CHRISTIAN RESPONSIBILITY, cont.

D) TAKE UP YOUR CROSS

A FAITHFUL CHRISTIAN IS ONE WHO IS WALKING UNDER PERSECUTION AND TESTING - THE CROSS PREPARED SPECIFICALLY FOR HIM TO CARRY

Scripture indicates that by being a faithful ambassador of Jesus Christ, (2 Cor 5:20), a believer will often be slandered, reviled and undergo other kinds of suffering. A believer is God's emissary on earth - an ambassador of the Lord Jesus Christ through whom God makes His appeal to mankind of the way to have eternal life with Him in heaven and the way mankind is to conduct itself on earth. God makes His appeal through the believer when the believer testifies to others with his mouth as to what God has said in His Word:

[2 Cor 5:20]:

"We [believers] are therefore Christ's ambassadors, as though God were making His appeal through us."

[So God's appeal is not just one of exemplary behavior but one of being an active witness of what God has said in His Word relative to all matters - even business matters - even at the workplace; and this will result in difficulty, conflict and sacrifice]

[Lk 9:23]:

(v. 23) Then He [Jesus] said to them all, "If anyone would come after Me, he must deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow Me."

[An individual is not just called in this life to trust alone in Christ alone unto eternal life. After his eternal destiny is secured by faith, (Eph 2:8-9), and sealed until the day of his redemption by the Holy Spirit, (Eph 1:13-14), a believer is required to "deny" his own personal pursuits and "take up his cross daily and follow" the Lord Jesus Christ. The believer has duties to perform:

[Eph 2:10]:

"For we [believers, vv. 8-9] are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them."

This verse indicates that a believer has certain unique tasks to perform which God designed specifically for each individual believer to do before the foundation of the universe was formed! - before all creation!

A.W. Tozer in 'The Best of Tozer' stated, 'True spirituality manifests itself in...the desire to be holy rather than happy...The spiritual man wants to carry his cross. Many Christians accept adversity or tribulation with a sigh and call it their cross, forgetting that such things come alike to saint and sinner. The cross is that extra adversity that comes to us as a result of our obedience to Christ. This cross is not forced upon us; we voluntarily take it up with full knowledge of the consequences.

We choose to obey Christ and by so doing choose to carry the cross. Carrying a cross means to be attached to the Person of Christ, committed to the Lordship of Christ and obedient to the commandments of Christ. Such a man would rather be useful than famous and would rather serve than be served. And this must be by the operation of the Holy Spirit within him. No man can become spiritual by himself.'

E) SEEK OPPORTUNITIES

A CHRISTIAN IS TO SEEK OUT OPPORTUNITIES TO REPRESENT JESUS

Objectors to a Christian's giving testimony claim that Jesus never sought people out - that people always came to Him in earnest to learn truth from God's Word. They claim that our Lord was never direct or firm in His manner toward others when He spoke of truths from God's Word, and that He never offended anyone.

Scripture says otherwise!!

Jesus sought out those who are lost. He didn't wait until people sought Him out:

[Lk 19:9-10]:

(v. 9) "Jesus said to him [Zacchaeus, the tax collector], 'Today salvation has come to this house, because this man, too, is a son of Abraham.'

(v. 10) For the Son of Man came to seek and to save what was lost.' "

[Mt 4:18-22; 9:9]:

[Jesus sought out Peter, Andrew, James, John, Matthew, etc.]:

(v. 18) "As Jesus was walking beside the Sea of Galilee, He saw two brothers, Simon called Peter and his brother Andrew. They were casting a net into the lake, for they were fishermen.

[Notice that Peter and Andrew were busy fishing. They were not seeking after our Lord, He sought after them]:

(v. 19) 'Come, follow Me,' Jesus said, 'and I will make you fishers of men.'

(v. 20) At once they left their nets and followed Him.

(v. 21) Going on from there, He saw two other brothers, James son of Zebedee and his brother John. They were in a boat with their father Zebedee, preparing their nets. Jesus called them,

(v. 22) and immediately they left the boat and their father and followed Him."

[Mt 4:18-22; 9:9 cont.]:

(Mt 9:9) "As Jesus went on from there, He saw a man named Matthew sitting at the tax collector's booth. 'Follow Me,' He told him, and Matthew got up and followed Him."

[And our Lord often went directly to the synagogue in each town that He visited in order to instruct others - without first being asked or even approached. The common practice in the synagogue was for an individual to voluntarily stand up and read a portion of Scripture, (O. T.), and make a comment on it, cp Lk 4:14-21]:

[Mt 4:23]:

(v. 23) "Jesus went throughout Galilee, teaching in their synagogues, preaching the good news of the kingdom, and healing every disease and sickness among the people."

[And Jesus was often aggressive in seeking out an audience]:

[Mt 15:10]:

"Jesus called the crowd to Him and said, 'Listen and understand."

F) OPPOSE WHAT THE WORLD REPRESENTS

Since the believer is placed by God under civil authority which includes the authority of his employer, combatting the theology imposed at the workplace must be made within God's sovereign authority which is placed with ones employer. The ambassador of Christ must make himself aware of God's principles with respect to all things so that he is equipped for combat - neither obeying rules at work which violate principles from God's Word nor disobeying one's employer out of a misinterpretation of Scripture:

[Ro 13:1-5]:

(v. 1) "Everyone must submit himself to the governing authorities, for there is no authority except that which God has established. The authorities that exist have been established by God."

Note that being in authority over another does not mean that everything that authority does is to be obeyed. Only those things which do not cause you to violate principles from God's Word are to be obeyed. Laws and civil authorities such as Supreme Court judges must not overrule principles of God's Word. Abortion, for example, is still murder and wrong in God's sight, (Ps 139:13-16). So opportunities to relay truths from the Bible are to be sought out by the faithful Christian, especially at work. And those opportunities arise more often than people think. Certain unbiblical points of view are often expressed in such a way that it provides an opening to respond for the prepared believer who is sensitive to the leading of the Holy Spirit, (Ro 8:5b). Following this is a list of false points of view which are often presented as truth. The presentation to the believer of any of these false notions provides a window of opportunity for the prepared and faithful believer to enter into the conversation in an appropriate manner in order to respond with what is actually true from divine viewpoint which comes from the Bible. Keep in mind that a believer has just a brief window of opportunity with most people. There is usually no time to develop rapport or secure a friendship or await a dramatically clear opportunity to share truths from God's Word. As a matter of fact, truths often come to individuals from strangers whether from a commentary, radio or T.V. or someone you just met. Behaving like a Christian but remaining in silence does not convey the truth that God commands one to relay to another. The unbelieving world cannot distinguish between a good behaving Morman, Islamic, Hindu or Christian anyway. It is the Christian's responsibility to see to it that God's Word is ever present in his mind and on his lips. That is to say that human viewpoint reasoning such as is attempted to be imposed on him in the world - especially at the workplace - must not take the place of divine viewpoint reasoning. Rules at the workplace today are designed to stop the Christian from obeying the following verse:

[Jos 1:8a]:

"Do not let this Book of the Law [the Bible] depart from your mouth [i.e., no longer be expressed by you], meditate on it day and night [including at the workplace] ..."

THEOLOGY OF THE WORLD

TABLE OF CONTENTS

1) EACH TO HIS OWN BELIEFS

2) IT IS WRONG TO ARGUE

3) TRUTH IS RELATIVE

4) THERE ARE MANY WAYS TO HEAVEN

5) DOING THE BEST YOU CAN IS ALL THAT GOD ASKS

6) A LOVING GOD WOULD NEVER SEND ANYONE TO HELL

7) CHRISTIANLIKE BEHAVIOR IS OFFENSIVE

8) WHAT YOU PERCEIVE IS TRUE FOR YOU

9) BEING CLOSED MINDED IS WRONG

10) OTHERS ARE RESPONSIBLE FOR YOUR FEELINGS

11) NONCONFORMIST BEHAVIOR IS WRONG

12) FATE DETERMINES THE OUTCOME OF A MAN'S LIFE

13) IT IS ARROGANT TO BE CONFIDENT

14) THAT'S YOUR INTERPRETATION

15) CHRISTIANS PRESENT THEIR VIEWS TOO HARSHLY AND TOO NEGATIVELY

16) JUDGE NOT THAT YOU BE JUDGED

17) MULTICULTURALISM IS MANDATORY BEHAVIOR

18) ABORTION IS A PERSONAL MATTER

19) THE KEY TO THE SURVIVAL OF HUMANITY IS TO PRESERVE THE ENVIRONMENT AND CONTROL POPULATION

20) THE BIBLE IS NOT TRUSTWORTHY

21) THE BIBLE IS OUT OF DATE

22) ONE MUST HAVE SELF ESTEEM

23) VISUALIZE AND MEMORIZE

24) PROSPERITY MEANS ONE IS RIGHT WITH GOD

25) EVOLUTION IS TRUE

1) EACH TO HIS OWN BELIEFS

The world says everyone is entitled to his own opinion. Each to his own set of beliefs. It also maintains that one must not attempt to disturb the status quo of an individual's belief system for that is what is true for them. It is none of anyone else's business, and it is morally wrong to attempt to persuade people to believe what one believes. This theology is often maintained by making the statement, 'That's what you believe.', as if to say that whatever anyone else says will not refute the truth of the belief system of another.

One time the writer was training a young man at an office partition assembly plant. The young man did not take instruction well and maintained that whatever he believed was the right way to do the job was the way he should do it, regardless of how he was instructed. He refused to place a piece of frame into the assembly line in the way instructed and instead insisted that his belief that it could be placed into the line his way was correct. After placing it in the line in the opposite way and discovering that it did not work, he maintained that his beliefs were still true because it would have worked had the assembly line been reversed. The young man's behavior illustrates the real reason for the EACH TO HIS OWN BELIEFS THEOLOGY: evasion of accountability. If an individual can hold to his own belief system, regardless of reality, then he can manipulate what he says he believes in order to evade being accountable to anyone. The young man just couldn't stand being told what to do, nor what was right and wrong. He maintained that whatever one believes is what is true and right for him. No one else's beliefs can refute the precepts of the belief system of another.

God says differently. As previously discussed, the believer is commanded by God to study, to be ready with an answer and then provide the answer in defense against objections and untruths. For the truthfulness of what one believes does not depend on what an individual believes, but on what God has said in His Word. Our Lord's command which is called the 'Great Commission' requires all believers to tell the gospel of salvation and truths from God's Word to peoples of all nations:

[Mt 28:19-20]:

(v. 19) "Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit,

(v. 20) teaching them to observe all that I commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age."

An objector to the Christian viewpoint who upholds 'EACH TO HIS OWN' theology will often ask a leading question or make a leading statement in order to check out another's conformity with his world view, especially the Christian's. By this act those who espouse 'EACH TO HIS OWN' violates his own theology - for he is expressing his beliefs to another as if to say that these are true for everyone. Isn't a person at least entitled to answer such a challenge from his own system of beliefs? Not so the Christian! That same individual often becomes offended at the faithful Christian's answer and creates an argument. He will often take exception to the believer's answer and launch a verbal attack on the believer's character. Thus the stance that one takes of 'EACH TO HIS OWN' theology becomes a hypocritical one because he won't let the Christian have his own beliefs.

Faithful believers often have their behavior closely scrutinized by 'EACH-TO-HIS-OWN-'ERS' such that unbelievers and weak resentful Christians point out the smallest of shortcomings in the believer's life. Often these shortcomings are outright fabrications.

Believers who receive persecution by others are made responsible for their own persecution. Because of the negative reactions of those who hear the believer's testimony - (those who 'listen in' on the conversation and even those who ask the question) the believer is determined to be deserving of such persecution and the persecutors are thereby not only exonerated from guilt but justified by the world in their actions. Not so with God.

The subject of divine viewpoint from Scripture is often disallowed from discussion within the workplace because of those who object to hearing it. Yet subjects which are obscene - usually of a vile sexual nature, taking the Lord's name in vain, swear words, etc., are consistently permitted. Non Christians can voice their opinions about anything but a Christian cannot. If he does, he is often cited for being argumentative. In actuality it is almost always the other party who brings up an anti-Christian subject and then objects if the Christian answers. His objection is usually an accusation that the believer is being argumentative, when he is the one who brought up the 'controversial' subject. So this leads to a corollary of EACH TO HIS OWN BELIEFS THEOLOGY:

2) IT IS WRONG TO ARGUE

'You just like to argue!' This accusation usually comes at the time when an individual is making a really good defense for his point of view and then the personal attack begins: 'You are not supposed to argue anyway;' as if this statement wins the day for the accuser who brought up the subject in the first place! This attack then begs the question, 'If you hold to EACH TO HIS OWN THEOLOGY and the premise that ONE SHOULD NOT ARGUE, then why are you imposing your beliefs on someone else yourself. And then why do you initiate the argument? Incidentally, God commands the believer to provide a good defense and a good argument for what is true in God's Word. So being argumentative is not always wrong:

[1 Pet 3:15]:

"but sanctify Christ as Lord in your hearts, always being ready to make a defense to every one who asks you to give an account for the hope that is in you, yet with gentleness and reverence;

[Jude 3]:

"Dear friends, although I was very eager to write to you about the salvation we share, I felt I had to write and urge you to contend [argue] for the faith that was once for all entrusted to the saints."

[Phil 1:27]:

"Whatever happens, conduct yourselves in a manner worthy of the gospel of Christ. Then, whether I come and see you or only hear about you in my absence, I will know that you stand firm in one spirit, contending [arguing] as one man for the faith of the gospel..."

One might ask the question given the opportunity to relay the truth about going to heaven instead of hell - or the truth about earning rewards instead of dire consequences in heaven and on earth: 'Is it not the duty of an individual to pass on this information so that others can benefit if they so choose?' So when a window of opportunity opens for a believer through which to respond then he is obligated by God to give a divine viewpoint answer.

T. A. McMahon states, (The Berean Call, Feb 1995, article entitled 'Jesus Who'):

''' "Brother, I'm not interested in any of your divisive doctrinal talk. All I care about is knowing that a person loves Jesus. If someone tells me that, no matter what church he goes to, he's my brother in Christ!" It didn't seem like the right time or place to get into an argument with this individual. Nevertheless, I felt compelled at least to get a question in before the conversation ended. "When you talk with someone who tells you he loves Jesus, do you ever ask that person, 'Jesus who?' "

After quick thought the elderly gentleman let me know that he would never ask such a question. "It wouldn't be loving."

Whenever I visit friends in Pennsylvania, there is a man whom I make it a point to see. He is a joy to be with, one of the friendliest men I know. Though a committed Muslim, he regards himself as an ecumenist. He's proud of the fact that he shares some of the beliefs of both Jews and Christians. Occasionally he attends a Presbyterian church with my friends and truly enjoys the experience and their fellowship. Once in a restaurant he was expressing to me and our Christian friends his love for Jesus. He ended his proclamation with these words: "If I could tear away my flesh so that all of you could see deep into my heart, you would know how much I love Jesus." The emotions that filled his every word were stunning; it's uncommon to hear such a devout declaration, even in Christian circles.

Getting back to my boysenberry pie, I felt good about my friend's expression of love when a nagging thought hit me: Jesus who? A brief mental skirmish took place over whether or not to ask such a question. My words, however, came out before my mind had settled the issue. "Tell me about the Jesus you love." My Muslim friend didn't hesitate: "He's the same one you love." Before I got "doctrinal" with my friend, I thought I should try to show him why it was important to make sure we were talking about the same Jesus.

I used his neighbor, who is a great friend to both of us, as an example. He and I really love the guy. After agreeing on our mutual feelings, I began to give a description of our common friend's physical attributes: "He's 5'6; He's completely bald; he weighs 320 pounds; he wears a ring in his left nostril" Actually, I didn't get quite that far before objections were made. "Wait a minute... He's easily over 6'4", I wish I had all his hair, and he's the thinnest man I know!" My friend added that it was obvious that we weren't talking about the same person. "Does it matter?" I asked. He gave me an incredulous look. "Of course it does! I don't have a neighbor fitting your description. You may know someone else like that, but it's not my good friend and neighbor." I pointed out that if I truly believed the description I'd just given, then we couldn't possibly be friends with the same person. He agreed.

What followed was my description of the Jesus I knew. "He was crucified and died on the cross for my sins. Did the Jesus you know do that?"

"No, Allah took him to heaven before the crucifixion. Judas died on the cross."

"The Jesus I know is God Himself, who became a man. Is that your Jesus?"

He shook his head. "No, Allah alone is God. Jesus was a great prophet, but just a man." The discussion went on to many other characteristics the Bible ascribes to Jesus. In almost every case, my Muslim friend had a different perspective. Though he remained convinced that he held the correct view, the fact that our contradictory convictions couldn't be reconciled seemed to dampen his zeal for proclaiming his love for Jesus.

Some may see my questioning as unloving - as proof of the divisiveness of arguing over doctrines. I see it as trying to clear the way for my friend to have a genuine relationship with the only true Savior, our Lord Jesus Christ - not someone he or other men have wittingly or unwittingly imagined or devised.

Quite simply, doctrines are teachings. They are either true or false. A true doctrine cannot be divisive in a harmful way; that characteristic applies only to false teachings. "Now I beseech you, brethren, mark them which cause divisions and offences contrary to the doctrine which ye have learned; and avoid them" (Rom 16:17; also Rom 2:8-9), Jesus, who is the Truth, can only be known in truth and by those who seek the truth (Jn 14:6; 18:37; 2 Thes 2:13; Dt 4:29). Christ Himself caused division (Mt 10:35; Jn 7:35, 9:16, 10:19), division between truth and error (Lk 12:51).

"Jesus who?" is a pivotal question for every believer in Christ. We should first of all ask it of ourselves, testing our own beliefs about Jesus (2 Cor 13:5; 1 Thes 5:21). Misunderstandings about Him inevitably become obstructions in our relationship with Him. The question also may be vital in our fellowshipping with those who claim to be Christians. On a brief airline flight recently, a friend of mine was concerned enough to ask the person next to him some crucial questions about his relationship with

Jesus. Although the young man professed to have been a Christian for four years or so and participated in a Christian fellowship for professional athletes, he didn't really know Jesus nor did he understand the gospel of salvation. My friend led him to the Lord before the plane landed.

All too often, phrases similar to "we stand together with anyone who names the name of Christ" are emotionally charged coverings for ecumenical agendas. The fear of destroying unity plagues those who take seriously such unbiblical propaganda, even to the point of discouraging any vestige of interest in contending for the faith. Astonishingly, "Christian unity" now includes co-laboring for the moral good of society with cults "that name the name of Jesus."

The cults' teachings about Jesus include every unscriptural idea imaginable. The "Jesus Christ" of Latter-day Saints, for example, couldn't be further removed from the Jesus of the Bible. The Jesus invented by Joseph Smith and after whom be named his church is the first spirit child of Elohim, just as all humans, angels, and demons are spirit children of Elohim. This Mormon Jesus became flesh through physical intercourse between Elohim (God the Father who has a physical body) and the Virgin Mary. Their Jesus is the half brother of Lucifer. He came to earth to become a god. His sacrificial death gives immortality to every creature (including animals) at the resurrection. However, whether an individual creature spends eternity in hell or in one of three heavens is totally up to his or her (or its) performance.

The Jesus Christ of the mind-science cults (Christian Science, Religious Science, Unity School of Christianity, etc.) is no different from any other human being. "Christ" is a spiritual idea of God and not a person. Jesus neither suffered nor died for mankind's sins because sin doesn't exist. Rather, he helped humanity to cease from believing that sin and death have any reality. That is "salvation" in so-called Christian Science.

Jehovah's Witnesses also love Jesus, but not the Jesus of the Bible. Before their Jesus was born on earth he was Michael the Archangel. He is a god, but not Jehovah God. When their Jesus became a man he ceased to be a god. There was no physical resurrection of the JW Jesus; Jehovah raised his spirit body, hid his physical remains, and now, once again, Jesus exists as an angel called Michael. The Bible promises that when a believer in our Lord and Savior dies, he or she immediately goes to be with Jesus (2 Cor 5:8; Phil 1:21-23). With their Jesus, however, only 144,000 Jehovah's Witnesses have that privilege - but not at death, for they are annihilated when they die. That is, they spend an indefinite period in an inactive and unconscious state, in effect, ceasing to exist. My fellowship of love with the Biblical Jesus, however, is unbroken and everlasting.

Roman Catholics love Jesus. I did for twenty-some years of my live, but he was very different from the Jesus I now know and love. Sometimes he was still a babe in arms or a young boy, overshadowed and protected by his mother. When I wanted his help I made sure I prayed to his mother first. The Jesus to whom I pray now hasn't been a baby for almost 2,000 years. The Jesus I loved as a Catholic resided bodily in a small, box-like tabernacle on our church altar in the form of a white wafer, while simultaneously inhabiting millions of pieces of bread worldwide. My Jesus is the (physically) resurrected Son of God; He doesn't indwell inanimate objects.

The Roman Catholic Jesus I knew was the Christ of the crucifix, his body continually hanging on the cross, fittingly symbolic of the perpetual sacrifice of the mass and his unfinished work of salvation. Nearly two millennia ago, the Biblical Jesus fully paid the debt for my sins. He has no need of the seven sacraments, the liturgy, the priesthood, the papacy, His mother's intercession, indulgences, prayers to and for the dead, purgatory, etc., to help save anyone. Roman Catholics who say they love Jesus, though they may call themselves charismatic Catholics, evangelical Catholics, or born-again Catholics, actually love a Jesus who is not the Biblical Jesus. He's "another Jesus."

Even some who claim to be evangelicals promote a different Jesus. The so-called faith and prosperity teachers promote a Jesus who was materially prosperous. According to evangelist John Avanzini, whose expensive wardrobe reflects his teachings, Jesus wore designer clothes (a reference to his seamless robe) similar to what kings and wealthy merchants wore. In a convoluted argument success preacher Robert Tilton claims that being poor is a sin, and since Jesus was sinless, it follows that he must have been extremely rich. Positive-confession teacher Fred Price explains that he drives a Rolls Royce simply because he's following the way of Jesus. Oral Roberts says that because Jesus and the disciples had a treasurer (Judas), they must have had plenty of money.

In addition to preaching a Christ who was materially wealthy, many of the faith teachers, such as Kenneth Hagin and Kenneth Copeland, proclaim a Jesus who descended into hell and had to be tortured by Satan in order to complete the atonement for the sins of mankind. That's not the Jesus I know and love.

Tony Campolo's Jesus indwells everyone. Television preacher Robert Schuller presents a Jesus who died on the cross to secure our self-esteem. In support of this Jesus, Christian psychologists and numerous evangelical preachers tell us that his death on the cross proves our infinite value to God and is the basis for our self-worth. Not only are a variety of ego-enhancing Jesuses being promoted today, but we're also being told by a psychologized "church" that the truth about Jesus may not be as important for our psychological well-being as our own perception of him. That's the basis for the current teaching by psychospiritual integrationist Neil Anderson and others who promote un-Biblical inner-healing techniques. We have to forgive Jesus for situations in the past where we feel he disappointed or wounded us emotionally. Jesus who?

Fellowship with Jesus is the heart of Christianity. It's not something merely imagined but is a reality. He literally indwells all who place their faith in Him as Lord and Savior (Col 1:27; Jn 14:20; 15:4). The relationship we have with Him is both subjective and objective. Our genuine personal experiences with Jesus are always in harmony with His objective Word (Is 8:20). His Spirit ministers His Word to us and that knowledge is the foundation for our fellowship with Him (Jn 8:31; Phil 3:8). Our love for Him is demonstrated by and increases through our obedience to what He commands; our trust in Him is strengthened through the knowledge of what He reveals about Himself (Jn 14:15; Phil 1:9). Jesus said, "Every one that is of the truth heareth my voice" (Jn 18:37). To whatever degree we believers entertain false beliefs about Jesus and His teachings, we undermine our vital relationship with Him.

Nothing can be better on this earth than the joy of fellowship with Jesus and with those who know and are known by Him. On the other hand, nothing could be more tragic than the offering of one's affections to another Jesus, the invention of men and demons. Our Lord prophesied that many would fall prey to that great delusion just prior to His return (Mt 24:23-26). There will be many who, because of the alleged signs and wonders they perform in His name, will convince themselves that they know Jesus and are serving Him. To them He will speak these sobering words: "...I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity" (Mt 7:23). Rather than being divisive, asking the question "Jesus who?" may be the most loving service one can perform these days. The answer has eternal consequences.'''

3) TRUTH IS RELATIVE

Another way to express 'EACH TO HIS OWN BELIEFS' THEOLOGY is to state that all truths are relative. In the world one is permitted to voice the statement, 'All truths are relative' which is the basis for many false religions such as Hinduism, (New Age theology). But one is not permitted to voice the statement, 'Truths from the Bible are absolute and not relative at all.' Thus, the world and especially the workplace, largely promotes Hinduism and New Age theology and at the same time prohibits the expression of Christianity. The world maintains that whatever belief system that an individual believes works for him is the truth for him. This relative truth, it is maintained, may or may not apply to another. Most people even state that it is unethical and immoral to make a firm stand for what God says in His Word.

The concept that all truth is relative contradicts itself, however, because it must maintain that it is ABSOLUTELY true that there is no such thing as an absolute truth. An absolute truth is a statement that is always true whether one believes it or not. For example, gravity exists and works even if everyone decides not to believe that it does; or God is God over all mankind including atheists in spite of their disbelief. Another problem relativism has with Christianity is that the Bible maintains that it is the only true belief system, i.e., all other belief systems are false. So relativism must declare still another absolute truth: that Christianity is absolutely wrong in its stance of being the only true belief system. But by making such a declaration, relativism violates its own basic premise that there are no absolutes. If the concept of 'all truths are relative' must maintain itself by holding to the statement that it is absolutely true that all truths are relative - there are no absolutes, then once this absolute truth is permitted in a world of relativism, one might ask, 'How many other absolute truths are also part of 'relativism'. Or is it absolutely true that there is only one absolute truth and everything else is relative? (That makes 2 absolute truths - how many more)?

The effect of espousing relativism at the workplace is devastating to proficiency. Many times the writer has been admonished for attempting to take detailed notes of job requirements so as to better do his work. The explanation managers give this chastisement is that things change so rapidly and everything is so relative that taking notes is a waste of time. Yet of all of the notes taken, the vast majority of the procedures were unchanging and not relative at all. Whenever detailed notes were permitted to be compiled and used, procedures became well defined and self-correcting, managers became accountable for detailed and proper training and excessive and wrongful chastisement of employees greatly reduced. Yet as soon as the benefit of well defined job procedures becomes apparent, managers put pressure on the conscientious employee to cease such an activity. The listing of well defined job procedures is in effect the presentation of truth to which one is accountable. This listing breaks the back of relativistic thinking and points to the heart of the matter: CONTROL. It is a matter of who's in control. The out-of-line manager wants to be in total emotional and intellectual control of his employees which violates principles from God's Word. This absolute control signifies that the manager is not accountable to anyone. Likewise the unbeliever and carnal Christian want to be in total emotional and intellectual control over themselves and others around them. This means no accountability to God and this is the underlying reason behind relativism.

[John F. McManus states in the New American magazine, August 8, 1994 issue, on the Publishers Page, p. 68]:

"In the absence of absolutes, rules set by man take over. If one man can establish his rule of conduct, another can reject that and create another. Moral anarchy is the certain result of ignoring God. Why is today's society ravaged by broken families, escalating crime rates, the refusal to accept the responsibilities of one's actions, etc.? The answer is that hard and fast truths have come to be recognized as a form of oppression rather than a guide to sound living...

[And our state run education system is the breeding place for the ungodly ideas of relativism and no moral absolutes]:

What ought to be obvious isn't: Education without a spiritual foundation is an absurdity. While it may be true that a person can be taught to be a good plumber or a fine electrician without any spiritual underpinnings, anything resembling a complete education has to include instruction in moral absolutes. Such absolutes have to be based on an awareness of God and His laws....

Let those who want prayer and Bible-reading support their types of schools; and let those who do not want such teaching support theirs. In like manner, choice should prevail among those who want phonics or look-say reading, creationism or evolution, old math or new math....

Competition in schooling would return and bring with it a dramatic increase in academic excellence and public morality.

Whatever education is imparted in today's public schools amounts merely to training young people to adapt to conditions around them, with no absolutes allowed. Many come out of these institutions unable to read, write, and compute, but they are well-schooled in foul language, promiscuity, and street-smartness. It's well past the time for something different."

(4) THERE ARE MANY WAYS TO HEAVEN

THE WORLD SAYS THAT THERE ARE MANY WAYS TO GO TO HEAVEN, CHRIST IS JUST ONE OF THEM, IF HE IS AT ALL

But God's Word says differently:

[Jn 14:6]:

"Jesus answered, 'I am the Way and the Truth and the Life. No one comes to the Father except through Me."

[Acts 4:12]:

"Salvation is found in no one else, [but Jesus Christ, vv 10-11, Jn 14:6] for there is no other name under heaven given to men by which we must be saved."

5) DOING THE BEST YOU CAN IS ALL THAT GOD ASKS

JUST KEEPING THE 10 COMMANDMENTS AS BEST YOU CAN IS ALL THAT GOD ASKS, HE WILL DO THE REST. GOD WILL FORGIVE ALMOST EVERYONE EXCEPT MAYBE PEOPLE LIKE HITLER, MUSSOLINI, SERIAL KILLERS, ETC.

(EACH INDIVIDUAL FILLS IN THEIR MOST HATED TYPE OF SINNERS WHO USUALLY COMMIT SINS THEY DON'T COMMIT AND RESENT IN OTHERS)

This point which is a corollary of the many roads to heaven theology, focuses on what man can do for God rather than on what God the Son, Jesus Christ has already done for man. John 14:6 and Acts 4:12 quoted previously provide the exclusive terms of salvation: faith alone in Christ alone. The keeping of some kind of behavior code is not an acceptable alternative for salvation, (Eph 2:8-9; Ro 11:6). Salvation is left exclusively in the hands of God to provide - and that is solely on a grace gift, i.e., undeserving basis:

[Eph 2:8-9]:

(v. 8) "For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith - and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God -

(v. 9) not by works, so that no one can boast."

[Ro 11:6]:

"And if by grace, then it is no longer by works; if it were, grace would no longer be grace."

[Ro 5:10, 15]:

(v. 10) "For if, when we were God's enemies, we were reconciled to Him through the death of His Son, how much more having been reconciled, shall we be saved through His life!

(v. 15) But the free gift is not like the trespass. For if the many died by the trespass of the one man, [Adam] how much more did God's grace and the gift that came by the grace of the one Man, Jesus Christ, overflow to the many!"

"free gift" = "charisma"

"grace" = "charis"

Grace means unmerited favor - something which an individual does nothing to merit receiving but which God provides nonetheless. An individual cannot pay God anything for the gift of His Son. A gift is a gift - it is by grace, FREE! What is beyond comprehension, (but indicated in God's Word as a truth, cp Lk 13:24), is how anyone can reject the free grace gift of God's love, of eternal life with Him in heaven, and instead make a futile attempt to behave absolutely perfectly while wallowing in the filthy mental attitudes and deeds of one's sin nature.

6) A LOVING GOD WOULD NEVER SEND ANYONE TO HELL

This statement often accompanies the many roads to heaven proposition. But Scripture says that God is a God of perfect justice such that provision for punishment must be made for every single sinful thought, word and deed - whether aware of it or not:

[Pr 11:21]:

"Be sure of this: The wicked will not go unpunished,

But those who are righteous will go free."

[Note that one is declared righteous ONLY by trusting in the Messiah Jesus Christ, no other way, (Ro 3:21-24, Jn 14:6). So anything other than faith alone in Christ alone makes an individual accountable for his own unrighteous condition and he will pay for all eternity in hell]

[Ps 11:5-7]:

(v. 5) "The Lord examines the righteous,

but the wicked and those who love violence His soul hates."

(v. 6) On the wicked He will rain fiery coals and burning sulfur;

a scorching wind will be their lot.:

(v. 7) For the Lord is righteous,

he loves justice;

upright men will see his face."

So if one has not received God's free grace provision of His perfect righteousness through faith alone in Christ alone, (compare Ro 3:21-24), then one will be held accountable for all of one's sins and will therefore be destined for eternal life in Hell:

[Heb 10:30-31]:

(v. 30) For we know Him Who said, 'Vengeance is Mine, I will repay.' And again, 'The Lord will judge His people.'

(v. 31) It is a terrifying thing to fall into the hands of the living God."

Compare Rev 20:11-15.

7) CHRISTIANLIKE BEHAVIOR IS OFFENSIVE

Christian lifestyle and witness at the workplace and everywhere is often considered offensive. Objectors to Christian lifestyle and witness at the workplace say that this offends others to the extent that it cannot be permitted in the workplace at all even at break times. Weak Christians often attack the faithful disciple of Christ by telling them they indeed are offensive to others especially when they witness. Being 'offended' by Christian behavior seems to provide an excuse for ongoing retribution and animosity, even by fellow believers.

An unknown writer once said, '''Of the lonely way His disciples should walk, Christ said: "Straight is the gate and narrow the way which leadeth unto life and few there be that find it."

"No man stood with me, but all men forsook me," wrote the battle-scarred apostle in describing his first appearance before Nero to answer with his life for believing and teaching contrary to the Roman world.

Truth has been out of fashion since man changed his robe of fadeless light for a garment of faded leaves.

Multitudes now, in the church and in the world, applaud the courage of patriarchs and prophets, of apostles and martyrs, but condemn as stubbornness or foolishness like faithfulness today.

WANTED TODAY, men and women, young and old, who will obey their convictions of truth and duty at the cost of fortune and friends and life itself.'''

So instead of being faithful themselves, or at least minding their own business, most Christians criticize faithful disciples of Christ. They point to passages about love and condemn the faithful Christian's behavior as hateful. Their definition of what is love, however, falls short of God's definition:

[Jn 14:15]:

"If you love Me, [the Lord Jesus Christ] you will keep My commandments"

[Ro 13:10b]:

"Therefore love is the fulfillment of the Law"

[2 Jn 6]:

"And this is love: that we walk in obedience to His commands. As you have heard from the beginning, His command is that you walk in love."

And our Lord commands the believer to witness to the world - even at the workplace. If reproving, correcting, rebuking or answering honestly and directly is considered wrong because it might tend to hurt someone's feelings or ego, how come God considers it a loving thing to do:

[Pr 24:23-26]:

(v. 23) "These also are sayings of the wise.

To show partiality in judgment is not good.

(v. 24) Whoever says to the guilty, 'You are innocent' -

Peoples will curse him and nations denounce him.

(v. 25) But it will go well with those who convict the guilty,

and rich blessing will come upon them.

(v. 26) An honest answer is like a kiss on the lips."

Objectors say that one should not correct or rebuke, (criticize, reprimand), but instead remain silent - for this is what they say is acting in 'Christian love'. But by not responding to another's challenge of a truth in God's Word, one in effect agrees in silence. For the other person concludes that you either have too weak an argument or that you actually agree that what he says is right thereby making what God says in His Word wrong. The objector says that to create displeasure in an individual ruins the Christian's witness. God says, however, that His Word is "useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, ..." (2 Tim 3:16). Now that is true love, (some today call it 'tough love'. God calls it 'agape' love. So to not answer is to answer in hate for the other individual and to be ashamed of God and His Word which He holds in highest esteem, (Ps 138:2).

[Pr 27:5-6]:

(v. 5) "Better is open rebuke

Than love that is concealed.

[It is better to undergo correction even in front of others than for others to be silent - thinking that they are acting 'in love']

(v. 6) Faithful are the wounds of a friend,

But deceitful are the kisses of an enemy."

"Faithful are the wounds of a friend. " ? It is better to receive the reprimand - the truth from one who is acting as a friend -

"But deceitful are the kisses of an enemy" ? Than to receive the 'love' of one who won't tell you the truth - but instead treats you with pleasantries, compliments and even affection. THAT IS NOT CHRISTIAN AGAPE LOVE!! Keep in mind that truths from God's Word are often offensive NOW MATTER HOW WELL THEY ARE PRESENTED, EVEN TO FELLOW BELIEVERS:

[Ro 8:7]:

"The sinful mind is hostile to God. It does not submit to God's law, nor can it do so."

The sinful mind - whether unbeliever or resisting Christian, (for that is sin also) - is at the moment HOSTILE to God and therefore hostile to what God says in His Word no matter how lovingly presented. That individual, carnal believer or unbeliever, cannot at the moment submit to any command - any law - any teaching from Scripture. So, it is not how the information is presented but the information itself which causes the hostility. Yet, God commands that when the opportunity arises, the information is to be presented as an answer, but in true godly agape love.

8) WHAT YOU PERCEIVE IS TRUE FOR YOU

(THE PERCEPTION RULE)

It is often stated that an individual in what he or she says and does is responsible for how others perceive those words and deeds. One rule in business and largely in the world today is that if what you say or do is perceived as offensive to another then you are responsible for causing an offense no matter how appropriate your words and delivery - no matter if you are directed to respond to a question or just happen to be overheard in the hallway. But reality says that the perception of the human mind is at best faulty. So, in light of this, wouldn't the perception rule make one responsible for another's perception even if it is completely wrong? Would an individual, therefore, be subject to discipline for another's lack of ability to understand the meanings of certain words which were expressed or for mishearing what was said?

One's perception of another's actions must be stored in one's memory and then recalled; but this perception and memory is flawed at best:

Psychoheresy Awareness Letter, Mar-Apr 1993 issue, Santa Barbara, Ca, Vol 1, p. 5:

"Some people would have us think that the memory is like a tape recorder that records every event accurately and keeps it intact. But, research on memory has debunked that myth.....Memories are created out of images, overheard conversations, dreams, suggestions, and imagination as well as out of actual events. And they change over time. Even as we remember we tend to fill in the gaps. Therefore, each time a memory is recalled it is also recreated with the emotions accompanying the recall and with the imagination which fills in the gaps.....

...Even immediate recall may be inaccurate simply because of an initial failure to perceive accurately. That is why those who testify about a particular event may give completely different stories.

(underlining mine)

Memories are also very malleable. They change even as we recall past events..... Even under the best circumstances, our memory is incomplete. We creatively fill in details with probabilities."

Furthermore, the absurdity of the Perception Rule is established when it is realized that being offended by anyone might cause the 'offender' to also be offended. Thus both individuals - by this human viewpoint rule - are responsible for the other's perception. Which one is right? God says neither party is to take offense in the first place! (Compare Pr 17:9; 19:11).

An actual case involving the PERCEPTION RULE was experienced by the writer at work when the writer, perceiving abusive and uncooperative behavior, reported these actions toward himself including withholding information needed for him to do his job. The managers responded for a long while by doing nothing, considering that 'someone was having a bad day' and 'someone else was overreacting'. But when the abuse and refusal to provide information continued and was confirmed by others, management stated that it perceived that the writer must have done something which triggered this behavior in the other individual. Thus management was arbitrarily making the writer responsible for the abusive behavior toward himself by using the perception rule: that's how management perceived the situation, so that's how it was. In effect, the abusive individual's unwarranted and vituperative behavior toward the writer was permitted by the use of the perception rule. It was perceived as justified even when withholding information by the abusive individual continually caused a disruption in the work flow. This behavior was perceived as being caused by the writer somehow; and the continued abusive behavior resulted in the writer leaving that employment. Another case of wrongful perception involving the writer occurred at work which resulted in wrongful termination for being insubordinate. The supervisor perceived insubordination that was nonexistent. The writer was determined by outside authoritative investigation to have been required to perform beyond human capabilities and then wrongly terminated for insubordination for not being able to follow impossible instructions. So the perception rule was used again as it usually is: to manipulate and control others, even to the extent of getting rid of unliked individuals, thus enhancing one's own position. This is often done by pushing another in unchristian like ways until he responds and then the perception of insubordination or negative behavior can be claimed and the party forced or terminated from their position.

Incidentally, the perception rule does not permit the person being accused of any defense whatsoever - he is guilty no matter what. Nor is the accuser's perception ever questioned. In effect, whatever the accuser decides to perceive in his own mind becomes absolute truth thereby deifying his own mind for that moment as absolutely perfect and true like the mind of God. An interesting flaw then becomes apparent with this reasoning: Suppose one perceives that the accuser's perception is in error? Now then which perception does authority choose to select as absolutely true? Little consideration is given to an analysis of the facts of the situation. Employers often bring up the issue of multi-million dollar lawsuits involving the perception of being offended at the workplace as if to say that a faithful believer's lifestyle is a potential risk of high dollar loss. The fact of the matter is that there are no dollar losses through lawsuits due to a faithful believer's lifestyle at all! But if there were multi-million dollar lawsuit losses incurred by a company because of a believer's faithful walk with Christ - then who is that individual to continue to obey, the company or the Lord Jesus Christ? In other words, who is sovereign over the lives of people, God or IBM? It is interesting to note that most of the world's religions and philosophies teach forgiveness and not taking offense - turning the other cheek. More importantly, God's Word commands one NOT to take offense and to forgive one another:

[Pr 17:9]:

"He who covers over an offense promotes love,

but whoever repeats the matter separates close friends."

[Pr 19:11]:

"A man's wisdom gives him patience;

it is to his glory to overlook an offense."

[Mt 18:21-22 NAS]:

(v. 21) "Then Peter came and said to Him, 'Lord, how often shall my brother sin against me and I forgive him? Up to seven times?'

(v. 22) Jesus said to him, 'I do not say to you, up to seven times, but up to seventy times seven.' "

[i.e., no limit to the number of times]

Many people consistently violate their own rule of not being offensive to others by ostracizing, ignoring, speaking ill about and even insulting others whom they dislike. It is interesting to note that when a faithful Christian perceives obstructive and offensive behavior on the part of others and reports it as interfering with doing his job, management often determines that the Christian's perception is not valid and he is a person who does not work well with others - he does not fit in - he is not a team player. Because obstructive and offensive behavior toward the faithful believer is frequent and rarely investigated, management concludes that the cause of the negative behavior must somehow originate with the Christian. The manager usually associates the cause of the situation to some religious talk that the Christian must have made. On the other hand, if an unbeliever or unfaithful Christian perceives the same offensive, obstructive behavior coming from another, that perception is usually determined without investigation as valid and steps are taken to resolve the situation - especially if a faithful believer is perceived as the originator of the offensive behavior. The writer has personally experienced and observed this phenomenon at the workplace time and time again.

9) BEING CLOSED MINDED IS WRONG

The world holds that being narrow minded is wrong - prejudicial. People often use the following expression in defending today's liberal and permissive mentality: 'we're in the 90's', as if to say that closed mindedness is the sin and not sin itself. Can one not be closed minded about not committing a particular sin before God? God Himself is closed minded when it comes to what is sin and what is not. And He is absolutely closed minded about the way to go to heaven.....

[Jn 14:6]:

"Jesus answered, 'I am the Way, the Truth and the Life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.' "

.....which is by faith alone in Christ alone, cp 1 Jn 5:9-13. And God, indeed, is a God of justice Who is narrow minded about sin:

[Ps 11:5-7]:

(v. 5) "The Lord examines the righteous,

but the wicked and those who love violence His soul hates.

(v. 6) On the wicked He will rain fiery coals and burning sulfur;

a scorching wind will be their lot.

(v. 7) For the Lord is righteous,

he loves justice;

upright men will see his face."

[Pr 11:21]:

"Be sure of this: The wicked will not go unpunished,

but those who are righteous will go free."

Finally, if narrow mindedness is a sin, then those who are narrow minded about Christians and their Bible, considering them wrong, commit such a sin. Incidentally, everyone is closed minded about some things - breathing every day, eating, somebody else's closed mindedness, their own belief system, etc. So the question is not whether or not narrow mindedness is wrong, but what to be narrow minded about.

10) OTHERS ARE RESPONSIBLE FOR YOUR FEELINGS

Most of the world maintains that the actions and words of others are what is responsible for the way people feel. One often says to another, 'You make me angry'. Being in a bad mood gives one the latitude of warning others not to make their mood worse and to treat them with a certain latitude of special respect and caution so as not to 'cause' them to erupt in unpleasant outrage. Scripture maintains that one is not to take offense, (Pr 17:9; 19:11), so one cannot blame another for how one feels. Furthermore, God's Word provides guidelines for Christian behavior in the workplace:

[Ro 12:9-21]:

(v. 9) "Love must be sincere. Hate what is evil; cling to what is good.

(v. 10) Be devoted to one another in brotherly love. Honor one another above yourselves.

(v. 11) Never be lacking in zeal, but keep your spiritual fervor, serving the Lord.

(v. 12) Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer.

(v. 13) Share with God's people who are in need. Practice hospitality.

(v. 14) Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse.

(v. 15) Rejoice with those who rejoice; mourn with those who mourn.

(v. 16) Live in harmony with one another. Do not be proud, but be willing to associate with people of low position. So do not be conceited.

(v. 17) Do not repay anyone evil for evil. Be careful to do what is right in the eyes of everybody.

(v. 18) If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone.

(v. 19) Do not take revenge, my friends, but leave room for God's wrath, for it is written: 'It is mine to avenge; I will repay,' says the Lord.

(v. 20) On the contrary:

'If your enemy is hungry, feed him;

if he is thirsty, give him something to drink.

In doing this, you will heap burning coals on his head'

(v. 21) Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good."

And the impetus for living this Christian lifestyle comes from the renewing of one's mind, (Ro 12:2), which is via the taking in of divine mental viewpoint from God's Word, (Eph 4:13):

[Ro 12:2]:

"Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind [through Bible study]. Then you will be able to test and approve what God's will is - His good, pleasing and perfect will."

Going one step further - Christians and for that matter all individuals are supposed to act out of love for one another not out of self centeredness, not out of personal feelings. Many have their own definition of love - but God has His - which overrides all:

[1 Cor 13:4-7]:

(v. 4) "Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud.

(v. 5) It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs."

[So whoever is "easily angered", "self-seeking", "rude"- belittling, putting others down, inconsiderate, unforgiving - keeping a "record of wrongs, demanding one's rights - insisting on ones own prerogatives above others' - this is not love. And God says this is not acceptable behavior. As a matter of fact it is sin]

(v. 6) Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth.

(v. 7) It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres."

Notice that there is nothing said here about whether or not you like someone. Liking someone is NOT a factor in the equation as to whether an individual acts toward another with love - as it is described in God's Word. ALL individuals, whether you like them or not, being loved by God, are to be loved by all people. And godly love requires humility and a serving heart toward others:

[Phil 2:1-4]:

(v. 1) "If you have any encouragement from being united with Christ, if any comfort from His love, if any fellowship with the Spirit, if any tenderness and compassion,

(v. 2) then make my [Paul's] joy complete by being like-minded, having the same love, being one in spirit and purpose.

(v. 3) Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit, but in humility consider others better than yourselves.

(v. 4) Each of you should look not only to your own interests, but also to the interests of others."

[Whether you like an individual or not, believers are to "look...to the interests of others". Recall that Christ died on the cross for all men - even the ones you don't like. (Ref. 1 Jn 2:2)]

11) NONCONFORMIST BEHAVIOR IS WRONG

Christians are often criticized because they don't 'go along to get along'. They are therefore not well liked because they don't conform to 'required-to-fit-in' behavior.

At the workplace, many employers require that others working around you like you - which translates into behaving in such a way that conforms to what others dictate as acceptable behaviorisms - most of which are anti-Christian and have nothing to do with how well you perform your job. (So much for 'EACH TO HIS OWN BELIEFS') In order to be liked, the world says that you must demonstrate support for behavior which is produced by the lust patterns of the sin nature, such as laughing at and telling non-Christian type stories, agreeing with unbiblical points of view, etc, etc. But God commands the individual to behave differently:

[Eph 5:1-4]:

(v. 1) "Be imitators of God, therefore, as dearly loved children

(v. 2) and live a life of love, just as Christ loved us and gave Himself up for us as a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God.

(v. 3) "But among you there must not be even a hint of sexual immorality, or of any kind of impurity, or of greed, because these are improper for God's holy people.

(v. 4) Nor should there be obscenity, foolish talk or coarse joking, which are out of place, but rather thanksgiving."

So one who walks closely in fellowship with God is viewed as being antisocial & unable to get along with one's coworkers. For example, working in a slower, less efficient, less meticulous way is the acceptable way for an individual in many work places in order to be liked. But the way of the Christian is to work as unto the Lord:

[1 Cor 10:31]:

"So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God."

[Col 3:23-24]:

(v. 23) "Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for men,

(v. 24) since you know that you will receive an inheritance from the Lord as a reward. It is the Lord Christ you are serving.

Behaving as a faithful Christian will surely single the believer out as 'antisocial', but it will also single him out as an ambassador of Jesus Christ, Whom he serves. Being liked unfortunately is the key priority in the world, not being productive. As a matter of fact, if one is not liked, management will tolerate others deliberately not working with the unliked person to the extent of sabotaging his work - thus 'proving' that the unliked person does not work well with others.

People are often permitted by management to act toward others who don't conform with petty maliciousness. For example, the writer has observed at a number of workplaces individuals who purposely block another's path. The 'blocker' does not move out of the way until the other person says the required words: 'excuse me'. The one who puts himself in the way is permitted by management to become angered and 'offended' if the other individual manages to get by without saying 'excuse me'. Often the targeted individual is carrying or pushing an extremely heavy load and the instigator places himself dangerously into his path blocking passage until the required words of apology and submissiveness are uttered. Believers, on the other hand, are required to be aware of others around them and politely move out of others' way without demanding any kind of apology in order to enable others to best do their job:

[Phil 2:3-4]:

(v. 3) "Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit, but in humility consider others better than yourselves.

(v. 4) Each of you should look not only to your own interests, but also to the interests of others."

Finally, the Bible says NOT to have fellowship with unbelievers:

[2 Cor 6:14-15]:

(v. 14) "Do not be yoked together with unbelievers. For what do righteousness and wickedness have in common? Or what fellowship can light have with darkness?

(v. 15) What harmony is there between Christ and Belial? What does a believer have in common with an unbeliever?

So faithful Christians, out of obedience to God's Word, must not conform with the way people say they should act:

[Ro 12:1-2]:

(v. 1) "Therefore, I urge you, brothers, in view of God's mercy, to offer your bodies as loving sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God - this is your spiritual act of worship.

(v. 2) Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God's will is - His good, pleasing and perfect will."

12) FATE DETERMINES THE OUTCOME OF A MAN'S LIFE

The world often maintains that an individual's life is predetermined. People often attribute this fatalistic destiny to some false god like Mother Earth or the stars or a set of impersonal forces described as good and evil. Many say that every person's life has been predetermined before they were born. So one's behavior, circumstances and opportunities are fixed somehow by 'fate' before birth.

Astrology is similar to the false concept of 'fate' and it is also widely accepted in the world. People often say that an individual's behavior and circumstances are determined by the month in which he was born - by the position of the stars at the time of one's birth - and every day thereafter. A careful analysis of 'horoscope' predictions, however, will find frequent miscues and generally vague and nonspecific predictions which could apply to any number of individuals regardless of sign. In any case, one's destiny is inherently tied to what God says in His unfailing Word and we are not to entertain false doctrines like astrology which have demonic influence behind them:

a) [Dt 4:19]:

"And when you look up to the sky and see the sun, the moon and the stars - all the heavenly array - do not be enticed into bowing down to them and worshiping things the Lord your God has apportioned to all the nations under heaven [for the regulation of seasons - not worship, etc] ."

And God says that one's destiny is closely tied to what God ways in His Word. For example, an individual's eternal destiny depends NOT on when he was physically born or some impersonal force, but on whether he has experienced at some time during his physical life a spiritual birth. This spiritual birth can occur at any time and it is not tied into the time when one is physically born:

b) [Compare Jn 3:5-6]:

(v. 5) "Jesus answered, 'I tell you the truth, no one can enter the kingdom of God unless he is born of water, and by that I mean the Spirit."

"ean-me tis ........gennthe ex ..hudatos

"unless ...anyone be born out of water"

kai ... [*ex]...................................pneumatos"

"and [*out of the realm of the] spirit" =

refers to this whole process of God sprinkling "clean water" on Nicodemus and cleansing him of all idols and putting a new [born again] spirit in him and giving him a "heart of flesh" replacing his "heart of stone" and putting His Spirit in him and moving him to follow God's decrees.

And all of this is done NOT in the physical realm but out of the realm of the spiritual:

"kai [*ex] pneumatos" = "and [out of the realm of the] spiritual"

*Notice that the Greek preposition "ex" applies to "pneumatos" = "spirit" as well as "hudatos" = "water". And to clarify this our Lord immediately makes this distinction between the spiritual realm of being born again and the physical realm of physical birth:

b cont.) [Jn 3:5-6 cont.]:

(v. 5) Jesus answered, 'I tell you the truth, no one can enter the kingdom of God unless he is born of water and spirit.

(v. 6) Flesh gives birth to flesh, but the Spirit gives birth to spirit.' "

i) ONE IS BORN AGAIN IN THE SPIRITUAL REALM AS OPPOSED TO THE PHYSICAL REALM

So it requires another birth, one which is out of the renewing work of the Holy Spirit and out of the realm of the spiritual, to become born again. This birth is brought about only by the Spirit, God the Holy Spirit.

In Jn 3:6, Jesus reiterates His answer to Nicodemus' question of "How can a man be born when he is old." so that Nicodemus will not miss it: "Flesh gives birth to flesh [the physical birth] but the Spirit [God the Holy Spirit] gives birth to [your dead] spirit in the spiritual realm."

There are two distinct realms: One is fallen man, the flesh, and the other is of God, the Holy Spirit, in the spiritual realm. A fallen man cannot regenerate himself, (be reborn), he needs a divine operation in a spiritual realm. Only God the Holy Spirit can regenerate a dead human spirit. Man can do nothing, the words are clear. So such actions as water baptism, committing one's life to Christ, going to church regularly, etc., being in the realm of the flesh will do nothing to effect an action in the spiritual realm, i.e., to become born again with an alive spirit.

[So it is a spiritual birth which is accomplished by God the Holy Spirit which determines ones eternal destiny and not when one is physically born. And that spiritual 'rebirth' is accomplished and completed at the moment an individual expresses his faith alone in Christ alone]:

c) [Jn 3:14-16]:

(v. 14) "Just as Moses lifted up the snake in the desert,.........

[Men who were bitten by deadly poisonous snakes could look up at a bronze snake on a pole, believe they would live and then they indeed would survive because of their belief, Num 21:6-9]

[Jn 3:14-16 cont.]:

(v. 14 cont.) "Just as Moses lifted up the snake in the desert, so [in the same way of requiring only faith] the Son of Man must be lifted up,

(v. 15) that everyone who believes in Him may have eternal life.

(v. 16) For God so loved the world that He gave His one and only Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life."

And it is God Who determines the destiny of all men - not some kind of impersonal force or fate or power relative to the stars.

[Pr 16:9]:

"In his heart a man plans his course,

but the Lord determines his steps."

[Pr 20:24]:

"A man's steps are directed by the Lord."

[Jer 10:23]:

"I know, O Lord, that a man's life is not his own;

it is not for man to direct his steps.

[God is completely and exclusively sovereign over the destiny of all men even to the extent that before the creation of the universe even, God determined the specific works which each individual believer was to do]:

[Eph 2:10]:

"For we are God's workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do."

[Ps 139:16]:

"Your [God's] eyes saw my unformed body,

All the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be."

A great window of opportunity occurs when someone asks you what sign you are born under. A believer should respond with divine viewpoint from Scripture, eventually leading to a statement like, 'God determined my destiny when I trusted in His Son for eternal life.'

13) IT IS ARROGANT TO BE CONFIDENT

IT IS OFFENSIVE AND ERRONEOUS TO CONFIDENTLY MAINTAIN THAT WHAT YOU ARE SAYING IS TRUE

- ESPECIALLY IF IT COMES FROM THE BIBLE

The world calls this arrogance, the Bible teaches that it is divine assurance:

[1 Jn 5:9-13]:

(v. 9) "We accept man's testimony, but God's testimony is greater because it is the testimony of God, which he has given about His Son.

(v. 10) Anyone who believes in the Son of God has this testimony in his heart. Anyone who does not believe God has made Him out to be a liar, because he has not believed the testimony God has given about His Son. (v. 11) And this is the testimony; God has given us eternal life, and this life is in His Son.

(v. 12) He who has the Son has life; he who does not have the Son of God does not have life."

[And the next verse clearly states that a Christian can and should know that he has eternal life - his testimony to others reflecting such grand assurance]:

(v. 13) I write these things to you who believe in the name of the Son of God so that you may know [and testify] that you have eternal life."

The believer's confidence that he is going to heaven comes not from within himself but from what God says about His Son. Furthermore, the believer can speak in full assurance about the reliability of information that comes from the Bible:

[Ps 19:7-9]:

(v. 7) "The law of the Lord is perfect, reviving the soul. The statutes of the Lord are trustworthy,

making wise the simple.

(v. 8) The precepts of the Lord are right,

giving joy to the heart.

The commands of the Lord are radiant,

giving light to the eyes.

(v. 9) The fear of the Lord is pure,

enduring forever.

The ordinances of the Lord are sure

and altogether righteous."

(Compare Ps 12:6; 119:89-96)

[2 Tim 3:16]:

"All Scripture is inspired by God [and therefore inerrant] and [therefore in all respects without exception] profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness; "

[Jn 10:35b]:

[Jesus said] "...the Scripture cannot be broken),"

[i.e., there is nothing in God's Word which has a hint of error or contradiction which would enable it therefore to be broken - i.e., no portion of Scripture can be considered suspect of not telling truth]

[Mt 5:17-18; 24:35]:

(v. 17) "Do not think that I came to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I did not come to abolish, but to fulfill."

(v. 18) For truly I say to you, until heaven and earth pass away, not the smallest letter or stroke shall pass away from the Law. until all is accomplished."

[Mt 24:35]:

"Heaven and earth will pass away, but My words [i.e., Scripture] shall not pass away."

[Even the smallest of nuances of the words chosen by God to be written by men in His Word was perfectly chosen to convey precisely what God chose to say without error and in perfect truth]

[2 Pet 1:20-21]:

(v. 20) "But know this first of all, that no prophecy of Scripture is a matter of one's own interpretation,

[That is to say that no verse is to be interpreted apart from, i.e., in contradiction to, any other passage in the Bible]

(v. 21) for no prophecy was ever made by an act of human will, but men moved by the Holy Spirit spoke from God."

So the Bible testifies to its own inerrancy: to its own absolute perfection. It is the product of a sovereign, perfect and holy God Who chose to work through imperfect man in order to produce a miraculously perfect Bible. The result of God's endeavor is so awesome and perfect that God states in His Word through the praises of David:

[Ps 138:1-2 AMPLIFIED]:

(v. 1) "I will confess and praise You O God, with my whole heart; before the gods [angels] will I sing praises to You.

["gods" = "elohim" = God's messengers, angels, cp Ps 8:5, same word]

(v. 2) I will worship toward Your holy temple, and praise Your name for Your loving-kindness and for Your truth and faithfulness; for You have exalted above all else Your name and Your Word, and You have magnified Your Word above all Your name!"

[Notice that God has magnified His Word above all His name]

Being called arrogant is often followed by a corollary of the 'IT IS ARROGANT TO BE CONFIDENT RULE:'

14) THAT'S YOUR INTERPRETATION

Once the objector has received an answer from the Bible which breaks down the accusation of being arrogant, then the personal attack on the believer goes to 'That's your interpretation' or 'There are so many interpretations, who knows which one is right'

or 'The Bible has so many versions', etc. etc. The faithful Christian, being well versed, can confidently say that most of the teachings of the Bible are clear in any of the legitimate translations, (legitimate translation = the translation which reflects the correct literal, grammatical and contextual content of the original language). Problems and controversies arise when individuals refuse to take what God clearly teaches in His Word and impose on Scripture what they want to believe instead. The correct interpretation of Scripture, (and there is only one correct interpretation), is arrived at by following the built in rules of interpretation which become evident when one seriously studies the Bible. The approach is simple: the Bible is a group of 66 books originally written in several ancient languages. The original writings have been copied and translated many times throughout the centuries. And through the efforts of many, errors in copying have been purged to the extent that we have in the original languages nearly all of what God inspired the authors to write down. And year by year the few remaining unsettled variants amongst manuscript copies are being resolved. Incidentally, the variants in manuscript copies never affected a single major Bible doctrine. And we have a number of very reliable translations to work with so long as we constantly refer to the original language behind the translation as a double check of the translators. So Scripture is to be interpreted from the original language on the basis of what those original words meant to the people to whom those words were written, just like any other ancient writing. Translations are sometimes awkward and even misleading because of the differences in languages and cultures, but with a little study using commentaries, reference materials, dictionaries and the teaching of fellow believers one can determine the meaning of what God has said in His Word. The crux of the matter is that most objectors do not want to make the effort to study God's Word at all and they are upset that the faithful believer has done his homework and can easily refute their opinions which they desperately hold on to.

15) CHRISTIANS ARE ACCUSED OF PRESENTING THEIR VIEWS TOO HARSHLY & TOO NEGATIVELY

Most comments against Christian witness revolve around accusing the believer of not presenting God's Word in a way which would NOT make others angry. But unbelievers and carnal Christians who resist truths from God's Word are hostile to hearing truths from Scripture no matter how well presented. Their reaction will often be one of emotional defensiveness and personal attack on the faithful believer:

[Ro 8:7a]:

"The sinful mind [could be unbeliever or carnal Christian] is hostile to God."

Believers who knuckle under this demand to adjust their delivery are 'successful' at not making many angry because they no longer present the truths of God's Word but in fact present human viewpoint untruth with a few out of context/incorrectly used references from Scripture. Paul called this 'another gospel':

[Gal 1:6-9]:

(v. 6) "I am astonished that you are so quickly deserting the one who called you by the grace of Christ and are turning to a different gospel -

(v. 7) which is really no gospel at all. Evidently some people are throwing you into confusion and are trying to pervert the gospel of Christ."

[Gal 2:15-16]:

(v. 15) "We who are Jews by birth and not Gentile sinners'

(v. 16) know that a man is not justified by observing the law, but by faith in Jesus Christ. So we, too, have put our faith in Christ Jesus that we may be justified by faith in Christ and not by observing the law, because by observing the law no one will be justified."

[So Paul is saying it is faith alone in Christ alone which justifies God in providing an individual with eternal life with Him in heaven; and NOT by the keeping of any set of moral rules such as the Mosaic Law]

[Gal 1:6-9 cont.]:

(v. 6 cont.) "I am astonished that you are so quickly deserting the one who called you by the grace of Christ and are turning to a different gospel -

(v. 7) which is really no gospel at all. Evidently some people are throwing you into confusion and are trying to pervert the gospel of Christ."

[So what many 'popular' preachers are doing is what the Apostle Paul soundly rebukes as a false gospel]:

(v. 8) "But even if we or an angel from heaven should preach a gospel other than the one we preached to you, let him be eternally condemned!

(v. 9) As we have already said, so now I say again: If anybody is preaching to you a gospel other than what you accepted, let him be eternally condemned."

For example, most people are incensed at the idea that once having trusted in Christ as Savior, how they behave after their conversion does not affect their eternal destiny to heaven. Many discussions about our Lord start out calmly until the subject of eternal security comes up and then calm reason through the Scriptures is replaced by an angry personal attack on the believer who explains the sealing ministry of God the Holy Spirit until the day of his redemption:

[Eph 1:13-14]:

(v. 13) "And you also were included in Christ when you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation. Having believed, you were marked in Him with a seal, the promised Holy Spirit,

(v. 14) Who is a deposit guaranteeing our inheritance until the redemption of those who are God's possession - to the praise of His glory."

This passage says that at the moment of simple trust - that's all believing is - as a child simply puts his trust, (Mk 10:15) - at the moment of simple trust alone in Christ alone then one is saved and sealed by God the Holy Spirit until the day of his redemption - his receiving his eternal glory and eternal body. NO MATTER WHAT!

Well meaning but misguided Christians will often advise the faithful believer that he must earn the right to be heard. In order to do this he must first listen to all of what the unbeliever has to say. In rebuttal to this, one might ask, 'Where in the Bible does it say to do this - to listen to human viewpoint and false doctrine at length?' An experienced Christian needs only to hear a few phrases to know immediately where the unbeliever or carnal Christian is coming from. Then it becomes his responsibility to gracefully 'jump in' and provide the truth at the point where the other person diverted into error. Further listening to error only contaminates the minds of everyone within ear shot. Those who are so 'sensitive' as to be offended by an interruption are inevitably those who would keep right on talking - dominating the conversation and never permitting a word in edgewise. This kind of individual makes his point by disallowing any other viewpoint. With him, especially, is interruption vital. As the supreme example, our Lord did not listen at length to the erroneous opinions of others, He did most of the talking.

Too many pastors, faced with opposition, have followed the route of preaching 'another gospel'. Many individuals find it more palatable accepting what many preachers call the gospel presented as follows: 'Let Jesus into your heart, (life)...'

'Give Him your problems.......'

'Let Him be the Lord of your life....'

'....then your life will change, old habits will go away, success will come, relationships will be reestablished - renewed....' But this is NOT the gospel of salvation at all! God's Word clearly states what the gospel of salvation is and what it is not:

[Jn 3:16, 18]:

(v. 16) "For God so loved the world that He gave His one and only Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life"

(v. 18) Whoever believes in Him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe stands condemned already because he has not believed in the name of God's one and only Son."

[It is therefore a matter of faith and faith alone in Jesus Christ alone]:

[1 Jn 5:9-13]:

(v. 9) "We accept man's testimony, but God's testimony is greater because it is the testimony of God, which He has given about His Son."

(v. 10) Anyone who believes in the Son of God has this testimony in his heart. Anyone who does not believe God has made Him out to be a liar, because he has not believed the testimony God has given about His Son.

(v. 11) And this is the testimony: God has given us eternal life, and this life is in His Son.

(v. 12) He who has the Son has life; he who does not have the Son of God does not have life."

[Again it is faith alone in Christ alone which brings the gift of eternal life, (compare Eph 2:8-9). And upon believing one can then be assured that one has eternal life no matter what]:

(v. 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."

[Note that nothing is mentioned in these passages about making Jesus the Lord of your life, (which is an act of work prohibited in salvation, Eph 2:8-9.) Nor is anything mentioned about letting Jesus into your heart. Acting in obedience to Christ and His Word is a choice that individuals, ONCE THEY BECOME BELIEVERS, are commanded and exhorted to make. All of the Scripture passages which exhort the believer NOT to act like the world but to act righteously are proof of the fact that believers can remain saved and choose to act like the world otherwise why call them believers? No passage in the Bible states that an individual will lose his eternal destiny in heaven for misbehaving. Some passages, however, do state that one's inheritance of rewards and relative position in heaven, (Col 3:24), will be lost; but not one's heavenward destiny, (1 Cor 3:11-15). It's a choice which Christians have to make. So passages in Scripture offer proof that believers have the potential - even being saved and therefore

permanently indwelt by the Spirit, (Eph 1:13-14) - of behaving like the world but never losing their salvation.

For example:

[Ro 13:12b]:

"So let us [born again believers] put aside the deeds of darkness and put on the armor of light."

Note that Ro 13:12b above exhorts the believer to put aside "deeds of darkness" as if to say that the believer indeed has a choice and yet still remain sealed, (Eph 4:30; 2 Cor 1:21-22), and destined for heaven, (Eph 2:5-6).

Ephesians 5:1-14 exhorts believers to imitate God in their daily walk. In so doing it indicates the undesirability and the consequences of a disobedient life. Verses 7-12 indicate the shamefulness of going back to the disgusting lifestyle of the world after Christ had sacrificed Himself so that the believer would not have to be a slave to sin and suffer eternal condemnation, (v. 2). The passage says to act instead like the person that a believer is: a child of light possessing eternal life, (v. 8), rather than to act like the world and suffer the consequence of losing one's inheritance in, (and not one's destiny to), the kingdom of Christ for being immoral, (v. 5):

[Eph 5:1-14]:

(v. 1) Therefore [Christians] be imitators of God, as beloved children [believers];

["Therefore, be imitators.." = Paul is commanding Christians in this passage, (Eph 14:1b - 3; 13:30-32), who are eternally secure, (Eph 4:30; Jn 10:28) to be imitators of God]

(v. 2) and walk in love, just as Christ also loved you, and gave Himself up for us, an offering and a sacrifice to God as a fragrant aroma.

(v. 3) But do not let immorality or any impurity or greed even be named among you, as is proper among saints;

[Notice that Paul indicates the proper behavior for saints: moral, righteous behavior - as opposed to improper behavior: "immorality," and "impurity" and "greed". This strongly implies that saints can behave improperly and still be called saints, i.e., still have eternal life]

(v. 4) and there must be no filthiness and silly talk, or coarse jesting, which are not fitting, but rather giving of thanks.

(v. 5) For this you know with certainty, that no immoral or impure person or covetous man, or one who is an idolator, has an inheritance in the kingdom of Christ, even God.

["of Christ, even God" = "tou christou kai theou ""= "of Christ, Who I mean to say is God". When "kai" occurs in this manner, i.e., when the noun after it, ("theou"), is without an article; it signifies identification of this noun "God" ("theou" = "God") with the first noun "Christ". Therefore "Christou"= "Christ"= "God".

"has an inheritance" = a disobedient believer will not receive an inheritance of any kind when that child of God, (Eph 5:1), goes to heaven. That child has been disinherited but remains a saved child who will go to heaven but with precious few rewards and

inheritance, (Eph 4:30; I Cor 3:11-15).

(v. 6) Let no one deceive you with empty words, for because of these things the wrath of God comes upon the sons of disobedience"

"sons of disobedience" ? those who disobey the gospel, i.e., those who do not believe in Christ as Savior, are defined as sons of disobedience, i.e., sons of Satan, unbelievers. The only requirement of the Gospel is to believe it, (Jn 3:16; Eph 2:8-9). So

to DISobey the gospel can only mean to DISbelieve in it. Compare I Pet 1:18-22, 2:6-8. I Pet 4:17 teaches that to obey the gospel is to believe it, to disobey the gospel is to disbelieve it. Compare Eph 2:1-3 = unbelievers are disobedient & follow Satan.

Compare Jn 3:36 which contains the Greek word "apeithOn" ="disobedient" = refusing to believe in the Son:

[Jn 3:36]:

"Whoever believes in the Son has eternal life, but whoever refuses to believe = "apeithOn" and obey, i.e., rejects the Son [as his Savior] will not see life, for God's wrath remains on him."

[Jn 3:18]:

"Whoever believes in Him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe stands condemned already because he has not believed in the name of God's one and only Son."

Notice that here in John 3:18 and 3:36 the only condition presented for being condemned is to not believe in the name of God's one and only Son.

Compare Jn 8:42-47: Those who do not believe in Christ belong to their father the devil, i.e., are not saved.

Since the sole condition on the part of the individual to receive eternal life is to trust alone in Christ alone and

since the sole condition of condemnation unto the Lake of Fire is not ever trusting alone in Christ alone as Savior and

since disobeying the gospel of salvation gets you condemned to hell

then disobeying the gospel of salvation is the same thing as disbelieving it. One can disobey by doing something out of the line of the authority that you are under and one can also disobey by believing something out of line.

[Eph 5:1-14 cont.]:

(v. 6 cont.) Let no one deceive you with empty words, for because of these things the wrath of God comes upon the sons of disobedience ="apeitheias" [noun form of the same verb, "apeithOn", as in Jn 3:36 above]

(v. 7) Therefore [you believers] do not be joint partakers [in disobedience, disbelief and sin] with them,

[Do not be joint participaters in sin with unbelievers ? This does NOT say as some maintain, 'Do not be joint partakers of God's wrath with unbelievers' because one would not, as a believer, participate in such wrath, (1 Thes 1:10; 5:9). So Eph 5:7, just quoted, commands believers not to sin as unbelievers do; but it does NOT indicate that believers would be condemned to Hell if they led sinful lives]

(v. 8) For you [believers] were formerly darkness, but now you are light in the Lord; [so therefore] walk as children of light

(v. 9) (for the fruit of the light consists in all goodness and righteousness and truth),

(v. 10) [so do not sin by] trying to learn what is pleasing to the Lord.

(v. 11) And do not participate in the unfruitful deeds of darkness, [which are characteristic of the unsaved] but instead even expose them;

(v. 12) for it is disgraceful even to speak of the things which are done by them in secret.

(v. 13) But all things become visible when they are exposed by the light,

[The light of the righteousness of Christ which evidences itself via God the Holy Spirit in the conscience of every believer. Compare I Jn 1:5-7; Ro 9:1]

(v. 14) For this reason it [Scripture] says,

'Awake, sleeper,

And arise from the dead,

And Christ will shine on you"

[This verse contains a quotation from a combination of Old Testament passages or perhaps from an early Christian hymn. In any case the words speak of a believer who has committed "deeds of darkness" who is commanded to wake up and rise from the dead as he is involved with the deeds of evildoers. Here is a Christian who has no deeds, i.e., divine good works, (Eph 2:10; I Cor 3:11-15). His faith - his very life - is considered dead by Scripture and the God Who inspired that Scripture. This Christian is not physically dead nor spiritually dead. He is temporally dead, dead meaning useless in the same way that faith without deeds is dead = useless to God, (Jas 2:17, 26). He is out of fellowship with God. He walks in darkness. Having grieved God the Holy Spirit with his sin, (Eph 4:30), his soul is separated from the righteousness of God and is useless to God until that sin is dealt with, (I Jn 1:5-10). While he is in this state of temporal death, under the control of his sin nature, he produces nothing of eternal value, (Ro 8:8). Romans 8:6a says that the mind of sinful man is death. The man described in Eph 5:14 is a sinful believer - a believer who is not under the control of the Spirit but under the control of the sin nature.

Finally, in accusing Christians of presenting views too harshly and too negatively, people object to the faithful believer's so called negative attitude. The world is always commanding its own to think postively and then 'good' things will happen. 'A negative mind just drags everybody down', they say. But being positive about the continued effects of sin in the world is neither productive nor realistic. Things will not get better before Christ comes again. The entire Bible and world history testifies to this. Everything is devolving NOT evolving: matter, energy, animals, people, stars, the universe, etc, etc. The truth of the matter is that matters will get far worse. The theology that every cloud has a silver lining or that there is a positive reason humanly speaking for everything that happens just clouds over the issue of what is right and what is wrong. If being negative is wrong then one most point that accusation right at God Himself Who is negative toward sin. And there are times to be negative and times to be positive:

[Eccl 3:1-8]:

(v. 1) There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under heaven:

(v. 2) a time to be born and a time to die,

a time to plant and a time to uproot,

(v. 3) a time to kill and a time to heal,

a time to tear down and a time to build,

(v. 4) a time to weep and a time to laugh, a time to mourn and a time to dance,

(v. 5) a time to scatter stones and a time to gather them,

a time to embrace and a time to refrain,

(v. 6) a time to search and a time to give up,

a time to keep and a time to throw away,

(v. 7) a time to tear and a time to mend,

a time to be silent and a time to speak,

(v. 8) a time to love and a time to hate,

a time for war and a time for peace."

16) JUDGE NOT THAT YOU BE JUDGED

INDIVIDUALS ARE NOT TO JUDGE OTHERS LEST THEY BE JUDGED. THEREFORE CHRISTIANS SHOULD NOT OFFER THEIR WITNESS TO OTHERS. IT'S JUDGMENTAL!

[Mt 7:1]:

"Do not judge lest you be judged yourselves"

This verse is often used to condemn the Christian's obedient lifestyle. Ironically, the world often condemns to hell those who hold firm to the Biblical truth of an eternally secure salvation by faith alone in Christ alone. So much for judging others. Most who use this verse ignore another passage which states that the believer is to judge all matters in the sense of discerning right from wrong:

[1 Cor 2:15-16]:

(v. 15) "The spiritual man makes judgments about all things, but he himself is not subject to any man's judgment:

(v. 16) 'For who has known the mind of the Lord that he may instruct him?'

But we have the mind of Christ."

Incidentally, the "Do not judge.." passage that unbelievers use to beat down the Christian lifestyle is ironically a passage about MISJUDGING others and condemning the individual rather than to discern, i.e., judge their behavior against what is said in God's Word without the personal condemnation:

[Mt 7:1-5]:

(v. 1) "Do not judge, lest you be judged yourselves.

(v. 2) For in the same way you judge others, you will be judged, and with the measure you use, it will be measured to you.

[And following is the key to understanding that this passage speaks about condemning others as if they were the only ones with sin, i.e., being a hypocrite]:

(v. 3) Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother's eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye?

(v. 4) How can you say to your brother, 'Let me take the speck out of your eye.' when all the time there is a plank in your own eye?

(v. 5) You hypocrite, first take the plank in your own eye? and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother's eye."

So it is commanded of the believer to judge all matters so that one can determine the course of one's behavior in accordance with the will of God, which foundation is based in the study of the Bible.

When one judges all matters by the Word of God we find that such judgment is "sharper than any double-edged sword":

[Compare Heb 4:12]:

"For the Word of God is living and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart."

As a matter of fact, Christians will be judging angels and the world:

[1 Cor 6:2-3]:

(v. 2) "Do you not know that the saints will judge the world? And if you are to judge the world, are you not competent to judge trivial cases?

(v. 3) Do you not know that we will judge angels?[the fallen, i.e., demonic angels] How much more the things of this life!"

17)MULTICULTURALISM IS MANDATORY BEHAVIOR

HOW ONE IS BROUGHT UP DETERMINES HOW OTHERS ARE REQUIRED TO TREAT YOU

The world is filled with countless cultures - most of which are ungodly and unproductive influences. These cultures promote many of the false human viewpoints enumerated here resulting in ungodly and inhumane behavior. Man has an intrinsic tendency to vehemently resist aspects of a culture which conflict with his own - right or wrong. People throughout history have fought to the death to maintain their own cultural way of doing things, even if it is cruel, evil or unproductive by comparison to another way of a different culture. In order to be productive and truly humane from God's viewpoint one must be prepared to discard those aspects of one's cultural background which are in direct conflict with a productive and humane society and learn and apply the principles which are truly humanitarian and proficient all of which come from the Bible. The nation Israel's periods of unprecedented prosperity and tranquility, and for that matter America's, are a result of remaining true to their culture which was Scripturally based.

Nations which permit cultures to operate and rule in contradiction to one another within their boundaries cause such inner conflict that they often break apart in brutal and bloody violence. The decline and fall of the Roman Empire is a prime example of this. America is threatening to be another. In order to maintain its integrity, a nation must sustain one culture as the ruling one. God's will is that it be a Biblically based one. Individuals of other cultures must therefore change their ways in order to become part of that nation. God established the dispensation of nations each with one predominate language and culture in order to guard against a despotic and evil one world government leading to worldwide destruction and extinction of the human race.

This will nearly happen when God permits the Antichrist to enslave the whole world during the 7 year tribulation period, (Rev 13:5-18; Mt 24:21-22). Our Lord established the dispensations of nations when men moved to establish a one world government centered around man and not God:

[Gen 11:1-9]:

(v. 1) "Now the whole world had one language and a common speech.

(v. 2) As men moved eastward, they found a plain in Shinar and settled there.

(v. 3) They said to each other, 'Come, let's make bricks and bake them thoroughly.' They used brick instead of stone, and tar for mortar.

(v. 4) Then they said, 'Come, let us build ourselves a city, with a tower that reaches to the heavens, so that we may MAKE A NAME FOR OURSELVES [instead of worshipping God] and not be scattered over the face of the whole earth.

(v. 5) But the Lord came down to see the city and the tower that the men were building.

(v. 6 Thru The Bible text) And the Lord said, 'Behold, the people ["are"] one, and they have all one language; and this they begin to do: and now nothing will be restrained from them, which they have imagined to do.

[They proposed to set up their own evil world which denied God and promoted man as his own god. Being Satanically motivated, this would eventually lead to the destruction and doom of humanity BEFORE Christ would be born to reconcile man back to God. So God thwarted this evil plan]:

(v. 7) Come, let us [God referred to in plurality ? Trinity] go down and confuse their language so they will not understand each other.

(v. 8) So the Lord scattered them from there over all the earth, and they stopped building the city.

(v. 9) That is why it was called Babel - because there the Lord confused the language of the whole world. From there the Lord scattered them over the face of the whole earth."

The rule of a one culture nation was reinforced when our Lord established that the rule of Israel was to be a one culture nation under the Mosaic Law. One could not continue to live by another culture if one chose to live in Israel, (Dt 4:1-9).

So America's leaders' misguided admonition to promote multiculturalism, i..e., to 'embrace our differences' is ludicrous and dangerous. Men are vehemently intolerant and astoundingly bigoted toward others who are different: a demonstration of man's sin nature. Instead of rejecting multiculturalism, American society has given it priority and explains away the resulting ungodly and unproductive behavior by saying, 'That's the way she is'. or 'That's the way he was brought up'. Rather than live by the culture of the Christian, upon which our country is founded, men choose instead to live out the lust patterns of their own sin natures vehemently insisting that they have a right to maintain their own cultural heritage no matter how evil and counter to America's Christian culture.

One way of proving that multiculturalism is wrong is to carry it to its logical conclusion: If multiculturalism is OK, then one cannot object to honoring the precepts and ways of the vicious, Neonazi culture originally established in Hitler's Nazi Germany

nor the communist culture of Karl Marx as instituted by communist China and Russia. Can the deadly enemies of communism and capitalism co-exist and together prosper a nation? Capitalism is God's way, (I Cor 3:5-8; Isa 65:21-23). Communism is Satan's.

The resulting inefficient, abusive, petty and bigoted behavior in the American workplace violates safety and proficiency standards and destroys the concept of teamwork and enablement of others to do the best job they can for society and business. Yet this kind of behavior is permitted in order to conform to the rule of 'HOW ONE IS BROUGHT UP'

Ironically, this 'rule' is often used to express dislike and contempt for another who is different and to make life on the job unpleasant for them rather than to enforce respect for someone's cultural background. The evidence for this is that it has been observed that this rule is invoked far less with 'friendlies' of the same kind than with 'enemies' of a different kind. It is interesting to note, for example, that most individuals who are 'brought up' to put others down or to demand some kind of petty and submissive behavior when others enter 'their territory' are usually quick to take offense at the slightest hint of the same behavior toward them.

If this rule is a righteous one, (and it is not), then how far is this rule legitimately carried in the workplace:

Some workers not having to comply with the dress code because of how they were brought up.

Trading favoritisms, under the guise of multiculturalism, for loyalty to supervisors. at the cost of productivity?

Permitting lower performance levels from individuals on account of their cultural upbringing, and then demanding higher performance levels from others who come from a more productive cultural background? Not having to work with others that are different because they were brought up that way, (race, religion, background, etc.)?

Disallowing a proficient method of doing something because it offends someone of a different culture?

Lowering standards for hiring individuals who are less qualified so as not to offend them by giving preference to more highly skilled individuals of another culture.

James Thornton states in the New American, Sept 19, 1994, 'Multicultural Invasion', pp. 25-28:

"Non-Europeans, coming to the U.S. for economic reasons and finding American society and culture very different from the society and culture of the lands of their birth, tend naturally to try to alter their adopted land so that it resembles more closely the country they abandoned.....

Thomas Jefferson, writing in 1782, warned against the pitfalls inherent in irresponsible immigration policies and what is today called 'multiculturalism':

'They [foreign immigrants] will bring with them the principles of the government they leave, imbibed in their early youth; or if able to throw them off, it will be in exchange for an unbounded licentiousness, passing as is usual, from one extreme to another. It would be a miracle were they to stop precisely at the point of temperate liberty. Their principles with their language, they will transmit to their children. In proportion to their numbers, they will share with us in the legislation. They will infuse into it their spirit, warp and bias its direction, and render it a heterogeneous, incoherent, distracted mass.'

Alexander Hamilton, likewise, instructs Americans to heed reality and beware the hazards of massive immigration by peoples still devoted to their former homelands. He declares bluntly that 'particular attachment to any foreign nation is an exotic sentiment which, where it exists, must derogate from the exclusive affection due to our own country.' The best course, Hamilton notes, would be 'to render the people of this country as homogeneous as possible' for that policy 'must tend as much as any other circumstance to the permanency of their union and prosperity.'............

[Hamiliton continues] 'The influx of foreigners must, therefore, tend to produce a heterogeneous compound; to change and corrupt the national spirit; to complicate and confound public opinion; to introduce foreign propensities. In the composition of society, the harmony of ingredients is all-important, and whatever tends to a discordant intermixture must have an injurious tendency.'.........

Washington, Franklin, Madison, Adams, Ames, and others spoke similarly. None was afflicted with that strange malady, so prevalent today, in which any culture on Earth - especially the most primitive - is valued more highly than our own.........

The traditional view...insists that human kind possesses a multiplicity of dimensions, that man is an enormously complex creature, that certain flaws in human nature are persistent, and that man's spiritual and cultural attributes are signal components in determining his economic and political life....

....Radical theorists postulated, [that] man is a wholly malleable creature, the perfect plastic material for experiments in social engineering....

The French Revolution, the Bolshevik Revolution, socialist movements, and the modern welfare state all find their source in those theories, and the colossal mounds of corpses produced by many of these experiments bear stark witness to the error, and ruthlessness, of that school of thought. The deliberate forcing together of peoples of unlike or rival cultures is also related to the same fanciful ideas, and generates the same tragic sequelae [ensuing result]....

Most of the world's societies are not tolerant, not charitable, not magnanimous, and not evenhanded towards the representatives of other societies and cultures. Events in history as well as in our own time serve equally to prove the point. Even at this very moment, as we read quietly in the comfort of our homes, human beings are ripping to pieces artificially contrived societies in which culturally disparate populations have been thrown together.

The litany of human catastrophe is seemingly endless: the murderous conflicts that bedevil Rwanda, Nigeria, South Africa, the Indian subcontinent, and the Balkans are only the most recent illustrations of that phenomenon of hostile cultural groups giving vent to an impulse so trenchantly described by Dr. Samuel Francis as 'secret compulsions to spill each other's blood.' And so, human beings and human society are not nearly so ductile as Leftist theorists would have us believe....

Harold J. Brown, in an essay on the writings of Henri Bergson published recently in The Religion and Society Report, discusses some of the prerequisites for a successfully functioning society....

'A universal human society is not possible, or not yet possible, because a society can exist only on the basis of shared obligations, and obligations cannot be shared, or can be shared only with difficulty, where there is no common language or culture.....'

[Dr Brown continues] 'Multiculturalism' actually works, wherever naked force is employed to make it work. Unquestionably, the foregoing furnishes the reason that the only relatively successful models in history for 'multicultural' or 'pluralistic' societies have been, by necessity, absolutist despotisms - the Roman Empire, the USSR, and Tito's Yugoslavia, to mention only three......

However strict and edifying Islamic moral teaching may be in Saudi Arabia, however colorful Hindu ceremonies may be in India, however abstruse Buddhist philosophy may be in the Far East, and however passionate the devotees of Voodoo may be in Haiti or Brazil, none of these religious views are in harmony with Christianity, nor can they be harmonized with Christian moral teaching and with life in a country where laws and customs are supposed to be based on a Christian worldview....

In contrast, and not all surprisingly, Bill Clinton recently expressed the wish that, 'somehow, between the government, the churches, and the schools, we could teach people not only to resolve their differences, but to understand that America has the opportunity to become the world's first truly multiethnic, rainbow society, where we can embrace their differences.'....

When America was still inwardly robust and when our belief in the superiority of our way of life was still undiluted, immigrants were not given the chance to do this. 'Adapt or leave' was the operative attitude in those days.....

The Eastern Establishment, multi-national corporations and giant, tax-exempt foundations envision an America where people's lives are no longer animated by their traditions, where there is no genuine heritage worth fighting for, where 'average Americans'

are little more than a faceless, mindless, rootless fellaheen, and where an upright and alert citizenry has been supplanted by an effortlessly controlled, materialistically oriented herd of 'consumers,' driven this way or that by a captive media and by tawdry commercial interests......."

Charley Reese wrote an article in the New American magazine on 3/27/95 entitled "Preserve America or lose it" excerpts from which follow:

"A MAJORITY of [immigrants to this country] are not Europeans who would at least share our cultural and political traditions. They are largely from areas of the world where the tradition is far from democratic, where violence as a political means of persuasion is a common tool, where authoritarian rule rather than liberty has been the way of life and where collectivism rather than individualism has been the cultural standard.

AMERICANS ARE BEING brainwashed daily that the only virtue is tolerance. Ironically, the people who do the brainwashing are themselves intolerant of Americans, American culture and our historical European and Mediterranean roots. But, in fact, cultural differences do make a difference...

The idea expressed in the Declaration of Independence, that every person is born free with unalienable rights given to him by God, is a uniquely American concept with Anglo-Saxon roots.

If you asserted that concept in most countries of the world, the ruling elites would laugh in your face, and inmany countries, not even the people believe it."

18) ABORTION IS A PERSONAL MATTER

ABORTION IS A PERSONAL MATTER - A PERSONAL CHOICE. A WOMAN HAS A RIGHT TO HER OWN BODY NO MATTER WHAT. THE FETUS IS PART OF THE WOMAN'S BODY, NOT A SEPARATE INDIVIDUAL, AND CERTAINLY NOT A SEPARATE PERSONALITY

****************

19) THE KEY TO THE SURVIVAL OF HUMANITY IS TO PRESERVE THE ENVIRONMENT AND CONTROL POPULATION

Dave Hunt, editor of 'The Berean Call', Bend, Oregon, Mar 1994 issue:

"Underlying the environmental movement is the theory that mankind is the product of evolutionary forces inherent within the universe. The scientific humanists regard these forces as impersonal, while the classical pagan or New Ager views the world and cosmos as a living entity/goddess known as Mother Nature or Gaia [or Mother Earth]........

This growing pagan spirituality with its worship of creation instead of the Creator (Rom 1:21-23) is ideal for joining science and all non-Christian religions.....

.......Carl Sagan...told.....that Earth should be regarded as 'sacred' to encourage treating it with 'care and respect' - not because God made it, but because it (Gaia) made us. Sagan, who rejects the Biblical God, says we should 'revere the Sun and stars.' This scientific neopantheism is called ecotheology. Another advocate, Professor Victor Ferkiss, says its basic premise is that 'the Universe is God.'

Atheist Mikhail Gorbachev...says.....'to bring nations together...to simulate the new environmental consciousness..returning man to a sense of being a part of Nature.'

To require man to act as if he's 'part of Nature' is an admission that he is not. Nature's creatures need no such urging. Gorbachev has said that 'conflict with nature is fundamental to our technologies.' Yet conflict with nature is impossible to natural creatures. Radios, TV, cars, planes, computers, operas and art are not natural nor are ambulances, doctors, hospitals and compassion.

If evolutionists believe their theory, then they should shut down all medical facilities and let the weak die naturally. Medically prolonging lives allows such persons to pass on their defects to subsequent generations. If evolution.....is true, then we must stop trying to find a cure for AIDS, stop treating those with the HIV virus and let them die. Since AIDS is largely a homosexual disease, it must be Nature's way of wiping out those who practice what is undeniably unnatural sex. According to Nature's

'survival of the fittest' approach, the sooner those with deficiencies die, the better for our species!

If stopping all assistance to the ill so that only the 'fittest survive' sounds harsh, blame Nature. That's her way. There is nothing more natural than disease, pain, death, and those calamities known as 'natural disasters' (hurricanes, earthquakes, lightning, drought, and famine, to name a few). Gaia or 'Mother Nature' is anything but kind. The evolutionist's attempt to have it both ways - denying a personal Creator yet insisting upon morals and compassion which can't come from Nature - betrays the lie.......

Animals have no concern to help their fellows, even in the face of death. If we were a natural product of evolution, then we would accept death as a natural process. After the lion has dragged down its victim, the herd pauses in its flight and grazes while the lion eats its prey nearby. In contrast, man mourns the death of his fellows (Gn 21:16, 23:2; 1 Kgs 13:29) - and feels an inner anger against death itself. Man realizes that death is not the way things ought to be, but an enemy which has invaded our lives. Only Christ destroys death (1 Cor 15:51-57; Heb 2:14-15) against which science and religion have no real hope (1 Thes 4:13).

If evolution were true and Al Gore's tree-hugging made sense, then whatever man did, from muggings to murder to war, would be a natural act. Police, courts, prisons and criminal accusations would have to be eliminated. Animals, the wind and sea, gravity and lightning act neither morally nor immorally, but naturally - and the same would be true of man. If it is not wrong (nature has no morals) for a volcano to spew forth poisonous gases, then neither is it wrong for manmade factories or aerosols to do the same. Nor can there be any complaint if Oregon loggers wipe out the spotted owl or whalers exterminate their prey. By destroying creatures standing in his way, man, as the ultimate predator, would only be fulfilling his evolutionary purpose as the 'fittest' species which is able to 'survive' at the expense of all others.

Honest logic descredits the evolutionary theory behind much of the environmental movement. No impersonal, natural force could design and produce a single cell, much less the brain. Only the God of the Bible could have brought moral man into existence. Thus the solution to man's problems is not in living harmoniously with nature, as we are being told, but in being reconciled to the God who made him (2 Cor 5:18-20; Col 1:21) and in submission to His will.....

This old creation is under God's judgment and will not be rescued from it, but is 'held in store' (i.e., reserved) for destruction by fire (2 Pt 3:7-12). Everything will be destroyed and God will make a 'new heavens and new earth' (v 13). We must live for that eternal state and warn mankind that only those saved by the redemptive work of Christ on the Cross will inhabit His new, perfect universe."

Robert W Lee states, (The New American, Sept 5, 1994 issue, 'The Grim Harvest of Population Control, p21-26):

"History is replete with ludicrous lamentations about alleged overpopulation. Confucius and other Chinese thinkers worried about 'excessive' population growth centuries before Christ. Plato and Aristotle fretted about it. In the Roman Empire, environmental fright peddlers proclaimed that population growth had worn out the earth. Writing in crowded Carthage in the second century after Christ, the philosopher Tertullian wailed that what 'most frequently meets our view (and occasions complaint), is our teeming population. Our numbers are burdensome to the world, which can hardly support us....In very deed, pestilence, and famine, and wars, and earthquakes have to be regarded as a remedy for nations, as the means of pruning the luxuriance of the human race.'

Such unsubstantiated fright peddling has continued to haunt us in the 20th century. In his 1948 book Our Plundered Planet, Fairfield Osborn predicted that the world could not feed more than two billion or so people then living. In The Population Bomb (1968), Stanford University biologist Paul Ehrlich predicted that hundreds of millions of persons would die of starvation worldwide and that the U.S. would have food rationing by the end of the 1970s. By 1984, he predicted, 'the United States will quite literally be dying of thirst.' In 1981, The Global 2000 Report to the President, commissioned by Jimmy Carter, declared that world food production per capita would increase less than 15 percent between 1970 and 2000, while real food prices would double.....

None of those dire predictions, nor anything close to them, actually occurred. Regarding the Global 2000 report, nationally syndicated environmental columnist Alston Chase wrote in 1989, 'Rather than becoming more scarce, most agricultural products are increasingly abundant...'

An illustration of how governments create and perpetuate poverty can be found in the case of Ethiopia during the rule (1977-1991) of Marxist dictator Lieutnnant Colonel Mengistu Haile Mariam. In the mid-1980s, Americans were inundated with news stories portraying the horrors of famine that eventually claimed the lives of an estimated one million Ethiopians. Starving children with flies crawling on their faces helped to create an impression of 'overpopulation.' But as news commentator Paul Harvey might say, here's the rest of the story.

Traditionally, Ethiopian peasants had stored food in good years as a hedge against bad harvests. But the Mengistu regime had outlawed the practice, branding it 'hoarding.' It was also customary for peasants to invest money earned from surplus crops grown

on their own farms to expand production, but Menhgistu attacked that practice as 'capitalist accumulation' and banned it. Occasionally, independent food traders would buy food in areas of the country where food was in surplus and transport it to areas where food was scarce. That free market solution to the distribution problem was besmirched as 'exploitation' and also outlawed. As syndicated columnist Jeffrey Hart observed at the time, 'the starvation in Ethiopia is manmade...The destruction of Ethiopian agriculture was...not a natural calamity, but the result of ideologically dictated government policy.'

Many densely populated countries with relatively free economies are thriving, so are seldom mentioned by the overpopulation plotters, who prefer instead to focus on those relatively sparsely populated nations with oppressive governments which are plagued with problems that can be misleadingly attributed to fecundity. Ethiopia's population density, for instance, is a scant 117 per square mile and its per capita gross domestic product (GDP) is a pitiful $121. By contrast, economically freemarket Singapore enjoys a per capita GDP of $13,900, despite a population density of 12,464 per square mile. Similarly, Taiwan, with a population density nearly five times that of Red China (1,503 compared to 315 per square mile, respectively) produces nearly 25 times as much per capita gross national product ($8,790 compared to $360).....

Historically, the chief indicator of 'overpopulation' has been the imbalance between a people and its food supply.

The Myth of Overpopulation (1969), Dr. Rousas J. Rushdoony recalls that the 'world, during its least populous eras, suffered most from hunger and famine.' It was only when 'statist controls receded in the late 19th century [that] hunger also began to recede, and Western civilization increasingly saw famine banished and hunger successfully dealt with. A far greater population enjoyed far greater supplies of food.' With the rise of communism, welfare states, and other manifestations of Big Government in the 20th century, many of the destructive statist controls returned.....

The essence of the problem, then, is that [Dr Rushdoony continues] 'socialism inevitably creates an imbalance between the number of persons living in an area and their basic economic requirements. There is, and always will be, overpopulation' under socialism. And the problems which socialism spawns will be used as the excuse to further augment the size, power, and reach of government.

According to Dr. Rushdoony, the world does indeed face overpopulation, hunger, and famine, but only 'as it becomes more and more socialistic. Socialism has a poor record when it comes to elimination problems: its answer adds up to eliminating people. In fact, one of socialism's major and chronic problems is simply people... Socialism always faces overpopulation; a free economy does not.'....

In 1974, biologist Francis P. Felice calculated that as summarized by Dr. Kasun, 'all the people in the world could be put into the state of Texas, forming one giant city with a population density less than that of many existing cities, and leaving the rest of the world empty.'.......

University of London economics professor Dr. Peter Bauer, a leading authority on Third World development, has written: 'Contemporary famines and food shortages occur mostly in sparsely populated subsistence economies with abundant land.' He points out that the 'small size of farms and the low level of agricultural productivity over most of the less developed world reflect lack of skills, ambition and energy, or social beliefs and customs adverse to economic achievement - and not a shortage of land.'... When Colin Clark, former director of the Agricultural Economic Institute at Oxford University, analyzed the food-raising capabilities of the various types of land throughout the world, he concluded that if all farmers were to employ the most productive methods, sufficient food could be raised to provide an American-style diet for 35.1 billion people, more than six times the present world population. Clark further estimated that, at Japanese standards of consumption, more than 100 billion persons could be adequately fed (and the Japanese are arguably more healthy than are we).

Former Harvard Center for Population Studies Director Roger Revelle estimated in 1979 that the agricultural resources of the world were capable of providing an adequate diet (2,500 kilocalories per day), as well as fiber, rubber, and beverages, for 40 billion people, and that it would require the use of less than one-fourth of the earth's icefree land area. His figures were based on the assumption that average yields would be only one-half of those realized in the United States Midwest..........

Writing in the Wall Street Journal for September 19, 1991, Hudson Institute fellow Dennis Avery, principal author of the Institute's book Global Food Progress 1991, agrees that the 'world isn't running out of food or farming resources.'......

......Avery insists that 'per-capita food supplies in the Third World have increeased 25% above subsistence since 1960 - during the peak of the current population growth surge. The U.S. Agency for International Development's newly completed demographic survey shows Third World birth rates slowing more rapidly than anyone had predicted. And Third World food production continues to rise twice as fast as its population.'.......

Overall, Avery concludes, the 'reality of the world's food and environmental gains are confirmed by all the major published data series, including the UN's Food and Agriculture Organization and the U.S. Department of Agriculture. Every reputable study of the world's 'carrying capacity' has concluded that the world can feed its expected population growth.'...........

E. Calvin Beisner, author of Prospects for Growth: A Biblical View of Population, Resources, and the Future, confirms.....that the combination of increased productivity and continuint innovation have led to 'multiplying returns' from resources, so that natural resources have actually become more abundant as population has increased. And Cato Institute Senior Fellow Doug Bandow adds that there has been a 'steady increase in the estimated reserves of everything from copper to oil to zinc; between 1985 and 1990 alone proven international petroleum reserves jumped by 400 billion barrels.'

William A. Goesch wrote, ('Back to Genesis' periodical brochure, April 1994 issue, pp.a-d):

"The chief problem with man, according to the new agenda, is separation from his environment, and that man simply cannot be spiritually fulfilled unless this breach is restored......The Bible, however, as well as history, teaches exactly the opposite. The great crisis is not that man is separated from creation, but that he is separated from his Creator. Until this is rectified, man will only become increasingly alienated from his fellowman, and nature will become increasingly alienated from his fellowman, and nature will become increasingly distorted. The whole of creation groans and travails today, not because man has turned his back on nature, but because he has turned his back on God!........ The teaching that says man has a special dignity, or is in some way 'above' the animals, is viewed today by many environmentalists and 'New Age' educators as utterly repugnant, and as one of the chief causes for the decay in our environment......Evolution teaches that man is a mere animal, made in the image of ape, at best. For this reason, many school children are taught that the Native American religions are far more noble than Christianity, for in those beliefs, man is viewed holistically as a part of the natural world from which he evolved. If evolution is true, then nature is not so much to be cared for as it is to be revered as 'sacred,' which is what our Vice President espouses. The Biblical teachings that man is separate, being made in God's image, and that man has been commissioned to have dominion over nature are held up for ridicule today.... According to this new agenda, only if the environment is set right can there be any hope that man can live harmoniously with his fellow man and with nature. Yet the book of James declares that it is because of an internal problem - sin - that man has lusted, destroyed, and warred with his fellowman. One hardly ever will learn today the real lesson from the French Revolution, and, more recently, from the fall of the communist Soviet Union. This lesson is that man cannot be perfected by furnishing the 'proper' teaching environment, for man's fundamental flaw is an internal one.......Getting right with God is crucial to a healthy view of the environment, and both the Bible and history teach this.

These hyper-environmentalists claim that because such problems as global warming and ozone depletion pose a clear and imminent threat, it will be only by the most concerted global effort, including the forging of a 'new spirituality,' that disaster is to be averted.....most people are not aware that there is no consensus yet existing in the scientific community that 'global warning' even has been determined to be real, much less to be.....dangerous.....

The Christian has been commanded by God to show a serious and sober concern for the environment....... Although we should not shrink from accepting our part of the blame for the current state of the environment, we must not be taken in by this emerging new environmental religion.......

Man is indeed in grave danger today because of his separation - not from nature - but from the GOD Who created nature."

Robert W. Lee states, (The New American, Sept 5, 1994, 'The Grim Harvest of Population Control,' p.26:

"Dr Peter Raven, professor of Botany at Washington University in St. Louis, has lamented that with about five percent of the world's population, the U.S. produces 25 percent of the world's output of carbon dioxide (CO2), which is supposed to be warming the globe to a dangerous degree. While there is little scientific basis for, or actual evidence of, global warming hypothesis, reductions in CO2 could prove disastrous to food production and water supplies worldwide. An increasing number of scientists are convinced that, if anything, our planet is seriously deficient in CO2, and that a doubling (or more) would be highly beneficial. After all, CO2 is the major building block of life. Plants extract it from the atmosphere through photosynthesis and transform it into food. A doubling of CO2 levels would not only greatly increase food supplies, but help conserve water as well, since plants exposed to higher levels of CO2 do not open their stomates (pores in the leaves) as widely as when there is less CO2 in the air. The smaller the openings, the less water is lost into the atmosphere through evaporation.

Dr. Sherwood B. Idso of the Agriculture Department's U.S. Water Conservation Laboratory has persuasively argued that a 'doubling of the CO2 content of the atmosphere will produce a tremendous greening of planet earth.' He explains that 'as the CO2 content rises, plants will obviously be able to grow and survive in areas where they currently cannot because of a lack of water. That means that you should see a tremendous redistribution of plants on the face of the earth.' In addition, 'forests should greatly expand their ranges.'

In its most recent State of the World report, released in January of this year, Worldwatch Institute lamented that 'fresh water shortages' are occurring in the U.S. and elsewhere, while 'worldwide stocks of rice are at 20-year lows...' Assuming for the sake of argument that such is actually the case, an increase in CO2 could be the solution, rather than the global-warming nightmare envisioned by environmentalists. Dr. Jeffrey T. Baker of the University of Florida's Agronomy Department reports that 'with rice, elevated CO2 levels stimulate growth and ultimately this translates into increased grain yield. We're getting, typically, anywhere from 30 to 40 percent increases in grain yield. We get increased carbon uptake through photosynthesis. We get a decline in carbon loss during nighttime respiration. We also get a decline in total water use. And all this translates into an increase in grain yield, which is the useful portion of the plant with rice.' "

William F. Jasper comments, in his review of 'Environmental Overkill: Whatever Happened to Common Sense?', (authors Dixy Lee Ray with Lou R. Guzzo, in The New American magazine, June 28, 1993, in the article entitled, 'Environmental Ammo', pp31-32):

"Anthropogenic (man-made) CO2 is estimated to total some seven billion tons annually worldwide. Sound like an enormous sum? Well, nature - through volcanoes, geysers, and the respiration of countless organisms - contributes an estimated 200 billion tons annually. Man-made CFCs (chlorofluorocarbons) contribute roughly 750,000 tons of chloride to the atmosphere per year. Mother earth contributes 600 million tons of chloride through sea water evaporation alone. Volcanoes provide many billions more.

Not that any of these effluents - natural or man-made - matter that much one way or the other. When it comes to the 'greenhouse' effect - a phenomenon essential to life on our planet as we know it - CO2 plays a relatively insignificant role. 'Indeed,' notes Ray, 'although carbon dioxide is getting all the attention in greenhouse discussions, it is really water - the water vapor of the atmosphere, and droplets in the clouds - that is the main greenhouse gas. Water is responsible for 98 percent of all greenhouse warming.' And the evidence, from voluminous temperature measurements taken from weather-monitoring stations throughout the world over the past hundred years, as well as the continuous temperature readings taken by the Tiros II satellite, shows no current global temperature trends either up or down.

But that is only part of the picture. The good professor surveys the frightening scenarios and frantic statements of the global warmies from a number of different angles, applying common sense and the facts of science so deftly that their perfervid bleatings are completely exposed for the utterly absurd and fraudulent ravings that they have always been.

In similar fashion, she methodically examines the emotionally and politically charged doomsday predictions of the self-appointed guardians of the ozone layer. A major problem with their theory, she points out, 'is that ultraviolet radiation levels at the earth's surface are going down, not up.' Just the opposite of what the ecofanatics tell us is happening as the result of man's pumping of CFCs into the atmosphere. Moreover, how do these CFCs rise into the stratosphere when the CFC molecules are four to eight times heavier than air? Answer: There is no evidence that they do reach the stratosphere. 'At least 192 chemical reactions and another 48 photochemical reactions have been identified in the stratosphere,' observes Ray, 'but none involves CFCs.'

Nevertheless, because the U.S. Senate ratified the UN's Montreal Protocol on ozone depletion, Americans will be paying hundreds of billions of dollars and suffering untold refrigeration and air conditioning headaches as the CFC ban - including freon and halons - goes into effect. This is a crime. As Ray points out, 'Not only are CFCs safe, but all of the proposed substitutes have turned out to be very expensive, and some are toxic, flammable, and corrosive. All are inefficient compared to freon.' The cost of this one mad act, she notes, 'may be as high as $5 trillion worldwide by the year 2005.' The cost in human lives is even more grim. Because of the severe effect on transportation and storage of food due to the loss or greatly increased cost of refrigeration, avers Dr. Ray, 'estimates indicate that between 20 to 40 million people will die yearly from hunger, starvation, and food-borne diseases.'

Dixy Lee Ray recognizes that there are global stakes involved in the battle against the environmental extremists. 'More and more it is becoming clear that those who support the so-called New World Order or World Government under the United Nations have adopted global environmentalism as a basis for the dissolution of independent nations and the international realignment of power,' she warns."

Gary Benoit states, (The New American, Sept. 20, 1993, 'Ozone and CFCs'):

"The ozone layer is not battered, CFCs have not been destroying the ozone layer, and the Antartic ozone hole - which is not an actual 'hole' but a seasonal thinning of the ozone - was first observed in 1956, long before CFCs came into common use."

[Robert W Lee, The New American, July 26, 1993, 'Ozone Hole: The Prize Eco-Scam', p.8]:

"The Antarctic ozone depletion is evident during September and October, lasts for a few weeks, then returns to normal by late November or December. It has been measured on a consistent annual basis only since 1985. In some years it 'worsens,' while in others it 'improves,' in what appears to be a natural ebb-and-flow associated more with such factors as sunspot activity, planetary waves, major storms, and the occurrence or absence of the 'El Ni?o' warm current in the Eastern tropical Pacific Ocean.

On September 8, 1984, researchers at the National Center for Atmospheric Research announced that satellite measurements had found that the sun's ultraviolet radiation affects the concentration of ozone in the atmosphere, and that the changes may have inflated estimates of human damage to the ozone layer (as is still the case). The center's Dr. John Gille asserted that in the past, 'if scientists thought that an ozone decrease had occurred in the stratosphere, it could have been mistaken for a chlorofluorocarbon effect from spray cans and other sources, when it was a solar effect.'......

If ozone is indeed declining on a global basis, there should be an increase in UV-B radiation reaching the earth's surface. To the contrary, however, ground measurements indicate that such UV has, if anything, been decreasing."

Gary Benoit, op. cit:

".....As Dr. Dixy Lee Ray notes in her book, Environmental Overkill, ozone concentrations 'on any particular day may differ dramatically from the next. These changes in ozone concentration occur naturally... In the northern latitudes, ozone concentrations differ as much as 40 percent, even within a few days...' By misrepresenting these natural fluctuations, the ozone layer can be made to appear 'battered' when in fact it is not.

But suppose that CLO really is destroying the ozone layer faster than nature's ability to replenish it. Would the chloride released by the break-up of CFCs in the atmosphere be responsible? Not at all, since chloride is one of the most abundant ions found in nature. Dr. Ray notes: 'Sea water evaporation provides the atmosphere with 600 million tons of chloride per year. Volcanic eruptions emit millions of tons of chloride. And at least another million tons of chloride are produced naturally every year.' By comparison, 'World production of CFCs at its peak reached 1.1 million tons per year. At this rate there would be roughly 750,000 tons of chloride available from CFCs annually.'

Besides, how could a substantial amount of CFCs get into the stratosphere when CFC molecules are four to eight times heavier than air? And how do these heavier-than-air molecules -most of which are released in the Northern Hemisphere - find their way to the South Pole to create an ozone 'hole' there?"

Robert W Lee, op. cit:

"...the volcanic eruption of Mount Tambora in Indonesia in 1813 'ejected 211 million tons of chloride. At the highest rate of worldwide CFC production, it would have taken about 282 years to produce as much chloride-yielding CFCs as this one eruption.'

Mount Erebus in Antarctica has been producing 1,000 tons of chloride daily for more than two decades. The volcano is located, Dr. Ray observes, only '10 kilometers upwind of McMurdo Sound, where ozone measurements are made. The volcano pumps out 50 times more chlorine annually than an entire year's production of CFCs. And, interestingly enough, the amount of chloride calculated to be in the stratosphere at any one time is 50 to 60 times higher than the chloride that comes from CFCs every year.' "

Other active volcanoes such as El Chichon in Mexico, (1982), Mt Pinatubo in the Philippines, (1991), Mt Helena, USA and many others add far more chloride into the stratosphere than man.

John f. McManus states in the New American, Nov 14, 1994 issue, in "Behind the Freon Frenzy", pp.6-7:

'''...in September 1991 NASA placed an unmanned satellite in orbit for the specific purpose of measuring man-made chemicals in the upper atmosphere....

NASA then launched the Atalntis space shuttle in March 1992, again to measure manmade chemicals in the upper atmosphere.....

They cannot admit that they have been wrong in so many press conferences for so many years by releasing the truth that only an infinitesimal quantity of CFCs ever rose up into the stratosphere. So they now claim no attempt was made to measure CFCs specifically and that neither mission had an instrument aboard to measure CFCs...

...[automotive air-conditioning engineer Bob Holzknecht from Cocoa, Florida] explains:

"Ozone is created by sunshine (energy rays from the sun).... For several weeks each year, the natural tilt of the Earth's axis shields the South Pole from its daily sunshine. During those weeks, very little new ozone gets created...To attribute the 'ozone hole' to escaping freon in Antarctica makes no sense; how many air conditioners and refrigerators exist on the whole continent? Zero!"

But references to Antarctica's annual ozone hole show up in the media every September - the end of the region's long, dark winter.'''

20) THE BIBLE IS NOT TRUSTWORTHY

FALLIBLE MEN WROTE THE BIBLE SO IT IS NOT REALLY TRUSTWORTHY. THERE ARE MANY INTERPRETATIONS TO THE BIBLE SO WHO KNOWS WHAT IS RIGHT OR WRONG?

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First of all, the writings of Scripture, (i.e., the original writings of the authors of the 66 books of the Bible which were written in ancient Hebrew, Aramaic & Greek), do not have any contradictions or errors. Scripture itself maintains that this is true:

[Ps 19:7-9]:

(v. 7) "The law of the Lord is perfect, restoring the soul; The testimony of the Lord is sure, making wise the simple.

(v. 8) The precepts of the Lord are right, giving joy to the heart. The commands of the Lord are radiant, giving light to the eyes.

(v. 9) The fear of the Lord is pure, enduring forever. The ordinances of the Lord are sure and altogether righteous." (Cf Ps 12:6; 119:89-96)

[Cp 2 Tim 3:16]:

"All Scripture is inspired by God [and therefore inerrant] and [therefore in all respects without exception] profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness;"

[Cp Jn 10:35b]:

[Jesus said] "...the Scripture cannot be broken)," [i.e., there is nothing in God's Word which has a hint of error or contradiction which would enable it therefore to be broken - i.e., no portion of Scripture can be considered suspect of not telling truth, (Cf Mt 5:17-18; 24:35)]:

(v. 17) "Do not think that I came to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I did not come to abolish, but to fulfill."

(v. 18) For truly I say to you, until heaven and earth pass away, not the smallest letter or stroke shall pass away from the Law. until all is accomplished."

[Mt 24:35]:

"Heaven and earth will pass away, but My words [i.e., Scripture] shall not pass away."

[Even the nuances and grammatical forms of the words chosen by God in the original languages were selected to convey precisely what God chose to say without error and in perfect truth]

[2 Pet 1:20-21]:

(v. 20) "But know this first of all, that no prophecy of Scripture is a matter of one's own interpretation, [That is to say that no verse is to be interpreted apart from, i.e., in contradiction to, any other passage in the Bible]

(v. 21) for no prophecy was ever made by an act of human will, but men moved by the Holy Spirit spoke from God."

So the Bible testifies to its own inerrancy: to its own absolute perfection. It is the product of a sovereign, perfect and Holy God Who chose to work through imperfect man in order to produce a miraculously perfect Bible. As a matter of fact, throughout history, there has never been an archaeological or scientific discovery which has ever disproved a single verse of the Bible, all have indeed proved out the truths in God's Word. The result of God's endeavor is so awesome and perfect that God states in His Word through the praises of David:

[Ps 138:1-2 AMPLIFIED]:

(v. 1) "I will confess and praise You O God, with my whole heart; before the gods [angels, cp Ps 8:5] will I sing praises to You.

(v. 2) I will worship toward Your Holy temple, and praise Your name for Your loving-kindness and for Your truth and faithfulness; for You have exalted above all else Your name and Your Word, and You have magnified Your Word above all Your name!" Notice that God has magnified His Word above His name. And the unique message of the Bible: God's redemption of mankind through His own sacrifice which is available as a free grace gift could only come from God Himself. Mankind's solutions do not even approach such an awesome and wondrous message: [Ro 3:24 N.I.V.]: (v. 23) "This righteousness from God comes through faith in Jesus Christ to all who believe. There is no difference, (v. 24) and are justified freely by His grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus." [Dr Kenneth S. Wuest states, ('Ephesians and Colossians in the Greek New Testament', Wm B. Eerdmans Publishing Co. Grand Rapids, Mich, 1963, p21-23)]: "...God's action at the Cross in dying for lost humanity is an action beyond the ordinary course of what might be expected and is therefore commendable. Here is one of the strongest proofs of the divine source of the Bible. The substitutionary atonement never came from the philosophies of man but from the heart of God." The original writings, which are no longer extant, have been copied, translated, quoted and written about many times throughout the centuries. With the availability of thousands of manuscript copies, innumerable letters quoting what the original writers wrote down and the incredibly meticulous work of dedicated scholars, errors in copying have been purged to the extent that what we have is almost all of what God inspired the authors of the Bible to write down. And year by year the few remaining unsettled variants amongst manuscript copies are being resolved. Incidentally, the variants in manuscript copies never effected a single major Bible doctrine. And we have a number of very reliable translations to work with so long as we constantly refer to the original language behind the translation as a double check of the translators. So copies and translations, such as the various King James Versions, the New International Version and the New American Standard versions are to be tested against the original words in the original languages which the human authors of God's Word actually wrote down. Changes in the meaning of words, expressions and figures of speech which are peculiar to particular cultures and times and outright translation errors demand this constant comparison to the original text. So Scripture is to be interpreted from the original language on the basis of what those original words meant to the people to whom those words were written, just like any other ancient writing. Translations are sometimes awkward and even misleading because of the differences in languages and cultures, but with a little study using commentaries, reference materials, dictionaries and the teaching of fellow believers one can determine the meaning of what God has said in His Word. Most of the teachings of the Bible are clear in any of the legitimate translations, (legitimate translation = translation which reflects the correct literal, grammatical and contextual content of the original language). Problems and controversies arise when individuals refuse to take what God clearly teaches in His Word and impose on Scripture what they want to believe instead. Although it may seem false because it is circular reasoning and contrary to human viewpoint, it is true that Scripture, i.e., God's Word, is without error because it says it is. The proof is in taking Scripture at its word and proving it out for oneself. By faithfully and exclusively following the rules of interpretation which are inherant and often explicitly stated in Scripture, the fact of the inerrancy of God's Word will be proved out every single time. An important point to understand relative to the interpretation of Scripture is that there is only one interpretation for each passage in God's Word which can be arrived at correctly according to the proper interpretive principles inherent in God's Word. Other interpretations such as those with a so called deeper spiritual meaning will inevitably fail the test of God's sovereign interpretive principles which are explicit or inherent in His Word and thus will be ruled out as incorrect. Since there are no contradictions in God's Word, then if there were a deeper second spiritual meaning or another interpretation for any passage in Scripture in addition to the meaning as attained by proper Biblical interpretive rules, (and there is not)......then these other interpretations could NOT contradict or add to the teachings from Scripture arrived at by utilizing proper Biblical rules of interpretation. Yet they inevitably do. God's Word refutes the idea of a second interpretation: [2 Pet 1:20-21]: (v. 20) "But know this first of all, that no prophecy of Scripture [i.e., no teaching in God's Word] is a matter of one's own interpretation, (v. 21) for no prophecy was ever made by an act of human will, but men moved by the Holy Spirit spoke from God." [Pr 30:5-6]: (. 5) "Every word of God is tested; He is a shield to those who take refuge in Him. (v. 6) Do not add to His words Lest He reprove you, and you be proved a liar." [Rev 22:18-19]: (v. 18) "I testify to everyone who hears the words of the prophecy of this book: if anyone adds to them, God shall add to him the plagues which are written in this book; (v. 19) and if anyone takes away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part from the tree of life and from the holy city, which are written in this book."

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21) THE BIBLE IS OUT OF DATE

THE BIBLE IS OUT OF DATE AND NOT APPLICABLE TO TODAY

Most people condemn the Bible as out of date and not applicable to today, yet principles from Scripture are espoused and followed everyday, especially at work.

Private ownership & enjoying the fruits of ones own labors is a Biblical principal which has provided unprecedented prosperity to the western world and is God's plan for the Kingdom Age:

[Isa 3:10]:

"Tell the righteous it will be well with them, for they will enjoy the fruit of their deeds."

[Micah 4:4]:

"Every man will sit under his own vine

and under his own fig tree,

and no one will make them afraid,

for the Lord Almighty has spoken."

Whenever a nation follows the Biblical principles of monogamous hetersexual family ralationships, sex within the bounds of marriage, individual free will and the divine institution of government to protect the people then that nation prospers. Great empires have fallen mainly due to internal immorality, oppression of individuals' freedoms and confiscation of individuals' productivity. The fall of the Roman Empire is a typical ancient example, the Soviet Union is a more recent one and America is next.

22) ONE MUST HAVE SELF ESTEEM

Human dysfunction is more often than not blamed on lack of self esteem if not the environment or the way one is brought up. Part of self-esteem theology is the belief that man is inherently good - that it is just a matter of bringing out the inherent goodness in man in order to resolve conflict. So the world says that developing an attitude of self-esteem is one of the ways to bring out man's supposed inherent goodness. God's Word says differently. First of all, every single individual has an inherent

nature which is totally depraved, capable of the most despicable acts. To have great self esteem is to love what is inherently evil in oneself from the moment of conception:

[Lk 18:19b]:

" 'Jesus answered. 'No one is good - except God alone. ' "

[Only God is good - man is totally depraved]

[Job 14:1-4]:

(v. 1) "Man born of woman is of few days and full of trouble.

[This speaks of ALL men, not just some]

(v. 2) He springs up like a flower and withers away; like a fleeting shadow, he does not endure.

(v. 3) Do You [God, (cp. v. 5)] fix Your eye on such a one? Will You bring him before You for judgment?

(v. 4) Who can bring what is pure from the impure? No one!

[Eccl. 7:20]:

"There is not a righteous man on earth who does what is right and never sins."

[Jer 17:9]:

"The heart is deceitful above all things and beyond cure.

Who can understand it?"

[Ps 51:5]:

"Surely I was sinful at birth,

sinful from the time my mother conceived me."

"I" ? King David of Israel and by application all mankind.

[Ro 5:12 INHERENT OR IMPUTED SIN]:

"Therefore, just as sin entered the world through one man, and death through sin, AND IN THIS WAY DEATH CAME TO ALL MEN, BECAUSE ALL SINNED."

[Ro 3:23 IMPARTED SIN - SIN NATURE]:

"for all [men] have sinned and ( ??? o ?? ? ) are constantly falling short of the glory of God,

[ ??? o ?? ? usterountai ? are constantly falling short of ? present tense which signifies that not only have all men sinned in the past through Adam, (Ro 5:12), - who represented all men as the federal head of the human race, (this is called inherent or imputed sin); but all men are constantly falling short of the glory of God because all men are born, as a result of Adam's original sin, with a sin nature, (this is called imparted sin). And as a result of our imparted sin nature, all men are constantly sinning - constantly falling short of the glory of God. All men are constantly committing sins. These are called personal sins. So man is obviously totally depraved and incapable of lifting one finger to save himself or even contribute one deed toward his salvation. Man has the inherant sin of Adam, he has an imparted sin nature and he has his own personal sins which create an impenetrable wall between himself and a holy God. Man is totally lost. He needs a Savior. All the good deeds, the righteousnesses that man does, coming out of his contaminated nature, with its impure motives at best, are looked upon by God as filthy menstral rags:

[Isa 64:6]:

"All of us [all mankind, vv4-5] have become like one who is unclean,

and all our righteous acts are like filthy [menstral] rags."

Even faithful believers cannot claim purity:

[Ro 7:23]:

"but I see a different law in the members of my body, waging war against

the law of my mind, and making me a prisoner of the law of sin which is in my members.

So even the Apostle Paul from the time he became a believer still possessed a most difficult sin nature. As all believers do.

[1 Jn 1:8]:

"If we [believers] claim to be without sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us."

This verse can be a startling one: if for even one fleeting moment one claims to be without sin. If one has even thought to himself, 'Well, I've gone for the moment without committing a sin.' Then, think again! I John 1:8 refutes that. God says, through the words of the Apostle John, that believers who claim to be even for a moment without sin are NOT telling the truth. So the focus is wrong. It should not be on self but on Christ:

[Eph 5:1]:

"Be imitators of God, therefore, as dearly loved children"

[Phil 2:3-8]:

(v. 3) "Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit, but in humility consider others better than yourselves.

(v. 4) Each of you should look not only to your own interests, but also to the interests of others.

(v. 5) Your attitude should be the same as that of Christ Jesus:

(v. 6) Who, being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be grasped,

(v. 7) but made Himself nothing, taking the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness.

(v. 8) And being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself and became obedient to death - even death on a cross!

God's Word does not require an individual to have high self esteem, i.e., to feel good about himself in order to function in His will. Instead, God turns a Christian's focus from inward to outward towards Christ first and then others, (Phil 2:3-4).

Consider the words of our Lord and the focus that they maintain:

[Jn 12:49]:

" For I [Jesus] did not speak on My own initiative, but the Father Himself Who sent Me has given Me commandment, what to say, ["? ? " ? " eip o" ? the content of what to say] and what to speak. [" ? ? " ? "lal e o" ? the actual words to specifically say"

[Compare Jn 5:19-20]:

(v. 19) "Jesus therefore answered and was saying to them, 'Truly, truly, I say to you, the Son can do nothing of Himself, unless it is something He sees the Father doing; for whatever the Father does, these things the Son also does in like manner.

(v. 20) 'For the Father loves the Son, and shows Him all things that He Himself is doing; and greater works than these will He show Him, that you may marvel.' "

[Compare Jn 8:28]:

"Jesus therefore said, 'When you lift up the Son of Man, then you will know that I am He, and I do nothing on My own initiative, but I speak these things as the Father taught Me.' "

23)VISUALIZE AND MEMORIZE:

THE POWER OF THE MIND

The world deifies the human mind. New age theology teaches that the mind of man can tap into the power of the universe - which they say is God. So they say if people would visualize success or some other more specific goal - or memorize a statement, then the outcome would align itself with the vision of the mind, summoning the powers of the universe which they consider God, and success would be the inevitable result.

At one time, the writer was actually ordered to gather together in a circle with fellow employees of an airline catering company to hold hands, visualize a preprogrammed vision of success and recite a company success motto in unison like a chant. This action, we were advised, was part of the new year's success program. At another company, it was strongly suggested to the writer and fellow employees to memorize a company mission statement which effort would contribute toward the success of the company. But God's Word says differently. The power of the universe is within the Creator of all things: God Himself, (Ps 8; 18; 19; 24; 29; 45-48; 50; 65-68; 77; 78; 89; 91-100; 104-108; 110; 111; 113-118; 135; 136; 139; 145-150), certainly not in creation, (Ro 1:20-23), nor from within the mind of man which is totally depraved, (Jer 17:9; Eccl 7:20). To tap into any other power source is to fall into the hands of demonic powers leading to disaster.

24) PROSPERITY MEANS ONE IS RIGHT WITH GOD

When evaluating the validity of prosperity theology, one must ask the question, if prosperity is an indicator of being in the will of God, what happened to the Apostle Paul and the Lord Jesus Christ Himself in His humanity - who were both materially poor:

[2 Cor 11:25-27]:

(v. 25) "Three times I [Paul] was beaten with rods, once I was stoned, three times I was shipwrecked, I spent a night and a day in the open sea,

(v. 26) I have been constantly on the move. I have been in danger from rivers, in danger from bandits, in danger from my own countrymen, in danger from Gentiles; in danger in the city, in danger in the country, in danger at sea; and in danger from false brothers.

(v. 27) I have labored and toiled and have often gone without sleep; I have known hunger and thirst and have often gone without food; I have been cold and naked.

[Mt 8:20]:

"Jesus replied, 'Foxes have holes and birds of the air have nests, but the Son of Man has no place to lay His head.' "

Scripture also indicates that the wicked do prosper at times:

[Ps 73:3, 12]:

(v. 3) "For I envied the arrogant when I say the prosperity of the wicked."

(v. 12) "This is what the wicked are like - always carefree, they increase in wealth."

Although Abraham, Isaac and Jacob prospered, Job for a season, did not - he was destitute. Job, whom God called a righteous man, lost his children and was divested of everything he owned:

[Job 1:13-22]:

(v. 13) "One day when Job's sons and daughters were feasting and drinking wine at the oldest brother's house,

(v. 14) a messenger came to Job and said, 'The oxen were plowing and the donkeys were grazing nearby,

(v. 15) and the Sabeans attacked and carried them off. They put the servants to the sword, and I am the only one who has escaped to tell you!

(v. 16) While he was still speaking, another messenger came and said, 'The fire of God fell from the sky and burned up the sheep and the servants, and I am the only one who has escaped to tell you!'

(v. 17) While he was still speaking, another messenger came and said, 'The Chaldeans formed three raiding parties and swept down on your camels and carried them off. They put the servants to the sword, and I am the only one who has escaped to tell you!' (v. 18) While he was still speaking, yet another messenger came and said, 'Your sons and daughters were feasting and drinking wine at the oldest brother's house,

(v. 19) when suddenly a mighty wind swept in from the desert and struck the four corners of the house. It collapsed on them and they are dead, and I am the only one who has escaped to tell you!'

(v. 20) At this, Job got up and tore his robe and shaved his head. Then he fell to the ground in worship

(v. 21) and said:

'Naked I came from my mother's womb,

and naked I will depart.

The Lord gave and the Lord has taken away;

may the name of the Lord be praised.'

(v. 22) In all this, Job did not sin by charging God with wrongdoing."

Objectors to what has been stated above point to Old Testament passages which promise prosperity for faithful believers under the Mosaic Law. But this was a rule of life which is no longer in effect:

[Ro 6:14b]:

"because you [Christian believers] are not under law, but under grace."

During the period of time in history that God designated as being under the Mosaic Law, the Law also provided for moment to moment temporal blessings and discipline for an individual living under the Law who obeyed or disobeyed particular statutes. So the

Law also served as a rule of life to an individual under that Law during that period of time from Moses to Pentecost as well as an absolute mirror which reflects God's perfect righteousness which is required for salvation.

Lewis Sperry Chafer states in "Chafer Systematic Theology - Abridged", vol 2, pp. 312-317:

"THE MOSAIC ECONOMY

With the coming of Moses and growth of the nation Israel, the Mosaic Law was given. It included more than 600 detailed laws including rituals which Israel was required as a nation to observe.....

.....The Mosaic sacrificial system was given as a means of restoring fellowship with God for believers who fell into sin. The sacrifices were to be offered by Israelites who had placed their faith in Yahweh.....

[Yahweh ? The Lord Jesus Christ - the Messiah]

.....The nation Israel descended physically from Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. As a nation and race, they received special promises from God both for their present and the future and were given privileges that do not extend to the Gentile world.

Israelites were promised blessing in return for obedience to the Law, and were told that God would discipline them if they failed to keep the Law. This is illustrated in Deuteronomy 28. The first 14 verses promised blessing to those who keep His commandments, and verses 15-68 are a declaration of curses and judgments that would fall on the nation if she disobeyed. Subsequently both the blessings and the cursings were fulfilled.......

.....THE MOSAIC LAW WAS TEMPORARY

The Mosaic Law was given as a temporary, not an eternal, rule of life.

Before the Mosaic Law was given those laws did not apply,...........................

[Ro 5:13]:

["for before the Law was given, sin was in the world. But sin [personal sin committed] is not taken into account when there is no Law."]

....and after the Mosaic Law was concluded the Law was no longer a basic moral code for Christians in the present age......

[Ro 6:13b]:

["...you (Christian believers) are not under the Law but under grace."]

.....THE LAW BEGAN ITS REIGN AT MOUNT SINAI. Before the Law was given, no one was responsible to keep it. With the introduction of the Law Israel was required to obey it as stated in Deuteronomy 5:1-3.....

[Dt 5:1-3]:

(v. 1) "Moses summoned all Israel and said: Hear O Israel, the decrees and laws I declare in your hearing today. Learn them and be sure to follow them.

(v. 2) The Lord our God made a covenant with us at Horeb.

(v. 3) It was not with our fathers that the Lord made this covenant, but with us, with all of us who are alive here today.'.....

....the Law came to an abrupt end at the time of the death of Christ.

The Law was given only until 'the Seed to Whom the promise referred had come' (Gal 3:19). It resulted in those under the Law coming clearly under condemnation with salvation only available to them through faith in Christ.

Paul came to the conclusion, "Before this faith came, we were held prisoners by the Law, locked up until faith should be revealed. So the Law was put in charge to lead us to Christ that we might be justified by faith. Now that faith has come, we are no

longer under the supervision of the Law.."

[Gal 3:23-25]

25) EVOLUTION IS TRUE

THE VIEWPOINT OF EVOLUTION IS WHAT IS LARGELY IMPOSED ON THE WORLD TODAY

CREATIONISM VS EVOLUTION:

A COMPLETE STUDY SCIENTIFIC AND SCRIPTURAL

TABLE OF CONTENTS....

G) WALKING IN FELLOWSHIP WITH GOD

THE FIRST PRIORITY OF THE CHRISTIAN FROM THE MOMENT HE IS BORN AGAIN IS TO MAINTAIN HIS FELLOWSHIP WITH GOD ALMIGHTY, WHICH WAS BEGUN THE INSTANT HE WAS SAVED. FELLOWSHIP WITH GOD IS A SIMPLE MATTER FOR THE BELIEVER:

CONFESS AND MOVE ON

CHRISTIAN RESPONSIBILITY CONTINUED....