Lay it to Heart
HOMETHE BEGINNINGTHE PAST
THE PRESENTTHE FUTURETHE END
SITE MAP



Living Today the Right Way

There are other areas of living today where the pastors are failing to lead the flock. There are misconceptions and myths passed along regularly. It is not the end of the world, neither is it a major issue. It is, however, a continual weakening of the body.

Legalism

What is legalism? There are several types. One is to seek salvation through obedience. We are saved by Jesus' sacrifice not works. Another type of legalism is to insist on obedience to old forms of the law that are not applicable today. The sacrifices were completed in Jesus' sacrifice on the cross which combined and fulfilled all sacrifices once for all. We do need the old sacrifices. Jesus is our sacrifice. The opposite of legalism is also present today which is disguised as liberty. Our liberty in Christ does not mean we disregard God's commandments, that we do whatever we want. What we must keep in mind that Jesus is the end of the law FOR righteousness not the end of the law OF righteousness (Romans 10:4). We are not to despise God's commandments and say now that Jesus died we can go and do whatever we want. In Matthew 5:17-19 Jesus said, "Think not that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets: I am not come to destroy, but to fulfil. For verily I say unto you, Till heaven and earth pass, one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law, till all be fulfilled. Whosoever therefore shall break one of these least commandments, and shall teach men so, he shall be called the least in the kingdom of heaven: but whosoever shall do and teach them, the same shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven." What is the fulfillment then? It is people obeying God because they want to and not because the have to. It is not using our liberty in Jesus to ignore his commandments. I have heard if your heart is in the right place then it is ok. Is this different than saying that as long as you are sincere then it is ok? King Saul was sincere when he held back from keeping God's commandment in 1 Samuel 15. He was to utterly destroy Amalek and spare nothing yet he spared some for a sacrifice. He thought he was doing right but neglected to truly follow God's way. The prophet Samuel rebuked him in verse 22 saying, "Hath the LORD as great delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices, as in obeying the voice of the LORD? Behold, to obey is better than sacrifice, and to hearken than the fat of rams." We must seek to follow God and not change his commandment for convenience or tradition. Sometimes the term legalism is just a label used to reject the messenger. Focus on God's word and not a label.

Is Christianity a Religion?

A current trend is to say Christianity is a relationship not a religion. Supposedly in 1828 Webster defined religion as man's attempt to reach God. Because God gave his son Jesus to die on the cross God really reached down to us and therefore Christianity is not a religion. People see religion as a bunch of ceremony and rules. Their definition of religion is wrong. Merriam Webster's definition is different today referring more to a system of belief. A better definition of religion is what someone believes about God and how they act upon it. James 1:26-27 tells us, "If any man among you seem to be religious, and bridleth not his tongue, but deceiveth his own heart, this man's religion is vain. Pure religion and undefiled before God and the Father is this, To visit the fatherless and widows in their affliction, and to keep himself unspotted from the world." This clearly shows there is a pure religion. If there is a pure religion then Christianity must be it. According to the Bible, Christianity is a religion and the preachers today who call for relationships not religion are just playing word games. Not only that, they are a threat to Christianity. If Christianity were not a religion contributions to churches would lose their tax exempt status. It would be acceptable to discriminate against Christians. Christianity would not be protected by the Constitution of the United States.

Man Is Not a Three Part Being

Preachers love to talk about how man is a three part being with body, soul and spirit. Actually, the soul and spirit are redundant terms or descriptions of the same thing. People are really two parts; a spiritual being and an earthly tent made of the body of flesh. Hebrews 4:12 says, "For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any twoedged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart." Here the words soul and spirit are used. If this were the first time you read the Bible you might believe that the soul and spirit were different. If you go on further, however, you will find in Deuteronomy 6:4; "And thou shalt love the LORD thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might." So now we see heart and might added to the list. Matthew 22:37 reads, "Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind." Add mind to the list. In Mark 12:30 Jesus said, "And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind, and with all thy strength: this is the first commandment." The new description here is strength. In Luke 22:42 Jesus prayed, "Father, if thou be willing, remove this cup from me: nevertheless not my will, but thine, be done." So of we proceed in the same line of thought we should go with body, soul, spirit, mind, heart, might, strength and will. That gives us eight parts. These eight words really only describe the flesh which is temporary and the spirit which is eternal. As a child I was not concerned about what happened to my soul when I died. I only cared about me not knowing that when the preacher was speaking of my soul he was speaking of me. Why should we confuse children with words games? Why waste time in the pulpit with filler instead of the real thing?

All Sin Is the Same

Preachers claim all sin is the same from God's standpoint. This is not accurate. They ignore other parts of the Bible where God commands us to deal with it. There is more than one aspect to sin. One aspect applies to conviction, whether someone is guilty or not. The other aspect applies to sentencing; what should be done once guilt is established. They are correct about one part that any sin makes you a sinner and will send to you to hell without the grace of Jesus. What they delete from God's word is another aspect of his commandments and that is how the sin should be dealt with. Exodus 22:1 says, "If a man shall steal an ox, or a sheep, and kill it, or sell it; he shall restore five oxen for an ox, and four sheep for a sheep." The person whole stole an ox had to pay back five to one. For a sheep which had a smaller value it was only four to one. Exodus 35:31-34 has a much greater penalty for murderer so as not to pollute or defile the land. Given how we are to treat sin not all sin is the same.

A Living Hell

The terms "a living hell" and "hell on earth" are incorrect. Nothing compares to hell. Matthew 18:6 says, "But whoso shall offend one of these little ones which believe in me, it were better for him that a millstone were hanged about his neck, and that he were drowned in the depth of the sea." Getting thrown in the depth of the sea is better than hell. Verses 8 lets us know having two hands or two feet cut off it better than hell. Verse 9 says it is better to have an eye plucked out than to go to hell. Matthew 13:42 talks about a furnace of fire as well as weeping and gnashing of teeth. Burn victims may temporarily experience something terrible but it does not go on forever. People may be suffering but it in no way compares to hell. We should not take away from the severity or reality of hell.

Seeker Sensitive

How far is this one going to go? God does not come to us on our terms, we must come to him on his. Changing or adapting church services is not necessarily wrong but is what your doing or not doing a sin? Romans 6:1 says, "What shall we say then? Shall we continue in sin, that grace may abound?" The ends does not justify the means. We should not have false preachers or politicians on our pulpits even if they support some of the things we are doing. Let them attend and sit quietly in the pews. Interfaith gatherings are often wrong and very wrong. 1 Corinthians 5:11 says, "But now I have written unto you not to keep company, if any man that is called a brother be a fornicator, or covetous, or an idolater, or a railer, or a drunkard, or an extortioner; with such an one no not to eat." When a preacher publicly takes a test from the pulpit for a sickness that would only be present if he or his wife had been unfaithful, it is a sin. It may be seeker sensitive but it is certainly a disgrace. If the pastor is qualified and blameless as required in 1 Timothy 3:1, he will not need such a test. If you are holding back on the word of God or tolerating sin in your church in order to be seeker sensitive, then seeker sensitive is wrong.

Rock and Roll

Some pastors will tell you rock and roll is a sin. Actually, it is a sin to say rock and roll is a sin because such a statement is a lie. Have you heard the joke "All generalities are false"? There is a reason for the joke. That statement, of course, is a generality. Not all generalities or blanket statements, however, are false. Here is a true blanket statement; "Without air you will die." What is said about rock and roll music is said without scriptural backup. There is not a verse in the Bible that says rock and roll music is necessarily bad. Are some rock musicians doing bad things? Yes, they are. Should you boycott their music because of it? Ask yourself if you boycott any other business with bad employees. If the guy stocking the food in the grocery store gets drunk every weekend will you stop buying food from that store and all other stores? If some of the auto workers who make your car have improper relationships will you stop buying cars altogether? 1 Corinthians 8 talks about meat sacrificed to idols. It wasn't a sin to eat the meat purchased in the market place that had been sacrificed to an idol. It was a sin to cause someone to stumble. Concerning rock and roll, more damage is done by categorically classifying rock music as a sin. It is so bad, that some people even think they can't get saved because they listen to rock and roll. If we stop listening as soon as we find something bad and then completely reject all other work of a similar nature then we should stop singing hymns from the hymnal because some of them are wrong (see the page about Christmas or Other Unscriptural songs.) Pastors need to let people know they should not listen to bad lyrics. We should screen out the bad and listen to the good. Just because an artist does something wrong does not make all of their music wrong. Also, just because some artists do wrong does not make all rock and roll a sin.

Dressing Modestly

Pastors call for revival but are not willing to really preach it. One disgraceful practice in the church is women who show part of their breasts. If it is necessarily sexual assault to touch a part of their body that they are showing, they are partially naked. This is sin and pastors are cowardly avoiding it. Some pastors reason that people know better and don't need to be taught. Some people don't know better. Some do, but either way, pastors need to publicly from time to time tell women to cover up. Women sure would be upset if the pastor touched what they showed but they won't repent. Don't be confused because it is only the top or sides of their breasts they are showing. Women today are living a double standard. Apply the same standards to a man. If a man wore a low cut belt buckle and just showed the top part of his stuff, people would be grossed out. If kids saw him he would be arrested. In Matthew 5:27-28 Jesus told us, "Ye have heard that it was said by them of old time, Thou shalt not commit adultery: But I say unto you, That whosoever looketh on a woman to lust after her hath committed adultery with her already in his heart." Most men would have been married that heard this saying. For the unmarried lusting after the unmarried it would have been fornication. The concept is still the same. If it is adultery for a man to lust after a woman then why isn't it adultery for a women to entice the lust of a man?

What Is Lust?

Preachers have redefined lust to mean an unholy sexual desire. What lust really means is simply a desire. It can be good. It can be wrong. Deuteronomy 12:15-16 says, "Notwithstanding thou mayest kill and eat flesh in all thy gates, whatsoever thy soul lusteth after, according to the blessing of the LORD thy God which he hath given thee: the unclean and the clean may eat thereof, as of the roebuck, and as of the hart. Only ye shall not eat the blood; ye shall pour it upon the earth as water." In this passage lust was not just acceptable it was blessed by God. Judges 3:29 says, "And they slew of Moab at that time about ten thousand men, all lusty, and all men of valour; and there escaped not a man." Here lusty meant desirable. We need to stick with the Bible and not redefine words.

Wearing Hats Indoors

From time to time some uneducated person will say, "Is your head cold". I totally agree with my one of my professors in college who wouldn't let students wear hats in class as I suspected it could be used for cheating. Men should not pray or prophesy with their head covered as it is a disgrace to Jesus (see the page on why men should have short hair and women long hair). At home or indoors, tradition had overcome the word of God. It is not a sin to wear a hat indoors. On the other hand, concerning his words, God says in Deuteronomy 6, "And thou shalt bind them for a sign upon thine hand, and they shall be as frontlets between thine eyes." I prefer to put scripture on my hat and wear it. I also put them on my work gloves. Men make their own tradition as the word of God and then disregard God's word.

Driving

1 Peter 2:13-14 commands, "Submit yourselves to every ordinance of man for the Lord's sake: whether it be to the king, as supreme; Or unto governors, as unto them that are sent by him for the punishment of evildoers, and for the praise of them that do well." We need to follow the traffic laws because God said to. Of course, it also saves lives. Not all pastors drive as though this were true and in some cases belittle following the law. Many others say nothing about it yet thousands of people die every year on the road. Churches need to take more serious approach to this problem.

Pictures of Jesus

Exodus 20:4 says, "Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image, or any likeness of any thing that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth:" Pictures of Jesus have become graven images. First of all, no one alive today knows what Jesus looked like. This is a false testimony. Many of pictures of Jesus are of someone who does not even look Jewish. Jesus was not German and he was not African. Why assign these German or African features to him? Why assign western European features, either? Why assign anything at all? Historical fiction presented as truth is a lie. It is a sin. Next, almost all pictures show Jesus with long hair which would be a sin (see the page on why men should have short hair and women long hair). Jesus was not a sinner. Additionally, they often show Jesus with an unscriptural beard. The Jews were not to mar the corners of their beards (Leviticus 19:27). Basically, pictures of Jesus are an idolatrous lie. Showing Jesus in a movie or a play is a form of animated idolatry.

Nativity Scenes

Should God defend nativity scenes? Christians try to recreate scenes of Jesus birth but in many cases these are sin. We have no business making up anything about the Bible. To do so is a lie and a sin. Dolls or toy babies used to represent Jesus are just idols which God says not to have. Some scenes have the Magi or the wise men present. The wise men were not present at his birth. They came to his house later. To show them at the manger is also a lie. God will not honor our sin.

Women's Health

It 's an embarrassing subject but an important one. Never has a preacher that I have seen or heard of had the courage to preach on menstruation. Leviticus, "And if a man shall lie with a woman having her sickness, and shall uncover her nakedness; he hath discovered her fountain, and she hath uncovered the fountain of her blood: and both of them shall be cut off from among their people." Leviticus 15:19 says, "And if a woman have an issue, and her issue in her flesh be blood, she shall be put apart seven days: and whosoever toucheth her shall be unclean until the even." Sex during menstruation is used by some as a means of birth control but it is wrong. It is sin. Pastors won't teach it but when women develop gynecological sickness later they join in with them to say, "God, why did this happen?" God has a plan for our lives but preachers won't preach it. If you care about women or think that women's health issues are important you need to preach the word.

Is Jesus the Reason for the Season?

They say it about Christmas. Is it true? The name comes from Christ and mass. The mass teaches Jesus as being resacrificed and desecrates the true gospel. Is Jesus the reason for that? The time of the year is not based on the Bible. The Bible only gives clues as to the time. Luke 2:8 tells us there were "shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night." Is that likely in the winter? John 1:14 tells us that he "was made flesh, and dwelt among us". The actual Greek word is skenoo which refers to fixing one's tabernacle, abiding or living in a tabernacle or tent. This could be a reference to the Feast of Tabernacles which occurs in September or October. It may be that time when Jesus was born. We don't know for sure but it is not Jesus who is the reason for a winter celebration. What about Christmas Songs? Many are unscriptural. Jesus is not the reason for that. What about the story of the wise man visiting Jesus in the manger? That isn't true. The Magi actually visited him after the manger. Matthew 2:11 says he was in a house when the Magi came to visit him. Is Jesus the reason people make mistakes in teaching. How about Christians who teach their kids about all the worldly make believe? Jesus is not the reason for that, either. Really, why is Jesus the reason for Christmas as it is celebrated today? We are not told to celebrate his birth are we? The closest possibility would be if Jesus was born during the Feast of Tabernacles. Christians celebrate something they are not commanded but ignore that which they are.

The Feast of Tabernacles

Leviticus 23:34-36 says, "Speak unto the children of Israel, saying, The fifteenth day of this seventh month shall be the feast of tabernacles for seven days unto the LORD. On the first day shall be an holy convocation: ye shall do no servile work therein. Seven days ye shall offer an offering made by fire unto the LORD: on the eighth day shall be an holy convocation unto you; and ye shall offer an offering made by fire unto the LORD: it is a solemn assembly; and ye shall do no servile work therein." Verses 37-43 describe this even more. Matthew 5:17-19, "Think not that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets: I am not come to destroy, but to fulfil. For verily I say unto you, Till heaven and earth pass, one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law, till all be fulfilled. Whosoever therefore shall break one of these least commandments, and shall teach men so, he shall be called the least in the kingdom of heaven: but whosoever shall do and teach them, the same shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven." Zechariah 14:16-19 teaches us, "And it shall come to pass, that every one that is left of all the nations which came against Jerusalem shall even go up from year to year to worship the King, the LORD of hosts, and to keep the feast of tabernacles. And it shall be, that whoso will not come up of all the families of the earth unto Jerusalem to worship the King, the LORD of hosts, even upon them shall be no rain. And if the family of Egypt go not up, and come not, that have no rain; there shall be the plague, wherewith the LORD will smite the heathen that come not up to keep the feast of tabernacles. This shall be the punishment of Egypt, and the punishment of all nations that come not up to keep the feast of tabernacles." The feast was celebrated before. Jesus did not do away with it. The sacrifices and now fulfilled in Jesus's death on the cross but the tabernacle part of the feast was not about forgiveness of sin. Leviticus 23:43 explains that the feast is so all generations would know that God made the children of Israel to dwell in booths, when he brought them out of the land of Egypt. He is the LORD your God. The feast will be celebrated again when Jesus returns. There is not a reason to ignore it today.

America is a Christian Nation

Preachers are out there claiming America is a Christian nation. They've got to stop with this nonsense. What makes a Christian nation? It is the same as a Christian person. This nation must first admit that it is a sinner. That is not going to happen. Next, it needs to repent … in my dreams. A Christian must confess with their mouth Jesus as Lord and believe in their heart that God has raised him from the dead. America is not willing to do this. It must accept Jesus as its saviour. If a nation accepts Jesus as it saviour it will make laws based on God's laws. It will recognize God and trust in him as its ultimate leader. This does not describe America.

2 Chronicles 7:14

"If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land." I hear this frequently around the Fourth of July. In what context is this used? It is almost always presented as if America repented things would be different. The word actually means something else. Christians conveniently forget that America and God's people are not the same. America is not a Christian nation. God's people today are the Christians. If God is not hearing from heaven, forgiving the sin, and healing the land then who is the source of the problem? It is the Christians. God did not say if the President, Speaker of the House and Senate Majority leader and the rest of Congress repented he would hear from heaven. He did not say if a majority of Americans repent he would heal the land. God said if his people repent he would do these things. Christians need to look at themselves first. Since the land is not being healed but instead declining Christians should ask the question why?

God's Phone Number: Jeremiah 33:3

Some people refer to Jeremiah 33:3 as "God's Phone Number". It says, "Call unto me, and I will answer thee, and shew thee great and mighty things, which thou knowest not." They leave it at that. Verse 3 sounds great until you keep reading. Verses 4 through 9 follow, "For thus saith the LORD, the God of Israel, concerning the houses of this city, and concerning the houses of the kings of Judah, which are thrown down by the mounts, and by the sword; They come to fight with the Chaldeans, but it is to fill them with the dead bodies of men, whom I have slain in mine anger and in my fury, and for all whose wickedness I have hid my face from this city. Behold, I will bring it health and cure, and I will cure them, and will reveal unto them the abundance of peace and truth. And I will cause the captivity of Judah and the captivity of Israel to return, and will build them, as at the first. And I will cleanse them from all their iniquity, whereby they have sinned against me; and I will pardon all their iniquities, whereby they have sinned, and whereby they have transgressed against me. And it shall be to me a name of joy, a praise and an honour before all the nations of the earth, which shall hear all the good that I do unto them: and they shall fear and tremble for all the goodness and for all the prosperity that I procure unto it." "Great and mighty things" as thought of by those who quote this are not the great and mighty things that God is really talking about. Here "great and mighty" is good for Israel but very bad for Israel's enemies. Ezekiel 33:11 lets us know God has "no pleasure in the death of the wicked." 2 Peter 3:9 reminds us, "The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance." We do not come to God as a result of the destruction of our enemies. Instead Jesus said, "I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me." In Jesus, all are blessed. 1 Timothy 2:5 tells us, "For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus;" We come to God through Jesus. We communicate to God through Jesus. This is a classic example of a verse taken out of context and turned in a cliche that people proudly repeat like parrots.

The Ten Lost Tribes of Israel

After King Solomon's reign in Israel ten tribes split into a northern kingdom which was eventually conquered by Assyria. The tribes of Judah and Levi remained in the south until captured by Babylon. King Cyrus of Persia (now Iran) defeated Babylon, freed the Jews and allowed them to return to their country. Some people believe that the other ten tribes never returned or are still in exile somewhere in the world. They call this the ten lost tribes of Israel. In 70 AD Jerusalem was once again destroyed and the Jews dispersed throughout the world. Since then God has once again brought them back into the land and the theory of the ten lost tribes remains. Is this true? What did Jesus say? In Matthew 10:6 he said he was sent to the "lost sheep of the house of Israel." He did not say Levi or Judah. He said Israel. In Acts 26:6-7 Paul defended himself, "And now I stand and am judged for the hope of the promise made of God unto our fathers: Unto which promise our twelve tribes, instantly serving God day and night, hope to come. For which hope's sake, king Agrippa, I am accused of the Jews." In Romans 11:1 God inspired Paul to say, "I say then, Hath God cast away his people? God forbid. For I also am an Israelite, of the seed of Abraham, of the tribe of Benjamin." At this time the tribe of Benjamin was represented in Israel. The book of James starts out, "James, a servant of God and of the Lord Jesus Christ, to the twelve tribes which are scattered abroad, greeting." This was to all of Israel. Notice it does not say to the two tribes or the the ten tribes. In Jeremiah 33:7 God said he would cause the captivity of Judah and the captivity of Israel to return, and he would build them, as at the first. How would this be possible unless he brought them at the same time? They would have to be brought back together. God says in Isaiah 11:10-14, "And in that day there shall be a root of Jesse, which shall stand for an ensign of the people; to it shall the Gentiles seek: and his rest shall be glorious. And it shall come to pass in that day, that the Lord shall set his hand again the second time to recover the remnant of his people, which shall be left, from Assyria, and from Egypt, and from Pathros, and from Cush, and from Elam, and from Shinar, and from Hamath, and from the islands of the sea. And he shall set up an ensign for the nations, and shall assemble the outcasts of Israel, and gather together the dispersed of Judah from the four corners of the earth. The envy also of Ephraim shall depart, and the adversaries of Judah shall be cut off: Ephraim shall not envy Judah, and Judah shall not vex Ephraim." God did not say he would restore Levi and Judah. He said he would restore Israel. Ephraim is mentioned which was one of the so-called lost tribes. Isaiah 17 prophesies The Future of Damascus. Verse 3 says, "The fortress also shall cease from Ephraim, and the kingdom from Damascus, and the remnant of Syria: they shall be as the glory of the children of Israel, saith the LORD of hosts." Ephraim is found today. Israel existed as a whole restored nation in Jesus' day and it exists today. There are not any lost tribes.

America Supports Israel

From an American point of view, we tell Israel we love her and will respect her in the morning. We claim we love Israel but act as though we are married to many other women. We wake up in the morning and catch the thief taking half of her house and tell her to negotiate with the thief. The thief strikes her, drawing blood, and we say she should show restraint. We carry a gun but tell her she doesn't need to. We have shot thieves before but how dare she even think of doing the same. She goes to the kitchen and we say she is occupying the thief's place. She locks a door and we say she is violating international law. If she wants to join in on the war against crime, she is going to have to cooperate. She calls the police who say she is intolerant and needs to withdraw from part of the house if she wants to get along with the thief. The thief says he wants to run her out of the house and into the sea and we give the thief money. The thief destroys her pictures and scrapbook and we won't even discuss it. We claim that the thief and his friends have rights to share her bedroom as well as she does. Do we love Israel? America is using Israel. It does not really love her.

God Is in Control

People share their problems with others and often hear them offer words of comfort in return, "God is in control." God is in control but the definition in mind is usually wrong. According to their definition of control God is not in control. First of all, the causes of our problems can come from outside of God's will for us. They come from personal sin, from other people's sin and other circumstances. Some circumstances are the result of people taking control from God. Another problem with this saying is what control means. Control to some means that it will work out their way, that there won't be more problems, that they will understand everything about the problem and when it is over everything will be what they want. If that is your definition of control then understand God is is not in control. Trials and tribulations will come. God is not in control your way. God is not in control my way. God is not in control his way.

Laying On Of Hands Is Not Required to Be Filled With The Holy Spirit

Laying on of hands is not required to receive the Holy Spirit. It does not say so in the Bible. Who laid hands on the apostles and disciples? What if someone who is not associated with any believers gets saved? Can they be filled with the Holy Spirit? Jesus said he would be with us always. How is that possible without the Holy Spirit? The word always includes all the time not just the time after someone has hands laid on them. In Acts 5:32 Peter told the high priest, "And we are his witnesses of these things; and so is also the Holy Ghost, whom God hath given to them that obey him." The first act of obedience to God is to repent of your sins and trust in Jesus to save you. You can be filled with the Holy Spirit without a ceremonial laying on of hands. You cannot be filled with the Holy Spirit when you are preaching sin from the pulpit. God does not focus on ceremony but instead our obedience to him.

When in Rome Do as the Romans

I have had a Bible study teacher tell me this one. Should we act this way? No, we should not. The Romans used to get drunk, have improper relations and throw Christians to the lions. We should do what Jesus would have done.

Jesus is Lord of All or He Is Not Lord at All

Is the phrase true that says Jesus is Lord of all or he is not Lord at all? For this to true a person would have to be perfect. Christians are not perfect just forgiven. 1 John 1:8-10 says "If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. If we say that we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us." There is nobody who does everything right but that does not not mean Jesus is not their Lord. Look at Peter. We find in Galatians 2:11, "But when Peter was come to Antioch, I withstood him to the face, because he was to be blamed. Here, God through the Apostle Paul, lets us know Peter was wrong. Did that mean Jesus was not his Lord? Of course not. This declaration about Lord of all is popular with preachers who themselves espouse numerous teachings contrary to the Bible. Does that mean that they do not love Jesus or that he is not their Lord? No, it does not. This cliché appears to survive today only because it is a clever twist of words.

What Is Faith?

Asked what the definition of faith is today many Christians depart from the Bible and respond with "Forsaking all I trust him" This is not correct. The fist letter of each word creates an acrostic cliche F.A.I.T.H. Hebrews 11:1 defines it, Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen. Faith is a conviction of the heart and not of the mind. God does not ask use to forsake all. He asks us to surrender all. Even so, the action of forsaking or surrendering all would be a result of faith not the definition of it. In addition, most people do not forsake or surrender all. Does that mean they do not have faith? Furthermore it is an incomplete definition as well. Having a clever saying does not represent the true meaning God gave us.

What Is Grace?

Another common attempt to express God's word in a witty saying involves grace; "God's riches at Christ's expense " or G.R.A.C.E. The real meaning of grace is an unearned gift and most specifically refers salvation given to all those who trust in Jesus to save them. People need to know that they need God's grace and not his riches. God's riches may be a result of grace but the definition misses the mark. Have they forgotten 1 Corinthians 1:18-19? It explains, "For the preaching of the cross is to them that perish foolishness; but unto us which are saved it is the power of God. For it is written, I will destroy the wisdom of the wise, and will bring to nothing the understanding of the prudent."

What Is the Bible?

Another tricky answer applies to the Bible saying it is "Basic instructions before leaving earth" or B.I.B.L.E. There is more to it than that. You can also find history, understanding and praise in the Bible. Christians are not here to impress others with eloquent speech but instead reach the spiritually lost with their witness.

I Don't Think ...

I have had people tell me when someone says, "I don't think, they usually don't". This is not correct. This is really just a smart aleck or abusive cliche. The phrase, "I don't think..." is most often used as a nice way of telling someone they are wrong or of allowing room for disagreement.

When You See A Therefore

"When you see a therefore, go back to see what it's there for." This is another trite ego booster. It is not necessary and most pastors don't really do it. When is the last time you have seen them do this? How come they rarely do it? For example, many people have memorized Romans 12:1 which says, "I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service." What does the verse right before it say? Do you know? Can the majority of pastors quote it? Certainly we know chapter 11 comes before chapter 12, but how many verses are there? What is the number of the verse before Romans 12:1? Apparently, people are not practicing what they preach. The word "therefore" appears 350 times in the New Testament. How many of these verses cannot be read stand alone or by themselves and still be in context?

Pointing Fingers

From time to time you may hear "Whenever you have one finger pointing at someone else you have three pointing back at you." In context this is a lie designed to avoid the truth. They do not mean that you have fingers physically pointing in some direction but instead to imply there is something wrong with the person who points out sin. This in turn can be used to avoid responsibility, self examination and the conviction of the Holy Spirit. Some people don't want to hear the truth so they attack the messenger. There is a difference between judging someone and calling for them to repent. Use discretion but do not keep quite about the things that are wrong. Don't be discouraged by the hard hearted feedback. Ephesians 4:15 admonishes us, "But speaking the truth in love, may grow up into him in all things, which is the head, even Christ:"

The Word Biblical Should Always Be Capitalized

The word Biblical is frequently misspelled bringing dishonor to God's word. Although minor in nature, it is still wrong. The word Biblical is an adjective referring to the word Bible which is a proper noun. All adjectives based on proper nouns should be capitalized. Words such as Chinese, American, French, South African, Arabian always begin with upper case letters. Why shouldn't Biblical be spelled in a similar manner?

We Have Two Ears and One Mouth

"We have two ears and one mouth. Therefore we should listen twice as much as we speak." If the ratio of body parts is correct it does not make a logical tie between how much we should listen and how much we should speak. The word "therefore" is a lie. Sometimes we should speak more than we listen. A good example would be a witness telling the police everything he saw. A time to say almost nothing would be a jury listening to a case in court. The situation dictates how much we should speak not how many body parts we have.



Go to the Top

Home

The Present

Copyright ©2007-2015 Lay it to Heart