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FAQ ABOUT FORGIVING OTHERS

October 21, 2017 Leave a comment

 

Dr. Mike Johnston

 

Being forgiven of our sin and given a standing of righteousness before God is a prerequisite for Heaven. But is forgiving others a foregone requirement for salvation like many have led us to believe? Scripture studied in context teaches it is not!

Jesus prayed: And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors (Matthew 6:12), and Paul wrote: And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ’s sake hath forgiven you (Ephesians 4:32).

I don’t see how it could be any more clear. Horizontal forgiveness (man forgiving man) is predicated upon and patterned after vertical forgiveness (God forgiving man).

 

What part does forgiveness play in a Christian’s salvation?

Again, bear in mind that forgiveness restores relationships. You can’t have a relationship with a person where unforgiveness reigns. Webster defines forgiveness as follows: “the pardon of an offender, by which he is considered and treated as not guilty.” This is precisely what happens through redemption in Christ:

 

  • We are born sinners and thus are separated from God (Isa. 59:2; Rom. 5:12).
  • We cannot go to Heaven while God holds these sins against us. We must obtain forgiveness which is offered through Christ’s blood (Eph. 1:7) to all who personally go to God through Jesus for it. It is not automatically extended (Rom. 10:9-10, 13; John 6:37).
  • We all continue to sin after we are saved and need forgiveness; not for redemption, but for restoration. Again, we are required to go to God and confess our sins in order to receive forgiveness and cleansing (1 John 1:8-9). It is not automatic.

 

Aren’t we told that if we don’t forgive we won’t be forgiven?

Yes. However, the teaching is taken out of context and misapplied causing undue guilt and self condemnation. Here is the verse often quoted in support of this: For if ye forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you: But if ye forgive not men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses (Matthew 6:14-15).

Here is the teaching in context: If thy brother trespass against thee, rebuke him; and if he repent, forgive him. And if he trespass against thee seven times in a day, and seven times in a day turn again to thee, saying, I repent; thou shalt forgive him (Luke 17:3-4).

I don’t see how this could be any clearer. If he repents forgive him, regardless of how many times he repeats his offense. If he turns to you again and repents, honor the request and be restored to the relationship. That is the stipulation from Christ. The problem is that when quoting the Sermon on the Mount (Matt. 6:14-15), the entire truth is not represented regarding forgiveness. The fact is that in every Scriptural instance where forgiving others is presented, it must be interpreted within the context of Christ’s teaching that forgiveness requires repentance. Anything else is not rightly dividing the Word of Truth (2 Tim. 2:15).

 

Are there examples in the Bible to prove what you are teaching?

Absolutely! I tell you, Nay: but, except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish (Luke 13:3).

  • God is angry with the wicked every day (Psalm 7:11). The unforgiven aren’t given a free pass into glory they are judged and sent to the Lake of Fire for eternity (Rev. 20:15).
  • Jonah preached to Israel’s enemy Nineveh, if they didn’t repent they would be destroyed.  They did repent and were temporarily spared (Jonah 3).
  • David wrote what we call imprecatory Psalms where He invoked God’s wrath on his enemies (Psalm 7, 35, 55, 58, 59, 69, 79, 109, 137 and 139). While some water this down, the fact is, David was a man after God’s own heart, so was he wrong?
  • Jesus excoriated the Pharisees throughout His ministry for being hypocrites and sinners (Matt. 23). Then shall he say also unto them on the left hand, Depart from me, ye cursed, into everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his angels (Matthew 25:41). They weren’t forgiven because they hadn’t repented.
  • Paul complained about the problems Alexander the coppersmith caused him in his ministry right up until his final days (2 Tim. 4:14). If blanket forgiveness was in order, wasn’t Paul in danger of not having his sins forgiven as maintained by some today?
  • A quick look at the souls under the altar in Heaven cried out for vengeance unto the Lord. Instead of rebuking them for their unforgiving attitude, they were given white robes signifying purity and righteousness (Rev. 6:9-11; 19:8).
  • The tribulation is filled with judgments against men who refused to repent (Rev. 9:20-21; 16:9, 11).

 

But didn’t Jesus and Stephen ask God to forgive those who murdered them?

Yes (Luke 23:34; Acts 7:60). However, it wasn’t  meant as an exoneration of their sin (see Luke 12:47-48), or they would have been saved in a manner inconsistent with Scripture (Luke 13:3; John 3:16-18). Greek scholar AT Robertson says Jesus was asking that the sin not be placed on the soldiers who were merely obeying orders, but directly upon the powers who ordered it. Vincent renders Stephen’s words: “fix not this sin (permanently) upon them.” If it were, they would not ever be able to be saved. It is in this light forgiveness was requested.

 

How do we respond to someone who hurts us?

Go to them. If thy brother trespass against thee, rebuke him; and if he repent, forgive him (Luke 17:3). The moment we are aware of a strained relationship, we need to initiate reconciliation (Matt. 5:22-24). “The goal” says Gary Inrig, “is not to express anger or get something off our chests, but to bring about repentance, restoration, and reconciliation.” [1] However, not every person you humbly approach in this manner will be receptive or restored. Pride will continually produce in them the fruit of the flesh, which is impervious to your love and is never good (Ga. 5:19-21).

Pray for them. Bless them that curse you, and pray for them which despitefully use you

(Luke 6:28; see also Rom. 12:14, 20). In Joseph we see the pattern given for not holding a grudge. He saw things from the divine perspective and God rewarded him. How much different his life and our world have been if he would have given his brothers what they really deserved for selling him out like they did, or for Potiphar’s lying wife for falsely accusing him?

As you know, we are far from perfect, and frankly we all struggle in some area. Obviously unforgiveness haunts you since you requested this info. While this subject is spoken of often in Scripture, the flesh cannot produce anything that comes close; in fact, it seeks retaliation and vengeance. God says: Vengeance is mine; I will repay, saith the Lord (Rom. 12:9). The best brotherly advice I can offer is that you pray for reconciliation, take whatever humble steps you can to achieve it, and wait upon God to bring it about. In the mean time, let go of all bitterness or it will eat you alive: Looking diligently lest any man fail of the grace of God; lest any root of bitterness springing up trouble you, and thereby many be defiled (Hebrews 12:15).

For further study, please write to RBC Ministries – POB 2222 – Grand Rapids, MI 49501-2222 and request What is True Forgiveness? #HP071

[1] RBC BOOKLET: What is True Forgiveness?

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Eternal Security Brief

September 2, 2017 Leave a comment

 

Dr. Mike Johnston

The following factors underwriting eternal security are expressive rather than exhaustive.

  1. We are saved as a result of the finished work of Jesus Christ at Calvary (John 17:4; 19:30; Heb. 4:3). If it depends on us in the least little bit, we become Co-Redeemers with Him.
  2. It is believing, not performing, that saves us: (Eph. 2:8-9).
  3. If our faith fails, His sustains us: (2 Tim. 2:13).
  4. Salvation by faith alone glorifies Christ who died for us and will one day present us to the world as trophies of His grace: (Eph. 5:25-27).
  5. It is Christ, not ourselves, who makes us acceptable before God: (Eph. 1:6).
  6. Redemption is a present possession of every born again believer in Christ: (Eph. 1:7).
  7. If the dos and don’ts of the Mosaic Law didn’t save anyone then, why would any set of dos and don’ts save anyone, or keep anyone saved now (Rom. 3:19-20; 10:3-4)?
  8. Whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved (Rom. 10:13). If salvation can be lost, this verse is not true.
  9. We are born again (regenerated) from above: (John 3:3-5). There isn’t a verse anywhere in the Bible teaching this process can be reversed!
  10. We have been redeemed by His blood: (Eph. 1:7; Col. 1:14). Redemption means to be purchased, like from a slave market.
  11. It is Christ’s righteousness not our own, that provides us right standing before God: (Rom. 3:21-28; Phil. 3:9; Titus 3:5).
  12. We have been forgiven all sin: (Rom. 4:7; Eph. 1:7).
  13. We are now and forever, the children of God: (John 1:12).
  14. We are never to be condemned: (John 3:18; 5:24; Rom. 8:1) This includes future condemnation in Hell, dear friend.
  15. We can’t be lost by Christ: (John 6:39-40).
  16. If salvation can be lost, how strange that no theologian in the history of the church has ever been able to set forth the precise moment is will be taken from us.
  17. We are in Christ’s hand and in the Father’s hand never to be removed (John 10:28-29).
  18. Verses promising everlasting life to those placing faith in Christ must be extracted from Scripture is salvation can at any point, for any reason, be forfeited.
  19. We are reckoned by God to be sinless: (Rom. 4:7-8; 8:33; Col. 2:13).
  20. We are citizens of Heaven: (Eph 2:19; Phil. 3:20).
  21. We have entered into His rest: (Heb. 4:3).
  22. We have been made perfect forever by the offering of Christ: (Heb. 10:14).
  23. We can never ever be snatched out of Jesus’ hand: (John 10:28)
  24. We can never ever be snatched out of the Father’s hand: (John 10:29)
  25. We have been delivered from the wrath to come: (1 Thess. 1:10)
  26. We are dead: (Col. 3:1-3). Death permanently removes us from the earthly realm as Paul explains in this passage of Scripture.
  27. We have been justified (declared not guilty of all sin) by faith: (Rom. 3:28) If right living got us declared not guilty, Christ died for nothing – (Gal. 2:21).
  28. We furthermore, have had all charges dropped against us: (Rom. 4:7-8; 2 Cor. 5:19; Col. 2:13-14; Heb. 10:17-18).
  29. We are (spiritually and positionally) in Christ: (Ephesians 1:1,3,10,12,20; 2:6,10,13).
  30. We are being kept secure by God: (Phil. 1:6; Col. 3:3).
  31. We are sanctified (set apart permanently): (1 Cor. 6:11; Heb. 10:10).
  32. We are seated in Heaven with Christ now: (Eph. 2:6; Col. 3:1-3). Nowhere in Scripture are we ever removed or unseated from this lofty position.
  33. We are sealed unto the day of redemption (Eph. 1:13-14; 4:30). The redemption spoken of here is the ultimate deliverance of all believers by the Lord Jesus Christ (Eph. 1:14).
  34. We are a brand new creation; a new person: (2 Cor. 5:17; Gal. 6:15; Eph. 4:24).
  35. We have everlasting life as a present ongoing possession: (John 3:16, 36; 5:24; 6:47) Greek scholar AT Robertson’s Word Studies says that we have this here, and now, and for all eternity.
  36. We are as righteous as the Lord: (1 Cor. 1:30; Rom. 3:25; 2 Cor. 5:21) Righteousness comes purely from believing in God, not in doing a thing- (Rom. 3:22). It gives us the same standing with God as Christ has with Him, since His righteousness has been transferred to us through faith (Rom. 3:25).
  37. We are saved completely by grace apart from personal worth, merit, or ability (Rom. 1:15; 4:16; Eph. 2:8-9).
  38. We were chosen to be saved on the basis of God’s foreknowledge (Rom. 8:29-30) before God created the world (Eph. 1:4) If we could lose our salvation, then God is not omniscient in that He made a mistake choosing us.
  39. We are preserved in Christ: (Jude 1:1) The Greek word here, according to Strong is tay-reh’-o, and it means to guard from loss or injury, properly keep an eye on; in other words they live in complete protection. Scofield wrote: “Assurance is the believer’s full conviction that, through the work of Christ alone, received by faith, he is in possession of a salvation in which he will be eternally kept.”
  40. For every verse submitted by limited security advocates to “prove” salvation can be lost, a plethora exist to contradict it.

The Epistles of Paul

September 1, 2017 Leave a comment

The Epistles of the Apostle Paul have a very distinctive character. All Scripture, up to the Gospel accounts of the crucifixion, looks forward to the cross, and has primarily in view Israel, and the blessing of the earth through the Messianic kingdom. But “hid in God” (Ephesians 3:9) was an unrevealed fact–the interval of time between the crucifixion and resurrection of Christ and His return in glory; and an unrevealed purpose– the outcalling of the ecclesia, the church which is Christ’s body. In Mat. 16, our Lord announced that purpose, but wholly without explanation as to how, when, or of what materials, that church should be built, or what should be its position, relationships, privileges, or duties.

All this constitutes precisely the scope of the Epistles of Paul. They develop the doctrine of the church. In his letters to seven Gentile churches (in Rome, Corinth, Galatia, Ephesus, Philippi, Colosse, and Thessalonica), the church, the “mystery which from the beginning of the world hath been hid in God” (Ephesians 3:9), is fully revealed, and fully instructed as to her unique place in the counsels and purposes of God.

Through Paul alone we know that the church is not an organization, but an organism, the body of Christ; instinct with His life, and heavenly in calling, promise, and destiny. Through him alone we know the nature, purpose, and form of organization of local churches, and the right conduct of such gatherings. Through him alone do we know that “we shall not all sleep,” that “the dead in Christ shall rise first,” and that living saints shall be “changed” and caught up to meet the Lord in the air at His return.

But to Paul was also committed the unfolding of the doctrines of grace which were latent in the teachings of Jesus Christ. Paul originates nothing, but unfolds everything, concerning the nature and purpose of the law; the ground and means of the believer’s justification, sanctification, and glory; the meanings of the death of Christ, and the position, walk, expectation, and service of the Christian.

Paul converted by the personal ministry of the Lord in glory, is distinctively the witness to a glorified Christ, Head over all things to the church which is His body, as the Eleven were to Christ in the flesh, the Son of Abraham and David.

The chronological order of Paul’s Epistles is believed to be as follows: 1 and 2 Thessalonians, 1 and 2 Corinthians, Galatians, Romans, Philemon, Colossians, Ephesians, Philippians, 1 Timothy, Titus, 2 Timothy. Hebrews has a distinctive place, nor can the order of that book amongst the writings of Paul be definitely fixed.

The Two Silences

Two periods in the life of Paul after his conversion are passed over in a silence which is itself significant–the journey into Arabia, from which the Apostle returned in full possession of the Gospel explanation as set forth in Galatians and Romans; and the two silent years in prison in Caesarea, between his arrest in the temple at Jerusalem and his deportation to Rome.

It was inevitable that a trained intellect like that of Paul, a convinced believer in Mosasism, and, until his conversion on the Damascus road, an eager opposer of Christianity, must seek the underlying principles of the Gospel. Immediately after his conversion he preached Jesus as the Messiah; but the relation of the Gospel to the Law, and, in a lesser degree, of the great Jewish promises, needed clear adjustment if Christianity was to be a reasonable faith, and not a mere dogma. In Arabia Paul sought and found that adjustment through revelation by the Spirit. Out of it came the doctrinal explanation of salvation by grace through faith, wholly apart from the law, embodied in Galatians and Romans.

But the Gospel brings the believer into great relationships–to the Father, to other believers, to Christ, and to the future purposes of God. It is not only a salvation from sin and the consequences of sin, but into an amazing place in the Divine counsels. Furthermore, the new thing, the church in its various aspects and junctions, demanded clear revelation. And these are the chief themes of the Epistles written by Paul from Rome, and commonly called the Prison Epistles–Ephesians, Philippians, Colossians. It is contrary to the method of inspiration, as explained by Paul himself, to suppose that these crowning revelations were made apart from deep meditation, demanding quietness, and earnest seeking. It seems most congruous with the events of Paul’s life to suppose that these great revelations came during the silent years at Caesarea–often spoken of as wasted. (Old Scofield Reference Bible)

Chronology of Paul’s Letters

First Thessalonians 52 AD Philippians 62 AD
Second Thessalonians 52 AD Colossians 62 AD
First Corinthians 57 AD Philemon 63 AD
Second Corinthians 57 AD Titus 64-65 AD
Galatians 55-57 AD First Timothy 64-65 AD
Romans 57-58 AD Second Timothy 66-67 AD
Ephesians 62 AD *Hebrews 64-65 AD

The Rapture and Revelation an overview of 1 and 2 Thessalonians

 
Dr. Ted Horton, Director of PMI Center for Biblical Studies – Arab
(PhD Graduate of PMI Center for Biblical Studies and Calvary Christian College and Seminary)

We can find the Apostle Paul discussing the pre-tribulation rapture or the Second Coming of Christ (and by context alluding to the pre-tribulation rapture) in every verse of 1st and 2nd Thessalonians. Paul was encouraging the church in the first epistle with the Blessed Hope. In the second letter we find that the church in Thessalonica had been led to believe that they had missed the Day of Christ, NOT the Day of the Lord as many new versions translate 2 Thessalonians 2:2. Even going back to the Greek we see that the word is “Christos,” so it is properly translated Christ. But I am getting ahead of myself. The Bible of course would be the King James Bible.

 

1 Thessalonians

 

CHAPTER 1-1Th 1:9 For they themselves shew of us what manner of entering in we had unto you, and how ye turned to God from idols to serve the living and true God; 10 And to wait for his Son from heaven, whom he raised from the dead, even Jesus, which delivered us from the wrath to come. – Here we see a picture of the PTR as we are waiting on Christ to return for us. We have been delivered by our salvation from eternal wrath and the church that will be present when it is time for Daniel’s 70th Week to commence will be delivered from that wrath.

 

CHAPTER 2- 1Th 2:19 For what is our hope, or joy, or crown of rejoicing? Are not even ye in the presence of our Lord Jesus Christ at his coming? – When the Lord returns bodily to the earth, the church will be coming WITH Him. We will be with Him because He took us up in the PTR.

 

CHAPTER 3- 1Th 3:13 To the end he may stablish your hearts unblameable in holiness before God, even our Father, at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ with all his saints.—Again, when the Lord returns He will come WITH ALL His saints. This is because He will have already gathered them.

 

CHAPTER 4- 1Th 4:14 For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with him. 15 For this we say unto you by the word of the Lord, that we which are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent them which are asleep. 16 For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first: 17 Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord. – This shouldn’t require much commentary. The Lord is personally returning for His saints. This MUST be PTR as during the Second Coming the saints are all with Him.

 

CHAPTER 5- All of chapter 5 should be read, but here are some highlights:

1Th 5:1 But of the times and the seasons, brethren, ye have no need that I write unto you. 2 For yourselves know perfectly that the day of the Lord so cometh as a thief in the night.—Notice here Paul says Day of the Lord. This is much different from the Day of Christ that will be used in 2 Thessalonians. The Day of the Lord is dealing with The Time of Jacob’s Trouble and the Millennial Kingdom and is much longer than a 24 hour day. The Day of Christ is the Rapture and happens in an instant. Terms that relate to the Day of the Lord that you will see often are night, thief, darkness, overtaken, wrath, etc. The church has words associated with it such as light and day; the church is never used in conjunction with wrath, night, or thief.

 

1Th 5:5 Ye are all the children of light, and the children of the day: we are not of the night, nor of darkness. – Study the pronouns of Chapter 5. You will see they, they, they and then all of a sudden, ye. Paul is distinguishing between the two groups; between the world and the church.

 

1Th 5:7 For they that sleep sleep in the night; and they that be drunken are drunken in the night. 8 But let us, who are of the day, be sober, putting on the breastplate of faith and love; and for an helmet, the hope of salvation.—Here it is again: they, sleep, night. Then we see the word but. But is a subordinate conjunction and when we see it we know that we are about to read something of a different tone or scope than what came before it. They (the world, the lost, unbelieving Israel) sleep in the night BUT us (believers, the church) are of the day!

 

1Th 5:9 For God hath not appointed us to wrath, but to obtain salvation by our Lord Jesus Christ, 10 Who died for us, that, whether we wake or sleep, we should live together with him. 11 Wherefore comfort yourselves together, and edify one another, even as also ye do.—God has not appointed US (who is us again? The church!) to wrath. We will live with Him. We are to take comfort in that. The comfort, by context is the Blessed Hope, the PTR!

 

1Th 5:23 And the very God of peace sanctify you wholly; and I pray God your whole spirit and soul and body be preserved blameless unto the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.—These believers will have been long dead in body when Christ returns, and they will be with Him and we know that they will rise first from what we read earlier. So that again demands a PTR for them to get new bodies that they may be WITH Him at His coming.

 

2 Thessalonians

 

CHAPTER 1- 2Th 1:7 And to you who are troubled rest with us, when the Lord Jesus shall be revealed from heaven with his mighty angels,– We will be at rest with the Lord when it is time for Him to return because the saints will have been taken up. We are with Him so that we can return with Him.

 

CHAPTER 2- 2Th 2:1 Now we beseech you, brethren, by the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, and by our gathering together unto him,– Chapter 2 gives a good timeline of the Tribulationon and you will notice that before it ever begins the Lord comes for us and we are gathered together unto Him.

 

CHAPTER 3- 2Th 3:5 And the Lord direct your hearts into the love of God, and into the patient waiting for Christ.—The Church has been waiting for His imminent return for 2,000 years. With proper exegesis of Daniel, Revelation, the Olivet Discourse, and the Pauline Epistles we can see that this 7 year period is for Israel and that the church will be removed sometime before it begins.

Israel’s History: from Her Calling to Her Kingdom

January 10, 2017 Leave a comment

Dr. Mike Johnston

  1. An earthly Kingdom in Jerusalem, Israel has been on God’s agenda from the beginning (Matt. 25:34).
  2. God’s will and His Word have been revealed though God’s inspired servants the prophets (2 Kings 9:7; 17:13; Ezra 9:11; see especially Amos 3:7).
  3. Israel exists from prophecy spoken by the mouth of His holy prophets since the world began (Luke 1:70; Acts 3:21).
  4. God chose and Covenanted with Abraham; commissioning him as prophet (Gen. 20:7) and the father of Israel (Gen. 17:5; Deut. 9:5; Matt. 3:9; Luke 1:55; etc) whereby blessing would flow through his family, from His calling to her Kingdom (Gen. 12:1-8; 13:14-18; 15; 17; see Ex. 19:5; etc).
  5. Over the years, God expanded the Abrahamic Covenant four times to include Kingdom laws (Ex. 20:1 – 31:18); land (Deut. 30:1-10); and a Jewish born King with a New Covenant Constitution for the Kingdom (2 Sam. 7:8-16; Matt. 5-7; Jer. 31:31-40).
  6. God specified Israel’s Kingdom would commence following a 490 year prophecy of seventy weeks of seven years broken into two parts: 483 years and 7 years that the nation Israel herself must fulfill (Dan. 9:24-27).
  7. “When the fulness of the time was come, God sent forth His Son, made of a woman, made under the law” (Gal. 4:4) who offered Israel her Kingdom, and was rejected precisely at the end of the 69th week just as Daniel prophesied (Luke 1:32-33; Matt. 4:17; Dan. 9:244-26).
  8. Israel’s seventieth week is currently on hold until he who now letteth be taken out of the way (2 Thess. 2:6-7) and the time of Jacob’s trouble (Jer. 30:7; Dan. 12:1; Zeph 1:15) aka the Tribulation (Deut. 4:30-31; Matt. 24:21, 29; Rev. 7:14) begins.
  9. The Lord Jesus will return to earth immediately after the tribulation to fulfill the Covenant’s by inaugurating the thousand year Millennial Kingdom in Jerusalem (2 Sam. 7:8-16; Ezek. 34:11-31; Zech. 14; Rev. 19:11-20:7).
  10. Once Israel’s Covenants are fulfilled – and bear in mind they MUST BE – eternity will begin.

 

Resources – PMI Center for Biblical Studies

December 31, 2016 Leave a comment

The following resources are provided by the PMI Center for Biblical Studies strictly for research purposes. We do NOT necessarily endorsement all the author teaches or represents. Resources may be used according to the copyright holder’s wishes.

Bible Wines – William Patton:  http://pmiministries.com/Books/Bible_Wines_William_Patton.pdf

 

Judging Deceivers -Evidence vs. Emotion

October 31, 2016 Leave a comment

To Judge or not to Judge Deception and Deceivers

Dr. Mike Johnston

 

                Do ye not know that the saints shall judge [1]the world? (1 Cor 6:2).

 

Mr. Tolerance challenged Mr. Truth to a debate. Mr. PC was moderator. All the major networks carried it except Fox which was not allowed. All went well until Truth quoted Scripture and Mr. PC accused Truth of being judgmental which sent Tolerance and his crowd into a cheering frenzy; causing Truth to throw in the towel, limp off stage, and hide his head in shame. While this encounter began centuries ago, it has only become obvious lately. Back in 1975 when I was saved, there was still a modicum of light shining through a rapidly darkening horizon. Fundamentalists were standing and truth was creating fresh hunger in many hearts. Hardly anyone paid attention to Satan’s oldest trick in the Book let alone its ramifications once published: impugn the Word of God- yea, hath God said (Gen 3:1), and then present an easier to understand translation contradicting it (Gen 3: 4-5). How my heart aches to watch many of the ramparts of Fundamentalism become defectors of the King James Bible by preaching modernist versions from Romanist manuscripts lacking thousands of words while making audacious claims that it just doesn’t matter. Is it any wonder people are so easily deceived?

 

Hear me friend. Playing fast and loose with the Word of God is dangerous and demonic; yet it is at the core of the end times delusion. This of course has caused right and wrong to exchange seats at the table with hardly a word from Bible believers. I received a letter from a man some time ago confirming this. He was far more upset with me for excoriating a heretic than he was with the heresies I had exposed. His reason was solely based on one quote from the Lord Jesus pulled from its context: judge not lest ye be judged (Matt 7:1). But was it the intention of the Lord Jesus to silence Christian voices in an unsavory world? I don’t believe it was.  Dr. William MacDonald [2] agrees:

 

“Sometimes these words of our Lord are misconstrued by people to prohibit all forms of judgment. No matter what happens, they piously say, “Judge not, that you be not judged.” But Jesus is not teaching that we are to be undiscerning Christians. He never intended that we abandon our critical faculty or discernment. The NT has many illustrations of legitimate judgment of the condition, conduct, or teaching of others. In addition, there are several areas in which the Christian is commanded to make a decision, to discriminate between good and bad or between good and best.”

 

To be sure, the “judge not” quote is one of the most misrepresented verses in the Bible, and is the one unabashedly trotted out by liberals seeking a gotcha moment allowing them to label anyone who disagrees with them as “mean spirited bigots.” How disingenuous of them to jump to judge us while overlooking another of the Lord’s warnings: ye shall know them by their fruits (Mat 7:16). Is it not possible for these false accusers to understand that in order to know a person’s fruit you must first judge the actions of the person? Or are these scallywags representing something other than integrity? I’ll explain.

 

Serious Bible students know that the last days herald an unprecedented time of deception. The Lord Jesus warned about this at least 4 times in Matthew twenty-four (4,5,11,24). Paul reinforced Christ’s words with the following prophecy: But evil men and seducers shall wax worse and worse, deceiving, and being deceived (2Ti 3:13).  Peter called them false prophets and teachers bringing damnable heresies (2 Pet 2:1-3); and John revealed them doing all manner of well-staged miracles (Rev 16:14); all in a kind of regal preparation for the man of sin: For many deceivers are entered into the world, who confess not that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh. This is a deceiver and an antichrist (2 John 1:7). Much to the dismay of the “judge not” crowd, each of the prophecies above require judgment in order to obey them.

 

Mutual exclusives: Reason and liberalism           

 

My experience with liberals in the “quit judging me” camp tells me their entire political and religious position unravels when reason is forced upon it.

 

First reason: The judicial system in America is based on rendering judgment and Christians are often called as jurors. Are they disobeying the Lord Jesus by fulfilling their civic duty? Nonsense!

Second reason: Christians are to be the salt of the earth and the light of the world (Matt 5:13-14) which mandates that we judge righteous judgment (John 7:24) in two arenas requiring it:  the world and the church.

Third reason: Untold numbers of Scriptures challenge us to eschew evil and embrace good (Psa 34:14, etc) which requires judgment.

Fourth reason: Many more Scriptures give us mandates that are impossible without judging. I’ve listed a few with my comments in [brackets].

  • Romans 16:17 Now I beseech you, brethren, mark them [take aim at] which cause divisions and offences contrary to the doctrine which ye have learned; and avoid them [marking and  avoiding them is predicated on judging them].
  • Do ye not know that the saints shall judge the world? and if the world shall be judged by you, are ye unworthy to judge the smallest matters? (1 Corinthians 6:2)- [we are judges by divine appointment as born again saints of our holy, righteous God!]
  • And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather reprove [blame; censure] them (Ephesians 5:11).
  • For many walk, of whom I have told you often, and now tell you even weeping, that they are the enemies of the cross of Christ: Whose end is destruction, whose God is their belly, and whose glory is in their shame, who mind earthly things [Philippians 3:18-19]- [knowing and pointing out these enemies of the cross requires judgment]
  • A man that is an heretick after the first and second admonition reject [Titus 3:10]- [this requires that you first judge the person’s teachings as heretical. If they are, you must reject them]
  • Beloved, believe not every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of God: because many false prophets are gone out into the world. (1 John 4:1)- [again, this requires judgment of a person’s spirit]

 

Let’s take the tolerance vs. truth test

 

EXAMPLE 1. An ordained man is a San Francisco preacher. He leads a fairly large church reaching the forgotten and the downtrodden, and in his emotionally charged messages often employs quotes from Jesus and the Bible. Over time he convinces his congregants that the world is about to end but that he is their saviour. Most of them sell their belongings, give him the money, and move to the city of hope in Guyana, South America that is named after him; Jonestown.

 

EXAMPLE 2. A neighboring group claims to be Christian. They study the Bible, pray, evangelize, promote family values, and generally live lives above reproach. They also have canonized the teachings of a perverted polygamist named Joseph Smith who promoted a plethora of heresies including denying the trinity and deity of Christ, polytheism, baptism for the dead, the deity of man and others. They are Mormons.

 

EXAMPLE 3. For years major denominations have defected from orthodoxy (Methodists, Presbyterians, Congregationalists, some Baptists, etc). Growing numbers of them no longer believe the Bible is inerrant, infallible, and inspired. As such, they support abortion, teach evolution, and ordain women, and preside over sodomite “marriage” ceremonies.

 

Question: With what you’ve just read about the above groups- and assuming what is reported is factual- if one of your loved ones (son, daughter, sibling), or a dear friend was about to embrace the teachings of these hereticks, would you close your eyes to the truth and simply tolerate them?

 

If you answered no I congratulate you; you have rendered righteous judgment (John 7:24; see Lev. 19:15), which we are called to do as Christians. May I welcome you to the uncompromising world of Biblical separation (2 Cor. 6:14-17)[3] where I live and have chosen to contend for the faith once delivered (Jude 1:3)!

 

In closing

 

And they shall teach my people the difference between the holy and profane, and cause them to discern between the unclean and the clean (Eze 44:23).

 

Hear me friend. There’s a clear choice to be made here but there are consequences.

 

First, if you choose to expose evil for what it is, you won’t be invited to preach in as many churches; you won’t win any ecumenical unity awards; you probably won’t have as many friends as you once did, and if you’re a missionary, you might even lose some of your much needed support base.

 

However, if you in any way accommodate the politically correct “judge not” mindset, I promise you these sneaky sniveling snakes will slither into your church via television, books, internet, and other means, where they will saturate the willing hearts of your people with so much deceit they will in time convince your friends and church members that you are the problem that must be disposed of [4] and they will set out to do it with a great feeling of divine justification!

 

That being the case isn’t it high time we started judging deceivers and their deceptions in the Biblical manner to which we’ve been called?

[1] Webster’s Dictionary 1828 defines judging as “hearing and determining; forming an opinion; dooming.” That being the case, judging is our heritage and our future.

[2] The Believer’s Bible Commentary us available for a gift of $34 to PMI. Stamps are welcome.

[3] For more detailed discussion, you may order our tract entitled Biblical Separation.

[4] Arnold Murray of Shepherd’s Chapel is a great example of a vile heretical wolf who turned  three otherwise supportive family units against me when I tried to warn them about his heresies.

 

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