Exploring Christ's Spiritual Laws

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Webers.Home

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#41
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Rom 14:22b-23 . . Blessed is the man who does not condemn himself by
what he approves. But the man who has doubts is condemned if he eats,
because his eating is not from faith; and everything that does not come from
faith is sin.

In other words, it's possible to be wrong even when you're right because it's
a sin to forge ahead when one's conscience is not sure it's okay to do so.

I once knew a Christian who felt guilty just setting foot inside a BlockBuster
video store. Was he silly for feeling that way? Not in his mind; and it's your
own personal moral compass that counts in gray areas. Some Christians
can't permit themselves to dine in a restaurant that serves alcohol; while
others see nothing wrong with it. If those two kinds of Christians should
perchance dine out together, it's the more sensitive conscience that
determines where to eat.

In other words; it makes good spiritual sense to avoid insisting upon your
freedoms and rights sometimes in order to prevent dragging your fellow
Christians into something that makes them feel guilty and/or uncomfortable.
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Webers.Home

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#42
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Rom 15:1-2 . . We may know that certain things make no difference, but
we cannot just go ahead and do them to please ourselves. We must be
considerate of the doubts and fears of those who believe certain things are
wrong.

Webster's defines "considerate" as thoughtful of the rights and feelings of
others, i.e. sympathetic regard; which is no doubt near impossible for
Christians afflicted with narcissistic personality disorder: a toxic
psychological condition characterized by a grandiose sense of self
importance, a need for excessive admiration, exploitive behavior in
relationships, and a lack of empathy.

I think this would be a good place to interject a note pertaining to the
statement below:

"By this all men will know that you are my disciples, if you love one
another." (John 13:35)

For many of us who grew up in dysfunctional families, broken homes, foster
systems and/or orphanages et al; the concept of love doesn't resonate in our
thinking; viz: it just goes in one ear and right out the other because we
quite literally have no points of reference in our minds to aid comprehending
what The Lord means by love; and this is what makes his commandments
interspersed throughout the epistles so valuable. Many of them not only
show us how to recognize love when we encounter it; but also how to
exemplify it in our own lives so that those of us who were deprived of love
growing up are not left to figure it out on our own.
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Webers.Home

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#43
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Rom 15:7 . . Accept one another, then, just as Christ accepted you, in order
to bring praise to God.

That's a bit tricky but I think it just means all Christians should acknowledge
each other as Christians, and treat one another as Christians though they
may differ in opinion about what constitutes a true Christian.

For example: it's not unusual to hear a Christian pontificate that real
Christians would never watch R-rated movies, gamble, wear a speedo or a
string bikini, use cosmetics, smoke marijuana, expose cleavage or wear skin
tight yoga pants in public, stop for a beer on the way home from work, have
a glass of wine before bedtime, listen to RAP music, ditch church and
Sunday school for years at a time, or go in a bar or a nightclub where
there's topless female dancers up on a stage twining themselves around a
pole while leering men stuff currency into the hems of their skimpy little
costumes.

Too many Christians have the opinion that unless others believe and practice
the very same way they believe and practice, then those others are not
Christians. Well; the easiest way to settle this is to follow Webster's
definition that a Christian is simply someone who professes a belief in the
teachings of Jesus Christ. That's it: no more, no less, and no qualifiers. They
don't even have to practice The Lord's teachings; they only have to profess
to believe in them.

An internet forum I was on in the past made it even easier. In order to
qualify as a Christian on that forum; one only had to believe they were a
Christian; viz: they didn't have to prove they were a Christian; no, they only
had to be convinced in their own minds that they were a Christian. If we all
followed that rule it would put a stop to a lot of unnecessary quarreling,
name calling, and bad feelings.

NOTE: Heresy is subjective. In other words: what's heresy to a Catholic
may not be heresy to a Methodist, and vice versa. And what's heresy to a
Mormon may not be heresy to a Jehovah's Witness, and vice versa. And
what's heresy to a Baptist may not be heresy to the Church Of God, and vice
versa. So my advice is: never, ever call another Christian a heretic-- just to
be on the safe side; cut that name from your remarks because it just might
be that you yourself are the one infected with heresy and don't know it; viz:
be circumspect with your choice of words because the hapless day just may
arrive when you are forced to eat them.
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Webers.Home

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#44
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Rom 15:27 . . If the Gentiles have shared in the Israelite's spiritual
blessings, they owe it to the Israelites to share with them their material
blessings.

Within the context of Rom 15:25-27, the Israelites to whom Paul refers are
not those who believe and practice Judaism; but those who believe and
practice Christianity. It is unbecoming for Christians to support religions that
undermine their Master.
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Webers.Home

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#45
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Rom 16:17-18 . . I urge you, brothers, beware of those who cause
divisions and put obstacles in your way that are contrary to the teaching you
have learned. Keep away from them. For such people are not serving our
Lord Christ, but their own appetites. By smooth talk and flattery they
deceive the minds of naïve people.

In the 17th chapter of John's gospel, Christ prayed for unity. People in
church who cause division and put obstacles in your way that are contrary to
the teaching you have learned are detrimental to his wishes.

NOTE: Christianity isn't a democracy. It's a theocracy. The New Testament
Greek word for lord and/or master in Luke 2:29, Acts 4:24, 2Tim 2:21, 2Pet
2:1, and Rev 6:10 is despotes (des-pot'-ace) from which we get our English
word despot; defined by Webster's as a ruler with absolute power and
authority.

People in church following a fire in their belly instead of the wishes of
Christianity's despot are guilty of sedition; defined by Webster's as
incitement of resistance to, or insurrection against, lawful authority.

In their own minds; the rebels no doubt honestly believe themselves
working for the greater good, but that path is risky. For example: failure to
obey God cost King Saul the loss of his reign. (1Sam 15:22-26)

"smooth talk" is the practice of sophistry; defined as a reason or an
argument that sounds correct but at its core is actually false; viz: subtly
deceptive reasoning or argumentation.

Sophistry is typically rational, reasonable, and sensible; but the thing to
keep in mind is that faith believes what's revealed to it rather than only what
makes sense to it. For example; by revelation we know that the cosmos-- all
its forms of life, matter, and energy --is the product of intelligent design.
Sophistry argues that the cosmos originated from the mighty explosion of a
miniscule something or other; a.k.a. the Big Bang.

According to Eph 4:11-14 the very reason that Christ endows some of his
followers to speak for him is so that the rest of his followers may have
access to true premises upon which to build their faith and thus achieve the
unity for which he prayed.

FYI: "keep away from them" isn't a recommendation; it's an order.
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Webers.Home

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#46
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1Cor 1:10 . . I appeal to you, brothers, in the name of our Lord Jesus
Christ, that all of you agree with one another so that there may be no
divisions among you and that you may be perfectly united in mind and
thought.

I think it would be interesting to analyze the incident that prompted Paul to
issue that order.

"My brothers, some from Chloe's household have informed me that there are
quarrels among you. What I mean is this; one of you says: I follow Paul;
and another says: I follow Apollos; and another says: I follow Cephas; and
still another says: I follow Christ." (1Cor 1:11-12)

The "divisions" that Paul addressed were apparently related to the sins of
rivalry and elitism— some even going so far as to allege that their baptism
was superior to the "second-rate" baptisms undergone by others.

Modern examples of that kind of elitism today might go like this: one might
brag "I was saved at a Louis Palau crusade" while, not to be outdone,
another might retort "That's nothing; I was saved at a Billy Graham crusade"
or "My pastor got his degree at Dallas Theological Seminary" while another
may counter by saying "So? My pastor got his doctorate at Yale Divinity
School" or "I listen to Thru The Bible with J.Vernon McGee every day on the
radio" while another may retort by saying "He's okay for some people; but
Back To The Bible with Woodrow Kroll is where it's really at." or "I use
nothing but the King James version of the Bible" while another may scoff
with "People serious about Bible study use a Scofield Reference Bible in the
NIV." or "I can read and write Greek" while another might retort: "You
should try learning Hebrew sometime. Now there's a challenge." And then
there's the hermeneutics know-it-alls who insist that the truth of a passage
can only be seen in context and no other way

Those kinds of petty rivalries are harmful to unity; plus: they generate
unnecessary bad feelings amongst Christians, and should be avoided.
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Webers.Home

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#47
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1Cor 1:26-31 . . Remember, dear brothers and sisters, that few of you
were wise in the world's eyes, or powerful, or wealthy when God called you.
Instead, God deliberately chose things the world considers foolish in order to
shame those who think they are wise. And he chose those who are
powerless to shame those who are powerful. God chose things despised by
the world, things counted as nothing at all, and used them to bring to
nothing what the world considers important, so that no one can ever boast
in the presence of God.

. . . God alone made it possible for you to be in Christ Jesus. For our benefit
God made Christ to be wisdom itself. He is the one who made us acceptable
to God. He made us pure and holy, and he gave himself to purchase our
freedom. As the Scriptures say: The person who wishes to boast should
boast only of what The Lord has done.

Some of us tend to think ourselves pretty smart for having enough good
sense to believe the gospel. But according to the passage above, we didn't
become believers due to our IQ; were that the case, then Carl Sagan
would've stood on the side of intelligent design instead of opposing it.

No; the credit is due to God's IQ, i.e. God alone was smart enough to make
it possible for any of us to be in Christ Jesus. Personally, I look upon that as
something not for me to boast about, rather; an incredible stroke of luck.
(One of the meanings of "blessed" is fortunate.)

Boasting in what the Lord has done is sort of like the pride that sports fans
feel for their favorite teams; especially when they win. Well; it goes without
saying that God is a winner-- maybe He's not accounted a winner by the
world's best and brightest, but certainly by those of us very pleased that
Christ's mission succeeded.
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Webers.Home

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#48
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The next commandment is embedded in the following scripture. It's
indicated by underlined text.

1Cor 3:5-15 . .What, after all, is Apollos? And what is Paul? Only servants,
through whom you came to believe. As The Lord has assigned to each his
task: I planted the seed, Apollos watered it, but God made it grow. So
neither he who plants nor he who waters is anything, but only God, who
makes things grow. The man who plants and the man who waters have one
purpose, and each will be rewarded according to his own labor. For we are
God's fellow workers; you are God's field, God's building. According to the
grace of God which was given to me, as a wise master builder I laid a
foundation, and another is building upon it. But let each man be careful how
he builds upon it.


. . . For no man can lay a foundation other than the one which is laid, which
is Jesus Christ. Now if any man builds upon the foundation with gold, silver,
precious stones, wood, hay, straw, each man's work will become evident; for
the day will show it, because it is to be revealed with fire; and the fire itself
will test the quality of each man's work. If any man's work which he has
built upon it remains, he shall receive a reward. If any man's work is burned
up, he shall suffer loss; but he himself shall be spared, yet so as through
fire.

Sorry for that big gob of scripture, but in order to explain what is meant by
the underlined text it's essential that I retain it's context.

It's easy mistake the judgment spoken of in that passage for the judgment
spoken of in Rev 20:11-15. But there are crucial differences worth noting.

1• The fire spoken of at 1Cor 3:5-15 burns works. The fire spoken of at Rev
20:11-15 burns people.

2• People walk away alive from the fire spoken of at 1Cor 3:5-15. Nobody
walks away alive from the fire spoken of at Rev 20:11-15.

3• People are awarded at the judgment spoken of at 1Cor 3:5-15. People
are punished at the judgment spoken of at Rev 20:11-15.

FYI: Koiné Greek words for "purify" and "purge" are nowhere to be found in
1Cor 3:5-15; and a note in the current official Catholic Bible— the 2011 New
American Bible —says: "The text of 1Cor 3:15 has sometimes been used to
support the notion of a purgatory, though it does not envisage this."

If perchance there are Catholics reading this, I should clue them that the
non Biblical materials (foot notes) in the 2011 New American Bible have a
nihil obstat by Reverend Richard L. Schaefer, Censor Deputatus, and an
imprimatur by Most Reverend Jerome Hanus, O.S.B. Archbishop of Duguque.

Nihil Obstat is defined as: The certification by an official censor of the Roman
Catholic Church that a book has been examined and found to contain
nothing opposed to faith and morals

Imprimatur is defined as: Approval of a publication under circumstances of
official censorship

So; if 1Cor 3:15 doesn't envision the notion of a purgatory, then what does
it envision? It's a depiction of people who waken inside a burning home with
barely enough time to get out; taking nothing with them but whatever they
wore to bed. Their home is destroyed, and all their valuables and all their
mementoes; but at least the occupants themselves are safe, and suffer no
harm from the fire.

The works in context are those pertaining specifically to Christians like Paul
and Apollos; viz: people involved in ministerial capacities e.g. apostles,
missionaries, evangelists, pastors, deacons, Sunday school teachers, church
administrators, home Bible study leaders, et al. Though John Q and Jane
Doe pew warmer's works will some day be evaluated too; they are not the
ones whose works will be evaluated as per 1Cor 3:5-15 because John Q and
Jane Doe are depicted not as God's fellow workers, but as: (1) God's field,
and (2) His building.

It's extremely important to note that only the Christian worker's works are
tested with fire; not the worker himself. Compare this to the great white
throne event depicted at Rev 20:11-15 where the dead's works are not
tested; but rather, their works are introduced as evidence in the
prosecution's case against them. The Christian worker's works aren't
evaluated as evidence against them, but as potential credit to justify giving
them a performance award.

Another extremely important thing to note is that the Christian worker's
substandard works are burned up rather than burned off.

"let each man be careful how he builds upon it" indicates that Christian
workers need to keep in mind that what they produce will be thoroughly3
scrutinized; and projects that don't measure up will be summarily culled;
resulting of course in reduced compensation for their service. How sad it
would be to see workers like Mother Teresa who, after devoting decades of
their lives to a Christian service capacity, only to be stripped of everything
and come away with nothing to show for it; not even so much as a Boy
Scout merit badge.
_
 

Webers.Home

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#49
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1Cor 3:18 . . If any one of you thinks he is wise by the standards of this
age, he should become a fool so that he may become wise.

I'm guessing that command relates to one of Christ's instructions.

"Truly I say to you, unless you are converted and become like children, you
shall not enter the kingdom of heaven." (Matt 18:3)

The koiné Greek word for "converted" is strepho (stref'-o) which basically
means to twist, i.e. turn quite around or reverse (literally or figuratively)

In a nutshell, strepho is talking about taking a new direction.

Many of those in Jesus' audiences were mature, educated folk. Jesus is as
much as saying that they need to go back to school and learn a new trade--
so to speak -- which is what quite a few people had to do back when the
housing bubble burst in 2008 and they found themselves not only out of
work, but also quite over-qualified and/or their skills no longer in as much
demand like they once were.

In our age, "wise" would pertain to people high up in finance, education,
science, art, computing, crafts, music, philosophy, politics, etc. Many of
those kinds of people are brilliant, but when it comes to knowing the ways of
God, they're about as bright as an elementary school kid just starting out in
kindergartner in need of beginning right from square-one and learning some
basics.

"The Lord knows the thoughts of the wise; that they are worthless." (1Cor
3:20)

Christ also spoke of humbling one's self as a little child. Well; I can say from
personal experience that wise people like those mentioned above make very
poor Sunday school students because their intelligence gets in the way. If
only they would leave their IQ at the door, even they themselves would be
the better for it.

"Receive with meekness the engrafted word, which is able to
save your souls." (Jas 1:21)
_
 

Webers.Home

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#50
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1Cor 3:21-23 . . So don't take pride in following a particular leader.
Everything belongs to you-- Paul and Apollos and Peter --the whole world
and life and death; the present and the future. Everything belongs to you,
and you belong to Christ, and Christ belongs to God.

I've noticed that avid sports fans are afflicted with chronic identity
syndromes. When their favorite team wins; they say "we" won; as if they
were on the field playing the game instead of up in the bleachers or on the
couch at home watching the action on TV.

Christians that idolize their favorite pastors and/or Sunday school teachers
are just as avid. They want to be identified with those kinds of church
luminaries because it makes them look really smart and elite; when in
reality it just makes them look silly and star-crossed.
_
 

Webers.Home

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#51
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1Cor 4:1 . . So then, men ought to regard us as servants of Christ, and as
those entrusted with the mysteries of God.

Big names like Mother Teresa and Billy Graham are practically sacred cows--
but celebrities like those are only human rather than divine; and just be
thankful you're not one of them because their responsibility is immense.

1Cor 4:5 . . Judge nothing before the appointed time; wait till The Lord
comes. He will bring to light what is hidden in darkness and expose the
motives of men's hearts.

The "appointed time" is probably referring to the event described at 1Cor
3:5-15 when the work done by outstanding Christians will be evaluated for
performance awards.

Human nature has a propensity to shower accolades on religious celebrities
without having all the facts.

For example; we now know from Mother Teresa's private letters-- made
public by Father Brian Kolodiejchuk's book "Mother Teresa / Come Be My
Light
" --that Ms. Agnes Gonxha Bojaxhiu was a nun with so little personal
belief in God as to be an agnostic; and yet for decades everyone the world
over thought she was the cat's meow and the bee's knees: a veritable poster
child of piety in thought, word, and deed. It turns out Teresa was a
remarkable actor. Her public image bore no resemblance whatsoever to the
secret life of her inner being.

The reinforcement that comes to Christ's followers via Rom 8:16 never
happened for Teresa. As a result, the remarkable nun came to the end of her
life worried that if perchance there is a God, He didn't particularly like her
and might actually be quite intent upon condemning her.

Well; I'd have to say that if you're a Christian missionary with those kinds of
thoughts going thru your head, maybe you really ought to seriously consider
another line of work.
_
 

Webers.Home

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#52
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1Cor 5:1-5 . . It is actually reported that there is immorality among you,
and immorality of such a kind as does not exist even among the Gentiles,
that someone has his father's wife. And you have become arrogant, and
have not mourned instead, in order that the one who had done this deed
might be removed from your midst.

. . . For I, on my part, though absent in body but present in spirit, have
already judged him who has so committed this, as though I were present. In
the name of our Lord Jesus, when you are assembled, and I with you in
spirit, with the power of our Lord Jesus, I have decided to deliver such a one
to Satan for the destruction of his flesh, that his spirit may be saved in the
day of The Lord Jesus.

Gentiles of course do sleep with their stepmothers on occasion; but the
world's practice of that kind of behavior is more an aberration than a
custom.

Well, the Corinthians were treating that man's behavior as if it were a norm,
i.e. they apparently felt that the man's conduct was trivial, undeserving of
criticism. They must have wondered why Paul was reacting so badly rather
than just "get over it". After all; it's none of his business what goes on
behind closed doors. Had he not heard of the right to privacy? And besides,
didn't the Lord say: "Let he who is without sin cast the first stone."

Delivering someone to Satan for the destruction of the flesh just simply
means to ostracize, i.e. no associating with them whatsoever, and especially
no spiritual support, not even prayers. This may seem an extreme measure
but that man's impious conduct was dragging the whole church down.

NOTE: In modern mega churches it's near impossible for pastoral staffs to
keep up on who's been naughty and nice; so I'm afraid it falls more and
more upon congregations these days to police each other's morals.
_
 

Webers.Home

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#53
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1Cor 5:6b-8 . . Do you not know that a little leaven leavens the whole lump
of dough? Clean out the old leaven, that you may be a new lump, just as
you are in fact unleavened. For Christ our Passover also has been sacrificed.
Let us therefore celebrate the feast, not with old leaven, nor with the leaven
of malice and wickedness, but with the unleavened bread of sincerity and
truth.

. . . I wrote you in my letter not to associate with immoral people; I did not
at all mean with the immoral people of this world, or with the covetous and
swindlers, or with idolaters; for then you would have to go out of the world.
But actually, I wrote to you not to associate with any so-called brother if he
should be an immoral person, or covetous, or an idolater, or a reviler, or a
drunkard, or a swindler-- not even to eat with such a one. For what have I
to do with judging outsiders? Do you not judge those who are within the
church? But those who are outside, God judges. Remove the wicked man
from among yourselves.

The apostle Paul's leaven analogy indicates that the shameful conduct of just
one member of the congregation is the whole congregation's shame. This
isn't a proprietary Christian principle. It first shows up in the 7th chapter of
Joshua. The insubordination of one insignificant Jewish man-- just one -
caused God to stop assisting Joshua's army in battle. As a result, 36 men
were needlessly killed in action; and ultimately capital punishment was
inflicted upon not only the insubordinate man himself, but also his sons and
his daughters. What did God say? Achan has sinned? No: Israel has sinned.
(Josh 7:11)

This is one of the best arguments against church expansion. The bigger a
congregation gets, the more difficult it is to keep an eye on everyone's
conduct.

Q: What about saved and born-again LGBT? Do they have to be judged and
ostracized too?

A: There was a time in the not-so-distant past when there would have been
no need to ask that question. But the question is very pertinent nowadays
what with so many State, local, and Federal laws practically giving LGBT the
status of protected species. It's got to the point when accusing them of
sexual sin is considered hate speech.

The key to correctly applying Paul's instruction to Christian LGBT is the word
"indulges" which Webster's defines as: excessive compliance and weakness
in gratifying another's or one's own desires. In other words: before judging
and ostracizing LGBT they have to be sexually active.

And please; let's not level all the heavy guns at LGBT because the list
takes in all forms of immorality; plus slander, heavy drinking, greed and
swindling.

Those last two were responsible for the Wall Street crash of 2008 that led to
thousands of people everywhere losing their jobs, their retirements, and
their homes. LGBT are of no consequence at all in comparison to the power
of greed and swindling to ruin people's lives, collapse entire economies, and
create fear, panic, and havoc on a titanic scale.

NOTE: If there's an old leaven, then there must be a new leaven; which
requires an explanation.

Well; biblical leaven has practically nothing to do with yeast; after all, even
freshly milled flour contains an amount of naturally-occurring fungi so it's
just about impossible to find flour that doesn't contain some. But the
presence of fungi isn't the focus in leaven. It's all about age rather than
ingredients.

Naturally-occurring fungi will, in time, sour even the very freshest lump of
pure dough. Old leaven then, probably speaks of a lump of dough that has
been allowed to get so old, and consequently so bitter, that it's no longer fit
for human consumption and has to be thrown out.
_
 

Webers.Home

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#54
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1Cor 6:1-6 . . If any of you has a dispute with another, dare he take it
before the ungodly for judgment instead of before the saints? Do you not
know that the saints will judge the world? And if you are to judge the world,
are you not competent to judge trivial cases? Do you not know that we will
judge angels? How much more the things of this life!

. . .Therefore, if you have disputes about such matters, appoint as judges
even men of little account in the church! I say this to shame you. Is it
possible that there is nobody among you wise enough to judge a dispute
between believers? But instead, one brother goes to law against another-and
this in front of unbelievers!

Apparently some of the Christians in the church at Corinth let the Sermon
On The Mount go in one ear and out the other.

"But I say unto you: That ye resist not evil; but whosoever shall smite thee
on thy right cheek, turn to him the other also. And if any man will sue thee
at the law, and take away thy coat, let him have thy cloak also." (Matt 5:39
40)

"Why don't you judge for yourselves what is right? As you are going with
your adversary to the magistrate, try hard to be reconciled to him on the
way, or he may drag you off to the judge, and the judge turn you over to
the officer, and the officer throw you into prison. I tell you, you will not get
out until you have paid the last penny." (Luke 12:57-59)

The Lord began his teaching in Luke with the words "Why don't you judge
for yourselves what is right?" In other words; if someone threatens to take
you to court over a tort matter, and you know darn good and well he's in the
right; don't force him to go to law. Instead, admit to your wrong and settle
out of court. According to The Lord, it’s unrighteous to tie up the courts
when you know your own self that you are the one who's in the wrong.
There's just simply no righteous reason why Christian defendants and
plaintiffs can't be their own judge and jury in tort matters.

"Now therefore there is utterly a fault among you, because ye go to law one
with another. Why do ye not rather take wrong? why do ye not rather suffer
yourselves to be defrauded? Nay, ye do wrong, and defraud, and that your
brethren." (1Cor 6:7-8)

The koiné Greek word for "defraud" is apostereo (ap-os-ter-eh'-o) which is
an ambiguous word with more than one meaning, and more than one
application. The meaning that seems appropriate in this instance is
"deprive".

It works like this: Were I to trip and fall because of a crack in the walk
leading up to the front door of the home of one of my kin; I wouldn't haul
them into court over it because we're related; viz: any injury I might incur
by tripping and falling because of a crack in their walk would be a family
matter rather than a legal matter; and they have a right to be treated by me
as family rather than as enemies in a lawsuit because we're related. Were I
to sue them for tripping and falling because of a crack in their walk; I would
be depriving them of the love that kin have a right to expect from one
another.

Well; Christians are supposed to be brethren; in the highest possible sense
of the word.

"We know that we have passed out of death into life, because we love the
brethren. . . We know love by this, that He laid down His life for us; and we
ought to lay down our lives for the brethren." (1John 3:14-16)

I think it's safe to say that if somebody is comfortable taking a fellow
Christian to court; then they certainly are not prepared to lay down their life
for the brethren.

It's sad to see relatives suing each other in court; but it happens all the
time. When the world does it; well, that's to be expected; but when
Christians sue each other; that's dysfunctional.
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Webers.Home

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#55
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1Cor 6:18 . . Flee fornication. Every sin that a man doeth is without the
body; but he that commits fornication sins against his own body.

The koiné Greek word for "fornication" is porneia (por-ni'-ah) which doesn't
especially mean pornography; it means harlotry; a term that Webster's
defines as sexual profligacy. Porneia would include things like prostitution,
adultery, promiscuity, date sex, free love, shacking up, one-night stands,
swingers, wife swapping, and that sort of thing.

The command is not to walk away from fornication; but to run away from it
as if your very life depends upon putting distance between you and it. The
same Greek word is used at Matt 2:13 where an angel instructed Joseph to
flee into Egypt in order to save his little boy's life.

Fleeing is different than shunning. I think what we're talking about here are
the times when a golden opportunity comes along to mess around with
somebody who is absolutely irresistible. Some people would call that getting
lucky; but in God's estimation, it's getting stupid if you play along and see
what happens.

Young Christian couples often want to know how far they can go with their
dates before they're into forbidden territory. Well, we all instinctively know
the upper limits, but since the lower limits aren't chipped in stone then I
would have to say let your own conscience be your guide in accordance with
The Lord's principles stipulated in the 14th chapter of Romans regulating
gray areas. The key principles are:

"Let every man be fully persuaded in his own mind." (Rom 14:5)

"Happy is he that feels no guilt in that thing which he allows." (Rom 14:22)

"He that doubts is guilty if he eats, because he eats not of faith: for
whatsoever is not of faith is sin." (Rom 14:23)

However, as an old senior guy of 74 who's been around the block a time or
two: I must forewarn youngsters that the human conscience is trainable.
What I mean is, if you manage to suppress your first-time pangs of guilt, the
second time will be easier; and each succeeding suppression of your
conscience gets easier and easier till the day comes when you feel no guilt at
all. In other words: you will eventually succeed in cauterizing your
conscience. (cf. 1Tim 4:1-2)

The phrase "sins against his own body" is sort of the same wording as at
1Cor 11:27 where it's said: Whoever eats the bread or drinks the cup of The
Lord in an unworthy manner will be guilty of sinning against the body and
blood of The Lord.

Some Christians construe 1Cor 11:27 as murder. Well if so, then sinning
against one's own body would be suicide. But actually, what we're talking
about here is gross contempt and disrespect. In other words; Christian
fornicators are treating their body like a chamber pot instead of a holy
vessel; and all the while dragging God's Spirit into situations that He finds
extremely unbecoming.

"Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit, who is in
you, whom you have received from God?" (1Cor 6:19)

"Do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, with whom you were sealed for the
day of redemption." (Eph 4:30)

They're also dragging Christ into shame and disgrace too.

"Do you not know that your bodies are members of Christ himself? Shall I
then take the members of Christ and unite them with an harlot? Never! Do
you not know that he who unites himself with an harlot is one with her in
body? For it is said: The two will become one flesh." (1Cor 6:14-16)
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Webers.Home

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#56
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1Cor 6:20 . . For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your
body, and in your spirit, which are God's.

Christ's crucifixion and resurrection liberated his followers from facing justice
and the second death in the scene depicted at Rev 20:11-15. That was a
mighty big favor, and I should think it earns him the right to expect a favor
in return. All things considered; conducting ourselves in ways that honor
God is really not too much to ask seeing as how it was He who donated His
#1 son's life to pay the price for our ransom.

Human life consists of not only body and spirit, but also soul. (1Ths 5:23,
Heb 4:12). So, that being the case; why isn't soul mentioned in 1Cor 6:20?
Well; I'm pretty sure it's inferred, by the pronoun "ye".

NOTE: "Soul" is somewhat ambiguous. In the very beginning, the Hebrew
word for soul (nephesh) simply distinguished between fauna life and flora
life.

It shows up first at Gen 1:20-21 as sea creatures and winged creatures.
Then again at Gen 1:24 as terra creatures; again at Gen 2:7 as the human
creature; again at Gen 2:19-20 as the creatures to whom Adam gave
names; and again at Gen 9:8-16 as all creatures aboard the ark, including
Noah and his family.
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Webers.Home

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#57
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1Cor 7:2 . . To avoid fornication, let every man have his own wife, and let
every woman have her own husband.

The above is especially pertinent in 2014 America. Fornication is
everywhere: on a pandemic scale. It's in our music, in our schools, in the
White House, in our offices, on our televisions, in our movies, in our novels,
and in our conversations. People are even sleeping together on their very
first dates.

Even Congressmen, Senators, and US Presidents are indulging in forbidden
love. The previous Governor of Oregon was openly shacking up with a
girlfriend. An item in the January 2011 issue of National Geographic reported
that 41% of America's births in 2008 were illegitimate; which is up 28%
from 1990.

This country is in a state of moral decadence, and becoming more and more
like the ancient city of Pompeii just prior to its destruction by the volcanism
of Mt. Vesuvius.

It's important to note that 1Cor 7:2 makes it okay to marry for sex. My
childhood religion taught me that it's a sin to marry for any other reason
except procreation and that couples who decide to remain childless are living
in sin. They get that from Genesis 1:28 where it's says: "God blessed them;
and God said to them: Be fruitful and multiply". But that is clearly a blessing
rather than a law. It's always best to regard blessings as benefits and/or
empowerments unless clearly indicated otherwise.

Ironically the original purpose of marriage was neither sex nor procreation;
it was companionship (Gen 2:18). Leave it to people to construe God's
words to mean things they don't say in writing.
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RickyZ

Senior Member
Sep 20, 2012
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#58
Actually, marriage is a public confession of a spousal relationship, which is formed when the two make one (wink wink) - that is why marriage is not valid until consummated.
 

Webers.Home

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#59
.
1Cor 7:3-4 . . Let the husband render unto the wife due benevolence: and
likewise also the wife unto the husband. The wife hath not authority of her
own body, but the husband: and likewise also the husband hath not
authority of his own body, but the wife.

What we're talking about in that verse is the principle of private property in
marriage that was established right from the get-go.

"Hence a man leaves his father and mother and clings to his wife" (Gen
2:24)

There are no specific Hebrew words for "wife". The word for wife in that
verse comes from the very same word as woman-- 'ishshah. What makes an
ishshah somebody's wife? The possessive pronoun "his". So Eve became
Adam's woman; and Adam of course became Eve's man. They quite literally
owned each other.

Adultery is very serious not only because it's immoral, but also because it's
an act of theft. Spouses that cheat on their partners are no different than
carjackers taking an SUV that doesn't belong to them and selling it to a chop
shop.

So then; if you're looking for a man, or for a women, then go out and find
one of your own instead of taking a married one who has no right to give
themselves to you without their spouse's consent.
_
 

Webers.Home

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#60
.
1Cor 7:5 . . Defraud ye not one the other, except it be with consent for a
time, that ye may give yourselves to fasting and prayer; and come together
again, that Satan tempt you not for your incontinency.

It's not uncommon for wives to withhold intimacy from their husbands as a
strategy to manipulate them. God forbid that any woman believing herself to
be one of Christ's followers should ever pull a stunt like that! Same goes for
the husbands. There is just no excuse for that kind of behavior in marriage.
It's deplorable and it's unbecoming.

The koiné word for "defraud" is apostereo (ap-os-ter-eh'-o) which means: to
despoil; which Webster's defines as: to strip of belongings, possessions, or
value; viz: pillage.

In other words, married people who withhold sex from their spouses without
a valid reason to do so are nothing less than thieves, and in violation of the
8th commandment.

"Thou shalt not steal." (Ex 20:15)

The temptation in question is of course adultery. In other words; if one
spouse denies the other spouse's conjugal rights for too long a time they run
the risk of pushing them into another's arms.

I heard a story recently about a rather conniving Christian woman who
wanted a divorce from her Christian husband; but seeing as how The Lord
only allows death or adultery to dissolve the marital bond; she deliberately
denied her husband his conjugal rights in order to force him to think about
taking a lover; and when he did; she proceeded to divorce him on the
grounds of unfaithfulness. That way, in her mind's eye, she was the innocent
victim and he the villain.

The woman's first mistake was going for a divorce instead of a separation.
Her second mistake was denying her husband's conjugal rights without his
consent. Her third mistake was in putting a stumbling block in his path. Her
fourth mistake was in leading him to do something that made him feel
guilty. She no doubt made a number of other mistakes too but those four
suffice for starters.
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