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FOR FAIR USE EDUCATION AND DISCUSSION PURPOSES[color]
Link of article or video : http://www.mountainretreatorg.net/faq/bema.html
This morning as I was reading letters on another site, I saw mention of the Bema Seat Judgment and how it is only for believers. This is another doctrine of the Pre-Tribulationists who have divided Christ's Second Coming into two events, and therefore must divide the Judgment into two events. This, then becomes another reason to look at the Biblical validity of such doctrine, and find out what is really true. I found that the word "bema" is never mentioned in the Bible, and there is nowhere a separate judgment of believers is implied or mentioned, either. I used to just take this teaching for granted as so many other things that I was taught by Chuck Missler. Now, I know that this is not true.
Below is a very through and biblically supported study, that covers all the reasons it is not true, and supplies explanations of what is. This is important, because it is further proof that there is no Pre-Tribulation Rapture. It is a very lengthy study, but well worth the read. I am dividing it into 2 posts, so it will be easier to read.
Is the "Bema Seat Judgment" Biblical?
-by Tony Warren
One of the more frequently asked questions is of the "Bema Seat Judgment" of Christians. This phrase generally refers to the doctrine that teaches Christians must stand before God and be judged, not for their sins, but in order to determine the nature of the rewards for their works on earth. The proponents of this theology call this "The Bema Seat Judgment" to distinguish it from what they term "The White Throne Judgment." The latter they believe to be the Judgment that God reserves for judicial verdict against the transgressions of the wicked.
However, the truth is a lot less complicated. The Greek word [bema], which is translated seat, is from a root that means 'base' or the foot (and by implication, step). It is therefore used to designate a stepped seating area for Judgment. Thus bema simply refers to the raised seating of a judge or a king. For example, the throne of a King is usually stepped seating. In other words, seating which is raised above the level of the surrounding area. Much the same as our courts today have established for judgments. One must approach the raised Judgment area called the bench. Likewise, the bema seat is simply the raised seating of someone sitting to judge.
The problem of the Bema Seat Judgment is not really one of misunderstanding the Greek, it is an exegetical problem where some theologians are reading their own presuppositions "into" the text. They have formulated a doctrine that teaches that there is a adjudication that is specifically to judge the value of the Christian's service to the Lord. And so they attempt to shape the word "bema" to conform to their predetermined doctrine. While their beliefs certainly cannot be proven Biblically, many of these theologians (using secular testimony) have gone to great lengths to justify the doctrine, even though it contradicts the Bible text itself. Some claim that this particular seat was only used to reward and was never used to punish. However, these secular ideas are not only contrary to all other doctrines of scripture concerning God's rewarding us for our work, but they are contradictory to the way the Greek word [bema] itself is used in the scriptures. God's word does not lend itself in support of such an obviously Biblically indefensible position. In fact, God clearly illustrates just the opposite. For example, Pilate sat on the Judgment seat [bema] when Jesus was being accused of wrong doing. Clearly this makes these theories about its purpose being for rewards, null and void.
Matthew 27:19 •"When he was set down on the judgment seat, his wife sent unto him, saying, Have thou nothing to do with that just man: for I have suffered many things this day in a dream because of him."
John 19:13 •"When Pilate therefore heard that saying, he brought Jesus forth, and sat down in the judgment seat in a place that is called the Pavement, but in the Hebrew, Gabbatha."
The Greek word translated seat is [bema]. Clearly, this isn't a seat for rewarding anyone. And the word Gabbatha means the knoll, a vernacular term for the Roman tribunal. The whole idea makes no sense. Why would his wife be warning him not to have anything to do with this "just" man, if all Pilate was there for was to hand out rewards? In both Biblical accounts of this episode, the Greek word translated seat, is the same word [bema]. And we should note very clearly that far from being a seat to hand out rewards, it is a seat of Judgment in tribunal for crimes (perceived or otherwise). Pilate sits upon this Judgment seat and he makes a Judgment to have the the Lord Jesus Christ scourged, and handed over to be crucified. Quite clearly, this was a Judgment seat for judicial law. And this is not only illustrated by the context, but also by the content. In both passages, Pilate sits on this bema and delivers a judicial verdict against Christ (beating and handing Him over to be crucified) which has absolutely nothing to do with rewards. Likewise, in the book of Acts we find the same scenario present with this Judgment seat.
Acts 18:12-13 •"And when Gallio was the deputy of Achaia, the Jews made insurrection with one accord against Paul, and brought him to the judgment seat,
•Saying, This fellow persuadeth men to worship God contrary to the law."
Acts 18:17 •"Then all the Greeks took Sosthenes, the chief ruler of the synagogue, and beat him before the judgment seat. And Gallio cared for none of those things."
Clearly we see from the context that this word 'bema' is used in the sense of Judgment in a trial, where Paul is accused by the Jews of some crime, which they ultimately could not prove. We can say without fear of rational contradiction that this was a seat where a judgment of the law was to be pronounced against or for the Apostle Paul. It was most certainly not a Judgment seat for rewards, nor an award ceremony. And for any Theologian to make such claims concerning the 'Bema Judgment' is pure fabrication. It is a personal or private interpretation that most certainly is not evidenced by the scripture. As stated, the scriptures themselves testify against such an understanding of this type. Explicitly we learn that the bema was not used to hand out rewards, but as a place for Judgment in a tribunal.
Is this doctrine of a "Bema Seat Judgment" invented to be the believer's motivation to work? Are believers truly motivated by a desire for rewards (above and beyond the reward of inheritance in our salvation in Christ) in the kingdom of heaven? The answer is an emphatical, no! And to have a doctrine that postulates our possible loss of rewards if our works on earth are not up to standards, bridges on the heretical. Rather than have the Christian be motivated to persevere through love, this doctrine actually threatens our future reward at the bema seat based upon our good, or not so good works. So despite all objections to the contrary, this is a doctrine that promotes "Merit" rather than "Grace," and it makes a total mockery of the passages (divinely inspired of God) that clearly demonstrate that our reward in heaven cannot be by both by Grace of God, and by our own merit.
Romans 11:6 •"And if by grace, then is it no more of works: otherwise grace is no more grace. But if it be of works, then is it no more grace: otherwise work is no more work."
Our labor is gracious only as it is through "the work of Christ." Because there is no disagreement between God's Grace and human responsibility. But there can be no agreement between a merit system of rewards based upon our own works, and not the work of Christ in us. Neither should our responsibility be confused with human merit. But that is exactly what many of these theologians have done in formulating the Bema Seat Judgment. Responsibility does not mean that Christians must in any way cooperate in their own perseverance in works. Nor does God motivate us to work through diverse crowns or rewards based on our effort. Those who misinterpret the scriptures that exhort work, does not truly understand why the Christian either wills or works. For a scripture out of context, is a pretext.
Hebrews 10:23 •"Let us hold fast the profession of our faith without wavering; (for he is faithful that promised;)"
The exhortation to, "...hold fast the profession of our faith without wavering," is not a proof of our indispensable cooperation, but the illustration of the necessary evidence of true salvation, which is the compulsory results inevitable when Christ is truly working within us. We are motivated by the Spirit, not by rewards. The fact of the matter is, of ourselves we merit no rewards, for it is Christ's work in us that merits reward for our labors. Why then a bema seat Judgment when we merit nothing of ourselves? Why such a doctrine when it is only by Grace of God that we merit the reward. For our own works are unprofitable, and merit us no payment (translated, reward). The only reward we get is for the work that Christ did on our behalf.
Luke 17:10 •"So likewise ye, when ye shall have done all those things which are commanded you, say, We are unprofitable servants: we have done that which was our duty to do."
Do you see any merit of reward in that verse? It is by the sovereignty of God that Christians are good servants and are moved to do the works of Christ. It is by 'His Work' within us (not our own) that we both have the will to do, and are wherewithal to do it. What then is this Bema seat a test or Judgment of? God's own work in us? If that be the case, then we shall all receive a full reward, because Christ's work is perfect in us. All credit goes to Him, and we thus merit nothing of our own. And this is not speculation, for God is not silent on this matter.
Philippians 2:13 •"For it is God which worketh in you both to will and to do of his good pleasure."
Hebrews 13:20-21 •"Now the God of peace, that brought again from the dead our Lord Jesus, that great shepherd of the sheep, through the blood of the everlasting covenant,"
•Make you perfect in every good work to do his will, working in you that which is wellpleasing in his sight, through Jesus Christ; to whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen."
Ephesians 2:10 •"For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them."
1st Corinthians 3:9 •"For we are labourers together with God: ye are God's husbandry, ye are God's building."
2nd Corinthians 4:7 •"But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellency of the power may be of God, and not of us."
1st Corinthians 15:10 •"But by the grace of God I am what I am: and his grace which was bestowed upon me was not in vain; but I laboured more abundantly than they all: yet not I, but the grace of God which was with me."
How then are we standing before the so-called Bema seat being judged for doing good things that we cannot 'honestly' take credit for? Because Christ moved us to do that which we in our 'sinful nature' would never do? He gave us the will to do good. There is none that seeks after God, there is none that doeth good, no not one (Romans 3:12). We have to be moved of God to do good. And that is how we find that we do accomplish good works after we are saved. But it is 'only' because the Spirit of God is now dwelling within us, making our body His habitation, His Holy temple, making us perfect in every good work we do. What reward does a perfect man receive, and wow many rewards shall he lose for imperfection? Obviously, a full reward and none lost. Each good man in Christ, shall receive a good man's reward.
Ruth 2:12 •"The LORD recompense thy work, and a full reward be given thee of the LORD God of Israel, under whose wings thou art come to trust."
It is Biblically absurd to argue for additional personal rewards for the good that we do, or loss of them as Judgment for any imperfection (which is sin), while all the while arguing that it is not a Judgment for sin. If we are not perfect in our works, we are in sin. It was for this reason that Christ went to the cross. That we "could" appear before Him blameless, perfect, and without fault in all our works. That we "could" appear before the bema seat and be judged according to the work of Christ.
FOR FAIR USE EDUCATION AND DISCUSSION PURPOSES[color]
Link of article or video : http://www.mountainretreatorg.net/faq/bema.html
(CONTINUED FROM ABOVE STUDY)
The Bema seat is not to punish believers I agree, but it is not to reward anyone based on his individual righteousness (meritorious works) either, for we are all worthy of a full reward of inheritance because we are all without fault. And if any of our works could be faulted, it is sin. And the wages of sin is death, not the loss of rewards. All our punishment was paid for by Christ at the cross, and our full reward was "secured" for us by that very same 'work' of the cross.
Colossians 3:24 •"Knowing that of the Lord ye shall receive the reward of the inheritance: for ye serve the Lord Christ."
The inheritance is not diverse crowns handed out at the Bema seat, it is in being regenerated or born of God, we have the seed of Christ remain in us that we are Sons of God. And thus heirs of the promise to the Son. Yes, there are scriptures that some theologians use to attempt to undermine this inheritance in Christ's Reward, but once carefully examined none of them either support these doctrines, nor speak of diverse rewards for believers. One such passage often quoted as proof is Revelation chapter 22:
Revelation 22:12 •"And, behold, I come quickly; and my reward is with me, to give every man according as his work shall be."
Their belief is that if every man is rewarded according to his own work, then believers shall receive different rewards. The problem with this assumption is that this scripture doesn't say believers. It says every man. In other words, one man will receive reward for Good. And the other shall receive the reward for bad. Two different rewards, but for two different men. You see they totally misunderstand and thus misapply this verse. The wicked are paid (translated rewarded) also. What shall their wages or reward be? God's wrath.
Let's look at the word translated reward. It is the Greek word [misthos], and means payment or wages for work. Thus (as it declares) every man shall be rewarded according to his own work. Whether good or bad.
2nd Peter 2:13 •"And shall receive the reward of unrighteousness, as they that count it pleasure to riot in the day time. Spots they are and blemishes, sporting themselves with their own deceivings while they feast with you;"
That is the exact same word [misthos] meaning payment or reward for our labors. The wicked receive for his work the reward of ****ation, and the righteous receive for his work, the reward of everlasting life in the inheritance of the Son. That is how Christ gives to every man according to his own work, whether good or bad. Because when every Christian is rewarded according to his work, then every one of them shall receive the exact same reward, seeing how every work of the man of God is without blemish. Every single one. God looks upon us all as blameless, and so how could any of us merit less than another? It is impossible.
2nd Timothy 3:17 •"That the man of God may be perfect, throughly furnished unto all good works."
Revelation 14:4-5 •"These are they which were not defiled with women; for they are virgins. These are they which follow the Lamb whithersoever he goeth. These were redeemed from among men, being the firstfruits unto God and to the Lamb.
•And in their mouth was found no guile: for they are without fault before the throne of God."
God declares that they stand without fault before the King, and so how could one be faulted that he not receive the same reward that another receives? It is totally unbiblical to believe that one is better than another to be given rewards at the bema seat. When we are rewarded according to our own works. One (the reprobate) is rewarded according to 'his own' evil work, and the other (the believer) is rewarded according to the work of Christ on his behalf. He thus receives a full reward. There is no way to escape the obvious implication that our rewards are earned by our own righteousness or good. And all we can say to that is, "God forbid!"
Another passage that is often quoted by the proponents of meritorious rewards, is Matthew chapter six. The idea is that God is saying that we should all labor to heap up rewards in heaven.
Matthew 6:19-21 •"Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt, and where thieves break through and steal:
•But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through nor steal:
•For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also."
Some theologians use this verse to teach that not only does this justify individual meritorious rewards at the Bema seat, but it tells us to pursue them. But again, that is a careless reading of the text. First of all, this verse does not in any sense teach that believers will receive varying rewards depending upon their own merit, it does not even mention the bema seat, and it does not tell us to pursue such rewards (payments). Rather, it points out the uselessness of possessing earthly "treasures," and the glory of laying up spiritual "treasures" that are incorruptible. The incorruptible treasure in view is Christ, a spiritual reward that is in us a tree of Life. Not a meritorious reward or payment because we have evangelized so greatly, or worked so much harder than the next Christian in the mission field. We lay up for ourselves treasure in heaven when we become rich in Christ.
2nd Corinthians 4:6-7 •"For God, who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, hath shined in our hearts, to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.
•But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellency of the power may be of God, and not of us."
If this treasure is judged at the Bema seat, then again, all the credit goes to God, for all the treasure laid up is by the power of God. What merit then is of our own righteousness in our work? there are none. If our treasure be in Christ's work, our reward is in Christ's work. Better than anything we 'of ourselves' could dream of meriting by our own labor.
The fact is, there really is no "Bema Seat Judgment" for handing out rewards versus a later white throne Judgment to hand out punishments. The Bible is clear that there is one Judgment of Christ, and it takes place at the last day. It is then that man will stand before the Judgment seat of Christ to give account of what he has done on earth, whether good or bad. And of course, all those who were washed clean in the blood of Christ stand before God clean and white with 'good' works, being without fault before the throne. While the rest of the dead stand with 'bad' works, and found guilty in the works of sins.
With all of this evidence of reward in Christ, one may then ask, "why is there this belief by some Christians in a multiple Judgment?" The answer is twofold.
One: Man in his pride and vanity wants credit for what he thinks he has done of his own (alleged) free will.
Two: Premillennial (and particularly dispensational) theologians, of necessity must create more than one Judgment because they have Christ returning more than once. If Christ returns only once (at the last day), their need for multiple judgments disappear.
The Premillennial eschatology of a thousand year reign of Christ on earth necessitates a double Judgment. For they have some judged for rewards before the thousand years, and some judged after the thousand years. This is problematic if there is a pretribulation rapture and no Bema Seat Judgment.
Some will ask, 'Why then does God call where He is seated in Revelation chapter 20, the [thronos] or throne, and in other places say the Judgment [bema] or seat.' The answer is actually very simple. God's word is replete with symbolism, figures and word images or pictures which vary signifying or illustrating some particular spiritual truth. Some chapters and verses may be illustrating one aspect of God (such as, He being the King who rules upon the throne), while others chapters and verses may be illustrating another aspect of God (such as his position seated as Judge to mete out punishment). There really is no mystery in this. No more than the mystery of how God calls Himself in one chapter the Lamb, and in another chapter the Lion. One signifies His meekness and sacrifice, and the other His power and Strength. It doesn't mean it's two different Gods. In one verse Christ is called the Root, and in another the Vine. In one He's called the Bread, and in another the Water. There is no mystery, nor is it curious that God in one verse calls His chair the Judgment seat, and in another the throne of God. They signify different aspects of God's magnificent design. Judgment and Kingship.
Surely, there is only one time of Judgment, and that day is spoken of in scripture as "the last day." It is the day when judgment will take place for all people. There are no multiple Judgment days, although many theologians have gone to great lengths in an effort to prove that there are. One of the most popular scriptures used in support of this teaching is Romans chapter 14. Even though it says nothing about multiple judgments days, nor of this being a judgment of rewards for saints only.
Romans 14:10 •"But why dost thou judge thy brother? or why dost thou set at nought thy brother? for we shall all stand before the judgment seat of Christ."
This verse doesn't in any way defend or prove the theory that there are two judgments. The only way that we can see the doctrine of two separate judgment times in this verse is if we "read it into" these scriptures. Because it was obviously not inspired of God to be written there. Moreover, we have the identical language in 2nd Corinthians, and it is clear from this text that it is a time of Judgment both for the good and the bad alike. Not coincidentally, this is totally harmonious with what we've already learned when looking at the actual word "Bema" in scripture, and it's example uses for judgment for those at a tribunal.
2nd Corinthians 5:9-11 •"Wherefore we labour, that, whether present or absent, we may be accepted of him.
•For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ; that every one may receive the things done in his body, according to that he hath done, whether it be good or bad.
•Knowing therefore the terror of the Lord, we persuade men; but we are made manifest unto God; and I trust also are made manifest in your consciences."
The terror of the Lord doesn't sound to me like a time of rewards for Christians. This Judgment seat [bema] is the same one all mankind must stand before. We know Christians cannot be judged for any bad (as this verse clearly says this Judgment is for). And so this passage must be illustrating one Judgment of those the Lord will find good (those made righteous), and those whom the Lord will find bad (the unsaved in whom is sin), when they All stand before this Judgment seat. Not all believers (as is surmised), but all.
And so knowing all these things, let us go forth with confidence that all our sins (bad works) were made white as snow by Christ at the cross, and so we could never be held accountable for anything less than perfect works when we stand before the Judgment seat of Christ. Let us have the confidence to know that while all 'our own' righteous works are as filthy rags before God, the righteous works of Christ in us make us appear before Him perfect. Confidence to know that while our own prayers may be imperfect (as we are finite beings), the burnt offering of the sacrifice of Christ brings them up before the Lord as a sweet incense (Romans 8:26; Revelation 8:3).
Let us not get caught up in seeking our own rewards before a Bema seat, but trust in the reward of Christ, the inheritance that the Son secured for us by His own work. Let us not set our eyes upon gain, reigns, or prideful lust for rewards, but upon the riches which cannot be earned by us. The treasures which are received by faith. Let us trust in the work of Christ, and we can never go wrong. For it is then that we will understand that when we stand before the Bema seat judgment, we will stand a 'Righteous Man,' a man perfect in every way before God, having a Saviour who has delivered him a full inheritance, a full reward, by His work.
We pray that the Lord who is Gracious above all, will give us the wisdom to understand His most Holy Word, and discern between the right hand and the left.
I sure learned a great deal from this study, I hope you all did, too. So much coming to light when we really examine what the Bible truly says, and not trust mainstream Christianity to tell us what to believe.
JESUS IS ALL AND EVERYTHING!
You write such wonderfully refreshing studies!!
I did a similar study a few years back, and I came to the SAME conclusion...there is no "Bema Judgment" that most pastors talk about.
How it all will work, we will see....but there are NOT multiple judgments. The judgment for sin is already in the past, and that was accomplished by Jesus Christ, our Lord, on the Cross...
Everyone will have to render payment, and/or receive reward, on an individual basis. And it will be handled by the Mind greater than all of ours combined. I believe that He guides us all, and He will accomplish in all of us what is needed. So, we need not worry about anything...that is, having to DO anything by or for ourselves.
Thanks for all the time and effort you put into this wonderful study...I really enjoyed ALL OF IT!!
Thanks for reading and responding to this study, and for your insightful comments. So thrilled to find out that you came to the same conclusions. I am sorry I missed seeing you had written, yesterday. I have been so involved in writing what is being put on my heart everyday, I rarely have time to sit back and enjoy all the other wonderful posts that show up on this site. Yesterday, I woke up with the Bema seat Judgment on my mind, and decided to look into it. As it turns out, it is just another false doctrine that ties in with the Pre-Trib Rapture theory, and is just another reason to not believe this theory as the Truth.
I returned to work today, and have not had much time to write, but that is okay as the fire has cooled, and now all that I have learned is sinking in and I am finding peace in having grasped more of the Truth of His Word. It is so wonderful to study on ones own, and really find out for ourselves. I thank you for leading me in the right direction, as it all started with realizing who Israel truly is.
I hope to spend more time reading other posts and commenting. I have taken the time to read your posts everyday, but have not commented as much as I would like. You are always so on fire for the Lord and I admire that so much.
You are also right about everything being finished at the Cross. We just need to stay peaceful and alert to His prompting and everything will work together for our good. Even my injuries, as painful and limiting as they were (and still are to some extent) was actually a great thing! It gave me the time and opportunity to study the Bible and begin to really learn His Holy Word, and see how wrong I was in trusting others to do that for me.
Bless you dear sister, you have been such help and encouragement through this whole process, and I treasure all that you have shared and are sharing. You go girl!!
Yesterday I turned on my computer and I had no internet service. That was a good thing because I accomplished a lot with other things I ignore when I'm trying daily to bring what is missing to the "body of Christ" today....COMMON SENSE!
Usually when I wake in the morning, one or two "key" words pop into my mind, and that's what I research for the day. Yesterday, strangely, my mind told me nothing special, Biblically. And then, my internet was down.
Later, when it came back, I was involved in other things. Then today, I saw your answer to my reply. You're such good encouragement to me. You are one of the very rare "jewels" who actually study the Bible and WANT to learn. Everyone else is too busy watching the world. I have very little interest in the world....and that little decreases daily.
It's your postings I look for because they show so much insight. By bouncing things back and forth, we can learn from each other....and maybe someone will catch on to what Jesus said..I John 2:15:
"Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him."
Yet, this is all most Christians focus on...."church" activities, the Middle East, comets, or politics. I've been following the warnings on comets coming since 1983 (that's 30 years now)....and so far, NOTHING, has been seen to be prophetic. But then, "spiritual" things can't be seen, and that's what God's focus is on now. God's "Israel" is an invisible kingdom...and so are it's people....until our "change" comes "in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye"...I Cor.15:52. When this happens, it will be done before we even know it's coming.
I, like you, are focused on Jesus Christ and His Kingdom alone....and it has nothing to do with what is happening in this present world. But then, God did tell us that "few" would find this "narrow way"...Mt.7:14.
Wow! We really are on the same page!! I have been thinking the same thing about what most Christians are focusing on, and how very materialistic that is. These worries, that are being added to daily, are so distracting and keeps one focused on what the "world" is doing, and not focused on what the Lord is doing in our lives!!
I think all this reflects in the belief system we now see in the Churches....everyone wants to escape, and not have to deal SPIRITUALLY with their own walk with the Lord. They are having more faith in what the world tells them is going to happen,than in what Jesus tells them to do. This all boils down to seeing men as more powerful than God!! This is frightening in many ways, as most do not realize that God is in charge, and is letting these things occur to have each one turn to Him, and with faith in Him, carry out His commands in this life.
God is love, and love is the most important of all the Spiritual attributes of a Christian. The world is all about fear. How can love and fear exist together and not cause division in the heart. The only fear we should have is fear of God, and going astray from Him!! But, all these happenings of the dark forces seems to be more interesting than finding out the Truth....do you think these people could be guilty of not loving the Truth?
Our focus in these end times seems to be more on the terrifying and yet somehow exciting secret conspiracies and supposed truths that the world is hiding from us. Maybe all this is satisfying itching ears, even if it is not about the Gospel, perse, it keeps our minds off the Word, and learning more about that. When we really look at it, why are we more concerned about our lives and bodies in this world, than we are about our eternal souls and where they are headed. Distraction is from the devil, and one of his best tools, and we keep falling for it again and again!!
I went on to 5Doves today, and I could not believe there was not one letter that focused on the Bible and the Spiritual aspects of what is taking place. Every letter was about what is happening in this world or about a secret Rapture they are awaiting to happen in the next few days on one of the Feast of the Lord. I feel sorry for these people as they are going to be so discouraged when they are not taken out of here, soon. If only they would search for the Truth, they would know what the Lord is telling them, but instead they rely on religious teachers and preachers and each other to keep them informed and alert. It is sad.
I guess what the Lord tells us is really true in that regard. One must really love the Truth in order to want to find it. Maybe that is what Jesus meant when He told the church that we had lost our first love. If we truly love Him, we will want to know Him, and He is the Truth!!
I think it is fine and interesting and informative to know what is going on in the world around us. But to become so obsessed about it, and totally focused on it to the exclusion of everything Biblical and Spiritual, is exactly what is causing the great falling away.
I am finding that studying the Bible and finding the Truth that the Lord shares with us, is a calming and centering activity, that keeps me focused on what is truly important. If an astroid comes and blows me away, or if the earth shifts on its axis and I fall off, of if the horrible monsters from the pit of hell want to eat me, or if the world government want to cut off my head, or if the sun burns out and blows up the whole world, that has to be okay with me. I want to go be with Jesus, I do not want to stay in this world any longer than I have to. Yet, if I have to be here, I want to live in love, and the only way to do that is to know the Lord, and the only way to do that is to study His Word.
That is what I really like about this site, there are people here that are SPIRITUALLY in tune with what is happening in the world, because they are Spiritually connected to the Lord, and they love the Truth. I am honored to be able to share what I am learning, on a site, that encourages and supports such a love for the Lord and His Word.
All that just because you just happened to mention where you are coming from in this regard! I guess you got the idea that I have given it some thought also! Ha! It is good to rant once in awhile...Amen?
What is happening in the world is interesting, especially how it is lining up with Bible Prophecy, but in the long run, it is all temporary. The truth of His Holy Word, and the Glory and Power of His Kingdom, is forever!!
Agape, dear sister!!
For the first time in quite a while I also "visited" "5 Doves" today....before I even read that you did!
There is such a deterioration in Christian thinking in most of the postings there. I thought about the "man of sin" who is sitting in their "temples of God" and totally changing what God has written in His Book, probably due to their own preferences in thinking. It sure shows proof of this at that site today!
In a brief search today, I found a great example of this kind of apostasy. Most Christians are looking for "evil" everywhere except where it originates....in themselves. But, in order to combat evil, one has to realize it's source, FIRST. I came to terms with this when I totally understood Romans chapter 7.
Link on this one:
It's a sad thing that most Christians claim to love God with all their hearts...yet, they don't know a thing about Him except for what is "common knowledge" even by unbelievers. Few actually STUDY their Bibles apart from what they hear in church from "Pastors"....or what they read in books written by Christian "hawkers" ($$$$).
And each individual denomination believes they are the only ones who are right, and they won't even take time to search out ANYTHING that goes against their own opinion. That takes some "ego trip", doesn't it??
Am I the same way? Absolutely!! For many years I have "gone to church", read those corrupt books, and listened to the opinions of men...and BELIEVED every one of those lies, at one time or another!! But I LEARNED FROM MY MISTAKES!!
However, I don't think it's possible for anyone to come to terms with the truth until God, Himself, opens their eyes! It's not a slow process...it happened almost instantaneously with me! One day I believed all that garbage, and the next day it was like a "light bulb" going off in my understanding. My "ego" shot out the window like a rocket....and it left me with my head hanging in shame for what I used to think of God....and about "hell"...and about watching what the world was doing instead of understanding what God was telling me.
THE PROBLEM WAS....ME!! So, once I took "me" out of the equation, then there was plenty of room for the truth.
And I think you've been through it as well....I can tell! And I can really see those who haven't.
PS I wanted to add in that my "ego" which "flew out the window" came back in, of course (as we can't have a normal mental condition without SOME "ego" as a balancing factor)....but since that day, it's not nearly as strong, and it's much easier to control now. And, most importantly, I see it for what it is. One good example of a STRONG ego is a baby!! It thinks of NOTHING but itself. And, pathetically, some adults haven't changed much from that time.