Call-In Classic Christianity Radio – Bob George P445 (5-31-19)
Tony asked for understanding of a conversation he had with people who believed that the apostle Paul was the only person with the mystery of the gospel. Bob instructed him to stay away from such erroneous teaching and rely on the Spirit to teach you and trust Him to complete the work he started in you. Think about Ephesians 3:5 and 2 Timothy 3:16 for example. Bob then answered his question about priesthood and ambassadors. Those in Christ Jesus are ambassadors for Christ, since our citizenship is in heaven, representatives of God on earth and our priestly function, with the Spirit living in us, is to represent Christ to the lost and the lost to Christ. Aaron got into a conversation with Bob, agreeing that scare tactics is not an effective way of evangelizing. Bob addressed that the heart of the gospel is the resurrection. Bob personally addresses the person’s need of new life first, and if the person then does not accept or agree, then it would be fine to address the matter of their being on their way to hell in unbelief, but he would not start there. Ed called to ask about how to pray so as not to be begging him for things. Bob said that listening to God is the key to growing in faith. Faith comes by hearing and hearing by the word of God. For when you are listening to him, you get to know the character of God and his will, and then the things you speak to him about are in accordance with his will, things above and not of earth. That is why we have two ears and one mouth. The attitude of faith is to trust God in whatever happens. Our attitude to God is like this, “You know what my desire is but that is not the issue. The issue is what is your will”. Bob says there is very little he asks of the Lord. Daniel asked what it means to walk in the Spirit. To walk in the Spirit is to walk by truth and in grace. Daniel then asked how do you walk in the Spirit after you blew it. Bob explained that as a new creation in Christ, a child of God, God is not dealing with your sins, having already taken them away before you were even saved, but he is dealing with you as a father to a loving child, disciplining you, instructing and correcting your thinking. The root of all sin, the why you sin, is you stopped trusting God and starting believing a lie of Satan.
Tony from Pittsburg, PA
Is the book of Peter written to us Christians today?
Peter was an apostle to the Jews and Paul was an apostle to the Gentiles. Yet the most logical person to be an apostle to Jews would be Paul due to all his knowledge of Judaism, being trained under Gamaliel.
Then Paul said: 3 “I am a Jew, born in Tarsus of Cilicia, but brought up in this city. I studied under Gamaliel and was thoroughly trained in the law of our ancestors.
4 If someone else thinks they have reasons to put confidence in the flesh, I have more: 5 circumcised on the eighth day, of the people of Israel, of the tribe of Benjamin, a Hebrew of Hebrews; in regard to the law, a Pharisee; 6 as for zeal, persecuting the church; as for righteousness based on the law, faultless. 7 But whatever were gains to me I now consider loss for the sake of Christ. 8 What is more, I consider everything a loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whose sake I have lost all things. I consider them garbage, that I may gain Christ 9 and be found in him, not having a righteousness of my own that comes from the law, but that which is through faith in Christ—the righteousness that comes from God on the basis of faith.
Yet God chose Peter, an uneducated fisherman, to be an apostle to the Jews and Paul to preach to the ignorant Gentiles. God does not want us to lean on our own understanding and lean on him. Even Paul considered all his training as worthless compared to instruction from the Lord, by which he came to understand the meaning of righteousness by faith.
Peter would be writing to the Jews but what he wrote is still applicable to the Gentiles. Jews and Gentiles are saved the same way, as one reads from Ephesians.
When they saw the courage of Peter and John and realized that they were unschooled, ordinary men, they were astonished and they took note that these men had been with Jesus.
What is common between Paul and Peter is they had been with Jesus and were taught of the Lord, and that is what matters, truth revealed to them by the Spirit of God.
1 Peter 2:9-12
9 But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God’s special possession, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light. 10 Once you were not a people, but now you are the people of God; once you had not received mercy, but now you have received mercy. 11 Dear friends, I urge you, as foreigners and exiles, to abstain from sinful desires, which wage war against your soul. 12 Live such good lives among the pagans that, though they accuse you of doing wrong, they may see your good deeds and glorify God on the day he visits us.
Tony asked, “So Peter writes that we obtain mercy. Is that the Gentile?” Mercy is for both Jew and Gentile.
Tony then asked, “What is the difference between an ambassador and a priest?”
Peter is addressing a Jewish audience, for when he refers to a holy nation, he is referring to the nation of Israel, and the pagans, that is in reference to the Gentiles. But the spiritual truth applicable here is that anyone without the Holy Spirit, who is not born again, is really a pagan, and those who are born again have become a royal priesthood.
Every high priest is selected from among the people and is appointed to represent the people in matters related to God, to offer gifts and sacrifices for sins.
In the same way, Christ did not take on himself the glory of becoming a high priest. But God said to him, “You are my Son; today I have become your Father.”
23 Now there have been many of those priests, since death prevented them from continuing in office; 24 but because Jesus lives forever, he has a permanent priesthood. 25 Therefore he is able to save completely those who come to God through him, because he always lives to intercede for the
The job of a priest is to represent man to God. Christ Jesus is our high priest. Each and ever one of us, having the Spirit of God living in them, has a priesthood of being able to represent people to God. That is, you and I can go to the lost world and tell them about how they can know God. That is the position as a priesthood.
2 Corinthians 5:20
We are therefore Christ’s ambassadors, as though God were making his appeal through us. We implore you on Christ’s behalf: Be reconciled to God.
Being an ambassador means that is our job. We are in the world but not of the world. We are aliens and strangers in this world, as Peter urged us to live because our citizenship is in heaven. We are to be an ambassador to be as a representative of God here on this earth, to represent the kingdom of God to a fallen world and as a priesthood to represent Christ to the lost and the lost to Christ.
So Peter talks about being called out of darkness into his marvelous light. The apostle Paul does too.
13 For he has rescued us from the dominion of darkness and brought us into the kingdom of the Son he loves, 14 in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.
Tony then repeated what he heard his friend say, “You cannot go to Peter, you have to go to Paul, that is for us.” Bob said that person is a “Paul only” person and that is crazy stuff. Those “Paul only” people are discounting other writers, saying they know more about what should be in the canon than those who originally put the canon together.
2 Timothy 3:16
All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness,
They took Paul as an ambassador and erroneously said that he alone was given the true message of salvation. What they have forgotten is that in Ephesians 3:5, this mystery was made know to the apostles and to the prophets.
which was not made known to people in other generations as it has now been revealed by the Spirit to God’s holy apostles and prophets.
That knocks out their deal that it was only to Paul. So not given only to Paul. Paul was to administrate the mystery to the body of Christ same way as the Jews were. The mystery was made known to the apostles and the prophets. Paul came to fully explain it but it was not given only to him. Paul was given the responsibility to proclaim it but was not given only to him.
That “Paul-only” thinking is dead wrong since God revealed truth to all these others as well, including Matthew, Mark, Luke, John, and that is why we have the canon today.
Then Tony said that he took me to Galatians 2:7, that it was unto the Gentiles and then uncircumcision is what Peter went to.
7 On the contrary, they recognized that I had been entrusted with the task of preaching the gospel to the uncircumcised, just as Peter had been to the circumcised.
Here again that was the basic audience Paul took the message of the gospel to. That does not mean Peter never preached to a Gentile or Paul never preached the gospel to the Jews. Recall Peter bringing the gospel to Cornelius’s house, who were Gentiles. But the main mission for Peter was to preach to the Jews and the main mission of Paul was to preach to the Gentiles. Some claim Peter was martyred in Rome but no evidence of that and that is pure speculation.
When start talking about “Paul-only”, that is nonsense. They are divisive in this area that divides the body unnecessarily. Many of them have a great understanding of law and grace and the gospel but they are in error on this area. Why are the rest of these writers in the bible? No one could write scriptures except an apostle or a commiserate to an apostle, someone who had been with Christ from the beginning. It is a way of dividing the body that is unnecessary. Let the word of God teach you and stay away from people who are trying to drag you away into something else. Just rely on the fact that God is able to teach you and will finish the work he began in you.
But the Advocate, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you.
being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.
Aaron from Coryville, CA
He heard a message by Bob talking to a previous caller on the subject of scare tactics in evangelism. He is opposed to scare tactics, characterized as such. He called to share his thinking on the subject. He said that a distinction needs to be made. He said he observed in Acts, that not one of them mentions the love of God but all of them take special note of the spiritual condition in relation to God as being dead and need of salvation and facing judgment. He said, “The message of the apostles, while may not be teaching hell, fire and brimstone, did incorporate some element of that in the presentation.”
Bob then responded. The distinction is telling people they are dead spiritually. That is an absolute must in salvation. If I do not know I am dead, why would I ever turn to the resurrected life of Christ Jesus any more than if I did not know that I was a sinner, why would I turn to Christ for his forgiveness? So telling someone he is dead in sins and in uncircumcision of his sinful nature is the dynamic of solid evangelism.
When you were dead in your sins and in the uncircumcision of your flesh, God made you alive with Christ. He forgave us all our sins
We were talking about something different than that, and that is this using scare tactics. We are called the bride of Christ. How would you like to be told if did not marry your wife you would go to hell? What kind of real motivation to be married would that be? People can use all kinds of things and God can use tactics. I do not want to go out with a tactic, a personal thing said Bob. I do not want to go out with a message of saying “you are going to hell”, because the issue is I can tell you how to get to heaven. But if someone does not accept or believe the way to heaven, then you can tell the person the opposite of that. If you do not go to heaven then the opposite is going to hell. If there is a heaven, then there is a hell. You will remain separated from God forever and if that needs to be mentioned then that’s fine, but that should not be the focal point of a full gospel presentation. Daniel asked what it means to walk in the Spirit. Walking in the Spirit is walking by truth and in grace. Daniel then asked how we walk after we blew it. Bob explained how as a new creation in Christ, and having taken all your sins away already before you were even saved, he is not dealing with sins anymore, but he is dealing with you as a child of God who needs discipline or correction in thinking as a father to a loving child. Root of sin is not trusting God.
2 Thessalonians 1:8-9
8 He will punish those who do not know God and do not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus. 9 They will be punished with everlasting destruction and shut out from the presence of the Lord and from the glory of his might
Aaron said, “The moral culpability of us all, man is cut off from a relationship with God, is the heart of the gospel”. Bob said, “Actually the heart of the gospel is the resurrection. As Paul wrote, without the resurrection we are to be pitied of all men.
1 Corinthians 15:14-19
14 And if Christ has not been raised, our preaching is useless and so is your faith. 15 More than that, we are then found to be false witnesses about God, for we have testified about God that he raised Christ from the dead. But he did not raise him if in fact the dead are not raised. 16 For if the dead are not raised, then Christ has not been raised either. 17 And if Christ has not been raised, your faith is futile; you are still in your sins. 18 Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ are lost. 19 If only for this life we have hope in Christ, we are of all people most to be pitied.
The focal point of the gospel message is you are dead. That is a worse problem than sin. We, the religious world, have stopped short in the gospel presentation where people come forward to accept or get forgiveness. But that is not what God has revealed through the scriptures.
For if, while we were God’s enemies, we were reconciled to him through the death of his Son, how much more, having been reconciled, shall we be saved through his life!
We were reconciled to God when we were lost. How much more shall we be saved through his life. What we are saved from is the consequences of sin, which is death, by the gift of God, which is eternal life.
For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.
We have stopped at the cross instead of going onto the resurrection, despite the fact Paul said that without the resurrection we are to be pitied of all people, knowing full well that a cross had occurred where Jesus took away the sins of the entire world, but also knowing that forgiveness provided then is only received in the resurrected life of Christ Jesus. You have to put in the whole package, the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ.
1 Corinthians 15:1-4
1 Now, brothers and sisters, I want to remind you of the gospel I preached to you, which you received and on which you have taken your stand.
2 By this gospel you are saved, if you hold firmly to the word I preached to you. Otherwise, you have believed in vain.
3 For what I received I passed on to you as of first importance: that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures,
4 that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures,
Ed from Lakewood, CO
Ed asked about prayer. He said he went to work asking for safety for his family. He said, “God does not have afflictions that I have, cataracts or short term memory, so I wonder if I should be bugging him all the time?”
God gave us two ears and one mouth. God wants us to use that properly. Man was created for the purpose to be available to the living God. He wants us to do more listening than talking. We listen to God through the word of God.
Consequently, faith comes from hearing the message, and the message is heard through the word about Christ.
Faith comes by hearing the word of God. Faith is not increased by praying but by hearing. Since people are lazy and do not want to study the word of God, they do not grow. So the Berean Jews spent time studying the word of God to see if what Paul said was so and Mary spent time listening to God.
Now the Berean Jews were of more noble character than those in Thessalonica, for they received the message with great eagerness and examined the Scriptures every day to see if what Paul said was true
38 As Jesus and his disciples were on their way, he came to a village where a woman named Martha opened her home to him. 39 She had a sister called Mary, who sat at the Lord’s feet listening to what he said. 40 But Martha was distracted by all the preparations that had to be made. She came to him and asked, “Lord, don’t you care that my sister has left me to do the work by myself? Tell her to help me!”
So the things we talk to God are from the things we heard from God. I have come to understand the heart of God, the mercy of God, when I am sitting, listening at his feet. Our thinking would be a reflection of our time spent with God listening to God, gaining more understanding of his character. Our prayer should be not in getting prayers answered but in seeing God’s will be done. So we say to God, “I do not know your will in this situation but I want to know your will. It is my desire for my father or mother but it is not my will I am concerned with but your will. And whatever happens I will praise you for that”. When we are talking to God, we are talking to a perfectly loving and just God. We can trust Him with that truth. Bob says that there is very little he asks of the Lord. Bob says, “Sometimes I ask God for wisdom and He is my wisdom.” God says to Bob and to us, “I am your wisdom, so trust me”. What God is looking for is an attitude of faith. So the attitude of faith is to trust God in whatever happens. Our attitude to God is like this, “You know what my desire is but that is not the issue. The issue is what is your will”.
Daniel from Denver, CO
Daniel asked, “What does it mean to walk in the Spirit?”
To walk in the Spirit is to walk by faith and to walk in grace. Jesus is full of grace and truth.
The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the one and only Son, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.
When walking in the Spirit, walking in truth as revealed by the word of God and you will be walking in grace. You will be walking in grace and truth. Jesus is full of grace and truth. When praying in the flesh, you are asking for things. When praying in the Spirit, you are thanking and praising God, thanking him for things he taught you. The key question is, “Where do you have your mind, on things of earth or spiritual things?”
1 Since, then, you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts on things above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. 2 Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things. 3 For you died, and your life is now hidden with Christ in God.
Daniel then asks, “Say you have made mistakes, so when walking in the Spirit, do you ignore those?”
Walking in the Spirit, whatever you have done, is walking in truth. Your sins were placed on the back of God never to see them again.
2 Corinthians 5:19
19 that God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ, not counting people’s sins against them.
When Jesus went to the cross, he came not to cover your sins but to take them away. If I am to walk by faith, then I walk by faith in that truth. There was also the consequences of sin called death. That is what has to be corrected by his death and through his resurrected life. He came to correct the consequences of sin, which is death, by the offer of his resurrected life. When come to Jesus, I come to him for life.
Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.
25 Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. The one who believes in me will live, even though they die; 26 and whoever lives by believing in me will never die. Do you believe this?” 27 “Yes, Lord,” she replied, “I believe that you are the Messiah, the Son of God, who is to come into the world.”
So if Jesus asked you the same question, “Do you believe this?”, how would you answer? Walking by faith is saying “yes”. Now God is dealing with you on the basis of new life, a new creature. That new creature, he reasons with you as a father to a loving child.
2 Corinthians 5:17
Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here!
12 Yet to all who did receive him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God— 13 children born not of natural descent, nor of human decision or a husband’s will, but born of God.
When you blow it, God is saying, “Daniel, that sin was placed behind my back never to be seen again”. Now God is dealing with you as His child. God asks you, “Is what you have been thinking and doing consistent with who you are as a child of God?” We say, “No.”. Then we say to God, “What do you want me to do?” God says, “Well, I want yo to change your mind. I want you to realize that you began to believe a lie instead of resting in my truth.” The root of every sin we commit is that we stopped believing the truth and started believing the lie of Satan. In religion, you are only dealing with outward observations but not into the heart of the matter. You are only dealing with what you did but never why you did it. God says, “I know what you did, so now let us get down to why you did it?” It is always because you stopped trusting. When we walk by faith we walk trusting truth and trusting the grace of God.
everything that does not come from faith is sin.
Doubting the character and nature of God and listening to the lie of Satan is how sin entered the world in the first place. We were meant to depend on the Spirit of God in a loving relationship and not on our own understanding, deciding for ourselves what is right and wrong, good and evil.
but you must not eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, for when you eat from it you will certainly die.”