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    by Published on 06-30-2016 02:32 AM     Number of Views: 161 
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    Early Creedal Texts by Gary R. Habermas

    The New Testament contains dozens of very early texts that actually pre-date the epistles in which they were recorded. They may basically be thought of as the answer to the exciting question, “Of what did the very earliest apostolic and other preaching look like before even a single New Testament book was ever written?” The earliest forms of these texts were oral, where they usually served the purpose of briefly summarizing the essentials of Christianity (usually the factual essence of the Gospel data) including the deity of Jesus Christ, and could easily be memorized, even by those who were illiterate.

    Amazingly, scholars generally agree on the location of these traditions or creeds. These texts are recognized in many ways, but one of the clearest is when the New Testament writer explicitly tells us that he is repeating an early teaching, passing on a tradition, and so on. The chief examples include 1 Cor. 11:23-26; 15:3; 2 Thes. 2:15; 1 Tim. 1:15; 3:1; 4:9; 2 Tim. 2:11; Titus 3:8; Heb. 2:2-3. Others are identified by linguistic, syntactical, cadence, and other textual hints, and often concern the subject of Jesus occupying his heavenly place on the right side of God’s throne. Major examples include those in Rom. 1:3-4; 4:25; 5:8; 10:9; 1 Cor. 8:6; Phil. 2:6-11, and Heb. 1:3. Cf. many others such as Eph. 1:20; Col. 1:15-20; 3:1; 1 Tim. 2:5-6; 3:16; Heb. 1:1; 1:13; 8:1; 12:2; 1 Pet. 1:21; 2:21; 3:18; 3:22.

    While a bit different, it is widely agreed that there are also a number of brief sermon summaries within the Book of Acts which, like the other creedal materials, are much older than the book in which they appear. The most-commonly mentioned candidates for these sermon segments are in Acts 1:21-22; 2:22-36; 3:13-16; 4:8-10; 5:29-32; 10:39-43; 13:28-31; 17:1-3; 17:30-31. Those speaking of Jesus’ deity include Acts 2:33, 36; 5:31.

    Among other crucial topics, these early creeds often applied the loftiest titles of deity to Jesus Christ. Like Acts 2:36; Rom. 1:3-4; 10:9; 1 Cor. 8:6; 11:23; and Phil. 2:6-11. Intriguingly, this entire subject arose from studies by critical New Testament scholars rather than from evangelicals. This is one of those rare subjects where older studies are often seen as the most authoritative ones, such as what is often proclaimed as the classic work: Oscar Cullmann, The Earliest Christian Confessions, trans. by J.K.S. Reid (London: Lutterworth, 1943). Other major studies include Cullmann, “The Tradition” (59-99) and other essays in The Early Church, ed. by A.J.B. Higgins (London: SCM, 1956); C.H. Dodd, The Apostolic Preaching and its Developments (London: Hodder and Stoughton, 1936; Grand Rapids, MI: Baker, 1980); Dodd, “The Primitive Catechism and the Sayings of Jesus,” in New Testament Essays: Studies in Memory of Thomas Walter Manson, 1893-1958, edited by A.J.B. Higgins (Manchester: Manchester University Press, 1959), 106-118; Joachim Jeremias, The Eucharistic Words of Jesus, trans. by Norman Perrin (London: SCM, 1966).

    Agnostic New Testament scholar Bart Ehrman both freely and often dates the earliest of these creeds to the 30s AD, sometimes within just 1-2 years after the crucifixion! Bart D. Ehrman, Did Jesus Exist? The Historical Argument for Jesus of Nazareth (New York: Harper Collins, 2012), see pages 22, 27, 92-93, 97, 109-113, 130-132, 141, 144-145, 155-158, 164, 170-173, 232, 249-251, 254, 260-263; cf. 289-291.
    by Published on 01-27-2016 03:26 PM     Number of Views: 216 
    1. Categories:
    2. LDS/Mormons,
    3. Atheist, Agnostic, Agtheist,
    4. Universalism

    FairMormon.Org

    Quote Originally Posted by Michael LeCheminant
    These are my opinions and do not necessarily represent FairMormon or the LDS church.

    In monotheism of Christianity God was alone from everlasting and nothing beside God (no nature/matter/intelligences/material/etc), but not in Mormonism.
    This statement is not Biblical. Do you have a scriptural reference for why you believe this? When you say that God was alone, do you mean the Father, the Son, or the Holy Spirit, or all three of them? Genesis chapter 1 says "let us make man in our image." The ancient Jews believed (as Mormons do) that in the beginning there was a council of gods.
    The Jews did not believe in a council of gods. They believed there were no such thing as gods, they were just idols made up by men. Elohim is the Trinity; if not then simply speaking of majesty.

    The law of the conservation of mass states that mass cannot be created or destroyed. This fits with the Mormon belief that God organized existing matter to create the universe. Some essence of our being has always existed.
    The law of conservation of mass allows for God who is infinitely great to bring things into being from Himself so nature did not always need to exist as you surmised. No essence of your being ever existed before God created you. By placing yourself alongside God feeds pride and debases God to a lesser being so you don't receive salvation from God who is optimally great.

    Mormons believe that all people are spirit children of God and that we lived with him before we were born. I find this to be a wonderful teaching that makes sense to me as well as a number of non-Mormons I have talked to, and it is hinted at several times in the Bible, yet no other church believes it. You are correct that Mormon belief is different from traditional Christianity. That is why we send missionaries throughout the world to share our message with everyone we can.
    It's never hinted at in the Bible we lived with God before being born. It's simply the romance of the gods such as Zeus and the gods of eastern religions. It's a way to exalt self. Whereas Christianity is monotheistic, that is to say, God was alone from everlasting before time and space in His 3 Persons. As the Bible says there is none beside Him, and no gods after Him. What you are doing to yourself is rejecting the atonement of Christ because you have turned Jesus into a lesser being who can never save. Only the uncreated Creator has that power to redeem. Since you are sending missionaries out, you are sending men to their doom and others. And isn't that Satan's ultimate objective? The Church did not disappear for 18 centuries.

    And there was nothing beside God before time and space.
    I believe that God is a physical being who interacts with others, and therefore he must exist in time and space. It makes no sense to me that it could be otherwise.
    Since the Bible says God the Father is spirit and that you can't see Him then He is not a physical being. He can and does exist outside of time and space in the Trinity. This is not so hard to understand as you think. Think of yourself as a stick figure on a piece of paper. He can see 2 dimensions. A cube is 3 dimensions. So when the cube is presented, the stick figure can only see one side or a square. He doesn't see the full cube (he can't) because the cube is in 3 dimensions. So it is with the 3 Persons of the Trinity. There is the other problem posed of your faith that if God the Father was once a man who became a God and the God that created that man was once a man, and this goes on ad infinitum in the past, you have the same problem atheists have because if there was this infinite regress of cause and effects, you would have happened already having had an eternity to do so. So nature needs a cause outside of itself, outside of time and space, being uncreated. This uncreated Creator, the Trinity, is whom we call God. Mormons are really supernatural atheists.

    And Jesus created all things, being God (John 1.1) in the Trinity.
    I agree that Jesus is God and created the world under the direction of his Father.
    Jesus didn't just create the world, He created all things. He didn't even create only on the instruction of the Father for John 1.3 says "All things were made by him." Always remember, you redefine what God is so you don't agree that Jesus is God. God is not multiple beings. That's if anything polytheism. God is one Being. That's traditional monotheism even in other faiths. Evil the Devil knows God is One Being. There are not some things Jesus did not create. He created all things so there cannot be these things you call material/matter/intelligences that always existed alongside God.

    So how can the Jesus of Mormonism be the Jesus of Christianity?
    The Jesus of Mormonism is God incarnate who was born to the virgin Mary, worked many mighty miracles such as healing the sick and raising the dead, taught many important things such as those found in the Sermon on the Mount, and then suffered for all of our sins, was crucified on the cross, buried in a tomb, and was the first to be resurrected. He is our Savior and Redeemer and the Messiah. Is this this the same Jesus that you believe in?
    The reason why your Jesus is not the same Jesus because you redefine all these terms, but don't tell people until later. Jesus God incarnate is not a separate being from the Father or the Spirit. They are One Being in 3 Persons, co-equal like Phil. 2 says, co-inherent, one substances, each Person distinct, but not separate. Whereas your incarnation is relegated to being something alongside God in the eternity of the past. Surely you can see God alone from everlasting in His 3 Persons is all-knowing, all-powerful and everywhere present when He cannot be if He is limited by material/matter/intelligences that always existed also and if He was not alone before time and space. See the problem? It's not solvable because Mormonism is just a cult that came 18 centuries later. And so you are receiving an atonement that lacks the all-inclusiveness and effectiveness in Christ.

    Lastly, in Christianity when a person is born-again they can never go to Hell, but in Mormonism after being saved you can still go to Hell as an apostate Mormon and your works determine which heaven you go to.
    Most Christians do not believe in the Calvinist teaching of "once saved, always saved" (perseverance of the Saints), and there is no Biblical evidence for this, so Mormons reject it as do many other Christians. Only a certain segment of Protestants believe this. I'm curious as to your reason for believing it. Just because a person starts on the path toward God does not mean that they can't choose to leave that path and reject God. I have seen this happen countless times.
    Christians are not Calvinists. We know that Calvinists are going to Hell. But you are overlooking OSAS that is not Calvinistic, but OSAS Arminian. In other words, instead of being once saved always saved irresistibly a person can be once saved always saved by giving their lives to the God who keeps, for we don't even have in our own strength once saved to keep ourselves. saved. So John 10.28 says, "And I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand." As an aside Calvinists are confused because they teach "perseverance" which is works; they are suppose to believe in irresistible works. What you are teaching is what the Roman Catholic Church teaches, that great harlot of religious Rome that makes drunk the nations with the wine of the wrath of her fornications. Roman Catholics are Remonstrants. But the Bible teaches salvation is not by works lest anyone should boast. So there are not different heavens to go to based on your works. What you have seen countless times is a person who was never saved to begin with because if it was real it would have remained. Christians are not Remonstrants like you and the RCC, but nor are we Calvinists. We are the ones who were killed by the Roman Catholic Church and by that Protestant Pope of Geneva John Calvin. We are a "little flock" (Luke 12.32). The RCC is a great harlot, Mormons are a little harlot. Technically though Mormons are not even in Christendom. Many in Christendom are not saved, but Mormons are not even in that sphere as they are so aberrant.

    Mormons have a very different concept of hell as compared to traditional Christianity, and I believe that virtually all people who have every lived on the earth will eventually go to heaven. The Bible makes it very clear that we should live our lives according to the commandments God has given us. As we do so, we will become more like Christ and we will be blessed and rewarded as we follow him. That does not mean that we can save ourselves through our works.
    I don't believe most Mormons believe in Universalism for they do believe that Hell is a place of eternal separation from God even though in Mormonism very few go there. This speaks to the low standards in Mormonism if almost everyone is saved. But you believe in Universalism which has major problems such as you will be sharing a bunk bed with Hitler, Stalin, Mao, rapists and other sadistic evil people who never repent. Firstly, the Bible teaches there is no rest day or night forever in Hell where the worm never dies. Secondly, free will is not truly free if you don't have the free choice to reject God. Once resurrected a person will not change their mind. That's why I have never met anyone past the age of 40 (though there may be a few) who ever gave their life to Christ because they had more than enough time. Before you can receive this new life and work in that new life, you need to be born-again. The only way for you to be born-again is if you accept who Jesus truly is and receive what He did for you. You don't actually receive what He did for you turn Him into a false Christ and a lesser being which, of course, is what you have done.

    But in Christianity, works don't save or give you a standing in the pillars of the New City.
    I don't understand this statement. Maybe you can clarify.
    After the millennial kingdom, rewards are done away with. Everyone will be where they belong in the New City so it would be unjust to have multiple different heavens as in Mormonism. It reeks survival of the fittest. There is only one heaven and Rev. 21 heaven and earth come together in the New City on the New Earth. Period. There is one thing I haven't told you about, about who lives outside the New City on the New Earth who go through the 12 gates to receive renewal from the Tree of Life, but I will save that for another time.

    Works in Christianity only are rewarded when Jesus returns to reign over the nations for 1000 years.
    I agree that judgment day will occur after the second coming of Christ during or after his Millennial reign. But I have a question for you. If you believe that you are going to heaven, and you believe that you will be rewarded for your works, as you state here, do you believe that different people will receive different levels of rewards? If so, doesn't that mean that there will be different levels of heaven? Earlier you criticized Mormons for believing this, but it sounds like you must believe the same thing. Please correct me if I'm wrong.
    Judgment Seat is for Christians when He returns. The Great White Throne is after the millennial kingdom and judges the unsaved. Paul distinguishes spiritual and carnal Christians. Spiritual Christians receive the reward of returning (Jude 14,15) with Christ to reign over the nations (Rev. 2.26,27) for 1000 years (20.4-6). Think of that reward being presidents, prime ministers, ministers, ombudsmen, even head of businesses because knowledge is not as important as conscience. A better conscience in charge makes things run better. The millennial kingdom is not heaven. This is why the millennial kingdom is called the "time of recompense".

    I can't get Mormonism to agree with Christianity.
    If by Christianity you mean traditional Christianity of the Catholic, Orthodox, or one of the many Protestant varieties, then I would absolutely agree with you! Mormonism is not the same as traditional, creedal Christianity. We make the claim that we are more similar to the original Christianity as taught by Jesus and his apostles than any other church, and there is much evidence to support this view. We are a restoration of the ancient church in these latter days, and since we definitely believe in Jesus Christ, we definitely consider ourselves to be Christians.
    Think of an orthodox Christianity that sticks with the Bible, after all the Bible says don't say "I of Cephas" (denominationalism), "I of Apollos", don't even say "I of Jesus" (congregationalism). In the Bible the church is a locality of believers in a region of church localities so you see the church of Jerusalem in the churches of Judea, the church of Antioch in the churches Syria, or the church of Dallas in the churches of Texas. If someone asks what church you belong to, speaking to Christians, say you belong to the church <your town> in the churches of <your state or province>. Even where 2 or 3 are gathered in His name. This treats the church as a locality responsible unto itself.

    As aberrant as the Roman Catholics and Protestants are in all their varieties they are still closer to traditional orthodox Christianity than Mormon will ever be because they are Monotheistic. Mormons are the most polytheistic and henotheistic religion on the planet. I know you want to think you are Christian, but you are so far away. You are very much like atheists, but call yourselves supernatural atheists. Mormons are not restoring anything, you're just a cult headed up by a con artist Joseph Smith. The Church has always been fine the past 20 centuries. It did not disappear. And think how evil that would be that people could not get saved for 18 centuries. You definitely do not believe in Jesus Christ because Jesus created all things and only the uncreated Creator can atone for sins; anything else is insufficient and deficient. Humble yourself to the One True God who's power and authority in being alone from everlasting with nothing beside Him, no gods, nothing. By the way Rev. 17.16 says a dirty nuclear bomb will blow up the Vatican the smallest city in the world.

    Therefore, Mormons must be wrong about thinking that the Church disappeared for 18 centuries. That would be crazy since people couldn't get saved for 18 centuries.
    The church did not disappear for 18 centuries. The priesthood authority to perform saving ordinances was lost, and some doctrines were corrupted, but there are many, many people who lived during that time who will receive salvation. I'm curious what your belief is regarding what a person must do to be saved. You seem to think that the Church is necessary for salvation, and I agree with you, but many evangelical Protestants believe that confessing Christ is all that is required. If it's important to have a church, how do you know which church it should be?
    There were no doctrines that were corrupted. That's what a cult would say. I can help you with each one you hold precious. The Bible remains intact. You are actually saying the Church disappeared because the body of Christ is a royal priesthood and for 18 centuries you claim it was without priesthood. If you are not a royal priesthood, you're not saved. All believers are a royal priesthood. You're trying to Judaize Christianity by having an intermediary other than Jesus. Saving ordinances do not exist, for anyone can come to Christ without your alleged ordinances. Baptism does not save; rather, baptism is symbolic of burial and resurrection with Christ and coming out of the world up out of the water with Jesus. It is performed with or without water and it is experiential and for service having a sense you no longer belong to this world like a sojourner. All you need to be saved is to accept Jesus so nobody is without excuse. The church is for fellowship and to draw people to Christ. The solution for you is to relinquish the idea you need big glorious buildings with the Pentagram on them calling down the power of Satan, without any crosses, and just accept walking to the mall, or at the gym, or perhaps a small gather with friends on your street that there the church. In the OT the groups broken up into counted as 50 individuals. This does not preclude 3000 or 5000 together at one time, but it is less optimal.

    You say that it would be crazy if people couldn't be saved for 18 centuries, and I would agree with you. But I have a question. What do you think about all of the people who lived for several thousand years before Jesus was born? What about all of the people who have lived who have never even heard of Jesus? Do they have any chance of being saved? The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is the only church I know of that claims that every single person will have a full and equal opportunity for salvation, regardless of when or where they lived. Most Christians believe that all of those people are going to hell, but I don't see a just and merciful God doing that. He wants us all to return to live with him forever.
    Firstly, those who were looking to their Messiah as their suffering servant whose hands would be pierced in Is. 53 are no doubt saved. But someone on a remote island who never heard of Jesus, yet rejected the idols worshiped as gods, and believed in the God of the mountains and stars surely if he was presented Christ would accept Him whole heartedly. As you see the Father you see the Son, and as you see the Son you see the Father for with the Holy Spirit they are the Trinity. Father is I AM and Alpha and Omega, and Jesus said the same about Himself. Test yourself. Ask yourself how would the word of God need to be worded to convince you in the Triune God? I find that the Bible expresses it so many ways in so many places it would be overly redundant to do more than what the Bible has already done to make the point. Hell is eternally rejecting the Triune God, because those who reject the Triune God can't be in heaven since there is no sin corrupting people with a lie and not humbling yourself to God with the truth. You want to think Christians believe people who receive common grace and have not heard the special grace of the gospel are going to Hell, but that's not what we believe. A merciful God is no a God who is going to send you to different heavens based on your works, nor is God merciful in sending you to Hell after you were saved. As Dave Hunt said, that would be a weird kind of salvation if you get saved, lose it, get it back and lose it again. God will just throw the whole of Mormons in Hell, and actually, you lock yourself in Hell from the inside because you admit you will never accept the Triune God. So be it.

    But the Bible says Hell can't come against the Church even though Mormons think it had.
    Let me ask you a question, Troy. As a Protestant, do you believe that the Catholic Church is the true church that Jesus established? If your answer is no, then that means that the original church must have become corrupted or changed, because the Catholic Church was the only church for many centuries. If your answer is yes, then why do you subscribe to Protestant beliefs that are different from the Catholic Church? My point is that both Mormons and Protestants believe that the original church fell into apostasy. Protestants believe that they can get back to the original truth by correctly interpreting the Bible, but which of the hundreds of Protestant interpretations is correct? Mormons believe that the only way to return to the authority and purity of the original church was for God to restore it through a prophet and through continuing revelation. I would invite you to seriously consider this possibility.

    Mike L.
    You're misreading the Bible. In Rev. 2 & 3 we see a review of the problems the Church will go through for the past 20 centuries. The first church which was in the first century is Ephesus. They lost their "first love". The 2nd century church was called Smyrna. God told them to hold on for 10 days more as they were heavily martyred. The 3rd century church was called Pergamum. Their mistake was marrying church and state under Constantine. These 3 churches passed, but the next 4 after starting remained even to today. The 4th church period was Thyatira with Jezebel. She represents the beginning days of the Roman Catholic Church. She was a mustard seed but then turned into a great big tree with branches birds landed on like demons. The next church period was called Sardis representing revivals, but like a glass a water refilled with less and less water each time. It became in the 15th century reemphasizing justification by faith. Of course Calvinist latch onto that and call themselves Reformed which is a misnomer since the church doesn't need reforming. It had all the tools it always had. Luther was not saved because he was a Calvinist like Augustine before him. The 6th church period was Philadelphia, brotherly love. They were in the 1830s called the Brethren Movement. This was a name given to them, but in actuality they just wanted to be called Christians; that alone distinguished them as Philadelphia. And the last church period we are in now at the tail end of today is Laodicea. They are considered neither hot nor cold, just lukewarm. For a deeper study of the 7 church periods from a Christian who had the highest IQ in Christendom,


    Protestants do not believe the Church fell into apostasy, for the church has always been there as a church locality in a region of churches. With so much corruption go on around the world and in Christendom, the little flock remained true. Apostles are directly commissioned by God to appoint Elders of each church locality, and in turn those Elders approve the Elders of the many meeting places in a locality. The church is a locality of believers responsible unto itself and does not need a big show and pomp like Mormons. Praise the Lord!

    None of the 150 sects of the cult of Mormonism are true, but those who are truly born-again Christians have no denomination. Your approach is all wrong. You are making the same mistake Joseph Smith made when he asked what is the correct church? Satan gave him the wrong answer. When you begin to see the church as a locality of believers and they as a unit are responsible to themselves, you won't need to be part of the Mormon cult. You will try to make your church locality run better the race (first get saved though). You'll stop looking to the outer and walk in the inner sanctuary of your spirit receiving intuitive revelation in your spirit by the Holy Spirit. There are Apostles, Prophets, Evangelists, Teachers/Shepherds every century as workers for the Church. But the prophet you follow is a false prophet. The New Jerusalem was never built in west Missouri within a generation and your Jesus never returned in 1891 as Joseph Smith promised. Besides Missouri is only about 264 x 264 miles. The New Jerusalem in Rev. 21 is 1379 x 1379 miles. Smith didn't understand this. For him it was always about west vs. east. The center from where Jesus will reign is the 3rd Temple in Jerusalem for 1000 years, not America. The sooner you accept this the sooner you can begin to make progress in your life towards who Jesus really is.
    by Published on 12-21-2015 02:23 AM     Number of Views: 214 
    1. Categories:
    2. Regeneration,
    3. LDS/Mormons,
    4. Trinity

    I am a Christian. I was born-again as in John 3.7,16 Jan. 2001 and given eternal life right at that moment (John 3.15, 17.3). I can never lose salvation (John 10.28), and I go to the highest heaven of which there is only one heaven anyhow which is the New City in the New Earth (Rev. 21) where heaven and earth come together.

    The only new earth that fits this description is Mars for various many reasons as the old earth is left without the sea, but the new earth will also be without the sea as disclosed in Scripture (Rev. 21.1). And John viewed the New City from a great high mountain, mount Olympus, the largest mountain in the solar system. Hugh Ross, a scientist, has come up with over 800 variables for life to exist on another planet, but there are only 10^24 planets in the universe, so it is impossible for life to exist on another planet. Mars would have to be greatly terraformed for humans to live on it. Also, if 1% of the population goes to the highest heaven in Mormonism, there, again, are not enough planets in the universe. This is an easy enough mathematical calculation, and it holds true whether you start from Adam 4004 BC or from 1830 in Joseph Smith's time.

    Paul said "But I wish everyone were single, just as I am. Yet each person has a special gift from God, of one kind or another." (1 Cor. 7.7) "For when the dead rise, they will neither marry nor be given in marriage. In this respect they will be like the angels in heaven" (Matt. 22.30). I don't see any couples in heaven when people die. I don't see, thus, billions of spirit babies.

    I find these verses disagree with Mormonism greatly. The word of God is pure and unchangeable. Jesus said, "Heaven and earth shall pass away, but my words shall not pass away" (Matt. 24.35, Mark 13.31, Luke 21.33). That being the case, the 66 books of the Bible have not been corrupted and remain perfectly preserved. So anything that contradicts it would not be true.

    I believe in the Trinity. One way to understand this without using Scripture is to provide an analogy since Mormons will often say the Bible is true but only to the extent that Joseph Smith says it is true; then no verse can be relied upon to help Mormons according to Mormons since they will just change it on the fly if they are corned. There is no cornerstone of truth.

    So imagine if you will a piece of paper. And on this piece of paper is a stick figure with legs, feet, circle for head, and arms and hands. Let's give this figure consciousness. In viewing his surroundings he will just see lines since his world is just width and length. He will see different colors in those lines; or he might see a 2 dimensional square or 2 dimensional shapes. They keep changing colors as an actual 3 dimensional cube with different colors on each side keeps rotating. God is showing you one side, then another side, and yet another side when you read about the Father, the Son and the Spirit (analogous to a 3 dimensional triangle, but don't get caught up in the analogy), yet all 3 are God so you can say 1/3+1/3+1/3=1. God doesn't need more sides than 3 so He only shows us 3 sides. We can't speculate beyond what He has revealed.

    A God who is infinitely greater than us stands to reason we can't see Him as He fully is in additional planes (God the Father is spirit, none can see spirit), but He can show us the sides of Him (Jesus entered His creation and Holy Spirit came to indwell the regenerated spirit of a saved person). And that's what He does with His Triune Being. Before the foundations of the world God's 3 Persons of One Being, One Substance, existed before time and space. There was nothing but God. Out of His glory He created us. He already had glory and perfection in His 3 Persons. This God is so much different than the Mormon god who once was a man. As God is, man may become; as man is, God once was according to Mormons. The law of eternal progression is a false law. This is bringing God down to our level of understanding and mistaken perception at that which leaves something to be desired.

    So, in conclusion, I don't see materials or intelligences beside God out of which He created, nor does God have a creator, for God is the uncreated Creator before time and space. He creates out of Himself. Man did not always exist in some pre-existing form alongside God. And that's the difference. Which God trumps the other? I believe God of the Bible wins out by proving His existence by the Trinity which is a superior concept or idea of God than simply God being an exalted man. Besides, salvation is not by works lest anyone should boast. Hindus believe the ultimate Creator is Brahma. Muslims believe in the uncreated Creator also except that he is not the God of the Bible. Even the Devil knows God is the uncreated Creator but that can't save him, nor you. There must be a relationship founded upon the new birth.

    Likewise, the god of Mormonism can't be true either, because God always existed alone from everlasting, and because Jesus died for the sins of the world that whosoever believes in Him shall not perish but have everlasting life (John 3.16). To receive eternal life is not by works lest anyone should boast (Eph. 2.9). Works flow from the new life, as a new creation of God, but they do not have the power to gain salvation or lose it. Grow in that new life once born-again to walk by the Spirit in our spirit. First you need to be born-again. Mormons have never been born-again by the Spirit of God.
    by Published on 12-13-2015 08:55 PM     Number of Views: 253 
    1. Categories:
    2. Spiritual Warfare

    Prayer and Warfare

    The Spiritual Man, Vol. 2, Part 4 THE SPIRIT, Ch. 4, by Watchman Nee

    ALL PRAYER OUGHT TO BE SPIRITUAL. Unspiritual prayers are not genuine and can produce no positive result. What abundant spiritual success there would be were every prayer offered by believers on earth in fact spiritual! But sad to say, fleshly prayers are far too numerous. Self-will found therein deprives them of spiritual fruitfulness. Nowadays Christians appear to treat prayer as a means to accomplish their aims and ideas. If they possessed just a little deeper understanding, they would recognize that prayer is but man uttering to God what is God’s will. The flesh, no matter where displayed, must be crucified; it is not permitted even in prayer. No mixing of man’s will in God’s work is possible, for He rejects the best of human intentions and man’s most profitable prospects. God does not will He should follow what man has initiated. Other than following God’s direction, we have no right to direct Him. We have no ability to offer save to obey God’s guidance. God will do no work which originates with man, no matter how much man may pray. He condemns such praying as fleshly.

    As believers enter the true realm of the spirit, immediately they shall see how empty they themselves are, for absolutely nothing in them can impart life to others or work havoc upon the enemy. Instinctively they will therefore reckon on God. Prayer then becomes imperative. True prayer uncovers the emptiness in the petitioner but the fullness in the Petitioned. Unless the flesh has been reduced to a “vacuum” by the cross, what use is prayer and what can it possibly signify?

    Spiritual prayer does not proceed from the flesh nor the thought, desire, or decision of the believer; rather does it follow purely from that which is offered according to the will of God. It is prayed in the spirit, that is to say, spiritual prayer is made after one has discerned the will of God in his intuition. The command insisted upon in the Bible is to “pray at all times in the spirit” (Eph. 6.18). If that is not the way we are praying we must be praying in the flesh. We should not open our mouths too hastily upon approaching God. On the contrary, we first must ask God to show us what and how to pray before we make our request known to Him. Have we not consumed a great deal of time in the past asking for what we wanted? Why not now ask for what God wants? Not what we want but what He wants. If such be the case, then the flesh is provided no footing here. It takes a spiritual man to offer true prayer.

    All spiritual prayers have their source in God. God makes known to us what we ought to pray by unfolding to us the need and by giving that need as a burden in our intuitive spirit. Only an intuitive burden can constitute our call to pray. Yet how we have overlooked many delicate registrations in the intuition through carelessness. Our prayer should never exceed the burden in our intuition. Prayers which are not initiated or responded to in the spirit originate instead with the believer himself. They are therefore of the flesh. So that his prayer may not be fleshly but may be effectual in the spiritual domain, the child of God ought to confess his weakness that he does not know how to pray (Rom. 8.26), and petition the Holy Spirit to teach him. He next should pray according to His instruction. God gives us utterance to pray just as he gives us utterance to preach. The need for the former equals that of the latter. In acknowledging our total weakness, we then are able to depend on the movement of the Holy Spirit within our spirit for uttering His prayer. How empty that work is which is done by the flesh; how likewise fruitless is that prayer which is offered in the flesh.

    Not only should we pray with the spirit; we should “pray with the mind also” (1 Cor. 14.15). In praying, these two must work together. A believer receives in his spirit what he needs to pray and understands in his mind what he has received. The spirit accepts the burden of prayer while the mind formulates that burden in prayerful words. Only in this way is the prayer of a believer perfected. How often the Christian prays according to the thought in his mind without possessing any revelation in his spirit. He becomes the origin of the prayer himself. But true prayer must originate from the throne of God. It initially is sensed in the person’s spirit, next is understood by his mind, and finally is uttered through the power of the Spirit. Man’s spirit and prayer are inseparable.

    To be able to pray with the spirit a Christian must learn first to walk according to the spirit. No one can pray with his spirit if during the whole day he walks after the flesh. The state of one’s prayer life cannot be too greatly disconnected from the condition of his daily walk. The spiritual condition of many too often disqualifies them from praying in the spirit. The quality of a man’s prayer is determined by the state of his living. How could a fleshly person offer spiritual prayer? A spiritual person, on the other hand, does not necessarily pray spiritually either, for unless he is watchful he also shall fall into the flesh. Nonetheless, should the spiritual man pray often with his spirit, his very praying shall keep his spirit and mind continually in tune with God. Praying exercises the spirit which in turn is strengthened through such exercising. Negligence in prayer withers the inner man. Nothing can be a substitute for it, not even Christian work. Many are so preoccupied with work that they allow little time for prayer. Hence they cannot cast out demons. Prayer enables us first inwardly to overcome the enemy and then outwardly to deal with him. All who have fought against the enemy on their knees shall see him routed upon their rising up.

    Now the spiritual man grows stronger through such exercises. For if a believer prays often with his spirit, his spiritual efficiency shall be increased greatly. He will develop sharp sensitivity in spiritual affairs and will be delivered from all spiritual dullness.

    The current need of the spiritual Christian is to learn by God’s revelation in his spirit how to detect the enemy’s attack and subsequently through prayer to disclose it. He should quickly understand any movement in his spirit so that he may achieve immediately through prayer what God desires him to accomplish. Prayer is work. The experiences of many children of God demonstrate that it accomplishes far more than does any other form of work. It is also warfare, for it is one of the weapons in fighting the enemy (Eph. 6. 18). However, only prayer in the spirit is genuinely effectual.

    Praying in the spirit is most productive in attacking the enemy or resisting his wiles. It can destroy as well as build up. Whatever issues from sin and Satan it destroys, but what-every belongs to God it edifies. Prayer is thus one of the most significant instruments in spiritual work and warfare. Yes, spiritual work and warfare turn on the matter of prayer. If a believer fails in prayer, he in fact fails in everything.

    Spiritual Warfare

    Broadly speaking, a Christian who has not yet experienced the baptism in the Holy Spirit is rather vague about the reality of the spiritual realm. He is like the servant of Elisha whose eyes were closed to that sphere. He may receive instructions from the Bible, yet his understanding is confined to the mind because he still lacks revelation in his spirit. But upon experiencing the baptism his intuition becomes acutely sensitive and he discovers in his spirit a spiritual world opening before him. By the experience of the baptism in the Holy Spirit he not only touches the supernatural power of God but contacts God’s Person as well.

    Now it is just there that spiritual warfare begins. This is the period when the power of darkness disguises himself as an angel of light and even attempts to counterfeit the Person and the work of the Holy Spirit. It is also the moment when the intuition is made aware of the existence of a spiritual domain and of the reality of Satan and his evil spirits. The Apostles were taught in the Scriptures by the Lord after Calvary; but they were made conscious of the real existence of a spiritual realm following Pentecost. Spirit-baptism marks the starting point of spiritual warfare.

    Once a believer has contacted the Person of God via the baptism in the Holy Spirit, he then has his own spirit released. He now senses the reality of the things and beings in the spiritual domain. With such knowledge (and let us call to mind that the knowledge of a spiritual man does not accrue to him all at once; some of it may, and usually does, come through many trials), he encounters Satan. Only those who are spiritual perceive the reality of the spiritual foe and hence engage in battle (Eph. 6.12). Such warfare is not fought with arms of the flesh (2 Cor. 10.4). Because the conflict is spiritual so must the weapons. It is a struggle between the spirit of man and that of the enemy—an engagement of spirit with spirit.

    Before he arrives at such a juncture in his spiritual walk, the child of God neither understands, nor can he engage in, the battle of the spirits. Only after his inner man has been strengthened by the Holy Spirit does he know how to wrestle with the adversary in his spirit. As he spiritually advances he begins to discover the reality of Satan and his kingdom and then it is that he is given to understand how to resist and attack the foe with his spirit.

    The reasons for such conflict are many, with the enemy’s tactic of attack and blocking constituting the greatest. Satan frequently either unsettles the emotions of the physical bodies of spiritual believers, or he blocks the works of the spiritual ones, or he may disturb their environments. The need to fight for God forms still another reason for this warfare. As Satan plots in the air and works on earth against God, so His people fight back with spiritual power, destroying the enemy’s plots and plans through their prayers. Though at times saints do not know for sure what Satan’s scheme is nor what he is doing at the moment, they nevertheless continue to press the fight with no let up, for they understand who their antagonist is.

    Beyond the above two explanations, spiritual combat has for its existence yet another cause: the need to be delivered from Satan’s deception and to deliver deceived souls.* In spite of the fact that their spirit’s intuition becomes sharp and sensitive after they are baptized in the Holy Spirit, believers may nonetheless fall into deception. To preclude their plunging into the wiles of the adversary, they need not only spiritual sensitivity but also spiritual knowledge. Should they be ignorant of the manner in which the Holy Spirit leads, they may assume a passive position and thereby become captives of the enemy. The easiest error Christians can commit at this moment is to follow some irrational feeling or experience rather than the leading in their inner man. Once baptized in the Holy Spirit, they have entered the supernatural realm. Unless believers appreciate their own weakness, that is, know how incompetent they are in themselves to encounter the supernatural, they shall be deceived.

    *Consult Part Eight, Chapter 3 and Part Nine, Chapter 4.


    The Christian’s spirit can be influenced by either of two forces: the Holy Spirit or the evil spirit. He commits a fatal blunder who thinks his spirit can be controlled solely by the Holy Spirit and not be so by the evil spirit too. Let it be forever known that aside from the Spirit that is from God, there is additionally “the spirit of the world” (1 Cor. 2.12), which is in fact the spiritual foe of Ephesians 6.12. Except the Christian shuts up his spirit to resist, he may find the evil one usurping his spirit through deceit and counterfeit.

    When a child of God becomes spiritual he is subject to the influence of the supernatural world. At this point it is vital for him to know the difference between “spiritual” and “supernatural,” the confusion of which forms the cause of many deceptions. Spiritual experiences are those which originate with the believer’s spirit, while those of the supernatural may not necessarily come from there. They may arise from physical senses or from the soulical sphere. A Christian ought never interpret a supernatural experience as always being a spiritual one. He should examine his experiences and determine whether they enter through the outer sensual organs or come via the inner spirit. Whatever emanates from outside, however supernatural it may be, is never spiritual.

    The Lord’s saints should not receive everything supernatural unquestioningly, for Satan too can perform supernatural deeds. No matter how the feeling is during the moment of experience nor how the phenomenon appears or declares itself to be, believers should investigate its source. The charge of 1 john 4.1 must be strictly observed: “Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are of God; for many false prophets have gone out into the world.” The counterfeits of the adversary often exceed the believer’s expectation. If the Lord’s people will humble themselves by admitting that deception is quite possible to them, they will be the less deceived. Because of the counterfeits of the enemy, spiritual warfare looms inevitable. Unless with their spirits soldiers of Christ take to the field to meet the foe, they shall find him coming in to suppress their spiritual strength. In spiritual conflict the spirit of the Christian wars against the enemy evil spirit. Now should the Christian be deceived already, then he fights to regain his freedom. If not, then he strives to rescue others and to prevent the foe from attacking. He takes the positive stance of subjugating the enemy by opposing every one of Satan’s plans and works.

    Such battles are fought in the strength of the spirit. It requires power there to wage war. A Christian must understand how to wrestle against the assailant with his spirit. Otherwise he cannot detect how the enemy will attack or discern how God will direct him to fight. But if he walks by the spirit he learns how to pray incessantly therein against the wicked powers. And with each battle his inner man waxes that much stronger. He comes to realize that by applying the law of the spirit he not only can overcome sin but also Satan.

    From that part of the Scriptures in which the Apostle touches on spiritual warfare we can readily estimate how important strength is in such conflict. Before he mentions the problem of spiritual warfare (Eph. 6.11-18), Paul first exhorts his readers to “be strong in the Lord and in the strength of his might” (v.10). Where should there be this strength of which he speaks? Paul tells us in Chapter 3: “strengthened with might through his Spirit in the inner man” (v.16). The inner man is man’s center, the spirit of man. And right there is where the powers of darkness attack the man. Now if the inner man is weak everything else becomes weak. A frail spirit produces fear in the heart which automatically weakens the believers stand in the day of evil. What he needs pre-eminently is a firm spirit. Except he understands the nature of the conflict a believer is not capable of resisting in his spirit against the principalities and the powers.

    Many Christians find their spirit feathery and free when all is sweetness and light; but just let there be eruptive war, and their spirit becomes disturbed, fearful, and worried, until finally it is submerged. They do not know why they are defeated. Satan’s aim is victory, and to this end he attempts to remove believers from their ascension position by causing their spirit to sink so that he can ascend. Position is a primary factor in battle. When the saint’s spirit tumbles, he loses his heavenly position. Christians must consequently maintain a strong spirit and yield no ground to the enemy.

    Upon realizing how his inner man is strengthened with might through God’s Holy Spirit, a spiritual child of God learns the absolute necessity of overcoming the enemy. His inner man grows sturdier as he attacks the foe with prayer and wrestling. In the same manner that the muscles of the wrestler develop in physical combat, just so the strength of the believer’s spirit increases as he battles the adversary. The latter mounts an assault in order to depress the believer’s inner man and thus to afflict his soul. If the child of God has come to appreciate the wiles of his assailant, he will not surrender at any point but will instead resist; and his emotional soul is thereby protected. Resistance in the inner man forces the enemy to go on the defensive.

    Resistance is one of the indispensable elements in spiritual combat. The best defense is a continuous offense. Oppose with the will as well as with the strength in the spirit. Giving opposition means struggling free from the power of suppression. The opponent will be routed if one fights his way out by the spirit. But should one allow the enemy to attack and not resist in return, then that one’s spirit will surely be depressed, sink very low, and may require many days before it regains its ascendancy. The spirit that does not withstand the enemy is often a suppressed one.

    How shall we resist? With the Word of God which is the Sword of the Holy Spirit. As a believer receives God’s Word it becomes “spirit and life” to him. Hence he can employ this as his weapon of resistance. A heavenly believer knows how to use the Word of God advantageously to break down the enemy’s lie. Even now a battle is raging in the world of the spirit. Though unobserved by the eyes of the flesh, it is sensed and proven by those who are seeking heavenly progress. Many who are deceived and bound by the enemy need to be released. Not only is there need for release from sin and selfrighteousness; many who are bound as well by supernatural experience need release also. Due to curiosity and the prospect of pleasant sensations, Christians gladly welcome these supernatural phenomena, not recognizing that these merely puff up their pride without producing any real or lasting result in terms of a holy and righteous life or spiritual work. When the evil spirits succeed in their deceptions they gain a footing in the believer. From this ground the enemy gradually enlarges his frontiers until finally he renders the believer as one who walks in the flesh.


    Now obviously he who himself is bound cannot possibly set others free. Only when wholly freed experientially from the powers of darkness can the believer himself overcome the foe and rescue others. The incidence of the danger of deception increases in proportion to the number of those who experience the baptism in the Holy Spirit. The need today is for a company of overcoming saints who know how to wage war for the release of those under the enemy’s deception. The church of God shall be defeated if she lacks members who know how to walk by the spirit and how to fight therewith against the enemy. May God raise up such!

    Something to Guard against in Spiritual Warfare

    Each stage of the believer’s walk possesses its particular hazard. The new life within us wages a constant war against all which opposes its growth. During the physical stage, it is a war against sins; in the soulish phase, it is a battle against the natural life; and lastly, on the spiritual level, it is an onslaught against the supernatural enemy. It is solely when a Christian turns spiritual that the evil spirit in that realm launches its assault against his spirit. Accordingly, this is called spiritual warfare. It is fought between spirits and with spirit. Such a phenomenon rarely if ever occurs with unspiritual believers. Do not imagine for a moment, therefore, that when one actually reaches the spiritual plateau he is beyond conflict. A Christian life is an unending engagement on the battlefield. The Christian has no possibility of laying down his arms until he stands before the Lord. While soulish, he faces conflict with the flesh and its danger; when spiritual, he encounters spiritual warfare and its peculiar hazards. Initially there is the war against Amalek in the wilderness. Upon entering Canaan there is next the struggle against the seven tribes of Canaan, wherein the attack of Satan and his evil hosts against the believer’s spirit is mounted only after the believer has become spiritual.


    Since the enemy focuses particular attention on the spirit, how necessary for spiritual believers to keep their own spirit in its normal state and frequently to exercise it as well. They must control with utmost caution all bodily sensations and carefully distinguish all natural and supernatural phenomena. Their mind must be kept perfectly calm without any disturbance; their physical senses too must be maintained in quiet balance without agitation. Spiritual Christians should exercise their will to deny and oppose any falsehood and seek to follow the inner man with their whole heart. Should they at any time follow the soul instead of the inner man they have lost precious ground already in spiritual warfare. Furthermore, they must be very careful to guard their spirit from being passive in this warfare.

    Now we have mentioned before that all our guidance must proceed from the inner man: we must wait with our spirit for the guidance of the Holy Spirit. All this is fundamentally true; however, we need to exercise extreme prudence here lest we fall into grievous error. For while we are waiting in our spirit for the Holy Spirit to move and guide us, a danger readily arises wherein our spirit and our entire being may slide into a state of passivity. Nothing can provide more ground for Satan to work from than this state of inaction. On the one side we ought not to do anything in our own strength save to obey the Holy Spirit; yet on the other side we need to be watchful lest our spirit or any part of our being turns mechanical and plunges into inertia. Our inner man must vitally govern our total being and must cooperate actively with God’s Spirit.

    When our spirit tumbles into passivity the Holy Spirit is left with no way to use it. This is because His operation in a human life is absolutely diametrical to that of Satan. The Holy Spirit requires man to cooperate livingly with Him. He desires man to work actively with Him because He never violates the believer’s personality. By contrast, Satan demands a full stop in man so that he may take over and do everything in man’s stead. He wishes man to accept his work passively. Satan wants to turn man into an automaton. Oh, how we should guard against whatever is extreme and guard against misunderstanding in spiritual doctrine. We need not fear being radical in obeying the Lord, that is for sure; nor do we need to guard against being extreme in denying the works of the flesh. But most vigilant must we be that we not be led to any extremes through misconception.

    We said most emphatically earlier that we ought to seek God’s work, for vain are those things which belong to man and spring from him. We have said that no spiritual value is possible except from what is done by the Holy Spirit through our inner man and that we should therefore wait with our spirit for revelation from God. Yes, this that we have affirmed is quite true. And blessed is he who is willing to follow this truth. Nonetheless, herein lies one of the gravest perils of all—that of going to the extreme through misunderstanding. Countless believers mistake this truth that we have enunciated as the call to inertia. They conceive the idea that their mind should be emptied for the Holy Spirit to think for them, that their emotion should be suppressed in order for Him to put His affection in them, and that their will should make no decision so that He can decide for them. They mistakenly assume they should accept without question whatever comes to them. Their spirit should not cooperate actively with the Holy Spirit but should wait passively for His moving. And then if there be any movement, it automatically is assumed to be from Him.

    This constitutes a very serious misjudgment. It is a fact that God wants to destroy every work of our flesh, but He never desires to destroy our personality. He takes no pleasure in transforming us into automata; rather does He delight in having us cooperate with Him. God does not wish us to be a people void of thoughts, feelings, and decisions: He yearns for us to think what He thinks, feel what He feels, desire what He desires. The Holy Spirit never supplants us in thinking, feeling, and desiring; we ourselves must think, feel and desire, but all according to God’s will. If our mind, emotion and will plunge into a state of quiescence—in which we are no longer active but idly waiting for an outside force to activate us, then our spirit too cannot escape being passive at the same time. And thus Satan benefits immeasurably when we are unable to exercise our spirit but expect instead to be prodded by some external force.

    A fundamental difference obtains between the work of the Holy Spirit and that of the evil spirit. The Holy Spirit moves people themselves to work, never setting aside man’s personality; the evil spirit demands men to be entirely inactive so that he may work in their place, reducing man’s spirit to a robot. Hence a passive spirit not only provides the evil one an opportunity to function but binds the hand of the Holy Spirit as well, because He will not operate without the cooperation of the believer. Under these circumstances the evil power inevitably will attempt to exploit the situation. Before a Christian becomes spiritual he is not confronted by this danger of contacting the satanic power; but once he becomes spiritual the wicked one naturally will assault his inner man. The fleshly Christian never experiences this passivity of spirit; the spiritual alone encounters the hazard of developing an errant spirit.

    Due to his misconception of the destruction of the flesh, a child of God may allow his inner man to sink into an inert state. This affords the evil one a chance to simulate the Holy Spirit. If the believer forgets that the enemy may influence his spirit as much as the Holy Spirit can, he unwittingly may accept every moving in his spirit to be from the Holy Spirit and thereby cede ground to Satan for pursuing his aim of destroying the moral, mental, and physical well-being of the saint and making him suffer unspeakable pains.

    This is exactly what has happened to many who have experienced “the baptism in the Holy Spirit.” They do not understand that such an experience necessarily initiates them into a closer relationship with the spirit world and exposes them to the influence of both the Holy Spirit and the evil spirit. While they are experiencing a baptism in the spirit they consider all supernatural experiences to be baptism in the Holy Spirit. Truly they have been baptized in the spirit, but the searching question is, in what spirit have they been baptized—in the Holy one or in the evil one? Both of these may be viewed as “baptized in the spirit.” Not recognizing that the Holy Spirit requires their spirit’s cooperation and that He never does violence to their personality, many saints allow their inner man to descend into passivity and to permit some outside force to burn, twist, or overthrow them. They, in a word, have been baptized in the evil spirit.

    Some Christians genuinely have been baptized in the Holy Spirit, yet being unable to distinguish between spirit and soul they are deceived afterwards. Because of their special experience, they maintain that now that the Holy Spirit is in full control they should not take any active step but remain completely passive. And so their inner man is submerged in total inertia. Satan begins to feed them many excessive pleasant sensations and numerous visions, dreams, and supernatural experiences too. They receive them all as from the Holy Spirit, not realizing that their inert spirit like a magnet draws in these counterfeit experiences. Had they known how to distinguish the sensational and the supernatural from the spiritual, these believers would have examined those experiences. Now, however, because of a lack of discernment combined with a passive spirit, they settle deeper and deeper into the enemy’s deception.

    As the believer’s spirit grows increasingly quiescent, his conscience of course follows suit. Once his conscience is rendered passive, he next expects to be led directly by the Holy Spirit, either by voice or by Scripture verse. He concludes that He no longer will lead him by his conscience or by decisions emanating from his intuition; instead he will be led in the highest way. The Holy Spirit, he now assumes, will speak either directly to him or indirectly through some Bible verses. By ceasing to employ his conscience and by letting it drop into inaction, the saint is deceived into minding Satan in his daily walk. The Holy Spirit, however, true to His Own working principle, will always refrain from taking over man’s conscience and using it for him. Satan alone will seize the occasion to replace the guidance of the believer’s conscience and intuition with supernatural voices and other devices.

    As conscience grows more passive and the evil spirit supplies his guidance, some Christians begin to lower their moral standard—thinking they henceforth live according to a higher life principle, and therefore treat immoral matters as not quite so immoral any more. They also cease to make any progress in life or work. Instead of exercising their intuitive power to detect the thought of the Holy Spirit or of engaging their conscience to discern right and wrong, they simply follow the supernatural voice which comes from outside and reduce themselves to robots. These Christians mistake the supernatural voice for the voice of God. They disregard their reasoning, their conscience, and other people’s advice. They turn out to be the most stubborn individuals in the world: they refuse to listen to anyone. They picture themselves as obeying a higher law of life than the rest of their spiritual confreres. How they fit perfectly the description of the Apostle: “whose consciences are seared”! (1 Tim. 4.2) Their consciences are void of conviction!

    Hence to sum up: in our spiritual warfare we must ever and anon preserve our inner man in an active state—wholly yielded to the Holy Spirit, yet not in passive submission; otherwise we shall be deceived by the enemy. Even should the adversary not assault us, we still shall retreat into a shut-in position if our spirit is not operative and outstretched. For the enemy would have the chance anyway to seal off all outlets for our spirit to work, to serve, and to war. It would suffer as though suppressed. Our inner man must accordingly be active and outgoing. It must resist Satan constantly or else it will be attacked from all sides.


    Another very important principle to learn in spiritual warfare is that we must attack Satan incessantly. This is to prevent ourselves from being attacked. When a believer has crossed into the domain of the spiritual he daily ought to maintain a combat attitude in his spirit, praying therewith for the overthrow of all the works of Satan done through the evil powers. If not, he shall discover his spirit shall fall from heaven, grow very weak and feeble, gradually lose its senses, and finally become scarcely detectable. This is all because the believer’s inner man has collapsed into such a passive condition that it has ceased to launch out in attack. Hence ground is surrendered to the enemy from which to assail, surround and shut in his spirit. But if the Christian daily “lets out” his spirit and continually resists the foe, he will keep his spirit mobilized. And with each passing day it shall wax stronger and stronger.

    A Christian must be delivered from every misconception with respect to spiritual life. He often surmises, before he enters the spiritual sphere, that if only he could be as spiritual as his brother how happy he would be! He visualizes the spiritual odyssey as a most happy affair; and so he contemplates spending his days in perfect joy. Little does he know that the opposite is the truth. The spiritual path does not yield any enjoyment to the person himself; it is instead a life of daily fighting. To remove warfare from a spiritual life is to render it unspiritual. Life in the spirit is a suffering way, filled with watching and laboring, burdened by weariness and trial, punctuated by heartbreak and conflict. It is a life utterly outpoured entirely for the kingdom of God and lived in complete disregard for one’s personal happiness. When a Christian is carnal he lives towards himself and for his own “spiritual” enjoyment. Of little real value is he in God’s hand. Only as he dies to sin and to his personal life shall he be able to be used by God.

    A spiritual life is one of spiritual usefulness because it is lived to mount assault upon assault against God’s spiritual enemy. We ought to be zealous for God, relentlessly attacking that enemy and never allowing this most useful spirit of ours to sink into passivity.
    by Published on 11-20-2015 07:01 PM     Number of Views: 260 
    1. Categories:
    2. Calvinism

    Dear Calvinist,

    The Reformation was justification by faith not irresistibly imposed salvation so you can see how Calvinists high jacked the word "reformed" for their cult.

    There were no great theologians who were Calvinists. Calvinists are going to Hell.

    None of those individuals you mentioned were born-again. They were frauds. In Christendom are many who worship false Christs.

    What they all had in common is they pridefully on a pedestal declared they were irresistibly selected, nothing they could do about it, and others sent to Hell given no opportunity for salvation. That's called preterition. Just like Hitler said the Jews were born for the gas chambers and his Aryan race irresistibly selected just like you.

    These characters you mentioned simply refused to repent and believe in Christ to be regenerated. Understand the cult you are getting yourself into.

    God implores you "that the wicked person should turn from his way and live. Repent, repent of your evil ways!" (Ez. 33.11) Is God some sadistic bastard that says you can't? Hence, Total depravity is a heresy.

    My prayer is one day give your life to Christ, because as you are now, you are going to Hell.
    by Published on 08-12-2015 03:55 PM     Number of Views: 305 
    1. Categories:
    2. Bart Erhman

    There are no contemporary sources for Jesus outside of the gospels. How necessary is it for history to be written during their lifetime? If history is written after Jesus' life does that mean we have to reject it as untrustworthy? Was the NT written intentionally to make it appear as though Jesus rose for the dead? Does a person's biography have to be written while they are alive?

    Not even in the modern world let alone in the first century. In the first century, just prior or after, most of the major works were not written contemporary of a person. Earliest sources for Alexander were written 350 years after his death. The two best known sources for Alexander (Plutarch and Arian) are +425 to +450. John Dominic Crossan and Bart Ehrman when they are responding to whether we know if Jesus is a historical figure, both of them say Josephus and Tacitus are probably our very best non-Christian sources. Bart Ehrman lists a dozen independent sources for the crucifixion of Jesus. 4 of them are non-New Testament, two of them are historians. Josephus is approximately 60 years after Jesus died. And Tacitus is as much as 80 years after the cross. Two critical sources consider these fine sources. Crossan says these two sources alone would cause me to think Jesus really lived and those holding the Jesus myth are wrong. They don't have an issue with 60 or 80 years after Jesus.

    Does it pose a problem if the 4 gospels were not written by Matthew, Mark, Luke and John?

    Not in the slightest. Whomever they were written by and the input given to them by Matthew, Mark, Luke and John is not important. What is important is they are our earliest sources within a decade after Jesus died on the cross. Historians highly value earliest sources. Even if you place these sources in the second half of the first century, they still make up sources that are closer to their events than for any writings in antiquity, thus, holding to the highest of standards.

    Early creedal texts such as in 1 Cor. 15 that take us back to what Christians reported in the early 30s AD makes so much sense compared to what Tacitus may have said.
    by Published on 07-31-2015 10:37 PM     Number of Views: 640 
    1. Categories:
    2. 2023 to 2030

    Tribulation from Feast of Trumpets 2023 to the Last 3 Feasts 2030

    This prophecy is based on the need for 2300 days for the Temple to be cleansed (Dan. 8.14). It must be completed by Passover after which there are 2300 days from Passover to Tisha B'Av. It takes at leas 4 years to build. Construction on the 3rd Temple must, therefore, begin by 2020 so it is completed by Passover 2024. There are exactly 2300 days from Passover April 23, 2024 to Aug. 8, 2030 Tisha B'Av. The Jubilee is 2015-16 running from Feast of Trumpets 2015 to Elul 29 2016. 2016-17 is the first year of 7 years of plenty to 2022-23. What follows are 7 years of famine (the Tribulation) from 2023-24 to 2029-30. From Feast of Trumpets Sept. 16, 2023 there are 2,520 days (7 x 360) to Tisha B'Av Aug. 8, 2030. 30 days more to the 1290th day (Dan. 12.11) Jesus judges the nations. To the 1335th day (Dan. 12.12), a few days after Simchat Torah Oct. 20, 2030, He sets up Israel as the center of all nations.

    This agrees with the "sign of the Son of Man" (Matt. 24.30) asteroid Apophis April 13, 2029 near the end of the Tribulation. "If therefore thou shalt not watch...thou shalt not know what hour I will come upon thee" (Rev. 3.3). If we are not watchful we won't know when Jesus returns.

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