William Andrew Dillard
simply means the losing of one’s salvation. It is the
multiple-emphasized declaration of the Holy Word that salvation is
everlasting. Still some have trouble with such passages as Matthew
5:22, “But I say unto you, That whosoever is angry with his brother
without a cause shall be in danger of the judgment: and whosoever
shall say to his brother, Raca, shall be in danger of the council:
but whosoever shall say, Thou fool, shall be in danger of hell
It is important to establish context. Verse one of the chapter set it. It is the inaugural message of Jesus to His newly called out church. The burden of the message is the difference between the Old Covenant and the New one. As He spoke about personal relationships, this verse that is problematic to some is spoken. The idea of judgment is not a problem; the idea of the council is not a problem, but to be put in danger of hell fire for using the label “fool” to a brother is a problem that few know how to understand. The exposition of its meaning is herewith offered as true and harmonious with the non-contradictory nature of the Holy Word.
The problematic terminology is “in danger of hell fire.” A survey of original language of the scriptures shows this “hell fire” to be an English translation of the Greek word, “Gehenna.” The hell fire to which unbelievers,,the devil, and his minions will be assigned is “Hades, hell” in the Koine Greek of the New Testament. It is a place that born again people can never experience on the merits of the Lord Jesus Christ.
On the other hand, “Gehenna” is the name of the city dump of Jerusalem. In it were discarded all things of no intrinsic value to be consumed by fire.
If one can say to his brother (spiritual brother in Christ; remember the context) you are a fool; a moron for living as you do in/for Him, then it is open proof that the value system of life of the one so saying is so far afield from God and the teachings of Holy Writ that such life will be lost in the judgment fires of God when ALL His people stand before Him, 2 Cor. 5:10. The apostle Paul taught in I Cor. 3:9-16 that all the words and deeds of life would be as six categories: wood, hay stubble, gold, silver, precious stones. All will be tried in judgment fire. Of course, wood, hay, stubble are consumed. And, there are some who will be saved, yet so as by fire. They will be without reward of life lived on earth. The judgment of a fellow brother in Christ as a moron is herewith underscored as wood, hay, stubble, and not the life that will be rewarded. That in itself is a catastrophe no believer should have, but it is a far cry from apostasy.
IT SHOULD BE IN THE BIBLE!
William Andrew Dillard
I am very certain there is good reason, perhaps known only to God the Author, but one wonders just why the word “Enthusiasm” is not in the Bible.
Think about it! The word consists of three parts: “En” (in); “Thus,” (God), and “Ism” (the noun ending denoting state of being). Hence, “enthusiasm” literally means, “The state of being in God.” But what is commonly associated with the term? It is excitement, energy. Is that not what one finds in a close relationship with God? Surely it is! So much the more, then why the word should be in the Bible, as least to the mind of this writer.
However, there are words in the Bible that are synonyms of “Enthusiasm.” Words as “Fervent,” “Zeal,” “Zealous.” These words come from the ancient Koine Greek term “Zeo” meaning boiling liquids or glowing hot metals.
Illustrated from childhood experience, a small amount of turpentine dabbed on a cat’s behind would cause the animal to erupt into a racing, super speed. It was a show and tell demonstration of enthusiasm. But that is far afield of what the term should mean, and what its synonyms do mean in the Bible.
Enthusiasm in spiritual matters is not self induced excitement or an attempt to create enthusiasm by that means. Such is easily seen and diagnosed. The problem is that it is false, and in reverse of the true process.
Enthusiasm in proper spiritual matters may indeed spill over into physical expressions. True happiness also shows, and it is detected as being genuine.
So, how may one come to possess the high degree of excitement and joy that is associated with the term “enthusiasm?” How about simply engaging in the activity that the term specifically denotes? “The state of being in God.” There is no other way to know this blessed state than a specific, complete surrender to God as personal Creator, Redeemer, Savior, Lord. As the writer of Hebrews so pointedly noted, “He that cometh to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him.”
When sobriety claims the mind and heart; when knowledge of one’s natural state permeates the mind; when realizing the presence of the new birth, and opening the divine presents of faith, hope, love; when basking in the myriad promises so applicable both here and hereafter of peace beyond understanding, then a resounding “Praise the Lord” and “Amen!” will not be sufficient expressions of the soul. Moreover, those will be fulfilling expressions of enthusiasm that are genuine and acceptable to the saints, and to the One Who gave it!
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