Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

Should Congregations Have A Regular Contribution?

January 18, 2019

For about the last 30 years, I have known about “church at Birmingham” type congregations starting up. And the one thing they all have in common is that they don’t have a regular collection … because they interpret I Cor 16:1-2 to be only a one-time thing for a one-time need. I cannot and will not judge anybody’s heart in particular, but there seems to be an ulterior motive at play here (for some). You could see how those who are tired of giving a considerable part of their income for the Lord’s work as they should (Matt 6:33) might be attracted to such type churches. I doubt there would be enough people for these type congregations to exist if it weren’t for this one issue.

Their argument is that (per I Cor 16:1-2) we should only have a collection when we see a particular need. Well, isn’t there always a need to preach the gospel? Through the years the North Huntsville congregation (where I attend) has used almost all of our income for supporting preachers in different places, radio programs, benevolence, etc. There has never been a time when we didn’t see a need in one or more of these areas.

If congregations back in the first century only had a collection (and resulting treasury) every once in a blue moon when a specific benevolent need came up (as the church at Birmingham types say), then how did the first century congregations have the money to support preachers as recorded in passages such as Phil 4:15-16 and II Cor 11:8? How did they finance regular (ongoing) benevolent needs like we read about in I Tim 5:4-16 and Acts 6:1ff? Don’t those four passages (and others like them) imply the church had money (in its treasury) and therefore imply they had some means of getting money into that treasury? And there are other passages like Acts 4:35 which talk about a collection. Perhaps they are not as well known because they don’t mention the first day of the week.

It seems that texts like I Cor 16:1-2 and Acts 11:27-30 tell us how to get money into the church treasury, and those and other passages tell us how that money should be spent. Meaning I Cor 16:1ff is not the only passage that tells us how to spend church money. Let’s don’t let a “love of money” (I Tim 6:10) get in the way of us serving the Lord faithfully.

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Matt 5:32 Teaches There Is Only One Scriptural Cause For Divorce (Even If No Remarriage Follows)

January 11, 2019

To see that fornication is the only scriptural reason for divorce (even if there is no subsequent remarriage), fill in the blanks …

Matt 5:32 But I say unto you, That whosoever shall put away his wife, saving for the cause of fornication …

or ___________________

or ___________________

or ___________________

causeth her to commit adultery.

A Plug For The Bible Crossfire Radio Program

January 3, 2019

The Bible Crossfire radio program is on 45 local radio stations across the nation, and SiruisXM radio which completely covers all of the United States and Canada. Because people like James Dobson and Charles Stanley appear on these stations daily, probably over 95% of my listeners are from denominational churches – so it is a great opportunity. Chances are you can pick up the program on your radio, but if not, you can listen to the program live via the internet at http://wwwbibledebates.info/BibleCrossfire/index.htm

Following is a typical response from what Anton Bergen of Winnipeg, Manitoba (Canada) wrote on Facebook on Jan 2, 2017 regarding one of my previous programs: “So my friend Patrick Donahue actually believes that unless you’re baptized, you can’t be saved, you can’t get to heaven. What say you, my Facebook friends, do you agree with Patrick? I do not, and I’m willing to stand alone on this. … Why do I keep pointing this out? Patrick has a megaphone, a half hour program on satellite radio with possibly millions of people tuned in on Sunday nights. … Most of the calls he gets is from people who disagree with him and argue his points. …”

Regarding Anton’s stance, what do the following passages clearly teach on whether or not a sinner has to be baptized to be saved?:

· Mark 16:16 He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be [condemned].

· John 3:5 Jesus answered, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God.

· Acts 2:38 Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.

· Acts 22:16 And now why tarriest thou? arise, and be baptized, and wash away thy sins, calling on the name of the Lord.

· I Pet 3:21 The like figure whereunto even baptism doth also now save us (not the putting away of the filth of the flesh, but the answer of a good conscience toward God,) by the resurrection of Jesus Christ:

hear Bible Crossfire every Sunday night at 8:04 central on SiriusXM radio Family Talk 131

Was Sodom’s Sin Only Pride And Inhospitality?

December 28, 2018

Gay church preachers claim Ezek 16:49 teaches Sodom’s sin was only pride, selfishness, and being inhospitable, and had nothing to do with their homosexual practices.

We agree Sodom had more problems than just homosexuality. People steeped in sexual sin are almost always involved in many other sins as well. But notice in addition to their sin of pride (verse 49), verse 50 says Sodom also “committed abomination.” And what does Lev 18:22 and 20:13 call the sin of homosexuality? Right, an “abomination.”

Notice verse 58 also accuses Sodom of “lewdness.” Here is how Gesenius defines that word (#2154) – wickedness … Especially used in speaking of sins of uncleanness, such as fornication, rape, or incest.

Finally, Gen 19:1-24 shows Sodom was guilty of the sin of homosexuality, plain and simple.  Read it for yourself.

Veil Or Hair Covering? – Does Praying or Prophesying Have Any Real Significance?

December 20, 2018

Some contend I Cor 11:2-16 only requires the long hair as a covering on a woman. But I suggest that if that were so, the three phrases like “praying or prophesying” found in verse 4, 5 and 13 would have no real significance. Because the passage would teach the same thing if those phrases were left out (not there).

To illustrate my point, would the New Testament law on divorce and remarriage be any different if the phrases “saving for the cause of fornication” in Matt 5:32 and “except it be for fornication” in Matt 19:9 were not there? Sure it would; if it weren’t for these phrases, there would be no exception to God’s no divorce law. The two phrases are very important.

Likewise the “praying or prophesying” phrases are there in I Cor 11, and their obvious significance is to tell us when a woman must be covered and when man must not be covered. And that fact rules out the view that the long hair is the only covering required by the text, because the woman’s long hair covering is worn all the time.

Conclusion: The three “prayeth or prophesieth” type phrases in I Cor 11 are very important. They were put there by God for a reason. Their presence proves a temporary artificial covering is also required by the passage in addition to the permanent long hair covering.

To Whom The Stroke Was Due – Isaiah 53:8b

December 12, 2018

Isaiah 53:8 says about Jesus “… he was cut off out of the land of the living for the transgression of my people to whom the stroke was due … (ASV).” If that translation is accurate, it sure sounds like Jesus got what was due us, what we deserved. So Jesus got what we deserved instead of us getting what we deserved. That then would be just another verse that conclusively proves Jesus died a Substitutionary Death.

If that is not definite, Isaiah 53:6c most certainly is. It says “the Lord hath laid on him the iniquity of us all.” So our sins were on Jesus instead of on us. Again that is exactly what we mean by Substitution.

Love Means Warn People About Their Sin Not Ignore It

December 6, 2018

Who loves the most, the one who warns others of their sin, or the one who ignores others’ sin?

Acts 20:31 “Therefore watch, and remember, that by the space of three years I ceased not to warn every one night and day with tears.”

Ezek 3:18 “When I say unto the wicked, Thou shalt surely die; and thou givest him not warning, nor speakest to warn the wicked from his wicked way, to save his life; the same wicked man shall die in his iniquity; but his blood will I require at thine hand.”

Eph 4:15 “But speaking the truth in love …”

Heb 12:6 “For whom the Lord loveth he chasteneth …”

Gal 3:16 “Am I therefore become your enemy, because I tell you the truth?”

Prov 27:6 “Faithful are the wounds of a friend; but the kisses of an enemy are deceitful.”

What Must A Saved Person Do To Be Lost Again?

November 28, 2018

I had a preacher (who believes Once Saved Always Saved) ask me recently, if a saved person can lose his salvation, what must he do to be lost again? I suggested to him the following passages which directly answer his question …

Heb 3:1,12,14 “Wherefore, holy brethren, partakers of the heavenly calling, consider the Apostle and High Priest of our profession, Christ Jesus … Take heed, brethren, lest there be in any of you an evil heart of unbelief, in departing from the living God … For we are made partakers of Christ, if we hold the beginning of our confidence stedfast unto the end”

· so if a holy brother, one who has partaken of the heavenly calling, develops an evil heart of unbelief and departs from God, he is no longer a partaker of Christ

Rev 3:5 “He that overcometh, the same shall be clothed in white raiment; and I will not blot out his name out of the book of life, but I will confess his name before my Father, and before his angels.”

· so one whose name is in the book of life (a saved person), who does not overcome (temptation and/or persecution), his name will be blotted out of the book of life – meaning he goes from saved to lost

Gal 5:4 “Christ is become of no effect unto you, whosoever of you are justified by the law; ye are fallen from grace.”

· so a Christian who tries to be justified by the old testament law falls from grace

II Pet 2:20-22 “For if after they have escaped the pollutions of the world through the knowledge of the Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, they are again entangled therein, and overcome, the latter end is worse with them than the beginning. For it had been better for them not to have known the way of righteousness, than, after they have known it, to turn from the holy commandment delivered unto them. But it is happened unto them according to the true proverb, The dog is turned to his own vomit again; and the sow that was washed to her wallowing in the mire.”

· so a person who has escaped the sins of the world thru the knowledge of Christ, is entangled back again into the sins of the world, it will be worse for him than if he had never been saved to start with

James 5:19-20 “Brethren, if any of you do err from the truth, & one convert him; Let him know, that he which converteth the sinner from the error of his way shall save a soul from death, and shall hide a multitude of sins.”

· so a brother in Christ who errs from the truth and is not converted back, his soul will die

I Cor 9:27 “But I keep under my body, and bring it into subjection: lest that by any means, when I have preached to others, I myself should be a castaway.”

· so if Paul didn’t keep his body under subjection he would become a castaway/reprobate (“rejected by God and beyond hope of salvation” – Random House)

I Tim 5:12 “Having condemnation, because they have cast off their first faith.”

· so if a Christian casts off his faith, he is condemned

II Pet 1:5-11 “And beside this, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue; and to virtue knowledge; And to knowledge temperance; and to temperance patience; and to patience godliness; And to godliness brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness charity. For if these things be in you, and abound, they make you that ye shall neither be barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. But he that lacketh these things is blind, and cannot see afar off, and hath forgotten that he was purged from his old sins. Wherefore the rather, brethren, give diligence to make your calling and election sure: for if ye do these things, ye shall never fall: For so an entrance shall be ministered unto you abundantly into the everlasting kingdom of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.”

· so if a Christian (one purged from his sins) does not add what we call the Christian graces, he falls and loses out on the everlasting kingdom

Heb 10:26-27 “For if we sin wilfully after that we have received the knowledge of the truth, there remaineth no more sacrifice for sins, But a certain fearful looking for of judgment and fiery indignation, which shall devour the adversaries.”

· so if a Christian sins willfully he has a judgment of fiery indignation to look forward to

II Chron 15:2 “… The Lord is with you, while ye be with him; and if ye seek him, he will be found of you; but if ye forsake him, he will forsake you.”

· so if an old testament saint forsook God, God would forsake him

John 15:2,6 “Every branch in me that beareth not fruit he taketh away: and every branch that beareth fruit, he purgeth it, that it may bring forth more fruit. … If a man abide not in me, he is cast forth as a branch, and is withered; and men gather them, and cast them into the fire, and they are burned.”

· so if one in Christ does not bear fruit / does not abide in Christ, he is taken away, cast forth, and cast into the fire

Is Suicide The Unpardonable Sin?

November 21, 2018

Several weeks ago a caller to my Bible Crossfire radio program asked if suicide was the unpardonable sin. The answer is that there is only one unpardonable sin and suicide is not it. Matt 12:31-32 describes for us the unpardonable sin. It reads “Wherefore I say unto you, All manner of sin and blasphemy shall be forgiven unto men: but the blasphemy against the Holy Ghost shall not be forgiven unto men. And whosoever speaketh a word against the Son of man, it shall be forgiven him: but whosoever speaketh against the Holy Ghost, it shall not be forgiven him, neither in this world, neither in the world to come.” So the only unpardonable sin is blaspheming against the Holy Ghost. Any other sin can be forgiven as long as it is repented of.

I guess the caller was asking the question because how could one repent of suicide since he is dead? That is a good point. But suppose a person shot himself but did not die immediately. Suppose they didn’t die from the wound until two days later. That would give them two days to repent of the sin and be forgiven. In every case in the Bible, repentance was always necessary in order to receive forgiveness for a sin. In Luke 13:3 Jesus said “except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish.” But if one is willing to repent, any sin (except the blasphemy against the Holy Ghost) can be forgiven.

Even murder can be forgiven. Passages like Rev 21:8 show that those who commit murder will be lost. It reads “But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.” But suppose a murderer changes his ways and becomes a Christian? Acts 2:38 says if he repents he will be forgiven. That text says “Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.” So a murderer who repents of his sin and is baptized receives the remission of sins. That would include one who commits suicide but has time to repent.

Even homosexuals can be forgiven. Passages like I Cor 6:9-10 show that homosexuals will be lost. It says “Do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived. Neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor homosexuals, nor sodomites, nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners will inherit the kingdom of God.” (NKJV) But what if a homosexual wants to become a Christian and be forgiven? He can, if he is willing to repent. Verse 11 confirms this when it says “And such were some of you: but ye are washed, but ye are sanctified, but ye are justified in the name of the Lord Jesus, and by the Spirit of our God.” So those homosexuals who were willing to change were forgiven.

Even adulterers can be forgiven. Passages like Matt 19:9 show that those who divorce for any reason other than fornication and remarry enter into an adulterous marriage. Jesus said there “Whosoever shall put away his wife, except it be for fornication, and shall marry another, committeth adultery: and whoso marrieth her which is put away doth commit adultery.” But suppose a Christian who has gotten into an unscriptural marriage wants to be forgiven. He can, if he is willing to repent. Acts 8:22 confirms this when it says “Repent therefore of this thy wickedness, and pray God, if perhaps the thought of thine heart may be forgiven thee.” What would repentance mean in this case? It certainly doesn’t mean he can continue to commit adultery with his new wife. Just like repenting of murder means a person must stop murdering people, repenting of adultery means he must stop his adulterous acts, so he must terminate the adulterous marriage. Mark 6:17-18 illustrates this truth as it says “For Herod himself had sent forth and laid hold upon John, and bound him in prison for Herodias’ sake, his brother Philip’s wife: for he had married her. For John had said unto Herod, It is not lawful for thee to have thy brother’s wife.” According to secular history, Herod and Herodias had divorced their spouses and now they were married to each other. John the Baptist (speaking for God) obviously expected Herod to get out of the unscriptural marriage, as he told him “It is not lawful for thee to have her” in Matt 14:4.

So even sins like murder/suicide, homosexuality, and adulterous marriage can be forgiven, if one is willing to repent, that is, stop the sin. The only sin that can’t be forgiven (no matter what) is the blasphemy against the Holy Ghost. But if one dies before he repents of suicide, or if one dies before he repents of homosexual acts, or if one dies while still in an unscriptural marriage, they will be lost – because they have not repented of and received forgiveness for those sins.

Is The Phrase “One Baptism” In Eph 4:5 Meant To Rule Out Holy Spirit Baptism?

November 15, 2018

In exhorting Christians to keep the “unity of the Spirit,” Ephesians 4:4-6 lists seven ones, including the subject of this article “one baptism.” Some teach this declaration rules out “Holy Spirit baptism” as being in operation any longer, but I am thinking this is a false argument for the truth.

Paul’s argument in this section is that Christians should and can have unity because there is only “one body” and “one Lord” and “one hope” and so forth, the point being they are part of the same body (church) and serve the same Lord (Jesus) and have the same hope (salvation in heaven). Similarly, Paul’s point on “one baptism” is not to contrast water baptism with other types of baptisms, but to say that every Christian’s water baptism was the same. Even though they were baptized at different times and perhaps at different places by different people, John Doe’s baptism is the same as Jane Doe’s baptism – it was “in the name of the Lord” (Acts 19:5) “for the remission of sins” (Acts 2:38) and it placed one “into Christ” (Gal 3:27). Every Christian’s baptism is the same as every other Christians’ baptism and therefore Christians are united in their baptism. Christians can be one because all their baptisms are one and the same.

The point of Eph 4:5 is not to disallow other types of legitimate immersions – like Holy Spirit baptism, the baptism of suffering, or even taking a bath or going swimming. There has never been more than one body, one Spirit, one hope, one Lord, one faith, or one God the Father, and there has never been more than one baptism in the sense Paul is talking about here.

Furthermore, understanding Holy Spirit baptism to refer to the direct miraculous measure of the Holy Spirit, then I Cor 13:8ff teaches Holy Spirit baptism does not happen anymore.  That is the correct way to show the miraculous gifts have ceased, not with Eph 4:5.