Warren's final message for the family of God.
Please remember this site is free to all, and can be down loaded to any and all that can use of it. It is free from all denominational agendas, dedicated to the glory of the Lord , and you can if you understand what He has said to you. His word is not a book of does and doníts but a series of life situations that illustrate the consequences that come from them. Some are good and others are bad, and God wants you to learn from them. He wants you to make the gand His Word, and to you the reader. Its purpose is to reveal the one true God and His character so that you are able to know Himood choices in life so He can bless you. He wants you to reach the great potential He has for you in serving Him.
For only there you can find true happiness andfulfillment in life. Reaching that potential starts with making an oath of commitment to Him as the Lord of your life. That commitment is Baptism consider Romans 6:1-18 " What shall we say then? Shall we continue in sin, that grace may abound? 2 God forbid. How shall we, that are dead to sin, live any longer therein? 3 Know ye not, that so many of us as were baptized into Jesus Christ were baptized into his death? 4 Therefore we are buried with him by baptism into death: that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life. 5 For if we have been planted together in the likeness of his death, we shall be also in the likeness of his resurrection: 6 Knowing this, that our old man is crucified with him, that the body of sin might be destroyed, that henceforth we should not serve sin. 7 For he that is dead is freed from sin. 8 Now if we be dead with Christ, we believe that we shall also live with him: 9 Knowing that Christ being raised from the dead dieth no more; death hath no more dominion over him. 10 For in that he died, he died unto sin once: but in that he liveth, he liveth unto God. 11 Likewise reckon ye also yourselves to be dead indeed unto sin, but alive unto God through Jesus Christ our Lord. 12 Let not sin therefore reign in your mortal body, that ye should obey it in the lusts thereof. 13 Neither yield ye your members as instruments of unrighteousness unto sin: but yield yourselves unto God, as those that are alive from the dead, and your members as instruments of righteousness unto God. 14 For sin shall not have dominion over you: for ye are not under the law, but under grace. 15 What then? shall we sin, because we are not under the law, but under grace? God forbid. 16 Know ye not, that to whom ye yield yourselves servants to obey, his servants ye are to whom ye obey; whether of sin unto death, or of obedience unto righteousness? 17 But God be thanked, that ye were the servants of sin, but ye have obeyed from the heart that form of doctrine which was delivered you. 18 Being then made free from sin, ye became the servants of righteousness."
First of all, please remember God does not look for perfection, for the only perfect one is Jesus Christ. He does, however, look at the priority of the heart. Consider the examples of God using imperfect men to do a perfect work for Him, both in the Old & New testaments. Remember the many failures of Abraham, for when he was afraid of death, to save himself, he give away his wife to those who wanted her saying she was his sister. But in the end he followed God's instructions to sacrifice his only son. Then what of God choosing David as a man after His own heart as a child, knowing David would later committed adultery and murder. David struggled to please God, Read Psalm 51. Many of God's men were chosen not for what they were, but for the fact that they wanted to be loyal to Him. Think of the apostle Peter vowing he would follow Christ even to death. Then denied Christ three times, yet was used to preach the gospel at Pentecost. So don't put yourself down, when God wants to lift you up and empower you through the indwelling Holy Spirit, to do His will in your life for Him. You can do it if you let the Lord live your life for you.
Secondly, In the final analysis we are either accepted by Him, or rejected by Him, as a result of our following Him and His Word, or by our walk in and with the world. Think about it, Jesus is not concerned with our meeting men's or institutions expectations and standards, but those of His own. The truth of it all is summed up in what Jesus said. Consider John 10:26 - 27 "But ye believe not, because ye are not of my sheep, as I said unto you. 27 My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me:" There is no religion spoken of here, it is the reality of a life committed to following Christ and His Word, versus a verbal profession of a religious belief system.
As you can see such an empty profession has no acceptance by Christ. Consider the words of Jesus Math. 7: 21 - 23 "Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven. 22 Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works? 23 And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity."
Did that say there is an order of religious words that will assure ones salvation and belonging to the family of God? Or does Christ say belonging to Him is not a profession of words, but a choice to be committed to follow Christ and His word. So much for the easy belief's spoken today, to entice people into a religious organization, and have a loyalty to them. While it may give them a religious crutch to lean on in troublesome times, it is rejected by Christ.
If you go to a good church where God's Word is taught and preached so you can grow in Christ, be faithful in attendance and help the pastor accomplish God's task for that assembly. However remember, your obligation is to be accepted by Christ not by men, denomination or institution. Therefore, you are to test all who teach and preach the Word of God and His will for you. Be sure the pastor or teacher lets the Bible interpret itself, not by him or others. If they do not, start a church (an assembly) with others, and remember Jesus promise in Math. 18:20 " For where two or three are gathered in my name, there am I among them." For where two or three are gathered in my name, there am I among them."
As to God's faithfulness, I can testify from the time of my receiving Him, growing in Him, being called into His service, He has never let me down. This is explainable by His wonderful character, and the fact that He knew me better than myself. Consider Psalm 139:1 - 11 "O LORD, thou hast searched me, and known me. 2 Thou knowest my downsitting and mine uprising, thou understandest my thought afar off. 3 Thou compassest my path and my lying down, and art acquainted with all my ways. 4 For there is not a word in my tongue, but, lo, O LORD, thou knowest it altogether. 5 Thou hast beset me behind and before, and laid thine hand upon me. 6 Such knowledge is too wonderful for me; it is high, I cannot attain unto it. 7 Whither shall I go from thy spirit? or whither shall I flee from thy presence? 8 If I ascend up into heaven, thou art there: if I make my bed in hell, behold, thou art there. 9 If I take the wings of the morning, and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea; 10 Even there shall thy hand lead me, and thy right hand shall hold me. 11 If I say, Surely the darkness shall cover me; even the night shall be light about me. 12 Yea, the darkness hideth not from thee; but the night shineth as the day: the darkness and the light are both alike to thee."
The Lord has been with me at all times, everywhere I was. Beyond that He was aware of all my thoughts, motives and actions, so that nothing took Him by surprise. He has been an eye witness to all I have said, done and thought. By His grace, He makes all things to work out according to His will, even when I have presumptuously messed things up, by overconfidence in prideful thinking. Sadly, however, in spite of these truths of God's all knowing omniscience, of everywhere we go, knowing our motives and witnessing all we do, many think they have lives unknown to Him. Many forget we are to be accepted by Him alone, and not by living our own presumptuous lifestyle or that of others.
At this point let me explain how this site came about. In 1980 I became aware of the fact that I learned about the facts of God and His character, both in my local church and attending and graduating from Moody Bible Institute. Although I knew the facts about God, I did not Know Him as a person. As a result of that awareness I began a study that has never stopped. It was from my notes of that study this site has developed, and the "Family of God Bible Outlines" so you can grow in Him and be prepared to serve Him, which was, and is my hearts desire. I also pray you have, or will look at the book I wrote entitled "See the Shepherd and Bishop of our Souls" and meditate on the serious questions it raises.
However, it came as a result of a great cost to me as a person. Consider what Jesus said to His disciples Matthew 19:29-30 (KJV) "And every one that hath forsaken houses, or brethren, or sisters, or father, or mother, or 'wife, or children, or lands, for my name's sake, shall receive an hundredfold, and shall inherit everlasting life. 30 But many that are first shall be last; and the last shall be first." Upon meditating on this, from that time on it was not my life anymore, it was Christ's life to live as He wanted it, for His purposes. I realized it was my responsibility to love and follow Jesus Christ, not them or their opinions, even when my loved ones did not understand. Many in my family put me down as a husband and father because Christ's purposes and that of the ministry came if front of the needs of myself and family. Some Pastors stopped supporting me because I left denominational dogmas and opinions that did not agree with their philosophy of the Word of God. Nevertheless, all through my ministry I have never asked for a particular salary or a retirement plan, I just used whatever the Lord gave us to accomplish the work He gave us.
He has faithfully been with me at all times, everywhere I was, beyond that He was aware of all my thoughts and actions, so that nothing took Him by surprise. He has been an eye witness to all I have said, done and thought. All He asked of me, was to prove my love for Him by trusting and committing myself to Him. Therefore, He gracefully cared for me and my family, and made all things to work out according to His will. Even when I have presumptuously messed things up, by overconfidence in my prideful thinking I knew how to manage a situation. Consider Romans 8:28 "And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose." He will do the same for you if you let Him.
All WHO ARE TRYING TO FOLLOW CHRIST should consider 2 Cor. 6:1 - 10 " We then, as workers together with him, beseech you also that ye receive not the grace of God in vain. 2 (For he saith, I have heard thee in a time accepted, and in the day of salvation have I succoured thee: behold, now is the accepted time; behold, now is the day of salvation.) 3 Giving no offence in any thing, that the ministry be not blamed: ( Please note, this is be careful not to do things presumptively or purposely that might bring reproach.)
Now notice God's knowledge of their actions and circumstances. " 4 But in all things approving ourselves as the ministers of God, in much patience, in afflictions, in necessities, in distresses, 5 In stripes, in imprisonments, in tumults, in labours, in watchings, in fastings; 6 By pureness, by knowledge, by longsuffering, by kindness, by the Holy Ghost, by love unfeigned, 7 By the word of truth, by the power of God, by the armour of righteousness on the right hand and on the left",
Then notice the paradox between God's knowledge, and the presumptuous evaluations of our circumstances or actions by others. This is something we have no control of. "8 By honour and dishonour, by evil report and good report: as deceivers, and yet true; 9 As unknown, and yet well known; as dying, and, behold, we live; as chastened, and not killed; 10 As sorrowful, yet alway rejoicing; as poor, yet making many rich; as having nothing, and yet possessing all things."
I have been encouraged by the apostle Paul in that he experienced these same things by different people in his lifetime. Think on this: 2 Cor. 12:7 - 10 "And lest I should be exalted above measure through the abundance of the revelations, there was given to me a thorn in the flesh, the messenger of Satan to buffet me, lest I should be exalted above measure. 8 For this thing I besought the Lord thrice, that it might depart from me. 9 And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me. 10 Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in necessities, in persecutions, in distresses for Christ's sake: for when I am weak, then am I strong."
My final thought and concern for you, is how will Jesus see you at the judgment seat of Christ?
Please remember Jesus said in Mat. 7:21 - 23 " Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven. 22 Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works? 23 And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity."
Consider 2 Cor. 5:8 - 11 " We are confident, I say, and willing rather to be absent from the body, and to be present with the Lord. 9 Wherefore we labour, that, whether present or absent, we may be accepted of him. 10 For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ; that every one may receive the things done in his body, according to that he hath done, whether it be good or bad. 11 Knowing therefore the terror of the Lord, we persuade men; but we are made manifest unto God; and I trust also are made manifest in your consciences."
Yes, in my life with Christ I have all too slowly learned that all my trials are really opportunities to demonstrate the reality of Christ living in me, IF I let HIM use them to do so. This is the prayer I pray many times a day . . . "O Lord may you have control of my mind and actions, so that your will be done in and through me."
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God bless you, and may all your decisions cause Romans 8:27 - 28 "And he that searcheth the hearts knoweth what is the mind of the Spirit, because he maketh intercession for the saints according to the will of God. 28 And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.' be true in your life.
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Your friend in Christ Warren T. Smith
Go to Family of God Bible Outlines Go to The Shepherd & Bishop of Our Souls
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