Call-In Classic Christianity Radio – Bob George P539 (05-28-20)
From time to time, is it not wonderful to hear encouragement from those who are helped by hearing truth from God’s word, as you were able to participate in the divine nature, allowing God to speak through you? There is no greater joy, Paul says, than to see my children walking in the truth. At times, we can grow weary, but God promises that His word does not return void, and God never forgets the labor of love you do in the Lord. Even Enoch speaks even though he is dead, the testimony of God, of what faith in God is all about. Think about it. Enoch was a man noted by his faith, and faith is what pleases God. Enoch did not face death, but God took him up, and he was no more, for God took him to be with Him, for scripture says he pleased God. God is taking all of us to be with Him one day, and all of our troubles, trials and tribulations will cease. Does it not help you see that for the joy set before Christ endured the cross, scorning it’s shame?
Right now, many of us long for our loved ones, family members, to come to Christ. Listen as Bob encourages a lady whose sister-n-law is a Jehovah Witness, an anti-Christ. Keep the message always on Christ and His Deity whenever you have an opportunity to share scripture. The hope is that faith will be revealed. No one is born with faith, trusting in Christ, or knowing who Christ is and what He has done. But the message of Christ is shared, in the hopes it will fall on soft hearts who are open to truth. Then truth will be revealed, by the Spirit of God, who will make that known to them, and that truth will set men free. Jesus Christ is the way, the truth and the life.
Listen. We have God’s word, handed down to us by those who were appointed apostles, not by men, but by God, and who were eyewitnesses of the death, burial and resurrection of Christ. Now this faith is more than believing in those things. There is a certain spiritual understanding that when Jesus died, he died for you. He died to take away your sins, and indeed the sins of the entire world, never to see them again. When Jesus rose from the dead, he rose from the dead for you, so that the same life that raised him from the dead can be given to you, to dwell within you, so you may know God. Jesus Christ, who is God, is the one who makes God known to us. So we have a sure word from God, we can hold onto, that this life, new spiritual life is in His Son, and he who has the Son has the life. He who does not have the Son does not have the life. This life is not temporal life, but eternal life. My prayer is that you have Christ in you, who is your only hope of glory, that one day you will be born again, and once you are, you can never be unborn. Lay aside those traditions and teachings of men that crowd out the word of the Spirit, and lay a hold of truth tugging on your heart to set you free. Invite Christ by faith to live in you.
For those who do have Christ living in you, then you will see Jesus face to face, and be forever with the Lord, and with any loved ones who have gone on before you. And, whatever you face down here is but light and momentary in comparison to what will be revealed in you, through Christ who gives you strength, through Christ who produces such peace in you, peace that surpasses understanding as you continue on in learning to trust Him, even as you have placed your trust in Him. I pray you experience all that God wants for you, the fruit of the Spirit – love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, gentleness and self control. Let us learn to abide in Him.
Chip from Richmond, VA
Chip: I started listening to you in 1993. Before that I was in Christ for 4 years. I remember being so sincere in my faith. I was really living the Christian life in the energy of my own flesh. For example, I remember memorizing 4300 bible passages and I thought I was hot stuff. The problem is I did not understand what the New Covenant was. I really tried to learn how to live righteously. I tried to do what Jesus said on the sermon on the mount. It just condemned me. The more I memorized it, the more I questioned my salvation. It just led me to be a double-minded person. Then, I started listening to People to People broadcasts. I started learning about the finality of the cross. Then I experienced the reality of the resurrection in my life. All those bible passages I memorized then started to make sense. I still wondered how I got off track. Sometimes we complicate the gospel so much yet it was in front of me all the time. I cannot thank you enough for the teaching you have done all these years. It has literally set thousands of people free, and I am a product of that. Thank you so much for that. It means the world to me.
Bob: Thank you, Chip. Thank you for sharing that with us. That is one of the things about scripture memory. People ask, “Is scripture memory good?” I say to them, “It depends.” If you memorize scripture in its context it is good, but if you do not then it is bad. You do not know the context then you will not know the meaning of it. To know what it means you must know it in its context. Most people promoting scripture memory do not promote it in its context. Just learn the verse. Once you see the context of those scriptures that you memorized. Thank God you have them in your heart. But once you see the context, it all starts falling together for you. We are very grateful for you, pal.
Chip: I am so excited that you are on the internet now. I am able to get you online now. Podcasting is the greatest adventure of all time. I can listen to you whenever I want to now. It is good to get that teaching in me again. I am in the process of planting a church. That should probably be in March 2006. You may not have a lot of active listeners in Richmond. Your ministry is touching my life. Hopefully, we will be helping a lot of other people. Your ministry has multiplied. You have probably reached lots of people you will never hear about. I believe you are doing God’s work. Jesus Christ is saying, “Well done good and faithful servant to you now”. And you will hear Him say that when you are present with the Lord.
Bob: You are so welcome. Thank you so much for the encouragement.
Chip: Here is my question. I have been talking to people who are on a baptism kick. These people are from the Church of Christ denomination. We have been discussing, or rather debating, the role of baptism in a believer’s life. So I was talking to them a lot about these scriptures. I firmly believe baptism is not crucial or necessary for salvation purposes. The thing they brought up to me is in the book of Acts. I know the book of Acts is not a doctrinal book. But in Acts, there is a verse that speaks of those who immediately followed by baptism. It seems like there is some kind of connection with that. I really did not have a good answer for that. In 1 Corinthians, we read about Paul saying, “I did not come to baptize but to preach the gospel”. In response to that, this guy shows Acts 2:38-40. It looks like he was baptizing people there. I really did not have a good answer for that. I wonder if you can shed light on baptism in the book of Acts and the context of that and what that meant.
38 Peter replied, “Repent and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. And you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. 39 The promise is for you and your children and for all who are far off – for all whom the Lord our God will call.”
40 With many other words he warned them; and he pleaded with them, “Save yourselves from this corrupt generation.” 41 Those who accepted his message were baptized, and about three thousand were added to their number that day.
Bob: I do not think you go to look in the book of Acts for any doctrine. If you are going to do that, then you ought to sell everything you have and lay it at the feet of the apostles, for they did that as well. Certainly, people are not following that. I have talked to so many people from the Church of Christ. First of all it is a nonsensical theology. Who died for your sins? Jesus. Who was raised from the dead? Jesus. Who baptized you? My pastor. That ought to tell you something right there.
Bob: Nothing in conversion comes from us. Everything in conversion is from God. You have to be born again from above, not from below. There is nothing that we can do to save anybody. So, salvation is putting your faith in what Jesus did, not putting our faith in what we have done. That fact alone should be known to anybody who has the Spirit of God living in him, that there is nothing we can do to add to what Christ Jesus has done. That is precisely why the apostle Paul, and he certainly did not lie when he said he did not baptize anyone.
1 Corinthians 1:13-17
13 Is Christ divided? Was Paul crucified for you? Were you baptized in the name of Paul? 14 I thank God that I did not baptize any of you except Crispus and Gaius, 15 so no one can say that you were baptized in my name. 16 (Yes, I also baptized the household of Stephanas; beyond that, I don’t remember if I baptized anyone else.) 17 For Christ did not send me to baptize, but to preach the gospel—not with wisdom and eloquence, lest the cross of Christ be emptied of its power.
Bob: People get confused on the difference between the baptism of the Spirit and the baptism of water. Jesus said, “John baptized with water but I am going to baptize you with the Holy Spirit and with fire”.
16 Then I remembered what the Lord had said: ‘John baptized with water, but you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit.’
Bob: John the Baptist said, “I baptize with water but there is one one coming after me whose sandals I am not worthy to untie. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit”.
16 John answered them all, “I baptize you with water. But one who is more powerful than I will come, the straps of whose sandals I am not worthy to untie. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire.
Bob: The water baptism was a shadow and the baptism is the reality. The baptism of the Holy Spirit is a reality. We are still pointing our finger at the shadow. That was merely a foreshadowing of the reality that is going to be found in Christ Jesus.
17 These are a shadow of the things that were to come; the reality, however, is found in Christ.
Bob: That is why Paul said, “I did not come to baptize anyone. God did not send me to baptize. Yes, I baptized Crispus and Gaius, but beyond that I do not recall baptizing anybody because I did not come to baptize but to proclaim the gospel”.
Bob: In 1 Corinthians, it tells us what the gospel is. It is the death, burial and resurrection and there is nothing in there about baptism in the gospel.
1 Corinthians 15:1-5
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, 5 and that he appeared to Cephas, and then to the Twelve.
Bob: And if Paul said he did not come to baptize but to preach the gospel, then that negates the idea that baptism is in the gospel. There is only one person who can save you and He is Christ Jesus. There is nothing we can do to add to that. So when you and I are indwelt by the Spirit of God, that is Jesus living in you, then the Spirit baptized us into the body of Christ.
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.
1 Corinthians 12:27
27 Now you are the body of Christ, and each one of you is a part of it.
Bob: This is a spiritual baptism. That is us in Christ. That completes the transaction. You are baptized by the Holy Spirit into the body of Christ Jesus. That is how we become members of His body. So anyone who thinks you become members of His body by being dunked in water, has now put baptism as a part of salvation into the hands of us instead of totally in the hands of Christ Jesus. There is nothing we do to add to what Christ Jesus did.
8 For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith – and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God – 9 not by works, so that no one can boast.
Bob: So baptism was ceremonial washing that was quite prevalent in Judaism. Baptism of that type of thing was taking place long before John the Baptist. John the Baptist said he came baptizing because the one who told him to baptize told him that the one whom the dove shall descend is the Messiah. The reason John the Baptist baptized and Jesus allowed himself to be baptized, was to point the Jews to Israel, that He is the Messiah.
30 This is the one I meant when I said, ‘A man who comes after me has surpassed me because he was before me.’ 31 I myself did not know him, but the reason I came baptizing with water was that he might be revealed to Israel.”
32 Then John gave this testimony: “I saw the Spirit come down from heaven as a dove and remain on him.
Bob: That was the excitement of John he Baptist’s ministry is that everyone he baptized, he had to wonder if this is the one. That is also why he said to the legalistic Pharisees, “why are you out here? Who told you to flee from the coming wrath, you brood of vipers? There is no way in the world you are the Messiah.”
7 But when he saw many of the Pharisees and Sadducees coming to where he was baptizing, he said to them: “You brood of vipers! Who warned you to flee from the coming wrath?
Bob: Baptism was a way of pointing you to, a ceremony of cleaning yourself up and preparing yourself for the Savior. And that is precisely why in one of the passages in Acts when people came and asked them, “Did you receive the Holy Spirit when you believed?” “We do not even know what the Holy Spirit is”. “What baptism were you engaged in?” “Well, the baptism of John the Baptist. All we were baptized in was John the Baptist”.
1 While Apollos was at Corinth, Paul took the road through the interior and arrived at Ephesus. There he found some disciples 2 and asked them, “Did you receive the Holy Spirit when you believed?”
They answered, “No, we have not even heard that there is a Holy Spirit.”
“John’s baptism,” they replied.
3 So Paul asked, “Then what baptism did you receive?”
4 Paul said, “John’s baptism was a baptism of repentance. He told the people to believe in the one coming after him, that is, in Jesus.” 5 On hearing this, they were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus. 6 When Paul placed his hands on them, the Holy Spirit came on them, and they spoke in tongues and prophesied. 7 There were about twelve men in all.
Bob: They went ahead to explain the fullness of the gospel. At that point they were baptized by the Holy Spirit. They were saved at that point. Prior to that time, they just received the preparatory work of John the Baptist.
Bob: You cannot take doctrine out of the book of Acts. The Church of Christ and people into tongues take it out of Acts. This is an interesting thing. Those into tongues teaching take it out of the book of Acts. They do not believe in baptismal regeneration. And those who do not believe in baptismal regeneration, do not believe in tongues. It is all out of the book of Acts. You ought to make up your mind to be for all of it or none of it.
Chip: Super. Thanks for shedding light on that. God bless all of you.
Bob: Thank you so much, Chip, and same to you brother.
David from Atlanta, GA
David: I was wondering if I had heard it said that to really have a true meaning and a true understanding of a lot of things in the bible that you have to study it and understand it from a Hebraic Jewish point of view. I was wondering what your opinion of that is?
Bob: I do not have an opinion. I can tell you the truth on it. It is just an absolute truth. In Christ, there is no Jew or Gentile, slave or free. We are one.
1 Corinthians 12:13
13 For we were all baptized by one Spirit so as to form one body – whether Jews or Gentiles, slave or free – and we were all given the one Spirit to drink.
Bob: Therefore, quite frankly, to study the bible from a Jewish position today would be to study it from the majority of the Jewish. It would be studying it from an atheistic standpoint, for the majority of them do not even believe in God. But if you want to study from a Jewish standpoint, are you talking about the orthodox Jewish standpoint or the conservative Jewish standpoint? To answer your question, the answer is no. The bible was written to you and me, to the Jew as well as to the Gentile, and God says in Christ there is no Jew or Gentile, slave or free. This is dividing up between Jew and Gentile is not biblical.
David: I was thinking maybe they were thinking about some of his parables, and things like that. You would have a deeper or better understanding of them if you tried to understand them in the context of their times.
Bob: It is a little hard to think of the thinking of the times when you are 3000 years from the times.
David: Thank you. I appreciate it.
Bob: I do not think so, David. The bible says that no eye has seen, whether Jew or Gentile, or mine, has conceived of those things that God has prepared for those who love Him but it must be revealed by the Spirit. The Spirt does not reveal one thing to the Jew and another thing to the Gentile.
1 Corinthians 2:9-10
9 However, as it is written:
“What no eye has seen,
what no ear has heard,
and what no human mind has conceived”[Isaiah 64:4] –
the things God has prepared for those who love him –
10 these are the things God has revealed to us by his Spirit.
David: Thank you. I appreciate it.
Bob: You are talking about people who have held onto tradition, whether Protestant tradition, Catholic tradition, Jewish tradition, or Muslim. It makes no difference. It is what you have been taught by man. That is what Jewish people were doing in Jesus day.
1 Then some Pharisees and teachers of the law came to Jesus from Jerusalem and asked, 2 “Why do your disciples break the tradition of the elders? They don’t wash their hands before they eat!”
3 Jesus replied, “And why do you break the command of God for the sake of your tradition? 4 For God said, ‘Honor your father and mother’[Exodus 20:12; Deuteronomy 5:16] and ‘Anyone who curses their father or mother is to be put to death.’[Exodus 21:17; Leviticus 20:9] 5 But you say that if anyone declares that what might have been used to help their father or mother is ‘devoted to God,’ 6 they are not to ‘honor their father or mother’ with it. Thus you nullify the word of God for the sake of your tradition. 7 You hypocrites! Isaiah was right when he prophesied about you:
8 “‘These people honor me with their lips,
but their hearts are far from me.
9 They worship me in vain;
their teachings are merely human rules.’[Isaiah 29:13]”
Bob: They were holding onto their tradition. They were not worshiping at the foot of the cross. They were worshiping their tradition. It does not make a difference whether Jewish traditionalist or Gentile or whoevet it might be. It is that you are holding onto what man taught or some interpretation instead of relying on the Spirit of God to reveal the meaning of it to you.
Bob: Thank you, David, very much.
Don from Fairfax, VA
Don: With regard to a prior caller, the connotation of the lady who asked for forgiveness. How much of the weight of the word “repentance” relates to turning from your sin? What does it mean to turn from any type of sin?
Bob: The word “repentance” used in scripture is not “I used to smoke but I repented and now I do not” because you can start again. Repentance is a total act of the will. It is a total belief system. You are not born a believer. No one came out of his mothers’ womb saying “praise Jesus”. You are born into this world an unbeliever.
12 Therefore, just as sin entered the world through one man, and death through sin, and in this way death came to all people, because all sinned
Bob: That is why everyone must be born again. Everyone is born once by mom and dad. Then you have to have spiritual birth if you are going to enter the kingdom of God.
1 Now there was a Pharisee, a man named Nicodemus who was a member of the Jewish ruling council. 2 He came to Jesus at night and said, “Rabbi, we know that you are a teacher who has come from God. For no one could perform the signs you are doing if God were not with him.”
3 Jesus replied, “Very truly I tell you, no one can see the kingdom of God unless they are born again.[a]”
4 “How can someone be born when they are old?” Nicodemus asked. “Surely they cannot enter a second time into their mother’s womb to be born!”
5 Jesus answered, “Very truly I tell you, no one can enter the kingdom of God unless they are born of water and the Spirit. 6 Flesh gives birth to flesh, but the Spirit gives birth to spirit. 7 You should not be surprised at my saying, ‘You must be born again.’ 8 The wind blows wherever it pleases. You hear its sound, but you cannot tell where it comes from or where it is going. So it is with everyone born of the Spirit.”[d
Bob: That means you are not born spiritually alive. You are born spiritually dead. Repentance is turning from that state of death to the life of Jesus. That repentance is not one of saying, “Well, I believe but I may not believe”. It is putting your faith in what you say you believe. That is why it says by grace you are saved through faith.
8 For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith – and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God – 9 not by works, so that no one can boast.
Bob: It is not just through believing. The devil believes Jesus is God.
19 You believe that there is one God. Good! Even the demons believe that – and shudder.
Bob: The devil can get into any church in town. “Do you believe Jesus is God?” “Yes”. “Do you believe Jesus died on a cross?” “Yes, and unfortunately I was there”. “Do you believe he was raised from the dead?” “Yes, I saw that too”. “Then you are in. Give me a tithing envelope and you are in”. But, that is not faith.
Bob: What was the difference between believing and putting faith in someone? He did not put faith in what Jesus did. That is what you repent of. You are not born with faith in Jesus. You had faith in yourself or whatever. It is repenting from that into Christ Jesus, taking yourself off the throne of your life and putting Christ Jesus on it. That is what repentance is dealing with. I laugingly say, repentane is kind of like breakfsast in the morning. The chicken made a contribution but the pig made a total commitment. Repentance is a total commitment.
Don: Alright. I also had another question. I read an article on the internet about Iraq, and early in the war a couple of years ago when their were different types of groups of people who were being oppressed by some of the different Muslim sects. One of them were the last group of people on earth that speak Aramaic. They were speaking the language Jesus spoke in. How does that relate to the original Greek? Where does Aramaic appear first in the early translations?
Bob: The Septuagint was a translation of the Old Testament from Hebrew into the Greek langage, which was the language of the day. It is the most distinct language. The Hebrew is more of a thought language whereby the Greek literally spells it out word by word, and syllable by syllable almost. The whole Old Testament was already translated into the Septuagint in Jesus day. Then the New Testament had to be written in the Greek language by an apostle or an emannuenscerant of an apostle. The spoken language at that time is irrelevant to us. The issue is God decided to put the bible in the Greek language. Those were the original manuscripts, all written in the Greek language. We have hundreds of manuscripts today, copies of those originals. So what they spoke or what Jesus spoke is irrelevant because we are all functioning off the written word today. Again, we are assuming because of the background, that Jesus spoke in Hebrew or Aramaic, but we do not know that. That is merely speculation. He could have been speaking in Greek. We do not know but probably not.
Don: Okay. I just wondered. I really enjoy biblical history. That was just hanging out there and I just wanted to hear what you had to say.
Bob: Did that help?
Bob: Okay, brother. Thanks for your call. You call again, my friend.
Sandy from Upland, CA
Sandy: I am at odds because I have a sister-n-law I dearly love. She is a Jehovah Witness. I have been really praying for truth to be revealed to her but I just get so stumped. Sometimes I just do not know the words to say. I was hoping that you might be able to help. Sometimes we talk about scripture but she always hounds me with the things that they believe. She is a wonderful person but they don not acknowledge Jesus Christ.
Bob: There is where you have to start and that is where you have to end. They live as what the bible would call anti-Christ. It does not matter how nice your sister-n-law is, the bible calls her an anti-Christ, of people who devote their livestyle to go and convince people Jesus is not God.
1 John 2:22
22 Who is the liar? It is whoever denies that Jesus is the Christ. Such a person is the antichrist – denying the Father and the Son.
2 John 7
7 I say this because many deceivers, who do not acknowledge Jesus Christ as coming in the flesh, have gone out into the world. Any such person is the deceiver and the antichrist.
Bob: You cannot put any other title on people like that. As what the bible says, this person is being an anti-Christ. You have to believe God exists in the flesh. It is one thing to say, “You have to do this and you have to do that”, and you can go either way on that, but when dealing with Jesus Christ, you are dealing with the essence of who God is. That is where I start and that is where I end. I do not get into any other discussion with them at all, except who Jesus is and Jesus declared himself to be God.
30 “I and the Father are one.”
Bob: It appeared to me that if declared to be on par to Jesus, and Jesus declared himself to be God, then you have to come to a conclusion. If anyone who claims himself to be God, he is either a nit-wit, an imposter or he would be God. I do not know of any other option than that, do you?
Sandy: I lost my brother to cancer six months ago. I took care of him. He had a brain tumor. I used to pray that God would not let him suffer the indignities of having to wear a pamper. The Lord did take him. I went through that. I never would have believed. I know the apostle Paul said we are not to mourn like the unbeliever. I just was having such a hard time coming to terms with not having him. I loved him so much. He is a believer. I know before he died, I whispered to him to run to Jesus. Those were the last words to him. My heart and souls knows where he is at. It is just my flesh misses him so.
Bob: Of course you do. You would be strange if you did not miss someone you loved. But the issue is, you will see him again. On that fact alone, if you had a loved one with certain sickness, they had to go. They had to go to live in Hawaii. You would not mourn as to where they were. The issue is loved ones are in the presence of God never to see this sin, this dishonest politicians, wars, rumors of wars, and never again. Would I trade places with him? I would not call him back in a million years.
Sandy: Is he in the Lord?
Bob: If he is in Christ Jesus, he is.
Sandy: Absolutely he was.
Bob: And if you are in Christ, you are with Him. My wife, Amy, wrote a book, Goodbye is not forever. Goodbye is not forever if you are a Christian. How many times have you been away from somebody? You have not seen a high school or college person for 10 or 15 years. Five minutes after you are together, it seems like you were never separated. We are going to be in the presence with loved ones. It is like time flew by so fast. It would be like yesterday. That is why we do not mourn and weep like the heathen do. Rejoice in the fact where they are. Rejoice in the fact you will see them again. All of that sadness even though you miss them is going to disappear.
1 Thessalonians 4:13-14
13 Brothers and sisters, we do not want you to be uninformed about those who sleep in death, so that you do not grieve like the rest of mankind, who have no hope. 14 For we believe that Jesus died and rose again, and so we believe that God will bring with Jesus those who have fallen asleep in him.
Sandy: Okay. Thank you, Bob.
Bob: As far as the other person is concerned, do not get off the subject of Jesus and His deity. It is interesting what you read in Revelation 22. They are always quoting out of Revelation.
12 “Look, I am coming soon! My reward is with me, and I will give to each person according to what they have done. 13 I am the Alpha and the Omega, the First and the Last, the Beginning and the End.
Bob: In earlier chapters, you will also read this, “I am coming soon, Jehovah God. I am coming soon”. Early in the book, who does he say is the Alpha and the Omega? Jehovah God. Then in verse 16, what does it say?
16 “I, Jesus, have sent my angel to give you this testimony for the churches. I am the Root and the Offspring of David, and the bright Morning Star.”
20 He who testifies to these things says, “Yes, I am coming soon.”
Bob: Here you read clearly identifying him exactly by the name, Jesus, as to who they would call Jehovah God, the Alpha and the Omega, the First and the Last, the Beginning and the end. How that anybody can deny that is beyond me! You have to see, Sandy, there is something inside of someone who has to say, “I am not going to accept Jesus as God in order to believe what you are believing”. That is the ultimate rebellion of man.
Sandy: Okay. Thank you, Bob.
Bob: Bye. Bye.