Daily Archives: February 24, 2014

Questions about Prayer: What Is a Prayer of Supplication?

 

We come to God in prayer for a variety of reasons—to worship Him, to confess our sins and ask for forgiveness, to thank Him for His blessings, to ask for things for ourselves, and/or to pray for the needs of others. The Hebrew and Greek words most often translated “supplication” in the Bible mean literally “a request or petition,” so a prayer of supplication is asking God for something. Unlike the prayer of petition, which is praying on behalf of others, the prayer of supplication is generally a request by and for the person praying.

The Bible includes many prayers of supplication. Numerous examples are found in the Psalms, for example. David’s psalms are filled with supplication for mercy in Psalm 4:1, for leading in Psalm 5:8, for deliverance in Psalm 6:4, salvation from persecution in Psalm 7:1, and so on. When Daniel learned that King Darius had issued an edict prohibiting prayer to any god but the king, Daniel continued to pray to God with prayers of thanksgiving as well as prayers of supplication for His help in this dire situation.

In the New Testament, Jesus tells us to ask for our daily bread in Matthew 6:11, which falls into the category of a prayer of supplication. In addition, in Luke 18:1–8, Jesus teaches us not to give up praying for what we need. In James, however, we find a balance: on the one hand we don’t receive because we don’t ask (James 4:2). On the other hand, we ask and don’t receive because we are thinking only of our fleshly desires (James 4:3). Perhaps the best way to approach supplications are to frankly ask God in all honesty as children talking to their kind-hearted Father, but ending with “Your will be done” (Matthew 26:39) in full surrender to His will.

After describing the need to take up the “full armor of God” (Ephesians 6:13–17), the apostle Paul exhorted the Ephesians (and us) to remain alert and to pray in the Spirit, “making supplication for all the saints” (Ephesians 6:18). Clearly, prayers of supplication are part of the spiritual battle all Christians are engaged in. Paul further exhorts the Philippian church to relieve their anxieties by remaining faithful in prayer, especially prayers of thanksgiving and supplication. This, he concludes, is the formula for ensuring that “the peace of God, which passes all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 4:6–7).

Here we see another crucial aspect of the prayer of supplication—the necessity of faith in the Lord Jesus Christ. Those who belong to Christ also have the indwelling Holy Spirit who is the one who intercedes on our behalf. Because we often don’t know what or how to pray when we approach God, the Spirit intercedes and prays for us, interpreting our supplications so that when we are oppressed and overwhelmed by trials and the cares of life, He comes alongside to lend assistance with our prayers of supplication as He sustains us before the throne of grace (Romans 8:26).[1]

 


[1] Got Questions Ministries. (2010). Got Questions? Bible Questions Answered. Bellingham, WA: Logos Bible Software.

Questions about Marriage: If a Man Has Multiple Wives and Becomes a Christian, What Is He Supposed to Do?

 

Since polygamy is frowned upon in most societies, this is not a question too many people think about. But there are still numerous places in the world where polygamy is accepted. Many Muslim countries allow polygamy. For a man to have multiple wives is somewhat common in several African nations. Even in the United States, there are some communities which endorse polygamy. However, virtually all Bible scholars agree that polygamy is not for Christians (see Why did God allow polygamy / bigamy in the Bible?). What, then, should a polygamist do if he places his faith in Jesus Christ and becomes a Christian?

Most people immediately give an answer like “He should divorce all of his wives but one.” While that seems to be an ethical solution, the situation is usually not quite that simple. For example, which wife does he keep? His first wife? His last wife? His favorite wife? The wife that has borne him the most children? And what about the wives he divorces? How do they provide for themselves? In most cultures that allow polygamy, a previously married woman has very little opportunity to provide for herself and even fewer possibilities of finding a new husband. And what happens to the children of these wives? The situation is often very complicated. There is rarely a simple solution.

We do not believe polygamy is something God approves of in this era. However, the Bible nowhere explicitly gives a “thou shalt not marry multiple wives” command. In the New Testament, a polygamist is ineligible for church leadership (1 Timothy 3:2, 12; Titus 1:6), but polygamy itself is not forbidden. Polygamy was not God’s original intent (Genesis 2:24; Ephesians 5:22–33), but it was also something He allowed (see the examples of Jacob, David, and Solomon). The closest the Bible comes to forbidding polygamy is Deuteronomy 17:17, which is properly understood as God’s command against a king of Israel taking many wives. It cannot be understood as a command that no man can ever take more than one wife.

So, if a man has multiple wives and becomes a Christian, what is he supposed to do? If polygamy is illegal where he lives, he should do whatever is necessary to submit to the law (Romans 13:1–7), while still providing for his wives and children. If polygamy is legal, but he is convicted that it is wrong, he should divorce all but one wife, but, again, he must not neglect providing for all of them and their children. They are his responsibility. If polygamy is legal and he has no conviction against it, he can remain married to each of his wives, treating each one with love, dignity, and respect. A man who makes this decision would be barred from church leadership, but it cannot be said that he is in explicit violation of any command in Scripture.[1]

 


[1] Got Questions Ministries. (2010). Got Questions? Bible Questions Answered. Bellingham, WA: Logos Bible Software.

Questions about Relationships: Is Missionary Dating a Good Idea? Can’t God Use It?

 

Missionary dating is the modern idea that a Christian can date a non-Christian with the goal of leading that person to faith in Christ. While God can use such relationships for evangelism, the Bible says our most important relationships should be with fellow believers.

One problem in evaluating missionary dating from a biblical perspective is that dating of any type was not widely practiced in biblical times. Most marriages were arranged. Yet, since dating is often seen today as a “pathway” leading to marriage, biblical principles for marriage can be applied to dating, the precursor of marriage.

The Bible teaches against marriage between a believer and an unbeliever. In 1 Corinthians 7:39, Paul says that a widow “is free to marry anyone she wishes, but he must belong to the Lord.” Paul’s stipulation that her spouse “belong to the Lord” is a clear directive to marry a Christian.

Paul also writes, “Do not be yoked together with unbelievers. For what do righteousness and wickedness have in common? Or what fellowship can light have with darkness?” (2 Corinthians 6:14). The principle here is that a close association with unbelievers often leads to compromised faith. Becoming romantically involved with an unbeliever is playing with fire. “Do not be misled: ‘Bad company corrupts good character’ ” (1 Corinthians 15:33).

What about those cases in which a Christian has dated a non-Christian, and the non-Christian did come to faith in Jesus? We praise the Lord for each conversion, but the fact that God has chosen to save someone who dated a Christian does not prove the wisdom of missionary dating in general or that it is a biblical practice. In truth, there are far more cases of missionary dating in which a Christian has lowered his standards or compromised her beliefs than in which someone was led to Christ. Despite the best of intentions, missionary dating remains a risky business, and there are far more effective forms of outreach.

The Bible does not speak explicitly regarding dating of any kind. However, since dating ultimately leads to marriage, we can glean some principles from what Scripture says of marriage. The indication is that believers should only date other believers.[1]


[1] Got Questions Ministries. (2010). Got Questions? Bible Questions Answered. Bellingham, WA: Logos Bible Software.

Miley Cyrus Demonic ‘Bangerz’ Tour Seeks To Indoctrinate Your Child

“Likewise also as it was in the days of Lot; they did eat, they drank, they bought, they sold, they planted, they builded; But the same day that Lot went out of Sodom it rained fire and brimstone from heaven, and destroyed them all.” Luke 17:28,29

The bible says that in the last days, homosexuality and all manner of perversion would be on open display as it was in the days of Lot where God destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah for their vile wickedness. Miley Cyrus and company are working overtime to teach your children that any love is good love, that any pleasure no matter how wicked should be indulged in, and that there is no right and wrong, only preference and personal opinion. And this doctrine of demons is rapidly spreading throughout all of Hollywood’s forms of media be they in motion picture, television, radio or internet.

We submit to you that those days, the days of Lot, have begun.

Yahoo News: The Los Angeles stop for Miley Cyrus’s “Bangerz” tour was bound to be eventful no matter what. It did, after all, commence with Miley making a grand entrance via a slide shaped like her giant tongue, and concluded with her getting frisky with an Abe Lincoln lookalike during “Party in the USA.” But thanks to a couple very special guests, Miley’s concert at L.A.’s Staples Center took the USA-partying to a whole new Hollywood level.

 

miley-cyrus-katie-perry-bangerz-tour-staples-center

Miley Cyrus kisses Katy Perry at the Staples Center [photo: @tylerrogers’s Instagram]

One of the highlights of Miley’s Saturday concert was her performance of the loved-up ballad “Adore,” during which she encouraged fans to make out for the jumbotron’s kiss-cam (“with lots of tongue — as you can imagine, tongue is appreciated on this tour”). But the most remarkable caught-on-camera smooch undoubtedly took place between Miley and her fellow pop princess Katy Perry, who appeared totally stunned when Miley leaned into the front row for a big kiss. source – Yahoo News 

The post Miley Cyrus Demonic ‘Bangerz’ Tour Seeks To Indoctrinate Your Child appeared first on Now The End Begins.

Guy Friendships and the Five T’s

Guy Friendships and the Five T's

 

 

Friendships with guys can be (let’s just be honest) awkward, confusing, hard, annoying, and so much more. I find that girls tend to do one of two things when it comes to guy friendships:

Revert to sarcasm, flirting, and more flirting.
Avoid guys like the plague and treat them as nearly non-existent.

Let me just say that I am not a fan of either of those options. I am a fan of treating Christian guys as brothers in Christ and interacting in a pure, fun, God-honoring way. I personally think guys are great. I have three brothers and love being around them. I have guy friends from church who I really enjoy spending time within group settings. I think guys add an awesome dimension to the world. How boring would life be if guys didn’t exist?

In the past, I’ve wondered how can I have pure, godly friendships with the opposite gender.

I’m excited to say that I have some great insight for you. I recently heard a message at my church that specifically talked about guy and girl friendships. My pastor gave us five specific areas in which we should evaluate our friendships with the opposite sex. Each of these different areas starts with a T making them easy to remember. You can go through these five T’s and ask yourself how your current guy interactions/friendships line up.

Here we go:

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What Does “Reformed” Mean?

From time to time Baptist (and other) friends ask me, “What does ‘Reformed’ mean, anyway?” They have come across a Baptist or Bible church that now styles itself “Reformed” or have heard someone describe a leader as having “gone Reformed,” and they’re finidng the term a bit confusing. The question doesn’t come to me from seminary graduates or church history majors. So here I offer an answer for the layman—especially the layman who grew up in some variant of independent Baptist.

What it is not

It may be helpful to begin with what “Reformed” is not. It is not one thing. Nowadays, even well informed people mean different things by the term. Still, because the last several decades have witnessed a revival of theological seriousness in parts of American Christianity, and because that revival has had much Reformed influence running through it, many have taken to using the term to mean nothing more than “theologically serious.” Some even seem to claiming the label just because it seems trendy.

There is a more or less correct definition of “Reformed,” to be sure. But if your goal is to know what people mean, you’ll have to accept the reality that there is no single, clear intent. Read more about What Does “Reformed” Mean?

The Law-Gospel Contrast

Reformedontheweb's Blog

by Tom Hicks

I submit that we need a clear understanding of the law/gospel contrast, if we want to be healthy in our preaching, churches, families, and individual sanctification. The law/gospel distinction is often misunderstood or overlooked, but it is thoroughly biblical and vital. Consider three different places in Scripture that teach the law/gospel contrast:

Galatians 4:22-26 says, “For it is written that Abraham had two sons, one by a slave woman and one by a free woman. But the son of the slave was born according to the flesh, while the son of the free woman was born through promise. Now this may be interpreted allegorically: these women are two covenants. One is from Mount Sinai, bearing children for slavery; she is Hagar. Now Hagar is Mount Sinai in Arabia; she corresponds to the present Jerusalem, for she is in slavery with her children. But the

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Twitter Theology That Makes Me Sigh

Zwinglius Redivivus

Rick Warren is at it again- peddling his false gospel:

sigh

Really Rick?  What you’re able to do, God wants you, WANTS you to do?  Because according to Scripture all you are ABLE to do is sin.  Any righteous act is a divine gift.  So, Rick, in your mind God wants you to sin.  That’s a perversion of the Gospel, Rick.  Stop defaming it.  Stop distorting it.  God isn’t about empowering you to be your best you (and you and Osteen share that perverse vision).  God doesn’t exist for you, you exist for God.  You anthropocentric heretic you.

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Thoughts on False Regeneration….

AbbasGirlMe

The “Evangelistic” Monstrosity of the Day

by A. W. Pink

“The of way salvation is falsely defined. In most instances the modern “evangelist” assures his congregation that all any sinner has to do in order to escape hell and make sure of heaven is to “receive Christ as his personal Savior.” But such teaching is utterly misleading. No one can receive Christ as his Savior while he rejects Him as Lord! It is true, the preacher adds, that the one who accepts Christ should also surrender to Him as Lord, but he at once spoils it by asserting that though the convert fails to do so, nevertheless heaven is sure to him. 
That is one of the devil’s lies! Only those who are spiritually blind would declare that Christ will save any who despise His authority and refuse His yoke: why, my reader, that would not be grace, but a…

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Outlines on Assurance of Salvation Series

The Domain for Truth

Assurance of Salvation Series

We have completed our weekly series of outlines on the topic of Assurance of Salvation.

It was a joy to search the Scriptures and work on this outline that I find helpful to encourage God’s people in counseling to encourage believers to find their assurance of salvation and bear more fruit, joy in Christ, etc.

Feel free to share this and use it for God’s Glory along with the encouragement of believers and evangelism of unbelievers!

Here are the outlines:

Theological Foundation

1.) Assurance of Salvation Part 1: Why study on the topic of Christian assurance?

2.)Assurance of Salvation Part 2: Foundation for Perseverance of the Saints

3.) Assurance of Salvation Part 3: Perseverance means a Believer Endure

4.) Assurance of Salvation Part 4: Objections to Perseverance of the Saints

5.) Assurance of Salvation Part 5: Christians can Know that they are saved

The Test of Assurance of A Christian’s Salvation

6.) Assurance of…

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Pope Francis And The Emerging One World Religion

Is Pope Francis taking steps that are laying the groundwork for the emergence of a one world religion? If that question sounds quite bizarre to you, I urge you to read the rest of this article. We live at a time when globalization is advancing rapidly. The global economy is more integrated than it has ever been before, and with each passing year new economic treaties tie us even more closely together. And “global governance” (as the elite like to call it) is also steadily gaining ground. Through a whole host of global institutions such as the United Nations, the World Bank, the IMF and the Bank for International Settlements, global governments are working together to a degree that is unprecedented. Well, what about religion? Is there evidence that we are also witnessing the globalization of religion? Well, yes there is. In fact, it appears that Pope Francis intends to lead the way.

(Read More…)

10 Stories From The Cold, Hard Streets Of America That Will Break Your Heart

If the economy is really “getting better”, then why have millions upon millions of formerly middle class Americans been pushed to the point of utter despair? The stories that you are about to read are absolutely heartbreaking. I don’t know how anyone can read them without getting chills. In America today, if you lose a good job, there is a good chance that you will get back on your feet before too long. But there is also a good chance that you won’t be able to find a decent job and will plunge into the abyss of depression and desperation that so many millions of other Americans have fallen into. As I wrote about earlier this month, the U.S. economy is definitely not getting any better. For example, if you assume that the percentage of Americans that want to work is about at the long term average, then the official unemployment rate in the United States would be above 11 percent. And compared to six years ago, 1,154,000 fewer Americans are working today even though our population has gotten significantly larger since then. Behind all of these numbers are real flesh and blood people, and you are about to hear from some of them. The following are 10 stories from the cold, hard streets of America that will break your heart… (Read More….)

To you I lift up my eyes, O you who are enthroned in the heavens! Behold, as the eyes of servants look to the hand of their master, as the eyes of a maidservant to the hand of her mistress, so our eyes look to the Lord our God, till he has mercy upon us.

Possessing the Treasure

by Mike Ratliff

1 To you I lift up my eyes,
O you who are enthroned in the heavens!
2 Behold, as the eyes of servants
look to the hand of their master,
as the eyes of a maidservant
to the hand of her mistress,
so our eyes look to the Lord our God,
till he has mercy upon us.
3 Have mercy upon us, O Lord, have mercy upon us,
for we have had more than enough of contempt.
4 Our soul has had more than enough
of the scorn of those who are at ease,
of the contempt of the proud.
(Psalms 123:1-4 ESV)

The vast majority of people on planet Earth want nothing to do with the real Jesus. Many love and hold dear “another Jesus,” but he is one made up by people who don’t know the one who is real. Also their Jesus is “different”…

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