Exploring Christ's Spiritual Laws

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Webers.Home

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May 28, 2018
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1Pet 4:1-2 . .Therefore, since Christ has suffered in the flesh, arm
yourselves also with the same purpose, because he who has suffered in the
flesh has ceased from sin, so as to live the rest of the time in the flesh no
longer for the lusts of men, but for the will of God.

The koiné Greek word for flesh is sarx (sarx); which basically indicates the
meaty parts of either man or beast; i.e. the body. The meaty parts of course
include one's brain.

The "lusts of men" is speaking of lusts that are common to everyone. (cf.
1Cor 10:13)

The koiné Greek word for "lusts" is epithumia (ep-ee-thoo-mee'-ah) which
means: a longing, defined by Webster's as a strong desire, i.e. a craving.

Cravings aren't necessarily bad. Problems arise when we let our cravings
rule us to the point of acting contrary to good scruples and/or our better
judgement especially when it comes to making God frown upon our conduct
as unbecoming, i.e. inappropriate for His son's followers.

NOTE: It offends some Christians to even so much as think that Christ
might've had human longings just like everybody else. They truly believe he
should have been above all that-- he wasn't. Much of Jesus' suffering in the
flesh came from suppressing his body's natural cravings. (Heb 5:7-8)

As the Word in heaven above, Jesus knew by omniscience that it's tough to
be an h.sapiens; but now he knows for himself by personal experience just
how tough it is. (Heb 2:16-18, Heb 4:15)
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Webers.Home

Active member
May 28, 2018
933
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1Pet 4:7 . . The culmination of all things is approaching; therefore be
serious, and watchful in your prayers.

The koiné Greek word for "watchful" is nepho (nay'-fo) which means: to be
discreet; viz: exercise discretion-- caution in speech, prudence, and care
taken to consider all circumstances and possible consequences.

Nepho prayer implies being realistic and avoiding flowery bombast, rhetoric,
and rote chanting. After all, there's a high priest in heaven representing his
fellow men who speaks your language and knows for himself how people
think and how people feel; so get down to business with God and tell Him
what's on your mind without beating around the bush about it.
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Webers.Home

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May 28, 2018
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1Pet 4:8 . . Above all, keep fervent in your love for one another, because
love hides a large number of sins.

A person easily provoked is not a loving person.

One Saturday morning I and another man at church were moving some
furniture from one place to another inside the main building where,
completely unknown to us, a wedding rehearsal was being conducted. The
woman in charge of organizing the wedding came out into the hall and
began scolding us for talking and making noise.

When I pointed out that there were no posted signs in the hallway indicating
a function in progress on the other side of the door, she became sullen, and
tightened her lips and narrowed her eyes in anger. Had that lady exemplified
the love about which Peter wrote, she would have handled her inconvenience
with a little more tact and sensitivity.

"Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be known as God's kin." (Matt
5:9)

BTW: That same lady was also in the choir, and sang doxologies in front of
about 2,000 people every Sunday morning. She was good at musical
harmony, but obviously in sore need of some training in the civil kind.
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Webers.Home

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May 28, 2018
933
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1Pet 4:10 . .As each one has received a special gift, employ it in serving
one another, as good stewards of the manifold grace of God.

The koiné Greek word for "manifold" is poikilos (poy-kee'-los) which
means: motley, i.e. varied in character. All that’s really saying is that the
gifts of God are multifarious; viz: having a number of different aspects or
characteristics. (cf. Rom 12:5-8, 1Cor 12:1-11)

Unfortunately, people with natural aptitudes generally make up the majority
of those in church capacities for which is supposed to be required a spiritual
gift from God. They may look like they're "on fire" for The Lord, but really all
they are is ambitious.
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Webers.Home

Active member
May 28, 2018
933
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43
Oregon
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1Pet 4:11b . . Whoever serves, let him do so as by the strength which God
supplies; so that in all things God may be glorified through Jesus Christ, to
whom belongs the glory and dominion forever and ever. Amen.

Hardly anybody seems to care much about that anymore, nor would
anybody probably know the difference anyway. It’s been my observation
that the truly spiritually-gifted Christians are mostly invisible, and go about
their business right under the noses of the stars in church, whose own
spiritual decadence is oftentimes very embarrassing to Christianity.

Point being; those that do have genuine spiritual gifts need to make very
sure that when they exercise those gifts in church; they do so in the Lord's
best interests rather than their own.
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May 28, 2018
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1Pet 4:11a . . If anyone speaks, let him speak as the oracles of God.

The koiné Greek word for "oracles" is logion (log'-ee-on) which refers to
something spoken rather than something imagined.

The Bible is the voice of God in written form (Acts 7:38) but not every
speaker is the voice of God is spoken form.

In order to comply with 1Pet 4:11a, speakers really need to sincerely believe
themselves infallible and speaking for God ex cathedra; which is a pretty tall
order to say the least; and scary too.

"Not many of you should presume to be teachers, my brothers, because you
know that we who teach will be judged more strictly." (Jas 3:1)
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May 28, 2018
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1Pet 4:11b . . Whoever serves, let him do so as by the strength which God
supplies; so that in all things God may be glorified through Jesus Christ, to
whom belongs the glory and dominion forever and ever. Amen.

Hardly anybody seems to care much about that anymore, nor would
anybody probably know the difference anyway. It’s been my observation
that the truly spiritually-gifted Christians are mostly invisible, and go about
their business right under the noses of the stars in church, whose own
spiritual decadence is oftentimes very embarrassing to Christianity.

Point being; those that do have genuine spiritual gifts need to make very
sure that when they exercise those gifts in church; they do so in the Lord's
best interests rather than their own.
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May 28, 2018
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1Pet 4:15-16 . . Let none of you suffer as a murderer, a thief, an
evildoer, or as a busybody in other people's affairs. Yet if anyone suffers as
a Christian, let him not be ashamed, but let him glorify God in this matter.

NOTE: The koiné Greek word for "Christian" is christianos (khris-tee-an-os')
which means: a follower of Christ. That word appears in only three places in
the entire New Testament. The other two are Acts 11:26 and Acts 26:28.
Peter’s is the only epistle where it appears; and it’s nowhere in any of the
four gospels.

A good example of glorifying God in the midst of one's troubles is Mr. Job.

"At this, Job got up and tore his robe and shaved his head. Then he fell to
the ground in worship and said: Naked I came from my mother's womb, and
naked I will depart. The Lord gave, and The Lord has taken away; may the
name of The Lord be praised. In all this, Job did not sin by accusing God
with wrongdoing." (Job 1:20-22)

"His wife said to him: Are you still clinging to your integrity? Curse God and
die! Job replied: You are talking like a foolish woman. Shall we accept good
from God, and not trouble? In all this, Job did not sin in what he said." (Job
2:9-10)

Jas 5:11 speaks of the "patience" of Job; which is illustrated by the fact that
in all his trouble, Job remained loyal to God and never once lost his
confidence that God is blameless in all that He does.
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1Pet 4:19 . .Therefore let those who suffer according to the will of God
commit their souls to Him in doing good, as to a faithful Creator.

In the world of business, it’s sometimes necessary to take a concern to court
in order to force venders of goods and services to honor their commitments.
Well, the Bible’s God is not like that; no, the Bible's God is not a slimy
weasel: He's a person of real integrity.

Peter emphasized that human soul was created rather than produced by a
mysterious interaction of time, space, and matter. In other words: human
soul had both a beginning and a beginner; viz: human soul would not exist
at all had not a higher power willed it into existence.

FYI: What is meant by souls?

A: Soul basically refers to consciousness and individuality. (Gen 1:20-21,
Gen 1:24, and Gen 2:7)

In its entirety, normal human life consists of body, soul, and spirit. (1Thess
5:23). Those three components are separable, viz: the soul and the spirit
are capable of surviving the body's demise. (Matt 10:28, Luke 23:46, and
Heb 4:12)
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1Pet 5:1-3 . .Therefore, I exhort the elders among you, as your fellow elder
and witness of the sufferings of Christ, and a partaker also of the glory that
is to be revealed, shepherd the flock of God among you, exercising oversight
not under compulsion, but voluntarily, according to the will of God; and not
for sordid gain, but with eagerness; nor yet as lording it over those allotted
to your charge, but proving to be examples to the flock.

First off; Peter assures church officers that his proximity to Christ says very
clearly, and without ambiguity, that he knows what he's talking about so
they really ought to listen to what he has to say about managing a church.

The New Testament doesn't record Peter as being present at Christ's
crucifixion, but that obviously doesn't eo ipso preclude his attendance
somewhere in the audience that day, or observing everything from a safe
distance. (cf. Matt 26:58, Matt 27:55)

The conjunction "therefore" refers to one of Peter's previous statements;
specifically this one:

"For it is time for judgment to begin with the household of God" (1Pet 4:17)

That's an echo of 1Cor 3:4-23 and 1Cor 4:2-5 where Paul revealed that
people "serving Christ" are facing a possibly very unpleasant evaluation.

Church is no country for achievers, nor is it a career track, nor is it a country
for control freaks and power-hungry imperious despots, nor for people who
love to bask in limelight and crave admiration and the center of attention;
no, serving in a church is for shepherds.

If you're not sure what shepherding entails; then next time you're at a
county fair strike up a conversation with some of the 4H kids and they'll be
only too glad to tell you just what a thankless, man-killing, drudgery-ridden,
time consuming, smelly, expensive, inconvenient, filthy, and sometimes
dangerous line of work that animal husbandry really is.

So why do 4H kids do it? Primarily because they love their animals; and if a
luminary in church doesn't feel a genuine affection for those under their
supervision, then that luminary will utterly fail to exercise oversight
according to the will of God. Self-seeking luminaries are depicted as very
poor sources of water. (2Pet 2:17)

NOTE: Professional church officers are basically hirelings; and according to
God's son, a hireling cannot be depended upon to protect the sheep when a
wolf is at the door.

"I am the good shepherd; the good shepherd lays down his life for the
sheep. He who is an hireling, and not the owner of the sheep, beholds the
wolf coming, and abandons the sheep, and flees, and the wolf snatches
them, and scatters them. He flees because he is a hireling, and is not
concerned about the sheep." (John 10:11-13

A paid church officer might be willing to sacrifice himself for the benefit of
The Lord's sheep; but will he sacrifice his wife who has cancer, and/or his
two daughters' future whom he has to put through college, and/or the
mortgage on his home and/or his health insurance?

No, the best interests of The Lord's sheep will be very low on the hireling's
list of priorities because his primary interest is in keeping his job, protecting
his income, his health benefits, and his wife and children. The hireling will
circle the wagons when the wolf comes; yes, but not around the sheep; no,
around himself and what's his. So be very cautious in putting too much
confidence in church officers; you just might end up disillusioned and very
disappointed.
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1Pet 5:5a . .You younger, be subject to your elders

The elders in this instance are church elders; not just any nondescript
person of age that happens to be in the area; and the inference is that the
inexperienced Christians should not think of themselves as know-it-alls, but
rather, respect the mature Christians as mentors who genuinely know a
thing or two.

Peter's command isn't optional; no, it's mandatory, and it's very serious.

"Obey them that have the rule over you, and submit yourselves: for they
watch for your souls, as they that must give account, that they may do it
with joy, and not with grief: for that is unprofitable for you." (Heb 13:17)

If you should find yourself in a church whose elders you don't trust and/or
simply cannot respect, then it's time to move on and find a church whose
elders are worth their salt.
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1Pet 5:5b . . and all of you, clothe yourselves with humility toward one
another, for God is opposed to the proud, but gives grace to the humble.

The koiné Greek word for "humble" is tapeinophrosune (tap-i-nof-ros-oo'
nay) which means lowliness of mind; viz: modesty, which Webster's defines
as freedom from conceit or vanity. Lowliness of mind is to be greatly desired
for its blessing.

"Blessed are the poor in spirit: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven." (Matt
5:3)

Humility is very rare on internet forums. Active members are typically easily
insulted and infected with vanity; plus imperious, domineering, despotic,
assertive, confrontational, arrogant, conceited, reactive, thin-skinned, self
righteous, emotional, critical, and defensive. Those are not what I would call
good Christian attributes. They also have a propensity to jump to
conclusions, get the wrong impression, and fly off the handle. Those aren't
good Christian attributes either; in point of fact; none of those attributes are
blessing-worthy.

"Grace" is one of those ambiguous abstract nouns that nobody seems to
agree upon. Noah found grace in God's eyes (Gen 6:8) which in his case,
regarded providence; which can be defined as kindly patronage. It was by
God's providence that Noah and his family survived the Flood while the sons
of God and their harems didn't. Let that sink in. Just because people label
themselves a Christian, and profess a belief in Christ, is no guarantee they'll
escape the horrors of the book of Revelation. Noah was a righteous man,
and perfect in his generation; too many of today's card-carrying Christians
are neither.

The koiné Greek word for "proud" is huperephanos (hoop-er-ay'-fan-os)
which means appearing above others, viz: haughty. Those kinds of people
typically regard others with contempt, i.e. underserving of respect or even
so much as common courtesy. Haughty people are typically cruel,
thoughtless, insensitive, and badly infected with a superiority complex,
which goes hand in hand with arrogance: defined as an exaggerated sense
of one's importance, sometimes manifested in an overbearing manner.

Arrogant people can be intolerably pushy and assertive at times; standing up
to them usually always provokes an indignant reaction and a call to arms, so
to speak, because these folk regard any and all disagreements with their
way of thinking as demeaning attacks upon their core values and their
distorted sense of self worth. These people have very little interest in
harmony; they're stand-up fighters whose primary interest is winning.

Seeing as how Heaven is reputed a place of peace, then the arrogant, the
haughty, and the proud cannot be allowed to go there with their unholy
personalities. For sure they'd just end up making things very uncomfortable
for Heaven's normally mild-mannered, affable society.
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