Is Christianity A White Man’s Religion?

Why is there hostility towards Christianity by many people of color and why is it frequently viewed as the white man’s religion?
Is Christianity really a white man’s religion? Was Christianity really founded by the white race and did they use religion to exploit people of color for their own personal gain?

Christianity has always had a complicated history simply because both the religion and the Bible itself has been exploited and misinterpreted for centuries.
Even satan attempted to twist scripture from the Bible in order to tempt, deceive and exploit Jesus Christ (Matthew 4:5-7).
Misinterpreting and twisting the meanings of scripture in the Bible can be very dangerous and it can give rise to extremism and cultic practices. For centuries many false prophets, cultic groups and false doctrines have arisen as a result of people exploiting and misinterpreting the Bible.
Therefore historically many people and various people groups have become abusers and persecutors supposedly in the name of Christianity. Throughout history and even in this present day, many people have been subjected to extremist behavior and abuse by deceived people professing to be Christians or under the banner of Christianity.
Jesus once told His disciples the following “… Indeed, the hour is coming when whoever kills you will think he is offering service to God. 3 And they will do these things because they have not known the Father, nor Me. 4 But I have said these things to you, that when their hour comes you may remember that I told them to you” (John 16:2-4)

Therefore it is important to acknowledge that many people over the centuries have done many despicable and wicked things whilst professing Christianity or whilst twisting the Bible.
For centuries, many people have falsely used the banner of Christianity in order to deceive, abuse and perform wicked acts against others.

However neither Christianity nor the Bible is the real problem – but instead for centuries it has been man’s misinterpretation or twisting of scripture which has opened the doors to exploitation, extremism and the abuse of others, supposedly in the name of Christianity.
The Bible itself with its principles and commandments has never been the real problem – but rather it is the sinful nature of man which has been the root cause of many issues that we have in this world.

So Why Has Christianity Been Perceived As The White Man’s Religion?

1. Christianity and the Bible was used by (not all but various) Europeans as one of the methods to psychologically exploit and colonize various nations, particularly in Africa
2. Christianity and the Bible was used by white salve owners to justify slavery and racism particularly in the United States. For example even to this day, many who are part of extremist groups such as the KKK (Ku Klux Klan) are racists and yet claim or profess to be Christians.
3. In recent centuries, many missionaries who brought the Christian religion to such continents as Africa were individuals who were predominantly white or Caucasian.
4. The suffering and exploitation of slaves and many victims of colonialism at the hands of their white colonial masters exposed the spiritual and ethical hypocrisy of the white man during colonialism and the slave trade era. Such behavior undermined the authenticity and truthfulness of Christianity.

 

The Real Historical Roots of Christianity
To understand the real roots of Christianity and whether or not it is a “white man’s religion”, we must first understand the definition of Christianity and what it really means to be called a Christian.
Christianity is not just a religion. Instead it is a relationship with God the Creator which has been made possible by Jesus Christ. Man is sinful and his sins spiritually separate him from God (Romans 3:23). Christianity exists because of the love of God for sinful man such that He sent His only begotten Son to pay the debt of sin that mankind cannot pay (John 3:16).
Man is destined for eternal punishment because of sin and therefore he needs eternal forgiveness and he also needs a Saviour.
Therefore man can only find forgiveness of sins and be reconciled to God through Jesus Christ alone by believing and receiving Him as Lord and Saviour (John 1:12).
Jesus Christ is the only Saviour and Mediator between God and man and nobody can find salvation or have an eternal relationship with God without Jesus Christ (John 14:6; 1 Timothy 2:5).
Christianity therefore exists because of God’s desire to have an eternal relationship with man through Jesus Christ who became man’s substitute for sin by dying on the cross and resurrecting on the third day.
Jesus Christ is the Founder of Christianity and His Church (Matthew 16:18). It is Christ alone who is building His Church and He alone is the Author and Finisher of our Christian faith (Hebrews 12:2). Christianity therefore begins and ends with Jesus Christ.

When the Church age began at Pentecost, there were Africans, Asians and people from other parts of the world who were present and who responded to the gospel of Christ (Acts 2:10).
In Acts 8:26-38, Phillip shared the gospel to an African or Ethiopian official who believed in Christ as Saviour.
Therefore Africans as well as Asians and people from many parts of the world were part of the early church many centuries before the existence of the transatlantic slave trade.

In the Old Testament, in Numbers 12:1, Mirriam and Aaron apparently objected to Moses marrying a Cushite woman. A Cushite was a black person of African origin. However, even though Mirriam objected, God did not object to the interracial marriage.

The first Christians were Jewish or Semitic and therefore had dark brown skin. They were not white or Caucasian.

Therefore regardless of the slave trade or colonial history, Christianity was not founded by the white man and neither is it a white man’s religion.
The Bible states that all mankind are equal and made in God’s image regardless of skin colour or background (Genesis 1:27).
It is not known what skin colour Adam and Eve were when they were created by God. The reason? Because it didn’t matter whether they were white, brown, black, yellow etc.
What mattered is that God made all people of different skin colour in His image.

 

Christianity Is NOT The Problem – But It Is The Corrupt Nature of Mankind
Christianity in itself is not the problem and neither is the Bible the problem. The law of God is perfect and holy.
The problem is that man is sinful and corrupt and he falls short of God’s glory (Romans 3:10; Romans 3:23).
Therefore because man is sinful, then this means that man is capable of exploiting even God’s word for his own selfish and personal gain by deliberately twisting or misinterpreting the scriptures.
In 1 Timothy 1:8-11 it says: Now we know that the law is good, if one uses it lawfully, 9 understanding this, that the law is not laid down for the just but for the lawless and disobedient, for the ungodly and sinners, for the unholy and profane, for those who strike their fathers and mothers, for murderers, 10 the sexually immoral, men who practice homosexuality, enslavers, liars, perjurers, and whatever else is contrary to sound doctrine, 11 in accordance with the glorious gospel of the blessed God with which I have been entrusted.

Therefore whether historically or presently, when man uses the Bible to exploit and abuse others, it is not because Christianity or the Bible is not true – but it is because man is corrupt and his heart can be desperately wicked (Jeremiah 17:9).
So whilst God’s law is good, one must use it lawfully or properly. However man can be lawless and therefore he is capable of doing many wicked things including whatever else is contrary to sound doctrine.

Therefore Christianity was not created for one group or race. The problem of sin exists in people of every race. Therefore every person regardless of color or race is in need of God’s forgiveness.
Christianity exists because there is a Saviour who came to earth to save people of ALL races. Jesus Christ died on the cross for the entire world so that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life (John 3:16).

 

DO YOU WANT TO BE A CHRISTIAN or A FOLLOWER OF JESUS CHRIST???

1. ACKNOWLEDGE: “For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23).
This means that we have all broken God’s laws and God’s 10 Commandments like those mentioned in Exodus 20:1-17. For example, if you have told a lie; if you have stolen something; if you have lusted after somebody or if you have coveted. This means you are guilty of breaking at least one or more of God’s 10 Commandments. Breaking God’s commandments makes us sinners. The fact that we are sinners who have broken God’s law means that we are accountable to God who is the Lawgiver. Romans 6:23 says that “the wages of sin is death BUT the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord”
You must acknowledge that you are a sinner who has broken God’s commandments and that you therefore need Jesus in your life.

2. REPENT: “Unless you repent you will all likewise perish” (Luke 13:3), “Repent therefore and be converted that your sins may be blotted out” (Acts 3:19)
Repenting means: to change your mind; a sincere turning away, in heart, mind and action;
Therefore God wants you to repent of sinful values and of sinful living. God wants you to decide to
follow Him and to make Jesus the Lord of your life.

3. CONFESSION: “If we confess our sins. He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness” (1 John 1:9). “That if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved” (Romans 10:9)
God is a forgiving God. God will forgive any sin that you have done because Jesus died for ALL your sins and to set you free from the bondage of all types of sin in your life.

4. BELIEVE: “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life” (John 3:16).
You must believe that ONLY Jesus can save you and restore your relationship with God. You must believe that Jesus is the ONLY way by which you can have everlasting life and escape from eternal separation from God. You must believe that Jesus died on the cross for you and resurrected from the grave.
“He came to His own, and His own did not receive him, But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, even to those who believe in His name” (John 1:11-12)
By faith, You must receive Jesus as Your Lord & Savior and therefore; you become a child of God; you become born again; you become a Christian; you restore your broken relationship with God

 

Why Not Make Your Eternal Decision NOW?

We become born again Christians by GRACE through FAITH or TOTAL TRUST in Jesus Christ as our Lord & Savior (Galatians 3:26) & (Ephesians 2:8,9). Salvation is a FREE gift received through FAITH in Christ.

PLEASE NOTE: You can choose to pray in your own words. This prayer is a sample prayer and it is only an EXPRESSION of your faith, belief & trust in Jesus. Salvation is by GRACE through FAITH or BELIEVING in Christ Jesus as your Lord & Saviour.

“Lord Jesus, I thank You for Your love. I thank You that You died on the cross for me and resurrected so that I may have life through You.
I confess Lord that I have sinned against You and today I ask You to forgive me of all of my sins, past present and future.
Today I repent and have decided to follow you. Thank you for forgiving all my sins.
From this moment, come into my life Lord Jesus & take full control of my life. I want to follow You Jesus and I want to follow Your ways. Save me and from today, make me the person You want me to be.
I receive You Lord Jesus right now by faith. I trust You as my Lord and Savior – Amen”

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9 Dangers of False Doctrines & Teachings

The Bible warns us that spiritual deception will increase in the last days in preparation for the eventual arrival of the antichrist (2 Thessalonians 2:1-11).
Jesus Himself warned people of the inevitability that many false teachers will arise who will propagate false doctrines and perform false signs and miracles (Matthew 24:24-25), (Matthew 7:15).
False doctrines have a dangerous and life altering effect on people. When you accept false doctrine it can be likened to accepting a disease in your life. The disease infects you and it begins to methodically and slowly weaken and destroy your body if the disease is not removed.
In the same way, false doctrines subtly infect the spiritual life of a person and are methodically capable of leading to a person’s spiritual destruction. Such examples of false teachings that are popular in this age are the prosperity gospel, spiritual covering / shepherding doctrines, seed-faith teachings, antinomianism / hyper-grace, the word of faith teachings and many more.
False doctrines not only affect an individual, but false doctrines can affect entire generations and masses of people at the same time.

 

THE DANGERS OF FALSE DOCTRINES / TEACHINGS

The consequences or dangers of false doctrines are as follows:

1. False Doctrines Cause Followers to Submit to Spiritually Blind Leaders
False teachers are themselves both deceived and blind. They are deceived and in the process they are deceiving others.
Jesus spoke of the blind leading the blind in Matthew 15:14 by saying “Let them alone; they are blind guides. And if the blind lead the blind, both will fall into a pit”.
Therefore both the false teacher and his followers will fall into the same pit. Jesus is thereby warning that false doctrines are capable of leading both the false teacher and his followers to destruction in hell.

2. False Doctrines Cause Followers to Obey the Teachings of Men Instead of the Doctrines of God
False doctrines will always oppose the word of God and cause people to disobey God’s values and principles.
Matthew 15:1-3 says Then Pharisees and scribes came to Jesus from Jerusalem and said, “Why do your disciples break the tradition of the elders? For they do not wash their hands when they eat.” He answered them, “And why do you break the commandment of God for the sake of your tradition?
Therefore you will discover that various religious groups, cults or false teachers might put their own group traditions & beliefs above the authority of the scriptures.

3. False Doctrines Create Hypocrisy and a Counterfeit Christianity
When followers who profess to be Christians have a culture of disobedience against the word of God because of their false doctrines, this type of culture ultimately leads to hypocrisy.
Jesus says the following to the Pharisees in Matthew 15:7-9 : “You hypocrites! Well did Isaiah prophesy of you, when he said: “‘This people honors me with their lips, but their heart is far from me; in vain do they worship me, teaching as doctrines the commandments of men.'”
The Pharisees were hypocritical teachers who only honored God with their words. However by their actions, the false teachers considered their own doctrines & traditions as being better than God’s commandments through their lifestyle and conduct. They reflected their hypocrisy by twisting scriptures and coercing their followers into obeying the traditions of men rather than God (Matthew 15:3-7).

4. False Doctrines Lead to People Becoming Followers of Men Instead of Followers of God
People who obey false doctrines are ultimately followers of men and not followers of Christ. Victims of false doctrines and teachings tend to have more of an adoration of men or their leaders rather than Jesus Christ.
Acts 5:29 says: But Peter and the apostles answered, “We must obey God rather than men.”
Acts 20:29-30 says: I know that after my departure fierce wolves will come in among you, not sparing the flock; 30 and from among your own selves will arise men speaking twisted things, to draw away the disciples after them.

By using deceptive teachings or deceptive words, false teachers ultimately encourage their followers to be loyal to them above their loyalty towards God or towards His word.
We learn in Matthew 15:1-9 that Jesus exposes the hypocrisy of the Pharisees and some of their false teachings. Jesus also exposes the fact that the Pharisees were not teaching their followers to obey the scriptures but they were teaching their followers to obey their own personal man-made traditions and twisted interpretations of the scriptures.
Hence blind men were leading blind men instead of blind men following God.
Colossians 2:8 says that we should be cautious about receiving philosophies of men and evil spirits – or any principles which oppose the teachings of Christ.

5. False Doctrines Lead to Spiritual Bondage and Legalism
Galatians 2:4-5 says Yet because of false brothers secretly brought in—who slipped in to spy out our freedom that we have in Christ Jesus, so that they might bring us into slavery— to them we did not yield in submission even for a moment, so that the truth of the gospel might be preserved for you.
The Christian life is not meant to bring people into a life of spiritual bondage but instead when you are in Christ you are set free from bondage and you have liberty in Christ.
Galatians was written by the apostle Paul because the churches of that region were facing a theological crisis pertaining to the gospel. The essential truth of justification by faith rather than by human works was being denied by the Judaizers. The Judaizers were legalistic Jews who falsely taught that salvation was by human works or obeying the Mosaic law rather than by faith alone in Christ.
Paul therefore wrote Galatians in order to set the record straight that salvation is a free gift received by grace through faith in Christ alone and not by our own works or human effort (Galatians 2:21).
We therefore consistently see through many of the epistles which Paul wrote that false gospels and doctrines were being spread during Paul’s lifetime & ministry. Therefore in many of his epistles, Paul himself had to consistently correct and warn his readers pertaining to the existence and rise of false teachings.

6. False Doctrines Lead to Devotion to the Teachings of Demons
1 Timothy 4:1-2 says Now the Spirit expressly says that in later times some will depart from the faith by devoting themselves to deceitful spirits and teachings of demons, through the insincerity of liars whose consciences are seared,
The Bible is clear that we do not fight against flesh and blood, but against evil forces of darkness (Ephesians 6:12). Therefore it’s important to understand that false doctrines are teachings which have been inspired by demonic spirits who ultimately report to Satan.
In other words, every false doctrine or false gospel that opposes the scriptures – especially the essential Christian doctrines is most certainly demonically inspired.
1 John 4:1 says: Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, for many false prophets have gone out into the world.
Why does 1 John 4:1 link the testing of spirits to the existence of false prophets? It’s because false prophets and false teachers are mostly inspired by demonic spirits whether these teachers are aware of it or not. Therefore their false teachings are also inspired by evil spirits.
The Bible itself and all its scriptures was inspired by God (2 Timothy 3:16) and God used men. Therefore the devil himself will inspire false teachings to oppose God’s word and he will use men whose consciences are seared to spread false doctrines.

7. False Doctrines Create A Counterfeit Christ or a False Concept of the Biblical God
2 Corinthians 11:4 says: For if someone comes and proclaims another Jesus than the one we proclaimed, or if you receive a different spirit from the one you received, or if you accept a different gospel from the one you accepted, you put up with it readily enough.
False doctrines are able to create a different Jesus than the actual Jesus that is mentioned in the Bible. For example there are false doctrines that deny the deity of Jesus Christ. These doctrines claim that Jesus is not God and that Jesus was only a man. There are also some false doctrines where Jesus is not seen as the ultimate Mediator between God and man. These doctrines have false teachers and cult leaders who claim that it is they who either mediate or co-mediate on behalf of their followers before God. Yet the Bible is clear in many verses of scripture that Jesus is God and that Jesus is the only Mediator between God and man (1 Timothy 2:5).
There are also false doctrines that falsely teach that God exists to give you any material possession that you can desire because Christ died for such a purpose. Other false doctrines teach that you can buy or earn the favour, the gifts and the blessings of God with money or by the amount of money that you donate or “seed”.
These kind of doctrines and many others do not speak of the Biblical Jesus or the God of the Bible. These false doctrines speak of another Jesus. Therefore while false teachers may read from the Bible and mention the name “Jesus” in their teachings, their false teachings do not represent the true Biblical character and nature of Jesus Christ. Hence false teachers will present a different Jesus by misinterpreting and twisting the actual meaning and context of various Scriptures.
Popular false doctrines and teachings that are taught today such as the prosperity gospel, spiritual covering / shepherding doctrines, seed-faith teachings, antinomianism / hyper-grace, the word of faith teachings and many more, all create a false concept of Jesus Christ and the true character of God. They propagate a false gospel and another Jesus instead of the Biblical Christ.
These false doctrines and others tend to diminish and distort the authentic nature and character of Christ.
Therefore following a counterfeit Jesus results in counterfeit Christians which then results in a counterfeit Christianity.
Jesus said “not everyone who says “Lord! Lord!” will enter the kingdom of Heaven.” When we read Matthew 7:21-23 we learn the tragedy that there are those who presume they will enter heaven but they will end up in hell simply because they lived hypocritical lives. They lived a counterfeit Christianity.

8. False Doctrines Encourage Sin, Pride and Rebellion
False doctrines do not lead people to Christ nor do they lead to authentic Christian living. Instead false teachings will energize the flesh and encourage the desire to sin or rebel. False doctrines will also encourage a spirit of pride and arrogance rather than Christ-like humility.
2 Timothy 2:16-18 says that false teachings not only lead to “empty chatter” but it also leads to ungodliness and is capable of spreading like a disease.
When you read Titus 1:10-11 it says that false teaching leads to
a) Rebellion or insubordination against God
b) Empty talk or mischievous conversations
c) Deceptive or manipulative behavior
d) Upsetting or division of families
In verse 11 it says that the motive of some of these false teachers is that “they teach for shameful gain what they ought not to teach”.
This means that false teachers teach false doctrines for their own personal gain even if they know that they are sinning and rebelling against God.
The result of continuous rebellion is that false doctrines eventually leads to both false teachers and their followers having a seared conscience.
1 Timothy 4:1-2 connects false doctrines to having a seared conscience because of people devoting themselves to teachings of demons.

9. False Doctrines Give False Teachers Abusive Control Over Their Followers
This happens especially within religious cults or groups that exhibit high control behaviour. False teachers and cult leaders tend to twist scriptures to enable themselves to intimately control, manipulate and spiritually abuse their deceived followers.
1 Peter 5:3 says that the church leader should not lord over or be domineering towards his followers but he should be an example to the flock.
In Matthew 20:25-28 Jesus gives His disciples the template for Christian leadership. He basically mentions that Christian leadership is when:
1. the leader becomes the servant
2. the leader serves the flock and not himself
3. the leader imitates Christ’s leadership style
Another name for Christ’s leadership style is Servant Leadership.
However false teachers will teach false doctrines that cause their followers to fear them, idolize them and follow them without exercising any critical spiritual thinking.
Many false teachers have caused divorces, separated families, sexually abused members and destroyed lives because of the application of false doctrines upon blind followers.

 

Conclusion
The Bible consistently warns believers to beware of false prophets and false doctrines. They key to avoid being deceived is to seek a sincere relationship with God and to imitate the example of the Bereans who studied and verified the scriptures for themselves irrespective of who preached it (Acts 17:11). For example, even though Paul was an apostle of Christ, the Bereans would fact-check Paul’s message by going back to the Scriptures to see if what Paul had preached was really true.
In this age of deception, this is the kind of Christian that is needed: a Christian who tests the spirits and diligently studies and rightly interprets the word of God. It is necessary that as we grow in our walk with God that we avoid a culture of being spiritually spoon-fed, but instead we grow into a culture of personally studying and obeying God’s word (2 Timothy 2:15-19).
False teachings and doctrines lead people to hell rather than to eternal life with Christ. They encourage idolatry by creating a false concept of the true nature of God so that people are deceived into worshiping a false god and a false christ. It is therefore necessary that the truth be preached and the deception exposed because the spiritual lives of people are at stake.

 

 

The Purpose of The Gospel of Christ

[by Lantz Manomano] — 

What is the gospel and what purpose or impact should the gospel of Christ have in our lives? Do people in general really understand what it is or what the word of God actually says about the gospel?

What is the Gospel?
1 Corinthians 15:1-4Now I would remind you, brothers, of the gospel I preached to you, which you received, in which you stand, 2 and by which you are being saved, if you hold fast to the word I preached to you— unless you believed in vain. 3 For I delivered to you as of first importance what I also received: that Christ died for our sins in accordance with the Scriptures, 4 that He was buried, that He was raised on the third day in accordance with the Scriptures

The gospel simply means the good news of Jesus Christ. The definition of the gospel of Jesus Christ is found in 1 Corinthian 15:1-4.
In a world where many false gospels and false doctrines exist, the authentic message and definition of the gospel may become distorted and irrelevant – but let’s examine 1 Corinthians 15:3-4 in order to reveal what this particular scripture tells us about what the authentic good news or gospel of Jesus Christ comprises of:
Verse 3, the gospel message consists of the death of Christ for our sins,
Verse 4, the gospel message consists of His burial and resurrection on the third day
We needed Christ to take our place because He took up human form (Galatians 4:4) in order to fulfill the law and satisfy God’s wrath as it could only be satisfied with One who knew no sin (2 Corinthians 5:21). His death and resurrection is good news because we know He is not dead and therefore we serve a living God. We also know He has overcome death and so that everyone who believes in Christ as Lord and Saviour has passed from death to life (John 5:24).

I hope by now you have an understanding of the gospel.
So let’s look into what the gospel does and its importance according to the scriptures:
• According to Romans 1:16, the gospel is the power unto salvation to everyone that believes in the good news of our Lord. The gospel message with its purpose and impact brings us to a realization that we need Jesus Christ as our Lord and Saviour.
• According to 1 Corinthians 1:18, the gospel or good news is foolishness to those perishing. In other words, the gospel message and its impact in our lives is deemed to be irrelevant and foolish by those people who reject it and by people who will eventually perish in hell.

How Does The Gospel Free Us?
The gospel is the first step to freedom because it results into a relationship from which we learn about the love of God and how God has ultimately given us freedom from the power of the enemy through our relationship with Jesus Christ.
The gospel helps us to understand the heart of God in relation to His desire to see all of mankind repenting. God desires that all of mankind should hear the gospel and be saved. Without accepting the gospel of Christ, we cannot have a genuine relationship with God.
Our relationship with God grows through our obedience and understanding of the Word of God and the gospel or good news of Christ helps us understand the heart of God.

The gospel also exposes the devil’s schemes and lies that have been spread through religious acts hiding in the name of Christ.

The good news frees us from:
• Blindness of the mind (2 Corinthians 4:4)
• Blindness of the heart (Ephesians 4:18)
• Blindness of the eyes (1 John 2:11, Mathew 6:23)
• The gospel free us from lies or spiritual deception (John 8:32, 44)
• Frees us from the world and worldly culture (John 17:9,14-17)
• Frees us from darkness into His marvelous light (1 Peter 2:9)
• Frees us from self or living for ourselves and into living for Christ (Galatians 2:20)
• Frees us from the traditions or philosophies of men (Mark 7:8)
These are just few examples of how we have been freed by the gospel.

Is the Gospel for a Specific People?
Did Jesus die only for a specific people? Did Christ come to save only a specific nation like Israel?
Many people will make a variety of excuses of not wanting to receive or accept the gospel of Jesus Christ.
For example, some people might claim that the gospel is a “white man’s religion”; Others may believe in their culture or tradition above the word of God; Others may simply be people who love their sinful lifestyle so much that they reject the message of the gospel of Jesus Christ.
However the gospel reveals the grace and mercy of God so that if people are to reject it, they will ultimately have no excuse because to reject the gospel means to also reject the grace and mercy of God. Jesus Christ died for the entire world (John 3:16) and not just for a specific race or tribe. We are all sinners (Romans 3:23) and therefore everyone needs saving.

Mathew 24:14 says: And this gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations, and then shall the end come.

Luke 24:47 says: And that repentance and remission of sins should be preached in his name among all nations, beginning at Jerusalem

The scriptures are on point and leave no room for confusion, instead God demonstrates that the Gospel message is for everyone. So please open your heart to God’s goodness if you have not done so already.

What Does the Gospel Reveal?
The gospel reveals the heart of God and of man, so there are things that do come with the gospel. Let’s list some of the things:
(1 Thessalonians 1:5) – it’s not in word only but also in power, Holy Spirit and much assurance
(1 Thessalonians 1:8-10), there is not only freedom when we repent and accept the gospel, but there is also judgment and wrath for those who reject or disobey the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ.
(Philippians 1:27), there’s unity in gospel that is one spirit and one mind for the faith of the gospel
(2 Corinthians 4:3-4) It is hidden to those who are lost because their minds are blinded by satan who is the god of this world.
(Acts 5:41) Suffering for the good news of Jesus Christ
(Luke 21:12) Persecutions leading to trials and prison time

These are things that show that God wants all men saved. At the same time we find that many men will resist the good news because they can’t surrender to Christ’s Lordship. Persecution and suffering will come but Christ’s glory is revealed in us through our obedience to the good news of our Lord Jesus Christ. I pray we may pursue a relationship with Christ and be taught of His good news and experience the power and joy that comes with the gospel. Be blessed.

DO YOU WANT TO BE A CHRISTIAN or A FOLLOWER OF JESUS CHRIST???

1. ACKNOWLEDGE: “For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23).
This means that we have all broken God’s laws and God’s 10 Commandments like those mentioned in Exodus 20:1-17. For example, if you have told a lie; if you have stolen something; if you have lusted after somebody or if you have coveted. This means you are guilty of breaking at least one or more of God’s 10 Commandments. Breaking God’s commandments makes us sinners. The fact that we are sinners who have broken God’s law means that we are accountable to God who is the Lawgiver. Romans 6:23 says that “the wages of sin is death BUT the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord”
You must acknowledge that you are a sinner who has broken God’s commandments and that you therefore need Jesus in your life.

2. REPENT: “Unless you repent you will all likewise perish” (Luke 13:3), “Repent therefore and be converted that your sins may be blotted out” (Acts 3:19)
Repenting means: to change your mind; a sincere turning away, in heart, mind and action;
Therefore God wants you to repent of sinful values and of sinful living. God wants you to decide to
follow Him and to make Jesus the Lord of your life.

3. CONFESSION: “If we confess our sins. He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness” (1 John 1:9). “That if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved” (Romans 10:9)
God is a forgiving God. God will forgive any sin that you have done because Jesus died for ALL your sins and to set you free from the bondage of all types of sin in your life.

4. BELIEVE: “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life” (John 3:16).
You must believe that ONLY Jesus can save you and restore your relationship with God. You must believe that Jesus is the ONLY way by which you can have everlasting life and escape from eternal separation from God. You must believe that Jesus died on the cross for you and resurrected from the grave.
“He came to His own, and His own did not receive him, But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, even to those who believe in His name” (John 1:11-12)
By faith, You must receive Jesus as Your Lord & Savior and therefore; you become a child of God; you become born again; you become a Christian; you restore your broken relationship with God

Why Not Make Your Eternal Decision NOW?

We become born again Christians by GRACE through FAITH or TOTAL TRUST in Jesus Christ as our Lord & Savior (Galatians 3:26) & (Ephesians 2:8,9). Salvation is a FREE gift received through FAITH in Christ.

PLEASE NOTE: You can choose to pray in your own words. This prayer is a sample prayer and it is only an EXPRESSION of your faith, belief & trust in Jesus. Salvation is by GRACE through FAITH or BELIEVING in Christ Jesus as your Lord & Saviour.

“Lord Jesus, I thank You for Your love. I thank You that You died on the cross for me and resurrected so that I may have life through You.
I confess Lord that I have sinned against You and today I ask You to forgive me of all of my sins, past present and future.
Today I repent and have decided to follow you. Thank you for forgiving all my sins.
From this moment, come into my life Lord Jesus & take full control of my life. I want to follow You Jesus and I want to follow Your ways. Save me and from today, make me the person You want me to be.
I receive You Lord Jesus right now by faith. I trust You as my Lord and Savior – Amen”

Have you accepted & believed in Jesus Christ as a result of reading this article and would like to know more about what to do next? If so please acknowledge by clicking the “I Have Accepted Jesus Christ” button below

What Do You Know About Jesus Christ?

[by Lantz Manomano] —

Matthew 16:13-17
Now when Jesus came into the district of Caesarea Philippi, he asked his disciples, “Who do people say that the Son of Man is?” 14 And they said, “Some say John the Baptist, others say Elijah, and others Jeremiah or one of the prophets.” 15 He said to them, “But who do you say that I am?” 16 Simon Peter replied, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.”

WHAT DO YOU KNOW ABOUT JESUS CHRIST?
What one knows about Jesus Christ is very important and is what also determines how one goes through life here on earth. Victory and disappointment is redefined by the relationship and knowledge we have of Jesus Christ. Knowing Christ does not remove us from life challenges but we are strengthened and equipped to implement what we know during such times. Let’s get to know Jesus Christ.

Jesus Christ is 100% God and 100% Man
This is one of the most important fact of the bible which has caused so many religious divisions and has partly led to the creation so many false churches. Jesus is not a creation but He himself is a creator, and to bring this point to light we have to understand that angels and the human race are the creations of God and can’t create.

Understanding Christ is 100% God:

Creator: as we mentioned above Christ is not a creation. Man invents and God creates, the difference being that an invention comes from an idea of bringing together resources that are in existence in order to improve the standards of living whereas creation is bringing something to life from nothing.
John 1:1-5 says: In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2 He was in the beginning with God. 3 All things were made through him, and without him was not any thing made that was made. 4 In him was life, and the life was the light of men.
John 1:2 says that Christ was in the beginning with God. Not only was He with God, but He was God. When it all started Christ was there and then verse 3 goes on to say all things were made by Him, and without Him was not anything made that was made. Verse 4 In Him was life, and the life was the light of men. He is the light of the world. Also read Colossians 1:16-17.

Foreknowledge: only God knows all things and Jesus Christ knows all things. John 13:11 says: For He knew who should betray him; therefore sad he ,Ye are not all clean.

Search the heart: the Bible says only God can search and know what’s in a human heart (Jeremiah 17:9-10). Jesus knew their thoughts and what was in their hearts (Matthew 9:4-5)

Forgive sins: only God can forgive sins Christ forgave sins. The scribes knew this and said among themselves that He is a blasphemous because they knew that only God forgives sins. So is it that Christ functioned outside God’s will or He is God.

Point to note: There is only one God who exists in 3 Persons. God the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit are one or united. They operate harmoniously. The Father glorifies the Son, the Son glorifies the Father and the Holy Spirit glorifies the Son as they execute the plan from the beginning. (Read: What Is The Trinity? Do Christians Worship 3 Gods?)

Understanding Christ is 100% Man:

• Christ was born: Galatians 4:4 But when the fullness of the time was come, God sent forth his Son made of a woman, made under the law
• Jesus got hungry Luke 4:2
• Jesus slept Luke 8:23
• Jesus had a natural growth Luke 2:40

It’s very important to understand Christ’s conception is miraculous which means He was not born of fleshly man otherwise he would also need saving. We also have to understand the reason why He had to leave His place at the throne to serve and save a people He created. These are just points to stir up our spirit so that we grow a hunger and thirst for the Word of God.

Why did Jesus come to die for us?

When sin corrupted mankind, death also came into existence because God surely said if you eat of this tree you will die, Genesis 2:17. This death was both physically and spiritually because we were then separated from God. We became enemies with God and no longer had peace with God. Let’s see some of the reasons why Jesus came:
1. To restore life in us and save us from eternal death (John 3:16). Also Ephesians2:1 which states that He quickened those who have believed on Him because we were dead in our trespasses.
2. Reconciliation: this is the amending of a broken relationship (2 Corinthians 5:18,19)
3. To adopt us as sons and to be able to come to the Father. (Romans 8:14,15 John 1:12)
4. There was an exchange where Jesus took our place of death as the wages of sin is death and we deserved to die, but Christ who knew no sin became sin for us so that we could receive His righteousness (Romans 6:23, 2 Corinthians 5:21)
5. To restore the lost peace (Romans 5:1)
6. To give us access to His grace (Romans 5:2, Hebrews 4:16)
7. To take away the sin of the world (John 1:29, 1 John 2:2)
These are just a few reasons of why Christ came. It was all from a place of love. With the way we act one would think that Christ did not come or that He came but did not accomplish what He came to do, which brings us to our next question below.

Did Jesus complete His mission on earth?
This is an interesting question and it has different answers as people at times answer based on how they are feeling leaving out the Word of God. Christ completed his mission; He left no stone attended. Below are a few points of how we know Christ has completed his mission:
• He died for our sins and announced the completion, (John 19:30) It is finished.
• He rose from death (John 20:14-17)
• He is seated at the right hand of the Father (Hebrews 1:1-3)
• We have received the gift of the Holy Spirit which he promised us, John 16:7-16

If Jesus accomplished satisfying God’s wrath and being the ultimate sacrifice, what does it mean for us who have believed?

• We are saved from God’s wrath, (1 Thessalonians 5:9,10)
• We are forgiven and should also forgive (Colossians 3:13)
• Put off the old man and put on the new man after Christ, (Ephesians 4:22-32)
• We are new creations, (2 Corinthians 5:17)
• We are complete in Him, (Colossians 2:10)
• We are dead to sin, (Romans 6:1-10).
• We now set our affection for the things of above and not on the things on the earth, (Colossians 3:2)
• Our life is hid in Christ with God, (Colossians 3:3)
• Christ is our life, (Colossians 3:4)

These are just but a few snippets just to spark one’s desire to hunger and thirst for the word of God. To conclude here are some of the names Jesus Christ was known by:

1. The Son of Man, (Mathew 8:20; 9:6, John 5:27)
2. Son of David (Mathew 1:1, 12:23, 2 Timothy 2:8)
3. King of Kings (1 Timothy 6:15, Revelations 17:14, 19:16)
4. A Corner-stone (Psalms 118:22, Mathew 21:42, Acts 4:11)
5. Morning Star (Numbers 24:17, 2 Peter 1:19)
6. Messiah (Matthew 11:3)
7. The Word (John 1:1, 14, 1 John 1:1, 5:7)
8. Master (Luke 5:5, 8:24)
9. The True Vine (John 15)
10. Prophet (Luke 7:16, John 4:19)

Jesus Christ is indeed Lord and there is no other name that can save under heaven (Acts 4:12) and also His name is above every other name and at the name of Jesus every knee will bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under earth, (Philippians 2:9-10). We can never know the Father’s heart if we don’t know about Christ because Him and the Father are One in nature and likeness and no one can come to the Father except through Christ.

Life Objectives
• To stir up a hunger and thirst for the Word of God
• To find out how much we know about Christ
• To assess whether we believe in Christ or not
• To discover whether Christ is active in our lives today

Life Questions
1. How much do you know about Jesus Christ?
2. Which name shall every knee bow to?
3. If Jesus’s name saves, it saves us from what?
4. Did Jesus complete the will of the Father?
5. According to the answer provided on question 4, how does it make you feel?

What Are The Christian’s Weapons of Warfare?

The Bible tells us that every Christian is consistently engaged in spiritual warfare. In 2 Timothy 2:3-4 the Christian is described as a “soldier of Christ” who is engaged in a war.
In Ephesians 6:12, Christians are reminded that we do not fight against flesh and blood, but instead we fight against spiritual forces of darkness.
The devil together with his demons is described as the enemy of God whose primary objective is to kill, steal and destroy (John 10:10).

 

WHAT ARE THE DEVIL’S WEAPONS OF WARFARE?
The devil’s weapons of warfare include such tactics and techniques as:
a) Deception and temptation (Matthew 4:1-11; Genesis 3:1-13)
b) Encouraging the works of the flesh (Galatians 5:19-21)
c) Causing fear, doubt and confusion (1 Corinthians 14:33; 1 Peter 5:8)
d) Idolatry, paganism and all forms of occultism (2 Chronicles 33:6)
e) Creating worldly philosophies & systems (Colossians 2:8; 2 Corinthians 4:4)
f) Creating false teachings and doctrines of demons (1 Timothy 4:1-2)

The devil is known as “the god of this world” who uses his own weapons of warfare to blind the world and to fight against Christian believers. 2 Corinthians 4:4 says: In their case the god of this world has blinded the minds of the unbelievers, to keep them from seeing the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God.
Therefore devil’s weapons of warfare are ultimately aimed at fighting against God and blinding people from having a relationship with Him through the knowledge and experience of the gospel of Jesus Christ.

 

THE CHRISTIAN’S WEAPONS OF WARFARE
However, God has also given the Christian believer some weapons of warfare so that he/she may be equipped against the attacks of the enemy.
2 Corinthians 10:3-6 (NIV) says: For though we live in the world, we do not wage war as the world does. 4 The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds. 5 We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ. 6 And we will be ready to punish every act of disobedience, once your obedience is complete.

According to 2 Corinthians 10:3, even though we live in the world, we do not war or fight our battles according to the principles of the world or according to our fleshly desires.
In other words, the Christian believer does not use the same deceptive or worldly tactics or techniques as the devil. Instead the Christian believer responds differently because according to verse 4, the Christians weapons of warfare have “divine power”.

So What Are The Christian’s Weapons of Warfare?

Ephesians 6:11-18Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the schemes of the devil. 12 For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places. 13 Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand firm. 14 Stand therefore, having fastened on the belt of truth, and having put on the breastplate of righteousness, 15 and, as shoes for your feet, having put on the readiness given by the gospel of peace. 16 In all circumstances take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming darts of the evil one; 17 and take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God, 18 praying at all times in the Spirit, with all prayer and supplication. To that end keep alert with all perseverance, making supplication for all the saints,

Ephesians 6:11-18 gives us an insight in relation to what our weapons of warfare consist of.
We are to wear the armour of God that we may be able to withstand the schemes and tactics of the devil.

The armour of God consists of the following virtues or principles that are necessary when engaged in spiritual warfare:
1) Speaking the truth and standing for the truth (verse 14)
2) Righteous living and standing for what is morally and spiritually right (verse 14)
3) Proclaiming the gospel of Jesus Christ (verse 15)
4) Living by faith and not by sight (verse 16)
5) Being reminded of who you are in Christ because of the salvation you received because of the finished work of Jesus Christ on the cross (verse 17)
6) Knowledge of the word of God and living according to the Scriptures (verse 17)
7) Praying according to the will of God (verse 18)

Therefore whenever we are engaged in warfare and in our daily walk with God, we wear the armour of God by applying and living according to the 7 principles or virtues mentioned above.
Wearing the armour of God and using this armour is only possible through the leading of the Holy Spirit.
In Galatians 5:16-25 we are told not to walk or live according to the desires of the flesh but we are to live according to the Holy Spirit who enables us to bear good fruit and overcome satanic deception.
Therefore whilst the devil may use carnal, deceitful and corrupt means to wage war, on the contrary the Holy Spirit will enable Christians to use Biblical principles to withstand the enemy.

 

WHAT IS THE PURPOSE OF GOD’S WEAPONS OF WARFARE?
According to 2 Corinthians 10:4-6 the weapons of the Christian’s warfare are useful for the following purpose:

1) For pulling down strongholds / destroying strongholds (verse 4)
2) For destroying arguments (verse 5)
3) For destroying every high thing or opinion that is raised against the knowledge and principles of God (verse 5)
4) For capturing every thought or idea so that it obeys Jesus Christ (verse 5)
5) For encouraging obedience to the things of God (verse 6)

Therefore whilst the devil’s weapons of warfare are meant to kill, steal, destroy and blind people from seeking a relationship with God through Jesus Christ – the weapons of warfare that the Christian has been given are meant to destroy the very tactics and schemes of the devil and instead promote obedience and a right relationship with God.

 

DO YOU WANT TO BE A CHRISTIAN or A FOLLOWER OF JESUS CHRIST???

1. ACKNOWLEDGE: “For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23).
This means that we have all broken God’s laws and God’s 10 Commandments like those mentioned in Exodus 20:1-17. For example, if you have told a lie; if you have stolen something; if you have lusted after somebody or if you have coveted. This means you are guilty of breaking at least one or more of God’s 10 Commandments. Breaking God’s commandments makes us sinners. The fact that we are sinners who have broken God’s law means that we are accountable to God who is the Lawgiver. Romans 6:23 says that “the wages of sin is death BUT the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord”
You must acknowledge that you are a sinner who has broken God’s commandments and that you therefore need Jesus in your life.

2. REPENT: “Unless you repent you will all likewise perish” (Luke 13:3), “Repent therefore and be converted that your sins may be blotted out” (Acts 3:19)
Repenting means: to change your mind; a sincere turning away, in heart, mind and action;
Therefore God wants you to repent of sinful values and of sinful living. God wants you to decide to
follow Him and to make Jesus the Lord of your life.

3. CONFESSION: “If we confess our sins. He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness” (1 John 1:9). “That if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved” (Romans 10:9)
God is a forgiving God. God will forgive any sin that you have done because Jesus died for ALL your sins and to set you free from the bondage of all types of sin in your life.

4. BELIEVE: “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life” (John 3:16).
You must believe that ONLY Jesus can save you and restore your relationship with God. You must believe that Jesus is the ONLY way by which you can have everlasting life and escape from eternal separation from God. You must believe that Jesus died on the cross for you and resurrected from the grave.
“He came to His own, and His own did not receive him, But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, even to those who believe in His name” (John 1:11-12)
By faith, You must receive Jesus as Your Lord & Savior and therefore; you become a child of God; you become born again; you become a Christian; you restore your broken relationship with God

 

Why Not Make Your Eternal Decision NOW?

We become born again Christians by GRACE through FAITH or TOTAL TRUST in Jesus Christ as our Lord & Savior (Galatians 3:26) & (Ephesians 2:8,9). Salvation is a FREE gift received through FAITH in Christ.

PLEASE NOTE: You can choose to pray in your own words. This prayer is a sample prayer and it is only an EXPRESSION of your faith, belief & trust in Jesus. Salvation is by GRACE through FAITH or BELIEVING in Christ Jesus as your Lord & Saviour.

“Lord Jesus, I thank You for Your love. I thank You that You died on the cross for me and resurrected so that I may have life through You.
I confess Lord that I have sinned against You and today I ask You to forgive me of all of my sins, past present and future.
Today I repent and have decided to follow you. Thank you for forgiving all my sins.
From this moment, come into my life Lord Jesus & take full control of my life. I want to follow You Jesus and I want to follow Your ways. Save me and from today, make me the person You want me to be.
I receive You Lord Jesus right now by faith. I trust You as my Lord and Savior – Amen”

Have you accepted & believed in Jesus Christ as a result of reading this article and would like to know more about what to do next? If so please acknowledge by clicking the “I Have Accepted Jesus Christ” button below

When False Teachers Have A Seared Conscience

Have you ever wondered why many false teachers/ prophets are capable of hypocrisy, manipulating, cheating and even abusing many of their followers and yet not feel a single ounce of guilt, shame or remorse for their actions?

Have you ever wondered if false teachers actually comprehend or care about the kind of spiritual damage that they cause to people when they spread false doctrines & teachings in order to brainwash and manipulate people for their own personal or financial gain?

Do you wonder why false prophets are capable of performing false or staged miracles & healings in order to deceive their followers that they are men of God who have been given healing powers?

Why do these false prophets speak false prophecies or hire people to give false testimonies in their churches and not feel any shame or guilt?

Why do false teachers deliberately twist and misinterpret God’s word in order serve their own appetites or for monetary gain?

Why do such false prophets / teachers seem to lack an authentic fear of God when they consistently manipulate, control or brainwash followers to satisfy their own ego and pride?

Where is their moral compass and do they actually comprehend the wrong that they are doing?

The answer to all of the above questions is found in 1 Timothy 4:1-2 (NKJV) which says: Now the Spirit expressly says that in latter times some will depart from the faith, giving heed to deceiving spirits and doctrines of demons, 2 speaking lies in hypocrisy, having their own conscience seared with a hot iron

The ESV version of 1 Timothy 4:1-2 says: Now the Spirit expressly says that in later times some will depart from the faith by devoting themselves to deceitful spirits and teachings of demons, 2 through the insincerity of liars whose consciences are seared

Therefore a seared conscience is the reason for why false prophets / teachers can behave badly without feeling any shame, guilt or remorse.

What Is A Conscience?
A conscience is defined as a person’s moral sense of right and wrong. Our conscience is our internal moral compass that enables us to know and feel when we have behaved badly or correctly in life.
The Greek term for conscience in the Bible is [suneidesis] which means “moral consciousness”.
Therefore our conscience helps us to distinguish between what is morally good or morally bad and our conscience is supposed to illicit the appropriate feelings depending on our moral behavior.
God has placed in every individual whether religious or not, a basic understanding of what is fundamentally right or wrong.
For example, you don’t have to tell an 8 year old child when he/she has done something wrong. Children already have an inbuilt moral compass that gives them knowledge of sin.

However a seared conscience is when a person has a conscience that is so damaged and deceived because of rebellion and pride to the extent that the person no longer feels shame, guilt, remorse or any appropriate feelings whenever he/she has committed sin.
A seared conscience no longer distinguishes between right and wrong because the conscience has become uncaring and insensitive due to consistent disobedience and pride.
Therefore when people have a seared conscience they have become insensitive to basic human morality and they no longer care about what is morally or spiritually right or wrong.

False Teachers With A Seared Conscience
According to 1 Timothy 4:1-2 there are many people who are going to be deceived by false teachers and therefore depart from orthodox Christian faith (vs 1).
Why will many people depart from the faith? It is because people will be coerced into believing and following deceitful spirits and the doctrines of demons (vs 1).
Any doctrines or teachings that contradict the word of God and attacks the gospel of Christ is either inspired by the sinful nature of man or such doctrines are sourced from deceitful demonic spirits (vs 2).
However, for any demonic doctrine to spread, both the teachings and the deceitful spirits who create the doctrines require a host in order to spread or propagate the false doctrines.
Hence in verse 2, Paul explains that men with a seared conscience are the hosts through which doctrines of demons are spread “through the insincerity of liars whose consciences are seared”

So in 1 Timothy 4:1-2 we learn the following about why false teachers can deceive without guilt, shame or remorse:

  1. False teachers have the characteristics of insincere or hypocritical liars whose consciences are seared. They have no moral compass and they no longer distinguish between right and wrong when they deceive their followers.
  2. The seared state of their conscience makes false teachers to be eligible mouthpieces for evil deceitful spirits. Hence in 1 John 4:1 Christian believers are encouraged and warned “not to believe every spirit but to test the spirits to see whether they are from God, for many false prophets have gone into the world”
    Therefore by comparing 1 Timothy 4:1-2 and 1 John 4:1, it is revealed through these scriptures that there is always a spiritual or demonic link & influence between false prophets / teachers and the demonic doctrines they teach. According to these scriptures, evil spirits influence the behaviours of false teachers / prophets.
  3. Thirdly we learn from 1 Timothy 4:1-2 that many people will depart from the faith due to the influence of false teachers who propagate the doctrines of demons.
    This reveals in the broader context that the battle between good and evil in not physical, but it is a spiritual battle between God and satan with his demons (Ephesians 6:12)
    Evil spirits are at work to influence men whose consciences are seared so that they may spread false doctrines and lead people astray from God’s word and truth.

A seared conscience enables a person to perform acts of wickedness and deception without the desire to repent or the comprehension that his/her actions are wrong.
False teachers with a seared conscience are easy instruments for the devil and for performing the works of the devil.

In Matthew 23:13-33 Jesus describes the Pharisees as being hypocritical and deceitful and lacking basic moral conscience.

In 2 Corinthians 11:13-15 we are warned of false apostles who are described as “deceitful workmen, disguising themselves as apostles of Christ. 14 And no wonder, for even Satan disguises himself as an angel of light. 15 So it is no surprise if his servants, also, disguise themselves as servants of righteousness. Their end will correspond to their deeds.”

In Matthew 7:15-20 Jesus warned us to beware of false prophets who will come disguised in sheep’s clothing but yet they are wolves. Jesus said they will be recognized by their fruits.

In Matthew 24:24-25 Jesus further warned about false prophets who will perform signs and wonders in order to lead people astray.

It is therefore clear that such actions by false teachers reflect the characteristics of people who have a seared conscience because they do not have any genuine fear of God.
False teachers will use the Bible and deliberately misinterpret it in order to manipulate and deceive others. They will stage false signs and wonders, speak false prophesies and spread false doctrines for personal and monetary gain without any moral compass or shame for deceiving others.

Men with seared consciences are consistently open to demonic influences because the truth of God’s word does not truly reside in their hearts. False teachers lack the true conviction of sin of righteousness and of judgment that comes from the Holy Spirit (John 16:8-11).

Therefore the only way to prevent having a seared conscience is by having a genuine relationship with God through Jesus Christ. In the life of the Christian it is the work of the Holy Spirit to convict us of sin. It the work of the Holy Spirit to lead us to all truth regarding the word and will of God for our life.
So as we yield more to the leading of the Holy Spirit, we will have the conscience and the mind of Jesus Christ.

 

 

 

 

How Can I Become More Like Jesus Christ?

The word Christian was originally a nickname for people who were followers or disciples of Jesus Christ or the Christian faith.
The word Christian means to be Christ-like or an imitator of Christ and therefore that is the aim of every Christian or born again believer: Christians are supposed to conform to the image or character and nature of Jesus (Romans 8:29).

When we give our life to Jesus Christ so that He becomes our Lord & Saviour, our life no longer belongs to us but instead our life now belongs to Jesus and it is Christ who is at the throne of our life.
Galatians 2:20 says: “I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me.”

 

So how do we become more like Jesus Christ?

1. We Need To Give Our Life To Christ
We cannot conform to the image or nature of Christ unless we are born again (John 3:3). To be born again means that we recognize our sinfulness and depravity to the extent that we realize our need for Christ as Lord & Saviour.
In other words, you cannot become more like Jesus unless you become a Christian.
Being a Christian means that we have a one-on-one relationship with God through Jesus Christ because it is only through Christ that we are able to please God.

2. We Must Be Motivated By Love
We do not simply follow Christ out of a sense of religious duty or ritual. Instead we follow Him because we are motivated by love.
The more we love God and His word, the more we will express God’s nature and character.
1 John 4:7-8 says: Beloved, let us love one another, for love is from God, and whoever loves has been born of God and knows God. 8 Anyone who does not love does not know God, because God is love.
Therefore as Christians we must be moved and motivated by the love of God and the love of people.
In John 3:16 God was motivated by love when He sent Christ to pay for our sins on the cross. The nature of God is that whilst we were sinners, Christ loved us and died for us (Romans 5:8).
Furthermore, to become more like Jesus, we must love the things that God loves and hate the things that God hates (Romans 12:9).

3. We Must Meditate & Obey God’s Word
How can we know who God is? How can we know the nature & character of Jesus Christ? How can we know what God loves and hates?
We can know all these things through the studying and meditation of God’s word. The Bible expresses the mind and heart of God because God Himself is the Author of the Bible.
2 Timothy 3:16-17 says: All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, 17 that the man of God may be competent, equipped for every good work.
It’s in the Bible that we know the difference between good and evil. It is also through His word that we receive encouragement, counsel and instruction on how we can become more like Jesus Christ.
Also our obedience to God’s word enables us to experience the nature and character of Christ who was able to obey God’s laws perfectly whilst He was on earth.
Therefore imitating Christ comes with the knowledge and of God’s word and the understanding that all we need to know about Jesus Christ is found in the Bible.

4. We Must Spend Time With God In Prayer
Communication with God is an integral part of every Christian’s life. The Bible tells us that Jesus Himself would spend time to be alone with the Father to pray (Luke 5:16).
Prayer draws us near to God and enables us to intimately fellowship with Him. It is also through prayer that we realize our utmost dependence on God because without God we are nothing.
Just like Christ it is important for us to spend time alone with God to pray and pour our hearts on God.
The disciples admired Christ’s prayer life and they witnessed Christ’s intimacy with the Father.
Because they witnessed Christ’s prayerful life, the disciples asked Jesus to teach them how to pray because they wanted the kind of prayer life that Jesus had (Luke 11:1-2).

 

Conclusion
Ephesians 5:1-2 says: Therefore be imitators of God, as beloved children. 2 And walk in love, as Christ loved us and gave Himself up for us, a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God.
So as Christians we are called to imitate the character and nature of Jesus Christ. Our Christian walk must reflect to the world the love and nature of God so that God may be glorified and by His grace many who are lost can be saved.
Ultimately the Christian life is not a religion – but it is a relationship with God. The more we love God and the more we want to know Him and spend time with Him – the more we will desire to imitate Christ.
Therefore to become more like Jesus Christ we must delight in Him and cultivate a desire to know Him intimately.

 

DO YOU WANT TO BE A CHRISTIAN or A FOLLOWER OF JESUS CHRIST???

1. ACKNOWLEDGE: “For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23).
This means that we have all broken God’s laws and God’s 10 Commandments like those mentioned in Exodus 20:1-17. For example, if you have told a lie; if you have stolen something; if you have lusted after somebody or if you have coveted. This means you are guilty of breaking at least one or more of God’s 10 Commandments. Breaking God’s commandments makes us sinners. The fact that we are sinners who have broken God’s law means that we are accountable to God who is the Lawgiver. Romans 6:23 says that “the wages of sin is death BUT the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord”
You must acknowledge that you are a sinner who has broken God’s commandments and that you therefore need Jesus in your life.

2. REPENT: “Unless you repent you will all likewise perish” (Luke 13:3), “Repent therefore and be converted that your sins may be blotted out” (Acts 3:19)
Repenting means: to change your mind; a sincere turning away, in heart, mind and action;
Therefore God wants you to repent of sinful values and of sinful living. God wants you to decide to
follow Him and to make Jesus the Lord of your life.

3. CONFESSION: “If we confess our sins. He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness” (1 John 1:9). “That if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved” (Romans 10:9)
God is a forgiving God. God will forgive any sin that you have done because Jesus died for ALL your sins and to set you free from the bondage of all types of sin in your life.

4. BELIEVE: “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life” (John 3:16).
You must believe that ONLY Jesus can save you and restore your relationship with God. You must believe that Jesus is the ONLY way by which you can have everlasting life and escape from eternal separation from God. You must believe that Jesus died on the cross for you and resurrected from the grave.
“He came to His own, and His own did not receive him, But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, even to those who believe in His name” (John 1:11-12)
By faith, You must receive Jesus as Your Lord & Savior and therefore; you become a child of God; you become born again; you become a Christian; you restore your broken relationship with God

 

Why Not Make Your Eternal Decision NOW?

We become born again Christians by GRACE through FAITH or TOTAL TRUST in Jesus Christ as our Lord & Savior (Galatians 3:26) & (Ephesians 2:8,9). Salvation is a FREE gift received through FAITH in Christ.

PLEASE NOTE: You can choose to pray in your own words. This prayer is a sample prayer and it is only an EXPRESSION of your faith, belief & trust in Jesus. Salvation is by GRACE through FAITH or BELIEVING in Christ Jesus as your Lord & Saviour.

“Lord Jesus, I thank You for Your love. I thank You that You died on the cross for me and resurrected so that I may have life through You.
I confess Lord that I have sinned against You and today I ask You to forgive me of all of my sins, past present and future.
Today I repent and have decided to follow you. Thank you for forgiving all my sins.
From this moment, come into my life Lord Jesus & take full control of my life. I want to follow You Jesus and I want to follow Your ways. Save me and from today, make me the person You want me to be.
I receive You Lord Jesus right now by faith. I trust You as my Lord and Savior – Amen”

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What is The Christian View of Xenophobia?

One of the interesting facts of life is that before a person is born into the world, that person does not choose which country he/she wants to be born into.
Nobody chooses their nationality nor do they choose which family they would like to be born into. At birth, such choices belong to God alone.
However this simple truth is missed by many racial or xenophobic individuals.

Xenophobia is the fear of that which is perceived to be foreign or strange. It is also defined as a deep-rooted fear towards foreigners or strangers.

For years we have witnessed xenophobia expressed in its most horrific and extreme forms. For example, in various countries foreigners have been beaten to death, burned to death or even stoned to death.
Whilst perpetrators and supporters of xenophobia have given economic & social reasons as justification for their behavior, such violent xenophobic attacks clearly indicate that there is something terribly wrong with the fabric of society and in or world today. Society is increasingly becoming morally lawless and desensitized.
In Matthew 24:12, Jesus speaks about the condition of mankind in the last days by saying “And because lawlessness will be increased, the love of many will grow cold.”

Therefore while the definition of xenophobia relates to fear of that which is different or unfamiliar, it has been clear for centuries that xenophobia eventually leads to hatred and intolerance.
Hatred ultimately leads to anger, violence and even murder as witnessed in such countries like South Africa.
So xenophobia is not only an expression of fear, but it is also an expression of hatred and anger.

In Matthew 5:21-22 Jesus says that anyone who is capable of anger in his heart is just as guilty of the same judgment as one who commits murder.
Proverbs 10:12 says “Hatred stirs up strife, but love covers all offenses.”

Hatred towards people of different skin colours, nationalities and cultures stirs up division and strife. This kind of hatred is not only rooted in fear, but it is ultimately because mankind is sinful and he is losing his ability to express true love. As Jesus said – the love of man will grow cold in the last days.

One of the greatest commandments that Jesus gave us in addition to loving God is that we learn to love our neighbour as ourselves (Matthew 22:30; Luke 10:27).

In Luke 10:27-37 when Jesus was asked “And who is my neighbor”, Christ specifically chose a Samaritan who was a foreigner and despised by the Jews to emphasize in His parable that love must be extended to foreigners and people whom we may despise.

In Exodus 22:21 the people of Israel were instructed to treat foreigners with kindness and respect because the Israelites themselves were once foreigners in Egypt.
Exodus 22:21 says: You shall neither mistreat a stranger nor oppress him, for you were strangers in the land of Egypt.

Since the Israelites were once mistreated themselves whilst in Egypt and yet God helped them escape, God did not want the Israelites with the same hatred and bigotry that they experienced at the hands of the Egyptians.
Instead God expected love to be the motivation of how they must treat foreigners

Therefore xenophobia is wrong for a Christian. The mandate of all Christians is to love God and to love others (Matthew 22:37-40).
We are to see all of mankind as created equal and as being created in God’s image (Genesis 1:27).

Numbers 15:15-16 says: The community is to have the same rules for you and for the alien living among you; this is a lasting ordinance for the generations to come. You and the alien shall be the same before the Lord: 16 The same laws and regulations will apply both to you and to the alien living among you.

There is no nationality or race or individual who is better than another. We are not to judge others according to their nationality or outward appearance but we should see people through the eyes of God.

A nation whose society cannot express genuine tolerance and love for each other nor for foreigners and immigrants, is a nation whose basic sense of morality is on the decline.
Love is the therefore the ultimate Biblical solution to such issues as xenophobia.

1 Corinthians 13:4-7
Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant 5 or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; 6 it does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth. 7 Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.

 

Why Should I Not Kill Myself?

Life is a precious gift from God. However there can be times when we do not view our life as being precious, nor do we perceive our life as being a gift.

When you have problems and issues that seem unsolvable and problems that bring enormous guilt and shame, you may be tempted to believe that life is not worth living.

When problems lead to anxiety and depression, one can be forced to believe that suicide is an option.
However when we focus on our problems & circumstances, we do not always see the clear picture.
When we focus on our problems & challenges we may not always discover the solutions or answers that may be available to us.

Therefore the times when you are depressed or feeling guilt and shame, or faced with a seemingly unsolvable situation, it is not the time that you should make any detrimental decisions.
Instead it is the time that you should seek help and support. It is the time to seek help from your family, your friends, your church or anyone who is loving and compassionate enough to help you and comfort you during your time of distress.
Most importantly you must also seek help from God who is your Creator.

God created you for a reason. God created you for a purpose. It is never God’s will or purpose that we commit suicide.
Even during the most tragic of situations, God can give us guidance and peace.
There is also no sin in your life which God cannot forgive.
God says in Isaiah 43:25: “I, I am He who blots out your transgressions for My own sake, and I will not remember your sins.”

Your life is a gift from God and you are truly loved by God. However you must understand that the devil comes to kill, steal and destroy all that God loves and has created.
Jesus says: “The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have life and have it abundantly.” (John 10:10)

In 1 Peter 5:7-9 God’s word says that we must cast all our issues and anxieties on God because He cares for us. It also says that we must resist the devil knowing that the kind of problems we experience are similar to what many people face throughout the world.

1 Peter 5:7-9 says: Casting all your anxieties on Him, because He cares for you. 8 Be sober-minded; be watchful. Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour. 9 Resist him, firm in your faith, knowing that the same kinds of suffering are being experienced by your brotherhood throughout the world

You are of value to God. You are fearfully and wonderfully made (Psalms 139:14).
God knows you more than you know yourself. He knows you so well that He knows how many hairs you have on your head (Luke 12:7).

There is nothing too difficult for God to handle. God is able to give you peace that surpasses all understanding. God is also able to use people to support you in a difficult situation.
God is able to turn a bad situation and use it for His good purposes and glory (Romans 8:28; Genesis 50:20).

God does not have plans to harm you. Instead He has plans to give you a future and a hope.
God says the following in Jeremiah 29:11-12 “For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for wholeness and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope. 12 Then you will call upon Me and come and pray to Me, and I will hear you.”

God loves you with steadfast love. He loves us even when we are in our worst and shameful state.
Romans 5:8 says: But God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.

God is always ready and willing to forgive us of our sins. God’s grace, mercy and forgiveness is possible because of the penalty that Jesus paid for mankind on the cross.
1 John 1:9 says: If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.

The truth is, we are all sinners who have sinned against God (Romans 3:23). We live in an imperfect world that is filled with problems and tragedies because of the sin that exists in all of us as mankind.
Thankfully Jesus Christ paid the debt for our sin so that through Him alone, we can receive eternal life and be able to overcome the challenges and issues of life in this world.

Jesus Christ alone is able to give you spiritual and inner peace that is better and different from the kind of peace that the world offers.
Jesus says: “Peace I leave with you; My peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid.” (John 14:27)
In John 16:33, Jesus also says the following: “I have said these things to you, that in Me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world.”

God says that He does not desire that any man should perish but that we should all repent so that we may receive His peace and eternally be reconciled to Him (2 Peter 3:9).

If you’ve had thoughts about committing suicide, speak to someone. Urgently seek help; seek support and seek counselling.
You still have people who love you and who want you to stay alive. There are still people in the world who are compassionate enough to love and support you.
Proverbs 15:22 says “Without counsel plans fail, but with many advisers they succeed.”
Proverbs 11:14 says “Where there is no guidance, a people falls, but in an abundance of counselors there is safety.”

Most importantly, no matter the condition or state of your life right now, remember that God is with you and He will never leave you nor forsake you.
Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. 6 In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will make straight your paths. (Proverbs 3:5-6)

Therefore seek God and allow Him to give you His peace and guidance.

 

The Importance of Premarital Counseling

The rising increase in the divorce rate not only within the secular world but also within the church is a clear indication that many people are entering into marriage without understanding and also without the mental, social and spiritual preparation.

A marriage can often begin well, but then end up in disaster.
Therefore one of the purposes of premarital counseling is to educate and address any misconceptions or preconceived ideas about the marriage covenant.
Another purpose of premarital counseling is to help the couple to understand and be prepared for the realities regarding the kind of challenges and issues that occur within a marriage relationship.
In any marriage relationship it is inevitable that there will be disagreements, annoyances and all sorts of challenges and problems.
Marriage can be hard work in which both spouses must participate and contribute to its success.

The marriage relationship is so unique and so intimate above any other human relationship in that both the husband and wife will become one flesh (Genesis 2:21-24). Marriage is a relationship between 2 people who will intimately know each other more than they will ever know any other person.

Premarital counseling also helps a couple to understand God’s role within a marriage.
True Biblical marriage will always consist of God, the husband and the wife.
Therefore because God is the Creator of marriage since the beginning of creation, it is therefore necessary for a husband and wife to have God to be the centre and ultimate leader of every marriage.
A strong marriage must be governed by Biblical principles and guidelines if it is to overcome various relationship challenges and trials.
Therefore premarital counseling will also reveal the value of a couple remaining unified through both the good and difficult times in life.

Premarital counseling also helps a couple to set realistic and practical goals and objectives for their marriage relationship. There are many factors and circumstances in life that can cause confusion and disunity within the relationship.
When a couple sets agreeable goals and objectives before marrying, it may help set the direction of the overall relationship and help a couple to overly remain unified during the marriage.

Therefore specific areas such as the roles of the husband and wife must be discussed and understood (Ephesians 5:22-33).
The caring of children and issues related to finances and career plans are essential issues to discuss and plan.

 

Sources for Premarital Counseling
The most important kind of premarital counselling must have Biblical principles and guidelines.
Biblical premarital counseling enables a couple to differentiate between God’s view of marriage and the secular world’s view of marriage.
God’s word is the best source for providing us with how we should conduct our relationships with one another including marriage.
Marriage is a covenant created by God and therefore the principles and foundations of how a marriage ought to function should come directly from the word of God.
God’s word clearly outlines such things as the role of the husband and wife (Colossians 3:18-20); God’s view of divorce (Matthew 19:1-9); God’s view of sexual immorality or adultery and the like (Hebrews 13:4).
God’s word also commands us to be motivated by love in how we conduct all our relationships.
Therefore in all situations and relationships the Bible is God inspired and necessary to teach, reproof and correct us in all areas of life including marriage (2 Timothy 3:16-17).

Proverbs 15:22 says “Without counsel plans fail, but with many advisers they succeed.”
Proverbs 11:14 says “Where there is no guidance, a people falls, but in an abundance of counselors there is safety.”

Within Christianity premarital counseling can be done by a multitude of counselors from a pastor, an elder, parents of the couple or any elderly and mature Christian person who can be trusted to give sound Biblical counsel (Titus 2:1-6).
However, one of the main criteria is that anyone who counsels, is that his/her own family and household must be in good order before he/she can counsel or advise anyone else according to 1 Timothy 3:4-5 and Titus 1:7.

In Titus 2:1-6 says that older women are to “train the younger women to love their husbands and children… and to be submissive to their own husbands, that the word of God may not be reviled”

Parents of the couple must also play a major role as they have a duty to counsel their children as they grow up.
Therefore from childhood to adulthood, Christian parents always have a constant opportunity to train up a child concerning all areas of life including marriage (Proverbs 22:6).

Therefore premarital counseling provides the basis for Biblical understanding; for preparation and for the creation of Biblically sound foundations in order to make the marriage relationship work and function for the glory of God.