The common thread tying together all those who love Jesus is a simple concept: Bringing the lost to Jesus. For most who call themselves Christians, since they believe we are “saved by grace” and “God loves everyone”, they do not have that “thread” in their hearts. They may bring people to church to satisfy their ego. They may hand out some literature to sooth the conscience. They may even support independent ministries. But the drive that brought Jesus down from Heaven to die for us, not much.
Keeping the Ten Commandments goes way deeper than just not stealing a pencil. If you are not driven to share the truth with those around you, you are stealing their eternal life. You will be held accountable for breaking the Ten Commandments. We must redefine “Christianity” for these last and final days of Earth’s history.
Paul had a burning desire to keep people in his church. It was so strong he went out persecuting and destroying those who left his church. That is what church does. However, when he became a Christian, he had such a burning desire to get people out of church and religious organizations, he was persecuted and lost his head for it. I don’t see much of that today in those who call themselves Christians. We are just having way too much fun sitting in church. And by the way, “church” doesn’t have to be sitting in a building or belonging to a denomination. It can be a set of beliefs one holds. Let us check our beliefs and make sure they align with Jesus.
Even though Paul was called by Jesus to give the gospel to stop sinning, be perfect and keep the Ten Commandments to get eternal life to the world, his burning desire was for the tithe-paying, Sabbath-keeping and church-going members. They were observing the forms, rituals, traditions, services and ceremonies, but they didn’t have Jesus. Oh, how he wanted to bring them the truth.
Romans 9:1 to 10:21
I say the truth in Christ, I lie not, my conscience also bearing me witness in the Holy Ghost, that I have great heaviness and continual sorrow in my heart.
I don’t think we have that understanding while sitting comfortably in our churches, in our homes watching religious programs or reading our religious papers. No, Christianity today is all about fun, rejoicing, praise and entertainment. Few actually “say the truth in Christ”. It is all about church, our opinions, independents and religious organizations.
For I could wish that myself were accursed from Christ for my brethren, my kinsmen according to the flesh: Who are Israelites; to whom pertaineth the adoption, and the glory, and the covenants, and the giving of the law, and the service of God, and the promises; . . .
Paul wished that he “were accursed from Christ” for his brethren. Jesus also wished the same. Jesus was “accursed” from His Father for us, His brethren. Paul had the same Spirit in him that was in Jesus. Do you have the same Spirit in you? As the Israelites were adopted by God to be His special “priests” to the world, so we are to accept the adoption from God and become His special “priests” to the world. The glory that was the Israelites can be ours. The “giving of the Law” to the Israelites for their glory, protection, peace, joy and eternal reward is also offered to us. When the Israelites lived in service to God, living His perfect, sinless and Commandment keeping life, the promises of God were fulfilled in their lives. So with us. God wants the world to see His love, His joy, His peace, His glory, His promises revealed and fulfilled in us as we live in obedience to Him.
Whose are the fathers, and of whom as concerning the flesh Christ came, who is over all, God blessed for ever. Amen.
As the Israelites had a rich and wonderful heritage, from whom the Messiah came, so we, who live as Christians, also have a rich and wonderful heritage to look back upon. We may study the lives of Jesus and true Christians who came before us and be blessed in the knowledge that God watches over His own. The examples are there. Those who lived obediently were blessed. Those who sinned were punished. We can be “God blessed for ever” if we will only live as Jesus commands us.
However, I want to make a distinction here between worldly blessings and God’s blessings. Many people who claim to be Christians are worldly blessed. They look upon themselves as being blessed by God. Worldly blessings are God’s grace to us. They belong to all of us. Those who have them don’t see themselves as having to change their sinful lives. He may have given them grace in allowing them to have worldly blessings, but if they do not study carefully how God wants His blessing to be used, those blessing will do no good in the resurrection. No Christian is wealthy. All the wealth God graciously gives is to be used for His work. To be spent on those who teach people to live as Jesus lived: perfect, sinless and Commandment keeping.
Not as though the word of God hath taken none effect. For they are not all Israel, which are of Israel:
It wasn’t God’s fault that the Israelites were no longer counted as God’s nation. He did everything He could for their salvation. He even gave His only Son. But the nation rejected the living God for their church-god. Their church was far more important to their ego, pride, wealth and arrogance than the living God. So it is today. It is not God’s fault that all the churches, denominations and religions of the world have been rejected by God. He has done all He could to bring them salvation. But they have rejected God by rejecting His commands to stop sinning, be prefect and to keep the Ten Commandments to get eternal life. No, their church-god is far more exciting and entertaining. Worldly blessings are more important than eternal blessings.
Neither, because they are the seed of Abraham, are they all children: but, In Isaac shall thy seed be called.
The Jews thought they were saved by belonging to the “seed of Abraham”. Today, church members think they are saved because of their membership or lineage to a certain church, denomination or religion. Not so. Nothing physical of this world can save you.
That is, They which are the children of the flesh, these are not the children of God: but the children of the promise are counted for the seed.
Those claiming to be “Christian” because they go to church or belong to a religious organization are “not the children of God”. Only those who are “of the promise are counted” as “children of God”. What is that promise? “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have eternal life.” John 3:16. From Genesis to Revelation, only those who have “believed” in the Messiah “have eternal life”. Whether you were Adam looking at the lamb being sacrificed in the Old Testament and believing in the “Lamb of God” who would come, or looking back to the cross and believing in Jesus of the New Testament as the “Lamb of God, your salvation was in believing what the “Lamb of God” taught was essential for your eternal life. To believe in Jesus is to love Him. “If you love Me, you will keep My Commandments.” “Whoever has My Commandments and keeps them, he it is who loves Me.” “Whoever does not love Me does not keep My words.” John 14:15, 21, 24.
God does not care who you are, what your bloodline is, how much money you make, what church you go to, what religion you belong to, what your titles are, how much property or wealth you have or what you believe. He only cares that you live in obedience to His Ten Commandments. Do you “believe”? Are you living the perfect, sinless and Commandment keeping life?
For this is the word of promise, At this time will I come, and Sara shall have a son.
As the birth of Isaac was a human impossibility, so the birth of Christ was an impossibility. Only because they were a “promise” of God could any of it be accomplished. Same in our spiritual lives. Humanly, it is impossible for us to be “born again”. But with God, all things are possible. All we have to do is do our part. If Abraham had doubted God’s promise and refused to have intercourse with his wife Sara, there would have been no Isaac. But he believed God and did his part while waiting on God to fulfill His part. We are to do the same in our spiritual lives. We are to put forth every effort, living in obedience to the teachings of Jesus to stop sinning, be perfect and to keep the Ten Commandments for our eternal life, and God will fulfill His promises for us.
And not only this; but when Rebecca also had conceived by one, even by our father Isaac; (For the children being not yet born, neither having done any good or evil, that the purpose of God according to election might stand, not of works, but of him that calleth;) It was said unto her, The elder shall serve the younger.
There again, God gave a promise, the older son and his descendants would serve the younger son. A promise that was fulfilled. Paul is attempting to show two very important things here. While the Jews boasted of their lineage from Abraham, Paul let them know it wasn’t from Abraham, but from Isaac and down though Jacob. Why? Because Abraham had nine sons, as recorded in the Bible, therefore, all of them could claim the same promises as the Jews. Which is exactly what the Muslims do. They claim their salvation lineage from Abraham. So the Jews were nothing special if they counted the physical lineage from Abraham as their link to Heaven. On the other hand, through the promised sons, Isaac and Jacob, the sons of promise, everyone in the whole world could be counted as “sons of God” by that same promise.
As it is written, Jacob have I loved, but Esau have I hated.
First of all, keep in mind, the above text was not given before Jacob and Esau were born. God doesn’t hate anyone in advance. He simply knows the future. This was written about 1500 years after Abraham, and in response to the actions of Esau’s descendants. Malachi 1:3. It is very important, when studying the New Testament, to check every reference that comes from the Old Testament and understand the reference in context with the times.
What shall we say then? Is there unrighteousness with God? God forbid.
Is God “unrighteous”? Of course not. From Genesis to Revelation we see the righteousness of God played out over and over again. He is long-suffering and unwilling that any should die. But, if people persist in their sins, they will be cut off from the promises of God and eventually die eternally. Therefore, Paul is now going to give us an example of that long-suffering.
For he says to Moses, “I will have mercy on whom I have mercy, and I will have compassion on whom I have compassion.”
Paul, in all his writings, takes his theology and his defense of God from the Old Testament. There is no “new” anything for eternal life in the New Testament. When Moses went up to meet with God after the Israelites had committed a terrible sin in making and worshiping the golden calf, God (Jesus) told Moses, “The LORD, the LORD, a God merciful and gracious (grace), slow to anger, and abounding in steadfast love and faithfulness, keeping steadfast love for thousands, forgiving iniquity and transgression and sin, but who will by no means clear the guilty.” Genesis 34:6, 7. God has always been faithful, loving, gracious (grace), merciful and forgiving. However, those qualities will “by no means clear the guilty”.
So then it depends not on human will or exertion, but on God, who has mercy.
Since we all deserve death, the mercy of God has nothing to do with our “human will or exertion”. God lives by the rules of justice, mercy, love and law. Before we even existed, the mercy of God had already devised the plan of salvation.
For the Scripture says to Pharaoh, “For this very purpose I have raised you up, that I might show my power in you, and that my name might be proclaimed in all the earth.”
God knew from the beginning of the world everything which would ever take place. Therefore, He worked out His will to have the Israelites in bondage at the time of Pharaoh in order to show His power, through Pharaoh, to the world. Each era has had its examples of God’s forbearance and destruction of wickedness. The flood, Tower of Babel, Sodom and Gomorrah. Now it was time for Egypt. I call this concept, “the Natural Order of Things”. God allows the natural order of wickedness to play out so we see the results and learn to hate wickedness.
So then he has mercy on whomever he wills, and he hardens whomever he wills.
God could have struck Pharaoh dead the first time Moses appeared before him. But in His mercy, and to show the results of rebellion, God bore long with Pharaoh. In one sense, yes, God did harden the heart of Pharaoh. How? Look at it like this, if you are determined to do something, and someone comes along and says you can’t, what happens to your “will”. It usually”hardens” your “will” to do what you want, right? So with God to Pharaoh. Pharaoh did not want to let the Israelites go. God commanded him to let them go. Pharaoh stiffened in his rebellion and refused. He hardened his heart. God gave him opportunity after opportunity to surrender. He refused. What are you doing with your will?
You will say to me then, “Why does he still find fault? For who can resist his will?”
Well, Pharaoh resisted God’s will. That is what made his heart hard. God has done everything He can to save us. But if we continually resist His salvation-will for us, then He has the right to “find fault” with us. If we live according to His will, to live in obedience to His commands, we will live under His promises and be saved. But if we “resist His will”, then we will be destroyed.
But who are you, O man, to answer back to God? Will what is molded say to its molder, “Why have you made me like this?”
Paul is using a human concept here. Later on he refines it even more. But God used the stubborn heart of Pharaoh for His own purposes. God has predestined wickedness, not individual people, to be destroyed. God has predestined righteousness, not individual people, to be saved. The choice between the two is your own. God made us, then He gave us free will. You determine what to do with that free will.
Has the potter no right over the clay, to make out of the same lump one vessel for honorable use and another for dishonorable use? What if God, desiring to show his wrath and to make known his power, has endured with much patience vessels of wrath prepared for destruction, in order to make known the riches of his glory for vessels of mercy, which he has prepared beforehand for glory— even us whom he has called, not from the Jews only but also from the Gentiles?
It is very important to understand that Paul teaches from the Old Testament. This concept of potter and vessel comes from the Old Testament in Jeremiah 18. Paul isn’t inventing a new concept. The people he was talking to knew their Old Testament and understood what Christians today have no idea about. Since Christians today have rejected the Old Testament, they don’t have any clue as to what Paul is talking about. That is why they have no understanding of salvation.
You see, God has “endured with much patience” those who have made themselves “vessels of wrath prepared for destruction”. God is the potter, He gives life to everyone. But what He makes is righteousness. But if the pot decides it doesn’t like righteousness and wants to be a vessel of wrath, then God will use that vessel to “make known the riches of His glory” to those vessels He has had mercy on. Again, God has predetermined what is righteous and what is wicked. We, the vessels, make the choice as to which we want to be. God will use us for His glory no matter what choice we make, either for destruction or for eternal life. The wicked vessel is to warn us to chose the Lord’s way of righteousness. But if we don’t listen and refuse to take warning, then we become a vessel to be destroyed. In the end, all the wicked will bow before God and confess, admit, that God is just in destroying them. They will recognize that their hearts refused to submit to God’s law.
And this calling, this desire, this righteousness that “He has prepared beforehand for glory” is for all people, not just the Jews. Everyone must make their own decision as to which vessel they want to become. The Jews thought it was just for them.
As indeed he says in Hosea, “Those who were not my people I will call ‘my people,’ and her who was not beloved I will call ‘beloved.’”
That is all Paul is trying to get across, that the Jews were in no way “special” in thinking they were God’s people. God has called everyone to be “My people”. The Jews, as a nation, were a vessel God called and “made” to be His special people to show the world the glory of God. But the nation eventually chose to become a vessel of wickedness.
“And in the very place where it was said to them, ‘You are not my people,’ there they will be called ‘sons of the living God.’”
The same goes today for churches, denominations, independents and religions that think you must belong to them in order to have eternal life. None of them have eternal life. They have all separated themselves from God. They refuse to believe that God is the God of the whole world, not of a certain sect, religion, denomination or church. Everyone can become a “child of God” by simply living as He commands: perfect, sinless and Commandment keeping. And let me make this perfectly plain. Not once in all the Bible does God command or even teach that we are to go to church or start a religion. Those whom churches think are not God’s people, are just the ones who are God’s people.
And Isaiah cries out concerning Israel: “Though the number of the sons of Israel be as the sand of the sea, only a remnant of them will be saved, for the Lord will carry out his sentence upon the earth fully and without delay.”
As the Lord, through Isaiah, predicted the destruction of Israel by the nation of Babylon, that prediction had many fulfillments. Evil will always be destroyed. And so, the Lord carried out His sentence upon Israel by Babylon, Rome and then by many nations throughout history. Being of Abraham’s bloodline has done nothing to save them. Only a “remnant of them” have been “saved”. God no longer looks upon Israel as a nation. Only those of Israel, and the world, who accept Jesus and His word to stop sinning, be perfect and to keep the Ten Commandments, are included in the “offspring” and will have eternal life.
And as Isaiah predicted, “If the Lord of hosts had not left us offspring, we would have been like Sodom and become like Gomorrah.”
If God had not been merciful, in allowing individuals from the offspring of Abraham to have eternal life, they would all have been “like Sodom and become like Gomorrah”. The same goes with the rest of the world. But the mercy of God has granted salvation to all who will believe and obey the law of God.
What shall we say, then? That Gentiles who did not pursue righteousness have attained it, that is, a righteousness that is by faith; but that Israel who pursued a law that would lead to righteousness did not succeed in reaching that law.
You see, the Jews had the law of righteousness, however, just having it does you no good. Why? Because having the law hanging on your wall without faith in the atonement of Christ, will do you no good for eternal life. All have sinned. Therefore, no matter how much you possess, talk about, or as Paul said, “pursued”, the law, you still had a big problem, you were still a sinner. Something had to happen to wipe out your past sins. That “something” was Jesus Christ. That is why the Gentiles who pursued the law received the benefits of that law because they believed in a Savior who atoned for their past sins. While the Jews possessed the law, taught it and pursued the law academically, but did not obey it, the Gentiles were pursuing the law by keeping it. Listen to Jesus as he confronted the Jews, “Why do you break the Commandment of God for the sake of your tradition?” Matthew 15:3. The Gentiles accepted the sacrifice of Jesus to pay for their past sins, while the Jews thought they could “earn” off their death-penalty through their own works by possessing the law, going to church and living by their traditions.
Why? Because they did not pursue it by faith, but as if it were based on works. They have stumbled over the stumbling stone, . . .
Yes they did. They refused to humble themselves and recognize they were sinners who needed a Savior to pay for their past sins. It was far more prideful to earn their own justification by their own works. Therefore, they “stumbled over the stumbling stone”. They did not want to believe in Jesus as their Savior. They did not want to humble themselves before Jesus and live in obedience to Him. No, they wanted their church-works, not God’s works. Their opinions were more important than the opinion of Jesus and His teachings.
. . . as it is written, “Behold, I am laying in Zion a stone of stumbling, and a rock of offense; and whoever believes in him will not be put to shame.”
Paul is talking here about justification, not sanctification. There is a huge difference between them. Only Jesus can justify us. Nothing we can do, except to have faith in Jesus, will justify us. After that, sanctification is on us to fulfill the requirements of the law in our lives in order for justification to complete its work in us. Therefore, “whoever believes in Him will not be put to shame”. Again, the Jews, as with most “Christians” today, were trying to work out their “justification” and pay off their past sins. They did not want to trust in the sacrifice of Jesus to pay their past debt.
Brothers, my heart’s desire and prayer to God for them is that they may be saved.
Do you have the same desire for those who go to church? As the Jews in their church, so those who sit in church today. They want to be “saved by grace” or the “unconditional love of God” or any other means besides faith that leads to obedience in the death of Jesus to pay our death-debt.
For I bear them witness that they have a zeal for God, but not according to knowledge.
How true that is of those who call themselves “Christian” today. When most “Christians” communicate with me, they have lots of “zeal for God”, but “not according to knowledge”. Nothing they say has anything to do with obedience to the Word of God. It is all about what God will do for “me”. They comfort each other with fine sounding phrases from the Word of God, but they show no desire to hear their obligations to God.
For, being ignorant of the righteousness of God, and seeking to establish their own, they did not submit to God’s righteousness.
Finally, after all this discourse, Paul hits the nail on the head. They, along with those who belong to, and support, religious organizations today, are “ignorant of the righteousness of God”. They do not want to submit to God. Their ego, pride and arrogance wants to “establish their own” righteousness. God’s righteousness is to have faith (justification) in the death of Jesus for past sins, and then to live in obedience (sanctification) to the Ten Commandments in order to continue living without sin. Justification wipes out our past sins and our penalty of death. Sanctification guarantees our justification by living continuously the sinless, perfect and Commandment keeping life.
This is one reason why Jesus stated, “It will be hard for a rich person to get into the kingdom of heaven.” Matthew 19:23. Why? Their money has become their “righteousness”. They believe they are blessed in their sins and in their “beliefs” and can do what they want with “their” money. Like Jezebel, their money is used to “feed” those independents and religious organizations who tell them what they want to hear. But they refuse to listen to this little “Elijah” voice God has sent them.
For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to everyone who believes.
Yes He is! Not only did He fulfill the law of righteousness in His life, but He offers it to “everyone who believes” and lives as He lived. Another way to say this is, “Christ is the embodiment of the law for righteousness”. Jesus was righteous because He kept the Law that is righteous.
For Moses writes about the righteousness that is based on the law, that the person who does the commandments shall live by them.
Yes, those who live by the Commandments shall live by them. That is correct. However, there was one small problem. Since all had sinned, all would have to die no matter how much keeping of the Commandments they did. Therefore . . .
But the righteousness based on faith says, “Do not say in your heart, ‘Who will ascend into heaven?’” (that is, to bring Christ down) “or ‘Who will descend into the abyss?’” (that is, to bring Christ up from the dead). But what does it say? “The word is near you, in your mouth and in your heart” (that is, the word of faith that we proclaim); because, if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.
In other words, we don’t need to go looking around for a method to clear our past sins and death-debt. We don’t need to look up to the heavens or down here on earth. We don’t need churches, denominations or religions. God has had the solution to our death-debt right from the beginning. But just as Cain refused to have faith in the “Lamb of God” to pay his death-debt, and wanted to work out his own justification, so with church members today. They work and work and work at going to church, supporting ministries and doing it their way to gain their justification in God’s eyes. But all we need to do is . . .
For with the heart one believes and is justified, and with the mouth one confesses and is saved.
So simple. But the prideful human heart wants to earn his justification before God. He doesn’t want to simply believe with his heart and confess that he is a sinner and needs a power outside of himself to justify him. All we need to do is humbly kneel before God and accept the sacrifice of Jesus for our death-debt.
For the Scripture says, “Everyone who believes in him will not be put to shame.”
Then, in gratitude for the sacrifice of Jesus, we also will sacrifice our lives for Him by living as He commands us. When we do that, salvation is open to every single person. You don’t have to belong to any church, religion or denomination. Just believe, obey and you will have eternal life. No more shame or condemnation for past sins and a future death.
For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek; for the same Lord is Lord of all, bestowing his riches on all who call on him.
We are not to call on our pastors, ministers, teachers or churches. We are not to go to church, but to Jesus. He is Lord of everyone in all the earth. All may receive His riches if they call on Him.
For “everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.”
To call on the “name of the Lord” to be saved is to recognize our sinful need of a Savior to pay our death-debt. We can’t work it off. We can’t buy it off. We can’t church it off. We can only believe and have faith that Jesus will keep His word and pay it with His own sacrifice. With that understanding, we will be so humbled, we will arise with a determination in our hearts to never disobey our Lord again. “Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord must turn away from evil.” 2 Timothy 2:19. “God, having raised up His servant, sent Him to you first, to bless you by turning every one of you from your wickedness.” Acts 3:25.
How then will they call on him in whom they have not believed? And how are they to believe in him of whom they have never heard? And how are they to hear without someone preaching?
Look around you. Look around your church. Look closely at those ministries you are supporting. If you don’t explain this to them, they are lost. Their blood will be on you. They do not “believe” in Jesus and are “ignorant of the righteousness of God, and seeking to establish their own” salvation. You must take to them the truth that what they are doing will never work off their death-debt.
And how are they to preach unless they are sent? As it is written, “How beautiful are the feet of those who preach the good news!”
Do you have “beautiful” feet? Will you “preach the good news” to them? Or will you let them die in their lies. There in religious organizations lay the lies that will destroy them. And you will be held accountable. Take this ministry to them.
But they have not all obeyed the gospel. For Isaiah says, “Lord, who has believed what he has heard from us?”
If you have beautiful feet and are bringing them the good news but they refuse to obey the gospel to stop sinning, be perfect and to keep the Ten Commandments to get their eternal life, then you have fulfilled your obligation. You can stop supporting them. We can’t save one person. Our job is to find the lost sheep, gather in the lost coins and preach to them the truth. It is on them to believe and obey. That is all I can do. I teach the truth as God is giving it to me. Those who obey will have eternal life. Those who are hardheaded, stiff-necked and filled with their own egos and pride, will never make it to heaven.
So faith comes from hearing, and hearing through the word of Christ.
Notice, it isn’t hearing through your church, your pastor, minister, independent or denomination. It is “hearing through the Word of Christ”. And what was the “Word of Christ”? Stop sinning, be perfect and keep the Ten Commandments to get your eternal life.
But I ask, have they not heard? Indeed they have, for “Their voice has gone out to all the earth, and their words to the ends of the world.”
If that was true back then, how more so today. Everyone has heard about Christ, but few have hard the truth. The Bible has been sent “to the ends of the world”, but who is listening? However, that does not remove from us the obligation to continue reaching out to those around us. You must have a heart like Jesus. You must help them understand the Word of God. Take the material God has dictated and directed on His website: www.jcpm.com and share it with the world around you.
But I ask, did Israel not understand? First Moses says, “I will make you jealous of those who are not a nation; with a foolish nation I will make you angry.” Then Isaiah is so bold as to say, “I have been found by those who did not seek me; I have shown myself to those who did not ask for me.”
Again, Paul is still trying to convince people that the Gospel is for everyone around the whole world. It was never restricted to the Israelites. The Jews had no right to think that salvation was limited to their organization. Same today. Jesus does not care what religion you belong to. He doesn’t care what day you go to church on. He doesn’t care what denomination you belong to. He cares that you live in obedience to His Ten Commandments and have faith in His sacrifice for your death-debt. Remember, going to church does not make a day holy, nor does it make you holy. The only thing that makes us holy is living the holy, perfect, sinless and Commandment keeping life.
But of Israel he says, “All day long I have held out my hands to a disobedient and contrary people.”
I have found that so true with those who are tithe-paying, Sabbath-keeping, church-going members today. They are trying to earn their justification their own way. They are refusing to find the righteousness that comes from God. Will you believe Jesus today and get out of your church, denomination, independent ministry and kneel before Jesus and accept His sacrifice for your past sins, then get up and live in obedience to His Ten Commandments?
Prison Mission Report
Ron,I heard about your Bible study book and how you used to be locked up from Darby. What he has been saying makes a lot of sense. I can really see the Lord working in his life and I want what he has. Can you please send me your book?Danny, VA
Brother Ron,I must say, what you shared about this being a lonely life is true. Not that I had a lot of friends, but I know a lot of people and when I begin to share the truth, they either duck me or get upset and try to argue. I don’t entertain because the choice is theirs. A lot of them don’t want the truth. Brother Ron, brother Floyd and I fellowship and work together. We discuss your booklet and the teachings of Jesus daily with our coworkers. I believe soon we may have a couple of names for you. I have been sharing with my mom and it’s been a blessing, even though she is still hesitant about certain things. I am reading my Bible daily and really beginning to understand what I am reading, which refreshes and excites me. I have been listening to the people I live and work with. To my amazement, they all live in confusion and have no idea what peace is. They are worried about the things of this world instead of where they will spend eternity. James, LA
JCPM,A friend of mine got the “Change Your Life Biblically” book today in the mail. I love it so much, I had to write you and ask if you would please send me one of my own. I want you to know I respect what you are doing and your ministry. Please keep up the good work.James, TN
Dear Brother Ron,I received your letter and was surprised and uplifted. I can’t believe how easy you make history learnable from the Bible. So much I did not know, yet you brought it out and made it plain in how going from book to book to get the full picture and chapter to chapter for a full understanding. Well, brother Ron, I’m all in. It’s Jesus way or no way. No churches, just me, my Bible and God’s Word with lots of prayer and meditation. Oh, I’ve been praying 4 times a day and in the last 2 days, I have felt better and growing stronger in spiritual warfare, being self-controlled. Yeah, Duke is laid out! This has put a smile on my face seeing Duke chillin’. Darrien, LA
Hey Brother Ron,I sit in this cell and listen to the radio and heard that the book “Change Your Life Biblically” was good. So, I wanted to write and ask you for a copy of the book, please. This is my third trip down here and it is really time to change my life. This isn’t for me any more. Jonathan, TX
Dear JCPM,I recently received your booklet and it really resonated with me. I would like to be added to the list.Jose, WI
Dear Brother Ron,The relationship compared to obedience is a nice subject. The analogy that you use with the man just sitting around dreaming about being in top physical and mental shape compared to actually putting in that work. Thank you for your insight into these subjects which have given me another way of looking at them. I agree that faith in Jesus and obedience to His Word is most important. Kevin, PA
To Whom It May Concern,Please send me the free book. I would like to do a Bible study.Tony, TX
JCPM,I got your pamphlet through the mail tonight. Nothing but God sent it. So, I’m writing you because I want to continue the Bible studies.Brendon, TX
JCPM,I came across an incomplete workbook about dinosaurs and prophecies. Is there any way your ministry could send me this? I don’t have any money. I am praying that God hears my request and blesses me. Just the undamaged pages has caught my attention on how much stuff I’ve been taught is so wrong.Thomas, CA
Testimony for God's Children
We have read how Paul was on fire in his missionary work for Jesus. How he was willing to sacrifice himself for the good of others. That spirit is not seen very much in the lives of Christians today. The fire of God is almost extinguished in Christians. The following is especially presented for those who make missionary work their life work. However, all of us, if we claim the name of Christ, are to be missionaries. I pray that as you read the following, your heart will be stirred with a new zeal for the souls around you. Please listen to the principles being discussed and apply them to your heart. God’s blessing will be upon you as you do.
December 10, 1871, I was shown that God would accomplish a great work through the truth if devoted, self-sacrificing men would give themselves unreservedly to the work of presenting it to those in darkness. Those who have a knowledge of the precious truth and who are consecrated to God should avail themselves of every opportunity where there is an opening to press in the truth. Angels of God are moving on the hearts and consciences of the people of other nations, and honest souls are troubled as they witness the signs of the times in the unsettled state of the nations. The inquiry arises in their hearts: What will be the end of all these things? While God and angels are at work to impress hearts, the servants of Christ seem to be asleep. But few are working in unison with the heavenly messengers. All men and women who are Christians in every sense of the word should be workers in the vineyard of the Lord. They should be wide-awake, zealously laboring for the salvation of their fellow men, and should imitate the example that the Saviour of the world has given them in His life of self-denial, sacrifice, and faithful, earnest labor.
What is interesting is, inmates, those who have heard the truth for the very first time, are on fire to share the truth with those around them. Few people on the outside have ever shared the truth with those around them. Even though the material in “Change Your Life Biblically” was dictated and directed by the Spirit of God, few care. God means nothing to them. The message God is putting out for today is being ignored just as it was in biblical times. The end result will be the same.
There has been but little of the missionary spirit among Sabbathkeeping Adventists. If ministers and people were sufficiently aroused, they would not rest thus indifferently while God has honored them by making them the depositaries of His law by printing it in their minds and writing it upon their hearts. These truths of vital importance are to test the world; and yet in our own country there are cities, villages, and towns that have never heard the warning message. Young men who feel stirred by the appeals that have been made for help in this great work of advancing the cause of God make some advance moves, but do not get the burden of the work upon them sufficiently to accomplish what they might. They are willing to do a small work which does not require special effort. Therefore they do not learn to place their whole dependence upon God and by living faith draw from the great Fountain and Source of light and strength in order that their efforts may prove wholly successful.
People seem to think that if they donate their 10%, they have satisfied God. The Bible shows that God required almost 25% of Israel. It was to be heart work. They were to love the Lord with all their heart for all He had done for them by giving thank offerings and other offerings. But today, so few are “thankful” for what God is and has done for them. They grudgingly give 10%, if that, and think it will appease God. It won’t.
Those who think that they have a work to do for the Master should not commence their efforts among the churches; they should go out into new fields and prove their gifts. In this way they can test themselves and settle the matter to their own satisfaction, whether God has indeed chosen them for this work. They will feel the necessity of studying the word of God and praying earnestly for heavenly wisdom and divine aid. By meeting with opponents who bring up objections to the important points of our faith, they will be brought where they will obtain a most valuable experience. They will feel their weakness and be driven to the word of God and to prayer. In this exercise of their gifts they will be learning and improving, and gaining confidence, courage, and faith, and will eventually have a valuable experience.
The Brethren (missionaries) commenced right in this work. In their labor they did not go among the churches, but went out into new fields. They commenced humble. They were little in their own eyes and felt the necessity of their whole dependence being in God. These brothers, . . ., are now in great danger of becoming self-sufficient. When he has discussed with opponents, the truth has obtained the victory, and he has begun to feel strong in himself. As soon as he gets above the simplicity of the work, his labors will not benefit the precious cause of God. He should not encourage a love for discussions, but should avoid them whenever he can. These contests with the powers of darkness in debate seldom result the best for the advancement of present truth.
If young men who commence to labor in this cause would have the missionary spirit, they would give evidence that God has indeed called them to the work. But when they do not go out into new places, but are content to go from church to church, they give evidence that the burden of the work is not upon them. The ideas of our young preachers are not broad enough. Their zeal is too feeble. Were the young men awake and devoted to the Lord, they would be diligent every moment of their time and would seek to qualify themselves to become laborers in the missionary field rather than to become combatants.
In 22 years of asking “young men” to join me serving God, none have “the burden of the work” upon them. Few from this time of Earth’s history will be in Heaven.
Young men should be qualifying themselves by becoming familiar with other languages, that God may use them as mediums to communicate His saving truth to those of other nations. These young men may obtain a knowledge of other languages even while engaged in laboring for sinners. If they are economical of their time they can be improving their minds and qualifying themselves for more extended usefulness. If young women who have borne but little responsibility would devote themselves to God, they could qualify themselves for usefulness by studying and becoming familiar with other languages. They could devote themselves to the work of translating.
Our publications should be printed in other languages, that foreign nations may be reached. Much can be done through the medium of the press, but still more can be accomplished if the influence of the labors of the living preacher goes with our publications. Missionaries are needed to go to other nations to preach the truth in a guarded, careful manner. The cause of present truth can be greatly extended by personal effort. The contact of individual mind with individual mind will do more to remove prejudice, if the labor is discreet, than our publications alone can do. Those who engage in this work should not consult their ease or inclination; neither should they have love for popularity or display.
I’m still looking for one who can start up our Spanish department. But I have not found one who loves Jesus. It is all about selfishness and the world.
When the churches see young men possessing zeal to qualify themselves to extend their labors to cities, villages, and towns that have never been aroused to the truth, and missionaries volunteering to go to other nations to carry the truth to them, the churches will be encouraged and strengthened far more than to themselves receive the labors of inexperienced young men. As they see their ministers’ hearts all aglow with love and zeal for the truth, and with a desire to save souls, the churches will arouse themselves. These generally have the gifts and power within themselves to bless and strengthen themselves, and to gather the sheep and lambs into the fold. They need to be thrown upon their own resources, that all the gifts that are lying dormant may thus be called into active service.
At this point, I just want to say “thank you” to our donors. Those of you who are putting every resource available into this work of God’s brings great rejoicing in Heaven. Your unselfish, sacrificial, timely, dedicated tithes and offerings are needed to keep this little ministry moving forward.
As churches are established, it should be set before them that it is even from among them that men must be taken to carry the truth to others and raise new churches; therefore they must all work, and cultivate to the utmost the talents that God has given them, and be training their minds to engage in the service of their Master. If these messengers are pure in heart and life, if their example is what it should be, their labors will be highly successful; for they have a most powerful truth, one that is clear and connected, and that has convincing arguments in its favor. They have God on their side and the angels of God to work with their efforts.
The reason there has been so little accomplished by those who preach the truth is not wholly because the truth they bear is unpopular, but because the men who bear the message are not sanctified by the truths they preach. The Saviour withdraws His smiles, and the inspiration of His Spirit is not upon them. The presence and power of God to convict the sinner and cleanse from all unrighteousness is not manifest. Sudden destruction is right upon the people, and yet they are not fearfully alarmed. Unconsecrated ministers make the work very hard for those who follow after them and who have the burden and spirit of the work upon them.
That is why in today’s world, God has withdrawn “His smiles” from the churches. They are not sanctified by the truth and they do not convict the sinner to “cleanse from all unrighteousness”. It is all entertainment, fun, games and money.
The Lord has moved upon men of other tongues and has brought them under the influence of the truth, that they might be qualified to labor in His cause. He has brought them within reach of the office of publication, that its managers might avail themselves of their services if they were awake to the wants of the cause. Publications are needed in other languages to raise an interest and the spirit of inquiry among other nations. . . .
Those engaged in the work have been about two thirds dead because of yielding to wrong influences. They have been where God could not impress them by His Holy Spirit. And, oh, how my heart aches as I see that so much time has passed, and that the great work that might have been done is left undone because those in important positions have not walked in the light! Satan has stood prepared to sympathize with the men in holy office and to tell them that God does not require of them as much zeal and unselfish, devoted interest as Brother White expects; and they settle down carelessly in Satan’s easy chair, and the ever-vigilant, persevering foe binds them in chains of darkness while they think that they are all right. Satan works on their right hand and on their left, and all around them; and they know it not. They call darkness light, and light darkness.
That one paragraph pretty much sums up our condition as Christians today. This little ministry is attempting to share the same devoted interest as Brother White expected, but most in our churches today are carelessly sitting in Satan’s easy churches thinking “that they are all right”. The paragraph above was written about 150 years ago. Today, the conditions in our churches are even worse than back then.
If those in the office of publication are indeed engaged in the sacred work of giving the last solemn message of warning to the world, how careful should they be to carry out in their lives the principles of the truth they are handling. They should have pure hearts and clean hands.
Our little print shop is sacred ground. I pray in there every day. I ask God that His spirit goes with every page that we print. That hearts will be touched and lives changed. But we need your prayers. We need your support. As you can see, our print shop doesn’t look like much, but what is printed inside, and what comes out, is mighty in the eyes of God. Keeping the equipment repaired and running is not cheap. God bless each of you who are dedicated to supplying our needs each month.
Our people connected with the office have not been awake to improve the privileges within their reach and to secure all the talent and influence that God has provided for them. With nearly all connected with the office there is a very great failure to realize the importance and sacredness of the work. Pride and selfishness exist to a very great degree, and angels of God are not attracted to the office as they would be if hearts there were pure and in communion with God. Those laboring in the office have not had a vivid sense that the truths that they were handling were of heavenly origin, designed to accomplish a certain and special work, as did the preaching of Noah before the Flood. As the preaching of Noah warned, tested, and proved the inhabitants of the world before the flood of waters destroyed them from off the face of the earth, so the truth of God for these last days is doing a similar work of warning, testing, and proving the world. The publications which go forth from the office bear the signet of the Eternal. They are being scattered all through the land and are deciding the destiny of souls. Men are now greatly needed who can translate and prepare our publications in other languages so that the message of warning may go to all nations and test them by the light of the truth, that men and women, as they see the light, may turn from transgression to obedience of the law of God.
The printing we do here at the ministry “bear the signet of the Eternal”. The Spirit of God is dictating and directing the material. Through the printed word, video and online we are putting out a message of warning “to all nations and test them by the light of the truth, that men and women, as they see the light, may turn from transgression to obedience of the law of God.
Every opportunity should be improved to extend the truth to other nations. This will be attended with considerable expense, but expense should in no case hinder the performance of this work. Means are of value only as they are used to advance the interest of the kingdom of God. The Lord has lent men means for this very purpose, to use in sending the truth to their fellow men. There is a great amount of surplus means in the ranks of Seventh-day Adventists. And the selfish withholding of it from the cause of God is blinding their eyes to the importance of the work of God, making it impossible for them to discern the solemnity of the times in which we live, or the value of eternal riches. They do not view Calvary in the right light, and therefore cannot appreciate the worth of the soul for which Christ paid such an infinite price.
We could do so much more if we had more donors who would “discern the solemnity of the times in which we live” and provide as God would have them too. We are in need. Many split their tithes, giving some here and some there to ministries that have nothing to do with bringing people to the teachings of Jesus to stop sinning, be perfect and to keep the Ten Commandment to get their eternal life. They teach what is pleasing. Giving to them is more enjoyable to the ego and pride. But God is not pleased when the means He has given is used for your personal feelings and selfishness. We need to get out of the world and put our money where our heart should be.
Men will invest means in that which they value the most and which they think will bring them the greatest profits. When men will run great risks and invest much in worldly enterprises, but are unwilling to venture or invest much in the cause of God to send the truth to their fellow men, they evidence that they value their earthly treasure just as much more highly than the heavenly as their works show.
If men would lay their earthly treasure upon the altar of God, and would work as zealously to secure the heavenly treasure as they did to gain the earthly, they would invest means cheerfully and gladly wherever they could see an opportunity to do good and aid the cause of their Master. Christ has given them unmistakable evidence of His love and fidelity to them, and has entrusted them with means to test and prove their fidelity to Him. He left heaven, His riches and glory, and for their sakes became poor, that they through His poverty might be made rich. After thus condescending to save man, Christ requires no less of him than that he should deny himself and use the means He has lent him in saving his fellow men, and by so doing give evidence of his love for his Redeemer and show that he values the salvation brought to him by such an infinite sacrifice.
Now is the time to use means for God. Now is the time to be rich in good works, laying up in store for ourselves a good foundation against the time to come, that we may lay hold on eternal life. One soul saved in the kingdom of God is of more value than all earthly riches. We are answerable to God for the souls of those with whom we are brought in contact, and the closer our connections with our fellow men the greater our responsibility. We are one great brotherhood, and the welfare of our fellow men should be our great interest. We have not one moment to lose. If we have been careless in this matter, it is high time we were now in earnest to redeem the time, lest the blood of souls be found on our garments. As children of God, none of us are excused from taking a part in the great work of Christ in the salvation of our fellow men.
It will be a difficult work to overcome prejudice and to convince the unbelieving that our efforts to help them are disinterested. But this should not hinder our labor. There is no precept in the word of God that tells us to do good to those only who appreciate and respond to our efforts, and to benefit those only who will thank us for it. God has sent us to work in His vineyard. It is our business to do all we can. “In the morning sow thy seed, and in the evening withhold not thine hand: for thou knowest not whether shall prosper, either this or that.” We have too little faith. We limit the Holy One of Israel. We should be grateful that God condescends to use any of us as His instruments. For every earnest prayer put up in faith for anything, answers will be returned. They may not come just as we have expected; but they will come, not perhaps as we have devised, but at the very time when we most need them. But, oh, how sinful is our unbelief! “If ye abide in Me, and My words abide in you, ye shall ask what ye will, and it shall be done unto you.”
Young men who are engaged in this work should not trust too much to their own abilities. They are inexperienced and should seek to learn wisdom from those who have had long experience in the work and who have had opportunities to study character.
Instead of our ministering brethren laboring among the churches, God designs that we should spread abroad and our missionary labor be extended over as much ground as we can possibly occupy to advantage, going in every direction to raise up new companies. We should ever leave upon the minds of new disciples an impression of the importance of our mission. As able men are converted to the truth, they should not require laborers to keep their flagging faith alive; but these men should be impressed with the necessity of laboring in the vineyard. As long as churches rely upon laborers from abroad to strengthen and encourage their faith, they will not become strong in themselves. They should be instructed that their strength will increase in proportion to their personal efforts. The more closely the New Testament plan is followed in missionary labor, the more successful will be the efforts put forth.
We all need to get out of our churches to reach those who have never heard the truth. Each of us should bring as many out of the churches as possible. The truth is not being taught in the churches.
We should work as did our divine Teacher, sowing the seeds of truth with care, anxiety, and self-denial. We must have the mind of Christ if we would not become weary in well-doing. His was a life of continual sacrifice for others’ good. We must follow His example. We must sow the seed of truth and trust in God to quicken it to life. The precious seed may lie dormant for some time, when the grace of God may convict the heart and the seed sown be awakened to life and spring up and bear fruit to the glory of God. Missionaries in this great work are wanted to labor unselfishly, earnestly, and perseveringly as coworkers with Christ and the heavenly angels in the salvation of their fellow men.
Especially should our ministers beware of indolence and pride, which are apt to grow out of a consciousness that we have the truth and strong arguments which our opponents cannot meet; and while the truths which we handle are mighty to the pulling down of the strongholds of the powers of darkness, there is danger of neglecting personal piety, purity of heart, and entire consecration to God. There is danger of their feeling that they are rich and increased with goods, while they lack the essential qualifications of Christians. They may be wretched, poor, blind, miserable, and naked. They do not feel the necessity of living in obedience to Christ every day and every hour. Spiritual pride eats out the vitals of religion. In order to preserve humility, it would be well to remember how we appear in the sight of a holy God, who reads every secret of the soul, and how we should appear in the sight of our fellow men if they all knew us as well as God knows us. For this reason, to humble us, we are directed to confess our faults, and improve this opportunity to subdue our pride.
Ministers should not neglect physical exercise. They should seek to make themselves useful and to be a help where they are dependent upon the hospitalities of others. They should not allow others to wait upon them, but should rather lighten the burdens of those who, having so great a respect for the gospel ministry, would put themselves to great inconvenience to do for them that which they should do for themselves. The poor health of some of our ministers is because of their neglect of physical exercise in useful labor.
It isn’t easy. Every day I get my jog in and then go to the workout bench to torture my body. But it keeps me in health. The pain I live with, few would understand. But I put up with it to do the work God has called me to do.
. . . The work has been hindered by Satan, and much has been lost because these works were not prepared when they should have been. These brethren can do much good if they are fully devoted to the work and if they will follow the light that God has given them. 3T 202-211.