August 2017           "A Journal of Biblical Understanding"           Volume 14           

(Daniel 4:25)
" ... and seven times shall pass over thee, till thou know that the most High ruleth in the kingdom of men, and giveth it to whomsoever he will."


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To Be A Christian..
Millions CLAIM to be, but are they? Millions claim to KNOW HIM as Lord, but... do they? More importantly, does HE know THEM?
Recent quote from a modern-day Preacher, ".. To be a Christian means to follow Christ, to desire Him, to fellowship with Him, to be indwelt by Him, and to bring glory to Him in your life. To be a Christian means to be like Him..."
Does that sound 'right' to you? Is that quote something you'd be comfortable sharing with others?
Let's examine this popular definition.

"To be a Christian means to follow Christ..."

Did you know, that multiple millions CLAIM to follow Christ, yet they rarely 'do as He did'

The devil has deceived the whole world...  (Rev. 12:9)..and the whole world thinks it's A-OK with The True God, for them to worship Him as they please...  The majority... the 'many'... are satisfied that the True God accepts their 'worship', and, in fact, is glad to get it.  Many sincere individuals offer up what they feel is right and good 'worship'.. after all, it was good enough for their parents and grandparents... and it ought to be 'good enough' for God...(They think). Lots of people claim to 'follow' Him.. yet, the majority tend to do what they want to do, and go where THEY want to go, without reference to His Example! They teach and preach that they are already SAVED and that He has given them the “Christian Freedom” to decide for themselves when and how they will WORSHIP!

Phillipians 3:12  Not as though I had already attained, either were already perfect: but I follow after, if that I may apprehend that for which also I am apprehended of Christ Jesus.

The Apostle Paul did not count himself as having already attained salvation. He knew that we are all flesh and that as long as we are, we are subject to temptation... and sin!

None of us have'attained' that SALVATION.. the majority claims to have... they BELIEVE that they have attained it! They CLAIM to already BE SAVED, when, in fact, they have NOT attained that state! Neither are they already perfect!

1Pe 2:21 For even hereunto were ye called: because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that ye should follow his steps:

REMEMBER: Christ's STEPS never avoid the keeping of the Sabbath and Annual Holy Days!

REMEMBER: Christ's STEPS never lead to, or point toward, sun-day worship, or the keeping and observance of ANY pagan days, symbols or customs!!

The modern-day belief that Jesus has somehow 'set us free' from keeping ALL the Commandments of God, and that He is satisfied with US deciding how we will worship Him, is DIAMETRICALLY OPPOSITE to what He told the Children of Israel before they were allowed to enter into the promised land! Deuteronomy Chapter seven is filled up with a description of God's intent to BLESS His people IF they are willing to OBEY HIM and His Commandments, Statures, and Judgments! And, what AWESOME and wonderful blessings they are!!! Who wouldn't want those blessings?  Who wouldn't crave that kind of love and protection from their God? Well, people DO want those things... but, most aren't willing to DO what the God of Creation demands of them in order to RECEIVE those blessings!!  God wanted to BLESS His people!!

Deu 11:26 Behold, I set before you this day a blessing and a curse;...

He gave them a CHOICE!! He DESCRIBED what He expected in return!! He wanted to bless them!!

Deu 11:27 A blessing, if ye obey the commandments of the LORD your God, which I command you this day:

Those verses in Deuteronomy also describe His intent to CURSE those who WILL NOT keep them!

Deu 11:28 And a curse, if ye will not obey the commandments of the LORD your God, but turn aside out of the way which I command you this day, to go after other gods, which ye have not known.

Today, the masses of people who claim to be Christians, have been led to salve their consciences with the idea that THEY are NOT a part of Israel! That way, they think, they are not obligated to keep those Commandments, Statutes, and Judgments... “That was only for the Israelites!” or, “That was only for the Jews!”, they exclaim!! But there are millions out there who ARE descended from the lost tribes of Israel... (especially Britain and America) and that too, is rejected and hated as being anything they would want to believe as “Christians”.. Today's so-called “Christian” traditions and holidays... are what people love and accept, while all these things mentioned in Deuteronomy as being what God wants and demands from his people, are REJECTED!! This world is deceived and is missing out on the blessings and protection that God was/is willing to give, and provide, if only they would OBEY!! But, the sad part is, they would rather keep their traditions and WORSHIP HIM AS THEY PLEASE, than to simply be obedient to Him!

Yet they CLAIM to be 'followers' of Christ!!

Again, Christ's STEPS never avoid the keeping of the Sabbath and Annual Holy Days!

Do YOU avoid those things? Do YOU, in your 'worship' of the True God, REJECT and abhor the Seventh Day Sabbath and the Annual Holy Days? Do YOU believe that those things are “Jewish” or “LEGALISTIC” and no longer required?
Do YOU keep sunday? Do YOU keep and revere the customs of X-mas, easter, and valentines?? Do YOU love and desire all the traditions and symbols of these admittedly, PAGAN practices? Do YOU embrace them as  YOUR PERSONAL WAY OF WORSHIP TOWARD THE TRUE GOD????

If you do, then YOU are NOT following Christ's STEPS!!!

Christ's STEPS never lead to, or point toward, sun-day worship, or the keeping and observance of ANY pagan days, symbols or customs!!

To FOLLOW CHRIST then, would be to avoid, or shun such activities!! If one truly wishes to FOLLOW Christ, or anyone else, that can't be accomplished by going in the OPPOSITE DIRECTION!
And, yet, that is what the MAJORITY DO and KEEP!!   That is NOT FOLLOWING Christ's Example!

1Pe 2:21  For even hereunto were ye called: because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that ye should follow his steps:

The Example

Why did Christ 'leave us an example?  It should be obvious!  

Comparing CHRIST'S EXAMPLE with modern day "Christianity" should clearly indicate whether one is following Christ, or not!

One can 'kid themselves' and insist that they are following Christ, or one can open the Bible and SEE where those STEPS GO!  See where Christ went, what He DID, and what He Preached!

His life was PERFECT!! He did no sin!!  If one were to actually walk in his STEPS, then that person would also BE PERFECT!!  But hardly anyone is interested in living their lives that way, or doing the things He did.... Tradition and “Christian Freedom” are vastly more popular!

Claiming to follow Christ, the majority of 'professing' Christians, are content with simply deciding for themselves which path they will actually follow! THEY DECIDE for themselves what sin is.. and THEY DECIDE for themselves, HOW, and on which DAYS, they will worship the True God! Nine times out of ten, their preferred choice of worship, will be PAGAN in origin and content- contrary to what He stated to the Children of Israel- "Thou shalt not do so unto the Lord, thy God!"

What's Love Got To Do With It?

".. To be a Christian means to ... desire Him.."

Millions 'desire Him'... they desire to SEE Him return, and to have Him reach down and snatch them from this rotten, evil world and RAPTURE them to heaven...

Luke 17:22 And he said unto the disciples, The days will come, when ye shall desire to see one of the days of the Son of man, and ye shall not see it.

Desiring Him and what He can do... the blessings He can provide... nothing wrong with that.. and yet, the many shall not see it!!

Yes, millions  'DESIRE HIM'.. they want, and crave His blessings and His love... yet, they are unwilling to 'love Him', with the 'love' He demands.

God's LOVE

1Jn 5:3 For this is the love of God, that we keep his commandments: and his commandments are not grievous.
2Jn 1:6 And this is love, that we walk after his commandments. This is the commandment, That, as ye have heard from the beginning, ye should walk in it.
1Jn 5:2 By this we know that we love the children of God, when we love God, and keep his commandments.
John 14:15 If ye love me, keep my commandments.
John 15:10 If ye keep my commandments, ye shall abide in my love; even as I have kept my Father's commandments, and abide in his love.

We see that DESIRE and LOVE are closely related...

Luk 20:46 Beware of the scribes, which desire to walk in long robes, and love greetings in the markets, and the highest seats in the synagogues, and the chief rooms at feasts;..

People desire lots of things... they desire to dress up and be seen... to walk about with recognition and praise of the people... to be greeted and hailed as someone important... to be honored... and treated as 'special'... but this is NOT the LOVE of God! HE is the one who deserves the praise and honor and special treatment... and HE is the one who SAYS what that special treatment is to be... He is the one who decides what LOVE is, and the kind of Love He desires and will accept!

1Pe 2:2 As newborn babes, desire the sincere milk of the word, that ye may grow thereby:

Sadly, in these last days, FEW will come to Him, desiring the sincere milk of the word...most have already DECIDED what they will believe, and what they will do... and how they will do it!

FELLOWSHIP

".. To be a Christian means... to fellowship with Him.."

1Co 1:9 God is faithful, by whom ye were called unto the fellowship of his Son Jesus Christ our Lord.
Eph 3:9 And to make all men see what is the fellowship of the mystery, which from the beginning of the world hath been hid in God, who created all things by Jesus Christ:
Php 2:1 If there be therefore any consolation in Christ, if any comfort of love, if any fellowship of the Spirit, if any bowels and mercies,
1Jn 1:3 That which we have seen and heard declare we unto you, that ye also may have fellowship with us: and truly our fellowship is with the Father, and with his Son Jesus Christ.
1Jn 1:7 But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin.


Millions want to 'fellowship with Him', be near to Him etc... and yet they insist that HE come to be with them where THEY are... instead of them going to be with Him, where He is... they ASSUME that He will join them in their worship services, on sun-day, but that is not the day He Blessed and sanctified... it's not the day that HE demands that His people Keep, and observe... It is NOT the day that He observes! It is NOT keeping His Commandments! It is not imitating His EXAMPLE! It is NOT LOVING HIM! It is NOT fellowshiping with Him!

INDWELT

".. To be a Christian means...to be indwelt by Him.."

Professing Christians want to be 'indwelt' alright! They claim that they are 'born again' and that the Holy Spirit is indwelling them... and yet, they refuse to do as Christ SAYS they should do! They refuse to OBEY Him and they forget that the Bible SAYS that He only gives His Spirit to them that obey him! Preaching and teaching against God's Law, and denying His authority in their lives is NOT 'being a Christian'!! More than that, it's PROOF that they are NOT being indwelt by Him!

Rom 8:9 But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his.

Nominal Christianity, thinks it's ok with God, for them to do, and live as they please.. DENYING the authority of God's Law and His ruler-ship in their lives!! Fact is, they are STILL 'in the flesh'! Carnally, or fleshly minded.. and NOT being led by, nor indwelt by God's Holy Spirit!!

2Co 6:16 And what agreement hath the temple of God with idols? for ye are the temple of the living God; as God hath said, I will dwell in them, and walk in them; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people.
Eph 3:17 That Christ may dwell in your hearts by faith; that ye, being rooted and grounded in love,

1Jn 4:13 Hereby know we that we dwell in him, and he in us, because he hath given us of his Spirit.

Rev 21:3 And I heard a great voice out of heaven saying, Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and he will dwell with them, and they shall be his people, and God himself shall be with them, and be their God.

“.. To be a Christian means to...bring glory to Him in your life...”

Millions of sincere, dedicated individuals BELIEVE that they are bringing GLORY to God by the things they do... they clothe, feed, and shelter the homeless and serve the sick and the elderly... many provide services to those who cannot help themselves... widows and orphans and those who are in prison... and, admittedly, these ARE 'good' deeds, and they ARE things that the true God requires His people to do... but they DO NOT MAKE one a Christian!

Millions Believe that the doctrines they adhere to, and the holidays they observe... Christmas, Easter, Valentines Day... etc, are acts that honor and bring GLORY to God! They BELIEVE that God sent His Son to live a perfect life, and die a horrible death, so that THEY can be set free to worship God as they please and not be burdened or bound by any LAW!! They are totally convinced that Romans 14 is their ticket to self expression in how, and when, and with what customs they will use, in their efforts to WORSHIP the true God. They are wrong! They are DECEIVED! The truth is, those who call themselves “Christian”, and yet, aren't willing to SUBMIT to HIM, are NOT BRINGING GLORY TO HIM in their lives! They are basically thumbing their noses at Him and falsely claiming to be “like Him”!

To be like Him?

“...To be a Christian means... to be like Him..."

Bottom Line... to be like someone, is to do, and speak,  and think and act as they do/did... to be like Jesus, one must imitate Him... today's 'modern christian', is not willing to imitate Jesus! Rather, they 'do, and speak, and think and act' AS THEY PLEASE, and SAY they are imitating Him!  They deceive themselves... and OTHERS, by these things! By these things, they TEACH ERROR and cause more and more CONFUSION!

Sincerely?... yes, they do it 'sincerely', thinking that THEY have been given the “Christian Freedom” to do so... But in doing so, they depart from FOLLOWING, to leading... in deciding for themselves, THEY take the lead, and sadly, they lead others in the wrong direction!

Our goal here at SEVENTIMES is to clarify these things and share the TRUTH with those who truly
want to FOLLOW HIM, even if it means forsaking the WAY they have been going, and striving mightily to fall in line behind HIM as He leads...

...to those who truly do DESIRE HIM, instead of desiring themselves and THEIR ideas and THEIR ways...

Psa 145:19 He will fulfil the desire of them that fear him: he also will hear their cry, and will save them.
Pro 10:24 The fear of the wicked, it shall come upon him: but the desire of the righteous shall be granted.

...to those who truly do crave HIS FELLOWSHIP, over and above the fellowship of others who are not willing to submit to His Rule in their lives....

1Jn 1:5 This then is the message which we have heard of him, and declare unto you, that God is light, and in him is no darkness at all.
1Jn 1:6If we say that we have fellowship with him, and walk in darkness, we lie, and do not the truth:
1Jn 1:7But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin.

...to those who truly do seek the INDWELLING of God's Spirit... that He may dwell in them, and they IN HIM.... (NOT POSSIBLE unless one is willing to OBEY HIM)

Act 5:32 And we are his witnesses of these things; and so is also the Holy Ghost, whom God hath given to them that obey him.

This message is...
...to those who truly do want, and intend to BRING GLORY to Him in their lives... those who are willing to turn from sin and begin to earnestly OBEY His holy, just and good law... to actually FOLLOW HIM and  His Righteous Example...

...to those who truly do desire to BE LIKE HIM... even if it means giving up THEIR OWN WAYS, and repenting of THEIR OWN THOUGHTS! Even if it means SUBMITTING THEIR OWN WILLS to His Will!

Is that you? Are you one who is willing to repent of your ways and seek Him and His Way? I hope so!

Is this your first visit to SEVENTIMES JOURNAL? If so, I hope you will visit often and take time to SEARCH our Articles for the information YOU NEED to begin growing in Grace and Knowledge of the Lord and Saviour, Jesus, the Christ!

With love,
in Christ,
Ben Browder


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