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The Desire of Ages / Re: The Desire of Ages--55--Not With Outward Show
« Last post by Dorine on Today at 07:47:58 AM »
How true Richard. Even those who seem to be born with such a loving, even temperament who put many professed Christians to shame, will show a miraculous transformation when converted. 

"Now, as in Christ's day, the work of God's kingdom lies not with those who are clamoring for recognition and support by earthly rulers and human laws, but with those who are declaring to the people in His name those spiritual truths that will work in the receivers the experience of Paul: "I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me." Gal. 2:20. They will labor as did Paul for the benefit of men. He said, "Now then we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God did beseech you by us; we pray you in Christ's stead, be ye reconciled to God." 2Cor. 5:20

Scripture is so clear on the kingdom of God and what it is and how it works but minds are so dull. Man has a better way. Just like the disciples who although they ate, walked and talked with Jesus did not fully understand what Jesus was telling them because of the preconceived ideas of the Messiah's mission when He came. But oh! after Jesus left and their eyes were opened what regrets they had for not paying better attention to what He was telling them.

I don't want to have a dull mind. I don't want to have regrets down the road because I was clinging to my own ideas of what Christ is telling me in His word. I want to be like Paul who everyday was crucified with Christ and was able to say, "I determined not to know anything among you, save Jesus Christ, and Him crucified." 1 Cor.2:2
Amen, Richard!!

When we realize how we are to experience a transformation of character by having a full-heart surrender to God by the indwelling of the Holy Spirit, we will appreciate true piety, true godliness, a way of life that is a continual expression of the self-sacrificing love of God in Christ, who gave all heaven in Christ to save us! How can we settle for less than to give all to Him who gave all for us?

   "It is as true now as in apostolic days, that without the illumination of the divine Spirit, humanity cannot discern the glory of Christ. The truth and the work of God are unappreciated by a world-loving and compromising Christianity. Not in the ways of ease, of earthly honor or worldly conformity, are the followers of the Master found. They are far in advance, in the paths of toil, and humiliation, and reproach, in the front of the battle 'against the principalities, against the powers, against the world rulers of this darkness, against the spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places.' Ephesians 6:12, R. V. And now, as in Christ's day, they are misunderstood and reproached and oppressed by the priests and Pharisees of their time."    {The Desire of Ages, page 508, paragraph 4}

Let us renounce a Laodicean "world-loving and compromising Christianity," for by compromise with one known sin, we separate from God (see Isaiah 59:2) and come under condemnation (because sin leads to death). The Scripture shows clearly that such is not a true conversion, because supreme love for God cannot allow for the love of the world on the throne of the same heart. We either love Jesus supremely and our neighbor as ourselves because we have beheld His loveliness and surrendered all to Him, or we are unconverted and still overcome by unbelief. May we not be of those who love the world, but those who do God's will and abide forever because we discern the excellency of the spiritual nature of the kingdom of God that does not come with outward show.

1 John 2:15-17
15 Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him.
16 For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world.
17 And the world passeth away, and the lust thereof: but he that doeth the will of God abideth for ever.
Lessons From Nature / Re: Keep a look out for.....
« Last post by Richard Myers on Today at 06:18:29 AM »
Today's the day!!    source

Monday August 21

The Challenge to Become

Read 1 Corinthians 11:1; Philippians 3:17; 2 Thessalonians 3:7-9; and Acts 26:28, 29. What is Paul saying there that is reflected in Galatians 4:12? How are we to understand his point?

Several times throughout Paul’s letters, he encourages Christians to imitate his behavior. In each situation, Paul presents himself as an authoritative example that believers should follow. In 2 Thessalonians 3:7-9, Paul offers himself as an example of how the believers in Thessalonica should work to earn their own living and not be a burden on others. In 1 Corinthians 11:1, Paul calls upon the Corinthians to imitate him in placing the welfare of others first. Paul’s concern in Galatians appears to be somewhat different.

In Galatians 4:12, Paul does not ask the Galatians to imitate him; instead, he asks that they “become as” he is — he is talking about being, not acting. Why? The trouble in Galatia was not unethical behavior or an ungodly lifestyle, as in the church in Corinth. The issue in Galatia was rooted in the essence of Christianity itself. It was more about “being” than “behavior.” Paul was not saying act like me, but be what I am. The exact terminology in Galatians 4:12 occurs in Paul’s appeal to Herod Agrippa II in Acts 26:29 (ESV), where Paul writes, “I would to God that not only you but also all who hear me this day might become such as I am — except for these chains” (emphasis supplied). In other words, Paul is referring to his experience as a Christian, a foundation that rests on Christ alone, a faith that trusts in what Christ has done for him and not in his works of the law. The Galatians were placing greater value on their behavior than on their identity in Christ.

Like Paul before he was converted, they did not understand that they could not keep the law without being fully surrendered to Christ. Do we understand this today? Or, are we like the Galatians attempting to keep the law in our own strength?

Although Paul does not specifically say how he wants the Galatians to become like him, the context of the situation in Galatians indicates it was not a blanket statement that covered every aspect and detail of his life. Because his concern was with the law-centered religion of the Galatians, Paul surely had in mind the wonderful love, joy, freedom, and certainty of salvation he had found in Jesus Christ. In light of the surpassing wonder of Christ, Paul had learned to count everything else as rubbish (Phil. 3:5-9) — and he longed for the Galatians themselves to have that same experience.

Is there someone you know (other than Jesus) who presents you a good example? If so, what are the qualities of that person that you find so exemplary, and how can you better reveal those qualities in your life?

What are the qualities that all Christians reveal? Truly converted Christians? Is there a radical transformation of character when conversion takes place? If so, what are the qualities in the life of the true convert to Christianity? If these are all in the "baby" Christian, then what do we see in the mature Christian? Is there a difference? If so, what is that difference and why is there a difference?

What does it mean to be a Christian? What is conversion? It is a radical transformation of character that comes when the heart is fully given to Christ and the Holy Spirit takes possession of the heart. The old man is dead.

     As priests and rulers combined against them, and they were brought before councils and thrust into prison, the followers of Christ rejoiced "that they were counted worthy to suffer shame for His name." Acts 5:41. They rejoiced to prove, before men and angels, that they recognized the glory of Christ, and chose to follow Him at the loss of all things.
     It is as true now as in apostolic days, that without the illumination of the divine Spirit, humanity cannot discern the glory of Christ. The truth and the work of God are unappreciated by a world-loving and compromising Christianity. Not in the ways of ease, of earthly honor or worldly conformity, are the followers of the Master found. They are far in advance, in the paths of toil, and humiliation, and reproach, in the front of the battle "against the principalities, against the powers, against the world rulers of this darkness, against the spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places." Ephesians 6:12, R. V. And now, as in Christ's day, they are misunderstood and reproached and oppressed by the priests and Pharisees of their time.   
     The kingdom of God comes not with outward show. The gospel of the grace of God, with its spirit of self-abnegation, can never be in harmony with the spirit of the world. The two principles are antagonistic. "The natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned." 1 Corinthians 2:14.   
Amen. "No repentance is genuine that does not work reformation. The righteousness of Christ is not a cloak to cover unconfessed and unforsaken sin; it is a principle of life that transforms the character and controls the conduct. Holiness is wholeness for God; it is the entire surrender of heart and life to the indwelling of the principles of heaven.  DA 555.
Yes, cp. It is a common heresy to teach that Jesus places His robe of righteousness over our filthy garments. What is being taught by this heresy?

Justification alone.... no need to change... salvation in sin
The Desire of Ages / Re: The Desire of Ages--54--The Good Samaritan
« Last post by Richard Myers on August 20, 2017, 09:41:35 PM »

Good to have you back with us, Sister Dorine! 

When we love Jesus with the whole heart, then we will love others as He loves us. This is the fruit of conversion. Here we see the law as a positive, not a negative. To love God supremely and to love our neighbor as ourselves is to manifest the character of our Lord as revealed in the law of God. If we do not keep the law, then we do not love either God nor our neighbor.

Yet, Satan has stolen a march on Christianity by bringing into the church heresies that allow salvation when not loving God nor our neighbor with the whole heart.

How can we reject the Word of God and teach contrary to this?

    The lawyer said, "Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy strength, and with all thy mind; and thy neighbor as thyself." Jesus said, "Thou hast answered right: this do, and thou shalt live."   

This is not salvation by works. It is salvation by grace, because it is only by grace being taken into the heart that we can keep the commandments which is loving God and others with the whole heart.
Church News / Re: Former Review Editor Involved With the One Project
« Last post by Richard Myers on August 20, 2017, 09:14:56 PM »
They have been too successful to just pack up and go home. They have Johnsson with them now.

Sunday August 20

The Heart of Paul

Read Galatians 4:12-20.

 4:12   Brethren, I beseech you, be as I [am]; for I [am] as ye [are]: ye have not injured me at all. 
 4:13   Ye know how through infirmity of the flesh I preached the gospel unto you at the first. 
 4:14   And my temptation which was in my flesh ye despised not, nor rejected; but received me as an angel of God, [even] as Christ Jesus. 
 4:15   Where is then the blessedness ye spake of? for I bear you record, that, if [it had been] possible, ye would have plucked out your own eyes, and have given them to me. 
 4:16   Am I therefore become your enemy, because I tell you the truth? 
 4:17   They zealously affect you, [but] not well; yea, they would exclude you, that ye might affect them. 
 4:18   But [it is] good to be zealously affected always in [a] good [thing], and not only when I am present with you. 
 4:19   My little children, of whom I travail in birth again until Christ be formed in you, 
 4:20   I desire to be present with you now, and to change my voice; for I stand in doubt of you. 

What is the thrust of Paul’s message in these verses?

The initial indication of the concern that weighs heavily on Paul’s heart is his personal appeal in verse 12. The appeal follows immediately after Paul’s insistence that the Galatians “become as I am.” The significance of the word entreat or beseech is, unfortunately, not fully conveyed in some translations. The word in Greek is deomai. Although it can be translated “to urge” (NKJV) or “to entreat” (ESV), the Greek word has a stronger sense of desperation connected to it (see 2 Cor. 5:20, 8:4, 10:2). Paul is really saying, “I’m begging you!”

Paul’s concern was not simply about theological ideas and doctrinal points of view. His heart was bound up with the lives of the people who were brought to Christ through his ministry. He considered himself more than just a friend; he was their spiritual father, and they were his children. But even more than that, Paul likens his concern for the Galatians to the worry and anguish that accompany a mother in childbirth (Gal. 4:19). Paul had thought that his previous “labor” had been sufficient for their “safe delivery” when he founded the church. But now that the Galatians had wandered from the truth, Paul was experiencing those labor pains all over again in order to secure their well-being.

What goal did Paul have in mind for the Galatians? What result did he want to see from all his “labor” in their behalf? Gal. 4:19.

He is very pointed in wanting to see the character of Christ revealed again in his children.

Having first described the Galatians as being formed in the womb, Paul now speaks of the Galatians as if they were expectant mothers themselves. The word translated as “formed” was used medically to refer to the development of an embryo. Through this metaphor Paul describes what it means to be Christian, both individually and collectively as a church. To be a follower of Christ is more than just the profession of faith; it involves a radical transformation into the likeness of Christ. Paul was “not looking for a few minor alterations in the Galatians but for such a transformation that to see them would be to see Christ.” — Leon Morris, Galatians (Downers Grove, Ill.: InterVarsity Press, 1996), p. 142.

Well....if this is an Evangelical, he surely has it right. There are truly converted Evangelicals despite the multitude of theological heresies taught.

In what ways have you seen the character of Christ manifested in your life? In what areas do you still have a lot of growing to do?

Is it a progressive conversion? We can manifest some of the works of the flesh because have not grown in that area yet? Or is it that we are ignorant of some of the law and yet learning about diet, dress, and other such things? Or is it that we know, but are not yet doing? The author needs to explain it so those who think they are converted and are not will understand.

It would be good to explain that the Bible teaches first the blade, then the ear, then the full corn in the ear....perfect at each stage. This would be helpful to the Laodicean in discovering his condemnation. All of the fruits of the Spirit are in the life of the true convert, not one is missing. Then how is it that we can grow in our character if when converted we already manifest all of the fruits of the Spirit?

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