliness about the other. So in that they took the high road.

  4. SFDBWV says:

    I read this morning that President Obama and his family met the Pope upon his arrival in the US at the bottom of the stairs as he departed the airplane; viewed as a special welcoming.

    However I didn’t read that he knelt and kissed the Popes ring as he did when he met with the Saudi King.

    Now granted I should be satisfied that Obama showed respect to the Pope, but at the same time I can’t help but observe the difference between the meetings.

    And so my feelings on the matter remain resentment and displeasure regarding Obama.

    When I first came upon this blog site I was very impressed that it was read, viewed and filled with people from all over the world. Even more was the fact that Mart published it as part of RBC Ministries and made it available to an even larger audience via email lists.

    The result was a very diverse compliment of participants even some being non-Christian.

    Our common ground being we all were curious enough to participate in such a venture. I remember one fellow telling Mart to get ready for an even larger audience as it grew quickly and another saying what a relief to be on a blog where there wasn’t any finger pointing, Bible quoting bullies to spoil the event.

    However that same fly that was in the ointment was now in the soup.

    The fly being the human condition.

    It is absurd to think that within any gathering of peoples that there isn’t going to arise resentment and offence and even more absurd to believe that just because we consider ourselves to be followers of Christ that we are exempt from it.

    Anyone who has made it a study of society will tell you that within a free society it is that freedom that opens the door for corruption and misuse of freedoms gift.

    It is the unique position of BTA that we have not only been allowed the freedom to express ourselves but the freedom to allow ourselves to be less cloaked and more personal with our presentations.

    The result being a more personal approach to our walk of faith and our dealing with life, which is what makes the experience successful.

    If this were just a bulletin board where we posted Bible quotes in support of a subject it would be dry and lifeless.

    But we share our lives with each other and in so doing expose our nature and become all too visible and with such exposure will come personality conflicts.

    Just pretending they don’t exist for the sake of trying to present a “Christian” view isn’t being honest and will only grow worse as a result.

    Trying to fix the differences is of course the best course of action, but what happens when the fly become the elephant that nobody can ignore?

    There is a saying within the Amish community that states “Autonomy is not what is always best for the community.”

    The result being that some freedoms have to be curtailed for the best of the rest of the group.

    James warned of the destructive power of the tongue and Paul of the *cancer* of strife. So what to do when each make an inroad into our community?

    Paul teaches that some people are to be excommunicated from the body a practice still used today by Catholicism and some Protestants alike.

    Is that within the concepts of 1 Corinthians 13?

    No it isn’t.

    I as an individual can sometimes ignore insults and after a time totally ignore the insulting party, but as a community an authority needs sometimes to intervene and assist the community at large.

    Without such intervention strife will only have a stronger foothold and grow into a more ugly cancer.

    In this respect the community trying to correct the problem without authority only inflames the situation.

    I am way out of time and getting far too long. I agree our little gathering needs some help and hopefully if we can talk about it without it becoming heated we may be able to resolve it. Otherwise we may be seeing the sun setting on our participation on BTA or BTA altogether.


  5. poohpity says:

    Look at the disagreement between Paul and Peter about causing the gentiles to go back under the Jewish laws but they did it with respect. No talking down, name calling or judging one another’s character. They discussed it taking the center and promoting unity.

  6. joycemb says:

    Probably why Peter and Paul’s letters are in the Bible and Joyce and Steve’s or whoever are not. Biblical authors were chosen for their consistency with the message of the Gospel by God some 2000 years ago. 2000 years ago!

    Yet they were human, do we not think they too had their bad days just like us all? And there are MANY examples of less then perfect characters in the Bible; David, Jonah, Solomon, etc, etc just to name a few. To try and make ourselves be like them in the few interactions we see and hear about in scripture is ludacris and another example of trying to insert ourselves into Holy Scriptures. It ain’t about us, it’s about God. People now days need to stop comparing others and themselves with Gospel writers and accept they probably weren’t
    perfect either. We need to get over ourselves.

  7. joycemb says:

    Even John said in 21:25 that if everything Jesus did were written down the world could not contain all the books. Jesus was perfect and sinless, yes, but not the human authors of the canon of scripture. And certainly not us. And if everything the authors did were to be included I doubt the world could not contain them either, as it is with our own lives if we were to write each minute of every day of our lives. Would we not want to share what we learned from God if we knew it were to be a part of Holy writings? OF COURSE WE WOULD.

  8. joycemb says:

    Yet Christ in us is our hope of glory. Lord change me to become a vessel worthy of your very life.

  9. poohpity says:

    To me the authenticity and genuineness of scripture is seen by not hiding the flaws, failures, brokenness, faults and sinfulness of the people in it. It is a mirror of humanity and an example of God’s mercy. Which shows how it is in God’s hand alone to judge because He knows even our thoughts, motivations most often we jump to conclusions about and make judgements from our own perspectives which are often tainted in some form or another.

  10. joycemb says:

    not always tainted though

  11. joycemb says:

    There are six things the Lord hates,

    seven that are detestable to him:

    17haughty eyes,

    a lying tongue,

    hands that shed innocent blood,

    18a heart that devises wicked schemes,

    feet that are quick to rush into evil,

    19a false witness who pours out lies

    and a person who stirs up conflict in the community

    Proverbs 6:16-19

    So has God changed his mind? I think not.

  12. poohpity says:

    Joyce, please do share what human being has had thoroughly pure motives or thoughts not tainted other than Jesus?

  13. street says:

    mart said,”we need to decide whether we can honor Jesus-like behavior wherever we see it without jumping to conclusions about one another, or someone else, that God alone is in a position to judge.”

    a servant is not above his master. to make judgments about what is Jesus-like behavior is to make oneself greater than Jesus? certainly greater than the one we judge.

    let me try a different approach to this. my brother-in-law has a masters in theology. he told me he wanted to go back to school to study systematic theology and build one. i remember hearing a learned man and respected Bible teacher say systematic theology doesn’t work. you always have parts left over. to me it would be like putting God into a box for convenience. the truth of the matter is God likes to destroy the boxes. i think subconsciously we build these ineffective systems to help us navigate through life. Jesus did not leave us high and dry. mart is correct in mentioning these two chapters as a truer and better.

  14. joycemb says:

    Pooh actions are what Solomon is talking about, not motives. Only God can judge the heart, but actions define our daily living situations and the consequences thereof.

    Street I took systematic theology courses in school also and came to the same conclusions that no matter what system you choose there are always unanswerable questions left over. Sometimes we just have to take an eclectic approach and trust God for the outcome. I think that’s why I love the mystery that is God because if I don’t have the answer I know He does! Yay!

  15. joycemb says:

    Or think I have the answer :-)

  16. joycemb says:

    Romans 14 has nothing to do with what goes on here. We are not disagreeing over what rules of law to follow or not follow. I quit reading my LifeApplication study Bible a long time ago because of the liberty it takes on applying everything to everything. The weaker brother, yes we overlook and not judge their actions pertaining to whether they eat fish on Friday or not, but to use it as a covering for those things I brought up in Proverbs is a real stretch for me. I’m probably wrong, but God will tell me. For now this is my conviction.

  17. jeff1 says:

    The fact that I am not steadfast in my behaviour means I have to take responsibility when I do not behave Christ like towards others. What makes me different from a worldly person is that I should take responsibility for wrong doing or wrong behaviour otherwise how can I expect that God will use me in His will if I am not reflecting it.

  18. street says:

    jeff i think you hit bulls eye with the word will.
    been thinking about this will of God and how it is understood. God gave us a choice, somewhere in there is a will. i come back to these saying don’t judge, live by faith, be holy, forgive one another, show no partiality, owe no man nothing but love, walk by the Spirit. You shall live by every Word that proceeds from the mouth of God. God’s will for us to live and not die.

    the death and resurrection breaks this cycle of sin and death for the believer. the Holy Spirit is given for assurance of new life and as a helper. it seems, to build a box would be like building am idol. faith is much more difficult, but it is not arbitrary or precarious. it can be precarious if we make judgments about what we see and hear that seem not right and are the will of God, such as the suffering of the innocent. jobs friends got into hot water with God in their theology and job had to bail them out. a true friend covers a multitude of sin because of their love.

    i remember God using really wicked people to punish less wicked people. either way He will not tolerate evil. these are forms of correction. very difficult at best. also jonah’s response to the kindness and mercy of God to the assyrians is quite interesting. the road is very narrow. stay focused on the Word.

  19. street says:

    jeff said,”What makes me different from a worldly person is that I should take responsibility for wrong doing or wrong behaviour otherwise how can I expect that God will use me in His will..”

    we call this repentance.

    i don’t think there is much difference between a christian and a none christian at present in this way. we both get choices but we do not get to choose the consequences of our actions. God will make a distinction between the two in the future. i also understand we both receive God’s grace and mercy here and now. for the saint it will continue forever. we need to abide in this grace mercy and love in away that makes Christ visible to our non believing contemporaries. they will turn and give thanks to God because of Him not us. i have to admit it a joy to be in the presents of one who is in harmony with God. the iron sharpening iron is still a painful processes. nothing gets are attention more quickly than pain and suffering and bringing with it the deep and personal questions. thinking we have to go through the tempest to see God correctly, yet He came down to earth to see us. there in lies our faith. He speaks to us.

  20. joycemb says:

    Yes going through the tempest….certainly that was God’s plan when he gave Satan permission to ruin Jobs life. Are we any different, really? My life certainly went from bad to worse after I converted. It was about 6 weeks of glory hallelujahs then I lost everything. That was when I learned to say glory hallelujah through tears, anquish, and deep sorrow. Yet 30 years later I still have nothing-just what I need though from one month to the next. And the consistent presence of Jesus! Worth more than all the gold/silver/diamonds in the world! It wasn’t my will for all this, but His will to do whatever it took to conform me to His image. Yes I’d say His will will be done whether we like it or not, even if we are dragged kicking and screaming through the countryside. Or if we have to be swallowed by a big fish!

  21. joycemb says:

    I was also thinking about God’s will today when I was talking with a friend about me moving back to the area I used to live in before I retired 2 years ago. It is no longer working out for me to stay here around my adult children who want nothing to do with me. (Unfortunately their wealth/status is getting in between us, again.) She said, “It wasn’t a mistake you moved you know”. I said I know, it was God’s will and though I don’t know exactly what He is doing in my kids lives spiritually, I trust and believe He wants them back more than I want a relationship with them. And it’s time for me to get out of the way, about 150 miles away, lol!

    Sometimes it’s just wise to leave. I can still love them but it’s up to God to teach them to love me back.

  22. street says:

    steve said,”that we are all human beings living together in the only world there is.”

    i believe in God and this God reveled by Christ has saved the best for last. looking for an eternity of blessing and joy with God that begin here. this perishable will put on imperishable. there is a new heaven and a new earth for new life.

    thinking further about seeing that the palace Gods lives in heaven. the foundation reaches down to the earth. God was happy and perfect yet decided to build a residence that included man. He could have chosen anything to live in or nothing, but chose man to live in and reflect His Glory.

    satan was indeed beautiful and great in the presents of God it did not come from himself but from the presents of God. it did not work to well for him when he rejected God. repentance humility walking by the light of His Word as He tries and test us. but most of all abiding in His Love.

  23. jeff1 says:

    What you said Joyce about kicking and screaming but God will conform us to His will. I sometimes believe I make it hard on myself because my beliefs get in the way. I struggle with whether I am putting God or the law first.
    I have to trust God on this for confusion sets in when I try to understand myself.

  24. street says:

    steve said,”Anyone who has lived among other people have come across someone, who no matter what, they just don’t like.”

    i was thinking along the same lines recently of why i would like one person more than another. i ran across the term natural affection. these affections are governed by the flesh or instinct. much like an animal except we are are moral agents of responsibility, not animals, whether we understand this or not.

    earlier i blogged about running across such people and not liking anything about them, should we not extend kindness goodness and patients to them just like God extended to us. God’s way is a very high road less traveled. the idea there is something in us that is likable comes from hell. now for a person with the Holy Spirit living in them, it’s entirely a different matter. how so, is the subject of much discussion on this blog.

  25. joycemb says:

    Viv I’ve always heard that confusion is of the devil. That said, when I’m confused which happens often I look up and say “Jesus, I trust in You!” Maybe 2-3 times until my thoughts are off of myself and on Him. Some days I feel like I am full of the devil so who knows really, but I trust in Jesus to work things out. Write it on your computer, put it on your bathroom mirror, the refrigerator handle. Jesus I trust in You!

  26. street says:

    Beginning with our differences is a non-starter for getting anywhere together. But all too often finding agreement isn’t easy. Pope Francis’ visit to America, like Jesus’ arrival in Jerusalem, is a timely example.

    thinking relationships based on differences end on good friday. hope began before the resurrection. after we see how high the path is and how high the cost is. we need to be reminded about this love everyday. most of all to spend time with Him.

  27. poohpity says:


  28. poohpity says:

    Spending time with Him is what transforms our thinking, will, purpose and goals.

  29. street says:

    was also thinking about how opposites attract and the same things repels in magnetism. thinking further that looking at something not so agreeable to your natural affection might be looking into a mirror. but then again we were never called to live by our natural affections. God gives us new ones, they are learn just like the other ones. the other ones have gotten a head start. when we deny ourselves and take up our cross these natural affections begin to die. i wish it was as easy as turning on a light, but that is not the way God has chosen for us to grow. looking forward to perfection and life. i don’t like fall down.

  30. street says:

    paul’s prayer in Philippians
    8 For God is my witness, how I long for you all with the affection of Christ Jesus. 9 And this I pray, that your love may abound still more and more in real knowledge and all discernment, 10 so that you may approve the things that are excellent, in order to be sincere and blameless until the day of Christ; 11 having been filled with the fruit of righteousness which comes through Jesus Christ, to the glory and praise of God.

    new and refined affections through longing for truth and love in the inmost parts? the kind that transforms person and circumstances. it only comes from Jesus.

  31. street says:

    found this verse very interesting in regard to our disagreements.

    12 So then, my beloved, just as you have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your salvation with fear and trembling; 13 for it is God who is at work in you, both to will and to work for His good pleasure.

    remembering God uses the wicked to accomplish His purposes too like the devil and the romans. we will never be able to put God in a box, He is to be worshiped.

  32. SFDBWV says:

    I read yesterday that Jeb Bush believes that immigrants should adopt the culture of America, not continue a culture of from wherever they came. That they become American, not a foreigner in America.

    Most likely I am getting some of this wrong, but the gist is for all of us to have the common ground of being American’s.

    I remember when an admitted non-Christian began questioning the foundation of our beliefs here on this blog I ask why would someone come on a Christian blog and not be Christian and challenge our collective faith.

    His answer was he had gotten the invitation to join the conversation via RBC email.

    After a few months of conversation he left deciding he would rather be what he is than become what he sees us to be.

    It is a given understanding that God wrote/encoded eternity on the hearts of mankind. For most that internal instinct is for the purpose of seeking out God and recognizing Him when found.

    “In our conversations today here, at the coffee shop, or in the lunch room at work.” Our common ground begins with being human and begins to diversify from there.

    It is said that “birds of a feather flock together.” As an observer of nature I am all too familiar with “the pecking order.”

    As we gather here in this venue our commonality is that we all are people struggling with life as Christians. Clearly the “pecking order” is at play here just like everywhere else in the natural world.

    Our choices are to ruffle our feathers, peck back, fly away or be killed off.

    What happens though when we try and honor Jesus by living as He has ask us to do and yet are subjected to un-honorable behavior by what looks like pseud-Christian behavior?

    The Scripture tells us to shun such people, remove them or ourselves from their influence, to pray for them, but not allow them to even be in our homes.

    Here as only participants in a community of participants our only real option is to either stand our ground, peck back or fly away.

    When we fly away the problem remains and has victory over all that removes themselves in the pecking order.

    The problem is that over time and all too sadly the only one remaining is the one with the problem, all alone as everyone else has flown away.

    36 degrees this morning under a starry sky.


  33. jeff1 says:

    To follow in Christ’s footsteps is to put up with behaviour that drives me to His arms. He went to His father for rest from the behaviour of those who did not understand Him. It is for us to go to Him for our rest when others upset or misunderstand us. The more I focus on Christ the less I will feel upset when people either intentionally or unintentionally ruffle my feathers. In a world where Christianity has been marginalized we will be subjected to more criticism and in some cases hatred towards us. It was never going to be an easy choice the Bible shows us how difficult it was for our forefathers. Hence why we fall down and get up until God calls us home as I see it. It is also sharing our trials with each other that sustains our faith for it can feel lonely when trials come. I find that knowing others have struggles too make me realize I am not the only one who finds trials difficult and listening to how others have dealt with them can enlighten me how to strengthen my faith where I might otherwise give up on God or myself. We are in the race together, Christ is what we agree on, everything else should be secondary but we have to make that choice daily. When I choose Christ I have reflected the God of heaven but when I do not put Him first then I am not. I do not believe I am any different to other Christians, there are days I do better than others but thankfully God loves us enough to allow us to grow individually and we need to allow others the same leverage for in doing that we are behaving towards others as Christ as behaved towards us.

  34. foreverblessed says:

    Hallo Jeff, I was going to post in the same line as you just did:
    going to Christ with our being upset!

    I was thinking about what Bubbles wrote last topic:
    Eph 4:29-30
    What words do we use here?
    Wholesome talk, that which is edifying. So as not to grieve the Holy Spirit…
    There is a bible verse preceding to that:
    v 22 to put of your old self.
    23 and put on the new self

    what about it here: if we feel misjudged, our comment misinterpreted, do we give a reaction out of discomfort, out of irritation? Yes, we do.
    But…we should take these reaction to God Himself, to the Throne of Grace, and deal with them there. And then come back to this blog. But we don’t. We post immediately.
    And that gives a strange mixture.
    At one post we say with our words how wonderful God is, and the next one we give our meaning about another blogging person.

    This, my brotheres should not be so.
    With the tongue we praiw God the Father, and with it we curse men, who have been made in the God’s likeness.
    James 3:9-10

    I myself have a great feeling that those who used harsh words in the last topic should say sorry, after they have said sorry, then go on to say how wonderful God’s grace is. Otherwise this is all hypocritical.

    James goes on the say, how to treate this, James 3:13-18 together with what he had already written in James 1:5 If anyone lacks anything, peace, (even if misjudged by fellow bloggers) love (when feeling irritated by another blogger) etc,ask God for everything that is peace, love, impartial, wise, that is from above
    Peacemakers that sow in peace raise a harvest of righteousness, (only in Christ is righteousness). So in Christ we are right. Bring all what you are to Him, and sit at His feet, and then come back here, in His righteousness! Yes

  35. foreverblessed says:

    Narrow, I have a word for you in the last topic.
    God bless you even more now, and strengthen you!

  36. foreverblessed says:

    Sorry for all the typos, I should have checked before posting my brotheres= my brothers
    praiw God= Praise God

    God’s throne in heaven, but His feet on earth
    Isa 66:1
    As what Street was saying a few times now already.
    We go to the throne in heaven, sit on His lap, with our worries, stress,our hurt feelings. There we ask for His peace, wisdom, discernment, and above all LOVE and then glide back, along His legs and on His feet and land again on earth!
    Filled with all these treasures from above.

  37. poohpity says:

    Wow that must have been horrible for a non-believer coming to a so called Christian site searching for Christ only to be run off. How do non-believers ever become believers if that is how they are treated? Viv, you are right in treating others the way Christ has treated us; it was Him who went searching for those who needed Him, those who were lost not those who thought they were good, those are the very one’s that Jesus did not want to spend time around because their self righteousness caused them to look down on others. One of our purposes is to go into the world sharing the gospel, making disciples. In other words introducing Jesus to them. Coming to a Christian site that Jesus was no where to be found, wow.

  38. poohpity says:

    Jesus never seemed to show favoritism or partiality. He seemed to value all people and wanted them to come to Him as brothers/sisters through the bond of our faith in Jesus. Sharing the level ground found at the foot of the Cross. We, those who have professed faith in Christ, are not enemies of one another through that alone we can find unity not to be exclusive but to be inclusive of each other. Seeing each other through God’s eyes not our prejudices and differences but that which we can agree on. We do not receive accolades or high honors for doing that which followers of Christ do because of who we follow well unless we follow other people and not Christ.

  39. joycemb says:

    Jeremiah’s complaint: 12:1
    12 Righteous are you, O Lord,
    when I complain to you;
    yet I would plead my case before you.
    Why does the way of the wicked prosper?
    Why do all who are treacherous thrive?

    My heart is heavy this morning with this very complaint, even before I got on-line. Habakkuk and all the others had their times of questioning also. We are all very human yet, why does deception flourish? Only God knows, HIS purposes to fulfill.

    Sometimes it’s the long wait that’s hard.

  40. joycemb says:

    Mobile-friendly – John 13:23 –At the last supper, “One of his disciples, the one whom Jesus loved, was reclining at Jesus’ side”.

    Jesus had a favorite, we all have favorites, there’s nothing sinful about that.

    Personally I like Steve because he’s a strong leader, ( not an authority but leader) and his life and words show it. That’s the test isn’t it? We are to love even our enemies, those whose hearts are black but we are never told to hang around with them. Whether it’s in the neighborhood or a blog. The danger is we become like them because the Enemy is very cunning. I’ve battled Satan more times than I can count and I’m tired. Spiritual warfare is draining. I’m drained but filled with Gods comfort.

  41. joycemb says:

    We all gather at the feet of Jesus, at the foot of the cross. The gathering is just a gathering. Even Satan has an audience with God as we find in Job. Jesus said there would be wolves, tares among the wheat. We are to love all as they appear, yet, be wise as serpents and gentle as doves. Martyrdom is not our decision or choice even, it’s Gods’.
    His purposes to be fulfilled.

  42. joycemb says:

    The Good News is not a fairy tale. It’s much deeper than that. Much deeper.

  43. poohpity says:

    I know Steve is an awesome guy and I respect how he cares for his son. I can see you follow Steve like he said, “birds of a feather flock together” which a majority of those left on here do as well. Steve is a the leader in his community, in his home, and on Mart’s blog but where are the one’s who follow Jesus? Where have they all gone? I remember when Steve first came on here guiding the discussions as far away from the topic as possible and he has won, he now rules the roost here. Like you said Joyce he is a good leader but where and to whom is he leading you?

    The battles we face; “For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the powers, against the world forces of this darkness, against the spiritual forces of wickedness in the heavenly places.” Those battles belong to the Lord and when we surrender to Him, He fights those battles for us.

  44. poohpity says:

    Yes John did refer to himself as the disciple whom Jesus loved but was that Jesus saying He was the only one? Could it be because John knew his own heart and how much he loved Jesus and it was returned?

  45. joycemb says:

    He is a leader on this blog, but Jesus is my savior, not Steve. Just because you disagree with him and his leadership style does not make him a devil. The fruits Jesus produces in him and many many others here are palpable and obvious. Yours not so much. That’s just the way it is.

  46. joycemb says:

    One can manipulate scripture to say whatever it is they want it to say, but God’s purposes will be fulfilled here and on earth.

  47. poohpity says:

    I remember the very first person that Steve guided off the blog, DMG. Boy she used to slam Mart, calling him names and say his topics were many things other than what they said but then Steve took over her role and told Mart the very same things she used to. Joyce I never said Steve was the devil, he is just another sojourner with all of us, just a human being.

  48. poohpity says:

    Following anyone other than Christ can lead us into prejudices, divisions, dehumanizing and demonetization of other people rather than to unity of cause, purpose and goals.

  49. joycemb says:

    No fruit here today

  50. joycemb says:

    I shouldn’t have said that. His purposes will be fulfilled, whether there is deception caused by using the most Holy Name of Jesus to coverup one’s sin-filled heart or just use the name give in scripture to the Most High.

    Why do the wicked prosper? I don’t know. But in the end, His will and purposes here will be fulfilled. On that I hang my life.

  51. narrowpathseeker says:

    I am sorry but I will NOT let Pooh’s CONTINUOUS blatant and/or subtle lies and vicious attacks go unchallenged. It is NOT right and to allow it, ignore it, or excuse it is NOT right either. I LOVE my children and grandchildren, but I don’t IGNORE, ALLOW, nor EXCUSE lies and vicious behavior.. STEVE never attacked Mart, and Steve is a true man of God that shows his Christianity through action and his words. BUT POOH, Mart is about the ONLY one that you HAVEN’T attacked and that is because it wouldn’t serve your manipulative agenda.

    I have long been baffled as to why Mart allows it here as I have always thought very highly of him way back before this blog, when his BTA tracts came monthly with ODB. Mere limited intelligence can discern someone that attacks and robs them of their peace, joy, etc without ceasing for more than a few days at a time. So I don’t believe Mart is lacking awareness of what you do and I also don’t believe he can be deceived with sickening flattery. The more I read Acts chapter 16, the more I wonder if it is fear that allows such a person free reign to do as they will. When Paul cast the wicked spirit out of the soothsayer, her masters went to the authorities and subsequently Paul and the disciples were beaten. Could this be the reasoning that allows this? Well, I don’t know anything for sure, but I DO know that I will not be robbed of my joy, peace, etc by the devil on a Christian blog. I will continue to pray for EVERYONE here but I will not subject myself to this nonsense another day. If Pooh should EVER admit to her offenses, repent, apologize, and stop lying… please someone email me. Lord have mercy on us all.

  52. joycemb says:

    I know Pearl, slander is a grievous thing. I’m just as sick about it as you and others are.
    I have a feeling somewhere the enemy is rejoicing. Let’s not let him steal our joy. If we keep looking up and ahead and try to refocus our attention on what is true, honest, just, lovely, pure, and praiseworthy we get through the hard things. Working hard at it myself today as so much is going on in my world that’s frustrating and just NOT FAIR!! But we’re not promised fair I guess. Not yet.

  53. narrowpathseeker says:

    Froeverblessed, I left you a message in last topic, thanking you for your concern and beautiful spirit.

    Joyce, I will refocus on what is good as you say, but I really think it is best for me and everyone here if I stay away.. I am sure the enemy is rejoicing at this time but it won’t last…he and his demons are going down…I don’t want to be with them.. ;-) will converse with you soon.

  54. joycemb says:

    Mart you said: “In our conversations today here, at the coffee shop, or in the lunch room at work, we need to decide whether we can honor Jesus-like behavior wherever we see it…”.

    Mart that’s the issue we are struggling with. What to do when we don’t see Jesus-like behavior. And consistently don’t see it. I guess ignoring the opposite behavior is what you are trying teach us here? And to learn how to respond gracefully to consistent un-Jesus-like behavior? I don’t think I’m getting it. Would you please put your thoughts into different words on this subject? Thank you.

  55. joycemb says:

    My Utmost today does help explain some of the problems here. Confessing not just admitting sin. More prayer needed against strongholds of the will. Or can anyone change another’s will? Just asking myself this question. Hmmmm. I think the only way one’s will can be changed is if their very life is at stake.

  56. joycemb says:

    Uncle street help me please!

  57. street says:

    mart said,” we need to decide whether we can honor Jesus-like behavior wherever we see it without jumping to conclusions about one another, or someone else, that God alone is in a position to judge.

    thinking along these lines. man is made in the image of God and his behavior is similar yet distinct and fallen. thinking God’s behavior responses are righteous and based in His perfect character. man not so much, even thought we see God express all the emotions and responses of man. mart is correct in stating only God can judge these responses. a wise man could possible draw out a motive into the open or even short comings. even so, we still have a choice to agree or disagree with on the table. i guess it comes down to does Jesus have all of me or none of me. when He comes to the human heart and takes up residence He will eventually renovate the whole person. it’s only a matter of time according to His choosing. the word sanctification comes to mind. the other word justification seems to be in conflict. i don’t think so, both are true….they both reveal something very powerful and at work in a child of faith. His Spirit. it seems to me we need to be listening to the Spirit more than each other. i have always had difficulty weighing in on the faith with others because of all the difficulties. i have never had trouble with grace and mercy that are found in Christ.

    this brings me to something that was said earlier about sliding off or out of the presents of Jesus. next time need a break.

  58. joycemb says:

    Street I knew you would have a good answer. My thinking and yours are polar opposites, however, I like your way of thinking better; “i have always had difficulty weighing in on the faith with others because of all the difficulties. i have never had trouble with grace and mercy that are found in Christ”.

    I think your are right about staying more in the Presence and less in conversations about faith. Actually I’ve been trying to stay more in the Presence, but obviously the little test God has given me I have failed. Never too late to start over again. Takes discipline which only the Holy Spirit can give me if I will take it.

  59. street says:

    poo said,”Following anyone other than Christ can lead us into prejudices, divisions, dehumanizing and demonetization of other people rather than to unity of cause, purpose and goals.”

    my thinking is if you don’t want God to rule over you, some else will be more than happy to take up the spot in a lesser inefficient unloving ignorant godless fashion. then the politics show up. with God it’s not politics, it’s dissidence. He’s perfect for the job. the part we need to hold on to the most is He is crazy in love with us and He is Holy. be Holy for He is Holy. i am so glad He has removed the barrier of sin by His Son.

  60. joycemb says:

    I am impressed by Pope Francis’ message to the U.S. congress today:
    “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.”

    That pretty much sums it up.

  61. Regina says:

    Good Evening, All,
    Pray all is well in your lives. Haven’t read the entire intro comment yet, but I want to share my thoughts on Mart’s first sentence,
    “Knowing when to settle for our agreements rather than trying to graciously forge through our disagreements requires the art and gift of wisdom.”

    Knowing what to say and what not to say requires prayer and the wisdom of God. So, my constant prayer needs to be, “Dear LORD, please give me your supernatural wisdom, according to James 1:5, and help me to be slow to speak and swift to hear. You said a soft answer turns away wrath, and I want my words and actions to be pleasing in your sight. In Jesus’ name, I pray. Amen.”

    86 degrees and a partly cloudy night in my neck of the woods…

    Love to all,

  62. jeff1 says:

    What you said Joyce about ‘Do unto others as you would have them do unto you’

    I think as followers of Christ more than this is required when others do not treat us as we would want them too.

    Christ said ‘Forgive them Father for they known not what they do’. We who claim to know Christ must be able to do the same or else we do Christ no justice.
    We must give others the benefit of any doubt we have as regards their knowing or not of what they do. It is what Christ did and for this world to reflect Him then the same action is required to reflect the truth of the Gospel.

    If I do not then in this world I am as much part of the problem then part of the solution. God came to save the world not me from the world, it is inclusive not exclusive. Forgiveness is the key for without it the cycle continues and it is in Christ we are equal, no buts it is finished in Christ. God says, not any power on earth, God’s word not man’s.

  63. bubbles says:

    The pope and his sayings don’t impress me in any way. He’s an elderly man and that’s all he is.

  64. SFDBWV says:

    An eye opener for me many years ago was when I read that there was/is a “prince” of the kingdom of Persia that interfered with what is perceived as an angel of the Lord in his coming to Daniel. In fact this angel said he needed the Archangel Michael’s help in getting through. (Daniel 10: 10-13)

    Paul tells us that our battle is not with flesh and blood, but with “principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness, of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.” (Ephesians 6:12)

    This spiritual influence both influences those it can and grows stronger by those who are influenced by it.

    The full armor of God is what Paul tells us is needed in order to combat such evil. (Ephesians 6:13-18)

    Jesus tells us that He came to set us free of these powers and influences and their grip on us.

    In essence He has given us authority over these “principalities and powers” through Him and His authority.

    I have not spoken nor accused a single person by name in my attempts to discuss this topic Mart has presented, but that has not kept me from being attacked personally as I have been laying down my foundation for my thoughts.

    I expect no less, as my message of hoping to discuss the cause of our community’s problems and seek healing comes in direct conflict with the spirit of strife.

    I deeply appreciate Pearl and Joyce’s confidence in me and my messages as their confidence is rooted in our Lord, not me. And I appreciate their defense of me personally. They are my friends.

    I do apologize to all that my name is used in an attempt to sew discord among us, as I have no control over the words and actions of another, I still feel bad that the discussion becomes soiled as a result.

    I feel it not totally necessary to quote Scripture as I feel certain all here are familiar with it but here goes;
    Galatians 5:19 addresses the works of the flesh, and Galatians 5:22, 23 addresses the works of the Spirit. Which do you see expressed here and which do you follow in your responses to conversation among any?

    Because I had to address the situation regarding accusations and slurs against me, my train of thought and continuance of the subject matter had to be somewhat sidelined for today; sorry for that, but I am not going away and will have more to say concerning the subject matter tomorrow morning.

    50 degrees and partially cloudy this morning.


  65. oneg2dblu says:

    Brother Steve… Glad to hear you are taking the high road on this particular attack.
    Perhaps we can see here Mark’s underlying premise in action, as we all can choose a lower road as well, but, we are being taught a better way.
    What most perplexes me about your particular choice of verses is the avoidance of the verses that actually connect those choices together.
    Are we only to “believe and follow” certain ones, and intentionally avoid the others?
    And, if so, why?
    Just asking for the entire context to be exposed here, not trying to set up any contention or provoke arguments.
    I am only asking a simple question here, because we all tend pick and choose our road and our verses which support our beliefs.
    What was “left out,” was Paul’s very clear warning, “I warn you, as I did before, that those who live like this will not inherit the kingdom of God.
    I wish Paul was writing to only the world of unbelievers, those who were not Followers of Christ and already saved,
    But, he was writing to the churches in Galatia, to all those who were gathered there.
    Without belaboring further the list of lifestyles which are clearly opposing following the Spirit, and not Under the LAW, could also be those very things that Paul believes and says here,”those who live like this will not inherit the kingdom of God.”
    Was Paul misleading his people, or, was Paul just teaching us the truth?
    To All gathered here… “Have a blessed day,as you can also choose to take the Higher Road.”

  66. joycemb says:

    Hi Gary nice to know you didn’t pack up and move away. I’m really not trying to be contentious, but reading what you said about Paul’s writings in Galatians my thinking is that he is speaking to believers yes, but is he speaking to believers about the behavior of unbelievers, or about behaviors of so-called believers in their midst? What’s your take? Should we or can we use these scriptures to warn the elect, or to explain to the elect why those outside the faith will not find grace in the Kingdom of God? If I am making no sense it is because sometimes I make no sense. Thinking gets me in trouble a LOT lately. Trying to tone it down. Grace and mercy are the better way.

    Doesn’t even a Catholic Pope deserve grace and mercy? Are we judging him? Just thinking, again. Oh my…hush up!

  67. poohpity says:

    “a fly in the ointment/soup”; “the elephant in the room”; “phoney”; “wolf in sheep’s clothing”; “ugly cancer” who were these directed towards? Is this not name calling and personal attacks?

  68. street says:

    dear loved ones. this business of speaking well is a worth while and great goal. job did very well even in the midst of gravely difficult circumstances. his faith held firm and the reward was beyond anything he hoped for. an audience and relationship with God. it seems to me that speaking well is a difficult and precarious thing for us. first off knowing the truth will help, but with out love and faith there is no opportunity for establishing a relationship and a walk together. if you know the truth fine, but if your not listening to your fellow sojourner you can not possibly speak well. if your not listening to your fellow man are you listening to the Holy Spirit that dwells in you? i remind you of the flesh that has spoken and lead you astray on several occasions is present too. God has given everything we need to please Him. work out your faith in fear and trembling. His love and faithfulness will keep you sure footed and firm.

    gary….i have to say you are consistent to the point of irritation. i remind you that if you put a stumbling block in front of your brother and they suffer from it, you will not be held guiltless. let the Sheppard of souls do what you are trying to do. i truly hope we have all gotten past our battles of doubt, second guessing and wild speculations.

    to Him be the Power, the Glory, and the Dominion, now and forever.

  69. jeff1 says:

    For something to lift my mood I like a gospel song and this is one I enjoy, hope you do too.

    Reach Out To Jesus

    Is your burden heavy as you bear it all alone?
    Does the road you travel, harbour dangers yet unknown?
    Are you growin’ weary in the struggle of it all?
    Jesus will help you when on his name you call.

    He’s always there hearing every prayer, faithful and true
    Walking by our side, in his love we hide all the day through
    When you get discouraged just remember what to do
    Reach out to Jesus, he’s reaching out to you.

    Is the life your living filled with sorrow and despair?
    Does the future press you with its worry and its scare?
    Are you tired and jealous, have you almost your way?
    Jesus will help you, just talk to him today.

  70. rokdude5 says:

    Hello BTA folks.

    For me whatever I disagree on, I do so in an “agreeable” manner.


  71. oneg2dblu says:

    street… Could you not identify with Paul’s words?

    Or is it just my bringing them into the dialogue, or is it their truth that irritates you?

    Or is the context of what I referred to, the skipping happily around the word and picking and choosing, from the category I would label “word light,” where we all can so easily fall victim to only the parts we choose to identify with?

    Or, is “the list” of those who still choose to live a certain way that Paul says, “will not enter the kingdom,” more of a stumbling block for you, your beliefs, or current lifestyle?

    My guess would be, that if you already are sold out to believe a teaching that says, once saved always saved as being your only truth, then you may well want to think that the Apostle Paul, who was clearly led by the Holy Spirit, is likely not really loving, or being truthful here.

    Does one really suffer a brother, or really love a brother, by exposing the context of knowing that Paul warned the churches repeatedly for a reason, that their very eternity is threatened by how they choose to live, unless they change.

    As you are exposed to the truth here found in Paul’s words, and if that truth then makes you stumble, then you have stumbled onto something much more irritating then I, by finding that the way you live, just may well be your part in your own eternity.

    How irritating that must be for some to hear, especially if they currently believe otherwise.

    Paul obviously had a different teacher then the many who take the wide road today.

    Just thinking…


  72. joycemb says:

    Also thinking….
    Earlier today I was very very sad and depressed over the tone of this blog. Then I read ODB and reread Gal. chapter 4 and now I am great! The Holy Spirit is so faithful to keep us in the Truth. The Truth that sets us free, free to love, overlook others faults, stop counting up the sins of others, and trusting that it IS finished, really, just like Jesus said.

    I’m seeing Light again, praise God!

  73. joycemb says:

    And, because I am seeing Light again I choose to forgive everyone on this blog for hurting/upsetting me and ask everyone else to also forgive me for hurting/upsetting/labeling, etc. I can get very defensive/angry about things that I have no control over. Which is pretty much everything, LOL!

    I can be right, or I can be at peace.
    I choose peace, the kind that Jesus gives me and us all, or I can choose to return hurt for hurt, bitterness and anger. I’m done with it.

  74. street says:

    gary who is paul?

  75. oneg2dblu says:

    joyce… yes the tone, it is straining at times. I for one completely forgive you for any tone in your voice that you wish were not there. Be at peace and know you are forgiven.

  76. street says:

    gary said,”Are we only to “believe and follow” certain ones, and intentionally avoid the others?”

    gary the christian faith is based in the choice by God to save certain individuals according to His grace will and mercy in Christ Jesus. it is a relationship established by God and sealed by the Holy Spirit. this salvation is available to everyone, but they are incapable of understanding it or it’s power. even christians sealed with the Holy Spirit still struggle with it and their flesh. it’s really fun to get Dad’s attention when we please Him and very trying when we don’t. the question how do we please Him? in the flesh i think not. paul did talk about subjecting His body to the Spirit not to the law. the law can still keep you out of a lot of hardship and difficulties, but it takes His Spirit to do this. remember apart from me you can do nothing?

  77. street says:

    gary said,”Just asking for the entire context to be exposed here, ”

    sometimes God doesn’t tell us everything. His choice. if you see something others don’t see are you really seeing something? if you did see something others do not, tell me how you can explain something that is beyond them in way they can understand what they can not?

    just asking. i do know knowledge puffs up and i am not immune to it. i do know knowledge will be done away with some day.

  78. oneg2dblu says:

    As Steve would say, “I had expected nothing less.

    Enjoy the anticipation of receiving an answer, as I know I am.

  79. poohpity says:

    RJ, I am part of a theater company and we are doing “To Kill A Mockingbird” right now. That is the kind of attitude that Atticus Finch has. Simple and to the point.

    Can you imagine if we were only surrounded by people that agree with us, that think the same way we do and never stretch us to consider other things? It would be pretty boring wouldn’t it? When we did not agree with them instantly we are deemed enemies and become hostile towards them?

    In this play it was an uneducated family that stirred up the community to want to kill an innocent man to hide their own actions that went against the social norms. Atticus taught his children not to make judgements about others until they could walk around in their skin because you never know what one is going through.

  80. poohpity says:

    Not really all social norms but guilt as well.

  81. street says:

    gary i did run across some problems the church encountered with the idea of predestination or eternal security. one was the euphoric high of going to heaven and being of no earthly good and the other of great despair from dealing with sin leading to giving up thinking you are destine to to hell. knowledge does come with a high price tag. we still should not shy away from getting to know Dad better. the world really needs salt and light that are found in Christ Jesus and so do we. the enlightenment and preservation of God’s love and His immutable promises keep us going. the blood of the Lamb is His signature.

  82. oneg2dblu says:

    street… my last post @709 was in reply to your 633 question, “who is paul?”

  83. oneg2dblu says:

    street… to your 721, all those things you just said are true, but, is predestination and once saved always saved or eternal security, really a problem of the church?

    Or, are they more likely problems encountered in the actual knowledge, or understanding, of the word as interpreted by man?

    Makes one wonder if Paul had problems with his message, of seeing sin issues being a problem for those people in the church who were not living right, yet had euphoric high thinking, but were actually destined to go to hell, unless they changed.

  84. poohpity says:

    Yes Gary, God goes back on His promises all the time, we just can not trust Him to be faithful and snatching our salvation back after gifting it to us.

  85. poohpity says:

    Gary, what is it that prompts bringing up the same old things over, over, over, over and over again? Do you know what Paul’s message was? What was he jailed, persecuted, stoned, whipped and ship wrecked for? How does that apply to finding our center and walking in a high and wide way?

  86. poohpity says:

    I do know that Jesus’ message to Paul was that because of his treatment of those who follow Him(Jesus), killing them, being mean and ugly to them Paul was doing it to Jesus. If one is doing things to those who follow Jesus they are doing it to Jesus.

  87. street says:

    poo said,”Can you imagine if we were only surrounded by people that agree with us, that think the same way we do and never stretch us to consider other things? It would be pretty boring wouldn’t it?”

    i have never experienced this problem in my entire life. the only time i get bored is with myself and and same ole same ole. at first glance it is a good point.

    i wonder how adam and eve felt about considering other things? ops.

    thinking of colonel potter in mash playing the same song sentimental journey over and over for hours.

    discovery is a good thing, sin not so much.

  88. joycemb says:

    Pooh your 8:53 comment’
    I hadn’t thought about that. I am remembering how Jesus responded to insults, beatings, etc etc. Just like Paul and others. They did not ‘fight’ back in our language. They took it for the sake of the gospel. Many Catholic saints teach the same thing. Paul said in Col.1:24 “I am glad when I suffer for you in my body, for I am participating in the sufferings of Christ that continue for his body, the church.”
    Very good point to bring to BTA right now.

  89. poohpity says:

    street, didn’t Adam and Eve get to talk with God about everything there was to discover? So it would never be the same ol same ol or get boring. They were in the presence of infinite wisdom and knowledge.

  90. street says:

    gary said,”Makes one wonder if Paul had problems with his message, of seeing sin issues being a problem for those people in the church who were not living right, yet had euphoric high thinking, but were actually destined to go to hell, unless they changed.”

    i don’t think for one moment paul struggled with his understanding in the Old Testament or the New which was not complete in his day. even peter wrote that unskilled or unlearned men would have a difficult time with keeping up with paul. peter was humble enough admit even he had a difficult time with him but understood they served the same master. the grace they both received is not less or greater then what we have received. i am amazed and astounded by it all. they are truly great gifts to the church. we all aspire to be like abraham or moses, but we find ourselves more like jacob. gary God saves the jacobs of this world right in front of the people who have no understanding of what is going on. we should be greatly ashamed if they did not know and we did. pray for your loved ones and ask God to extent His salvation to more. the time is short and the darkness is deep. may we be found faithful and ready when He returns.

  91. joycemb says:

    Look where Adam and Eve’s search for knowledge got them, and us! Another great point tonight, Street!

  92. street says:

    gary it occurred to me that your mo of asking questions about the past or get it right, crossing all you t’s and doting your i’s is an impossible assent for man, not so hard for the Son of Man or those walking by the Spirit. where’s the mercy and grace?
    i understand God will not tolerate any sin in His presents. i also understand He will complete what He started. i have a feeling we will be done with sin too.
    a verse comes to mind frequently to me, those who suffer ceases from sin. if not for the steadfast character of God we certainly would not have any assurance at all. we do need comfort and assurance and a good Father see to this. the question with the kids is, do i trust Him? i am beginning to see that my dad loves me and stuck around when others dads did not yet we were not close. i know others will read this and not be as blessed as we wish we were, but God in His great mercy and love will keep His promises to adopt you and be a Father to you and show you how to live joyfully. stay close hold on Dad is a loving disciplinarian. i don’t think i would have it any other way seeing what sin can do. God can do better and He proved it at the cross.

    gary you would have to admit that the blood of Christ cleans us from our sin and sustains us in our walk.

  93. street says:

    poo i don’t think adam and eve never got to know God very well unless they ate from the tree of life which they did not before they were kicked out. i am thinking the tree of life is Jesus and He is still available. if they did eat from the tree of life i don’t think they would have ever fallen. sin had it’s effect on man and God and through it we discover who and what we are and begin our quest for the knowledge of God. who mercifully is reaching out to us. it’s like living with family members your whole life and not knowing or asking who are what they are. sin shattered our innocence, but i believe they could have gotten to know God with out sinning but that’s not the way it worked out. God was not surprised.

    poo you said it like being in the presents of infinite wisdom and knowledge. well i am sitting here with and internet connection and more info than i could possible processes or use. how our wills and God power are worked out in heaven will be very interesting indeed. in other words this relationship has to be established by mutual agreement. i think and unreserved and unrestricted is best considering who is on the other side. God bless you in my wild speculation i hope i did not speak beyond my boundaries. be very careful speculation can cause much harm.

  94. foreverblessed says:

    Joining a christian blog for me was to be encouraged in our daily walk with living people.
    I was reading devotionals, from Spurgeion, the twolisteners and Oswald Chambers, (that’s how I found RBC), but these people are all dead. Joining the living, and actually talking with them was a great added value.
    all of us here are still maturing, growing, so some times things go wrong. Just as in church, where things go wrong. But overall I am encouraged.
    When it goes wrong it is a test, am I hurt in y own ego, then it is a matter of killing the old man.
    If I am discouraged, I am learning to immediately go to Christ, and ask Him what He is saying to me. Christ is always loving, and encouraging, if He warns me, He does it lovingly. Our fellow christian is not Christ, and is learning.

    I started to see what else is on RBC, the radio broadcasts, 3 people talking things over in their walk with God. They are so courteous, no negative comments towards each other. We should follow their example here on this blog.
    Stay courteous and mild when things go a strange way.
    (Like what Pooh wrote about Steve, what a strange way of thinking. I hope the issues you have Pooh, here in this blog, that you resolve it with your Lord and Master. I pray for you, and for your peace.)
    As Mart writes, do not jump to conclusions about one another. Neither does God, He waits

    I listen to Discover the Word, August 17 and onwards, about Psalm 46, that God is with us IN the storm, He does not take the storm away.
    That is what I am trying here, when the going is rough. God is with us, and guiding each one of us. As I believe that all of us are sincere seekers to follow God.
    God could lead Jacob to his knees in Pniel finally, and so He can with the hardest of us here.
    That is God the Holy Spirit.

    Count on the Holy Spirit to lead us, to make us holy and unblemished, in the old wording of the bible.

  95. foreverblessed says:

    Mart is talking about us telling our own experiences. My own experience is that I came from a legalistic church, hammering down the commandments of God. That when we love God we obey Him. And all the verses in the bible warning us for falling away. I know them all by heart.
    But I needed to hear what the positive verses in the bible are.
    That when I believe in Christ, and have faith in Him, I AM His child.
    Romans 8,
    Thanks Joyce, for Gal 4, and the Song of Solomon, is Gods love letter to me. He loves me, it is so hard for me to get that message. There must be something in me that is wrong, and that makes God really angry at me. Fear, in the wrong way.
    It is with cords of love that God is drawing me.

    The love that is burning hot, and is like a fire, that also burns away in me, all that does not belong to Him. But in Love.
    Where there is love there is no fear.
    THanks Street for all your encouragements, and Joyce, I would like to encourage you too, Look to Jesus, and all His assets of Grace, and mercy, to all who turn in sincerity to Him. ANd You are sincere.

    And I am so happy for Jeff, that she is learning to throw away negative thoughts, and I pray that God will strengthen her and free her from all that is evil.
    Her story here is such an encouragement, and that makes this blog worthwhile.
    Look at the positive side. Many have been encouraged her all these years!
    And I pray that many more will be encouraged in their walk with God, Jesus and the Holy Spirit,
    They are ONE.

  96. SFDBWV says:

    As I have grown older in my faith as a follower of Jesus it has always bothered me that as Christians about the only thing we agree with is a belief in Jesus.

    In one conversation with Jesus the Disciples tell Jesus they told someone to stop using the name of Jesus because the individual is not a part of the original group. (Mark 9:38)

    Jesus says “Forbid him not”; “For he that is not against us is on our part.” (Mark 9:39, 40)

    I have had to adopt this Divine advice in my view of what appears to be a very fractured Christianity, with some reservations and caution.

    As a result on the surface we can agree, but once we scratch below the surface differences begin to appear.

    So what do we do? Do we stop with just an acceptance that we both consider Jesus to be Lord or do we dig deeper by sharing how we think about various subjects?

    Here in this *arena* we talk about what we think about, that is the purpose of being here. However is it our duty to convince everyone else to think the same way about everything else except that Jesus is Lord?

    Is it not courteous to allow others to express their views without correction?

    If when we discuss our thoughts and it then becomes a debate are we changing the concept of sharing our thoughts?

    I would like to believe that Christians are Christians whether they go by the name of Catholic, Eastern Orthodox, or the endless names under the banner of Protestant.

    I would like to believe Jesus when He said if they are not against us they are on our part.

    It is heartbreaking to see the anger and hatred that follows from the basics of centering on a common belief that Jesus is Lord, but the elephant in the room is the fact that these differences exist and exist with deep resentments and emotions.

    If we can find peace in Jesus we need to quit looking any further for answers or questions and simply rest in that peace…Easy to say, but when found a great release.

    53 and cloudy, we won’t get to see either the “Blood Moon” or the lunar eclipse this weekend with rain in the forecast.


  97. poohpity says:

    forever, what did you find strange about what I said about Steve? I said he was an awesome guy, I have much respect for his parenting or that he was a leader which one was strange or untrue?

  98. poohpity says:

    street, God walked and talked with Adam and Eve face to face how much closer or more intimate could that be? Rather than being satisfied with walking with God they wanted to be like God they wanted more.

  99. poohpity says:

    “Mart is talking about us telling our own experiences” I would add in regards to the topic laid before us. Does that mean when we do not understand the topic that we just start one of our own? It really doesn’t make any difference any more anyway.

    Thinking about the wide road that Paul was talking about in Romans 14 he eluded to not letting the differences cause division or contempt for each other; “for if we live, we live for the Lord, or if we die, we die for the Lord; therefore whether we live or die, we are the Lord’s. 9For to this end Christ died and lived again, that He might be Lord both of the dead and of the living. 10But you, why do you judge your brother? Or you again, why do you regard your brother with contempt? For we will all stand before the judgment seat of God.…” They way I understand that is simply to talk about the things of God not each other or gossip.

    Elenore Roosevelt said, “Great minds discuss ideas; average minds discuss events; small minds discuss people.” When one discusses the things of God our minds grow and we grow closer to God getting an on going glimpse about His character, His wisdom, His attributes learning about His promises but more than anything else His grace and mercy shown to the undeserving.

  100. poohpity says:

    Maru, I really miss you. :-( I felt you were a kindred spirit and so enjoyed our discussions.

  101. poohpity says:

    Maybe if we are not experiencing unity with other believers we need to examine ourselves that does not mean to examine, judge or jump to conclusions of others. Paul said, “Examine yourselves, to see whether you are in the faith. Test yourselves. Or do you not realize this about yourselves, that Jesus Christ is in you?—unless indeed you fail to meet the test!” Do I have concern and care for my brothers/sisters in Christ or do I see them as enemies with batches of anger, hatred, jealousy and malice towards them? We(those in Christ Jesus) are all one in purpose, cause and service rooted and established in love. Is our goal to destroy each other?

  102. joycemb says:

    Pooh those are some hard questions you are asking yourself today.

  103. joycemb says:

    I guess the outcome tells the truth.

  104. poohpity says:

    Joyce, I ask myself lots of questions daily on what my motivations are, where is my heart or focus is. A lot of times I do not like the answers either that is when I confess them to God and thank Him for His forgiveness. It is really not that hard to be honest with myself had a lot of time learning. No sense in trying to fool myself since God already knows and He is all that is important to me cause I know He loves me warts and all.

  105. joycemb says:

    Yes He does!

  106. tracey5tgbtg says:

    Stopped in to read posts. Just like a car wreck, it is impossible to look away.

    God knows – He definitely knows – that I am not perfect and I generally cringe when I go back and read the posts I have made in the past. (what was I thinking?) He knows that many times I am annoyed by the comments I read here, and many times I am truly moved, but I rarely comment to let that person know.

    Pooh – I think you really enjoy this blog and having discussions. Mart has stepped away from this blog almost completely. It does not appear to be a part of ODB ministries. I am surprised we are able to still post here. I think, Pooh, that you say the things you do because you are trying to get people to post something, anything, good or bad, because you want to keep the discussion going.

    I also think that God loves you warts and all.

    I don’t think anyone here is any better or worse than anyone else, or that anyone has a greater grip on being right than anyone else.

    Rambling. Wish Mart would post more, but I think that BTA is something that has had it’s moment and is now fading away – unless the comments become such that they point people to the Good News of the grace of God; of the love of Jesus Christ our Lord God and Savior. We are sinners in need of a Savior, and that Savior has come. It is finished. Let everything that has breath praise Him.

  107. joycemb says:

    You said Pooh: “I remember when Steve first came on here guiding the discussions as far away from the topic as possible and he has won, he now rules the roost here. Like you said Joyce he is a good leader but where and to whom is he leading you?”

    Steve always leads to Christ, to whatever is true, honest, just, lovely, pure, peaceable, etc. He’s not perfect-none of us are- but his leadership here is exemplary as far as I can tell. By their fruits you shall know them. Good fruit here. I don’t really think ‘winning’ is in his vocabulary either. I do think that using the gifts he’s been given and trained for he does to the best of his ability-leadership-and that because of God’s grace.

    These are my observations..

  108. poohpity says:

    tracey, I have not cringed at the things you have said. I do not look at things on here as good or bad, right or wrong. I try to look at the front of the tapestry when I look at the back with all the knots, lose strings, threads dangling I miss what the front looks like. That each string has it’s place in the grand scheme of things to form a beautiful art work and yes relationships can get messy that’s because we are messy people. I agree the need for our Savior to fill us joy and He needs to be our focus until He has finished His work in us then we see without our specific string there would be a blank space. Every string fills a void somehow and left in the hands of the Master designer it all works out.

  109. poohpity says:

    Ooops I do look at wrong when someone misuses, misquotes the bible. ;-)

  110. poohpity says:

    Joyce is it lovely, pure, peaceable to call names, devaluing another person’s character? Maybe it seems appropriate for others who do the same things but is it really lovely, pure? It is so easy to be kind to those who agree with you, think the way you do and put you on a pedestal but where the rubber meets the road is when we deal with those who think differently, disagree and do not put someone on a pedestal that is when the real heart comes out. As Jesus put it, “If you love those who love you, what benefit is that to you? For even sinners love those who love them. 33 And if you do good to those who do good to you, what benefit is that to you? For even sinners do the same.”

  111. oneg2dblu says:

    sounds like the same ole to me…

  112. joycemb says:

    Pooh! You answered my response to your question with another question! I have no response to your latest question. Sorry.

  113. oneg2dblu says:

    What is the standard for showing one has truly repented and turned to God?

    Does the biblical standard found in the word, actually judge another by how they live?

    According to John the Baptist, Christ, the Disciples, and Paul, to name a few, “Repent,” was the first word used in their ministry.

    For John the Baptist, Christ said, “I tell you among those born of women no one is greater than John the Baptist..

    John the Baptist says, “Prove by the way you live that you have repented of your sins and turned to God.

    Matthew 3:8 NLT, and in Luke 3:8 NLT.

    Could any of us here today say, “How we Christians live is no one else’s business and makes no difference, and anyone who says otherwise is just being judgmental?”

    They are only irritating us, over, and over, and over.

    I’ve recently read under the heading Christian Love, “The Christian love that Paul displayed had eternity in mind. It was central in all he did and taught.Sin is always the issue throughout the entire Bible, including after Calvary.
    Sin drags people to hell(Mark 9:43-48) and therefor must be resisted and warned about.
    Even the righteous can die spiritually, just as God’s first recorded words to Adam were a dire warning about quick spiritual death because of sin in Genesis 2:17.
    Paul warned the saints the same way throughout all his epistles. Over, and over, to the Corinthians this is shown, especially in 1 Corinthians chapters 5&6.
    The sexually immoral man of 1 Corinthians 5:1-5 was shown to be wicked (5:13). Such people who commit that type of sin, will not inherit the kingdom of God unless they change.
    Paul didn’t believe there were any Christian sexually immoral people (like the once saved always proponents do) and wanted others to know the same about that sin.”

    Christian Love Warns About Sin’s Lethal Power

    But, our modern Eternal Security or O.S.A.S. thinking today says, “What difference does it make now?”

    Sound familiar?

    In His Love, Gary

  114. oneg2dblu says:

    joyce… it seems to be the new standard here for some, when you ask them a question, one they can’t answer because it challenges them, or makes them uncomfortable, or even eat their own words, they avoid answering and ask you a question instead, or change the subject, and there in, providing no answer, and no resolve.
    But, we can all learn some thing here,, we can see how they remain stuck.
    Thinking they are back in control, by their provoking more dialogue, over, and over, and over…
    But, that is just my thoughts…
    Love, Gary

  115. oneg2dblu says:

    joyce… I know that when I am asked things in a certain provocative way, which asks only to hear what the questioner already knows, or wants to hear, then, you dance to their dance, as you fall into their trap.
    Discernment is the only way out.
    Knowing the difference between, when you are being played with, and know when you are being stretched rightly.
    As you have said, their tone will become obvious.
    Be Blessed, Gary

  116. joycemb says:

    My daughter has a favorite saying:
    Be kind always, as you never know what that person is dealing with.

    I like that.

  117. poohpity says:

    Specifically for Gary to answer his questions.

    “What is the standard for showing one has truly repented and turned to God?” God alone is in a position to judge. So does it matter what any other human being says?

    “Does the biblical standard found in the word, actually judge another by how they live?” God alone is in a position to judge. Only God truly knows one’s heart. Does one truly know what that biblical standard says if they do not know the bible?

    “Could any of us here today say, “How we Christians live is no one else’s business and makes no difference, and anyone who says otherwise is just being judgmental?” God alone is in a position to judge. Especially on here no one really knows anyone well enough to know how they live their lives.

    “But, our modern Eternal Security or O.S.A.S. thinking today says, “What difference does it make now?” To understand that God alone is in a position to judge.

    “Sound familiar?” That God alone is in a position to judge? Yes I believe God is and I trust that judgement in His worthy care because He is Omnipotent, Omnipresent and Omniscience.

  118. poohpity says:

    Bottom line is we, people, just do not know enough so God alone is in a position to judge.

  119. street says:

    poo said,”street, didn’t Adam and Eve get to talk with God about everything there was to discover? So it would never be the same ol same ol or get boring. They were in the presence of infinite wisdom and knowledge.”

    been thinking about this relationship. it’s depth could have been developed without sin. now it is developed in the presents of sin. God would not be hindered in either case. remember the parable of he wheat and the tares. they were words sown in soil. we really don’t know our potential till we accept wheat or tares. both potentials are possible but not at the same time. you have to chose. we lost our innocence a long time ago. in choosing we find out what we are. we can not reach or be what we were intended on our own apart from God. thinking He would have to tell us. on our own we could not get there. thinking of abraham and moses who received instruction from God and they obeyed. there is no possible way they could have done God’s will for their lives without instruction. abraham would have grown up and died in ur and moses would have died in midian a Sheppard. believing God changed them and established a relationship. thinking believing God made them sons. this is for gary no amount of sin would change that fact, and there’s no limit to God’s ability to discipline and correct the son He loves. you can play this game with words, but i would not do it with God. reverence and fear are needed along with love and assurance. the assurance and love come from God not man.

  120. street says:

    “Anyone who withholds kindness from a friend forsakes the fear of the Almighty. [15] But my brothers are as undependable as intermittent streams, as the streams that overflow

  121. joycemb says:

    Those verses from Job and the context are powerful.

  122. street says:

    I was reading devotionals, from Spurgeion, the twolisteners and Oswald Chambers, (that’s how I found RBC), but these people are all dead.

    i have been reading books from dead guys and i thank God for them and their faithfulness. i will always treasure them for the fire God kindled with them.

  123. cbrown says:

    Matthew 11:11New International Version (NIV)

    11 Truly I tell you, among those born of women there has not risen anyone greater than John the Baptist; yet whoever is least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he.

    “you must be born again.”

    New International Version (NIV)
    Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

  124. street says:

    Regina i think you are on to something in your comment about listening. today i heard someone venting. if you understand venting, no response instruction or teaching is required. most of the time they just want someone to listen. to get it off their chest. in a way it helps people process what is going on. this is something i believe God wants us to come to Him for. you might think of just taking big problems to God, but they are all small to Him. why not take the other small problems too? i think He really wants to build a relationship of love and trust. sometimes we are too independent. people speak for other reasons and it is up to the listener to discern what is going on and how to respond correctly. if we don’t know silence may be a good coarse of action.
    God is allowed to paint us into corners and dead ends. they help break down our false beliefs. on the other hand i would not want to paint God into a corner like job did. this was one of the things satan tested Jesus on in the desert, about putting God to the test. it’s a really bad place to be.

  125. street says:

    gary said,”it seems to be the new standard here for some, when you ask them a question, one they can’t answer because it challenges them, or makes them uncomfortable, or even eat their own words, they avoid answering and ask you a question instead, or change the subject, and there in, providing no answer, and no resolve.”

    Jesus responded to questions on more than one occasion with a question. if you look at His question it is to clarify there position so they could not avoid His answer. He truly is the Master Teacher.

    i seems to me that you offer no answer or no resolve either. would it not be better for the hearers if you were more strait forward and to the point? arguing ideas is one thing, refining a message is another.

  126. oneg2dblu says:

    pooh says…Specifically for Gary to answer his questions.

    Of course, my reply is for pooh and all…

    Gary asks all…
    “What is the standard for showing one has truly repented and turned to God?”

    I actually exposed several verses, which apparently do not fit pooh’s standards.

    Answers from pooh in another question form, pooh asks…

    “So does it matter what any other human being says?”

    My answer, also back to her in question form… so we can not resolve, but only question, again, and again, and again.

    Do you mean it does not matter what is written in the word by any other person?

    Let’s say, “How about John the Baptist, who I gave you verses to read, again, and again, being you claim to have read the entire bible so many times now you’ve certainly encountered these words before, but to you, do those words ever matter?

    How about, Matthew, Mark, Luke, John, do their words matter?

    How about all the Prophets, do their words matter?

    How about the Psalms, do those words matter?

    How about the entire bible?

    pooh asks…

    Does one truly know what that biblical standard says if they do not know the bible?

    Now, there’s a deep hit to left field, looking ever so promising, but it is caught, held captive to Christ, and you are out.

    Out of Context.

    We are not talking to or about people here who do not know the bible, as we are talking about Paul in the epistles, and like Paul, we are also talking to believers.

    Here’s what the word says, once you have been exposed to the Word of God, which is actually what “IS” happening here, when we share verses, then you certainly ARE to be held to them, accountable.

    First because,
    “Faith comes by hearing and hearing the word of God.”

    That is one I am sure you have no conflict with being held accountable.

    Christ said, (who are those in my family), or my mother and my brothers, but those who hear the word and put into practice what it says?

    Luke 8:21

    “Repent and turn to God.” too many verses to list…

    The very Words spoken by Christ, and by many other people according to the word of God, which you lay claim to already know.

    So, you are just playing with words again, and that will not produce any resolve.

    But, “Resolve is not what you are looking for, is it?”

    One can only tell a good tree by its good fruit, and repentance without change is dead or fruitless living.

    The axe is waiting by the stump ready to cut down those who do not produce, they are to be thrown into the fire.

    Luke 6:43 ” No good tree bears bad fruit, nor does a bad tree
    bear good fruit. Each tree, (person) is recognized by its own fruit.”

    But, don’t take my word on that, check out His Word, again, and again, and again.

  127. oneg2dblu says:

    street says…i seems to me that you offer no answer or no resolve either. would it not be better for the hearers if you were more strait forward and to the point? arguing ideas is one thing, refining a message is another.

    I thought I just had said something about using discernment, and then, you bring it up into the next conversation with another.

    So, it seems to me that you do listen, especially when you are not too busy posting questions yourself.

    “Who is Paul?”


  128. oneg2dblu says:

    Could you ever imagine that God has brought us all here, for His Purposes, even to witness this car wreck, “love those ever fitting choice of words,” and we are all at a point of discovering exactly what He is looking to teach us all?
    One exchange of ideas at a time, over, and over again, until we get it!
    Let me say this one more time, and probably not my last time, so just relax, “Faith that is not tested, can not be trusted.”
    Be Blessed, Gary

  129. cbrown says:

    So Gary you are the one that is testing us?

  130. poohpity says:

    lol Yes he is testing us to see if we can unscramble the various points to make sense of an unclear hypothesis that is not clearly stated from the left field to the bottom of the right field turned into a muted focus that is questioned but then there is the answer to the question that was not asked.

  131. joycemb says:

    Mart you said:
    Who can deny that by looking for and walking these two “high and wide” roads— we can make progress in moving from the agreements that deepen our sense of unity… through and beyond the disagreements that our God alone is in a position to judge?

    This is hard to do. We often loose sight of the goal because we get caught up in the personality difficulties.
    Hoping for a better day today,
    love and blessings to all,

  132. oneg2dblu says:

    joyce… yes, we all have personal difficulties, they are a gift from God, a thorn in our side, a cross we must bear, a limp that does not go away, the battlefield of the mind, all gifts to those who know God, and know that He brings all things together for the good of those who are in Christ Jesus.
    We are Blessed to have them, and each other.

    To All…
    There is no question about whether or how God has already judged, as we all know, God made all mankind, loves all mankind, and He will judge all mankind in the end.

    But, is that the whole story?

    It is obvious to me from reading the scriptures, that God also still sees sin, even though He knew the heart of David, which the word says was clearly for God, He also saw the sin David allowed in his life. Ouch!

    God made a judgment call on that sin and punished David severely by taking his son.

    God clearly also saw the hearts of all mankind prior to the flood as well, and because their hearts were wicked, He took sever action on them as well.

    God created Adam, as the very first man Adam was born righteous or completely sin free.

    He knew God personally and talked to God daily, but, when he sinned, God saw it and made a judgment call on that sin, and today none are even born righteous anymore, but all possess a sin nature.

    So, the gifts that God first gave Adam, everlasting life, (Adam, unlike all others since Adam, had no expiration date on him) he was also righteous, and sinless in nature, but, all those things were definitely lost through Adam’s sin, and all mankind has been, making wrong choices, living wrong lifestyles, displaying wrong motives, exercising wrong thinking, and sinning ever since.

    Any questions about what God actually took away from man?

    God took away from Eve pain free childbirth that which was to be painless, but was changed into what we have today.

    He also gave mankind hard labor to replace what was there before it, (easy diggin’ and no thorns)…and added toil to all man’s days.

    He shortened our lifetimes as a result of sin.

    Where is that “once given gift” to man, the Garden of Eden today?

    Oh that’s right, God took it away from man when he banned man from entering it again.

    Just some thoughts about the gifts we were at one time given.

    But, I may be wrong…

  133. joycemb says:

    Gary I think only a born-again person can understand how God can completely forgive and put a new life inside them, don’t you think? If I view all scripture as pertaining to me in my flesh, then I am doomed. But in the Spirit there is a whole other World out there where life is actually good and we don’t have to worry about sin, pain, and death because it’s all been taken care of. It does require walking in the Sprit though. We can, still, sin in the flesh if we want to. So I suppose that those who are walking after the flesh will reap the consequences as you point out, whether born-again or not. Am I understanding your understanding of scripture?

  134. joycemb says:

    As the flesh decays, at it does, I pray more and more, Come Lord Jesus.

  135. joycemb says:

    Gary I don’t think that God is the mean old man that you portray Him to be sometimes. I don’t think God ‘gave’ curses as much as He proclaimed the consequences of Adam and Eve’s sin. Because they and we often choose to disobey we end up walking the hard road not because God wills it but because we choose to walk away from God. What a mess we have since Adam and Eve. Not only do we suffer the consequences of our own sin, but of the sin of others. The world is a treacherous place. The Bible, however says to ‘be in the world but not of it’. (Somewhere)

  136. joycemb says:

    Gary you’ve talked before about the ‘sin’ that brought you to your knees when you walked into a church. Do you still feel like you are being somehow punished for that particular sin? You will find so much freedom if you can forgive yourself and God. So much freedom. We’re all ragged from sin and those of us who came to God later in life, I was 30, with 30 years of decay and damage to deal with do have a harder time finding that grace and believing it for everything we have done or has been done to us. But the more I find that grace is all-sufficient, the better off I am.

  137. Regina says:

    Good Evening, All
    Pray all is well in your lives. Have read most of the comments on this blog topic, and I have been blessed, challenged and strengthened in my personal walk with the LORD… foreverblessed, pooh, Steve, Gary and all thank you for the wisdom that you share on this blog post. And, Tracey, I pray it doesn’t fade away… I’m growing spiritually from the wisdom shared on this blog. I pray that Mart knows how much we (those of us who comment daily, frequently and every once in awhile) really appreciate this blog site. It’s been online for years, and I think it has become a “landmark” blog site… Like the “Statue of Liberty” in New York and the “Washington Monument” in Washington, DC. :-)

    Off topic here… pooh, I love the novel, “To Kill A Mockingbird”! It’s a timeless classic, and I’ve seen the movie on tv about 5 times or more! I ((LOVE)) Gregory Peck’s role as Atticus Finch, the caring, humble…even selfless attorney who attempts to defend an innocent black man who’d been accused of raping a white woman. Think “To Kill A…” and “Uncle Tom’s Cabin” (Harriet Beecher Stowe) should be required reading for every high school-er and college student.

    Still off topic… Was watching a tv show the other day, pooh, (“Border Wars”) about a day in the lives of the U.S. Border Patrol, those who protect the border that separates Nogales, Arizona and Nogales Sonora Mexico. The Arizona Border Patrol protects that border (wall) all day, everyday with high-tech, state-of-the-art equipment! Wow! I had never seen the Mexico-United States Border (a wall that’s almost 2,000 miles long!). No one ever mentioned it when I was in grade school, middle school, high school or college. Ironically, the length of the border (wall) in Texas (my state) is bigger than the one in Arizona. Have you ever been to Nogales, Arizona? Have never seen a show about the Texas-Mexico border…

    88 degrees and partly cloudy in my neck of the woods…

    Love to all,

  138. Regina says:

    street said,
    “Regina i think you are on to something in your comment about listening. today i heard someone venting. if you understand venting, no response instruction or teaching is required. most of the time they just want someone to listen. to get it off their chest. in a way it helps people process what is going on.”

    Yes, street, the LORD provided many opportunities for me to learn the value of being “slow to speak” and “swift to hear.” It took a lot of practice, let me tell you! And, while I can’t say I’ve mastered it, I can definitely say that I’m better than I used to be. Praise the LORD! :-) Want to share a testimony… I was in a frustrating situation recently (with a former roommate), and the LORD spoke to me, so clearly in my spirit, and said “a soft answer turns away wrath.” I took God’s advice, and it worked beautifully, as it always does (the roommate who was not a very good roommate moved out)!

    Love to all,

  139. street says:

    mart said,”we can make progress in moving from the agreements that deepen our sense of unity… through and beyond the disagreements that our God alone is in a position to judge?”

    i think of moses leading the people out of egypt and all the things they encountered. thinking moses was close to a few people, but for the rest he was distant, and person not to know very well even if the things he did affected your everyday life. these agreements and disagreements seem to me like some kind of treaty God warned us not to make. do you think we make them out of ignorance of God’s Word and will?

  140. oneg2dblu says:

    joyce… be at peace and know my old sins are just as forgiven as yours. We are both to be free of the guilt and free from the sentence of death which our old condition would have brought upon us, but, because we have repented and turned to God, we were raised to new life, and forgiven them.

    Now to your second point, which is the one I make all the time, and in only love and caring for my other brothers and sisters in Christ, saying only this, that if we are still stuck, still living in those same things we “were” forgiven in the past, we are living without any true repentance for those sins, and the guilt which still hold us captive, for we have not yet turned away from them and turned to God.

    My case in point, although extreme, makes my point very clear…

    If as the scriptures says, while you “were” still sinners, Christ died on the Cross for our sins, regardless how many or how awful, when you repented and turned to God for His Forgiveness, you “were” forgiven them.
    There apparently was a record somewhere of all sins that “were forgiven you” at that time, and we and God know exactly what those sins were.

    We got a fresh start, a new life, and a Deposit of the Holy Spirit, all that given to us in one point of time, when we were Born Again.

    They were the sins that were forgiven, that was the record of sin that was removed from our old man rap sheet, and we were free to walk on, or away from it, without the burden of the guilt that it brought upon us.

    But, the rest of the world, and the rest of our lives not yet lived, awaits us, and just as Our Salvation into the Kingdom of God awaits Christ’s returning, which is another moment in time, that has not yet fully elapsed.

    We only experienced our initial salvation, and we only received our initial forgiveness, for we can not repent of anything we have not yet committed or experienced.

    We live in a reality of, one tic of time, at a time. We do not live in the past, or the future, that is the stuff of science fiction, and not our reality.

    So, how we live for Christ makes a difference in our daily walk with Him, and it certainly makes a difference in the world we live in.

    If we again choose to live as the rest of the world now lives, living in sin instead, as you say, we are not walking in the Spirit, but in the flesh.

    Now the rubber hits the road, and the road very quickly divides, as there are some who are taught that how they live after receiving initial salvation, initial forgiveness, and although scripture clearly tells of many who were initially found righteous, but through making wrong choices,suddenly became spiritually dead, and some even physically dead as well.

    But, that premise will never be received, if some find they must choose to believe otherwise.

    To me, the Holy Scriptures can always be trusted, even almost as much as the very Word of God Himself.

    We will never be able run on both sides of that divided road at the same time, as we must each take one side or the other, and what a car wreck we witness today as each side tries to direct its traffic to their side of the that road.


  141. street says:

    gary said.”Just some thoughts about the gifts we were at one time given.

    But, I may be wrong…

    yes you are wrong….

    God did not take away from man what God gave him, God only added to what man wanted, knowledge of good and evil. now even i have to admit that God said to him who has even more will be give, to him who has not even what he has will be taken away. this will be future at judgment. i do know also as we get older God starts taking things away to. eventually everything….thinking so we can have all of Him.

  142. street says:

    dear God if the ax is laid at the base of the tree please chop me down and save me from the many words of gary.

    gary said,”If as the scriptures says, while you “were” still sinners, Christ died on the Cross for our sins, regardless how many or how awful, when you repented and turned to God for His Forgiveness, you “were” forgiven them.
    There apparently was a record somewhere of all sins that “were forgiven you” at that time, and we and God know exactly what those sins were.”

    gary you missed the trees because of the the forest again. if we are saved by Jesus death how much more by His Life as a true High Priest. a dead Jesus is a problem for the devil, Jesus is a bigger problem after the resurrection.

    “and we and God know exactly what those sins were.”you need some serious explaining on this one. most sins are done in ignorance….my people die from a lack of knowledge come to mind?

  143. street says:

    gary said,”We will never be able run on both sides of that divided road at the same time, as we must each take one side or the other”

    my understanding is a narrow road with a ditch on either side. trouble is we find ourselves in the ditch often and when we get out we find ourselves in the ditch on the other side. God is really giving us an education isn’t He?

  144. joycemb says:

    The book of Colossians comes to mind; The all-sufficiency of Christ. It’s a short read. But beautifully explains our position in Christ, and how we are to live as Christ-followers. I think it takes a whole life-time to learn to do it perfectly, and then thankfully Jesus comes.
    I am learning it’s not wise or expedient to judge another Christians’ walk. I’ve been a slow learner. God keep helping me.

  145. poohpity says:

    Gary, where is it written there is a record of our sins? What it does say however is “As far as the east is from the west, So far has He removed our transgressions from us.” and “Otherwise Christ would have had to suffer many times since the creation of the world. But he has appeared once for all at the culmination of the ages to do away with sin by the sacrifice of himself.” All sins are forgiven past present and future. God knows the sins we will commit because He is omnipotent that is why Christ’s sacrifice finished it once and for all.

    Our salvation is in Heaven not waiting for Christ return but for us to shed this flesh and go to our eternal home; “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who according to His great mercy has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, to obtain an inheritance which is imperishable and undefiled and will not fade away, reserved in heaven for you, who are protected by the power of God through faith for a salvation ready to be revealed in the last time.”

    No one who has received Christ’s forgiveness ever lives the same again because we are “Born Again” the past is gone and we now live for Christ Jesus. We can trust the Holy scriptures but we can NOT trust what you say about them.

  146. joycemb says:

    Gary check this out:
    Colossians 1:21 And although you were formerly alienated and hostile in mind, engaged in evil deeds, 22 yet He has now reconciled you in His fleshly body through death, in order to present you before Him holy and blameless and beyond reproach— 23 if indeed you continue in [ad]the faith firmly established and steadfast, and not moved away from the hope of the gospel that you have heard, which was proclaimed in all creation under heaven, and of which I, Paul, [ae]was made a [af]minister.

    Notice Paul says, “If you indeed continue in the faith firmly establish and steadfast, and not moved away from the hope of the gospel….

    The danger to Christians is in rejecting Christ.

  147. joycemb says:

    street your prayer about the axe and the tree are really making me LOL tonight! Thanks, I needed that.

  148. poohpity says:

    Oh Joyce, on ODB you said you know I have a life time of service but you do not even know me or what I have done so how would you know that?

  149. joycemb says:

    Pooh, you’ve talked on here about working with homeless as a detox counselor, working in human services, in the church etc. I guess I believed what you have said here. That’s all.

  150. joycemb says:

    You also talked a while back about writing programs for how to talk to people for a ministry in your church. I remember praying about that with you here also.

  151. joycemb says:

    Maybe I have been duped. Not my problem.

  152. SFDBWV says:

    I couldn’t help but notice that Fox news showed the Pope’s service in Philadelphia without commercial interruption. Followed by continued coverage with an almost reverent interest and coverage concluding with his plane lifting off on its way back to Rome.

    The Popes message to America being one of hope and service to the needy.

    One commentator making the observation that there were a million people there to be a part of the event without a single incident of crime or violence.

    Sadly this past week there were some 700 people trampled to death in a human stampede in Saudi Arabia during a pilgrimage to Mecca.

    Something deep within our DNA stirs up in us an emotion so intense that we are brought to tears and trembling as well as over-zealous devotion to our faith.

    Personally I was very pleased to see our Lord Jesus get so much attention on the TV news as the conversation was as much about being Christian as it was about hearing what the Pope had to say.

    Listening to a sermon about Nebuchadnezzar’s dream of the statue of man on David Jeramiah also lifted me up as I found myself hearing a conformation of what I believe also in that we are living in the last days before our Lord returns.

    As always when I think about the Lords return I think about if it were to happen within the next few moments what do I want to be doing or saying or where is my heart when that instant in time comes?

    I then am reminded that this is how my attitude should be at all times.

    Gary, it is my opinion that you can believe as you want regarding our differences. Nothing I am going to say will change your mind. You have only made your walk in faith more difficult for yourself, not for me. But we can agree that Jesus of Nazareth is Lord and know by such a statement that the Holy Spirit is within us.

    For many of us that is all we need to know and hold on to as we await His return.

    Just want to ad that when Jesus told Peter that Satan had ask to sift Peter, Jesus did not say that Satan was allowed to. I don’t believe we should sift one another either.

    Overcast, foggy and wet here in the mountains. No observation of a “super moon” or a “Blood moon” either one, just another night.


  153. oneg2dblu says:

    And on and on it goes, this divided road we are on.
    So much division if fact that it will take much time to defend every thing I believe that others are having such problems with.
    Here is some of their tone, and my response to it.

    Street says: in his 734 reply, where I say I may be wrong, he says, yes, you are wrong.
    First he saves that God does not take away but gives man what he wants.
    I ask in reply, “Did Adam who was clearly righteous in God’s sight, also “want” to disobey God?
    Did Eve want to be deceived?
    Or, after being deceived, she loving and caring for her mate, only want to share with him?
    I believe, that even those in the church who are deceived by false teaching, want to share that falsehood with others they love and care for, so that is why false teaching is so prevalent and dangerous today.
    But, I may be wrong.
    I will say this though to street, in your own words, you say that God does take away things from us as we age.
    Which is it my friend, does God take away, or not take away?
    Would you say that the gift of “initial innocence of mankind” was taken away from all mankind by the wishes and will of God, because of Sin?
    Have a blessed day my friend, Gary

  154. poohpity says:

    Joyce those were jobs I had, not how I reach out daily to people in the name of Jesus. The first half of my life was not spent working for the Lord. I was only trying to say it sounded like you know me but you really don’t. It is OK not many of us on here know how others live their everyday lives but make the mistake of judging like we think we know.

  155. oneg2dblu says:

    To the tone of street in his 753 reply, “dear God if the ax is laid at the base of the tree please chop me down and save me from the many words of gary.

    Street the axe lies at the base of the tree that will be chopped down because it is unfruitful, not because it listens to another brothers beliefs.

    Which is saying, in your own words, that listening to me makes you unfruitful.

    Perhaps you may be onto something there, being that your tone is so very personally demeaning.
    Just a thought…

    I have already forgiven you for that particular tone though.

    Now on to the other point you have made,

    I said, “and we and God know exactly what those sins were.”

    I was only speaking to the sins we know, and we all know which ones they are.

    The scripture says, “All have sinned and fallen short of the Glory of God.” Romans 3:23

    It is by the very sins we know about ourselves that we are convicted and repent, that is from my experience, and yours may be different.

    But, I may be wrong…

    We can not know which sins we are forgiven, if we do not know what they are, those sins my friend, “Only God knows.”

    But, I may be wrong…

    I say back to you, “you need some serious explaining on this one.”

    ” most sins are done in ignorance….my people die from a lack of knowledge come to mind?

    To me, that lack of knowledge is exactly why God gives us the Great Commission, to bring the Good News to all nations, to the ends of the earth.

    But, I may be wrong…

    Explain to me which things exactly “comes to mind” in you, for the knowledge of that which you lack?

    If you name only one thing, then, you do not die for lack of its knowledge.

    You see, that a non resolvable premise.

    Now, we do know however, that there are Sins of Commission, and Sins of Omission, but those sins, we certainly have knowledge of.

    Those are the sins I was referring to, for I alone have no other knowledge except for what I already know, and those that God reveals to me.

    All the other sins, the unknown ones you apparently are referring to, I currently have no knowledge of them.

    But, trust me my friend, as soon as they come to be in my knowledge, I will immediately confess them, and repent of them, and receive from my Father, His Forgiveness.

    The scripture says, If you confess your sins… you will be forgiven them.

    Those last few words were shared in my own words, so you can quote me on them, if it pleases you.

    But, I may be wrong…

  156. oneg2dblu says:

    Sorry I have to go to work now as there are hungry mouths to feed there, in fact, everywhere it seems to me, people are hungry.
    Be Blessed, Gary

  157. joycemb says:

    My apologies Pooh

  158. joycemb says:

    My apologies to you also Gary in laughing at Streets comment, I heard his exasperation only without thinking of your feelings. I was wrong to make light of it. I’m sorry.

  159. joycemb says:

    Pooh I may have exaggerated your ‘works’ but I certainly didn’t mean to criticize you. I am truly sorry you took it that way. As am I sorry I offended you.

    Thank God for a new day. Clean slate now (so far anyway).

  160. jeff1 says:

    Why did God say it was finished in Christ because He new the arguments between Christians would become a stumbling block too unification. It is not non believers that are God’s worst enemies but Christians who divide His word by taking what they want from it! Thankfully Christ died for us all whether we agree on any other teachings or not. I often wondered why the Roman Catholic church did not encourage their followers to read the Bible and now I believe they where right. They had the insight to see what would happen and it has happened in that people take the chapter and verse that fits with their beliefs rather than read it in context. I have listened to the Day of Discovery and find those on there, who have studied the Bible, convince me that they know what they are talking about because they are studying the Bible for the right reasons. While the Bible is one way of getting to know God, I do not believe that God has restricted our getting to know Him by the Bible, for He has drawn me to Him, when I was desperately seeking Him, when distressed with my own struggles in life. Joyce like you I am learning that it is not for me to judge another’s Christian walk. I only know how God is working in me but it is God who knows another man’s progress like He knows mine. I often find that saying nothing is better if I find that another is not on the same wavelength as myself otherwise I confuse more than I help.

  161. poohpity says:

    Joyce, I was not offended in anyway nor did I take it as criticism. Just saying after you volunteered me for service to God which is an individual choice we each have to make, then went on to give the illusion that you know me when you don’t. I wish I knew how to write in the tone of voice I would say it in person but still have not got that down yet. I just did not understand where you were coming from and on my part it was just confusion. I also did not mean to cause any hurt feelings and if I did please forgive me. It is OK not to know someone that is not a slam or meant to be ugly it is just reality.

  162. poohpity says:

    I went to ODB to get away from the things that go on here now they are happening there.

  163. joycemb says:

    Pooh I am so sorry, I will not speak to you here or on ODB just to keep the peace! Blessings, Joyce

  164. joycemb says:

    One last thing Pooh; I do not know you or your heart.

  165. oneg2dblu says:

    Let’s not take this I will no longer speak to you here, because if we no longer speak, we no longer contribute anything.
    I trust there is a learning curve going on here.

    Here’s one I like to think I’ve learned, until you pass the test of temptation, you will always be tempted to fail it first.


  166. oneg2dblu says:

    My Dear Sister Pooh/Deb questions my statement…
    “There apparently was a record somewhere of all sins that “were forgiven you” at that time, and we and God know exactly what those sins were.”
    I never said, “it is written,” in the word, I said somewhere.
    You ask where…
    It is written in our mind, our memory, our life experience of sinning, remembering from where we have come.

    Now let’s challenge your words…

    pooh says: “All sins are forgiven past present and future.”

    I ask the same from you, where is it written?

  167. oneg2dblu says:

    street… yes, it is written that people die for their lack of knowledge, but is it not because of their lack of knowing there is a Savior, one who is willing and able, found only in the Lord, Jesus Christ?

    Their lack is of the hearing the word, which produces Faith, the hearing of Good News, that is what they lack.

    You see, we can find common ground, if we will only lay the axe aside.

    Be Blessed, Gary

  168. poohpity says:

    lol Gary I have gave you the verses above in the sept 27th post @ 8:37pm. It was the words in quotation marks (which means it was a direct quote from the bible) but I thought I would let you look up where they were located.

  169. poohpity says:

    “once for all” = past, present and future.

  170. oneg2dblu says:

    Pooh… “once and for all” = once and for all.

  171. oneg2dblu says:

    once upon a time= would be past present and future time.

    You see, Past, is a period of time, and Present is a period of time, and Future is a period of time.

    We only live in this present period of time, and our present sins, according to the word written, are those which at present can still be confessed and forgiven, or, has that verse, also presented more problems for you, than solutions?

    Is there no repentance left, or no place or reason for confessing left for you and your sinning in the present period which sin now presents itself daily in your life?

    I have been taught that every sin we commit today a still a sin, and, if it is not immediately repented of, then, that sin still has its guilt attached to it if it is carried and has not been confessed, it still awaits forgiveness.

    It is written…

    “If we confess our sins, God is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.” 1 John 1:9

    “If we claim we have not sinned, we make him out to be a liar and his word has no place in our lives.”

    1 John 1:10

    So, which is it, do we confess, or do we just ignore or lie about our sinning in the present time where we walk today, saying to ourselves, I am already forgiven “all”, so for me, there is no longer any conviction, confessing, repenting, or forgiveness available to me?


  172. oneg2dblu says:

    Gee, I guess the Pope and the Catholic Church got it all wrong with their present day going to confession, and doing acts of contrition for sins that are already forgiven them…
    or, has that changed?
    Maybe they have a different take on this, past, present, and future thing than others.
    I am not a Catholic, so again, I may be wrong…

  173. oneg2dblu says:

    Yep, I looked, the once and for all, refers to the sacrifices that were required by the Law for the forgiveness of sins.

    Christ became that sacrifice for sin, so, “once and for all,” the sacrifices, are no longer needed for those who’s righteousness is found in Christ Jesus.

    Hebrews 10 explains this quite well.

    Yet, in verses 26-31 we see that , “If we deliberately keep on sinning after we have received the knowledge of the truth, no sacrifice for sins is left, but only fearful expectation of judgement and raging fire that will consume the enemies of God. Anyone who rejected the law of Moses died without mercy on the testimony of two or three witnesses. How much more severely do you think a man deserves to be punished who has trampled the Son of God under foot, who has treated as an unholy thing the blood of the covenant that sanctified him, and who has insulted the Spirit of grace? For we know him who said, “It is mine to avenge; I will repay, and again, “The Lord will judge his people.” It is a dreadful thing to fall into the hands of the living God.”

    That is what the Word says.

  174. joycemb says:

    I believe he’s making a rhetorical statement to support his thesis that all righteousness is found in Christ alone.

  175. poohpity says:

    Joyce, It would be wonderful if Gary believed all righteousness is found in Christ alone but sadly his premise is that we have something to do with it. Over the years even when scripture is given he argues with that as well and says it does not say what it says unless it is used to prove his thinking then the scriptures that he uses are usually so far from the point he is trying to make. There is only One way to understand scripture but first one has to believe in Christ alone.

  176. oneg2dblu says:

    Pooh… I wonder if you have ever read both parts of this one verse, and also accepted both of them to be your truth as well?
    John 3:36
    “Anyone who believes in God’s Son has eternal life.
    Anyone who does not obey the Son will never experience eternal life but remains under God’s angry judgement.”
    Mark 4:17
    From then on Jesus began to preach, “Repent of your sins and turn to God, for the Kingdom of Heaven is near.”

    Now I ask, do you believe that one can still continue to go on sinning without repenting, and because anyone believes in Christ alone, they go to Heaven?

    Christ himself said we have a part to do.

    But, knowing you, from you past postings only, you must say again, that it is I who is misguided and wrong in my interpretation.

    Even though, they are not my words, but God’s Words.

  177. poohpity says:

    What does obeying the Son mean?

    I have never said that one can continue sinning without repenting that is what you say I/we say but not at all what I/we have said. Putting words in others mouths then accusing them of the words you put in their mouth is actually accusing yourself because that is how you think.

    I understand that you just don’t understand.

  178. oneg2dblu says:

    Here we are again folks… always another question posted, with unending accusations with me and many others here, over and over, again and again, always another accusation and another sidelining or resolution defying question.

    Here is what I believe I actually said…

    Now I ask, do you believe that one can still continue to go on sinning without repenting, and because anyone believes in Christ alone, they go to Heaven?

    But, as you all can see, there is answer given to my question, because it challenges, and some will not even allow the challenging word of God, which is earnestly presented here by using only scripture, to penetrate ones current non-answering position.

    “A thing is what it is!”

  179. oneg2dblu says:

    There is “no” answer given…

  180. oneg2dblu says:

    I see that on the other thread, the slow drip and dribble of tolerance, ever starting anew the slowly advancing upon the unseeing, as calling it ever loving, while also forcing upon others its new doctrine, which declares us to accept others sin, not to label it sin, and to become as blind as they feel God is to it…
    Not to cal out a particular sexual sin as it is, but to now call it a newer inclusive evil tolerating, and more loving way.
    A way where staying saturated in a life of living in the corrupted fleshly desires of man, saying,somehow, it is now more acceptable to God, then staying with the old more scriptural wrong way, that clearly goes against written word of God.

    We are being duped again folks, only by some here, to now see the actual origins of the word, that is used to define the heinous act of “sodomy,” once considered a criminal offense, to now being watered down to a misunderstood people, who were only, accused by scripture of not taking care of the needs of the poor.

    Where the words of Lot who was trying to only protect and defend the angles sent by God, recorded there for a reason, are now to be ignored.

    “Don’t do this wicked thing.”

    The is such rich a misuse of scripture, that we are all poor if we start to believe this newly fashioned “other” gospel.

    Buyer Beware!

  181. poohpity says:

    The other thread the focus is on Jesus and the person(sinner) that He came to save not on the sin. Loving the sinner while still hating the sin and looking at the sin in your own life before casting stones at the sin others.

  182. oneg2dblu says:

    Well said pooh, where we focus, and what we focus on can make all the difference, even in the lifestyles we choose to live.

    Too All…
    It is almost a self fulfilling prophesy of sorts, as we are “what” we think we are, or “who” we think we are.

    Some focus on changing things in themselves, and changing their world around them, and some focus more on not being able to change anything.

    We all know that any self image we think we see is not exactly what the rest of the world thinks they see in us.

    We can so easily say, ” God sees the heart and judges us by that, so how can we look to others and judge?

    Yet, we are taught, that when Christ saw a fig tree that looked so promising from a distance, but found upon a closer more intimate look, it was only looking deceptively productive on the outside, but not bearing any fruit, He cursed it, and we all know the fate of that tree.

    What could be more legalistic then telling others, they should not to judge anyone else by how they live, or act.

    Who decides, which judgments we all make daily, are made from having been given Godly Discernment, and which are more from only our own life experience, or all our efforts of the obtaining some form of worldly wisdom, or just plain foolish self seeking pride?

    That is why God’s Word says, we are to test everything using a standard, the word of God, which some would then very quickly label us as being legalistic.

    Double Standard?

    Just thinking…

  183. foreverblessed says:

    It was a sort of big surprise to see the photo that was with My Utmost for His Highest.

    Why is that, because the picture of the train looks like a dutch train, and trainstation. Our trainstation look exactly like the one on the picture.

    It is out of context, so I post it here.

    But the message of the Oct 1 Utmost does go with what Gary is talking about the last couple of posts.
    I really like the message of this day!
    How doubt can rob you of a good life!
    But why should we doubt whether we have eternal life?

    How can we be sure that we go to heaven?
    Because God tells me to in 1 John 5:13

    “I write these things to you who believe in the name of the Son of God so that you may know that you have eternal life” (1 John 5:13).

    God promises that through faith in His Son, Jesus, we already have eternal life:

    “God has given us eternal life, and this life is in his Son” (v. 11). This assurance sharpens our faith, lifts us up when we are downhearted, and gives us courage in times of doubt.

    And it ends with a prayer:

    “Dear Lord, during my times of doubt help me remember the promise of Your Word. Since I have invited Jesus into my life and placed my faith in His payment for my sins, You have promised me eternal life with You.”

  184. oneg2dblu says:

    foreverblessed… Wow thanks for sharing that “one verse,” that forever settles any doubt about one’s eternal life.

    There is one thing though, Satan believes in Christ, but he does not obey Him, which means according to the word, Satan does not love Christ, but as you point out with your one point about belief, Satan and his minions also have eternal life, but where will they spend that eternity?

    Every human being will spend eternity in one of two places, so eternal life with Christ and not some place else, which is also a possibility according to the word, there is the Lake of Fire, Eternal Separation from God, or Eternal Darkness, so there must be some other conditions that must be met according to the wholeness of the word.

    Shall we compile a list of those conditions from the word, or should we ignore those other verses that actually have conditions in them?

    It is not really a one verse solution meeting all conditions, where everybody gets in through just a once held belief in Christ, because is not the one stop shop, it is much more, if you also believe the rest of the verses about Eternal Life.


  185. poohpity says:

    Satan is already a created eternal being who wanted to be above God. Yes he knows the identity of Jesus but shudders at His name. However the people who claim that there is more to do to be saved do not even shudder teaching things that are not true. Are you shuddering or scared Gary? You say many many things but still do not understand aren’t you worried about where you are going to end up because you are unable to be completely obedient? Who has put the hiss of doubt in your ear? Who are you listening to? When you are able to live the compiled list of conditions that you have to meet to be saved please show us that you are able to comply with them completely. Show us your obedience to God Gary by the way you live. When I have proof I will believe what you say otherwise it is just noise.

  186. foreverblessed says:

    Gary, God bless you, forever and ever.
    May His blessing on your never end.
    May He also bless all those you come in contact with, may He shine His light into their hearts. The light of the glorious gospel, that is in Jesus Christ.

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