About Me

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I am the Pastor/Teacher of Rivers of Joy Baptist Church in Minford, Ohio since August 2008.  I am married to Charity since June 14, 1969.  I have four grown children.   Having served in the local church for over forty years as Pastor/Teacher, Asso., Youth Pastor, Minister of Education, Building Upkeep, Camp Director, Sunday School Teacher, etc. Also I have worked in the public place for as many years as I have preached. Charity and her sister are co owner of Union Mills Conf. (Bakery) in West Portsmouth Ohio

Terror As Always Been



The more I read, the more I watch television and follow the news, the more convinced I am that we will not be free of the scourge of terror in my lifetime—and probably not in yours, either. The only thing that will dampen terror down is the natural tendency of human beings to adapt. We all know that a certain number of people are going to be killed by lightning every year, and yet we still go out in the rain. We lose more lives to homicides in this country than we do to terrorist acts. We lose more lives to murder every year, in any one of our major cities, than we lost in the entire Iraq war to date. People will keep on flying. Cancellations of flights due to terror are minuscule compared to cancellations from weather and equipment failure.

As time goes by, Americans will adapt their lives and go on about their business, realizing that there are more ways to get killed than terrorism. We will become a little more observant. We will become a little more efficient at catching terrorists. We will tire of seeing terror lead off the news and it will drift back in the pages of the newspapers. But terror will not go away, because it never has.
As we enter the 21st century, we should realize that the century just past was perhaps the worst in the history of man in terms of lives lost to terror. We had two world wars, the Korean War, the Vietnam War, the Gulf War, and various other skirmishes that cost millions of lives. Even more lives were lost as governments killed and starved their own populations, while most of the world was blissfully unaware. From China to Russia to Germany to Africa, genocide has come close to wiping out whole populations. The toll in human life and suffering is enough to make your mind reel.
People used to say that more people had been killed in religious wars than any other kind. That is no longer true, if it ever was. The utopian ideas of totalitarian regimes have killed people in their millions, trying to improve the race. Even discounting wars, the hard, cold fact is that, in the last 100 years, a number close to the population of the United States died who need not have died at all. They died because of the stupidity or rank evil of the people who took control of their governments. There is a spirit of insanity abroad in the world. It has been here for a very long time and will still be here tomorrow, and the day after that. It is a destructive, life-hating spirit. How far back does it go? It started with Cain. It is staggering when you realize that the first man ever born of a woman, turned out to be a murderer. We’ll find the story in Genesis, chapter 4.



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Every time an airliner goes down, the first thing we want to know is: Was it a bomb? You can visualize the press conference and the questions from reporters. "Was it a bomb?" If not, "Was it a missile?" And, of course, the unsaid question: "Was it an Arab terrorist that caused the crash?" I think it would be fair to say that the Islamic fundamentalists in this world have gotten our attention. But who are these people? What do they want and why are they mad at us?
Gerald Seib, in the Wall Street Journal writes, "the U.S. is a target not because of something that it has or hasn’t done, but simply because it exists." He’s right, but not many people understand that—and even fewer seem to understand why it would be so.
On this program, we’ve been talking about the Arab people, their religion, and why it is that we are on a collision course with some of those people. In the West, we’re accustomed to separating religion and politics—religion is over here and politics over there. They are two different parts of our lives, compartmentalized. Some people even seem to be a little offended by the idea that religious people should attempt to exercise influence in the political arena. "Keep your church out of politics", they say. The separation of church and state are fundamental values in our constitutional system.
Islam is not like that at all. Islam draws no distinction between the religious and temporal areas of life and therefore, by definition, the Islamic state is a religious state. Hard to get your mind around, isn’t it, when you’re used to living in a secular state—where religion is out there somewhere—to think in terms of a religious state. Muslims, in general, do not believe that men can be made righteous just by moral example or intellectual persuasion. They consider that force may also be necessary. Individual conversions are a by-product that occurs when the power structure passes into the hands of the Islamic community.
Classical Islamic doctrine holds that the world is divisible into three parts: the zone of Islam, the zone of peace (that is, those countries with whom they have peace treaties), and the zone of war—that’s the rest of the world. Most of us have heard the word jihad, but not that many understand precisely what it means. Jihad is the holy struggle of Islam to gain political control over the affairs of society. They intend to run society according to the holy principles of Islamic law. What we Christians, I think, fail to understand about Islam is that its concerned not only with regulating man’s relationship with God through conscience, but with regulating human relationships in society, as well. The dual religious and social character of Islam sees itself as commissioned by God to bring its value system to the world through the jihad. And we, my friends, are part of that "rest of the world" which is the object of jihad.

Bible Verses on Eternal Security

WHAT DOES THE BIBLE SAY ABOUT YOUR SALVATION THAT IT IS ETERNAL AND CAN NOT BE TAKEN AWAY

  • John 10:27-30 My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me. 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. I and the Father are one."
  • Hebrews 6:4-6 For it is impossible, in the case of those who have once been enlightened, who have tasted the heavenly gift, and have shared in the Holy Spirit, and have tasted the goodness of the word of God and the powers of the age to come, and then have fallen away, to restore them again to repentance, since they are crucifying once again the Son of God to their own harm and holding him up to contempt.
  • Hebrews `0:26For if we go on sinning deliberately after receiving the knowledge of the truth, there no longer remains a sacrifice for sins,
  • James 5:19-20 My brothers, if anyone among you wanders from the truth and someone brings him back, let him know that whoever brings back a sinner from his wandering will save his soul from death and will cover a multitude of sins.
  • Revelation 2:1-29"To the angel of the church in Ephesus write: ‘The words of him who holds the seven stars in his right hand, who walks among the seven golden lampstands. "‘I know your works, your toil and your patient endurance, and how you cannot bear with those who are evil, but have tested those who call themselves apostles and are not, and found them to be false. I know you are enduring patiently and bearing up for my name's sake, and you have not grown weary. But I have this against you, that you have abandoned the love you had at first. Remember therefore from where you have fallen; repent, and do the works you did at first. If not, I will come to you and remove your lampstand from its place, unless you repent. ...
  • Matthew 7:21-23 Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. On that day many will say to me, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and cast out demons in your name, and do many mighty works in your name?’ And then will I declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from me, you workers of lawlessness.’
  • 2 Peter 2:20-22 For if, after they have escaped the defilements of the world through the knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, they are again entangled in them and overcome, the last state has become worse for them than the first. For it would have been better for them never to have known the way of righteousness than after knowing it to turn back from the holy commandment delivered to them. What the true proverb says has happened to them: "The dog returns to its own vomit, and the sow, after washing herself, returns to wallow in the mire."
  • I Timothy 4:1 Now the Spirit expressly says that in later times some will depart from the faith by devoting themselves to deceitful spirits and teachings of demons,
  • Romans 11:19-22Then you will say, "Branches were broken off so that I might be grafted in." That is true. They were broken off because of their unbelief, but you stand fast through faith. So do not become proud, but fear. For if God did not spare the natural branches, neither will he spare you. Note then the kindness and the severity of God: severity toward those who have fallen, but God's kindness to you, provided you continue in his kindness. Otherwise you too will be cut off.
  • Mark 13:13And you will be hated by all for my name's sake. But the one who endures to the end will be saved.
  • 1 John 5:13 I write these things to you who believe in the name of the Son of God that you may know that you have eternal life.
  • Galatians 5:19-21 Now the works of the flesh are evident: sexual immorality, impurity, sensuality, idolatry, sorcery, enmity, strife, jealousy, fits of anger, rivalries, dissensions, divisions, envy, drunkenness, orgies, and things like these. I warn you, as I warned you before, that those who do such things will not inherit the kingdom of God.
  • 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.
  • Galatians 5:4You are severed from Christ, you who would be justified by the law; you have fallen away from grace.
  • 1 Corinthians 9:27But I discipline my body and keep it under control, lest after preaching to others I myself should be disqualified.
  • James 2:14-17What good is it, my brothers, if someone says he has faith but does not have works? Can that faith save him? If a brother or sister is poorly clothed and lacking in daily food, and one of you says to them, "Go in peace, be warmed and filled," without giving them the things needed for the body, what good is that? So also faith by itself, if it does not have works, is dead.
  • John 15:6If anyone does not abide in me he is thrown away like a branch and withers; and the branches are gathered, thrown into the fire, and burned.
  • Johjn 5:24 John 5:24 Truly, truly, I say to you, whoever hears my word and believes him who sent me has eternal life. He does not come into judgment, but has passed from death to life.
  • Matthew 7:21"Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven.
  • 2 Peter 1:10Therefore, brothers, be all the more diligent to make your calling and election sure, for if you practice these qualities you will never fall.
  • Matthew 10:22And you will be hated by all for my name's sake. But the one who endures to the end will be saved.
  • Romans 8L:12-13 So then, brothers, we are debtors, not to the flesh, to live according to the flesh. For if you live according to the flesh you will die, but if by the Spirit you put to death the deeds of the body, you will live.
  • Romans 2:6-8He will render to each one according to his works: to those who by patience in well-doing seek for glory and honor and immortality, he will give eternal life; but for those who are self-seeking and do not obey the truth, but obey unrighteousness, there will be wrath and fury.
  • 1 Corinthians 10:12Therefore let anyone who thinks that he stands take heed lest he fall.
  • Matthew 24:13But the one who endures to the end will be saved.
  • Ezekiel 18:L24 But when a righteous person turns away from his righteousness and does injustice and does the same abominations that the wicked person does, shall he live? None of the righteous deeds that he has done shall be remembered; for the treachery of which he is guilty and the sin he has committed, for them he shall die.
  • Mark 16:16 Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned.
  • 1 John 3:6-9No one who abides in him keeps on sinning; no one who keeps on sinning has either seen him or known him. Little children, let no one deceive you. Whoever practices righteousness is righteous, as he is righteous. Whoever makes a practice of sinning is of the devil, for the devil has been sinning from the beginning. The reason the Son of God appeared was to destroy the works of the devil. No one born of God makes a practice of sinning, for God's seed abides in him, and he cannot keep on sinning because he has been born of God.
  • Romans 8:15-17For you did not receive the spirit of slavery to fall back into fear, but you have received the Spirit of adoption as sons, by whom we cry, "Abba! Father!" The Spirit himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God, and if children, then heirs—heirs of God and fellow heirs with Christ, provided we suffer with him in order that we may also be glorified with him.
  • John 3:36Whoever believes in the Son has eternal life; whoever does not obey the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of God remains on him.
  • Ephesians 1:13-14In him you also, when you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation, and believed in him, were sealed with the promised Holy Spirit, who is the guarantee of our inheritance until we acquire possession of it, to the praise of his glory.
  • Romans 6:23 For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.
  • Romans 8:39Nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.
  • Romans 11:23 And even they, if they do not continue in their unbelief, will be grafted in, for God has the power to graft them in again.
  • I Corinthians 3:11-15For no one can lay a foundation other than that which is laid, which is Jesus Christ. Now if anyone builds on the foundation with gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, straw— each one's work will become manifest, for the Day will disclose it, because it will be revealed by fire, and the fire will test what sort of work each one has done. If the work that anyone has built on the foundation survives, he will receive a reward. If anyone's work is burned up, he will suffer loss, though he himself will be saved, but only as through fire.
  • John 6:28-29Then they said to him, "What must we do, to be doing the works of God?" Jesus answered them, "This is the work of God, that you believe in him whom he has sent."
  • Luke 8:13And the ones on the rock are those who, when they hear the word, receive it with joy. But these have no root; they believe for a while, and in time of testing fall away.
  • Matthew 13:1=58That same day Jesus went out of the house and sat beside the sea. And great crowds gathered about him, so that he got into a boat and sat down. And the whole crowd stood on the beach. And he told them many things in parables, saying: "A sower went out to sow. And as he sowed, some seeds fell along the path, and the birds came and devoured them. Other seeds fell on rocky ground, where they did not have much soil, and immediately they sprang up, since they had no depth of soil, ...
  • 1 John 5:16-17If anyone sees his brother committing a sin not leading to death, he shall ask, and God will give him life—to those who commit sins that do not lead to death. There is sin that leads to death; I do not say that one should pray for that. All wrongdoing is sin, but there is sin that does not lead to death.
  • Hebrews 5:9And being made perfect, he became the source of eternal salvation to all who obey him,
  • Titus 3:5He saved us, not because of works done by us in righteousness, but according to his own mercy, by the washing of regeneration and renewal of the Holy Spirit,
  • Titus 1:2 In hope of eternal life, which God, who never lies, promised before the ages began
  • 1 Corinthians 3:15If anyone's work is burned up, he will suffer loss, though he himself will be saved, but only as through fire.
  • John 10:1-42"Truly, truly, I say to you, he who does not enter the sheepfold by the door but climbs in by another way, that man is a thief and a robber. But he who enters by the door is the shepherd of the sheep. To him the gatekeeper opens. The sheep hear his voice, and he calls his own sheep by name and leads them out. When he has brought out all his own, he goes before them, and the sheep follow him, for they know his voice. A stranger they will not follow, but they will flee from him, for they do not know the voice of strangers." ...
  • Revelation 2:10 Do not fear what you are about to suffer. Behold, the devil is about to throw some of you into prison, that you may be tested, and for ten days you will have tribulation. Be faithful unto death, and I will give you the crown of life.
  • 1 John 5:4For everyone who has been born of God overcomes the world. And this is the victory that has overcome the world—our faith.
  • 1 Peter 1:23 Since you have been born again, not of perishable seed but of imperishable, through the living and abiding word of God;
  • Hebrews 3:12-14 Take care, brothers, lest there be in any of you an evil, unbelieving heart, leading you to fall away from the living God. But exhort one another every day, as long as it is called "today," that none of you may be hardened by the deceitfulness of sin. For we have come to share in Christ, if indeed we hold our original confidence firm to the end.
  • 2 Corintehians 4:16 So we do not lose heart. Though our outer self is wasting away, our inner self is being renewed day by day.
  • John 3:3 Jesus answered him, "Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born again he cannot see the kingdom of God."
  • Revelation 20:11-15 Then I saw a great white throne and him who was seated on it. From his presence earth and sky fled away, and no place was found for them. And I saw the dead, great and small, standing before the throne, and books were opened. Then another book was opened, which is the book of life. And the dead were judged by what was written in the books, according to what they had done. And the sea gave up the dead who were in it, Death and Hades gave up the dead who were in them, and they were judged, each one of them, according to what they had done. Then Death and Hades were thrown into the lake of fire. This is the second death, the lake of fire. And if anyone's name was not found written in the book of life, he was thrown into the lake of fire.
  • Jude 1:24Now to him who is able to keep you from stumbling and to present you blameless before the presence of his glory with great joy,
  • Philippians 3:12-14 Not that I have already obtained this or am already perfect, but I press on to make it my own, because Christ Jesus has made me his own. Brothers, I do not consider that I have made it my own. But one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.
  • Galatians 6:8-9 For the one who sows to his own flesh will from the flesh reap corruption, but the one who sows to the Spirit will from the Spirit reap eternal life. And let us not grow weary of doing good, for in due season we will reap, if we do not give up.
  • Galatians 5:24 And those who belong to Christ Jesus have rucified the flesh with its passions and desires.
  • Galatians 5:1 For freedom Christ has set us free; stand firm therefore, and do not submit again to a yoke of slavery.
  • Romans 11:29 For the gifts and the calling of God are irrevocable.
  • Ezekiel 33:12-22 And you, son of man, say to your people, The righteousness of the righteous shall not deliver him when he transgresses, and as for the wickedness of the wicked, he shall not fall by it when he turns from his wickedness, and the righteous shall not be able to live by his righteousness when he sins. Though I say to the righteous that he shall surely live, yet if he trusts in his righteousness and does injustice, none of his righteous deeds shall be remembered, but in his injustice that he has done he shall die. Again, though I say to the wicked, ‘You shall surely die,’ yet if he turns from his sin and does what is just and right, if the wicked restores the pledge, gives back what he has taken by robbery, and walks in the statutes of life, not doing injustice, he shall surely live; he shall not die. None of the sins that he has committed shall be remembered against him. He has done what is just and right; he shall surely live. ...
  • Philippians 2:12-13 Therefore, my beloved, as you have always obeyed, so now, not only as in my presence but much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling, for it is God who works in you, both to will and to work for his good pleasure.
  • 1 Corinthians 15:2 And by which you are being saved, if you hold fast to the word I preached to you—unless you believed in vain.
  • 2 Corinthians 13:5 Examine yourselves, to see whether you are in the faith. Test yourselves. Or do you not realize this about yourselves, that Jesus Christ is in you?—unless indeed you fail to meet the test!
  • 1 john 5:18 We know that everyone who has been born of God does not keep on sinning, but he who was born of God protects him, and the evil one does not touch him.
  • Hebrews 10:14 For by a single offering he has perfected for all time those who are being sanctified.
  • Philippians 3:2Not that I have already obtained this or am already perfect, but I press on to make it my own, because Christ Jesus has made me his own.
  • Philippians 1:6 And I am sure of this, that he who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ.
  • Ephesians 1:13In him you also, when you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation, and believed in him, were sealed with the promised Holy Spirit,
  • Galatians 4:9 But now that you have come to know God, or rather to be known by God, how can you turn back again to the weak and worthless elementary principles of the world, whose slaves you want to be once more?
  • 2 Corinthians 1:22 And who has also put his seal on us and given us his Spirit in our hearts as a guarantee.
  • 1 Corintehians 1:1-3 Paul, called by the will of God to be an apostle of Christ Jesus, and our brother Sosthenes, To the church of God that is in Corinth, to those sanctified in Christ Jesus, called to be saints together with all those who in every place call upon the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, both their Lord and ours: Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. I give thanks to my God always for you because of the grace of God that was given you in Christ Jesus, that in every way you were enriched in him in all speech and all knowledge— ...
  • Romans 7:1-8:39 Or do you not know, brothers—for I am speaking to those who know the law—that the law is binding on a person only as long as he lives? For a married woman is bound by law to her husband while he lives, but if her husband dies she is released from the law of marriage. Accordingly, she will be called an adulteress if she lives with another man while her husband is alive. But if her husband dies, she is free from that law, and if she marries another man she is not an adulteress. Likewise, my brothers, you also have died to the law through the body of Christ, so that you may belong to another, to him who has been raised from the dead, in order that we may bear fruit for God. For while we were living in the flesh, our sinful passions, aroused by the law, were at work in our members to bear fruit for death. ... need to read the two chapters`
  • Luke 20:36 For they cannot die anymore, because they are equal to angels and are sons of God, being sons of the resurrection.
  • Revelation 3:2-5 Wake up, and strengthen what remains and is about to die, for I have not found your works complete in the sight of my God. Remember, then, what you received and heard. Keep it, and repent. If you will not wake up, I will come like a thief, and you will not know at what hour I will come against you. Yet you have still a few names in Sardis, people who have not soiled their garments, and they will walk with me in white, for they are worthy. The one who conquers will be clothed thus in white garments, and I will never blot his name out of the book of life. I will confess his name before my Father and before his angels.
  • Colossians 1:22-29 He has now reconciled in his body of flesh by his death, in order to present you holy and blameless and above reproach before him, if indeed you continue in the faith, stable and steadfast, not shifting from the hope of the gospel that you heard, which has been proclaimed in all creation under heaven, and of which I, Paul, became a minister. Now I rejoice in my sufferings for your sake, and in my flesh I am filling up what is lacking in Christ's afflictions for the sake of his body, that is, the church, of which I became a minister according to the stewardship from God that was given to me for you, to make the word of God fully known, the mystery hidden for ages and generations but now revealed to his saints. ...
  • Philippians 4:5-9 Let your reasonableness be known to everyone. The Lord is at hand; do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things. What you have learned and received and heard and seen in me—practice these things, and the God of peace will be with you.
  • 1 Peter 13-5 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! According to his great mercy, he has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, to an inheritance that is imperishable, undefiled, and unfading, kept in heaven for you, who by God's power are being guarded through faith for a salvation ready to be revealed in the last time.
  • James 2:24 You see that a person is justified by works and not by faith alone.
  • Titus 3:5-7 He saved us, not because of works done by us in righteousness, but according to his own mercy, by the washing of regeneration and renewal of the Holy Spirit, whom he poured out on us richly through Jesus Christ our Savior, so that being justified by his grace we might become heirs according to the hope of eternal life.
  • Colossians1:21-23 And you, who once were alienated and hostile in mind, doing evil deeds, he has now reconciled in his body of flesh by his death, in order to present you holy and blameless and above reproach before him, if indeed you continue in the faith, stable and steadfast, not shifting from the hope of the gospel that you heard, which has been proclaimed in all creation under heaven, and of which I, Paul, became a minister.
  • 1 Corinthians 5:5 You are to deliver this man to Satan for the destruction of the flesh, so that his spirit may be saved in the day of the Lord.
  • Romans 8:L34-39 Who is to condemn? Christ Jesus is the one who died—more than that, who was raised—who is at the right hand of God, who indeed is interceding for us. Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or danger, or sword? As it is written, "For your sake we are being killed all the day long; we are regarded as sheep to be slaughtered." No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, ...
  • Acts 2:38-39 And Peter said to them, "Repent and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins, and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. For the promise is for you and for your children and for all who are far off, everyone whom the Lord our God calls to himself."
  • Judge 1:24-25 Now to him who is able to keep you from stumbling and to present you blameless before the presence of his glory with great joy, to the only God, our Savior, through Jesus Christ our Lord, be glory, majesty, dominion, and authority, before all time and now and forever. Amen.
  • Ttius 2:11-14 For the grace of God has appeared, bringing salvation for all people, training us to renounce ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright, and godly lives in the present age, waiting for our blessed hope, the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ, who gave himself for us to redeem us from all lawlessness and to purify for himself a people for his own possession who are zealous for good works.
  • John 14:16 And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Helper, to be with you forever,
  • Matthew 24:24 For false christs and false prophets will arise and perform great signs and wonders, so as to lead astray, if possible, even the elect.
  • Psalms 125:1 A Song of Ascents. Those who trust in the Lord are like Mount Zion, which cannot be moved, but abides forever.
  • Jude 1:5 Now I want to remind you, although you once fully knew it, that Jesus, who saved a people out of the land of Egypt, afterward destroyed those who did not believe.
  • 1 John 5:11-12 And this is the testimony, that God gave us eternal life, and this life is in his Son. Whoever has the Son has life; whoever does not have the Son of God does not have life.
  • 1 Thessialonians 4:13-18 But we do not want you to be uninformed, brothers, about those who are asleep, that you may not grieve as others do who have no hope. For since we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so, through Jesus, God will bring with him those who have fallen asleep. For this we declare to you by a word from the Lord, that we who are alive, who are left until the coming of the Lord, will not precede those who have fallen asleep. For the Lord himself will descend from heaven with a cry of command, with the voice of an archangel, and with the sound of the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first. Then we who are alive, who are left, will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air, and so we will always be with the Lord. ...
  • Ephesians 2:8-9 For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast.
  • 1 Corinthians 10:1-14 For I want you to know, brothers, that our fathers were all under the cloud, and all passed through the sea, and all were baptized into Moses in the cloud and in the sea, and all ate the same spiritual food, and all drank the same spiritual drink. For they drank from the spiritual Rock that followed them, and the Rock was Christ. Nevertheless, with most of them God was not pleased, for they were overthrown in the wilderness. ...
  • Romans 10:9-10 Because, if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For with the heart one believes and is justified, and with the mouth one confesses and is saved.
  • John 8:32 And you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free."
  • John 6:50-71 This is the bread that comes down from heaven, so that one may eat of it and not die. I am the living bread that came down from heaven. If anyone eats of this bread, he will live forever. And the bread that I will give for the life of the world is my flesh." The Jews then disputed among themselves, saying, "How can this man give us his flesh to eat?" So Jesus said to them, "Truly, truly, I say to you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you have no life in you. Whoever feeds on my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up on the last day. ...
  • Matthew 25:31-46 "When the Son of Man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, then he will sit on his glorious throne. Before him will be gathered all the nations, and he will separate people one from another as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats. And he will place the sheep on his right, but the goats on the left. Then the King will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world. For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me, ...
  • Titus 1:16 They profess to know God, but they deny him by their works. They are detestable, disobedient, unfit for any good work.
  • Hebrews 7:25 Consequently, he is able to save to the uttermost those who draw near to God through him, since he always lives to make intercession for them.
  • Revelation3:5 The one who conquers will be clothed thus in white garments, and I will never blot his name out of the book of life. I will confess his name before my Father and before his angels.
  • Ephesians 3:20 Now to him who is able to do far more abundantly than all that we ask or think, according to the power at work within us,
  • Matthew 24:1-51 Jesus left the temple and was going away, when his disciples came to point out to him the buildings of the temple. But he answered them, "You see all these, do you not? Truly, I say to you, there will not be left here one stone upon another that will not be thrown down." As he sat on the Mount of Olives, the disciples came to him privately, saying, "Tell us, when will these things be, and what will be the sign of your coming and of the close of the age?" And Jesus answered them, "See that no one leads you astray. For many will come in my name, saying, ‘I am the Christ,’ and they will lead many astray. ...
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As a Calvinist This Is What I Believe

 
The first 18 years of preaching I could never preach a sermon without mention going to a movie, (Jerry Lewis you know) and going to a dance, or having long hair, and playing cards, etc. And eveery sermon had to have salvation, and Heaven sweet and Hell hot. Then the last 34 years I just taught what the Bible said book by book, chapter by chapter. I didn't add or substract or twist or
 
The first 18 years of preaching I could never preach a sermon without mention going to a movie, (Jerry Lewis you know) and going to a dance, or having long hair, and playing cards, etc. And eveery sermon had to have salvation, and Heaven sweet and Hell hot. Then the last 34 years I just taught what the Bible said book by book, chapter by chapter. I didn't add or substract or twist or take a verse here and there, half verse and made it a sermon.
The first 18 years of preaching I could never preach a sermon without mention going to a movie, (Jerry Lewis you know) and going to a dance, or having long hair, and playing cards, goingt to a rock show, goling camping, playing golf, going to a NASCAR race, And every sermon had to have salvation, and Heaven sweet and Hell hot. Then the last 34 years I just taught what the Bible said book by book, chapter by chapter. I didn't add or substract or twist or take a verse here and there, half verse and made it a sermon.



 


I have friends who are Calvinist Baptists..., and I love their friendship dearly! But I dare you to test the mindset of Calvinism..., if you're truly born again, indwelt by the Holy Spirit, then I dare you to test their doctrine..., just as you walk past the next stranger, think of them as lost..., then HOLD that thought and set it aside, then walk right on past that stranger with the mindset that God has already chosen that they will or will not be saved, that they are going to heaven or Hell, and there's nothing you are responsible for doing concerning them! I dare you! The Spirit of God will overcome that doctrine of devils, and will compel you to witness of your Saviour Jesus Christ, to them. I tried the test...and the Lord would not let me pass them by..., and thank God I tested that false doctrine..., because some of those folks have been saved, not because of my feeble efforts, but because Jesus is not a Calvinist..., in fact, Satan is not a Calvinist, even the Devil knows that's a lie even he cannot believe! Terry Rollins

 

I said: Of course you are so wrong brother, but that is okay, your heart is in the right pleace. your view point about most Calvinist is wrong. There is a responsibility to share the gospel, with out which no one would be born again. The gospel must first be preached, the gospel is to be shared. God could save everyone, God could use angles to bring the gospel story, but God calls us to present the Gospel to all men, but it is God's alone that saves a sinner from Hell. I know I don't share the gospel to every one I see, but its not because I don't think I should. I think I must have talked to 20 people today in stores, and in a bakery, in a bank, at quick stop and didn't ask them if they were going to heaven, but it was not because I didn't think about it. Of course Jesus is a Calvinist, He knows God alone saves. But Jesus knew he had to die on the cross in order for God to save. And we know we need to present the gospel message for God to save those that are lost.

 

Contentment

 

Paul  say that “I have learned to be content in whatever circumstances I am” (Philippians 4:11). That’s not to say that Paul had found a state of being that was free from suffering, disasters, or opposition. Rather, he was able to embrace all hardships as essential components of God’s sovereign plan. The contentment (autarkēs in the Greek) he describes transcends all of those things. His union with Christ brought with it a profound sense of satisfaction and independence from worldly distractions. And that was because Paul’s dependence and sufficiency were found in Christ: “I can do all things through Him who strengthens me” (Philippians 4:13).

John MacArthur elaborates further:

Paul was saying, “I have learned to be sufficient in myself—yet not in myself as myself, but as indwelt by Christ.”  He elsewhere expressed that subtle distinction: “I have been crucified with Christ; and it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me, and delivered Himself up for me”  (Galatians 2:20). Christ and contentment go together.


But the contentment Paul described was never detached from his passions; rather, it was found in His ultimate passion—Christ. It wasn’t being disconnected from all things that made Paul content. It was His connectedness to Christ that was all-satisfying and the cause of Christ was all-consuming. His letters to the churches he planted are overflowing with love for Christ and love for His people. As John MacArthur points out: “Under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, he took the idea of contentment much further than it was taken even in the Greek culture, where the word first found its meaning.” Anxious for Nothing, 130. What Paul left us with was a divinely inspired thank-you note.
But I rejoiced in the Lord greatly, that now at last you have revived your concern for me; indeed, you were concerned before, but you lacked opportunity. Not that I speak from want, for I have learned to be content in whatever circumstances I am. I know how to get along with humble means, and I also know how to live in prosperity; in any and every circumstance I have learned the secret of being filled and going hungry, both of having abundance and suffering need. I can do all things through Him who strengthens me. Nevertheless, you have done well to share with me in my affliction.

Don't Try to Please People

What’s a chronic people pleaser to do? Here are six ways I’m still learning to fight the idol of approval.

1. You can’t know what others think, but you can know what Jesus thinks.


The cruelty of approval is that you can’t ever really know what others think of you. One look at the cross, though, and you can be sure what Jesus thinks of you. He literally loves you to death.
When talking about approval, my dad likes to say, “What you think of me is none of my business.” But making what Jesus thinks of you “your business” is key.

2. The pursuit of coolness and the practice of kindness are mutually exclusive.

Being a people pleaser means that even when I’m doing something nice for you, it’s really about me. Which is shorthand for saying, “I want you to like me and think I'm cool.”
The way out of this trap is dying to what you think of me so I can begin to be kind to you in the ways Jesus has been kind to me. Because Christians have died with Christ to being cool, we’re free in him to begin being kind. The pursuit of coolnees feeds our approval idol, but the practice of kindness starves it.

3. Being yourself is better than being a cover band of someone else.

A few years ago I braved a dive bar to see a Led Zeppelin cover band called Zoso. They were amazing and the next best thing to Led Zeppelin. But they also made me sad since they’d adopted the persona of someone else, down to the long curly hair and tight leather pants (which should be illegal unless you’ve been on the cover of Rolling Stone). The world has missed out on the unique music only they could have made, even if it wasn’t appreciated beyond their cat lady aunts and favorite high school teachers.
No one wants you to be a cover band of someone else. They want you to be yourself, in all of your shame and glory.

4. Before you can ever be yourself, you have to actually like yourself.

Sadly most of us could agree with Dave Matthews (right now people with Jeeps are nodding extra hard): “I wish I had been anyone other than me.” A guy in my high school actually chose that for his senior quote because he hated himself so much.
The way out of hating yourself isn’t being someone else. It’s beginning to be who God made (and redeemed) you to be. It’s like that scene in Silence of the Lambs when Hannibal Lector escapes from prison by cutting off the guard’s face and wearing it on top of his own. As gross as it is, it’s exactly what we do when we try to be somebody else.
The only way out of the prison of people pleasing is to take off the skin of others and get comfortable in your own. Of course this doesn’t mean getting comfortable in our sin. God is at work to renew us into the likeness of Jesus. But do you realize that God made, chose, redeemed, adopted, called, and sent you?

5. Live from your identity, not for it.

Maybe it’s better to make the distinction between identity and image. Identity is something given, fundamental to the way you see yourself. Image, on the other hand, is something you create, fundamentally about the way you want others to see you. The sin of our age is to live for our image instead of from our identity. Which is why Vaughan Roberts wisely warns us that “wholehearted commitment to Christ will not be good for our image.”
But we have something better than an image. We have an identity in Christ that nothing and no one can touch. It includes words like “son,” “daughter,” “servant,” and “heir.” In the words of Aslan:
You come of the Lord Adam and the Lady Eve. . . . And that is both honor enough to erect the head of the poorest beggar, and shame enough to bow the shoulders of the greatest emperor on earth. Be content.
You don’t have to be someone when you already are someone.

6. Resign yourself to the awkwardness of life.

This is my new favorite line (mainly because my spiritual gift is making things awkward). It’s from the Before movie trilogy (Before Sunrise, Before Sunset, Before Midnight). From beginning to end, life is awkward. Life isn’t as it should be, and neither are we. Let’s not pretend life isn’t hard, or that any of us has it all together. Let’s admit to ourselves (and one another) that we’re broken and can’t fix ourselves. Resigning yourself to the awkwardness of life means being vulnerable about all your weakness and weirdness. Awkwardness is an invitation to vulnerability. And vulnerability is where friendship is born. It’s also where God becomes big. And not until he becomes big will people become just the right size: big enough to matter, small enough to not be enslaved to what they think.
Unfortunately, our struggle with approval won’t just go away. The fight for the gospel of grace to reign in our hearts and minds is a daily one. The fear of winning (or losing) the approval we crave is something to be repented of daily, too. That’s why I’m strongly considering getting Jesus’s words in Luke 6:26 tattooed on my forearm: “Woe to you, when all people speak well of you.” Then again, having a forearm tattoo might be its own approval struggle.
The rest we need from our constant striving to be liked will never be found in ourselves, in the clichés of “trying harder” or “doing better,” or in the shame of “just stop being this way already.” Instead it’s found at the right hand of God, where we already have all of the approval we could ever need. As someone once said, God doesn’t just love us. He likes us. He really likes us.
Sammy Rhodes is a campus minister with Reformed University Fellowship at the University of South Carolina. He also recently authored his first book, This Is Awkward (Thomas Nelson, 2016). 

List of Places Charles e Whisnant, (born in 1947, raised in Roanoke VA.) has worked (some)

Born Again Believer in Jesus Christ. Married to Charity 1969 Pastor/Teacher. 4 children.