relationship

The Divine Vine – A new and deeper in-depth look into John 15:1-12


Why is this needed? It is needed because it is my belief that the message within this message from Jesus Christ is not being taught correctly. As we go through this I hope this comes to light and helps for those of you reading to awaken to this and help spread it to those that need to hear this and come to a new level of understanding in their relationship with God through His Son the Lord Jesus Christ.
Jesus, the True Vine
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. 7 But if you remain in me and my words remain in you, you may ask for anything you want, and it will be granted! 8 When you produce much fruit, you are my true disciples. This brings great glory to my Father.
9 “I have loved you even as the Father has loved me. Remain in my love. 10 When you obey my commandments, you remain in my love, just as I obey my Father’s commandments and remain in his love. 11 I have told you these things so that you will be filled with my joy. Yes, your joy will overflow! 12 This is my commandment: Love each other in the same way I have loved you. 13 There is no greater love than to lay down one’s life for one’s friends. 14 You are my friends if you do what I command. 15 I no longer call you slaves, because a master doesn’t confide in his slaves. Now you are my friends, since I have told you everything the Father told me. 16 You didn’t choose me. I chose you. I appointed you to go and produce lasting fruit, so that the Father will give you whatever you ask for, using my name. 17 This is my command: Love each other. (NLT)
I read through several commentaries on these verses and each amazed me on how they twisted the words of Jesus to suite their own desires of not be cut off from God. It was shocking to say the least. That is why I am here writing this. So we will go at this verse by verse, because the true meaning of these words of the risen Christ are extremely important to know and understand.
Verse 1: I am the true vine, and my Father is the husbandman. (KJV)
I – ego – a primary pronoun of the first person. I (only expressed when emphatic.) [Strong’s Expanded Exhaustive Concordance of the Bible, 2010] {Strong’s}
a – emphatic – done or said in a strong way and without any doubt [Cambridge Dictionary] {CD}
Here is where we need to go deeper though. For John, especially when quoting Jesus, there is a more profound and powerful imagery that comes out. With the simple word “I” Jesus shows His resurrected form. In these teachings that are given they do not follow the normal syntax. They reach to a new level like saying: “He is light. But He is the true and proper light which alone deserves this name.” [Theological Dictionary of the New Testament] {TDNT}
The true – alethinos – truthful – “true” which denotes the sense of real, ideal, genuine. [Strong’s]
In this deep look we see here Jesus saying “the true” is not just speaking of “true” or “genuine.” He is actually saying “divine.” [TDNT]
a – divine – connected with a god or like a god. [CD]
Vine – ampelos – deeply though we find that there were others that called themselves the vine. Examples: the Dionysus cult, the Mandaean religion. [TDNT]
Just in these four words Jesus is showing that He is the true and divine vine, and no other can come to God except through being a branch upon His vine.
Father – pater – a nourisher, protector, upholder; of the nearest ancestor. [Strong’s]
In the deeper study within TDNT it is showing us the “harmony of the Father and the Son.” Of the two working together for the good of those that are on the vine which is Jesus. {book V p. 999 – 1001}
The husbandman – georgos – a land-worker, i.e. farmer, a vinedresser [Strong’s]
a – vinedresser – a person who cultivates and prunes grapevines [Dictionary.com]
Verse 2 – Every branch in me that beareth not fruit he taketh away: and every branch that beareth fruit, he purgeth it, that it may bring forth more fruit. (KJV)
Every – pas- all things [Strong’s]
To quote the TDNT:
“The uniqueness of the NT view is that here all ideas of totality relate to a specific history of creation and salvation. As compared with the OT, the NT is distinguished especially by a richer soteriology.”
Soteriology – theology dealing with salvation as effected by Jesus Christ.
Branch – klema – a limb or shoot [Strong’s]
a – shoot – the first part of a plant to appear above the ground as it develops from a seed, or any new growth on an already existing plant [CD]
b – limb – a large branch of a tree [CD]
Shoot, young twig, branch, shoot of the vine [TDNT]
So this means “Every branch both young and old upon the vine which is Jesus Christ,” as the next words state.
In – en
“The ‘en’ of Fellowship in John. Exclusively in John’s Gospel and 1 John. We have a distinctive ‘en’ of religious fellowship.” [TDNT]
Meaning a free will relationship between the branch (humanity), the Vine (Jesus Christ), and the Vinedresser (God).
Beareth – phero – bear, bring forth [Strong’s]
Fruit – karpos – of works or deeds [Strong’s]
“This power is fellowship with Christ.” [TDNT]
a – fellowship – a friendly feeling that exists between people who have a shared interest or are doing something as a group [CD]
he taketh away – airo – to take up or away; to take away what is attached to anything, to remove [Strong’s]
It is here that we come to an issue. In the many commentaries I read they go with the definition of “lift up,” which doesn’t make any sense. It doesn’t even flow with the words of the Bible itself. When they translated the Bible to English in the early 1600s and then finalized it in 1611 they agreed upon the wording “he taketh away,” not “he lifteth up.” Those that made these commentaries made it sound as if they were lifting up to God those committing sin. This is contrary to the teachings within the Bible. We do not raise up the sin, we raise up ourselves to the altar seeking the removal of sin. Jesus Himself knew that this day would occur. So he repeats Himself in verse six and clarifies His meaning with more detail, which we will get to later. Their interpretation implies raising oneself up before God. If their intent to say that unfruitful are seeking forgiveness and wish to receive forgiveness and to try to bear fruit. There can be some merit to that. However Jesus made Himself clear on this matter elsewhere in the Bible as well.
Revelation 3:15 “I know all the things you do, that you are neither hot nor cold. I wish that you were one or the other! 16 But since you are like lukewarm water, neither hot nor cold, I will spit you out of my mouth!”
In John, Jesus states that God Himself will remove the branch that does not bear fruit. Not all branches that do not bear fruit lay upon the ground, but are a part of the vine itself.
Here in Revelation the Glorified Christ is making it clear that he will spit those out that are lukewarm. Using Christ’s words in John those that bear fruit would compare to those that are hot in the Revelation. So those that are cold in Revelation equates to those that deny Jesus altogether and live in sin. So that would mean that those that are lukewarm would be those that acknowledge Jesus Christ as their Savior and so are a branch upon the vine, or were attached to the vine that is Jesus Christ. However, they bear no fruit and so are living in sin. So God takes them away in John and Christ spits them out in Revelation. Thus removing them from His fellowship cutting them from the vine. For very few fall upon the ground. Most stay on the vine unless they are cut off from it.
He purgeth – kathairo – to cleanse, to prune, to expiate – purge
a – cleanse – to make something completely clean
b – expiate – to show that you are sorry for bad behavior by doing something or accepting punishment
c – purge – to make someone or something free of something evil or harmful.
That – hina – in order that [Strong’s]
More – pleion – more in quality, number or quality [Strong’s]
Verse 3 – Now ye are clean through the word which I have spoken unto you.
Now – ede – at (or by) this time [Strong’s]
Ye – hymeis – yourself, you [Strong’s]
Clean – katharos – free from impure admixture, without blemish, spotless [Strong’s]
“In both John and 1 John the question of the full purity of Christians is discussed. It is affirmed absolutely in theory in John 15:3.” [TDNT]
Through – dia – denoting the channel of an act [Strong’s]
The word – logos – the teachings of Jesus to the disciples that eventually became the gospels.
“But the person who receives and keeps” the teachings of Christ (the word) is now clean [TDNT in quotations]
I have spoken – laleo – the use of this word was to show that Jesus was like a parent talking to His children, at that point the disciples.
Verse 4 – Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, except it abide in the vine; no more can ye, except ye abide in me. (KJV)
Abide – meno – remain, dwell, continue [Strong’s]
“…… God abides in Christ. Believers abide in Christ, and Christ in them. God abides in believers, and believers in God. The eschatological promise of salvation becomes immediate possession in virtue of this statement in the present tense.” [TDNT book IV pg. 576]
Cannot – ou, dynamai
a: ou – also [Strong’s]
b: dynamai – to be able or possible, can, cannot, to be able to have power [Strong’s]
Bear – phero – to bear, carry, being moved, borne along [Strong’s]
“The term has the special sense of bearing fruit…… the vine with branches that bear fruit.” [TDNT]
Of – apo – off, away (from something near) [Strong’s]
Except – ean me – unless, except [Strong’s]
It abide – meno – to stay (in a given place, state, relation or expectancy) [Strong’s] See meno above for TDNT
No more – oude, houto
a: oude – nor however, neither, nor, not even
b: houto – in this way
Verse 5 – I am the vine, ye are the branches: He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without me ye can do nothing. (KJV)
And I – kago – from kai and ego: likewise me
Much – polys – much, many, great, abundant
Without – choris – separately or apart from [Strong’s]
Me – emou – of me, mine, my [Strong’s]
Do – poieo – to make or do [Strong’s]
The use of this word “poieo” had it usage done primarily to the actions, works and miracles of Jesus Christ. [TDNT] The use here stating that only with Jesus in and with you can you do holy works.
Nothing – ou, oudeis
a: oudeis – not even one, none, nobody, nothing [Strong’s]
verse 6 – If a man abide not in me, he is cast forth as a branch, and is withered; and men gather them, and cast them into the fire, and they are burned. (KJV)
If – ean me – see “except” above.
A man – tis – some or any person or object [Strong’s]
Me – emoi – to me [Strong’s]
He is cast – ballo – to throw [Strong’s]
“To throw” or “to cast,” “to cast off fruit. ‘Often in the NT “boallo” is used in different ways in connection with the thought of judgement, partly as a committal to the element which exercises it. Partly of expulsion from the community of salvation, when used with “exo.” [TDNT]
Forth – exo – out [Strong’s]
As – hos – in that manner [Strong’s]
And – kai – and, also, even, so, then, too. [Strong’s]
Is withered – xeraino – to desiccate, to shrivel [Strong’s]
Men gather – synago – sunago – to lead together, collect or convene, to entertain [Strong’s]
Them into – eis – to or into [Strong’s]
The fire – pyr – pur – fire [Strong’s]
A judgement [TDNT]
They are burned – kaio – to set on fire, consume [Strong’s]
With the TDNT the emphasis of this word is keyed to self-burning. Voluntarily giving oneself over to be burned.
The main takeaways from the translation of this verse is if you accept Christ as your Savior and you choose not to follow his teaching and live a truly Christian life. You instead choose to live in the world of man which entertains you. You are broken off from the Divine Vine that is Christ and you are cast willingly into the fires of judgement. Which agrees with Revelation 3:15-16.
This also shows that we must actively and with full knowledge follow the teachings within the Bible and if it is called a sin in the Bible and we are told not to live in this fashion. Then that is what we MUST do as our part of this relationship with Jesus Christ. It is not a one-sided relationship. We have an active part within it, which we need to do or we volunteer to lose our salvation and to be removed from Jesus and His Heavenly Father. This is verified in the next verse.
Verse 7 – If ye abide in me, and my words abide in you, ye shall ask what ye will, and it shall be done unto you. (KJV)
Verse 8 – Herein is my Father glorified, that ye bear much fruit; so shall ye be my disciples. (KJV)
Herein – en, touto
a: touto – to (in, with, or by) this (person or thing) [Strong’s]
Glorified – doxazo – to render (or esteem) glorious [Strong’s]
Shall ye be – ginomai – to cause to be, to become [Strong’s]
Disciples – mathetes – a learner [Strong’s]
Verse 9 – As the Father hath loved me, so have I loved you: continue ye in my love. (KJV)
As – kathos – just (or inasmuch) as, that [Strong’s]
Hath loved – agapao – to love (is a social or moral sense) [Strong’s]
“In brotherly love the circle of the Father, the Son and the people of the Son constitutes a fellowship which is not of this world. The love of God is the final reality for life if the fellowship, and abiding in His love is the law of its life” [TDNT]
Love – agape – affection or benevolence [Strong’s]
Verse 10 – If ye keep my commandments, ye shall abide in my love; even as I have kept my Father’s commandments, and abide in his love. (KJV)
Here Jesus makes it very clear. We are to follow the teachings within the Bible and to follow the commandments. What most don’t realize is that the original Ten Commandments are not all the commandments. There entire book of Deuteronomy contains commandments that we should also take into consideration. Should we follow all of them? In certain situations I would say not fully but as closely as possible keeping the ten in mind. In addition Jesus himself added 2 more commandments:
Mark 12: 28 And one of the scribes came, and having heard them reasoning together, and perceiving that he had answered them well, asked him, Which is the first commandment of all? 29 And Jesus answered him, The first of all the commandments is, Hear, O Israel; The Lord our God is one Lord: 30 And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind, and with all thy strength: this is the first commandment. 31 And the second is like, namely this, Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself. There is none other commandment greater than these. 32 And the scribe said unto him, Well, Master, thou hast said the truth: for there is one God; and there is none other but he: 33 And to love him with all the heart, and with all the understanding, and with all the soul, and with all the strength, and to love his neighbor as himself, is more than all whole burnt offerings and sacrifices. 34 And when Jesus saw that he answered discreetly, he said unto him, Thou art not far from the kingdom of God. And no man after that durst ask him any question. (KJV)
Verse 11 – 12: These things have I spoken unto you, that my joy might remain in you, and that your joy might be full. 12 This is my commandment, that ye love one another, as I have loved you. (KJV)
Here in verse 12 Jesus says basically the same thing He said in Mark 12:31. For if we treat everyone as we would treat ourselves how can we commit any sin? The problem is we live in a corrupt body and we listen to the world more than we should. That is why we should strive follow all of the teachings within the Bible. To call what is a sin a sin. For when we sin we place ourselves before God and do not love the Lord God with all our heart.
What many do not realize, especially those that label Christians as “bigots” and “racist” that they are the ones that are being the “bigots” and “racist.” For any who truly seek the love of God and Jesus Christ could never look down upon any other human being. Those that look down upon others are living in sin, by the very fact that they think themselves greater than another human being of any race, creed, gender, or religious belief. For all humanity is our neighbor. We are all equals, we all sin. However, when we accept Jesus Christ as our Savior and strive to live our lives as we are taught by the Bible. We live in a relationship with Jesus, which is all He is asking of us. So we will be a part of the Divine Vine and bear much fruit that is Holy and wonder and a sweet sent unto God our Father.
So obey the laws of the road, for when you speed you sin.(Titus 3:1) Treat all others as if they are a child of God. Because you know what they are. Even if they choose not to follow the Bible and live in sin. That is their choice. Not yours, but they are still a child of God. And one day, for many it will be too late though, they will see that God is real, and His Son is our King the Lord Jesus Christ.
All we can do is endeavor to live our own lives in a full relationship with Jesus, by following the twelve commandments and doing our best to turn away from sin. However, when we stumble, which we all will. We acknowledge this sin and ask for forgiveness and challenge ourselves not to repeat it. To turn it over to Jesus to ask Him to take it from us.

Goal in this temporal life


re-post
What is it you are seeking? What are your goals?
Are they to seek out wealth? Are you trying to seek fame? Do you seek to have your name go down through history?
If any of these are your goals then I have bad news for you: They are of this world and anything of this world is really not worth pursuing.
You want to know a couple of my goals.
1) To find someone to share all that I encounter. All the good and the bad. All the wonders and horrors. All the happy times and sad. (goal met and accomplished)
2) To see all the wonders of the universe. (heading in the right direction for this [I think])
“How it is possible to see all the wonders of the universe?” you ask.
Simple. Turn to God and serve Him. Follow the teaching of the Bible and turn from that which is called evil within it.
“You didn’t answer my question!” you state.
Actually yes I did. For God has promised all that server Him an eternal life. Are we going to spend it on this speck of a planet when God created the entire universe? No we are not. We will server God throughout His entire creation. What will we do there only time will tell, and since a few billion years is a long time. I have a feeling I my just get a chance to see all the wonders of the universe. Leaving events in this temporal life behind.

100 years verses 1000000000000000000000000000 years, which is greater?

The curse of the “Megachruch”


There have been many of these churches that have sprung up and then fallen away since the 1970s. Many have make it all the way to television while others were situated to the city they were founded in.
One of the main flaws within them was a lack of personal relationships. People could become lost in the crowd and in many cases think they were saved or on the right path to God when in fact they were not. In time either through scandal or simply a parting of the ways in philosophies would result in the church either downsizing or ceasing to exist all together.
In most cases the leader of the megachurch led a wealthy lifestyle like those of the Pharisees in the time of Christ. If you looked closely you would see that they suffered from the same sin. Placing the rituals of man over the teaches of God. They would have seminars about the “self” this or the “self” that. Leaving the word of God behind but instead turning to that which they truly sought after.
Now they are going with what is politically correct, but not Biblically correct and yet many still believe they are pursuing God when in reality they are pursuing the world. We are called to be separate from the world. A living example of what is good and righteous unto God through His Son the Lord Jesus Christ.
If it is called a sin in the Bible then it is a sin. If we are called to repent and turn from this sin then that is what we must do. Yet the megachruches now say “come to us has you are. You can keep you sin, because we will love you exactly as you are.”
It is true that Jesus will take you at this moment as you are, BUT you must come to Him with a repentant heart feeling shame and sorrow over where you now at this moment standing in the sin of the moment. This repentance never ends until the day we leave this temporal life. If you were repentant once and then never again, they I say you were never truly repentant that one time, for you have returned to your sin or new ones turning your back upon God. Through this ongoing repentance you chip away at this big sin and then this little sin and the process repeats itself on and on, for that is how TRUE repentance works. It is a never ending task that wears upon each and every person that truly goes through it. How do I know this? Because I go through it every single day.
We are told to place God first and then to be humble and place all others before ourselves. When doing this you place yourself last. Caring for all about you, wanting them to seek out and be with God. Can a megachruch provide this? No it can’t because those that go to these huge buildings are all strangers to one another in most cases. If you cannot even seek out a personal relationship with a person in one of these places then how are you expected to have a personal relationship with God? You can’t. You may think you do, but when you get right down to it are you still living in a sinful life? Are you heartbroken over it? If you say yes to the first and no to the second then you are a “lukewarm” and Jesus has said you will be cast away from Him. (Revelation 3: 14-22)
This is the curse of the megachruches, look closely and you will come to realize it.

Confessions of a screwed up middle aged man: the grudge


There is a young lady I work with that has been indoctrinated heavily into the liberal mentality. One of the strongest is one is that everything must be done their way or they will hate you and hold a grudge against you. There is other points that show how she thinks and believes, but that is not necessary for me to share with you, just know that I have no doubt about how she believes and thinks.
Now I have to admit since I am human there have been a couple of things that we have butted heads about. The last being me playing Christmas music from Thanksgiving till Christmas Eve. Now I admit I did not behave well on that issue and did apologies. Was just not in the mood to have to challenge my believe in God over secular Christmas music. Trust me there is a bit of difference between Christian Christmas music and secular. As it is it was clear she does not believe in Christmas or the REAL reason it is celebrated.
It is obvious that she hates me. Now I really have not done anything against her, but due to her brainwashing I am evil incarnate. Which is truly sad that she thinks this way.
Now like I said we have butted heads, but unlike her I greet her with a smile and a hello and goodnight. I do this to all, for it is the correct thing to do, especially when you say you are a Christian. She turns her head, refuses to talk and has hate written all over her face, but I will not let this deter me from doing what is right. I will continue to be nice to her, and it will be as Jesus has told us to act. Treat your neighbor as you would want to be treated, a better phrasing is the golden rule: Do unto others as you would have others do unto you.
This is the teaching of Christ and so I feel obligated due to His salvation of me to do this and so I shall.

Discomfort with and about God


People do not like situations that are beyond their control. As a result, they have learned to limit God. The true glory of God is too frightening to them. Consequently, they encapsulate Him to at the most the planet and the least they attempt to make Him into their personal genie. When doing this they get upset and blame Him for not living up to their desires, or God gives them a glimpse of how powerful He truly is which in turn makes them feel inadequate.
It challenges their believe that they must control how their live goes and works. As a result, they are repelled; Runaway; Deny. If they still believe they become lukewarm neither hot nor cold for God. If they don’t they become Atheist that still seek after the rewards promised to us by God, but instead say it is nature’s doing and it may take centuries to accomplish
I find it funny how those that say God is not real then look into space and say there are aliens. They bring forth theories that state there are multiple dimension. What I find funnier is that they think humankind by itself can grow to a point that they evolve into a higher and eternal life form.
Why do I find it so funny? It is that has they deny God they seek to be with God. Aliens are angels possibly. The idea that there is multiple dimensions is already well documented in the Bible. Earth is in one dimension while Heaven is another one. Last of all seeking to evolve into a higher eternal life form. Again, we are promised this within the Bible.
The only difference in their believe is that humankind will go through several generations to reach this goal. The Bible states that ALL that have ever lived will have an eternal body.
One major factor that may cause issue with them is the fact that only those that are amongst the count will be able to explore the universe as servants of God, while those that deny Him will end stuck on Earth in a VERY warm location that will be VERY uncomfortable. How unfortunate that they must deny Him.

Confessions of a screwed up middle aged man: Pettiness


It is something that still surprises me. Seeing someone act and behave with petty i.e. immature behavior. I see more and more as I age why Jesus clearly showed how corrupt the natural state of humanity is. I lived in the south most my life. Now I am not saying that there is not petty immature people in the south, by mentioning this point. Why I mention it is that it has allowed me to gain an insight into behavior I may not have noticed living my entire life where I now live.
I also think it is due to my salvation that I can see things in a different light, or a better phrasing would be with the light of God shown upon those about me. I have had a very diverse image upon life that not all can say they have had so that too helps me look at things in this light of Christ as many may not or purposely turn their heads away from.
At this time, I am going through a little bit of bumpy road at work. The one at its center, well other than me, is one of my bosses. It is a large enough company that there are bosses over bosses. Well as I look upon the issue I start to understand what is going on, and so all I think I can do is do what I am supposed to do as is taught by Christ. As I type this, the realization hits me, just so you understand where I am coming from.
I need to pray for this man as well as another of the bosses. They suffer from the ideal that since they are management that everything must be done in such a way and in such a manner that it gives them the feeling of control of the situation. I wish I could go into more detail, but let us just say that each day is different from the previous one or the one that is to come, well at least in the area I work in. It is an area that is demanding. I had raised to the next level recently having become bored with the “regular” challenges and sought after some that would actually make me think.
The thing is they sent me on a shift that had no other peers equal to that new level to discuss issues with to gain their insight. Not anyone who says you can go straight into a job without someone to help you out at first is not telling you the truth; they are also lying to themselves. I can go no further other than to say that this one boss did not like that I acted in a certain way. To his satisfaction, even though the reason for my actions goes back to them not providing me with something I requested from them several times that night.
As I stated though this person does not see it this way, nor does he wish to see the truth, for it would shatter his illusionary world of power and control. Have I grown from it? I would say yes. Has he? I would say no. Thus the need to pray for him. For it is his soul that is in need of the help not mine.
It was stated best in the movie “Angel and the Badman” with John Wayne, when dealing with his future wife. She was a Quaker; their outlook on faith is one that I think all should have. When someone seeks to do harm to you it. You may suffer some injury, you may even die, but it is not you that is ultimately being hurt. It is them they are hurting.
Our reward is not promised on this earth but in the eternal life that is to come beyond this temporal life, we now live. How we live this life though is a determining fact upon our reward in the eternal. When you seek to do harm to another through violence or simply removing them from a job because you do not like them it is your reward you are taking from yourself. Each action of hate, each word said in anger. Each act that causes harm to someone else ultimately lies at your doorstep. It is something you must answer for before God. Many who now think themselves Christian will be stunned to find themselves standing before God on the days of the Great White Throne Judgment. They had thought they would be among the counted but instead find themselves being judged to see if they are worthy of being welcome to live an eternal life free to serve the Creator of the Universe within and throughout His creation. All that stand before Him will weep and plead, but what they do not fully understand is even though God will be the one that ultimately says if they are welcome. Their own actions and behavior are their judge. For we are given the Bible to teach us what is right and wrong and if we do not follow these rules even though we may have been saved we will find that we can be removed from Jesus and thus from God Himself.

Don’t become a broken branch


There are those that believe in the manmade doctrine of “once saved always saved.” I do not follow this doctrine for within the book of John, Christ states you can be removed from Him. This implies that you were are one time with Him since you cannot be removed from something you were not a part of. Many follow this doctrine without being aware that they are.
Christ clearly states that one must “abide” with Him.
Abide – 3306. meno men’-o a primary verb; to stay (in a given place, state, relation or expectancy):–abide, continue, dwell, endure, be present, remain, stand, tarry (for), X thine own.
Dwell – 3 a: to keep the attention directed —used with on or upon
b: to speak or write insistently —used with on or upon
Endure – 1: to continue in the same state: last 2: to remain firm under suffering or misfortune without yielding

This means you have to have an active relationship with Jesus. Just going to church on Sunday and then not spend the other 313 days of the year dwelling in Christ and His teaches is not abiding in Him. We are the bride and He is the Groom. Do you spend 52 days out of the year with your wife or husband? If you did, you will soon find yourself divorced.
Your branch must bear fruit and that God Himself will prune you so that in the end you will bear more fruit. I experienced this pruning personally in my year of Job. Now I am dedicated to writing these words in hopes that they shall bear the fruit of God.
I know without a doubt that I came close to being a branch that bore no fruit and knew again, without a doubt, that I was close to being removed from the vine of Christ and gathered up and burned within the fire. The symbolism is clearly stated in these verses by Jesus Himself.
Know Him.
Have an active relationship with Him. This means to be a living example of what He taught and to strive to do so. Not only through prayer, but actions. So you can be a bearer of Godly fruit.
If you do not bear fruit you will be cast off by God and join the world of man and be thrown into the fire.
John 15: 7 If ye abide in me, and my words abide in you, ye shall ask what ye will, and it shall be done unto you.
Words – 4487. rhema hray’-mah from 4483; an utterance (individually, collectively or specially),; by implication, a matter or topic (especially of narration, command or dispute); with a negative naught whatever:–+ evil, + nothing, saying, word.

John 15: 1 I am the true vine, and my Father is the husbandman. 2 Every branch in me that beareth not fruit he taketh away: and every branch that beareth fruit, he purgeth it, that it may bring forth more fruit. 3 Now ye are clean through the word which I have spoken unto you. 4 Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, except it abide in the vine; no more can ye, except ye abide in me.
5 I am the vine, ye are the branches: He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without me ye can do nothing. 6 If a man abide not in me, he is cast forth as a branch, and is withered; and men gather them, and cast them into the fire, and they are burned. 7 If ye abide in me, and my words abide in you, ye shall ask what ye will, and it shall be done unto you. 8 Herein is my Father glorified, that ye bear much fruit; so shall ye be my disciples. 9 As the Father hath loved me, so have I loved you: continue ye in my love. 10 If ye keep my commandments, ye shall abide in my love; even as I have kept my Father’s commandments, and abide in his love. 11 These things have I spoken unto you, that my joy might remain in you, and that your joy might be full.

Confessions of a screwed up middle aged man: The Hand of God sent her


I look into her eyes and all I see is beauty.
I look into her soul, see the hand of God, and know that He is real.
I see how she acts and know I am loved.
No other is her equal when compared to those ladies of my past.
She is a star to their candle flame, which can be blown out with a mere breathe.
What makes her find happiness is the same that makes me happy.
What causes her fear causes me fear.
Then we both see God and know that His hand brought us together.

Confessions of a screwed up middle aged man: How do you define dating in today’s world?


Dating has changed so much just since I was in high school in the 1970s. I never truly liked having to pursue someone I was interested in getting know, but it is something that had to be done, for God made it plain that Adam should not be alone and thus made Eve.
In the ‘70s you had schools to get to meet someone or events. Now we have internet dating sites or even matchmaking services. You have a profile that someone reads, your picture for him or her to look at. Then the courage needed to type a message saying, “Hey you want to chat” or something like that.
Then you chat, through either e-mails or instant messaging, or texting each other on your phones. You get a feeling on how that person thinks feels and believes. Then you talk on the phone and see how each other sounds responds in a one on one conversation and see if they hold up.
Then you meet in person for the first time. Is this a first date? I mean really. Think on that. What if you felt really comfortable with the person you had been chatting with? What if to you they were beautiful or handsome in the picture they had presented for the world to see?
You meet them in person and they are looking great to you. You enjoy a drink, or a meal, or a walk in park or mall. Is this really the first date? You feel you know them. You enjoy their company. You see nothing negative. You see they have been honest with you and they see you have been honest with them. Is this really the first date?
In the movie “The Quiet Man” with John Wayne. He is an Americanized Irishman that is confronted with the dating practices of rural Ireland at the time the movie is made in the 1930s. In the movie they list different events that will take place a month at a time, but it all boiled down to seeing if you were compatible. Meaning shared the same likes, enjoyed the company of the other person, and mainly if you see God’s hand was present in the match between you.
Now days all that should truly matter is God’s approval. I can honestly say that was not present in my previous long-term relationships. The first time due to both being too young. The second due to deception taking place from the other side.
I guess it really does not matter what you call a first date, but I can say it is best not to rush. Why? To avoid the chance of deception. It is also important to be very honest. However, this brings up a point. How can you check the honestly of someone? I do not even have an idea how to answer that question myself. Go with your gut, which is where you know God will lead you from.
Be sure how you feel. Be sure how they feel. See if being with that other person makes you feel right. What is more important is making sure that it is a type of relationship God supports. If God calls it a sin in the Bible, it is a sin. This means it is wrong. The Bible also said to those that have been married before, that it would be best to stay single, but if you could not go without those actions that are called blessed within a marriage, but a sin outside of marriage it would be better for you to remarry so you would not live in sin.
So do what is right in the eyes of the Lord. Pray and ask for His support and favor, and it will be a blessed relationship.