Picture of eagle's head with text, "Bible studies"


(Newest ones are last)
Word study:  Overcomer Word Study: Overcomer
Word study:  Word (of God)
Word Study: Word (of God)
Word Study: Faith/Love Love/Faith
Word Study: Faith/Love Love/Faith
Word Study: Tongues
Word Study: Tongues
A Study on the Word of God
A Study on the Word of God
Word Study: Free
Word Study: Free
Word Study: Free
Word Study: Staying in Context


1/18/99  Word Study: Overcomer
"These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world."
John 16:33
We are going to do a word study on overcoming. In the above scripture we see where Jesus said He had overcome the world. He said that even before He was hung on the cross. Jesus had already overcome the world. Now, let's find out how that affects us. By the way, in all the scriptures I used here, the words overcome and overcometh mean conquer, overcome, prevail, get the victory (according to my Strong's concordance).

"Ye are of God, little children, and have overcome them: because greater is he that is in you, than he that is in the world." [1John 4:4] Who is in the world? Look around; who do you see? It is also important to note that the Bible refers to Satan as the prince of the world. So, the Holy Spirit in you is more powerful than Satan. You have some mighty power in you about which you need to learn!

"For whatsoever is born of God overcometh the world: and this is the victory that overcometh the world, even our faith. Who is he that overcometh the world, but he that believeth that Jesus is the Son of God?" [1John 5:4-5] So, this tells us that anyone who believes Jesus is the Son of God is an overcomer!

So, what else does the Bible say about overcomers? "He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches; To him that overcometh will I give to eat of the tree of life, which is in the midst of the paradise of God." [Revelation 2:7] The tree of life--eternal life--is for overcomers!

"He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches; He that overcometh shall not be hurt of the second death." [Revelation 2:11] What is the second death? Revelation 20:14-15 and 21:8 describe it as, "And death and hell were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death. And whosoever was not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire. But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death." This is where some people panic and think that they may be part of the second death because they are fearful, or have lied, or other things along those lines. Go back and read Revelation 2:11 where it says, "He that overcometh SHALL NOT be hurt of the second death." Yes, there will be fearful people, liars, etc. in the second death, but NO OVERCOMERS!

"He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches; To him that overcometh will I give to eat of the hidden manna, and will give him a white stone, and in the stone a new name written, which no man knoweth saving he that receiveth it." [Revelation 2:17] Sounds pretty good, doesn't it?

"But that which ye have already hold fast till I come. And he that overcometh, and keepeth my works unto the end, to him will I give power over the nations: And he shall rule them with a rod of iron; as the vessels of a potter shall they be broken to shivers: even as I received of my Father. And I will give him the morning star." [Revelation 2:25-28] So, those that believe in Jesus (overcomers) that are working for the Lord and are not lukewarm will have power over the nations. Wow! That sounds exciting!

"He that overcometh, the same shall be clothed in white raiment; and I will not blot out his name out of the book of life, but I will confess his name before my Father, and before his angels." [Revelation 3:5] Lets review what we've learned so far: overcomers are any that believe Jesus is the Son of God. Overcomers' names will be in the book of life. So, unless you lose your belief in Jesus being the Son of God, you have eternal life. There is no such thing as losing your salvation due to sins committed after you've been saved!

"Him that overcometh will I make a pillar in the temple of my God, and he shall go no more out: and I will write upon him the name of my God, and the name of the city of my God, which is new Jerusalem, which cometh down out of heaven from my God: and I will write upon him my new name." [Revelation 3:12] Cool!

"To him that overcometh will I grant to sit with me in my throne, even as I also overcame, and am set down with my Father in his throne." [Revelation 3:21] HALLELUJAH! PRAISE HIS HOLY NAME!

Any questions?
Link to 1/18/99 welcome message.


5/27/03  Word Study: Word (of God)
"So shall my word be that goeth forth out of my mouth: it shall not return unto me void, but it shall accomplish that which I please, and it shall prosper in the thing whereto I sent it."
Isaiah 55:11
COMMENTS:  You've heard this scripture many times, I'm sure.  I'm going to present some scriptures about the Word of God to you for you to ponder.  The Word of God cannot be described in words we can understand.  We have to allow God to help our understanding so we can be open to what His Word can and will do.  The Word is alive.  It breathes, moves, and has power.  The Word has the ability to lift us and to sustain us. All right, I'm going to quit talking and give you some scriptures.  Most will be coming out of the New Testament for this study.  (My comments are in parenthesis.) Genesis has the first evidence of what the Word can do:
Gen 1: 3, "And God said, Let there be light: and there was light."  Gen 1: 6, "And God said, Let there be a firmament in the midst of the waters."

See also:  1:11,14, 20, 24, 26 (All of the universe was created by the WORD of God.) Matt 4:4, "But he answered and said, It is written, Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every WORD that proceedeth out of the mouth of God." (Quoted from Deut 8: 3: And he humbled thee, and suffered thee to hunger, and fed thee with manna, which thou knewest not, neither did thy fathers know; that he might make thee know that man doth not live by bread only, but by every WORD that proceedeth out of the mouth of the LORD doth man live.

It was not the manna that sustained them.  God could have kept them alive without it.  They just grumbled because they thought they would starve to death.  He gave it to them to make them happy, not because they needed food.  Their clothes never wore out, but they didn't grumble about that so He didn't have to do a more humanly understandable thing for their benefit like laying new clothes out on the ground every night.  It was only God's WORD that they  needed.)

Matt 24:35, "Heaven and earth shall pass away, but my WORDS shall not pass away."  (Everlasting and enduring... we can count on His WORD always.)

Mark 4:19, "And the cares of this world, and the deceitfulness of riches, and the lusts of other things entering in, choke the WORD, and it becometh unfruitful." (We can hinder the WORD from working in us.)

Mark 7:13, "Making the WORD of God of none effect through your tradition, which ye have delivered: and many such like things do ye."  (Again, we can hinder the WORD from working in us by hanging on to traditions rather than allowing God's WORD to be fresh all the time.)

Luke 8:11-15, "Now the parable is this: The seed is the WORD of God. Those by the way side are they that hear; then cometh the devil, and taketh away the WORD out of their hearts, lest they should believe and be saved. They on the rock are they, which, when they hear, receive the WORD with joy; and these have no root, which for a while believe, and in time of temptation fall away. And that which fell among thorns are they, which, when they have heard, go forth, and are choked with cares and riches and pleasures of this life, and bring no fruit to perfection. But that on the good ground are they, which in an honest and good heart, having heard the WORD, keep it, and bring forth fruit with patience."  (We have to cherish the WORD and allow it to grow within us.)

John 1:1, "In the beginning was the WORD, and the WORD was with God, and the WORD was God."  (Draw your own conclusions from this one.)

John 17:17, "Sanctify them through thy truth: thy WORD is truth."

Rom 10:17, "So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the WORD of God."   (Let the WORD build your faith stronger and stronger.)

Eph 5:26, "That he might sanctify and cleanse [the church] with the washing of water by the WORD."  (The WORD cleanses and purifies.)

Eph 6:17, "And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the WORD of God..."  (The WORD is a weapon.)

Col 3:16, "Let the WORD of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom; teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord."  (How can we let the WORD dwell in us RICHLY?  To me, richly, means in abundance... quality AND quantity.  So, I must be continuously reading my Bible to obtain quantity and must be meditating on the WORD to allow it to live and work within me to obtain the quality.)

1Thes 2:13, "For this cause also thank we God without ceasing, because, when ye received the WORD of God which ye heard of us, ye received it not as the word of men, but as it is in truth, the WORD of God, which effectually worketh also in you that believe."  (The WORD works in us.  It doesn't just sit there.)

2 Tim 2:9, "Wherein I suffer trouble, as an evil doer, even unto bonds; but the WORD of God is not bound."  (The WORD is not stagnant and, when spoken and used, will do what it is intended to do!)

Heb 1:3, " [Jesus] being the brightness of [God's] glory, and the express image of his person, and upholding all things by the WORD of his power, when he had by himself purged our sins, sat down on the right hand of the Majesty on high."  (Upholding means to bear, bring; sustain, uphold... by the WORD of his power....  spend some time meditating on this verse.  The previous verse refers to Jesus as the appointed heir of all things.  Power... the WORD... )

Heb 4:12, "For the WORD of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any twoedged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart."  (Think of a two-edged sword.  It cuts coming and going.  Apply that thought to the WORD and meditate on this verse.)

Heb 11:3, "Through faith we understand that the worlds were framed by the WORD of God, so that things which are seen were not made of things which do appear."  (Genesis told us that God spoke everything into existence with His WORD.  He didn't assemble it out of spare parts floating around the universe.  He made everything out of nothing.  His WORD is capable of doing anything He desires!  Anything!)

1Pt 1:23, "Being born again, not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible, by the WORD of God, which liveth and abideth for ever."  (Cling to this verse and ponder it often!)

1Jn 2:14, "I have written unto you, fathers, because ye have known him that is from the beginning. I have written unto you, young men, because ye are strong, and the WORD of God abideth in you, and ye have overcome the wicked one."  (How was the wicked one overcome?  By men who were strong who had the WORD of God abiding in them.  Where did they obtain their strength?  "The LORD is their strength, and he is the saving strength of his anointed." Ps 28:8)

Rv 19:13, "And he was clothed with a vesture dipped in blood: and his name is called The WORD of God."  (Who else but Jesus?) Conclusion:  We need to continuously learn more about the WORD of God.  We need to read our Bibles, which contains it.  We need to look to God for understanding since He speaks it.  We need to allow it to work in our lives because it is within us.  Nothing will stop it from accomplishing what it is sent to do.  I would say it is very important we not get in the way!
Link to 5/27/03 welcome message.


2/2/04  Word Study:  Faith/Love Love/Faith
"Peace be to the brethren, and love with faith, from God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ."
Ephesians 6:23
COMMENTS:  Take a look at this illustration:
Arrows joining the words faith and love

Now I'm going to toss a few more scriptures in to the mix:

"For in Jesus Christ neither circumcision availeth any thing, nor uncircumcision; but faith which worketh by love."
 Gal 5:6
"But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance: against such there is no law."
Gal 5:22-23

"That Christ may dwell in your hearts by faith; that ye, being rooted and grounded in love."
Eph 3:17

"Remembering without ceasing your work of faith, and labour of love, and patience of hope in our Lord Jesus Christ, in the sight of God and our Father."
1Th 1:3 "

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."
1Th 5:8

"And the grace of our Lord was exceeding abundant with faith and love which is in Christ Jesus."
1Tim 1:14

"But thou, O man of God, flee these things; and follow after righteousness, godliness, faith, love, patience, meekness."
1Tim 6:11

"Hold fast the form of sound words, which thou hast heard of me, in faith and love which is in Christ Jesus."
2Tim 1:13

 "Hearing of thy love and faith, which thou hast toward the Lord Jesus, and toward all saints."
Phile 1:5

Do you see it?  Faith and love, love and faith... one rolls right into the other.  They are not two separate things.  In the Kingdom of God they are intertwined!  They are not like things of the flesh that are often black or white, big or small, or left or right.  God sees them together and we should see them together. Without faith in God we cannot love Him.  Without loving God we cannot have faith in Him.  Our breastplate is to be faith and love.  The breastplate is the most important piece of armor as it protects the heart.

I can't do much more explaining because you will have to let the Holy Spirit place the knowledge about this in you.  All I know is that God has shown me that it is important.  If He thinks it is important then so should we!
Link to 2/2/04 welcome message.


4/1/04  Word Study:  Tongues
"For he that speaketh in an unknown tongue speaketh not unto men, but unto God: for no man understandeth him; howbeit in the spirit he speaketh mysteries."
1Corinthians 14:2
COMMENTS:  This is a touchy subject for a lot of people.  Why?  Why should anything spoken about in the Bible be a touchy subject?  Why should anything spoken about in the Bible cause division and strife?  Does God want us having differing opinions about the cause, purpose, and details about speaking in tongues?

Let's try something.  Let's examine all the places that mention speaking in tongues in the New Testament.  I made a list of those scriptures a long time ago.  It was when I was invited to a women's Bible study by an acquaintance and I found myself in a group of women who spoke in tongues.  They all loudly praised the Lord in tongues (all at the same time) during the praise portion of the Bible study.  I had never spoken in tongues myself and hadn't been exposed to people speaking in tongues.  I decided to do Biblical research on the subject.

So, let's approach the scriptures with open minds seeking to learn what they can teach us, shall we?   Let's approach them in a scientific manner, just looking at what is specifically said.  When we are done we each need to take the matter to God for verification and clarification.  He is the source of the truth and that is where we need to take every single belief and every single opinion to find out what to keep, what to change, and what to discard.

For the sake of clarity I will refer to a "foreign" tongue as a language that is used by, and is the daily language of, people in some part of the world.  I will refer to an "unknown" tongue as something that is not understandable by any person and is only understood by the Holy Spirit.  (What seems like an exception would be when an unknown tongue is interpreted by the same person who spoke it or by another person.  Normally, in order to interpret something you need to understand it first.  A translation of a Word given by tongues comes from the Holy Spirit, so the translator actually doesn't understand the unknown tongue other than what the Holy Spirit reveals.)

Read Acts 2:1-11
Verse 4 says, "And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance."  Verse 8 says, "And how hear we every man in our own tongue, wherein we were born?"  We don't know if every person speaking in tongues was speaking in a foreign tongue, but it seems a good possibility.  There were a lot of different nations of people there and lots of different languages were being spoken by the disciples, who apparently didn't know those languages themselves as referenced in verse seven.  All men present (verse 6) heard at least one of the disciples (there apparently were around 120 disciples per Acts 1:15) telling the wonderful works of God in their own language (verse 11).  It doesn't specifically say that all were speaking in foreign tongues so there is a possibility that they also were speaking in unknown tongues.  We can't rule that out by what is written.

Read Acts 10:44-47
The first part of verse 46 says, "For they heard them speak with tongues, and magnify God."  This happened in Caesarea at Cornelius' house.  Cornelius had invited his relatives and near friends (verse 24) and he had servants and soldiers there (verse 7).  Peter took some friends with him.  So, there was an assortment of people in that house and probably were different nationalities.  It seems there are two possibilities.  Perhaps they spoke in foreign tongues and their praises to God were understood by others there.  The other possibility is that they spoke with unknown tongues and/or foreign tongues and they also magnified God in a language they used all the time as well.  We can't say for sure which kind of tongues were used by what is written.  We do know that it was clear that they were magnifying God.  So, whether that was understood in the words they used or in their body language and tone of voice, we don't know.

Read Acts 19:1-7
Verse 6 says, "And when Paul had laid his hands upon them, the Holy Ghost came on them; and they spake with tongues, and prophesied."  This scripture has the same two possibilities that the previous scripture had.  This isn't clear on whether they prophesied in foreign tongues or if they prophesied as well as spoke in unknown tongues or some of both.  We just know that somehow the onlookers knew they prophesied.

Read 1Corinthians 12:7-31
Verse 10 describes divers kinds of tongues along with a list of other gifts of the Spirit.  The word divers was not in the original language but was added by the translators for clarification probably based on verse 28, so we can't look at that word for help here.  Right after the tongues is listed the gift of interpretation of tongues.  We can't define whether the tongues listed here are directly linked with interpretation as always needing to be interpreted or if they are separate from it.  We also can't determine whether they were foreign or unknown tongues. 

Verse 11 indicates the Holy Spirit is in charge of giving out those gifts. Following verses 7-10 which list some gifts is a discussion on the Body of Christ and how there are different parts yet all working together as one.  That portion concludes with verses 28-30 listing various gifts that are given to men and asking the question, "Does everyone have all the gifts?"  Since verses 12-27 emphasize that there are different parts in the Body of Christ that do different things just as in a human body, perhaps we can conclude that the answer to the questions in verses 28-30 is, "No."

 Examining verse 28 it says, "...diversities of tongues...."  In this verse the word diversities also means kinds of tongues.  So, to what kinds of tongues does it refer?  Are they different foreign tongues?  Are they Words from God in an unknown tongue that require an interpretation?  Are they just an unknown tongue for the edification of the user?  Based solely on what is written in chapter 12 there don't appear to be definite answers to those questions.

Read all of chapter 14 in 1Corinthians.
Verse 2 talks about an unknown tongue and that God is the only one who can understand what is being said and verse 4 indicates that the speaker is the only person who is edified when speaking in an unknown tongue.  Verse 5 says, "I would that ye all spake with tongues, but rather that ye prophesied: for greater is he that prophesieth than he that speaketh with tongues, except he interpret, that the church may receive edifying."  Does this mean that the speaker knows what he is saying and can interpret?  Does this mean that the tongues cannot be interpreted without the Holy Spirit's help?  It's hard to say.

 Verse 14 says, "For if I pray in an unknown tongue, my spirit prayeth, but my understanding is unfruitful."  This describes how our spirit can pray to God using an unknown language or an unknown tongue.  We don't understand what we are praying.  Verse 15 says, "What is it then? I will pray with the spirit, and I will pray with the understanding also: I will sing with the spirit, and I will sing with the understanding also."   Paul, who wrote this, prayed in tongues and prayed with regular words as well as sang in tongues and sang using words.  He got benefit from both. Before covering the end of chapter 14 let's look at another scripture. 

Read Mark 16:17-18.
Jesus prophesied that people would speak with new tongues.  New would be something other than your regular language, so it could refer to speaking in a foreign tongue, speaking in an unknown tongue, or both.  Did Jesus mean that all people who who believe will do all of those things He named?  Maybe, maybe not.

OK, let's go back to 1Corinthians chapter 14.  Verses 27 and 28 give a rule or guideline for speaking in tongues.  "If any man speak in an unknown tongue, let it be by two, or at the most by three, and that by course; and let one interpret.  But if there be no interpreter, let him keep silence in the church; and let him speak to himself, and to God."  Verse 33 says, "For God is not the author of confusion, but of peace, as in all churches of the saints."  Verse 40 is similar and says, "Let all things be done decently and in order."  It is very specific here on publicly using tongues.  If you use it out loud intending others to hear you then there must be an interpretation.  Otherwise, you are just making noise and creating confusion in front of other people.

 A question that arises is how do you know there is an interpreter if you don't have the interpretation yourself?  I have never given a word in tongues in public so I questioned some of my friends who had.  They said that the urge to speak just welled up inside of them as if it were going to burst out and all they had to do is open their mouth and out it came.  Then, God would give them the interpretation or would give it to someone else.  The interpretation pretty much came out the same way with God taking over the person's mouth.

Finally, lets look at the last part of verse 39, "forbid not to speak with tongues."  Sadly enough, I know of churches that ask people to leave when they hear them speaking in tongues.  I went to a church once that asked some people to leave just because they talked about speaking in tongues.  They hadn't even been overheard speaking in tongues in that church.  It was just that they spoke about it.  If God gives us foreign and unknown tongues then we mustn't hide them or ask others to hide them.  God has a reason for what He does and it isn't our job to stop His work from being done.

There are some denominations that have a doctrine that the proof of a person's salvation is when they are baptized in the Holy Spirit with the evidence of speaking in tongues.   I've taken that doctrine to the Lord and He and I have discussed it because that doctrine doesn't at all fit my salvation experience.  Just because I had a particular experience doesn't mean that is the type of experience that is the norm.  I can't go around telling people to expect exactly what happened to me. 

God doesn't always do the same thing in every person.  He meets us each where we are in our understanding, in our emotional state, in our flesh, and in all things that are particular to us. I know people who are definitely saved and have never spoken in tongues.  There is no doubt about their salvation status, yet they haven't shown "evidence of speaking in tongues."  That creates a question in my mind as to who needs to have that evidence?  Is it the person who is saved or the people around them?  Does God need the evidence?  Well, that last question was silly and the answer to that one is a resounding, "NO!"  Anyway, perhaps they have the ability to speak in tongues and it just never manifested itself.  That I don't know.  As you have seen in the scriptures we researched there isn't anything in the Bible that specifically says ALL believers will speak in tongues.

The verses we read in Acts gave examples that tied together being filled with the Holy Spirit and speaking in tongues.  So, there are scriptures about it, but those scriptures are not specific enough to create a doctrine around it.  The churches I attended that had that doctrine expected to hear you speak in unknown tongues yet some of the scriptures in Acts specifically described foreign tongues.  Then, too, 1Cor specifically said that, if there was no interpreter, then the person should be speaking silently.  Basing a doctrine on scriptures without clearing it through God is wrong.  Just as teaching something about spiritual things that we learned from another Christian without clearing them through God is wrong.

Does it matter what we believe?  YES!  What we need to do is find out what God wants us to believe.  We need to take it to God and ask Him to help our understanding.  He certainly doesn't want us arguing with each other and definitely doesn't want the issue to hinder His will on earth!  If it hinders someone from getting saved then there is a HUGE problem that needs to be eliminated.  If it causes people to be kicked out of churches there is a big problem.  We must not let doctrines, beliefs, and opinions cause division in the members of the Body of Christ!

Have you had any checks in your spirit at anything you read here?  Did something rub you the wrong way?  Why is that?  Ask God what He thinks about it.  Ask God if there is something that is a traditional teaching that you have adopted as truth.  If God has taught you something other than what is written here, ask  Him if you should share that knowledge with me. There are some things that we know for sure.  One is that God doesn't want His children fighting among themselves.  The second thing is that He gave us the Bible and ALL the scriptures in it are for us to learn more about Him and His will. (If you are interested, the more complete story about that Bible study I attended and my own experience with speaking in tongues can be found here.)

Link to 4/1/04 welcome message.


5/5/04  A Study on the Word of God
"For thou wilt light my candle: the LORD my God will enlighten my darkness."
Psalm 18:28
COMMENTS:  Have you ever experienced how a particular scripture can mean one thing to you one time you read it and something else another time?  It's because the Word of God is alive!  It is a living, breathing entity.

God isn't like a man.  He isn't limited to a human brain or to human understanding.  (I know when a Bible study is a good one when I have a very hard time putting spiritual things into words.  That means God will do the explaining to each person that reads it!) 

He is many things all at the same time.  Take a look at the list of His names that I put together if you haven't already.  God IS all of those things.  They aren't just descriptions of Him.  They actually ARE Him.

So, just as difficult that is to understand, so is the explanation of what the Bible actually is.  The Bible is life and the Bible is death.  The Bible is strength and peace.  It doesn't just describe those things.... it IS those things!

So, are you confused yet?  I'm not, even though I probably sound pretty confused.

Here are some of the things this verse in Psalms means:
 Light my candle:  God will help me understand things
Enlighten my darkness:  make my lack of understanding  into understanding (light)

Light my candle:  bring me joy and peace
Enlighten my darkness: bring me out of despair, worry, or any other thing that brings me sorrow

Light my candle:  give me direction and encouragement to do what needs to be done
Enlighten my darkness:  make my life fruitful where it was empty of worthy accomplishments

Light my candle:  give me identity and value as a person
Enlighten my darkness:  reveal my low self-esteem as being ridiculous

Now you can have Him show you more, because there is always more.

Link to 5/5/04 welcome message.


7/27/05  Word Study: Free

"If the Son therefore shall make you free, ye shall be free indeed."
John 8:36

Guess what my most favorite word is!  Go ahead, give it a try! It's FREE!  We got a ping pong table that someone didn't want any more and we got it for FREE!  Sometimes we get a coupon for a restaurant that gives us a FREE meal or FREE dessert!  Sometimes a friend will give me something I've needed for FREE!

 Jesus wants to give us the best FREE thing in the world!  He wants to free us from our own selves!  We have put ourselves in bondage because we have made bad choices.  We have chosen to do things that we know are wrong.  We say things that we know are wrong. We become a slave to sin.  We often act like we are chained to our sins and cannot escape them. 

Have you ever gone ahead and done something wrong just because you know you "can't help it"? I've heard pastors actually tell their congregations that we are all sinners and can't help but sin. 

NO NO NO!  We don't have to live there!  In verses 34-35 Jesus said, "Verily, verily, I say unto you, Whosoever committeth sin is the servant of sin.  And the servant abideth not in the house for ever...." 

If you choose to sin then you become the slave of that sin, but you don't have to stay there.  You can escape!  You can choose to do differently next time!

Jesus died as our sin sacrifice so we can get forgiveness for those sins.  That is FREE!  Jesus provided a way for us to free ourselves from those sins and He provides a way for us to be free from them forever!  He already has set us free.  We just have to embrace that freedom.  We have to choose to accept it.  We have to choose to NOT SIN.

 If you've been around the Clarion Call a while you've heard this before.  If you are new here then here is an article you should read:  A Call to Holiness.  We are free from any hold that sin has over us.  Jesus has, indeed, made us free.  Let's not call Him a liar and say we can't help ourselves.  Let's not act like we are unable to speak and do the right things! 

 Let's believe Him when He says in verse 32, "And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free."

 FREE!  What a great word!

Link to 7/27/05 welcome message.


2/2/11  Word Study: Staying in Context
"And so all Israel shall be saved"
Romans 11:26

What does this mean?  All of Israel shall be saved as in they will all go to Heaven?  Is God going to treat the Jewish people different than the Gentiles?  In reading my Bible I have come across some scriptures that make me wonder.  Some of the other scriptures I have found that are along the same subject:
"Thou shalt arise, and have mercy upon Zion: for the time to favour her, yea, the set time, is come."
Ps 102:13

"Let Israel hope in the LORD: for with the LORD there is mercy, and with him is plenteous redemption. And he shall redeem Israel from all his iniquities."
Ps 130:7-8

"But Israel shall be saved in the LORD with an everlasting salvation: ye shall not be ashamed nor confounded world without end. In the LORD shall all the seed of Israel be justified, and shall glory."
Is 45:17, 25

"I bring near my righteousness; it shall not be far off, and my salvation shall not tarry: and I will place salvation in Zion for Israel my glory."
Is 46:13

"For this is as the waters of Noah unto me: for as I have sworn that the waters of Noah should no more go over the earth; so have I sworn that I would not be wroth with thee, nor rebuke thee. For the mountains shall depart, and the hills be removed; but my kindness shall not depart from thee, neither shall the covenant of my peace be removed, saith the LORD that hath mercy on thee."
Is 54:9-10

"In his days Judah shall be saved, and Israel shall dwell safely: and this is his name whereby he shall be called, THE LORD OUR RIGHTEOUSNESS."
Jer 23:6

"In those days, and at that time, will I cause the Branch of righteousness to grow up unto David; and he shall execute judgment and righteousness in the land. In those days shall Judah be saved, and Jerusalem shall dwell safely: and this is the name wherewith she shall be called, The LORD our righteousness."
Jer 33:15-16

"And I will bring Israel again to his habitation, and he shall feed on Carmel and Bashan, and his soul shall be satisfied upon mount Ephraim and Gilead. In those days, and in that time, saith the LORD, the iniquity of Israel shall be sought for, and there shall be none; and the sins of Judah, and they shall not be found: for I will pardon them whom I reserve."
Jer 50:19-20

"And the heathen shall know that I the LORD do sanctify Israel, when my sanctuary shall be in the midst of them for evermore."
Ezek 37:28

"And I will sow her unto me in the earth; and I will have mercy upon her that had not obtained mercy; and I will say to them which were not my people, Thou art my people; and they shall say, Thou art my God."
Hos 2:23

"(According as it is written, God hath given them the spirit of slumber, eyes that they should not see, and ears that they should not hear;) unto this day. And David saith, Let their table be made a snare, and a trap, and a stumblingblock, and a recompence unto them: Let their eyes be darkened, that they may not see, and bow down their back alway. I say then, Have they stumbled that they should fall? God forbid: but rather through their fall salvation is come unto the Gentiles, for to provoke them to jealousy."
Rom 11:8-11

"For I would not, brethren, that ye should be ignorant of this mystery, lest ye should be wise in your own conceits; that blindness in part is happened to Israel, until the fulness of the Gentiles be come in. And so all Israel shall be saved: as it is written, There shall come out of Sion the Deliverer, and shall turn away ungodliness from Jacob: For this is my covenant unto them, when I shall take away their sins. As concerning the gospel, they are enemies for your sakes: but as touching the election, they are beloved for the fathers' sakes."
Rom 11:25-28

I used to have a pastor come to my house to do a Bible study.  We were working our way through the Old Testament.  I can't remember which of these Old Testament scriptures we were discussing.  I told him how I had seen other scriptures that indicate a possibility that the Jews would be shown special favor and asked him what he thought about it.  He told me they weren't.  When I read our scripture saying, "And so all Israel shall be saved" he told me, "It doesn't mean all."

I can't tell you what it means in full detail.  I do know is that it is in the Bible because it means something.  I also know that we can't pick and choose what verses we want to believe.  That same pastor used to joke around and say things like, "For some have sinned, and come short of the glory of God," (see Rom 3:23)  and, "Give thanks always for some things unto God and the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ."  (see Eph 5:20)  He wanted to make sure we understood the emphasis on the word "all".

We can't do that.  We can't interpret the Bible based on our own opinions.  No one person has the complete correct interpretation of the Bible.  I have seen where God allows us to interpret something based on our own life's experiences.  I believe that He has some scriptures that apply to different people in different ways.  However, when He says "all" then there is a reason that it is "all" as opposed to "some".  We can't interpret the same word with the same meaning in totally different ways.

Of course, many of the Hebrew, Greek, and Aramaic words have multiple meanings and often we will find that the same word had different original words.  For example, the word "all" for our scripture (Romans 11:26) is word #3956 in the Strong's Concordance.  That's the same word for "all" in verses Romans 3:23 & Ephesians 5:20 which the pastor used to emphasize as truly being ALL while ignoring the all in our scripture.

Some other Strong's words that we read as "all" are #537 and #3650.  The definition for #3956 is:
every, all manner of
Including all the forms of declension; apparently a primary word; all, any, every, the whole -- all (manner of, means), alway(-s), any (one),  every (one, way), as many as, whatsoever, whole, whosoever.

So, according to this scripture it appears that ALL of Israel shall be saved.  Of course, we have to apply all other scriptures to this to see if there is some more definition to what it means by "saved" or "Israel".  I'm not going to do that today.  I'm just presenting to you the idea of being sure to keep an open mind when you are reading the Bible.

Many cults have taken only a few verses out of context and created a whole new "denomination" out of them.  Verses are NEVER to be taken out of context.  You can pretty much come up with any kind of theory as to what the Bible means if you take things out of context.  I'll leave you with a few examples.  If you don't apply other scriptures to the following scriptures and if you don't see what the New Testament says what kinds of interpretations can you give them?

(Regarding a man that is put to death on a tree)
"His body shall not remain all night upon the tree, but thou shalt in any wise bury him that day; (for he that is hanged is accursed of God;) that thy land be not defiled, which the LORD thy God giveth thee for an inheritance."
Deut 21:23

"By the blast of God they perish, and by the breath of his nostrils are they consumed."
Job 4:9

(speaking to God)
"Keep me as the apple of the eye, hide me under the shadow of thy wings"

Ps 17:8

"And call no man your father upon the earth: for one is your Father, which is in heaven."
Matt 23:29

"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."
Lev 17:11

Link to 2/2/11 welcome message.

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