1 Peter 3:15 – But in your hearts honor Christ the Lord as holy, always being prepared to make a defense to anyone who asks you for a reason for the hope that is in you; yet do it with gentleness and respect…
Today I took a day away from the Journey of 100 Churches. See, today I am seeking truth.
John 8:31-32- To the Jews who had believed him, Jesus said, “If you hold to my teaching, you are really my disciples. Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.”
I have been to eight churches so far. I can’t say we anymore because my own personal journey is what I am writing about here and I don’t want to influence anyone in my group and what they are taking away from this. I also don’t want to put words in their mouth. So, this is just me talking and only me.
A lot of things have been on my mind this week. I changed up my blog a bit to highlight the churches we have attended and have planned to. Twice now God has stopped me from going and just be with Him. Once, He got my attention in a big way.
I wonder have I been completely honest with myself and you in regards to why I wanted to do this. What was I really looking for by stepping away my home church and looking into other churches? In reality I did want to see how we were welcomed because it is a thing I consistently hear about, people not being welcomed or accepted. Another thing was trying to see how others worshipped God and if there was many different ways. I wanted to see if congregations were being fed the Word or a portion of it. I had my own personal reasons and others going along had their reasons. There was and is something to be taken away.
I said I would only write about churches who spoke God’s Word and if I didn’t have anything nice to say then I would say nothing. My heart is a little torn right now though. I was still having questions and each church I went to I could sit here and say I would like to know this or that. The things I set out to know became more questions for me.
One question is why doesn’t anyone take communion every week like the apostles did?
Acts 20:7- And upon the first day of the week, when the disciples came together to break bread, Paul preached unto them, ready to depart on the morrow; and continued his speech until midnight.
This very thing has bothered me for weeks. I even wrote to my minister and told him I missed our church because of that reason. Jesus said-
Luke 22:19-20-And he took bread, gave thanks and broke it, and gave it to them, saying, “This is my body given for you; do this in remembrance of me.” In the same way, after the supper he took the cup, saying, “This cup is the new covenant in my blood, which is poured out for you.
Yes, it doesn’t say how often we are to do this but if it is good enough for the apostles, then should we not follow?
During my own Bible study program I found that the key to success is through the Word of God. To know the Word and to do the Word is that key.
James 1:22- But be ye doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving your own selves.
Not only that but we are supposed to study the Word.
Joshua 1:8- Keep this Book of the Law always on your lips; meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do everything written in it. Then you will be prosperous and successful.
The churches we have been to have read from the Word of God, and I was pleased to see this.
Another thing that has been on my mind a lot these past few months, it is in regards to asking Jesus to come into your heart and be Saved and waiting to be baptized or not even pushing the issue of baptism. I have been greatly concerned about this thing.
What makes all of this even more strange is that this past week I removed some of my articles. I removed the music sections as well. I formed an archives for the articles I wanted listed and did so based on the traffic to those articles. Yet, am I here to please everyone else or am I here to please God? That is how it started, by me wanting to reach people for God. I wasn’t here for entertainment purposes. Why would I do that this particular week? Why also would it be my home church who would be the one to send me a book that was on the very thing I was so intent on finding the truth about? The truth about man-made rules and traditions and those following after their own heart’s desires.
2 Corinthians 11:12-15-And I will keep on doing what I am doing in order to cut the ground from under those who want an opportunity to be considered equal with us in the things they boast about. For such people are false apostles, deceitful workers, masquerading as apostles of Christ. And no wonder, for Satan himself masquerades as an angel of light. It is not surprising, then, if his servants also masquerade as servants of righteousness. Their end will be what their actions deserve.
I used to believe that was only for those that were under demonic oppression. That could very well still be true but it isn’t necessarily just referring to those people but people within the church who believe that they are doing the right thing. Those people, some who are good people, but who choose to not follow the outline of the Bible. There are those who believe what they are being told without finding the truth out for themselves.
2 Timothy 3:1-5-But mark this: There will be terrible times in the last days. People will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boastful, proud, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, without love, unforgiving, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not lovers of the good, treacherous, rash, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God— having a form of godliness but denying its power. Have nothing to do with such people.
2 Thessalonians 3:6-In the name of the Lord Jesus Christ, we command you, brothers and sisters, to keep away from every believer who is idle and disruptive and does not live according to the teaching you received from us.
1 Timothy 4:1-2-The Spirit clearly says that in later times some will abandon the faith and follow deceiving spirits and things taught by demons. Such teachings come through hypocritical liars, whose consciences have been seared as with a hot iron.
I am searching for the truth. That is the whole truth and nothing but the truth.
John 8:32- Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.
John 16:13 -When the Spirit of truth comes, he will guide you into all the truth, for he will not speak on his own authority, but whatever he hears he will speak, and he will declare to you the things that are to come.
John 14:6 -Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.
John 17:17 -Sanctify them in the truth; your word is truth.
Psalm 145:18 -The Lord is near to all who call on him, to all who call on him in truth.
1 Timothy 3:15- If I delay, you may know how one ought to behave in the household of God, which is the church of the living God, a pillar and buttress of the truth.
John 18:37-38 -Then Pilate said to him, “So you are a king?” Jesus answered, “You say that I am a king. For this purpose I was born and for this purpose I have come into the world—to bear witness to the truth. Everyone who is of the truth listens to my voice.” Pilate said to him, “What is truth?” After he had said this, he went back outside to the Jews and told them, “I find no guilt in him.
This very thing takes me back to last year in 2013 when I was hit with knowing the truth on a whole different level. This was when I was trying to find out the truth about marriage and divorce and I found it out but it wasn’t with the help of many preachers. My own minister gave me insight but also was insistent on me finding the truth for myself.
I already went over that though before but the number of preachers and congregations that were feeding into the lies that they were being told was immeasurable and the amount of people who became angry with me was just as equal. The truth is the truth, yet some want to deceive themselves by being blindly fed heaps of lies that they become addicted to.
Philippians 3:17-19-Brethren, join in following my example, and note those who so walk, as you have us for a pattern. For many walk, of whom I have told you often, and now tell you even weeping, that they are the enemies of the cross of Christ: whose end is destruction, whose god is their belly, and whose glory is in their shame—who set their mind on earthly things.
So, back to the baptism question. I always believed that baptism was all a part of the Salvation of Christ and being in the church I grew up in it was never an issue for me until as of late. I only saw one church perform a baptism and that was after people were “saved”. My confusion is this, why do so many people wait to be baptized? I have been told because there is no baptistery in the church. Or it takes a lot of water to continue refilling the baptistery. I have heard many excuses over the years though. I also know churches and different congregations who do not believe this is a necessary part of the Salvation process. This not necessarily coming from the churches we have been to but just things I have heard when asking the question.
How can we accept Christ and not be made aware that the baptism is a necessary and detrimental part in accepting Christ as our Savior? That is my question. That is again my source of confusion when you read over and over in the Bible how we are instructed to do so.
Acts 2:38-And Peter said to them, “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.
Acts 22:16-And now why do you wait? Rise and be baptized and wash away your sins, calling on his name.
1 Peter 3:21-Baptism, which corresponds to this, now saves you, not as a removal of dirt from the body but as an appeal to God for a good conscience, through the resurrection of Jesus Christ…
Mark 16:16 -Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned.
Romans 6:4 -We were buried therefore with him by baptism into death, in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, we too might walk in newness of life.
John 3:5 -Jesus answered, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God.
Matthew 28:19-Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit…
Colossians 2:12-13 -Having been buried with him in baptism, in which you were also raised with him through faith in the powerful working of God, who raised him from the dead. And you, who were dead in your trespasses and the uncircumcision of your flesh, God made alive together with him, having forgiven us all our trespasses…
Baptism and Salvation go hand in hand and to be baptized is a necessary condition of Salvation. So why are some churches not preaching this very thing? Why are Words of the Bible twisted or not used at all?
Revelation 22:18-20- I warn everyone who hears the words of the prophecy of this scroll: If anyone adds anything to them, God will add to that person the plagues described in this scroll. And if anyone takes words away from this scroll of prophecy, God will take away from that person any share in the tree of life and in the Holy City, which are described in this scroll. He who testifies to these things says, “Yes, I am coming soon.”Amen. Come, Lord Jesus.
So, here I sit and many things are going through my mind. The confusion I feel is based upon my own thoughts and not those of God. Is it really confusion though or an awareness of how far we have fallen away from God? It is no more those of the world that I am concerned with but those within the church. All I can think of is a moment in time where I prayed to God to please not allow me to fall into false doctrines, to protect me from the things of the devil within the church. As time goes on the reality of the Bible and the prophecies spoken within are coming true. As time goes on my prayer as well is this very thing.
Revelation 22:20-He who testifies to these things says, “Yes, I am coming soon.” Amen. Come, Lord Jesus.
What once started out as a quest to learn more about churches and the people within. What started out as a way to learn about this or that has now become a quest for the truth. Not truth in part, or a representation of it, but the truth-God’s TRUTH. Not a quest for man made traditions, rules, policies and procedures but the truth found in God’s Word and to find that for myself and to show it to other’s, not my version of it or a church’s version of it but what God says within His Word.
The further I go in life and the more I continue to grow in my spirituality I am more aware of truth because without it we are basing our lives around lies. We are basing our eternity on the same lies. How shocked we would be on judgment day. God help us! God help me to not step away from the one thing I believe you are calling me to do. Direct our steps, guard our minds, guard our hearts in Jesus’ name.
I suggest that all of you do the same. Are you holding onto what you were taught based upon the feelings and thoughts of people or are you holding onto what you know, believe, and have meditated on yourself?
Knowing the Bible to me is now the most important thing a Christian can ever do and it’s the greatest weapon against the enemy. It is not just the knowing though, it is also the studying and the doing. Be concerned with your soul to the point that you discover the information on your own. Be willing to give yourself that gift, because you are worth it. Don’t allow traditions made by men influence you. Let the Word of God do that for you!
God bless you, keep you, and protect you, and may you always search for the truth.