When I was growing up Gilligan’s Island was a popular TV show. As you probably already know, every opportunity for the cast aways to get off the Island always ended up in defeat leaving them stranded on the Island. The Apostle Paul has something to say about cast aways. He asks a simple question in Romans 11:1. The question is “Hath God cast away his people.” Paul then very clearly answers his own question in verse 2 with, “God hath not cast away his people which he foreknew” No doubt your church teaches doctrine every week that would seam to make the opposite argument that Paul does. By and large most churches today pay no attention to Paul’s statement. Churches that teach openly about the many guarantee’s God made to Israel of their restoration into their land are rare no doubt. Israel’s restoration does not preach well nor does it teach well I must assume. The Bible however OVERWELMINGLY teaches that Israel WILL BE restored into their land. Why I ask you would Jesus have quoted from the following section of scripture at the start of his earthly ministry if he never intended to do these things?
Isa 61:1 ¶ The Spirit of the Lord GOD is upon me; because the LORD hath anointed me to preach good tidings unto the meek; he hath sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to them that are bound;
2 To proclaim the acceptable year of the LORD, and the day of vengeance of our God; to comfort all that mourn;
3 To appoint unto them that mourn in Zion, to give unto them beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness; that they might be called trees of righteousness, the planting of the LORD, that he might be glorified.
4 ¶ And they shall build the old wastes, they shall raise up the former desolations, and they shall repair the waste cities, the desolations of many generations.
5 And strangers shall stand and feed your flocks, and the sons of the alien shall be your plowmen and your vinedressers.
6 But ye shall be named the Priests of the LORD: men shall call you the Ministers of our God: ye shall eat the riches of the Gentiles, and in their glory shall ye boast yourselves.
THESE VERSES ARE NOT ABOUT YOU! The Bible gives these verses to Israel. Jesus said these verses to Israel. Paul believed these verses just as they are written. Why must Christianity take these verses guaranteeing Israel’s restoration and put them on cards and signs? I hear “beauty for ashes” in Christian songs and read it in Christian books but never in the context of Israel’s restoration. It’s a sad state of affairs in Christianity today that people have no problem rewriting scripture to give something they want to themselves. We complain each time Congress votes themselves a raise, while we take anything we want from Israel and apply it to ourselves. Stop stealing what is not yours. The reason you struggle understanding the Bible is because of application! Stop trying to apply anything you find in scripture to yourself. If the Bible does not apply it to you then it’s NOT YOURS. Understanding the Bible is this simple. Israel has not been cast away forever. Israel is temporarily blinded as Paul explains later in Romans chapter 11.
Ro 11:25 For I would not, brethren, that ye should be ignorant of this mystery, lest ye should be wise in your own conceits; that blindness in part is happened to Israel, until the fulness of the Gentiles be come in.
Israel is spiritually blind right now while God is dealing with mankind in GRACE. This period of time Paul describes as a mystery. In other words, it was kept secret. God is showing mercy to everyone right now. (Rom 11:32) Notice this time we are in IS NOT permanent. In verse 2 of Isaiah chapter 61 shown above Jesus mentions the acceptable day of the Lord (Luke 4:19) but stops before mentioning the wrath Isaiah talks about. Why? Because Jesus knew about the mystery we are in now. Jesus knew the wrath comes later. These things become clear when we rightly divide the scriptures and leave God’s programs alone. All we do here is let God say what he says TO WHOM he says it. Then, we leave it TO WHOM it is given. Stop mixing things God made separate and the Bible will become understandable! If this sounds too good to be true, ITS NOT. God actually made it this simple.
Mar 7:20-23 And he said, That which cometh out of the man, that defileth the man. For from within, out of the heart of men, proceed evil thoughts, adulteries, fornications, murders, Thefts, covetousness, wickedness, deceit, lasciviousness, an evil eye, blasphemy, pride, foolishness: All these evil things come from within, and defile the man.
Jesus here speaking in Mark 7 is listing the things which defile a man. There are some pretty bad things in this list. In this list is the word PRIDE. There is good reason for the majority of references to pride in the Bible being negative. God hates pride, Jesus taught about the evil of pride and to these teachings Paul agrees. We know this fact but inevitably fall prey to it. Pride works to hinder our growth and understanding of God’s word. Pride says; “I can’t be wrong.” Pride says; “my church can’t be wrong.” Pride says; “My pastor can’t be wrong.” Pride says; “My education can’t be wrong.” Obviously, we could go on for some time with this list. Pride drops an anchor in the form of our “beliefs” and we never learn beyond this pre-conceived set of doctrines. Pride keeps us from listening to teaching that sounds different. I see this pride creep up almost every time I try to share the blessing of the mystery of Christ. Almost every time I attempt to show another Christian how easily they could understand the Bible, the pride of education, denomination, and tradition show their face. I am willing to listen to any challenge of my teaching because I know how long I was wrong and how long I defended a denomination instead of the Bible alone. If I was wrong for so long, I understand how others can be resistant to any instruction from outside their church. As we know, the Bereans were complimented for the fact that they listened, then compared what was said with scripture. I have personally witnessed and experienced the fact that today Christians never get past the LISTENING. By and large Christians will not listen to anything outside their agenda. So they never experience the comparing to scripture part. They never dig in God’s word to search for the truth. Pride closes their ears to any challenge of their beliefs. THIS IS THE REASON God hates pride! Christians are so worried of being “indoctrinated”. Let me tell you something as clearly as I can; if someone can show in from the Bible with words spoken TO YOU why you should change your beliefs, YOU SHOULD CHANGE YOUR BELIEFS. When I found out the denomination I was part of DID NOT teach the Bible literally, I CHANGED. I was wrong and I changed. Did this hurt my ego? Probably. Was I disappointed that I had taught probably thousands of people tradition instead of a literal interpretation of the Bible? Yes I was. Did I ask myself over and over “How did I miss this?” YES! I cannot explain to you how thankful I am for accepting the fact that I could be wrong. I cannot express the joy you feel when you finally come to the realization that the Bible is meant to be understood and you DO NOT need to be a Greek expert, read commentaries, or go to Bible College to understand the Bible. All you need is a willing heart to let the Bible have free course and start following the example of the apostle that Jesus sent to you; the apostle Paul. Right division of the Bible answers all the questions you have. Will you listen long enough to hear them?
I’m sitting here tonight processing the past 12 or so days. It has been a challenging time for our family. No doubt many of those reading this blog have walked through similar times. The loss of my mother in law Donna was not expected and one of the things we dread in life. When I started our church about three and a half years ago she was there and pretty much every Sunday since. She was so thankful to gain an understanding of how clearly the Bible can be understood by simply following the words in the Bible and not preconceived agendas created by man. She loved her Bible and studied every day. She was truly a workman that needeth not to be ashamed. She loved encouraging others and spent many hours praying for those around her. Paul tells us that every part of the body of Christ is important and needful. Every part fulfills a purpose and is vital to the edification of the body. Parts of the body of Christ can’t be voted in nor can they be voted out. These are contrivances of man. You become a member of the body of Christ by salvation and the sealing of the Holy Spirit. With each member of the body that goes home to be with the Lord those of us left behind must fill in the space left vacant and fitly compact the body again so we can continue to fulfill our purpose to share the mystery and to reconcile the world to Christ. How awesome it is to be able to be thankful in days like these. We sorrow yes, but not as others who have no hope. We mourn the loss but are fully assured of the day we will see our loved ones again. The Bible is clear when we set aside man’s ideas and opinions. If you struggle to understand the Bible, there’s nothing my mother in law would love more than to see you understand the scriptures as God intended. You only have man’s tradition to lose but you have a lifetime of understanding to gain. Interested?
Have you noticed the Jehovah’s Witnesses are now talking about Jesus when they come to your door? The last 2 groups I have talked to bring up Jesus and talk about him. This new tactic of theirs is quite interesting since they don’t believe who he is. I figure they sat down in a meeting and tried to figure out how to get people to listen a little longer and mentioning Jesus was the plan. Church growth plans abound in the world today. I always take time to talk to them because they need saved just like anyone else you might come across in life. I tried to explain to the last two JW ladies that came to my door that they were stealing things that belong to Israel. This is exactly what I try to show my Christian friends. All the lady kept saying was “But Israel rejected Jesus” So, her excuse for stealing what God promised to ONLY Israel was that Israel rejected Jesus. This basically is the exact same reason Christians use to steal Israel’s promises and write themselves into Israel’s prophecy. I didn’t get very far with the JWs at my door. Do you understand that God IS NOT going to finish what he started with Israel because they deserve it? By the way we don’t deserve it either. Ezekiel 36 gives us the reason God IS going to finish what he started with Israel. Please take the time to read this whole chapter. Let look at a few of the verses.
Eze 36:21 But I had pity for mine holy name, which the house of Israel had profaned among the heathen, whither they went. 22 Therefore say unto the house of Israel, Thus saith the Lord GOD; I do not this for your sakes, O house of Israel, but for mine holy name's sake, which ye have profaned among the heathen, whither ye went.
Eze 36:32 Not for your sakes do I this, saith the Lord GOD, be it known unto you: be ashamed and confounded for your own ways, O house of Israel.
Eze 36:36 Then the heathen that are left round about you shall know that I the LORD build the ruined places, and plant that that was desolate: I the LORD have spoken it, and I will do it.
I ask you why do the JWs think they get what belongs to Israel? For the SAME REASON Christianity has assumed whatever they want from Israel’s promises and prophecy, SOMEONE taught them they can! Why do I say this? Because the Bible does not teach it. Christ’s SUFFERING was foretold in prophecy just as his GLORY. God knew Israel would fail to accept their Messiah. God DID NOT write off Israel, so WHY ARE YOU?
Eze 37:13 And ye shall know that I am the LORD, when I have opened your graves, O my people, and brought you up out of your graves, 14 And shall put my spirit in you, and ye shall live, and I shall place you in your own land: then shall ye know that I the LORD have spoken it, and performed it, saith the LORD.
I can’t say it any better that Ezekiel. God IS NOT finished with Israel. I ask again, why must you take the things Jesus said to his people during his earthly ministry to Israel alone and force them into the age of grace and the body of Christ? If you truly want clarity and understanding when you read and study your Bible, separate what God has separated and you can have it. Yes, you must let go of hundreds of years of man-made tradition to have it. Are you willing to give up your tradition? I did. The rewards of understanding your Bible are more that I can put to words. God will finish what he started with Israel because HE SAID HE WILL. No, you don’t get to take their stuff. It is this simple. This is the essence of rightly dividing your Bible.
The majority of Christianity today believes they are building the Kingdom. They name their Sunday school classes’ names like Kingdom Builders and say things like they are working for his kingdom or building his kingdom. Why would they say this? Because they have been taught that they are living in the kingdom now. Look around you and tell me if this evil world looks ANYTHING like the kingdom God promised to set up on earth. Of course it doesn’t. The excuse: The prophets were mistaken in their writings and what Christ really set up is a “spiritual” kingdom where Jesus is ruling and reigning in our hearts. Like blind sheep, Christians believe the Covenant theology nonsense and just go along with the agenda taught by Bible Colleges and Seminaries across the country and globe. The Bible over and over says the words “ON EARTH” in reference to the kingdom. Christians over and over ignore the Bible to follow their pastor and his higher education because he went to Bible College and he can read the Greek. The Bible NEVER tells you to study the “original” language. The Bible tells you to BELIEVE the words. Sadly most Christians only believe their pastor. We are not “kingdom builders”. We are BODY BUILDERS! Romans 11:32 tells you that God is having mercy on everyone right now. Romans 12:5 explains the Body made up of believers. Rom 11:25 clearly teaches that Israel’s blindness IS NOT permanent! Matthew 24 is not a fairy tale. God is once again going to deal with Judgment to bring Israel through the fire. What happens next is the kingdom on earth. Yes the same kingdom the prophets preached about and Jesus announced was near. The SAME kingdom that Revelation explains being set up! How can you be a kingdom builder when Jesus sets it up himself In the future? As I said before, Jesus DOES NOT need your help setting up the kingdom. Jesus is asking YOU to help him BUILD A BODY. The Body of Christ that your apostle Paul was the FIRST member of, 1 Timothy 1:16. Paul was the first member of the body of Christ. We are saved by following Paul’s gospel of the grace of God. (Acts 20:24) You cannot be saved today by following the gospel of the kingdom Jesus and the 12 preached. Peter himself made this clear in Acts 15:11. We are saved today by the resurrection of Christ. The same resurrection the disciples DID NOT understand nor even expected. (John 20:9) How else can you explain why NO ONE was at the tomb that 3rd day? Friend, I want you to have something that passes through the fire at the Judgment seat of Christ. If you are following Jesus’ EARTHLY ministry to ISRAEL you will suffer loss. If however you have the guts to stand on the Bible ALONE and not church tradition and build upon Jesus’ HEAVENLY ministry through Paul, you can know for a fact you are building upon the right foundation and the correct ministry. You have heard the phrase “get with the program” This is exactly what we must do! Not Israel’s program! Our program of preaching the unsearchable riches of Christ. Jesus our Savior and Lord does have a program he is doing now. This program was delivered to Paul (Colossians 1:25-27). This is your only hope to see some gold, silver, or precious stones come out of that fire. It is this simple. Put your faith in the Bible ALONE, rightly divided according to the apostle Jesus sent to you.
I read an article a couple weeks ago about a first round draft pick that turned out to be a major draft bust. If you don’t follow sports this means the player did not match up to the expectations people had for him. I don’t recall the name of the player or the sport. I only mention it because the article mentions that he knows he did not meet the expectations of the team and he also knows why. When asked about it, the player mentions his inability to take criticism or receive feedback. Specifically he mentions defensiveness. He said when his coaches would give him constructive feedback that he immediately got defensive and none of us will listen once we get defensive. I have had the opportunity to give feedback as well as be on the receiving end of feedback many times at work in a professional atmosphere. At work we are expected to be open to coaching and if you are a valued employee you will be expected to give constructive feedback as well. This is how great companies are built. If you have been around very long you have seen both gratitude for your coaching as well as contempt for your coaching. As I read the article about the ball player I immediately wrote down the word “defensiveness.” We were programmed by the teaching we sit under Sunday after Sunday to be defensive. We were programmed to say we are open to God’s leading but are we? The ball player is going to go down as a major draft pick bust and in his own words the defensiveness to coaching is mostly to blame. The stakes are much higher for us. We have a very short lifetime to be coached by the word of God. During this very short life that we have, we are given the opportunity to build upon the foundation our Apostle Paul built. Paul built upon Jesus Christ. We are specifically told to build upon the foundation Paul started. This is no way makes Paul a better “coach” than Christ. If you are a member of the body of Christ you are required to follow Christ by following Paul. A good reminder is what Jesus said in John 13:20 “He that receiveth whomsoever I send receiveth me: In Acts 22:18 Jesus told Paul to “get thee quickly out of Jerusalem; for they will not receive thy testimony concerning me” Just a few verses later Paul rehearses that Jesus told him specifically “Depart: for I will send thee far hence unto the Gentiles. Paul is our apostle sent directly by Jesus himself to the Gentiles. It is my personal experience that Christians by and large are defensive to the things Paul taught. I understand we were programmed to be this way. The second we become defensive we hinder our learning. Most Christians don’t want a challenge. They want to be told they have it all right. I’m not saying I have it all figured out, I’m saying the Bible, when it’s rightly divided, has all the answers to the confusion in Christianity. Don’t be gullible, but be “ready” as Paul says to listen and compare what is said to scripture. This requires you to fight off the preprogramming we have to get defensive when challenged. This truly is the hard part. Yes! I was defensive for a long time in my Christian life. Now I understand better. I was wrong and I changed. Now I understand that I MUST be open to listen, compare, study and believe differently when I find out I’m wrong. By the way, this is required of you as well. Peter himself admitted he was wrong when confronted by Paul as to the truth of the gospel. Read Galatians chapter 2 for the details. If Peter can realize he is wrong and change then so can we.
I just attended the funeral of a very special person that I had the privilege of knowing. She was taken from the earth much too early. God did not take her, like most Christians would say, actually cancer did. God did not give her cancer, the evil world around us did. The false teaching of Calvinism robs Christians of so much. Sadly, this system is part of every corner of Christianity. It blames God for things he had nothing to do with. It causes people to hate God for things he did not do. There is peace in this horrible time because she knew the gospel that saves. Not the vague and hard to understand gospel you most likely hear every Sunday, but the clear, concise, and easy to understand gospel as Paul teaches. Today I heard an announcer on the radio say that “there is nothing more important than your life.” This is a patently false statement. There is something much more important than your life. What is this? Your eternal life. The book of James describes our life as a vapor that appears for a “little time” and vanishes away. During this little time here on earth you have the responsibility to make the decisions that will affect your eternity. Jesus told those around him in Matthew chapter 10 not to fear those that can kill the body but to fear him who can destroy both the body and soul in Hell. It is a Biblical FACT that there is more than one gospel in the Bible. Peter made a monumental and utterly important statement in Acts 15:11 after the Jerusalem council that everyone is now saved under Paul’s gospel. Why did he do this? Because the gospel of the Kingdom that Peter had been preaching was now being suspended and Paul’s gospel of grace alone was now the only gospel to be preached. Why is Christianity in such disagreement over the doctrine of salvation? Because your church and your pastor probably preaches these separate and distinct gospels as being the same thing. NOTHING could be further from the truth. I can have peace because I know my friend knew the gospel that saves TODAY clearly and completely. Putting your faith and trust in Paul’s gospel of grace alone is the ONLY way a soul is saved today. Mixing Jesus’ gospel of the kingdom to Israel and Paul’s gospel of grace to ALL is the reason why all the denominations don’t believe the same way. Paul’s gospel is the Biblical FACT that we must put our faith and trust (Eph 1:13-14) is Jesus’ death, burial, and resurrection as sufficient atonement for our sins. Jesus DID NOT preach about his death, burial and resurrection while he walked this earth!! Jesus preached that a kingdom is available to ISRAEL if they would repent and be baptized. Friend please ignore the covenant tradition your church teaches and know FOR SURE you have salvation. Choose to trust THE BIBLE not your church or anyone in it. Your eternal future hangs in the balance. Jesus never had a ministry to gentiles while he walked on the earth. Jesus sent Paul to you! Paul is your apostle. Salvation is only clear and understandable when you rightly divide your Bible. If you doubt this for one second, I dare you to read everything Jesus said about salvation! Do you have the integrity to do this? Read EVERYTHING Jesus said about salvation and list all the requirements. Then read everything the disciples said about salvation and list the requirements. Read Peter, James, John and list the REQUIREMENTS for salvation. Then read PAUL!!! I can tell you that you will find ONE requirement when your read Paul, BELIEF! Belief alone. Belief in Christ’s death and resurrection. (I Cor 15:1-4) Right division gives us so much I could not convey it all in 1000 blogs. But what matters the most? Right division of the Bible conveys the simple plan of salvation required today in the age of grace, free from church tradition and man-made systems. Trust your apostle, whom Jesus called and sent TO YOU! Or follow your pastor’s tradition and I pray you weave through the maze to somehow find the truth.
What a question. What an important question. A question most Christians probably answer to quickly. Ask these same people how a person gets saved today in the age of grace and you will in some cases get a blank stare for a good many seconds until they can gather their thoughts. Ask these same people detailed questions about the doctrine of salvation and you might just get them either mad or embarrassed, and maybe both. So how is it that many Christians will answer the question of “are you ready to die” and then struggle to give a detailed description of how a soul is saved? More disturbing is the FACT that you can go to different denominations and get very different opinions on HOW person is saved, what you must do/say to be saved, and weather a person can lose their salvation. You SHOULD ask yourself why God made it so confusing. Did God make it this confusing OR PERHAPS are you confused? Did God make it plain and clear and are YOU the one confusing it? I understand that you don’t think you’re wrong because you believe your church is the one that has it figured out and all those other churches are confused. I hope you realize ALL THOSE OTHER CHURCHES think they are right and you are wrong. So who is wright? Scripture is of course. But then why all the confusion? That’s the easy part…. Why does your pastor stand in front of a congregation week after week and tell people they need to “Ask Jesus into your heart” when there is NO evidence that this is required for salvation? Why does another church show you verses that CLEARLY seem to say water baptism is a required part of salvation today? Why does another church show you verses to insist that eating Christ’s body and drinking his blood is required for salvation? WHY THE CONFUSION???????? Did God make it this hard for me to figure out if I AM READY? Given the confusion in Christianity about salvation, this IS a reasonable question is it not?? The stubborn, arrogant demeanor of so many Christians is the reason this confusion continues. We fight anyone that dare question our denomination and our church’s position but we can’t accurately explain the details of how a soul is saved today. We defiantly hold up our own position as right when there are thousands and maybe millions of people with differing opinions. I ask you again why did God make it so confusing?? My friend HE DIDN’T! He actually left VERY CLEAR instructions for us. He left these instruction to ONE MAN. He gave this ONE MAN the truth for us today in the age of Grace. This man is Paul. The Bible teaches that Jesus NEVER had a ministry to Gentiles during his earthly ministry. The Bible teaches that today we DO NOT get our doctrine from what Jesus said while he walked this earth. When Christians TODAY try to teach salvation from Jesus’ earthly ministry only confusion results. Jesus taught Paul how a soul is saved today in the age of grace. Jesus sent Paul to the Gentiles with the message of Grace (Acts 20:24) Salvation is CLEAR when we get our information from the ONE MAN Jesus sent to us. Salvation is confusing when we try to mix what Jesus taught to the Jews and what Jesus revealed to Paul. You will NEVER be able to accurately answer the question “are you ready” until you rightly divide the Bible the way the Bible tells you. Christianity will never be of “one mind” until it gives up its pride of position and allows the bible ALONE to instruct us. No, Christianity DOES NOT use the Bible alone! Christianity uses the Bible to prove their position right. Christianity uses verses plucked from anywhere they like to prove their position right. When you teach salvation the way YOUR apostle taught it, salvation is clear, concise, and easy to understand. When you mix what Jesus and Paul both said, salvation becomes muddy, and hard to understand. Do you know for a fact you are ready? If not, read what Paul said about salvation today. It’s the ONLY hope you have for clarity. Salvation by grace alone through what Jesus accomplished on the cross is only taught by Paul. Jesus never told people he was going to die till the END of his ministry. His disciples DID NOT believe he rose from the dead. Based on these two FACTS, how then could he have been teaching is death, burial, and resurrection for salvation? HE COULD NOT HAVE. This ministry of Grace was revealed by Paul. Please DO NOT rely on what your pastor or your denomination says if it does not line up PERFECTLY with what Paul says. It could cost you eternity.
As far back as I can remember the church services I attended were always quiet and solemn times where you didn’t move or get up unless it was an emergency and no one ever stopped the preacher to ask a question or request further explanation. It was quite rare to ever see anyone come up to the pastor after the service to get a question answered. I’m sure it happened on occasion but not enough for me to notice. Why is this? I can think of a few reasons why this is the norm in most churches I have attended in my lifetime and maybe yours too. We wouldn’t want to put the pastor on the spot. This might be a reason but not a very good one in my opinion. No one expects the pastor to be able to answer every possible question off the cuff. Questions supply opportunities for both the person asking and the teacher to better understand scripture. Maybe we don’t want to show our own ignorance to others by asking questions? This is very possibly one of the more common dilemmas. Having taught service technicians for many years I can tell you we are NOT willing to ask questions for this reason more often than not. God hates pride for a reason. Pride hinders our growth, our spiritual life, and keeps us from learning the material the way God EXPECTS us to. The Bible clearly tells us we need to study and that we need teachers. If we are expected to study and learn from teachers then it goes to say that you MUST be WILLING to ask question when needed. Many times I think we don’t ask questions because we don’t have an opportunity to. The preaching service is a perfectly executed series of sections meant to build to the invitation. We all know when the invitation is coming because the pastor slows down and changes tactics. Most times a perfectly timed illustration or story sets up the crowd for the invitation and questions are not part of the program. Many Sunday school classes are plagued by the same “rules”. The questions we have typically are never asked much less answered. If you’re like me you spent too much time looking through commentaries only to find the writers avoid the hard verses and tough questions just like the preachers do. It’s funny how the commentators can give a “spiritual” application or a devotional comment but steer clear of the obvious doctrinal questions about these verses. Truth be told the writers are steering clear of the doctrinal statements many times so they can sell their books to a wider audience. My feeling is we have become accustomed to reading past the questions, and hard to understand sections of scripture without a second thought. Many Christians don’t question anything they hear. I think you should question EVERYTHING you hear! I think you should stop when you hit that hard to understand section of scripture and search till you have an answer. If you did this you would be in the minority for sure. Christians don’t seem to ask questions or test the doctrine being taught all too often. Here, every hour we spend teaching is completely open to questions, comments, critique and further explanation. In fact I encourage question every Sunday. On more than a few occasions we have chased a rabbit or two to clarify what the Bible is teaching us. This is EXACTLY what right division is; letting the Bible teach US. When the Bible is approached from a Bible believer’s position, you can just believe the verses exactly as written. No need for cute stories, analogies, and illustrations. The Bible can be understood just as it reads. If you don’t think so, maybe you should start asking some questions. Start with this one: Why does my church grab verses from all over the Bible that are clearly written to someone else and apply them to me today….. If you don’t know the answer, right division does.
I recently starting reading another book. Many people consider reading a book or maybe a commentary Bible study. Although our apostle Paul does teach that there is a need for teachers today, reading books is not Bible study. Reading commentaries is not Bible study. Bible study is reading the Bible and using scripture itself to instruct you. To many this is a foreign idea. Many Christians struggle to learn from scripture due to the lack of understanding of the flow of programs in scripture. The covenant theology in all denominations today makes it hard to see the big picture of scripture. Why? Because there is actually two “motion pictures” in scripture. One you could call the major feature and the other a short film. Without separating the big picture from the short film no clear understanding of God’s programs is possible. Sure seminaries teach what they think based on their tradition, but most Christians wonder how preachers can extrapolate so much material from so few verses. This is easy when you just read a few verses and then just ramble on for 45 minutes. If you were to understand that 90% of your Bible is for your understanding but NOT your doctrine for today the Bible would become clear and understandable in a short period of time. If you were to understand that the 10% of the Bible written by the apostle Paul was in fact written directly to you other than a few sections where Paul is addressing Jews, the Bible would come alive and a new and understandable book. Separating the major motion picture of Israel and their Messiah from the short film of Paul and the Gentiles is the key to understanding your Bible WITHOUT the need for commentaries and shelves of books. Sadly today, the shift of ALL the major denominations away from a literal interpretation of scripture has left Christians shocked at the idea of rightly dividing the Bible by the audience SPOKEN TO. You would think a concept so simple as paying attention to WHO is being spoken to in the Bible would be required learning in 1st grade discipleship? Actually Christians have been indoctrinated with the opposite of the common sense approach to scripture. We have been taught how to defend our current position and curse any attempt to challenge what we believe. Oddly Christians can’t even seem to open their eyes enough to see the confusion in Christianity around them that they are right in the middle of. The Bible is a closed book to most Christians because of the arrogance found in Christianity today. I am willing to challenge any position I currently hold, are you? I am willing to allow scripture to change my beliefs, are you? This is what people say, but by and large they are not willing to challenge anything they believe. So Christianity will stay fractured and confused. Separate God’s two programs found in scripture and learn what the Bible actually teaches for yourself. Or, continue to mix the two features God asked you to keep divided and keep Christianity divided. Yes, understanding the Bible actually is this simple.
Steve Schoenberger is a student of the Bible and the teacher at Abundant Grace Bible Fellowship, A Mid-Acts Dispensational Bible church teaching the Bible rightly divided according the the revelation of the mystery delivered to the Apostle Paul