Thursday, October 27, 2016

Scriptures of the prophets

If comparing Rom 1:5 with 16:26, is it not likely that the prophets spoken of in verse 26 are actually the prophets in the ministry of Paul? This is how I have come to understand it. How do you see it when comparing these verses?

Romans 1:5
By whom we have received grace and apostleship, for obedience to the faith among all nations, for his name: 

Romans 16:26
But now is made manifest, and by the scriptures of the prophets, according to the commandment of the everlasting God, made known to all nations for the obedience of faith:

When comparing the two verses that you cited, it is my understanding that the prophets mentioned by our Apostle Paul in Romans 16:26 could not be the prophets in the ministry of Paul because there is NO evidence/verses which state that they wrote scripture.  Yes, those prophets identified Paul’s letters as scripture (1 Corinthians 14:37), and yes, they spoke God’s Word to the saints in the body by the Holy Ghost (Ephesians 3:5), but there is no evidence that they themselves wrote any scripture as the verse indicates. Paul’s epistles were actually written by himself (Galatians1:20), or by a scribe called an amanuensis (Tertius in Romans 16:22).

And when you look at the three other verses in the bible, pairing the words “scripture/prophet”, they ALL are talking about the O.T. scriptures.

Matthew 26:56
But all this was done, that the scriptures of the prophets might be fulfilled. Then all the disciples forsook him, and fled.

Luke 24:27
And beginning at Moses and all the prophets, he expounded unto them in all the scriptures the things concerning himself.

Romans 1:2
(Which he had promised afore by his prophets in the holy scriptures,)

Therefore, I see the scriptures of the prophets in Romans 16:26 to be in reference to the same old testament Jewish prophets of Israel that our Apostle Paul mentions earlier in Romans

Which he had promised afore by his prophets in the holy scriptures.

The old testament prophets wrote about our Lord.

Rom 3:21
But now the righteousness of God without the law is manifested, being witnessed by the law and the prophets;

Romans 15:3-4
For even Christ pleased not himself; but, as it is written, The reproaches of them that reproached thee fell on me. For whatsoever things were written aforetime were written for our learning, that we through patience and comfort of the scriptures might have hope.

And even those old testament scriptures are for our learning.

1 Corinthians 10:6
Now these things were our examples, to the intent we should not lust after evil things, as they also lusted.

1 Corinthians 10:11
Now all these things happened unto them for examples: and they are written for our admonition, upon whom the ends of the world are come.

1 Corinthians 15:3-4
For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures;  And that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures:

Our Apostle Paul quotes the old testament scriptures a lot in Romans (as in all his epistles).

Rom 4:3
For what saith the scripture? Abraham believed God, and it was counted unto him for righteousness.

Romans 9:17
For the scripture saith unto Pharaoh, Even for this same purpose have I raised thee up, that I might shew my power in thee, and that my name might be declared throughout all the earth.

For the scripture saith, Whosoever believeth on him shall not be ashamed.

Romans 11:2
God hath not cast away his people which he foreknew. Wot ye not what the scripture saith of Elias? how he maketh intercession to God against Israel saying,

Galatians 3:8, 22
And the scripture, foreseeing that God would justify the heathen through faith, preached before the gospel unto Abraham, saying, In thee shall all nations be blessed.

Galatians 4:30
Nevertheless what saith the scripture? Cast out the bondwoman and her son: for the son of the bondwoman shall not be heir with the son of the freewoman.

1 Tim 5:18
For the scripture saith, thou shalt not muzzle the ox that treadeth out the corn. And, The labourer is worthy of his reward.

So, I see the “scriptures of the prophets” not a reference to the Body prophets, but to the old testament prophets. Although we need to know Paul’s doctrine first and foremost, we also need to know the rest of the bible rightly divided.

Hopefully this helps!

Do you have a question for Pastor Ron?

Monday, October 24, 2016

How can I know a person is saved?

Knowing that there are no baptisms, or offerings, or any works that God wants us to do, if we share the grace gospel with a person, and they accept Christ, how do I know they are saved?

There is no way for you to know for sure whether someone is saved or not! Only the Lord knows for sure because he is the only one who can know inside a person's heart. 

What you can do though is to make sure that you give them a very clear gospel when you are talking to them. Make sure that you do not confuse them when you are sharing the gospel of Grace with them. Make sure that you make it crystal clear that salvation today is not by any works of their own, but only by what he did, that being the shedding of his blood on Calvary's cross!

Then in order to make sure that they are trusting him and him alone, you can ask them follow up questions in order to verify what they are trusting. I ask them, If you commit a murder and then you die while running away from the police before repenting of that murder, where will your soul go when you die?   If they say anything other than "heaven," then they are not stablished in their understanding of grace salvation. So, I would stay on that until they answer right. But even then, they could simply parrot what you have shared with them.

Ultimately only God knows who's saved and who's not. So, to minister to people today, you need to share with them a crystal-clear salvation message, and magnify Paul's office and his sound doctrine in their ears.

Hopefully this helps!

Do you have a question for Pastor Ron?

Saturday, October 22, 2016

Practical Examples of Living by Faith

Can you give me some practical examples of "Living by Faith?"

When it comes to practical examples of living by faith, the very first thing that we need is to have a regular intake of God’s rightly divided word. Since faith comes by hearing the word of God, then in order to practice that, we must access his word.

Romans 10:17
 So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.

Romans 5:1-2
Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ:  By whom also we have access by faith into this grace wherein we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God.

So, the number one way to live by faith practically is to have a regular routine of taking in sound doctrine from our Apostle Paul.

1 Tim 1:3-5; 6:3-4
As I besought thee to abide still at Ephesus, when I went into Macedonia, that thou mightest charge some that they teach no other doctrine, Neither give heed to fables and endless genealogies, which minister questions, rather than godly edifying which is in faith: so do. Now the end of the commandment is charity out of a pure heart, and of a good conscience, and of faith unfeigned:

That would include reading Paul’s epistles ourselves along with regular prayers to God our Father.

1 Timothy 4:13
Till I come, give attendance to reading, to exhortation, to doctrine.

1 Thessalonians 5:17-18
Pray without ceasing.  In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.

Then, secondarily using the resource of other men that God has put into the Body of Christ, particularly in ministry of the word through preaching and teaching, coupled with (if possible) fellowship with those at a local assembly to grow together, be comforted, strengthened, to contribute our time/talent/treasure (supporting the ministry that is feeding you the best you can), and to work out our salvation with others.

2 Timothy 2:2
And the things that thou hast heard of me among many witnesses, the same commit thou to faithful men, who shall be able to teach others also.

Galatians 6:6
Let him that is taught in the word communicate unto him that teacheth in all good things.

1 Timothy 3:15
But if I tarry long, that thou mayest know how thou oughtest to behave thyself in the house of God, which is the church of the living God, the pillar and ground of the truth.

Philippians 2:12
Wherefore, my beloved, as ye have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling.

Also, our practice should include how we treat others, especially other members of the body of Christ. Our Lord is not nearly as concerned as to how much doctrine you know if you are not putting it into practice as pertaining to kindness to your brothers and sisters in Christ. There is a grave penalty at the Judgment Seat of Christ!

Galatians 6:10
As we have therefore opportunity, let us do good unto all men, especially unto them who are of the household of faith.

1 Corinthians 8:1, 12
Now as touching things offered unto idols, we know that we all have knowledge. Knowledge puffeth up, but charity edifieth… But when ye sin so against the brethren, and wound their weak conscience, ye sin against Christ.

1 Thessalonians 4:6
That no man go beyond and defraud his brother in any matter: because that the Lord is the avenger of all such, as we also have forewarned you and testified.

Then, how do you treat/serve those closest around you? Are you a husband? Then your wife is number two behind the Lord

1 Corinthians 7:3, 33
Let the husband render unto the wife due benevolence: and likewise also the wife unto the husband…But he that is married careth for the things that are of the world, how he may please his wife.

Ephesians 5:25, 33
Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it…Nevertheless let every one of you in particular so love his wife even as himself; and the wife see that she reverence her husband.

Colossians 3:19
Husbands, love your wives, and be not bitter against them.

Same for the wife with her husband.

1 Corinthians 7:34
There is difference also between a wife and a virgin. The unmarried woman careth for the things of the Lord, that she may be holy both in body and in spirit: but she that is married careth for the things of the world, how she may please her husband.

Ephesians 5:22-24, 33
Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as unto the Lord.  For the husband is the head of the wife, even as Christ is the head of the church: and he is the saviour of the body. Therefore as the church is subject unto Christ, so let the wives be to their own husbands in every thing…Nevertheless let every one of you in particular so love his wife even as himself; and the wife see that she reverence her husband.

Colossians 3:18
Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as it is fit in the Lord.

Titus 2:4
That they may teach the young women to be sober, to love their husbands, to love their children,

Are you a father? Then your children are number three behind the Lord and your wife; same for mother.

Ephesians 6:4
And, ye fathers, provoke not your children to wrath: but bring them up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord.

Titus 2:4
That they may teach the young women to be sober, to love their husbands, to love their children,

Are you on the job? Serve those people as unto the Lord, knowing that you will be rewarded for that.

Ephesians 6:7-8
With good will doing service, as to the Lord, and not to men:  Knowing that whatsoever good thing any man doeth, the same shall he receive of the Lord, whether he be bond or free.

Colossians 3:24
Knowing that of the Lord ye shall receive the reward of the inheritance: for ye serve the Lord Christ.

Galatians 6:10
As we have therefore opportunity, let us do good unto all men, especially unto them who are of the household of faith.

Deal kindly with your neighbors.

Romans 12:18
If it be possible, as much as lieth in you, live peaceably with all men.

Simply put, to practically walk by faith means to put into your “shoe leather” of your life the things written by our Apostle Paul for today.

Hopefully this helps!

Do you have a question for Pastor Ron?

Thursday, October 20, 2016

The Romans and the Greeks

Were the Greeks and Romans the same people in the bible?

In Rom 1:14 was Paul referring to the Greeks as Romans. I heard a pastor indicate that the Greeks in the books of Romans were Romans. However, there is a dispute between me and several family members concerning this topic. Could you please give me a biblical understanding on the topic thank you?

No, the Romans and the Greeks were not the same people in the bible. They were two different Gentile powers that God allowed to rule over and have dominion over the people of Israel because of Israel’s sin of rejecting God’s Law. God prophesied to Israel that if they did not obey Him, that He would allow the heathen Gentile nations to overcome them and subject them.

Leviticus  26: 14, 17, 25, 32
But if ye will not hearken unto me, and will not do all these commandments…And I will set my face against you, and ye shall be slain before your enemies: they that hate you shall reign over you; and ye shall flee when none pursueth you….And I will bring a sword upon you, that shall avenge the quarrel of my covenant: and when ye are gathered together within your cities, I will send the pestilence among you; and ye shall be delivered into the hand of the enemy…And I will bring the land into desolation: and your enemies which dwell therein shall be astonished at it.

Deuteronomy 28:33, 47-52
The fruit of thy land, and all thy labours, shall a nation which thou knowest not eat up; and thou shalt be only oppressed and crushed always…Because thou servedst not the Lord thy God with joyfulness, and with gladness of heart, for the abundance of all things;  Therefore shalt thou serve thine enemies which the Lord shall send against thee, in hunger, and in thirst, and in nakedness, and in want of all things: and he shall put a yoke of iron upon thy neck, until he have destroyed thee.  The Lord shall bring a nation against thee from far, from the end of the earth, as swift as the eagle flieth; a nation whose tongue thou shalt not understand;  A nation of fierce countenance, which shall not regard the person of the old, nor shew favour to the young:  And he shall eat the fruit of thy cattle, and the fruit of thy land, until thou be destroyed: which also shall not leave thee either corn, wine, or oil, or the increase of thy kine, or flocks of thy sheep, until he have destroyed thee. And he shall besiege thee in all thy gates, until thy high and fenced walls come down, wherein thou trustedst, throughout all thy land: and he shall besiege thee in all thy gates throughout all thy land, which the Lord thy God hath given thee.

God would allow, what our Lord Jesus Christ called “the times of the Gentiles” as punishment.

Luke 21:24
And they shall fall by the edge of the sword, and shall be led away captive into all nations: and Jerusalem shall be trodden down of the Gentiles, until the times of the Gentiles be fulfilled.

Among those Gentile nations that would dominate, Israel would be the succession of nations mentioned by Daniel in the book of Daniel. Those nations in history turn out to be: Babylon, Medes and Persians, Greece and Rome (Later in the future, the Anti-Christ’s kingdom Assyria). So the Greeks and Romans were two separate Gentile powers.

Now what about Romans 1:14? Well, although Greece and Rome were two different Gentile power, the influence of the Grecian empire with respect to academia, culture, wisdom, philosophy never left Rom, but was rather instituted into Rome’s culture. The Greeks were well known for their “intellect,” philosophies (lovers of wisdom). You have Plato, Socrates, Euripides, etc…whose philosophies even come down to our day, today. (Think about Greek fraternities and sororities on college and university campuses).

Even our Apostle Paul dealt with their vain human wisdom in Acts 17 on Mar’s Hill.  So the “Greco-Roman” world was one where Rome ruled, but Grecian thought and academia prevailed. That is why Paul uses the term “Greeks” in Romans 1:14, yet in v. 15, he says “to you who are in Rome”.

Notice also in v. 14…he qualifies the Greeks as the “wise”, and the “Barbarians” as “unwise”, that is, uncivilized like the “cultured, civilized” Greeks.

Romans 1:14-15
I am debtor both to the Greeks, and to the Barbarians; both to the wise, and to the unwise.  So, as much as in me is, I am ready to preach the gospel to you that are at Rome also.

1 Corinthians 14:11
Therefore if I know not the meaning of the voice, I shall be unto him that speaketh a barbarian, and he that speaketh shall be a barbarian unto me.

Colossians 3:11
Where there is neither Greek nor Jew, circumcision nor uncircumcision, Barbarian, Scythian, bond nor free: but Christ is all, and in all.

Hopefully this helps!

Do you have a question for Pastor Ron?

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

No need for blood anymore?

In describing the new body given at the rapture, you stated that it is unique in that it is bloodless. In running references on the topic, I find that our bodies are members of Christ, in a clearly 'physical' context.

1 Corinthians 6:15
Know ye not that your bodies are the members of Christ? shall I then take the members of Christ, and make them the members of an harlot? God forbid.

I need some help reconciling the blood/no blood concept that I've heard here and other places, but, though a Bible teacher myself, I have never taught because I don't teach things I don't understand. Is this something you can clear up for me?

The key to our new bodies is that Paul says in 1 Corinthians that our flesh and blood, corruptible bodies cannot inherit the kingdom. So we need bodies that are not flesh and blood. Our resurrected bodies will be like our Lord's glorious body.  His body is flesh and bone, therefore our bodies will be flesh and bone like His, not flesh and blood.

1 Corinthians 15:50
Now this I say, brethren, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God; neither doth corruption inherit incorruption.

Philippians 3:21
Who shall change our vile body, that it may be fashioned like unto his glorious body, according to the working whereby he is able even to subdue all things unto himself.

Luke 24:39
Behold my hands and my feet, that it is I myself: handle me, and see; for a spirit hath not flesh and bones, as ye see me have.

Remember Adam was first flesh and bone before sin. Blood came after the fall to pay for sins. There will be no more sin for us, therefore no more need for blood for us after our Resurrection. Plus, blood is needful for the life of our flesh now, but then we will have life by the Spirit.

Genesis 2:23
And Adam said, This is now bone of my bones, and flesh of my flesh: she shall be called Woman, because she was taken out of Man.

Leviticus 17:11
For the life of the flesh is in the blood: and I have given it to you upon the altar to make an atonement for your souls: for it is the blood that maketh an atonement for the soul.

Hopefully this helps!

Do you have a question for Pastor Ron?