Lessons Learned

Lessons Learned.

Ancient Warfare – A Very Short Introduction

We are all familiar with that picturesque incident of the conflict between Israel and Amalek, which ended in victory and the erection of this memorial trophy. Moses, as you remember, went up on the mount whilst Joshua and the men of war fought in the plain. But I question whether we usually attach the right meaning to the symbolism of this event. We ordinarily, I suppose, think of Moses as interceding on the mountain with God. But there is no word about prayer in the story, and the attitude of Moses is contrary to the idea that his occupation was intercession. He sat there, with the rod of God in his hand, and the rod of God was the symbol and the vehicle of divine power. When he lifted the rod Amalek fled before Israel; when the rod dropped Israel fled before Amalek. That is to say, the uplifted hand was not the hand of intercession, but the hand which communicated power and victory. And so, when the conflict is over, Moses builds this memorial of thanksgiving to God, and piles together these great stones—which, perhaps, still stand in some of the unexplored valleys of that weird desert land—to teach Israel the laws of conflict and the conditions of victory. These laws and conditions are implied in the name which he gave to the altar that he built—Jehovah Nissi, ‘the Lord is my Banner.’

Now, then, what do these stones, with their significant name, teach us, as they taught the ancient Israelites? Let me throw these lessons into three brief exhortations.

I. First, realise for whose cause you fight.

Antisemitism – A Very Short Introduction

The Crusades – A Very Short Introduction

Crusade: defined: according to circumstance, either a toxic byword for conflict between Christians and Muslims or a shorthand for what people believe to be a good and worthy cause. In the former context one might quote Osama bin Laden or, in parallel, the allegations made against Erik Prince, the founder of the Blackwater security company, in Iraq: ‘[he] views himself as a Christian crusader tasked with eliminating Muslims and the Islamic faith from the globe.’ In a more secular arena, any western politician asking for a cut in hospital waiting lists might call for a ‘crusade’.Yet such utterly divergent meanings originate with an idea conceived over 800 years ago, a concept that has produced one of the most long-lasting and adaptable legacies of the Middle Ages. Tracing how ‘crusade’ has evolved, mutated and been appropriated by individuals across the broadest possible spectrum is to follow an intriguing and often surprising trail.

The History of Time – A Very Short Introduction

The Spanish Civil War – A Very Short Introduction

The Renaissance – A Very Short Introduction

In nearly every nation, proceedings in courts of law often involve written documents. Things like receipts, letters, contracts, confessions and written statements by witnesses are used as evidence. But everyone knows that it is not enough simply to have such documents available to the court. For them to be used effectively, lawyers, judges, and juries have to know certain attributes or characteristics of their documents. Much time is often spent learning and establishing things like who wrote a particular document, who received it, when it was written, why was it written and what it states. Knowing these attributes is crucial to using these documents properly.

We have similar concerns when we do Christian ethics. No matter what the ethical question, we always have at least one document that we need to take into account, namely the Bible. But what impact the Bible has on our decision varies from person to person. Some Christians rely almost entirely on the Bible as the unfailing and authoritative source of perfect answers to moral questions; others value its advice, but take its words with a grain of salt; and still others disregard it as irrelevant and out of touch with the modern world. And all these different perceptions of the Bible’s usefulness in ethics have one thing in common: they are all based on an assessment of the Bible’s attributes.

This lesson is the third in our series of lessons on Making Biblical Decisions. We have entitled this lesson, “The Attributes of Scripture.” In earlier lessons we established that ethical judgments always involve a person applying God’s Word to a situation. And this outlook led us to see that there are three essential considerations that must always be taken into account as we make ethical decisions: the standard of God’s word, the particulars of the situation, and the person making the judgment. We have identified these three considerations as the normative, situational and existential perspectives in ethics. In this lesson we will address the normative perspective again, looking for the proper standards for ethical decisions.

As we have seen in the previous lesson, God’s own character is our ultimate standard, whereas his Word is our authoritative revealed standard because it infallibly teaches us about God’s character. In this lesson, we will focus on the attributes of Scripture in order to see more clearly how the Bible reveals God’s character to us. We will divide our discussion of the attributes of Scripture into two parts: First, we will investigate the attributes that Scripture possesses primarily by virtue of its Divine Authorship, namely, its power and authority. Second, we will explore the attributes that Scripture possesses primarily because it was written for a Human Audience: that is, its clarity, necessity and sufficiency. Let’s begin by looking at the Divine Authorship of Scripture.


When we speak of the divine authorship of Scripture, we are referring to the fact that the Biblical authors were inspired by God and authorized by him to deliver his message. We are looking at the Bible as God’s word to his people and emphasizing the fact that it is “God’s word.” As we explore the attributes of Scripture that derive primarily from its divine inspiration, we will touch on two matters: the power of Scripture and the authority of Scripture. Of course, most evangelical Christians instinctively recognize that the Bible is God’s powerful, authoritative word to every generation. Yet, most of us have never thought through many of the issues related these attributes of Scripture. But we can use the Bible more effectively in ethics if we understand these characteristics in further detail. So, let us turn our attention to the power of Scripture.

Power of Scripture

As Christians, when we approach the subject of ethics, we are not merely interested in figuring out which things are good and which are evil. We are also interested in applying that knowledge by acting, thinking and feeling in ways that are morally praiseworthy. But where can we find the strength to carry out what we know to be right and good? In this pursuit, we are greatly aided by Scripture’s power. As God’s living and active word, the Bible does not just tell us what to do; it also empowers us to believe and to live in ways that please God and lead to his blessings. Let’s unpack this concept first by looking at some examples of the power of God’s Word in its various forms, and second by turning to the implications that this power has for ethical decision-making.


As we have seen in our prior lessons, God’s Word may take many forms. And the Bible indicates that God’s Word is powerful even when it does not take the form of Scripture. As we seek to demonstrate the power of Scripture, we will begin by looking first at the power of God’s Word over creation. Next, we will touch on the power of his prophetic word, and then on the power of the preaching of the Gospel. Finally, we will explore the power of God’s written Word or Scriptures. Let’s begin by investigating the power of God’s Word over creation.

When we consider the power of God’s word, it is often helpful to think first about how his word is powerful over the creation. Perhaps the place where this is most easily seen is the creation account of Genesis 1, where God spoke the world into existence. Throughout the entire chapter, the only action that God performs is speaking. And by his spoken word, he creates, orders and fills the entire universe. As Psalm 33 verses 6 and 9 comment regarding this account:

By the word of the Lord were the heavens made, their starry host by the breath of his mouth… He spoke, and it came to be; he commanded, and it stood firm.” (Psalm 33:6, 9)

God’s declaration had great power in the days of creation, so much power that his word brought the creation into existence. It is not that the words have innate power that God manipulates. Rather, God uses his declarations as vessels that transmit his own power. God’s words are the means he uses to accomplish his ends, much as any human being might use a hammer to drive a nail into place.

In the second place, the Scriptures also make it clear that God’s word has power when it comes through the mouths of inspired prophets. Isaiah chapter 55 verses 10 and 11 confirm this idea. There the prophet wrote:

As the rain and the snow come down from heaven, and do not return to it without watering the earth and making it bud and flourish … so is my word that goes out from my mouth: It will not return to me empty, but will accomplish what I desire and achieve the purpose for which I sent it. (Isaiah 55:10-11)

Although this passage speaks of God’s word going out from his mouth, in the context it is apparent that God was referring to the preaching of the prophet Isaiah. The people of Judah heard this word of the Lord not directly from God’s mouth, but from Isaiah. Even so, the message was still powerful when Isaiah spoke and wrote it; it had God’s power to accomplish his purposes.

A third way in which we may see the power of God’s word is through the uninspired preaching of his word or the gospel. The New Testament frequently confirms this idea when it says that God works through the preaching of the gospel, even when the preachers are not infallibly inspired. For instance, in Romans chapter 1 verses 15 and 16, Paul directly stated that the preached gospel carries God’s power:

I am so eager to preach the gospel … because it is the power of God for the salvation of everyone who believes. (Romans 1:15-16)

The gospel Paul had in mind here was not just a set of truths about what Jesus had done, nor was it the power of God represented by the statements of the gospel. He did not mean that the gospel is about the God who has power, or about the things that God has done with his power. Rather, Paul meant that the act of preaching the gospel is powerful because God uses preaching to bring people to faith.

Paul made a similar statement in Colossians chapter 1 verse 18, where he wrote:

The message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God. (Colossians 1:18)

Notice again, that Paul was speaking about the message itself, not just about the historical facts related by the message. After all, people do not accept the truth of the gospel’s claims while, at the same time, condemning God as foolish for saving humanity. Rather, people count the gospel message as foolish because they do not believe that its statements are true. To them, it sounds like a fanciful tale or even a lie, and they think that no right thinking person would believe it. It is for this reason that the gospel seems like foolishness to unbelievers. But to people who believe the message, the preaching of the gospel is the power of God because it is the means by which God brings them to a saving knowledge of the truth.

Realizing that God’s word is powerful over creation, in the prophetic word, and even in the fallible preaching of the gospel, we are in a position to understand the power of the written Word of God, the Bible.

Jesus himself pointed to the power of the written word when he told the familiar story of Lazarus and the rich man in Luke 16. You will recall that when the rich man died, he looked up from hell to see Lazarus being comforted by Abraham. The rich man, worrying that his family would also perish in hell, asked Abraham to raise Lazarus from the dead and to send Lazarus to preach repentance to the rich man’s family. In Luke chapter 16 verses 29 through 31 we read Abraham’s answer:

“They have Moses and the Prophets; let them listen to them… If they do not listen to Moses and the Prophets, they will not be convinced even if someone rises from the dead.” (Luke 16:29-31)

At least two elements of this passage pertain to our discussion. First, Abraham was speaking about Scripture. He referred to Moses and the prophets not as living people who continued to speak in person, but as authors who continued to speak through the Bible, God’s written Word. And just as the words of Moses and the prophets were powerful when God inspired them to speak during their earthly lives, they continued to be powerful in written form.

Second, Abraham said that the written words of Scripture, written by God’s inspired prophets, have as much power to bring people to repentance as does the tremendous miracle of seeing someone raised from the dead. In many respects this passage is one of the most astounding statements about the power of Scripture found in the Bible. We all realize that witnessing someone raise the dead would be a tremendously influential experience. It would potentially have life-transforming power. But here Jesus actually indicated that reading the Bible has even more power than witnessing a resurrection from the dead

The apostle Paul affirmed this idea in 2 Timothy chapter 3 verse 15 when he wrote:

The holy Scriptures … are able to make you wise for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus. (2 Timothy 3:15)

Studying Scripture is like preaching because it is a means through which God gives people the understanding and faith necessary for salvation. Just as surely as the preached word carries God’s power, so does the Bible.


With such an understanding of the power of the Word of God in creation, inspired prophetic speech, fallible preaching, and the Bible, we are in a position to reflect briefly on the implications of these matters for the process of making ethical decisions.

One passage that touches on the practical implications of the power of God’s word is Hebrews chapter 4 verses 12 and 13:

The word of God is living and active… it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart. Nothing in all creation is hidden from God’s sight. (Hebrews 4:12-13)

Notice here that the writer of Hebrews speaks of God’s word as living and active. It is not a mere collection of inert information that has no potency. On the contrary, when we approach God’s word, we are to view it as an active living thing, full of power to accomplish what God desires. And what does the Word of God do in the area of ethics? As this passage says, the word of God judges our hearts. It is able to penetrate and to evaluate our deepest thoughts and motives. And it has the power to save us from condemnation and to enable us to live holy, moral lives. Listen to how Paul continued the passage in 2 Timothy that we read a moment ago. In 2 Timothy chapter 3 verses 15 through 17 he wrote:

The holy Scriptures … are able to make you wise for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus. All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the man of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work. (2 Timothy 3:15-17)

The Bible’s power is not just in leading us to our initial faith in Christ. As God’s voice, Scripture also has the power to equip us “for every good work.” The Holy Spirit uses the Scriptures to give us faith and wisdom, and to mold our characters in such a way that when we are confronted with moral choices, we are able to choose the good and refuse the bad.

Many times Christians find themselves frustrated by their attempts to live ethical lives. They feel helpless and impotent to do what is right and good. In such situations it is a great encouragement to know that learning the Scriptures, reminding ourselves of them, even meditating on the Scriptures, is not an exercise in futility. It is much more than simply reading an ethical guide. Instead, the word of God in Scripture actually empowers us to live for God. Constant learning and meditation on the word of God brings us into contact with the power of God that will always accomplish his purposes. In this way, the power of Scripture is of essential importance to Christian ethics.

Authority of Scripture

A second attribute of the Bible that derives from divine inspiration is the authority of Scripture. Because the Bible is divinely inspired, it carries God’s authority. In one sense, we have already proven this authority by demonstrating that Scripture is God’s voice, his living, active word to every generation. God has all authority. Therefore, whenever and however he speaks, all who hear him are obligated to obey him. This is the idea we put forth in our first lesson when we said that all revelation is normative because it teaches us about God, who is the ultimate standard for morality.

Nevertheless, it is still valuable to see how the Bible speaks about its own authority, as well as to look at some moral implications of this authority. We will turn first to the Bible’s claim of authority, and then to the implications of this claim for our lives.

Claim of Authority

The Bible claims divine authority for itself in at least two ways. First, it provides historical examples of its authority. And second, it explicitly claims authority. We’ll address the historical examples of the Bible’s authority first.

When we remember the close connection between the spoken word of God and the written word of God that we have already seen in this lesson, we can see many ways in which the Bible gives us examples of the authority of God’s word that apply to the Bible itself. In the earliest history recorded in the Bible, God spoke directly to humanity, and his speech carried authority. For example, in the account of the creation and fall in Genesis chapters 2 and 3, God commanded man to cultivate the Garden of Eden and not to eat the forbidden fruit. Eve, however, chose to listen to the spoken word of the serpent instead of to the spoken word of God, and thereby rejected the authority of God’s word. Adam, in turn, listened to Eve’s spoken word instead of to God’s word, also rejecting God’s authority. But the authority of God’s word was not thereby destroyed. Rather, God enforced his spoken word’s authority by punishing Adam and Eve, and all creation with them.

Later, in the days of Moses, God encoded his spoken word in written form. Instead of simply telling Moses what the Ten Commandments were, he carved these laws on stone tablets. He also gave Moses many other laws, and commanded Moses to record those words in writing. These records comprised the book of the covenant that we read about in Exodus chapter 24. They were the stipulations of God’s covenant with his people, and they carried not only God’s authority, but also his promise to enforce these laws with power, both by blessing the obedient and cursing the disobedient. Listen to this account in Exodus chapter 24 verses 4 through 8:

Moses … wrote down everything the Lord had said… Then he took the Book of the Covenant and read it to the people. They responded, “We will do everything the Lord has said; we will obey.” Moses then took the blood, sprinkled it on the people and said, “This is the blood of the covenant that the Lord has made with you in accordance with all these words.” (Exodus 24:4-8)

In this record we find that God’s spoken word is the basis for his written word, and that the written word is God’s authoritative covenant document that his people are obligated to obey.

Many centuries later, when God’s people had rejected the things written in Scripture, God sent foreign nations to afflict them in war. Isaiah ministered during this time, and wrote these words in Isaiah chapter 42 verse 24:

Who handed Jacob over to become loot, and Israel to the plunderers? Was it not the Lord, against whom we have sinned? For they would not follow his ways; they did not obey his law. (Isaiah 42:24)

God did not hesitate to enforce his word in Isaiah’s day, just as he had not hesitated to enforce it in the Garden of Eden. But this time, the word that was violated was God’s “law.” It was Scripture, the written words of the covenant between God and his people. Just as God’s spoken word is authoritative revelation, so is his written word.

The New Testament also confirms the authority of Scripture through its examples. For instance, Jesus frequently appealed to Scripture to justify and explain his actions, as in John 17 verse 12 where he prayed these words:

“I protected them and kept them safe by that name you gave me. None has been lost except the one doomed to destruction so that Scripture would be fulfilled.” (John 17:12)

Jesus here contrasted his eleven loyal disciples with Judas Iscariot, the one who betrayed him. And in this contrast, he indicated that both his protection of the eleven and his losing of the one were done in accordance with Scripture.

The apostles also demonstrated their belief in the Bible’s authority. For example, Paul appealed to the Scriptures as proof that Christians ought not to be vengeful. In Romans chapter 12 verse 19 he wrote:

Do not take revenge, my friends, but leave room for God’s wrath, for it is written: “It is mine to avenge; I will repay,” says the Lord. (Romans 12:19)

Paul’s argument here assumes that the Old Testament carries authority when it assigns vengeance to God. So, by placing his readers under moral obligation to the Old Testament, Paul demonstrated his belief that the Scriptures are God’s authoritative word that binds even New Testament believers.

Besides proving its authority through examples, the Bible also proves its authority through explicit statements to that effect. One of best known statements claiming authority for the Bible is found in 2 Peter chapter 1 verses 19 through 21, where Peter wrote:

We have the word of the prophets made more certain, and you will do well to pay attention to it… For prophecy never had its origin in the will of man, but men spoke from God… (2 Peter 1:19-21)

Here Peter indicated that the Old Testament prophetic writings continue to be authoritative in our day. Because these prophecies were inspired and authorized by God, they form a binding moral standard to which we must “pay attention.” That is, we must believe what the prophets wrote, and obey what they commanded.

James also made it clear that the Old Testament is still God’s authoritative command to us. As he wrote in James chapter 2 verses 10 and 11:

Whoever keeps the whole law and yet stumbles at just one point is guilty of breaking all of it. For he who said, “Do not commit adultery,” also said, “Do not murder.” (James 2:10-11)

Notice how far James went in emphasizing this point. First, he insisted that the written law is still binding. Those who break it are guilty. Second, James based the ongoing authority of Scripture on the authority of the one who gave the command, namely God. Because the Bible is still God’s word, it still carries God’s authority.

We also find claims for the authority of the New Testament. For instance, Jesus gave his apostles authority when he said in John chapter 13 verse 20:

“I tell you the truth, whoever accepts anyone I send accepts me; and whoever accepts me accepts the one who sent me.” (John 13:20)

The apostles used this authority not only in speaking, but also in writing the documents we now have in the New Testament. This is evident throughout the New Testament in every instance in which they issued written commands, as in 2 Thessalonians chapter 3 verse 6, where Paul wrote:

In the name of the Lord Jesus Christ, we command you, brothers, to keep away from every brother who is idle. (Thessalonians 3:6)

Here Paul issued a direct written command that carried his delegated authority from Jesus Christ. This approach was typical of the apostles; they frequently used their authority to transmit their instructions in written form. Because the New Testament consists of documents that the apostles either wrote or approved, it carries the authority of the apostles, which is the authority of Christ himself.


Now that we have seen that Scriptures proves its own authority, we should touch briefly on some implications of this idea. Most simply, because Scripture carries God’s authority, we are morally obligated to conform all our choices, actions, thoughts and feelings to it. We might say that ethical behavior equates to “keeping the word of the Lord.” And keeping the word of the Lord must be done in at least two ways: We must conform to Scripture’s breadth by obeying all of its commands, and we must conform to its depth by obeying these commandments with commitment and conviction.

On the one hand, God’s people must keep the breadth of biblical instruction. Followers of Christ are not to obey what we like and ignore what we do not like. Now, we should admit that some things the Bible requires of us are more difficult to accept than others, but we are still called to submit to all that God has commanded in Scripture. Listen for instance to Exodus chapter 15 verse 26, where the Lord told Israel these words:

“If you listen carefully to the voice of the Lord your God and do what is right in his eyes, if you pay attention to his commands and keep all his decrees, I will not bring on you any of the diseases I brought on the Egyptians.” (Exodus 15:26)

At a time when the people of Israel were receiving God’s commands in written form, God equated keeping all his decrees with doing what is right. In essence, we do what is right when we obey all of the Scriptures.

The breadth of our obligation to submit to Scripture comes out even more clearly in 1 Kings chapter 11 verse 38, where God said these words to Jeroboam:

“If you do whatever I command you and walk in my ways and do what is right in my eyes by keeping my statutes and commands … I will be with you.” (1 Kings 11:38)

You will recall that in our first lesson in this series, we defined moral goodness as that which God blesses. Here, God promised blessings on Jeroboam if Jeroboam did what was right, and God explicitly defined “what is right” as whatever he commands. Goodness is not found in keeping just some of the law of God while rejecting other parts.

The fact that God calls his people to observe the authority of all of his word without exception should challenge us in our own day, just as it challenged God’s people during biblical times. Sadly, sometimes believers respond to this challenge by imagining that God does not mind if they follow only some of his moral directives. They wrongly think that God has given them liberty to ignore those commands that they find uncomfortable or difficult.

But even if we do not try to justify our rejection of some of Scripture’s moral teachings, we need to realize that we all fall into the trap of unconscious selectivity. For this reason, we must constantly return to Scripture to be reminded of those commands we may have overlooked or forgotten.

In the second place, God’s word has authority over us not just in the full breadth of its teaching, but also in the depth of obedience it requires of us. For example, in both the Old and the New Testaments, the Bible connects obedience to Scripture with love for God. Moral goodness is not obtainable through begrudging obedience, or even through a love for goodness itself, apart from a love for God. Rather, the basis of duty is the fact that God has called us in love and authority to be his willing servants. Listen to the way Moses expressed this idea in Deuteronomy chapter 7 verses 9 and 11:

The Lord your God … is the faithful God, keeping his covenant of love to a thousand generations of those who love him and keep his commands… Therefore, take care to follow the commands, decrees and laws I give you today. (Deuteronomy 7:9, 11)

Because God has called us into a loving relationship with himself, we are obligated to obey his commands, which are set down for us in Scripture.

Jesus himself repeated much the same idea in the New Testament. In John chapter 14 verses 15 and 21 he told his disciples:

“If you love me, you will obey what I command… Whoever has my commands and obeys them, he is the one who loves me.” (John 14:15, 21)

And by his example, he demonstrated that we must also render this type of loving obedience to the Father. As Jesus said in verse 31 of John 14:

“The world must learn that I love the Father and that I do exactly what my Father has commanded me.” (John 14:31)

Time after time Scripture indicates that the moral requirements God places on us are based in his love for us and are to be fulfilled in our love for him.

So we see that according to the Bible, we cannot do the right thing unless we have the right motive. Or to put it another way, only when we embrace the Scriptures deeply, from the heart, can we rightly submit to the authority of God’s word.

Now that we have looked at power and authority of Scripture, those attributes that Scripture has primarily by virtue of its divine authorship, we should turn our attention to our second topic, those attributes of Scripture that relate more closely to its human audience.


When God inspired and authorized the writers of Scripture, he had a particular goal in mind. Specifically, he wanted to give his people clear revelation concerning his will and his character in order that they would be better able to conform themselves to him. So, at this point in our lesson, we will focus our attention on the attributes that Scripture possesses primarily by virtue of the fact that God inspired it for his people. This aspect of our discussion will cover three of Scripture’s attributes: its clarity, its necessity, and its sufficiency. Let’s look first at the clarity of Scripture.

Clarity of Scripture

When we say that Scripture is “clear,” we do not mean that everything in the Bible is easy to understand, or that everything in the Bible is stated plainly and directly. Instead, we mean that the Bible is not obscure. It is not filled with hidden meanings that can only be discovered through mysterious means, or through special spiritual gifting, or by those who hold special offices in the church.

As we approach the subject of the Bible’s clarity, sometimes called its “perspicuity,” it will help to look at two matters: The nature of the Bible’s clarity, and some implications of the Bible’s clarity. Let’s think first about the nature of the clarity we find in Scripture.


The Westminster Confession of Faith offers a good introductory summary of the nature of the clarity of Scripture. In chapter 1 section 7, it states:

All things in Scripture are not alike plain in themselves, nor alike clear unto all; yet those things which are necessary to be known, believed, and observed for salvation, are so clearly propounded, and opened in some place of Scripture or other, that not only the learned, but the unlearned, in a due use of the ordinary means, may attain unto a sufficient understanding of them.

Here the Confession addresses two aspects of the clarity of Scripture. First, it speaks of “all things in Scripture,” and second, it focuses on “those things which are necessary to be known, believed, and observed for salvation,” namely, the gospel. Let’s take a closer look at both of these ideas, beginning with the relative clarity of the gospel.

Simply put, Scripture speaks so plainly about the gospel that every mentally competent person should be able to figure out that salvation comes through repentance and faith in Christ. This does not mean that everybody does figure out the gospel. As the Confession points out, we have to make “due use of the ordinary means” if we expect to take advantage of the Bible’s clarity. That is, we have to read responsibly and diligently, not carelessly, and not with an agenda that twists what Scripture tries to teach us. In reality, many factors complicate our reading of the Bible, not the least of which is our sin. If we fail to handle the Bible reasonably, or twist it according to our sin, we will not discover the gospel. But again, this is our failure; it does not result from any lack of clarity in Scripture.

Notice also that the Confession does not say that a person can read any portion of Scripture and discover the way of salvation. Rather, it says that the gospel is made clear “in some place of Scripture or other.” That is, the Scripture as a whole presents a clear gospel message. A person who does not read the whole Bible may never come across the passages that present the gospel in a way that he could easily understand. Nevertheless, taken as a whole, the Bible does present the way of salvation with enough clarity that any competent person is capable of learning them directly from Scripture.

Although the Scriptures are particularly clear about the gospel of salvation in Christ, the Confession of Faith also makes some observations about all of Scripture. It says that matters other than the basic Christian gospel are “not alike plain in themselves, nor alike clear unto all.” In other words, Scripture may not be very plain regarding some of its teachings. In fact, there are many things in the bible that are not as clearly taught as the revelation of the way of salvation.

Still, God gave Scripture to us in order that we might understand the things he revealed in Scripture, and apply them to our lives. As Moses told the Israelites in Deuteronomy chapter 29 verse 29:

The secret things belong to the Lord our God, but the things revealed belong to us and to our children forever, that we may follow all the words of this law. (Deuteronomy 29:29)

In this passage Moses made a crucial distinction that we should remember as we explore the use of Scripture in Christian ethics. He distinguished between secret things and things revealed. God does keep some secrets from us. He does not tell us everything he knows, nor does he tell us everything we might want to know. There are matters — even matters of ethics — that God keeps to himself. Even so, what God has told us in Scripture is not a secret. The Scriptures fall into the category of “things revealed.” As Moses said, they are shown to us in order that we might “follow” and obey them.


To one degree or another, God has revealed his will to us with sufficient clarity to guide us in ethics. He has given us the Bible so that, through “due use of the ordinary means,” through reading and studying, we can come to know God’s will for all areas of our life. As Paul exhorted Timothy in 2 Timothy chapter 3 verse 16:

All Scripture … is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness. (2 Timothy 3:16)

All Scripture is clear enough to be useful, if we apply ourselves to study it diligently.

For this reason, each one of us must be ready to search the Bible to discern its teaching in ethical matters. Now, again, we are not saying that Scripture is easy to understand in every respect. In fact, some portions of Scripture are quite a bit less clear than others. And beyond this, some people have a greater ability than others to understand the words of Scripture. As Peter wrote in 2 Peter chapter 3 verse 16:

Paul’s letters contain some things that are hard to understand, which ignorant and unstable people distort, as they do the other Scriptures. (2 Peter 3:16)

Not everyone has an equal ability to understand the Bible. And not everyone makes equal effort to study it. Nevertheless, if we apply ourselves sufficiently, we can all come to know God’s will well enough to conform ourselves to his standard for morality.

Now that we have explored Scripture’s clarity, we are ready to look at the second attribute that Scripture possesses primarily because it was written for a human audience: its necessity.

Necessity of Scripture

When we speak of the necessity of Scripture, we have in mind that people need the Bible, especially for ethical decision making. As we explore our need for Scripture, we will touch on three matters: the necessity of Scripture for salvation, the necessity of Scripture for faithful living, and the implications of our need for Scripture.


In the first place, Scripture is necessary for people to find the way of salvation. As we saw in a prior lesson, general, special and existential revelation overlap greatly, but general and existential revelation only provide human beings with sufficient information to condemn them for failing to keep God’s standard. Only Scripture provides sufficient information to secure salvation. Listen to the way Paul touched on this in Romans chapter 10 verses 13 through 17:

“Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.” How, then, can they call on the one they have not believed in? And how can they believe in the one of whom they have not heard? And how can they hear without someone preaching to them? … Consequently, faith comes from hearing the message, and the message is heard through the word of Christ. (Romans 10:13-17)

Paul’s point here is rather clear: The gospel message is the normal means by which God delivers faith to individuals. And apart from the word of Christ, people have no access to the gospel message. This makes the word of Christ a necessary means to salvation in all but the most exceptional circumstances. The only exceptions theologians typically recognize are cases involving infants or other mentally incompetent individuals.

But what is this word of Christ? In the tenth chapter of Romans, Paul primarily had in mind the preaching of the gospel. But he also had in mind the Scriptures themselves as source of the gospel message. For instance, the words, “Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved” are actually a quotation from Deuteronomy chapter 30. Paul’s use of Scripture in this way follows a pattern that appears throughout the Scriptures. Specifically, in the Bible the gospel proclamation is closely associated with the written word of Scripture. For example, in the Old Testament, God often delivered his messages directly to prophets who spoke God’s word to the people. But God also insured that the prophetic word was written down so that it could be learned by those who were not present at the proclamation. Following this Old Testament pattern, the apostles first learned the gospel directly from Jesus, and then delivered it not only through preaching, but also through their writings in the New Testament.

The practical outworking of this process is that human beings by and large receive knowledge of the gospel, and thereby come to faith and salvation, from the Scriptures, either through their own reading of the Bible or through preaching based on the Bible. Of course, there is an important difference between the written word of Scripture and preaching based on Scripture. Scripture is inspired by God, infallible, and absolutely authoritative in every case. Preaching is not. Insofar as preaching is faithful to Scripture, it is true, authoritative and powerful. But because we are fallen human beings, preaching is never fully true to Scripture. Unlike preaching, Scripture is stable and unchanging, it is a fully reliable and trustworthy standard. Preaching, church tradition, theological instruction, and many other sources of information are all helpful. But all of these contain a mixture of truth and error. Only Scripture is absolutely, unfailingly, unquestionably reliable. Therefore, Scripture is necessary both as a record of the gospel, and as a basis and criterion for the preaching of the gospel.

Faithful Living

In the second place, Scripture is also necessary for ethical living. You will recall that in a previous lesson we established that general, special and existential revelation are all true and authoritative. Why then do we set apart Scripture as a special case of necessary revelation? The answer is that while general and existential revelation are infallible and authoritative, they are much harder to interpret than Scripture is. Sin has corrupted nature and humankind, so that we no longer see only a pure reflection as God intended it. As a result, it is often very difficult to know how to interpret general and existential revelation. Sometimes it’s almost impossible to tell if what we are seeing is the result of God’s intention in creation, or the result of sin’s corruption of creation. But the words of Scripture are presented with tremendous clarity in this respect.

And in addition to this, our fallen minds are prone to twist, repress and resist the truth of general and existential revelation. Scripture speaks much more clearly and directly than do general and existential revelation, making our ethical determinations based on Scripture more secure and more reliable than those based on other forms of revelation. This is why the Westminster Confession of Faith chapter 1 section 10 insists on the primacy of Scripture over other sources of information:

The supreme Judge, by which all controversies of religion are to be determined, and all decrees of councils, opinions of ancient writers, doctrines of men, and private spirits, are to be examined, and in whose sentence we are to rest, can be no other but the Holy Spirit speaking in the Scripture.

The Confession‘s point here is that all these other sources are valuable, but that the Bible is the most valuable of all because it is through the Scriptures that the Holy Spirit speaks most clearly.


What, then, are some moral implications of the necessity of Scripture? Although there are many ways in which the necessity of Scripture carries moral implications, we will focus on two. One, that we must read and rely on scripture if we are to have the ability to do what is morally good. And two, that we must read and rely on scripture’s comprehensive treatment of morality in order to gather ethical information that is not revealed in either general or existential revelation.

There is a very important sense in which we simply cannot be moral without attending to the teaching of Scripture. You will recall from our prior lessons that only those who are in Christ are capable of true morality. And as we saw earlier in this lesson, learning and believing the basic content of Scripture is necessary to salvation, whether we study the Bible directly or learn its central teachings from others. In short, without Scripture, salvation is not possible, and therefore morality is not possible. People who think they can ignore the teaching of Scripture and still be moral are seriously mistaken. In this sense, Scripture is necessary to our ability to behave morally.

In addition to this basic need for the word of God, Scripture is also necessary for human morality because it contains information that is not included in general and existential revelation. It is not uncommon for Christians to depend heavily on their experiences of life, the opinions of others, and their own moral intuitions as they make ethical decisions. And as we have seen, these and other features of general and existential revelation are important to consider. But we must also recognize that in many circumstances, general and existential revelation are not clear enough to show us the proper course of action, whereas Scripture reveals God’s will in sufficient detail to teach us what is right.

For instance, Acts 15 records that a controversy arose in the early church when Gentiles began to be converted to Christianity. Some within the church believed that Gentiles ought to be instructed to observe the Law of Moses in the ways that Judaism of the time had come to observe it. That is, they wanted Gentiles to be circumcised, and to offer the appropriate sacrifices at the temple, and to apply the Law to their lives in the ways that had become customary for Jews of the day. On the other hand, men like Paul and Barnabas argued that God did not expect Gentiles to live as first-century Jews. The issue was so problematic that the apostles and elders met to discuss and investigate the issue. During the council, both sides presented their arguments. We can speculate that those who wanted the Gentiles to adopt customary Jewish applications of the law appealed to Scripture itself, perhaps arguing that the law did not offer exceptions for believing Gentiles. The Apostles, however, looked at the general revelation of redemptive history to argue that God now received Gentiles unto himself without requiring them to adopt traditional Jewish customs. To solve this controversy, James, the brother of Jesus turned to Amos chapter 9 verses 11 and twelve. In Acts chapter 15 verses 16 and 17, James quoted Amos as follows,

“After this I will return and rebuild David’s fallen tent. Its ruins I will rebuild, and I will restore it, that the remnant of men may seek the Lord, and all the Gentiles who bear my name, says the Lord, who does these things.” (Acts 15:16-17)

From this text, James understood that God would include many Gentiles when he restored His Kingdom. More importantly, these converts would remain Gentiles even after they had been called to the Lord. In the Old Testament, Gentiles who converted became Jews and followed traditional Jewish practices. But, Amos indicated that when God restored His Kingdom in Christ the Gentiles would be included without having to follow Jewish traditions.

In this case, opinions of some people came into conflict with the reality of the Holy Spirit’s ministry among uncircumcised Gentiles. And these sources of information were not sufficient to provide a satisfactory solution. But once James appealed to Scripture that addressed this problem, the church united behind his position. Scripture was necessary because general and existential revelation were not sufficient to answer this moral question.

And the same applies today. Although general and existential revelation are always true, they are not always sufficient to give us clear moral guidance. Thus, in Christian ethics we must rely more heavily on Scripture than we do on general and existential revelation. We must devote ourselves to learning the teachings of Scripture as best we can because Scripture always speaks adequately to moral issues even when other forms of revelation do not.

Having this understanding of the clarity and necessity of Scripture in mind, we are now in a position to explore the sufficiency of Scripture.

Sufficiency of Scripture

Most basically, to say that Scripture is “sufficient” is to say that it is able to fulfill the purposes for which it was written. But not surprisingly, this simple idea becomes complicated because it is hard for Christians to agree on what the purpose of Scripture actually is. So, as we investigate the issue of Scripture’s sufficiency, we will begin by looking at Scripture’s purpose in relation to its sufficiency. Next, we will address some common misunderstandings of sufficiency, and finally we will speak about the popular but mistaken idea that Scripture is silent on certain matters.


With regard to the relationship between Scripture’s sufficiency and purpose, it will be helpful to look again to the Westminster Confession of Faith, which contains a very good summary of this idea in chapter 1 section 6. The Confession states the matter this way:

The whole counsel of God, concerning all things necessary for His own glory, man’s salvation, faith and life, is either expressly set down in Scripture, or by good and necessary consequence may be deduced from Scripture: unto which nothing at any time is to be added, whether by new revelations of the Spirit, or traditions of men.

The Confession rightly concludes that Scripture’s purpose is manifold. It mentions that the Bible was written to teach us how to glorify God, to bring men and women to salvation, to instruct believers regarding the content of their faith, and to guide us in Christian living. These ideas of the Bible’s purpose come from Scripture itself.

For instance, the Bible teaches in many places that Scripture has been given to us in order that we might glorify God by obeying his commands. One place this can be seen rather clearly is in the covenant curses in Deuteronomy. In Deuteronomy chapter 28, verses 58 and 59, Moses pointed out a striking correlation between obedience to the written commands of God and the glorification of God.

If you do not carefully follow all the words of this law, which are written in this book, and do not revere this glorious and awesome name — the Lord your God — the Lord will send fearful plagues on you and your descendants… (Deuteronomy 28:58-59)

The Bible is designed to teach us how to glorify God, and it is sufficient to accomplish this purpose. Scripture contains all the standards that we need to know to glorify him.

Regarding “man’s salvation, faith and life,” Paul instructed Timothy to remain steadfast in his study of Scripture in order to gain these benefits that Scripture was designed to deliver. In this context, in 2 Timothy chapter 3 verses 15 through 17, Paul explicitly taught the sufficiency of Scripture. He wrote these words in verse 15:

The holy Scriptures … are able to make you wise for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus. (2 Timothy 3:15)

When Paul said that Scripture is “able” to make us “wise for salvation” he meant that by studying the Bible, we can learn the things that are necessary for us to know if we are to be saved. Paul believed this to be true because he knew not only that the Bible was powerful, as we saw earlier in this lesson, but also that it was designed to provide these specific benefits. Because the Bible is able to accomplish this purpose, it can rightly be called sufficient for salvation.

In much the same way, Scripture is also sufficient for “faith.” Look again at Paul’s words in 2 Timothy chapter 3 verses 15 through 17. Paul said that “the holy Scriptures … are able to make you wise for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus.” The content of saving faith is revealed in the Bible as the means through which we are justified and receive our salvation from God.

Finally, the Bible is sufficient to guide us through “life,” the ongoing practice of our saving faith in Christ. Paul’s well known statement in 2 Timothy chapter 3 verses 16 and 17 make this clear:

All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the man of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work. (2 Timothy 3:16-17)

Besides being intended to bring us to faith in Christ for our salvation, Scripture is also intended to prepare us for “every good work” — not just for some good works, but for every good work. Because it is intended to prepare us for “every good work,” and because it is powerful to accomplish its intended function, it is right to say that Scripture speaks sufficiently about every good work. If we rightly understand the whole Bible, then we will know God’s standards sufficiently to make proper determinations about any given ethical issue, as long as we also have a sufficient understanding of the persons and the situation.

Now, understanding the sufficiency of Scripture for life raises a serious question: How can any book, even one as large as the Bible, cover every conceivable moral problem, equipping us for every good work? Well, in truth, the Bible does not address every conceivable moral issue directly. Scripture speaks directly only to a limited number of issues in life, such as the fundamental content of our faith, and our basic responsibilities toward God and other people. But in so doing, Scripture lays down principles that we can extend and apply beyond the specifics mentioned in the Bible. This is why the Confession distinguishes between what is “expressly set down in Scripture” and what must be deduced from Scripture by way of “good and necessary consequence.” In all cases, however, Scripture provides us with the information we need in order to discover God’s ethical standards.

The last point we should note in the Confession‘s explanation of the sufficiency of Scripture is the qualification that Scripture is complete, so that:

… nothing at any time is to be added, whether by new revelations of the Spirit, or traditions of men.

Scripture contains all the norms we need as Christians. Human traditions and authority structures, such as civil and ecclesiastical governments, are to be obeyed for the Lord’s sake, but they are never to be counted as absolute or ultimate norms. And insofar as these institutions require obedience to human norms that are not found in Scripture, the Christian has freedom to disregard these norms. The decision to follow or not to follow human norms must be guided by Scriptural norms, and human norms will always be defied when they conflict with biblical norms.

We see this demonstrated in Scripture time and again. For instance, in Jesus’ day the established Jewish leadership allowed moneychangers and vendors in the temple area. But when Jesus saw this, he became angry and drove them from the temple because the human leadership had allowed violations of scriptural norms within the temple grounds. We read this account in Matthew chapter 21 verses 12 and 13:

Jesus entered the temple area and drove out all who were buying and selling there… “It is written,” he said to them, “‘My house will be called a house of prayer,’ but you are making it a ‘den of robbers.'” (Matthew 21:12-13)

Jesus rightly understood that Isaiah chapter 56 verse 7, which he quoted, revealed the biblical norm that the temple was to be dedicated to prayer. But the Jewish leadership had permitted the temple grounds to be profaned by secular transactions. Jesus’ condemnation that they were making the temple a “den of robbers” is actually incredibly strong. That phrase is drawn from Jeremiah chapter 7 verse 11, where it refers to idolaters and violent criminals who pay lip service to God at his temple. By his actions and words, Jesus demonstrated that following any human law or tradition is sinful when the human norm contradicts Scripture.

In every case, Scripture is sufficient to establish all moral norms. The ethical ordinances of men, however, are valid and binding only insofar as they echo biblical norms. But when human norms contradict biblical norms, the Christian is obligated to defy them.

With a proper understanding of the sufficiency of Scripture in mind, we should now turn our attention to some common misunderstandings of the Bible’s sufficiency.


We will group these misunderstandings into two fairly general categories: first, views that overestimate Scripture’s sufficiency; and second, views that underestimate Scripture’s sufficiency. Let’s begin with views that overestimate Scripture’s sufficiency.

Typically, those who overestimate the sufficiency of Scripture have very strong commitments to the Bible. But they frequently lack proper commitments to general and existential revelation. As a result, they wrongly believe that they can properly apply Scripture to ethical questions without having much knowledge, if any, about specific situations and people. They believe that making ethical decisions is as simple as reading the Bible and obeying it. But in reality, before we can obey or apply the Bible, we must also know something about the people and situations to which we are applying it. God has provided us with this information in general and existential revelation. If we ignore these other forms of revelation, we are ignoring the tools he has given us for interpreting and understanding Scripture.

But not all errors are based on overestimating the Bible’s sufficiency. Many more errors come from underestimating it. This error generally appears as an insistence that the Bible is sufficient to guide us only in limited areas of life, that it gives us moral instruction only on certain topics. For instance, Thomas Aquinas argued that general and existential revelation are sufficient to teach many moral principles, and that Scripture supplements this knowledge by giving us information regarding those subjects that natural and existential revelation do not cover, such as the way of salvation. In recent years, others have argued that the Bible does not address matters such as so-called monogamous homosexuality, abortion, and euthanasia.

As we have seen, however, either through explicit or implicit teaching, the Scriptures provide us with a comprehensive system of ethical norms. In this sense, the Bible’s sufficiency is unlimited when it comes to revealing the will of God for his glory, and our salvation, faith and Christian living. General and existential revelation also contain some of these norms, but they contain no additional norms beyond those found directly or indirectly in Scripture. Now, it is important to stress once again that Scripture does not explicitly or exhaustively comment on every detail of life. We have a great need for the information that general and existential revelation communicate

The point is simply that the Bible speaks sufficiently to every area of life, so that our true duty toward God is always an application of Scriptural norms.


At this point, we should address what is perhaps one of the most common ways that well-meaning Christians underestimate the sufficiency of Scripture: the popular but mistaken idea that Scripture is silent on certain matters. Specifically, Christians frequently teach that some issues of life are morally “indifferent” because Scripture does not provide us with sufficient information to know God’s will on these matters. Historically, these have been known as “adiaphora.” This typical position has been that indifferent things are neither right nor wrong in and of themselves.

For example, the church fathers taught that eating meat was neither right nor wrong, and during the Reformation, Martin Luther applied the term “indifferent” to certain Roman Catholic forms of worship that he felt were neither commanded nor forbidden by Scripture. Although many people throughout the history of the church have held to such positions, this position actually runs contrary to the teachings of Scripture. To be sure, the Bible does not comment directly on many aspects of life, but it also denies that anything is morally neutral. For example, whereas theologians speak of impersonal objects as indifferent or “neutral,” the Bible speaks of them as being good. We find this principle first in Genesis one, but even after the Fall of mankind into sin, Paul still insisted that everything was good. As he wrote in 1 Timothy chapter 4 verses 5 and 6:

Everything God created is good, and nothing is to be rejected if it is received with thanksgiving, because it is consecrated by the word of God and prayer. (1 Timothy 4:5-6)

Paul spoke specifically about food in this context, but the principle is far broader, extending to all creation, just as God himself proclaimed at the end of the creation week. For this reason, even impersonal objects are not “indifferent”; they are good.

Some theologians have also applied the term “indifferent” or adiaphora to choices between two or more good options. They have suggested that when all the choices are good, then Scripture is indifferent as to which we choose. But Scripture teaches that God blesses some good choices more than he blesses other good choices, and that Scripture sometimes praises one good option over another good option.

For instance, in 1 Corinthians chapter 7 verse 38, Paul wrote:

So then, he who marries the virgin does right, but he who does not marry her does even better. (1 Corinthians 7:38)

Now, it should be noted that scholars are not agreed as to the precise circumstances Paul addressed here. But his words are clear enough to demonstrate that marrying and not marrying were both good options, and that not marrying was the better option. In this sense, the Scripture is not really “indifferent” even when we have to choose between good options. Rather, Scripture always has much to say about our actions. Even if we were to find a situation in which the Bible praised two options equally, it would still be misleading to suggest scriptural indifference on the matter, as this would seem to imply a sort of moral neutrality regarding the decision. And Scripture never takes the position that anything is morally neutral.

You will recall that in our first lesson, we defined “good” as being that which receives God’s blessing, and “evil” as that which does not receive his blessing. By this definition, aspects of human beings and their lives are either good or evil; nothing and no one is indifferent or neutral. Either God blesses or he does not — there is no middle ground. If he blesses, it is good; if he does not bless, it is evil.

That being said, it is true that there are some words, thoughts and deeds that are good in some situations, but evil in others. For example, sexual relations within marriage are good, but sexual relations outside marriage are evil. But this does not mean that sexual relations in and of themselves are neither good nor evil. Rather, they are good, just as God created them to be good. But unmarried partners misuse sexual relations so that in their situation such relations are evil.

Finally, some theologians use the category of adiaphora to cover matters where we cannot determine what choices are good or evil. But because we know that the Scriptures touch on every aspect of life, at least indirectly, we must not treat matters about which we are uncertain as indifferent. It is true that we often feel as if we cannot know which particular choices, thoughts, actions, or attitudes are good and which ones are evil. But such situations occur not because God’s word is insufficient, and not because the Bible takes a neutral stance, but because we fail to recognize or to understand how to apply the truth that the Bible has disclosed.

This failure to reach an ethical judgment may take any number of forms. As you remember, the biblical model for making ethical decisions may be summed up in this way: “Ethical judgment involves the application of God’s Word to a situation by a person.” We must act on a proper understanding of our moral standard, our goals, and our motives, or to put it another way, on normative, situational and existential concerns. Failure to reach a proper ethical judgment can be caused by a failure properly to assess any of these perspectives. We may fail because we overlook or misunderstand the passages of Scripture we are dealing with. We may fail because we overlook or misunderstand the situation associated with the ethical question. And we may fail because we overlook or misevaluate the existential and personal aspects of a matter. In all cases, when we cannot come to a firm conclusion on an ethical decision, it is not proper to conclude that God has not revealed the information necessary to make the decision. And it is not proper to say that the matter is indifferent, that there is not a right course to follow. Rather, we must continue to read, study, pray and investigate the question, doing the best we can with our provisional judgments, but reserving final judgment until the normative, situational, and existential issues become clear.


In this lesson we have looked at several important attributes of Scripture. We have seen that because Scripture is divinely inspired, it is powerful and authoritative. We have also seen that because Scripture is written for human beings, it is clear, necessary and sufficient. As we progress in our study of Christian ethics, remembering these attributes of the Bible will help us come to biblical conclusions.

God and America What If?



If you pray to God, to whom — or what — are you praying?

When you sing God Bless America, whose blessing are you seeking?

This Nation was built by the God Fearing and Moralistic people who have ethics, values and long standing foundations of truth. What truth is can not be surreal or imposed it is self evident in our lives and our families and friends. As statistics and polls say most Americans believe in God.

Therefore, rejecting all falsity and being done now with it, let everyone express the truth with his neighbor, for we are all parts of one body and members one of another. Ephesians 4: 25

Charlotte North Carolina Democratic Convention booing God CNN

Booing God

Ancient Warfare – A Very Short Introduction

We are all familiar with that picturesque incident of the conflict between Israel and Amalek, which ended in victory and the erection of this memorial trophy. Moses, as you remember, went up on the mount whilst Joshua and the men of war fought in the plain. But I question whether we usually attach the right meaning to the symbolism of this event. We ordinarily, I suppose, think of Moses as interceding on the mountain with God. But there is no word about prayer in the story, and the attitude of Moses is contrary to the idea that his occupation was intercession. He sat there, with the rod of God in his hand, and the rod of God was the symbol and the vehicle of divine power. When he lifted the rod Amalek fled before Israel; when the rod dropped Israel fled before Amalek. That is to say, the uplifted hand was not the hand of intercession, but the hand which communicated power and victory. And so, when the conflict is over, Moses builds this memorial of thanksgiving to God, and piles together these great stones—which, perhaps, still stand in some of the unexplored valleys of that weird desert land—to teach Israel the laws of conflict and the conditions of victory. These laws and conditions are implied in the name which he gave to the altar that he built—Jehovah Nissi, ‘the Lord is my Banner.’

Now, then, what do these stones, with their significant name, teach us, as they taught the ancient Israelites? Let me throw these lessons into three brief exhortations.

I. First, realise for whose cause you fight.

Religion?What about it?

Religion is as if you do something so much it becomes a religion.

Sound familiar?

It is the truth and message behind religion that has purpose a system of rituals to remind us by ceremonies and practices not to forget God’s message. We as Americans must never forget that and resolve our differences and seek true Unity once again in our lives, our homes and our nation. Division was not God’s message like unruly children are separated so has America become but even unruly children are reunited. So what of this new age? Can all God’s children learn to get along again? One person to the next can be a small miracle and as the saying goes it is the little things that count. So what if? America found God through religion once again or just found God? During the Reagan years America was at a climb and deeply rooted in God. Why not give it back to God and change our attitudes on economics, justice, social morality, war, natural disasters, science, politics, love and more. Once again a time has come to recognize blessings by God or the mass insanity of falling away.

Most of her first settlers came for the purpose of being free to express their Religious beliefs in accordance with their own consciences. Yet it is undeniable that America has changed greatly since that time, forsaking moral values, and grower colder and colder towards God and Religion. Throughout the centuries, there have been many events which have been turning points of decline, decline which has occurred in mainly the churches and schools of America.

Three men that lived and worked in the nineteenth century would have a profoundly detrimental effect on America; Charles Darwin, Sigmund Freud, and Julius Wellhausen. The publishing of Charles Darwin’s book, The Origin of Species, in 1859, laid the foundation for the an even greater corruption of thought in America through the theory of evolution. No longer was it necessary to believe in a Creator, for things could somehow “create” themselves out of nothing! Sigmund Freud went on to develop his own ideas based on logical conclusions from Darwin’s theory, and building these ideas into the sciences of psychology and psychiatry. 2 From this man came the notion that we can understand ourselves through our feelings, and this still impacts society today, as we are told to do what makes us feel good. Thus, we wouldn’t want to believe in a God who hates sin, because sin can be pleasing to us.

Truth shall spring up from the earth, and righteousness shall look down from heaven. Psalm 85: 11

Behold, You desire truth in the inner being; make me therefore to know wisdom in my inmost heart. Psalm 51: 6

Rather, let our lives lovingly express truth [in all things, speaking truly, dealing truly, living truly]. Enfolded in love, let us grow up in every way and in all things into Him Who is the Head, [even] Christ (the Messiah, the Anointed One). Ephesians 4: 15

God is a Spirit (a spiritual Being) and those who worship Him must worship Him in spirit and in truth (reality). John 4: 24

In 1963, prayer was removed from schools in yet another attempt to rid America of any reference to God.6 President Ronald Reagan recognized the danger of this act when he said:

“Our Pledge of Allegiance states that we are ‘one nation under God,’ and our currency bears the motto, ‘In God We Trust.’ The morality and values such faith implies are deeply embedded in our national character. Our country embraces those principles by design, and we abandon them at our peril. Yet in recent years . . . Americans . . . [have] for the sake of religious tolerance . . . forbidden religious practice in the classrooms. The law of this land has effectively removed prayer from our classrooms. How can we hope to retain our freedom through the generations if we fail to teach our young that our liberty springs from an abiding faith in our Creator?”

Thus if we look to the words of the early founders, we see that their desire and conviction was to build a nation who would fear and honor the Lord. However, soon the people of America would forget their reasons for coming to the new world. With each passing generation, America’s people became less and less God fearing. Tolerance lead to acceptance of many Christian denominations and sects, and this in turn laid the foundation for tolerance of many non-Christian religions. J. Hector St. John de Crevecoeur, a late eighteenth century author, described America as a land where “religion demands little of [one]” and as a place where all manner of religions could blend together smoothly. He notes how “Children will therefore grow up less zealous and more indifferent in matters of religion than their parents,” and concludes by proudly acknowledging how “all sects are mixed together as well as all nations; thus religious indifference in imperceptibly disseminated from one end of the continent to the other. . .”

And you will know the Truth, and the Truth will set you free. John 8: 32

It is interesting to note that early Americans were facing a land of emptiness; their future and all their well-being held no security. Therefore, these people recognized their daily need for God, and their circumstances kept them dependent on Him. However, we may note that as America grew more established and economically stable, her people began to forsake God, not recognizing their constant need for Him. The words of Jesus ring true, as he stated that “And again I say to you, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God.”10 More importantly, they began to disregard their need for a Savior, and turned away from God. Now religion is yet another thing that people may seek to make themselves happy, and thus is may be pursued in any way shape or form. Scripture makes it quite clear what must be done to reverse the tide of evil, yet many Christians wonder why America is in such a dire situation, while at the same time disregarding God’s admonition. “If My people, who are called by My name will humble themselves, and pray and seek My face and turn from their wicked ways, the I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and heal their land.”

So what Happened America? What happened to the values morals and ethics from the time of prosperity?

Brett Baier on DNC GOD vote Fox News

Watch Me Click Here

On July 17, 1980, Ronald Reagan accepted the Republican Presidential nomination.

Thank you very much. We’re using up prime time. Thank you very much. You’re singing our song. Well, the first thrill tonight was to find myself for the first time in a long time in a movie on prime time. But this, as you can imagine, is the second big thrill. Mr. Chairman, Mr. Vice-President-to-be, this convention, my fellow citizens of this great nation:

With a deep awareness of the responsibility conferred by your trust, I accept your nomination for the Presidency of the United States. I do so with deep gratitude. And I think also I might interject on behalf of all of us our thanks to Detroit and the people of Michigan and to this city for the warm hospitality we’ve enjoyed. And I thank you for your wholehearted response to my recommendation in regard to George Bush as the candidate for Vice President.

I’m very proud of our party tonight. This convention has shown to all America a party united, with positive programs for solving the nation’s problems, a party ready to build a new consensus with all those across the land who share a community of values embodied in these words: family, work, neighborhood, peace and freedom.

Now I know we’ve had a quarrel or two but only as to the method of attaining a goal. There was no argument here about the goal. As President, I will establish a liaison with the 50 Governors to encourage them to eliminate, wherever it exists, discrimination against women. I will monitor Federal laws to insure their implementation and to add statutes if they are needed.

More than anything else, I want my candidacy to unify our country, to renew the American spirit and sense of purpose. I want to carry our message to every American, regardless of party affiliation, who is a member of this community of shared values.

Never before in our history have Americans been called upon to face three grave threats to our very existence, any one of which could destroy us. We face a disintegrating economy, a weakened defense and an energy policy based on the sharing of scarcity.

The major issue in this campaign is the direct political, personal, and moral responsibility of Democratic Party leadership – in the White House and in the Congress – for this unprecedented calamity which has befallen us. They tell us they’ve done the most that humanly could be done. They say that the United States has had its day in the sun, that our nation has passed its zenith. They expect you to tell your children that the American people no longer have the will to cope with their problems; that the future will be one of sacrifice and few opportunities.

My fellow citizens, I utterly reject that view. The American people, the most generous on earth, who created the highest standard of living, are not going to accept the notion that we can only make a better world for others by moving backward ourselves. And those who believe we can have no business leading this nation.

I will not stand by and watch this great country destroy itself under mediocre leadership that drifts from one crisis to the next, eroding our national will and purpose. We have come together here because the American people deserve better from those to whom they entrust our nation’s highest offices, and we stand united in our resolve to do something about it.

We need a rebirth of the American tradition of leadership at every level of government and in private life as well. The United States of America is unique in world history because it has a genius for leaders – many leaders – on many levels. But back in 1976, Mr. Carter said, “Trust me.” And a lot of people did. And now, many of those people are out of work. Many have seen their savings eaten away by inflation. Many others on fixed incomes, especially the elderly, have watched helplessly as the cruel tax of inflation wasted away their purchasing power. And, today, a great many who trusted Mr. Carter wonder if we can survive the Carter policies of national defense.

“Trust me” government asks that we concentrate our hopes and dreams on one man; that we trust him to do what’s best for us. But my view of government places trust not in one person or one party, but in those values that transcend persons and parties. The trust is where it belongs-in the people. The responsibility to live up to that trust is where it belongs, in their elected leaders. That kind of relationship, between the people and their elected leaders, is a special kind of compact.

Three-hundred-and-sixty years ago, in 1620, a group of families dared to cross a mighty ocean to build a future for themselves in a new world. When they arrived at Plymouth, Massachusetts, they formed what they called a “compact,” an agreement among themselves to build a community and abide by its laws.

This single act – the voluntary binding together of free people to live under the law – set the pattern for what was to come.

A century and a half later, the descendants of those people pledged their lives, their fortunes, and their sacred honor to found this nation. Some forfeited their fortunes and their lives; none sacrificed honor.

Four score and seven years later, Abraham Lincoln called upon the people of all America to renew their dedication and their commitment to a government of, for and by the people.

Isn’t it once again time to renew our compact of freedom; to pledge to each other all that is best in our lives; all that gives meaning to them – for the sake of this, our beloved and blessed land?

Together, let us make this a new beginning. Let us make a commitment to care for the needy; to teach our children the values handed down to us by our families; to have the courage to defend those values and virtues and the willingness to sacrifice for them.

Let us pledge to restore, in our time, the American spirit of voluntary service, of cooperation, of private and community initiative; a spirit that flows like a deep and mighty river through the history of our nation.

As your nominee, I pledge to you to restore to the Federal Government the capacity to do the people’s work without dominating their lives. I pledge to you a Government that will not only work well but wisely, its ability to act tempered by prudence, and its willingness to do good balanced by the knowledge that government is never more dangerous than when our desire to have it help us blinds us to its great power to harm us.

You know, the first Republican President once said, “While the people retain their virtue and their vigilance, no Administration by any extreme of wickedness or folly can seriously injure the Government in the short space of four years.” If Mr. Lincoln could see what’s happened in these last three and a half years, he might hedge a little on that statement. But with the virtues that are our legacy as a free people and with the vigilance that sustains liberty, we still have time to use our renewed compact to overcome the injuries that have been done to America these past three and a half years.

First, we must overcome something the present Administration has cooked up: a new and altogether indigestible economic stew, one part inflation, one part high unemployment, one part recession, one part runaway taxes, one part deficit spending seasoned with an energy crisis. It’s an economic stew that has turned the national stomach.

Ours are not problems of abstract economic theory. These are problems of flesh and blood; problems that cause pain and destroy the moral fiber of real people who should not suffer the further indignity of being told by the Government that it is all somehow their fault. We do not have inflation because – as Mr. Carter says – we’ve lived too well.

The head of a Government which has utterly refused to live within its means and which has, in the last few days, told us that this coming year’s deficit will be $60 billion, dares to point the finger of blame at business and labor, both of which have been engaged in a losing struggle just trying to stay even.

High taxes, we are told, are somehow good for us, as if, when government spends our money it isn’t inflationary, but when we spend it, it is. Those who preside over the worst energy shortage in our history tell us to use less so that we will run out of oil, gasoline and natural gas a little more slowly.

Well, now, conservation is desirable, of course, but we must not waste energy. But conservation is not the sole answer to our energy needs. America must get to work producing more energy. The Republican program for solving economic problems is based on growth and productivity. Large amounts of oil and natural gas lay beneath our land and off our shores, untouched because the present Administration seems to believe the American people would rather see more regulation, more taxes and more controls than more energy.

Coal offers a great potential. So does nuclear energy, produced under rigorous safety standards. It could supply electricity for thousands of industries and millions of jobs and homes. It must not be thwarted by a tiny minority opposed to economic growth which often finds friendly ears in regulatory agencies for its obstructionist campaigns. Now make no mistake. We will not permit the safety of our people or our environmental heritage to be jeopardized, but we are going to reaffirm that the economic prosperity of our people is a fundamental part of our environment.

Our problems are both acute and chronic, yet all we hear from those in positions of leadership are the same tired proposals for more Government tinkering, more meddling and more control – all of which led us to this sorry state in the first place. Can anyone look at the record of this Administration and say, “Well done”?

Can anyone compare the state of our economy when the Carter Administration took office with where we are today and say, “Keep up the good work”? Can anyone look at our reduced standing in the world today and say, “Let’s have four  more years of this”? I believe the American people are going to answer these questions, as you’ve answered them, in the first week of November and their answer will be, “No – we’ve had enough.”

And then it will be up to us – beginning next January 20 – to offer an Administration and Congressional leadership of competence and more than a little courage. We must have the clarity of vision to see the difference between what is essential and what is merely desirable; and then the courage to bring our Government back under control. It is essential that we maintain both the forward momentum of economic growth and the strength of the safety net between those in our society who need help. We also believe it is essential that the integrity of all aspects of Social Security be preserved.

Beyond these essentials, I believe it is clear our Federal Government is overgrown and overweight. Indeed, it is time our Government should go on a diet. Therefore, my first act as chief executive will be to impose an immediate and thorough freeze on Federal hiring. Then, we are going to enlist the very best minds from business, labor and whatever quarter to conduct a detailed review of every department, bureau and agency that lives by Federal appropriation.

And we are also going to enlist the help and ideas of many dedicated and hard-working Government employees at all levels who want a more efficient Government just as much as the rest of us do. I know that many of them are demoralized by the confusion and waste they confront in their work as a result of failed and failing policies. Our instructions to the groups we enlist will be simple and direct. We will remind them that Government programs exist at the sufferance of the American taxpayer and are paid for with the money earned by working men and women and programs that represent a waste of their money – a theft from their pocketbooks must have that waste eliminated or that program must go. It must go by Executive Order where possible, by Congressional action where necessary. Everything that can be run more effectively by state and local government we shall turn over to state and local government, along with the funding sources to pay for it. We are going to put an end to the money merry-go-round where our money becomes Washington’s money, to be spent by states and cities exactly the way the Federal bureaucrats tell us it has to be spent. I will not accept the excuse that the Federal Government has grown so big and powerful that it is beyond the control of any President, any administration or Congress. We are going to put an end to the notion that the American taxpayer exists to fund the Federal Government.

The Federal Government exists to serve the American people and to be accountable to the American people. On January 20, we are going to reestablish the truth. Also on that date we are going to initiate action to get substantial relief for our taxpaying citizens and action to put people back to work. None of this will be based on any new form on monetary tinkering of fiscal sleight-of-hand. We will simply apply to government the common sense that we use in our daily lives. Work and family are at the center of our lives, the foundation of our dignity as a free people. When we deprive people of what they have earned, to take away their jobs, we destroy the dignity and undermine their families.

We can’t support families unless there are jobs; and we can’t have jobs unless the people have both money to invest and the faith to invest it. These are concepts that stem from an economic system that for more than 200 years has helped us master a continent, create a previously undreamed of prosperity for our people and has fed millions of others around the globe and that system will continue to serve us in the future if our Government will stop ignored the basic values on which it was built and stop betraying the trust and good will of the American workers who keep it going.

The American people are carrying the heaviest peacetime tax burden in our nation’s history — and it will grow even heavier, under present law, next January. We are taxing ourselves into economic exhaustion and stagnation, crushing our ability and incentive to save, invest and produce. This must stop. We must halt this fiscal self-destruction and restore sanity to our economic system. I’ve long advocated a 30 percent reduction in income tax rates over a period of three years. This phased tax reduction would begin with a 10 percent “down payment” tax cut in 1981, which the Republicans in Congress and I have already proposed.

A phased reduction of tax rates would go a long way toward easing the heavy burden on the American people. But we shouldn’t stop there.

Within the context of economic conditions and appropriate budget priorities during each fiscal year of my Presidency, I would strive to go further. This would include improvement in business depreciation taxes so we can stimulate investment in order to get plants and equipment replaced, put more Americans back to work and put our nation back on the road to being competitive in world commerce. We will also work to reduce the cost of government as a percentage of our gross national product.

The first task of national leadership is to set realistic and honest priorities in our policies and our budget, and I pledge that my administration will do that. When I talk of tax cuts, I am reminded that every major tax cut in this century has strengthened the economy, generated renewed productivity and ended up yielding new revenues for the Government by creating new investment, new jobs and more commerce among our people.

The present Administration has been forced by the Republicans to play follow-the-leader with regard to a tax cut. But in this election year we must take with the proverbial “grain of salt” any tax cut proposed by those who have already given us the greatest tax increase in our nation’s history.

When those in leadership give us tax increases and tell us we must also do with less, have they thought about those who’ve always had less – especially the minorities? This is like telling them that just as they step on the first rung of the ladder of opportunity, the ladder is being pulled out from under them. That may be the Democratic leadership’s message to the minorities, but it won’t be our message. Ours, ours will be: We have to move ahead, but we’re not going to leave anyone behind.

Thanks to the economic policies of the Democratic Party, millions of Americans find themselves out of work. Millions more have never even had a fair chance to learn new skills, hold a decent job or secure for themselves and their families a share in the prosperity of this nation. It’s time to put America back to work, to make our cities and towns resound with the confident voices of men and women of all races, nationalities and faiths bringing home to their families a paycheck they can cash for honest money. For those without skills, we’ll find a way to help them get new skills. For those without job opportunities we’ll stimulate new opportunities, particularly in the inner cities where they live. For those who’ve abandoned hope, we’ll restore hope and we’ll welcome them into a great national crusade to make American great again.

When we move from domestic affairs, and cast our eyes abroad, we see an equally sorry chapter in the record of the present Administration:

-A Soviet combat brigade trains in Cuba, just 90 miles from our shores.

-A Soviet army of invasion occupies Afghanistan, further threatening our vital interests in the Middle East.

-America’s defense strength is at its lowest ebb in a generation, while the Soviet Union is vastly outspending us in both strategic and conventional arms.

-Our European allies, looking nervously at the growing menace from the East, turn to us for leadership and fail to find it.

-And incredibly, more than 50, as you’ve been told from this platform so eloquently already, more than 50 of our fellow Americans have been help captive for over eight years – eight months by a dictatorial foreign power that holds us up to ridicule before the world. Adversaries large and small test our will and seek to confound our resolve, but we are given weakness when we need strength; vacillation when the times demand firmness.

The Carter Administration lives in a world of make-believe. Every day, drawing up a response to that day’s problems, troubles, regardless of what happened yesterday and what’ll happen tomorrow. But you and I live in a real world, where disasters are overtaking our nation without any real response from Washington. This is make-believe, self-deceit, and, above all, transparent hypocrisy. For example, Mr. Carter says he supports the volunteer Army, but he lets military pay and benefits slip so low that many of our enlisted personnel are actually eligible for food stamps. Reenlistment rates drop and, just recently, after he fought all week against a proposed pay increase for our men and women in the military, he then helicoptered out to our carrier the U.S.S. Nimitz, which was returning from long months of duty in the Indian Ocean, and told the crew of that chip that he advocated better pay for them and their comrades. Where does he really stand, now that he’s back on shore?

Well, I’ll tell you where I stand. I do not favor a peacetime draft or resignation, but I do favor pay and benefit levels that will attract and keep highly motivated men and women in our volunteer forces and back them up with an active reserve trained and ready for instant call in case of emergency. You know, there may be a sailor at the helm of the ship of state, but the ship has no rudder. Critical decisions are made at times almost in comic fashion, but who can laugh? Who was not embarrassed when the Administration handed a major propaganda victory in the United Nations to the enemies of Israel, our staunch Middle East ally for three decades, then claimed that the American vote was a “mistake,” a “failure of communication” between the President, his Secretary of State and the U.N. Ambassador? Who does not feel a growing sense of unease as our allies, facing repeated instances of an amateurish and confused Administration, reluctantly conclude that American is unwilling or unable to fulfill its obligations as leader of the free world? Who does not feel rising alarm when the question in any discussion of foreign policy is no longer, “Should we do something?” but “Do we have the capacity to do anything?”

The Administration which has brought us to this state is seeking your endorsement for four more years of weakness, indecision, mediocrity, and incompetence. No. No. Americans should vote until he or she is asked: Is the United States stronger and more respected now than it was three-and-a-half years ago? Is the world safer, a safer place in which to life? It is the responsibility of the President of the United States, in working for peace, to insure that the safety of our people cannot successfully be threatened by a hostile foreign power. As President, fulfilling that responsibility will be my No. 1 priority.

We’re not a warlike people. Quite the opposite. We always seek to live in peace. We resort to force infrequently and with great reluctance – and only after we’ve determined that it is absolutely necessary. We are awed – and rightly so – by the forces of destruction at loose in the world in this nuclear era. But neither can we be naive or foolish. Four times in my lifetime America has gone to war, bleeding the lives of its young men into the sands of island beachheads, the fields of Europe and the jungles and rice paddies of Asia. We know only too well that war comes not when the forces of freedom are strong, it is when they are weak that tyrants are tempted. We simply cannot learn these lessons the hard way again without risking our destruction.

Of all the objectives we seek, first and foremost is the establishment of lasting world peace. We must always stand ready to negotiate in good faith, ready to pursue any reasonable avenue that holds forth the promise of lessening tensions and furthering the prospects of peace. But let our friends and those who may wish us ill take note: the United States has an obligation to its citizens and to the people of the world never to let those who would destroy freedom dictate the future course of life on this planet. I would regard my election as proof that we have renewed our resolve to preserve world peace and freedom. That this nation will once again be strong enough to do that.

Now this evening marks the last step, save one, of a campaign that has taken Nancy and me from one end of this great nation to the other, over many months and thousands and thousands of miles. There are those who question the way we choose a President, who say that our process imposes difficult and exhausting burdens on those who seek the office. I have not found it so. It is impossible to capture in words the splendor of this vast continent which God has granted as our portion of His creation. There are no words to express the extraordinary strength and character of this breed of people we call Americans. Everywhere we’ve met thousands of Democrats, Independents and Republicans from all economic conditions, walks of life bound together in that community of shared values of family, work, neighborhood, peace and freedom. They are concerned, yes, they’re not frightened. They’re disturbed, but not dismayed. They are the kind of men and women Tom Paine had in mind when he wrote, during the darkest days of the American Revolution, “We have it in our power to begin the world over again.” Nearly 150 years after Tom Paine wrote those words, an American President told the generation of the Great Depression that it had a “rendezvous with destiny.” I believe this generation of Americans today also has a rendezvous with destiny.

Tonight, let us dedicate ourselves to renewing the American compact. I ask you not simply to “trust me,” but to trust your values – our values – and to hold me responsible for living up to them. I ask you to trust that American spirit which knows no ethnic, religious, social, political, regional or economic boundaries; the spirit that burned with zeal in the hearts of millions of immigrants from every corner of the earth who came here in search of freedom.

Some say that spirit no longer exists. But I’ve seen it – I’ve felt it – all across the land, in the big cities, the small towns and in rural America. It’s still there, ready to blaze into life if you and I will stimulate our economy, increase productivity and put America back to work. The time is now to limit Federal spending; to insist of a stable monetary reform and to free ourselves from imported oil. The time is now to resolve that the basis of a firm and principled foreign policy is one that takes the world as it is and seeks to change it by leadership and example, not by harangue, harassment or wishful thinking. The time is now to say that we shall seek new friendships and expand others and improve others, but we shall not do so by breaking our word or casting aside old friends and allies. And the time is now to redeem promises once made to the American people, by another candidate, in another time and another place.

He said:

“For three long years I have been going up and down this country preaching that government – Federal, state and local – costs too much. I shall not stop that preaching. As an immediate program of action, we must abolish useless offices. We must eliminate unnecessary functions of government.

“We must consolidate subdivisions of government and, like the private citizen, give up luxuries which we can no longer afford.”

And then he said:

“I propose to you, my friends, and through you, that government of all kinds, big and little, be made solvent and that the example be set by the President of the United States and his Cabinet.”

That was Franklin Delano Roosevelt’s words as he accepted the Democratic nomination for President in 1932.

The time is now, my fellow Americans, to recapture our destiny, to take it into our own hands. And to do this it will take many of us, working together. I ask you tonight, all over this land, to volunteer your help in this cause so that we can carry our message through out the land.

Isn’t it time that we, the people, carry out these unkept promises? That we pledge to each other and to all America on this July day 48 years later, that now we intend to do just that.

I have thought of something that’s not a part of my speech and worried over whether I should do it. Can we doubt that only a Divine Providence placed this land, this island of freedom, here as a refuge for all those people in the world who yearn to breathe free? Jews and Christians enduring persecution behind the Iron Curtain; the boat people of Southeast Asia, Cuba, and of Haiti; the victims of drought and famine in Africa, the freedom fighters of Afghanistan, and our own countrymen held in savage captivity.

I’ll confess that I’ve been a little afraid to suggest what I’m going to suggest. I’m more afraid not to. Can we begin our crusade joined together in a moment of silent prayer?

God bless America.

Thank you.

the armor of God

the armor of God.


I thought we should recap this one…….Amen

The Founding Fathers’

The Holy Family with God the Father and the Ho...

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Matthew 6

1Take heed that ye do not your alms (Alms – archaic : charity : something (as money or food) given freely to relieve the poor ” but let us not be full of worldly things for lest we be poor in spirit and fall short of the Kingdom of heaven) before men, to be seen of them( for we were spiritual in the beginning let us remember what God intended us to be) : otherwise ye have no reward of your Father which is in heaven.

2Therefore when thou doest thine (the divine and of the divinity) alms, do not sound a trumpet before thee (for is it of men that your works are done or of our father in heaven as it is written give the Glory to God), as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and in the streets, that they may have glory of men. Verily I say unto you, They have their reward.

3But when thou doest alms, let not thy left hand know what thy right hand doeth ( for in the body of the Holy Spirit there is a congregation of God and each member has its purpose just as the body of flesh has its hands eyes and ears):

4That thine alms may be in secret: and thy Father which seeth in secret himself shall reward thee openly.

5And when thou ( The you that God through the Holy Spirit created in the beginning Spiritually) prayest, thou shalt not be as the hypocrites are: for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and in the corners of the streets, that they may be seen of men (and not of God for God does not look upon the worldly but his children full of spirit and life). Verily I say unto you, They have their reward.

6But thou, when thou prayest, enter into thy closet(so that those poor in spirit may receive the blessings our father has given and the blind may see what you have seen and become known), and when thou hast shut thy door, pray to thy Father which is in secret; and thy Father which seeth in secret shall reward thee openly( for you have given glory to our father in heaven).

7But when ye pray, use not vain repetitions, as the heathen do: for they think that they shall be heard for their much speaking (our father knows what you need beyond your understanding).

8Be not ye therefore like unto them: for your Father knoweth what things ye have need of, before ye ask him.

9After this manner therefore pray ye: Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name (praising his name giving Glory to God for it is written do not put the light under a basket but place it upon high so that it may shine its light in the world).

10Thy kingdom come( the you of God – The Holy Spirit of God come), Thy (the you complete with truth and light full of the Holy spirit of God) will be done in earth (in flesh as we were created from the earth beneath our feet as vessels to receive the breath of life through the Holy Spirit and thus we have divorced the wickedness of the flesh – “the wife of our youth”), as it is in heaven(speaking living and walking in spiritual ways doing God’s purpose as it was in the beginning when the Holy spirit of God hovered over the void).

11Give us this day our daily bread.( The crumbs and slices to lead us to the truth as without it we have no meat and we shall receive meat in due season before the harvest)

12And forgive us our sins (Fleshly wickedness) and transgressions (as we have honored the covenant), as we forgive our sinners ( Fleshly wicked) and transgressors (teach the covenant to those outside of it protecting the lamb as we are sheep for the shepherd of shepherds).

13And lead us not into temptation (for we seek the brightest light not of the world but of the kingdom of heaven let not the world tempt us with it’s trickery of temptation), but deliver us from evil: For thine(the divine of the divinity) is the kingdom (Kingdom of Heaven of the Father in Heaven), and the power(thine will, to succeed, to bring forth fruit from the vineyard for the father in heaven) , and the glory(for it is the father in heaven who sent the Holy Spirit of God to redeem us), for ever (as the Holy Spirit of God is the rock of foundation who hovered over the void in the beginning and is the rock of all ages eternal the beginning of beginnings the end of ends and the new beginnings to lead and guide once again in every age to come become or be undone). Amen.

14For if ye forgive men (Plural as man was created both male and female in the beginning) their trespasses (Transgressions from the covenant), your heavenly Father will also forgive you:

15But if ye forgive not men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses (for you have not been teaching and it is the seed that has not yet been planted that brought about this evil for if all evil never saw good then how shall evil be defeated with out love? Did God not send his Holy Spirit throughout the world out of unconditional love?)).

16Moreover when ye fast( do without something of importance to you for a time to show our father you are in need), be not, as the hypocrites, of a sad countenance: for they disfigure their faces, that they may appear unto men to fast. Verily I say unto you, They have their reward.

17But thou, when thou fastest, anoint thine head, and wash thy face;

18That thou appear not unto men to fast, but unto thy Father which is in secret: and thy Father, which seeth in secret, shall reward thee openly.( for it is written with the faith of a mustard seed we cast out evil through prayer and fasting and as it is written bread is not the food that you eat but the words to protect you from the yeast, how then do you think the Lord was speaking of starvation and food?)

19Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth (for if you have too much one must be doing without therefore why have they suffered when the Lord has blessed you with the power to give?), where moth and rust doth corrupt, and where thieves break through and steal: (For if in the land of plenty no one suffered their would not be greed or suffering…is it not written we are each equally suffered unto him?)

20But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven (with our father in heaven’s way and love one another as you would love thine self and remember you are but sheep among the wolves and each sheep is a member and each member a part of the body and the body full of truth and light is a congregation of our father in heaven), where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through nor steal:

21For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also. (put your heart in our father in heaven and not in the way of the world for it was the way of the world that cursed you to be bound to it until you have learned)

22The light of the body is the eye (for we must follow the ways of our father because we lead by example and we follow to learn to lead): if therefore thine (the divine and of the divinity) eye be single (together in congregation in communion with our father through the guidance of receiving the Holy Spirit), thy whole body shall be full of light(the congregation of God is safe and full of truth and light giving the lost the way leading the lamb away from the slaughter into the center of the sheep to be lead by a shepherd and a shepherd by the shepherd of shepherds for it is written The Holy Spirit of God is Lord of the Hosts and we are destine to receive but it is left to us to choose, lead, follow and guide).

23But if thine eye be evil, thy whole body shall be full of darkness. If therefore the light that is in thee be darkness, how great is that darkness!

24No man can serve two masters (for you serve flesh by teaching sin or you serve Spirit by example and planting the seed for this is the food of which is written that every man should inherit the Kingdom of heaven therefor it is written the kingdom of heaven is at hand for you to choose): for either he will hate the one (worldly wickedness), and love the other(spiritual truth); or else he will hold to the one(world and perish), and despise the other(our father in heaven). Ye cannot serve God and mammon.

25Therefore I say unto you, Take no thought for your life, what ye shall eat, or what ye shall drink; nor yet for your body, what ye shall put on. Is not the life more than meat, and the body than raiment?(for it is the host of your spirit and if your spirit does not grow when the body has perished so shall thee)

26Behold the fowls of the air: for they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feedeth them. Are ye not much better than they?

27Which of you by taking thought can add one cubit unto his stature?

28And why take ye thought for raiment? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow; they toil not, neither do they spin:

29And yet I say unto you, That even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these.

30Wherefore, if God so clothe the grass of the field, which to day is, and to morrow is cast into the oven, shall he not much more clothe you, O ye of little faith?(for it is your fleshly body he has clothed your spirit in yet you have thought yourself to be your clothing?)

31Therefore take no thought, saying, What shall we eat? or, What shall we drink? or, Wherewithal shall we be clothed?

32(For after all these things do the Gentiles seek:) for your heavenly Father knoweth that ye have need of all these things.

33But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.

34Take therefore no thought for the morrow: for the morrow shall take thought for the things of itself. Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof.(for it is the thoughts of this world to not look to the future and it is that evil that blinds you to the spirit that must grow to become what God made you to be)

By our father in heaven

through the Holy Spirit hovering over the earth

and by our father on earth

we children must seek heavenly seeds

thus carrying on the tradition of the Founding Fathers’ (plural with ownership Fathers’ )

Minister Joseph Preston Kirk

The Path to God did you Know?

The Destruction Of Sodom And Gomorrah, a paint...

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Matthew 10:5-15

These twelve Jesus sent out, instructing them, “Go nowhere among the Gentiles and enter no town of the Samaritans, but go rather to the lost sheep of the house of Israel. And proclaim as you go, saying, ‘The kingdom of heaven is at hand.’ Heal the sick, raise the dead, cleanse lepers, cast out demons. You received without paying; give without pay. Acquire no gold or silver or copper for your belts, no bag for your journey, or two tunics or sandals or a staff, for the laborer deserves his food. And whatever town or village you enter, find out who is worthy in it and stay there until you depart. As you enter the house, greet it. And if the house is worthy, let your peace come upon it, but if it is not worthy, let your peace return to you. And if anyone will not receive you or listen to your words, shake off the dust from your feet when you leave that house or town. Truly, I say to you, it will be more bearable on the day of judgment for the land of Sodom and Gomorrah than for that town.

Kingdom?…of the King

Do not be of this world?

Of the King of Heaven?

Of God?

The people of God should be of God by walking and talking in spiritual ways.

Lead by Example?

To lead you must first learn to follow…..

To follow the example you have learned well enough to lead and thus can lead by example.

To be in communion with God you must receive the Holy Spirit of God.

The Kingdom? The of God

The kingdom of Heaven?

The of God of Heaven?

The Holy Spirit of God of our father who art in heaven……God the father in Heaven
These twelve Jesus sent out, instructing them, “Go nowhere among the Gentiles and enter no town of the Samaritans, but go rather to the lost sheep of the house of Israel(lost, confused or misguided members of God’s congregation so they will protect the lambs “youth poor in spirit” to be of the Holy Spirit of God once again in unity) . And proclaim as you go, saying, ‘The kingdom of heaven is at hand.(It is in your hands to choose to place yourself in God’s hands to receive the Holy Spirit of God you must obey the covenant the choice is yours and the time is always at hand as there is no time better than right now)’ Heal the sick(lacking the Holy spirit of God needing “the physician”), raise the dead(show them the way lead by example so they will receive and not perish but instead have everlasting life), cleanse lepers(cleanse the afflicted stilled walking in fleshly wicked ways), cast out demons(this is how you rid the world of evil and cast out demons). You received without paying(if you follow the example “the covenant” you have become an example and do not pay for sins as now you are free from sin); give without pay(Lead by example and they shall follow)( you received the Holy Spirit by honoring the covenant casting aside sin you cannot give the  way to the Holy Spirit with Sin as an example for if you sin you have become the hypocrite and make them twice the child of hell as you are by giving a bad example). Acquire no gold(Evil) or silver(temptation) or copper(the Dead in Spirit) for your belts(circles – For the shepherd shepherds the sheep and the sheep surround the lamb if the sheep be found as wolves the lamb is devoured), no bag for your journey(no bag for one ready for the Holy Spirit is pure having no burden to carry for the one on the path their burden is light), or two tunics (because you are either of the flesh or of the spirit you cannot be both) or sandals (do not walk in the ways of the flesh) or a staff (and the spirit shall sustain you and will lift you up and you), for the laborer( the one who does God’s will) deserves his food(Spirit). And whatever town or village you enter, find out who is worthy in it and stay there until you depart. As you enter the house, greet it. And if the house is worthy, let your peace come upon it, but if it is not worthy, let your peace return to you. And if anyone will not receive you or listen to your words, shake off the dust from your feet when you leave that house or town. Truly, I say to you, it will be more bearable on the day of judgment for the land of Sodom and Gomorrah than for that town.

Commandment 1

Thou shall have no other God before me.

For our father in heaven is the almighty who art in heaven.

The you that God through the Holy Spirit of God Created shall not know God until receiving the Holy Spirit of God. No Idols nor rituals shall save you. You can follow worldly rituals and make false Idols all day and night but none shall see the Kingdom without first honoring the covenant.

You would not walk before learning.

You would not eat before cooking.

You would not know before being enlightened.

Commandment 2

Love God with all your heart and all your soul, do unto others as you would have them do unto you, and love your neighbor as you would love yourself.

John 14:16

“I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.

Follow my example obey the Covenant fulfill the promise The Holy spirit is the way, and the truth, and the spirit who gives life. No one Knows God or shall enter the Kingdom before receiving the Holy Spirit of God.

Thou shall have no other God before me ……..

I am the God “I AM”

I am therefore I am

I have received the Holy Spirit of God who gives life and therefore I live.

~Minister Joseph Preston Kirk

Proverbs 30 with Proverbial Wisdom

English: Gian Lorenzo Bernini - Dove of the Ho...

The Dove a Symbol of Peace and Love

Proverbs 30

The words of Agur son of Jakeh. The oracle.
The man declares, I am weary, O God;
I am weary, O God, and worn out.
Surely I am too stupid to be a man.
I have not the understanding of a man.
I have not learned wisdom,
nor have I knowledge of the Holy One.
Who has ascended to heaven and come down?
Who has gathered the wind in his fists?
Who has wrapped up the waters in a garment?
Who has established all the ends of the earth?
What is his name, and what is his son’s name?
Surely you know!
Every word of God proves true;
he is a shield to those who take refuge in him.
Do not add to his words,
lest he rebuke you and you be found a liar.
Two things I ask of you;
deny them not to me before I die:
Remove far from me falsehood and lying;
give me neither poverty nor riches;
feed me with the food that is needful for me,
lest I be full and deny you
and say, “Who is the LORD?”
or lest I be poor and steal
and profane the name of my God.
Do not slander a servant to his master,
lest he curse you, and you be held guilty.
There are those who curse their fathers
and do not bless their mothers.
There are those who are clean in their own eyes
but are not washed of their filth.
There are those—how lofty are their eyes,
how high their eyelids lift!
There are those whose teeth are swords,
whose fangs are knives,
to devour the poor from off the earth,
the needy from among mankind.
The leech has two daughters:
Give and Give.
Three things are never satisfied;
four never say, “Enough”:
Sheol, the barren womb,
the land never satisfied with water,
and the fire that never says, “Enough.”
The eye that mocks a father
and scorns to obey a mother
will be picked out by the ravens of the valley
and eaten by the vultures.
Three things are too wonderful for me;
four I do not understand:
the way of an eagle in the sky,
the way of a serpent on a rock,
the way of a ship on the high seas,
and the way of a man with a virgin.
This is the way of an adulteress:
she eats and wipes her mouth
and says, “I have done no wrong.”
Under three things the earth trembles;
under four it cannot bear up:
a slave when he becomes king,
and a fool when he is filled with food;
an unloved woman when she gets a husband,
and a maidservant when she displaces her mistress.
Four things on earth are small,
but they are exceedingly wise:
the ants are a people not strong,
yet they provide their food in the summer;
the rock badgers are a people not mighty,
yet they make their homes in the cliffs;
the locusts have no king,
yet all of them march in rank;
the lizard you can take in your hands,
yet it is in kings’ palaces.
Three things are stately in their tread;
four are stately in their stride:
the lion, which is mightiest among beasts
and does not turn back before any;
the strutting rooster, the he-goat,
and a king whose army is with him.
If you have been foolish, exalting yourself,
or if you have been devising evil,
put your hand on your mouth.
For pressing milk produces curds,
pressing the nose produces blood,
and pressing anger produces strife.

Proverbs 30
The words of Agur son of Jakeh. The oracle.
The man declares, I am weary, O God;
I am weary, O God, and worn out.
Surely I am too stupid to be a man.(God made man both male and female in the beginning spiritual until we were cursed for transgression)
I have not the understanding of a man.(The spiritual being I am to become to receive the spirit of life once I have put away my fleshly wickedness of the world)
I have not learned wisdom,(The truth in the light of the Holy Spirit of God as true wisdom comes from above)
nor have I knowledge of the Holy One.(The Holy Spirit of God as I have been lost a stranger blinded by my fleshly youth)
Who has ascended to heaven and come down?(But the Holy Spirit of God)
Who has gathered the wind in his fists?(For through him all things are moved throughout time and space to inspire all things made and unmade)
Who has wrapped up the waters in a garment? (The spirits in his protection a new host or I.E. vessel I.E. wine sack as we drink of the spirit and not evil spirits is it no wonder they call alcohol and liquor “spirits”)
Who has established all the ends of the earth?(ordered by God the Holy Spirit of God hovered over the void and created all things – Genesis)
What is his name, and what is his son’s name?(God and the Holy Spirit of God)
Surely you know!
Every word of God proves true;
he is a shield to those who take refuge in him.(None come to the father”God” but through me “The Holy Spirit of God” as he gave all those receiving and honoring the covenant the right to become children of God)
Do not add to his words,(religious persecutions and rituals with their forgotten roots as man shall not live by them alone but every word that came from the mouth of God)
lest he rebuke you and you be found a liar.( a false teacher not tending to his vineyard)
Two things I ask of you;
deny them not to me before I die:
Remove far from me falsehood and lying;(the yeast of the bread revealing the true word – “the feast of unleavened bread‘s root)
give me neither poverty nor riches;(neither lack of The Holy Spirit or worldly riches as true riches are waiting for me in his kingdom not of this world)
feed me with the food that is needful for me,(Do not eat of the tree of knowledge of good and evil but drink of the spirit and eat of the unleavened bread as true wisdom comes from above and is the knowledge of God)
lest I be full and deny you(full of evil and impure unable to contain the grace of receiving the Holy Spirit)
and say, “Who is the LORD?”(Lest I be full of evil and not receive the grace of the holy spirit as a lamb sent to slaughter by my wicked ways not being a pure offering to the Lord as a new wine sack to receive The Holy spirit)
or lest I be poor(lacking spirit) and steal (for woe unto them who make them twice the child of hell by teaching false words adulterating the word of God as rituals and words will not save only actions and professions of faith – merit – without you will be stealing those away from the owner when the servant comes to receive them at harvest)
and profane the name of my God.(Adulterating his words)
Do not slander a servant to his master,(do not send an impure offering to the Holy Spirit as he shall see not only the words but the actions to prove upon the merits)
lest he curse you, and you be held guilty.(as it is written those false teachers shall see the darkest of darkness forever)
There are those who curse their fathers (father on earth, Holy Spirit the creator, and God)
and do not bless their mothers.(Mother on earth of the flesh, and mother – from the kingdom of which we come as it is written do not be deceived be not of this world)
There are those who are clean in their own eyes (self righteous not knowing the unleavened word of God trying to be saved by words and rituals alone but it is written “how can I be your master if you do not what I say?”)
but are not washed of their filth.(as water cleanses the earth the Holy Spirit of God cleanses the pure of heart honoring the covenants)
There are those—how lofty are their eyes,(as they seek worldly acceptance and seek the approval for worldly accomplishments)
how high their eyelids lift!(yet they are spiritually blind)
There are those whose teeth are swords,(the wolves looking for the lost with out sheep or shepherd as lambs to slaughter)
whose fangs are knives,(that dig deep to destroy God’s congregation)
to devour the poor(those lacking the truth and spirit) from off the earth,(the vineyard God hath set in place to harvest the pure spirits who have divorced the wickedness of the flesh I.E. the wife of their youth a spirit born into flesh to achieve grace and ascend to the kingdom of God)
the needy from among mankind.(as God created man both male and female and separated us from him for transgression to seek the light in the dark–darkness the wanting of light — light – the truth the wisdom of God – I.E. those needing the Holy Spirit of God to be saved)
The leech has two daughters:
Give and Give.(For they do not Give and receive they only take and destroy true life)
Three things are never satisfied;(the vineyard not tended, the lost without a guide, the trials that cannot be stopped without God’s love the Holy Spirit)
four never say, “Enough”:(The blind in Spirit cut off from the father in Heaven)
Sheol, the barren womb,(the seedless vineyard without the Holy Spirit)
the land(host I.E. vessel I.E. wine sack) never satisfied with water,(spirit)
and the fire ( as he will sit as a refiner of silver and to refine silver you must watch it until you see your image in it- therefore without God’s truth at times of trial leaving the silver to long burns it up and destroys it) that never says, “Enough.”
The eye (the wicked ways of the flesh without spiritual eyes) that mocks a father(by words and rituals but does not act in accordance will lack merit)
and scorns to obey a mother (a mother – singular – from the kingdom from which you came often referred to as the Jerusalem in heaven – defying God’s will)
will be picked out by the ravens of the valley (The valley of death as flesh ” the old wine sack will burst not being able to contain the spirit and shall perish in spiritual death not seeing everlasting life)
and eaten by the vultures.(The evil they are surrounded by picking away at them with temptation)
Three things are too wonderful for me;
four I do not understand:
the way of an eagle in the sky,(The one who watches over me for no one understands God without his Spiritual Guidance)
the way of a serpent on a rock,(The evil that upon a rock can only be if not on the rock of foundation- The Holy Spirit of God)
the way of a ship on the high seas,(this one shall be revealed to you when you receive it yourself)
and the way of a man with a virgin.( the way of a man “complete putting away childish things and becoming spiritual in maturity” who has received to plant the seed for one who has not –  God made man both male and female)
This is the way of an adulteress:
she eats and wipes her mouth (the womb of the world eats of the evil seed and hides as a wolf in sheep’s clothing)
and says, “I have done no wrong.”(self righteously)
Under three things the earth trembles; (God, the Holy Spirit, and the servants with a Godly congregation)
under four it cannot bear up:(under evil it cannot ascend)
a slave (as to be free from the bondage of sin we must divorce the wickedness of flesh) when he becomes king,( when evil is allowed to rule over good by transgressions and the lack of spirit….sheep to protect the lamb and shepherds to tend the flock.. for he sent them out as sheep among the wolves as sheep protect their lambs and shepherds keep the flock “congregation” together)
and a fool when he is filled with food;(lacking spirit filled with worldly knowledge and seeds of evil)
an unloved woman when she gets a husband,(for it is written the holy spirit is the bride groom yet if you are not pure it is written he shall not know the workers of lawlessness)
and a maidservant when she displaces her mistress. (a servant when displacing the master- “how can I be your master when you do not what I say)
Four things on earth are small,
but they are exceedingly wise:
the ants are a people not strong,(divided by rituals and religions and the yeast in the bread we are weak)
yet they provide their food in the summer;(meat in due season planting the seed with the faith of a mustard seed to harvest in abundance the good will and God’s purpose)
the rock badgers are a people not mighty,(building their house on firm foundations – The Holy Spirit is the rock)
yet they make their homes in the cliffs;( look for wisdom on high as true wisdom comes from above)
the locusts have no king,
yet all of them march in rank;( in unity each member has a purpose and skill and together a task is accomplished to establish divinity yet – evil shall deny God and stand against you if you do not know the way as evil has no king and has been denied entry into the kingdom and seek to devour it as locusts hence why God sent the locusts to teach evil a lesson they did not understand)
the lizard you can take in your hands,(for it is written to teach the kingdom of heaven is at hand)
yet it is in kings’ palaces.(plural – the choice is your’s and no other can choose for you – God gave man both male and female dominion over earth and it is by your works and measure that thou shall judge as a lizard is a chameleon it can be renewed beware of wolves but wolves can also be renewed as it is written one day the wolves and sheep shall dine together)
Three things are stately in their tread;(God, The Holy Spirit and the children of God planting seeds to tread out the grain (spirit) for the harvest)
four are stately in their stride:
the lion, which is mightiest among beasts (god)
and does not turn back before any;
the strutting rooster(The Holy Spirit who awakens you upon your rebirth in the spirit), the he-goat,(the child of God)
and a king whose army is with him.(congregation of God who stands for God in purity)
If you have been foolish,(without spiritual guidance) exalting yourself,(self righteousness)
or if you have been devising evil,(slaughtering the lambs having no sheep or shepherd to tend the vineyard by lack of spirit and teaching leavened bread)
put your hand on your mouth.(and speak not of the leaven but seek truth and the Holy Spirit shall set you free)
For pressing milk produces curds,(The press of the vineyard was a wine press to press spirits, milk rots and becomes curd and the Lord accepts no substitutions I.E. rituals and words by false doctrines having no works as it is written the flesh shall perish but all those receiving the grace of God The holy spirit shall not perish but become everlasting)
pressing the nose produces blood,( for the hypocrite lifts his nose and is to righteous shedding the blood of the lamb instead of producing water into wine “spirit” since we did not understand when Jesus was stabbed with the spear water flowed from him to give you this key)
and pressing anger produces strife.(for without love and the wisdom from God religions and rituals separate us with strife for this is the purpose of the greatest being the 2 love God and Love your neighbor as yourself)

We are all his creations and we are all his temples and we all were given the choice….

God Bless,

Minister Joseph Preston Kirk

For much is given much is required?

The Holy Spirit depicted as a dove, surrounded...

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2 Timothy 3:16

All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness,

Luke 12:48

But the one who does not know and does things deserving punishment will be beaten with few blows. From everyone who has been given much, much will be demanded; and from the one who has been entrusted with much, much more will be asked.


These words were spoken recently out of context in  a speech reported by FNC Fox News Channel………let us clarify them today

But the one who does not know (the wisdom of God through the Holy Spirit) and does things deserving punishment will be beaten with few blows. From everyone who has been given much (responsibility), much will be demanded(wisdom and Knowledge for Guidance in true faith); and from the one who has been entrusted with much(the Public “Congregation’s” trust), much more will be asked(the Ox must tread out the grain to provide spiritual wisdom to achieve peace on earth).

Prov 3:19-20 By wisdom (Spirit-the Holy spirit of God hovered over the void and created all things made- Genesis chapter 1) Lord laid the earth’s foundations, by understanding he set the heavens in place( by love care and protection he put the firmament around the world his vineyard- Genesis chapter 1); by his knowledge the deeps (spirits born and unborn)were divided.

Genesis 1:6
And God said, “Let there be an expanse between the waters to separate water from water.”
between the spirits as the holy spirit breathed the water(Spirit) of life into us in the beginning to separate us from him until we have learned to conduct ourselves in spiritual ways

1 Cor 13:8-12

For if there are prophecies they will be fulfilled and done with, if there are “tongues” (different languages twisted into self righteous opinions and Agendas) the need for them will disappear, if there is knowledge (worldly thoughts and opinions) it will be swallowed up in truth(the Holy Spirit). For our knowledge is always incomplete and our prophecy is always incomplete, and when the complete (Holy Spirit) comes, that is the end of the incomplete(worldly wickedness of the flesh). When I was a little child(born into flesh) I talked and felt like a little child(in fleshly ways). Now that I am a man (as God created man both male and female by spirit in the beginning and through the covenant I have achieved his grace) I am finished with childish things(wickedness and fleshly ways). At present we are men looking at puzzling reflections in a mirror(trying to find ourselves a way back to the revelation of his spirits image by our acts not just our lips and observances). The time will come when we shall see reality whole and face to face(as we again become one with the spirit on the day of at-one-ment)! At present all I know is a small fraction of the truth(spirit that is but crumbs to follow back into the Lord’s way), but the time will come when I shall know it as fully as God has known me(for when I accept his promise and honor the covenant I shall be in his Holy Communion)!

Prov 24:3-4 By wisdom (spirit) a house (host) is built (filled), and through understanding(wisdom and love) it is established(made to be sustained); through knowledge(enlightenment) its rooms (descendants) are filled (saved) with rare and beautiful treasures (the rewards of God).

Prov 19:2 It is not good to have zeal without knowledge(the Holy Spirit of God), nor to be hasty (self Righteous) and miss the way(examples given through the signs and seasons including the lessons of flesh).

Hos 4:6  My (God’s) people are destroyed from lack of knowledge(Spirit).

Eph 5:17  Therefore, do not be foolish(stricken by temptations of the flesh “world”), but understand what the Lord’s will is(Spirit of God’s purpose is).

Prov 23:23  Buy(The cost is honoring the covenant) the truth (Spirit)and do not sell it(and hold fast to your promise in return lest you be cast off for being defiled in his house); get wisdom(Spirit), discipline(Fast when dealing with trials and tribulations for we are each equally suffered unto the Lord), and understanding(unconditional love for God).

Prov 9:6 Leave your simple ways (worldly ways) and you will live(be redeemed); walk in the way of understanding(the Holy Spirit of God).

Jam 1:5  If any of you lacks wisdom(the Holy Spirit of God), he should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault(by honoring the covenant set down before thee), and it will be given to him(by and through repentance of our sins and divorcing the wife “flesh” of our youth).

Prov 8:11  For wisdom(Holy Spirit of God) is more precious than rubies, and nothing you desire can compare with her (the wife of your rebirth in spirit).

Prov 19:8  He who gets wisdom loves his own soul; he who cherishes understanding prospers.

Prov 13:20 He who walks with the wise (spirit) grows wise (spirit), but a companion of fools (wickedness of flesh)suffers harm.

Prov 24:5-6  A wise (spiritual) man has great power (for thine is the Kingdom the power and the Glory forever Amen), and a man of knowledge (God) increases strength. For waging war you need guidance, and for victory many advisers( a body of spirit with spiritual men in a congregation).

Gen 2:17 But you must not eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil (eat of the tree of spirit and not of flesh), for when you eat of it you will surely die (because you must choose their is no partiality to being in the spirit of God eating of the tree of flesh only leads to temptation as it was in the Garden of Eden in the beginning).

1 Cor 14:20 Brothers, stop thinking like children(disobedient children outside of the covenant). In regard to evil be infants(to be wise as serpents but innocent as doves “doves-long since a symbol of love), but in your thinking be like adults(spiritual beings full of truth and light in the Holy Spirit).

Rom 16:19b But I want you to be wise about what is good, and innocent about what is evil.

Rom 16:19b I want to see you experts in good, and not even beginners at evil.

Mat 10:16 I am sending you out as sheep among wolves(you must flock together in unity with a shepherd). Therefore, be as shrewd as snakes and as innocent as doves.

Phil 4:7  Then, the peace(Spirit) of God, which is beyond our utmost understanding(without it), will keep guard over your hearts and thoughts, in Christ Jesus(the messenger who first received him Jesus becoming the Christ..the Holy Spirit in his flesh).

Job 36:26 How great is God, beyond our understanding!

Prov 3:5,7a Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding…. Do not be wise in your own eyes.

Jam 3:13-17  Is there some wise and understanding man among you? Then let his life be a shining example of the humility that is born of true wisdom. But if your heart is full of bitter jealousy and rivalry, then do not boast and do not deny the truth. You may acquire a certain wisdom, but it does not come from above–it comes from this world, from your own lower nature, even from the devil. For wherever you find jealousy and rivalry you also find disharmony and all other kinds of evil. The wisdom that comes from above is first pure, then peace-loving, gentle, approachable, full of merciful thoughts and kindly actions, straightforward, with no hint of hypocrisy.

1 Cor 1:18-31 The preaching of the cross is, I know, nonsense to those who are involved in this dying world, but to us who are being saved from that death it is nothing less than the power of God. It is written: “I will destroy the wisdom of the wise, and the prudence of the prudent will I reject.” For consider, what have the philosopher, the writer, and the critic of this world to show for all their wisdom? Has not God made the wisdom of this world look foolish? For it was after the world in its wisdom had failed to know God, that he in his wisdom chose to save all who would believe by the “simple- mindedness” of the gospel message. For the Jews ask for miraculous signs and the Greeks an intellectual panacea, but all we preach is Christ crucified–a stumbling-block to the Jews and sheer nonsense to the gentiles… for God’s “foolishness” is wiser than men…. But God has chose what the world calls foolish to shame the wise… that no man may boast in the presence of God…. And this makes us see the truth of the scripture: “He that glorieth, let him glory in the Lord.”

1 Cor 3:19-21 Let no one be under any illusion over this. If any man among you thinks himself one of the world’s clever ones, let him discard his cleverness that he may learn to be truly wise. For this world’s cleverness is stupidity to God. It is written: “He that taketh the wise in their craftiness”, and again, “The Lord knoweth the reasonings of the wise, that they are vain.” So let no one boast of men.

Knowledge Without Love?

1 Cor 8:1b-2  It is easy to think that we “know” over problems like this, but we should remember that while this “knowing” may make a man look big, it is only love that can make him grow to his full stature. For if a man thinks he “knows” he may still be quite ignorant of what he ought to know.

1 Cor 13:2 If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge… but have not love, I am nothing.

The Source Of True Knowledge

Prov 2:6,9-11 For the Lord gives wisdom, and from his mouth come knowledge and understanding…. Then you will understand what is right and just and fair–every good path. For wisdom will enter your heart, and knowledge will be pleasant to your soul. Discretion will protect you, and understanding will guard you.

Mat 11:25 At that time Jesus said, “I praise you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, because you have hidden these things from the wise and the learned, and revealed them to little children.”

Jam 1:17 Every good thing bestowed and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation, or shifting shadow.

God’s Secret, Revealed By The Spirit

1 Cor 2:6-10 We do, of course, speak wisdom among those who are spiritually mature, but it is not what is called wisdom by this world, nor by the powers-that-be, who soon will be only the powers that have been. The wisdom we speak of is that mysterious secret wisdom of God, which he planned before the creation for our glory today…. But, as it is written: “No eye has seen, no ear has heard, no mind has conceived what God has prepared for those who love him”. Thus God has, through the Spirit, let us share his secret.

1 Cor 2:10  But God has revealed it [wisdom] to us by his Spirit.

Phil 1:9-10  My prayer is that your love for each other may increase more and more and never stop improving your knowledge and deepening your perception so that you can always recognize what is best. This will help you to become pure and blameless, and prepare you for the Day of Christ.(the day you are pure enough to receive the Holy Spirit for it is written the kingdom of heaven is at hand)

Col 1:9,10 For this reason, since the day we heard about you, we have not stopped praying for you and asking God to fill you with the knowledge (holy Spirit) of his will through all spiritual wisdom and understanding. And we pray this in order that you may live a life worthy of the Lord and may please him in every way: bearing fruit in every good work, growing in the knowledge of God.


Minister Joseph Preston Kirk