Call-In Classic Christianity Radio – Bob George P663 (08-20-21)
Make Yourself Available to the Lord for Building Up the Saints in All Truth and Godliness
We want to encourage our listeners to make your bodies a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to the Lord (Romans 12:1-2), to make yourself available to the Lord to use you as He directs. Follow the example of Bob George as he followed the example of Christ. That echoes the same sentiment as the apostle Paul who said the same thing to the believers he ministered to, according to the gift and grace God had given him.
1 Corinthians 11:1
1 Follow my example, as I follow the example of Christ.
3 John 1:4
4 I have no greater joy than to hear that my children are walking in the truth.
If you have matured in Christ and have understanding of the meaning of the word of God, and can teach that to others, then consider having a home bible study or an online zoom bible study, if you are not doing so already. If you are growing in the Lord, and you are equipped of the Lord in a different capacity, and you are a part of a home bible study or are blessed to meet with a local assembly, look out for those in the world who are longing to grow in grace. Let them know they can meet with you online or locally.
As a new infant in Christ, they are at a crucial stage in their growth and development. Having not spent much time in the Lord, they are much more susceptible to being deceived and pulled away in all sorts of directions with every wind of doctrine. They can more easily be led astray by the many false teachers out there. Will they be trapped and ensnared by false doctrines and false teachers? They are also just learning to walk in the new life God has given them, and they may struggle with their old thinking patterns they had in the flesh, and need much encouragement, long-suffering or patience. Consider also the way Paul addressed those new believers in Corinth. It was difficult for him at times, because he had to write some strong letters to the church leadership in addressing serious matters. By the grace of God, they responded to his instruction and God worked out such a strong desire in them to straighten out such matters (2 Corinthians 7:1-16). So he encouraged them to go out of the way to encourage the brother, to renew their love for him, who is now coming out of deep sorrow for the things he has done, otherwise he might be overcome with great distress and anguish of heart and may never recover (2 Corinthians 2:5-11).
Listen as Bob George encourages a new believer in Christ to get out of a place among a false teacher. He gets her in touch with a local group of believers in her area so she can go forward on a path of growing in the grace and knowledge of the Lord Jesus Christ. Today, it is very hard to know where to direct believers to hear truth from the word of God. There are denominations of all kinds out there, those that teach that godliness is a means for financial gain, which Paul addresses those who teach such things as men of corrupt mind and devoid of the truth (1 Timothy 6:2-9, 2 Timothy 2:14-26). Stay away from them. All the denominations tend to gravitate to one error or another, mixing law and grace or not proclaiming the fullness of the gospel. Many churches are merging together in a false unity, that Jesus foretold would happen in the last days, of a one world false religion, eventually to be worshipping the antichrist who is to come (Revelation 13:8). So be on guard. Some churches will form a doctrine out of the book of Acts, such as speaking in tongues in order to be saved, a heretical teaching. Stay away from such churches. Acts is an historical book, of the account of the early church just after the day of Pentecost, in what they said and did, and so is not meant to form doctrine. Not everything Peter said in Acts is true, but he said it (Acts 8:22). So you have to understand that about the books of the bible, their purpose and intent, the author and audience. You learn how to process the meaning of the word of God by knowing passages of scripture in proper context and their intent and purpose. But in the final analysis, the meaning of the word of God can only be understood through relying on the Holy Spirit who lives in you (1 Corinthians 2:9-10).
For a new believer trying to grow in grace and knowledge of the Lord Jesus Christ, it is best to first direct them to spend time in God’s word themselves, relying on the Holy Spirit to teach them. It is best to encourage them to stay in the epistles for awhile, in books like Hebrews so they may learn about the New Covenant they are under. The gospels are helpful once you understand the New Covenant you are under, so you do not get confused on some things that Jesus speaks on, as the Old Covenant system was still in place at that time those books were written and Jesus was walking on the earth. But the gospels are good so as to be more familiar with the Lord Jesus Christ who saved you. But the epistles of Paul is what provide the rich foundation of fundamental truths, such as the totality of the cross, your identity in Christ and of being made complete in Christ.
Many of the common issues people have trouble in understanding today is the meaning of the cross and the meaning of the resurrection. This is really the foundation of everything else believers needs to know to grow in grace. Bob explains this thoroughly when talking with a caller who wanted more clarification on a scripture passage in Revelation concerning the Great White throne judgment (Revelation 20:11-13). Bob addressed the callers question from passages like John 8:24, Colossians 2:13-14, 1 Corinthians 15:16-18 and Romans 5:10. For a short and concise summary of what Jesus accomplished for us and the meaning of the death, burial and resurrection, check out Be Born Free online gospel tract.
Many other questions callers have are practical questions, and relate to what they are personally struggling with, such as how to go on with life after having been divorced for quite some time. The apostle Paul addressed these practical issues of divorce, being widowed and in regard to marrying again in 1 Corinthians 7 and 1 Corinthians 15. Bob particularly explained the scriptures in regard to her situation from 1 Corinthians 7:8-9 and 1 Corinthians 15:25-28. The most important advice to anyone desiring to be married is to not be unequally yoked with a non-believer (2 Corinthians 6:14). If you had been divorced before, most likely the cause of the divorce to begin with was the fact you married a non-believer. The second important advice is to be sure your attitude of heart is not to get your needs met, not to receive but to give, to marry someone whom you want to give your life to and serve in love. The root cause of problems in marriage is from misplaced dependencies and unrealistic expectations, that is expecting unconditional love and acceptance from your spouse. That is a spiritual need that can only be met by God. And if that is not understood, then that puts undue strain and pressure on your spouse to deliver to you what your spouse cannot deliver. So it is good to evaluate the condition of your own heart, knowing your identity in Christ, and your decision-making in choosing a mate that caused the divorce in the first place so you do not repeat the same mistake that caused you so much hurt and pain. Do not choose a mate based on emotion, with hormones kicking in, but based on the fact that both of you can freely talk about the Lord together because you are both believers and so can grow together in grace.
Often a young believer may call concerning a passage of scripture he or she does not understand. Sometimes, because of a legalistic upbringing, where you are accustomed to being manipulated and put under guilt trips, you may be introspecting on a passage and focusing so much on how you have grieved the Lord, and the Lord is somehow mad at you, and is going to give up on you. Such a person is often struggling over some issue in their own life and is reading into scripture what is not there.
An example of that is the passage in Ephesians 4:30 about grieving the Lord, and is often understood incorrectly out of context. It is easy to read into the scripture what it does not say based on what you are experiencing in your own life, and then get all emotionally bound up in confusion or feelings of being out of fellowship with the Lord, which is never possible with the Lord who unconditionally loves you (Jeremiah 31:3) and who has said He will never leave you nor forsake you (Hebrews 13:5). So when you read a passage like this, it is really a passage about admonishing believers who are immature in their walk and are fighting among each other. A brother is angry with another brother in Christ or a sister is jealous of another sister in Christ. That ought not to be. God looks at that and is grieved because that is no more how a child of God should act toward one another than a parent with sons and daughters at ought with one another, as evidenced by fighting, bitterness or wrath. If you are a parent, seeing such behavior between your own children, you are grieved. It grieves you as a parent to see your own sons or daughters fighting with one another. So put such behavior aside (Ephesians 4:17-32), now that you are a child of God, and just as God forgave you, so forgive one another (Colossians 3:13). And as God has loved you, love one another (John 13:34-35, Romans 12:10). Walk in that new Spirit God has given you (Galatians 5:16). God lives in you to will and to act according to His good purpose (Philippians 2:13). As a child of God, walk in that new identity.
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