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The Lord is that Spirit

The Creator of Spiritual Fruit: Conclusion

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False Identification

In concluding this discussion of good works, there is a very dangerous deception having increasing influence in the Evangelical world.

It involves the confusion created when Evangelical leaders praise deeply religious people who have given their lives to help the poor, to fight for social justice, or to work with orphans, the sick, or the outcasts of society.

Just to be clear, the problem is not about giving credit to those whose work has been of great benefit to others. Nor about praising them for work they have done at great cost to themselves.

All of us can certainly recognize and be grateful to those who have helped other people.

However, this specifically relates to the identification of deeply religious people as great Christian examples based upon their good works; while these same people continue to hold to a spiritual belief that denies salvation by Christ alone, by faith alone, according to the scriptures alone.

For all practical purposes, these people are commonly being embraced as Christians based upon their outward show of good works rather than the specific truths they claim to believe about Jesus Christ and the word of God.

In doing this, we send a confused message to false religious leaders, to those who follow them, to the watching world, and to undiscerning believers. 

And we communicate a gospel that is in direct contradiction to the true gospel of faith alone in Christ alone.

And we give a false hope of salvation to those who are not trusting in the finished work of Jesus Christ as their only basis of eternal life.

Continue reading “The Creator of Spiritual Fruit: Conclusion”

The Creator of Spiritual Fruit

Pond Pink Flower

This only would I learn of you, received ye the Spirit by the works of the law, or by the hearing of faith? having begun in the Spirit, are ye now made perfect by the flesh?” (Galatians 3:2-5)

We can talk about the Holy Spirit all day long. We can read verses about the Holy Spirit as well. We can even read great books about the Holy Spirit.

But, unless we are brought to that place of seeing our dire need, as believers, for His continual work in our lives, He will simply remain an abstract idea to us.

Yes, we may see how He is necessary for our salvation. And even as someone who greatly influences our good behavior. And who gives us power to do good things.

But, practically speaking, we may still attempt to produce the works of God through our own dedication and will power. By the focused discipline of our own Christian flesh. Employing all kinds of methods and practices to bring our flesh under control.

Instead of patiently depending on the creation of His works in us.

Continue reading “The Creator of Spiritual Fruit”

The Eternal Spirit of Christmas

Sunset Beam

“Then said Mary unto the angel, How shall this be, seeing I know not a man? And the angel answered and said unto her, The Holy Ghost shall come upon thee, and the power of the Highest shall overshadow thee: therefore also that holy thing which shall be born of thee shall be called the Son of God.” (Luke 1:34-35)

At the very beginning of the Christmas story the critical presence of the Holy Spirit is established. By Him, was the child conceived within the virgin Mary. He was not born of the seed of a man, but of the Spirit of God.

Even at the beginning of Genesis, when God promised that Christ would come, He spoke of “the seed” of the woman (Genesis 3:15). It was not the seed of a man that would be the source of the Son of God made flesh; it would be the Holy Spirit using the woman’s body to bring forth the Holy One of God.

In this way, Christ would not have the sinful nature of Adam handed down through the seed of Adam. Which all other men, born of the union between a man and a woman, possess. This would be a unique man — the Son of Man. The same One who, along with the Spirit of God, created all things that are made.

Continue reading “The Eternal Spirit of Christmas”

The Seduction of Latent Power

Valley Bridge Arches

“For we which live are alway delivered unto death for Jesus’ sake, that the life also of Jesus might be made manifest in our mortal flesh.” (II Corinthians 4: 8-12)

The world is full of many strange things.

Various religions demonstrate their powers through levitation, bizarre physical abilities, appearances of disembodied forms and many other apparitions that are shockingly real.

The question is, “What is the origin of this power?” Is it from power drawn from within these mystics, gurus and shamans?

Some teach that this is power which is latent within man. That is resides in all people but lies unharnessed by most. Others believe it comes from a source outside of man.

The Bible teaches that these manifestations are the workings of demonic entities attempting to deceive these mystics and those who follow them.

Continue reading “The Seduction of Latent Power”

Self Deception

 

Kendall Ledge Moss

Two things here.

One: Sin has powerful emotions attached to it.

Two: These emotions or motions are both spiritual and physical.

Which makes our struggle against sin such a terribly fierce battle.

In Hebrews, it tells us to “lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us…” (Hebrews 12:1). That word, “beset“, is an interesting one. It sounds like a commonplace or simple word. As if our sin was nothing more than a simple fly or gnat that irritates us. Something we could just easily swat away.

However, beset actually means to combat on every side or to lay under siege. This is like a vast, terrible army surrounding people in a castle. As an enemy bringing all the machines of war against them — seeking their total annihilation.

Yet, that verse in Hebrews tells us to “lay aside” the sin that so easily defeats us.

So how does that work? How does one just “lay aside” something that so violently and overwhelmingly seeks to destroy us?

Continue reading “Self Deception”

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