Hard to be Understood

Hard to be Understood

“No one can understand the Bible; it is just too hard for me to know what God is saying.” These words express the hearts of many, but are they true? Peter said that in parts of the Bible there are “…some things hard to be understood” (2 Pet. 3:16), but he does not say that even the hard things are impossible to understand.

There are vital truths to be understood.

There are vital truths to be understood.

An amazing truth about the Bible is that the most important truths are stated in a way that everyone can comprehend them. Let’s take time to look at the following vital truths of the Bible which are so simply stated.

Jesus is the only way any person can be saved. Is this true? Read the words of Jesus. “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No man comes to the Father except through Me” (John 14:6). Is that hard to understand? A vital truth simply stated.

Those who do not believe in Jesus cannot go to heaven, even if they do good things. Read these words of Jesus. “If you do not believe that I am He, you will die in your sins” (John 8:24). Read them again and imagine the spiritual destiny of those who are still in their sins. A vital truth simply stated.

Not all religious people will be saved. Jesus said, “Many will say to Me in that day, ‘Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in Your name, cast out demons in Your name, and done many wonders in Your name?’ And then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness’” (Matt. 7:22-23). If you wonder how this could happen, look at verse 21, “Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in heaven.” A vital truth simply stated.

No man, without God’s help, can find the way to heaven. “It is not in man who walks to direct his own way,” and ‘’There is a way that seems right to a man, but its end is the ways of death’’ (Jer. 10:23; Prov. 16:25). A vital truth simply stated.

The Bible is the final source for all religious doctrine and instruction. “All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work” (2 Tim. 3:16-17). A vital truth simply stated.

Look at how simply God has stated the most important truths. Think about this. It is not the “hard” things in the Bible that should concern us, nearly as much as the “easy” things in it. God has stated eternal truths. God has stated the most vital, eternal truths in the simplest language. Wise men will never overlook the simple truths of the Bible. Be wise!

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Justified by Works?

Justified by Works?

We are justified by our works! That’s right. Despite what many in the religious world might profess, the Bible clearly states that men are justified, “by their works.” This has even led some to question the authenticity of the book of James. However, the overarching message of the New Testament supports this idea. The difficulty often lies in the misunderstanding between works of “merit” and works of “faith” or “righteousness.”

One must consider all of scripture...

One must consider all of scripture…

No one who knows the Scripture will ever say that one merits or earns salvation by their works. But likewise no sound teacher would say that works of faith are non-essential.  James says one must:

Be “swift to hear, slow to speak, slow to wrath.” – Works of faith.
“Lay aside all filthiness and overflowing of naughtiness.” – A work of faith.
Receive the word. – A work of faith.
“Be doers of the word.” – Works of faith.
Continue in works of faith.
Care for the needy. – Works of faith.
Keep yourself unspotted. – Works of faith.

Faith without works is dead and cannot save. Show me your faith without works. I’ll show you my faith by my works. How does your faith shine by what you are doing? Remember, the goal is to hear the Lord say, “Well DONE!” Be obedient, and be faithful.

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A Look at the Sinner’s Prayer

A Look at the Sinner’s Prayer

For decades, crusades have been conducted around the world, and thousands have responded to give their lives to Jesus. Conscious of their sins, they are told to simply say the “sinner’s prayer.” Of even greater impact is the preaching by televangelists and church pastors who tell those who are lost that if they will say this sinner’s prayer, God will immediately forgive them of all their sins.

Is this what the Bible says?

Is this what the Bible says?

There are slight variations in the wording of this prayer, but they all have this format. “Dear Lord Jesus, I know that I am a sinner, and I ask for Your forgiveness. You died for my sins and rose from the dead. I turn from my sins and invite You to come into my heart and life. I want to trust and follow You as my Lord and Savior. In Your name. Amen.” The lives of many have been changed, but a vital question must be answered. Does the saying of this prayer bring salvation?

When did this prayer originate? Google to find the answer. “Some affirm that it evolved, in some form or another, during the early days of the Protestant Reformation. Others believe it originated as late as the eighteenth century revival movement.” One study provides strong evidence that the sinner’s prayer originated in the early twentieth century.

Think of the implications of the preceding paragraph. It implies that the sinner’s prayer was unknown by the church in the first century. The church, directed by the apostles, told millions how to be saved, but never told them to pray this prayer. It is not found even one time in the Bible. It is not found in the Bible anywhere in any of the forms used today.

It is not found in the writings of church leaders of the second, third, fourth, fifth, sixth, etc. centuries! It was never used for fifteen hundred years after the church began. It is not from the mind of God but from the imagination of mere mortals.

If the sinner’s prayer is God’s answer to the question of what one must do in order to be saved, then was not one single person saved beginning at the death of Christ until the sixteenth century? Surely something must be wrong with giving this prayer as God’s plan to save mankind.

Let me suggest the path every man should follow in finding salvation. Read the book of Acts. It is the history of the church from its beginning until near the end of Paul’s life. Read about the spread of the church around the world. Read the Divine record of people asking what they must do about their sins. Note that never was any man told to pray this prayer. The answer given was always the same. Honestly seek to find the answer to life’s most important question. Read the book of Acts. Discover for yourself. Then do what they did!

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