Make sure your vote does not reverse your prayers!

There is a spiritual dimension in any election cycle, local, state, or federal.

There are Biblical issues at stake.

In this current cycle, voting for an avowed socialist would not be wise.

Voting for someone who ought to be indicted for knowingly violating federal law while in office would also be unwise.

Voting for a candidate who “says the right things” but over time has not “walked the walk” that matches the talk is unwise. Case in point:  Gary Johnson, the Libertarian Party Presidential Candidate. Perhaps his slogan is “It is time to Make America Sane Again.”

There is good evidence that Mr. Gary Johnson is not someone we should vote for.

Karl Denninger was an officer in the Libertarian Party in Florida during the last presidential election cycle. On his site (Market Ticker) he has stated that Gary Johnson is not worthy of our trust. In fact, Mr. Denninger, as I recall, left the Libertarian Party because of Mr. Gary Johnson. Mr. Denninger said that Gary Johnson was not financially careful with the Libertarian Party’s funds, and went deeply into debt, and far as I have heard reported, never made up for that over-budget expense. 

But most significant of all, Mr. Denninger made extended personal contact with Mr. Gary Johnson and fully explained the precarious financial condition of this country, and let him know precisely what must be done to solve it. Mr. Johnson refused to take a specific public stand on the issue. Mr. Denninger expressed the opinion that if Mr. Johnson or any candidate from any party would seriously address the problem, the public, coming to understand the issue, would flock to support that candidate. I believe Mr. Denninger is correct. I would not support Mr. Gary Johnson. 

In my reading of Mr. Trump’s books, and my watching Mr. Trump on line, it is clear to me that Mr. Trump is aware of this issue, has addressed it, and will in the future take the action to take care of this issue. The fact that Mr. Trump has already taken a stand on the issue seems to be the factor that convinced Mr. Denninger initially to support Trump, though some of what Denninger has written since indicates to me that he has been disappointed that Mr. Trump has not made more specific statements to address what he plans to do should he become President to solve this fiscal problem.  Mr. Denninger seems upset that Mr. Trump has taken unwise stands then back tracked from his stated position.  But I wonder if some of the negative things we hear and read about Mr. Trump are just “poisoned well” political propaganda.

I understand from my reading of Mr. Trump’s books and watching his speeches why he has not spilled all the beans–that is, revealed all his plans. He wisely likes to withhold a good bit of the strategy he plans to use so he has some element of surprise, and also some edge to use in future negotiations. 

In any case, I would consider a vote for Mr. Gary Johnson unwise, and ultimately a “throw-away” vote, because he has absolutely no chance to win the presidency, any more than he had the last time around.

As Christians we need to vote strategically so our vote counts for something in line what the Bible teaches us we should be praying for (1 Timothy 2:1, 2, 3).

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Daily Bible Nugget #408, 1 John 3:18

The Nugget:

1Jn 3:18 My little children, let us not love in word, neither in tongue; but in deed and in truth.

My Comment:

This Bible Nugget is a continuation from March 5, 2016, Daily Bible Nugget #406, 1 John 2:24.  I have not posted much since then because I have been converting my Bible cross reference research into actual Bible software. I’ve never done that kind of work before, but it is a most interesting process. One thing the process does is catch any and all mistakes made in the nineteenth century resources I drew material from, as well as my own mistakes. The result should be a wonderful Bible study tool that is nearly error free. Most users would likely have to use this new Bible study resource for a long time before they encountered a printing error.

But I have been presenting an outline here from my high school days when I did a study of the book of 1 John using the Bible study methods I’ve explained in the category to the right, “How to Study the Bible.” My little outline from back then states that a true believer in Christ lives:

(1)  in constant fellowship with God, 1 John 1:3

(2) true to the Gospel, 1 John 2:24

That was the subject of the Daily Bible Nugget #406 of March 5, 2016.

(3) with love for others, 1 John 3:18, 19;  1 John 4:7

John tells us that if we have genuine love for others, we will reach out to them and help them with their physical needs, 1 John 3:17.  This is a major emphasis throughout the Bible, and as a topic makes for a rich Bible study, particularly by using Bible cross references.  Let me share with you the cross references I have for 1 John 3:17 right now:

  1. whoso hath.  Gr. echō (S#2192g).  Present tense, active voice, subjunctive mood verb.  *Dt 15:7-11.  Ps 112:9.  Pr 3:9.  *Pr 19:17.  Ec 11:3.  Is 58:7-10.  +*Ezk 18:7.  Mt 5:42.  *Mt 15:4-6.  +*Mt 25:35.  *Lk 3:11.  +*Lk 11:41 n.  Lk 12:17.  Ac 2:44, 45.  11:29.  +*Ac 20:35.  *2 Cor 8:9, 14, 15.  *2 Cor 9:5-9.  +*1 Tim 6:17, 18.  +*He 13:16.  *James 2:15, 16.  world’s.  Gr. kosmos, +Mt 4:8.  1 J 2:17.  good.  or, goods, or living.  Gr. bios (S#979g, Mk 12:44).  FS111, Ge +18:27.  The phrase includes all the endowments which make up our earthly riches, wealth, station, intellect. It has been finely said of a great teacher that ‘he was tender to dulness as to all forms of poverty’ (Westcott).  Mk 12:44.  Lk 15:12, 30.  Lk 21:4.  seeth.  or, beholds.  Gr. theōreō (S#2334g).  Present tense, active voice, subjunctive mood verb:  deliberately contemplates (see Vincent).  Mk 12:41.  15:40, 47.  27:55.  Lk 21:6.  23:35.  Jn 2:23.  6:19, 62.  7:3.  9:8.  10:12.  14:17.  16:10, 16.  He 7:4.  Re 11:11.  his brother.  Le 25:35.  +*Is 58:7.  1 Cor 16:1.  +*Ga 6:10.  +*1 Tim 5:8.  2 P 1:7.  have need.  Dt 24:19.  26:13.  Ru 2:16.  **2 Ch 28:15.  Jb 31:17.  Pr 14:21.  Mt 6:2.  26:11.  Mk 2:25.  Ac 2:45.  4:35.  20:34.  28:10.  Ro 12:13.  2 Cor 9:12.  Ga 2:10.  James 1:27.  2:15, 16.  shutteth up.  Gr. kleiō (S#2808g, Mt 6:6).  Aorist tense, active voice, subjunctive mood verb.  +*Le 25:35.  *Dt 15:7, 11.  Ps 77:9.  +*Pr 11:24, 26.  Pr 12:10mg.  +*Pr 15:27.  17:5.  19:7.  24:11.  28:9.  *Lk 10:31.  +*Lk 12:15.  %1 Cor 13:5.  +*James 2:16.  his bowels.  Gr. splanchna (S#4698g, 2 Cor 6:12).  Ge 43:30.  1 K 3:26.  Ps 25:6.  Pr 12:10.  SS 5:4.  Is 63:15.  Lk 1:78.  2 Cor 6:12.  7:15.  Phil 1:8.  Col 3:12.  Phm 7, 12, 20. of compassion.  +Col 3:12.  how dwelleth.  ver. 1 J 3:15.  *1 J 4:20.  5:1.  Ps 125:4.  +*Ezk 33:31.  Lk 10:37.  Jn 3:12.  5:42, 47.  James 2:16.  the love.  +1 J 2:5.  Pr 14:31.  Mk 12:31.  Lk 11:42.  Jn 5:42.  14:24.  21:17.  Ac 2:44.  +*1 Cor 13:4, 5.  2 Cor 8:8.  13:14.  Ep 1:15.  +*He 6:10.  of God.  Objective genitive:  love for God (see EGT).  1 J 2:5.  in him.  1 J 2:15.

 

The fact that we have genuine love for other Bible believing Christians, fellow believers, is an evidence, John tells us, that we have a genuine faith in Christ (1 John 3:18, 19, 20), even if we may sometimes be in doubt about ourselves.

If and when we have real love for other Bible believing Christians, fellow believers, we have a desire to have fellowship and times of sharing with them about spiritual things.  Unfortunately, in today’s culture, electronic devices have eliminated the ability of some people to actually talk face to face with others; sports, and other entertainment and distractions cut short the interest and participation in spiritual fellowship that ought to take place. I’ve gotten to the place myself that I am afraid to try to attend a church ever again. Churches are not structured for fellowship. They are not designed to develop personal relationships with other believers. They are not designed to foster spiritual growth.  They are not welcoming places to be.

Why should I (or anyone else) bother any longer to try to attend a church when there is no provision within the activities of the church for opportunities to get to know the other people who go there? I say that, because I have found almost no churches since I moved out of the city of Detroit in 1975 who would welcome me. I’ve been actually shown the door, and told, “Find a church that believes like you do.” I’ve been told, “Jerry, you talk too much about the Bible, and too much about the Lord.” No wonder the Barna polls and research have shown in recent years that many Christians no longer attend any church, around 20 percent do not attend, and about 80 percent do.  Mr. George Barna said if the present trend continues, it will take less than 20 years for those percentages to reverse so that 80 percent of Christians will not attend church, and 20% will. I have written much about this subject on this site.  The church is in disobedience to the Bible. Particularly Romans 15:7.

Pastors and church people need to wake up. If church people are not interested in the Bible and not interested in Bible study, soul winning, prayer, and fellowship, and outreach to strangers who visit their church, then what makes them think they are even Christians? They don’t match the description I read in my Bible about what real Christians are interested in, and what real Christians do.

Excuse my rant, but this is very real experience with me and my family. After trying out half a dozen local churches, we’ve about given up. I am thankful for the opportunity to share my faith with other believers and non-believers alike right here, where I promote Real Bible Study, something many churches apparently not only do not do, but are not interested in.

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Daily Bible Nugget #407, Proverbs 14:15

The Nugget:

Pro 14:15 The simple believeth every word: but the prudent man looketh well to his going.

 

My Comment:

This verse has wide practical application. One application in this election season is to always “look well” to “your going.” Don’t be among those who simply “believe every word” that is said against, in this season, a presidential candidate.  Learn the truth about each candidate by reading, listening, and watching the several sides of the argument, discussion, or debate.  Don’t simply go by what others report about past positions held by any candidate. All of us continue to learn more over time if we are alert and attentive. It is okay to change your mind about what you once believed on the basis of newer, more comprehensive, well-founded evidence. That is a good mark of intellectual honesty or spiritual maturity, as the subject and case may be.

I wrote the following on Facebook today, and thought it would be good to share what I wrote here.

I see a lot of disinformation spoken about Mr. Trump. I bought his books on Amazon. I am reading them. I have watched as many clips of his rallies and comments as I’ve had time and access to. Only low information voters are against Trump.
 
Trump is the only presidential candidate who is not bought and paid for by the lobbyists and special interests.
 
Trump has the best tax plan for you as an individual tax payer, with no income tax for the first 25 thousand for singles, 50 thousand for married, and 10% tax rate up to 100 thousand: that would help almost all of us. 
 
There are other unnamed politicians running who are low-information politicians who claim this country cannot afford to grant such tax breaks. 
 
ONLY Trump understands the economy enough to know how to fix it.  Trump has stated specifically what steps he could and would take to correct some major injustices that largely account for our deficits. Karl Denninger has written repeatedly with documentation about this on his blog at The Market Ticker, a site well-worth reading regularly. Trump can fix the economy by simply enforcing existing law–he does not need to go to Congress for this at all. 
 
This may be our last best chance to “Make America Great Again.” Only Trump has the boldness and audacity to step up and do what needs to be done. Not one of the other candidates has a clue.
 
Why are even so-called “conservatives” plotting a 3rd-party challenge to Trump? Like the “liberals” they are among the “low information” folks. It is time to think and vote strategically. Go third party, and you have given the presidency to the Democrats, which would be a disaster.
 
Vote for Mr. Cruz, and you get a  liar, and a “dirty compromiser” (as Dr. Bob Jones Senior used to say of others in a different connection), because Mr. Cruz is bought and paid for by Goldman Sachs, a financial firm for whom his wife worked, holding a high position there. I say Mr. Cruz is a liar because he failed to report how he financed his senate campaign, and so violated the law. Did you not notice that Mr. Cruz voted FOR the TPP, “Trans-Pacific Partnership,” a so-called “trade deal” that has been kept almost totally secret from Congress, and especially secret from the people?  Why do you suppose Mr. Trump constantly criticizes the current administration for their utter inability to negotiate “deals” that are fair to our nation?
 
Any votes cast for Mr. Rubio are for a now lost cause.  Mr. Rubio and Mr. Cruz and Mr. Kasich are all “establishment” individuals who do not have our best interests in mind, and any votes cast for them represent votes cast by low information voters who are not thinking strategically. The Republican Establishment in particular has displayed no moral backbone, and during this administration, they have caved in every time to the current president and the Democrats. The establishment and its leaders (Karl Rove, Lindsay Graham, John McCain, Paul Ryan, Mitch McConnell) are utterly evil, totally against the American people and what this country and its Constitution stand for, and must never be trusted again. Time for a complete house-cleaning in Washington, D.C.
 
Time to build a fence and stop illegal immigration, stop the drug traffic, stop the crime at the border, and make our country safe again.
 
Time to support fully the Second Amendment.
 
Time to support and properly care for our Veterans.
 
Time to bring the manufacturing base back to America where it belongs.
 
Time to bring the jobs back to America.
 
Time to think strategically, and vote strategically.
 
When there is this much of an effort to derail the Republican Party’s front-runner candidate for the Presidency even by some of the Republicans themselves, you know that the special interests see that for them the end of their illegitimate gravy train is near, and they are scared.
 
Time to vote for the one candidate, Mr. Trump, who knows how to stop their thievery, put them in their place, put them out of business.
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Lavender New Testament Interview between Pastor Emery Moss and Jerome Smith link

Pastor Emery Moss, Jr., my former student from Cass Technical High School, interviewed me on his “Bible Talk” program on WLQV, AM 1500, in Detroit, Michigan, on Thursday, March 10, 2016 on his daily 6:00 pm talk show program.

Pastor Moss had just received a copy of the Lavender New Testament from one of the members of his church that morning, as I understand it. He saw my name mentioned in it (I wrote the Preface), and immediately called me up and asked me to be on his program that evening to talk about the Lavender New Testament.

You can hear me during the first half-hour of the program when he graciously interviewed me at the following links:

Pastor Moss interviews Jerome Smith

Bible Talk on WLQV with Jerome Smith

The Lavender New Testament, translated by my scholar friend Dr. Malcolm Lavender, with explanatory notes and documentation furnished by his son, Dr. R. L. Lavender, is available for purchase only at the following link:

Lavender New Testament

The Lavender translation of the New Testament is a rare jewel. It features the first and only English translation which accurately and consistently presents to the English reader the very important grammatical nuances of the Greek text underlying our English New Testament.

It presents, for the first time ever, an English translation that preserves from the Greek text the New Testament Salvation Vocabulary.

It is the only translation in any language that fully and properly preserves the New Testament teaching about the Atonement of Christ.

These are important matters! They potentially are eternal destiny altering matters.

To properly understand the doctrinal message of the New Testament, you must first understand the underlying grammar of the New Testament. This is the only English translation available that permits the ordinary English reader immediate access to these great truths in readable modern English.

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Daily Bible Nugget #406, 1 John 2:24

The Nugget:

1Jn 2:24 Let that therefore abide in you, which ye have heard from the beginning. If that which ye have heard from the beginning shall remain in you, ye also shall continue in the Son, and in the Father. (KJV)

1Jn 2:24 But as for you, keep in your hearts the things which were made clear to you from the first. If you keep these things in your hearts you will be kept in the Father and the Son. (Basic English Bible)

My Comment:A true believer in Jesus Christ remains true to the Gospel.To be true to the Gospel, we must remain true to the Bible. No compromise is allowed in this matter. If our belief system is not true to the Bible, then our belief system is wrong. If our belief is wrong, we will not receive the promise mentioned in 1 John 2:25, “And this is the promise that he hath promised us, even eternal life.”In a similar way, Paul warned the Christians of the region of Galatia that they must not depart from the Gospel which he had proclaimed to them (Galatians 1:6, 7, 8, 9). Paul is very severe in his judgment or condemnation of anyone who would “preach any other gospel” to them. On such persons Paul pronounces a very severe curse. To make sure his readers then and now understood him, he repeats the curse for emphasis.The same message is declared by Jude when he wrote, “Beloved, when I gave all diligence to write unto you of the common salvation, it was needful for me to write unto you, and exhort you that ye should earnestly contend for the faith which was once delivered unto the saints” (Jude 1:3). The original Greek text underlying our English translations uses a special and rarely used emphatic word for “once,” so that when fully translated, Jude declares that the true faith was “once for all” delivered unto the saints. Notice that the faith delivered to them was therefore complete, and nothing was to be added to it or changed. The basis of true faith in Jesus Christ can only be what is written in the New Testament.Any person who deviates from the truth taught in the New Testament, anyone who adds supposed further revelation to the New Testament, has departed from true faith in Jesus Christ. Carefully consider this truth: it means that many denominations and religions and so-called “teaching authorities” are very mistaken in their beliefs, and are fallen away from the true Gospel of Christ found in the New Testament.The Apostle John tells us in his second epistle or letter, “Whosoever transgresseth and abideth not in the doctrine of Christ, hath not God. He that abideth in the doctrine of Christ, he hath both the Father and the Son” (2 John 1:9).John therefore declares that any person who departs from the true faith, a person who does not abide in the doctrine of Christ, does not have God. In plain English, John has told us that it is possible for individuals, even Bible teachers, to fail to stay true to the faith taught in the Bible. Such persons no longer have God. They have fallen away from the faith. They are guilty of apostasy. This is not just a hypothetical possibility. John is warning against a real problem:  in 2 John 1:10, when John writes “If there come any unto you,” he uses what is called in Greek grammar the “first class condition,” which assumes the reality of the condition spoken of. Therefore, there were and still are such individuals who come with false doctrine. Those individuals do not have God. They must not be followed. This further supports the fact in Bible doctrine that Scripture teaches the absolute security of the believer, not the unbeliever. A person who has stopped believing (Luke 8:13) no longer has salvation, but has left the true faith.John tells us further, “If there come any unto you, and bring not this doctrine, receive him not into your house, neither bid him God speed” (2 John 1:10).  When John says “receive him not into your house,” he is speaking of the fact that Christians met for worship and fellowship in individual homes (see Romans 16:5;  1 Corinthians 16:19;  Colossians 4:15;  Philemon 1:2), and that they were not to permit false teachers to present their message in those meetings, and they were to offer them no encouragement.True believers will grow in their faith, but they will not change their faith in a manner that would be a departure of what is taught in the Bible, and particularly what is taught in the New Testament.

 

 

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Daily Bible Nugget #405, James 4:8

The Nugget:

Jas 4:8 Draw nigh to God, and he will draw nigh to you. Cleanse your hands, ye sinners; and purify your hearts, ye double minded.

My Comment:

A true believer lives (1) in constant fellowship with God, 1 John 1:3, 7.  2:6.

To have fellowship with God, draw near to Him. To do that, we must get to know God better. That is accomplished by letting God talk to us. How do we get God to talk to us? Actually, God has already spoken. What He has spoken is found only in the Bible. So, to let God talk to you, read His written word in the Bible.

Another very clear aspect of drawing near to God is for each of us to speak to Him. We do that by means of prayer (1 Thessalonians 5:17).

These two activities–reading God’s word in the Bible, and prayer–are the daily activity of all those who are rightly related to God, and mark the true believer.

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Spread truth, not lies

I posted the following comment on Facebook this afternoon:

I realize people sometimes have strong and sometimes conflicting views about politics, especially during an election year.
 
I have noticed that even some Christians are either linking to unfair commentary, or are themselves posting their own mistaken commentary about where a candidate stands on the issues.
 
This is most unfortunate because we should be careful to post only the truth about a candidate, and post the truth that is relevant to where the candidate stands today.
 
We need to be very careful not to adversely influence the willingness of good people to go out and vote. It is important that every Christian exercise their right to vote for the candidate of their choice. When anyone chooses not to vote, he or she is, in effect, voting for “the greater of two evils,” in the sense that elections are sometimes very close, and for a considerable number of voters not to participate can change the outcome of an election drastically.
 
I have purchased and am carefully reading books by Ted Cruz and particularly Donald Trump.
 
I no longer own a working television, and do not want one. You learn best by reading, not viewing the nonsense often to be seen on TV.
 
But I have watched at length on the Internet the full versions of some of the debates and also the rallies held by Mr. Trump. I have watched interviews given by the candidates.
 
I personally was very impressed by Dr. Ben Carson because of his excellent performance as the speaker at a fairly recent Presidential Prayer Breakfast. He comes from a poverty-stricken background in the city of Detroit, Michigan, where I taught public school. He was motivated to read books by his nearly illiterate mother. He ended up becoming a top neurosurgeon.
 
I was very pleasantly impressed by Mr. Cruz and his family by his remarkable presentation at Liberty University announcing his candidacy.
 
I believe I have read enough of Mr. Trump’s books, and have watched enough of his speeches, to be able to judge accurately where he now stands on the issues.
 
What some of the other Republican candidates are saying about some of the positions on issues currently held by Mr. Trump is totally false.
 
I believe that of all the candidates currently running for the office of President, only Mr. Trump has the ability to live up to and successfully advocate for what he correctly believes will “Make America Great Again.”
 
Let me share with you an important “link” to an article written just yesterday by Mr. Karl Denninger, who presents an analysis of the important positions taken by Mr. Trump. Mr. Denninger’s writing is better than mine on this subject. His expertise on the all-important economic issues makes his voice significant, and worthy of reading daily.
 
Here is the article link:
 
 
His article is titled “The 10th Inning.”
 
He sometimes writes in a manner that I do not approve, but his factual content and careful reasoning make what he has to say important to know.
 
Be sure to take the time to read his article.

This is a most important matter. We must not speak or write falsehoods about another person, no matter who they are, or how much we may dislike them.

The Bible is most clear about this issue:

Eph 4:23 And be renewed in the spirit of your mind;

Eph 4:24 And that ye put on the new man, which after God is created in righteousness and true holiness.

Eph 4:25 Wherefore putting away lying, speak every man truth with his neighbour: for we are members one of another.

Eph 4:26 Be ye angry, and sin not: let not the sun go down upon your wrath:

Eph 4:27 Neither give place to the devil.

Take great care to heed the commandments contained in Ephesians 4:23-27.

Dr. Bob Jones, Senior, used to say “It is never right to do wrong in order to get a chance to do right.”

By and large Dr. Bob Jones, Senior, is correct in his statement. The Bible does provide an interesting instance of an exception to this general truth. God Himself directed Samuel to conceal the truth of his intended mission should someone happen to ask where he was at that time going and why (see 1 Samuel 16:2 and the Note in The New Treasury of Scripture Knowledge given there). But in general, the Bible is clear:  we are always to be truthful.

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Daily Bible Nugget #404 1 John 5:13

The Nugget:

1Jn 5:13 These things have I written to you, that ye may know that ye who believe in the name of the Son of God have everlasting life. (Noyes NT)

 

My Comment:

This verse, 1 John 5:13, contains some of the most important truth in the Bible that you need to know.

I made a study of the book of 1 John when I was still in high school. I used the methods I learned in Miss Ellen Groh’s “How to Study the Bible” vacation Bible school class in the summer of 1954, held at the Highland Park Baptist Church. It was Miss Ellen Groh who introduced to the class, and to me, the important Bible study tool, The Treasury of Scripture Knowledge. She also taught us several methods of Bible study, and I share on this site in the “How to Study the Bible” category to the right the methods she taught and more. In her class we learned to apply the Bible study methods and use the Bible study tools she introduced us to as we made a careful study of the book of 2 Timothy.

After I made a study of the book of 1 John on my own, I wrote the following notes for 1 John 5:13.

“These things have I written unto you that believe on the name of the Son of God: that ye may know….”

The term “ye” is plural in Greek, and it is argued by some that this assurance is not valid for any specific individual, but only for the group, namely, the “body of Christ,” the Church. Such a view does not accord with those Scriptures which affirm such assurance of the individual, such as Galatians 2:20 and 2 Timothy 1:12.

Gal 2:20 I have been crucified with Christ, and no longer do I live, but Christ liveth in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live in faith in the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me.

 

2Ti 1:12 For which cause I suffer also these things. But I am not ashamed; for I know whom I have believed, and am persuaded that he is able to keep that which he hath committed to me unto that day.

Commenting further on 1 John 5:13, “that ye may know that ye have eternal life….” Notice John specifically writes to tell us that we may know that we have eternal life, and that we may possess this knowledge in this life. This is certainly one of the clearest statements in Scripture affirming that we may know in this life that we now have everlasting life–we are not left to wait until we die to discover whether we have eternal life or not. See 1 John 5:10;  1:1, 2;  John 14:20;  Romans 8:15-17;  2 Corinthians 5:1;  Galatians 4:6;  **2 Timothy 1:12;  +*2 Peter 1:10, 11;  Revelation 3:20.

Note further that John states “that ye may know that ye have eternal life.”  He uses the present tense, active voice, indicative mood, second person plural verb.  The present tense tells us this is an ongoing, present life experience for those who truly believe in Christ.  The indicative mood is the mood of reality.  Not will have, or merely hope we might have, but now have in the present:  such is our assurance of eternal life.

Yet, this assurance is grounded upon the individual believer possessing the marks of a true believer discussed throughout this epistle of 1 John.

A true believer lives:

(1) in constant fellowship with God, 1 John 1:8;  2:2.

(2) true to the Gospel, 1 John 2:24.

(3) with love for others, 1 John 3:18, 19.  4:7.

(4) in obedience to God, 1 John 2:3;  3:23;  5:2, 3, 4, 5.

(5) untainted by the world, 1 John 2:15, 16, 17.  5:4, 5.

(6) consistently victorious over Satan, 1 John 3:8, 9;  4:4;  5:18.

(7) concerned about souls, 1 John 5:16;  see James 5:20.

(8) assured of personal salvation, 1 John 4:17;  5:13.

 

I trust that all who read this post will consider carefully whether the above 8 marks of a true believer are reflected in your own life.

 

 

 

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Daily Bible Nugget #403, 2 Corinthians 5:17

The Nugget:

2 Corinthians 5:17 Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new. (KJV)

2Co 5:17 Therefore, if any one is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new. (Noyes NT)

 

My Comment:

In my preceding “Daily Bible Nugget” I discussed Romans 12:2, and the fact that we must be “transformed by the renewing” of our minds. That process takes place once we become rightly related to the Lord Jesus Christ.

Many people think they are Christians. One of the tests to know if you really are a Christian is to check whether what is spoken of in 2 Corinthians 5:17 is really true of you. In your life, have the “old things” truly passed away? Have “all things” become new?

If you truly belong to Christ, there should be some rather clear or obvious results that can be seen in your life. Genuine believers in Christ have an insatiable hunger for the Word of God. They are eager to feast upon the spiritual food, the spiritual nourishment, found in the Bible (1 Peter 2:2). They take time to read the New Testament regularly. They are on a path that brings about spiritual growth (2 Peter 3:18).

If you truly are properly related to Jesus Christ, the power of His Holy Spirit is producing the fruit of the spirit (Galatians 5:22, 23) in your life. What Paul calls “the works of the flesh” (Galatians 5:19, 20, 21) no longer characterize you.

Your friends will notice the change that has taken place in your life. They “are astonished that ye run not with them to the same excess of riot” (1 Peter 4:4), and they may say evil things about you.

Now it may be, if you have been a genuine Christian for a long time, perhaps since you were quite young, it may not be so much a change that friends and associates and acquaintances may notice, but they can tell you are not like them. If such people do not notice that you are any different from them, that may be evidence that you are not really walking close enough to Jesus Christ for them to notice, and you really need to draw closer to Him by reading and obeying His word.

 

 

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Daily Bible Nugget #402, Romans 12:2

The Nugget:

Rom 12:2 And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God. (KJV) Rom 12:2 Don’t be like the people of this world, but let God change the way you think. Then you will know how to do everything that is good and pleasing to him. (CEV, Common English Version) 

  My Comment:

Many who may consider themselves to be Christians might well find out, if they carefully read the Bible, that they are not living a life that is pleasing to God.

It ought to be the goal of every Christian to please God in every aspect of life.

The key to this is to “let God change how you think.” How does this happen? God speaks to us through His written word found only in the Bible. Is the Bible out-of-date, or does it teach what is suited to our time and situation? I believe the Bible still speaks to our day. Its advice and guidance never goes out of date. So to let God change how you think, you must read and study the Bible, and especially the New Testament.

The power to live according to God’s will comes by means of the working of the Holy Spirit taking place in your life. As you read and believe the message of the New Testament, you will experience regenerative change (Titus 3:5). Old things will pass away, all things will become new (2 Corinthians 5:17).

If this change is not happening in your life, you are not yet properly related to God. A proper relationship to God can only happen as the result of reading, believing, and obeying God’s Word in the Bible. A proper relationship is a synergistic affair:  you must do your part, and God will do His part (Philippians 2:12, 13).

We must grow in grace, and in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ (2 Peter 3:18). Most fundamental to this growth in grace is our regular reading and study of the Bible. All of us must make time in our life daily to read Scripture. That is the only food for our spiritual lives that God has provided.

If you are not motivated to regularly read the New Testament, then you do not have, in terms of spiritual life, the real thing. You must become properly related to God so that He can work in your life and produce the fruit (Galatians 5:22, 23) that is pleasing to Him, something we all ought to fervently desire if we really are to be considered true Christians.

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