Plumbline Faith

Simple Faith, Simple Virtue, Simple Church

Simple Virtue — August 15, 2018

Simple Virtue

When people say “worship” today …

They mean reverent music.

When the New Testament says “worship” …

It means living our lives in reverent submission and obedience to God.

There’s nothing wrong with music.

It has its place, when done as the New Testament actually says …

But not as a substitute or new definition for true worship.

That was never God’s intent.

Simple Faith — August 12, 2018

Simple Faith

“Worship” has been reduced from its Biblical meaning of living lives in obeisance (humble submission) and obedience to God …

To music that makes us feel good.

Although music can be a good thing …

Somehow, I think we lost our way.

Simple Faith — August 10, 2018
Simple Faith — August 8, 2018

Simple Faith

Jesus never said we’re saved by asking Him into our heart …

But by surrendering to His Kingdom rule and doing His Father’s will.

That’s called repentance.

Those who proclaim anything less …

Are preaching a lie.

Simple Church — August 7, 2018

Simple Church

How we measure “church” success:

Ministry by one gifted man who attracts fifty others to his “service” each Sunday morning …

That’s nice.

Ministry by one gifted man who attracts hundreds to his “service” each Sunday morning …

Now you’re talkin’!

Ministry by one gifted man who attracts thousands to his “service” each Sunday morning …

Mega success!!

How the New Testament measures church success:

Believers who gather together as a community, with each using their gifts …

For ministry one to another.

Simple Discipleship — August 6, 2018

Simple Discipleship

The me-centered, contrived intensity that many call “worship” these days …

Is an affront to God’s holiness.

In the New Testament, true worship is living lives of obeisance (humble submission) and obedience to Him, as He mandates …

Rather than projecting our own carnality onto Him to feed our own soulish needs.

Let’s return to the true God of Scripture with authentic worship …

As actually defined and commanded by Him.

Because when we relate to God on His terms rather than ours …

Amazing things of eternal significance will start happening in your own life and those around you.

Simple Faith — August 3, 2018

Simple Faith

It’s ironic how some think that elevating Christ as the Living Word …

Means discounting His written Word of Scripture.

Is Christ divided?

He’s all or nothing …

Because there is no pick-and-choose Jesus.

Simple Faith — August 2, 2018

Simple Faith

A “relationship” with a purely subjective Jesus, apart from His plenary authority of Scripture as His written Word …

Leads to inauthentic faith.

Likewise, “truth” based on the plenary authority of Scripture without Jesus alive in us …

Also leads to an inauthentic faith.

Each extreme – born of an endless cycle of reaction to the other – chronicles two tragic trends of Church history.

Unfortunately, we still see these extremes played out today.

Authentic faith embraces the fulness of Christ:

Both His Person …

And what He has revealed in His written Word of Scripture.

Even so, however, where my subjective perception of Him differs from His written self-disclosure, objective precepts and propositional truths of Scripture …

I must yield to Scripture.

There can be no maturity in Christ apart from these essentials.

Simple Faith — August 1, 2018

Simple Faith

Salvation isn’t about “asking Jesus into your heart”.

There’s nothing in the New Testament which says that.

Rather, it’s about repenting and submitting to His Kingdom …

On His terms, not ours.

When we stand before Him on that final day …

It will be the only Gospel that counts.

Simple Church — July 30, 2018

Simple Church

Functional, sustainable ekklesia is impossible …

Among those who reject the plenary authority of Scripture as God’s revealed, transcendent and propositional truth.

It’s like cats trying to herd themselves.

Simple Church — July 29, 2018

Simple Church

Someone asked if I believe in women clergy.

No way, no how!

But then again, I don’t believe in men clergy either. 😉

Seriously, there is no clergy/laity divide in the New Testament.

Instead, we are ALL commanded to submit one to another as we minister to each other …

No matter what differing function, diverse gift or level of grace we’ve been given.

Simple Faith — July 28, 2018
Simple Truth — July 27, 2018

Simple Truth

Have you ever noticed how so-called “Christians” who selectively dismiss the original intent, meaning and authority of Scripture so they can make it say whatever they want …

Inevitably do the same with our nation’s founding principles and Constitution?

This should be no surprise …

Because their hubris knows no bounds.

Simple Church — July 25, 2018

Simple Church

Four things not found in the New Testament:

– Current prevailing concepts of “pastor”;

– Current prevailing concepts of “tithing”;

– Current prevailing concepts of “worship”; and

– Current prevailing concepts of “church”.

My God bring forth those with the courage to pursue the authentic as He defines it …

Rather than remain stuck in post-biblical human traditions.

Simple Church — July 23, 2018
Simple Discipleship — July 22, 2018
Simple Faith — July 20, 2018

Simple Faith

What is existentialism, and why does it matter?

Existentialism is a worldly philosophy which believes that each individual can define – on their own terms – what is true, right and real based on their own perceptions and personal sensibilities. Continue reading

Simple Church — July 18, 2018

Simple Church

“Assembly” is probably the closest English word to “ekklesia”, which is the original ancient Greek word commonly mistranslated as “church” in our English Bibles.

But even “assembly” falls short.

In the common usage of the day when the New Testament was written, “ekklesia” almost always referred to the participatory governing authority in a city …

Made up of local citizens appointed by a larger empire.

In Israel during Jesus’ time on Earth, the local ekklesia under Roman rule was the Sanhedrin.

Each city or provence had their own local ekklesia, appointed by the conquering Roman empire to assemble and manage local affairs through local citizens.

Although it operated under the Emperor’s authority, it nonetheless functioned internally as a democratic and fully participatory assembly.

The idea of Christ building His ekklesia, therefore, was subversive to Roman ears but fully in line with His further teachings on His Kingdom.

Unfortunately, “church” today has little to do – either as to form or function – with what “ekklesia” actually meant when the New Testament was written.

Christ’s ekklesia would be an assembly of those called by Him to gather and participate together …

In exercising His authority and advancing His Kingdom as His representatives in their local community.

To really understand the Bible, we need to learn what it actually said when written, based on the meaning and context of the words used …

Rather than reading back into those words our contrary post-New Testament meanings.

Simple Discipleship — July 17, 2018
Simple Faith — July 16, 2018

Simple Faith

The Bible doesn’t say to believe in yourself …

But to die to self.

Jesus never said to forgive yourself …

But to forgive others and then ask God to forgive you.

The Gospel isn’t about affirming you …

But about repenting and surrendering to Christ’s rule.

Only then will you find yourself …

Your freedom …

And your validation …

As defined by Him.

Simple Virtue — July 15, 2018

Simple Virtue

“Who are you to judge? God knows my heart.”

Yes. Yes He does:

“The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked.” (Jer 17:9)

Which is why, in fact, we ARE to judge …

But righteously. (Jn 7:24)

Which means wisely applying God’s external standards of what’s true, real and right…

To internally justified lies, distortions and immorality.

Simple Truth — July 13, 2018

Simple Truth

Reformed Theology says it’s impossible to reject God’s grace when offered …

Based on the philosophic concept that doing so would involve human autonomy against God’s sovereignty.

The flaw is that Reformed Theology does not see that there is a third option, which runs throughout Scripture.

The choice isn’t Calvinism = God’s Sovereignty …

While Arminianism = Human autonomy.

Rather, Biblical doctrine shows that God is so sovereign …

He can offer not only undeserved grace, but also the undeserved choice to accept or reject that grace.

Denying God’s sovereign right to delegate that choice is, at it’s core, a denial of His sovereignty.

Simple Faith — July 12, 2018

Simple Faith

We are bound by the limits of our fallen nature, which makes us spiritually “dead in our trespasses and sin”.

We are not spiritually sick, but dead.

Free will, therefore, is a myth apart from God’s grace giving us the option to choose Him …

Because those who are spiritually dead have no choice in and of themselves.

Fundamentally, we have no human autonomy or ability to choose anything apart from what God has chosen to delegate and enable.

According to His sovereign will, however, He didn’t want puppets on a string …

So He gave Adam the option to choose sin and death – as He knew he would – by rejecting His rule.

Adam chose foolishly.

Christ, according to His eternal plan …

Then defeated sin and death through the Cross to give us the option to choose righteousness and life – as He wills – by submitting to His rule.

This is what makes God’s grace so amazing.

Choose wisely, therefore …

While you still have a choice.

Simple Church — July 9, 2018

Simple Church

Most of what we call “worship” today …

Is so contrived and manipulative as to be an affront to God.

Most, however, are so unwilling to submit their concept of “worship” to what the New Testament actually says is worship …

That they don’t even care.

Simple Faith — July 8, 2018