Month: April 2016

Where I am By Billy Graham – My commentary 2

As I have progressed through this book by this great servant of God I am humbled, honored, and reassured. But why?
The answer is because how he see the Word of God and how he see the consequence of adhering to the Christ’s teaches are the true key to salvation. Because seeing that he sees the Bible as I see the Bible nearly word for word, and as a result I feel confident in my ministry to help people awaken to the real truth.
He states many things as I have stated them and even gives an insight to issues of faith, salvation and what will result if you choose the world of God that have helped me know that Holy Spirit is with me.
He is doing the one thing God tells us to do with our brothers and sisters in Christ. Give reassurance, which in turn strengthens us. He is showing the love that is within all Christians. He is not afraid to tell the truth like so many are.
In true love for all the truth is the most important thing that must be heard. Too many do not talk of the results of not listening to God. Mr. Graham makes it clear that this is a lie by omission which is still a sin and even a worse sin than many realize or wish to acknowledge.
If you truly love God and wish to serve Him through His Son the Lord Jesus Christ. You will not be afraid to tell someone that if they do not change their ways their fate is something that you would not wish any to suffer. Mr. Graham makes it clear it is black or white, good or bad, right or wrong. There is no middle ground there is no grey area in your choice to follow God or not to follow Him.
Billy Graham makes it clear. People cannot go to church on Sunday and then spend the rest of the week in and of the world. In simply terms they love that which they have chosen. If they live in the world 8610 hours of the year and only 156 hours with God then it is the world they love. Serving God is a love that uses all 8766 hours of the year every year.

Where I am By Billy Graham – My commentary 1

Today I started reading the book “Where I am” by Billy Graham. As I first read the forward by Franklin Graham, Billy’s son and then started into the Introduction of the book, the gears in my mind started to turn and there was a desire to expound. So here we go.
One paragraph in the introduction just rang out to my soul so I am going to quote here:
“Many people teach today that the blood of Jesus covers all sin, regardless of whether the sinner repents or not. This is Satan’s great lie. Some believe they will automatically walk into Heaven when this earthly life is over because God is love. That would negate the sacrifice Jesus made on the cross. Don’t be deceived, for God is not mocked. God is also a God of justice and righteousness. He is not preparing a place in Heaven for unrepentant sinners. While we have contributed nothing to God’s free gift of salvation, there is a condition to possessing it—we must confess our sin, turn from it and receive Christ on His terms.”
It is this paragraph I wish to go into sentence by sentence if required.
The first sentence paraphrased, there are those that say Christ blood cover all no matter if they have stopped sinning or not. I agree with this sentence completely. There are many that live this belief, but as the next sentence makes perfectly clear it “is Satan’s great lie.”
Those that live in this fantasy wish to have their cake and eat it too as the saying goes. You cannot get into heaven if you live in sin period. If you live in sin on Monday, accept Jesus as you Savior on Tuesday and go back to living your live on Wednesday EXACTLY like it was Monday and have no desire to change in anyway, then you are not saved, period.
“Some believe they will automatically walk into Heaven when this earthly life is over because God is love.” I agree with the next sentence as well this makes Jesus going to the cross a waste of time, thus making the entire Bible irrelevant. People need to come to a realization, that not only are many events in the Bible able to be documented in other historical records but all archaeologically. Since there is more to say that the Bible is real than any other “religious” manuscripts on earth. Also the mere fact that many key figures of political power mentioned in the Bible supported by the above mentioned material makes trying to make them “irrelevant” an act of willful ignorance so as to condone the desire to live life as these people choose. Thus in their own minds free them from God’s justice. As Mr. Graham notes, they are mocking God, something I would highly suggest they not do.
What is “righteousness” in the Bible?
Righteousness in the Hebrew is “tsdaqah” – rightness (abstractly), subjectively (rectitude), objectively (justice), morally (virtue) or figuratively (prosperity):–justice, moderately, right(-eous) (act, -ly, -ness).
Righteousness in the Greek is “dikaiosune” – (usually if not always in a Jewish atmosphere), justice, justness, righteousness, righteousness of which God is the source or author, but practically: a divine righteousness.
This is how it is defined in the Bible. Yet as noted above many do not wish to hear this, but if you accept any part of the Bible you must accept all of it. Yet many just pick out what allows them to comfort their conscience, to place a band aid upon their sins not realizing that it is quickly pull off to allow the sin to ooze its corruption throughout their soul.
If you are unrepentant if you openly live in something that is called a sin within the Bible and have no true desire to turn from it. You are not welcome in Heaven, period.
1 Corinthians 6:9 – Don’t you realize that those who do wrong will not inherit the Kingdom of God? Don’t fool yourselves. Those who indulge in sexual sin, or who worship idols, or commit adultery, or are male prostitutes, or practice homosexuality, 10 or are thieves, or greedy people, or drunkards, or are abusive, or cheat people—none of these will inherit the Kingdom of God.
“While we have contributed nothing to God’s free gift of salvation, there is a condition to possessing it—we must confess our sin, turn from it and receive Christ on His terms.”
I think the last part of this sentence is the key to everything when it comes to salvation. “Receive Christ on HIS terms.” Not our own terms which allows us to live life as we see fit, but God’s Son’s terms. Living life to His expectations and desires. It is this that many do not wish to acknowledge or accept for to do so would place them in an uncomfortable position.
How I feel about that is good, I hope it does. Would you rather feel some discomfort here in this life or be subjected to an even more uncomfortable situation for all eternity with no hope of parole.

Confessions of a screwed up middle aged man: I wash my hand

Yes I am using the words of Pontius Pilate, but I am not turning my back upon God or His Son my Savior.
In fact I am turning toward my Creator in even more desire to honor and please Him.
Does this mean I am going to stop writing my blog? No it does not. I will still write the burdens upon my spirit as impressed upon it by the Holy Ghost. For I am His humble servant.
Will I still hope that someone awakens to His truth? Yes, for I do not wish any to spend even a day in the pit of fire. For the horrors of that damnation is something any that call themselves Christian would desire to save their worst enemy from, and that is my desire that those that have rejected God would awaken to the truth and see that God is real and that His Son is the only way to Him.
Then why am I washing my hands?
I am washing my hands to those that live in the lie they have created for themselves. They have shown their cards. They have exposed to the world what is of true import to them and it is not God nor the salvation of His Son. They are the ones described in John 15.
1 “I am the true grapevine, and my Father is the gardener. 2 He cuts off every branch of mine that doesn’t produce fruit, and he prunes the branches that do bear fruit so they will produce even more. 3 You have already been pruned and purified by the message I have given you. 4 Remain in me, and I will remain in you. For a branch cannot produce fruit if it is severed from the vine, and you cannot be fruitful unless you remain in me.
5 “Yes, I am the vine; you are the branches. Those who remain in me, and I in them, will produce much fruit. For apart from me you can do nothing. 6 Anyone who does not remain in me is thrown away like a useless branch and withers. Such branches are gathered into a pile to be burned.
I wash the dirt from my hands of those that God has cut from the grapevine that is Jesus Christ. They have sealed their fate. They are no longer those we are to care for nor love. For we are to love our brothers and sisters in Christ. However these apostates are of the world and no longer our concern. They have embraced the world and are friends and lovers of the world. They are adulterers.
James 4:4 – You adulterers! Don’t you realize that friendship with the world makes you an enemy of God? I say it again: If you want to be a friend of the world, you make yourself an enemy of God. 5 Do you think the Scriptures have no meaning? They say that God is passionate that the spirit he has placed within us should be faithful to him. 6 And he gives grace generously. As the Scriptures say,
“God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble.”
I wash my hands of those I counted as my friends for I had so hoped to see and talk to them time to time thought the billions upon billions of years that are within the eternal life that we are all promised, but I now know that many I would have liked to talked to will be where they cannot enjoy words for they have made their choice. A choice that was prophesied. A choice that will in time affect me and those that I love to our temporal pain and anguish. But it is something that I will endure for once it is done I will be standing before God Himself and to Him I will give all glory.
Let them with an ear hear and with an eye see. The seal is set to be broken.

Spiritual Warfare is real

It is one of those things that few understand or even grasp. Especially those that do not study the Bible as they should. But it is there.
Ephesians 6:10 – A final word: Be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. 11 Put on all of God’s armor so that you will be able to stand firm against all strategies of the devil. 12 For we are not fighting against flesh-and-blood enemies, but against evil rulers and authorities of the unseen world, against mighty powers in this dark world, and against evil spirits in the heavenly places.
13 Therefore, put on every piece of God’s armor so you will be able to resist the enemy in the time of evil. Then after the battle you will still be standing firm. 14 Stand your ground, putting on the belt of truth and the body armor of God’s righteousness. 15 For shoes, put on the peace that comes from the Good News so that you will be fully prepared. 16 In addition to all of these, hold up the shield of faith to stop the fiery arrows of the devil. 17 Put on salvation as your helmet, and take the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.
18 Pray in the Spirit at all times and on every occasion. Stay alert and be persistent in your prayers for all believers everywhere.
It is a war that is not going well at this time. Things are happening. Things we have been warned would happen. Yet many do not listen, nor care, for they care more for the temporal than the eternal.
They have no true concept or understanding of what is required when calling themselves a servant of Christ. They just think they are wearing a shield that protects them from damnation. Not realizing that in reality due for their love of the world is the opposite they are shielding themselves form, salvation.
Prayer is required and needed. True knowledge and understanding of the Bible is essential. The armor they need to wear is unkempt and falling apart.
While those that do know the truth and do understand God glory struggle in the spiritual. Losing ground because their numbers are dwindling. They are reducing from those that leave the temporal and move on into heaven to await for the soon return of Christ to welcome in the eternal life that is to come.
Many will say here: “But we are adding to the Body of Christ.”
I will say: “Are we?”
Are we teaching those we bring to Christ the true meaning of salvation? Are we teaching them the need to repent? For to remain in sin is not salvation. Are we teaching them the Bible or are we leaving them on their own to do it; as I was left alone to do it and took nearly 20 years to learn thing I should have learned in one. The armor of God is something that we are not just given, but must earn. It is not something to just place in the corner, for it is something that must be cared for and strengthened.
For if it is not cared for it can break off and leave us vulnerable to attack and leave us open to a blow that can kill us.
2 Peter 2:17 – These people are as useless as dried-up springs or as mist blown away by the wind. They are doomed to blackest darkness. 18 They brag about themselves with empty, foolish boasting. With an appeal to twisted sexual desires, they lure back into sin those who have barely escaped from a lifestyle of deception. 19 They promise freedom, but they themselves are slaves of sin and corruption. For you are a slave to whatever controls you. 20 And when people escape from the wickedness of the world by knowing our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ and then get tangled up and enslaved by sin again, they are worse off than before. 21 It would be better if they had never known the way to righteousness than to know it and then reject the command they were given to live a holy life. 22 They prove the truth of this proverb: “A dog returns to its vomit.” And another says, “A washed pig returns to the mud.”

Confessions of a screwed up middle aged man: corporal punishment

This last week in the area I live in I was exposed to two events that reemphasize this Bible verse:
Proverbs 13:24 – Those who spare the rod of discipline hate their children. Those who love their children care enough to discipline them.
Now a context. I grew up in the sixties and seventies and graduated from High School in the late 1970s. Schools were allowed to administer corporal punishment. People knew of and feared the paddle. In the High School I attended the paddle was a cricket bat, and I personally experienced its sting twice. Other more so, yet others never met the bat, but it was on display for all to see in the school office. This threat of punishment maintained order. Were there still fights? Yes, but they were few and far between.
This last week though, a day apart two events happened. A young white man was in the lunch line at his school when a group of young black boys approached him and his girlfriend with cellphones out to film the situation. One of the boys then started harassing the young couple. The young white man then knocked a cellphone from the hands of one of the boys. The person who had his phone was knocked away from him then attacked the young man they were bullying. The young white man, a born again Christian, did not retaliate. The boy who did the attacking has been suspended and removed from this school.
The next day at Howard High School of Technology a young black woman was attacked by a group of black girls in the restroom just before school was to start for the day. During the beating the young woman was severely injured and was then pronounced dead once she was transported to the hospital.
Corporal punishment is not allowed in these school or in any other schools that I am aware of. It is obvious that since there is no fear of punishment that people do not mature into mental adulthood even though their bodies do grow into adults.
True adulthood is the understanding that there is consequences for your actions. It is a simple theory that is even shown in science. For every action there is an opposite and equal reaction. If nature, through the input of science, and the Bible know that there is a need for discipline. Why is it humanity desires to remove discipline? Again the answer is simple:
Mark 7:20 – And then he added, “It is what comes from inside that defiles you. 21 For from within, out of a person’s heart, come evil thoughts, sexual immorality, theft, murder, 22 adultery, greed, wickedness, deceit, lustful desires, envy, slander, pride, and foolishness. 23 All these vile things come from within; they are what defile you.”
This is why there is not only a need for corporal punishment but the teaching of the Bible. This is why people need to acknowledge there is a God and accept His Son as their Savior who is the Lord Jesus Christ.

Understanding the word “conservative”

It is defined as this from the “Cambridge Dictionaries Online”-
“tending to emphasize the importance of preserving traditional cultural and religious values, and to oppose change, esp. sudden change”
Traditional – existing in or as part of a tradition; long-established. synonyms: long-established, customary, time-honored, established, classic, accustomed, standard, regular, normal, conventional, usual, orthodox, habitual, set, fixed, routine, ritual;
Religious values – Religious values are ethical principles founded in religious traditions, texts and beliefs. In contrast to personal values, religious-based values are based on scriptures and a religion’s established norms.
This is the core definition of what a “conservative” is and should be. However in two recent occasions I heard things that do not follow this definition.
The first was during a symposium on marriage during the 2016 CPAC conference. One of the people there supported homosexual marriage and yet called himself conservative.
The second was from a broadcast from Breitbart News on SiriusXM, in which the host of the weekday morning broadcast stated that religion had no place in conservativism.
This is counter to the definition of “preserving traditional cultural and religious values” so in my eyes this person at CPAC and host of Breitbart Mr. Stephen K. Bannon should not call themselves “conservative” but “progressives.”
Progressivism is a broad philosophy based on the Idea of Progress, which asserts that advancement in science, technology, economic development, and social organization are vital to improve the human condition.
Simply translated a progressive believes that humanity does it all and there is no need to include God into the equation and those that adhere to the belief in a God are out of touch with reality. This is totally counter to what a conservative is, but this is the mind set of those in today’s society since God has been removed from schools for fifty years now.
They have fallen for these misguided beliefs and feel that the existence of God is a misnomer due to all the corruption and ugliness within society. What they do not realize is that this corruption, even though present in the past has grown like a cancer throughout society today due to the mere fact that GOD WAS REMOVED.
Mark 7:20 – And then he added, “It is what comes from inside that defiles you. 21 For from within, out of a person’s heart, come evil thoughts, sexual immorality, theft, murder, 22 adultery, greed, wickedness, deceit, lustful desires, envy, slander, pride, and foolishness. 23 All these vile things come from within; they are what defile you.”
When God is removed from the picture and they are not shown that God must be the center of their lives and they must accept Jesus Christ as their Savior. The result is corruption and ugliness for that is all that humankind is capable of causing. Look to the French Revolution, which led to Napoleon; look at Socialism which turned into Communism which led to millions dying in Siberian Gulags; look at Nazism which led to the Holocaust. These are examples of where God was removed from the equation.
So to be a true conservative you must maintain that there is a God and that the teachings within the Bible are to be followed.
That being said at this time many that call themselves “conservative” are following a candidate for president that totally opposes all the true “conservative values.” That person is Donald Trump. In fact if you listen to him, other than the fact that he has no true plans and how to accomplish ANY of what he states he will do, he actually talks like a “progressive.” This means he is opposed to God, this was proven when he stated his favorite verse in the Bible is “an eye for an eye,” the last verse any true Christian would ever support. Yet millions that say they are “Christian” support him. What does this say about these people? The answer to that is not one they wish to hear and it is not good.

The warning of what to look for

Time and again within the Bible there is warnings. For even though the apostles did not know the day of the return of their mentor and leader Jesus Christ. Once they saw His resurrected form they knew without a doubt that He is the Son of God. They were so faithful to this belief, a belief that was not present upon the day Jesus died upon the cross and they hid themselves away out of fear for their own lives. This new faith was so strong because they saw Him appear before them whole and pure that they left their hiding and never returned to it. They knew He would return.
The Holy Spirit filled them and they went into the streets in joy and gladness because they knew Him to be real. They faced torture, pain, suffering and death. Those very things they feared before the third day they now gladly faced to their deaths. Only one died of old age. The rest were killed.
The last true apostle was Paul, once called Saul. He hated Christians and sought them out and killed them with joy and fervor. Paul the thirteen disciple of Jesus Christ did not change his way till the resurrected Christ stood before him. An event that blinded him, but he was healed. Not only in his eyes but in his spirit. A spirit that instilled within him the knowledge he used to teach of the ways of Christendom and of the return of Jesus Christ.
It was clear that Jesus Christ the risen Savior would return to the surface of this planet. When He does so though it will be a time that those that deny Him and His father will dread and curse. For when He does return their excuses and their placing of doubts into their fellow humans will be made clear for to all that their true desires was for only their lustful desires and not for the glorification of their Creator. All will know that all the marvels of creation are a gift given unto humanity that was abused by those that professed they were there for its protection when in reality they were there for themselves.
Yet that time has not come as of yet, but the signs are everywhere. There are those that mock Christianity and cry out “Where is your Savior?!” False teachers parade about in luxury saying they serve God when those with eyes see that all they serve is themselves. War and rumors of wars abound. Those that wish to control divide the people turning one group against the other all for the desire of pleasing only themselves and not those they pretend to care for.
So blind are those that say they are “Christian” that they willing follow this fad or that fad of words that is pleasing for them to hear. As their ears are tickled with what they wish to hear so they can avoid those words which they do not wish to hear. For if they truly listen to the words that they avoid they will be convicted within their hearts. Knowing with no doubt that they have turned their back upon their Savior and have rejected the love of Jesus Christ for the love and lusts of the world about them.
These are the warnings within the Bible. In no other time in history since Jesus left this planet has these predictions within the Bible been so many coming true at one time. So many are coming true that it rivals the predictions of the forty plus prophecies of what will mark who the Messiah is. The odds for all these prophecies to come true was 1 in 10 to the 156th power, yet come true they did. Yet at this very moment the predictions of what to watch for the soon return of Jesus begin to challenge these very odds yet they are coming true as we speak. However, people still laugh at God, His Son and His servants like myself. Scoffing at us as if we are crazy yet we are not.
It is time to face your Creator. It is time to leave your sins behind. It is time to repent. It is time to stop living in sin. It is time to stop seeking after the riches of this world and to seek the riches of the eternal life that is to follow this soon to end temporal world we now live within.
Do you not see that this world we live in is a poor reality? These large houses you store your worldly wealth within are nothing compared to that which is truly real. Do you not see the wonders within the universe? Do you not know that God created it ALL? These are a glimpse of the eternal rewards promised to all that accept Jesus Christ as their Savior. These are the wonders that await all those that repent and turn form their sin. But to truly turn for sin you must first acknowledge it is a sin. Then when you make this acceptance you must then turn away from it and strive never to do it again.
Do not embrace sin. Do not glorify sin and then on the other hand say you are a follower of Jesus Christ. For that is a lie and an insult to God. It is a slap in the face of your Creator. If you so desire to do this then you have made your choice, and it is a choice that will last you for all eternity.

Confessions of a screwed up middle aged man: snobs

Occasionally I like to go for Sunday drives with my wife. We both enjoy doing them. I try my best to go the back way whenever possible so as to enjoy the scenery of God’s creation.
Usually these little outings go well. This last Sunday however did not have the usually enjoyment. It wasn’t due to either of us or the scenery about us. This day’s enjoyment decreased as we started getting into an area filled with large houses and massive acreage being used for nonproductive matters.
As we entered into this area and stayed within it for nearly an hour we encounter other drivers that did not follow the laws of the road. Not staying in their own lanes and doing things that obstructed traffic. Once we stopped at a small convenience store and as I started to turn into the parking spot the driver side door of an expensive car suddenly flung open blocking the parking spot. Nearly a minute after this a woman decided to exist this vehicle and with a haughty look, looked upon both my wife and myself with disdain since our car was not on the same par as hers. She then slowly closed the door and walked in the middle of the parking spot I wished to pull into as she headed to the same store we wished to visit.
Shortly after this within another store we decided to go into we over hear an encounter between a customer and someone in the pharmacy. Apparently the employee was inconvenienced to walk ten feet and the customer was in turn bothered to accompany the employee the same ten feet to get what she was requesting.
So we get back onto our little adventure and still encounter poor driving habits that in one instance endangered my wife and myself.
When finally free of this area of expensive houses and ritzy stores suddenly we were able to once again relax and enjoy the country side and beauty of the sunny day.
As I was able to relax once again I started reflecting on the previous hour I had just encountered and was saddened. It is amazing how the Bible is not being taught correctly to the point that people that see themselves as a higher quality of humanity than of anyone else. Yet the Bible teaches us that we are all the same.
This also reminded me how the Bible again is not being taught correctly. Many times The Bible says to love one another, but here is what many do not realize. It is not a love for all humanity, but for those that are like us that have asked Christ into our lives and seek to be a reflection of Him.
Does this say that those that call themselves “Christian” should behave as those I encountered this last weekend? No it does not. In fact the Bible encourages humility. The act of placing all others before ourselves. Yet this is not the mentality of those we encountered this last Sunday. Their mentality is that all must bow and worship them for they are wealthy with the riches of the world.
They do not realize that in reality they are to be pitied. For they have embraced the temporal rewards of this world.
Mark 10:17 – As Jesus was starting out on his way to Jerusalem, a man came running up to him, knelt down, and asked, “Good Teacher, what must I do to inherit eternal life?”18 “Why do you call me good?” Jesus asked. “Only God is truly good. 19 But to answer your question, you know the commandments: You must not murder. You must not commit adultery. You must not steal. You must not testify falsely. You must not cheat anyone. Honor your father and mother.’” 20 “Teacher,” the man replied, “I’ve obeyed all these commandments since I was young.” 21 Looking at the man, Jesus felt genuine love for him. “There is still one thing you haven’t done,” he told him. “Go and sell all your possessions and give the money to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me.” 22 At this the man’s face fell, and he went away sad, for he had many possessions. 23 Jesus looked around and said to his disciples, “How hard it is for the rich to enter the Kingdom of God!” 24 This amazed them. But Jesus said again, “Dear children, it is very hard to enter the Kingdom of God. 25 In fact, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich person to enter the Kingdom of God!” 26 The disciples were astounded. “Then who in the world can be saved?” they asked. 27 Jesus looked at them intently and said, “Humanly speaking, it is impossible. But not with God. Everything is possible with God.”
James 4:4 – You adulterers! Don’t you realize that friendship with the world makes you an enemy of God? I say it again: If you want to be a friend of the world, you make yourself an enemy of God. 5 Do you think the Scriptures have no meaning? They say that God is passionate that the spirit he has placed within us should be faithful to him. 6 And he gives grace generously. As the Scriptures say,
“God opposes the proud
but gives grace to the humble.”
7 So humble yourselves before God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. 8 Come close to God, and God will come close to you. Wash your hands, you sinners; purify your hearts, for your loyalty is divided between God and the world. 9 Let there be tears for what you have done. Let there be sorrow and deep grief. Let there be sadness instead of laughter, and gloom instead of joy. 10 Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will lift you up in honor.
Matthew 6:24 – “No one can serve two masters. For you will hate one and love the other; you will be devoted to one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and be enslaved to money.

Doubt has always been present

Even when the disciples still lived doubt was present, and people could not accept that what they were being told could be real. Yet the Bible does not avoid speaking of these facts and makes it known that people did question, that people did doubt.
2 Peter 1: 16 – For we were not making up clever stories when we told you about the powerful coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. We saw his majestic splendor with our own eyes 17 when he received honor and glory from God the Father. The voice from the majestic glory of God said to him, “This is my dearly loved Son, who brings me great joy.” 18 We ourselves heard that voice from heaven when we were with him on the holy mountain.
1 Corinthians 15:3 – I passed on to you what was most important and what had also been passed on to me. Christ died for our sins, just as the Scriptures said. 4 He was buried, and he was raised from the dead on the third day, just as the Scriptures said. 5 He was seen by Peter and then by the Twelve. 6 After that, he was seen by more than 500 of his followers at one time, most of whom are still alive, though some have died. 7 Then he was seen by James and later by all the apostles. 8 Last of all, as though I had been born at the wrong time, I also saw him. 9 For I am the least of all the apostles. In fact, I’m not even worthy to be called an apostle after the way I persecuted God’s church.
Here are important points that must be made.
Christ resurrected was seen by Peter then by the Twelve.
Christ resurrected was seen by more than 500 people at one time.
Christ resurrected was seen by James his half-brother, whose mother and father were Mary and Joseph. Someone who knew Him all His life and had rejected Him as Christ until this encounter.
Christ resurrected was seen by someone that despised them and he became known as Paul.
As for his brother James. He is mentioned in a non-Biblical history. In fact the history was written by Flavius Josephus. The mention of James is in “Antiquities of the Jews” book 20, chapter 9 and states this:
“Festus was now dead, and Albinus was but upon the road; so he assembled the sanhedrin of judges, and brought before them the brother of Jesus, who was called Christ, whose name was James, and some others; and when he had formed an accusation against them as breakers of the law, he delivered them to be stoned: but as for those who seemed the most equitable of the citizens, and such as were the most uneasy at the breach of the laws, they disliked what was done”
There is also mention of John the Baptist and Jesus by Josephs, but due to doubt many choose to not call them credible especially the direct reference to Jesus because that mentions his resurrection.
“About this time there lived Jesus, a wise man, if indeed one ought to call him a man. For he was one who performed surprising deeds and was a teacher of such people as accept the truth gladly. He won over many Jews and many of the Greeks. He was the Christ. And when, upon the accusation of the principal men among us, Pilate had condemned him to a cross, those who had first come to love him did not cease. He appeared to them spending a third day restored to life, for the prophets of God had foretold these things and a thousand other marvels about him. And the tribe of the Christians, so called after him, has still to this day not disappeared.” Antiquities of the Jews Book 18, chapter 3.
Yet doubt is the problem with Christianity today. We are seventeen year from the anniversary of Jesus’ crucifixion and resurrection. Two thousand years of doubt, yet at the same time two thousand years in which people still say they belief in these very statements. Nothing can truly compare in recorded history or even in religion to these statements. Yet as we see above it is not just recorded in the Bible, but its very existence is mentioned in non-religious history.
So why is there doubt? Because without doubt people cannot justify their actions if it is without doubt. They use the doubt as a scapegoat which allows them to live in sin to their pleasure and enjoyment. For without doubt they must accept responsibility for their sins and since they do not wish to leave their sins behind doubt is their only refuge for the truth. The truth that tells them that if they live in sin they are destine to a pit of fire.
So they must doubt. They must question, because they fear that the truth is all too real and will lead to damnation. That is why there is “doubt.”

If you truly know Christ you will change

In the opening greeting of 2 Peter. A book that has been argued was not written by him for the mere fact that the content within in places a large burden upon those that call themselves “Christian” and yet do not reflect the lifestyle requirements placed within this letter. Peter lays out how things change within someone as they “escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust.”
So having left the desires of lust behind, what begins to take its place? First of you become more diligence in your pursuit of godliness. This is done through faith in Jesus Christ, which gives you virtue. Form the virtue you gain knowledge. With this knowledge you gain temperance, which also instills patience. From this patience rises godliness which leads to brotherly kindness which leads to charity.
What is listed above is covered in 2 Peter 1:3-7, but we need to take a look at each of these items listed of how when you accept Jesus as your Savior you will see and act differently.
First off is “diligence,” for with your love for Christ you will seek to be a true reflection of Jesus and to do that you must be hardworking in your faith.
Diligence – spoude – diligence, earnestness, enthusiasm.
So you should in your faith have enthusiasm and earnestness in seeking to be a better image of Christ, which is faith and belief in Him or like I said above, hardworking.
Now since you have gained strong faith in Christ it leads you into “virtue.”
Virtue – arête – virtue, moral excellence, perfection, goodness, a gracious act, uprightness.
So with strong faith you seek to avoid sin and strive toward perfection which is Christ. From this reflection of Jesus you are striving to achieve you gain knowledge, which is taught within the Bible.
Knowledge – gnosis – knowledge, doctrine, wisdom.
From what you have learned from reading the Bible this leads you into “temperance.”
Temperance – egkrateia – self-mastery, self-restraint, self-control, continence
With temperance you learn to limit your exposure to those things that can distract and turn you for your enthusiasm and makes it so you do not let the world dominate you with its lusts. It lust for those things that are the world. Examples: sports, television, alcohol, material possessions. For when you spend more time with these things than with God through His Son Jesus Christ you cannot achieve the goals we are studying in this article.
Once you accomplish getting into a temperate life you learn “patience.”
Patience – hupomone – endurance, steadfastness, patient waiting for.
Then once you are steadfast in your faith this leads to “godliness.”
Godliness – eusebeia – piety (towards God), godliness, devotion, godliness. Piety – the quality of being religious or reverent.
With your devotion toward God solidly in place this allows you to have “brotherly kindness.”
Brotherly kindness – philadelphia – brotherly love, love of Christian brethren.
This leads toward a love of your fellow Christians, not of those of the world, but of those that are like yourself, which causes you to be charitable to them.
Charity – agape – love, benevolence, good will, esteem.
A charity that is love for those that wish to strive to seek God as you do.
This is not how this is taught in many places. Many say we are to love all, but that is not what is taught in this message. We are to seek out our fellows in Christ and in love help them to achieve these changes so that they may become a more pure reflection of our Savior Jesus Christ

2 Peter 1:8 For if these things be in you, and abound, they make you that ye shall neither be barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. 9 But he that lacketh these things is blind, and cannot see afar off, and hath forgotten that he was purged from his old sins.