Call-In Classic Christianity Radio – Bob George P525 (04-02-20)
These are the common questions that people ask today when people do not understand the grace of God, the finality of the cross and being made complete in Christ. People have called in because they are burdened down by what they have been taught as far as what they should be doing as a Christian. Many are taught they should tithe for they have heard they would be robbing God if they do not or that they would be missing out on a blessing. Others are incorrectly taught that they must confess their sins, or repent of their sins before God, as in Revelation 2 or 1 John 1:9, when they sin, due to a faulty understanding of what repentance is and what it means to live under the grace of God as a child of God. Others are incorrectly taught that you must only take of the Lord’s supper in a worthy manner, and to eat only until you have confessed your sins to God. Others are told you must get busy for Jesus, not knowing what it means to rest in Christ and abide in Him. Others are so bogged down with past sins, focusing on sin, rather than focusing on the life God has given. We are to be transformed by the renewing of our mind so we can walk in the new life God has given.
What does the scripture teach concerning giving under a New Covenant, the covenant we live under today? The book of 2 Corinthians explains that to us, to give to the Lord first, from the heart, cheerfully, willingly, not under compulsion, in accordance with what you do have and not in accordance with what you do not have. There is no mention of the tithe at all in the New Covenant. It is not for us today.
Can we please God by what we do, or is it our faith that pleases God, where the works that are done are by allowing God to live His life in us and through us? Yet, so many have difficulty grasping this concept. The just shall live by faith. Just as you received Christ by faith, continue to walk in Him by that same faith. It is not about what you are doing but about what God is doing in and through you. God initiates His love to us, and we love because He first loved us. Love is a fruit of the Spirit (Galatians 5:22-23). We cannot produce it. As in the parable of the vine and the branches in John 15, we abide in the vine, and the vine produces the fruit that then is borne on the branches. The branch is not groaning in its own energy to produce fruit. Apart from Him we can do nothing.
Rest in the finality of the cross. Realize you have been made complete in Christ. Realize you are a member of the body of Christ. There is no more forgiveness to be executed on our behalf. Jesus cried out on the cross, “It is finished” (John 16:9), because it is finished. He took away the sins of the entire world, so it is not acting in faith when you ask him to do something he has already done.
It is when you sin against a brother or sister in Christ, such as eating up all the food at the Lord’s super, that you need to make it right with him or her. That is why you are sick, because you ate too much. That is why leaders in a church, or fellow brothers in Christ are judging you. Your actions are judged, not your motives. You are being disciplined of the Lord so you are not judged by the world. We forgive others as Christ has forgiven us. And we appeal to your identity in Christ. Are you in Christ, then what are you doing hurting your own body? If you steal, then steal no longer.
So what does the Lord’s supper represent? The picture of the Lord’s supper is a single loaf of bread representing the singleness of Jesus Christ when he was here on this earth. When you were to look for the body of Christ 2000 years ago, you would have to go to Israel to see Jesus of Nazareth and there you would find the body of Christ. But he said, “this body of mine is going away and when I do go away, I do so, so I can send my Spirit to live in you, and you are going to be my body.” This is a picture of that event. The body is here, you can see it, but it will be broken for you. Now take and eat. What is the eating from the single loaf of bread represent? It is the day you became a part of the body of Christ, Christ indwelling you and placing you into his body. It is a picture of that event taking place. As you pass the bread, and you watch a person take it, it is a picture the day they received Christ Jesus in their heart and became a member of the one body.
So celebrate what God did for you, thanking Him for having already taken your sins away, that before you were even born, when he shed his blood on the cross. Thank Him for the finality of the cross. There is now no condemnation for those in Christ Jesus. Praise Him for the new life He has given you, through His resurrection, where the Holy Spirit was permanently placed in you, when you believed in Him and put your trust in Him. Praise Him for making you a child of God, a member of the body of Christ. You are a forgiven person, and have been made complete in Christ.
Bill from Cincinnati, Ohio
Bill: My wife and I were about to join a church. The minister is a godly, sincere as he can be. He said, “You give what you can give but eventually give the tithe and then eventually more.” I told my wife that I cannot accept that. I do not have a problem with giving. It is a joy to give when I do have the money. I know God is not calling me to give a tenth. If I gave a tenth now then I know I could not pay my bills. I thought I should tell my pastor that and maybe that will cost me becoming member of the church, and that is okay.
Bob: In regard to giving, you go to 2 Corinthians, chapters 8 and 9, and you will see free will giving. You have seven major points that Paul points out in those two chapters as to the attitude of giving.
2 Corinthians 8:1-5
1 And now, brothers and sisters, we want you to know about the grace that God has given the Macedonian churches. 2 In the midst of a very severe trial, their overflowing joy and their extreme poverty welled up in rich generosity. 3 For I testify that they gave as much as they were able, and even beyond their ability. Entirely on their own, 4 they urgently pleaded with us for the privilege of sharing in this service to the Lord’s people. 5 And they exceeded our expectations: They gave themselves first of all to the Lord, and then by the will of God also to us. 6 So we urged Titus, just as he had earlier made a beginning, to bring also to completion this act of grace on your part. 7 But since you excel in everything – in faith, in speech, in knowledge, in complete earnestness and in the love we have kindled in you – see that you also excel in this grace of giving.
Bob: First, you give yourself to the Lord, then to us, in keeping with God’s will (2 Corinthians 8:5). Then it says to excel in the grace of giving (2 Corinthians 8:7). It does not say anything about the law of tithing, but to excel in the grace of giving.
2 Corinthians 8:10-12
10 And here is my judgment about what is best for you in this matter. Last year you were the first not only to give but also to have the desire to do so. 11 Now finish the work, so that your eager willingness to do it may be matched by your completion of it, according to your means. 12 For if the willingness is there, the gift is acceptable according to what one has, not according to what one does not have.
2 Corinthians 9:5
5 So I thought it necessary to urge the brothers to visit you in advance and finish the arrangements for the generous gift you had promised. Then it will be ready as a generous gift, not as one grudgingly given
2 Corinthians 9:7
7 Each of you should give what you have decided in your heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver.
Bob: Give freely and willingly, with an eager willingness to do the work of the Lord. It says the gift is acceptable in accordance to what one has, not in accordance with what he does not have (2 Corinthians 8:12). That takes care of your problem. You are to give hilariously, joyfully, enthusiastically (2 Corinthians 9:7). It talks about giving a generous gift, not to give grudgingly (2 Corinthians 9:5). Each man should give what he has decided in his heart, not what some pastor has decided you to give, not what some law decided for you to give, but what you decided in your heart to give, and not begrudgingly or under compulsion for God loves a cheerful giver (2 Corinthians 9:7).
Bob: We have dragged tithing over. A gentleman today in a bible study said, “We have to give the first fruits, otherwise God will not accept that offering.” That is so nonsensical. He said, “You give off the top brother.” I almost threw up. He continued to say, “How are you going to get blessed, on the gross or the net?” This issue to me is something troubling. We have been kicked off radio programs for teaching what we teach! Why do you people not study the bible instead of kicking people off the air for preaching by truth?
Bob: Instead of going to tithing, realize it is not there. Yet pastors keep teaching it? I will tell you why. They are afraid of losing money. They fear leaving that in the hands of people, to excel in giving, joyfully, in accordance with what do have, not what you do not have. They are scared to death of losing money, so they keep them under the law, and the law of tithing.
Bob: Tithing has nothing to do with the New Covenant. It is not in there. Not one place will you find tithing in the New Covenant. New Covenant went into effect at the death of Christ Jesus, and not one word about tithing. What there is, is two chapters devoted to free will giving. Would anybody with a brain figure out that if Paul devoted two chapters on how to give, and tithing not mentioned, that maybe that was under the Old Covenant and we are under the new? We should not be co-mingling the two as Galatians did.
1 You foolish Galatians! Who has bewitched you? Before your very eyes Jesus Christ was clearly portrayed as crucified. 2 I would like to learn just one thing from you: Did you receive the Spirit by the works of the law, or by believing what you heard? 3 Are you so foolish? After beginning by means of the Spirit, are you now trying to finish by means of the flesh?
Bob: The thing God is not going to do is accept your gift. Who are we to decide who God accepts their gift? It is not how much but to whom. Do you really think God will bless your gift if you give to Benny Hinn, and other false teachers? That is like giving to the Jehovah Witnesses because I must tithe to them. Do you think God will accept that? It is not how much, but to whom you are giving. I would not give a dime to a legalist church, much less tithe. I am not giving to church to build better places for me to be incarcerated. I am going to give where the grace of God is being taught. I have given my life to that and will continue to do so. I would not give a dime to legalistic church. It is not how much, but to whom. If I can get preoccupied with how much, then I can keep them away from to whom. It is to who are you giving to, not how much.
Bill: I totally understand that. I have joy giving to the Lord. I wish I had more to give but I don’t. I am not aware of any church that holds to teachings I have found since I have come to know your ministry about seven weeks ago. It is a tremendous blessing. It has changed my whole perception of God’s word. It is frustrating.
Bob: Yes it is. We have it all over the United States. The Christian world is in sad shape. We are either co-mingling law and grace, or trying to hold onto the law and hold onto grace at the same time. It is like going to walk on both sides of the street at the same time. If is is grace, then it is no longer law.
14 For sin shall no longer be your master, because you are not under the law, but under grace.
6 And if by grace, then it cannot be based on works; if it were, grace would no longer be grace.
Bob: We have got to let go of the law and let go of the Old Covenant in order to walk in the newness of life, being led and directed by the Holy Spirit of God, who indwells believers.
Bill: When you have the Lord’s supper, where some are getting drunk. He talked about how we are sinning against the body and blood of the Lord. Can you explain that also?
1 Corinthians 11:27-32
27 So then, whoever eats the bread or drinks the cup of the Lord in an unworthy manner will be guilty of sinning against the body and blood of the Lord. 28 Everyone ought to examine themselves before they eat of the bread and drink from the cup. 29 For those who eat and drink without discerning the body of Christ eat and drink judgment on themselves. 30 That is why many among you are weak and sick, and a number of you have fallen asleep. 31 But if we were more discerning with regard to ourselves, we would not come under such judgment. 32 Nevertheless, when we are judged in this way by the Lord, we are being disciplined so that we will not be finally condemned with the world.
Bob: The Lord’s prayer is people eating up all food before the rest of the body came and drank up all the wine and got drunk. They missed the whole point of what the Lord wanted us to see in the Lord’s supper. It was not talking about forgiveness. It was talking about taking the Lord’s supper in an unworthy manner. I do not know any doctrine that has been more perverted than taking of the Lord’s supper. I cannot believe the way in which I was taught to take the Lord’s supper. I found out everyone else taught the same way. The lights dim, the organ played “Just as I am”, and tried to get all of the unconfessed sin out of our lives so we do not eat and drink condemnation on ourselves. That is nonsense.
1 Corinthians 11:17-22
17 In the following directives I have no praise for you, for your meetings do more harm than good. 18 In the first place, I hear that when you come together as a church, there are divisions among you, and to some extent I believe it. 19 No doubt there have to be differences among you to show which of you have God’s approval. 20 So then, when you come together, it is not the Lord’s Supper you eat, 21 for when you are eating, some of you go ahead with your own private suppers. As a result, one person remains hungry and another gets drunk. 22 Don’t you have homes to eat and drink in? Or do you despise the church of God by humiliating those who have nothing? What shall I say to you? Shall I praise you? Certainly not in this matter!
Bob: That passage is not talking about that any more than flying to the moon. It is talking about the Corinthians taking the Lord’s supper in an unworthy manner by eating all the food and drinking all the wine before the rest of the body shows up.
1 Corinthians 11:33-34
33 So then, my brothers and sisters, when you gather to eat, you should all eat together. 34 Anyone who is hungry should eat something at home, so that when you meet together it may not result in judgment.
And when I come I will give further directions.
Bob: So the poor show up while we are drunk and happy. Why do you not have homes to eat and drink in? Paul said he is not going to comment on that. You are paying no attention to the body of Christ. Examine yourself. Are you a pig and a glutton? If you do not, then the body will be judging you. Christ will not judge you, but the body will judge you. Wait on each other. The conclusion is to wait on each other so you won’t be judged by the world.
1 Corinthians 10:16-17
16 Is not the cup of thanksgiving for which we give thanks a participation in the blood of Christ? And is not the bread that we break a participation in the body of Christ? 17 Because there is one loaf, we, who are many, are one body, for we all share the one loaf.
Bob: The picture of the Lord’s supper is a single loaf of bread representing the singleness of Jesus Christ when he was here on this earth. When you were to look for the body of Christ 2000 years ago, you would have to go to Israel to see Jesus of Nazareth and there you would find the body of Christ. But he said, “this body of mine is going away and when I do go away, I do so, so I can send my Spirit to live in you, and you are going to be my body.”
7 But very truly I tell you, it is for your good that I am going away. Unless I go away, the Advocate will not come to you; but if I go, I will send him to you.
Bob: This is a picture of that event. The body is here, you can see it, but it will be broken for you. Now take and eat. What is the eating from the single loaf of bread represent? It is the day you became a part of the body of Christ, Christ indwelling you and placing you into his body. It is a picture of that event taking place. As you pass the bread, and you watch a person take it, it is a picture the day they received Christ Jesus in their heart and became a member of the one body.
Bob: How are you going to get that picture when some body is eating up all the food and drinking all the wine before you get there? So he was chastising and disciplining them in the way they were taking the Lord’s supper in a very selfish way, and not waiting on the body.
Bob: Then you have the cup of the New Covenant. What is the New Covenant?
17 Then he adds: “Their sins and lawless acts I will remember no more.” 18 And where these have been forgiven, sacrifice for sin is no longer necessary.
Bob: That is a celebration. So what do people do? They get everybody confessing sin. What should people be doing? Rejoicing in the fact sins have already been forgiven. Jesus took them all away. People perverted that so badly. In all of this, how Satan got into the body of Christ was for one purpose only, to keep us from resting in the finality of the cross. People are still keeping the cross active when Christ said he is off of that cross. Jesus took care of sin once and for all. Why he cried out on the cross is because it is finished.
30 When he had received the drink, Jesus said, “It is finished.” With that, he bowed his head and gave up his spirit.
9 The world’s sin is unbelief in me;
Bob: There is no more forgiveness to be executed on anyone’s behalf. The only sin attributable to man is the sin of rejection of the Son of God who provided these things for you. That is the picture of the Lord’s supper.
Bill: Thank you so much, Bob.
Paul from Denver, Colorado
Paul: I have question on the book of Revelation. I know we are not to repent.
Bob: Hold on. Let us clarify. The repentance is necessary from repenting of your unbelief to belief in Christ Jesus. That is the repentance that we are called to. When you are talking about repenting, I used to smoke and now I do not, that is not repentance because you could go back to smoking, couldn’t you? I used to drink but now I don’t. That is not repentance because you can start again. When you are talking about repentance you are talking about a total change in mind and soul to come to Christ Jesus. We are not born believers. We are born unbelievers. We have an opportunity by faith to accept the death, burial and resurrection of Christ Jesus. After we come to Christ, there is no longer a need to repentance.
Paul: In the book of Revelation, my understanding is that Jesus Christ is speaking from heaven after he was resurrected.
Bob: If you are talking about the 2nd chapter.
4 Yet I hold this against you: You have forsaken the love you had at first.
Bob: “I hold this against you. You have forsaken your first love.” That means you had your first love. You have repented of your unbelief and you have come to Christ Jesus. Now, it says you are forsaking that first love.
5 Consider how far you have fallen! Repent and do the things you did at first. If you do not repent, I will come to you and remove your lampstand from its place. 6 But you have this in your favor: You hate the practices of the Nicolaitans, which I also hate.
Bob: Who was that written to? It was written to the angel of the church in Ephesus .
1 “To the angel of the church in Ephesus write:
These are the words of him who holds the seven stars in his right hand and walks among the seven golden lampstands.
Bob: Basically, it was written to the leadership of the churches. You could go down through all of these, Paul, and literally, I could put denominations to every one of these letters you are talking about. So, you are talking to church leaders, and talking that if you continue with this teaching, of continuing of where you lost your first love. There is no emphasis on the love of God among them. Since it is all about what you are doing, then I will remove your lamp stand from you. I will write Ichabod on you. I think God has written across denominations who have lost their first love, but even lost their teaching that Jesus is God and the word of God is the inerrant word of God.
Paul: What is the definition of first love again?
1 John 4:10
10 Herein is love, not that we loved God, but that he loved us, and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins.
1 John 4:19
19 We love him, because he first loved us.
Bob: You lost your first love. You came to Christ because of the love of God. When you come to Christ you responded to His love. That is what we are to Him. It is not that we loved God but He loves us first. We responded to that. That is what he is talking to this church in Ephesus about. But now you have fallen away from it and you have grown cold.
Bob: Let me give you an example of that. I came to Christ in 1969. I buried myself in the word of God. I have studied the bible for 40 years. I know what the bible says. About seven years into my experience I lost the joy of my salvation because I was in an organization. This is what happens all over in Christianity. You come to Christ and everybody says get busy for Jesus. So no one takes time to learn what Jesus has done, the magnitude of His mercy, goodness, and the grace of God. All we learned is this is what you do. After a while you are tired and worn out, in total desperation. You have gotten your eyes off Jesus and onto you and what you are doing. Then in comparison to what others are doing and in comparison to what we ought to be doing is when you lose your joy of salvation. I did not lose my salvation. God’s word to me is get back to your first love.
5 Consider how far you have fallen! Repent and do the things you did at first.
Bob: What are the first work?
Paul: To me, it means you do good.
Bob: Praise God, Paul, but how are you going to do good? What are the works of ministry? To believe in Him.
28 Then they asked him, “What must we do to do the works God requires?”
29 Jesus answered, “The work of God is this: to believe in the one he has sent.”
Bob: So what are good works?
Paul: To repent to what I did bad and do good. Do you agree with that?
Bob: What does it mean? Go back and go to church? What are good works? What good works do you do so that God looks at it as good works. What good works are you doing that are impressing God?
6 For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision nor uncircumcision has any value. The only thing that counts is faith expressing itself through love.
Paul: You are repenting and returning?
Bob: You did not start salvation by good works. You started by faith.
17 For in the gospel the righteousness of God is revealed – a righteousness that is by faith from first to last, just as it is written: “The righteous will live by faith.”
6 So then, just as you received Christ Jesus as Lord, continue to live your lives in him
Bob: How did you receive Him? By faith. How do you walk in Him? By faith. It is not what you are doing for God. It is what you are allowing God to do in and through you.
Bob: If you change your mind, and that is what repentance is. But repentance of salvation is far different because if you could get back to your first love and then lose it again, you could be repenting all over the place. The problem is that you get down to the point of saying, “I will never do this again Lord.” God says, “Yes you will.” And He will show you so you can start depending on Him and not yourself.
49 For I did not speak on my own, but the Father who sent me commanded me to say all that I have spoken.
10 Don’t you believe that I am in the Father, and that the Father is in me? The words I say to you I do not speak on my own authority. Rather, it is the Father, living in me, who is doing his work.
28 So Jesus said, “When you have lifted up the Son of Man, then you will know that I am he and that I do nothing on my own but speak just what the Father has taught me.
19 Jesus gave them this answer: “Very truly I tell you, the Son can do nothing by himself; he can do only what he sees his Father doing, because whatever the Father does the Son also does.
Jesus said he does nothing unless he sees the Father doing it. He says nothing unless the Father tells him what to say and how to say it. By saying these things, Jesus was proving in the flesh in what He gave an illustration of in the parable of the vine and the branches in John 15. You are a branch and you cannot do a single thing apart from the vine. So it is not you doing it, but Christ Jesus doing His work in and through you, that can only occur as you return to where you started, by faith in the vine.
Tom from Dale City, Virginia
Tom: Before I became a Christian, I had girlfriends, and then after I became a Christian, I broke off with them and has not seen them in three years. I struggle with thoughts of them, and how are we to let that go. Unfortunately, there were sexual sins and I still have those memories.
28 But I tell you that anyone who looks at a woman lustfully has already committed adultery with her in his heart.
Bob: Looking at a woman with thoughts and having sexual thoughts you act on in your mind is the same as committing adultery. It the same as fornication. What you repented of is coming to Christ. The issue is that you can do it again. The issue is “I am now in Christ Jesus”. That does not mean the moment you came to Christ that you went blind and deaf or that your thoughts automatically left. If you are thinking of the sexual aspect of it, then that is not from God, and recognize that there is an enemy who is trying to get you off track. Satan puts those thoughts in your head. Maybe one of those girls is in Christ today, for you are. It took place in your life so it could take place in theirs too. Anything you are thinking about today is fantasy.
Tom: When I came to Christ, I had to step away from that.
Bob: Do not put yourself on guilt trips for that is Satan trying to throw you off. He is trying to trip you up on those past memories. He does it with all of us. Anyone who had a sinful past and says he does not think about it is either dead or lying.
Tom: I want to walk right and most of the time I reject such thoughts but it is difficult at times.
14 For by one sacrifice he has made perfect forever those who are being made holy.
Bob: You are not going to get any more complete. He did that to all; he made us holy. You are not going to get more holy nor are you going to improve on it.
1 Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God—this is your true and proper worship.
3 Or don’t you know that all of us who were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death? 4 We were therefore buried with him through baptism into death in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, we too may live a new life.
2 Peter 1:4
4 Through these he has given us his very great and precious promises, so that through them you may participate in the divine nature, having escaped the corruption in the world caused by evil desires.
Bob: God set you apart for the divine purpose of walking in newness in life, alive in Christ Jesus, to allow Him to live in you and through you. That is a day to day decision. Sometimes you will fall flat on your face, and when you do, you get back up again. That is the process we will go through until the day we die. We all have struggles. Those struggles are what keep you dependent on Jesus. If you did not have such struggles or weakness in the flesh, then you would stop trusting God in a New York minute. Paul rejoiced in his weakness because his weakness kept him dependent on Jesus.
2 Corinthians 12:7-10
7 or because of these surpassingly great revelations. Therefore, in order to keep me from becoming conceited, I was given a thorn in my flesh, a messenger of Satan, to torment me. 8 Three times I pleaded with the Lord to take it away from me. 9 But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. 10 That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong.
2 Peter 3:18
18 But grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To him be glory both now and forever! Amen.
Bob: Keep growing in grace.