Episode 228

Disciple Up # 228
7 Letters For 7 Churches, Pt. 2
By Louie Marsh

Intro. Last week we did the first three and I shared a nice graph on the letters in the show notes. This week we’ll be finishing off the last four.

Next week – I might be focusing on what I preached on September 12th – Gender with a special focus on the end of the message which dealt with why we are thinking the way we are in this culture/

Gender & Sanity:

https://traffic.libsyn.com/secure/christschurchontheriver/02_reThink_-_Gender__Sanity.mp3

Last Four Letters:

 Website where I got what’s below from: https://www.christianity.com/wiki/end-times/what-do-the-7-churches-in-revelation-represent-summaries-and-explanations.html

  1. Thyatira. The Church that Follows False Prophets (Revelation 2:18-29)

Summary and Explanation: Thyatira was a wealthy commercial city. Jesus’ letter to Thyatira praises the church for having grown in faith and service (Revelation 2:19). The church’s downfall was its devotion to a false prophet that led some members to commit idolatry and immorality (Revelation 2:20). Although the false prophet remained unrepentant, Jesus affirms that the congregation can still repent by turning away from the prophet’s ways (Revelation 2:21-22).

The Lord reminds us in this revelation that He will repay each of us according to our deeds (Revelation 2:23). The payment for sin is death. Those who persevere in faith, however, will receive a share of Christ’s messianic authority over all nations and triumph over death (Revelation 2:26-28).

Significance Today: Just as some in Thyatira’s church were led astray by a false prophet, Christians today fall prey to cult leaders, occult practices, and other false teachings. To share in Christ’s victory, we are to avoid these “so-called deep secrets” of Satan (Revelation 2:24) and hold firm to Christ’s teachings.

  1. Sardis. The Church that is Spiritually Dead (Revelation 3:1-6)

Summary and Explanation: Sardis was a city that had endured two surprise attacks despite its fortifications. Our Lord faults the church in Sardis for maintaining an outward appearance of being “alive,” while actually being spiritually dead (Revelation 3:1). Alluding to the city’s history of prior surprise attacks, Jesus warns the congregation to “wake up” and repent, lest he “come like a thief” to bestow His judgment (Revelation 3:2-3).

Those in Sardis who heed Christ’s warning will be “dressed in white,” a symbol of purity and victory, and will be acknowledged in Heaven’s Book of Life (Revelation 3:5).

Significance Today: Today, Christians can fall into the trap that ensnared the church in Sardis if we merely go through the motions of practicing our faith without really feeding our spirit. We can avoid becoming “the living dead” by engaging in our faith through Bible study, prayer, and fellowship.

  1. Philadelphia. The Church that Patiently Endured Despite Weaknesses (Revelation 3:7-13)

Summary and Explanation: Philadelphia was home to a synagogue community hostile to Christians. Christ praises the Philadelphians for remaining faithful in the face of trials despite their limited strength (Rev. 3:8).

Jesus does not reproach this congregation but condemns its persecutors. (Revelation 3:9). Christ promises that if Philadelphia’s congregants remain faithful to Him, He will protect them from the “hour of trial” and make them pillars in God’s heavenly temple (Revelation 3:10-12).

Significance Today: The message to Philadelphia shows us the blessings that come when we maintain our faith despite life’s tribulations. In fact, those who persevere despite weaknesses will stand strong as pillars in Heaven.

  1. Laodicea. The Church with a Lukewarm Faith (Revelation 3:14-22)

Summary and Explanation: Laodicea was a prosperous industrial and commercial center. Jesus’ letter to this church wastes no time denouncing the congregation for its lukewarm faith, threatening to “spit” the congregation out of His mouth (Revelation 3:16).

Christ scolds this church for allowing its economic prosperity to cause it spiritual bankruptcy and reveals that, despite its economic wealth, only He can provide spiritual wealth (Revelation 3:17-18). Those in Laodicea’s church who open the door to Christ will share in His Heavenly banquet and have the right to sit with Him on His throne (Revelation 3:20-21).

Significance Today: Like the church in Laodicea, it’s easy to become complacent in our faith during times of abundance. Christ warns us in this revelation that he will “spit out” lukewarm disciples. Instead, Jesus urges us to keep seeking the Lord’s face even after His hand has bestowed riches in our lives.

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Episode 227

Disciple Up # 227
7 Letters to 7 Churches
By Louie Marsh, 9-8-2021

This is just about the only part of Revelation I will teach on. I’m not quite as bad as Martin Luther about this though.

He put both Revelation and the book of James into the appendix of his New Testament translation into German. He called the book of James, “a right strawy epistle.” And of Revelation he said that “Apostles ought not to write like that.”

I love the book of James and would not presume to tell an Apostle how to write. However, most of the book does leave me pretty cold. But not these 7 little letters.

False view of them as ages of church history. This was around when Luther lived because he accepted it, at least in part. When it really began, I don’t know.

Episode 216

Disciple Up # 216
The State of the American Church & Me!
By Louie Marsh, 6-23-2021

1“To the angel of the church in Ephesus write: ‘The words of him who holds the seven stars in his right hand, who walks among the seven golden lampstands. 2“ ‘I know your works, your toil and your patient endurance, and how you cannot bear with those who are evil, but have tested those who call themselves apostles and are not, and found them to be false. 3I know you are enduring patiently and bearing up for my name’s sake, and you have not grown weary. 4But I have this against you, that you have abandoned the love you had at first. 5Remember therefore from where you have fallen; repent, and do the works you did at first. If not, I will come to you and remove your lampstand from its place, unless you repent. 6Yet this you have: you hate the works of the Nicolaitans, which I also hate. 7He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches. To the one who conquers I will grant to eat of the tree of life, which is in the paradise of God.’” (Revelation 2:1–7, ESV)

I listened to a podcast today on Christianity Today website called, The Rise & Fall of Mars Hill, you can click the link below to check it out and can subscribe to this podcast on all the usual places.

https://www.christianitytoday.com/ct/podcasts/rise-and-fall-of-mars-hill/who-killed-mars-hill-church-mark-driscoll-rise-fall.html

Necessity of judging (check out my sermon on Judging Like Jesus Judged if that bothers you: http://riverchurchparker.com/sermons/08-the-gospel-of-john-1-7-judge-like-jesus-judges/ ) our spiritual state.

  • My own growth and health
  • My family’s (if I have one)
  • My small group or ministry (if I have one)
  • My church’s health.

1“Judge not, that you be not judged. 2For with the judgment you pronounce you will be judged, and with the measure you use it will be measured to you. 3Why do you see the speck that is in your brother’s eye, but do not notice the log that is in your own eye? 4Or how can you say to your brother, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ when there is the log in your own eye? 5You hypocrite, first take the log out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to take the speck out of your brother’s eye. 6“Do not give dogs what is holy, and do not throw your pearls before pigs, lest they trample them underfoot and turn to attack you.” (Matthew 7:1–6, ESV)

12Beloved, do not be surprised at the fiery trial when it comes upon you to test you, as though something strange were happening to you. 13But rejoice insofar as you share Christ’s sufferings, that you may also rejoice and be glad when his glory is revealed. 14If you are insulted for the name of Christ, you are blessed, because the Spirit of glory and of God rests upon you. 15But let none of you suffer as a murderer or a thief or an evildoer or as a meddler. 16Yet if anyone suffers as a Christian, let him not be ashamed, but let him glorify God in that name. 17For it is time for judgment to begin at the household of God; and if it begins with us, what will be the outcome for those who do not obey the gospel of God? 18And “If the righteous is scarcely saved, what will become of the ungodly and the sinner?” 19Therefore let those who suffer according to God’s will entrust their souls to a faithful Creator while doing good.” (1 Peter 4:12–19, ESV)

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104

Disciple Up #104
Is Easter Pagan?
By Louie Marsh, 4-17-2019

Webpages sited in the podcast:

https://christandpopculture.com/no-easter-isnt-pagan-either-a-very-d-list-saints-holiday-sequel-the-gritty-reboot/

 

https://jerome23.wordpress.com/2009/04/10/eostre-never-existed-why-easter-is-not-a-pagan-holiday/

http://www.koshabq.org/2012/03/09/celebrating-eostre/

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87

Disciple Up #87 Show Notes

The Non-Pagan Roots of Christmas

By Louie Marsh, 12-19-2018

Everyday in the Spirit 

Christmas wasn’t “borrowed” from a pagan holiday at all!

https://www.touchstonemag.com/archives/article.php?id=16-10-012-v

Gandhi Statue Torn Down

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2018/dec/14/racist-gandhi-statue-removed-from-university-of-ghana

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Episode 81

Disciple Up #81
What has Political Involvement Done to the Church?
By Louie Marsh, 11-7-2018

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Berrigan_Brothers

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Moral_Majority

The involvement in politics by the church as the church – ie as a group representing Jesus and His Gospel; has done near irreparable damage to both the church and the Gospel.

See this in non-Christians identifying Christians as people who are AGAINST – gays, abortion, porn, etc. We are known by what we are against and not what we are for. This is a disaster for any group or organization.

We are seen as hypocritical moral crusaders and this view has tarred nearly the entire church.

Specifically I believe our involvement has done several bad things to us.

  • Spurred the growth of Moralism – which is the enemy of the Gospel and one of the largest idols in the human heart.
  • Gotten us off course from preaching the Gospel and building the kingdom to trying to be saviors of our culture and country. This is not what the church is called to do and be in the New Testament.
  • Watered down the Gospel by our uniting with other religious groups who distort or deny the Gospel but agree with us on certain moral issues.

Imagine what the hundreds of million of dollars Christians gave to political causes could have done in the Kingdom if we had been wise enough to use them there.

Instead we’ve distorted Jesus and His Gospel and church and all for what?

FAILURE.

 The “Christian Right” has failed.

Example – what were the two big issues when all this started back in 1979 – Prayer in Public Schools and Abortion on demand. Both are still here.

In the meantime the Christian right fought homosexual rights and now we have homosexual marriage via the Supreme Court. Another sterling defeat by the so called Christian movement.

Politics is down stream from culture.

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Episode 73

Disciple Up # 73
Watchman Nee & Sit, Walk, Stand
By Louie Marsh, 9-12-2018

His Life:

Biographies:

Watchman Nee, Suffer for China – https://goo.gl/RcwG8v

Against the Tide, the Story of Watchman Nee – https://goo.gl/uX2v2B

Avoid anything written by Witness Lee – disciple of Watchman Nee who went off the deep end and found the Local Church cult.

Recommended Watchman Nee Books:

Sit, Walk Stand – https://goo.gl/icbDw8

The Normal Christian Life – https://goo.gl/YGMHwZ

What Shall This Man Do? https://goo.gl/cNsBKB

Changed Into His Likeness https://goo.gl/hzkksa

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Episode 23

Show Notes Disciple Up #23
Is the Reformation a 500 Year Old Failure?
By Louie Marsh

Update on Last Week’s Episode – The riots have begun, thanks fake Christian leaders.

http://www.christianitytoday.com/news/2017/august/500-reformation-protestants-catholics-luther-sola-fide-pew.html

After 500 Years, Reformation-Era Divisions Have Lost Much of Their Potency

14 I am under obligation both to Greeks and to barbarians, both to the wise and to the foolish. 15 So I am eager to preach the gospel to you also who are in Rome. 16 For I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes, to the Jew first and also to the Greek. 17 For in it the righteousness of God is revealed from faith for faith, as it is written, “The righteous shall live by faith.” Romans 1:14-17 (ESV)

8 For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, 9 not a result of works, so that no one may boast. 10 For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them. Ephesians 2:8-10 (ESV)

If We Must Work For Forgiveness Why Did Jesus Die on the Cross?

28 for this is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many for the forgiveness of sins. Matthew 26:28 (ESV)

7 In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, in accordance with the riches of God’s grace Ephesians 1:7 (NIV)

GOSPEL & OTHER QUOTES

https://www.goodreads.com/author/quotes/847789.Timothy_J_Keller

“The gospel is this: We are more sinful and flawed in ourselves than we ever dared believe, yet at the very same time we are more loved and accepted in Jesus Christ than we ever dared hope.”
― Timothy J. Keller, The Meaning of Marriage: Facing the Complexities of Commitment with the Wisdom of God

“…We must say to ourselves something like this: ‘Well, when Jesus looked down from the cross, he didn’t think “I am giving myself to you because you are so attractive to me.” No, he was in agony, and he looked down at us – denying him, abandoning him, and betraying him – and in the greatest act of love in history, he STAYED. He said, “Father, forgive them, they don’t know what they are doing.” He loved us, not because we were lovely to him, but to make us lovely. That is why I am going to love my spouse.’ Speak to your heart like that, and then fulfill the promises you made on your wedding day.”

“The gospel of justifying faith means that while Christians are, in themselves still sinful and sinning, yet in Christ, in God’s sight, they are accepted and righteous. So we can say that we are more wicked than we ever dared believe, but more loved and accepted in Christ than we ever dared hope — at the very same time. This creates a radical new dynamic for personal growth. It means that the more you see your own flaws and sins, the more precious, electrifying, and amazing God’s grace appears to you. But on the other hand, the more aware you are of God’s grace and acceptance in Christ, the more able you are to drop your denials and self-defenses and admit the true dimensions and character of your sin.”

“The basic premise of religion– that if you live a good life, things will go well for you– is wrong. Jesus was the most morally upright person who ever lived, yet He had a life filled with the experience of poverty, rejection, injustice, and even torture.”

“When you listen and read one thinker, you become a clone… two thinkers, you become confused… ten thinkers, you’ll begin developing your own voice… two or three hundred thinkers, you become wise and develop your voice.”

I Sat Next to Jesus & Other Non-Biblical Sources of Authority

Disciple Up Low Down

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Next week – unity in the Body

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