Pentecost 2013

Pentecost is a time for celebrating the gospel given at Mt. Sinai and the Spirit given after the resurrection of the Christ. The good news at Sinai was that God was going to be with us. He gave His Law as part of the preparation. The Spirit accompanies His Law because the Law is truth. God is indeed with us in Truth. Let us celebrate the reversal of the banishment from His presence with His Spirit in a heart of flesh walking in His statutes, keeping His rules, and obeying them.

Your righteousness is righteous forever, and your law is true. (Psalm 119:142, ESV)

And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Helper, to be with you forever, even the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees him nor knows him. You know him, for he dwells with you and will be in you. (John 14:16–17, ESV)

And I will give them one heart, and a new spirit I will put within them. I will remove the heart of stone from their flesh and give them a heart of flesh, that they may walk in my statutes and keep my rules and obey them. And they shall be my people, and I will be their God. (Ezekiel 11:19–20, ESV)

Feelings, Nothing more than Feelings

Feelings are a key factor in “decisions for Christ.” Most public appeals for these decisions rest on emotion and don’t generally last. Ray Comfort says he found an 80% to 90% failure rate for decisions in one study. He cited a major denomination which in the early 90’s racked up 294,000 “decisions” but later could find only 14,000 in fellowship (95% failure).

Besides, have you ever tried to teach someone how to feel? Specifically, to “feel” like doing something? It can’t be done. Many things we have to do in spite of our feelings. We don’t pass on the Word of God to the next generation by getting them to ‘feel’ it. We pass it on by living it. When we back up the truth with our lives, then the kids get it.

Feeling for Truth

From ‘Whole Bible Christianity’ chapter 1 section on Feel for Truth

Dogma in Greek means “that which one thinks is true” and comes from the root word dokeo meaning “to seem good” or “to think.” But at some point we stop thinking and switch to what “seems good” but is not sustained by the Word.

One way that people enable a part-Bible church is that we substitute feelings for truth. According to the survey ‘Americans Are Most Likely to Base Truth on Feelings’ from Barna Research (February 2002; The Barna Group of Ventura CA; many prefer to do whatever “feels right or comfortable,” or would “produce the most beneficial results.” Sadly, what is captivating many Christians these days is a form of godliness lacking in power and appealing to “various impulses.”

1But realize this, that in the last days difficult times will come. 2For men will be lovers of self, lovers of money, boastful, arrogant, revilers, disobedient to parents, ungrateful, unholy, 3unloving, irreconcilable, malicious gossips, without self-control, brutal, haters of good, 4treacherous, reckless, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, 5holding to a form of godliness, although they have denied its power; Avoid such men as these. 6For among them are those who enter into households and captivate weak women weighed down with sins, led on by various impulses, 7always learning and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth. (2 Timothy 3:1-7 NASB95)

God’s Word is Law, Love, Light, Lamp, Instruction, etc.

The Bible is given to all people, but some grab hold while others let it slip away. To believers every word from God is love, light, life, a lamp, instruction, law, commands, judgments, teaching, ways, wisdom and truth.

• Love—John 12-14, 15:10.
• Light and lamp—Proverbs 6:23; Psalm 119:105; Isaiah 8:20; Revelation 21:23, 22:5.
• Life—Deuteronomy 4:1, 32:46-47; Proverbs 8:32-36; Matthew 19:16, 17.
• Instructions—Isaiah 1:10; Exodus 16:4 24:12; Jeremiah 35:13; Job 22:22, 36:10; Psalm 78:1; Zephaniah 3:1-7; Malachi 2:1-9; Proverbs 1:2,3,7,8 4:1,2; Romans 15:4; Ephesians 6:4; 1 Timothy 1:5; 1 Thessalonians 4:1, 5:12; 2 Tim 4:2.
• Law—Jeremiah 6:18-19; Zechariah 7:12; Deut 5:5, 17:11, 27:1-3, 26, 30:10,14, 32:46,47; John 15:25; Acts 6:2-4,7 13:44,48,49, 28:23; Romans 9:28,31,32; 1 Corinthians 15:2; Galatians 5:14.
• Commands, judgments, teachings & ways—Isaiah 2:3; Proverbs 5:12, 7:2, 8:10, 1:8, 4:2, 3:1, 6:20-23; Jeremiah 32:33; Deuteronomy 4:1; 2 Chronicles 15:1-7; Matthew 4:23, 7:28,29, 9:35, 13:54, 15:9, 28:20; Acts 2:42, 4:2, 18:11; Romans 12:7; 1 Corinthians 14:26.
• Wisdom and truth—Psalm 119:43,44,142, 138:2; Proverbs 23:23; Malachi 2:6; 1 Kings 2:3-4; John 17:17, 18:37-38, 8:31-32; James 1:18, 21-23,25.

Everything God says could be described by any of these terms. ‘Law’ is ‘instruction’ and also a ‘lamp’ and ‘light.’ ‘Wisdom’ and ‘truth’ is also ‘love’ and ‘life.’ Some people separate His Words into cubbyholes. They think that somehow a word from Him that is ‘Law’ is not ‘love,’ or that a word that is a ‘lamp’ is not ‘Law.’