Saturday, April 1, 2017

The Truth That The Homosexual Agenda Refuses To Admit!

Image result for scientific evidence being born gayImage result for scientific evidence being born gay 

What Does The Bible Say About Consuming Alcoholic Beverages?

  • Defining The Issues:
          -Whether drinking wine is morally permissible or not is a controversial subject among different Christian circles. While some maintain that drinking alcoholic beverages is absolutely forbidden by God, others either believe otherwise or choose the neutral stance. In short, there is a wide diversity of opinion within Christianity as to whether drinking wine is morally permissible. The intention behind writing this article is neither to cast any judgment of condemnation on differing perspectives than the materials presented within nor to be dogmatic. My intention here is simply to provide some spiritual guidance on this issue.
  • All Food And Drink Has Been Declared Clean By God:
          -Issues pertaining to food and drink are clearly non-essential according to the New Testament Scriptures (Acts 10:10-16; Romans 14; 1 Corinthians 8), though we still need to take measures to prevent becoming a stumbling block to other fellow Christians (Romans 14:15-21).

  • Yes, the Bible does permit Christians to drink wine: 
           -For instance, Jesus Christ Himself transubstantiated water into wine at the wedding feast at Cana (John 2). He did indeed partake of alcoholic wine (i.e. Mark 14:23 Luke 7:33-44). This argument alone is definitive proof that drinking wine is morally acceptable within the reasonable boundaries of consumption, for the inspired Scriptures record Jesus as being sinless (1 Peter 2:22). If drinking wine was bad, then Jesus would be sinful just like we are and thus disqualified from redeeming mankind from sin. The Apostle Paul instructed Timothy to drink some wine to help with his frequent stomach illnesses (1 Timothy 5:23). In conclusion, the biblical view of wine is that it has been given to us by God as a gift to enjoy (Psalm 104:14-15). We should either avoid drinking wine to the point of drunkenness or completely abstain from it.
           -The only group of people who were ever forbidden by God (in the Old Testament) from consuming alcoholic wine was those who voluntarily took the Nazirite vow (Numbers 6:1-21).

  • Fun Fact:

          -Interestingly, there is a general consensus among medical doctors that periodically consuming red wine can have positive health benefits on the heart. Perhaps it is because of the antioxidants such as flavonoids and resveratrol.

  • Alcoholism Is Morally Wrong (A Brief Conversation On Gluttony, As Well):
          -Just as orally consuming too much of any food is classified as being gluttony, the same is equally true with wine or any other drink (Proverbs 20:1; Romans 13:13; Ephesians 5:18; 1 Peter 4:13). In fact, the Bible says that such behaviors are so evil that they could eternally separate us from God if never repented of (1 Corinthians 6:9-11; Galatians 5:19-21). Quite simply, eating and drinking too much is purely selfish and involves laziness. Furthermore, we know that gluttony is unnatural because it leads up to potentially fatal health conditions such as obesity, diabetes, and high-cholesterol. Becoming an alcoholic can be fatal, for it can raise blood pressure (and thus cause a heart attack), cause liver disease, and lead up to the formation of cancer. Hence, we should avoid consuming too much wine because it is morally wrong and damages our bodies. Although material objects such as bread and wine are not evil in themselves, misusing them by committing the sin of gluttony is what is wrong.

The Path Of Wisdom

                                                                      By Sean Dolan

  • DISCLAIMER: The author of this article is a Roman Catholic. I am pointing this out because I do not endorse all of the same views, as Sean does. Though he sometimes quotes from the apocryphal writings of the Roman Catholic Bible (which I deny the inspiration of), his points are all biblically sound. In fact, I believe that this essay by Sean Dolan was beautifully written. No disrespect intended. 

Throughout all the world exists a quest to find true happiness. People look everywhere for spiritual and physical fulfillment. In the things of this world they search, but “all things are vanity” (Eccl. 1:1). This pursuit of happiness can be traced all the way back to biblical times, but the writers of Scripture offer a completely different road to happiness. This way is wisdom. Wisdom ultimately leads one to unity with God, the ultimate peace, and a better understanding of this world. “Wisdom is a tree of life to those who grasp her” (Prov. 2:18). The challenge is how to obtain wisdom. The inspired writers of the Old and New Testament Scriptures have written a myriad of information on how to obtain wisdom. From the books that they have written, we can conclude in our pursuit of wisdom the absolute need for God, discipline, knowledge of self-worth, and the understanding of the vanity of fleshy desire.
            In this chase after wisdom, one can not get anywhere without God, for “all wisdom is from the Lord and remains with him forever” (Sirach 1:1) and “the beginning of wisdom is fear of the Lord” (Prov. 9:10). This means that one must have some sort of understanding of God and can not reject Him, if they choose to be wise. A rejection of God is a rejection of wisdom itself. “Only the fool says in his heart there is no God” (Psalm 14:1) and the wisdom of God is Christ (1 Cor. 1: 24). The wise must obey God, which consists of trusting in Him, loving Him, and keeping His Commandments. “Godliness is an abomination to the sinner” (Sirach 1:25). It is impossible to do God’s Will without any love. God also imparts a deeper understanding of the world that He made into our hearts. If one truly desired to know the natural order of the universe, then would they not seek the divine Creator? Of course they would! It would be unwise not to and would only result in spiritual harm. Not only are these previously mentioned notions objectively true, but following the Lord also brings joy and prosperity, as Tobit says, “at all times bless the Lord your God… and all your endeavors and plans may prosper” (Tobit 4:19). What’s more is that “no evil can harm the one who fears the Lord; through trials again and again he is rescued” (Sirach 33:1). Wisdom of the Lord ensures spiritual safety because He does not lie (Numbers 23:19). One would never have to be concerned about earthy harm if he or she followed God because He would lead him or her directly to eternal salvation in heaven. 
            Part of following God, and thus attaining wisdom, is knowing one’s strengths and weaknesses, as Ben Sira says, “my son, with humility have self-esteem; and give yourself the esteem you deserve” (Sirach 10:28). Humans have intrinsic value that can never be demolished. Jonah the Prophet was foolish and failed to recognize the worth in God’s eyes of the people of Nineveh. He placed them below a plant. As a result of Jonah's rash judgment, God scolded him. If people were worth the same value as plants, then one could just cut them down as if they were annoying weeds in the lawn. Although there are many humans, God recognizes each one and cares for them all. Ben Sira portrays this when he says, “do not say, ‘I am hidden from God; and on high who remembers me? Among so many people I am unknown” (Sirach 16:17). Giving a low self worth is foolish because God “has given man rule over the works of His hands” (Psalm 8;7). “God formed us to be imperishable; the image of his own nature he made us” (Wisdom 2:23) God made man in His image and likeness, which is completely different than that of animals such as dogs. We should not act as if we are the same category as they are. God has destined us for everlasting greatness, salvation which is in heaven. Therefore, our self-doubt should not keep us from Him. On the other hand, one should not be pompous. “Odious to the Lord and mortals is pride” (Sirach 10:8). The Israelites of old would abandon God by becoming arrogant during times of peace through the bold defiance against His moral Commandments and by worshiping false gods. He would then allow them to be enslaved to their enemies. People shouldn’t allow themselves to be too prideful, “for there is no one who does not sin” (I Kings 8:46). Humans are simply not perfect and have limited capacities due to the Fall. One should not think he can sprint a marathon when he cannot. If a person is unconscious of his true level of capabilities due to ego, then it is only a matter of time before he gets humbled, hurt, or even killed. “Pride goes before the fall” (Prov. 16:5). The wise need God, and arrogance will sever them from the presence of the Lord, their only source of salvation. One must choose a humble knowledge of self-worth. Exceeding this boundary of humility is departing from the door of wisdom.
            Placing our trust in ourselves is not the only thing one should not do. A person should also not place his trust in the desires and materials of this earth. A person seeking wealth is like a ravenous wolf always seeking more prey. “All human toil is for the mouth yet the appetite is never satisfied” (Eccl. 6:7). The things of this world are finite; so they cannot fill our spiritual hunger and thirst. God is the Infinite One who can quench our passions. Part of wisdom is understanding this precept. What even comes out of men’s toils, anyway? When they die, their wealth vanishes. “Naked I came forth from my mother’s womb, and naked I go back there” (Job 1:21). Earthly ambitions are futile because they do not lead us anywhere. Sins such as lust are folly. It always goes unsatisfied. It is against the Lord. So it could lead to condemnation, as Proverbs says, “be assured, the wicked shall not go unpunished, but the offspring of the just shall escape” (Prov. 11:21). “Wealth is good where there is no sin” (Sirach 13:24). But when it comes to the pursuit of wisdom, one can only depend on the sovereign Lord.
            Following God by understanding His Will and acting in accordance with it is certainly not a task of simplicity. However, discipline can help man to accomplish these tasks, and to thus discover eternal wisdom. “The first step towards wisdom is an earnest desire for discipline” (Wis. 6:17). People learn from their mistakes. If they do not, then they are foolish. These people may repeatedly fall into sin, which sets them back even more, and thereby makes trying to be holy more difficult. God uses trials of life as a means for us to become more christened. Job is a good example. He suffered, seemingly innocently, but never fell to sin, accepting his pains. In the end, he learned that God was infinitely superior to him and knew that He was doing good. Job was satisfied. His faith in the Lord grew stronger. He came out with a much fuller abundance of goods because of his humble trust in God. Suffering is not necessarily a terrible thing because it can have positive consequences. “The wise son loves correction” (Prov. 13:1). If enduring struggles or failing humbles prideful people by leading them to the recognition of their limitations, then it is good. If one loses every bit of his wealth but ends up trusting more in God, it is good. These times of discipline must be embraced wholeheartedly or the difficult situation may cause man to become angry and thus delude his moral judgement capacities. We could end up walking away from God. Discipline is very important, for without it one is not experienced in the ways of wisdom, which are the ways of God. When times of trouble come, the unchristened may not succeed in trusting God.

           Achieving wisdom is not easy. It takes sacrifice and discipline, along with divine intervention. After all of the struggle, the salvation and understanding will be worth it. “No treasure can compare with her” (Prov. 3:15). Following the ways of the writers of  the inspired Scriptures will help us to achieve the goal of becoming wise. With the spiritual gift of discernment, the free gift of God, which is salvation, can be inherited. Only then can we begin to experience the fullness of true happiness. In heaven, there will be no desire for fame or wealth. If we ask God for anything, then He will give it to us. The path of the wise does require effort, and the way of sin seems easier to our darkened eyes. But the consequences of possessing wisdom is much more satisfying. The wise will praise God with the angels in heaven; contently and in peace.

Discussion On Sola Ecclesia

  • Establishing A Foundation:
            -Sola Ecclesia is the Latin term that describes the Roman Catholic belief that the Church is the final authority in all religious matters (in opposition to the Protestant position of Sola Scriptura). In other words, the Church of Rome is believed to be the only infallible, true church of Jesus Christ with it all starting with the Apostle Peter being appointed its first pope. In summary, the Church hierarchy demands from its members complete and unquestioned submission to its authority.
            -As a result, appointed Roman Catholic apologists have developed scriptural arguments (they will be addressed in this article...So have patience....) to refute the principle of Sola Scriptura. In other words, they have been trying to establish their theory from the Bible itself that the Bible alone is too difficult for the common person to understand and is thus in need of an infallible interpreter. Hence, the purpose of this article is to deliver a quick response to the most common Bible verses used to prove that it itself is too difficult for us to understand without the support of the Roman Magisterium.
  • Phillip And The Ethiopian Eunuch (Acts 8:28-38):
         -Yes, teachers do exist in the church. In fact, nobody even claims that all portions of Scripture are equally clear. We may very well need things explained to us at times. But this text says nothing about infallibility or that only an infallible interpretation of Scripture would suffice for the confused Eunuch.
        -As you see, the Eunuch was from far away (Ethiopia), and he had apparently not been given a chance to hear about the teachings of the gospel message. Philip, who was at the right place at the right time by the power of the Holy Spirit, was given the opportunity to explain the passage from Isaiah 53. He was confused simply because he did not know who the prophet Isaiah was referring to (v.34). The gospel was not spread out back in the day, as it is today in our world. That is all this text is about. In short, this Acts 8:28-36 has nothing to do with infallible interpretations of Scripture or blind submission to a church hierarchy. 

  • No Prophecy Of Scripture Is Of Any Private Interpretation (2 Peter 1:20):
          -How can a person develop a biblical argument against the principle of Sola Scriptura by making a personal interpretation of a verse that supposedly condemns private interpretation of Scripture? 
         -How can a person rely on prophecy or compare Scripture to a "light" (v. 19), if they have been forbidden to use it (v. 20)?  
        -The context of 2 Peter 1:20-21 is not speaking of one's reading of Scripture, but rather, is about the origin of Scripture. No true prophecy was given to the prophet by his own interpretation. They all originated directly from God.
  • Twisting The Scriptures To Their Own Destruction (2 Peter 3:15-16)?:
          -First of all, this text only states that SOME things in Scripture are HARDER to understand than others. This does not mean that Scripture is impossible for the common person to understand or that we need an infallible interpreter of Scripture. It simply means that we need to pray and study harder. "Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth" (2 Timothy 2:15). 
          -There are copious Scripture passages testifying to its own perspicuous nature. 
          -This text says that people "twist the Scriptures to THEIR OWN destruction" (v. 16), which thereby indicates that foolish people are responsible for the consequences of endangering their spiritual health. 
           -2 Peter 3:15-16 is only speaking of the unfaithful and the unbelieving; not the humble and prayerful people.
           -Although the context of 2 Peter 3 would be a great place to introduce the concept of an "infallible interpreter" of the Bible, such is not mentioned at all. In fact, the Apostle Peter is absolutely silent about the idea of an infallible church hierarchy or an apostolic successor in his writings. 
  • Rome Openly Opposes The Idea Of Private Interpretation:
            - " . . . no one, relying on his own skill, shall,--in matters of faith, and of morals pertaining to the edification of Christian doctrine,--wresting the sacred Scripture to his own senses, presume to interpret the said sacred Scripture contrary to that sense which holy mother Church,--whose it is to judge of the true sense and interpretation of the holy Scriptures,--hath held and doth hold," (Trent, Session 4, "Decree Concerning the Edition, and the Use, of the Sacred Books")
  • The Church Of Rome Openly Denies That The Bible Alone Is A Sufficient Body Of Revelation And Claims To Provide Supplemental Oral Revelation :
          - “. . . the Church, to whom the transmission and interpretation of Revelation is entrusted, does not derive her certainty about all revealed truths from the Holy Scriptures alone. Both Scripture and Tradition must be accepted and honored with equal sentiments of devotion and reverence.” (CCC # 82)
            * What is the real reason for Rome being vehemently against the private interpretation of Scripture? Where does the Roman Catholic Church get its extra-biblical revelation from? After all, the first thing that every false teacher does is attack the sufficiency of Scripture. We neither have a clear definition of what constitutes "apostolic oral tradition" nor an official list of those incredibly rare ex-cathedra statements.
            *How can we know if the "infallible interpreter's" interpretation of Scripture is actually infallible? We cannot, but one thing can be said for certain: one's belief in the infallibility of an earthly entity is a fallible opinion. In other words, individuals who subscribe to the concept of an infallible church hierarchy are fallible themselves and are therefore liable to misunderstand or misinterpret the official teachings of their leaders. Guess what? Us "Bible-only" Christians have to endure the same challenges daily! In principle, neither side of the debate has an advantage over the other because they both have to use fallible reason to make a fallible personal interpretation of every revealed message. So what's the huge fuss against the private interpretation of Scripture that we constantly hear from Roman Catholics about?

Does Ezekiel 37:19 Prophecy The Coming Of The Book Of Mormon?

  • The Verse In Question:
          -"Say unto them, Thus saith the Lord God; Behold, I will take the stick of Joseph, which is in the hand of Ephraim, and the tribes of Israel his fellows, and will put them with him, even with the stick of Judah, and make them one stick, and they shall be one in mine hand" (Ezekiel 37:19).
  • How The Mormons Interpret The Verse:
            -"Ezekiel saw in vision the coming together of the stick of Judah, and the stick of Joseph, signifying the Bible and the Book of Mormon...The Nephites were then of the tribes of Joseph, and their record or 'stick' is as truly represented by the Book of Mormon as is the 'stick' of Judah by the Bible." (The Articles Of Faith, p. 276, by Talmage)
  • The Stick of Joseph And The Stick Of Judah Are Sticks, Not Scrolls:
           -The Hebrew word for stick is "aits", which means wooden stick or timber. The Hebrew word of scroll is "cepher", which is never used to mean scroll.
  • Additional Problems With The Mormon Interpretation Of Ezekiel 37:19:
            -The Book of Mormon was supposedly written on golden plates, not on a wooden scroll!
            -While Mormons see the Book of Mormon being recorded on the stick, the only thing that Ezekiel recorded onto the stick was the phrase, "For Joseph, the stick of Ephraim and all the house of Israel, his companions" (Ezekiel 37:16). That was all that God told Ezekiel to write on the stick. Therefore, Mormons are wrong when they assert that the Book of Mormon was what was written on the stick by the prophet.
  • What Ezekiel 37:19 Really Means:
           -In context, the people asked Ezekiel, ‘Wilt thou not show us what thou meanest by these?’ (Ezekiel 37:18). The joining of the two sticks represents the divided state of Israel (the northern kingdoms of Israel and the southern kingdoms which constitute the nation of Judah), which will eventually be united again (Ezekiel 37:21-22). In other words, the context is about the future restoration of Israel being under the kingship of the Lord Jesus Christ when He returns again. The two sticks do not in any way represent the union of two different books. Silly Mormons!