Part 32, PERGAMOS, SECTION 3

LOVE

This is not about sex. Ultimately love is a choice; “This is attractive about them, I want to know them better, that is attractive about them, I want to know them even better.” and you learn about them. It’s a process of exploring a personality, a soul. You are making small choices along the way; “I love this and that about them”. Finally; “I love them.” With that growth of love process comes a process of growing attention to, allegiance, loyalty and commitment. Love is a work in progress! It is a spiritual process. BUT:

The growing communication with, attention to, allegiance, loyalty and commitment must be demonstrated by ever growing, a work in progress, of physical and emotional (spiritual, non-physical) demonstrations that please the one you love. Love must be a growing thing or it will stagnate into a lukewarm relationship of what it could have been. OR:

Your love can slowly die away due to a slow dying out of allegiance, loyalty and commitment; “Maintaining this relationship is just too much trouble.” OR: Sometimes the relationship never gets very far beyond the introduction stage. “This relationship demands too much and developing it just isn’t worth the trouble.”

Doctrine of the Nicolaitanes

Remember: (Rev. 2:15) Jesus said: So hast thou also them that hold (to use strength, seize, take, retain, hold fast) the doctrine of the Nicolaitanes, which thing I hate.” It is imperative that you now read Satan: A Study Guide and Teaching Manual Part 1 in the commentary The Holy Spirit & You so you can fully understand how Satan deceives Christians, even you, even me, even a pastor or a teacher.

Nicolaitane is a compound word that is comprised of two Greek words; nikos (conquest, to conquer) and laos (a people). The Nicolaitanes had an easy believe-ism, ho-hum, do nothing-itis once in grace always in grace (eternal security) doctrine of; I’ll serve God at my leisure, when I have time. Christians are not under Jewish Law, we are separated, we are under grace, grace will get us through and everything is OK. Grace got us saved and grace will keep us saved.

PERSONAL EXPERIENCE: A Christian member of my immediate family whom I knew for many years said she was saved and went to church regularly. I never heard of her helping anyone or being good to anyone. She was either neutral or caustic to one degree or another in her conversations. She would take the scripture out of context to hurt someone. On the porch one evening my Mother said an old hillbilly axiom; (Matt. 16:1-4) “Red clouds tonight sailor’s delight, no rain tomorrow. Red clouds in the morning sailor’s warning, rain today.”

Rebecca said; “Well, well, well; (Matt. 16:1-4) the Bible says it’s a hypocrite that thinks they can read the sky!” Her long-abused husband was dead and when she got old no one would have anything to do with her because of her acid tongue. My Mother took her in and cared for her the last few years of her life. There at the end of it, Rebecca lay in her hospital bed, writhing and screaming that she was burning while Mom and her friend Anna held Rebecca’s hands and tried to comfort her for hours while she died. It was the talk of the hospital. I think of her as a Nicolaitane but also as an idolater worshipping self. Draw your own conclusions.

Idolaters have excessive devotion to or reverence for a person, place, or thing (serving or worshipping something more than the one true God). (Eph. 4:27) Don’t give the devil a place to buy you away from God with things of this world (idolatry) (Luke 4:6-8) like he tried to do to Jesus! He tempted Jesus so you can be assured the devil, Satan, will try it on you.

Three things, the world (people and things), the flesh (human nature with its frailties and passions- your carnal attitude toward your wants and perceived needs) and the devil (Satan, the counterfeit god, transforming himself into an angel of light) will attempt to seduce you away from your relationship with Jesus and turn you into a spiritual idolater first (thinking about it), then help you transform into a physical idolater when you exhibit love for a person, place or thing more than you do Jesus.

(Prov. 6:16-17) God hates a proud (Hebrew: exalt self, haughty) look (think self is best, conceit). (1John 2:16-17) Pride is of the world.

(1Tim. 6:3-5) If any man teach otherwise, and consent to wholesome (true in doctrine, to be uncorrupt, be safe) words, even the words of our Lord Jesus Christ, and to the doctrine which is according to godliness; He is proud (Greek: appearing above others, haughty), knowing nothing, but doting about questions and strifes of words, whereof cometh envy, strife, railings, evil surmisings (suspicion), Perverse disputings of men of corrupt (to rot thoroughly, to ruin, pervert, perish) minds, and destitute (deprive, despoil) of the truth, supposing that gain (furnishing, procuring, acquisition) is godliness: from such withdraw thyself.

(1Cor. 6:6-10, Gal. 5:19-21, Col. 3:2-10 & Rev. 21:27) In these scriptures, plainly written to the church, are a list of sins that will prevent Christians from inheriting the kingdom of God. When you read these scriptures please examine each sin, take time to think and understand how so many of them are a result of pride; "me and what I want comes first". (Eph. 6:10-18 esp. V.12) This scripture lists the armour (defensive and offensive) of God so a Christian can stand against the wiles (traveling over, travesty, trickery, lie in wait) of the devil.

Definitions of wiles: Traveling over is being overrun by an enemy, travesty is misrepresentation, distortion, perversion, corruption, poor imitation, trickery is deception, deceit, dishonesty, deviousness, cunning, fraud, underhandedness, lie in wait is to ambush to gain advantage, or to weaken, or to destroy.

(V.11) If you look closely you will see that each part of your Christian armour comes from and is based on the word of God (BIBLE) which is the sword of the Holy Spirit and that you must "pray always with all prayer and supplication in the Holy Spirit" (V.18) and remember to pray for your fellow Christians. (John 12:48) Jesus’ words are all that will ever count because they will judge each of us.

Regardless of the amount of time involved, minutes, days, weeks, etc., you do not flip a switch and immediately start committing sin; you see it, you think, you are attracted, you investigate, you evaluate, it begins to look more attractive, you gravitate toward it, it insidiously pushes your God thoughts out, you grow in it and you finally accept it. That is spiritual idolatry. After your spiritual acceptance you go ahead and physically commit whatever sin the spiritual idolatry has attracted you to do. That is physical idolatry.

Jesus said it this way; (Matt. 6:21) "For where your treasure is, there will your heart (soul) be also." AND: "(Matt. 15:8-9) "This people draweth nigh me with their mouth, and honoureth me with their lips; but their heart (soul) is far from me. But in vain they do worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men." Yes, Jesus was speaking to the Jews concerning their ‘religion’ BUT His words also apply to what the Bible instructs Christians to be and to do.

These two verses of scripture, Jesus’ direct statement, exposes the doctrine of the Nicolaitanes. (Matt. 11:29-30) Jesus said; “Take my yoke (to join, a coupling, the point of balance in a set of scales, servitude, a law or obligation,) upon you, and learn (understand) of me; for I am meek (gentle, humble) and lowly (humble in position, depressed) in heart (thoughts, feelings): and ye shall find rest (be exempt, refresh) unto your souls (selves). For my yoke is easy and my burden (task, service) is light (less, easy).”

The above definitions are explained: Yoke: (Eph. 1:12-14) When a person accepts salvation the Holy Spirit, (John 14:15-27) Jesus in His Holy Spirit person, spiritually joins with that person, it is a coupling together of souls. The sin balance in his life is reset and there is no sin against him, (2Cor. 5:17) and he is a new creature (creation) in Christ.

It is Jesus’ law or obligation (in the definition of yoke above) because Jesus plainly said “take my yoke upon you” and our obligation (Gal. 6:2) is to serve one another (John 12:26) and also to serve Jesus, we are servants (Phil. 2:5-8 esp. V.7 keyword: servant) because Christians are commanded to be like Jesus and He came as a servant telling the good news (gospel) that the kingdom of God was available to every person who (John 11:25-26) would believe in Him.

Jesus’ second command in that statement is “and learn (understand) of me”. THINK: The Nicolaitane is involved in watching TV or whatever. The thought comes; “Maybe I should turn this off, stop what I’m doing and go read the Bible an hour or so.” That is a reminder from the Holy Spirit, not Satan and probably not from yourself. #1) You think; “Well I’m enjoying what I’m doing, I’ll read my Bible later.” Usually you get interested in something else, forget, or fall asleep and don’t.

Another time: The Holy Spirit’s still, small voice says; “Maybe I out to stop this and go pray awhile.” #2)I’ll pray some other time, I’m busy doing my thing.” The reality of your decisions is revealed in Jesus’ thoughts and emotional reaction to your two decisions are numbered #1) and #2) in the second and third paragraphs below.

(Luke 14:26-27 & 33-35) (V.26-27) Jesus said; “If any man come to me, and hate (detest, by extension: to love less) not his father, and mother, and wife, and children, and brethren, and sisters yea, and his own life also, he cannot be my disciple (learner). And whosoever doth not bear (endure, declare, sustain, receive) his cross (self-denial), and come after me, cannot be my disciple.” (33-35) Jesus said; “So likewise, whosoever he be of you that forsaketh (to renounce) not all that he hath he cannot be my disciple.” Then Jesus says that person is fit for nothing but to be cast out.

#1)Well I’m enjoying what I’m doing, I’ll read the Bible later.” Jesus heard you, the Nicolaitane, say; “No, I don’t want to know you better!” (2Pet. 3:9 keyword: longsuffering: defined: suffer, patiently endure) Jesus’ emotional reaction is; “He/she don’t love me enough to want to know me better.”

#2) I’ll pray some other time, I’m busy doing my thing.” Jesus heard you, the Nicolaitane, say; “No I don’t want to talk to you. I don’t want to thank You for suffering for me, saving me, keeping me, praising you and etc.” (Eph. 4:30 keyword: grieve: defined: to distress, cause grief, be sorrowful) Jesus’ emotional reaction; “He/she don’t even love me enough to want to talk to me.”

What was your sin in the above? Idolaters have excessive devotion to or reverence for a person, place, or thing (serving or worshipping something more than the one true God). (Matt. 7:1-5 key message: judge and perfect yourself first & John 7:24 keywords: but judge righteous judgment) The only way to judge a righteous judgment is by God’s Holy Word. We are supposed to judge ourselves. When you judge yourself do you find yourself guilty of Idolatry? Christians do these things all the time and never regard Jesus’ feelings of rejection.

Jesus said; (Mark 12:30) And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart (life), and with all thy soul (personality, you), and with all thy mind (intellect) and with all thy strength (physical power); this is the first commandment.A Nicolaitane will shout with glee; “He was talking to a Jew!” God said (Malachi 3:6) “I change not.” An Idolater will shout with glee; “That was the OT (Old Testament) it was to the Jews.”

(Rom. 2:28-29) “For he is not a Jew, which is one outwardly; neither is that circumcision, which is outward in the flesh (physical): But he is a Jew, which is one inwardly; and circumcision is of the heart, in the spirit (spiritual), and not in the letter;” (it is critical that you closely read this scrip. Eph. 2:8-22) Gentiles (non-Jews) did not have any way to God until Jesus came but through Jesus we are now considered fellowcitizens in the household of God. That particular Nicolaitane and that particular Idolater are silent because they finally start to understand.

SATAN’S RELATIONSHIP WITH MAN

(Gen. 2:1-24) For effect, Adam and Eve (V.9) had the keys of sinless eternal life within their grasp (V.17) and they also had the keys of sin and death within their grasp. (V.17 again) God had told them His Law of sin (don’t eat) and death (or you will die). The law of sin and death are connected together, sin causes death.

(Gen. 3:1-24) When Adam and Eve sinned, (Isa. 14:12-14) because of Lucifer’s deception and lies (Ezek. 28:13-17 esp. V.17) due to his pride, and their own curiosity, unbelief and weakness they spiritually gave the keys, the law of sin and death, to Lucifer, (1Chron. 21:1) whose name was changed to Satan (adversary).

Satan became the adversary of God and of God’s chosen people, both (Deut. 7:6-8 keyword: chosen) Jews and (2Thess. 2:13-17 & 1Pet. 2:1-5 keyword in both: chosen) Christians, Israel and the church, (Isa. 14:12) and Satan is the leader of the heathen nations and people who are adversary to God’s chosen people, both Jews and Christians.

(Gen. 3:7-13) Adam and Eve knew they had done evil (sin) and disobeyed God. When they tried to hide their nakedness they proved their sin and when caught they each tried to blame someone else. That carnal mind was handed down through the generations to us (Rom. 8:7) and the carnal (human nature with its frailties and passions) mind is enmity (hostility, opposition, enemy) against God. The law of sin came from Eden.

(Heb. 9:27) It is appointed unto men once to die and mankind has died ever since then; (Gen. 5:22-24 keyword: Enoch) and (2 Ki. 2:11 keyword: Elijah) except for two, God sometimes shows Satan who is Boss. The law of death came from Eden.

JESUS’ RELATIONSHIP WITH CHRISTIANS

(Isa. 52:14 thru 53:12) (V.14) his visage was so marred (disfigurement) more than any man, and his form (figure, appearance) more than the sons of men: (V.3) He is despised and rejected of men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief: and we hid as it were our faces from him; he was despised, and we esteemed (value, honor) him not.

(V.4) Surely he hath born our griefs, and carried our sorrows:(V.7) He was oppressed, and he was afflicted, yet he opened not his mouth: he is brought as a lamb to the slaughter,” (V.12) he hath poured out his soul unto death: and he was numbered with the transgressors; and he bare the sin of many and made intercession for the transgressors.

(1John 3:5) Jesus did not sin (Luke 22:1-6) so Satan did not have the right to kill sinless Jesus (the law of sin and death) (1Cor. 2:7-8) but Satan did and that broke the connection between sin and death. As had been prophesied by millions of applications of blood upon the temple altar by Jewish sacrifices, the sacrifice of Jesus' blood, the perfect sacrifice, (Rev. 8:3) had to be applied upon the golden altar in heaven.

(Luke 23:43) Therefore Jesus could return to take the repentant man on the cross to paradise. SO: (Rev. 1:18) In the spirit world was where Jesus took the keys to hell and death (John 18:28 thru 19:37) because Jesus had died (Rom. 8:1-2) to set us free from the law of sin and death. Jesus’ resurrection proved death could not hold Him like it had other men.

(John 14:16-23 & Eph. 1:12-14) When you were saved you knew your sins were gone (set free from the law of sin) because you were sealed with the Holy Spirit (John 14:16-23) and Jesus took up His abode within you just like He promised. Its personal, only you, only me, only all of us, one at a time, it’s a personal relationship with Jesus.

Jesus’ resurrection proved Jesus has the keys to the law of death in His hands (John 11:26 & Heb. 2:9-11 esp. V.11 keywords: they who are sanctified) and Jesus’ Christians are no longer subject to the law of death. (Psa. 23:1-4) If you question the freedom from the law of death please, right now, click on the commentary The Holy Spirit & You, scroll the menu to and read the two articles; I have experienced Christian Physical Death and you will understand set free from the law of death. The witnesses proved the event happened.

(John 20:1-31) When Jesus came back from the dead (V.28) Thomas, (V.24-25) the doubter, named Jesus; “My Lord and my God.” And Jesus obviously accepted the accolade because it was true. (Luke 24:45-53) That last day Jesus took His body with Him when He ascended into heaven.

(Acts 2:1-4 & Rom. 8:8-18) After that Jesus came back as the Holy Spirit to live within every Christian (John 14:16-23 & Eph. 1:12-14) just like He promised He would. (1Cor. 12:12-27 esp. V. 27 keyword: body) (V.27) “Now ye are the body of Christ, and members in particular.” Its personal, only you, only me, only all of us, one at a time, it’s a personal relationship with Jesus.

Holy Spirit and God’s word powered, yours, and mine, and all of us, are the only physical hands, fingers, feet, legs, arms, mouth, tongue, brain voice, the whole thing, is the only body that Jesus has with which to do His work here on earth. Its personal, only you, only me, only all of us, one at a time, it’s a personal relationship with Jesus.

I assume you have read God’s identity near the end of Section 2 of this article. SO: Jesus gave all He was and all He had, all of it, everything, even His life (John 3:16) so that we would not perish, but have everlasting life (1John 4:8 & 16) because Jesus is love.

THINK: Jesus said; (Mark 12:30 again) And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart (life), and with all thy soul (personality, self, you), and with all thy mind (intellect) and with all thy strength (physical power); this is the first commandment.”

In reality Jesus is saying to each individual Christian; “I gave everything I was and all I had (all of me) to come and set you free because I love you and that is the same magnitude (all of each of you) of love from you for Me that I deserve and expect.”

LET THE MIND OF CHRIST BE IN YOU

(Phil. 2:5) “Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus:" (John 3:16 & 1John 4:8 & 16 keywords in both: God is love) The mind of Christ is based on love, is yours?

A FELLOW CHRISTIAN IN NEED

(1John 3:14-17) (V.14) “We know we have passed from death unto life, because we love the brethren, He that loveth not his brother abideth (dwell, continue) in death. (V.15) Whosoever hateth (to detest, especially to persecute, by extension to love less) his brother is a murderer: and ye know that no murderer hath eternal life abiding in him.

(V.16) Hereby perceive (to know absolutely, be aware of, feel) we the love of God, because he laid down his life for us: and we ought (necessary as binding) to lay down our lives for the brethren. (V.17) But whoso hath this world’s good, and seeth his brother have need, and shutteth up his bowels of compassion from him, how dwelleth the love of God in him?”

If Jesus had come with only His personality and not have had a message of God, hope, salvation, heaven, hell, resurrection, Satan, angels, eternity, (seeking to save) and etc. the people around Him would have simply regarded Him as; “a very good person” and nobody else would have ever heard of Him but He had a message.

A Christian can have all the personal attributes of Jesus, (Gal. 5:22-23) love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness and temperance and the world will simply regard him as; “a very good person” and nobody will really care but we are supposed to have a message.

CHRISTIANS WHO TRESPASS AGAINST YOU

(Matt. 18:15) “Moreover if thy brother trespass (to err, to sin) against thee, go and tell him his fault between thee and him alone: if he shall hear thee, thou hast gained thy brother.”

With the mind of Christ based on love how can you hold a brother Christian’s trespass (singular) against you when Jesus has put up with and forgiven you of all your trespasses (plural) against Him all of your Christian life? And this scripture did not say to run the course of a backbiter and talebearer; “Hey brother, do you know what brother trespass did to me?” And it sure doesn’t say go on a pout spree and run to another church! (1Cor. 12:18) God set you there so don’t take your spite out on Jesus either!

(Rom. 1:29-32 keywords: maliciousness, whisperers, backbiters, despiteful and 2Cor. 12:20 keywords: strifes, backbitings, whisperings then (2Tim. 2:3-4 keyword: soldier: defined: warrior, by extension: an army) The Christian army is the only army in the history of the world in which many of its soldiers bayonet their own wounded (please read this: Gal. 6:1-2 esp. V.2 keywords: and so fulfil the law of Christ) instead of tending to them, helping them and restoring them. AND: That deadly bayonet is their tongues. “Did you hear what that so-called brother Joe Blow done? I knew there wasn’t anything to him anyway!” Pure pride!

Its personal, only you, only me, only all of us, one at a time, it’s a personal relationship with Jesus based on love.

(Luke 17:3-4) (V.3) “If thy brother trespass (sin, miss the mark) against thee, rebuke (admonish) him: and if he repent (think differently, reconsider, feel compunction defined: guilt), forgive him. (V.4) And if he trespass against thee seven times in a day, and seven times in a day turn again to thee, saying, I repent; thou shalt forgive him.” I am grateful with all my heart that Jesus will not give us a command He will not fulfill toward me! That is the mind of Christ based on love in all its purity.

In a situation like that treat your brother with the love, empathy, kindness and understanding you would like to have if your positions were reversed. If we have to rebuke a brother, we had better have the word of God (Bible) to make our case and we had better have the mind of Christ based on love to endure what may be coming.

TO CHRISTIANS WHO HAVE SINNED

(Gal. 6:1-2) Brethren, if a man be overtaken (to put self first) in a fault (disgraceful, condemnable), ye which are spiritual (non-carnal- Holy Spirit led), restore (repair, adjust, mend) such an one in the spirit of meekness (gentleness, humility); considering thyself, lest thou also be tempted (tested, scrutinized, disciplined). Bear ye one another’s burdens, and so fulfill the law (regulation, principal) of Christ.”

Have you forgotten how you felt when you had to crawl up to Jesus’ throne of grace to ask for mercy and find help in your time of need because you had privately sinned (Prov. 15:3 keywords: The eyes of the Lord are in every place, beholding the evil and the good) right in front of God? Have you forgotten your shame, humiliation and dread to face people when you had committed a public sin that was known by part of or all? Have you forgotten your shame when you sinned in front of your family? Oh! You haven’t sinned? All you perfect Christians please stand up and wave so I can see you?

I want to read some scripture to you that is written to Christians. (1John 1:7 thru 2:1 and the first eight words of V.2 keywords in all: we, our, us - John included himself then Rom. 3:23) (1John 1:8) If we say we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us.(Rom. 3:23) For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God.SO: You are a liar and you have called God a liar and you need to spiritually go to Jesus’ throne of grace just as fast as you can. There are Christians who say they live perfect Christian lives.

Personal Experience: A large truck with a load of parts and supplies came into the mining machinery rebuild shop where I worked. Three or four of us, all Christians, unloaded the truck and in an ensuing conversation the truck driver started giving his testimony. It rose to a crescendo of his obedience and he finally said; “I do not sin. I have participated in many healing services. I have even raised the dead. I’m just like Jesus!”

“One of us said; “Your company is only about a hundred miles away, looks like we would have heard about that!” He answered; “Oh, it was done in secret.” My buddies and I just looked at each other. We watched the driver with his head held high get into his truck and drive out of sight on down the crooked road and someone softly spoke; “He must be better than John.” Draw your own conclusions.

(Heb. 12:6-14) (V.7) God does the chastising but He is doing it to you (V.7-8) because you are His child (V.11) and it is not pleasant (V.10) but God does it for your profit that you may be partakers of His holiness (V.11) and it will bring the peaceable fruit of righteousness. Pray, ask Jesus to forgive you of your own sins, praise Him, ask Him to go with you and put the words He wants said in your mouth, ask for a double helping in humility and showing love and to help you with understanding, compassion, and empathy to be gentle and humble enough to restore a heart broken Christian (Gal. 6:1-2) “overtaken by a fault”.

Be knowledgeable of the scripture; “My brother/sister I love you, I’ve been where you are and it was miserable but God brought me through. Let’s talk about it.” Listen, share with, sympathize, encourage and show how the God who is love itself is a forgiving God. I’ve been on both sides of that fence and there was no Christian there to help me in my awful time of need; not one, not even my pastor. I emotionally understand how awful that time was and that event has made me, a soldier of love, a better restorer through prayer, God’s Word and the empowerment of the Holy Spirit (John 15:5) because without Jesus we can do nothing.

JESUS’ MESSAGE TO THE LOST BY CHRISTIANS

(Phil. 2:5 keywords: Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus) With the mind of Christ in you based on love (Luke 19:10 keywords: For the Son of man is come to seek and save that which was lost) how can a Christian not have a Bible based, easily understood message (witness) to the lost? (Matt. 18:11 keywords: For the Son of man is come to save that which was lost) With the mind of Christ in you based on love how can a Christian not be glad to share their own salvation experience (testimony) to the lost?

How can we, little old me, make the kingdom of God available? With words! (Acts 8:3-4 esp. V.3 keywords: men and women) (V.4) “They went everywhere preaching (to announce the good news of the gospel, show it, be glad about it) the word.” You, male or female, do not need some useless credentials written on paper by man to give you permission to scripturally tell people about Jesus and His purpose, how and what He has done in your life and how and what Jesus can and will do for them!

(read: Phil. 2:5-8 esp. V.5 keywords: Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus and V.7 keyword: servant) Jesus said He had come as a voluntary minister and servant and Christians are to be of the same mind, the mind of love, (exercise the sentiment and opinion, set the affection on, be like, be of one with) as is Jesus.

CHRISTIAN PRIDE

(Prov. 6:16-19 esp. V.17) God hates pride. Pride is a basic, a mother, emotion because it effects all other emotions in a detrimental way. (Rom. 1:28-32 esp. V30, 1Tim. 3:6 and 6:3-5, 2Tim 3:1-5 esp. V.4, 1Pet. 5:5 & 1John 2:15-18 esp. V.16 keywords in all: pride or proud) Pride puts the Big Me (self) before all other things. Pride condescends to serve God at self's convenience.

Pride serves self first. Pride, self love, turns self (the Big Me) into an idol. Pride worships at the inward altar of Big Me. (1Cor. 6:6-10, Gal. 5:19-21, Col. 3:2-10 & Rev. 21:27) Pride is instrumental in almost all these sins that will cause Big Me, the idol of Self, to not inherit the kingdom of God and the only other place to go is to hell! When you read these scriptures, you will see that before them, or after them, or in both places the word cautions and warns Christians to not commit them along with an encouragement, a reminder of who they are and of their relationship with God through the Holy Spirit.

Pride was Satan's downfall; "I will be God". Pride was Adam and Eve's downfall; "I want to be as a god, knowing good and evil." Pride will be self's downfall; "I will serve god self first!" then you bow down to the Big Me idol; "I'll do what I want to do now, today, tonight, this week etc. and I’ll serve God later!"

(read all this>2Tim. 2:14-26 esp. V.15, 18, 20-21 & 25-26) How much time each day do you reverence God by devoting your time to Bible study; "God, I want to know You better", (Eph. 6:18) "Oh God, help me find understanding and knowledge and wisdom. Take my body and use me to serve You better; witnessing, visiting the sick, helping weak Christians and etc."

CHRISTIAN IDOLATRY

(Matt. 12:36) Every idle (defined: inactive, unemployed, implying lazy, useless, barren) word that men shall speak, they shall give account thereof in the day of judgment.

How much time each day do you reverence (THE BIG ME IDOL) by devoting your time to your team, shopping, sex, hobby, electronic games, vehicle, career, dreaming about and wanting things, emails, sport, club, collecting, accumulating, hoarding, political party, boat, house, yard, singer, athlete, Facebook, pet, texting, computer, TV and endlessly on. You know; those unnecessary things that makes the Big Me feel so good! Pride, love of self, condescends to serve God at self's convenience.

Of course, God knows you have to live, work, rest, interact with people and etc. BUT: (Mark 4:18-19 keywords: lusts of other things, 2Tim. 2:4 keyword entangleth, Rev. 3:14-22 esp. V.15-16 keyword: lukewarm) Do you think you can fail to inherit the kingdom of God because of your excessive devotion to or reverence for a person, place, or thing. They are those useless, frivolous things YOU spiritually crave, physically spend money on and physically serve more than you do Jesus? Are you an idolater and just didn't realize it? Pray, repent and stop.

Conclusion: (Col.3:2-10 esp. V.5 keywords: covetousness which is idolatry) Covetousness is defined: desire for more things, to lust after. Idolatry is defined: to adore, to reverence something more than God. Idolatry is rampant in the modern church in the developed world. The idols simply have different names and faces than the ancient ones, are you part of it?

Are you part of the easy believeism, don't do much for Jesus, once in grace always in grace (eternal security) believers? (read all this>Matt. 24:3-13 esp. V.11-13) (V.3) The disciples asked Jesus; "what shall be the sign of thy coming, and of the end of the world?" Jesus answered; (V.12) “And because iniquity shall abound, the love of many shall wax cold.” (1Thess. 4:1-18) (V.1-13) Paul told the church how they should act (V.14-18) then he explained how the church would be "caught up to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord."

(2Thess. 2:1-9 esp. V.3) The Thessalonian church wanted to know what all that meant and Paul wrote; "Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day shall not come, except there come a falling away first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition. (1John 2:15-18 esp. V.18) even now there are many antichrists.The key to Biblical eternal security grace is to get in grace by salvation, stay in grace by being obedient to God's word through the Holy Spirit, die or be raptured in grace and you will always be in grace.

In the prophesy of the (Rev. 1:19) past (hast seen), present (which are) and future (shall be): (Rev. 1:13 & 20) Jesus was standing in the midst of seven golden candlesticks then Jesus revealed that the seven types of churches are the candlesticks. That corresponds perfectly with (Matt. 5:13-16 esp. V.14) in which Jesus said Christians and thus the church is the light of the world (Rev. 2:5) and Jesus said He would remove the candlestick of the church in Ephesus if they did not repent from leaving their first love which, of course, was that passionate first love after salvation.

(Rev. 3:2-5) Jesus said He could and would blot out the names out of the book of life of some the Christians in the church at Sardis. (Rev. 3:15-16) Jesus said he would spue (vomit) the lukewarm Christians in Laodicea out of his mouth. Is Jesus going to vomit them out in some back corner of heaven to fester there? Are you really willing to gamble your eternal destination on the Nicolaitane concept of serving Jesus at your leisure instead of by His word?

If you wish to read an in-depth study concerning backsliding please see the two articles Backsliding: Quest For The Truth on the commentary The Holy Spirit & You on this website.

PRETENDER CHRISTIANS

There are even organizations that call themselves churches whose Balaamite religion is founded on the BIG ME process of idolatry. Read the internet information concerning the church of Satan, the homosexual church and the church of pot, also be sure to read the comments at the end of the articles. See: www.christianpost.com and ask for information concerning the IRS recognition of the PCMW church.

(Lev. 20:13 keyword: abomination, Rom. 1:21-32 esp. V.31 keyword: covenantbreakers then 24-28 keywords: gave them over to a reprobate mind defined: rejected, castaway soul & 1Cor. 6:9 keywords: Be not deceived neither---- effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind---- and V.10 shall inherit the kingdom of God) Read the internet information concerning individual churches and even whole denominations that accept homosexuality as a viable Christian lifestyle.

When you are done ask yourself, in the light of (Rom. 8:6-9 & Rev. 2:14-15), are these ‘Christians’ operating under the power of the Holy Spirit (Heb. 6:4-6) or has the Holy Spirit left them and are they merely a scripture perverting, social gathering with the name 'whatever' church over the door, but in reality, (2Cor. 4:4 and 11:13-15) the god of this world, Satan, is their false angel of light and his false ministers (apostles) are their leaders in their politically correct religionism?"

Jesus said; (Matt. 7:21-23) (V.21) "Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven. (V.22) Many will say unto me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works? (V.23) And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity (wickedness)."

YOU CAN OVERCOME AND REPENT

Remember, this is written to the Balaamites and Nicolaitanes whose teaching Jesus hates. (Rev. 2:16) Jesus said; "Repent; (reconsider, reversal of decision) or else I will come unto thee quickly (suddenly, by surprise), and will fight (to battle) against them with the sword of my mouth." (Heb. 4:12) For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any twoedged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is the discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.

(Rom. 8:6-7) (V.6) For to be carnally minded is death, but to be spiritually minded is life and peace. (V.7) Because the carnal (human nature with its frailties and passions) mind (soul) is enmity (enemy) against God: for it is not subject to the law of God, neither can be.

Give yourself to God (Eph. 6:18) and pray in the Spirit; “Oh God take my body and use me to bring honor and glory to your name, help me understand. Anchor me in Your love. I want to serve you with all my heart!” Use God’s sword (your Bible) (read these: 1Cor. 11:28 & 2Cor. 13:5 keyword in both: examine) examine yourself in the light of God’s word and hang your forever on the word of God. BECAUSE:

(Eph. 6:17) "the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God:" (2Tim. 3:16) "All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for instruction in righteousness:” (John 1:1-4 & 1John 1:1-4) Jesus is the living word of God, the scripture is alive with Jesus (Heb. 4:12-16) and (V.14) Jesus is our great high priest (V.16) so come boldly to His throne of grace repent and ask forgiveness so you can obtain mercy and find grace to help in your time of need.

(Rev. 2:17) "To him that overcometh will I give to eat of the hidden manna," (John 6:51) Jesus is the living bread of life and through Him you will live forever. (Acts 4:10-12 esp. V.12) There is no other way.

THE ALLEGORY OF THE WHITE STONE

(Rev. 2:17) "and will give him a white stone, and in the stone a new name written, which no man knoweth saving he that receiveth it."

Most Bible scholars have a theory about the white stone. The two most widely accepted ones are: #1 The winner of the ancient Greek athletic competitions was given a white stone with the winner's name engraved on it. #2 When a person was tried in an ancient Greek court of law the accused was given a white stone if he was found innocent. Both are true physical allegories. When a person accepts Jesus’ salvation, they are automatically a winner because they have been found innocent through Jesus’ blood.

But the white stone new name has a much more secretive, in depth, scriptural revelation.

(Rev. 2:17)  "which no man knoweth saving he that receiveth it." Secret event: (John 3:1-10) (V.1-2) Nicodemus, a Pharisee ruler of the Jews, a master of Israel, highly educated in the History, Law and Prophets of Israel, should have understood Jesus’ purpose because it was so plain in their prophesies. (Acts 1:6) Like the vast majority of Jews Nicodemus expected a redeemer, a Messiah, to come and lead Israel back to a conquering 'world power' physical kingdom as King David had done. (Luke 17:20-21) The Pharisees could not conceive a spiritual kingdom of God that would be within man.

(V.3-4) Jesus said a man must be born again and Nicodemus did not understand because he still thought in physical terms. (V.5) Jesus said a man must be born of the water and of the Spirit. (John 4:10 & 14) Nicodemus did not understand Jesus was telling him that the words (the living water of everlasting life) coming out of Jesus and the drawing and verification by the Holy Spirit leads to the spiritual born again event. (V.6) Jesus patiently explained the difference between physical birth and spiritual birth (re-birth, born again) are two separate things.

(V.7-8) Jesus said; Marvel (wonder) not that I said unto thee, ye must be born again. Then Jesus explained that the born again (spiritual re-birth of the soul) event "of the Spirit" is like the wind blowing (a metaphor). Think about it: I can't see the wind, I don't know where it started, how did it get here, I don't know where its going but I see the effects of it." Think again: "He said he's born again, he's the same man but acts different, how'd that happen, how did he get it, where did it come from, where did it go?"

Nicodemus could not understand the millions of physical, visible, circumcised Jewish foreskins left to rot all over the middle east were each one a physical prophecy (Rom. 2:28-29) of the coming spiritual, invisible, circumcision of the heart (soul) by the Holy Spirit during the spiritual, invisible, born again event in the soul of man.

Just like Nicodemus, unsaved people don't understand how the Holy Spirit works, or what He does, or how we can say we are saved with such assurance. Anybody can say they are a Christian and nobody can look into a person's soul and see for sure but God knows and the individual Christian also knows BECAUSE (2Cor. 1:21-22) "God; Who hath also sealed (to stamp with a private mark for preservation, by implication to keep secret) us, and given the earnest (living pledge) of the Spirit in our hearts (mind, soul, me)."

Jesus said: (John 10:14) I am the good shepherd, and know my sheep, and am known of mine.” Jesus knows each Christian by name and each Christian knows his Saviour by name, Jesus. Only Jesus knows if the individual person has really been born again (saved) and only the individual person knows if he has really been born again (saved) OR (Heb. 6:4-6 esp. V.4 keyword: impossible V.6 keywords: If they shall fall away, to renew them again unto repentance) and has not gone so far into sin he cannot get back.

Hence, Jesus said; (Rev. 2:17) "He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit sayeth to the churches (plural- all Christians); To him that overcometh  (conquer, prevail, get the victory) will I give to eat of the hidden manna (John 6:35-40 keywords: Jesus said I am the bread of life and John 12:47-48 esp. V.48 keywords: He that rejecteth me, and receiveth not my words, hath one that judgeth him: the word that I have spoken, the same shall judge him in the last day), only Jesus and only you know if you have been and are faithful to Jesus’ words.

If you have not been faithful to Jesus’ words, (please read this: Heb. 4:12-16) (V.14) Jesus is our great high priest, (1John 1:7 thru the first eight words of 2:2 keywords: we- used 9 times, us- used 5 times, our- used 3 times) the great high priest applies blood to erase our (all Christians) sins and all of us do sin including the Bible writers. (Rev. 2:5, 16, 21, 22, 3:3 & 19 keyword in all: repent) Repent, go to Jesus’ throne of grace where you may obtain mercy and find grace to help in your time of need.

Jesus said; (John 15:5) for without me ye can do nothing) Through Jesus is the only way any of us Christians (Rev. 2:7, 11, 17, 26, 3:5, 12, 21 & 21:7 keyword: overcometh) can overcometh (subdue, conquer, prevail, get the victory).

(Rev. 2:17 continued) and will give him a white (light: John 8:12 Jesus said; I am the light of the world then Matt. 5:14-16 Jesus said; ye are the light of the world----Let your light so shine before men and 2Cor. 5:19-20 keywords: we are Christ’s ambassadors of reconciliation to lost people) stone (a pebble worn smooth by handling, by implication of use as a counter or ballot, a verdict of acquittal or ticket of admission) and in the stone

a new (freshness) name (authority, character) written (verb- graven in stone figuratively to describe), which no man knoweth saving (except) he that receiveth it." Thus, the name written in the stone is "MINE!" denoting Jesus' possession and only Jesus and the individual Christian know for sure the name is there. Jesus, the God that is love personified, said; (John 15:5 for without me ye can do nothing).

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