Ecc 3:1 To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven: KJB
Tag Archives: heaven
A CHURCH THAT DOES NOT EXIST
William Andrew Dillard
title is paradoxical. To say that there is a church is to say that it
exists, but to say there is a church that does not exist is a
contradiction of thoughts. Yet, I have read about such a church, and
I am sure you have, too. In newspapers and magazines, it will not be
unusual to read of “the Baptist church.” This reflects a thought
pattern of the church being universal. Of course, expressions of “the
Catholic church,” the Methodist church,” etc. are more nearly
correct since Catholic and Protestant churches consider themselves to
be universal. Catholic theology points to a universal, visible church
while Protestants point to a universal invisible church.
So, to which of these lines of theological thought do Baptist churches generally subscribe? Neither! It is the Bible presentation that the true churches of the Lord Jesus Christ are both visible and local. Each church is totally independent under the headship of Christ Jesus. There is no ecclesiastical (preacher) authority. There is no hierarchy. There is no little church/ big church difference in the eyes of the Lord. All are local assemblies, answerable only to God, with the full weight and responsibility of carrying out the commands of Christ as though they were the only congregation on earth. The only headquarters of the Lord’s churches is in heaven. His churches have equal authority to win disciples, baptize them, teach them, and administer the ordinances according to the Word. A church simply cannot get any more independent than to have the independence God gave to it to represent Him on earth. But, a church can get a lot less independent by subscribing to false doctrines, practices, and acquiescing to the designs and schemes of men. The purpose of such is usually for the sake of “business advantage” and/or to capture congregational power to enhance economic, political, and strained theological activity that God never commanded or intended.
There is no such thing as a biblically recognized, universal church on earth whether visible or invisible! Jesus set in motion a local congregation and empowered it to do likewise in carrying out the Great Commission, Matthew 28:18-20. I understand “Johnson Street Baptist Church” or a church by some other name that distinguishes it as a local assembly in a specific location or in a specified dedication of service. I do not understand nor will I accept the terminology of “The Baptist Church.” It is a church that simply does not exist.
Filed under dillard
to believe in heaven
Is not to run away from life
it is to run toward it.
ON GOING TO HEAVEN
Parson to Person
noticed that a lot of folk want to go to heaven when they die, but
they don’t want to go to church while they live. Could it be that
they really don’t want to go to heaven, but just want to escape
What really happens to a saved, never-dying spirit the moment death comes? The scriptures are very clear: to be absent from the body is to be present with the Lord. How long does it take to go to heaven? Just the twinkling of an eye. There is no process; there is no purgatory.
But just here is where things seem to get a little confused in the minds of a lot of nominal Christians. It is thought that St. Peter will greet one at the golden gate; that the departed will be in a bodily form; that all manner of activity occurs in heaven and a tear drop will never be shed. Is this really the way it is? Think with me!
While confessing freely that I have never been to heaven, there are still some things that may be known, according to Bible revelations. It must be emphasized that since flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God, (I Cor. 15:50) only departed spirits may go to heaven upon physical death. The breaking of the fifth seal in Revelation gives one extremely rare insight into the state of saved departed spirits. They are seen as being under the altar of God, not running around all over the place. It is furthermore stated that the meaning of death is a rest from all labor. Moreover, it is revealed that the departed spirits of righteous persons cry for the Lord to avenge their blood on those who dwell on the earth. This is a subliminal cry of sorts for these departed spirits to be clothed with resurrected bodies. Oh, it is a blessed state to be sure, but not in keeping with common visions of that state and place.
When the Lord Jesus returns to earth, when the resurrection and rapture has occurred, all of God’s people will have new, incorruptible bodies. They will live again on this earth for one thousand years with Jesus ruling from the throne of His father David.
When the 1,000 year rule of Jesus is completed, the kingdom will be yielded up to the Father that God may be all in all. I Corinthians 15:28. At that time, the universe will melt with a fervent heat and pass away with a loud noise. 2 Peter 3:10-12. Then God will recreate new heavens and a new earth. 2 Peter 3:13. There will be a great and unimaginably marvelous city on the new earth: New Jerusalem. God’s saints will inhabit this new city whose street is of gold, and whose gates are of a single pearl, and whose foundations are precious stones. Revelation 21. How long will it last? Forever and ever. Now this is more like the vision of heaven that most Christians have. What a blessed eternity that will be! I would not miss it for anything, even my life, but, sadly, there are multitudes who will because they have rejected the Lord Jesus Christ. There are two things All men should know 1) that all God requires of man was fulfilled in Christ Jesus, and He may be had by faith! 2) that no man may come to God except through His Son, the Lord Jesus Christ!
Filed under dillard
Heaven or Hell
It is better to be
frightened into heaven
lulled into hell.
Faith is the medium of exchange in heaven.
If you need an answer to prayer,
spend a little faith.
THE LIKENESS OF THIS GENERATION
once said the more things change, the more they stay the same. It
appears contradictory, nevertheless true. Vaunted progress in most
every field of endeavor characterizes the present time, but the
universal plight, and the persistent actions of men remain unchanged.
Nowadays, good is called evil and evil is called good. Selfishness
largely rules, and the unchanging principles of time and eternity are
pushed aside for what men want right now.
It was to a similar generation of Jesus’ day that he explained the ministry of John the Baptist, and the subsequent kingdom of heaven. There were those who heard him, and they with the publicans justified God being baptized with the baptism of John. On the other hand, there were many of the lawyers and Pharisees who rejected the counsel of God against themselves by rejecting the baptism of John. Luke 7.
They wanted to pit the ministry of John against the ministry of Jesus. They criticized the person of John as aloft, stoic, antisocial because he was not given to eating bread, nor drinking wine with them. Then they criticized Jesus because He did those things, calling Him a gluttonous man, a winebibber, and a friend of publicans and sinners. In short, nothing could be right in the eyes of these critics but their own twisted formula of life. How that remains. Times have changed, but the more they change, the more they stay the same.
Jesus summarized the generation of His earthly ministry. “They are like unto children sitting in the marketplace, and calling one to another, and saying, We have piped unto you and you have not danced; we have mourned to you, and ye have not wept.” Luke 7:31-32. This is an unchanged status quo, having multiplied exponentially.
Men do not have the qualifications, nor any ability to call upon the substance or perimeters of eternity. God does! Moreover, the true churches of the Lord Jesus Christ are in covenant relationship with Him, so they have been given the knowledge of eternity by the abiding presence of the Holy Spirit. They have visited that dimension vicariously, and proven their understanding by the eternal, unchanging Word. It is they who justify God, not only being baptized with the baptism of John, but offering the same to such as bring forth fruit meet for repentance. With them, by God’s grace, I stand! Trusting one’s pompous, but powerless formulations is silly. Trusting the eternal creator of the universe is wise.
Filed under Commentary
There’s a Divinity that Shapes Our Ends
John Adams: There’s a Divinity that Shapes Our Ends
Daniel Webster records that in 1776, while some men vacillated as to Independence, John Adams, the “Voice of the Declaration,” arose and stirred the hearts of his countrymen with these immortal words:
Sink or swim, live or die, survive or perish, I give my hand and my heart to this vote. It is true, indeed, that in the beginning we aimed not at independence. But there’s a Divinity which shapes our ends. . . . Why, then, should we defer the Declaration? . . . You and I, indeed, may rue it. We may not live to the time when this Declaration shall be made good. We may die; die Colonists, die slaves, die, it may be, ignominiously and on the scaffold.
Be it so. Be it so.
If it be the pleasure of Heaven that my country shall require the poor offering of my life, the victim shall be ready. . . . But while I do live, let me have a country, or at least the hope of a country, and that a free country.
But whatever may be our fate, be assured . . . that this Declaration will stand. It may cost treasure, and it may cost blood; but it will stand and it will richly compensate for both.
Through the thick gloom of the present, I see the brightness of the future as the sun in heaven. We shall make this a glorious, an immortal day. When we are in our graves, our children will honor it. They will celebrate it with thanksgiving, with festivity, with bonfires, and illuminations. On its annual return they will shed tears, copious, gushing tears, not of subjection and slavery, not of agony and distress, but of exultation, of gratitude and of joy.
Sir, before God, I believe the hour is come. My judgment approves this measure, and my whole heart is in it. All that I have, and all that I am, and all that I hope, in this life, I am now ready here to stake upon it; and I leave off as I began, that live or die, survive or perish, I am for the Declaration. It is my living sentiment, and by the blessing of God it shall be my dying sentiment, Independence now, and Independence forever.
Source: The Works of Daniel Webster, 4th ed., 1:133–:36 Adams speech was delivered before the Continental Congress.
Liberty Letters is a project of The Moral Liberal’s, Editor in Chief, Steve Farrell.
Filed under History
The password to heaven is JESUS.
Leave a comment
Filed under Commentary
Tagged as heaven, Jesus, password