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

Mom lives with my sister Ellen and her husband Hershel. They have been taken care of mom for a number of years. Mom likes to eat. As a matter of fact , Mom likes to eat three times a day. And if you set at the breakfast table for very long, she will want dinner in a few hours.
MY MOTHER




DISPENSATIONALISM AND PREMILLENNIALISM
and Covenant Theology
part four
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DO YOU BELIEVE WHAT YOUR PASTOR HAS PREACHED FOR TWENTY YEARS?or HAS NOT PREACHED BUT BELIEVES?
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  • "Oh brother, where art thou." not another dissertation on doctrine!? Many of us have that attitude when it comes to these "high-fa-lootin'" multi-syllable theological words. But we all practice what we believe to be true, therefore doctrine does make a difference! You need to know what your preacher is preaching! Often they are not willing to spell out what they are teaching. Oh I am not talking about Jerermiah Wright, or am I.
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Magnitudes of articles have been written explaining the teachings of both covenant theology and dispensationalism. This information hereper is not intended to define these systems of interpretation.
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A Bit of History
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In order to understand the development of covenant theology, we need to take a brief look at church history.

Some covenant theologians would have us believe that their belief system was that of the founding fathers of the early church. They try to make a case that dispensationalism is a mere infant when compared to the grand old scheme of covenant theology. However, the truth of the matter is that systematized covenant theology is actually of recent origin. Cornelius Van Til, a covenant theologian, admits, "the idea of covenant theology has only in modern times been broadly conceived." Louis Berkhof, another covenant theologian, wrote, "In the early Church Fathers the covenant idea is not found at all." Dr. Ryrie points out:
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It [covenant theology] was not the expressed doctrine of the early church. It was never taught by church leaders in the Middle Ages. It was not even mentioned by the primary leaders of the Reformation. Indeed, covenant theology as a system is only a little older than dispensationalism. That does not mean it is not biblical, but it does dispel the notion that covenant theology has been throughout all church history the ancient guardian of the truth that is only recently being sniped at by dispensationalism.
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Covenant theology does not appear in the writings of Luther, Zwingli, Calvin, or Melanchthon…… There were no references to covenant theology in any of the great confessions of faith until the Westminster Confession in 1647, and even then covenant theology was not as fully developed as it was later by Reformed theologians. The covenant (or federal) theory arose sporadically and apparently independently late in the sixteenth century.
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Yet having said all this, much of the erroneous teachings of covenant theology can find its roots centuries earlier.
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For the first three centuries the predominant belief of the early church was that Jesus Christ would literally return to the earth to reign for a thousand years. A number of historians have documented this belief of the early church Fathers. The evidence is indisputable. However, around 170 A.D. certain factors began to undermine the belief of Christ's literal return to establish a physical earthly kingdom.
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The book of Revelation written by the Apostle John ends with the Lord Jesus declaring, "Behold, I come quickly (20:20)". About a hundred years had passed and this promise had yet to be fulfilled. Obviously, something was wrong! Some church leaders in Asia Minor decided to reject the book of Revelation from the canon of scripture. They may have reasoned that this supposed declaration by Jesus must somehow be false. In actuality there were a number of factors that influenced them in their decision to reject Revelation from the canon of scripture:
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· A certain group of Christians had taken their premillennial beliefs to an unhealthy extreme. Therefore anyone who believed that Jesus would return to establish a literal kingdom upon earth was viewed with suspicion.
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· Many early Christians taught that Christ would soon return and crush the Roman power that was ruling the empire. Some of the leaders of the early church felt that it would be better to sacrifice their premillennial belief rather than face more intense persecution.
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· There was also a strong anti-Semitic spirit in the eastern church. The thought of Christ regathering Israel to their land was an abomination to them.
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· A new method of Biblical interpretation known as Alexandrian theology greatly changed the view of scripture. Origen (185-254) and other scholars in Alexandria developed a system of Biblical interpretation based on allegory. Origen and his contemporaries were greatly influenced by pagan Greek philosophy. They tried to integrate this into their theology.
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According to Greek philosophy all physical matter was inherently evil. Therefore the idea of a literal earthy, millennium with physical blessings could only be erroneous. This allegorical or spiritualizing method of interpretation allowed these theologians to read almost any meaning they desired into the Bible. Thus they were able to do away with a literal return of Christ to establish a physical earthly millennial kingdom.
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All of these factors set the stage for the rejection of premillennialism. In the early days of his Christian faith Augustine (354-430) was premillennial. However, through time he abandoned the idea of a literal return of Christ to establish a physical kingdom on earth. He used this new allegorical method of interpretation to explain away the literal return of Christ and thus amillennialism was born. In his book, The City of God, Augustine taught that the Universal Church is the Messianic Kingdom and that the millennium began with Christ's first coming. When the church lost the hope of the imminent return of Christ it plunged headlong into the dark ages. The seeds of false interpretation bore fruit giving rise to Roman Catholicism and a works-based religion. Augustine's amillennial teaching continued to be the standard view of organized Christendom until the 17th century. Occasionally premillennial groups challenged that doctrine through out the dark ages, but they were a small voice compared to the powerful
Roman Catholic church.
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On October 31, 1517 Martin Luther nailed his Ninety-five Theses on the door of the Castle Church in Wittenberg. One of the primary factors that caused him to break away from the Roman Catholic Church was his understanding of Sola Fide——the doctrine that man is justified by faith alone without works. Through Luther and the reformers, God restored the doctrine of salvation by grace back to His true church. The reformers understood grace in regard to salvation, but for Christian living they fell into the Galatian error of works. They knew that they couldn't keep the law in order to gain salvation, but the law became the rule for living the Christian life. Little did they realize that sanctification is also by grace
will continue

PROGRESSIVE REVELATION WITHIN ESCHATOLOGY, DISPENSATION THEOLOGY
part three
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Covenant or Reformed Theology Versus Dispensationalism
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Oh brother, not another dissertation on doctrine!? Many of us have that attitude when it comes to these "high-fa-lootin'" multi-syllable theological words. But we all practice what we believe to be true, therefore doctrine does make a difference!

EXPLANATIONS ABOUT SALVATION
  • But I need to add here, I am not speaking of many ways of SALVATION. Each period, each dispensation, each administrative arraignments had sufficient revelation so that a person could be right with God. Adam was not given the Roman Road of Salvation. Moses was not given one verse from the N.T. for salvation. The term "By faith believe in Jesus Christ and you will be saved." is not found in the Old Testament. This does not mean salvation has not always been by God’s grace. The basis of salvation in every dispensation is the death of Christ; the requirement for salvation in every age is faith, the object of faith in every age is Christ. BUT, the content of faith changes in the various dispensations. Abraham had faith to believe, it was counted unto him as righteousness.. The information that he received in his time, and he believed, was counted unto him as faith. (Romans 4)
The Bible teaches this: Jesus said that he had not come to abolish the Law and the Prophets (i.e. the Old Testament) but to fulfill. (Matt 5:17-19) Paul speaks of God sending His Son when the fullness of time came. (Gal 4:4). Hebrews 1:1,2 reflects this as well. Jesus on the Road to Emmaus opened up the Old Testament and showed how it spoke of Him from the beginning.
In other words, the entire O.T. was the unfolding of God’s plan of redemption of mankind, in stages

Some examples of the progressive nature of revelation:

The doctrine of redemption.
  • The initial promise of the Gospel is Gen 3:15- the seed of the woman will crush the head of the serpent, though bruised on the heel. (cf. Rom 16:20, Rev. l2:9; 20: 3,10 on the serpent, Isa 7:14, 9: 6,7, Mt 1:18f, Rev. 12:1-9 on the seed of the woman.) The blood sacrificial system was to teach of the necessity of the redeemer to sacrifice his life for the salvation of his people. "The patriarchal, sacrificial system and later the entire levitical ritual, point forward to Christ and His redeeming work. The plan of salvation develops with ever increasing clarity and fullness as the messages of the prophets and the Psalms are historically unfolded. In such a passage as Isaiah 53 the richness of the Gospel is almost complete." Buswell,, Systematic Theology, p. 382,383. God progressively expands man's comprehension of the Savior that when He came in the fullness of time- man was ready to recognize Him and understand His coming
The Varied Uses of the Divine Names
  • "The revealed names of God connect the knowledge of God in a special way with his creation of the universe and with his redemptive deeds of Israel and the founding of the Christian church. . . the truly remarkable factors in the disclosure of God’s names are these: that the Living God transcendently and absolutely discloses his name in historical revelation and that the successively revealed names of God signal distinctive epochs in the progressive manifestation of God's redemptive purpose. The fact that the Hebrew people come to know God now by one then another revealed name bears its own testimony to the enlarging significance of these names. Viewed from the side of human comprehension, no single name wholly expresses God's being. The many names reveal his perfection, purposes and personal distinctions. . . . Yet we shall see that the Hebrew-Christian revelation not only periodically unveils new names for the living God, but that in successive periods of redemptive history, earlier names of God are retained side-by-side with later names. Later divine disclosure does not annul the force and significance of the earlier names, for God does not deny himself in the progressive revelation of his names," (Carl. F.H. Henry, God, Revelation and Authority, pp. 180, 181-182)
God’s Covenant of Redemption,
  • The basic covenant is expressed perhaps best in Gen17:7 "And I will establish my covenant between me and you and your descendants after you throughout their generations for an everlasting covenant, to be God to you and to your descendants after you." is progressively repeated in the history of God's dealings with man :Adam (Gen 3:15), Noah (Gen 9), Abraham (Gen 17), at Sinai (Exo 19 & 20), with Levi (Num 25:12,13) and David (II Sam 7) and is in essence the New Covenant (Jere 31:31-34, cf. Hebr 8, cf. Mt 26:28, Lk 22:20) and the Covenant of Peace (Ezek l6:60, 34:25). The Scripture comes to its climax in Rev. 21:3 with the fulfillment of that covenant: "Behold the tabernacle of God is among men and He shall dwell among them, and they shall be his peoples, and God Himself will be among them." The relationship man was created to have, though lost through the fall, is restored in Christ, and will be brought to fulfillment in the New Heaven and Earth. God's revelation of this is, in the successive stages of Biblical history, expanded and clarified- though it is there from the beginning.

STEPHEN SIGMAN AND CHARLES WHISNANT
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Stephen is finishing up his senior year and will be attending
Liberty University in Lynchburg, Virginia
in the fall of 2008

PROGRESSIVE REVELATION WITHIN ESCHATOLOGY, DISPENSATION THEOLOGY
Part Two
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We are to live with the view that Jesus Christ is LORD. We are to grow in our Knowlege of Jesus Christ.

This is not to say God is still making new revelation, He does know the beginning and the end (there will be not end, but eternity). This is not to say that God is revealing new revelation to man today. But I would say, some events are becoming clearer to us today than they were, let us say sixty years ago.

When the term PROGRESSIVE DISPENSATION is used theologically or biblically, they are describing the unfolding of that administration or plan for the world in various stages in history. I have always looked at the Scripture in view of History in stages of time. Adam to Abraham to Moses to David to Christ and then into the Kingdom.
I was really brave in Seminary in teaching an after class Bible study on the seven dispensations.
How a first year student could have done that, is amazing, or stupid. But I had been teaching that as a Youth Pastor in my home church for several years.

From God’s point of view, a dispensation is an economy. From man’s point of view it is a responsibility to the particular revelation given at the time. In other words, Adam was asked to respond to the given revelation he was given at the time. Adam did not have all the revelation that we have today, for example. Really.

God knows exactly what He has planned for all eternity. But even today, we do not know very much about the future. Daniel didn’t know a whole lot about what he was even writing in the book of Daniel.

  • The basic truths of Scripture are in their essence present in the first 11 chapters of Genesis, yet progressively in stages they are unfolded, explained, clarified and brought to their fullness in the New Testament. What has been the saying, The Old Testament Veiled and the New Testament Revealed.

Thus, the doctrines of Creation, God’s nature and attributes, Man as created and as fallen in sin, God's covenant of redemption, the Savior - his person and work, Faith and repentance and salvation through grace, judgment, are there from the beginning, though the fullness (and along with it, the understanding) of them undergoes a gradual development through Scripture.


Because of this, we must not demand the same understanding of God's truth by an Old Testament individual as we would find in Paul or John. Because God's revelation is both through word and deed, there is an unfolding revelation through the events of Israel’s history- Abraham's covenant and pilgrimage, Israel’s captivity and exodus, of judges, kings, prophets, captivity and restoration. God did not present Moses with a complete systematic theology, but He did in "nutshell" form lay out all the basic truths of the Bible.

  • "This perspective of Progressive Revelation is very important to the interpreter. He will expect the full revelation of God in the New Testament. He will not force New Testament meanings into the Old, yet he will be able to more fully expound the Old knowing its counterparts in the New. He will adjust his sights to the times, customs, manners and morals of the people of God at any given state in the Old Testament period of revelation; and he will be aware of the partial and elementary nature of Old Testament Revelation. . . . Progressive Revelation. . . states simply that the fullness of revelation is in the New Testament." But at the same time we cannot think that the people in the Old Testament knew as much as those in the New Testament.
    (Bernard Ramm, Protestant Biblical Interpretation, pp. 103-104)

The applicable principles are implied already. We must look for the clearest and most complete understanding in the New Testament, while recognizing that the Old 'Testament is the progressive unfolding of those truths. The book of Hebrews helps us understand the Old Testament ritual and sacrifices, but without the books of Exodus, Leviticus and Numbers - Hebrews would not be as meaningful. We need to see the Old Testament from the New Testament understanding, without imposing that understanding on the Old Testament saint.

Henricksen expresses the important principle of progressive revelation quite simply: "God does progressively reveal himself as history unfolds. But this does not mean that God’s standards become progressively higher or that God changes along the way. Rather it is our understanding of God and His revelation that progresses. God never changes." (Laymen's Guide to Interpreting the Bible, P. 77)

If we apply this principle of progressive dispensational theology its going to lead us to:
Your theology is going to lead you in a certain direction.

Applying progressive dispensational theology leads you to distinguish God’s program for Israel from His program for the church. Therefore, the church of the N.T. is not in the O.T. Israel of the O.T. is not the same as in the N.T. This will guide your interpretation of Scripture different from other systems of interpretation.

If you see Israel and the Church as the same, you are going to view Revelation different from what I would. You are not going to see even an Antichrist with this point of view. You are likely to view Revelation as Historical rather than future. You are not going to see a 1000 year millennial reign of Christ. Most do not even see a "rapture" nor a Tribulation as spoken in Revelation.

  • If you apply progressive dispensational thinking you are going to see that Israel is to have a future program with God. There is going to be the "rapture" of the true believer; there is going to be a seven-year Tribulation.

  • There is going to be a man of sin who will reign and then be defeated, and the world as we know it will be destroyed. Then God will take back the earth from Satan and give it to Christ to reign for a thousand years.

THE BIBLE EXPLAINED BY KIDS - TRUTH HAS BEEN REDEFINED!


The following is from a lady in Oregon. It is priceless! The Bible explained by kids - truth has been redefined! You are going to laugh.

One of our favorite jobs has been leading junior church. We try to do more than Baby-sit our church’s beloved lit tle ankle-biters during their time in our special junior church facility. We aim to give them a solid background in biblical history. At the end of each year, we give them pencils and paper and ask them to chronicle what they have learned. This assignment never fails to elicit some intriguing responses. In case you’re a little foggy on your biblical history, let our junior church students help you with his complete overview of the Bible, compiled from their essays:

In the beginning, which occurred near the start, there was nothing but God, darkness, and some gas. The Bible says, ‘The Lord thy God is one,’ but I think He must be a lot older than that. Anyway, God said, ‘Give me a light!’ and someone did. Then God made the world. He split the Adam and made Eve. Adam and Eve were naked, but they weren’t embarrassed because mirrors hadn’t been invented yet. Adam and Eve disobeyed God by eating one bad apple, so they were driven from the Garden of Eden. Not sure what they were driven in though, because they didn’t have cars Adam and Eve had a son, Cain, who hated his brother as long as he was Abel.Pretty soon all of the early people died off, except for Methuselah, who lived to be like a million or something. One of the next important people was Noah, who was a goo d guy , but one of his kids was kind of a ham. Noah built a large boat and put his family and some animals on it. He asked some other people to join him, but they said they would have to take a rain check. ; ; ; After Noah came Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. Jacob was more famous than his brother, Esau, because Esau sold Jacob his birthmark in exchange for some pot roast. Jacob had a son named Joseph who wore a really loud sports coat. Another important Bible guy is Moses, whose real name was Charlton Heston. Moses led the Israel Lights out of Egypt and away from the evil Pharaoh after God sent ten plagues on Pharaoh’s people. These plagues included frogs, mice, lice, bowels, and no cable. God fed the Israel Lights every day with manicotti. Then He gave them His top ten commandments. These include don’t lie, cheat, smoke, dance, or covet your neighbor’s bottom (the Bible uses a bad word for bottom that I’m not supposed to say. But my Dad uses it sometimes when he talks about the President). Oh, yeah, I just thought of one more: Humor thy father and thy mother. One of Moses’ best helpers was Joshua, who was the first Bible guy to use spies. Joshua fought the battle of Geritol and the fence fell over on the town. After Joshua came David. He got to be king by killing a giant with a slingshot. He had a son named Solomon who had about 300 wives and 500 porcupines. My teacher says he was wise, but that doesn’t sound very wise to me.

After Solomon there were a bunch of major league prophets One of these was Jonah, who was swallowed by a big whale and then barfed up on the shore. There were also some minor league prophets, but I guess we don’t have to worry about them After the Old Testament came the New Testament. Jesus is the star of the New Testament. He was born in Bethlehem in a barn. (I wish I had been born in a barn, too, because my mom is always saying to me, Close the door! Were you born in a barn?’ It would be nice to say , ‘As a matter of fact, I was.’)

During His life, Jesus had many arguments with sinners like the Pharisee sand the Republicans. Jesus also had twelve opossums. The worst one was Judas Asparagus. Judas was so evil that they named a terrible vegetable after him Jesus was a great man He healed many leopards and even preached to some Germans on the Mount. But the Republicans and all those guys put Jesus on trial before Pontius the Pilot. Pilot didn’t stick up for Jesus. He just washed his hands instead.

Anyways, Jesus died for our sins, then came back to life again. He went up to Heaven, but will be back at the end of the Aluminum. His return is foretold in the book of Revolution.

There! Now you understand!
Those kids in the photo are Reid, Cole, and Ella Williams kids of Bryan and April Williams



TO WHOM IS THE CHRISTIAN BLOGGER 'ACCOUNTABLE"?
tHSI IS THE GOOD QUESTION sORRY ABOUT THAT?

Sorry about that! Webding! That was a new font!


Some might be saying, "Charles who holds you accountable for what you write?" Or I might say, "Am I accountable to anyone?" Only three people come to mind that would give me thought when I am blogging or e mailing that would give me concern, generally. My wife, Charity, and John MacArthur, Jr. and the Lord. Of course, my kids would have some influence.


When I blog about our personal life, personal history in ministry, it's my view, how I personally saw the events, which was the orginial intent of this blog to begin with. I wrote with an honest pen as to how I viewed the ministry over the last thirty five years.


At first I was not conscious that the public was going to read what I had written. I wasn't aware of the power of the Internet worldwide. I was not writting to change opinions of anyone. At first I was not even aware that I had any influence to cause anyone to think.


After several months and reading other Bloggers, I began to realize that there are some people who will read what you write. Think of that! So should I write with the public in mind?


In this respect I should keep the public in mind: How it is written. That means I should allow Charity to proofread the article first. For correct content, and spelling, and grammer, etc. This gives Charity a headache (not really) . She always keeps in mind those who might read the article. While I do not necessarily give a lot of attention to how others will react.


I have had a few critics, really, I have. Generally when the topic is doctrine, or church ministry, or pastors, or elders. Some will say, the articles are too long, or my words are too big to understand. Some will say, the topics are too close to the truth, about what I am writting. Someone might read what you are saying and believe you. Believe me they are correct in many cases.


Today I do write with friends in mind, I do write with those who read this blog.


The only advisory panel I have as I said, is my wife, family, and John MacArthur. (not personally of course, but by his books). But I do have now in view that the public can find this GROW BY LEARNING. blog and that they can also find GROW BY LEARNING.COM by a click of the mouse. Or Google. That is really scary.


Of course I welcome comments, or emails. I acknowledge that everything I write will be read by all sorts of people, and that is very sobering as well. Think about this, everything I write about doctrine, the Bible, church ministry, theology, will be read by people smarter than I, and they will be more educated than I. People will see theology, ministry from a point of view that I haven't seen. Some will get angered by what I say, some will be agreeable. Some will even misunderstand what I am saying. Think of that!


BUT WHAT IS THE FINAL COURT OF APPEAL? (as Dan Phillips puts this) The public! My wife, John MacArthur, Eric and Leslie, Chad, Kyle, Becky? My good friends, pastors, elders! Maybe DeWayne Prosser!


When the final opinion is made, on that day of judgment, 2 Corinthians 5:10 and Hebrews 4:13, the LORD will have the final judgment on what I have said, and it's not going to be by a majority vote. Leviticus 9:14 "You shall not curse the deaf or put a stumbling block before the blind, but you shall FEAR YOUR GOD; I AM THE LORD." Leviticus 25:17 "You shall not wrong one another, but you shall fear your GOD, FOR I AM THE LORD YOUR GOD."


As Dan pointed : Ecclesiastes 8:2-4

  • I say, Keep the king's command, because of God's oath to him. Be not hasty to go from his presence. Do not take your stand in an evil cause, for he does whatever he pleases. For the word of the king is supreme, and who may say to him, "What are you doing?"
  • Ultimately, as I have heard John MacArthur, Jr, say, if the fear of God is insufficient motivation, then we have a problem, not soluble by committee. Bill Gothard has said about the "fear of the Lord": it's the motivation that should cause all of us to think.

I note that I make mistakes, it really is both humbling and a responsibility to be a Christian Blogger, and it would be wise to listen to wise criticism without being its slave. I trust that I will be scholarly enough not to misktake either my critics' judgment, nor my own, for God's.

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Approved by my proofreader....... she is back from the bakery. Updated at 8:43 p.m.




BECKY - NOW THERE IS A OUR GIRL
Born in Texas , Lived in Ohio, Kentucky, but a
Kansas Girl
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PROGRESSIVE REVELATION WITHIN ESCHATOLOGY, DISPENSATION THEOLOGY
Part One
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(How do you like those words:)

  • It is an effortless matter for 21th Century preachers to chasten the First Century Jews for failing as a nation to recognize and embrace their Messiah. After all, OT Messianic prophecies abound, and with the benefit of centuries of hindsight we affirm that those prophecies point clearly and unarguably to Jesus Christ. We are altogether properly humbled, however, when we struggle with those prophecies still unfulfilled at the end of the Apostolic Age which speak of events in our time. It is not so easy to make quick applications from Daniel 7-11 or from Revelation.
You should ask, "How do you know Scripture is saying what you say they are saying?" "Are .you just guessing?" "What makes what you say different from what someone else is saying about the meaning of Scripture?"
Generally, I would conjecture, most people who listen to their teacher, preacher, writer, usually don’t really ask those questions, but generally will agree and disagree based upon their own frame of references.
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You ask them, "Why do you believe that?" "I believe it because I believe it." That is to say, I don’t really have a clue why, but it’s what I have always been taught.
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There are volumes of material on the interpretation of the Bible. Certainly I have studied the systems which teach us how to study the Bible -- Bible study methods, there are so many of them.


Having studied the Bible verse by verse for over forty years, I am still learning . The truth of the Bible always stays the same. Truth never changes, our understanding of the truth in the Word changes as we GROW BY LEARNING.




HOW DO I VIEW THE BIBLE AS A WHOLE
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PROGRESSIVE REVELATION: The unfolding of God's revelation. Sometimes known as PROGRESSIVE DISPENSATIONALISM

The concept of progressive revelation is closely related to the historical nature of Scripture. It can be very simply defined as God’s revealing of His will in successive stages, each founded upon and further illuminating the previous stages. God did not reveal all truth at one time, but through various periods and stages of revelation.


Paul said to his audience on Mars Hills, that in a former time God overlooked their ignorance, but now commands all men everywhere to repent. Acts 17:30. In Hebrews 1:1 -2
  • "God who at various times and in divers manners spake in times past unto the fathers by the prophets, having in these last days, spoken unto us by His Son, whom He appointed heir of all things, by whom also He made the worlds."
  • John 1:17 "For the law was given by Moses, but grace and truth came by Jesus Christ. "

The concept of progressive revelation does not negate the unity of the Bible but recognizes the diversity of God’s unfolding revelation as essential to the unity of His complete revelation.

Dispensational theology grows out of a consistent use of the hermeneutical (study of) principle of normal, plain, and literal interpretation, when applied.

Since we are talking about Eschatology (Study of future events) we will speak to that issue.


  • As a footnote:
    God's redemptive acts were progressive, preparing the way for Christ who should come in the fullness of time (Gal 4:4) the accompanying truths that were progressively revealed show in most cases a progressive development. That is., God graciously unfolded both His redemption and His revelation in ways corresponding to man’s capacities to receive them.
What God revealed to Adam was not as much as he did to Abraham, and then Moses received more revelation than Abraham.

Footnote:


  • The word "economy" can be traced back to the Greek word, "one who manages a household", which was derived, which had not only the sense "management of a household or family" but also senses such as "thrift", "direction", "administration", "arrangement", and "public revenue of a state". In God’s economy. God rules

    The term dispensationalism simply means "to manage, regulate, administer and plan the affairs of a household."

Human stewardship is illustrated in Luke 16:1-2
Divine stewardship, i.e. an administration or plan, being accomplished by God in this world.
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VACATION TIME WITH MY MOM 2008
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A PORTRAIT OF THE ANTI CHRIST
A

It’s not necessarily imperative to know who this person is. The point is not to try to figure out if someone living today is this person. The spirit of antichrist has been and will continue to be in the world until Christ returns. The point is to live the Christian life in view of our loving Savior and Lord, the Lord Jesus Christ. We are looking upward to the coming of Jesus Christ.
  • But with that said, I love theology, and I love the Word of God. And if the Word of God speaks on a subject I love to study the subject.
  • This brief post is that only, brief in nature. Volumes of material have being written on this subject.,There are a number different points of view about the End Times of History.
  • My personal position on the interpretation of Scripture comes from a progressive revelation of the Bible.

A brief understanding of the Progressive Revelation Position: will come in the next post.

  • God did not reveal all truth at one time, but through out history. The truth that Adam had was not as fully as Moses, etc.
It is legitimate to have an investigation in this matter of the term of Antichrist. First we need to understand what the term means. Where do we find the term Antichrist in the Bible? I have heard all my life of 60 years this idea of the Antichrist. I have preached and taught for over 40 of those sixty years. Let us take a look at what the Scriptures teach about this Anti Christ.

First the word is found only in John’s Epistles of the many anti-christs who are forerunners of the Antichrist himself 1 John 2:18, 22 and 2 John 7 of the evil power which already operates anticipatively of the Antichrist: 1 John 4:3 The term anti-christ, one who is against Christ or instead of Christ. or maybe, combining the two. "one who, assuming the guise of Christ" (Westcott).

The understanding of the term is of an arch opponent of God and the Messiah. The term means against rather then instead of. The idea is that Anti christ opposes Christ.

OLD TESTAMENT DEVELOPMENT OF THE ANTI CHRIST:

In the O.T. there is really no complete portrait of Anti Christ but it does furnish us with materials for the picture in descriptions of personal or national opposition to God.

BELIA. The term "sons of or men of Belial" used to describe those for their wickedness.

Example: those of evil speech Proverbs 6:12. Those who the good shun in Psalms 101:3

FOREIGN ENEMIES: Opposition to God’s kingdom is opposition to him. The nations’ vain plot against the Lord’s anointed king in Psa. 2. There is the idea in the O.T. of those who are for ever trying to frustrate the plan of God throughout the O.T.

THE LITTLE HORN. This rebellion is symbolized in Daniel’s little horn. Chapter 7 the more eschatological, seems to depict the defeat of God’s final enemy, while chapter 8 describes Antiochus !V Epiphanes (175-163 B.C.) the foreign ruler most hated by the Jews because of his personal wickedness and ruthless persecution of their religion.

The portrait of this "king of the north" Daniel 11, the personification of evil, has helped significantly to shape the N.T. figure of Antichrist:

  • He abolished the continual burnt offering and erected the abomination of desolation in the temple: Daniel 11:31, Matt 4:15, Mark 13:14 and Rev 13:14-15.
  • He exalted himself to the position of deity: Daniel 11:36-39; 2 Thess 2:3-4,

  • His helpless death points to Christ slaying of the "lawless one": Daniel 11:45, 2 Thess 2:8 and Rev 19:20

The beast from the sea in Rev 13:1 recalls Daniel’s 7:3,7 and strengthens the link between Daniel’s prophecy and the N.T. account of Antichrist.


THE NEW TESTAMENT DEVELOPMENT OF THE ANTI CHRIST.

THE GOSPELS: References to Christ’s opponent are neither numerous nor specific. The disciples are warned that false Christs will attempt to deceive even the elect. Matthew 24:24, Mark 13:22. Christ Himself speaks of one who is to come in his own name, whom the Jews receive John 5:43. This could be a veiled reference to Antichrist or to any false Messiahs who present themselves to Judaism.


A Single evil personality may be in view, but his portrait is not even sketched..
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SECOND THESSALONIANS:

Paul does give a clearer picture of Christ’s archenemy, whose outstanding characteristic is contempt of law. This person is described by two names. "man of lawlessness" (0r man of sin) and "the lawless one." 2 Thess 2:3 and 8-9. Here it seems to stress this anarchistic attitude, as in Daniel 7:25, where the little horn tries to change the times and law. Note also the Antichrist makes the exclusive claim to deity 2 Thess 2:4, in terms indicative of Daniel 7:25 11:36.


This Antichrist deceives many by wonders: 2 Thess 2:9-10. He will work miracles by satanic power, and many will worship him as God.
One of Antichrist’s names: "son of perdition" 2 Thess 2:3 cf John 17:12, reveals his destiny: Christ will slay him by his breath and the brightness of his appearing: 2 Thess 2:8, Rev. 19:15, 20, cf. Isa. 11:4.


John’s letters gives attention to many antichrists.

Now John’s account complements rather than contradicts Paul’s teaching. Following Daniel, Paul characterizes a single archenemy, who claims the right to personal worship. John stresses the spiritual lie which made Antichrist seemingly strong.
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THEN YOU HAVE THE BOOK OF REVELATION:


The Apocalyptist’s beast of Revelation 13 is in view of Daniel, and combines the characteristics of all four O.T. beasts. If you will note the beast of Revelation 13 has an authority belonging only to the little horn of Daniel’s beast. How I remember teaching Daniel twice at FBC in Altoona, Kansas. There is much more detail here about the beast of Revelation 13, that would take a lot of time. There seems to be implied this antichrist embodied in the kingdom. He seems to be more than a person, which he is, but part of seven heads that are seven kings. Rev. 17:10-12. Whereas the beast himself is the eighth king. As I have taught Revelation in every church I have pastored. (or started to) Madison, FBC and even Second Baptist.
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So you take Daniel’s beast, Paul’s beast, and John’s beast in Revelation, you have a picture that suggests a wordly power, an anti-God spirit of nationalsitic ambition.
It’s not necessarily imperative to know who this person is. The point is not to learn who he is.
  • The point is not to try to figure out if someone living today is this person. You might think a number of people throughout history have the description of an antichrist spirit who opposes God’s laws and wants to rule the world by himself.
UBIQUITOUS

  • ubiquitous \yoo-BIK-wih-tuhs\, adjective:
  • Existing or being everywhere, or in all places, at the same time.

Now you might say I thought the word was Omnipresent. Well, yes, God is ever present every where, at all times. But at the same time we might say that SIN is ever present in every one, at all times, and in every place in the world, all at the same time. And we could say, that GRACE is ever present, in every place in the world.

BECKY, CHARITY, STEPHEN, AND APRIL 2008



BARACK OBAMA THE ANTI-CHRIST ! !
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If I get one more e-mail or hear another one that says Obama is the Anti-Christ, I am going to write a blog.
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Oh please! How little we know about the Scriptures. All the following information is creepy to say the least, but Obama is a Democrat, not the Anti-Christ. Obama may be from Hawaii, but not the Anti-Christ. Obama may be a Muslim, but not the Anti-Christ. Obama may have attended a Catholic school, but he is not the Anti-Christ. Obama may not want to wear the USA pin. That’s okay. I don’t wear a lapel pin either, but he is not the Anti-Christ. He may be black, but he is not the Anti-Christ. His dad may be from Kenya and his mother from Wichita, Kansas, but he is not the Anti-Christ. Obama may be Muslim, but he is not the Anti-Christ. Obama’s middle name may be Hussein, but he is not the Anti-Christ. Obama may say he is a Christian and reads the Koran, but he is NOT the Anti-Christ. Obama may have enrolled in a Wahabi school in Jakarta, but that doesn’t make him the Anti-Christ. Where do people get this idea he is or could be the Anti-Christ?
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Of course, I would be glad IF HE WERE the Anti-Christ. That would mean that the return of Christ is just around the corner!
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The wife of a Baptist preacher can say he is, but really she knows little about the Bible.
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All the above ideas about Obama don’t make him a good candidate for the Anti-Christ (and perhaps not a good candidate for President of the United States either). Sorry, but that is not the description of the Anti-Christ.
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I do believe that God is sovereign over all the actions of this nation. I don’t think God is a
Democratic candidates or Republican. I think God is going for Ralph Nader.
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TEN REASONS I THINK THERE IS NO ANTI CHRIST LIVING TODAY
TEN REASONS WHY BARACK OBAMA IS NOT THE ANTI-CHRIST
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1 Those in the Reformed Camp do not believe there will be an Anti-Christ, so therefore Obama couldn’t be the Anti Christ.
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2 In saying you thank Obama could be the Anti-Christ you are saying that there is going to be a Anti-Christ and there is going to be a Tribulation.
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3 An intellectual genius
Daniel 7:8 describes him as having "eyes like the eyes of a man" (cf., v. 20). The eye is often a symbol of intelligence.
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4 . An outstanding orator
Daniel 7:8 says the Antichrist will have "a mouth speaking great things" (cf., v. 20). Effective leadership is predicated on the ability to communicate.
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5 . A master politician
Revelation 6:2 says he will conquer the world having a bow without any arrows. That means he'll conquer peacefully through politics. The world will be looking for someone to bring peace and economic stability. Daniel 11:21 says, "In his estate shall stand up a vile person [the Antichrist], to whom they shall not give the honor of the kingdom; but he shall come in peaceably, and obtain the kingdom by flatteries."
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6 . A commercial wizard
Daniel 8:25 says, "Through his policy ... he shall cause deceit to prosper in his hand; and he shall magnify himself in his heart, and by peace shall destroy many; he shall stand up against the Prince of princes, but he shall be broken without hand." He will be a wizard at building a world system of economics that feeds his own pocket (cf., Rev. 18).
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7 . A military genius
According to Daniel 7:23 he "shall devour the whole earth, and shall tread it down, and break it in pieces." He will be a military leader without equal. He's going to be everything that Nebuchadnezzar, Alexander the Great, the Caesars, and Napoleon Bonaparte were in terms of military ability combined in one individual. Revelation 13:4, 7 says, "They worshiped the beast [the Antichrist], saying, Who is like the beast? Who is able to make war with him?... It was given unto him to make war with the saints, and to overcome them; and power was given him over all kindreds, and tongues, and nations." The Antichrist will conquer the world.
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8 . A religious leader
Second Thessalonians 2:3-4 identifies him as the "man of sin ... the son of perdition, who opposeth and exalteth himself above all that is called God, or that is worshiped, so that he, as God, sitteth in the temple of God, showing himself that he is God." He will command the whole world to worship him.
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9 I believe the Antichrist will come out of a revived Roman empire because
Daniel 9:26 says, "The people of the prince that shall come shall destroy the city and the sanctuary." The people who destroyed Jerusalem were the Romans in A.D. 70 That implies the Antichrist will be a Gentile from Europe
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10 The Antichrist will offer himself as the protector of Israel. He’s not labeled the Antichrist, he’Os a man of peace, a leader, a great world leader of peace. They’re very possibly out of the Roman Catholic system. He comes in, sets up some kind of pact with them, becomes their protector.

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Oh he is not Henry Kissenger :-)

WISE COUNSEL FROM THE MASTER: CLICK THAT BUTTON CHARITY
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I WAS ASKED TO DEFINE GRACE AND SIN: And I look at terms in the theological, scriptural point of view:
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GRACE

Grace is a term that has a variety of connotations and nuances. For the purpose of this article its meaning is that of undeserved blessing freely bestowed on man by God.
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I was given grace to preach the unfathomable riches of Christ. And, of course, the riches of Christ are connected to the work of Christ and the work of Christ is a cross work by which saving grace is granted to penitent believing sinners. And so doing, Paul says in Ephesians 3 verse 9, God used me to bring to light what is the administration, or the stewardship of the mystery which for ages has been hidden in God who created all things, in order that the manifold wisdom of God might now be made known through the church to the rulers and authorities in the heavenlies. That is an amazing statement.
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God showed grace to me in order that I might preach the gospel of grace, in order that the manifold wisdom of God exhibited in grace might be made known through the church which is the product of that saving grace to the rulers and authorities in the heavenly places...angels...angels. God allowed sin from the very beginning, planned it in without being responsible for it, so that He could display His grace to the holy angels who would otherwise not be able to worship Him fully for who He is, not having any demonstration of the massive significance of grace with all its components, were it not put on display. God then enacts a gracious salvation so that angels can give Him full glory and full expression of worship consistent with all His attributes.
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SIN
Footnote:
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  • Sin is not only an act of doing wrong but a state of falling out from God. Sin is much more than the violation of a forbidden or the transgression of an extenral ordiance.
  • Sin in the mind is a fruit of the same moral defect that produces deeds of sin.
When Jesus said hatred carries the same kind of guilt as murder, and lust is the very essence of adultery, He was not suggesting that there is no difference in degree between sin that takes place in the mind and sin that is acted out. Scripture does not teach that all sins are of equal enormity.
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That some sins are worse than others is both patently obvious and thoroughly biblical. Scripture plainly teaches this, for example, when it tells us the sin of Judas was greater than the sin of Pilate (John 19:11).
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But in His Sermon on the Mount Jesus was pointing out that anger arises from the same moral defect as murder; and the one who lusts suffers from the same character flaw as the adulterer.
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Furthermore, those who engage in thought-sins are guilty of violating the same moral precepts as those who commit acts of murder and adultery.
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In other words, secret sins of the heart are morally tantamount to the worst kind of evil deeds—even if they are sins of a lesser degree. The lustful person has no right to feel morally superior to a wanton fornicator. The fact that she indulges in lust is proof she is capable of immoral acts as well. The fact that he hates his brother shows that he has murder lurking in his heart.
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Christ was teaching us to view our own secret sins with the same moral revulsion we feel for wanton acts of public sin.
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Believers need to be aware that secret sins can have the same effects as public sins.
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Whereas in unbelievers, they have sin that only grace can change: And sin in their heart will and can lead to action of sinful acts.

This morning we read where a young man was accused of plotting to bomb his school. In his mind there is anger, hatred and then there is lurking in his heart murder, the killing of students in his school.
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18-year-old S.C. student accused of plotting to bomb school
May 20, 2008
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COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — Students arriving Monday at a small South Carolina high school face newly installed metal detectors and extra police after a student was arrested in what authorities said was a plan to carry out a Columbine-inspired attack.
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Bomb-sniffing dogs have already checked the hallways and classrooms at Chesterfield High School, authorities said. Metal detectors were borrowed from a courthouse.
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The alleged plotter, Ryan Schallenberger, 18, was arrested Saturday. His parents called police after 10 pounds of ammonium nitrate were delivered to their home in Chesterfield and they discovered a disturbing journal.
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"He seemed to hate the world. He hated people different from him — the rich boys with good-looking girlfriends," said the town's police chief, Randall Lear.
Schallenberger was one of the top students at the high school of about 580 students and had not caused any serious problems before his arrest, principal Scott Radkin said.
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THEREFORE
  • SIN is the principle that corrupts the mindset of mankind, GRACE is the principle that will produce saving grace.
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WHAT DOES IT MEAN TO GIVE PLACE TO THE BIBLE IN THE FOUNDATIONAL ROLE IN THE CHRISTIAN LIFE?


WHAT ROLE OF THEOLOGY IN FOSTERING THE CENTRALITY OF SCRIPTURE AMONG THOSE WHO CLAIM ALLEGIANCE TO THE GOD OF THE BIBLE?
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When I think of preaching and Biblical preaching, and theological teaching of the Word, I think of John MacArthur, Jr. Period. There are a few good preachers and teachers
and some are not known as John MacArthur.
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You might like the emotions of a John Piper, the style of a Charles Stanley, or David Jeremiah, or even Chuck Swindoll, and I do like them all; but for the pure preaching, teaching of the Word of God, John MacArthur is the best bar none. He may not have the style that will mesmerize you with human emotions, but the teaching of the Word will.
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AS I HAVE SAID FOR THIRTY YEARS, IF YOU WANT TO KNOW WHAT I BELIEVE AND PREACH AND TEACH THEOLOGICALLY, WITH OUT SHAME, IT'S JOHN MACARTHUR.
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Of course I study the Bible for myself, I research the scripture fully as I am able with my little mind. I have always challenged the teaching of John's from the start. I have always viewed the different points of theological positions. I have never been one who just will study my belief, but I will and have read both sides of a theological issue. But at the end of the day, it's clear to me that what I believe is okay. To be sure, no preacher or teacher or theologican is 100 per cent correct in all matters of the Scriptures.
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SECONDLY:
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There has been no church ministry that I have found better than Grace Community Church, where John is the Senior Pastor for thirty years. If you want to know what I believe and have tried to practice as pastor/teacher you would only have to note the manual of Church ministry of Grace Community Church.
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FOOTNOTE:
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It's not only good to be a good preacher and teacher but also a good Shepherd. From what I have heard and read, John MacArthur has been a good Shepherd to his flock and staff of elders and ministers at Grace Community Church.
Now I have also tried to be a good Shepherd to the sheep that the Lord allowed me to minister to. Those whom the Lord allowed Charity and I to minister to over these forty years we still love. Our greatest sadness was to leave the church where we were ministering. We have been blessed to have been able to keep up with a lot of those folks that we dearly love.
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VACATION TIME IN 2008
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Charity and I had one of the better vacations in Kentucky, Mississippi and Texas this year.
Bob Temple, Charity's dad is on a missionary trip, and he said we could use his car, and our gas expenses was provided, and we were set.
I will be posting some of the pictures from our vacation over the next few days.
If you would like to visit my sister's blog which is about Mom and learn about our vacation in Texas, I believe you would enjoy the articles that Ellen has written. click and view.
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Stay turn
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COMPETENT TO COUNSEL BIBLICALLY

REVIEW:


SOME OBJECTIVES TO BIBLICAL COUNSELING

  • A system of biblical truth that brings together people, their problems, and the living God. With the conviction that:
  • God’s Word should be our counseling authority
  • Counseling is a part of the basic discipling ministry of the local church.
  • God’s people can and should be trained to counsel effectively.

The term that is used is "Nouthetic confrontation." Let’s look at the meaning of the term.

All Christians should engage in it. "Let the word of Christ richly dwell within you, with all wisdom teaching and (for the moment we shall simply transliterate the next word) confronting one another nouthetically." Colossians 3:16.
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There are at least three basic elements according to Jay Adams.
  • 1 "to teach" The term "didasko" does not imply any problem, but simply suggests the communication of data (teaching); making information known, clear, understandable and memorable.

  • "to admonish". Here is the idea: the sense of admonishing with blame, and to rebuke. That is never well liked. The idea of "nouthesis" gives the idea, there is going to be some kind of confrontation in which the objective is to effect a character and behavior change in the person you are talking to one on one.
Today:

THIRD POINT: 3 "for correction." I Corinthians 4:14. Paul wanted to confront but with care, because you are my beloved children.. He wanted to correct with the intent to benefit the person.

Paul would get his point across without screaming at them. He didn’t want to "exasperate" them. He would confront them as a "brother". II Thessalonians 3:15.

The third point of nouthetic counseling suggests changing that in his life which hurts the counselee. The idea is not to punish them but to help them. How often have I seen how the "what" they were doing in their life was only hurting them. Their behavior was hurting them, their thinking was hurting them. Their life was a mess. When they came for counseling, they were in trouble.

Generally I would counsel those in our church family, those who were our dear friends. I cared for each member of our church family. I was deeply concerned for their well being. Nouthesis is motivated by love and deep concern, in which you are willing to give advice, admonish, warn, do what you could to bring about change of behavior and change of mind. I often had strange ways of doing this very idea.

As Paul said in Colossians 1:28, in order that every man may be presented to Christ mature and complete. And the best way that can be done is to apply the principles of Scripture.

Scripture in II Timothy is used nouthetically. Reproving, teaching, correcting, and training men in righteousness. I believe scripture can instruct us in the manner that Christ would have us to think, behave, and believe about how to live life.

We get into the "what’s" of life because we are not personally confronted with the Scriptures.

We get into bad behavior and bad thinking when we are not confronted with Scripture. We get into the "why" when we don’t have a clear understanding of Scripture.

2 Timothy 4:21 "Preach the Word." I heard that a lot. "be ready in season and out of season," in the pulpit, in the foyer, in the class room, in the home, at the ball park, just about anywhere "reprove, rebuke, exhort", but note "with great patience and instruction." (I did have a little trouble with patience, and tactful instruction.).

I believe it’s a balance. Some preachers push people to guilt for wrong living and behavior with Scriptural teaching. Others will preach or teach scripture without any confronting.

There is a difference between how preachers and preachers versus how John MacArthur preaches.


Paul thought of bringing God’s word to press upon people’s lives in order to uncover sinful patterns, to remedy what is wrong, and to set new ways of life of which God approves.

John MacArthur said, I preach with the authority of Scripture, I want to push people back up against the wall as it were, and confront them with the principles of Scripture and the will of God, and force then to face life in the light of Scripture. Getting them to understand the "what" they are doing, is either right or wrong biblically, and help them know the "why" they are giving is not biblical, nor for their best interest, or for the glory of God. ( a very loose paraphrase of what John was saying)
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VACATION CONTINUES

April 15th, 2007 I know most know this day as IRS day, but today is my Mom's Pauline Whisnant's 86th birthday. She is really doing very well. Charity and I are visiting her for a few days. We are taking a lot of pictures and when I get back to Portsmouth, I am going to post some pictures of our visit with Mom and the family.

On this date last year in 2007 Charity and I anda Ellen and Stephen and Mom were in Lynchburg, Virginia visiting with Jerry and Macel Falwell. Jerry passed away one month later on May 15th, 2007. Ellen has talked to Macel several times. Macel sent me some pictures she had of Dad and Mom and me, and a picture of her when she was a teenager in Dad's church in Lynchburg.

As I have said, Stephen will be going to Liberty U this fall. Thanks to Jerry and Macel Falwell. And thanks also for my Dad and Mom who have been a friend to the Falwell's for all these years.

We enjoyed our daughter with us for a few days, here in Midlothian, Texas, and she drove back yesterday evening to Kansas.

We enjoyed time with Bryan and April Williams, Ellen's daughter, and their three kids. I realized at 60 I am out of shape playing with pre school kids. But not out of shape drinking a large Braum's milk shake, a tradition I have with Brian.

Brian and I were talking about PRAYER: Some people will pray what to do, while sitting when they should be doing, waiting for an answer. Others are doing and praying while they are doing, and helping when they know it's what the answer would be from the Lord if they prayed about it.

Some will say, "I will pray about it," others will say, "Yes I will go and help," Sometimes praying for an answer, gets in the way of doing what the Lord has already told us to be ready to do at a moment's notice. Sometimes the Lord has already given the answer to our question in prayer, we just need to do it. Usually I do not hear a voice from God, generally the Lord has already addressed the issues of life in the Word. I need to read as much as I need to pray. I need to obey as much as I would pray. I need to do as much as I need to pray.

I would say if we spend time in the Word, and listening to the Gospel, and teaching of the Word, we would have a good idea as to how we should live in obedience of the Lord. We would do more doing and serving than wondering what the Lord would have us to do.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY MOM. I LOVE YOU Charles and Charity



VACATION TIME


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We are in Midlothian Texas, Herschel and Ellen Samples home. My mother lives with them, and Stephen who is a senior and will be going this fall to Liberty U.
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We had a great day on Sunday. I went to church with Stephen and then after church made a few stops on the way home to check for good "Hot Wheels". While the girls shops, Becky, Charity and April, I watched the Masters with Mom, and Bry and Herschel put together a outside swing for Mom. And Ellen was at a meeting. And Stephen watched the boys for April and Bry.
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The girls returned, and April is the photo girl, so she took some great photo shots of Charity and I and Becky and Mom. We then had a great late supper, just before Mom was about to die of hunger. She wanted to see her 86 birthday on Tuesday. The meal was great, the ice cream was good as well.


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VACATION TIME

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  • Charity and I will take a few days to travel to Lexington KY to visit our boys. Spent the night with Eric and Leslie. On Friday we traveled 434 miles to Southaven Mi s s i s s i p p i. to visit with Susan Lugar. On Satursday we will end up in Midlothian Tx. My sister Ellen and husband and Stephen live there. And my mother who will be 86 on the 15th lives there too. So we are glad to get a change to visit family and friends this weekend weekend and a few days next week. Our trip is just under 2000 miles round trip.

  • I was pleasantly surprise by my children on Friday, they had bought me a Scanner. Those pictures on the blog were pictures made from the orginials by my digital, so they thought it would be nice to be able to scan the orginial pictures. Now I really can have enjoyment doing it right: as soon as I learn how to use the Scanner. GROW BY LEARNING as I say.
DENNIS AND SUSAN LUGAR have a wonderful God blessed ministry here in Southaven. I will give more deal about the ministry as soon as I can. I have taken some wonderful pictures of their new building, and as soon as I can get them on the computer I will post them.
We are spending the night with the Lugar's and they are just minutes from the Memphis, Tenn. Memphis, oh the team that KANSAS Jayhawks won to take the 2008 Basketball Championship. Both teams were great this year. No team had won more games than Memphis this year.
I learned today from their son Jonathan that FED X mail hub for over night for all the USA comes through Memphis. They have over 240 jets that come in and out of Memphis at night.
BIBLICAL COUNSELING: HOW DO YOU DO IT?

Review:

There are at least three basic elements according to Jay Adams.


1 "to teach" The term "didasko" does not imply any problem, but simply suggests the communication of data (teaching); making information known, clear, understandable and memorable.


2 "to admonish". Here is the idea: the sense of admonishing with blame, and to rebuke. That is never well liked. The idea of "nouthesis" gives the idea, there is going to be some kind of confrontation in which the objective is to effect a character and behavior change in the person you are talking to one on one

  • Here is what Adams said,
    "Nouthetic confrontation, that is one on one, in its biblical usage, aims at straightening out the individual by changing his pattern of behavior to conform to biblical standard."
When I was a Juvenile Probation Officer, when talking with a kid that had just robbed his mother of $100, I didn’t say, "Son, why did you do that?" I knew why. I wanted to deal with the "What" What was done? What must be done to rectify it? "Young man, what you did, was really bad." What are you going to do about it?"

So I wanted to deal with the "what" rather than the "why." You know the why? The reason people get in trouble or have trouble, even if they don’t know that they are in trouble with God, is their relationship with God and others because of their sinful nature..

Christians do not have to ask the question "why". They already know why fallen human nature acts sinfully. Many do not see the "what" as sinful behavior. It’s a chemical imbalance or "I don’t see why it’s a problem."

By the way, nouthetic counseling doesn’t take weeks to solve, unlike what most psychiatrists are saying is needed -- months and maybe years

"What" leads to solutions to problems'

"What are you doing?" That is a very good question to ask, rather than "Why did you do that?"

Now you might think: Isn’t that what a Christian should do? Yes, but it’s often the last thing we do. We will use the secular points of view. We will say, "I am depressed." "I have a chemical imbalance." "I am bi-polar." etc. Most of the time we will know the secular term and not the biblical term of our problems. All these terms are secular and are not biblical terms.
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Can I ask, "What does God say about what you are doing?" And secondly, what can be done about this situation? Many times they don’t like these questions.
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HERE IS THE POINT OF NOUTHETIC BIBLICAL COUNSELING CONFRONTING:

Biblical counseling seeks to correct sinful behavior patterns by personal confrontation and repentance. "The what you are in to, or what you are doing, by biblical standard is not what Christ would have you to do." And what are you going to do about it?
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Until they see and understand the "why" they won’t clearly see why the "what" is wrong. And they want see why the need to change is needed. The "why" of every problem is sin. When we understand the sin problem we will have and idea that the "what" is wrong.
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So the point is to try to bring about change of direction in the thinking and behavior that would be beneficial to the person and be glorifying to Christ rather than what is most convenient for the person.

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Adams says this:

  • "Any biblically legitimate verbal means may be employed that will bring about change in the direction of greater conformity to biblical principles and practice."
NOW I WANT TO ADDRESS THIS IDEA OF ‘NOUTHETIC CONFRONTATION ."
WHAT IS BIBLICAL COUNSELING
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Discerning thinking and behavior that God wants to change.
You want to view how you think about any issue in life with what God thinks about it. Your problem might be that you don’t agree with what Christ says.
Using God’s Word to Change Thinking and behavior
You want to start with Scripture as the means of how you should think about living life.
For the benefit of the person and for the glory of God.
So how do you accomplish this process? it’s called nouthetic counseling
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Let the Word of Christ richly dwell within you, with all wisdom teaching and confronting one another nouthetically." Col. 3:16.
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Paul engaged in teaching the scripture night and day. He didn’t just teach on Sunday, then the rest of the week train to be a Gladiator. He engaged in the process of pastoral work that is necessary to build up individuals in their faith. He engaged individuals one on one on a daily basis. If you read Paul’s letters, you will see they are filled with people. I need to check out how many people are mentioned in his letters that he was personally involved with teaching.
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He preached, but Paul dealt with people as individuals, as groups, and as families, and he confronted them nouthetically.
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ELEMENTS IN NOUTHETIC confrontation. Usually there is going to be a clash or an argument of points of views. In my experience, those who I am talking to, generally do not agree with a scriptural point of view.
  • Okay, what do the terms mean to "admonish," "warn," and "teach."
    A. T. Robertson, of Colossians 1:28, rendered it "put sense into."

So what does nouthetic confrontation consist of? There are at least three basic elements according to Jay Adams.


1 "to teach" The term "didasko" does not imply any problem, but simply suggests the communication of data (teaching); making information known, clear, understandable and memorable.


What I learned early, "to teach" is something that refers to the one who is teaching. The person who you are teaching, may not be at all happy about what you are teaching. They may not even agree with what you are teaching. They generally are not all that excited about hearing your instruction, or teaching on the subject at hand. My experience is that most don’t want to hear biblical teaching, but would rather hear what the other points of view are.


Adams points out: "nouthesis" specifically presupposes the need for a change in the person confronted, who may nor may not put up some resistance." But in either case there is a problem in their life that needs to be solved. Some sin, some obstruction, some problem, some difficulty, some need that has to be acknowledged and dealt with. What you are trying to say, is "God wants change." You don’t change by taking a pill. There needs to be an inward personality change, a behavioral change.


2 "to admonish". Here is the idea: the sense of admonishing with blame, and to rebuke. That is never well liked. The idea of "nouthesis" gives the idea, there is going to be some kind of confrontation in which the objective is to effect a character and behavior change in the person you are talking to one on one.


Here is what Adams said,

  • "Nouthetic confrontation, that is one on one, in its bibical usage, aims at straightening out the individual by changing his pattern of behavior to conform to biblical standard."
    For example, Nathan’s confronting David after his sin with Uriah and Bathsheba. And also, Christ’s restoring Peter after His resurrection.


The idea is to confront with the truth of scripture. Nouthetically, means you speak soon enough, strictly enough, and seriously enough to really effect genuine changes in them.


Counseling in the first place implies someone has a hindrance, difficulty, dilemma, problem, etc. and you presuppose a blockade that must be overcome..


And what generally happens, you don’t want to confront, challenge, or deal with what you really know to be the real problem. That is not the meaning of nouthetical biblical counsel.


"Why did you do that, or why are you doing this?" This is not nouthetical counseling either. One young man when asked why he kept doing what he was doing. He said, "It’s in my blood line." Too much on the "why" will lead to finding some extenuating reasons for excusing conduct which other wise would be described as sinful. Nouthetical biblical counseling is not finding excuses for their bad behavior. It is the task to stop them.

The idea is to discuss the WHAT, NOT THE WHY.

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