Spiritual Deception, Revival and Angus Buchan (South Africa’s Charismatic “Hajj”)

Prof. Johan Malan, South Africa (May 2010)

Spiritual deception and apostatising keep on proliferating as we are moving deeper into the end-time. We know that the Spirit of truth wants to guide us into all the truth of God’s Word – including the correct understanding of end-time prophecies (John 16:13). On the opposite side there is the spirit of error who is intent on deceiving people spiritually with a view to preparing them on the coming of the Antichrist (1 John 4:1-6). More than ever before we need discernment to be able to observe the full counsel of God and to allow the Holy Spirit to teach us and keep us from all forms of deception.

It is not always easy to keep our ways pure in all respects by correct discernment of these two spiritual influences since there is, by the devil’s doing, a grey area between them. Satan has the ability to present himself as an angel of light, thereby also deceiving Christians with noble intentions (2 Cor. 11:13-15; Matt. 24:4-5,24). It is one of his main objectives to confuse   believers by inciting them to entertain erroneous views on Christ and the Bible. There are many examples of such satanic influence in the Bible.

Peter was conscious of the fact that Jesus is the Messiah and Son of God and honestly thought that he made a very positive statement when he expressed himself against the idea of Christ’s crucifixion. However, it was clearly evident that he was deceived by Satan to take this stand (Matt. 16:14-23). Maybe Peter can be excused for this action since he did not yet have the full enlightening of the Holy Spirit.

But later, as a Spirit-filled apostle, Peter erred again when he failed to discern between the grace of Christ for justification and Jewish law-observance. He even compelled Gentile believers to behave like Jews. Paul reprimanded him in public for doing this (Gal. 2:11-21). Wrong teachings of this nature were also proclaimed by the Galatian congregation, thereby seriously jeopardising their trust in Christ’s work of grace (Gal. 5:4). Similar false teachings are rapidly increasing in our time since many Christians are subjecting themselves once again under the law.

Many of the early Christian churches seriously defected from the truth and all of their behaviour may be attributed to Satan and his accomplices (cf. Acts 20:29-30). Ephesus lapsed into a form of godliness which soon estranged them from their love for the Lord Jesus (Rev. 2:4-5). Pergamum listened to false prophets and compromised with the evil world, thereby allowing the devil to gain a foothold in their church (Rev. 2:13-15). The single person who expressed himself against the stream of deception had to pay with his life for doing so (Rev. 2:13). Thyatira was under the influence of a false prophetess, which caused extreme apostatising and put them on course to the great tribulation (Rev. 2:20-23). Only a small number of church members remained true to the Lord Jesus and walked in worthiness of his kingdom (Rev. 2:24-29). Sardis had a name that they were alive but they were spiritually dead and did not engage in evangelistic outreaches (Rev. 3:1-3). In this church there were also a few believers who persevered on the right way and did not stagnate together with the majority (Rev. 3:4-5). Laodicea completely fell victim to materialism, self-justification and a form of godliness, and were not even aware that the Lord Jesus had withdrawn from them and stood knocking outside the door (Rev. 3:15-17).

All people can be deceived, including the best Christians, and for that reason the Lord Jesus admonished us: “Take heed that no one deceives you” (Matt. 24:4). But if we know the Word of the Lord, accept it by faith and strictly walk in accordance with it, we will not err: “All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work” (2 Tim. 3:16-17). If we do not strictly abide by the Bible we will stray and also restrict the work of the Holy Spirit in our lives. “Jesus answered and said to them, You are mistaken, not knowing the Scriptures nor the power of God” (Matt. 22:29). The Holy Spirit is willing to fulfil biblical promises which we accept by faith.

End-time deception

In the end-time spiritual deception takes on much larger proportions than in the past – still under the direct influence of the devil and his spirit of error. Postmodern man liberates himself from Biblical mandates by questioning their validity or merely ignoring them as if they do not exist. In their place he observes humanistic philosophies inspired by the devil and propagated by false teachers. These new views are contrary to the guidance and conviction of the Holy Spirit. They are aimed at attacking people’s faith, and for this reason the Holy Spirit warns against them: “Now the Spirit expressly says that in the latter times some will depart from the faith, giving heed to deceiving spirits and doctrines of demons, speaking lies in hypocrisy, having their own conscience seared with a hot iron” (1 Tim. 4:1-2). The Living Bible paraphrases these two verses as follows: “But the Holy Spirit tells us clearly that in the last times some in the church will turn away from Christ and become eager followers of teachers with devil-inspired ideas. These teachers will tell lies with straight faces and do it so often that their consciences will not even bother them.” The end result of this deception is that many people’s faith is completely destroyed. They depart from the truth and follow a way that may seem to be right in terms of human rationalising but its end is the way of death (Prov. 16:25).

There are different kinds of false teachings which we have to avoid. Some of them are even propagated by true believers who are ignorant or deceived in certain areas of their spiritual lives. Other teachings represent a more advanced degree of deception and are only proclaimed by false prophets. The following are the ten most common categories of deception which are encountered in a large number of Christian churches and interdenominational movements:

A multireligious orientation: This false dogma propagates the lie that Christianity is not unique but only one group in a large family of co-equal world religions. According to this view, salvation may be obtained by members of any faith. The interfaith dogma also rejects the idea of the Triune God. God the Father is depicted as the universal God of all faiths, and different paths may be followed to approach him. Jesus is only regarded as an ordinary prophet who functions on an equal level with Mohammed, Krishna, Buddha and other mediators to God. The Holy Spirit is associated with all supernatural experiences, including witchcraft, divination and other strange phenomena. A multireligious orientation is promoted by the universal god of this age, Satan, and also preached in Christian churches by his false prophets (2 Cor. 4:4; 11:13-15; 2 Pet. 2:1-12).

Mysticism: Strange techniques from the Eastern religions are often used to establish contact with the supernatural world and also to experience spiritual enlightening. One of the most common mystical practices is transcendental meditation. This is a form of turning to one’s “deeper self” during extended times of silence and exclusion from the world, when people descend to so-called creative levels of their subconscious mind to attune to the supernatural, cosmic world. Mantras (a word or short sentence) are repeated over and over until the person experiences an alternative state of consciousness – which is a type of hypnotic trance. The Bible denounces the use of mantras as a heathen practice which should not form any part of Christian prayers (Matt. 6:7). A mystical orientation leads to the view that there is not a personal God but only an impersonal, pantheistic god within all people and also in nature. Such people do not believe in heaven or hell as specific places, neither in a personal devil. According to them there is only an element of evil in the cosmos (also in people) which should be resisted. They strive towards creating a condition of heaven on earth.

The proclaiming of another Jesus: These people do not deny the biblical Jesus in name but they do question and change His personal attributes and works. Among them are a great number of apostate theologians and preachers who openly allege that Jesus was not born from a virgin, He was not Christ or the Son of God, neither was He resurrected from the dead nor did He ascend to heaven. In the postmodern deconstruction of the Scriptural image of Jesus, the name “Jesus” is retained but is assigned to “another Jesus” who is an impostor of Satan (2 Cor. 11:2-4). A person who turns his back upon the true Jesus inevitably becomes a follower of the Antichrist: “Who is a liar but he who denies that Jesus is the Christ? He is Antichrist who denies the Father and the Son” (1 John 2:22). Those who proclaim another Jesus do not consider the statements of the true Jesus and create their own future scenario. The Lord Jesus said that the world is heading for a great tribulation, but that true believers can escape it by way of the rapture (Matt. 24:21; Luke 21:36). Followers of the “other Jesus” deny the coming judgements and exert themselves for the establishment of a peaceful human kingdom on earth.

The promotion of another spirit and another gospel: According to 2 Cor. 11:4, the inception of a counterfeit Jesus coincides with the adulteration of the Holy Spirit and the gospel of salvation. When people render the Lord Jesus an ordinary, human prophet and fail to worship Him as the only Mediator to God, they subject themselves to the influence of a foreign spirit that comes from the devil. This spirit will not convict them of sin but establish a false sense of peace in their hearts. He may also work strange manifestations in his victims such as falling on the floor while laughing uncontrollably. Within the context of this spirit’s false gospel they regard rebirth as a form of supernatural power that falls on them in a tangible way. Their lives are then built upon the foundation of a false conversion, and many of them will only discover that they have been deceived when it is too late to change the situation (Matt. 7:22-23).

Discrediting of the Bible and its message: It has become a modern fad to reject the Bible as the inspired Word of God by relegating it to the level of human literature which is allegedly full of contradictions and mythological accounts. No biblical prophecies on the end-time are literally interpreted – including prophetic books such as Daniel, Zechariah and Revelation. Theologians who approach the Bible in such an indifferent, subjective way by spiritualising and allegorising everything, or interpreting it historically, are called amillennialists or preterists. Most of them hold the view that end-time prophecies on divine judgements, the Antichrist and the great tribulation, were fulfilled in the first century AD during the reign of Nero and the destruction of Jerusalem. To them, the literal message of the Bible has largely fallen away – also the many prophecies on the end-time restoration of Israel. No wonder that many of them proceed with their systematic dismantling of the Bible by also questioning or rejecting many other doctrines such as the deity of the Lord Jesus, His resurrection and the significance of His death on the cross. Neither is biblical morality seriously regarded but reduced to contemporary guidelines to historical societies. In this way postmodern man “liberates” himself and gives free reign to his fleshly lusts. He even justifies abominable sins such as drunkenness, adultery and homosexuality.

Legalism: Since the religion of many people is not based upon a sound relationship of faith in the Lord Jesus, large numbers of them are reverting to the Old Testament law to give substance to their religious activities. They regard themselves as “spiritual Israelites” and commit themselves to observing Sabbaths and Jewish feasts. Some even have themselves circumcised so as not to be part of the “uncircumcised heathen world”. It is obvious that they understand very little of the covenant of grace with God through His Son, Jesus Christ. Through the value that they attach to law observation they put their relationship with the Lord Jesus in jeopardy as they do not completely rely on His grace (Gal. 5:4). At the extreme side of the movement back to the Old Testament is British Israelism, which is also strongly represented in South Africa. They see the white nations as the continuation of the Old Testament’s covenant people of Israel, and strongly emphasise the position of confrontation which they occupy towards the Gentile world of coloured nations. They have their own prophets, such as “Siener” (Visionary) Van Rensburg, and expect that the modern heathendom will wage a racial war in which they will endeavour to destroy white Israelites in a cruel and merciless way. Virtually all supporters of British Israelism have a hard and uncompromising spirit because of their boundless hatred towards the coloured nations as well as the Jews, whom they regard as a mongrel race that has mixed with Edomites and other enemies of God. They expect that the heathen nations will be utterly destroyed, after which the “white Israelites” will inherit the kingdom of God. It is characteristic of this group that they are dominated by a foreign spirit of extreme racism, hatred and vindictiveness. They do not have any peace in their hearts, and that is the reason why they incite one another and easily lapse into panic and despondency when they lose hope for their immediate survival.

Ritualising and moral justification: Most people wish to be justified in an easy way without complying with the biblical demand of being born again. The Lord warns us that in the end-time there will be large numbers of preachers who will be prepared to proclaim fables of false conversions for the sake of money and popularity (2 Tim. 4:3-4). One of the popular fables which is proclaimed within the framework of Calvinism is that people do not have a free will and that all Christians have been predestined by God to salvation. Their election and salvation are confirmed by the ritual of infant baptism, after which they enjoy eternal security as no one can snatch them form the Lord’s hand. They are baptised into heaven without rebirth and then given the assurance that no sin or apostasy can change their status as Christians. The Bible, however, does not teach this false doctrine and demand that all people (also “covenant children”) must be born again (John 3:3). It is a clear command of the Lord that all of us should repent (Acts 17:30; 2 Pet. 3:9; Rev. 22:17). In most religions – also in degenerate, nominal Christianity – the view is entertained that we should live morally and socially acceptable lives in order to be fit for heaven. But that is also a myth as the cross of Christ plays no role in this doctrine of self-justification.

Ignoring of the biblical message of sanctification: A serious injustice is done to Christians when the message of sanctification as a second work of grace is withheld from them. The consequence of this shortcoming is that they are confined to the category of carnal believers who are described as babes in Christ (1 Cor. 3:1-3; Eph. 4:13-14). They lead a life of stumbling and rising, and have no understanding of the deeper things of God’s Word (Gal. 5:17; Heb. 5:12-14). Such people are not filled with the Holy Spirit and can, therefore, not claim that the Holy Spirit guides them into all truth (John 16:13). They are easy targets for spiritual deception. Since they are not endued with the power of the Holy Spirit, they easily fall into fleshly sins such as drinking and immorality (Eph. 5:18; 1 Thess. 4:3,7-8). We are admonished to be strong in the Lord so that we may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil (Eph. 6:10-11). This power not only enables us to live victoriously over sin and temptation but also gives us boldness to be successful witnesses for Christ. The Lord Jesus said: “You shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you shall be witnesses to Me” (Acts 1:8). Empty yourself of the world and all forms of sin and fleshliness, wait on the Lord, and He will fill you with His Holy Spirit. That will make a very big difference in your life. It will, amongst others, enable you to identify and resist deception. Without this experience and spiritual enlightenment you will be tossed to and fro by every wind of doctrine (Eph. 4:14).

Signs and wonders as part of a faith based upon physical experiences: In the end-time there is a major resurgence in supernatural manifestations as preparation toward the coming of the Antichrist (Matt. 24:24). Large numbers of people run after preachers and prophets who were allegedly empowered by God to heal the sick and even resurrect the dead. Great credibility is enjoyed by such preachers, e.g. Benny Hinn and TB Joshua, and everything they say and do is blindly accepted. The Antichrist and false prophet will act in a like manner (2 Thess. 2:8-10; Rev. 13:13-14). They will do great signs through the power of Satan, and the whole world will be in amazement. Hurry-scurry decisions will globally be taken to accept and worship these two magicians and deceivers as special representatives of God (Rev. 13:3-4). We should guard against the tendency to seek after miracles, thereby elevating material and sensual experience above our relationship of faith with the Lord Jesus. The devil will increasingly use miracles to get people in his power and into his sphere of influence.

Dominionism, transformations and false revivals: The promotion of a manmade kingdom on earth (dominionism) is a very common characteristic of our time. All churches that do not believe in the future revelation of the kingdom of Christ on earth after His second coming, transfer kingdom promises in the Bible to the church dispensation and exert themselves for the establishment of a Christian kingdom here and now. According to them, a united (ecumenical) church will rule over this kingdom and subject the whole world to Christian control. Various techniques are used to manifest this kingdom, which is dispensationally completely out of place:

1.   Transformation meetings are held to assemble churches in the same town or city and to present a kingdom vision to them. In this way they are challenged to work together for the good of the entire community. The leaders of the movement express themselves against all forms of crime and human suffering, they join hands with political leaders and take calculated steps to create a world in which righteousness and prosperity will prevail.

2.   Divine intervention in the interest of peace and prosperity in the entire land is promised in terms of 2 Chronicles 7:14 to every host country where transformation meetings are held. According to this promise which was made to Israel in the Old Testament, the Lord will forgive the nation all their sins during a national repentance and also heal their land.

3.   A promise of big revivals is made to the entire community. It is stated that the Lord’s Spirit will work so mightily that virtually all people in a country will repent and join the ecumenical city churches. All key positions in society and government will ultimately be filled by Christians, and they will ensure that righteousness will prevail and everybody is justly treated.

Biblical evaluation of the transformation movement: The Bible nowhere promises a position of dominion to believers during the church dispensation between the first and second coming of Christ. The church is in a position of conflict against a depraved world and should rather expect rejection and persecution from the unsaved majority. In the Bible it is often stated that those who are truly saved will always be a small minority. They must shine as lights in the midst of a crooked and perverse generation. How can they win a democratic election and take over positions of authority in the world? The kingdom of Christ will only be revealed when He comes as King of the kings, and then His saints will rule with Him. The saved Israel will play a very prominent role in this kingdom and be a blessing to the entire world. During the church dispensation, however, Israel was dispersed among the nations, Jerusalem was trampled and the majority of Jews still reject Jesus as Messiah. Israel is only now, at the end of the church dispensation, restored in their land in preparation for their national conversion.

The promise in 2 Chronicles 7:14 was given to Israel in the Old Testament. However, with the exception of short periods of special dedication they never complied with the Lord’s condition of a national repentance. Ultimately, Israel was scattered abroad because of their unbelief. The spiritual condition of the Gentiles is the same, where only a small minority (a remnant) truly serves the Lord. Because of this, the nations should be warned against the judgements of the Lord during the coming tribulation period. Nowhere on earth is there even the slightest indication of a national repentance as a result of the transformation movement. It is one of the major weaknesses and errors of the transformation movement that they fail to warn the nations against the wrath to come as a consequence of their spiritual stubbornness. Neither do they warn the nations against the Antichrist and false prophet who will rule over them during the seven-year tribulation period, should they persevere on their present course. Multireligious constitutions are the order of the day, and in these policy documents no recognition is given to the position and authority of the Triune God.

There is no Christian empire which can be promised to any nation during the church dispensation since they all form part of the present evil world and its humanistic institutions. Even true Christians should not prepare themselves to take over the kingdoms of the world during the end-time, but rather to escape the coming judgements of the tribulation by means of the rapture. After that, they will appear before the judgement seat of Christ to receive rewards of grace (2 Cor. 5:10). However, preaching on the second coming is completely absent from transformation meetings because the outpouring of divine wrath is contrary to their kingdom vision for the last days.

The expectation of big revivals is completely out of place for the end of the church dispensation. The Bible in fact only refers to a time of great falling away directly preceding the second coming of Christ. It will again be as in the days of Noah and Lot (Luke 17:26). Most people will grow cold in their love for the Lord (Matt. 24:12) while a large-scale spiritual and moral falling away will occur in the church (2 Thess. 2:3; 2 Tim. 3:1-5). Revival will only be experienced by small groups of true Christians who will further separate themselves from the world and from sin to serve the Lord with their whole heart (Rev. 22:11).

The only worldwide spiritual awakening which the Bible refers to in the end-time will, according to Revelation 7, occur during the seven-year tribulation. During this time, 144 000 Jews will first be saved and spiritually equipped to act as evangelists during this very trying time. A big harvest of souls will be gathered in Israel and also among the other nations (Rev. 7:9-14).

After the tribulation, Christ will return to judge His enemies and take the kingdoms of the world upon His shoulders (Rev. 11:15; 19:11-21). His saints will rule with Him then – not now (Rev. 2:25-27).

True and false prophets

How should we judge the large number of prophets, preachers and their messages? As indicated above, there are false prophets who are guilty of outright heresies due to the denial of basic Christian doctrines. They should be resisted and rejected. To be able to do that, we must have a sound knowledge of the truth lest we may also be deceived: “But there were also false prophets among the people, even as there will be false teachers among you, who will secretly bring in destructive heresies, even denying the Lord who bought them, and bring on themselves swift destruction. And many will follow their destructive ways, because of whom the way of truth will be blasphemed” (2 Pet. 2:1-2).

These false prophets will give evangelical believers a bad name and completely reject their narrow, biblical views. Peter seriously warns us not to be influenced by them: “You therefore, beloved, since you know these things beforehand, beware lest you also fall from your own steadfastness, being led away with the error of the wicked; but grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. To Him be the glory both now and for ever” (2 Pet. 3:17-18).

Then there are those preachers who do have a saving faith in the Lord Jesus, although there may be various aspects of God’s counsel which they do not correctly understand. Because of their ignorance on matters such as the end of the church dispensation, the rapture, the judgements of God during the tribulation, the Antichrist and false prophet, the second coming of Christ and His subsequent millennial reign, they often become involved with a completely distorted eschatology and kingdom vision, as well as the transformation movement and its associated ecumenical movement. We should be cautious not to reject such brothers as Christians if they have a testimony of being born again and truly honour and serve the Lord Jesus. But it is nevertheless our duty to take a strong stand for the truth against their wrong views on certain issues. We cannot be onlookers while thousands of people are lured away after wrong teachings on eschatology as well as the purpose and calling of the church.

Angus Buchan

It is obvious that the South African revival preacher, Angus Buchan, does have a relationship with Jesus Christ as his Saviour and experiences Him as a living reality in his life. He also exhorts thousands of people to repent, and helps families to reconcile with each other, which is praiseworthy.  On the other hand, worried voices are being heard that he reveals great ignorance on various aspects of biblical doctrines – to such an extent that he has embarked on the way of kingdom theology, the ecumenical movement, and even the promotion of dubious signs and wonders. On certain occasions he has made positive comments on false prophets such as Benny Hinn and Kathryn Kuhlman. His perceived ignorance on these matters is disturbing and even bewildering.

Great concern is also mentioned about Angus’ method of mass evangelisation where he usually brings one or two messages before leaving again. It is inevitable that this is like sowing the seed of the gospel on shallow ground, and many questions arise from this strategy: How can sustainable work be done in this way? What about the further message of sanctification which should be preached to all converts? What happens to young believers who are returned to their homes and mostly dead churches without the equipment of a Spirit-filled life, and consequently also without a sound grounding in their life of faith? These are the major questions on the shortcomings of his ministry.

The other questions relate to the kingdom deception which Angus proclaims to the crowds. How can he, according to his own insight, promise people that South Africa and Zimbabwe will be completely restored? In this regard he acts contrary to Jesus Christ Himself, who said that in the end-time there will be great tribulation such as has never been on earth (Matt. 24:21). Someone who correctly understands the biblical message on the end-time would warn his followers against a time of great spiritual and moral falling away, while also mentioning the possibility of the persecution and rejection of evangelical Christians. These matters are not part of Angus’s message. Neither does he proclaim the blessed hope of the rapture to Christians to encourage them to remain steadfast until the Lord Jesus takes us away to our heavenly home (1 Thess. 4:16-18).

The fact that so many people stream to the meetings of Angus is proof of the lack of leadership which the whites in South Africa experience in both the political and religious fields. They are looking for somebody to come and lead the Boers. Even some of the Israel groups (British Israelism, or White Theology supporters) allege that Prophet Van Rensburg has referred to a leader who would lead the Boers to a Boer state where they can be free from domination by the blacks. Could this perhaps be the reason for the popularity that Angus enjoys?

Many disappointed Christians perceive that Angus, unlike Paul, does not proclaim the full counsel of God to his thousands of followers. This is a relevant observation because, if he would have done so, he would in concrete terms have achieved much more than is the case at present. He cannot even remotely be mentioned in the same vein as a revival preacher such as Andrew Murray. It is in fact highly questionable whether the movement which he describes as a revival indeed qualifies to be defined as such.

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Thank you Prof Johan Malan !!!

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17 thoughts on “Spiritual Deception, Revival and Angus Buchan (South Africa’s Charismatic “Hajj”)

  1. Hi Prof Malan,

    I hear you on all these points but would like to raise one point with regards to eschatology. It seems to me that here (implied) and elsewhere (other writings I’ve seen of yours) you place great importance on a pre-millennial eschatology; to the point that it seems that if someone holds a different eschatological view you seem to imply that they are believing / teaching heresy.

    Basic doctrinal points around eschatology are obviously of mass importance – the fact that Jesus is coming again, physically, and will then bring the Kingdom in its fullness, there will be a new earth and heaven, God will judge believers for rewards, non-believers will be judged by God and his sentence on them will be just, etc.

    But if I don’t believe / teach a Great Tribulation in a pre-millennial way, I don’t believe there will be a rapture before this tribulation etc., or I choose to remain neutral on pre-millenialism, post-millenialism etc. you seem to be saying that this would make me something of a heretic or unorthodox believer. Why do you place so much importance on a pre-millennial view, making essentially a secondary doctrine (pre-millenialism) more important or as important as a primary doctrine (parousia). Would really like to hear why this seems to be the case.

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  2. Ryan
    The answer to your comment from Prof Johan Malan:

    Hi (Ryan) Peter
    Thanks for your letter.
    I do stand strong on premillennial eschatology and a pretribulation rapture, but definitely not to the extent of calling anyone who holds another view a heretic. When I discuss doctrine on justification and sanctification, the sequence of end-time events are not even mentioned as part of the teaching. If you read my book, “Jesus Christ and our Life in Him” (available in electronic format) you will notice that the basics of our relationship with Christ predominate and that the rapture is very seldom mentioned.
    But when I do write about the end-time, there is no beating about the bush, and I clearly present the facts as I understand them. However, I never condemn anyone who holds different views. In fact, I stand strong on spiritual preparedness (sanctification) and do not hesitate to state that even people who understand these promises correctly but are not spiritually worthy (like the five foolish maidens) will be left behind when the Bridegroom comes.
    You may contact me for further clarification of my position: johan@bibleguidance.co.za
    Blessings
    Johan Malan

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  3. Dear Johan Malan

    Eschatology is fine by me whether it be preached or not for my main goal is as the Apostle Paul said to gain Christ. He is All and He should be the center of all things. My sanctification, wisdom, righteousness and redemption is not found eschatology but only in Christ. He should be our main focus. We preach Christ and him Crucified. Be careful at the enemies weapons, one of which is the substitues for Christ. Anything that distracts us from Him who is in us is a hindrance. He is our very Life, nature and spirit. God is moving in these days to recover. What is the way of His recovery? I believe many of us would like to be in that way. It is just in these three things: 1) the recovery of Christ as life and everything to us, 2) the recovery of the functions of all the members, and 3) the recovery of the proper unity. Not until these three things are recovered among us will we have a proper and adequate church life. There must be a group of believers who realize and experience Christ as their life and content and will take no substitute. Not one member of this group would be a clergyman or a layman. They are all living, functioning members of Christ. And all of them have abandoned the denominations and divisions and come to meet on the ground of oneness to practice the proper unity. If there is such a group, there is the Lord’s recovery, there is a real expression of the Body of Christ, and there the enemy and all his work are put to shame.

    Hope you find this on order.

    Shaun Mortimer

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  5. Shaun

    May I respond to your comment:

    I think you are wrong in saying that sanctification, wisdom, righteousness and redemption are not found in eschatology.

    Sanctification – (1Jn 3:3) “And every man that hath this hope in him purifieth himself, even as he is pure.” This hope is for the future redemption (Rom 8:23 – redemption of our bodies) that will take place when we see Christ as He is (1 Jn 3:2) at the rapture. This hope “purifies”/ sanctifies us.

    Wisdom – I would like to think that it is wise to study the end-times. Surely Jesus deemed it of much importance for us to now the end-times and warn us of false Christs and prophets.

    Our focus should be on Christ’s second coming. Looking unto Him, the Author and Finisher of our faith (Heb 12:2).

    You said that anything that distracts you from Christ is a hindrance. Question: How can eschatology distracts you from Christ, when in fact the book Revelation is a revelation of Jesus Christ and His second coming. AND the book revelation blesses those who read it (Rev 1:3). It is not a hindrance but a blessing and focuses your attention on Christ and the future redemption and not on the here and now.

    We are going to gain Christ at His coming and our focus should be on that. Your best life is not NOW, but it IS TO COME. As sinners best life is now. God is not preparing us for this life. He is preparing us for the next.

    Blessings

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  10. Dear readers,

    I have no words to express my sadness with the unbiblical doctrine in the rapture and futurism, which was a creation of John Darby in 1830. Revelation says it so plainly. It was a revelation of things that must soon (in the time of Johannes) take place. Revelation tells us about seven times that the things it revealed were immanent. THe word antichrist does not even feature in revelation, but was a word used in 1 and 2 John. Antichrist was never a person, but a believe system which was already present in John’s day. It did not meant a vile, cruel or tyrant person that was to appear two thousand years later. Antichrist and the beast of revelation had nothing in common. How can serious bible studying christians be so gullable to believe a false doctrine. If ever you want to read a proper biblical commentary on revelation, please go to DAYS OF VEANANGE by David Chilton on pdf. formate. Another brilliant book is Paradise Restored by the same author. You can download both for free on the internet.

    Regards
    Herman

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  13. How much of what you say is led by the Holy Spirit or do you use the Word as doctrine to judge and through stones. Did you pray and let God lead you in saying this against Angus. We must meditate over the Word not study it as it is God talking to us. A million people comming together to pray is revival sorry to burst your self rightious bubble.

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    • Agh Shame Riaan, you are so blinded by pagan ways. You say : “We must meditate over the Word not study it as it is God talking to us.”

      That is typical pagan religion did you know ? God hands people over to their own devices and that is when he abandons people, a very terrible thing to happen, when God abandons one. Read and STUDY Romans 1. And people like to heap for themselves men unto fables like the Bucan’s of the world. Another way where God abandons people. But you would not understand this , keep on following your religion on your way on the broad road that leads to destruction. You do not even know how many times God warns us in HIS WORD about false teachers like Angus Buchan and many others. The fool says in his heart there is no God, such like you.

      By my pastor Don Fortner ……THE WORD OF GOD

      “I will worship toward thy holy temple, and praise thy name for thy lovingkindness and for thy truth: for thou hast magnified thy word above all thy name.” – Psalm 138:2

      I do not pretend to know all that is implied by that statement; but I am sure of this – God almighty intends for us to understand that he has a very high opinion of his Word. It is something of indescribable value, a Book to be revered, honored, read, believed, and obeyed. It has not been given to us to be an ornament of decoration to adorn your coffee table at home or the communion table at church. The Volume of Holy Scripture came from God and shows us the way back to God. Read it. Study it. Believe it. Obey it. Know it in your head. Store it in your heart. Show it in your life. And sow it in the world. This blessed Book, the Bible, is and must be the Word of God.

      Before studying the glorious truths of Holy Scripture, we must have a firm grasp of the fact that the Bible is indeed of divine origin, inspired, infallible, and authoritative. Unless we recognize that fact, we have no authoritative basis for believing anything taught in the Bible. In fact, I am certain that the reason for all the fuzziness, instability, and confusion among religious people in our day is that they fail to recognize the absolute authority of the Word of God in all matters of faith and practice, in all matters of doctrine and conduct.

      ` As we face the heresies, speculations, skepticism, and ignorance of the religious world around us, as well as that of the secular world, we need to be sure of our ground. Doctrinal, spiritual ignorance always leads to spiritual bondage (Isa. 5:13).

      Numerous books have been written demonstrating the fact that the Bible’s claim of divine origin, inspiration, and infallibility cannot be denied. Assuming that you recognize this fact, I will show you four things about the Bible which I trust will be blessed of God to your soul and make the Book of God even more precious to you than it is already.

      1. The Bible is the inspired, infallible, inerrant Word of God.

      This is the claim the Bible makes of itself. We must either accept the claim in its entirety or reject it altogether. Either the Bible is the Word of God, or it is a horribly evil hoax by which the souls of men are deceived and ruined. The same must be said concerning all other religious books that claim divine origin. If the Bible is the Word of God, then the Koran, the Book of Mormon, and the claims of modern self-proclaimed prophets must all be rejected as evil deceptions by which the souls of men are destroyed. The Bible claims to be the inspired, infallible, inerrant, complete, sufficient, and final Word of God. It takes but a casual glance at the Scriptures to see that this is the claim of the Bible.

      · The Bible claims divine origin. It claims to be infallibly inspired, though written by men who were both fallible and sinful (2 Tim. 3:16-17; Heb. 1:1; 2 Pet. 1:21).
      · The Bible claims to be a necessary revelation, without which God cannot be known (Rom. 10:13-17; 1 Pet. 1:23-25). God is Spirit, the eternal, self-existent, incomprehensible Spirit. Though his eternal power and godhead is evident from the things he has made, so that all are without excuse, he cannot be known unless he makes himself known by special revelation through the Word.
      · The Bible claims to be the sufficient, effectual means by which chosen, redeemed sinners are called to life, faith, and everlasting salvation in Christ (Isa. 55:11; 2 Tim. 3:15; Heb. 4:12; James 1:18).
      · The Bible claims both authority and finality as the Word of God (Isa. 8:20; Rev. 22:18-19).

      When we talk about inspiration, be sure you understand what the Scriptures teach about it. We sometimes speak of the men who wrote the Scriptures as being inspired. That is not really accurate. Those men were moved and carried along by the Holy Spirit as they wrote; but they were not inspired. It is the Word of God itself, that which those faithful men were employed to write, which is inspired.

      We recognize, and the Bible carefully shows us, the flaws of those men. The Book was given through weak, sinful human beings; but their weaknesses, sins, and humanity does not affect the Bible’s infallibility. We see the personalities of the writers in their writings; but their personalities did not corrupt the Bible’s perfection. The Bible claims to be and is the inspired, infallible, inerrant Word of God.[1]

      Few believers have not been asked, “What about all the places where the statements of the Bible contradict the proven discoveries of science?” Usually, I respond by asking, “Would you show me which statements you mean?” That usually ends the discussion. I do not claim to be a scientist. I am not even a student of science. Yet, I do make this assertion without the slightest fear of contradiction – There is not a single point of contradiction between the statements of Holy Scripture and the established facts of science. There is great conflict between the Scriptures and scientific theories, but none between Scripture and fact. The theories of science change constantly and constantly contradict one another; but the facts of science and the facts of the Bible are in perfect harmony.

      2. The evidences and arguments for the divine origin and inspiration are as comforting as they are irrefutable.

      Let me give you just a few of the many internal evidences of inspiration. We will not even look at the external evidences, though they are numerous. The internal evidences are sufficient, both to refute the gainsayers and to comfort our souls, as we live by faith in this world of trouble and woe, leaning upon the promises and teachings of our God in Holy Scripture.

      First, the Lord Jesus Christ accepted the Old Testament Scriptures as the Word of God. When he dwelt upon the earth, he never made any attempt to prove the validity of the Old Testament, but simply referred to it, quoted it, expounded it, and lived upon it as the Word of God. In fact, he very deliberately quoted from the two books of the Old Testament which are most frequently attacked by infidels: Deuteronomy and Isaiah. Deuteronomy was the book from which he made every quotation when Satan tempted him in the wilderness (Deut. 8:3; 6:16; 6:13; Luke 4:4-12). Isaiah was the book he referred to when he began his public ministry and first announced himself as the Messiah (Isa. 61:1; Luke 4:16-21).

      Second, the uniqueness of the Bible, that is to say the singularity of its teachings, attests to its divine origin. The Book of God is totally different from all other books in the things it reveals and teaches. All who ever drank from this Fountain of Truth have tasted the distinct difference. The Bible tells us what no other book could tell us and what no other book would tell us if it could about certain things.

      · The Bible alone gives us an account and revelation of God’s character that agrees with and satisfies that which is revealed in creation and stamped upon the consciences of all human beings. Holy Scripture tells us that the Lord our God is omnipotent, holy, wise, just, and good.
      · The Bible alone gives us an account of man’s origin, his sinful nature, his God consciousness, and his sense of immortality. No other attempts to account for these things gives any satisfaction. No book of mere human composition would give such a brutally honest portrayal of human depravity.
      · The Bible alone reveals and explains the necessity of Christ’s incarnation, obedience, death, and resurrection.
      · The Bible alone reveals a plan and scheme of salvation for fallen men that is both honoring to God and satisfactory to the consciences of men. God’s plan of salvation (Rom. 3:24-26) is the satisfaction of justice by substitutionary redemption and imputed righteousness by his free grace toward sinners in Christ his Son.

      Any honest person who reads the Bible with any measure of carefulness and thoroughness will readily acknowledge that it could not possibly be a book of mere human origin. The Bible has the stamp of God upon it.

      Third, the frankness and candor with which the Bible deals with its most prominent characters is evidence of its divine origin. All human biographies, if they expose any weaknesses and faults in their subjects, either excuse them or find a way to make them appear insignificant. The Word of God paints a different kind of picture when it describes the lives of its greatest, most eminent characters, it paints their very darkest sides. The Bible makes no attempt to whitewash Noah’s drunkenness, Abraham’s fear of Abimelech, Lot’s incest, Moses’ anger, Aaron’s idolatry, .David’s murder and adultery, the disciples’ unbelief, Peter’s fall, or the strife which divide Paul and Barnabas.

      Fourth, the perfect harmony and unity of the Bible is simply an unanswerable argument for its divine origin and a great source of comfort and assurance for our faith. If I should see my great-grandfather, who has been dead since I was a boy, rise up out of the earth that fact would be less miraculous than the existence of God’s Word. Listen to this carefully.

      The Bible was written in three languages (Hebrew, Aramaic, and Greek), by some forty different authors, who lived on two separate continents, over a period of more than sixteen hundred years. Parts of it were written in palaces, parts in prisons. Some of it was written by well educated men in great cities, other parts were written by shepherds and fishermen. Parts of it were written during times of war, pestilence, and danger, other parts during times of ecstatic joy. Those who wrote the words of Holy Scripture were from virtually every walk of life: judges, priests, kings, prophets, prime-ministers, herdsmen, scribes, fishermen, and soldiers. Yet, in spite of all these varying circumstances, conditions, workmen, and ages of time employed in the production of the Book, it stands as one Book. It is perfectly one in all its parts, free of error, and free of contradiction.

      “Imagine forty persons of different nationalities, possessing various degrees of musical culture, visiting the organ of some great cathedral and at long intervals of time, and without any collusion whatever, striking sixty-six different notes, which when combined yielded the theme of the grandest oratorio ever heard; would it not show that behind these forty different men there was one presiding mind, one great Tone-Master? As we listen to some great orchestra, with its immense variety of instruments playing their different parts, but producing melody and harmony, we realize that at the back of these many musicians there is the personality and genius of the composer. And when we enter the halls of the Divine Academy and listen to the heavenly choirs singing the Song of Redemption, all in perfect accord and unison, we know that it is God himself who has written the music and put this song into their mouths.” – A. W. Pink

      There is only one sane explanation for the existence of the Bible. “For the prophecy came not in old time by the will of man: but holy men of God spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost.”

      Fifth, the multitude of prophecies given in the Bible that have been exactly fulfilled, to the very letter, demand that honest people acknowledge the divine origin of the Bible. Prophecy is the foretelling of future events before they come to pass. This is the acid test of divine revelation. The Lord God himself appeals to fulfilled prophecy throughout the Bible (Deut. 18:22; Isa. 41:21-23; 2 Pet. 1:19-21). Fortune tellers, palm readers, and other practitioners of witchcraft frequently make general predictions that astound men. The Word of God does not make vague, general predictions, but specific, precise predictions, and stakes its veracity upon their fulfillment.

      The Lord Jesus Christ was, of course, the central theme of Old Testament prophecy (Ps. 22; Isa. 53); but there were a multitude specific prophetic statements made about him in the Old Testament that were exactly fulfilled (Isa. 7:14; Mic. 5:2; Acts 13:29). The prophecy concerning Josiah, the boy king of Judah, was made during the days of Jeroboam and fulfilled three hundred and fifty years later (1 Kings 13:2; 2 Kings 23:15-16). Numerous other fulfilled prophecies could be cited by anyone even casually familiar with Holy Scripture. These are facts which no one can refute.

      Let men cavil as they will, the Bible is the very Word of God. It simply cannot be explained in any other way. It is an open Book. Its truths are not written in the language of scholars, but in the common language of common men. The Bible is the Book for the people. It was delivered by God to his saints, not to the pope, not to priests, not to academics, not to the clergy, but to the saints of God. There is nothing hidden, nothing written in secret codes. Everything is open. If the gospel is veiled, it is not because there is a veil upon the Book of God, but because there is a veil upon the hearts of men (2 Cor. 4:4).

      3. The doctrine of the Bible’s inspiration and infallibility has very serious consequences.

      If the Bible is indeed the Word of God, its authority cannot be questioned. Its teachings cannot be disputed. All that it says must be received as true, submitted to, and obeyed. Its words must be candidly, honestly, and faithfully interpreted. There must be, on our part, a docility of spirit before God’s holy Word. We must bow before God, as he speaks in his Word, with hearts willing to be taught of God, crying saying with Samuel, “Speak, Lord, for thy servant heareth” (1 Sam. 3:9).

      As the this Book is of divine origin, so too our understanding of it is the gift of God. Every time we open it, let us pray for grace from God the Holy Spirit to enlighten and illuminate our hearts, that he might open our understandings and cause us to understand the Scriptures (Ps. 119:18; John 16:13-16; 1 Cor. 2:11, 14).

      4. The metaphors used to describe the Scriptures give us a hint of their great value, usefulness, and profitability.

      It is both interesting and profitable to carefully study the various metaphors given in Scripture for the Word of God. The Bible is compared to a lamp, or a light (Ps. 119:105, 130; Pro. 6:23). It is called a mirror (2 Cor. 3:18; James 1:25). We look into the Bible and see ourselves, not what we think we are, but what we really are: sinful, corrupt, depraved, lost, ruined, and utterly helpless. Holy Scripture is compared to a laver, or wash bowl (Eph. 5:26; Ps. 119:9; John 15:3). It is compared to bread, or food for our souls (Job 23:12). It is bread for the hungry, milk for babes, strong meat for men, and honey to sweeten the lives of those who experience bitterness in this world. The Book of God is compared to both fire to melt, warm, and comfort and a hammer to break (Jer. 23:29). It is the Sword of the Spirit 9Eph. 6:17; Heb. 4:12). It is called good Seed which is sown by the preaching of the gospel (Luke 8:11; Ecc. 11:6; Ps. 126:6).

      “The thoughts of man are lies, The Word of God is true.
      To bow to that is to be wise; Then hear, and fear, and do.”

      “The law of the LORD is perfect, converting the soul: the testimony of the LORD is sure, making wise the simple. The statutes of the LORD are right, rejoicing the heart: the commandment of the LORD is pure, enlightening the eyes. The fear of the LORD is clean, enduring for ever: the judgments of the LORD are true and righteous altogether. More to be desired are they than gold, yea, than much fine gold: sweeter also than honey and the honeycomb” (Ps. 19:7-10).

      [1] “It is utterly inconsistent to extol the Bible as a good book, and at the same time deny its infallibility.” C.D. Cole

      Below are just some verses where God (not me) proves your words , that we must not study God’s Word as false and pagan religion.

      2 Timothy 3:16-17 ESV / 331 helpful votes

      All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the man of God may be competent, equipped for every good work.

      2 Timothy 3:14-17 ESV / 193 helpful votes

      But as for you, continue in what you have learned and have firmly believed, knowing from whom you learned it and how from childhood you have been acquainted with the sacred writings, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus. All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the man of God may be competent, equipped for every good work.

      Joshua 1:8 ESV / 190 helpful votes

      This Book of the Law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do according to all that is written in it. For then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have good success.

      Psalm 119:11 ESV / 171 helpful votes

      I have stored up your word in my heart, that I might not sin against you.

      Psalm 119:105 ESV / 144 helpful votes

      Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path.

      Proverbs 3:1-2 ESV / 130 helpful votes

      My son, do not forget my teaching, but let your heart keep my commandments, for length of days and years of life and peace they will add to you.

      2 Timothy 2:15 ESV / 118 helpful votes

      Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a worker who has no need to be ashamed, rightly handling the word of truth.

      1 Peter 3:15 ESV / 107 helpful votes

      But in your hearts honor Christ the Lord as holy, always being prepared to make a defense to anyone who asks you for a reason for the hope that is in you; yet do it with gentleness and respect,

      Deuteronomy 11:18-23 ESV / 97 helpful votes

      “You shall therefore lay up these words of mine in your heart and in your soul, and you shall bind them as a sign on your hand, and they shall be as frontlets between your eyes. You shall teach them to your children, talking of them when you are sitting in your house, and when you are walking by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise. You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates, that your days and the days of your children may be multiplied in the land that the Lord swore to your fathers to give them, as long as the heavens are above the earth. For if you will be careful to do all this commandment that I command you to do, loving the Lord your God, walking in all his ways, and holding fast to him, …

      Psalm 119:18 ESV / 92 helpful votes

      Open my eyes, that I may behold wondrous things out of your law.

      Romans 12:2 ESV / 79 helpful votes

      Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.

      Psalm 119:9 ESV / 78 helpful votes

      How can a young man keep his way pure? By guarding it according to your word.

      Acts 17:11 ESV / 74 helpful votes

      Now these Jews were more noble than those in Thessalonica; they received the word with all eagerness, examining the Scriptures daily to see if these things were so.

      Ephesians 6:11-17 ESV / 52 helpful votes

      Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the schemes of the devil. 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. 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. Stand therefore, having fastened on the belt of truth, and having put on the breastplate of righteousness, and, as shoes for your feet, having put on the readiness given by the gospel of peace. …

      Hebrews 4:12 ESV / 49 helpful votes

      For the word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and of spirit, of joints and of marrow, and discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart.

      Acts 8:30 ESV / 47 helpful votes

      So Philip ran to him and heard him reading Isaiah the prophet and asked, “Do you understand what you are reading?”

      James 1:22 ESV / 46 helpful votes

      But be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves.

      John 8:32 ESV / 45 helpful votes

      And you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.”

      Proverbs 2:1-5 ESV / 44 helpful votes

      My son, if you receive my words and treasure up my commandments with you, making your ear attentive to wisdom and inclining your heart to understanding; yes, if you call out for insight and raise your voice for understanding, if you seek it like silver and search for it as for hidden treasures, then you will understand the fear of the Lord and find the knowledge of God.

      2 Timothy 3:1-17 ESV / 43 helpful votes

      But understand this, that in the last days there will come times of difficulty. For people will be lovers of self, lovers of money, proud, arrogant, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, heartless, unappeasable, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not loving good, treacherous, reckless, swollen with conceit, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, having the appearance of godliness, but denying its power. Avoid such people. …

      1 John 2:27 ESV / 39 helpful votes

      But the anointing that you received from him abides in you, and you have no need that anyone should teach you. But as his anointing teaches you about everything, and is true, and is no lie—just as it has taught you, abide in him.

      John 13:17 ESV / 36 helpful votes

      If you know these things, blessed are you if you do them.

      John 1:1 ESV / 36 helpful votes

      In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.

      Luke 4:4 ESV / 33 helpful votes

      And Jesus answered him, “It is written, ‘Man shall not live by bread alone.’”

      Hosea 4:6 ESV / 32 helpful votes

      My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge; because you have rejected knowledge, I reject you from being a priest to me. And since you have forgotten the law of your God, I also will forget your children.

      John 5:39-40 ESV / 30 helpful votes

      You search the Scriptures because you think that in them you have eternal life; and it is they that bear witness about me, yet you refuse to come to me that you may have life.

      1 Peter 2:1-2 ESV / 29 helpful votes

      So put away all malice and all deceit and hypocrisy and envy and all slander. Like newborn infants, long for the pure spiritual milk, that by it you may grow up into salvation—

      John 6:63 ESV / 29 helpful votes

      It is the Spirit who gives life; the flesh is no help at all. The words that I have spoken to you are spirit and life.

      John 1:1-51 ESV / 29 helpful votes

      In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things were made through him, and without him was not any thing made that was made. In him was life, and the life was the light of men. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it. …

      Proverbs 2:1-22 ESV / 29 helpful votes

      My son, if you receive my words and treasure up my commandments with you, making your ear attentive to wisdom and inclining your heart to understanding; yes, if you call out for insight and raise your voice for understanding, if you seek it like silver and search for it as for hidden treasures, then you will understand the fear of the Lord and find the knowledge of God. …

      Romans 8:1-10 ESV / 25 helpful votes

      There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. For the law of the Spirit of life has set you free in Christ Jesus from the law of sin and death. For God has done what the law, weakened by the flesh, could not do. By sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh and for sin, he condemned sin in the flesh, in order that the righteous requirement of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not according to the flesh but according to the Spirit. For those who live according to the flesh set their minds on the things of the flesh, but those who live according to the Spirit set their minds on the things of the Spirit. …

      Isaiah 28:9-10 ESV / 25 helpful votes

      “To whom will he teach knowledge, and to whom will he explain the message? Those who are weaned from the milk, those taken from the breast? For it is precept upon precept, precept upon precept, line upon line, line upon line, here a little, there a little.”

      Acts 17:11-12 ESV / 24 helpful votes

      Now these Jews were more noble than those in Thessalonica; they received the word with all eagerness, examining the Scriptures daily to see if these things were so. Many of them therefore believed, with not a few Greek women of high standing as well as men.

      Revelation 1:3 ESV / 22 helpful votes

      Blessed is the one who reads aloud the words of this prophecy, and blessed are those who hear, and who keep what is written in it, for the time is near.

      Matthew 4:1-4 ESV / 22 helpful votes

      Then Jesus was led up by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil. And after fasting forty days and forty nights, he was hungry. And the tempter came and said to him, “If you are the Son of God, command these stones to become loaves of bread.” But he answered, “It is written, “‘Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that comes from the mouth of God.’”

      Ezra 7:10 ESV / 22 helpful votes

      For Ezra had set his heart to study the Law of the Lord, and to do it and to teach his statutes and rules in Israel.

      Psalm 1:2 ESV / 21 helpful votes

      But his delight is in the law of the Lord, and on his law he meditates day and night.

      Matthew 28:20 ESV / 20 helpful votes

      Teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.”

      John 6:68 ESV / 19 helpful votes

      Simon Peter answered him, “Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life,

      Psalm 119:17 ESV / 18 helpful votes

      Deal bountifully with your servant, that I may live and keep your word.

      Luke 18:15-17 ESV / 17 helpful votes

      Now they were bringing even infants to him that he might touch them. And when the disciples saw it, they rebuked them. But Jesus called them to him, saying, “Let the children come to me, and do not hinder them, for to such belongs the kingdom of God. Truly, I say to you, whoever does not receive the kingdom of God like a child shall not enter it.”

      2 Peter 1:2-3 ESV / 16 helpful votes

      May grace and peace be multiplied to you in the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord. His divine power has granted to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of him who called us to his own glory and excellence,

      James 5:15 ESV / 15 helpful votes

      And the prayer of faith will save the one who is sick, and the Lord will raise him up. And if he has committed sins, he will be forgiven.

      Luke 1:1 ESV / 15 helpful votes

      Inasmuch as many have undertaken to compile a narrative of the things that have been accomplished among us,

      Matthew 22:29 ESV / 15 helpful votes

      But Jesus answered them, “You are wrong, because you know neither the Scriptures nor the power of God.

      Luke 10:20 ESV / 14 helpful votes

      Nevertheless, do not rejoice in this, that the spirits are subject to you, but rejoice that your names are written in heaven.”

      Psalm 1:1-6 ESV / 14 helpful votes

      Blessed is the man who walks not in the counsel of the wicked, nor stands in the way of sinners, nor sits in the seat of scoffers; but his delight is in the law of the Lord, and on his law he meditates day and night. He is like a tree planted by streams of water that yields its fruit in its season, and its leaf does not wither. In all that he does, he prospers. The wicked are not so, but are like chaff that the wind drives away. Therefore the wicked will not stand in the judgment, nor sinners in the congregation of the righteous; …

      Galatians 1:6-8 ESV / 13 helpful votes

      I am astonished that you are so quickly deserting him who called you in the grace of Christ and are turning to a different gospel— not that there is another one, but there are some who trouble you and want to distort the gospel of Christ. But even if we or an angel from heaven should preach to you a gospel contrary to the one we preached to you, let him be accursed.

      2 Peter 3:18 ESV / 12 helpful votes

      But grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To him be the glory both now and to the day of eternity. Amen.

      Philippians 2:5-7 ESV / 12 helpful votes

      Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus, who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, but made himself nothing, taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men.

      2 Peter 1:3-4 ESV / 11 helpful votes

      His divine power has granted to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of him who called us to his own glory and excellence, by which he has granted to us his precious and very great promises, so that through them you may become partakers of the divine nature, having escaped from the corruption that is in the world because of sinful desire.

      James 1:5 ESV / 11 helpful votes

      If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given him.

      1 Timothy 2:1-15 ESV / 11 helpful votes

      First of all, then, I urge that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings be made for all people, for kings and all who are in high positions, that we may lead a peaceful and quiet life, godly and dignified in every way. This is good, and it is pleasing in the sight of God our Savior, who desires all people to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth. For there is one God, and there is one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus, …

      Colossians 3:16 ESV / 11 helpful votes

      Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly, teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom, singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, with thankfulness in your hearts to God.

      John 5:39 ESV / 11 helpful votes

      You search the Scriptures because you think that in them you have eternal life; and it is they that bear witness about me,

      John 3:16-17 ESV / 11 helpful votes

      “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him.

      Matthew 13:1-58 ESV / 11 helpful votes

      That same day Jesus went out of the house and sat beside the sea. And great crowds gathered about him, so that he got into a boat and sat down. And the whole crowd stood on the beach. And he told them many things in parables, saying: “A sower went out to sow. And as he sowed, some seeds fell along the path, and the birds came and devoured them. Other seeds fell on rocky ground, where they did not have much soil, and immediately they sprang up, since they had no depth of soil, …

      2 Timothy 3:17 ESV / 10 helpful votes

      That the man of God may be competent, equipped for every good work.

      2 Corinthians 4:4 ESV / 10 helpful votes

      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.

      Psalm 119:99 ESV / 10 helpful votes

      I have more understanding than all my teachers, for your testimonies are my meditation.

      Psalm 19:7-11 ESV / 10 helpful votes

      The law of the Lord is perfect, reviving the soul; the testimony of the Lord is sure, making wise the simple; the precepts of the Lord are right, rejoicing the heart; the commandment of the Lord is pure, enlightening the eyes; the fear of the Lord is clean, enduring forever; the rules of the Lord are true, and righteous altogether. More to be desired are they than gold, even much fine gold; sweeter also than honey and drippings of the honeycomb. Moreover, by them is your servant warned; in keeping them there is great reward.

      Romans 8:28 ESV / 9 helpful votes

      And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose.

      Romans 8:16 ESV / 9 helpful votes

      The Spirit himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God,

      Matthew 5:48 ESV / 9 helpful votes

      You therefore must be perfect, as your heavenly Father is perfect.

      Psalm 119:103 ESV / 9 helpful votes

      How sweet are your words to my taste, sweeter than honey to my mouth!

      2 Timothy 2:2 ESV / 8 helpful votes

      And what you have heard from me in the presence of many witnesses entrust to faithful men who will be able to teach others also.

      1 Timothy 3:16 ESV / 8 helpful votes

      Great indeed, we confess, is the mystery of godliness: He was manifested in the flesh, vindicated by the Spirit, seen by angels, proclaimed among the nations, believed on in the world, taken up in glory.

      Galatians 1:1-24 ESV / 8 helpful votes

      Paul, an apostle—not from men nor through man, but through Jesus Christ and God the Father, who raised him from the dead— and all the brothers who are with me, To the churches of Galatia: Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ, who gave himself for our sins to deliver us from the present evil age, according to the will of our God and Father, to whom be the glory forever and ever. Amen. …

      Revelation 8:1-13 ESV / 7 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful

      When the Lamb opened the seventh seal, there was silence in heaven for about half an hour. Then I saw the seven angels who stand before God, and seven trumpets were given to them. And another angel came and stood at the altar with a golden censer, and he was given much incense to offer with the prayers of all the saints on the golden altar before the throne, and the smoke of the incense, with the prayers of the saints, rose before God from the hand of the angel. Then the angel took the censer and filled it with fire from the altar and threw it on the earth, and there were peals of thunder, rumblings, flashes of lightning, and an earthquake. …

      Isaiah 58:1-14 ESV / 7 helpful votes

      “Cry aloud; do not hold back; lift up your voice like a trumpet; declare to my people their transgression, to the house of Jacob their sins. Yet they seek me daily and delight to know my ways, as if they were a nation that did righteousness and did not forsake the judgment of their God; they ask of me righteous judgments; they delight to draw near to God. ‘Why have we fasted, and you see it not? Why have we humbled ourselves, and you take no knowledge of it?’ Behold, in the day of your fast you seek your own pleasure, and oppress all your workers. Behold, you fast only to quarrel and to fight and to hit with a wicked fist. Fasting like yours this day will not make your voice to be heard on high. Is such the fast that I choose, a day for a person to humble himself? Is it to bow down his head like a reed, and to spread sackcloth and ashes under him? Will you call this a fast, and a day acceptable to the Lord? …

      Isaiah 55:11 ESV / 7 helpful votes

      So shall my word be that goes out from my mouth; it shall not return to me empty, but it shall accomplish that which I purpose, and shall succeed in the thing for which I sent it.

      Matthew 8:5 ESV / 5 helpful votes

      When he entered Capernaum, a centurion came forward to him, appealing to him,

      Isaiah 53:5 ESV / 4 helpful votes

      But he was wounded for our transgressions; he was crushed for our iniquities; upon him was the chastisement that brought us peace, and with his stripes we are healed.

      Jeremiah 15:16 ESV / 3 helpful votes

      Your words were found, and I ate them, and your words became to me a joy and the delight of my heart, for I am called by your name, O Lord, God of hosts.

      Ecclesiastes 12:12 ESV / 2 helpful votes

      My son, beware of anything beyond these. Of making many books there is no end, and much study is a weariness of the flesh.

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