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  1. We don’t seem to have much opportunity except to pray in our day. I have sent the OPCW report to our MP. I’m not convinced it will make much difference. Do they even want to know the truth or do they prefer to believe a lie? What are their hidden motivations?

    We will keep praying as there does not appear to be any path for taking action for most people, apart from writing and demonstrating perhaps. We rely on God’s faithfulness to His praying church, but also take time to share our wonderful gospel on the streets. God is still on the throne and foresaw all this and therefore has the answers.

    1. If God foresaw all this, it would have been better if he had intervened earlier. If his church has been praying, why has he not been faithful and put a stop to it before ?

      These are difficult questions for any Christian to answer, but if you are going to make statements like this, you need to have some answer ready for the inevitable questions they provoke.

      1. No, the question is not difficult. God is God. He does God stuff. There are lots of things which people should do and they don’t. So evil flourishes.

        1. But now he had finished all the really busy God stuff of creating everything, what God stuff is there left for him to do except to keep it running smoothly ?

            • Stephen
            • Stephen on 25 April 2018 at 15:04
              Author

            If you don’t believe in God anyway, you are just playing games. Trolling, I think they call it. You cannot speak of the Lord of heaven and earth as if he were a human being. That betrays deliberate ignorance. God just is.
            So for the benefit of others, yes, God sustains creation by his power:
            Hebrews 1:3 Who being the brightness of his glory, and the express image of his person, and upholding all things by the word of his power, when he had by himself purged our sins, sat down on the right hand of the Majesty on high;
            He hears and answers his people’s prayer:
            1Kings 8:45 Then hear thou in heaven their prayer and their supplication, and maintain their cause.
            he sends out evangelists to bring more people into the Kingdom:
            Luke 10:2 Therefore said he unto them, The harvest truly is great, but the labourers are few: pray ye therefore the Lord of the harvest, that he would send forth labourers into his harvest.
            And he calls everyone everywhere to repent and believe the Gospel:
            Act 17:28 For in him we live, and move, and have our being; as certain also of your own poets have said, For we are also his offspring. 
            Act 17:29 Forasmuch then as we are the offspring of God, we ought not to think that the Godhead is like unto gold, or silver, or stone, graven by art and man’s device. 
            Act 17:30 And the times of this ignorance God winked at; but now commandeth all men every where to repent: 
            That was the Apostle Paul in Athens. Here is the Apostle Peter:
            Acts 4:12 Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.
            There is hope even for you. The Apostle Paul again:
            Romans 10:9 That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.

            • Rocks
            • Rox G on 25 April 2018 at 20:04

            Yes, but asking people to believe in him and pray to him and then “saving” them is not the same thing as improving the world he has created, which he ought to be perfectly capable of doing.

            Are you saying that there is no point in living in this world, all that is needed is to be saved and cosy in Heaven ? I don’t think that goes along with your usual line, but of course some Christians have always seen it like that.

            • Stephen
            • Stephen on 25 April 2018 at 20:40
              Author

            I can’t see the world needs a lot of improvement, but if people were to behave in a manner commanded by Almighty God in the Bible it would be a far better place to live in. One task of Christians is to try to explain that and call people, especially those who lead us, back to those Biblical principles, which God gave for the good of mankind.

      2. I have often wondered about this myself, Rox. However, “His ways are not our ways, His thoughts are higer than our thoughts”. I have had enough God-incidences, things happen and direction, etc that could only have come fro God, to keep my fiath alive. For example, I cry out to God: 50,000 children starve to death EVERY day: why doesn’t God do something? But He gives us free will, it would cost US$30 to $40 billion a yearto feed, clothe and educate everyone on the planet apparently, according to the UN. Peanuts really. There is even enough money in so-called CHRISTIANS’ pockets alone to do it, you’d have thought they’d be concerned. The amount of money that goes on brand, spanking new church buildings, with all mod-cons (COFFEE included, of course, must have coffee!!!!) is a disgrace, imo.

        1. But it isn’t just 40 billion dollars. The dollars won’t do it. You need to produce the stuff which you are assuming the dollars would buy. And it’s not just lying around already waiting to be bought.

          You may think that Rothschilds are sitting on huge piles of food, clothes, and trainee teachers, waiting for enough money to come in for them to be prepared to release them. I don’t think so.

          Why would the Rothschilds need to do anything like that when they own the central banks and can just print as much money as they want in any currency at any time ?

          Needless to say, I don’t subscribe to your belief that Rothschilds do own the central banks. Nor are they sitting on all the food.

            • BigMarktheGeezer
            • Mark J on 26 April 2018 at 12:37

            think about it. Its not just a case of printing money.

  2. Unfortunately your comment, Stephen, about asking if there are two classes of Christian; those “born again”, and those “not born again” is thoroughly disingenuous. The Bible makes it clear the only thing that matters is being a “new creation” as nothing else “counts”! You shouln’t need me to tell you this. As for the so called “Orthodox” churches, most are frankly horrendous & worse than the worst aspects of Roman Catholocism. We have personal experience of most of them, finding them deeply disturbing Spiritually, and clearly even Satanic. You yourself identify that Protestant Christians are the minority in Syria, and even they (as in our own country) will mostly NOT be “saved”; as we have again encountered by personal experience. As previously identified, we do these people no service by pretending they are christian, and loving them into hell; when their organisations are riddled with heresy & un-Biblical doctrine, superstition & idolatry. Once “saved”, they will flee these false churches, as have the many we know.

    1. That was my point, Woolley. One is either a believer in the Lord Jesus, born ‘from above,’ or not. But I think I should want to be generous. You see, when Islamic State singled out the 21 Coptic Christians in February 2015 and sentenced them to death unless they renounced Jesus, and they all knelt down to be martyred, I find it hard to accept they were not, every single one, at that moment, true born-again followers of the Lord of Life and qualified to avail themselves of this verse: Psalm 116:15 Precious in the sight of the LORD is the death of his saints.

      1. Agreed. But whoever disowns me before others, I will disown before my Father in heaven. Matthew 10:33. I hope we will have the same Holy Spirit courage and boldness in our time of testing. But, I consider how silent the Church is NOW in the UK when evil & unjust laws are made-I despair. Thank God for Christian Voice . God willing more vocies will be heard loud and clear…including mine!

    2. If you really believe that millions of fairly ordinary and sincere people in Europe and South America are in the hands of a clearly satanic organisation, you can’t expect to be taken very seriously. Who are you to make this pronouncement, with your “personal experience”. Don’t you think they have personal experience ?

  3. I absolutely agree about the Coptic Christians you refer to, Stephen; one of the father’s of these dear souls actually thanking I.S. for not editing their executions as it included their testimony refusing to renounce Jesus, so the families were comforted in their son’s eternal destiny. This moved me to tears, as I had previously been very sceptical about the Coptics, and certainly re-assessed my views. In answer to Roxy G I can only point out the Bible clearly refers to the Roman Catholic doctrines of celibacy & dietry rules as being demonic, and praying to relics & Mary are clearly heresy. We must contend earnestly for the faith once & for all handed down to the saints, and if we fudge these issues we risk encouraging immature believers into false doctrine and wrong faith. The Bible, the whole Bible, and nothing but the Bible must be our guide for faith & life; not vain teachings & doctrines of men or institutions of men. I want to be generous too, but I also know we must honour our Lord & Saviour & Heavenly Father in Spirit & Truth.

    1. I don’t think you can call celibacy demonic. It wouldn’t suit me, but some say they are called to it. Fasting is commended in the Bible. Routine abstinence from meat on Friday transfers some of the solemnity of Good Friday to every Friday. The veneration of relics was seen as consistent with Christ’s incarnation (as well as big business) going back in history. How we wish we could have been there in the seventh century, David, you and I, to tell them where they were going wrong.
      As to praying to the saints, and Mary is not the only one, maybe they seem to be more accessible, or to have more time on their hands, than our blessed Lord. We ask each other for prayer after all. Mind you, I see the saints (not just the Saints!) as asleep waiting to be raised. However, I may be wrong. In Rev 6:10 they are not asleep but crying out to the Lord to avenge their blood. On the other hand, perhaps that is a pictorial illustration of a yearning in heaven. Personally, I should rather pray to the Lord of Life if I am to spend any time in prayer at all. Which I do, I hasten to add.

  4. Stephen, I’m frankly staggered, as well as very concerned, by your remarks above. The difference is, one is optional, as Paul makes clear in his epistles to the Corinthians & others (which is acceptable); the other is compulsory as in the case of the Roman Catholic Church (& others) which is not acceptable. 1 Timothy 4:1-5 makes this clear, (headed as The Great Apostasy) “Now the Spirit expressly says that in latter times some will depart from the faith, giving heed to deceiving spirits & doctrines of demons, speaking lies in hypocrisy, having their own conscience seared with a hot iron, forbidding to marry, and commanding to abstain from foods which God created to be received with thanksgiving by those who believe & know the truth”. This has nothing to do with “fasting” which is a different matter altogether. Celibacy of the Roman Catholic Priesthood & their doctrine of abstaining from meat on Fridays clearly falls within this. Their so called Priesthood is also obviously un-Biblical, as the New Testament clearly shows we are all part of the “holy priesthood” (1 Peter 2:5) ; the Old Covenant Priesthood being done away with (Hebrews 4-8) finishing with verse 13 “In that He says,”A new covenant”, He has made the first obsolete”. You are right about there not being “Saints”, but now only “saints” which is what all true believers are, but to suggest they “maybe have more time on their hands than our blessed Lord” is frankly very disturbing as no one has more time than our precious Lord Jesus, and it could also unwittingly encourage people into an un-Biblical practice, praying to the dead (or for the dead) being clearly forbidden in Scripture. Asking our living Brethren to pray is a totally different matter, and we do well not to confuse these issues & muddy the water.

    1. Fair play to you David. But I think you’ll find the ‘forbidding to marry’ verse was directed at the Gnostics who absolutely forbad their followers to marry so as not to bring more material people into the world. Because for them only the ‘spiritual’ was any good. Homosexuality was OK, because that did not lead to procreation. Parallels with secularism and especially population controllers today?
      As to a class of believers being celibate, I don’t like it, and as I said, it wouldn’t do for me, so I struggle to understand how anyone could go for it. But the Apostle does write:
      1Cor 7:1  Now concerning the things whereof ye wrote unto me: It is good for a man not to touch a woman. 2  Nevertheless, to avoid fornication, let every man have his own wife, and let every woman have her own husband. … 6  But I speak this by permission, and not of commandment. 7  For I would that all men were even as I myself. But every man hath his proper gift of God, one after this manner, and another after that. 
      So I cannot say men (or women) deciding to be celibate in the quest to follow the Lord is contrary to scripture, however odd I find it myself.
      As to the second point, apparently the Gnostics forbad the eating of meat too. (So did Dewi Sant in his rule – and that was the Celtic Church. Mind you, Gildas was less than impressed with that kind of asceticism and the danger of a kind of spiritual superiority that came with it. I am so with Gildas!)
      As to a ‘priesthood’, I am with you again, but the Anglicans claim to have priests as well. And in most of our churches there is a class of person whom we call ‘Pastor’ or ‘Minister’. We respect them as maybe having studied more, prayed more, having more of the Holy Spirit, etc, than us. We should not call him a ‘Priest’ with a big ‘P’, but nevertheless …
      As to praying to the faithful departed, I was merely trying to understand, not to endorse. I believe some people ask these saints to pray for them, not in any way to answer their prayer. But, as this article shows comprehensively, and as you say, praying to anyone departed is not scriptural. Indeed, Saul was cursed for bringing up Samuel. Additionally, no-one has more time, or understands our needs better, than our Saviour, the Lord of life.

  5. Stephen, Thanks for your helpful clarifications. Gnostics or not; as a doctrine, instruction & practice it is Biblically wrong & cannot be supported – hence all the paedophilia that is rampant in the R.C. church (and other denominations). We used to have an Evangelical R.C. Minister in Malton, everyone calling him Father Joe, but I could not call him such and referred to him simply as “Joe”; but talking to him one day about being”born again”, he said “We don’t use that term” to which i replied, “Jesus did” which ended to conversation.
    We would see all these titles as false & not Biblical. They all lead to the clergy/laity divide. How any man of God (so called) can allow himself to be called Father, Vicar, Reverend or even Pastor with a capitol is beyond me; never mind Priest. None of this is in the Bible. Many of them do not have the Holy Ghost, never mind “more of the Holy Spirit” as you suggest. If they had the Holy Ghost, He would convict them of their error, and they would not allow themselves to be so called. I well remember discussing this with a dear Vicar friend of ours who in the end denounced me by saying, “For goodness sake David, I’ve been earning my living at this for years” ending the discussion & literally leaving us dumb-founded. What the Bible said didn’t matter, even though we “Revere” God, not man. Vicar is from the word “vicarious” meaning instead of and intermediary, which stems from the Pope’s other title of “Vicar of Christ”! Outrageous!!
    The Church is the Body of Christ, and should be “overseen” by a group of elders & deacons, and ministry should be from the Body according to the gift & calling recognized by the Body & overseen accordingly.
    Now you know why we’ve got into so much trouble with the established churches! May our Lord Jesus bless & keep you, and guard & guide you as you seek to serve Him. With much love & prayer, David.

    1. Hi David. Every blessing. Yes, sure, but a class of men will always arise as leaders, like it or not. And we shall always give them titles. You realise the title of ‘vicar’ in the Anglican church is nothing to do with anyone in Rome. The vicar of All Saints or wherever is the stand-in on behalf of the diocesan or local bishop, who is the true overseer.
      As to your first point, I am going to suggest that paedophilia, or more properly pederasty, occurs in churches and scout groups and teaching situations because a certain kind of man seeks out these positions as a means of getting close to his prey. As opposed to celibacy leading of itself to those desires. It follows that those interviewing men for such positions should go out of their way to exclude anyone homosexual. But they aren’t allowed to by law and prevailing fashion. And if that sort are already in position doing the interviewing, then the problem will only grow. We live in a bad time.

  6. Thanks Stephen. Appreciate your point, but we’re sort of modern day Dissenters & Non-Conformists. If it’s not in the Bible, we would dissent, and like-wise refuse to conform. Hence often branded as trouble makers, like most of our predecessors such as Bunyon. Praise the Lord!

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