Call-In Classic Christianity Radio – Bob George P485 (10-24-19)
Bob George receives calls from several callers. Monte was specifically asked to come on the program to share his testimony of God’s grace. He had a hard time accepting the grace of God because of his horrible life he lived. He had been caught up in drugs, and in and out of jail, since he was young. He was literally pushing a shopping cart around here in Vancouver at three in the morning trying to get his next fix. Yet when he came to understand the grace of God, and became born again, his life was dramatically changed.
Bob explained how hard it is for people to understand grace. He explained that Romans 7 is the passage of scripture that to him explains grace. For in Romans we read how Paul testified that he was in sins grasp, for what he knew what was right to do he could not do and the wrong he did not want to do, he did anyway. He realized what a wretched man he was and, therefore, was ready for the grace of God for there was no where else to go and no one to turn to. Praise be to God through Jesus Christ our Lord. Bob rejoiced with Monte, and affirmed that indeed this man’s life had been changed by knowing the grace of God.
Another man, Robert, called, trying to grasp how to live the Christian life, identifying that he is so often selfish. He essentially asked what the key is to living the Christian life? First of all, no one can live the Christian life in the energy of the flesh. We have to come to realize that we can’t so that He can. We abide in the life of Christ, who has taken residence in us, to live the life we could never live. Bob George explains that the best illustration in the bible to explain to us what it means to let the Spirit of God live in you and through you is the story Jesus told of the vine and the branches in John 15.
Brian also called to say that a book that Bob wrote was the best book he had have ever read to help him understand how to live in the grace of God. He called to let listeners know how much the book, “Faith that Pleases God”, had personally helped him. He said he could not recommend a better book than that one.
Jim also called to ask a question about law and grace. He asked, “Do we have the law to back up the Spirit?”. Bob explained from scriptures in Romans and Galatians to explain that since we died to the law, how can the law back up anything. Also for those in Christ Jesus, we are no longer under the supervision of the law and are internally led by the Spirit of God. So, no, the law does not back up the Spirit. Romans 8:14 and Galatians 5:18 were two passages Bob pointed out to clear up any misunderstanding. The law did not back up anything. The law is there to show you are dead.
Monte from Vancouver, British Columbia
Monte: I was praying about this all day. I was praying the Lord would use it in a mighty way to reach hearts. I shared about this with some people, like pastor Jeff, concerning drugs, pornography, and all these things Satan serves up.
Bob: Just share with people what happened last night and how you came to the Lord. Just Take a few minutes to do that.
Monte: I came from a big family. When I was exposed to pornography when I was real young. My mom left when I was three. My dad raised me with some other siblings. I found his collection when I was five years old. Seeing these things just burned into my mind.
Bob: Yes, it does.
Monte: It actually stimulated me when I was 5 years old. By the time I was 10, I was hanging in local bookstore in town. At the age of 12, I was running away. I was a runaway kid. I survived by selling my body. If someone had pornography, that was all the better, and got lost in that. I was just surviving. The police kept returning me to my mom. I said to my mom, “I wish you were dead.” I literally murdered her in my mind. I realize that now. I did not want to live any more. She sent me to courts to a reform school and I continued to run away. I ran away 35 times from that place. I was exposed to homosexuality and all kinds of weirdness. By the time I was fifteen I was living on the streets in New York City, just surviving the only way I knew how. When I mentioned yesterday, I was in the first gay pride day ever. The spirit that accompanied that parade was strange. It turned into a riot. Today, we have all these gay pride parades. I was a drug addict all my life. I was in and out of jail. All total, I was seventeen years lost. I started seeking the Lord three years ago. My place was overrun by crack addicts. They sold everything I had. I just had nothing left. I was bankrupt inside and outside. I tried AA. I just felt something pulling me toward God. I started going to church. I went to church about six months. I was hearing the grace message. I was hearing Romans. I was hearing grace but I could not grab it. Finally, one day this fellow I met at church, I attend now, a dear brother in the Lord, and I love him very much, but I met him and his wife. He asked me, “Monte, would you like to go to this Alpha thing?” Well, I said I would check it out. I went six weeks but I was not hearing the gospel. I was not hearing grace. They were wonderful people doing it but I was not hearing the message. After six weeks, I went home one day. I was sitting in my bedroom. In my mind I heard this evil voice. It scared me to death. The demon would say, “Pick up the phone and dial 911 and tell what rotten things you did and you will go to jail forever”. It just terrified me. I heard this evil voice for three week. I was going to church and talking to people. One night, I was stoned, and I punched in Jesus on the internet. The face came on from Australia. He is a pastor and a good friend of mine today. David. I punched in my address and he started e-mailing me. He kept telling me that Jesus did it all. He did everything. This went on for three weeks. I just do not get it. He would say, “Look, Paul killed Christians. He persecuted the church. Jesus loved him so much and he wrote half the New Testament.” There was still a stumbling block. Then Sunday, a friend from church called and said Billy Graham is on channel 10. So I turned it on. I heard the gospel from creation to the cross. I heard the fall of man, the redemption, the propitiation, and Jesus Christ paying for all of our sins. Jesus paid for murder, for rape, for robbery, for lying to parents. Then he talked about hell. I heard him say, “There is someone else and you do not want to go there”. My hand shot up and I said, “Lord Jesus, forgive me and come into my life. Come into my life. Be the Lord of my life”. It was like my hand was on fire. I started to weep. I called this number, saying I talked with this woman named Evelyn. She prayed with me for half an hour. She said to me, “You are a brother in Christ now.” That demonic voice immediately stopped. My life has been transformed. Praise the Lord. I am two and a half years old Christian. Every day is not a perfect day but I understand God’s grace. That is the only way I could have come to the cross. I really appreciate your ministry, the way you talk about grace. My friend, Tony, actually I tell him I listen to your ministry.
Bob: Monte, you understand grace. It takes time for many a Christian to understand grace. I said so many times before, to me, the pathway a person has to take to come to understand, fully understand grace, is the pathway of Romans 7.
14 We know that the law is spiritual; but I am unspiritual, sold as a slave to sin. 15 I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate I do. 16 And if I do what I do not want to do, I agree that the law is good. 17 As it is, it is no longer I myself who do it, but it is sin living in me. 18 For I know that good itself does not dwell in me, that is, in my sinful nature. For I have the desire to do what is good, but I cannot carry it out. 19 For I do not do the good I want to do, but the evil I do not want to do – this I keep on doing. 20 Now if I do what I do not want to do, it is no longer I who do it, but it is sin living in me that does it.
21 So I find this law at work: Although I want to do good, evil is right there with me. 22 For in my inner being I delight in God’s law; 23 but I see another law at work in me, waging war against the law of my mind and making me a prisoner of the law of sin at work within me. 24 What a wretched man I am! Who will rescue me from this body that is subject to death? 25 Thanks be to God, who delivers me through Jesus Christ our Lord!
Bob: You come to the point to where you say, “I do not do the good I want to do, but the evil I do not want to do – this I keep on doing” and then can only say, “Who can save me from this body of death?” You finally recognize yourself as the wretched man that I am. Who will free me from this bondage? Out comes the answer, “Thanks be to God”. Until we have gone through, and not everybody has to go through the same way, but until we see our wretchedness, how are we ever going to appreciate the grace of Jesus? If we think if it comes to my sins, then he did not have to hang there very long, then you are not ready for salvation. That is why you see such a dramatic conversion to people like yourself, that have horrible lives and just absolutely realize I have nothing to offer to anybody. And you come to this empty handed. You do not come to Christ with some of your talents or come to Christ with your abilities. You come to Him totally empty handed, “Lord Jesus Christ, if you do not save me I am a goner”. That is what has happened to you. We just thank you for taking the time to call back tonight to share that with us. It is a touching story and one that I think so many people benefit from.
Monte: Can I share one more thing?
Bob: Sure, go ahead, Monte.
Monte: I got to tell you. In 1993, my life had reached such a bad ending, that I was literally pushing a shopping cart around here in Vancouver at three in the morning trying to get my next fix. I was crawling in dumpsters to get cigarette butts and smoke. I actually injected the AIDS virus into myself. I just forfeited my life at that time. I just thought, “You know what, I am just cashing it in. Life does not mean anything“. Praise God Jesus saved me.
Bob: You can tell that there is a total change.
Monte: I have got a new body waiting in heaven.
Bob: Yes, that is for sure. Monte, thank you so much for doing that. While we get off here, I want to get your address and how to get in contact with you. You feel free to call at any time. You just keep listening and growing in grace and realizing that it is the grace of God that will continue to teach you to say no to unrighteousness and live a life God has for you.
Monte: Thank you, brother. God bless you.
Brian from Atlanta, GA
Brian: I was calling to listen. I was to calling to put it out to everybody out there listening. I have read about three or four of your books, Bob. That book, “Faith that Pleases God” is beyond a doubt the best book outside of the bible that I have ever read that will help me in understanding the New Covenant of love and New Covenant faith. It is just the best tool I have ever read.
Bob: Brian, all I can say to that is thank you. I am grateful to God that it has done that. I think many times, we do not mention faith that pleases God enough either on radio or otherwise. I agree with you. It was put together after a lot of years of just testing this. When I say testing it, I mean, if this is true, I am going to put it into practice and see what works. “Faith that Pleases God“ is a book that will change a person’s life if they put it into practice.
Brian: It is the best book I have read by anyone, including the “Classic Christianity”. I love “Classic Christianity“, do not get me wrong, but “Faith that Pleases God” is phenomenal.
Bob: Brian, I am tickled to death that book has made an effect on your life. So let us try to get it into more people’s hands. Just keep telling more people about it, like you have done tonight.
Brian: Alright Bob. We love you. Take care.
Bob: Your welcome, my brother. God bless you, my friend.
Robert from Ontario, CA
Robert: Bob, I have a question about how you know that what you are shown becomes what is real agape love? I look at my own life and I see a lot of selfishness. I can use anything you have to say.
Bob: First thing I say is join the crowd. You are not alone on that brother, for it is impossible for you to pull it off. When God says, “love one another”, you cannot do it. You have to abide in the vine. If the Christian world would keep in mind the story of the vine and the branches illustration in John 15. It is the greatest illustration God had ever given us to experience the Christian life.
1 “I am the true vine, and my Father is the gardener. 2 He cuts off every branch in me that bears no fruit, while every branch that does bear fruit he prunes so that it will be even more fruitful. 3 You are already clean because of the word I have spoken to you. 4 Remain in me, as I also remain in you. No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in me.
5 “I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing. 6 If you do not remain in me, you are like a branch that is thrown away and withers; such branches are picked up, thrown into the fire and burned. 7 If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you. 8 This is to my Father’s glory, that you bear much fruit, showing yourselves to be my disciples.
9 “As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you. Now remain in my love. 10 If you keep my commands, you will remain in my love, just as I have kept my Father’s commands and remain in his love. 11 I have told you this so that my joy may be in you and that your joy may be complete. 12 My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you. 13 Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one’s life for one’s friends. 14 You are my friends if you do what I command. 15 I no longer call you servants, because a servant does not know his master’s business. Instead, I have called you friends, for everything that I learned from my Father I have made known to you. 16 You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you so that you might go and bear fruit – fruit that will last – and so that whatever you ask in my name the Father will give you. 17 This is my command: Love each other.
Bob: It is the exchanged Christian life. You are the branch and the branch cannot do anything apart from the vine. The only way you, a branch, can bear fruit of the Spirit, which is love, and that is agape love. That is not friendship love. That is agape love that only comes from God.
22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.
Bob: In other words, you cannot legislate that. It has to come from the source. The source of those things is only through Christ Jesus. There is no joy that you can produce in the energy of the flesh. There is no love that you can produce in the energy of the flesh. There is no patience that you can produce in the energy of the flesh. All of those things called fruit of the Spirit are not called fruit of the flesh because flesh cannot produce it. It is like what Jesus said when the apostle asked him, “What is the work of the ministry?” Jesus responded, “The work of the ministry is to believe in the one who was sent.“.
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: It would have shocked the disciples, and it shocked me, the first time I understood it. “Lord, I do not think you understood my question?”. The Lord answered, “Yes, I do. That is your work, to believe in me”. If you ask a branch if it could talk and you ask the branch, “What is the work of ministry?“ The branch replies, “Well, I cannot produce anything on my own but wax, which is inedible fruit. My role is really to abide in the vine”. Yes, that makes all the sense in the world. That is the same in our life, the only way we can produce. We cannot produce. The way we bear is by abiding in the life of Christ Jesus and in Him alone. Robert, that is learning how to live in dependency on Christ, to get down to the point of dependency, as Jesus said, “I do not do anything unless the Father tells me to”.
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.”
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.”
Bob: That pulls you out of the category of having to be a part of the group. That pulls you out of the group saying, “Group, tell me what to do and we will all do it together”. But He is not talking to the group but to you, individually. “Robert, I will tell you what to do. I will tell Bud what to do but it will not be the same thing I will tell you what to do. I will deal with each of you individually”, as we begin to learn how to accept the love of God for you. God loves you. You can say He loves the world that is in love, but I am in the world, and I want to knwo God loves me. And God loves me perfectly and nothing can separate me from the love of God.
38 For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, 39 neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.
1 John 4:19
19 We love because he first loved us.
Bob: I do not initiate that. I have to respond to the fact that is the way God loves me. We are responders to the initiator. It is your love of God that then results in dependency on God. Why can I depend on God? Because I know He loves me. If I did not know He loves me, then how can I depend on Him. So it is your love of God that results in dependency upon God that then results in obedience to God. We are out in the Christian world trying to produce legalistic obedience and we forget about getting people to love and so all you can produce is legalistic obedience. He wants your obedience to be a by product of your love and dependency upon Him. The issue to your question is abide in Jesus and let Him produce in you what you cannot produce on your own. Then look at 1 Corinthians 13 and you will find out love is not a feeling.
1 Corinthians 13:4-8
4 Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. 5 It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. 6 Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. 7 It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.
8 Love never fails.
Bob: Love is an action. Love is patient. Love is kind. Love does not keep records of wrongs. Love refuses to bring up wrongs. Just take a look at that definition and that will show you that definition of Agape love. When you look at that, Robert, if you are like me, you are going to look at that, and say there is not one thing in Bob George that slightly lines up with this definition of love. There is nothing in my flesh. The only way those kinds of characteristics, being patient, kind, loving, is ever going to come out of me is when I abide in the one who can produce this kind of love. When He produces this, it is not a feeling. It is an action on behalf of another person.
Robert: Thank you.
Bob: Did that help, Robert?
Robert: That helps, yes. Be preoccupied and dependent on Him.
Bob: Absolutely. He is the only one who can produce it. He can. When I learn I can’t, then I am ready to depend on the one who can. We need to learn how to get out of the way, Robert, and let Him get in action on our behalf. That is the fact that is just not understood in the Christian world. Everybody says “pick yourself up by your bootstraps and try harder”. We end up in total frustration. That is because we are trying to do something that is impossible to do. It is like telling somebody to jump over a 10 foot high bar. You might be able to get over a 2 or 3 footer but eventually, as the bar is raised, you find yourself not able to get over the bar and find yourself as a total failure. So you have to realize you have to abide in Him and that I have no way in the world of producing that in myself.
Robert: Thank you very much.
Bob: Does that help, Robert?
Bob: Thank you for calling. Bye. Bye.
Jim from Newton, Kansas
Jim: Good evening, Bob. I got a quick question about what is happening in our Sunday school opening at church. The speaker made a comment how we have the freedom of the Spirit, which is not the Spirit of freedom. But then he made a comment that we have the law to back up the Spirit. I just cannot find my way through that one. Is there any stretch of imagination where law backs up Spirit?
Bob: Of course not! Paul says to die to something. I do not think that is going to be a very good backup do you? You are talking about two contrasting things altogether. You are talking about law that kills and Spirit that gives life.
2 Corinthians 3:6
6 He has made us competent as ministers of a new covenant – not of the letter but of the Spirit; for the letter kills, but the Spirit gives life.
Bob: I do not know what he was meaning there. Will the Spirit of God contradict the law? It depends on which one you are talking about. If you are talking about ceremonial laws. Yes, the Spirit replaces those things. That is obvious with what Peter was talking about, all things kosher now. What about the ten commandments? It is not going to contradict the ten commandments either, but the law is not backing up the Spirit, as if the Spirit needs a backup. The law was to lead us to Christ. It was not made for the righteous. It was made for the unrighteous.
24 So the law was our guardian until Christ came that we might be justified by faith.
1 Timothy 1:8-9
8 We know that the law is good if one uses it properly. 9 We also know that the law is made not for the righteous but for lawbreakers and rebels
Bob: Once the law had done its job, we live in grace. The law killed us. That is what Paul was saying, “through the law, I died”. When I died, I died to the law in order that I might walk in newness of life in Christ Jesus, being led internally by the Spirit of God, not externally by laws written on stone.
19 For through the law I died to the law so that I might live for God.
Bob: No, Jim, law does not back up anything. Law is exactly what scripture says, to show you are sinner so that you will turn to Christ for your salvation.
Jim: There is no way we can fall out of our salvation or back into law from Spirit?
Bob: You can fall. That is what it talks about, falling from grace. That does not mean grace has left you. When you fall from something you have to fall to something. So what you have done is put yourself back under law, which is idiotic and we do that. That is why Paul wrote to the Galatians.
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: Paul asked, “Who hypnotized you and put a spell on you? Did you receive the Holy Spirit by obeying the law or by believing what you heard? After believing by faith, are you now trying to perfect yourself by human effort?” Yes, you can do it, but as far as God is concerned is to never allow yourself to be burdened again by a yoke of slavery. Yes, you can do it, but you are pretty stupid when you do. The end of the law so you can walk free in Christ Jesus.
Jim: We do not have the law backing up the Spirit as a reinforcement?
Bob: We are supposed to be dead to the law. We should not even be coming up with statements like that. If a person understands the New Covenant, then he should not be saying things like that, confusing people. The law did not back up anything. The law is there to show you are dead.
Jim: That was the intent of the law to show us our condition and drive us to Christ.
Bob: Absolutely. In Galatians, now that faith has come, we are no longer under the supervision of the law.
25 Now that this faith has come, we are no longer under a guardian
Bob: So how can the law back up anything?
14 For sin shall no longer be your master, because you are not under the law, but under grace.
Bob: If you are under the law, sin is your master. The law is not backing up anything. The law is for the lost to show you are lost so you can turn to Christ for salvation.
Jim: Well, that answers my question. That learns things for me. Well, if something happens in the future, I can talk to him about this. I appreciate your input.
Bob: Until a man dies to the law. Let me read a couple of passages of scripture.
14 For those who are led by the Spirit of God are the children of God.
Bob: You cannot be led by the Spirit if you are not a child of God.
18 But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law.
Bob: Reverse it. If you are under the law, you are not led by the Spirit. If you are not led by the Spirit, you are not a son of God. Those are the very statements that need to be looked at in a person’s life and ask themselves the question, “Am I under the law or am I being led by the Spirit?” For the bible says if I am under the law, I cannot be led by the Spirit. If I am not being led by the Spirit, then I am not a son of God. I think it would cause a person to sit back in reflection and analyze if they are truly in Christ or not.
Jim: Okay. We will use that and look at that and see if we can approach that. Thank you very much for clarifying that up.
Bob: Your welcome, Jim. Best to you.