1. Bo, It is perplexing to read your statement…”Surely we could learn much from a verse by verse study of these, without reading into them our preconceived ideas”. Why, because of your own past assumptions of out of context meanings of this verse or that one in the letters: as to assumptions made of certain phrases, yet without the contextual connections and establishments of a given passage’s mutual corevelancies built and woven throughout a given letter, by a given author, to a given readership. The New Testament authors are primarily those linked in very heart with Christ Jesus. [And I have faith in the Lord for you, that in time, all this barrage of dominance and such use of disjointed noncontextual citings will come up short for your soul, and out of its own need for stale water changing into wine you will do the work to pull from the passages of connection of a given text {letter} to understand the very heart of each author’s intentions. Paul did not meet Moses, nor was instructed of Moses on the road to Damascus. Dry desert seasons, or primarily going on one’s own propensities of assumption, will not replenish the well over time].

    This has been a matter of suppression of what is actually being stated by the hearts expressing truth and grace when so interpreting by assumed meaning carried from the old literal into the New and Living Way, where so. Each letter is first of all a comment on itself, its own ideas, then we can look at the whole assembly of data of the individual author’s other expressions adding up the light to complete an impartation of contextual/historical/literary meaning as well.

    Paul in particular uses argumentation with very long thought development, and a yielded heart. His “therefore”‘s in Romans are particularly telling. The sound bite was not yet invented in the cultures with which he interacted, nor the overzealous heaping up of content based on a key word search somewhere. Even today Yeshiva’s and other rabbinical schools take the long way around the barn, often to enter it from the nonfacing door so to speak, inorder to extract the intentions of relevant fact.

    James, John, and Paul were partcularly difficult to approach with authenticity by the past limiting expressions you have made or often miscited. As for “reading into” these expressions, to date, you would fail commentary thesis assignments in the best of Seminaries (based on those assumptions past made as projected into the partial texts you have given alone). There are many websites on effective exegesis, as to faithfully reproducing the author’s passage and argumentation intentions. Try a passage sometime, simply for the joy of development of author intented meaning. Frankly the Word comes alive by such study, delighting the soul over the pursuit.

    As for backsliding, some good sharing has occurred here, with various possibilities on how so. Deception over self is often at the core.

    My own take on the 10 virgins would be as to these being Watchmen on our own walls or boundaries of maintaining faith with the lulling and enticing world system all around us sending out its cobwebs–as to soberly being mindful of what we will wall in and wall out. If we do not first and foremost maintain our connection to the Head, and the still small voice for sober regard, we may not be “ready” for the Return at all. Then enticement may capture five over what the world is up to. It is a conscious business, trimming one’s provided lamp.

    This has been contemplated for some time, where, the burden of this illustration is to abide in Him while still in this world, and even as associated with other believers who might literally sap us of what we are diligent to be and do, the oil being oft used for the Holy Spirit’s presence in scripture. Trimming the oil is a different notion than whip em up pump em up notions of needing more of the manifestations of meeting based behaviors sometimes hyped as Holy Spirit actions. And it is different than being so quiet that even a small contrary wind might extinguish the flame.

    As you wrote, Bo, the letters are warnings in part, and as you have not shared, they also encourage certain ways, behaviors, and expressions of faith, hope, and love. They begin and end with wishes of peace in God. It is clear that the Kingdom is a relational reality, and a revelation of the intention of the qualifications of redemption, yet too with our particular human condition of self awareness happening through it all. We all need the admonishment of the various thoughts, concerns, and solutions of scripture: of primarily that coming after receipt of the Promise by these letters’ authors. Did they become what they beheld of Yeshua for a few intense years of godly intimacy?

    Jude can be very poignant in the knowledge that human predatory tendencies have existed for all related history, among the history of the people of God,with this trend as socially acceptable, or that one–all the while being sinful in enticement, intention, and consequence. A key question to walking in faith is what empowers one, and how is that maintained so as to be gently effective while doing and being? Yet, even with this letter, we find the testimony of Jesus Christ prevailing over such soul deceiving stuff buring short candles for short seasons for many.

    As Michael Brown wrote, we must search our own hearts and minds for deception, and lay out our confession before the Lord to be known by Him. Pride is dangerous, immobility is problematic, sharing the light, yet retaining it, is an ongoing challenge of the heart following the Way.

    The world would consume us, dissipate our very oil of life (the other symbol of oil most used). Why ten virgins? Perhaps with the notion of the lost tribes, wherever they be, keeping on with their faith, in spite of unknown identity, dispersion, and captivity with the longing for grace.

    This too is an interesting thought, for, since the 6th century, when the notion of passing on the Priesthood of Moses was lost due to the history of the Jews–as to a true Biblically endowed continuous bequest of the office of elder Priest to growing new becoming Priest–we are alike challenged in our own passing on or even the receipt of the gentle life necessary to faith.

    I like this passage because the virgins are waiting for the Lord, obviously with darkness around, the need for light to be maintained, yet not found by giving up the oil needed for their own essential life to be watchful and abiding in the vine during dark phases of the Moon(the description is very different than the notion that one must continually give away more and more to receive more from God, an anxious church culture notion which is sold as a bill of goods to get as well as give in part, always with the heart of merchandising. We are challenged to turn these tables over.).

    Here we find the personal freedom and choices and endowment of the Spirit to maintain in the face of the pressures of the last days, final events, and connections once established now coming into question between five and five of ten. It has an interesting parallel in these times with the restoration of natural Israel. To create the 2004 intially “New” Sanhedrin rabbinical court and wisdom body of the elders of Israel, the various Hebrew and Yeshiva schools and cadres competing to hold and yet give away their own lineage of truth have moved very cautiously forward toward a comutually regarded coequal necessary recognition of coand coadornment mutually recognized to grant the whole possibility of the mantel of an anointing by God returning to the Priesthood and Elderbody of the Land. It was mutually humbling, and without precedent since the fifth century CE, in Tiberias, to assert a newly made quiet in the recognition of one another’s bonds as well as boundaries. This must be part of the current restoration of natural Israel (albeit, in separation from other movements in the Land of assembly of both the natural and spiritual their as One).

    Will we permit the challenge of the virgins to be our own? Do we know the balance of light and the trimming of the light? Will the humility of seeking the Word for what it actually states and concludes be in the mix of oil used, begged for, and maintained?

  2. Jabez,

    That was a lot of words. Could you summarize? You can leave out the part of how I am so inept, out of context, bla bla bla. There is no need to rake me over the coals as to your opinion of me and my scripture references. I asked a legitimate question without inserting my view, so all of you lambasting is out of line.


  3. Why do some people backslide? The truth is, temptation becomes so overwhelming that we can’t control ourselves. There is none of us that are perfect. We all know the feeling of temptation in our lives. If God expects perfect obedience, then we all will fail. By His mercy we have been set free from our imperfections and by his grace we will have eternal life. There is no other way to stand before a perfect God who judges in righteousness. Adam has proved that we are ultimately in need of mercy, and thank God that He is love. I need His love, we all do. I hope that He changes my heart to understand Him better and how much I need Him. I hope that love for God will rule my life one day because it is rejection of Him in my life that causes me to sin. Save us Jesus.

  4. “Here is a song” – Bo

    Wow, that is amazing!

    I just saw “Lordship Salvation Does Not Save!” in a review on Amazon.com of a K. Green CD. I’ve never heard of that claim. I guess back-slidding is (and demons are) acceptable if you can be saved without even trying to obey Jesus.

  5. Sure, Who do the Virgins represent in context? Why do their interdependencies fail? Is it selfish or preservative to use the oil given for self maintenance of an essential relationship, while waiting for whom?

    Messiah is bridegroom, coming for who? Jesus in his teaching places himself as Lord in placement. He still tarries, while the bride may forget his very face and bearing. The very delay of His coming puts the burden on the bride to maintain. Yet the Parousia has its linkage to the Messianic expectation of Israel. Ten tribes are unidentified (were at one time anyway), five still with a proper expectancy, five losing the vision of expectancy. The coming King tarries, what to do?

    Yeshua will carry his bethrothed back to his home, to be included in his merriment of the occasion. Where can we find an adequate supply of oil, from our unique relationship with the Promise, not of ourselves or by draining from others? Who were called the wise here? What do they bring? What do the foolish lack?

    When does the cry ring out? Who awakens and tends to their lamps, who is sleeping? It is the promise of the end of the Age, and the beginning of all hoped for. One’s preparation cannot be given to another, diligence and devotion is for one’s own abiding pursuit. He returns, the door is shut once and for all time.

    At that time, this time, the Kingdom is like these bethrothed, so pictured. How to maintain hope for connection to the Head when he tarries? How to not be lulled to sleep? What is the price of keeping up hope, faith, and love? What is the duty of our watch?

  6. Secondly the call to expectancy tarries with the absence of the bridegroom. Natural Israel regathered too is awakened and stirring. Which values of who will relight the lamps needed to be ready? Why does redemption tarry, and what is happening to eyes once blind, and hearts once hardened? It is as if springtime accompanies the bridegrooms group coming to glean from the missing tribes as well: those whose hearts are stirred to awakening, whose lives reorient for the expectation, whose days are limited in this regard.

  7. Thirdly, we have those who have remained true all along, whose sleep is not death, but of the rest of maintining life unto promised Kingdom purpose. Now the hope of life, of the promised shared life with the King, of the intimacy only known between bride and groom, with all the joys and shared experience involved, is the primary gift of the joining. The groom’s accompanying group has come for the bride, and she is ready; they all return to His home to celebrate and enjoy the shared life of Hope, faith, and love.

    For the first time ever, life makes sense.

  8. R. Kneubuhl,
    I say big Big AMEN to your post. May the Lord strengthen us all.
    Lord bless R. Kneubuhl. I pray for favor in his life and protection.

  9. R. Kneubuhl…
    I felt strong by the Lord to do a search on your name. Do not ask me exactly why I did, just being led by the Holy Spirit. Well, is your name Rebecca? Are you a singer and is this one of your songs? “This Broken Soul” by Rebecca Kneubuhl. If you are, I correct my above post to “pray for favor and protection in her life”

    If you are not Rebecca…sorry but the prayer still remains.

    “This Broken Soul” by Rebecca Kneubuhl.

  10. Jabez,

    I wonder if it is a bit more simple. As I am sure you know, an analogy/parable can loose its point if we try to make every last detail mean something. Some parables are a bit more detailed and have many correlations between the story’s details and the realities being conveyed. Some parables seem to be told to emphasize one main point.

    In meditating on the parable of the 10 virgins and looking at the context in which it was given, I am seeing one main point that is brought to the front over and over in context of Y’Shua’s teaching on that occasion. It seems to be a graphic depiction of the results of faithfulness and endurance.

    We see the subject of faithful endurance being brought up before the 10 virgins story in Matthew 24:13, 42-51. We see this concept continued from vs. 15:14 to the end of the chapter. There are obviously different things to be faithful in, and thus different teachings and parables, here in Matthew, touch on some of these varied areas of being faithful.

    We see the idea of faithfulness in our concern and care for the well being of others in the sheep and the goats story.

    We see the idea of being faithful in our handling of truth in the parable of the talents, for we are to gain more gold after we receive the initial investment of money. The master left, having only given us very small percentage of the great wealth contained in the whole of scripture, but He did pour our His spirit to lead us into all truth. The word of YHWH is more to be desired than much fine gold. If we are content to stagnate in our knowledge and performance of the truth our end is not one of great reward…but “in the keeping of them is great reward.”

    We see the idea of enduring until the end in the face of deception, persecution, and tribulation in the teaching before the 10 virgins. We see, at the very end or Matthew 24, the idea of watching to make sure that the day of YHWH does not take us by surprise due to our lax lifestyle and falling in with those that live in sin.

    As for the story of the 10 virgins, we get a glimpse into the joy of the reward of enduring faithfulness, but also see the ultimate remorse brought on by good intentions and blissful hope. These latter two have no depth of character. They have no sense of duty. They are counterfeits of real faith/faithfulness and steadfast commitment.

    The foolish virgins bask (while they sleepily dream) in the prospect of a marriage to their beloved, but in their immaturity and short sightedness they fail to realize that the night will be long. Their selfish gladness of free salvation has blinded them to the stark reality that getting ready for the bride groom is not just a one time confession of faith.

    The wise virgins, though they have fallen asleep too, have prepared themselves for the long haul. They have made preparations so as to endure until the end. They have “put away childish things.” They understand that their beloved comes for a spotless bride. They have read his words to them and have washed in those words. They have made themselves ready. They have done their best to make themselves match up to the bridegrooms expectations. The extra oil may have some specific meaning, or it may not. We surely could meditate more on this item. Whatever it is, it sustains the wise ones through the night. It either is or causes enduring faithfulness. The Spirit of YHWH? The Word of YHWH? Depth of Character? All of the above?

    What ever the final analysis, we must endure until the end. We will either be let in or left out. I think it behooves us to take all these parables to heart and pursue each idea to the utmost.


  11. Bo, As for your notion of simplicity setting aside what I wrote, then to dismiss and take charge of my own understanding being thereby inadequate, I reject this. And not for personal reasons. There is a series of three parables in the Discourse’s context spoken over Jerusalem, this is the final of the series. Read them, in context, draw from them, in context. See what is being built up for the immediate audience, and a wider audience over time, and pondered of the Parable of the Virgins in its initial setting and its wider context (culturally, linguistically, logically, and thematically: as to points being asserted, and as to admonition). Then do the personal application. In your original posting you demanded the personal application first, and ignored these other immediate historical/literal contexts of Jesus parable, and, as with my own naitivitee of doing what you requested, then baited and switched once more (your well evidenced style by the way).

    Do you believe that the words you offered somehow simplify the issues and matters involved? That these words thus represent sum and substance of what the Messiah himself, as Lord, is instructing? Do you know how argumentation is built in Hebrew thought, religion, and wisdom culture, from which Yeshua came forth? Who is Jesus addressing on the Mt. of Olives overlooking Jerusalem? Why is context important for any reader’s understanding?

    Count your words, look at the context of the three building blocks of the associated parables in Jesus’ discourse. Count my words of three postings. Which are more succint in addressing all the interpretive challenges involved, your dismissal/reinterpretation, or what was asked from the text and its context? Why so?

    Read Paul too in his immediate passage context, as to making a point linked to earlier argumentation, in individual letter context as to what built up to any statements accepted and you have asserted and quoted, as to any thematic context developed on a passage’s topic or topics in the actual letter being cited, then throughout his writings, then of the thematic context of the story of Jesus (PRIOR TO AND AFTER THE SENDING OF THE PROMISE. AND AS TO JESUS PAST, PRESENT, AND FUTURE), then of the thematic context of being an Apostle, in the role of a Church planter/overseer, and of the historical/thematic context of how the spreading of the Gospel unfolded, and only then in the context of what is written of old in the law, then the Prophets, then the writings, etc. You start with the latter, and oft ignore all former. Your zeal for the law then blinds your interpretation of scripture.

    Certainly the questions raised of the readings of the three parable series in the discourse are some of those I offered, there can be many more. Certainly the parable you requested a response to, then did not like the response requested and dismissed, challenges us all–of the Promise of the Spirit, the Promise of the Return, the Promises of the Restoration of Israel and all things, and of the Promises of Old–with many challenges. Eschatological marriage meaning and Kingdom and Messianic challenges on the first layer, others mentioned on others.

    Ever use Photoshop, it breaks images into layers, which can be viewed of the whole picture, or, as to each pcture element (black and white, color layers, tonal elements, etc.): as broken down as pondered, accepted, or interpreted for accuracy and/or change. I know it is difficult for anyone to humble themselves and answer what seem to be another person’s questions given in response to your request to break down my earlier wordy answer (as I humbled myself and did at your request), but, if based on scripture’s own regard and wisdom there is something more to be gained, just as if going to commentaries to understand what Paul, Peter, James, and John may be saying in a different context on the law than you have permitted offers greater layers of perspective on the whole image, so to speak.

    Note that you were compelled by your own assumptive manner and way to go back and totally reinterpret for your self, and not use any helps provided and broken down from some layers of the passage involved by my responses. Why was this? Could it be that submission, “one to another” is not in your way? Have it your way and who is in charge? Then who is viewed as possessing the only correct response accordingly? Respond to simple questions raised from the text, from Jesus parable series in the Mount of Olives discourse, and of the context given, and it is not a matter of anyone being in charge: but of responding to the broad picture of What?, as a disciple of Jesus?

    I suggest to you that you may not be ready with the five ready for the bridegroom, and may, in fact be of the other five. Why, for all of the reasons given above.

  12. Bo, As for my first paragraph of #64, bear with me, for, these are words you did not request. But you seem unaware of your basic manner, way, and style of approach to scripture and others.

  13. Since you desire simple personal application as primary application, here goes. When you analyze scripture it begins from the perspective that you are superior in your comprehension, perspective, and understanding to any and all others. This differs from the manner in which Paul wrote he approached others, and the challenges involved. There, I gave you your preferred personal application of my first paragraph of #64, before granting the greater context of all our interchanges here in this forum, then of all other forums of this site. Since this is the manner you prefer, it is granted.

    Is it not more “fathful” and “enduring” to actually see what a passage says, means in its own historical/cultural/literary context, and then go to the personal application as another level of comprehension for one’s own benefit? It we always start with personal application it tells us something about our manner, processing, view of self, and view of the authority of scripture as to priority.

  14. Hence, exegesis evolved as a manner of scriptural interpretation which is more impartial in application than simply leaping to personal application by personal processing. Recall that the Lord, when advocating being perfect, as God is, placed this command in the impartial context of the rain given by God falling on the just and the unjust. In this sense it is God who is the giver, and people receivers, God being impartial in application. In the Sermon Jesus did not say the rain falls first on those who practice the original Mosaic law, or even those who have developed traditions around it, He said, the rain falls on the just and unjust. This says something about where His kind of perfection–impartiality of giving–is centered, and it is not merited as to the law in that instance of instruction. This is a simple illustration of scripture’s passage context speaking for itself, not anyone taking charge of the impartial gifts of God, as to their administration, and as were the traditionalists of the Visitation’s era. Throughout the Srmon on the Mount Jesus assets a New and Living Way along with the original values commanded of the Commandments and other moral law living principles of true and gracious community.

    If we always think our interpretation is the superior one, over and above what the actual passage is establishing, we will constantly be being deceived as to the passage’s intention. I John comes to the forefront of interpretive error in your past citations, Bo, as an example of why an effective exegesis is essential to understanding Christ, the New Covenant given the Nation, as carried by the Apostles to the Gentiles, and as to how it trickles down even to Israel today, us today, and our affilitations and associations today. God’s perfection is based on his impartial application of the Gospel of Jesus Christ, not on the personal applications of a traveling Tabernacle cultic society.

  15. No Bo, to keep these remarks fairly simple, I left off beginning an exegesis first with the passage, then paraphrase of it, then noting its significant words, researching these as to their complete possible meanings by themselves, then as used in context, then as to developing actual descriptors of the emphasis of the passage according to its original language word employments and usages. This would complicate the intention of what I just wrote, which had its own meaning and emphasis. Please trust that this was not written to build up my person at the expense of yours, but to uphold scripture and its own writers’ thoughtful integrity of the layers of meaningful expression which they themselves developed in the long and rich history of inspriation, revelation, and redemptive intention.

    II Cor 3-5 certainly underscores the impartiality of God, of his moral way, his values and principles, and of the callings put on his Apostles in the context of their time and placement. How wonderful it is that this has trickled down to us as meaningful even for our own personal applications.

  16. Jabez,

    You wrote:
    “Please trust that this was not written to build up my person at the expense of yours, but to uphold scripture and its own writers’ thoughtful integrity of the layers of meaningful expression which they themselves developed in the long and rich history of inspriation, revelation, and redemptive intention.”

    I can’t believe you on the above statement. Your demeanor is too condescending. You take too many opportunities to lambaste. Your interpretations do not line up with the rest of scripture. This is my heart felt opinion.


  17. Jabez,

    You think you know a lot that you do not know. I had nothing in mind when I asked the original questions about this parable. I had nothing to bait and switch. It had just occurred to me that this parable and backsliding had something in common.

    If you will note…the parable of the talents would be the one that would trip my trigger the best. I had not even remembered that this parable or the others were in relation to each other. But I started looking at and meditating on the one and the others, being in conjunction, happened to come into my view.

    You can reject my simple approach that has no cemetery (I use this word on purpose in place of seminary) training. The doctors of the law also rejected Y’Shua’s teaching.

    I offered my thoughts as a devotional meditation on faithfulness and endurance. How can anyone not have these two character qualities jump out at them in reading Matthew 24 and 25?

    What you call bait and switch, might just be you having a hard time coming to grips with the heart of what is being said in the passage. The intellectualism and liberalism that posses you might just be blinding you to the truth…at least on occasion.

    I assume that you still insist upon your idea about not being able to tell what day of the week it is. You base this upon intellectual ungodly science, and you shun the obvious scriptural and historical testimony that PROVES the opposite to be true. Where is your faith founded…in science and liberal philosophy or in the direct words of scripture? You might want to search your soul about this.

    It is pretty obvious that you are running a pretty close second to me in pridefulness and thinking you know all the answers…who knows, you may be leading me on occasion. But of course I can’t see my pride and you can’t see yours.

    You can culturalize and intellectualize the words of Messiah into nonsensical gibberish that has no application to us and our time if you like. I’ll simply continue to accept His sayings at face value and believe Him with the faith of a little child. I seriously doubt that this approach puts me into the category of the 5 that are to be locked out. It is generally the intellectual approach that should worry in this regard.

    1 Corinthians 1
    26 For ye see your calling, brethren, how that not many wise men after the flesh, not many mighty, not many noble, are called:
    27 But God hath chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the wise; and God hath chosen the weak things of the world to confound the things which are mighty;
    28 And base things of the world, and things which are despised, hath God chosen, yea, and things which are not, to bring to nought things that are:

    Jabez, I suggest that you deal with the topics that I raise and leave your personal vendetta against me out of the discussion from now on. This personality conflict does us and others no good. I will do the same. I will try to only deal with your arguments from now on. YHWH please help us both.

    No more accusations…please.


  18. Jabez,

    You wrote:

    Is it not more “fathful” and “enduring” to actually see what a passage says, means in its own historical/cultural/literary context, and then go to the personal application as another level of comprehension for one’s own benefit? If we always start with personal application it tells us something about our manner, processing, view of self, and view of the authority of scripture as to priority.

    Wow…that was good. I have pretty regularly approached scripture with personal application first. I really think this will help me see beyond myself/beliefs to see what is really said. The funny thing is, I think if I am consistent in seeking what the text really means before personal application it will wind up benefiting ME all the more!


  19. Bo,

    You know I disagree with your interpretation of this passage. Regardless, I don’t see the connection you are trying to make with my post.

  20. Dave,

    Try this new approach that you learned from Jabez on that passage. See what you think it means without preconceived ideas. See what it means without looking for the personal application first.

    That is all I mean.


  21. Dave,

    In other words…see what He said to who He said it to. See What the words He said meant to who He said it to. Try to understand the passage from the cultural and historic perspective. etc. Try do divorce yourself from the 21st century Dave view and see the passage for what it says.


  22. Bo, As to your comments of #70, you are simply unaware of your approach, and seem to lack self knowledge through your approach. Others have informed you of similar information, though noone has been quite as direct, to date. However, it has to come to you through other sources as well as my own mentions. Over and over through many attempts, threads, and forums, until the moderator or site personality has requested that these not continue, the problem has not been accepted as identified, let alone taken to heart for change.

  23. Jabez,

    Are you going to stop insulting me and bringing up your judgment of me, or are you going to continue to rail and use personality conflicts to be half of your posts?


  24. Bo,

    I have spent much time on that passage. In fact, it is through the time I spent that I am completely convinced you are wrong in your interpretation.

    And while I have no interest in getting involved between you and Jabez, I read nothing in that post(176) that seems insulting to me. Could it be your defenses are high? I have been talked to in a much more condescending tone than that before from people and it was still the Lord speaking through them.

  25. Dave,

    I didn’t think that you would want to try to look at those verses in the new method you learned form Jabez.

    Thanks for your input. You might consider that my condescending tone to you in the past was from above also. Did you look at the posts Before 176 from Jabez? Would you like to balance your view with what you think of them? Maybe my defenses are high.


  26. Exhaustion can make us backslide. Stress. It’s very important to follow the Great Physician’s leading and take care of our health. We know that the body under stress can be especially weak to temptations. It is harder to be patient, kind, forbearing, forgiving, loving — all that we wish to be — when we are overly tired and in need of healing. Yet it is usually by ignoring His leading that we wind up over-taxed. We spiral ourselves away from Him. Making time for contact, privately, in prayer is so restorative, but then we need to align our actions with His benevolent leading for us.

  27. Jabez,

    I ask publicly that you leave ME alone. You can discuss my ideas and argue against my posts, but do not speak of me or my personality in this public forum. You will not convince me of error by insulting me or raking me over the coals. You are not my pastor or adviser as to how to behave. I adjure you to not bring up my personal sin, as you see it, over and over. If I have been rebuked by the site host…so be it. It is not your job to accuse me.


  28. Back to backsliding…I have noticed that there is a very weak condition after being used by YHWH in a spiritual way. It is kind of like Peter declaring, “thou art the Messiah the son of the living Elohim” and then just a little later being rebuked for speaking from the enemy’s view point.

    It could be that the pride of knowing that one has been used sets one up for a fall. It could be the let down effect of dropping ones guard after winning a battle. What ever it is, it is a difficult place sometimes…especially when you forget to expect the temptation.


  29. So, all said, identified and detailed as to issues and matters raised about backsliding, and approaches to scripture and its own teaching recovering the mind of Christ, and the feet of our Master, what is needful to overcome sin, sins, and sinning?

    Bo wrote in #80 “there is no example in the history of the established ‘church’ repenting of its backsliding on a large scale”. who blinked over the reformation, who missed other changes in the historical direction and repentance of the “established Church”?

    Even this day, is not this very site dedicated to the challenge of such a repentance? I think too of Armstrong’s “Radio Church of God” labeling its own heresy and repenting: back to the sufficiency of the Gospel. I think of Sheila’s confessions in this blog, and her vulnerabilities by a tender heart turning each challenge over to Jesus. I think of the stories Dave, Tom, and others have shared about their personal struggles and coming into the Kingdom by grace, through truth. All shared under the possibilities of this site.

    I think of going to my then Pastor, who fell away to open homosexual affiliation in the late 1970s, and weeping before him as to his use of psychological arguments for the inevitablity of sin, the “sancficiation of personal sin”, and the deception he attempted bringing into a local assembly…where, in the pursuit of such arguments he subtly substituted his voice for the Words of Jesus over a several year time frame (when the teaching of “authority and submission” ruined the then so-called Charismatic movement). I was excommunicated, yet the fellow believers of that assembly survived its own demise conducted by this weeping “prophet”. Leaving the church, with its strong bondages taught of guilt, submission to its authority, and everyman’s psycholocial inevitability to sin was like leaving God at the time. This was a church which begain with the clear word of the Gospel, linkage to the Head, and mutual submission. What happened over the lulling years was the fear of man replacing the fear of God, and the love of Jesus.

    Repentance from backsliding permeates the history of the confessing church of Jesus Christ, with the price often paid of rejection and isolation of those attempting confrontation when the church goes the way of merchandising, saying one thing and doing another, open embrace of amoral behavior, and the deceit of pleasure, riches, and dissipation.

    Paul employed thought development, argumentation, analogy, confession, tears, a wounded body, journies, shipwreck, and time on his knees to return churches written to a fidelty with the Image of the true Christ. It amazes me how the common understanding of the Law of Love, set in regard by the Commandment of our Lord Jesus the Messiah, was commonly understood by the letter writers. BAcksliding to them was moving away from their first love to some other agenda.

    What followed the Apostles was martyrdom, rejection, isolation, fellowship, and true discipleship. What were the intentions of their texts, and as to how to address the problem of backsliding, as such? Whatever the human tendencies they mention, the primary difficulty was always when hearts fell out of essental fellowship with the Father, through the Son, as empowered by the Holy Spirit. “Return to the works which were your first works”.

  30. Bo,

    I wasn’t trying to stir the pot more. Just an observation that was truly separated from the fact that we disagree on things.

    As far as your comment about not thinking I would use the technique suggested by Jabez, I just told you in the previous post I have already done that many times with that text. I often don’t use that approach in general was my point. I’m guessing this is just a misunderstanding.

    Not to rehash the topic of Matthew 5, but to conclude this conversation as to the validity that I have in fact sought out truth to the text, I have already explained to you in previous forums my reasons for whom it was spoken too, and it’s timing…specifically before He died/resurrected, that it was applicable to that audience of Jewish people still under the Old Covenant, the tutor of the law. Once he had risen He had fulfilled that which He spoke of and sent his Spirit for us to live in newness of life, the new way of the Spirit.

  31. “Recall that the Lord, when advocating being perfect, as God is, placed this command in the impartial context of the rain given by God falling on the just and the unjust.” – Jabez H.

    In this application, what do the rain-drops represent?

    “In this sense it is God who is the giver, and people receivers, God being impartial in application.” – Jabez H.

    What follows doesn’t make sense, but are you trying to say God rains down blessings (heaven/eternal life/etc) upon the just and unjust equally? I can’t guess what else you might mean, so I’ll just continue in this vein.

    If I’ve captured your meaning, and this is all very easily understood, then be corrected by the sermon, look at Matthew 5:12 and see Jesus say great is ‘your’ reward. The reciever of blessing is described in 5:3-11 (for Bo you could look at 5:10 in particular, as he pursues and teaches the exact righteousness that the Law teaches – that the Lord strove to obey, even as you persecute him).

    Further on down Jesus instructs us on the unjust, describing their guilt and their punishment, but NEVER their blessing or reward (not in the sermon, not in the entire Bible). That really says something there. …sun and rain sure, followed by hell-fire.

    Now how could you make the case that God gives impartially between just and unjust? He is biased towards the obedient.

    “This says something about where His kind of perfection–impartiality of giving–is centered, and it is not merited as to the law in that instance of instruction.” – Jabez H.

    How could you conclude in that way? Everything Jesus says is in the context of the Law and His deep understanding of it. Was He not speaking to Jews also? No special blessing is ever impartially given, but I can admit that the unjust are allowed to live (sun and rain being bare essentials) along with the just.

    Matthew 6:7 says “And when you are praying, do not use meaningless repetition as the Gentiles do, for they suppose that they will be heard for their many words.”

    When you are involved in discussion or an argument, do not ramble and carry on as if any good will come of it. You’re actually distracting us from discovering the truth by showering us with excess words delievered in long complex (or run-on) sentences. You utilize lists and compound descriptions constantly. You cast doubt without ceasing and bombard us with illegitimate concerns. It seems a top purpose of yours is appearing scholarly whilst confusing the common. I suggest you tailor your message to the proper audience in the future.
    Consider how you confuse and lull the less educated/less dedicated, whether they are meek or not.

    “Which are more succint…” – Jabez H.

    Bo’s message is clear and easily understood. Yours is speculative and vague, at best, and realistically, it’s difficult to even follow. Many people I know aren’t top readers – I bet they’d skip right over practically everything you say.

  32. Jabez H.,

    There is a reason that there are thousands of denominations. A denomination is started when there is a call to obey truth and the then established church refuses to repent from its backsliding. Ultimately there is a remnant that leave or get kicked out of that backslidden church. The start a new assembly that is trying to obey the truth. They get so far and there is a call to obey the truth that they are ignoring…and the cycle occurs all over again.

    So then the backslidden churches continue to reject the truth that the remnants accepted, and so slide backwards further until they are reprobate. The remnant churches become denominations that refuse to go on in truth. And thus we have no wholesale reformation.

    The Roman Catholic church did not repent…some individuals did. Many denominations came from this, but the oldest are now in bad shape spiritually.

    There are also many new churches/denominations that have not stated because of revival. They have their origins in self pleasing, easy going, lukewarmness. There will be those in these churches that repent and start a new assembly, but the vast majority will continue to backslide into apostasy.

    This is the point I was trying to make by saying, “There is no example in history of the established “Church” repenting from its backsliding on a large scale. There are examples of revival/repentance coming to great numbers of individuals, though. The people of Israel refused to return and departed not from the sins of Jeroboam. What will we do?”


  33. Thus the call has always been, “Come out from among her.” The mother of harlots has very many daughters. They are being born all the time. They are born by backsliding. Babylon accepts paganism and worldliness into its congregations. As an example, there have been many times in church history that there has been a call to stop celebrating Xmas, by devout believers. But the pagan idolatry continues. Babylon will not repent…we must come out.


  34. Why do some people backslide?..

    They follow the other sheep. They just keep doing what those around them are doing. Their culture’s and family’s rules and traditions are more important than YHWH’s rules and statutes. They deceive themselves and refuse to come out.


  35. Juan, I think the citing and context as is given on Jesus command to be like God, with his kind of perfection, has to do with having an attitude of God’s impartial heart toward all, not with the blessings and rewards associated with any conditional covenants, where so, or a related life connected judgment of some in the illustration Jesus chose of intention to make his point on the heart of God. He was God on earth at the time and knew what He meant and clearly emphasized foremost by using such an illustration. And so it was made where it was the hardhearted religiously correct of his Nation and of His of family origin which had “shut up” a common person’s approach to the Kingdom and aCCOMPANYING good and impartial wishes of God for everyman.It was such an attitude Paul carried to the unconverted on Mars Hill.

    As your other examples show, we will always find a tension in scripture between impartiality of heart, and works or covenant based rewards and relationships, as such. Grace through faith essentially takes this tension to task through the basis of heart of the free gift offered anyone of the New Covenant, and its New and Living Way of life. What can happen after that relationship is established is altogether a different matter, of a different economy of God.

    God did not create the Mosaic covenant so as to create elitism, or as to becoming measuring sticks for comparisons of those upholding the traditions which evolved in practice around the covenant as forming hardhearted lenses from which to view others of a more common existence (as being inferior unloved and unrewarded folk); He sent the law for a mutual accountability and service regarding bonds shared among the selected covenant people group and Nation chosen to first receive it. He ushered in the New to replace the old over time and interchange around receipt of the Message of impartial love extended of the Gospel being preached to everyman. THereafter it is up to each and every to choose life or death accordingly.

    The old covenant kept them on track through the challenges of their environment and other value systems faced in the Land promised, in due season, on occupation and assumption of the locus of the Covenant.

    Even the sinner lost in darkness, if approached with the Gospel and its warmth has the opportunity of livin his or her for a prior season, as a given gift from God housing that person’s soul amd body on this earthly plane. This is the state of everyman, whereas they may be given the opportunity to repent and believe in time, place, and social setting.

    And too, not all aspects of human life are about Spiritual connection and matters or spiritual relationship, some are established simply by living on earth. The honest and hardworking rice patty farmer may or may not hear the Gospel in a lifetime, yet may indeed live a life of integrity solely based on the simple economy of their own existence, where so. To read into the text on perfection, as God is perfect, these other matters of religious equation consideration in the relationship of a believer to God is to miss the point of that particular passage.

    Bo, Once again the premises of your analysis differ from what are other premises for such an analysis of Church history phenomena over time, in cultural contexts, and of historical relevance (to populations, placements, cultures, language and tribal groups, migrations, seasons and history, etc.–none of which have to do with a believable cycle of religious change which you have described as a hypothetical. Your analysis begs of the lust of totality in its approach, not of the heart of God in impartiality of assumption.). There will always be real believers in most culturally founded churches, as well as in offshoots of preexisting churches in time. For example, after a Communist revolution destroys the infrastructure of faith in a given nationally boundaried nation or society, then that form of oppressive government changes due to this or that, the reappearance of the infrastructure of faith will occur. Faith then in that suffering context most likely was hidden in hearts, not publicly displayed, for obvious reasons. Faith is based on hearing the Word of God and responding to it, not on rules and regulations, for: it involves a divinely planted transaction between God and the believer in the Message.

    It simply comes across as vain to attempt to give a total phenomena summary analysis of what is true and not. and what resulted thereafter and not as a hypothetical. Church history is real, fills volumes of books, and is unrecorded as well. It involves real souls of real people in realtime. Only God can judge hearts adequately. Even in the crudible of the Crusades, with both godly and ungodly demands placed upon its footsoldiers, undoubtedly ongoing transactions between believers among these groups and the Father were happening. Who died and went to heaven in that scenario would be God’s call, not our own.

    Church history will inevitably be involved with families of origin, people groups, nations, and forces bearing upon such, over which, for the most part we are armchair observers, looking from the outside in. The Holy Spirit is placed inside believers to bear witness of Him, to show who are His, to reveal what is to come, etc.–all refelcted in John 13:13 through the beginning of the 16th chapter by our Lord.

    Who abides in Him, as telling in what circumstances, is ultimately His business as Head of the Church. Our lenses, analysis, and judgments are just that.

  36. Jabez H.,

    You wrote:
    “The old covenant kept them on track through the challenges of their environment and other value systems faced in the Land promised, in due season, on occupation and assumption of the locus of the Covenant.”

    When I read the prophets, I do not see the law keeping them on track. The schoolmaster that kept them was the priesthood and its related sacrifices. The Sacrificial system kept their sins covered. The priesthood was there to teach them the holy and righteous rules of YHWH. But they backslid into pagan idolatry and commandments of men. It is no different for us today concerning the backsliding.

    The law only keeps one on track if it is written on the heart. The old covenant ministration of the law on stone was a testimony against their unrighteousness. The law is unable to keep anyone on track, in and of itself. The circumcised heart obeys YHWH’s law, by the ministration of the Spirit.

    My general overview was just that. There are many examples of what I relayed. There are a few examples of established churches throughout history remaining true and continuing to grow in truth. That is part of the problem with established churches…they are established. They get stuck in “this is the way it has always been.”

    The second and third generation believers slide back to a non circumcised heart approach to the truth. Usually the third or fourth generation is finally able to see the apostasy and reenters covenant with YHWH in a dynamic way. This fourth generation usually is bold enough to start a new and heart felt obedience. It usually has to leave the established church to do it.

    Persecuted churches are another matter. There are very few just along for the ride in these. I was not making reference to them in my above posts.


  37. Other than what is recorded of history, or is objectively immediately seen through one’s own involvement, as to facts and trends within and without religiously boundaried groups–as being actual factors bearing on such or being so–what evidence do we have of indications of contributing particulars becoming an acquaintance of associated integrity for forming truly informed hypotheticals? To conclude who is a “true believer” and not then is a luxury as to assessing ekklesias’ changes over time. All civilizations change, if nothing more simply because their participants age in body and mind over time. Resources are accessed, used, depleted, and wain. Only the Son abides forever.

    There indeed must be many possible indicators of this or that, with some not as reliably certain as others, but, what is the point, we are not the all knowing, timeless, boundariless, all seeing Lord of the Revelation. We are in relationship with Him, not the recorders of inclsuion of His revealing. We are of the vast group holding to the testimony of Jesus, associated witht he provision of his blood, and trusting him for our own resurrection. We have the hope of the Promise.

    His vision of the Revelation is His, shared with great detail, yet too with considerable mystery in its reading. He sees the seven churches all at once, and as to the correction of His sum and summary spiritual conditions; He draws from this certain advocacies and pure hearted concerns. Indeed, as written, they are primarily concerns as to maintaining a relationship with Him as the Head.

    Only recently can we find mention of direct of associated religious groups social systems professional psychology and sociology assessments and interventions (which even then would be historically limited and rare as such, and so as is limited by assessment applied methodology, involvements, and purpose. Even with the noblist view, such are not God’s view. Their findings are seldom of faith, hope, and love.).

    So, I feel it is presumptuous to attempt to label all church and Christian religion changes over time as to patterns with possible armchair accuracy as to sin and true faith cycles, rather than as to indications of other cycles of change. This holds as to assuming any equation of sins and consequences, or as to so asserting any continuance of faith moving ahead by anyone so involved, who will have a limited time on earth from the point of their faith and any assessment of it. Especially this holds as to assuming as an armchair observer any knowledge of others hearts as known somehow intimately (as God knows) with conclusive results about the outworking of one’s or a group’s faith.

    There are many many reasons why one group goes through changes, and why other new groups happen. Many are the normal attritions of persons set in history, in time and place. It would be a fool’s errand to think our own analysis of circumstance and change is the same as the Lord’s, tha Ancient of Days. The fact remains that only the Lord can accurately say all the reasons for success, lack of success, and an abiding promise being in the mix of anyone’s faith, and confession, or not so.

    Even then, the instant one “counselor” or “mentor” or “assessor” counsels, it takes only one of any family system with an identified member having exhibited problems, without the full participation of other family members, to skew any assumptions of cause and effect as to assessments. All such family system assessments are at best educated guesses, and can reinforce alliances of convenience, 1:1, rather than of the all seeing eye of God allying with all those who wash their garments in the blood and testimony of the chosen Lamb. The very sending of the Lamb says something about the human ability to assess and control with impunity.

    Belief and practice will don the garments of time and place for everyman. Only one revealer of the Gospel came to earth from heaven, all the rest are partial imitators, not acquainted with the spiritual transformation of experiences of the others so affiliated–except in part.

    Does an assumptive analysis of which church once true as not believed as continuing so truly discern what the Lord has offered inall readers of His Revelation? Such may temporarily grant some analyst’s need for meaning, and possible temporal power–for gatekeeping information does include power–but as to reason and result we end up with the sense of human frailty and sinfulness even for the limiting heart of the analyst, as requiring the grace of redemption for its own state of being.

    I concur with what Dr. Brown wrote on an inability of one believer to understand all other believers history of assembly and faith because of not sharing the same moccasins of these, or the heavenly perspective of the risen Lord. We are not time travelers, and standards givers, He is.

    There is the mystical union body of Christ, the Church as cultural representative in time and space, and the organism of each church in relationship to the King and Kingdom. There is the ever shifting role of authority, submission, hierarchy, and mutuality, the practices of observance in assembly, and sacriments, and the cultivatged interior life, where so.

    Personality, lifespan growth and development, assoiciations, marriage and family, social values, society and the state or nation, education, economics, and morality: all speak of limits of any other besides the Lord to accurately assess. These can be stated to be interrelated to the “weightier matters” even discovered as being of the law (as well as present in these other constructs of human involvements as well). There remains a trust in that uncontrollable for a believer after the flesh passes on the soul to the truth of promises regarding time and eternity. Death, judgment, Hell, Heaven. This kind of economy is beyond our assessment and assumption capacity, other than as partial imitators of the Messiah’s own revelations and visitations.

    Presumption. It is dangerous to do so as to its affect on one’s own heart. It was the Lord who addressed the seven actual churches, and it was His corrective suggestions coming to bear on what was needed for His presence to continue with each one. The bottom line on faith is that we are redeemed by the works of Christ, and must abide in these truths, by grace through faith.

    We hope to bear His image. We hope to understand the operations of God. We hope to connect with the godly supernatural as tasting the authority from above. We hope that the misery and happiness of being human can realize the joy of the gifts given of God. The incarnation is central to this hope. Sacrifice has led to triumph only because of Jesus.

    The motive and rule of faith over a heart is humbling of intellectual ascent, related moral life, social order, and all order. Death is known by all who cycled through their here and now with this assembly and that one. Can we let God be God in Christ Jesus as to viewing the big picture over time and eternity?

  38. Oh, and I did not wish to add to the above thesis the notion that the Priests you mentioned Bo, in their season, where components of the law in its season.

  39. Bo, The point being on what you quoted from one of my posts that whatever the administration of the law in that cultic setting for the Nation, it was by components of the law, including Priests and Prophets–all elements of its composition–that boundaries were placed on citizens’ behavior. You have isolated one paragraph in my response and missed the theme of the response overall. I’d suggest outlining it or paraphrasing it as to achieving a capacity to increase apprehending what people actually write. It seems characteristic to take writing out of context in your responses, including that of NT scripture, to date.

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