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BIBLE STUDY: Truths and Lies About The Bible (Part 3)

“A thorough knowledge of the Bible is worth more than a college education" - Nobel Prize Winner & U.S. President Theodore Roosevelt

Jesus who was the God of both the Old and New Testaments (1 Corinthians 10:4) came to show us He was the Way, the Truth, and the Life (John 14:6). They nailed Him to a tree because he dared to clarify what God the Father really wants from us. It makes you wonder what people would say about us, if we started speaking, and doing everything, the way Jesus did!

Continued from Parts 1 & 2 of this study, which is available at http://www.onug.us/content/bible-study-truths-and-lies-about-bible-part-1

http://onug.us/content/bible-study-truths-and-lies-about-bible-part-2

This will be the third and last segment of our 3 part study: Truth and Lies About The Bible.

We hope that you have been with us through the last two weeks. If so, “Welcome Back” yet again! If you missed any of the last two weeks, feel free to “catch up” on what we covered, by visiting the above link (or go to www.onug.us) and download the first two study guides. In them we examined how it was possible, for so many people to get so far off track in their beliefs, about some very basic Biblical Truths.

The greater part of modern Christianity (with more than 300,000 churches and 217 main denominations in America), has twisted, perverted, or ignores many of the scriptures we examined over the last two weeks. We shall see the same is true for the scriptures we will ask God to clarify for us today. Rediscovery of God’s Truth is best accomplished by examining the easiest to understand Bible verses first; once we have proven their clear intent and meaning, we can safely proceed on to more complex scriptures dealing with the same subject.

Remember, we must turn back to God and heed His instruction when He is calling us to repent and hold fast to the things He gave us to follow (Revelation 3:2-3,15-16,19-22). It is always too late, when we realize by our human senses, that it is time to turn back to God (Luke 13:22-30). God is speaking to us! Are we listening?

If you are joining us today on-line, or following us real-time on the internet, you are keeping God’s True Sabbath, as are we (Hebrews 10:12-18 / John 20:19-24 / Hebrews 10:19-39). Our High Priest, Jesus the Christ, shows us how to worship The Father (John 4:23-24), when to worship Him (Leviticus 23:1-4), and why we worship Him (Psalm 111:10 / Revelation 22:14-15 / John 15:7, 10-11,15-16). When you study God’s Word, and in whose company you study It, is equally important to God as How you study God’s Word (Isaiah 28:9-10 / Matthew 13:52).

Let’s begin today’s study with another big lie most Christians have sadly come to believe. By proving this one from the scriptures, we will see many sincere believers in Christ, have once again been deceived!

Lie # 2: When I Accepted Christ As My Savior, And Was Baptized; I Was “Born Again”! I am a born-again believer!

How can that be a lie? Doesn’t the Bible say we are born again when we accept Christ? Well… No, it actually doesn’t say that! But let us look at what the Bible really does say about this important subject.

Jesus told Nicodemus that he could not see, let alone enter, the Kingdom of God unless he was born again (John 3:3). As we shall see, Jesus was telling Nicodemus that he must become a “spirit being” (or be born again in a spirit body) before he could enter the Kingdom of God.

According to Jesus, He said He went (to heaven) to prepare a place for us (John 14:2). Does that mean we go to heaven one day? No it does not. As we learned in last week’s study, no one is going to ascend up to heaven (John 3:13); Christ does say He will come back from the third Heaven, to the earth, so that we can be with Him (John 14:3). We know that when Jesus does return to earth, He will bring our reward of eternal life with Him (Revelation 22:7, 12 / 1 Corinthians 15:22-23). Because we have kept God’s commandments, we will receive God’s gift of eternal life (we will be born again in SPIRIT), and will be able to enter into the Beloved City, Jerusalem; from whence Christ and His saints will rule for a thousand years (Revelation 22:14). Jesus then warns those in “the churches”, that those who DO NOT keep God’s commandments (even though they profess Christ as the Messiah), will not be “born again” into spirit bodies, because they CANNOT enter into the Beloved City (Revelation 22:15). Does this include those who do not worship God in Spirit and in Truth (those who love and make a lie)?

Nicodemus, like many Christians today, was confused by what Jesus was saying about being born again (John 3:4).

Remember:

Jesus was not talking about entering our mother’s womb a second time, yet so many today – understanding correctly that it is not a physical birth; miss the mark completely and assume that Christ is talking about a “religious experience”, when a believer accepts Jesus as their Savior. He is not! Even though millions today (and their ministers), define themselves as being “true Christians” because they have undergone this experience and are born again; the Bible says, as we shall see, that they are in error.

According to the Bible, being born again is not a “feeling”, it is an actual birth, into the spiritual realm as a son of God – in glory (Hebrews 2:10)! Being born again means we will have a 100 percent - spirit, zero percent - flesh, body!

Many churches today use the following scripture to support their “feeling” of being born again (John 3:5), saying being “born of water” is baptism, and “of the Spirit”, is when we receive the Holy Spirit after baptism. They are partially correct!

Water applies to baptism, being fully immersed under water, which symbolizes a person’s “old self” being buried in a watery grave. The person is then raised from the water as a “new man”, and is to live the rest of his physical life in obedience to God. In effect, such a person is born of “water”. This also applies to one’s physical birth when surrounded by water in their mother’s womb. We break forth from this water when we are actually born as a baby. Every one of us has experienced this type of birth.

Notice now in John 3:5, Jesus is clearly saying that a person must be born of both water “AND” of the Spirit to enter into the Kingdom of God. Most Christians think this happens at baptism, because they do not take the next verse to mean exactly what Christ said (John 3:6)!

“That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit.”

There is a difference between being born and being baptized. There is a physical birth from a woman and also a symbolic birth at baptism-from water; after both – we are still made of flesh. Since the time of Christ’s ascension up into heaven (Acts 1:9), and from that Pentecost on; Christians are now baptized with the Holy Spirit (Acts 1:5 & 8). After baptism, Christians receive power from God – through God’s Holy Spirit (Acts 1:8 / Mark 16: 15-20), so that they can and will do even greater works than Christ did upon the earth – if they are obedient to God (John 14:11-15); yet they are still made of “flesh and blood”! When we are “born again” after baptism, at the return of Jesus Christ; we then put off our physical bodies, and are born again into spirit bodies!

True Christians are right now baptized with the Spirit, but they are not yet born of the Spirit!

We CANNOT be in the flesh, if we are born of the Spirit! How clear! It is impossible according to Jesus, for a flesh and blood person to be born again – and still be made of flesh!!! Those born of a woman (or flesh) are flesh! Those who are born of the Spirit (at the first resurrection) are spirit! Such a simple concept, yet we have buried it in so much confusion!

Thankfully, Jesus continued to clarify for His followers, what being born of the Spirit really meant (John 3:7-8). We should not marvel either! Jesus compared those “born again” to wind! We can see and hear the effects of wind (leaves and curtains moving), but we cannot see the wind itself. Likewise, everyone who is born again, or born of the Spirit, will be invisible to other flesh and blood humans. Now let’s look at 1 John 3:4-10 and read it literally, not putting our own ideas into what we think it means. (:9-10 “Whosoever is born of God [born again] doth not commit sin; for his seed remaineth in him: and he cannot sin, because he is born of God [born again]. In this the children of God are manifest [changed from flesh and blood into spirit – born again], and the children of the devil: whosoever doeth not righteousness is not of God, neither he that loveth not his brother.”)

We must recognize not only “what” God is saying to us, but “how” we are hearing what He is saying! The way we believe and interpret (hopefully we are now proving all things: line upon line, precept upon precept), will determine how we “apply” God’s Truths in our lives; and it will most certainly determine what comes to pass in our lives!

We know that Jesus promised us that we would enter His Kingdom (Matthew 25:34). Praise God! But in order to do that, we will have to be born again first; because flesh and blood cannot enter in (1 Corinthians 15:50). This will happen only at the Second Coming of Christ (1 Corinthians 15:22-23)! Christians are Born Again at Christ’s Coming - NOT before!

Paul will now help clarify 1 John 3:4-10, which we just finished reading, and make the definition of what “born again” is, impossible for us to misunderstand (1 Corinthians 15:51-58):

“Behold, I shew you a mystery; We shall not all sleep (or die and be buried), but we shall all be changed (born again into spiritual bodies),

In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump (at the return of Jesus Christ): for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed (born again).

For this corruptible (flesh and blood that sins) must put on incorruption (spirit that cannot sin), and this mortal (which can die) must put on immortality (which cannot die).

So when this corruptible shall have put on incorruption, and this mortal shall have put on immortality (when we are all glorified with Christ at the first resurrection – see Revelation 20:6) , then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written, Death is swallowed up in victory.

O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory?

The sting of death is sin; and the strength of sin is the law.

But thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.

Therefore, my beloved brethren, be ye stedfast, unmoveable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, forasmuch as ye know that your labour is not in vain in the Lord.”

3 Biblical Tests For Anyone Who Claims To Be Born Again (Remember John 3:7-8 / Revelation 20:6):

1) If humans can “see” you, you ARE NOT born again!

2) If you ARE NOT composed of 100% spirit, you ARE NOT born again!

3) If you can burn up and die in fire, you ARE NOT born again!!!

In contrast; God is a Spirit, and cannot be seen. Anyone who claims they are born again – in this life, has wrongly made this assumption - despite Jesus’ clear teaching to the contrary!

I thank you LORD, for the Truth of Your Word! I thank you for showing me the traditions I was clinging to were only the fabrication of men! I now know the Truth, and the Truth has set me free (John 8:32)! Thank You LORD!

Truth # 15: The Bible says that Jesus Built Only One Church, His Church!

Today, however, we see many different Christian churches, with many different beliefs. Could they all be different parts of the “church universal?”

Let’s look at what one mainstream “mega-church” says in their statement of beliefs:

“The church is composed of sincere believers and faithful followers of the Lord Jesus Christ. It expresses itself both universally and locally. All Christians around the world throughout the history of time compose the church universal. The local church is a contemporary community expression of this larger body. It gathers regularly for worship, instruction, fellowship and service. Every believer is uniquely gifted by the Holy Spirit helping the local church act as one body, representing Jesus Christ on earth.” The church then lists the following scriptures to support this statement: Acts 2:41-47; 1 Corinthians 12:12-13; Ephesians 4:4-6; Hebrews 10:25”.

Acts 2:42 & 44 says, :42 “And they continued stedfastly in the apostles' doctrine and fellowship, and in breaking of bread, and in prayers.” – I ask, what if a “Christian” church does not continue in the apostles’ doctrine, is it still Christ’s church?

:44 “And all that believed were together, and had all things in common.” – I ask, what if several “Christian” churches don’t believe in the same thing or together, and they have different doctrines, and they do not have all things in common; are they still part of the church Jesus built?

I had a difficult time imagining God’s Church could be a giant “universal” shopping mall, with many hundreds of smaller stores inside all selling different products; and all of them stamped, “Jesus Approved!”

I wanted to know more about the church that Jesus Christ said He actually built. Is it still around today? And if so, where is it, and who are its members?

I didn’t want to take each church at their word, that they were part of the church Jesus founded. I wanted to see if the Bible could answer the matter for itself; and I found that it actually did! So let’s look into the matter for ourselves. Let’s go back in time, over 2,000 years, to the far North of ancient Israel, to a place called Caesarea Philippi, and see what Jesus said about His Church (Matthew 16:13). Jesus Christ used this location to teach a very specific Truth, not only to His disciples, but to all of us who would follow Him in the centuries to come!

Did Jesus build His Church upon Peter (Matthew 16:18)?

Did Jesus give Peter and His Church the keys to heaven so that they could change church doctrine into whatever they saw fit (Matthew 16:19); to stay relevant and modern, as society would change over the years?

Let’s go back to Matthew 16:13-16 and let’s validate by scripture just who Jesus Christ was. As you can see we have Jesus Christ in the flesh, the Son of the Living God! Wow! Now let’s look at verse 18 again. This is one of those scriptures we need to know what the original words meant:

“…You are Peter (“petros” – a piece of rock or pebble), and upon this rock (“petra” – a massive or great rock) I will build My Church.” (Let’s also look at John 1:40-42, “a stone [petros]).

Many people and many “churches” today assume Christ would build His Church upon Peter. The universal church today also assumes Peter was the first Pope. But Christ built His Church on a Boulder, NOT a little Pebble! Jesus Christ, NOT Peter is the rock upon which the Church is built! When one travels to Caesarea Philippi today; the massive rock that dominates the landscape can still be seen. Jesus used that location to make a point… one that is sadly lost on most people today (1 Corinthians 10:4, that spiritual Rock [petra] that followed them: and that Rock [massive Boulder] was Christ)!!!

Jesus Christ was and is the Rock of the Old Testament (Deuteronomy 32:15, 18 / Psalm 18:2 /Acts 7:38)!!! Jesus was the Rock of Israel! Jesus was telling Peter, that He would build the New Testament Church on Himself (Jesus), and that He (Jesus) would be its head; and remain with it always (Matthew 28:20 / Hebrews 13:5), so the gates of hell could never destroy it! It is still here today, among men, praise God!

Jesus told us to build our personal houses on a rock [petra] (Matthew 7:24-29), not a pebble [petros]. The difference between Peter and Christ when looking at the original words becomes very clear indeed!

- With Christ as the head (or Rock) of His Church, His followers would always be on the right path, the same path (Malachi 3:6-7), and Jesus would not only keep us from destruction, but in His Blessing as well (Proverbs 3:1-10)!

– with Men in charge of God’s Church, people would get so far off track, they would eventually abandon the original path that Jesus walked all together (Proverbs 14:12 / Matthew 15:8-9 / Mark 7:6-9 )! Human leaders, without being submissive and obedient to Christ, will always lead their followers off a cliff (Matthew 7: 15-21 [read the labels on the fruit trees you are buying / compare church doctrines to the Word of God] / :13-14] ).

The Keys To The Kingdom of God:

Jesus said He would give His Church leaders the knowledge (or keys) of how to enter the Kingdom of God, or the way of life a Christian must live to achieve Salvation (Matthew 16:19). Christ rebuked lawyers for hiding or suppressing these keys of knowledge (Luke 11:52), and hindering people from entering God’s kingdom!

These keys were not a free license for church leaders to change any and all of God’s Laws and teachings at will, to suit their needs (remember Acts 2:42). Jesus did not appoint Peter as the first Pope, or use human replacements of Christ, down through the centuries to run His church and make decisions on Christ’s behalf (see Matthew 28:20)!

Jesus Christ and no one else heads His Church (Ephesians 1:22-23 / Colossians 1:18)! Peter never thought he was the rock Christ spoke of. He knew Jesus was that Rock upon which we as Christians must build upon (1 Peter 2:6). Peter also knew many would be disobedient to Christ and attempt to build other churches, rejecting Christ and His teachings (1 Peter 2:7-9 [“and a rock “petra” of offense] / Isaiah 28:16).

Paul said very much the same thing (Ephesians 2:20 / 1 Corinthians 3:11). Peter was merely the lead apostle in the decades following the death of Christ; Jesus Christ would always be the Rock [petra] of the Church He founded!

In Summary (Let’s read 1 Corinthians 1:1-10, 2:4-16) :

We hope that this three part study on Truth and Lies about the Bible has been insightful and helpful! It was our intent to use this series as a very basic foundation for the continued study of God’s Word (in Spirit and in Truth) throughout this year. We hope you will stay with us!

In this series we covered the following topics:

Truth # 1: Satan Has Deceived The Whole World!

Truth # 2: Satan’s Deception Is Always Subtle!

Truth # 3: Most people worship the god of this world (Satan with a Jesus Mask), and don’t even know it!

Truth # 4: The Definition of “Sin” has NEVER Changed!

Truth # 5: God’s Laws Have Never Been Abolished, and NEVER Will Be Abolished, Never-Ever!

Truth # 6: You Cannot Love God Without Keeping His Commandments! All of Them!

Truth # 7: Keeping The Annual Feasts of The Lord Is Still Commanded By God (Leviticus 23:1-44 / Exodus 23:14)!

Truth #8: We Are Saved By Grace Alone, But Faith in God - Without Works (or Obedience To The Law) Is Dead! Both are Required!

Truth # 9: The Reward of The Saved Is Eternal Life On The Earth – For All Eternity. Even God the Father, Will Come Down From Heaven And Eventually Join Us, Here On Earth!

Truth # 10: The Gospel Or “Good News” That Jesus Came To Deliver Was Not About Himself! The Gospel That Christ Preached Was That The Kingdom Of God, Was Coming To Earth!

Truth # 11: God Has Called Christians Today, To Be In Training For A New And Much Different Government.

Truth # 12: Jesus Christ is the God of both the Old and New Testaments!!!

Truth # 13: Jesus Christ Was and Still Is Lord of The Sabbath Day!

Truth # 14: Those Who Are Lead By The Spirit Of God, Will Obey God! Those Are They He Calls “Sons”!!!

Truth # 15: The Bible says that Jesus Built Only One Church, His Church!

Lie # 1: When I Die (As A Christian) I Will Immediately Ascend Up To Heaven And Be With God and Jesus Forever!

Lie # 2: When I Accepted Christ As My Savior, And Was Baptized; I Was “Born Again”; I am a born-again believer!

The sad state of affairs today is that the vast majority of Americans are Bible illiterates (Hosea 4:6). They simply have never read the book which they profess to regard as the “Word of God”. If we are to change this, we must begin using the Bible as our primary source of education, to learn about God and His teachings (Matthew 6:33).

If you have never faithfully kept God’s seventh day Sabbath holy or God’s Holy Days, the way Jesus Christ did – in the flesh, and in the fellowship of other followers of the Son of Man (Hebrews 10:25); we invite you to obediently enter into God’s rest today, and to keep the Feasts of the LORD (Hebrews 4:1-11 / Leviticus 23:1-44)! Contact us to find out where we fellowship and worship God, in your area, on His Sabbath Days (Exodus 31:12-18). We would love to hear from you and help get you started!

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”But ye believe not, because ye are not of my sheep, as I said unto you. My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me: And I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand. My Father, which gave them me, is greater than all; and no man is able to pluck them out of my Father's hand. I and my Father are one” (John 10:26-30).

Christians must learn to read the Bible, interpret the scriptures according to Biblical principles (Isaiah 28:9-10, 13 / Matthew 13:52), and begin to apply the precepts they learn in their walk with God. Individual study is essential; coupled with fellowship times of group study, worship, and discussions of personal insights and observations.

We strive, each Saturday, to foster an open and welcoming atmosphere where Spirit led confirmation, clarification, questions, and correction can be made in the fellowship of other students of God’s Word.

One Nation Under God U.S.A. (www.onug.us) is working to unify the body of Christ in the worship of God the Father, in the way Jesus showed us to - in Spirit and in Truth! We strive to promote rediscovery of American History, and renew in current generations the Vision and the Covenant of our Founding Fathers.

We are honored that you joined us in the study of God's Word!

- submitted by R.C. Brown

One Nation Under God U.S.A. Ministries (www.onug.us)

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