Archive for Gospel

The Primary Purpose of the Gospel – And an Accurate Perspective… Rodna Epley

Posted in #PaulthePoke, Gospel, Rodna Epley with tags , , , , on February 4, 2020 by paulthepoke

Jesus came down from the Father and went back up to the Father. He restored us to the Father. That’s the reason Jesus came and did all that He did—to restore, to reconcile us to the Father.

We are seated in heavenly places in Christ now, already restored to the Father. Knowing this changes our entire lives and the way that we see everything. It changes the way we see ourselves. It changes the way we see the world. It changes the way we see God.

It shifts our perspective from standing on the earth looking up and victimized, to the position of being seated in Christ where He is on the throne of glory with the earth as our footstool, and where all principalities, powers and rulers of the darkness are beneath us.

Knowing we are restored to the Father (restored to glory) causes the Word of God (Bible) to come alive immediately and make perfect sense, because it removes the veil that is over our eyes—the veil of a broken perspective.

Everything Jesus did was to restore us to the Father: the Father of glory…and love. He is the WAY to the Father. This is the primary message of the Gospel and everything Jesus taught. And He did it all for love, so that we would know the kind of love that holds no record of wrong, the kind of love that makes us able to love even our enemies.

I came forth from the Father and have come into the world. Again, I leave the world and go to the Father” (John 16:28).

And where I go you know, and the way you know…Jesus said to him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me” (John 14:4,6).

But God, who is rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us, even when we were dead in trespasses, made us alive together with Christ (by grace you have been saved), and raised us up together, and made us sit together in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, (Ephesians 2:4-6).

And now, O Father, glorify Me together with Yourself, with the glory which I had with You before the world was…And the glory which You gave Me I have given them, that they may be one just as We are one: I in them, and You in Me; that they may be made perfect in one, and that the world may know that You have sent Me, and have loved them as You have loved Me. (John 17:5,22-23).

Beloved, let us love one another, for love is of God; and everyone who loves is born of God and knows God (1 John 4:7).

Love your enemies, bless those who curse you, do good to those who hate you, and pray for those who spitefully use you and persecute you, that you may be sons of your Father in heaven…therefore you shall be perfect, just as your Father in heaven is perfect (Matthew 5:44,45,48).

How do You DO that, Jesus? -Michael Stone

Posted in #PaulthePoke, Michael Stone with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on October 23, 2019 by paulthepoke

You are omnipresent. That means that you are everywhere at once, ever present everywhere. That’s amazing to me. You are God, so I don’t struggle understanding that.

You are omniscient. That means that you know everything. That blows me away, yet, because You are God, I have no problem understanding that.

You are omnipotent. That is almost incomprehensible, yet, because You are God, I get it. You have always existed.

You have no beginning and no ending. I don’t really understand that with the finite mind that You created me with, but by faith I believe it wholeheartedly.

You created everything out of nothing but Your Word. I’m flabbergasted, yet, You are God, so it was really not a big effort for You at all.

You spoke light into utter darkness just by saying “LIGHT”. Okay, then! That’s all it took, because You are God.

You humbled Yourself and became a man to show us that we could be sinless and full of love, then You gave Yourself as the ultimate sacrificial Lamb, taking our place so that we may live with You forever. That’s amazing love. I accept that. I receive that.

Here’s the part that baffles me, though, Jesus; when we believe on You and confess You as LORD, You forgive every single sin that we have ever committed. Not only that, but You take it a step further and You forget every single sin that we have ever committed. WOW! That is mind boggling! How do you DO that, Jesus?

I have a hard enough time just struggling to forget a single mistake, yet You easily forget every horrible thing that I’ve ever done! You separate my sins from Yourself as far as the east is from the west. That’s immeasurable! How do you DO that, Jesus? Your Word says that You cast our sins into the sea of forgetfulness, to never again be remembered. How do you DO that, Jesus?

Why do I continue to compare Your ability to forgive and forget with mine, or anyone else’s? That’s really not wise. You ARE God. Nothing is impossible for you. When the enemy comes to me to remind me of bad things that I have done, and I bring them back up to You, Your reply is always, “What are you talking about? I don’t recall that. You’re forgiven. It’s forgotten. Don’t look back. Keep moving forward. Trust Me.” It’s time that I stop listening to the accusations of Satan, and start listening to the truth of who You are in me. You gave us all of Your power and authority.

It’s time that I started using it. Once we as Believers, as Followers of the Way, as Christians – once we all begin walking in the authority and faith that you gave to each of us, we CAN turn the world right-side-up for You, Jesus. How do we DO that, Jesus? In Your name! THAT’S how!
Thank You, Jesus!



Oh, How He Loves You… Christine McDonald

Posted in #PaulthePoke, Christine "Clarity" McDonald with tags , , , , , , on August 24, 2019 by paulthepoke

Genuine love and compassion, the kind that truly come from Christ and are imaged in us to a broken world, view every human being as treasured and precious. People, all people, were the single motivation God had that compelled Jesus to the cross. His sacrifice was made for all sins committed before He came, all sins committed during His earthly journey, and all sins we would think up, dream up, and commit after He died and rose again.

This means that every human being has equal value and access to God’s love and amazing grace. It means that none of us are worthy or hold more value in and of ourselves, but through Him we are redeemed to become treasures. Before you accepted Him, He loved you passionately and saw you as a “not–yet–redeemed” treasure. He wanted you before you were cleaned up and polished by His blood.

That redemption transforms our value to reflect His value, and He is priceless. That redemption also cleanses our hearts and minds so that we can take on His viewpoint. Our role, as believers, is to be the human extenders of what God grants us daily, moment by moment. If His grace is sufficient (2 Corinthians 12:9), then it is sufficient for us and a sufficient supply for us to give others. Christ is the great equalizer!

2 Corinthians 12:9 And He has said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for power is perfected in weakness.” Most gladly, therefore, I will rather boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may dwell in me.

“Love your neighbor, all of ’em.” -Christine Clarity McDonald

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Atheists and Their Death Bed… Phil Kulis

Posted in #PaulthePoke, Culture, Hell, Phil Kulis with tags , , , , , on May 29, 2019 by paulthepoke

When men feel that the day of their death is far off, they find it easy to adamantly maintain that there is no God. They may indulge in all kinds of sophistry in order to promote their unbelief. But its very interesting to know what some famous skeptics have said on their deathbed, just before dying.

Caesar Borgia: “While I lived, I provided for everything but death; now I must die, and am unprepared to die.”

Thomas Hobbs, political philosopher: “I say again, if I had the whole world at my disposal, I would give it to live one day. I am about to take a leap into the dark.”

Thomas Payne, the leading atheistic writer in American colonies: “Stay with me, for God’s sake; I cannot bear to be left alone, O Lord, help me! O God, what have I done to suffer so much? What will become of me hereafter? I would give worlds if I had them, that The Age of Reason had never been published. 0 Lord, help me! Christ, help me! …No, don’t leave; stay with me! Send even a child to stay with me; for I am on the edge of Hell here alone. If ever the Devil had an agent, I have been that one.”

Sir Thomas Scott, Chancellor of England: “Until this moment I thought there was neither a God nor a hell. Now I know and feel that there are both, and I am doomed to perdition by the just judgment of the Almighty.”

Voltaire, famous anti-christian atheist: “I am abandoned by God and man; I will give you half of what I am worth if you will give me six months’ life.” (He said this to Dr. Fochin, who told him it could not be done.) “Then I shall die and go to hell!” (His nurse said: “For all the money in Europe I wouldn’t want to see another unbeliever die! All night long he cried for forgiveness.”

Robert Ingersoll: “O God, if there be a God, save my soul, if I have a soul!” (Some say it was this way: “Oh God, if there be a God, save my soul if I have a soul, from hell, if there be a hell!”

David Hume, atheist philosopher famous for his philosophy of empiricism and skepticism of religion, he cried loud on his death bed, “I am in flames!” It is said his “desperation was a horrible scene”.

Napoleon Bonaparte, the French emperor, and who, like Adolf Hitler, brought death to millions to satisfy his greedy, power-mad, selfish ambitions for world conquest: “I die before my time, and my body will be given back to the earth. Such is the fate of him who has been called the great Napoleon. What an abyss between my deep misery and the eternal kingdom of Christ!”

Sir Francis Newport, the head of an English Atheist club to those gathered around his deathbed: “You need not tell me there is no God for I know there is one, and that I am in His presence! You need not tell me there is no hell. I feel myself already slipping. Wretches, cease your idle talk about there being hope for me! I know I am lost forever! Oh, that fire! Oh, the insufferable pangs of hell! …Oh, that I could lie for a thousand years upon the fire that is never quenched, to purchase the favor of God and be united to Him again. But it is a fruitless wish. Millions and millions of years will bring me no nearer the end of my torments than one poor hour. Oh, eternity, eternity forever and forever!, Oh, the insufferable pangs of Hell!”

Charles IX was the French king who urged on by his mother, gave the order for the massacre of the French Huguenots, in which 15,000 souls were slaughtered in Paris alone and 100,000 in other sections of France, for no other reason than that they loved Christ. The guilty king suffered miserably for years after that event. He finally died, bathed in blood bursting from his veins. To his physicians he said in his last hours: “Asleep or awake, I see the mangled forms of the Huguenots passing before me. They drop with blood. They point at their open wounds. Oh! That I had spared at least the little infants at the bosom! What blood! I know not where I am. How will all this end? What shall I do? I am lost forever! I know it. Oh, I have done wrong.”

David Strauss, leading representative of German rationalism, after spending a lifetime erasing belief in God from the minds of others: “My philosophy leaves me utterly forlorn! I feel like one caught in the merciless jaws of an automatic machine, not knowing at what time one of its great hammers may crush me!”

In a Newsweek interview with Svetlana Stalin, the daughter of Josef Stalin, she told of her father’s death: “My father died a difficult and terrible death. God grants an easy death only to the just. At what seemed the very last moment he suddenly opened his eyes and cast a glance over everyone in the room. It was a terrible glance, insane or perhaps angry. His left hand was raised, as though he were pointing to something above and bringing down a curse on us all. The gesture was full of menace. The next moment he was dead.”

Anton LeVey, author of the Satanic Bible and high priest of the religion dedicated to the worship of Satan. One of his famous quotes is, “There is a beast in man that needs to be exercised, not exorcised.” His dying words were, “Oh my, oh my, what have I done, there is something very wrong…there is something very wrong….”

It does not have to be…

1 Corinthians 15:3-4 For I delivered to you as of first importance what I also received, that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, and that He was buried, and that He was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures…

Jude: Love

Posted in Jude with tags , , , , , on October 28, 2018 by paulthepoke

Jude 1:2 May mercy, peace, and love be multiplied to you.

This is the second time the word αγαπαο/agapao or “love” is used by Jude. For what it’s worth, scholars argue whether the term is used three or four times by Jude.

This is αγαπαο/agapao. This is God’s “love” for us. Defined as love, affection, good will, benevolence, to welcome, to entertain, to be fond of, to love dearly. This love is the nature of God.

Get the flutter out of your stomach and the tingle out of your senses. This love is purposeful with selection. God chooses us despite our issues.

God is love. He is αγαπαο/agapao.

1 John 4:8 Anyone who does not love does not know God, because God is love.

1 John 4:16 And we have come to know and believe the love that God has for us. God is love; whoever abides in love abides in God, and God in him.

God demonstrated His αγαπαο/agapao for broken humanity by sending His Son.

John 3:16 For God so loved the world, that He gave His only Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have eternal life.

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In response to God’s love, we are called to αγαπαο/agapao. We are called to love with all of our being and all that we have to offer; heart, soul, mind, and strength. In the verses below from Mark 12, the original language communicates this love is a future action. Jesus is telling us how and who to love.

Which begs the questions, do we put God first in our lives? Order matters to Jesus. He put God above others. Have we made personal sacrifices for God? Do we love God with intensity and passion? Do we sacrifice ourselves on behalf of others? Do we love our neighbors with the same gusto as we love ourselves?

Mark 12:29-31 Jesus answered, “The most important is, Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. And you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength. The second is this: You shall love your neighbor as yourself. There is no other commandment greater than these.”

 

Jude places the focus on the concepts of mercy and peace and love. May these ideals be multiplied and lavished. May an abundance be heaped upon you, the believer in Jesus Christ.

 

Jude: Called, Loved, & Kept

Posted in Jude, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , on October 9, 2018 by paulthepoke

Jude 1:1b To those who are called, beloved in God the Father and kept for Jesus Christ:

…those who are called… In the original Greek, the word for “those” is the definite article τοῖς. It is the plural form of what would be translated as “the”. Definite articles are a big deal in the Greek language. The koine Greek of the New Testament has no indefinite articles like we do in English. There are no “a” or “an” in the language. A definite article is a point of emphasis.

God the Father describes “those” as called or κλετοσ/kletos. The idea is called, invited (to a banquet); invited (by God in the proclamation of the Gospel) to obtain eternal salvation in the kingdom through Christ; called to (the discharge of) some office; divinely selected and appointed.

Everybody is ultimately invited to the call of Jesus Christ. Salvation is for all of humanity.

1 Timothy 2:3-4 This is good, and it is pleasing in the sight of God our Savior, who desires all people to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth.

1 Peter 3:18 For Christ also suffered once for sins, the righteous for the unrighteous, that he might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh but made alive in the spirit…

…beloved… “Those” are “loved”. This is αγαπαο/agapao. This is God’s love for us. Defined as love, affection, good will, benevolence, to welcome, to entertain, to be fond of, to love dearly. This love is the nature of God.

The concept is God has loved us from the past and His love will never end. His love for us is eternal. It is God who has shown us what love is and how to love.

John 13:34 A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another: just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another.

 

…in God the Father… The verse states “those” are “in” God positionally. As believers in Jesus, this is our place. We are in the body of Christ. Believers are sealed with the Spirit. Jude states we are fixed in the Father. This position is confirmed by John as well as others.

John 10:28-29 I give them eternal life, and they will never perish, and no one will snatch them out of my hand. My Father, who has given them to me, is greater than all, and no one is able to snatch them out of the Father’s hand.

 

and kept for Jesus Christ: The Father has looked upon “those” and τερεο/tereo or “kept”. Tereo means: to attend to carefully, take care of or to guard. Metaphorically to keep, one in the state in which he is; to observe or to reserve: to undergo something.

The point is God has always “kept” us and He will continue to “keep” us. The Father does not change in the way He views us.

We are “kept” for Jesus Christ. The language is vague. But is there an implication something is coming to “those”???

1 Corinthians 15:52 in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised imperishable, and we shall be changed.

 

Definitions provided by Strong’s Concordance.

 

 

Adam & the Fall of Man… Phil Kulis

Posted in Creation, Phil Kulis with tags , , , , , , , , , , on September 20, 2018 by paulthepoke

PhilKulis PicGenesis 3:6-7 When the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was a delight to the eyes, and that the tree was desirable to make one wise, she took from its fruit and ate; and she gave also to her husband with her, and he ate. Then the eyes of both of them were opened, and they knew that they were naked; and they sewed fig leaves together and made themselves loin coverings.

Notice something? Adam and Eve’s eyes were opened at the same time even though Eve ate first.

The command to not eat wasn’t given to Eve. It was given to Adam before Eve was created.

Genesis 2:17-18 but from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat from it you will surely die.” Then the LORD God said, “It is not good for the man to be alone; I will make him a helper suitable for him.”

 

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Photo: Pixabay.com

Eve didn’t disobey a command from God because God didn’t give the command to Eve. Neither was there a command “nor shall you touch it” from God.

Eve’s eyes were opened when Adam disobeyed. Until he ate she was justified by his obedience even though she had sinned.

 

Jesus cross sun

The Second Adam, Jesus Christ, was obedient to God even until death on a cross. Therefore, His bride the Church is justified by His righteousness in obedience even though the bride has sinned.

It’s not about your unrighteousness because of disobedience, you’re doomed. It’s about His righteousness because of obedience. In Him, we have grace and mercy.

Her sin would be addressed same as the Church’s sin is addressed in Christ.

Sadly, mankind has blamed Eve all this time. The fall of Man was Adam’s fault.

Romans 5:12-21 Therefore, just as sin came into the world through one man, and death through sin, and so death spread to all men because all sinned, for sin indeed was in the world before the law was given, but sin is not counted where there is no law. Yet death reigned from Adam to Moses, even over those whose sinning was not like the transgression of Adam, who was a type of the one who was to come.

But the free gift is not like the trespass. For if many died through one man’s trespass, much more have the grace of God and the free gift by the grace of that one man Jesus Christ abounded for many. And the free gift is not like the result of that one man’s sin. For the judgment following one trespass brought condemnation, but the free gift following many trespasses brought justification. For if, because of one man’s trespass, death reigned through that one man, much more will those who receive the abundance of grace and the free gift of righteousness reign in life through the one man Jesus Christ.

Therefore, as one trespass led to condemnation for all men, so one act of righteousness leads to justification and life for all men. For as by the one man’s disobedience the many were made sinners, so by the one man’s obedience the many will be made righteous. Now the law came in to increase the trespass, but where sin increased, grace abounded all the more, so that, as sin reigned in death, grace also might reign through righteousness leading to eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.

 

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