4/27/20

"THE GOSPEL OF MATTHEW" The Discipling Ministry Of Jesus (4:18-22) by Mark Copeland

                        "THE GOSPEL OF MATTHEW"

               The Discipling Ministry Of Jesus (4:18-22)

INTRODUCTION

1. We saw where the public ministry of Jesus involved "preaching"...
   a. Proclaiming the need to repent, for the kingdom of heaven was at hand - Mt 4:17
   b. Taking this message to synagogues throughout the land - Mt 4:23

2. His ministry was not limited to preaching; it also involved "discipling"...
   a. In which He called select individuals to follow Him
   b. Creating His own group of "disciples"
      1) Just as John had his disciples - Mt 9:14
      2) Even the Pharisees had their disciples - Mt 22:15-16

3. We read of Jesus calling His first disciples in our text...
   a. The call of Peter and Andrew - Mt 4:18-20
   b. The call of James and John - Mt 4:21-22

4. Throughout His public ministry...
   a. Jesus would call others to become His disciples - cf. Mt 9:9
   b. Jesus would spend much time with His disciples
   c. Jesus would end His time on earth with a command for them to make more disciples - Mt 28:19-20

[Such an important subject to our Lord naturally raises some questions. For example...]

I. WHAT DOES IT MEAN TO BECOME JESUS' DISCIPLE?

   A. THE WORD "DISCIPLE"...
      1. The word "disciple" literally means a learner
      2. According to Vine's Expository Dictionary Of New Testament
         Words, it denotes "one who follows another's teaching"
      3. But a disciple was not only a learner, he was also an adherent
      4. For this reason disciples were spoken of as imitators of their teachers
      -- When Jesus told Peter, Andrew, James, and John to "Follow Me"
         (Mt 4:19), it meant more than to just physically follow Him!
 
   B. THE GOAL IN BECOMING HIS DISCIPLE...
      1. Stated by Jesus on this occasion:  "I will make you fishers of men"
         a. Just as they had worked in going after fish, now they would be going after men!
         b. As indicated in the Great Commission, they would be making more disciples - Mt 28:19
      2. Stated by Jesus on another occasion:  to be like their teacher
         a. Those perfectly trained will be like their teacher - Lk 6:40
         b. Just as Christ sought to save men and make them disciples,
            so His disciples were to seek and save the lost

[A disciple of Jesus, then, is one who desires to imitate Jesus.  Since
He was concerned for the lost, His disciples would be also!  Another question...]

II. HOW DOES ONE BECOME JESUS' DISCIPLE?

   A. JESUS SAID "FOLLOW ME"...
      1. This command He gave to His future disciples - Mt 4:19; 9:9
         a. They would spend three years following Jesus around Palestine
         b. During that time they would listen to what He said, observe what He did
         c. Eventually they would be told to carry on His work - Mt 28:19-20
         d. Their success was related to this time spent with Jesus - cf. Ac 4:13
      2. To be a disciple of Jesus, then, requires that one:
         a. Follow Him
         b. Spend time with Him
         c. Carry on His work
      -- But how can we do this when He is no longer with us on earth?
   
   B. JESUS SAID "ABIDE IN MY WORD"...
      1. This He said to those who believed in Him - Jn 8:31
         a. By learning and observing what He taught, they would truly be His disciples
         b. As Jesus would say later, future disciples would be made as
            they were taught "to observe all things that I have commanded you" - Mt 28:20
         c. It would begin with baptism, for He had just commanded His
            disciples to make disciples by baptizing them - Mt 28:19;cf. Mk 16:16; Ac 2:38
      2. To be a disciple of Jesus, then, requires that one:
         a. Be baptized (having repented and confessed one's faith in Jesus)
         b. Follow Jesus by doing what He taught His first disciples (the apostles)
      -- By continuing steadfastly in the apostles' doctrine (i.e., 
         their gospels and epistles), we can be Jesus' disciples today!- cf. Ac 2:41-42

[To follow Jesus by abiding in His word implies some degree of effort
and cost.  This leads to our next question...]
   
III. WHAT DOES IT COST TO BECOME JESUS' DISCIPLE?

   A. HIS FIRST DISCIPLES LEFT "ALL" TO FOLLOW JESUS...
      1. They left their business and family - Mt 4:20-22
      2. As Peter would say later:  "we have left all and followed You"- Mt 19:27

   B. JESUS EXPECTED THE SAME OF OTHER DISCIPLES...
      1. That He must come before family - Mt 10:37; Lk 9:59-62; 14:25-26
      2. That one must be willing to suffer hardship - Mt 10:38; Lk 9:57-58; 14:27
      3. Simply put, to forsake all to follow Him - Lk 14:33

   C. JESUS EXPECTS THE SAME OF HIS DISCIPLES TODAY...
      1. To seek first the kingdom of God - Mt 6:33
      2. As illustrated in The Parable Of The Great Supper, family and
         business cannot come before accepting the call of the gospel!- Lk 14:15-24

CONCLUSION

1. In calling people to repent, Jesus was also calling people to become His disciples...
   a. But like John the Baptist before Him, Jesus expected that people
      "bear fruits worthy of repentance" - cf. Mt 3:8
   b. As He would say later, "By this My Father is glorified, that you
      bear much fruit; so you will be My disciples." - Jn 15:8

2. For those willing to accept His call, along with the cost, there is promise of great blessings...
   a. As Jesus told Peter - Mk 10:28-30
   b. As Paul would encourage the Christians at Corinth - 1Co 15:58

3. Have we accepted the call and responsibility of discipleship, or do we just "go to church"?
   a. Which comes first, our families, our businesses, or Jesus Christ and His kingdom?
   b. Are we busy building our lives, enjoying our retirement, while the Lord's church suffers?
   c. Do we spend more time on fishing and other forms of recreation, than we do on fishing for men?
   -- How we answer such questions reveals much as to whether we are truly the disciples of Jesus!

May we all be open to the call of Jesus:

           "Follow Me, and I will make you fishers of men." 

Global Warming, Earth’s History, and Jesus’ Return by Eric Lyons, M.Min.


http://apologeticspress.org/APContent.aspx?category=11&article=2521

Global Warming, Earth’s History, and Jesus’ Return

by  Eric Lyons, M.Min.

As to whether or not the Earth is currently going through a warming trend, there is much debate. Although many, including former Vice President Al Gore, vehemently defend the man-made global warming theory (see “An Inconvenient Truth,” 2006), countless others, including thousands of scientists, have rejected the theory in part or in whole (see “Weather Channel Founder...,” 2007; Bonnici, 2008; Brennan, 2008). One truth that seems to get little attention, however, is the fact that the Earth has gone through various warming and cooling periods in the past.
Today, Antarctica is covered by seven million cubic miles of ice, which represents 90% of all the ice on Earth (“Antarctica,” 2008). The continental ice sheet at the South Pole is about 9,000 feet thick (Amundsen-Scott..., 2008). The average temperature at the South Pole is nearly -50 degrees Celsius. Nevertheless, Antarctica has not always been the frozen tundra it is today. The pro-atheistic, evolutionary science journal New Scientist recently ran an article titled, “Once the South Pole Was Green...” (2008, 198[2661]:34-38). The journal admitted that scientists are well aware that “Antarctica was once warm and forested” and inhabited by at least six different kinds of dinosaurs (p. 34). “Antarctica once enjoyed a climate warmer than that of England today” (p. 38). The fossil record indicates that in the past Antarctica was “almost sub-tropical,” lush with ferns, cycads, and conifers (p. 37). What’s more, fossils of breadfruit trees, crocodile-like creatures, and turtles have been discovered well inside the Arctic Circle (pp. 35-36). It is “abundantly clear” to scientists that at one time “both the Arctic and the Antarctic were ice-free and warm” (p. 37)—“more than warm enough for a pleasant swim” (p. 38).
Although today certain ones (e.g., Al Gore) are attempting to scare people into a “global-warming submission,” the fact is, our planet has gone through various stages of warming and cooling throughout its history—long before the invention of carbon-emitting planes, trains, and automobiles. At one time, the polar ice sheets were more extensive than at present; at another time, the Earth’s Arctic and Antarctic regions were virtually ice-free. In view of such naturally changing climates on Earth during its history, why should it surprise us if our planet does occasionally get warmer or cooler?
Our forefathers, along with plants and animals, have been on the Earth “from the foundation of the world” (Luke 11:50-51; Genesis 1-2; Exodus 20:11). They survived the ice-age(s), as well as the so-called “hothouse phase.” Today, we are flourishing in what scientists call the “icehouse” phase. In truth, man will continue the cycle of life on Earth until our Lord returns and destroys the Earth with fire (2 Peter 3:10-13)—a global warming for which man must prepare, else he will suffer in the hothouse of hell forever (Matthew 25:46; 2 Thessalonians 1:7-10).

REFERENCES

Amundsen-Scott South Pole Station (2008), National Science Foundation, [On-line], URL: http://www.nsf.gov/od/opp/support/southp.jsp.
“Antarctica” (2008), Britannica, [On-line], URL: http://www.britannica.com/EBchecked/topic/27068/Antarctica#tab=active~ checked%2Citems~checked&title=Antarctica%20--%20Britannica%20Online% 20Encyclopedia.
Bonnici, Tony (2008), “Global Warming? It’s the Coldest Winter in Decades,” Daily Express, [On-line], URL: http://www.express.co.uk/posts/view/35266/Global-warming-It-s-the- coldest-winter-in-decades.
Brennan, Philip (2008), “31,000 Scientists Debunk Al Gore and Global Warming,” May 19, [On-line], URL: http://www.newsmax.com/newsfront/al_gore_global_warming/2008/05/19/ 97307.html.
“An Inconvenient Truth” (2006), [On-line], URL: http://www.climatecrisis.net/aboutthefilm/.
“Once the South Pole Was Green...” (2008), New Scientist, 198[2661]:34-38, June 21.
“Weather Channel Founder: Global Warming ‘Greatest Scam in History’” (2007), [On-line], URL: http://icecap.us/index.php/go/joes-blog/comments_about_ global_warming/.

Give a Defense...to Everyone! by Kyle Butt, M.Div.


http://apologeticspress.org/APContent.aspx?category=11&article=847

Give a Defense...to Everyone!

by  Kyle Butt, M.Div.

The word apologetics derives from the Greek apologia, which means to defend or give a defense. Christian apologetics, then, is the defense of the Christian belief system.
The passage in 1 Peter 3:15 often is hailed as “the apologetic verse” because of its command to “sanctify the Lord God in your hearts, and always be ready to give a defense [apologian] to everyone who asks you a reason for the hope that is in you, with meekness and fear.”
The inspired apostle instructed believers to be ready to give a defense. Offering a defense for the hope that lies within the heart of faithful Christians often is an easy thing to do. Whenever a person is surrounded by others of “like precious faith,” it proves an easy task to boldly defend New Testament Christianity. Perhaps it is for that very reason that Peter carries the thought a step farther by saying that Christians should stand ready to offer a defense “to everyone who asks you.”
Imagine Peter penning these words as his mind drifted back to the hour of Jesus’ arrest and trial. Shortly before the events of that night unfolded, Peter boldly and bravely had declared that he would die with Christ. Yet once the murderous mob confiscated His Lord, Peter was reduced to lurking in the shadows and following at a distance. His weakness and ignominy would only multiply as he was ushered into the courtyard of the High Priest. Waiting for him outside the trial was an enemy he was unable to fight—one so fierce and heinous that his mouth seemingly could not utter a defense of either his faith or his Lord. That enemy was…a servant girl!
“You also were with Jesus of Galilee” she accused. And Peter, who had been one of the first disciples to declare that Christ was the Son of the living God (Matthew 16:16), and who had been the one among the disciples to voice his affirmation that Christ alone had the words of life (John 6:68), stood dumbfounded as he cowardly muttered, “I do not know what you are saying” (Matthew 26:70).
Peter had faced a primordial challenge to his faith—and had failed that challenge miserably. He thus knew from firsthand experience exactly how it felt to have his faith collapse under the weight of pressure from the enemy. Yet only a few weeks after his shameful denial, the Lord granted him the privilege of preaching the sermon that opened wide the doors of the Kingdom on the Day of Pentecost.
Peter’s admonition to those who were to follow after him, therefore, becomes somewhat like the warning of a loving mother who has burned her hand on the stove many times and wants to save her child from making the same mistake and enduring the same pain. Peter’s life-changing experience, no doubt, was why the apostle urged every Christian to “sanctify the Lord God in your hearts, and always be ready to give a defense to everyone who asks you a reason for the hope that is in you, with meekness and fear.” He understood all too well the alternative—denying the Lord in the face of the enemy—and knew far better than most that it was too horrible to contemplate.

Gentiles, Proselytes, and the Gospel by Eric Lyons, M.Min.

http://apologeticspress.org/APContent.aspx?category=11&article=1488

Gentiles, Proselytes, and the Gospel

by  Eric Lyons, M.Min.

According to certain religious groups, all Christians should seek to be immersed by the Holy Spirit (as the apostles were in Acts 2), and thereby gain the “God-given” ability to speak in tongues and possibly perform other miraculous feats. In an attempt to defend the doctrine that Holy Spirit baptism should be expected by believers even in the twenty-first century, some have alleged that the outpouring of the Spirit upon the household of Cornelius (Acts 10) was not done for the purpose of demonstrating to the Jews that the Gospel was to be preached to the Gentiles in the hope that they would enter into fellowship with Christ and the church (see Miller, 2003). According to one individual who wrote our offices, proof that Gentiles were converted to Christianity before Acts 10 is found in Acts 8. Since the Ethiopian eunuch was converted prior to the events that took place in Acts 10, Cornelius’ Holy Spirit baptism obviously was not intended to show the Jews that Gentiles were henceforth candidates for discipleship. Rather, the events recorded in Acts 10 supposedly are just an example of what happens when sincere believers yield control of themselves to the Holy Spirit. What can be said about such matters?
First, Luke never indicated in Acts 8 that the treasurer from Ethiopia was a “Gentile.” On the contrary, he implied that this eunuch was either a Jew or a proselyte when he stated that he had “come to Jerusalem to worship” (8:27). At this point in time, the eunuch was not yet a Christian; he had not yet heard and obeyed the Gospel (cf. 8:34-38). Thus, while he had in fact gone “to Jerusalem to worship,” such worship was not with the church in Jerusalem. It seems obvious that the reason he was reading from the Old Testament book of Isaiah when Philip approached him, and the reason he already had traveled hundreds of miles from Ethiopia “to Jerusalem to worship,” was because he was either a Jew or (more likely) a proselyte. On the possibility of the eunuch being a Jew, respected biblical scholar J.W. McGarvey stated: “It was not uncommon for Jews born and reared in foreign lands to attain to eminent positions, such as this man enjoyed, and especially in the department of finance...” (1892, p. 152). The other (more probable) possibility is that the eunuch was a proselyte—a convert to Judaism—just as one of the early servants in the church, Nicolas of Antioch, was a proselyte (Acts 6:5). The Ethiopian eunuch was a worshiper of Jehovah God, like the Jews and proselytes who were in Jerusalem on the day of Pentecost “from every nation under heaven,” including “Egypt” and “parts of Libya” (Acts 2:5,10). In the book of Acts, a distinction is made between proselytes and Gentiles. For example, when Paul and Barnabas were in Antioch of Pisidia, they encouraged Jews and devout proselytes “to continue in the grace of God” (Acts 13:43). But on the next Sabbath, Paul and Barnabas turned their attention to the Gentiles (13:42,44-48)—i.e., those who were not full converts to Judaism.
What Bible students must understand is that the eunuch from Ethiopia was not considered a “Gentile” in the sense that Cornelius and his household were Gentiles (Acts 10:45). Cornelius and his household were uncircumcised Gentiles who were considered by the Jews to be unclean (Acts 10:28); proselytes, on the other hand, were granted fellowship by the Jews (i.e., they were not unclean; cf. Acts 2:10; 13:43). Following the conversion of Cornelius and his household, “the apostles and brethren who were in Judea heard that the Gentiles had also received the word of God. And when Peter came up to Jerusalem, those of the circumcision contended with him, saying, ‘You went in to uncircumcised men and ate with them!’ ” (Acts 11:1-3, emp. added; cf. 10:45). How did Peter respond? Did he react by saying, “What’s the big deal? We’ve been teaching the Gospel to, and fellowshipping with, unclean, uncircumcised Gentiles for years.” Did he defend his actions by reminding the apostles and brethren in Jerusalem that Philip already had converted an unclean Gentile from Ethiopia? No. Instead, Peter informed his brethren that God had just used him (cf. Acts 15:7) to implement a monumental, permanent change within the early church. He stated:
As I began to speak, the Holy Spirit fell upon them, as upon us at the beginning. Then I remembered the word of the Lord, how He said, “John indeed baptized with water, but you shall be baptized with the Holy Spirit.” If therefore God gave them the same gift as He gave us when we believed on the Lord Jesus Christ, who was I that I could withstand God (Acts 11:15-17)?
What did his Jewish brethren understand him to mean? What was their response? According to Luke, “They became silent; and they glorified God, saying, ‘Then God has also granted to the Gentiles repentance to life’ ” (Acts 11:18, emp. added).
At a later meeting, following the apostle Paul’s first missionary journey, Peter spoke to the apostles and elders who had gathered in Jerusalem regarding whether or not a convert to Christianity needed to be circumcised and to keep the law of Moses. He stated:
Men and brethren, you know that a good while ago God chose among us, that by my mouth the Gentiles should hear the word of the gospel and believe. So God, who knows the heart, acknowledged them by giving them the Holy Spirit, just as He did to us, and made no distinction between us and them, purifying their hearts by faith. Now therefore, why do you test God by putting a yoke on the neck of the disciples which neither our fathers nor we were able to bear? But we believe that through the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ we shall be saved in the same manner as they (Acts 15:6-11, emp. added).
James later would add concerning Peter’s comments: “Simon [Peter] has declared how God at the first visited the Gentiles to take out of them a people for His name” (Acts 15:14, emp. added).
Based upon these statements, it rightly can be concluded that the Holy Spirit overwhelmed those in Acts 10 for the purpose of showing the Jews that all Gentiles were valid candidates for entrance into the kingdom of Christ. The miraculous outpouring of the Spirit on that occasion is not something that Christians should seek for themselves today. It served a specific purpose—which Peter and others acknowledged. Any attempt to circumvent this purpose for Holy Spirit baptism in Acts 10, including the allegation that Gentiles (e.g., the Ethiopian eunuch) long before Cornelius had obeyed the Gospel and become members of the Lord’s church, is indefensible in light of reason and revelation.

REFERENCES

McGarvey, J.W. (1892), New Commentary on Acts of Apostles (Cincinnati, OH: Standard).
Miller, Dave (2003), “Modern-day Miracles, Tongue-speaking, and Holy Spirit Baptism: A Refutation,” [On-line], URL: http://www.apologeticspress.org/articles/2572.

DON’T DO IT! by Jim McGuiggan

http://theabidingword.com/logos/index.html

DON’T DO IT!

I write mainly for readers who share with me a profound and common interest in and commitment to the God who revealed Himself in and as Jesus of Nazareth—the now resurrected and exalted Lord of All. I write for readers who believe in the Holy Spirit who makes Himself present (peculiarly) in the Church of God by His living Word in the Holy Scriptures. This living Word is living and powerful precisely because it is the Word of the living Spirit of God—it is never dead! Like its holy source, the Holy Spirit, it can be resisted, quenched and rejected because the “power” the Spirit of God brings to bear on the hearts and minds of people and in their societies is not coercive. It is God’s power to save but it is a drawing and shaping power (Acts 20:32; Romans 1:16; John 12:32 and elsewhere).
We’re aware of our flaws though we accept the fact that we don’t know or see them as our God and Savior can and does. Still, however flawed we are in practice or vision we can’t subscribe to the views of someone like J. Selby Spong who can take or leave the existence of God and still speak as one who is a Christian.
I can’t embrace the view of a congregation of people who are committed to Jesus as Lord but that in His name calls no one to repentance. When I hear people being invited to dialogue with Christians that assure them, “We’re not asking you to change your mind about your homosexual stance or relationships” I immediately ask, “Yes, but is God asking them to change their minds (repent)?”
Romans 1:18-32 is a long list of markers that the human family has suppressed the truth of God in unrighteousness and that God them gave them up to those various chosen evils that included foolishness and homosexuality in its various forms.
[It’s interesting that Paul is said to be wrong about homosexuality but is right when he condemns the rest of the list he spells out.]
And look at 1:32. These words have as much to say to universities, educational institutions as to individuals. “…who knowing the righteous judgment of God…approve of those who practice them.”
He immediately follows that long (but not exhaustive list) with a fearful warning that to choose to reject a change of mind (repentance) is to choose to reject God and His goodness and store up for oneself a coming wrath (Romans 2:1-4). Not to call me to repentance when it’s clear that I’m consciously choosing to reject His goodness is not kindness or friendship within the Christian narrative. To tell me it’s my God-given right to do as I please is to speak peace to me where there is no peace.
Still, how could we not be in favor of friendly dialogue with sinners when we ourselves are sinners? How could I not believe that God is calling other struggling sinners back to Himself when He calls me to Him as I seek a nearer likeness to Jesus Christ? His goodness to me and to everyone who seeks His presence and peace is expressed in the gift of His drawing us to repentance (Romans 2:4; 2 Timothy 2:25-26; Titus 2:11-14; 1 Corinthians 1:30; 2 Thessalonians 2:11; 1 Peter 1:2; 2:24).
This is no plea for Christians to keep sinners like ourselves at arm’s length with a “holier than thou” attitude or speech (Isaiah 65:5). We’ve done enough of that! Should we invite sinners who choose to reject God’s goodness to eat with us or to keep company with us if they choose to or to gather with us when we assemble to glorify Him? Dear God, yes!
But to tell them their conscious choosing to live their lives contrary to the good God who offers them a “change of mind”—to tell them that it is not sin to be repented of but rather a right for them to enjoy and for which they need to apologize to no one, not even to God? That is loving them with the love of the Lord? To tell people “We aren’t asking you to be reconciled to God (2 Corinthians 5:18-20); you need no such thing”? This is the love of God speaking through us?
To make a friend of sinners is like Jesus Christ! To make a friend of a “world” and a “world spirit” that first seduces and blinds, then shames and degrades and corrupts us and through us spreads corruption that is to make an enemy of God (James 4:4; 1 Tim 1:8-11) who loves those we smile at and say, “We’re not asking you to change.”
How seductive the Tempter is and how sweet and cozy is our feeling that we’re tolerant and friendly and Christlike. But there is no kindness so merciless as that which extends the hand of friendship to a slithering parasite that’s devouring those we care about. The patient and loving Son of God turned to His critics when they slated Him for caring for the noted sinners and He said, “They’re ill and I’m their doctor.” They hung Him for many things but they hung Him for making friends of sinners and even while he choked to death He said, “Father they need forgiveness. Forgive them they don’t know what they’re doing!”
Sinners like us who are “in the know” need to tell them.
There are many young people on the edge of an abyss. Don’t tell them it’s their God-given right to jump.
And there are those who are struggling with what they’re mortally afraid of and need a doctor like the Savior and friends standing by to assist Him. Don’t tell them everything is all right!
The Satan, said Paul, can transform himself into a minister of light.
(Holy Father, help us who wish to please you by being instruments of your blessing to the human family that you so love that you sent the Lord Jesus that we might have life in and through Him. Save us that we might not be carried away by every wind of cultural and societal change for we too are attacked by invisible rulers of the darkness of this “world” and hosts of wickedness in the unseen realms. Do continue in your faithfulness to keep us from trusting our emotions when they would carry us to places and thoughts you have protected us from. Convince us that your salvation is more than forgiveness but that it includes your patient work of deliverance from ALL that is unlike the Lord Jesus and that we might be included, more and more, among the number of whom it is said, “And such were some of you but you  but you were washed, sanctified, justified in the name of the Lord Jesus and by the Spirit of our God.” 1 Corinthians 6:9-11. Do come to our aid that as your People we will trust your saving Word in the Lord Jesus who is the same yesterday, today and forever, rather than our ever-changing feelings. Do help us to be faithful as servants of your Saving Truth that liberates. Do it for us your sinful children and do it for those too with whom we live and to whom we speak for if they do not hear it from us who will tell them of the full, final, glorious and joyful LIFE you offer? This prayer in Jesus Christ.)

WHAT DO YOU THINK IT MEANS? by steve finnell

http://steve-finnell.blogspot.com/2017/03/what-do-you-think-it-means-by-steve.html

WHAT DO YOU THINK IT MEANS? by steve finnell

 What is your opinion of the meaning of Scripture? Does your opinion matter or should you believe what others tell you is the truth?

Hebrews 6:4-6 For in the case those who have once been enlightened and have tasted of the heavenly gift and have been made partakers of the Holy Spirit, 5 and have tasted the good word of God  and the powers of the age to come, 6 and then have fallen away, it is impossible to renew them again to repentance, since they again crucify to themselves the Son of God and put Him to open shame.(NASB)

What do you think Hebrews 6:4-6 means?

1. If you have received the gift of the Holy Spirit you cannot fall from grace.

2. If you fall away after receiving the indwelling gift of the Holy Spirit, then, you were never saved in the first place.

3. Those who stop believing in Jesus find is easy to repent and start believing again.

4. Saved believer can never fall away because God predestined them for salvation. They have have been saved by grace alone. John Calvin knows that God chooses some to be saved and others to be lost forever.

5. My denomination believes in eternal security. That many people could not be wrong. Once a Christian, there is nothing a person can do to lose his salvation.

As for me, I believe the writer of Hebrews. 

------------------------------------------------------

Acts 2:36-38 "Therefore, let all Israel be assured of this: God has made this Jesus whom you crucified both Lord and Christ." 37 When the people heard this, they were cut to the heart and said to Peter and the other apostles, "Brothers, what shall we do ?" 38 Peter replied: Repent and be baptized, every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ so that your sins may be forgiven. And you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. (NIV 1973)

What do think Acts 2:36-38 means?

1. The 3000 men were saved as soon as they heard Peter preach Jesus as Lord and Christ; because they believed.

2. The 3000 wanted to know what to do after they believed and were saved.

3. The 3000 repented and were baptized because their sins were already forgiven.

4. The 3000 received the gift of the Holy Spirit the minute they believed that Jesus was Lord and Christ.

5. The 3000 told Peter they would be baptized as a testimony of their faith, but it would not be essential to the forgiveness of their sins.

6. The 3000 told Peter that water baptism was a work and that works cannot save, however, they would be baptized so they could join the denominational church of their choice.

7. The 3000 told Peter to baptize their non-believing infant children so they could be forgiven of the guilt that they inherited from Adam and for all future sins and so they could be added to a denominational body of Christ. 

As for me I believe the writer of Acts.

The question is can man-made creeds save anyone?

What must we do to be saved? by Roy Davison





http://www.oldpaths.com/Archive/Davison/Roy/Allen/1940/whatmustido.html

What must we do to be saved?
 
People at Capernaum asked Jesus: “What shall we do, that we may work the works of God?” (John 6:28). A lawyer asked Him: “What shall I do to inherit eternal life?” (Luke 10:25). A rich young ruler asked Him: “What shall I do that I may inherit eternal life?” (Mark 10:17). On Pentecost the people asked: “What shall we do?” (Acts 2:37). The Philippian jailor asked: “What must I do to be saved?” (Acts 16:30).

What answers did these people receive from Jesus and His apostles?

A popular answer today, given by evangelicals, is: You do not have to do anything! I found the following quotations on the Internet: (1) “Salvation does not depend on what you do or don’t do”; (2) “Your salvation does not depend on what you do.”

Did Jesus teach that one does not have to do anything to be saved?

Jesus said: “Not everyone who says to Me, 'Lord, Lord,' shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in heaven” (Matthew 7:21). “Therefore whoever hears these sayings of Mine, and does them, I will liken him to a wise man who built his house on the rock: and the rain descended, the floods came, and the winds blew and beat on that house; and it did not fall, for it was founded on the rock. But everyone who hears these sayings of Mine, and does not do them, will be like a foolish man who built his house on the sand: and the rain descended, the floods came, and the winds blew and beat on that house; and it fell. And great was its fall” (Matthew 7:24-27).

Thus, to enter God’s kingdom we must do the will of the Father. We must do what Jesus says.

Evangelicals contradict Jesus when they claim that salvation is not dependent on what one does.

What answers were receive when people asked: “What must I do?”

At Capernaum people asked: “What shall we do, that we may work the works of God?” (John 6:28). Jesus replied: “This is the work of God, that you believe in Him whom He sent” (John 6:29).

The first thing one must do to be saved is to believe in Christ. “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life” (John 3:16).

Jesus then explains that believing or not-believing is related to what one does: “And this is the condemnation, that the light has come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil. For everyone practicing evil hates the light and does not come to the light, lest his deeds should be exposed. But he who does the truth comes to the light, that his deeds may be clearly seen, that they have been done in God” (John 3:19-21).

“All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23). Only through Christ can sinful man be saved: “Nor is there salvation in any other, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved” (Acts 4:12). “For the grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to all men” (Titus 2:11). Christ “died for all” (2 Corinthians 5:15). He “gave Himself a ransom for all” (1 Timothy 2:6). “He Himself is the propitiation for our sins, and not for ours only but also for the whole world” (1 John 2:2).

Through the sacrifice of his Son, God has made salvation available to everyone. Whether one is saved or not depends on how one responds to God’s offer of salvation.

The first reply to “What must we do” is “Believe in Him whom He sent” (John 6:29).

This faith must be confessed. Jesus said: “Whoever confesses Me before men, him I will also confess before My Father who is in heaven. But whoever denies Me before men, him I will also deny before My Father who is in heaven” (Matthew 10:32, 33).

And the lawyer then, what answer did he get when he asked Jesus: “What shall I do to inherit eternal life?” (Luke 10:25). When Jesus asked him to answer his own question, he said: “‘You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your strength, and with all your mind,’ and ‘your neighbor as yourself’” (Luke 10:27). Jesus then said: “You have answered rightly; do this and you will live” (Luke 10:28). When the lawyer tried to excuse himself by asking, “And who is my neighbor?”, Jesus gave the example of the Good Samaritan and said, “Go and do likewise” (Luke 10:29-37).

What must we do to inherit eternal life? Faith is the first requirement, but faith without love is worthless: “Though I have all faith, so that I could remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing” (1 Corinthians 13:2).

What did Jesus reply to the rich young ruler when he asked, “What shall I do that I may inherit eternal life?” (Mark 10:17).

First He said: “If you want to enter into life, keep the commandments” (Matthew 19:17). To be saved, we must keep God’s commandments. This was true under the Old Covenant, and this is true under the New Covenant.

Jesus said: “If you love Me, keep My commandments” (John 14:15). “He who has My commandments and keeps them, it is he who loves Me. And he who loves Me will be loved by My Father, and I will love him and manifest Myself to him” (John 14:21). “If you keep My commandments, you will abide in My love, just as I have kept My Father’s commandments and abide in His love” (John 15:10).

But keeping commandments is not enough. When the rich young ruler told Jesus he had kept the commandments, Jesus replied: “You still lack one thing. Sell all that you have and distribute to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, follow Me” (Luke 18:22).

Although he kept the ten commandments, he lacked something. He had to repent and follow Jesus. Without repentance, no one can be saved.

Referring to people who had died because of their sins, Jesus said: “Do you suppose that these Galileans were worse sinners than all other Galileans, because they suffered such things? I tell you, no; but unless you repent you will all likewise perish” (Luke 13:2, 3). And referring to others who had died in an accident, He said: “Do you think that they were worse sinners than all other men who dwelt in Jerusalem? I tell you, no; but unless you repent you will all likewise perish” (Luke 13:4, 5).

To be saved we must discard everything that separates us from God, and follow Christ. Jesus says: “If anyone desires to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow Me” (Luke 9:23).

Is there something else that one must do? After Jesus died and rose, He told His followers: “Go into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature. He who believes and is baptized will be saved; but he who does not believe will be condemned” (Mark 16:15, 16).

In addition to faith, confession and repentance, one must also be baptized to be saved. That is what Jesus says.

Paul clarifies that baptism itself is a gift of God’s grace through which He gives us salvation. “But when the kindness and the love of God our Savior toward man appeared, not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to His mercy He saved us, through the washing of regeneration and renewing of the Holy Spirit, whom He poured out on us abundantly through Jesus Christ our Savior, that having been justified by His grace we should become heirs according to the hope of eternal life” (Titus 3:4-7). Through what does God save us? “Through the washing of regeneration.”

There is something wrong with the faith of those who teach: “Your salvation does not depend on what you do or don’t do.” They reject God’s gift of saving grace in baptism. They are unbelievers in the sense that they do not believe what Jesus says about salvation. They claim one can be saved by faith only, whereas Jesus says, “He who believes and is baptized will be saved” (Mark 16:16). Nor do they believe the Holy Spirit speaking through James: “Faith without works is dead” (James 2:20); “You see then that a man is justified by works, and not by faith only” (James 2:24). People who believe in salvation by faith only do not have a saving faith.

The apostles preached the same gospel Jesus preached.

When the Philippian jailor asked, “What must I do to be saved?” (Acts 16:30), he was told: “Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and you will be saved, you and your household. Then they spoke the word of the Lord to him and to all who were in his house. And he took them the same hour of the night and washed their stripes. And immediately he and all his family were baptized. Now when he had brought them into his house, he set food before them; and he rejoiced, having believed in God with all his household” (Acts 15:31-34).

Paul wrote: “With the heart one believes unto righteousness, and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation” (Romans 10:10).

And what was Peter’s reply on the Day of Pentecost when the people asked, “What shall we do?” (Acts 2:37). “Repent, and let every one of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins; and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit” (Acts 2:38).

When the apostles were asked: “What must we do to be saved?” their reply was the same as that of Jesus. To be saved people must believe in Jesus, confess their faith, repent and be baptized for the remission of sins. To follow Christ they must deny themselves and learn to observe all things that He has commanded them (Matthew 28:20).

God loves you so much that He sent His Son to die on the cross to suffer the penalty for your sins. He offers you salvation as a free gift of His grace. Whether you are saved or not depends on your response. You can be saved if you believe in Christ, confess His name, repent of your sins and are baptized. This is the good news preached by Jesus and His apostles.

Roy Davison


The Scripture quotations in this article are from
The New King James Version. ©1979,1980,1982, Thomas Nelson Inc., Publishers.
Permission for reference use has been granted.
Published in The Old Paths Archive
(http://www.oldpaths.com)

Bible Reading for April 27 and 28 by Gary Rose





Bible Reading for April 27 and 28

World  English  Bible



Apr. 27
Deuteronomy 9, 10

Deu 9:1 Hear, Israel: you are to pass over the Jordan this day, to go in to dispossess nations greater and mightier than yourself, cities great and fortified up to the sky,
Deu 9:2 a people great and tall, the sons of the Anakim, whom you know, and of whom you have heard say, Who can stand before the sons of Anak?
Deu 9:3 Know therefore this day, that Yahweh your God is he who goes over before you as a devouring fire; he will destroy them, and he will bring them down before you: so you shall drive them out, and make them to perish quickly, as Yahweh has spoken to you.
Deu 9:4 Don't say in your heart, after Yahweh your God has thrust them out from before you, saying, For my righteousness Yahweh has brought me in to possess this land; whereas for the wickedness of these nations Yahweh does drive them out from before you.
Deu 9:5 Not for your righteousness, or for the uprightness of your heart, do you go in to possess their land; but for the wickedness of these nations Yahweh your God does drive them out from before you, and that he may establish the word which Yahweh swore to your fathers, to Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob.
Deu 9:6 Know therefore, that Yahweh your God doesn't give you this good land to possess it for your righteousness; for you are a stiff-necked people.
Deu 9:7 Remember, don't forget, how you provoked Yahweh your God to wrath in the wilderness: from the day that you went forth out of the land of Egypt, until you came to this place, you have been rebellious against Yahweh.
Deu 9:8 Also in Horeb you provoked Yahweh to wrath, and Yahweh was angry with you to destroy you.
Deu 9:9 When I was gone up onto the mountain to receive the tables of stone, even the tables of the covenant which Yahweh made with you, then I stayed on the mountain forty days and forty nights; I did neither eat bread nor drink water.
Deu 9:10 Yahweh delivered to me the two tables of stone written with the finger of God; and on them was written according to all the words, which Yahweh spoke with you on the mountain out of the midst of the fire in the day of the assembly.
Deu 9:11 It came to pass at the end of forty days and forty nights, that Yahweh gave me the two tables of stone, even the tables of the covenant.
Deu 9:12 Yahweh said to me, Arise, get down quickly from hence; for your people whom you have brought forth out of Egypt have corrupted themselves; they have quickly turned aside out of the way which I commanded them; they have made them a molten image.
Deu 9:13 Furthermore Yahweh spoke to me, saying, I have seen this people, and behold, it is a stiff-necked people:
Deu 9:14 let me alone, that I may destroy them, and blot out their name from under the sky; and I will make of you a nation mightier and greater than they.
Deu 9:15 So I turned and came down from the mountain, and the mountain was burning with fire: and the two tables of the covenant were in my two hands.
Deu 9:16 I looked, and behold, you had sinned against Yahweh your God; you had made yourselves a molten calf: you had turned aside quickly out of the way which Yahweh had commanded you.
Deu 9:17 I took hold of the two tables, and cast them out of my two hands, and broke them before your eyes.
Deu 9:18 I fell down before Yahweh, as at the first, forty days and forty nights; I did neither eat bread nor drink water; because of all your sin which you sinned, in doing that which was evil in the sight of Yahweh, to provoke him to anger.
Deu 9:19 For I was afraid of the anger and hot displeasure, with which Yahweh was angry against you to destroy you. But Yahweh listened to me that time also.
Deu 9:20 Yahweh was very angry with Aaron to destroy him: and I prayed for Aaron also at the same time.
Deu 9:21 I took your sin, the calf which you had made, and burnt it with fire, and stamped it, grinding it very small, until it was as fine as dust: and I cast its dust into the brook that descended out of the mountain.
Deu 9:22 At Taberah, and at Massah, and at Kibroth Hattaavah, you provoked Yahweh to wrath.
Deu 9:23 When Yahweh sent you from Kadesh Barnea, saying, Go up and possess the land which I have given you; then you rebelled against the commandment of Yahweh your God, and you didn't believe him, nor listen to his voice.
Deu 9:24 You have been rebellious against Yahweh from the day that I knew you.
Deu 9:25 So I fell down before Yahweh the forty days and forty nights that I fell down, because Yahweh had said he would destroy you.
Deu 9:26 I prayed to Yahweh, and said, Lord Yahweh, don't destroy your people and your inheritance, that you have redeemed through your greatness, that you have brought forth out of Egypt with a mighty hand.
Deu 9:27 Remember your servants, Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob; don't look to the stubbornness of this people, nor to their wickedness, nor to their sin,
Deu 9:28 lest the land whence you brought us out say, Because Yahweh was not able to bring them into the land which he promised to them, and because he hated them, he has brought them out to kill them in the wilderness.
Deu 9:29 Yet they are your people and your inheritance, which you brought out by your great power and by your outstretched arm.

Deu 10:1 At that time Yahweh said to me, Cut two tables of stone like the first, and come up to me onto the mountain, and make an ark of wood.
Deu 10:2 I will write on the tables the words that were on the first tables which you broke, and you shall put them in the ark.
Deu 10:3 So I made an ark of acacia wood, and cut two tables of stone like the first, and went up onto the mountain, having the two tables in my hand.
Deu 10:4 He wrote on the tables, according to the first writing, the ten commandments, which Yahweh spoke to you on the mountain out of the midst of the fire in the day of the assembly: and Yahweh gave them to me.
Deu 10:5 I turned and came down from the mountain, and put the tables in the ark which I had made; and there they are as Yahweh commanded me.
Deu 10:6 (The children of Israel traveled from Beeroth Bene Jaakan to Moserah. There Aaron died, and there he was buried; and Eleazar his son ministered in the priest's office in his place.
Deu 10:7 From there they traveled to Gudgodah; and from Gudgodah to Jotbathah, a land of brooks of water.
Deu 10:8 At that time Yahweh set apart the tribe of Levi, to bear the ark of the covenant of Yahweh, to stand before Yahweh to minister to him, and to bless in his name, to this day.
Deu 10:9 Therefore Levi has no portion nor inheritance with his brothers; Yahweh is his inheritance, according as Yahweh your God spoke to him.)
Deu 10:10 I stayed on the mountain, as at the first time, forty days and forty nights: and Yahweh listened to me that time also; Yahweh would not destroy you.
Deu 10:11 Yahweh said to me, Arise, take your journey before the people; and they shall go in and possess the land, which I swore to their fathers to give to them.
Deu 10:12 Now, Israel, what does Yahweh your God require of you, but to fear Yahweh your God, to walk in all his ways, and to love him, and to serve Yahweh your God with all your heart and with all your soul,
Deu 10:13 to keep the commandments of Yahweh, and his statutes, which I command you this day for your good?
Deu 10:14 Behold, to Yahweh your God belongs heaven and the heaven of heavens, the earth, with all that is therein.
Deu 10:15 Only Yahweh had a delight in your fathers to love them, and he chose their seed after them, even you above all peoples, as at this day.
Deu 10:16 Circumcise therefore the foreskin of your heart, and be no more stiff-necked.
Deu 10:17 For Yahweh your God, he is God of gods, and Lord of lords, the great God, the mighty, and the awesome, who doesn't regard persons, nor takes reward.
Deu 10:18 He does execute justice for the fatherless and widow, and loves the foreigner, in giving him food and clothing.
Deu 10:19 Therefore love the foreigner; for you were foreigners in the land of Egypt.
Deu 10:20 You shall fear Yahweh your God; you shall serve him; and you shall cling to him, and you shall swear by his name.
Deu 10:21 He is your praise, and he is your God, who has done for you these great and awesome things, which your eyes have seen.
Deu 10:22 Your fathers went down into Egypt with seventy persons; and now Yahweh your God has made you as the stars of the sky for multitude.

Apr. 28
Deuteronomy 11, 12

Deu 11:1 Therefore you shall love Yahweh your God, and keep his instructions, and his statutes, and his ordinances, and his commandments, always.
Deu 11:2 Know this day: for I don't speak with your children who have not known, and who have not seen the chastisement of Yahweh your God, his greatness, his mighty hand, and his outstretched arm,
Deu 11:3 and his signs, and his works, which he did in the midst of Egypt to Pharaoh the king of Egypt, and to all his land;
Deu 11:4 and what he did to the army of Egypt, to their horses, and to their chariots; how he made the water of the Red Sea to overflow them as they pursued after you, and how Yahweh has destroyed them to this day;
Deu 11:5 and what he did to you in the wilderness, until you came to this place;
Deu 11:6 and what he did to Dathan and Abiram, the sons of Eliab, the son of Reuben; how the earth opened its mouth, and swallowed them up, and their households, and their tents, and every living thing that followed them, in the midst of all Israel:
Deu 11:7 but your eyes have seen all the great work of Yahweh which he did.
Deu 11:8 Therefore you shall keep all the commandment which I command you this day, that you may be strong, and go in and possess the land, where you go over to possess it;
Deu 11:9 and that you may prolong your days in the land, which Yahweh swore to your fathers to give to them and to their seed, a land flowing with milk and honey.
Deu 11:10 For the land, where you go in to possess it, isn't as the land of Egypt, from whence you came out, where you sowed your seed, and watered it with your foot, as a garden of herbs;
Deu 11:11 but the land, where you go over to possess it, is a land of hills and valleys, and drinks water of the rain of the sky,
Deu 11:12 a land which Yahweh your God cares for: the eyes of Yahweh your God are always on it, from the beginning of the year even to the end of the year.
Deu 11:13 It shall happen, if you shall listen diligently to my commandments which I command you this day, to love Yahweh your God, and to serve him with all your heart and with all your soul,
Deu 11:14 that I will give the rain of your land in its season, the former rain and the latter rain, that you may gather in your grain, and your new wine, and your oil.
Deu 11:15 I will give grass in your fields for your livestock, and you shall eat and be full.
Deu 11:16 Take heed to yourselves, lest your heart be deceived, and you turn aside, and serve other gods, and worship them;
Deu 11:17 and the anger of Yahweh be kindled against you, and he shut up the sky, so that there shall be no rain, and the land shall not yield its fruit; and you perish quickly from off the good land which Yahweh gives you.
Deu 11:18 Therefore you shall lay up these my words in your heart and in your soul; and you shall bind them for a sign on your hand, and they shall be for symbols between your eyes.
Deu 11:19 You shall teach them your children, talking of them, when you sit in your house, and when you walk by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise up.
Deu 11:20 You shall write them on the door posts of your house, and on your gates;
Deu 11:21 that your days may be multiplied, and the days of your children, in the land which Yahweh swore to your fathers to give them, as the days of the heavens above the earth.
Deu 11:22 For if you shall diligently keep all this commandment which I command you, to do it, to love Yahweh your God, to walk in all his ways, and to cleave to him;
Deu 11:23 then will Yahweh drive out all these nations from before you, and you shall dispossess nations greater and mightier than yourselves.
Deu 11:24 Every place whereon the sole of your foot shall tread shall be yours: from the wilderness, and Lebanon, from the river, the river Euphrates, even to the hinder sea shall be your border.
Deu 11:25 No man shall be able to stand before you: Yahweh your God shall lay the fear of you and the dread of you on all the land that you shall tread on, as he has spoken to you.
Deu 11:26 Behold, I set before you this day a blessing and a curse:
Deu 11:27 the blessing, if you shall listen to the commandments of Yahweh your God, which I command you this day;
Deu 11:28 and the curse, if you shall not listen to the commandments of Yahweh your God, but turn aside out of the way which I command you this day, to go after other gods, which you have not known.
Deu 11:29 It shall happen, when Yahweh your God shall bring you into the land where you go to possess it, that you shall set the blessing on Mount Gerizim, and the curse on Mount Ebal.
Deu 11:30 Aren't they beyond the Jordan, behind the way of the going down of the sun, in the land of the Canaanites who dwell in the Arabah, over against Gilgal, beside the oaks of Moreh?
Deu 11:31 For you are to pass over the Jordan to go in to possess the land which Yahweh your God gives you, and you shall possess it, and dwell therein.
Deu 11:32 You shall observe to do all the statutes and the ordinances which I set before you this day.

Deu 12:1 These are the statutes and the ordinances which you shall observe to do in the land which Yahweh, the God of your fathers, has given you to possess it, all the days that you live on the earth.
Deu 12:2 You shall surely destroy all the places in which the nations that you shall dispossess served their gods, on the high mountains, and on the hills, and under every green tree:
Deu 12:3 and you shall break down their altars, and dash in pieces their pillars, and burn their Asherim with fire; and you shall cut down the engraved images of their gods; and you shall destroy their name out of that place.
Deu 12:4 You shall not do so to Yahweh your God.
Deu 12:5 But to the place which Yahweh your God shall choose out of all your tribes, to put his name there, even to his habitation you shall seek, and there you shall come;
Deu 12:6 and there you shall bring your burnt offerings, and your sacrifices, and your tithes, and the wave offering of your hand, and your vows, and your freewill offerings, and the firstborn of your herd and of your flock:
Deu 12:7 and there you shall eat before Yahweh your God, and you shall rejoice in all that you put your hand to, you and your households, in which Yahweh your God has blessed you.
Deu 12:8 You shall not do after all the things that we do here this day, every man whatever is right in his own eyes;
Deu 12:9 for you haven't yet come to the rest and to the inheritance, which Yahweh your God gives you.
Deu 12:10 But when you go over the Jordan, and dwell in the land which Yahweh your God causes you to inherit, and he gives you rest from all your enemies around you, so that you dwell in safety;
Deu 12:11 then it shall happen that to the place which Yahweh your God shall choose, to cause his name to dwell there, there you shall bring all that I command you: your burnt offerings, and your sacrifices, your tithes, and the wave offering of your hand, and all your choice vows which you vow to Yahweh.
Deu 12:12 You shall rejoice before Yahweh your God, you, and your sons, and your daughters, and your male servants, and your female servants, and the Levite who is within your gates, because he has no portion nor inheritance with you.
Deu 12:13 Take heed to yourself that you don't offer your burnt offerings in every place that you see;
Deu 12:14 but in the place which Yahweh shall choose in one of your tribes, there you shall offer your burnt offerings, and there you shall do all that I command you.
Deu 12:15 Notwithstanding, you may kill and eat flesh within all your gates, after all the desire of your soul, according to the blessing of Yahweh your God which he has given you: the unclean and the clean may eat of it, as of the gazelle, and as of the hart.
Deu 12:16 Only you shall not eat the blood; you shall pour it out on the earth as water.
Deu 12:17 You may not eat within your gates the tithe of your grain, or of your new wine, or of your oil, or the firstborn of your herd or of your flock, nor any of your vows which you vow, nor your freewill offerings, nor the wave offering of your hand;
Deu 12:18 but you shall eat them before Yahweh your God in the place which Yahweh your God shall choose, you, and your son, and your daughter, and your male servant, and your female servant, and the Levite who is within your gates: and you shall rejoice before Yahweh your God in all that you put your hand to.
Deu 12:19 Take heed to yourself that you don't forsake the Levite as long as you live in your land.
Deu 12:20 When Yahweh your God shall enlarge your border, as he has promised you, and you shall say, I will eat flesh, because your soul desires to eat flesh; you may eat flesh, after all the desire of your soul.
Deu 12:21 If the place which Yahweh your God shall choose, to put his name there, is too far from you, then you shall kill of your herd and of your flock, which Yahweh has given you, as I have commanded you; and you may eat within your gates, after all the desire of your soul.
Deu 12:22 Even as the gazelle and as the hart is eaten, so you shall eat of it: the unclean and the clean may eat of it alike.
Deu 12:23 Only be sure that you don't eat the blood: for the blood is the life; and you shall not eat the life with the flesh.
Deu 12:24 You shall not eat it; you shall pour it out on the earth as water.
Deu 12:25 You shall not eat it; that it may go well with you, and with your children after you, when you shall do that which is right in the eyes of Yahweh.
Deu 12:26 Only your holy things which you have, and your vows, you shall take, and go to the place which Yahweh shall choose:
Deu 12:27 and you shall offer your burnt offerings, the flesh and the blood, on the altar of Yahweh your God; and the blood of your sacrifices shall be poured out on the altar of Yahweh your God; and you shall eat the flesh.
Deu 12:28 Observe and hear all these words which I command you, that it may go well with you, and with your children after you forever, when you do that which is good and right in the eyes of Yahweh your God.
Deu 12:29 When Yahweh your God shall cut off the nations from before you, where you go in to dispossess them, and you dispossess them, and dwell in their land;
Deu 12:30 take heed to yourself that you not be ensnared to follow them, after that they are destroyed from before you; and that you not inquire after their gods, saying, How do these nations serve their gods? even so will I do likewise.
Deu 12:31 You shall not do so to Yahweh your God: for every abomination to Yahweh, which he hates, have they done to their gods; for even their sons and their daughters do they burn in the fire to their gods.
Deu 12:32 Whatever thing I command you, that you shall observe to do: you shall not add thereto, nor diminish from it.

Apr.  27
Luke 15

Luk 15:1 Now all the tax collectors and sinners were coming close to him to hear him.
Luk 15:2 The Pharisees and the scribes murmured, saying, "This man welcomes sinners, and eats with them."
Luk 15:3 He told them this parable.
Luk 15:4 "Which of you men, if you had one hundred sheep, and lost one of them, wouldn't leave the ninety-nine in the wilderness, and go after the one that was lost, until he found it?
Luk 15:5 When he has found it, he carries it on his shoulders, rejoicing.
Luk 15:6 When he comes home, he calls together his friends and his neighbors, saying to them, 'Rejoice with me, for I have found my sheep which was lost!'
Luk 15:7 I tell you that even so there will be more joy in heaven over one sinner who repents, than over ninety-nine righteous people who need no repentance.
Luk 15:8 Or what woman, if she had ten drachma coins, if she lost one drachma coin, wouldn't light a lamp, sweep the house, and seek diligently until she found it?
Luk 15:9 When she has found it, she calls together her friends and neighbors, saying, 'Rejoice with me, for I have found the drachma which I had lost.'
Luk 15:10 Even so, I tell you, there is joy in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner repenting."
Luk 15:11 He said, "A certain man had two sons.
Luk 15:12 The younger of them said to his father, 'Father, give me my share of your property.' He divided his livelihood between them.
Luk 15:13 Not many days after, the younger son gathered all of this together and traveled into a far country. There he wasted his property with riotous living.
Luk 15:14 When he had spent all of it, there arose a severe famine in that country, and he began to be in need.
Luk 15:15 He went and joined himself to one of the citizens of that country, and he sent him into his fields to feed pigs.
Luk 15:16 He wanted to fill his belly with the husks that the pigs ate, but no one gave him any.
Luk 15:17 But when he came to himself he said, 'How many hired servants of my father's have bread enough to spare, and I'm dying with hunger!
Luk 15:18 I will get up and go to my father, and will tell him, "Father, I have sinned against heaven, and in your sight.
Luk 15:19 I am no more worthy to be called your son. Make me as one of your hired servants." '
Luk 15:20 "He arose, and came to his father. But while he was still far off, his father saw him, and was moved with compassion, and ran, and fell on his neck, and kissed him.
Luk 15:21 The son said to him, 'Father, I have sinned against heaven, and in your sight. I am no longer worthy to be called your son.'
Luk 15:22 "But the father said to his servants, 'Bring out the best robe, and put it on him. Put a ring on his hand, and shoes on his feet.
Luk 15:23 Bring the fattened calf, kill it, and let us eat, and celebrate;
Luk 15:24 for this, my son, was dead, and is alive again. He was lost, and is found.' They began to celebrate.
Luk 15:25 "Now his elder son was in the field. As he came near to the house, he heard music and dancing.
Luk 15:26 He called one of the servants to him, and asked what was going on.
Luk 15:27 He said to him, 'Your brother has come, and your father has killed the fattened calf, because he has received him back safe and healthy.'
Luk 15:28 But he was angry, and would not go in. Therefore his father came out, and begged him.
Luk 15:29 But he answered his father, 'Behold, these many years I have served you, and I never disobeyed a commandment of yours, but you never gave me a goat, that I might celebrate with my friends.
Luk 15:30 But when this, your son, came, who has devoured your living with prostitutes, you killed the fattened calf for him.'
Luk 15:31 "He said to him, 'Son, you are always with me, and all that is mine is yours.
Luk 15:32 But it was appropriate to celebrate and be glad, for this, your brother, was dead, and is alive again. He was lost, and is found.' "

Apr. 28
Luke 16

Luk 16:1 He also said to his disciples, "There was a certain rich man who had a manager. An accusation was made to him that this man was wasting his possessions.
Luk 16:2 He called him, and said to him, 'What is this that I hear about you? Give an accounting of your management, for you can no longer be manager.'
Luk 16:3 "The manager said within himself, 'What will I do, seeing that my lord is taking away the management position from me? I don't have strength to dig. I am ashamed to beg.
Luk 16:4 I know what I will do, so that when I am removed from management, they may receive me into their houses.'
Luk 16:5 Calling each one of his lord's debtors to him, he said to the first, 'How much do you owe to my lord?'
Luk 16:6 He said, 'A hundred batos of oil.' He said to him, 'Take your bill, and sit down quickly and write fifty.'
Luk 16:7 Then said he to another, 'How much do you owe?' He said, 'A hundred cors of wheat.' He said to him, 'Take your bill, and write eighty.'
Luk 16:8 "His lord commended the dishonest manager because he had done wisely, for the children of this world are, in their own generation, wiser than the children of the light.
Luk 16:9 I tell you, make for yourselves friends by means of unrighteous mammon, so that when you fail, they may receive you into the eternal tents.
Luk 16:10 He who is faithful in a very little is faithful also in much. He who is dishonest in a very little is also dishonest in much.
Luk 16:11 If therefore you have not been faithful in the unrighteous mammon, who will commit to your trust the true riches?
Luk 16:12 If you have not been faithful in that which is another's, who will give you that which is your own?
Luk 16:13 No servant can serve two masters, for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to one, and despise the other. You aren't able to serve God and mammon."
Luk 16:14 The Pharisees, who were lovers of money, also heard all these things, and they scoffed at him.
Luk 16:15 He said to them, "You are those who justify yourselves in the sight of men, but God knows your hearts. For that which is exalted among men is an abomination in the sight of God.
Luk 16:16 The law and the prophets were until John. From that time the Good News of the Kingdom of God is preached, and everyone is forcing his way into it.
Luk 16:17 But it is easier for heaven and earth to pass away, than for one tiny stroke of a pen in the law to fall.
Luk 16:18 Everyone who divorces his wife, and marries another, commits adultery. He who marries one who is divorced from a husband commits adultery.
Luk 16:19 "Now there was a certain rich man, and he was clothed in purple and fine linen, living in luxury every day.
Luk 16:20 A certain beggar, named Lazarus, was laid at his gate, full of sores,
Luk 16:21 and desiring to be fed with the crumbs that fell from the rich man's table. Yes, even the dogs came and licked his sores.
Luk 16:22 It happened that the beggar died, and that he was carried away by the angels to Abraham's bosom. The rich man also died, and was buried.
Luk 16:23 In Hades, he lifted up his eyes, being in torment, and saw Abraham far off, and Lazarus at his bosom.
Luk 16:24 He cried and said, 'Father Abraham, have mercy on me, and send Lazarus, that he may dip the tip of his finger in water, and cool my tongue! For I am in anguish in this flame.'
Luk 16:25 "But Abraham said, 'Son, remember that you, in your lifetime, received your good things, and Lazarus, in like manner, bad things. But now here he is comforted and you are in anguish.
Luk 16:26 Besides all this, between us and you there is a great gulf fixed, that those who want to pass from here to you are not able, and that none may cross over from there to us.'
Luk 16:27 "He said, 'I ask you therefore, father, that you would send him to my father's house;
Luk 16:28 for I have five brothers, that he may testify to them, so they won't also come into this place of torment.'
Luk 16:29 "But Abraham said to him, 'They have Moses and the prophets. Let them listen to them.'
Luk 16:30 "He said, 'No, father Abraham, but if one goes to them from the dead, they will repent.'
Luk 16:31 "He said to him, 'If they don't listen to Moses and the prophets, neither will they be persuaded if one rises from the dead.' "