Sunday, August 30, 2015

New Testament Giving – 2 Corinthians 9 (Post 5) - Tassos Kioulachoglou

New Testament Giving – 2 Corinthians 9

This study is a continuation of the respective study of 2 Corinthians 8. The wealth of information given in 2 Corinthians 8 concerning giving, continues in 2 Corinthians 9 too.

2. Corinthians 9:1-5: the gift as a blessing and not as covetousness.

2 Corinthians 9:1-5 “Now concerning the ministering to the saints, it is superfluous for me to write to you; for I know your willingness, about which I boast of you to the Macedonians, that Achaia was ready a year ago; and your zeal has stirred up the majority. Yet I have sent the brethren, lest our boasting of you should be in vain in this respect, that, as I said, you may be ready; lest if some Macedonians come with me and find you unprepared, we (not to mention you!) should be ashamed of this confident boasting. Therefore I thought it necessary to exhort the brethren to go to you ahead of time, and prepare your generous gift beforehand, which you had previously promised, that it may be ready as a matter of generosity and not as a grudging obligation.”

The words “generous gift” and “generosity” in the last sentence of the above passage is the Greek word “eulogia” that means “blessing”. Also, what is translated as “grudging obligation” is the Greek word “pleonexia” that means “covetousness”.
Paul calls the gift “blessing”. It is not a tithe, it is not a mandatory giving either. It is a blessing! This is how we should also think of our gifts to the poor saints: as blessings! Paul was excited that the Corinthians wanted so much to give, but he was not pressing them about it. The gift was to “be ready as a blessing [Greek: eulogia] and not as covetousness [Greek: pleonexia]”. Here is what a commentator says on this (Barnes: Albert Barnes’ Notes on the Bible):

“The word used here (pleonexia) means usually covetousness, greediness of gain, which leads a person to defraud others. The idea here is, that Paul would have them give this as an act of bounty, or liberality on their part, and not as an act of covetousness on his part, not as extorted by him from them.” (emphasis added)

Paul wanted the gift of the Corinthians to be a blessing and not something that was taken from them, out of covetousness. It is a pity that there are people today that do what Paul would not do: use manipulation and enticement to extort gifts from people. People today often don’t care about the means as long as their aim is obtained. It should not be like this. This is in no way what God wants. What He wants is that your gift is a blessing, an act of liberality, something that you desire and you can give and is in no way something that is taken from you through guilt, enticement or any other of the techniques that are many times used today. Back to Paul, he would not be greedy concerning the gift. He wanted the Corinthians to give but he was very careful, very gentle. He was careful in 2 Corinthians 8 and is careful here too. As Barnes correctly states, he wanted the gift to be an act of bounty, of liberality, on their part and not an act of greed from his part. How liberating is the Word of God and how much distortion exists today in the way many demand money.

2 Corinthians 9:6-7: The law of sowing and reaping and (again) how to give.

 2 Corinthians 9:6-7 “But this I say: He who sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and he who sows bountifully will also reap bountifully. So let each one give as he purposes in his heart, not grudgingly or of necessity; for God loves a cheerful giver.”

If we have heard something, and this many times, from 2 Corinthians 9 it is verse 6 (“He who sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and he who sows bountifully will also reap bountifully”). But Paul does not use verse 6 to manipulate believers into giving. He already spoke for almost one and a half chapters on how to give, before he arrives at this verse. What Paul does in 2 Corinthians 9:6 is to state the simple truth: if you sow sparingly you will reap sparingly and if you sow bountifully you will also reap bountifully. According to what you sow you will also reap. There will be a return for your gift and this return is in accordance to how much you give. HOWEVER the giving has to be voluntary, from the heart. No gift is welcomed if it is given grudgingly, with sorrow, without being happy with it, or if it is given out of compulsion or “of necessity” (2 Corinthians 9:7). “Of necessity” means because you have to. You don’t want to give but you are somehow forced to give. And this is what happens many times with tithing. Preachers come up, start reciting Malachi and Old Testament passages on the tithe and end up saying or implying that if you don’t give the tithe to the church you are cursed by God (or close to be cursed) and you cheat Him. Then you go ahead and put money in the money basket in response to this. In reality you didn’t give voluntary but you gave because you don’t want to cheat God and be under a curse – as the preacher told you. You would prefer to feed the poor, buy some sacks of rice for those poor kids in Haiti and support that evangelist that spreads the gospel in India. But now you were forced by the preacher to give for something else that you didn’t really want to give to. Thus you gave out of guilt, out of condemnation. Now if this is not giving with sadness and out of necessity I wonder what this is. Dear brother you do not have to succumb to such calls! What you were told is simply not the voice of the Word of God but the voice of tradition and religion that distorts the Word of God. You must not give because somebody forces you to give but because you really want to give from the heart. If you give out of guilt, if you have sorrow about it, the gift will not be welcomed by God. Also, to those that use condemnation and guilt as techniques to force God’s people to give for their purposes, I would like to point out: Paul said that he didn’t want the gifts to be as taken, extorted, from them. God does not really want such gifts, because people didn’t give them voluntary but they were in fact taken from them, stolen if you want! Not by force of power but by the force of words!
Having said the above, let’s go and have a look at 1 John 3:16-18:

“By this we know love, because He laid down His life for us. And we also ought to lay down our lives for the brethren. But whoever has this world’s goods, and sees his brother in need, and shuts up his heart from him, how does the love of God abide in him? My little children, let us not love in word or in tongue, but in deed and in truth.”

God’s Word says in 2 Corinthians 9:7 not to give grudgingly or out of necessity, because somebody tells you to give. Instead we must give out of the heart and be generous in it. God loves the one that gives gladly. He does not welcome the gift that is given with sadness. On equal ground it is a sin to have any love of money. As Paul said “the love of money is the root of all evil” (I Timothy 6:10). He also said that the genuineness of our love is tested by how much we care for the others (2 Corinthians 8:8). And what John describes here is a real situation: you have two brothers. One has this world’s goods. He has extra empty beds at home. He has plenty of money in the bank. He has plenty of food in the cellar. Now this man meets a brother that is in need. A need that the first one can satisfy. What should the first brother do? Should he pray for his bother in need? Yes he should do this too, but he should not stay there! He should give to him and help him. He should not shut his heart up as John says and just mutter a prayer or say a “God bless you brother” and walk away. The test of caring for others proves the sincerity of our love and whether the love of God is in us or not. And this is really a very serious matter.
Now, going back to the tithing system, there is the other distortion created by it: people are forced to give their tithe to a local church basket and then when they see a brother in need, they think: “I have already given my tithe to the church”. Thus we give out of necessity to purposes that give little help to the poor (most of what is given to a local church basket does not really end up helping the poor – this is sad but it is real and a look at the budget of an average church, especially in the Western world, is enough to verify it) and then when the poor come up we do not want or we cannot help them. This is a real, sad and usual situation.
Returning to 2 Corinthians 9:6, people very frequently use it to tell others that if you give a lot God will return the gift to you multiple times. In fact, in addition to 2 Corinthians 9:6, they again use Malachi for this:

Malachi 3:10-12 “Bring all the tithes into the storehouse, That there may be food in My house, And try Me now in this," Says the Lord of hosts, "If I will not open for you the windows of heaven And pour out for you such blessing That there will not be room enough to receive it. "And I will rebuke the devourer for your sakes, So that he will not destroy the fruit of your ground, Nor shall the vine fail to bear fruit for you in the field," Says the Lord of hosts; And all nations will call you blessed, For you will be a delightful land," Says the Lord of hosts.”

Some preachers and ministers wrongfully use the above passages enticing their audience to give with the promise of many financial blessings. Thus people give. But why? What is their motive? None of the motives of 2 Corinthians or the remaining word of God. It is not a act of generosity out of the heart but rather either an act of guilt (they give so that they do not … cheat God, as the preacher told them) or an act of greed (they give so that they get back much more). God is presented in this way as a money machine, as a bank. “Give your tithe and you will get it back multiple times”. Having money as a motive is wrong! Though God does return bountifully to those that give bountifully it would be out of order and character for Paul to use 2 Corinthians 9:6 to entice the Corinthians to give under promises of big and more harvests! What I believe Paul wanted to do was to state the facts. There is indeed a harvest to the givers. There is indeed a reward. I don’t know what it is, but why should it necessarily be a financial harvest or only a financial harvest or a harvest that refers only to the present earthly life ? The main thing is that there is a harvest! And the one that sows sparingly harvests sparingly and the one that sows abundantly also harvests abundantly. This is a fact! The Word does not speak of financial harvests, it speaks of harvests and there can be many different kinds of them, including financial ones. Do you want to call them “blessings”, here and in heaven? Call them blessings. I like more the word harvest! You want to harvest a lot? Sow also a lot!

2 Corinthians 9:8-15: “All sufficiency in all things”, guaranteed by God.

2 Corinthians 9:8-9 “And God is able to make all grace abound toward you, that you, always having all sufficiency in all things, may have an abundance for every good work. As it is written: "He has dispersed abroad, he has given to the poor; his righteousness endures forever."

God through Paul leaves no shadow of doubt: nobody is going to be made needy by giving liberally. As he makes clear, God assures they will have all sufficiency in all things and this always! They will have an abundance for every good work! God Himself guarantees this! Then Paul quotes Psalms 122:9: “"He has dispersed abroad, he has given to the poor; his righteousness endures forever”. Now this passage does not refer to God. It does not say: “God has dispersed abroad, God has given to the poor; God’s righteousness endures forever”. Instead this Psalm refers to the man that fears the Lord. Let’s read it in its entirety because it contains more promises:

Psalms 112:1-10 “Praise the Lord! Blessed is the man who fears the Lord, Who delights greatly in His commandments. His descendants will be mighty on earth; The generation of the upright will be blessed. Wealth and riches will be in his house, And his righteousness endures forever. Unto the upright there arises light in the darkness; He is gracious, and full of compassion, and righteous. A good man deals graciously and lends; He will guide his affairs with discretion. Surely he will never be shaken; The righteous will be in everlasting remembrance. He will not be afraid of evil tidings; His heart is steadfast, trusting in the Lord. His heart is established; He will not be afraid, Until he sees his desire upon his enemies. He has dispersed abroad, he has given to the poor; his righteousness endures forever; His horn will be exalted with honor. The wicked will see it and be grieved; He will gnash his teeth and melt away; The desire of the wicked shall perish.”

We have extensively written in another study about the fear of the Lord. The man that fears the Lord will be blessed! And one of the things that the man that fears the Lord does, is to give to the poor. He is liberal in his giving. He has dispersed abroad. He is not stingy but generous, because God is his abundance. And as 2 Corinthians 9:8-9 told us, God Himself guarantees that when you give liberally to the poor you are not going to run out of seed. And it continues:

2 Corinthians 9:9-15 “Now may He who supplies seed to the sower, and bread for food, supply and multiply the seed you have sown and increase the fruits of your righteousness, while you are enriched in everything for all liberality, which causes thanksgiving through us to God. For the administration of this service not only supplies the needs of the saints, but also is abounding through many thanksgivings to God, while, through the proof of this ministry, they glorify God for the obedience of your confession to the gospel of Christ, and for your liberal sharing with them and all men, and by their prayer for you, who long for you because of the exceeding grace of God in you. Thanks be to God for His indescribable gift!”

God who supplies the seed to the sower and the bread for food will supply and multiply the seed we have sown so that we can sow even more. And Paul explains that this gift, the gift to the poor, will abound in many thanksgivings to God. In the Corinthians instance the recipients would glorify God for the liberal sharing, the generosity, of their Corinthian brothers and sister.

2 Corinthians 9: Conclusion.

In this article we considered what 2 Corinthians 9 tells us about giving. What we saw here has to be added to what we saw in the respective article from 2 Corinthians 8. Here are the additional points we saw in this study:
i) Paul wanted the gift to be an act of generosity from the Corinthians’ side not an act of covetousness or greed from his side, where he would somehow extort the gift from them through guilt or any other manipulative way (2 Corinthians 9:1-5). In contrast to many today, Paul would not use guilt to take the gift. The gift is not the only thing that is important. It is equally important how the gift is taken. Using guilt to motivate people to give is wrong. The only valid motivator I see is the desire from the heart to give.
ii) Then we saw that the gift should not be given grudgingly or out of necessity (2 Corinthians 9:7). Instead it should be given joyfully. Again we see the same as in i) above. The gift itself is not enough. It is equally important how the gift is given and what is the motivator that made somebody to give.
iii) Whoever sows sparingly will also harvest sparingly and whoever sows bountifully will also reap bountifully (2 Corinthians 9:6). If you want a law, this is a law, a principle that will never be violated. Giving is like sowing seed. You sow much, you harvest much. It does not necessarily mean a financial harvest or only a financial harvest. It means harvest, and this harvest can be various things, including financial “harvests”. Paul does not state this to entice people so that they give out of greed. There is nothing good in greed and this can never be a good motivator for anything. He says this to state a fact, and the law of sowing and reaping is a fact.
iv) God Himself gives assurance that you will in no way get poor by giving liberally (2 Corinthians 9:8-10). God guarantees this Himself. As the Word says: “God is able to make all grace abound toward you, that you, always having all sufficiency in all things, may have an abundance for every good work” (2 Corinthians 9:8). ALL grace, ALL sufficiency in ALL things, ALWAYS, so that you may have abundance in EVERY good works. It cannot be made clearer. There is a guarantor behind this promise and this is GOD Himself.

Tassos Kioulachoglou
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Saturday, August 29, 2015

How You Can Live Forever And Never Die?

How You Can Live Forever
And Never Die

Dan Corner

Live Forever Never Die

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Jesus Taught We Can Live Forever

LIVE FOREVERThe one and only precious Lord Jesus who conquered death, the grave and defeated the devil taught that we can live forever and never die on at least four different occasions. He gave us his word on how we can have this sought-after live forever experience. This is what the beloved Lord of lords and God in the flesh declared:

I am the living bread that came down from heaven. If anyone eats of this bread, he will live forever. This bread is my flesh, which I will give for the life of the world (John 6:51) .... This is the bread that came down from heaven. Your forefathers ate manna and died, but he who feeds on this bread will live forever (John 6:58).

To properly understand those verses we must consider what else was said about living forever and never dying. By comparing Scripture with Scripture we will gain added truth and understanding:

Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in me will live, even though he dies; and whoever lives and believes in me will never die. Do you believe this?” (John 11:25,26)

I tell you the truth, if anyone keeps my word, he will never see death (John 8:51).

Together these verses are clear in stating that for us to live forever and never die we must:

● continue to feed off of his body (or flesh)
● continue to believe [Greek tense] on Jesus
● keep his word

These are all referring to the same act. In other words, to believe on Jesus = to keep his word = to feed off of his flesh.

[Sadly, the Roman Catholics have magnified John 6:51-58 to the exclusion of other related Scriptures and have wrongly concluded that Jesus was referring to transubstantiation there. He was not, which is apparent from other Scriptures related to living forever, eternal life and salvation.]

The Lord's Apostles

The Lord’s Apostles similarly taught on living forever and never dying:

The world and its desires pass away, but the man who does the will of God lives forever (1 John 2:17).

That truth is also related to John 6:51-58; 8:51 and 11:25,26. In other words, we are to continue to do the will of God, which is = to believe on Jesus = to keep his word = feed off of his flesh.


Living in God’s presence beyond the grave is what is meant by immortality, which is the same as living forever. Those who don’t live forever will experience eternal death and will be conscious forever in fiery torment. Immortality is referred to throughout the Bible:

In the way of righteousness there is life; along that path is immortality (Prov. 12:28).

To those who by persistence in doing good seek glory, honor and immortality, he will give eternal life (Rom. 2:7).

Notice: the ones seeking immortality will get eternal life (Rom. 2:7) and it comes from righteous living (Prov. 12:28). They are also described in Rom. 2:7 as persisting in doing good.

Victory In Jesus

Immortality is a definite promise held out for the Christian:

For the perishable must clothe itself with the imperishable, and the mortal with immortality. When the perishable has been clothed with the imperishable, and the mortal with immortality, then the saying that is written will come true: “Death has been swallowed up in victory.” ... But thanks be to God! He gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ. Therefore, my dear brothers, stand firm. Let nothing move you. Always give yourselves fully to the work of the Lord, because you know that your labor in the Lord is not in vain. (1 Cor. 15:53,54,57,58).

Specifically, it is the message of salvation called the gospel that reveals the truth about living forever and immortality:

But it has now been revealed through the appearing of our Savior, Christ Jesus, who has destroyed death and has brought life and immortality to light through the gospel (2 Tim. 1:10).

Tree Of Life

In the first book of the Bible we read of the tree of life. We read that eating from it will enable one to live forever:

And the LORD God said, “The man has now become like one of us, knowing good and evil. He must not be allowed to reach out his hand and take also from the tree of life and eat, and live forever” (Gen. 3:22).

Then in the last book of the Bible we read of it again and who will have the right to eat of this fruit:

He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches. To him who overcomes, I will give the right to eat from the tree of life, which is in the paradise of God (Rev. 2:7).

Blessed are those who wash their robes, that they may have the right to the tree of life and may go through the gates into the city. Outside are the dogs, those who practice magic arts, the sexually immoral, the murderers, the idolaters and everyone who loves and practices falsehood (Rev. 22:14,15).

So how do we wash our robes so we can have the right to the tree of life and live forever? Here’s the answer:

I answered, “Sir, you know.” And he said, “These are they who have come out of the great tribulation; they have washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb” (Rev. 7:14).

Only the blood of Jesus can enable us to eat from the tree of life so you can live forever. Jesus is our only hope and savior.

Getting back to Rev. 22:15, please notice who will be outside New Jerusalem where the tree of life is. Turn from these sins that are dragging you to the lake of fire (Rev. 21:8).

The Real Fountain Of Youth

Some are hoping for a scientific breakthrough so they will never die. Juan Ponce De Leon once searched for the fountain of youth, but only discovered Florida.

To live foreverhowever, can only be found by seeking spiritual life found in JESUS CHRIST, who died for our sins and rose again from the grave. He himself taught we will never die [never experience eternal death] if we keep his words. Dear reader, look no further than the message of the Bible to learn about immortality. The precious truth of Almighty God tells us how to live forever.

Live Forever And Never Die


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Is Believing on Jesus Christ The Same as Obeying Him?

Is Believing on Jesus Christ
The Same as Obeying Him?

Dan Corner

PRINT: Is Believing On Jesus The Same As Obeying Him (pdf)
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Do We Have To Obey To Believe On Jesus Christ?

What does it really mean to believe on Jesus Christ? Because of various doctrines of demonsmany wrongly think they can believe on Jesus without obeying him. believe on Jesus ChristThis, however, is not the message of the Bible, but a dangerous misunderstanding and deadly spiritual snare. Please note the following passage cited from two different reputable translations revealing what it means to believe on Jesus Christ:
Whoever believes in the Son has eternal life; whoever disobeys the Son will not see life, but must endure God’s wrath (John 3:36, NRSV).He who believes in the Son has eternal life; but he who does not obey the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of God abides on him (John 3:36, NASB).
Is Disobedience Equated To Unbelief?

The King James Version renders this same verse as:believe on Jesus Christ
He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life: and he that believeth not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth on him.
The point is: To believe on Jesus Christ is the opposite of disobeying Jesus! Furthermore, the Greek word translated as believeth not in that verse is apeitheo and it means: not believe, disobedient, obey not, unbelieving. This alone makes the crucial point loud and clear about disobedience being a manifestation of unbelief.

Those Who Believe On Jesus Christ Obey Jesus Christ!

Remember also that there are only two types of people which are sometimes referred to as the saved or the unsaved,the sheep or the goats, etc., but in the above passage, these two types of people are either mentioned as those who believe on the Son or those who disobey the Son. In other words, again it becomes apparent that unbelief in Jesus is synonymous with disobedience to him, while believing in Jesus equals obeying him. That is also related to the repentance definition and is vital truth we all need to remember because it helps us understand the Biblical meaning of the only kind of belief in Jesus that brings salvation. The same truth is also shown in the following passage:
And to whom did He swear that they should not enter His rest, but to those who were disobedient? And so we see that they were not able to enter because of unbelief (Heb. 3:18,19, NASB).
Notice again how disobedience is equated to unbelief. Hence, we see again the meaning of unbelief and an important insight about disobedience. In other words, disobedience is a manifestation of unbelief. A careful comparison of two other salvation passages will also make this same point:
Jesus said to her, "I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in me will live, even though he dies; and whoever lives and believes in me will never die. Do you believe this?" (John 11:25,26)
I tell you the truth, if anyone keeps my word, he will never see death. (John 8:51)

Learn Now The Difference Between True Grace and False Grace

A Continuous Tense Believing On Jesus Christ
is Needed To Avoid Spiritual Death

Jesus taught what one must do to never die spiritually. In Jn. 11:25,26 he taught it takes a continuous tense belief in Jesus. In Jn. 8:51 the Lord taught it will take keeping his word. In other words, one is not really believing on Jesus unless he is keeping his words. Please remember that. Can it then be stated that many who at one time truly believed on Jesus are now in unbelief as is evident by their disobedience? The answer is a resounding yes. Jesus taught:
They believe for a while, but in the time of testing they fall away. (Luke 8:13)
Jesus taught a true believer could turn into an unbeliever and, consequently, die spiritually. This is especially important in a day when so many have been deceived by the security in sin gospel commonly called eternal security or the perseverance of the saints. In other words, a true Christian can afterwards lose his salvation, as has happened numerous times, according to the Bible.believe on Jesus Christ To enter God’s paradise kingdom after death, a person who was previously born again must endure persecution and hatred for being a Christian, bring forth good fruit and (among other things) continue to believe on Jesus Christ, which will manifest in simple obedience.Besides all of the above, remember the following relevant salvation Scriptures:
He [Jesus] became the source of eternal salvation for all who obey him (Heb 5:9)Those who have done good will rise to live, and those who have done evil will rise to be condemned. (John 5:29)
We know that we have come to know him if we obey his commands. The man who says, "I know him," but does not do what he commands is a liar, and the truth is not in him. (1 John 2:3,4)
For of this you can be sure: No immoral, impure or greedy person - such a man is an idolater - has any inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and of God. Let no one deceive you with empty words, for because of such things God’s wrath comes on those who are disobedient. Therefore do not be partners with them. (Eph 5:5-7)
... the church submits to Christ .... (Eph 5:24)
Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the sinful nature with its passions and desires. (Gal 5:24)
Much more related information can be found in our 801 page volume entitled, The Believer’s Conditional Security. This is the most exhaustive refutation to the teaching of eternal security that has ever been written. It will also reinforce the necessity of believing of Jesus Christ TO THE END for salvation's sake!
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Friday, August 28, 2015

Augustine of Hippo's Prayer To Mary For His Salvation

Friends, your church most likely has roots leading back to Augustine of Hippo. Are you trusting in man while all along you have the New Testament which exposes the truth and the lie? How much is your soul worth? How important are your spouse's and your children's soul? Will God wink at us when we gave ourselves to this World's wickedness, in TV trash, movies, music, etc. Warren McGrew 111

Augustine of Hippo's Prayer To

Mary For His Salvation and View On Infant Baptism

Dan Corner

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The Real Augustine Of Hippo Exalted In Calvinism and Catholicism

How Does Augustine's Prayer To Mary Dangerously Contradict The Bible

The Calvinists (and Catholics) exalt Augustine of Hippo as a great theologian. In fact, John Calvin systematized Augustine's doctrines and this is, to a large degree, the Calvinism presented today. What a surprise it will be for many to read Augustine's prayer to Mary for salvation and his teaching on infants getting born again at baptism!

Augustine's Prayer To Mary For Salvation

Please ponder this prayer and it will become apparent how darkened and deceived Augustine really was. Only God knows how many have been stumbled because of exalting Augustine to an elevated level, which he doesn’t deserve. Augustine prayed to mary for salvation infant baptism born againIt is impossible for him to be a great theologian as many think of him just in light of this. He was a heretic and nothing better:

Blessed Virgin Mary, who can worthily repay you with praise and thanksgiving for having rescued a fallen world by your generous consent? What songs of praise can our weak human nature offer in your honor, since it was through you that it has found the way to salvation? Accept then such poor thanks as we have to offer, unequal though they be to your merits. Receive our gratitude and obtain by your prayers the pardon of our sins. Take our prayers into the sanctuary of heaven and enable them to bring about our peace with God.
May the sins we penitently bring before Almighty God through you be pardoned. May what we beg with confidence be granted through you. Take our offerings and grant our request; obtain pardon for what we fear, for you are the only hope of sinners. We hope to obtain the forgiveness of our sins through you. Blessed Lady, in you is our hope of reward.

Holy Mary, help the miserable, strengthen the discouraged, comfort the sorrowful, pray for your people, plead for the clergy, intercede for all women consecrated to God. May all who venerate you, feel now your help and protection. Be ready to help us when we pray, and bring back to us the answers to our prayers. Make it your continual care to pray for the People of God, for you were blessed by God and were made worthy to bear the Redeemer of the world, Who lives and reigns forever. [—Saint Augustine (d. 430). (Dictionary of Mary, Catholic Book Publishing Co.: New Jersey, 1997, 1985, p. 531.)]
augustine of hippo infant baptism born again catholic

Augustine of Hippo Taught Babies Are BORN AGAIN
At Infant Baptism Apart From Faith

One can see the Roman Catholic view of getting regenerated at infant baptism in Augustine of Hippo, but how John Calvin could exalt such a rank heretic as Augustine of Hippo is beyond reason (as well as how proponents of Calvinism can cite John Calvin as a great theologian and Charles Spurgeon as the Prince of Preachers)! Here are the facts of how babies are BORN AGAIN, based on HERETIC Augustine:
The answer is, that Regeneration is conferred by the Sacrament and not by the parents' faith. 2 It is not written, says Augustine, except a man be born again of his parents' will, or of the faith of those who present him to Baptism or who minister the Sacrament ; but, except a man be born again of Water and of the Holy Spirit. Thus Regeneration is the work of the Holy Spirit. As Augustine puts it: the water externally manifesting the Sacrament of Grace, and the Spirit inwardly effecting the benefit of Grace. ("Aqua igitur exhibens forinsecus sacramentum gratiae, et Spiritus operans intrinsecus beneficium gratiae.") The Regenerating Spirit is present alike in the elders who offer the child, and in the child who is offered and born again. And it is this association in the one Spirit which gives value to the parents' faith. The stress, according to Augustine, must be laid on the Divine side and not on the mere human belief. (Augustine of Hippo, Letters 98:2)

Biblical Salvation vs Augustine's Prayer To Mary

True salvation is only found in the Lord Jesus. He is our life (1 John 5:12) and the only way to the Father (John 14:6). Jesus is the only hope of sinners, not Mary. Praying to Mary is not Biblical and will not assist you in obtaining forgiveness of sins. It is also disobedience in itself to how the Lord taught for us to pray (Mt. 6:6-8; Jn. 14:14 cf. Acts 7:59,60).

Here Is Proof That Alphonsus Liguori Prayed To Mary For Salvation

To be forgiven of your sins you must repent (turn away from your sins) and place a trusting and submitting faith in the Lord Jesus who shed his blood for your sins. Infants can NOT be born again at infant baptism! Please read the New Testament for yourself, believe what it says and change accordingly. The Bible Is Final Authority. Humbly seek the proper interpretation of Scripture by reading all of it, carefully examining the context and comparing Scripture with Scripture. The Holy Spirit is the Christian's teacher and guide, not John CalvinCharles Spurgeon, the Pope or anyone else. Your eternal destiny depends on what you do with the message of the Bible. The Augustine wrongly exalted by Calvinism (and Catholicism) was not sound. He was NOT a great theologian. He believed in a mythical, non-existent Mary - not the real mother of Jesus shown in the Bible. Click here to purchase our book, Is This the Mary Of The Bible. Remember, your eternal destiny hinges on what you do with the message of the Bible, not how Augustine prayed or believed!

augustine's prayer to mary


Evangelical Outreach
PO Box 265,
Washington, PA 15301

Thursday, August 27, 2015

The Pagan Roots of the Roman Catholic Church - Part 1 & 2

I Resigned as a Baptist Deacon Over Eternal Security Heresy

I Resigned as a Baptist Deacon
Over Eternal Security Heresy

Brother Ken

backslider return to salvationI was raised in the Baptist faith. So part of my learning was that “Once Saved Always Saved” and I truly believed that, but not any more. Here is why... Everyday I get into my Bible and study God’s word. Normally I do this around noon time and will spend anywhere from an hour up to four or five hours each day. Before noon I usually spend time playing my ____ video games ... As I was playing my video games I wasn’t thinking about God or scriptures, I was thinking about how to dodge the enemy’s gunfire (I was playing a war game). Anyway, the book of James and “salvation” kept coming to my mind, not that I was thinking about it, but it kept hounding me. So finally, I turned my game off figuring this has to be important for God to be driving it home.

Now normally I do my Bible study in my office where the computer is at, but I stood there at the table and opened my Bible to the book of James and focused in on James 5:19-20. I didn’t skim through the book of James; I opened it up and went directly to the fifth chapter and the last two verses, which reads ...My brothers, if one of you should wander from the truth and someone should bring him back, remember this: whoever turns a sinner from the error of his way will save him from death and cover over a multitude of sins. (NIV)

My mouth dropped open as my mind that was clouded with all the lies I was taught over the years became immediately clear. A “believer” CAN turn away from God and return back to sin, and by doing so, they have lost their salvation. Of course, I was taught that if a person does return back to sin, then they were NEVER saved to begin with. This is a TRAINED thought process, but it is not supported by the Bible. A person is ONLY guaranteed “Eternal Life” IF THEY CONTINUE TO LISTEN TO JESUS’ VOICE AND FOLLOW HIM (John 10:27-29). And I thank God for revealing this TRUTH to me, because now I am “TRULY” born again with a whole new thought process. Because of this “TRUTH” I was forced to make a decision, I had to stand against the Baptist beliefs and stand firm on God’s word. The preacher (J. _____) came over to my house to “convince” me of my error. He tried three or four verses of scripture to prove me wrong, but not one of his verses of scripture stood up to James 5:19-20. When, he realized he wasn’t winning me over, he said he had to get going, and then he left.

The next day he picked me up for our weekly visitation time, and as we made our way over to one of the church member’s home, we talked some more about the OSAS doctrine and he was singing a totally different tune supporting my belief. He even gave two biblical examples I didn’t think of. The first being the disciples that followed Jesus no more (John 6:66) and Judas Iscariot who was an Apostle BEFORE he betrayed Jesus. When he dropped me off at my home, he said how he wanted him and I to have a meeting with ____ _____ (my Uncle) to get this straightened out. I agreed to it and that night we had the meeting. My Uncle ____ was totally closed minded and refused to accept God’s word. For example; I told him in regards to James 5:19-20 and he cut me off saying how the book of James was a letter to ALL Jews and NOT just believers. I told him he was wrong and to prove it read James 2:1. He only read “My brothers, as believers ...” and he stopped. Now why did he stop? Because this verse tells us who James is directing his letter to, which is the believers and NOT ALL the Jews. But my uncle couldn’t FACE THE TRUTH, so he kept saying “according to MacArthur ...” To me, I don’t care what MacArthur says. I care what God says. Finally, my Uncle not being able to stand firm with scripture to prove me wrong, and since I refused to accept what MacArthur says, his last resort was to stand firm on the Baptist Tenets. So he said “According to the Baptist Tenets you CANNOT serve as deacon in a Baptist church not believing in the Once Saved Always Saved Doctrine.” Then he turned to the preacher who up to this point said absolutely nothing and asked “Isn’t that right ____?” And ____ agreed. Remember, ____ agreed with me earlier that day. So he was faced with a decision—to either stand firm on God’s word or stand firm on the Baptist Tenets. He chose the Baptist Tenets over God’s word. I however, stood firm on God’s word proving the OSAS doctrine to be false, and I stood up and told them that they would receive my resignation because there was no way that I could belong to a church that blatantly taught heresy. My uncle yelled “This isn’t heresy!” I told him as I walked away “when you teach that a person can commit adultery, but they aren’t an adulterer if they’re saved, then that is heresy.” Then he yelled “we don’t teach that!” I told him “you teach that every time you teach OSAS.” Then he didn’t say anything.

VERY FEW people will accept this as truth, because they WANT to believe that God will NOT punish them for their sins. But wake up people, God is a just God and he CANNOT and WILL NOT say that your sins are OK as he punishes others for their sins ...

Where God’s word says “ALL” liars will have their place in the fiery lake of burning sulfur, the eternal security teachers are excluding the “saved” liars. If you have lied since being saved you CANNOT believe in OSAS and Revelation 21:8, because God’s word condemns and OSAS gives immunity, so you have to believe in one or the other. Now the question is: do you believe what God’s word says or do you believe what man has said? For me all it took was God to show me James 5:19-20 to open my eyes to the truth. How many times over the past twenty years I’ve seen and read James 5:19-20 and why I didn’t see this truth before is beyond me. I just praise God for this knowledge he has given me, because I sit back and think of the millions of people who are in hell right now because they believed the OSAS doctrine ... DO NOT BE DECEIVED the wicked WILL NOT inherit the kingdom of God (1 Corinthians 6:9-10) ... Our eternal salvation is too important to NOT get it right. Make sure you get it right. I want to leave you with one more thing to think about. Between God and Satan, who would want you to believe that you CAN’T lose your salvation no matter what you say or do? 
In Christ Jesus our Lord and Savior,
eternal security heresy


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Monday, August 24, 2015

New Testament Giving – 2 Corinthians 8 (Post 4)

New Testament Giving – 2 Corinthians 8

As we said in the article: “Why tithing is not for the New Testament believer”, tithing is a term almost unknown in the New Testament. I need to clarify here that when I’m speaking of New Testament I mean the New Covenant, the covenant that was instituted with the sacrifice of our Lord Jesus Christ. The Old Testament, the Old Covenant, has indeed a lot to say about tithing (this word is used 36 times there), but not the New. In contrast, the New Testament says a lot about giving. To see what the Word of God says for us - who live under the New Covenant, under this present administration of grace –we will start from 2 Corinthians 8. This together with 2 Corinthians 9 (that we study in a separate article), deal directly with the matter of giving and contain a wealth of information. We will explore this information as follows: we will be reading blocks of Scripture from 2 Corinthians 8 and then we will be exploring to see what they are telling us about giving.

2 Corinthians 8:1-4: What was given, how and for what purpose ?

Starting our study from 2 Corinthians 8:1-4 we read:

“Moreover, brethren, we make known to you the grace of God bestowed on the churches of Macedonia: that in a great trial of affliction the abundance of their joy and their deep poverty abounded in the riches of their liberality. For I bear witness that according to their ability, yes, and beyond their ability, they were freely willing, imploring us with much urgency that we would receive the gift and the fellowship of the ministering to the saints.”

This passage of 2 Corinthians speaks about the believers, the people that made the churches of Macedonia. Paul describes here how they gave and though there is more to be found in this passage I have noted the following:

1. What they gave was a GIFT. The Greek word that is translated as “gift” in 2 Corinthians 8:4 is the word “charis” that means “grace”. In other words, a more accurate translation here would be: “that we would receive the grace and the fellowship of the ministering to the saints”. What was ministered to the saints in the age of grace is not called “tithe” but “grace”. The giving of the tithe (tithing) belongs to the age of the law. In the age of grace what you have is no longer tithing but “grace giving”.

2. “They were freely willing” (2 Corinthians 8:3). It is again worthy to go to the Greek text here. There, the word used is the word “authairetos”. As the Vine’s dictionary says about this word:

“authairetos is from autos, self, and haireomai, to choose, self-chosen, voluntary, of one’s own accord, occurs in 2 Corinthians 8:3 and 17, of the churches of Macedonia as to their gifts for the poor saints and of Titus in his willingness to go and exhort the church in Corinth concerning this matter”. (Vine’s expository dictionary of New Testament words, Mac Donald Publishing company, p.25. Emphasis is added.)

The believers in Macedonia were NOT forced to give. What they gave was given voluntary. Again there is a huge difference to tithing. The tithe was mandatory in the Old Testament. However, what we have here is not mandatory. What we have here is not tithing but something completely different. It is voluntary contributions to the saints, given out of free will and of the people’s own accord. In contrast to this, today many times we will hear people preaching about the tithe and that the people owe it to God and the church and if they don’t give it they cheat Him. In this way, people are forced, out of guilt, to do whatever the speaker says. This obviously has nothing to do with the free willing, voluntary contributions that Paul is speaking about here.

3. “ministering to the saints” (2 Corinthians 8:4). Now what was this gift for? It was for ministering to the saints. Paul tells us more about this “ministering” in Romans 15:25-26:

“But now I am going to Jerusalem to minister to the saints. For it pleased those from Macedonia and Achaia to make a certain contribution for the poor among the saints who are in Jerusalem.

This was Paul’s last visit to Jerusalem. There he was imprisoned. As he says about the purpose of this trip in Acts 24.17: “Now after many years I came to bring alms and offerings to my nation”. As we see from the above, the ministering to the saints, the grace that the believers in Macedonia and Achaia (Corinth) contributed freely, the voluntary contributions, were contributions “for the poor among the saints who were in Jerusalem” (Romans 15:26). The money was going to the poor brothers and sisters. These poor church members were the target of the giving. Ministering to the poor saints gets a lot of attention in the Scriptures. James, John and Peter told Paul:

Galatians 2:10 “and when James, Cephas, and John, who seemed to be pillars, perceived the grace that had been given to me, they gave me and Barnabas the right hand of fellowship, that we should go to the Gentiles and they to the circumcised. Only they would that we should remember the poor, the very thing which I also was eager to do.

James, Peter and John told one thing to Paul: “remember the poor”! And Paul carried this out. People today give their tithe to the church where they go on Sundays, much of it goes to administration expenses with a small portion (if any) left for the poor. In the New Testament church though, it was the other way around: people were not giving involuntary – out of guilt – but voluntary and though there are also other purposes for giving (as we will see later), giving for the poor saints was probably the most important one.

2 Corinthians 8:5-8: Exhortation to give: How Paul did it?

In 2 Corinthians 8:5-8 Paul exhorts the believers to give. Let’s see how he did it:

2 Corinthians 8:5-8 “And not only as we had hoped, but they first gave themselves to the Lord, and then to us by the will of God. So we urged Titus, that as he had begun, so he would also complete this grace in you as well. But as you abound in everything––in faith, in speech, in knowledge, in all diligence, and in your love for us––see that you abound in this grace also. I speak not by commandment, but I am testing the sincerity of your love by the diligence of others.

Paul exhorts the believers to give abundantly. “See that you abound to this grace” (2 Corinthians 8:7), he tells them. But notice how gentle he is. See what he says in the next sentence: “I speak not by commandment”. You will not find anywhere in the New Testament the coercion and the language that you will find in some of the today’s churches when it comes to giving or “tithing”. You will not find Christ, Paul, Peter, John or any other coercing people, reciting Malachi and other Old Testament passages, to give their “tithes” or else they will be … cursed (that’s what is implied by some of the modern sermons on tithing). Paul knows nothing of this. He gently exhorts the Corinthians to abound in this grace making clear that he does not speak by commandment. He does not command them to do so but he exhorts them to do so. He didn’t have a budget to meet for the poor saints. He didn’t get a number down from the headquarters and now was going around pressuring or enticing people in order to meet it. What he was doing was to state the truth. As he said: “I am testing the sincerity of your love by the diligence of others” (2 Corinthians 8:8). Not empty words but real support.

2 Corinthians 8:10-15: Giving out of desire and in accordance to what one has.

2 Corinthians 8:10-11 “a year ago (you) started not only to do this work but also to desire to do it. So now finish doing it as well, so that your readiness in desiring it may be matched by your completing it”

This passage deals with desires about giving and realization of these desires. The first part of the passage shows how important it is not only to give but also TO DESIRE IT. It is desire plus realization of this desire that God wants from His people. None of these two alone works. God does not want you to desire to give but to never act upon it! Always to say: “how great would it be to give this gift for the ministering of those saints” but never to realize it, though you have the means. This is hypocrisy. And vice versa, He does not want you to give without heartfully desiring it, as of commandment, out of coercion by somebody. Keep this in mind always. In giving both the desire and acting upon this desire are important! The motivation for giving is the desire in your heart. And as Philippians 2:13 tells us:

“For it is God who works in you to both will and to do of His good pleasure”.

God is at work in us to will, to desire, to want and then to do what is of His goods pleasure. Again, as we observe, the way that God works is through putting a desire in our heart. This is the primary way He uses to motivate us. Coercion and guilt are wrong and invalid motivators.
Now speaking about desire, and as we will also see more extensively in our study of 2 Corinthians 9, a real Christian that has the love of God in him does have a desire to help his poor brothers. John makes it clear that if somebody sees a brother in need and he has the means to help him, yet he chooses to “shut up his heart from him, how does the love of God abide in him?” (1 John 3:16-18).
Continuing in 2 Corinthians 8:

2 Corinthians 8:10-15 “your readiness in desiring it may be matched by your completing it out of what you have. For if there is first a willing mind, it is accepted according to what one has, and not according to what he does not have. For I do not mean that others should be eased and you burdened; but by an equality, that now at this time your abundance may supply their lack, that their abundance also may supply your lack––that there may be equality. As it is written, "He who gathered much had nothing left over, and he who gathered little had no lack."

There are so many truths in this passage that ought to be preached much, much more than Old Testament tithing. Paul speaking to Corinthians about giving tells them that they should give “out of what they have”! Now if tithing was valid in the New Testament – which it isn’t – I would expect Paul to make a blanket statement: “you give 10% of your income. Period.” Is he saying anything like this ? You may have heard it preached (explicitly or implicitly) from a pulpit but you will not hear it from the Word of God! And guess whose words count at the end ?! “Out of what you have” means “according to what you have” and so that there are no misunderstandings, Paul makes it clear: “not according to what you don’t have” (2 Corinthians 8:12)! Today some churches press (gently or otherwise) their members to give their tithe (i.e. 10 % of their income) to the church funds. Apart from the fact that such a call is wrong there are also no qualifications added to it. The poor family that can barely makes ends meet is expected to take 10% of their pay and give it to the church. They are told that God is going to bless them much more if they do so. The thing is that the New Covenant does not know such giving. According to the Word, whatever is given should be out of what one has. You cannot take from the needs of your family to cover the needs of another family, let alone the needs of the church organization (bills, staff salaries etc.). This is what the Word of God says. You can only give what you have. You don’t have it, you can’t give it! As Paul told Timothy:

I Timothy 5:7-8 “And these things command, that they may be blameless. But if anyone does not provide for his own, and especially for those of his household, he has denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever.”

First you are expected to provide for your own household and your own people i.e. those that are dependant on you. Whoever does not do this, says the Word of God, is worse than an unbeliever. After these needs are covered you can then think of needs that are outside your own household. It is out of what you have, after the needs of your family have been met. As Paul also makes clear in the above passage of 2 Corinthians 8:13-14:

“For I do not mean that others should be eased and you burdened; but by an equality, that now at this time your abundance may supply their lack, that their abundance also may supply your lack––that there may be equality.”

Paul had no intention to help the poor in Jerusalem by making the Corinthians poor! He had no thought at all of burdening the one to ease the other! They would help, out of their abundance. It was this abundance that would supply the lack of the poor saints in Jerusalem at this time, so that the abundance of these, now poor, saints could supply the Corinthians’ lack in another time.
Moving on, we have mentioned it before that the gift itself is not enough. There has to be a desire for it. It cannot be as by command! And in 2 Corinthians 8:12 Paul repeats it again: “For if the readiness is there, it is accepted according to what one has” Readiness, a willing heart, is a prerequisite for a gift. If (first) this readiness is there, then (second) is the gift accepted “according to what one has and not according to what he does not have” (2 Corinthians 8:12).
To summarize what we see 2 Corinthians 8:10-15 telling us: for a gift to be acceptable, a willing heart is a prerequisite. There must be a readiness, a willingness, a desire to give. And out of this desire one should give. He should give not according to what he does not have, but according to what he has. The equality is not done by giving out of your lack, but by giving out of your abundance, out of your surplus, to cover somebody else’s lack. Your surplus will be reduced and may be eliminated but his lack will be reduced and it may be eliminated too! That’s New Testament giving. That’s grace giving!

2 Corinthians 8:16-21: Transparency in the administration of the gift.

Continuing in 2 Corinthians 8 and moving to verses 16-21:

“But thanks be to God who puts the same earnest care for you into the heart of Titus. For he not only accepted the exhortation, but being more diligent, he went to you of his own accord. And we have sent with him the brother whose praise is in the gospel throughout all the churches, and not only that, but who was also chosen by the churches to travel with us with this gift, which is administered by us to the glory of the Lord Himself and to show your ready mind, avoiding this: that anyone should blame us in this lavish gift which is administered by us – providing honorable things, not only in the sight of the Lord, but also in the sight of men.

I want to focus on the part of the above passage that I have emphasized. Paul was not only collecting contributions for the poor saints but he also cared that nobody should blame him and his team “in this lavish gift which was administered by them” (2 Corinthians 8:20). What could they blame them for? That they used the gift inappropriately. That they used it for themselves. That they said one thing but did another. To avoid any of these, Paul had with him a brother that was chosen by the churches to travel with them with this gift. If you are administering the gifts of God’s people, do what Paul did: take measures so that nobody can blame you in the administration of these gifts. Be transparent! As transparent as possible! Give frequent updates of what you did with the gift. What was received, where was it spent, what is left ? Get witnesses trusted by the people. Nothing should be hidden. We must be open and transparent with gifts. Paul took care providing honorable things not only in the sight of God but also in the sight of men. So must we too.

2 Corinthians 8: Conclusion.

2 Corinthians 8 and 9 are two chapters with wealth of information about giving and how it is to be applied in the New Testament era. In this article we dealt with 2 Corinthians 8; we will deal with 2 Corinthians 9 in the next article. Summarizing what we have learned up to now from 2 Corinthians 8:

i) What 2 Corinthians 8 speaks about is gifts, grace gifts. It does not speak about tithes and tithers but about gifts and givers.
ii) The purpose of the gift was to support the poor saints in Jerusalem (2 Corinthians 8:4). Supporting the poor saints is not the only purpose to which gifts can go. We will see more purposes. However, giving to the poor is one of the most important ones. I believe, based on the Scripture, supporting the poor saints should have very high priority in people’s giving and congregational giving.
iii) People were to give freely and not to be forced to give (2 Corinthians 8:5-8).
iv) On the same matter: desire was a prerequisite to give. It was the prime motivator. There is no place in 2 Corinthians 8 for gifts given out of guilt, or because “it is mandatory” (2 Corinthians 8:10-15).
v) The people were to give according to what they had and not according to what they didn’t have. There was no fixed percentage of how much somebody should give. All was a combination of a) desire and b) ability i.e. “according to what they had” (2 Corinthians 8:12).
vi) Finally, Paul was taking measures not to allow any chance for somebody to blame him about the administration of this gift. He was fully transparent concerning this gift and its use (2 Corinthians 8:20).