Ask Your Preacher

Ask Your Preacher

DOCTRINE

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Stop Thinking That!

Friday, October 09, 2020
     I have a question about the unforgivable sin.  I didn't entirely understand what it meant last night, so I looked it up on the computer.  I was reading it, and while I was reading it, my mind was thinking about things that could cause that to happen.  One thing I thought was that if a person just thought, “I want to have committed this sin”, that might be enough to have done it.  I was thinking how I would not want to think that, and my mind thought that thought anyways!  I am saved and am fearful of God, and I am very scared about having thought that.  I was afraid that thinking about it was like doing the sin, and if it’s unforgivable, I don't know what to do.  I love God, and I want to have the Holy Spirit in me; I definitely do not want to reject Him!  I know I need Him.  This is the most scared I have ever been in my life, and I want to make sure that I didn't do anything by thinking that thought.  I just need to be entirely reassured; I don’t want to lose my salvation.

Sincerely,
Terrified

Dear Terrified,

The unforgivable sin is the sin against the Holy Spirit, and the fact that you are visiting this website is a pretty sure sign that you haven’t committed it.  Jesus says that any sin will be forgiven except for someone blaspheming the Holy Spirit (Mk 3:28-30).  Jesus said this to the crowd that accused Him of casting out demons by the power of Satan (Mk 3:23).  That crowd could have been forgiven of any sin, but instead they rejected the miracles that testified that Jesus was from God.  Contrast that crowd’s attitude with Nicodemus’ attitude.  Nicodemus understood that the only way that someone could perform a miracle was if God was with him (Jhn 3:2).  When that crowd rejected the evidence that the Holy Spirit provided (in this case, the miracles), they rejected any chance to receive the forgiveness found in Jesus’ teachings.  When we reject the truth of God (the Bible), we reject the Holy Spirit.

The Holy Spirit’s primary job is to bring the truth of the gospel to mankind (see the post “What the Holy Spirit Does” for more details).  Someone blasphemes the Holy Spirit by rejecting the truth that the Holy Spirit sent us in the Bible.  Any sin can be forgiven if we will turn to God’s Word and obey it (Rom 10:17, Heb 5:9), but there is absolutely no hope for someone if he or she will not accept the Holy Spirit’s Bible.

Therefore, since it seems that you are actively seeking the truth and trying to study and learn what God’s Word is – you can find comfort that you haven’t committed the unforgivable sin.

Can't He Read?!

Thursday, October 08, 2020
     I have always wondered that if all these things are going to happen in the Bible and in the end Satan will be defeated, can't Satan read?  These Scriptures have been translated into every language known to man.  Can't he read?  If he knows he will lose, then why even try unless it is written that it will happen, in which case, he has no free will.  In the Gospel of Judas, Judas writes that he was asked by the Lord to betray Him in order for God’s will to be carried out.  Somebody had to do it, right?  Or else how could all other things come to pass?  Either way, I try to live my life by one of Christ’s sayings, and that's to "love one another as I have loved you".  It works for me… and is reading the Bible enough?  What do the Scriptures say to you?

Sincerely,
Mystified

Dear Mystified,

You could just as easily ask the question, “Since all non-Christians will go to hell in the end, why don’t they convert? Can’t they read?”.  Anytime someone has a dishonest or hardened heart, they do things that are against logic.  This is why people murder, steal, hate, etc.  Hard hearts make for bad decisions.  The Bible describes that state as having a “seared conscience” that is incapable of seeing the truth that is right in front of them (1 Tim 4:2).  From what we can read, nobody has a harder heart than Satan.
Now let’s address the other details you mentioned.  The Gospel of Judas isn’t a Bible book; it is a fraud.  God didn’t write that book, and it has been left out of the Bible for a reason.  The Gospel of Judas is what is called an apocryphal book, and it was never accepted as authentic by the early Christians.  Read “Books Of The Apocrypha” for further details.
Now for your last question – reading the Bible isn’t enough; you have to live by it, too.  The apostle Paul said the gospel is the power of God unto salvation (Rom 1:16).  When we read the words and then live by the words, then we will be saved (Jas 1:22).  You might want to read “Five Steps To Salvation” for further details on getting started in that life.

Staying In Grace

Thursday, August 27, 2020
Would you explain "once in grace, always in grace"?

Sincerely,
Gracious

Dear Gracious,

The idea that you can’t ever lose your salvation is a warping of Christ’s message in Jhn 10:27-29.  “Once saved, always saved” (sometimes referred to as “once in grace, always in grace”) is a basic doctrine of Calvinism (read “Calvin And Sobs” for more details on the errors of Calvinism).  The Bible clearly says that you can lose your salvation.  Heb 3:12 says that we must be wary and protect our hearts because an evil, unbelieving heart can fall away.  2 Pet 3:17 says that we can lose our salvation if we get caught up in false teaching (1 Tim 4:1 also states this).  If we return to a life of ungodliness, then we crucify Christ again (Heb 6:4-6).

All In Your Head

Thursday, August 06, 2020
How do you know if you are getting a dream from God, and not just you or the devil?

Sincerely,
A Dreamer

Dear A Dreamer,

The days of dreams and visions have passed.  In the past, God spoke to various people through dreams, visions, and prophecy, but today He speaks to us through His Son, Jesus Christ (Heb 1:1-2).  Now that we have the complete and perfect Bible – there is no need for God to give people individual dreams or visions.  It is through the Word of God that we learn how to live faithfully (Rom 10:17).

We are sure that your dreams mean something, but they don’t mean anything supernatural or prophetic.  What you had was not a vision.  Prophets have visions, and there are no more prophets since we have the perfect and complete Word of God (1 Cor 13:8-10).  The human mind is a complex and wondrous thing (Ps 139:14).  It is perfectly normal for our minds to make mental connections as we pray, study, sleep, etc.  Those mental images aren’t visions; they are just your own thoughts as your mind meditates upon what you have said, read, or heard.

Counting Sheep

Tuesday, June 23, 2020
     I had a dream of the Lord last night.  He called me to Him and held me in His arms for a while.  I could even smell His hair in my dream.  He said to me that the lion will soon lay down with the lamb.  Could you explain that?

Sincerely,
Sheepish

Dear Sheepish,

The days of dreams and visions have passed.  In the past, God spoke to various people through dreams, visions, and prophecy, but today He speaks to us through His Son, Jesus Christ (Heb 1:1-2).  Now that we have the complete and perfect Bible – there is no need for God to give people individual dreams or visions.  It is through the Word of God that we learn how to live faithfully (Rom 10:17).

We are sure that your dream means something, but it doesn’t mean anything supernatural or prophetic.  What you had was not a vision.  Prophets have visions, and there are no more prophets since we have the perfect and complete Word of God (1 Cor 13:8-10).  The human mind is a complex and wondrous thing (Ps 139:14).  It is perfectly normal for our minds to make mental connections as we pray, study, sleep, etc.  Those mental images aren’t visions; they are just your own thoughts as your mind meditates upon what you have said, read, or heard.

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