May Questions & Answers
The following questions are taken from emails and are printed below exactly as I received them. Names and contact information has been removed. The answers are in note form (sorry for any of my grammar errors) to be studied through. You’ll have to examine each Scripture below to see the points. Please be mindful that there are often circumstances and details to every question that could potentially change the answer.
1. “So I was reading about the wheat and tares. I see the explaining why the church has all of the tares. What the parable does not explain is why Jesus wants the tares in the church. Can you explain this?”
The “Parable Of The Tares Of The Field” is not about the church. The Parable is taught in Matthew 13:24-30 and then explained by Jesus in Matthew 13:36-43 because the disciples did not understand it.
In Jesus’ explanation of the Parable He said: “The field is the world; the good seed are the children of the kingdom; but the tares are the children of the wicked one” (Matthew 13:38). Therefore, when you stated that “the church has all of the tares”, that conclusion was incorrect.
For your further studies, you should study and learn that Jesus does not allow for any sinners to be in His body, the church (Revelation 2:14-16).
The church MUST be holy and without blemish (Ephesians 5:27).
The church, which is the body of the faithful in Christ (I Corinthians 12:27), may not have ANY fellowship with those in error, sin, etc. (II Corinthians 6:14-18, Ephesians 5:6-11, I Timothy 5:22, and II John 1:6-11).
Such is why we must purge out the erring, through marking and withdrawing from them (Matthew 18:15-17, Romans 16:17-18, I Corinthians 5:1-13, II Thessalonians 3:6, and II Thessalonians 3:14-15).
Those whom the faithful should call “brethren” [in a spiritual sense] are those whom are faithfully obedient to the will of the Lord (Matthew 12:46-50).
Your incorrect conclusion is something to learn from. You must study things out in context and then verify that your conclusions are correct in light of the rest of the Scriptures (Acts 17:10-11 and II Timothy 2:14-18). Had you thought this through, based upon some of the other Scriptures mentioned above, you would have known your conclusion could not have been correct.
2. “Is it true that God ordered a prophet to married a prostitute?”
Yes, God had Hosea marry a wife of whoredoms (Hosea 1:1-3 and Hosea 3:1-5). The marriage and life of Hosea was a living lesson. His relationship represented what God’s relationship was like with Israel. Israel was a spiritual harlot (more on that in a moment).
God had Hosea and some of the other prophets even name their children as lessons unto Israel (i.e. Hosea 1:6-11 and Isaiah 8:1-4).
Isaiah wrote it well: “Behold, I and the children whom the Lord hath given me are for signs and for wonders in Israel from the Lord of hosts, which dwelleth in mount Zion” (Isaiah 8:18).
To further illustrate the point, recall that the prophets had to do things such as walk around naked (Isaiah 20:1-6), use a girdle (Jeremiah 13:1-14), display pottery (Jeremiah 19:1-15), Ezekiel had to lose his wife and not mourn her (Ezekiel 24:15-24), use sticks as lessons (Ezekiel 37:16-28), etc.
The reason was, Israel had gone whoring after other gods in their practices of idolatry, etc. (Deuteronomy 31:16, II Chronicles 21:8-13, Jeremiah 3:1-11, Ezekiel 16:1-63, and Ezekiel 23:1-49).
Think for a moment of the illustration the life of Hosea serves. When a child of God errs God sees that as spiritual adultery/fornication (Jeremiah 9:1-3 and James 4:4). When you want to come back to Him and repent like all is well and fine, you are asking Him to take you back just as a woman playing the whore would be asking of her husband. We should abhor ourselves if we sin (Job 42:1-6).
3. “How can you say that Jesus is God? Jesus said that only God is good. Jesus says, by myself, I can do nothing. This indicates that Jesus is relying upon his own relationship with God. Jesus is not trying to “please myself” but rather is seeking to please the one who sent me. Jesus said The Father is greater than I. Jesus was tempted in every way, but God cannot be tempted. This is why Jesus said, don’t call me good, none are good, only God. Now do you see?”
I “say that Jesus is God” because the Scriptures say that Jesus is God (Isaiah 9:1-7, Matthew 1:21-23, John 1:1-5, John 8:58 [cf. Exodus 3:14-15], Acts 20:28 [cf. Ephesians 5:25], and Romans 9:1-5). All of your arguments and twists of Scriptures do not change that the Scriptures repeatedly and clearly call Jesus God.
When Jesus made statements that He could have done nothing by Himself (John 5:19 and John 5:30), He was making a point about the hierarchy in Heaven (I Corinthians 11:3). That does not make Him cease to be deity. The Bible says He was and is!
The Father was greater in authority than Jesus. He is the one that gave authority to Jesus (Matthew 17:1-5 and Matthew 28:18-20).
You are perverting James 1:13 in your argument to deny the deity of Christ. The point of Hebrews 4:14-16, that makes the Father different from the Son, is that Jesus lived in the flesh and experienced the things we face in the flesh. The Father and the Holy Spirit have not had that experience. The Greek word translated “tempted” in James 1:13 [Strong’s # 551] is not the word used in Hebrews 4:15. What Jesus faced was being tried (Matthew 4:1-11) and that is what is meant in Hebrews 4:15 [Strong’s #3985]. In fact, the Greek word in Hebrews 4:15 is the same word as used in Matthew 4:1, Matthew 4:3, Matthew 16:1, Matthew 19:3, Matthew 22:18, Matthew 22:35, Mark 1:13, Mark 8:11, Mark 10:2, Mark 12:15, Luke 4:2, Luke 11:16, Luke 20:23, etc. Each of those Scriptures show Jesus being tried, tested; to prove Him (John 6:6). Jesus was not being tempted in the way the word is commonly understood. Jesus was NOT tempted as the word in James 1:13 is used. He was tested as the word in Hebrews 4:15 means. Study that out and you will see you are twisting the Scriptures to your own destruction (cf. II Peter 3:15-18).
Again, regarding His “there is none good” statement; you’ve twisted another Scripture. When Jesus was teaching the rich young ruler and stated that none are good, but God, He was not denying being God. The rich young ruler didn’t recognize who He was talking to and that was the overall point of Jesus’ statement (Matthew 19:16-22, Mark 10:17-22, and Luke 18:18-23). The man approached Jesus as though Jesus was just a teacher [master]. Jesus questioned him as to why he called Him “good” seeing as how he did not even fully know who Jesus was.
Do you really think Jesus was denying being good? You are incorrect if you think so. The Scriptures teach clearly that Jesus was good (Hebrews 7:22-27, Hebrews 9:28, I Peter 2:21-23, and I John 3:1-5).
Consider also, for further thought on your part, that only God is to be worshiped (Deuteronomy 6:13-14).
Angels knew that only God was to be worshiped and they refused such (Revelation 22:8-9).
Apostles knew that and did not allow themselves to be worshiped (Acts 10:25-26).
Jesus knew that (Matthew 4:9-10). Jesus accepted worship (Matthew 8:1-3, Matthew 14:32-33, Matthew 28:16-17, Luke 24:51-53, and John 9:35-38).
My question, back you to, is: Now do you see? Jesus IS God (I Timothy 3:16).
You cannot be saved if you think otherwise (John 8:23-24).
4. “Ok so I have a doctrinal question for you... I ran into an old buddy who became a Baptist. He started telling me how to get salvation but never mentioned baptism. So I told him that we had to be saved too, but he told me that baptism was not necessary. He asked me why Jesus never baptised if he was sent to save. He asked me if baptism was so important why did Paul say that he was not called to baptize.”
First, you have to realize that when people start down the road of reasoning that your “old buddy” did, you do not have to answer them (II Timothy 2:23). He is not looking for the truth, he is looking to keep from having to obey the truth (i.e. Matthew 21:23-32). Having said that, here are some things in regard to what you have asked...
Jesus didn’t baptize individuals (John 4:1-2). Prior to the death of Jesus, the Old Testament law was in effect. It took Jesus’ death to put it away (Romans 7:1-6, Colossians 2:14, and Hebrews 9:15-17).
Consider the thief on the cross as an illustration to this point. The “thief on the cross” was not living under the New Testament Law. Jesus, prior to His death, had not even commanded the Apostles to go and preach the Gospel to the whole world baptizing those who believed. That command was given AFTER Jesus’ death, burial, and resurrection (Matthew 28:18-20 and Mark 16:15-20).
Prior to Jesus commanding all to baptized, the baptism of John was practiced and even Jesus obeyed that instruction (Matthew 3:1-17). Prior to the command to teach and baptize all who heard and wanted to be converted (again; Matthew 28:18-20 and Mark 16:15-20), Jesus’ disciples began teaching, but only the to the Jews (Matthew 10:1-6).
This period of time was during the end of the Law of Moses, but before the Law of Christ full came into effect (Matthew 11:9-13 and Luke 16:16).
After the Law of Christ came into effect, those taught John’s baptism needed to be immersed into Christ (Acts 19:1-7).
The thief of the cross (Luke 23:36-43) was not living under the Law of Christ as we are. We don’t even know if or not he was baptized with John’s baptism. To compare him to anyone living today is dishonest.
We are under the New Covenant. As such, the only way into Christ is to be immersed (Romans 6:3-6 and Galatians 3:26-29).
What Paul wrote in I Corinthians 1:17 has to be kept in context. The saints in Corinth, who had been baptized (Acts 18:8), were wearing the names of those who baptized them (I Corinthians 1:10-13). Paul had baptized some of them (I Corinthians 1:14-16). Paul’s point is that his work was to preach the Gospel, not to serve the purpose of baptizing people. Baptism is in response to preaching, not the other way around. Paul was attempting to get these erring Christians to understand that the person who baptized them did not matter. To infer that Paul did not baptize is to err (Acts 16:13-34).
Baptism saves (I Peter 3:20-21).
However, baptism is not any more important than the many other things one must do to be saved and remain saved (Matthew 13:19, Matthew 18:1-4, Luke 13:1-5, Luke 14:25-33, John 8:23-24, John 8:31-32, Acts 3:19, Acts 8:12-39, Romans 1:16, Romans 8:24-25, Romans 10:9-10, I Corinthians 15:1-4, Colossians 1:23, Hebrews 11:1; 6, James 1:18-27, James 2:10-26, I Peter 2:1-2, II Peter 3:10-14, II John 1:6-11, etc.).
Arguably, one could say that hearing the truth is the most important thing for a sinner to do because without hearing it, that person has no chance of salvation (Romans 10:11-17).
5. “What do I say to a demon possessed person?”
You cannot say anything seeing as how the devil and his angels are bound, not at all possessing people today (II Peter 2:4, Jude 1:6, and Revelation 20:10).
If demon possession were happening today, the only way that one would cast them out would be through miraculous abilities through the Holy Spirit. Those things have passed (I Corinthians 12:3-13:13).
If demon possession were happening today and you tried to say something, that demon would have his way with you (Acts 19:8-18).
For those who will LIE to you today and tell you they are capable of casting out demons, take them to a cemetery and have them raise the dead (Matthew 10:7-8).
6. “where is the bible say do not go beyond what is written?”
The Scripture you are looking for is I Corinthians 4:6. In the King James Version it reads: “And these things, brethren, I have in a figure transferred to myself and to Apollos for your sakes; that ye might learn in us not to think of men above that which is written, that no one of you be puffed up for one against another” (I Corinthians 4:6).
The NIV, ESV, a few other modern perversions of the Scriptures have the exact wording you were looking for in I Corinthians 4:6.
The ASV 1901 translation of I Corinthians 4:6 is very close to what you are looking for in saying “… ye might learn not to go beyond the things which are written...”
The point is taught in many other places too, though the exact wording is different (Deuteronomy 4:2, Deuteronomy 12:32, Joshua 1:7, Proverbs 30:5-6, Galatians 1:6-10, and Revelation 22:18-19).
7. “I'm not into organized religion. Can't I be a Christian without going to church regularly?”
I am not sure what you are meaning by “organized religion”. I will proceed by answering the question by what those terms actually mean. Organized means: “To arrange or constitute in parts, each having a special function, act, office, or relation; to systematize; to get into working order” (Webster). Religion [as used in James 1:27) means: “ceremonial observance:--religion, worshipping” (Strong’s #2356).
The church that Jesus established (Matthew 16:13-18, Acts 20:28, Ephesians 1:22-23, and Hebrews 3:1-6) is organized in that there are functions, offices, and a working order (Romans 12:4-5, I Corinthians 12:14-27, I Corinthians 14:40, I Timothy 3:1-15, II Timothy 4:1-5, etc.).
In a context dealing with the abuses of first century spiritual gifts in the worship service to God, we learn that the assembly is to be decent and orderly (I Corinthians 14:40). Thus, worship [religion] is to be organized.
You cannot “go to church” in the way that terminology is usually used. The church is the people (I Corinthians 12:27).
One, of the many things a Christian must do to be saved, includes assembling with faithful Christians on a regular basis for things included worshiping God (Acts 20:7 and Hebrews 10:22-25).
© 2017 This material may not be used for sale or other means to have financial gain. Use this as a tool for your own studies if such is helpful! Preachers are welcome to this work, but please do not use my work so that you can be lazy and not do your own studies. – Brian A. Yeager