False Witnesses

Psalms 27:11-14 ESV

“Teach me your way, O Lord,
and lead me on a level path
because of my enemies.
Give me not up to the will of my adversaries;
for false witnesses have risen against me,
and they breathe out violence.

“I believe that I shall look upon the goodness of the Lord
in the land of the living!
Wait for the Lord;
be strong, and let your heart take courage;
wait for the Lord!”

What or Who is The Church?

The one thing the Lord is bringing to mind here is in relation to the difference between the institutional “church” (of man, not of God) and the true church, the body of Christ. For there is a lot of confusion on this subject. For if you were to ask most people in America to draw a picture of the church, I think most people would draw a picture of a building, perhaps with a steeple on top, because that has been ingrained in them, probably from childhood, that the building is the church.

And so when they read Hebrews 10:25, and just these words, “not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some,” they interpret those words as we all have to be in a building called “church” on a weekly basis or we are neglecting to meet together as Christians. But back when this was written, they didn’t meet in buildings called “church.” They were the church, and they met together in people’s homes or in the temple courts or wherever they could find a place to meet together as the church.

And another thing about this is that we need to pay attention to the context of Hebrews 10 (before and after and including the whole sentence in vv. 24-25). For this is not talking about a physical building but a spiritual building. For we do not have to go to a physical building now to worship our Lord, for our Lord, by his Spirit, lives within those of us of genuine God-given faith in Jesus Christ. Now we are his building. We are the temple of God, and God lives in us, not in buildings built by human hands. We are God’s house.

[Matt 5:13-16; Matt 28:18-20; Lu 9:23-26; Jn. 4:31-38; Jn. 13:13-17; Jn 14:12; Ac 1:8; Ac 2:42-47; Ac 26:18; Rom 6:1-23; Rom 8:1-17; Rom 10:14-15; Rom 12:1-8; Gal 5:16-21; 1 Co 3:9,16-17; 1 Co 6:19-20; 1 Co 12:1-31; 2 Co 5:1; 2 Co 6:14-16; Eph 1:4,22; Eph 2:19-22; Eph 4:1-32; Eph 5:17-30; Col 1:18-24; Col 2:19; Col 3:12-16; 2 Tim 1:9; 2 Tim 2:21; 1 Pet 1:13-16; 1 Pet 2:4-9,21; Titus 2:11-14; Heb 3:13; Heb 10:23-31; Jude 1:20-21; 1 Jn 1:5-9; 1 Jn 2:3-6; 1 Jn 3:4-10]

And we are to draw near to God with our hearts sprinkled clean from an evil conscience and our bodies washed with pure water, which is speaking of what takes place when we believe in Jesus. We are crucified with him in death to sin, and we are raised with him to walk in newness of life in him, now set free from our slavery to sin so that we will now be slaves of God and of his righteousness. So now we walk according to the Spirit and no longer according to the flesh. And we are to hold fast to these walks of faith.

[Lu 9:23-26; Jn 6:35-58; Jn 15:1-11; Rom 6:1-23; Rom 8:1-17; Eph 4:17-24; 1 Pet 2:24; 1 Co 6:19-20; 2 Co 5:15,21; Tit 2:11-14; Jas 1:22-25; 1 Jn 1:5-9; Rom 12:1-2; Eph 2:8-10; Heb 12:1-2; Jn 6:44; 2 Pet 1:1; 1 Co 15:58; Php 2:12-13; Col 1:21-23; 1 Co 10:1-22; Heb 3:1-19; Heb 4:1-13]

What is the Purpose of our Gatherings?

And now we are to “consider how to stir up one another to love and good works, not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the Day drawing near” (Hebrews 10:24-25 in context). So, what is the purpose of us meeting together? To stir one another up to love and good works (deeds), and to encourage (exhort, urge) one another toward walks of holiness and righteousness and in obedience to our Lord, for we don’t have for forever.

So, we need to meet somewhere together where we can do this, right? Are most institutional churches open to that? None that I am aware of where Christians can meet together and where they can encourage and urge one another in walks of holiness and righteousness, and in loving one another with the love of God, and where we can stir one another up to love and to good works, using the gifts of the Spirit we each have been given in the areas of ministry to which our Lord has called us individually.

And then what follows in Hebrews 10 in vv. 26 and beyond? “For if we go on sinning deliberately after receiving the knowledge of the truth, there no longer remains a sacrifice for sins, but a fearful expectation of judgment, and a fury of fire that will consume the adversaries.” So, the whole purpose of our meeting together is to help prevent this from happening. Our purpose in gathering together as the body of Christ is to exhort and urge one another in holy living and to warn each other, too, of the consequences of continuing in habitual and deliberate sin against our Lord.

[Matt 7:21-23; Lu 9:23-26; Jn 6:35-58; Jn 15:1-11; Rom 1:18-32; Rom 2:6-8; Rom 6:1-23; Rom 8:1-14; 1 Co 6:9-10; 2 Co 5:10; Gal 5:16-21; Gal 6:7-8; Eph 5:3-6; Col 1:21-23; Col 3:5-11; 1 Jn 1:5-10; 1 Jn 2:3-6; 1 Jn 3:4-10; Heb 10:23-31; 1 Pet 1:17-21; Rev 21:8,27; Rev 22:14-15]

False Witnesses

So, going back to the passage of today, there are many professing Christians today who are convinced that we must be in a building called “church” at least once a week or else we are neglecting the meeting together of us Christians. And some of them will put much pressure on Christians who, by God’s direction and leading, have abandoned what is of man and of the flesh of man in order to follow the Lord in obedience in doing what his word teaches us we must do. And they will try to guilt-trip us into returning to what is of man which will mean neglecting what God has called us to do.

Now, I believe many of them mean well, but others who know better who are listening to and who are speaking the lies do not mean well. For some of them who are of the flesh are trying to draw us back into living by the flesh and to not walking by the Spirit. But here is the bottom line. The church is not a building, and it is not a business or a corporation under the state or a church denomination. All of that is of the flesh of man. The church is us, the people who are following Jesus Christ with our lives, and so we are following his lead and not the leading of human flesh.

And God has led many of us to leave the institutional church (Babylon) and to go where our Lord sends us where we can do what he has called us to do, as his body – where we can use our spiritual gifts and ministries for the encouragement and building up of the body of Christ to maturity in Christ and in our walks of faith and obedience to our Lord – and where we can warn of the things the Scriptures warn us against, which is also for the building up of the body of Christ to maturity in Christ, our Lord. And for me, that place is the internet, which is where the Lord led me 18 years ago.

Come Out from Among Her: [John 2:13-17; 1 Corinthians 1:10-17; 2 Corinthians 6:14-18; Revelation 18:1-5]

For Our Nation

An Original Work / September 11, 2012

Bombs are bursting. Night is falling.
Jesus Christ is gently calling
You to follow Him in all ways.
Trust Him with your life today.
Make Him your Lord and your Savior.
Turn from your sin. Follow Jesus.
He will forgive you of your sin;
Cleanse your heart, made new within.

Men betraying: Our trust fraying.
On our knees to God we’re praying,
Seeking God to give us answers
That are only found in Him.
God is sovereign over all things.
Nothing from His mind escaping.
He has all things under His command,
And will work all for good.

Jesus Christ is gently calling
You to follow Him in all ways.

Men deceiving: We’re believing
In our Lord, and interceding
For our nation and its people
To obey their God today.
He is our hope for our future.
For our wounds He offers suture.
He is all we need for this life.
Trust Him with your life today.

4 thoughts on “False Witnesses

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