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Introduction to Personal Bible Study - Videos (2007)

4 short introductory video studies First recorded in 2007, posted to GodTube in 2010  These short videos were made nearly 14 years ago. ...

Saturday, September 3, 2022

People Are Free to Believe Whatever They Want

There is one body, and one Spirit, even as ye are called in one hope of your calling

-Ephesians 4:4

In the Post-Acts age (the current age), there is One Body and the middle wall of partition between Jew and Gentile has been taken away (Ephesians), but that wall was clearly still up in the synoptic Gospels and in the Acts age. There are differences in conditions and commands all through scripture. You do not have to acknowledge the differences, but if you don't, you must explain (to yourself) any inconsistencies in the biblical commands and conditions revealed. 

If you read the vast majority of scripture, including the gospels and the Acts age, there certainly was an enormous gulf fixed between the hope of Israel and the hope of Gentiles in God's plan and communication. From Adam, the gift of resurrection Life has always been by grace through faith, but that does not mean all people in all ages from all nations had the same hope. In a future age, the Kingdom will be restored to believing Israel (Acts 1:6, Acts 3; etc.). That is not my hope and that hope was forbidden by Christ himself to be preached to anyone but to Israelites (Matthew 10).

There are earthly hopes and a hope in the far above the heavens. There are hopes given SINCE or FROM the foundation of ages and a hope hidden from BEFORE the foundation of the ages. We must mark the differences that scripture marks. If someone wants to believe these are all the same hope, good luck. Feel free to do so. If some think Matt 5 and Matt 10 and Mark 16 and Acts 3 and Acts 15 and Acts 21 and Acts (etc.) are for them, good luck. Have at it. But if one believes these are for and to him, he is bound to obey it. He is bound to reconcile the practices, conditions, and commands in these passages with his personal faith.

As late as Acts 26 Paul testified, "Having therefore obtained help of God, I continue unto this day, witnessing both to small and great, saying none other things than those which the prophets and Moses did say should come." NONE. Yet Ephesians speaks of a truth hidden from the prophets from before the foundation of the ages and revealed to Paul alone. Again... if people want to mash it all together, good luck. I say, feel free to try and practice ALL these things together. No skin off my nose.

People are free to pretend they take all scripture for themselves, but they clearly don't (and that is easily demonstrated). I'm not here to convince anyone. If somebody thinks all the commands and conditions of scripture are for all people of all ages, have at it. Clearly some practices and commands contradict others (if we assume all scripture is to all people). But I am not the judge of another man's servant. But, please, if you're going to claim that ALL scripture is to you and for you, then you're going to have to explain some things.

Here's an easy one... BIBLE COMMAND: build a boat of gopher wood, with one door, and pitch it in and out with pitch because a worldwide flood is coming. BIBLE COMMAND! Good luck. Not to me. How do I know? No flood coming. Commands and conditions do not apply in this age. Does the one who claims ALL of scripture is TO him believe he should build an ark for a coming judgment of a worldwide flood? I've never met anyone building an ark, but I've met a lot of people who claim I'm "tearing out parts of the Bible" because I do not believe all of it is spoken TO me.

Do these folks take a sacrifice to Jerusalem for the Feasts? Why not? Do they perform miracles? Do they avoid the Tree of Knowledge? Do they walk around naked? Do they preach to Jews that God will restore all things if they repent? Do they give only gentile believers "four necessary things" to obey? Do they start their preaching in Jerusalem? Do they only speak that which Moses and the Prophets promised? Do they warn gentile believers they will be cut off from Israel if they become haughty against that root? Etc... 

They're the ones denying the scriptures they claim for themselves.

Even Mark 16 should be a clue that conditions have changed since the gospel/Acts age (and that's mild compared to the myriads of other commands and practices of scripture). But, again, folks are free to try and "obey" everything they read. Good luck!

If you acknowledge that, at least to one degree or another, that not every condition and command in the Bible applies directly to you, you'll be happy to know there is a theological word for that. It starts with a "Dis" and ends with "pensationalism."

Dispensationalism. Simply the belief that we must rightly handle the Word of God according to the context (2 Tim 2:15) and mark things that differ (Phil 1:10).

Consequently they know little or nothing of other callings and imagine that God's plans revolve solely around themselves. This is a species of slavery to self that we all need to be delivered from.

-Stuart Allen

Michael's Podcast: The Red Letter Christians Don't Read All the Red Letters