Call-In Classic Christianity Radio – Bob George P560 (08-07-20)
As we grow in Christ, we all have our struggles, our battles with temptations of the flesh. That can be unique to each individual, what seems to be more prone to you, your weakness. Sometimes we give into our flesh, but we must remind ourselves that we do not have to. We are instructed to rejoice in our weakness so that the power of Christ might rest on us. That is what walking by faith is, walking in what God says is true about you and His provision of life or you. If you are a child of God, then you are being internally led by the Spirit of God, who lives in you. As a child of God, He has given you everything you need for life and godliness through Him who lives in you.
If we do not properly understand the gospel, or have forgotten that our past sins have been forgiven, then we found ourselves putting ourselves under the law. The power of sin is the law. The law stirs up sin. So, when we renew our mind in what truth is, and that truth sets us free. We are not under the law of sin and death, but under grace. So we can now begin to walk in the new life God has freely given us.
The issue is that although we could do this or that sin, it is not profitable. Yes, it is permissible, since we are no longer under law, but why do something that now you have been set free from, that you are now ashamed of? Since you are a new creation, God has put new desires, new attitudes, in your heart. Otherwise, you would not be bothered by the temptations of your flesh. You know how much misery and heartache those sins caused you in your former life, and so you were so miserable that you came to Christ for a new life.
But if you do not have your mind renewed, realizing that Christ is living in you, and that to live is Christ, abiding in Him, for Him to live His life in and through you, then you have difficulty in walking by faith. Faith is in what God says is true. What is true is that you have the mind of Christ. You have His wisdom, His counsel. He is your heavenly Father. He has given you everything you need for life and godliness. So, when you sin, you thank him for what He has already done for you, taken away all your sins, never to see them again, and that before you were ever born. And He lives in you, to counsel you, so you can walk in the new way His Spirit has set you free to live in. So, walk by the spirit and you will not carry out the desires of the flesh.
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Mitch from CA
Mitch: Thank you for what you do, getting the message out. May God continually bless you in your outreach for the rest of us lost souls.
Bob: Thanks, Mitch.
Mitch: I have known of Christ my entire life but I did not really come to know Him until three years ago when He saved me from alcoholism, and I have been sober ever since. Prior to that, I was kind of wild. I dated a girl in my mid to late thirties, who had tattoos. At that time, I did not have any. I got caught up in it, and I got two tattoos now. At the time I did not really know what the scriptures said about them. Since I have come to know Christ personally, I want to read the word. I have read Leviticus on what it says, that you should not mark your body, not in honor of the dead, and so forth. I am not necessarily concerned about the ones that I have. I am concerned about the one I am considering getting, but knowing what the bible says, it bothers me. I would like to know your opinion on tattoos, on what the bible says.
28 “‘Do not cut your bodies for the dead or put tattoo marks on yourselves. I am the Lord.
Bob: Mitch, you know, it is somewhat along the same lines as the instruction to the Corinthians in regard to women not shaving their heads because that is what the prostitutes did. So it was an identification with the prostitutes. When you think of tattoos, what do you think about, in regard to who has them? When I think of tattoos, I think of popeye and drunken sailors. Probably about 90% of tattoos are from navy bases. Some guy comes to shore, drunk, and gets a tattoo put on him.
1 Corinthians 11:6 (KJV)
6 For if the woman be not covered, let her also be shorn: but if it be a shame for a woman to be shorn or shaven, let her be covered
Mitch: I was in the military, often intoxicated. I do not know how I made it four years.
Bob: The issue is, can it be a stumbling block? To me, I would not want one. I sure wouldn’t want 666 on my forehead. I personally would not want one. I got a friend of mine in Louisville, KY who came to the Lord. He had tattoos all over his arms, covered with them. He went back and got them removed. He did not want them anymore because of what it says. It was kind of acquainted with the Hell’s angels and wild living. That is not the image you really want, to be associated as living or thought of as into wild living. So, I personally would not do it for anything nor would I allow my children to ever do it while they are under my care. What they do today would be their own business. I would certainly recommend them not to do it. That would be my recommendation to you today.
Mitch: As a child of God I think your testimony. I think the ones you have you decided on that. But that could be a testimony of who I was and who I am today. So it can be a testimony. Until Jesus came into my heart, this was the kind of lifestyle I was living. It most certainly was.
Mitch: I am also an artist. I drew a design that included the cross and Christ with a crown of thorns around a heart with wings. I have shown it. I have a portfolio I show friends and acquaintances from time to time. They have been drawn to that particular image. Immediately they see the cross, and they say, “Oh, you are a Christian.” Friends know that but acquaintances do not.
Mitch: I thought as a Christian that I am to witness by my actions or otherwise. It struck me that that particular image, the image I drew, had caused so many people to question and ask about Christianity. I have not led anyone to Christ as a result of this particular image but certainly has drawn a lot of interest from acquaintances of mine who are not believers. I have been able to share a little about my faith. This may be a complete excuse and that is the last thing I want it to be. I do not want to make excuses. I do not need something tattooed on my body to assist me in witnessing to Christ. I have always been a little bit of an introvert and a little shy. I feel guilty I do not witness more often.
Bob: Again, Mitch, that comes through growth and comes from not working at witnessing. You really do not need to be working at it. It is to be available to God to talk to people with sincerity in your heart. When you are asking a person, “How are you?”, it is not a glib “How are you?” but you really want to know how you are doing. If you have that kind of a heart attitude, people are going to tell you of trials and tribulations we all go through at different times of our lives, then you will be able to give the gospel at that particular point. Do not worry about chasing people down. Be available to get to know people and find out where they are and apply Christ to whatever circumstances they are going through. Leave the results to God on that thing.
Bob: My recommendation to you as Christian is not to add to that but use what you have as a part of your testimony.
Bob: Okay, brother?
Mitch: Thank you very much. God bless you.
Bob: Same to you, Mitch. Bye bye now/
Matt from San Diego, CA
Matt: As I am growing in grace, and God is making me teachable to receive truth. I used to receive because of legalism, and that kept the focus on me and how I am performing. Now that I am being freed from that, slowly but surely, I see my focus on the Lord Jesus Christ, on what He is doing and not on what I am doing.
Matt: Recently the Holy Spirit has shown me how I am relying on Him through prayer, realizing I know that in any relationship, if one person is always doing the talking and never is listening, that is not a healthy relationship. Sometimes because of old patterns, Bob, I see myself in relation to God, either just praising Him or whatever. It is not always asking God. Sometimes it is just praising and serving Him, but I do not take time to listen. How do I develop a healthy relationship with my heavenly Father. I do not know if it is a control issue. I want a relationship with my Father. I listen to Him because I know He listens to me. He is the almighty God. He is sovereign. He is worthy. To be still and allow him to have control in my prayer life.
Bob: Matt, I think you are working at it. If you have a relationship with somebody you know, who loves you totally, and you know he loves you, you do not have to work at a relationship. That is ludicrous. You are trying to work and see how worthy God is, and this type of thing. Quite frankly, God does not need your acknowledgment of those things. Jesus came down and ate with us, and said, “Behold I stand at the door of your heart and knock, and if you open the door I will come eat with you. We will go out and walk together and talk together.” He is not looking for all this high falutin stuff in religion. He wants you to have a Father to son relationship. He wants you to call Him, daddy Father.
20 Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with that person, and they with me.
Bob: Like I say, if you have a relationship with somebody that you know loves you perfectly and you love him, you do not have to work at that relationship. Just have one. Sometimes you might talk too much and sometimes you can talk too much. I do not think you listen too much with God. Quit working at it and enjoy it. It is there. You cannot do anything to improve it. So nothing can separate you from the love of God. If nothing can separate you from the love of God then that is a solid relationship, isn’t it? So bask in it. Enjoy it and walk in it. Quit working for it. It is already there. That relationship has already been established.
Matt: Thank you for that. Slowly the chains are coming off because of truth. I am learning to rest in what He has done for me. I am growing in that. I just hit a weak link in my prayer. How does growing in grace affect my prayer life?
2 Peter 1:3-4
3 According as his divine power has given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness, through the knowledge of him that hath called us to glory and virtue:
4 Whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises: that by these you might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust.
Bob: I think learning grace destroys your existing prayer life because once you come to understand His love for you and the fact that He has already given you everything you need for life and godliness, what are you going to be asking Him for? Quite frankly, in my relationship with God and talking to God is mostly just praise, thanking Him for mercy, for kindness and goodness to me and faithfulness to me. Things will come up and I will see that. “There you go again, Lord. You are so faithful to me.” As far as sitting around asking God for anything, I do not know what to ask Him for. I already have everything I need, so what am I going to be asking Him for?
Matt: What you are saying, because of the verse, is that we have all we need. Then God is our wisdom.
Bob: He says you already have His wisdom.
Matt: Wow. That just blows my mind. Light just comes on. That is awesome. Or, you can pray for wisdom?
1 Corinthians 1:30
30 It is because of him that you are in Christ Jesus, who has become for us wisdom from God – that is, our righteousness, holiness and redemption.
Matt: So what that is saying is that I have faith that He has already given me everything, so I praise Him for what I already have and walk in that.
Bob: You can praise Him and count upon His wisdom for He is your wisdom.
Matt: He will give it to me at the time I need it. I do not have to ask Him.
Bob: Yes, He is already there.
Matt: He pre-ordained us for good works because He has already provided the means for me to do that.
10 For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.
Bob: In other words, you are a branch and He is the vine. He wants you to abide in Him and He will do the work in and through you. We get out of the way and let Him get into action.
Matt: That brings up another question. So, when I am at church and someone asks to pray for this, what do I say? Why don’t we praise God for what He has already done? How should I respond to people like that?
Bob: Sure. Absolutely. I will pray that God’s will be done. God knows what our hearts are. So we pray for God’s will to be done. Those are prayers He answers. We do not boss God around. He is the initiator and we are the responder. Your prayer will not cause Him to get into action. It will cause you to get into action on His behalf.
Matt: Thank you so much, Bob. God bless you.
Bob: God bless you, too.
Billy from Slidell, LA
Billy: I was listening to your opening comment about being born dead to God because of the sin consequence, and I just never heard you speak on the issue before, but what about children dying early before the age of accountability? I wanted to know what your views are?
Bob: I have spoken on that on different occasions. You might have just missed that one. Age of accountability is not mentioned in scripture. It is something we made up in our religious circle. This is what we do know about those kinds of things. Those kinds of decisions fall into the hands of a perfectly loving and perfectly just God. I believe in my heart that whenever that decision is placed in the hands of your God, who is perfectly loving and perfectly just, that decision will be made properly and we do not have to worry about it. It is not mentioned for that reason. If you gave one exception to there is no name under heaven we might be saved, then you would come up with a thousand more. So the bible just does not deal with it. It just comes down to “that is my decision.” For now, I am talking to you and what you are going to do with the word of God. That is how I deal with people. Let us not talk about them. Let us talk about you. Have you accepted the provision of God for you in Christ Jesus? Forget about the people over in Africa or forget about a baby. We are not talking about that. We are talking about you. You have now heard about Jesus Christ. What are you going to do with Jesus?
Billy: That makes a lot of sense.
Bob: Okay, brother?
Billy: Yes. I appreciate it.
Rick from Corpus Christi, TX
Rick: Thank you for your ministry. I listen to your program quite often. You were very instrumental in bringing me to the Lord also. I deal with homosexuality also. In giving my life to the Lord and asking Jesus Christ to come into me, I thought that urge would go away. I still face temptation for homosexual. I am out of the lifestyle. I do not hang around with gay people. I changed my friendship. I have done everything I possibly know how to do. I am trying to stay in the word as possibly as I can. I do not go to gay clubs. I do not do anything but it happens to come around once in a while. Am I going to lose my salvation because I do and still have that urge?
Bob: Not at all, Rick. You see, by asking that question, it could be that you have not become free from the law. That seems to me what that is, when you say you can lose salvation. The only thing that can cause you to lose salvation is under the law, of the wages of sin is death. Under law the wages of sin is death. That means if I sin, I could lose salvation, under law. The power of sin is in the law. You have to come to the point, Rick, of getting rid of the law in your life in order not to be under the power of sin. It sounds strange, doesn’t it? But it is true as anything you will ever hear. I am going to give you a couple of passages of scripture.
14 For those who are led by the Spirit of God are the children of God. 15 The Spirit you received does not make you slaves, so that you live in fear again; rather, the Spirit you received brought about your adoption to sonship. And by him we cry, “Abba, Father.” 16 The Spirit himself testifies with our spirit that we are God’s children. 17 Now if we are children, then we are heirs – heirs of God and co-heirs with Christ, if indeed we share in his sufferings in order that we may also share in his glory.
Bob: Led by the Spirit means walking by faith. Because those led by the Spirit of God are sons of God.
18 But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law.
Bob: Which means if you are under law you cannot be led by the Spirit and if you are not led by the Spirit, you are not a son of God. I do not know how you can interpret that any other way. So the issue is that what you want to do is you want to be led by the Spirit. Religion keeps you dragging this law over. It is not the case that you cannot do homosexual things. That would not be profitable. If it was not permissible it would be under the law.
1 Corinthians 6:11-12
11 And that is what some of you were. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God.
12 “I have the right to do anything,” you say—but not everything is beneficial. “I have the right to do anything” – but I will not be mastered by anything.
Bob: You are not under the law, so all things are permissible, but not all things are profitable. So the issue is, it is not that you could not do that, it is that it is not profitable to you. It never brought satisfaction to you. It only brought guilt and condemnation to you. You realized you were doing something so contrary to God in every shape and form. So it is not profitable. If you look at it because God is take away my salvation, then that thinking is under the law, and that is the power of sin.
1 Corinthians 15:56
56 The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law.
14 For sin shall no longer be your master, because you are not under the law, but under grace.
15 What then? Shall we sin because we are not under the law but under grace? By no means! 16 Don’t you know that when you offer yourselves to someone as obedient slaves, you are slaves of the one you obey – whether you are slaves to sin, which leads to death, or to obedience, which leads to righteousness? 17 But thanks be to God that, though you used to be slaves to sin, you have come to obey from your heart the pattern of teaching that has now claimed your allegiance. 18 You have been set free from sin and have become slaves to righteousness.
Bob: So you have to die to law if you are to come alive to reality that Christ Jesus has taken away your sins, all of them from the eyes of God, all of them that you will ever do, have done, or will ever think of doing, have been taken away from the eyes of God.
2 Corinthians 5:19
19 that God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ, not counting people’s sins against them. And he has committed to us the message of reconciliation.
10 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!
Bob: You were reconciled to God, as far as your sins were concerned, when you were born.
Rick: Then why do I keep yielding to that temptation, Bob?
Bob: Hold on a minute. Let us get the doctrine down first.
Bob: How much more, having been reconciled, shall we be saved through his life!
Bob: You are not saved by the death of Christ. You are saved by the life of Christ. You could not be saved eternally by the life of Christ were it not for the eternal consequence of the cross, where he took away eternally the cause of death. But that is what he had to do in order to give you life, his life living in you.
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: Now, it says you have the ability to participate in the divine nature, who lives in you. That is God’s life living in you. But you can also participate in the flesh. Let us say this Rick. I believe with all my heart, that whatever you and I have ever done in regard to sin, we can sin again. I do not think it should be a shock to us.
Bob: Some people say, “I came to Christ and I never did this.” Well, there are some things when I came to Christ that I never did again, but there is a whole bunch I did do again. It just depends on the person. I know people who were total alcoholics, who came to Christ and never touched another drop of alcohol ever again in their life. I know some people who were promiscuous, and came to Christ and were never promiscuous again, but they still drank. What you are dealing here with is you have got these compartments in your life that God is gaining control over. Sometimes it is taken away immediately. Sometimes it will go on. But here is what God says you should do, Rick.
2 Corinthians 12:9
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.
Bob: Rejoice in your weakness. That is a weakness isn’t it? Yes. He says rejoice in it. Why would he tell me to rejoice in it? Because your weakness should keep you dependent on Christ. If you never had any weakness or struggle, anything that never came up and bothered you, you would forget Jesus in a New York minute.
Bob: It is your weakness that keeps you dependent on Christ so when the temptations come do what Jesus did. It is scripture. You have scripture living in you. You say, “Satan, get lost. You have been tempting me with this. I am done with this. I am giving into this stuff no more. I am going to turn to Christ Jesus who says he wants me to live a pure life. I do not have to give in to that.” You know yourself, Rick, is when you are into something like that, you resist it and resist it, and after a while the temptation is less. You might get zapped with another one. But there is a period of time it fades away.
Rick: I am waiting for that day.
Bob: Well, Rick, the thing of it is, are you married?
Rick: Yes, I am Bob.
Bob: Are you having a sexual relationship with your wife?
Rick: She has had a quadruple bypass heart surgery. Our sex life is null to nothing.
Rick: I do not want for you to think I am doing this every day.
Bb: That is not the issue, Rick, whether you are doing that every day. If you never had a desire for homosexual experience, and your wife had bypass surgery, would you go around and run with another woman? Why then would you think of going running around with another man with hairy legs? Rick, that is so unnatural to be with a hairy legged man. It is so unnatural, that you know it is perversion. It is perversion in its ultimate form. The issue is, “I got myself trapped in this perversion. I want out of it. When the temptation is coming, I am refusing to give into it. I am not a pervert. I am a child of God.” The question I am asking you is a very simple one. If you are married and never had homosexual experience, you would not think of running around with another woman when she is sick.
Rick: Even before married I had homosexual tendencies.
Bob: I understand that. The issue is you do not have to today. All that is is sexual temptation. I understand that. It is not that Satan cannot put that in your mind. The focus is that you do not have to listen to it.
Rick: Thank you, Bob.
Bob: You can refuse to listen to it. Your salvation, if you are in Christ Jesus, is as secure as it can be. You would not even be worried about this if you were not in Christ Jesus.
Rick: I asked Him to come into my heart, but boy I have to stay in prayer all the time.
Bob: Stay in prayer and stay in the word.
17 Consequently, faith comes from hearing the message, and the message is heard through the word about Christ.
Bob: Spend more time listening to what God has to say to you than what you are saying to God.
Rick: Thank you.
Bob: Okay, my friend.
Rick: Thank you.
Bob: Alright, Rick?
Rick: Keep me in your prayers.
Bob: I sure will. Thank you, my friend.