月別アーカイブ: 2020年10月

A Pharisees counseling session: advice concerning divorce.

The level of ignorance concerning divorce among Christian’s today is utterly nauseating. Its unbelievable.

The prevailing narrative literally makes me sick to my stomach. These know it alls condemn divorced people until they are served with one themselves and then humbly join the ranks of those they condemned. And shut up.

I once attended a funeral where the preacher condemned anyone who had a “living spouse” but married to another was living in perpetual adultery. Unbelievable. The man must not have had good sense, because I would speculate that 100% of those in the chapel had been divorced, or had divorced family members, or divorced parents. Nothing he could have said could have insulted and offended more people in one breath than his 5 minute rant displaying his utter biblical ignorance and lack of understanding.

Here is a hypothetical sum total of what their marital advice would sound like. Yes, its idiotic. Yes it takes ingoramous to new levels, but this is what these religious idiots would prescribe for you, and logically their own family and friends as well.The worst part is folks actually listen to them.

..”So, your husband left you through no fault of your own? That’s too bad, I’m so sorrry, that is so unfortunate. How does that make you feel? Terrible huh? Ok. I’m so sorry”

“SO? they are now living with a new spouse happily?. Well, they will give an account for all that, I promise you. Shame on them.”

“It’s so unfortunate that they have moved on and are happy now, but let’s not focus on THEM. We have to talk about YOU now. Ok?”

“Ok.. this is hard. I really hate breaking this to you, but you have to just accept this, it’s not me, it’s the scriptures: What has happened to you is God’s will for your life, you just have to accept that ok? Ok.”

“Ok, I know this seems unfair, he remarried, but YOU can’t do that, because for YOU to remarry would be a sin, so to keep from sinning, YOU have to remain alone, celibate, and struggle to raise your kids and stay unmarried so you can be available for that adulterous abusive husband of yours just in case he divorces and decides he wants you and the kids back”. “I know that is hard to accept, but that’s scriptural” “God will help you through this though, don’t worry”, you’ll be fine, pray with me” .

..Mean while, the sanctimonious hypocritical church boss hens cluck: “(Poor girl, so sad the Lord is dealing with her so bitterly. It’s going to be hard, but she’s a tough girl, she’ll make it. …I can’t help but wonder what sin she did to deserve this? We need to really pray for her don’t we?”)

Deuteronomy 24 says it is abomination to remarry a former spouse after you’ve been married to another. Granted, people go back to exes all the time, and are usually sadly reminded of why things did not work in the first place.

God will save us from hell, but he does not spare us from deceptive people, nor save us from the consequences of our bad choices and bad decisions and mistakes, but he does provide a remedy, and he delights in new beginnings.

Deut 24:1 When a man hath taken a wife, and married her, and it come to pass that she find no favour in his eyes, because he hath found some uncleanness in her: then let him write her a bill of divorcement, and give it in her hand, and send her out of his house.

And when she is departed out of his house, she may go and be another man’s wife.

And if the latter husband hate her, and write her a bill of divorcement, and giveth it in her hand, and sendeth her out of his house; or if the latter husband die, which took her to be his wife;

Her former husband, which sent her away, may not take her again to be his wife, after that she is defiled; for that is abomination before the Lord: and thou shalt not cause the land to sin, which the Lord thy God giveth thee for an inheritance.

Divorce is just as permanent as marriage folks, and exes are exes FOR A REASON!

158

The resurrection of Jesus

James Dixon, Resurrection day message 2018, Ferry Road Baptist Church

Today is resurrection day. If you could go back in time 1986 years, and imagine today were a Saturday, right now Jesus would have been in the grave almost three days, and sometime after dark today, he would be rising from the dead.

Today is being called “Easter Sunday”

We are here today to remember Jesus resurrection. I try to say “resurrection day” vs “Easter” so as to not mislead people concerning the two holidays.  In today’s world, the two words are almost interchangeable, but they are two different days at different times.

A little bit about Easter.

This year, Easter was actually March the 20thr. Easter was last month.  Oddly enough, today, at many churches across our land, you’ll see Easter bunnies and Easter baskets and colored eggs. They are about a month late.

Easter is reckoned by the spring equinox, and honors a fertility goddess named Ishtar, pronounced Easter. Today it is Ostara. Ostara is one of the 8 sabbaths of the wiccan religions . Other wiccan sabbaths are New year’s day, January 1, then Yule, the winter equinox, Dec 20-23 and Samhain, which begins at midnight on October 31st,

We have all been to New year’s eve parties. I gather with many of my friends on New years eve to celebrate the new year, not witchcraft. But we don’t meet at the Lord’s house for it.

I visit family and celebrate Christmas with family and friends, not witchcraft, But not at the Lord’s house.

I personally do not observe Halloween. I don’t even pass out candy in the neighborhood. But if I did, It wouldn’t be at the Lord’s house. I don’t condemn others for doing so.

 For me, it is a matter of conscience. For a church, it should be a matter of honoring the Lord.

Earnest hated a Christmas tree with a passion. He didn’t condemn others for enjoying Christmas lights and Christmas trees.   But he kept one in the social hall. Why? Tolerance. Love. Acceptance of others. Not worth being right about.     

In 1 Tim 4:7 Paul says:   But refuse profane and old wives’ fables, and exercise thyself rather unto godliness.

  You know, anytime someone has a birthday, or a wedding, THEY are the one’s who should get the undivided attention of those who have came to honor that person. Today is a day we should give the Lord our undivided attention, and be especially grateful, on today of all days, for his sacrifice, and his resurrection from the dead.

At the Lord’s house, today is the Lord’s day, as it should be every time we meet,  BUT ESPECIALLY on the day of his resurrection, to honor HIM, in his house. JESUS should have our undivided reverence and attention in the Lord’s house,  not the Easter bunny, or colored eggs, or chocolate eggs,  an Easter egg hunt.

What a man’s conscience allows, and what a man does in his house is his business. The Lord’s house is a different place.

Ok, enough about all that.

Why the resurrection?

Paul says: In 1 Cor 15:14 Paul says And if Christ be not risen, then is our preaching vain, and your faith is also vain.

If Jesus had not risen from the dead, our faith is a total waste of time. A dead man has no power. A dead man cannot help anyone.   Paul bet the farm on Jesus resurrection. He gave up his head before he denied the risen Christ, or worshipped the roman emperor.  

I had an exchange once with a muslim once who said “If God died, he is not a god”

I said “seems to me God can do what ever he wants to do, including dying and raising himself up from the dead”. 

He then asked me “Why would Jesus die, and rise from the dead”?

I responded:

If a man told you when he was going to die, HOW he was going to die, when he was going to die, and who would kill him, and that he would raise HIMSELF up from the dead, and then, after all that, after three days, prove himself, would you follow him?  If he fulfilled over 300 prophecies from the Bible, which YOUR KORAN says is true, would you follow him?

-If this same man PROVED to you that he had power over death, hell, and the grave, would you follow him?

-to which he replied “Jesus is not God”

– I asked him “Is Jesus ALIVE”?

-He said “yes, of course he is” (He HAD to say this, or contradict his koran)

-To which I replied “So, Jesus has NEVER died, but he is 2019 years old, and promises anyone who believes in and follows him eternal life” would you believe it coming from a 2000 year old man?

Seems to me a 2000 year old man has the secret to long life.”  You would be  fool not to .

-He said “god is not a man”

-I said: “Why can’t he be? can God take on any form he wants”

– “Well , yes he can” 

-“The Bible says god is a man. Fully God, yet fully human. Fully devine, fully flesh. Remember, we are made in HIS image, not he in ours”. “And your Koran says the Bible is true, so”

I continued:

-Tell me what your god looks like.

-He couldnt. Because he doesn’t know.

He tried to say muslims worship the same god as the Christian, which is a lie, the koran says Allah has no son, but I digress.

I then asked-Tell me: has your god loved you so much, he is willing to assume your form and die in your place to satisfy his justice and his own judgements?

I continued. We do not worship the same god. There is a big difference between YOUR god, and my god.

 Your religion teaches that God is not a man, and that all humans are slaves.

-My religion teaches that God IS a man, and we are his brothers, sisters and mothers.

Your religion teaches that you shall die for your god

My religion teaches that My God loves me so much, he died for me

Your religion teaches that you cannot go to god, and he will not come to you.

My God came to me. In the man Jesus Christ, and will return for me one day, raise me up if I am dead , and take me to be with him in heaven. Has YOUR god made such a promise? Can mohammed help you? Nope, Mohammed is dead.

You cook meals and sacrifice animals and human beings for your god.  

My God sacrificed himself for ME, and cooked meals for and ate with his creation. And will cook a meal for me in heaven when I get there.

Your god requires you to humble yourself to him.  

 My God washed the feet of his disciples in all humility and humbled himself at the cross for my sake.  

My God is a man, as such, he is acquainted with grief, having been tempted and tried in every way as we are. He feels our pain. He understands our troubles and temptations.   

Your god knows no such temptations or grief. He cannot empathize with you. “I know how you feel” is not in his vocabulary.

Your religion REQUIRES you to worship 5 times a day. And sacrifice to your god:

My God sacrificed HIMSELF for me. He loves me that much.

My God never asked me for worship, I worship him freely from LOVE, not compulsion

Muslims cut themselves for their god. You bleed for your god

MY GOD bled for me.

Your god has already ordained and decreed all things, including where you will spend eternity, and there is not one thing you can do about it but hope he chose you for paradise.

 My God loves his creation so much, he gave him complete sovereignty, meaning the full liberty to pick his poisons and choose his changes, knowing full well we may choose evil, and moreover paid the penalty for my bad choices himself.

Your god will require payment at your hand, not his.

Your god hates his creation. According to the Koran, most will see hell, especially women.

 That is how much MY god loves me. How much does your god love you? How many times in your Koran does it say your god loves you? Not once. 

Your god hates you, and will require all men, including muslims to “burn off your sins in hell” for a time, if not for all eternity. 

My god loves me so much, he paid the penalty for my sins, and is not willing that any should perish he sacrificed HIMSELF for me. He loves me that much.

Your god has decreed all will see hell, including you, at least for a time.

My god has decreed that all who believe in him, and accept his sacrifice, will not perish, but will see heaven with him for all eternity.

My God has spared me from hell. Fact is, because of his shed blood, and my faith in him, again it is impossible for me to go to hell. Hell is the last thing I have to worry about.

My God loves me so much, and desires fellowship with me so much, he has a special place built for me in heaven, so that I will have a heavenly home with him for all eternity.

My God loves me so much, he will dispense judgement and vengeance to all who have denied him for the righteous sake.

-He stopped conversing with me after this.

All Religions across the world teach some sort of eternal life. This is the hope of all religions.

But Mohammed did not die for the sins of man.

And he did not rise from the dead. He’s still dead. Still in the dirt. 

Buddha? Still dead.

Vishna? Still dead.

Darwin? Dead. And still dead.

Isis? Horus? Sorus? Still dead.

Haven’t saw a Pope rise from the dead yet.

Haven’t saw Jean Calvin rise from the dead yet.

Haven’t saw EG white rise from the dead yet.

Only Jesus has risen from the dead. In no other religion has anyone has died and came back. Not . one. Single. One.

I once saw a facebook post that asked why Jesus had to die for us?

I said “well, I guess there are many reasons for Jesus death on the cross, not the least of which is the blood payment for our sins”, but one more thing I get out of the cross is this:

If a man told ME he could defeat death: Meaning he could WILLINGLY lay down his life, be killed, and come back from the dead, and do the same for me if I followed him, logically, then, my response would be “OK then, you go first” . And if he did, and rose from the dead, I would be a fool not to believe and follow him. 

Well: Jesus did go first. He has PROVEN he can give us eternal life. And he does to all who believe in him.

He proved his power over death and hell in his resurrection, and promises all in John 11:25 he says-26Jesus said unto her, I am the resurrection, and the life: he that believeth in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live:

26 And whosoever liveth and believeth in me shall never die. Believest thou this?

27 She saith unto him, Yea, Lord: I believe that thou art the Christ, the Son of God, which should come into the world.

If you want to live forever, Jesus is the only way. There is no other way. John 14:6 “I am the way, the truth and the life, no man cometh to the father but by me”

Well? Just what does it require to have eternal life?

Believe. Believe he is who he says he is, and will do what he says he will do. John 3:16 says; For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. … For God loved the world in this way: He gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life.

The bible says “as a man believes in his heart, so is he”

Can it really be that easy?

There is nothing hard about believing.

I often talk about the imminence of the rapture being a strong motivator for a believer. It is the same principle for one who believes.

The one who truly believes in Jesus cannot help but to be changed. That change affects his behavior. It affects the way he thinks, the way he talks, and the way he treats others.

The change is not from the outside in, but from the inside out. That change is not something that has to be forced, it is a natural process of growth and maturity in Christ Jesus. That change is not overnight in most cases, but it is a change nonetheless.  As Jeff often says: Its not “have to”< but “want to”.

Well, many say that Jesus is a fictional character. There are those that claim he never existed. They are pitifully ignorant or lying. They would have better luck denying Lincoln was president.

Believe it or not, Jesus is THE MOST verifiable , confirmed person who ever walked the planet. And notably, you won’t hear anyone say he is dead.

More than a dozen historians have written about Jesus. More than a dozen of his disciples gave their lives before they would deny their witness of the resurrection of Jesus.  

Jesus has a half dozen holidays in his honor.

More songs have been written about Jesus than any person that ever existed.

At the present, I don’t know of any man on the planet anyone else, of any religion would die for.

Yet, in the words of Napoleon Bonaparte, More people stand ready to die Jesus at this very moment than any man who has ever lived, or ever will live. A man none of them have met in person.

Here is what Napoleon said: Napoleon Bonaparte (1769-1821) was, by all accounts, a giant of history. Soldier. General. Emperor. Exile. And although no would add ‘theologian’ to this list, Napoleon faced a question common to all mankind: Who is Jesus Christ?

History has seen many different answers. Christians have claimed Him as Savior, others have considered Him just another wise teacher, and skeptics have deemed Him to be a largely mythological figure.

Near the end of his life, the exiled Emperor Napoleon came to the following conclusion about the King of Kings:

I know men, and I tell you Jesus Christ was not a man.

Superficial minds see a resemblance between Christ and the founders of empires and the gods of other religions. That resemblance does not exist.

There is between Christianity and other religions the distance of infinity.

Jesus Christ alone founded His empire upon love; and at this hour millions of men will die for Him.

Alexander, Cæsar, Charlemagne and myself founded empires. But on what did we rest the creations of our genius? Upon sheer force. Jesus Christ alone founded His empire upon love; and at this hour millions of men will die for Him. In every other existence but that of Christ how many imperfections!

From the first day to the last He is the same; majestic and simple; infinitely firm and infinitely gentle. He proposes to our faith a series of mysteries and commands with authority that we should believe them, giving no other reason than those tremendous words, ‘I am God.’

The Bible contains a complete series of acts and of historical men to explain time and eternity, such as no other religion has to offer.

If it is not the true religion, one is very excusable in being deceived; for everything in it is grand and worthy of God.

The more I consider the Gospel, the more I am assured that there is nothing there which is not beyond the march of events and above the human mind. Even the impious themselves have never dared to deny the sublimity of the Gospel, which inspires them with a sort of compulsory veneration.

What happiness that Book procures for those who believe it!

So said Napoleon Bonaparte. What about you? Who do you say that Christ is? Scripture tells us that “every knee should bow…and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord.” Even the great Napoleon.

Yet Christianity is the most hated and persecuted religion that has ever existed.

And still, Christianity is the dominant religion on the earth. And it will dominate in the tribulation. 

In the tribulation, many folks believe “the church will go through the tribulation”. They lack understanding.

Tribulation root word is Tribulum. Which means to sort, or to sift.

When the tribulation begins, there will not be a single believer on the earth. The entire earth will be nothing but UNBELIEVERS. Yet billions of believers will come out of the tribulation. “no man could number”  The tribulation will be a victory for the gospel, and a victory for the church.  Even with completed control over the earth, the antichrist will not be able to overcome the gospel. When the tribulation ends and Jesus begins his reign, there will not be a single UNBELIEVER alive on the earth.

Jesus says: I will build my church, and the gates of hell[b] shall not prevail against it. 

All through the power of his death, burial and resurrection. Share it with others. Enjoy today, but lets not forget its meaning, and be grateful for what the Lord has given us, and what he has in store for us. 

God bless you.

Copyright James Dixon 2022

157

CALVINISM-A DOCTRINE OF DEMONS

 1 Timoth 4:1 Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils;

These are those days folks. One of the worst evil doctrines infesting our churches today is Calvinism. Its important to understand it so you can recognize it.

First, a bit about its author and founder:

Jean Calvin was a former Catholic, who wrote his institutes in the form of book at the age of 27. He became the ruler of a town called Geneva Switzerland, with some 15,000 citizens. At first, he retaliated against those who criticized him. When he got the courage, he made an example, and had a man named Servetus executed by burning at the stake, and made the executors use GREEN wood so his suffering would be increased. After this, amazingly enough, the entire town became Calvinist.

Calvin forced people to go to church and endure his sermons, and appointed men to spy upon folks in his flock.  Calvin ordered the deaths of some 76 people and was directly responsible for hundreds of tortures and exiles. His institutes have caused immeasurable suffering to mankind, and millions of deaths. “manifest destiny” was Calvinist in origin, and was used to justify the slaughter and enslavement of millions of native Americans in the early days of our country.  “It’s God’s will that we conquer the heathan” was a battle cry to steal their lands, and destroy a civilization that did not believe as they did. No where in scripture does Jesus command such a thing. He says if a city will not hear you, when you leave, shake off the dust of your feet when you go out. Calvin apparently never read this verse of scripture. 

Today’s teachers of Calvin most notably are John MacArthur, and James Piper and Rick Warren. There are many others. They all have nothing but glowing words to say about the demon named Jean Calvin.

The greatest deception of Calvinism is that most folks don’t know what it is, or how to recognize it. It is essentially sugar coated islam. Today, Calvinism is called “reformed doctrine” which is nothing more than sugar coated Calvinism.

In the future, I hope to see many new faces come through the doors of the church. With each one will come errant doctrines. We must be wary.  

Calvinism essentially amounts to fatalism and has shipwrecked many believers faith and led many believers to abandon the faith for atheism.

I mean, when bad times come, when someone kills or murders their loved one, logically, for one to be told that God planned and ordained that would give one a propensity to reject such a god as he.

God is not the author of sin. We are free moral agents. Many choose to do bad. Sinners will answer to God for it, but God did not will nor ordain such evil as we see in the world today. 

Calvinism teaches that only certain ones were chosen for salvation, and the rest will never be saved. The Bible says God is not respector of persons.

From Marcos Simian:

James, It is worse than that! The real question is: Why delay the inevitable? If nothing you say, do, nor believe will change anything for anyone, not even yourself, then there is no real point to existing in this world in the first place. Even Paul admitted this in Philippians 1:23-24; wherein he says that he has a desire to go to his eternal home right now. BUT then he clarifies that the reason he remains is because it is to the benefit of others. Therefore, IF Paul believed his presence within this world wouldn’t change anything for anyone, then by his own admission, he would have departed from the world sooner. We OUGHT to do the same if we genuinely believe that remaining in this world accomplishes/changes nothing. If everyone’s fate remains the same no matter what, then it is far better to simply die right now and go to your pre-determined “home” than to waste your time in this world merely delaying the inevitable… Personally, if I were a Calvinist, then I would ALREADY be dead!!! Because I’m not gonna waste my time in a world were nothing I say, do, nor believe changes anything whatsoever. Therefore, I would commit suicide to go “home”…

Calvinism teaches that God is sovereign, and that there are no other sovereigns in his creation, and for him to extend sovereignty to his creation would somehow impugn or lessen his own. This is a lie. God does not know what color shirt you will wear tomorrow. That is your decision. You have the liberty to decide that. He can handle anything you throw his way.

Psalms 82:6  I have said, Ye are gods; and all of you are children of the most High.

This tells us God has extended a certain amount of sovereignty to his creation. There are many more. 

God knows the beginning and the end, and nothing will change it concerning the end times and the future of them that love him. God sees all, he is everywhere. He sees the sparrows fall, but he does not make them fall, nor control or determine color shirt you will wear tomorrow. That is your decision.

One example: Jeremiah 19:5  They have built also the high places of Baal, to burn their sons with fire for burnt offerings unto Baal, which I commanded not, nor spake it, neither came it into my mind:

Calvinism teaches that God does not change his mind. This is not true. A sovereign God can do what he pleases, when he pleases. It is clear in scripture that God changed his mind many times, especially in response to prayer and repentance. 2 kgs 19 And Isaiah the prophet the son of Amoz came to him and said to him, “Thus says the Lord, ‘Set your house in order, for you shall die and not live.’” Then he turned his face to the wall and prayed to the Lord, saying, “Remember now, O Lord, I beseech You, how I have walked before You in truth and with a whole heart and have done what is good in Your sight.” And Hezekiah wept [b]bitterly. Before Isaiah had gone out of the middle court, the word of the Lord came to him, saying, “Return and say to Hezekiah the leader of My people, ‘Thus says the Lord, the God of your father David, “I have heard your prayer, I have seen your tears; behold, I will heal you. On the third day you shall go up to the house of the Lord. I will add fifteen years to your [c]life, and I will deliver you and this city from the hand of the king of Assyria; and I will defend this city for My own sake and for My servant David’s sake.”’” Then Isaiah said, “Take a cake of figs.” And they took and laid it on the boil, and he recovered.

Calvinism teaches that salvation is decided before birth, and that not all are chosen, which means it teaches , logically that unborn babies and infants that die untimely go to hell. Matt 18:14 Even so it is not the will of your Father which is in heaven, that one of these little ones should perish. 1

David says of his child: 2 Sam 2:23  But now he is dead, wherefore should I fast? can I bring him back again? I shall go to him, but he shall not return to me. 2

So it is clear in scripture that babies and children do not go to hell. At some point in our lives, the age of accountability, man becomes aware of his condition and seeks a Saviour, or rejects him. Until then, they are kept by God’s grace and mercy on account of the blood of Jesus. See romans 5:12 “where there is no law, there is no transgression”

 I am going to give you a brief overview of Calvinism and refute the five points point by point. At the end I will show you a comparison that will alarm you.

Tulip Is the acronym used to describe the five main doctrines of Calvinism. T for total depravity, U for unconditional election, L for limited atonement, I for Irresistable grace, and P for perserverance of the saints.

The total depravity doctrine says man is utterly, totally depraved, intent on evil at all times and has no ability or volition to do good, save himself, or acknowledge and accept the love of God, or choose God. It teaches that God must choose him . This is not true.

 Millions of people in other religions that don’t accept Jesus do good works, live pious lives full of good deeds, help the poor, and often die for their faith. They will go to hell without Jesus.  

Luke 6:32 And as ye would that men should do to you, do ye also to them likewise. 32For if ye love them which love you, what thank have ye? for sinners also love those that love them.

Jesus is clear here that even sinners possess the capacity to love and return the love of others that love them, so its not a stretch to see how a lost man can respond to the gospel of the love of Jesus by his own volition and willful decision. You will find many other scriptures in your Bible to support this.

Sadly I found this doctrine in our church constitution and bylaws. I have amended and change this False doctrine.

I: Stands for irresistible grace. This is a totally ridiculous doctrine. If true, you would amount to a robot waiting to be charged up and flipped on. Read with me in Acts 7:51 Ye stiffnecked and uncircumcised in heart and ears, ye do always resist the Holy Ghost: as your fathers did, so do ye.

So it is clear, we can resist the Lord, and the Holy Ghost. Again, we are free moral agents, with an amount of sovereignty. That is love. That is God.

P: Perserverance of the saints. This simply means that for those whom the Calvinist god has chosen, they must “perservere” and “endure” to the end to go heaven. A nonsensical proposition. One could fail at the end and go to hell, while someone else could live like hell til the end and get saved.

Lastly, Calvin taught that the Calvinist god lies to people. If this is true, then no Calvinist can honestly say he is not under deception and merely THINKS he is elect, and he will have to examine himself and his doctrine in light of the Bible. 

In closing, Calvinism is sugar coated islam. Don’t be deceived by “Chrislam” or folks who tell you muslims and Christians worship the same god. They do not. The god of Islam and Calvinism has no son, his name is molech, god of human sacrifice.

I have written extensively about Calvinism. Calvinism bears many similarities to another false religion of our time- islam. I will read one of my blog posts about Calvinism and islam.

God bless!

Copyright 2022 James Dixon

156

Did Paul know Jesus before the cross?

I have concluded that Paul HAD to know Jesus before the cross. Unless Paul missed church on Sabbath, or was hiding under a rock in Jerusalem, he HAD to know about Jesus, most likely knew him on sight, and had heard him, as well as his apostles preach at Pentecost.

I looked up “the Apostle Paul” on the internet the other day. “Wikipedia” gave a few details about Paul that were mostly true, but the one thing I was shocked to read was that “Wikipedia,” and indeed many other people, exclude the obvious, and  don’t believe Saul of Tarsus, later named Paul, ever met Jesus Christ in the flesh. It saddens me to see such things that fly directly in the face of the scriptures, and logic.

In this post I am going to give you what facts I could dig up on the Apostle Paul and let you draw your own opinion about him. It seems that the consensus among Christians today is that Paul just fell out of thin air and started preaching the gospel of grace through faith. An examination of the facts, Paul’s life, his personal descriptions of details concerning his life and common sense logic will bear out a completely different dichotomy than the one generally held by most seminaries and believers today. Paul did not “just drive up”, or fall out of the sky, or crawl out from a rock in Jerusalem and begin preaching. He was well acquainted with Jesus ministry, and the ministry of the twelve Apostles long before he was converted and started preaching.

My opinion is that Saul, later named Paul had met Jesus, and knew him on sight before the cross.

Many believer’s and seminaries also teach that Paul was the “First grace saint”. My research concludes that Paul met Jesus in the flesh, and most likely had seen him preach and teach in the Temple “as was his custom” so I don’t see how Paul could be “the first grace saint”. This is a topic for further study in another chapter.  A further explanation of the difference between grace through faith, and the other gospels is contained in another chapter of this book. 

After I concluded my research, It was my opinion that Paul not only met the risen Jesus in person, but he was also well acquainted with him, their paths most likely crossed many times long before the cross, or the beginning of Paul’s ministry.

The Jewishness of Paul:

The first thing to do is to put Paul and Jesus in the same place, at the same time before the cross. This is not hard to do. Considering the zealousness of Paul, and his own description of his life, and whereabouts after the age of 13, it’s not hard to understand that Paul never missed church, and Jesus “custom” was teaching in the Temple. Jewish boys begin their religious training at the age of thirteen.

First we must establish when Paul was born, and draw a timeline parallel between the lives of Saul and Jesus, and put them in the same town, at the same time. That is the goal here.

 My research concludes that, depending on who you believe, that, Saul, (here after referred to as Paul) was born between 5 and 10 AD.

Taking the date of Jesus birth as two years before Herod’s  “slaughter of the innocents” in 2 AD. This would make Paul about 3 to 8 years younger than Jesus. It would make Paul, or Saul at the time, in his mid to late twenties during the time of Jesus earthly ministry. Again, Paul did not miss church, and neither did Jesus, so their paths crossing in the Temple is not outside the realm of possibility, and was, in my opinion, actually highly probable.

“A Pharisee, the son of a Pharisee”

Paul described his early life as being sent to Jerusalem as a young man to train under Gameliel to be a Pharisee. Young Jewish men were sent to train for the priesthood at the age of 13, so we know Paul was in Jerusalem when Jesus would have been 23 or so. Jesus ministry began when he was 30, which would have made Saul “a young man” of about 22 (add scripture).  We also know this same Gameliel was on the council that condemned Jesus, and is on record as speaking in his defense. “if this thing be of God, no man can stop it” (provide scripture).

Jesus, a regular temple teacher “as was his custom”.

Jesus was from Nazareth, of Galilee, which is about a three day walk from Jerusalem. The Bible says Jesus was a “teacher in the Temple, as was his custom” (add scripture). There was a synagogue in every Jewish town, but there there was only ONE Temple, the one in Jerusalem. Jesus is also called “rabbi” in the scriptures, so his connection to the Temple in Jerusalem is pretty obvious, and beyond dispute.

God BLess!

Copyright 2022 James Dixon

154

Encouragement

ENCOURAGEMENT:

Sept 8/2019 Ferry Road Baptist Church

Prov 18:21 Death and life are in the power of the tongue: and they that love it shall eat the fruit thereof.

15: 4 A wholesome tongue is a tree of life: but perverseness therein is a breach in the spirit.

15:The lips of the wise disperse knowledge: but the heart of the foolish doeth not so.

15:12 12 A scorner loveth not one that reproveth him: neither will he go unto the wise.

Prov 16 23 The heart of the wise teacheth his mouth, and addeth learning to his lips.

16; 24 Pleasant words are as an honeycomb, sweet to the soul, and health to the bones.

16: 27 An ungodly man diggeth up evil: and in his lips there is as a burning fire.

28 A froward man soweth strife: and a whisperer separateth chief friends.

17;Excellent speech becometh not a fool: much less do lying lips a prince.

Prov 17: 27 He that hath knowledge spareth his words: and a man of understanding is of an excellent spirit.

28 Even a fool, when he holdeth his peace, is counted wise: and he that shutteth his lips is esteemed a man of understanding.

18: A fool’s lips enter into contention, and his mouth calleth for strokes.

A fool’s mouth is his destruction, and his lips are the snare of his soul.

The words of a talebearer are as wounds, and they go down into the innermost parts of the belly.

18:13 13 He that answereth a matter before he heareth it, it is folly and shame unto him.

Prov 19;1 Better is the poor that walketh in his integrity, than he that is perverse in his lips, and is a fool.

19:5 A false witness shall not be unpunished, and he that speaketh lies shall not escape.

Prov 19:

25 Smite a scorner, and the simple will beware: and reprove one that hath understanding, and he will understand knowledge. 26 He that wasteth his father, and chaseth away his mother, is a son that causeth shame, and bringeth reproach. 27 Cease, my son, to hear the instruction that causeth to err from the words of knowledge. 28 An ungodly witness scorneth judgment: and the mouth of the wicked devoureth iniquity. 29 Judgments are prepared for scorners, and stripes for the back of fools. 20:It is an honour for a man to cease from strife: but every fool will be meddling. Prov 20: He that goeth about as a talebearer revealeth secrets: therefore meddle not with him that flattereth with his lips. 20 Whoso curseth his father or his mother, his lamp shall be put out in obscure darkness. Prov 21:6 The getting of treasures by a lying tongue is a vanity tossed to and fro of them that seek death. 21: 23 Whoso keepeth his mouth and his tongue keepeth his soul from troubles. 21: 28 A false witness shall perish: but the man that heareth speaketh constantly. Prov 23:Speak not in the ears of a fool: for he will despise the wisdom of thy words. Prov 24 : 28 Be not a witness against thy neighbour without cause; and deceive not with thy lips. Prov 25:8 Go not forth hastily to strive, lest thou know not what to do in the end thereof, when thy neighbour hath put thee to shame. Debate thy cause with thy neighbour himself; and discover not a secret to another: 10 Lest he that heareth it put thee to shame, and thine infamy turn not away. 11 A word fitly spoken is like apples of gold in pictures of silver. 12 As an earring of gold, and an ornament of fine gold, so is a wise reprover upon an obedient ear. 25:15  By long forbearing is a prince persuaded, and a soft tongue breaketh the bone.   26: 22 The words of a talebearer are as wounds, and they go down into the innermost parts of the belly. 23 Burning lips and a wicked heart are like a potsherd covered with silver dross. 24 He that hateth dissembleth with his lips, and layeth up deceit within him; 25 When he speaketh fair, believe him not: for there are seven abominations in his heart. 26 Whose hatred is covered by deceit, his wickedness shall be shewed before the whole congregation. 28 A lying tongue hateth those that are afflicted by it; and a flattering mouth worketh ruin.   27: 27 Boast not thyself of to morrow; for thou knowest not what a day may bring forth. Let another man praise thee, and not thine own mouth; a stranger, and not thine own lips. 27:Open rebuke is better than secret love. 27:10 10 Thine own friend, and thy father’s friend, forsake not; neither go into thy brother’s house in the day of thy calamity: for better is a neighbour that is near than a brother far off.

28: 13 He that covereth his sins shall not prosper: but whoso confesseth and forsaketh them shall have mercy.

28: 23 He that rebuketh a man afterwards shall find more favour than he that flattereth with the tongue.

Prov 29:A man that flattereth his neighbour spreadeth a net for his feet.

If a wise man contendeth with a foolish man, whether he rage or laugh, there is no rest.

11 A fool uttereth all his mind: but a wise man keepeth it in till afterwards.

20 Seest thou a man that is hasty in his words? there is more hope of a fool than of him.

Prov 30: 10 Accuse not a servant unto his master, lest he curse thee, and thou be found guilty.

32 If thou hast done foolishly in lifting up thyself, or if thou hast thought evil, lay thine hand upon thy mouth.

33 Surely the churning of milk bringeth forth butter, and the wringing of the nose bringeth forth blood: so the forcing of wrath bringeth forth strife.

Prov 31:Open thy mouth, judge righteously, and plead the cause of the poor and needy.

Prov 31: 26 She openeth her mouth with wisdom; and in her tongue is the law of kindness.

Ecc 3:A time to rend, and a time to sew; a time to keep silence, and a time to speak

Ecc 5: Keep thy foot when thou goest to the house of God, and be more ready to hear, than to give the sacrifice of fools: for they consider not that they do evil.

Ecc 5; Be not rash with thy mouth, and let not thine heart be hasty to utter any thing before God: for God is in heaven, and thou upon earth: therefore let thy words be few.

Ecc 7 16 Be not righteous over much; neither make thyself over wise: why shouldest thou destroy thyself ? (Don’t be quick to condemn, folks will avoid you)

17 Be not over much wicked, neither be thou foolish: why shouldest thou die before thy time? (Don’t be too tolerant, permissive, or passive, folks will think you are a hypocrite)

Ecc 10: 12 The words of a wise man’s mouth are gracious; but the lips of a fool will swallow up himself.

13 The beginning of the words of his mouth is foolishness: and the end of his talk is mischievous madness.

14 A fool also is full of words: a man cannot tell what shall be; and what shall be after him, who can tell him?

20 Curse not the king, no not in thy thought; and curse not the rich in thy bedchamber: for a bird of the air shall carry the voice, and that which hath wings shall tell the matter.

James 3:8-14But the tongue can no man tame; it is an unruly evil, full of deadly poison.

Therewith bless we God, even the Father; and therewith curse we men, which are made after the similitude of God.

10 Out of the same mouth proceedeth blessing and cursing. My brethren, these things ought not so to be.

11 Doth a fountain send forth at the same place sweet water and bitter?

12 Can the fig tree, my brethren, bear olive berries? either a vine, figs? so can no fountain both yield salt water and fresh.

13 Who is a wise man and endued with knowledge among you? let him shew out of a good conversation his works with meekness of wisdom.

14 But if ye have bitter envying and strife in your hearts, glory not, and lie not against the truth.

God bless you!

copyright 2022 James Dixon

153

Giving to the Church

I Cor 16:2 Upon the first day of the week let every one of you lay by him in store, as God hath prospered him, that there be no gatherings when I come.

2 Cor 9:7 Every man according as he purposeth in his heart, so let him give; not grudgingly, or of necessity: for God loveth a cheerful giver.

Matt 5:23 Therefore if thou bring thy gift to the altar, and there rememberest that thy brother hath ought against thee;

24 Leave there thy gift before the altar, and go thy way; first be reconciled to thy brother, and then come and offer thy gift.

God bless!

Copyright James Dixon 2022

152

Mamma’s pulpit

I once read a Christian periodical that had an article in it which was written by Perry Stone, a popular Pentecostal, Messianic Jewish evangelist.  (I THINK). I often see him on different “gospel channels” such as TBN and others.

The gist of his article was women in the church. He addresses woman’s role in the churches TODAY, and made a few interesting points and observations. He referred to several instances “back then” where women held different roles in the ministry of the Apostles. It all seems to make plenty of sense to the un initiated. I recall taking his words to heart, and meditating on them for some time. I eventually concluded that this man had chosen opinion over Scripture, and tradition over the Bible. And too often in today’s world, in our churches, folks take scripture of context, that doesn’t apply to the church today, to justify their actions.  I summed up his article in one statement.  That’s fine and dandy, but that’s not what PAUL says about it”

In regards to women, Paul says “suffer not (don’t allow) a women to teach, nor usurp authority over a man”. That’s what Paul said about it.

Is that to say that a woman has no role in the church? No, actually, she has a much more important role in the churches than most folks realize, or consider, and the women in our churches are much more important to the body as a whole, than a teacher or a preacher. I hope to expound and explain that statement   in this chapter.

In regards to preaching, Paul called it ‘foolishness”, so It’s easy to agree that most anyone can preach, and most any one, given a lesson plan, or those popular little pamphlets used by churches worldwide, can teach a Sunday school class. It takes no degree or seminary certification.

The role of the women in the church is profound. The primary reason being, the MOTHERS are the first one to introduce a child to Jesus.

I can write a sermon or lesson plan in a matter of minutes. After 20 minutes or so of talking about it, I’m done.  Not so for the women in the church.

There is no way I could keep my sanity for two hours in  a room full of laughing, playing, screaming, crying toddlers every Sunday so others can listen and learn the Gospel. Women have a special ability for that. I’ve never saw a man who could endure such an environment for long.

Understanding the the gospel starts long before one hears it. I got saved at the age of nine. I had never heard a whole lot of preaching, or folks talking about Jesus, but I sure heard the woman who raised me, (I call her mama) talking about him. I did not know it at the time, but  she was the daughter of a Baptist minister.   So if you are a woman reading this,  next time you find yourself thinking your role, or your duties in the church are not important, reconsider the MEN, and “the foolishness of preaching”, next to the powerful influence a mother has on a child. No man can substitute, or even imitate such an influence.  No doubt Paul was fully aware of this.

God Bless!

Copyright 2022 James Dixon

151

Rewards and Crowns in the Bible:

The Bible tells us of many rewards and crowns in the Bible. Don’t forfeit your crowns. Here are just a few:

Victor’s Crown 1Cor 9-25-27.

Crown of rejoicing/soul winners crown 1 Thess 2:19

Crown of righteousness/ for those that look for his return. 2 Tim 4:8

Crown of life/martyr’s crown. James 1:12, Rev 2:10

Crown of glory/elders/teacher/Pastor’s crown. 1 Pet 5:4

 Other rewards:

Rev 1: And hath made us kings and priests unto God and his Father; to him be glory and dominion for ever and ever. Amen.

Rev 2:7He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches; To him that overcometh will I give to eat of the tree of life, which is in the midst of the paradise of God.

2:11 He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches; He that overcometh shall not be hurt of the second death.

Rev 2:17 17 He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches; To him that overcometh will I give to eat of the hidden manna, and will give him a white stone, and in the stone a new name written, which no man knoweth saving he that receiveth it.

Rev 2:26 And he that overcometh, and keepeth my works unto the end, to him will I give power over the nations:

27 And he shall rule them with a rod of iron; as the vessels of a potter shall they be broken to shivers: even as I received of my Father.

28 And I will give him the morning star.

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.

Rev 3:10 Because thou hast kept the word of my patience, I also will keep thee from the hour of temptation, which shall come upon all the world, to try them that dwell upon the earth.

11 Behold, I come quickly: hold that fast which thou hast, that no man take thy crown.

12 Him that overcometh will I make a pillar in the temple of my God, and he shall go no more out: and I will write upon him the name of my God, and the name of the city of my God, which is new Jerusalem, which cometh down out of heaven from my God: and I will write upon him my new name.

Rev 3:21 To him that overcometh will I grant to sit with me in my throne, even as I also overcame, and am set down with my Father in his throne.

Rev 5:10 And hast made us unto our God kings and priests: and we shall reign on the earth.

1Cor 6:3 Know ye not that we shall judge angels? how much more things that pertain to this life?

Rev 20:4 And I saw thrones, and they sat upon them, and judgment was given unto them: and I saw the souls of them that were beheaded for the witness of Jesus, and for the word of God, and which had not worshipped the beast, neither his image, neither had received his mark upon their foreheads, or in their hands; and they lived and reigned with Christ a thousand years.

I Cor 3:14 If any man’s work abide which he hath built thereupon, he shall receive a reward.

Rev 22:12 And, behold, I come quickly; and my reward is with me, to give every man according as his work shall be.

God bless!

Copyright James Dixon 2022

150

The Martyrdom of the Apostles

11/10/19 J.Dixon

                                The deaths of the Apostles, Preterism, and Jesus birthday.

 Judas: suicide by hanging off the side of the cliff. 32 AD. The rope or the tree broke and he fell and burst asunder on the rocks below.  His place of death can be seen today. He was replaced by Matthias.

Paul: Death by decapitation after a severe scourging at the hand of Nero in 66AD. As a Roman citizen, Paul was exempt from crucifixion. His date of death is recorded as June 29. His remains can be viewed in Rome today. His grave has the word “martyr” carved in stone. This logically means his Epistles were all written sometime between Jesus death, burial and resurrection in 32-33 AD, and 66-67 AD. Paul wrote 14 of the 27 books of the New Testament, to include the book of Hebrews.

Peter: Killed by crucifixion at the hand of Nero at the same time, or about the same time Paul was killed. Peter was married, and tradition holds that he had a daughter named Petronilla. His remains are at the Basilica of St. Peter in Rome. Peter wrote two epistles of the New Testament. I and 2 Peter.

Luke: Died after Peter and Paul. He was hanged in Greece after a powerful salvation message to the lost. He wrote Acts and the book of Luke. Another account of his death in orthodox church history claims that Saint Luke preached the gospel after the martyrdom of Saint Peter and Saint Paul, attracting the attention of pagan and Jewish citizens. These individuals reportedly told Roman Emperor Nero that he was practicing sorcery. Nero responded by sending for Saint Luke, who had enough time to deliver his books to a local fisherman before the audience. Nero reportedly cut off his right hand, at which point Saint Luke performed a miracle by reattaching it to this body and then separating it again. While this impressed the Emperor’s cabinet, who then professed to believe in Christ, Nero responded by decapitating the entire lot, including Saint Luke, and having the saint’s body cast into the sea.

John; John was martyred, but didn’t die. He was boiled alive in oil by the roman emperor. He survived, and his skin was in better shape after he came out of the oil than before. John was then banished by the superstitious Roman ruler to Patmos in about 83 AD. It was there that John received the book of revelation sometime between 92AD and 96AD.  John spent 13 years at Patmos and was released after he appealed to the new Roman ruler. It was ruled that he had been punished for the same offense twice, and he was immediately released. John died in Ephesus where he was bishop, at the age of well over 100 sometime after the turn of the first century AD. John wrote four epistles of the New Testament and the book of Revelation.

James, son of Zebedee: He was killed by Herod in 44AD. Death by decaptitation.  Acts 12:2 mentions his death.

Andrew: Killed in Greece, by crucifixion on an X shaped cross. Tradition holds that he was the first to take the gospel to Russia. He preached also in Asia Minor and Turkey.

Thomas: According to Syrian Christian tradition, Saint Thomas was allegedly martyred at St.Thomas Mount, in Chennai, in 72 A.D July 3rd,and his body was interred in Mylapore. Ephrem the Syrian states that the Apostle was martyred in India, and that his relics were taken then to Edessa. He was killed by spears of four soldiers after preaching the gospel.  Tradition holds December 21 as the date of Thomas’ death.

Philip: had a powerful ministry in Carthage in North Africa and then in Asia Minor, where he converted the wife of a Roman proconsul. In retaliation the proconsul had Philip arrested and cruelly put to death.

Matthew: the tax collector and writer of a Gospel, ministered in Persia and Ethiopia. Some of the oldest reports say he was not martyred, while others say he was stabbed to death in Ethiopia.

Bartholemew: had widespread missionary travels attributed to him by tradition: to India with Thomas, back to Armenia, and also to Ethiopia and Southern Arabia. There are various accounts of how he met his death as a martyr for the gospel.

Is one of at least three James referred to in the New Testament. There is some confusion as to which is which, but this James is reckoned to have ministered in Syria. The Jewish historian Josephus reported that he was stoned and then clubbed to death.

Matthias: Replaced Judas. was the apostle chosen to replace Judas. Tradition sends him to Syria with Andrew and to death by burning.

James the brother of Jesus was thrown from the pinnacle of the temple, and then beaten to death with a fullers club.

Excerpt from Foxes book of martyers:

The said Dorotheus witnesseth also that Simon, another of the deacons, bishop afterward of Bostrum in Arabia, was there burned. Parmenas also, another of the deacons, suffered.

    Thomas preached to the Parthians, Medes, and Persians; also to the Germans, Hiraconies, Bactries, and Magies. He suffered in Calamina, a city of Judah, being slain with a dart.

    Simon Zelotes preached at Mauritania, and in the countries of Africa, and in Britain; he was likewise crucified.

    Judas, brother of James, called also Thaddeus and Lebbeus, preached to the Edessenes, and to all Mesopotamia: he was slain under Augarus, king of the Edessenes, in Berito.

    Simon called Cananeus, which was brother to Jude above mentioned, and to James the younger, which all were the sons of Mary Cleophas, and of Alpheus, was bishop of Jerusalem after James, and was crucified in a city of Egypt in the time of Trajanus the emperor, as Dorotheus recordeth, But Abdias writeth, that he with his brother Jude were both slain by a tumult of the people in Suanir, a city of Parsidis.

    Mark the evangelist, and first bishop of Alexandria, preached the gospel in Egypt, and there, drawn with ropes unto the fire, was burned, and afterward buried in a place called there Bucolus, under the reign of Trajanus the emperor.

    Bartholomeus is said also to preach to the Indians, and to have converted the Gospel of St. Matthew into their tongue, where he continued a great space doing many miracles. At last in Albania, a city of Greater Armenia, after divers persecutions, he was beaten down with staves, then crucified, and after being excoriate, he was at length beheaded.

    Of Andrew the apostle and brother to Peter thus writeth Hieroni in his Catalogue of ecclesiastical Writers. Andrew the brother of Peter (in the time and reign of Vespasianus, as our ancestors have reported) did preach in the eightieth year after our Lord Jesus Christ to the Scythians, Sogdians, to the Saxons, and in a city which is called Angustia, where theethiopians do now inhabit. He was buried in Patnis, a city of Achaia, being crucified of Egeas the governor of the Edessenes. Hitherto writeth Hierom, although in the number of years he seemeth a little to miss; for Vespasianus reached not to the eightieth year after Christ. But Bernard in his second sermon, and St. Cyprian, do make mention of the confession and martyrdom of this blessed apostle; whereof partly out of these, partly out of other credible writers, we have collected after this manner: that whenas Andrew, being conversant in a city of Achaia called Patris, through his diligent preaching had brought many to the faith of Christ, Egeas the governor knowing this, resorted thither, to the intent he might constrain as many as did believe Christ to be God, by the whole consent of the senate, to do sacrifice unto the idols, and so give divine honour unto them. Andrew thinking good at the beginning to resist the wicked counsel and the doings of Egeas, went unto him, saying to this effect unto him: That it behoved him which was judge of men, first to know his Judge which dwelleth in heaven, and then to worship him being known, and so in worshipping the true God, to revoke his mind from false gods and blind idols. These words spake Andrew to the consul.

    But he, greatly therewith discontented, demanded of him whether he was the same Andrew that did overthrow the temple of the gods, and persuaded men of that superstitious sect, which the Romans of late had commanded to be abolished and rejected. Andrew did plainly affirm, that the princes of the Romans did not understand the truth, and that the Son of God, coming from heaven into the world for man’s sake, hath taught and declared how those idols, whom they so honoured as gods, were not only not gods, but also most cruel devils, enemies to mankind, teaching the people nothing else but that wherewith God is offended, and being offended, turneth away and regardeth them not; and so by the wicked service of the devil they do fall head long into all wickedness, and after their departing nothing remaineth unto them but their evil deeds.

    But the proconsul esteeming these things to be as vain especially seeing the Jews (as he said) had crucified Christ before, therefore charged and commanded Andrew not to teach and preach such things any more; or if he did, that he should be fastened to the cross with all speed.

    Andrew abiding in his former mind very constant, answered thus concerning the punishment which he threatened: He would not have preached the honour and glory of the cross, if he had feared the death of the cross. Whereupon sentence of condemnation was pronounced, that Andrew, teaching and enterprising a new sect, and taking away the religion of their gods, ought to be crucified. Andrew coming to the place, and seeing afar off the cross prepared, did change neither countenance nor colour, as the imbecility of mortal men is wont to do, neither did his blood shrink, neither did he fail in his speech; his body fainted not, neither was his mind molested; his understanding did not fail him, as it is the manner of men to do, but out of the abundance of his heart his mouth did speak; and fervent charity did appear in his words as kindled sparks: he said, O cross, most welcome and long looked for; with a willing mind joyfully and desirously I come to thee, being the scholar of Him which did hang on thee; because I have been always thy lover, and have coveted to embrace thee. So being crucified, he yielded up the ghost and fell on sleep, the day before the kalends of December.

Illustration — the martyrdom of St. Andrew

    Matthew, otherwise named Levi, first of a publican made an apostle, wrote his Gospel to the Jews in the Hebrew tongue, according to Eusebius and Irenæus.

    Matthias, after he had preached to the Jews, at length was stoned and beheaded. Some others record that he died inethiopia.

    Philippus the holy apostle, after he had much laboured among the barbarous nations in preaching the word of salvation to them, at length suffered as the other apostles did, in Hierapolis, a city of Phrygia, being there crucified and stoned to death, where also he was buried, and his daughters also with him.

    After that Festus had sent the apostle Paul to Rome after his appellation made at Cesarea, and that the Jews by the means thereof had left their hope of performing their malicious vow against him conceived, they fell upon James the brother of our Lord, who was bishop at Jerusalem, against whom they, being bent with like malice, brought him forth before them, and required him to deny before all the people the faith of Christ. But he, otherwise than they all looked for, freely and with a greater constancy before all the multitude confessed Jesus to be the Son of God, our Saviour, and our Lord. Whereupon, they not being able to abide the tes timony of this man any longer, because he was thought to be the justest among them all, for the highness of Divine wisdom and godliness which in living he declared, they killed him, finding the more opportunity to accomplish their mischief, because the kingdom the same time was vacant. For Festus being dead in Jewry, the administration of that province was destitute of a ruler and a deputy. But after what manner James was killed the words of Clement do declare, which writeth that he was cast down from the pinnacle of the temple, and, being smittcn with the instrument of a fuller, was slain; but Egesippus, which lived in the time next after the apostles, described the cause diligently in his fifth commentary, after this manner as followeth.

    James the brother of our Lord took in hand to govern the church after the apostles, being counted of all men from the time of our Lord to be a just and perfect man. Many and divers other Jameses there were beside him, but this was born holy from his mother’s womb; he drunk no wine, nor any strong drink; neither did he eat any living creature; the razor never came up on his head; he was not anointed with oil, neither did he use bath; to him only was it lawful to enter into the holy place; neither was he clothed with woollen cloth, but with silk; and he only entered into the temple, falling upon his knees, asking remission for the people; so that his knees by oft kneeling lost the sense of feeling, being benumbed and hardened like the knees of a camel. He was (for worshipping God and craving forgiveness for the people) called just, and for the excellency of his just life named Oblias, which (if you do interpret it) is the safeguard and justice of the people, as the prophets declare of him: therefore whenas many of the heretics which were among the people asked him what manner of gift Jesus should be, he answered that he was the Saviour. Whereof some do believe him to be Jesus Christ; but the aforesaid heretics neither believe the resurrection, neither that any shall come which shall render unto every man according to his works, but as many as believe, they believed for James’s cause. Whenas many therefore of the princes did believe, there was a tumult made of the scribes, Jews, and Pharisees, saying, It is dangerous, lest that all the people do look for this Jesus as for Christ. Therefore they gathered themselves together, and said to James, We beseech thee, restrain the people, for they believe in Jesus as though he were Christ; we pray thee, persuade them all which come unto the feast of the passover of Jesus; for we are all obedient unto thee, and all the people do testify of thee that thou art just, neither that thou dost accept the person of any man; therefore persuade the people that they be not deceived in Jesus, and all the people and we will obey thee: therefore stand upon the pillar of the temple, that thou mayst be seen from above, and that thy words may be perceived of all the people, for to this pass over all the tribes do come with all the country. And thus the forenamed scribes and Pharisees did set James upon the battlements of the church, and they cried unto him and said, Thou just man, whom all we ought to obey, because this people is led after Jesus, which is crucified, tell what is the gift of Jesus crucified. And he answered with a great voice, What do you ask me of Jesus the Son of man, seeing that he sitteth on the right hand of God in heaven, and shall come in the clouds of the sky? But when many were persuaded of this, they glorified God upon the witness of James, and said, Hosanna in the highest to the Son of David. Then the scribes and the Pharisees said among themselves, We have done evil that we have caused such a testimony of Jesus, but let us go up, and let us take him, that they, being compelled with fear, may deny that faith. And they cried out, saying, Oh, oh, this just man also is seduced. Therefore they went up to throw down the just man, and said among themselves, Let us stone this just man James; and they took him to smite him with stones, for he was not yet dead when he was cast down. But he turning, fell down upon his knees, saying, O Lord God, Father, I beseech thee to forgive them, for they know not what they do.

    But when they had smitten him with stones, one of the priests of the children of Rechas, the son of Charobim, spake to them the testimony which is in Jeremiah the prophet: Leave off; what do ye? The just man prayeth for you. And one of those which were present took a fuller’s instrument, wherewith they did use to beat and purge cloth, and smote the just man on his head; and so he finished his martyrdom, and they buried him in the same place, and his pillar abideth still by the temple. He was a true testimony to the Jews and the Gentiles. And shortly after Vespasianus the emperor, destroying the land of Jewry, brought them into captivity. These things being thus written at large of Egesippus, do well agree to those which Clement did write of him. This James was so notable a man, that for his justice, he was had in honour of all men, insomuch that the wise men of the Jews, shortly after his martyrdom, did impute the cause of the besieging of Jerusalem, and other calamities which happened unto them, to no other cause, but unto the violence and injury done to this man. Also Josephus hath not left this out of his history, where he speaketh of him after this manner: These things so chanced unto the Jews for a vengeance, because of that just man James, which was the brother of Jesus, whom they called Christ; for the Jews killed him, although he was a righteous man.

    The same Josephus declareth his death in the same book and chapter, saying, Cæsar hearing of the death of Festus, sent Albinus the lieutenant into Jewry; but Ananus the younger being bishop, and of the sect of the Sadducees, trusting that he had obtained a convenient time, seeing that Festus was dead, and Albinus entered on his journey, he called a council, and calling many unto him, among whom was James, by name, the brother of Jesus which is called Christ, he stoned them, accusing them as breakers of the law.

    Whereby it appeareth that many other besides James also at the same time were martyred and put to death among the Jews, for the faith of Christ.

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Rapture Verses:

This is NOT an all inclusive list. You will find more in your study

Zech 14:5 And ye shall flee to the valley of the mountains; for the valley of the mountains shall reach unto Azal: yea, ye shall flee, like as ye fled from before the earthquake in the days of Uzziah king of Judah: and the Lord my God shall come, and all the saints with thee.

Daniel 12:1-2 “At that time Michael, the great prince who protects your people, will arise. There will be a time of distress such as has not happened from the beginning of nations until then. But at that time your people—everyone whose name is found written in the book—will be delivered.  2 Multitudes who sleep in the dust of the earth will awake: some to everlasting life, others to shame and everlasting contempt.

Malachi 3:16-1816 Then they that feared the Lord spake often one to another: and the Lord hearkened, and heard it, and a book of remembrance was written before him for them that feared the Lord, and that thought upon his name.

17 And they shall be mine, saith the Lord of hosts, in that day when I make up my jewels; and I will spare them, as a man ­­­­­spareth his own son that serveth him.

18 Then shall ye return, and discern between the righteous and the wicked, between him that serveth God and him that serveth him not. (you gotta go before you can return). (Rev 1:6, 5:9:10, 20:4-6)

Mt 24:50 50 The Lord of that servant shall come in a day when he looketh not for him, and in an hour that he is not aware of, (Jesus coming at the end of the tribulation won’t be a surprise, it will be preceded by many signs).

Mark 13:32: “But about that day or hour no one knows, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father.

Mt 24:40 40 Then shall two be in the field; the one shall be taken, and the other left.41 Two women shall be grinding at the mill; the one shall be taken, and the other left.42 Watch therefore: for ye know not what hour your Lord doth come.

34 I tell you, on that night two people will be in one bed; one will be taken and the other left. 35 Two women will be grinding grain together; one will be taken and the other left.” (a worldwide event, dark on one side, daylight on the other).

 Luke 21:36 36 Watch ye therefore, and pray always, that ye may be accounted worthy to escape all these things that shall come to pass, and to stand before the Son of man.

John 14:3 And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am.

2 Cor 5:10 For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, so that each of us may receive what is due us for the things done while in the body, whether good or bad.

1 John 2:28 And now, little children, abide in him; that, when he shall appear, we may have confidence, and not be ashamed before him at his coming.

1 Cor 15:51-53 51Listen, I tell you a mystery: We will not all sleep, but we will all be changed— 52 in a flash, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, the dead will be raised imperishable, and we will be changed. 53 For the perishable must clothe itself with the imperishable, and the mortal with immortality.

2 Tim 4:22: Henceforth there is ladi up for me a crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, shall give me at that day: and not to me only, but unto all them also that love his appearing.

Jude 1:14 14 And Enoch also, the seventh from Adam, prophesied of these, saying, Behold, the Lord cometh with ten thousands of his saints. (Rev 19).

Titus 2:13: Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ;

Revelation 3:10 Since you have kept my command to endure patiently, I will also keep you from the hour of trial that is going to come on the whole world to test the inhabitants of the earth.

Philippians 3;20-21 But our citizenship is in heaven. And we eagerly await a Savior from there, the Lord Jesus Christ, 21 who, by the power that enables him to bring everything under his control, will transform our lowly bodies so that they will be like his glorious body.

1 Thess 4:17 After that, we who are still alive and are left will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And so we will be with the Lord forever. 18 Therefore encourage one another with these words.

1 Thess 1:10 And to wait for his Son from heaven, whom he raised from the dead, even Jesus, which delivered us from the wrath to come.

1 Thess 5:9 God has not appointed us to wrath. Godly people (not hypocrites and the world) are not appointed to wrath but to obtain salvation through Jesus Christ.

1 Thess 3:13 13 To the end he may stablish your hearts unblameable in holiness before God, even our Father, at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ with all his saints. (You gotta go before you can return.)

1 Pet:1;7That the trial of your faith, being much more precious than of gold that perisheth, though it be tried with fire, might be found unto praise and honour and glory at the appearing of Jesus Christ our Saviour.

And when the chief Shepherd shall appear, ye shall receive a crown of glory that fadeth not away.

After this I beheld, and, lo, a great multitude, which no man could number, of all nations, and kindreds, and people, and tongues, stood before the throne, and before the Lamb, clothed with white robes, and palms in their hands; ( Saints in HEAVEN, long before the end of the Tribulation).

Rev 19:11    And I saw heaven opened and behold a white horse; and he that sat upon him was called Faithful and True, and in righteousness he doth judge and make war.

12 His eyes were as a flame of fire, and on his head were many crowns; and he had a name written, that no man knew, but he himself.

13 And he was clothed with a vesture dipped in blood: (from the battle of Armegeddon) and his name is called The Word of God.

14 And the armies which were in heaven followed him upon white horses, clothed in fine linen, white and clean.

2 Tim 4:8
Henceforth there is laid up for me a crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, shall give me at that day: and not to me only, but unto all them also that love his appearing.

Rev 4:10 The four and twenty elders fall down before him that sat on the throne, and worship him that lives for ever and ever, and cast their crowns before the throne, saying,(this shows saints in heaven before the tribulation begins in Rev 6. Where’d they come from?).

1 John 2:28 (imminence) And now, little children, abide in him; that, when he shall appear, we may have confidence, and not be ashamed before him at his coming.

2 John 1:8 Look to yourselves, that we lose not those things which we have wrought, but that we receive a full reward.

Col 3:4. When Christ, who is our life, shall appear, then shall ye also appear with him in glory.

1 Thess 5:6 Therefore let us not sleep as do others, but let us watch and be sober.

2 Thess 1:6: Seeing it is a righteous thing with God to recompense tribulation to them that trouble you: 7and to you who are troubled rest with us, when the Lord Jesus shall be revealed from heaven with his mighty angels, In flaming fire taking vengeance on them that know not god and that obey not the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ:

1 Thess 2:7 For the mystery of iniquity doth already work: only he who now letteth will let, until he be taken out of the way. (the Body of the church, and the Holy Ghost)

Rev 3:10 10 Because thou hast kept the word of my patience, I also will keep thee from the hour of temptation, which shall come upon all the world, to try them that dwell upon the earth.

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