Even in the midst of our very worst rebellion, we can’t stop being our Father’s children.
Prodigal means “given to extravagant expenditure.” The word never appears in the parable of Luke 15, or anywhere else in the Bible for that matter. I think the Lord would have titled this story, “The Parable of the Two Sons,” because we’re to learn from the behavior of both. But since He didn’t, we tend to focus on only the “bad” son and miss the lesson in the behavior of the “good” one.
No portion of scripture provides a more succinct view of our need for a savior than Mark 9-10. When praying recently about how to best present this passage in a Bible study, the Lord clearly said, “Get the big picture.” Suddenly I saw these two chapters in a new light … the definitive presentation of the “Mission of the Messiah.” It goes like this.
As Jesus was walking beside the Sea of Galilee, he saw two brothers, Simon called Peter and his brother Andrew. They were casting a net into the lake, for they were fishermen. “Come, follow me,” Jesus said, “and I will make you fishers of men.” At once they left their nets and followed him.(Matt 4:18-20)
It is impossible for those who have been once enlightened, who have tasted the heavenly gift, who have shared in the Holy Spirit, who have tasted the goodness of the word of God and the powers of the coming age, if they fall away to be brought back to repentance, because to their loss they are crucifying the Son of God all over again and subjecting Him to public disgrace. (Hebr 6:4-6)
My name is Philemon and this is my story. It’s been described as the application of the highest principles to the most common affairs, but at the time it happened it was just two people at odds with each other being reconciled by a common love for the Lord.
Every time I post a study on the completed work of the Lord who took away all the sins of the world, and how all that’s left for us to do is believe, I get a number of questions from people. These questions are always about others who don’t seem to have been changed at all by their salvation experience. The writers ask me, “Where’s the evidence of a changed life?” or, “What about sacrifice, and repentance, and death to sin?” or “Are you saying that just because a person went forward and mouthed some prayer, and then never did anything else, that means they’re saved?” Continue reading…
Do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived. Neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor homosexuals, nor sodomites, nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners will inherit the kingdom of God. And such were some of you. But you were washed, but you were sanctified, but you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus and by the Spirit of our God (1 Cor. 6:9-11).
Q. Someone discussing how Jesus has paid for our healing quoted Isaiah 53, “by His stripes we are healed”, but said it was also by the crown of thorns that Jesus wore. I know that stripes refers to the marks of the whips on His back, but this man was insisting that the crown of thorns was payment also. I haven’t heard much over the years about the significance of the crown of thorns. Could you give me some more detail on this event in the Lord’s crucifixion?
Q. I had always thought that if you accepted Jesus as your savior you were saved and went to Heaven to be with Him for Eternity, and if you rejected Him you would spend eternity In Hell ( Lake of Fire). But a lot of preachers today say that if you are not saved you will be separated from God forever which is true but not complete in my opinion and some of the young people I am talking with say, “So what? I am separated from Him now and it is no big deal.” Other pastors say you will suffer eternal death and again they say, “So what? A little pain and then oblivion.” Will you help and once again I request that you tell me if I am wrong.
Q. While reading your post on “Abraham And The Jews Of Today” a question came to me. In Genesis 22 it says that God tested Abraham and told him to offer his son Isaac on one of the mountains He would show him. Many of my teachers past and several preachers I have listened to have said that Abraham was devastated, heart sick, and full of remorse to have to offer his son as a burnt offering, yet he reluctantly did what God wanted him to. I don’t think that was how it was, and would be very pleased to know your thoughts on the subject.
Q. When you say that you don’t think the Bible supports the “God is in control” idea in the universal sense, you are saying that God is caught off guard when bad weather happens and the people of earth are subject to chance or luck. I will agree with you that that is true in a limited sense but only when you are talking about non believers. In a “limited sense” I believe there is no chance or luck in a believers life and the evil one can only have the control the Father lets him have. So you believe that God just sits back and lets things happen and only gets involved when He wants to use natural events to make a point?
Q. I’m struggling with trying to understand and accept the idea of willfully, consciously sinning and still being saved. For example, if someone decides to commit adultery, or hurt a child sexually, or kill an unfaithful wife, you’ve explained that they’re still going to heaven if they have previously accepted the truth of Jesus Christ as Son of God and their Savior, Redeemer. It seems to go against every moral, spiritual conduct to have no eternal consequence in choosing to do the above. I understand they’ll have earthly consequences (jail, remorse, etc.), but are we sure that God will give entrance to heaven to a soul who chose to bring death to others?
Q. I have a list with the names of people (my family,my friends, and people I came to like) and I pray for their salvation regularly. I put this list before the Lord and pray for them as it comes from my heart. But I have a few questions about this kind of prayer. My first question is, does it make any difference if the person for whom I pray lives far from me, on another continent and doesn’t even know me very well? My other question is, how can I make the prayer for a person’s salvation the most effective?
Q. In case you have time for this trivial question on the origin and use of the word “amen” or similar words. A friend told me that some scholars have concluded that it origin is Egypt from the pharaoh Amen Ra. I’m curious to see if I can find any useful answers to his questions on the word “amen.”
Q. I have been reading Matthew’s Gospel and came across this verse – “Therefore whoever confesses Me before men, him I will also confess before My Father who is in heaven. But whoever denies Me before men, him I will also deny before My Father who is in heaven” Matthew 10:32-33. Is this referring to people who deny Christ full stop or those who refuse to witness? In light of this how would this affect their salvation?
Q. Please can you explain the word “ordained” (Modern King James Version) in Acts 13:48. “And hearing, the nations rejoiced and glorified the Word of the Lord. And as many as were ordained to eternal life believed.” Does it mean those ‘chosen’ for eternal life?