Jesus also, that he might sanctify the people with his own blood, suffered outside the gate.  Therefore, let us go forth to him outside the camp, bearing his reproach.  For we have no continuing city here, but we seek one to come.

 
 
 

Going to Jesus

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Thought for the Morning
2-04

The Elect: Responses

Pastor John:

What a good thought! Your e-mail about "the elect" brought to mind a thought I have had the last couple of days. I have been thinking about the danger of not being willing to admit wrong doing. We have to be able to see things clearly and honestly if we are ever going to be willing and ready to receive the help we need. What is it about us that puts up such a wall - a defense - against just saying, "I was wrong. I am sorry. Please forgive me"? God help us to stay humble and keep pride out of our hearts!

You wrote: "Do not become proud. You are not saved yet." Boy! The more we believe that, the more we will be willing to stay humble and do good works all our days... to the very end!

Donna

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Pastor John,

Wow, this really stood out to me....

"Are you a believer? Do not become proud. You are not saved yet. Besides, 'the demons also believe, and tremble'" (Jas. 2:19). Do you believe so much that you tremble? If not, then demons have more faith than you do."

That is something to think about.

Amy

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Hey Amy:

May God help us not only to think about that vital truth but to escape the pride that comes with knowledge so that what we know does not destroy us.

Pastor John

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Pastor John:

Those sure ARE good thoughts. I liked Donna's and Amy's (and your) comments on this. I was thinking that to be saved we need 1) "more than believing", and 2) "more than trembling."

  1. Those who really believe, "out of their bellies will flow living water". It's more than receiving the holy Ghost.
  2. Those who tremble have the dread and fear of God. That is what is being stolen from the children of God right now through the "getting saved" thing. And yet, even if we overcome that, and have the fear of God, there is more to it. What is it? I thought of, "enduring to the end"; that is the one thing the demons did not do.

And then I thought of Paul's admonition to "endure sound doctrine". To the end. Can we take EVERYTHING that God sends us - to the end? Who knows what He may say next. That means being prepared to receive it.

Gary

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Hi Gary:

You mentioned preparing for the next thing God will say to us. Every time God speaks to us, it is a miniature judgment day. When He speaks, it is too late to "get ready" to hear. And when Jesus comes, it will be too late to "get ready" for his coming.


Pastor John

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Pastor John:

I had a thought on the TFM - The Elect. Would spiritual creatures have faith or knowledge about who God is? Seems to me that it would be a demon's knowledge of God that makes them tremble. They certainly recognized who Jesus was when they asked him, "What have we to do with You, Jesus, You Son of God? Have You come here to torment us before the time?"

Doesn't knowledge replace faith? Once we are saved, will we still have faith in God or will our faith be replaced by knowledge? Just wondering.

Bob

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Hey Bob!

Good question. Yes, it is the demons' knowledge of God that makes them tremble. But I am of the opinion that in the kingdom of God, genuine faith equals knowledge.

Hebrews 11:3 tells us that "By faith we understand." On earth among carnal men, faith actually means "assumption that it is true" or "hope that it is true", but genuine faith is a knowing. Let me give you an example.

I could not know more than I know now that the story of Noah and the ark is true even if archaeologists found the remains of it in the snow-capped mountains of Ararat next week. Physical remains mean nothing to my faith because by faith I already understand that the power of God tore this earth apart and spared Noah and his sons and their wives with the ark, and I need no physical evidence. I have felt the power of God.

If demons tremble and we do not, they have more genuine faith than we do, which means, as you pointed out, that they have more knowledge of God than we do. Such knowledge comes only by experiences with the power of God. They have had plenty of that, and we and our children, as I have said a hundred times, desperately need more experiences with it, "so that your faith will not rest in the wisdom of men, but in the power of God."

Pastor John

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