Episode 184

Disciple Up # 184
When Your Side Loses
By Louie Marsh, 11-4-2020

Intro:  Another show I’d rather not do but feel it’s needed. For the first time in my life I’m actually worried that no matter what happens in the election tomorrow (I’m recording this on Monday November 2nd 2020) that the United States might not stay united. That’s BAD!

Two kinds of people after an election – winners and LOSERS!!  It’s not fun to be a LOSER! So how do we handle losing, especially when we think it was critical that we win? That’s what I want to talk about.

Note: I’m discussing the aftermath of an election; not the election itself and I will not be making any political statements myself. Yes I voted. Who did I vote for? None of your business! Thank God for the secret ballot. It lets me minister to everyone no matter what side they are on!

To understand the Christian view of this issue you have to understand what the sovereignty of God is and how He works His will in this world. You also have to understand the real focus of the Christian life is supposed to be and then you have to learn to cling to that focus and not be pulled off of it.

THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD

11In him we have obtained an inheritance, having been predestined according to the purpose of him who works all things according to the counsel of his will,” (Ephesians 1:11, ESV)

28And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose. 29For those whom he foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, in order that he might be the firstborn among many brothers. 30And those whom he predestined he also called, and those whom he called he also justified, and those whom he justified he also glorified.” (Romans 8:28–30, ESV)

29Are not two sparrows sold for a penny? And not one of them will fall to the ground apart from your Father. 30But even the hairs of your head are all numbered. 31Fear not, therefore; you are of more value than many sparrows.” (Matthew 10:29–31, ESV)

16For by him all things were created, in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities—all things were created through him and for him. 17And he is before all things, and in him all things hold together.” (Colossians 1:16–17, ESV)

7I form light and create darkness; I make well-being and create calamity; I am the Lord, who does all these things. 8“Shower, O heavens, from above, and let the clouds rain down righteousness; let the earth open, that salvation and righteousness may bear fruit; let the earth cause them both to sprout; I the Lord have created it. 9“Woe to him who strives with him who formed him, a pot among earthen pots! Does the clay say to him who forms it, ‘What are you making?’ or ‘Your work has no handles’?” (Isaiah 45:7–9, ESV)

33The lot is cast into the lap, but its every decision is from the Lord.” (Proverbs 16:33, ESV)

2“I know that you can do all things, and that no purpose of yours can be thwarted.” (Job 42:2, ESV)

37Who has spoken and it came to pass, unless the Lord has commanded it? 38Is it not from the mouth of the Most High that good and bad come? 39Why should a living man complain, a man, about the punishment of his sins?” (Lamentations 3:37–39, ESV)

27for truly in this city there were gathered together against your holy servant Jesus, whom you anointed, both Herod and Pontius Pilate, along with the Gentiles and the peoples of Israel, 28to do whatever your hand and your plan had predestined to take place.” (Acts 4:27–28, ESV)

4even as he chose us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and blameless before him. In love” (Ephesians 1:4, ESV)

1Let every person be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and those that exist have been instituted by God. 2Therefore whoever resists the authorities resists what God has appointed, and those who resist will incur judgment. 3For rulers are not a terror to good conduct, but to bad. Would you have no fear of the one who is in authority? Then do what is good, and you will receive his approval,” (Romans 13:1–3, ESV)

HOW TO REACT TO LOSING!

1) Look at my problems from a KINGDOM PERSPECTIVE.

12 I want you to know, brothers, that what has happened to me has really served to advance the gospel, 13 so that it has become known throughout the whole imperial guard and to all the rest that my imprisonment is for Christ. 14 And most of the brothers, having become confident in the Lord by my imprisonment, are much more bold to speak the word without fear. Philippians 1:12-14 (ESV)

My Natural Perspective On Life: I ME MINE

 A Kingdom Perspective: God’s Kingdom, Others, Myself

 Trouble reveals the true condition of  MY HEART.

 13 Whoever conceals his transgressions will not prosper, but he who confesses and forsakes them will obtain mercy. 14 Blessed is the one who fears the LORD always, but whoever hardens his heart will fall into calamity. Proverbs 28:13-14 (ESV)

Discipleship

2) Put other’s salvation ahead of MY COMFORT.

12 I want you to know, brothers, that what has happened to me has really served to advance the gospel, 13 so that it has become known throughout the whole imperial guard and to all the rest that my imprisonment is for Christ. 14 And most of the brothers, having become confident in the Lord by my imprisonment, are much more bold to speak the word without fear. 15 Some indeed preach Christ from envy and rivalry, but others from good will. 16 The latter do it out of love, knowing that I am put here for the defense of the gospel. 17 The former proclaim Christ out of rivalry, not sincerely but thinking to afflict me in my imprisonment. 18 What then? Only that in every way, whether in pretense or in truth, Christ is proclaimed, and in that I rejoice. Yes, and I will rejoice, Philippians 1:12-18 (ESV)

3) Always keep God’s work in my life ROOTED IN THE GOSPEL.

18 What then? Only that in every way, whether in pretense or in truth, Christ is proclaimed, and in that I rejoice. Yes, and I will rejoice, 19 for I know that through your prayers and the help of the Spirit of Jesus Christ this will turn out for my deliverance, 20 as it is my eager expectation and hope that I will not be at all ashamed, but that with full courage now as always Christ will be honored in my body, whether by life or by death. Philippians 1:18-20 (ESV)

4) Make Jesus the very REASON I LIVE.

21 For to me to live is Christ, and to die is gain. Philippians 1:21 (ESV)

Christ means everything to me in this life, and when I die I’ll have even more. Philippians 1:21 (GW)

5) Move forward by SERVING & SACRIFICING for others.

22 If I am to live in the flesh, that means fruitful labor for me. Yet which I shall choose I cannot tell. 23 I am hard pressed between the two. My desire is to depart and be with Christ, for that is far better. 24 But to remain in the flesh is more necessary on your account. 25 Convinced of this, I know that I will remain and continue with you all, for your progress and joy in the faith, 26 so that in me you may have ample cause to glory in Christ Jesus, because of my coming to you again. Philippians 1:22-26 (ESV)

This shows my love for them & Christ.

 

I can bring authentic joy into their lives

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Episode 183

Disciple Up # 183
When God Speaks…Listen!
By Louie Marsh, 10-29-2020

Intro.  Thoughts on last week’s episode – No Place for Repentance? Sad that many leave their hidden sin as their legacy.

There are at least three times in the New Testament when God seems to have been rude to the Apostle Peter.  Three times when God interrupted and silenced Peter to make a point.  What was so important that God decided to act like this?  Let’s find out.

I) The Content of Christianity

 About eight days after Jesus said this, he took Peter, John and James with him and went up onto a mountain to pray. As he was praying, the appearance of his face changed, and his clothes became as bright as a flash of lightning.
Two men, Moses and Elijah, appeared in glorious splendor, talking with Jesus. They spoke about his departure, which he was about to bring to fulfillment at Jerusalem.
Peter and his companions were very sleepy, but when they became fully awake, they saw his glory and the two men standing with him. As the men were leaving Jesus, Peter said to him, “Master, it is good for us to be here. Let us put up three shelters–one for you, one for Moses and one for Elijah.” (He did not know what he was saying.)
While he was speaking, a cloud appeared and enveloped them, and they were afraid as they entered the cloud. A voice came from the cloud, saying, “This is my Son, whom I have chosen; listen to him.”
When the voice had spoken, they found that Jesus was alone. The disciples kept this to themselves, and told no one at that time what they had seen. Luke 9:28-36 (NIV)

 A) The Three Figures

1, Moses = the Law

2, Elijah = the prophets

3, Jesus = the New Covenant

  1. B) Peter Vs. God

1, Peter saw all three as equal and valued them that way

2, God set Jesus above them all

16“The Law and the Prophets were until John; since then the good news of the kingdom of God is preached, and everyone forces his way into it.” (Luke 16:16, ESV)

The law and the prophets—till John; from then on the kingdom of God is being preached as good news, and everyone is energetically pressing into it[1]

  1. C) Christianity’s Content

1, Christ is superior to all and everything

a, That’s the whole point of the book of Hebrews!

2, To be a Christian is to realize and confess that Jesus outshines and rules over everything!

II) The Foundation of Christianity 16:13-23

 When Jesus came to the region of Caesarea Philippi, he asked his disciples, “Who do people say the Son of Man is?”  They replied, “Some say John the Baptist; others say Elijah; and still others, Jeremiah or one of the prophets.”
“But what about you?” he asked. “Who do you say I am?”
Simon Peter answered, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.”
Jesus replied, “Blessed are you, Simon son of Jonah, for this was not revealed to you by man, but by my Father in heaven.  And I tell you that you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church, and the gates of Hades will not overcome it.  I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven; whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven.”
Then he warned his disciples not to tell anyone that he was the Christ.
From that time on Jesus began to explain to his disciples that he must go to Jerusalem and suffer many things at the hands of the elders, chief priests and teachers of the law, and that he must be killed and on the third day be raised to life.
Peter took him aside and began to rebuke him. “Never, Lord!” he said. “This shall never happen to you!”
Jesus turned and said to Peter, “Get behind me, Satan! You are a stumbling block to me; you do not have in mind the things of God, but the things of men.”  Matthew 16:13-23 (NIV)

  1. A) The Divinity of Christ

1, Jesus was either Who He claimed to be – God

a, Or He was a liar or insane!

  1. B) No Compromise!

1, Compromise is a good way to solve problems!

a, But there are some things that you can’t compromise!

2, You cannot compromise on Christ’s identify

a, If we lose this – we lose the entire point and meaning of His life and teachings!

  1. C) Living This Truth

1, Obey Him!!!

a, If He really is God that’s the least we can do!!

2, Don’t argue so much!

a, It’s good to let it all hang out with the Lord.

b, One sign of spiritual growth is when I argue less and trust more!

III) The Sphere of Christianity  Acts 10: 41-48

 He was not seen by all the people, but by witnesses whom God had already chosen–by us who ate and drank with him after he rose from the dead.  He commanded us to preach to the people and to testify that he is the one whom God appointed as judge of the living and the dead.
All the prophets testify about him that everyone who believes in him receives forgiveness of sins through his name.”
While Peter was still speaking these words, the Holy Spirit came on all who heard the message.
The circumcised believers who had come with Peter were astonished that the gift of the Holy Spirit had been poured out even on the Gentiles.
For they heard them speaking in tongues and praising God. Then Peter said, “Can anyone keep these people from being baptized with water? They have received the Holy Spirit just as we have.”
So he ordered that they be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ. Then they asked Peter to stay with them for a few days.
Acts 10:41-48 (NIV)

 A) Not An Exclusive Club!

1, Not just for Jews – or the spiritual

2, But for Everybody!

  1. B) God Love Everyone

1, There can be no place for bigotry in the Christian faith!

2, That includes all types of bigotry – racial, cultural, educational, religious, etc.

  1. C) We Are All One In Christ

1, the more we realize this – the quicker the world will be won!

[1] Lenski, R. C. H. (1961). The Interpretation of St. Luke’s Gospel (p. 839). Minneapolis, MN: Augsburg Publishing House.

 

 

Episode 182

Disciple Up # 182
No Place for Repentance?
By Louie Marsh, 10-21-2020

Intro. Episode on change is going to be a ways off.

Today’s episode wasn’t planned or wanted actually, but here it is and I feel like we have to deal with it like it or not. We’ve talked about this in episodes 93, 96 and at least one before 93 but I’m not sure which one.

Also see episodes 97, 98, 99 – Wounded by the Church

1When one of you has a grievance against another, does he dare go to law before the unrighteous instead of the saints? 2Or do you not know that the saints will judge the world? And if the world is to be judged by you, are you incompetent to try trivial cases? 3Do you not know that we are to judge angels? How much more, then, matters pertaining to this life! 4So if you have such cases, why do you lay them before those who have no standing in the church? 5I say this to your shame. Can it be that there is no one among you wise enough to settle a dispute between the brothers, 6but brother goes to law against brother, and that before unbelievers? 7To have lawsuits at all with one another is already a defeat for you. Why not rather suffer wrong? Why not rather be defrauded? 8But you yourselves wrong and defraud—even your own brothers!” (1 Corinthians 6:1–8, ESV)

Links Used:

https://www.christianitytoday.com/ct/2018/november-web-only/james-macdonald-harvest-bible-chapel-suing-our-critics-bibl.html

https://www.christianitytoday.com/news/2020/october/james-macdonald-harvest-walk-word-million-arbitration.html

https://harvestbiblechapel.org/2020/10/14/october-14-2020-elder-update/

https://jamesmacdonaldministries.org/reconnecting-with-our-partners/

https://www.christianitytoday.com/news/2020/september/ravi-zacharias-sexual-harassment-rzim-spa-massage-investiga.html

https://www.christianitytoday.com/news/2020/september/ravi-zacharias-sexual-harassment-rzim-spa-massage-investiga.html

Verses on Repentance:

38And Peter said to them, “Repent and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins, and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.” (Acts 2:38, ESV)

31God exalted him at his right hand as Leader and Savior, to give repentance to Israel and forgiveness of sins.” (Acts 5:31, ESV)

4Or do you presume on the riches of his kindness and forbearance and patience, not knowing that God’s kindness is meant to lead you to repentance?” (Romans 2:4, ESV)

9As it is, I rejoice, not because you were grieved, but because you were grieved into repenting. For you felt a godly grief, so that you suffered no loss through us. 10For godly grief produces a repentance that leads to salvation without regret, whereas worldly grief produces death.” (2 Corinthians 7:9–10, ESV)

24And the Lord’s servant must not be quarrelsome but kind to everyone, able to teach, patiently enduring evil, 25correcting his opponents with gentleness. God may perhaps grant them repentance leading to a knowledge of the truth,” (2 Timothy 2:24–25, ESV)

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Episode 181

Disciple Up #181
Greater Than: Hebrews 2:1-4, Don’t Drift Away
By Louie Marsh, 10-12-2020

Intro:

Simple Outline of Hebrews Chapter Two:

1) I must stay focused on Jesus & His Salvation (1-4)

 2) Jesus was a servant, but will be exalted (5-9)

 3) Jesus suffered & died to bring believers back to God (10-18)

1Therefore we must pay much closer attention to what we have heard, lest we drift away from it. 2For since the message declared by angels proved to be reliable, and every transgression or disobedience received a just retribution, 3how shall we escape if we neglect such a great salvation? It was declared at first by the Lord, and it was attested to us by those who heard, 4while God also bore witness by signs and wonders and various miracles and by gifts of the Holy Spirit distributed according to his will.” (Hebrews 2:1–4, ESV)

1) I must stay focused on Jesus & His Salvation (1-4)

Therefore – For this reason – We need to realize that Christ is pre-eminent over everything else. Because of this, the salvation He offers is of utmost importance that requires all of our attention.

This here is the same idea as we saw in Chapter One. Because Christ is supreme, everything He has done for us and teaches us is of maximum importance that we should pay attention to and not deviate from in the slightest.

Pay attention – really focus on this new covenant and upon Jesus who gave it to us. If you don’t then you’re going to end up in trouble.

Some Actions that will help your focus:

 Fellowship – depending on how real your fellowship is.

  • Read & Study the Bible.
  • Meditate on Scripture
  • Find your ministry and do it full force!

1Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight, and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, 2looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God.” (Hebrews 12:1–2, ESV)

Drift away  – Notice the word “drift.” Drift means to slowly change direction. This change in direction is not done on purpose, it’s an accident or happenstance. Boats will slowly drift off course if the captain is not paying careful attention to maintain his heading. It’s also used of boats and other floating things that are NOT powered; they just drift along with the current.

Drift Away

Uncle Kracker (Sang by Dobie Gray in 1973)

Day after day I’m more confused
Yet I look for the light in the pouring rain
You know that’s a game that I hate to lose
I’m feelin’ the strain, ain’t it a shame

Oh, give me the beat, boys, and free my soul
I wanna get lost in your rock and roll and drift away

19holding faith and a good conscience. By rejecting this, some have made shipwreck of their faith,” (1 Timothy 1:19, ESV)

A married couple will slowly drift apart in their relationship. A student may slowly drift off to sleep in class. You slowly fall asleep while driving. None of these things are intentional.

Drifting happens subtly and without warning. It’s hard to notice unless you are really paying attention. It’s very hard to see unless you have a fixed point to focus on. If you have a fixed point then the drifting can be seen much easier.

This also happens with churches drifting away from sound doctrine and individuals drifting away from God in their relationship with Him.

Strong believers don’t just wake up one day and decide to leave church and never come back. It is incremental. It’s a slow, steady process that eases you into doing and believing things you once would have never considered. Sin creeps in on us gradually. This is Satan’s method. He wins little battle at a time until he has won the war.

6I am astonished that you are so quickly deserting him who called you in the grace of Christ and are turning to a different gospel— 7not that there is another one, but there are some who trouble you and want to distort the gospel of Christ. 8But even if we or an angel from heaven should preach to you a gospel contrary to the one we preached to you, let him be accursed. 9As we have said before, so now I say again: If anyone is preaching to you a gospel contrary to the one you received, let him be accursed.” (Galatians 1:6–9, ESV)

The word “word” or message in verse two refers to Scripture. This is the greater/less than argument. If the lesser is true (the words from angels are true and do not change and can’t be altered) then certainly Jesus’ words are true (verse 3) and the consequences of rejecting His words are serious.

1This is the blessing with which Moses the man of God blessed the people of Israel before his death. 2He said, “The Lord came from Sinai and dawned from Seir upon us; he shone forth from Mount Paran; he came from the ten thousands of holy ones, with flaming fire at his right hand.” (Deuteronomy 33:1–2, ESV)

Verse 2 implies the spiritual law that “sin must be punished.” If this was not true, Christ would not have to die for us. But because sin must be punished it is either we face the punishment or Christ face it for us.

5For there is one God, and there is one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus, 6who gave himself as a ransom for all, which is the testimony given at the proper time. 7For this I was appointed a preacher and an apostle (I am telling the truth, I am not lying), a teacher of the Gentiles in faith and truth.” (1 Timothy 2:5–7, ESV)

Verse 3 – If even disobeying the angels comes with a very costly punishment, how about if we reject the great salvation that Christ has made possible for us?

This great salvation was offered by Christ. For that reason alone we should not ignore it, take it for granted, reject it, or drift away from it.

God used a variety of signs and wonders and miracles to verify this gospel.

You need to check this site out – fantastic videos!  https://patternsofevidence.com/

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Email – louie@discipleup.org

 


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Episode 180

Disciple Up #180
Shepherding: Feeding & Defending the Flock
By Louie Marsh, 10-7-2020

Intro. An e-mail poured in! Disagreement on what I said about Witness Lee and the Local Church. Episode 73-74.

So what is the duty of teachers and shepherds when it comes to dealing with doctrinal error and, sometimes, out right heresy? Let’s take a look!

 Everyone – Leaders Included – Must Watch Their Mouth!

 Yes, I am very well aware that we’ll be judged for every careless word we speak. I’ll go even further we are also commanded not to lie and not to condemn our brothers when we disagree with them

 34You brood of vipers! How can you speak good, when you are evil? For out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks. 35The good person out of his good treasure brings forth good, and the evil person out of his evil treasure brings forth evil. 36I tell you, on the day of judgment people will give account for every careless word they speak, 37for by your words you will be justified, and by your words you will be condemned.”” (Matthew 12:34–37, ESV)

4Who are you to pass judgment on the servant of another? It is before his own master that he stands or falls. And he will be upheld, for the Lord is able to make him stand.” (Romans 14:4, ESV)

6The one who observes the day, observes it in honor of the Lord. The one who eats, eats in honor of the Lord, since he gives thanks to God, while the one who abstains, abstains in honor of the Lord and gives thanks to God. 7For none of us lives to himself, and none of us dies to himself. 8For if we live, we live to the Lord, and if we die, we die to the Lord. So then, whether we live or whether we die, we are the Lord’s.” (Romans 14:6–8, ESV)

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.” (Matthew 7:1–5, ESV)

 TEACHERS AND SHEPHERDS HAVE DUTIES FROM GOD

 FEED AND LEAD:

When they had finished breakfast, Jesus said to Simon Peter, “Simon, son of John, do you love me more than these?” He said to him, “Yes, Lord; you know that I love you.” He said to him, “Feed my lambs.” 16 He said to him a second time, “Simon, son of John, do you love me?” He said to him, “Yes, Lord; you know that I love you.” He said to him, “Tend my sheep.” 17 He said to him the third time, “Simon, son of John, do you love me?” Peter was grieved because he said to him the third time, “Do you love me?” and he said to him, “Lord, you know everything; you know that I love you.” Jesus said to him, “Feed my sheep. (Jn 21:15–17).

However, pastors and teachers aren’t just commanded to teach and lead the flock. We are also called upon to defend it when necessary. James says teachers are under a stricter judgment and this tension between not being judgmental but being discerning and defending your flock from harm, is part of the weight of that judgment.

Ezekiel tells us that if the watchman doesn’t warn those under his care he will be condemned. So yes, I am very aware of this and living with the weight of this greater judgment is something I agreed to take on when I became a teacher and pastor.

WATCHMEN – PROTECTING THE FLOCK

1The word of the Lord came to me: 2“Son of man, speak to your people and say to them, If I bring the sword upon a land, and the people of the land take a man from among them, and make him their watchman, 3and if he sees the sword coming upon the land and blows the trumpet and warns the people, 4then if anyone who hears the sound of the trumpet does not take warning, and the sword comes and takes him away, his blood shall be upon his own head. 5He heard the sound of the trumpet and did not take warning; his blood shall be upon himself. But if he had taken warning, he would have saved his life. 6But if the watchman sees the sword coming and does not blow the trumpet, so that the people are not warned, and the sword comes and takes any one of them, that person is taken away in his iniquity, but his blood I will require at the watchman’s hand.” (Ezekiel 33:1–6, ESV)

3Beloved, although I was very eager to write to you about our common salvation, I found it necessary to write appealing to you to contend for the faith that was once for all delivered to the saints. 4For certain people have crept in unnoticed who long ago were designated for this condemnation, ungodly people, who pervert the grace of our God into sensuality and deny our only Master and Lord, Jesus Christ.” (Jude 3–4, ESV)

5And the Pharisees and the scribes asked him, “Why do your disciples not walk according to the tradition of the elders, but eat with defiled hands?” 6And he said to them, “Well did Isaiah prophesy of you hypocrites, as it is written, “ ‘This people honors me with their lips, but their heart is far from me; 7in vain do they worship me, teaching as doctrines the commandments of men.’ 8You leave the commandment of God and hold to the tradition of men.”” (Mark 7:5–8, ESV)

Should We Name Names?

11But when Cephas came to Antioch, I opposed him to his face, because he stood condemned. 12For before certain men came from James, he was eating with the Gentiles; but when they came he drew back and separated himself, fearing the circumcision party.” (Galatians 2:11–12, ESV)

19holding faith and a good conscience. By rejecting this, some have made shipwreck of their faith, 20among whom are Hymenaeus and Alexander, whom I have handed over to Satan that they may learn not to blaspheme.” (1 Timothy 1:19–20, ESV)

16But avoid irreverent babble, for it will lead people into more and more ungodliness, 17and their talk will spread like gangrene. Among them are Hymenaeus and Philetus, 18who have swerved from the truth, saying that the resurrection has already happened. They are upsetting the faith of some.” (2 Timothy 2:16–18, ESV)

  • If the people involved are public figures – like I am – the answer is yes!

THE PRICE OF LEADERSHIP:

1Not many of you should become teachers, my brothers, for you know that we who teach will be judged with greater strictness. 2For we all stumble in many ways. And if anyone does not stumble in what he says, he is a perfect man, able also to bridle his whole body.” (James 3:1–2, ESV)

  • God’s judgment is based on what you know.

20For his invisible attributes, namely, his eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly perceived, ever since the creation of the world, in the things that have been made. So they are without excuse.” (Romans 1:20, ESV)

That’s the only way His judgments can be just. He can’t condemn or justify you if you didn’t something was right or wrong.

47And that servant who knew his master’s will but did not get ready or act according to his will, will receive a severe beating. 48But the one who did not know, and did what deserved a beating, will receive a light beating. Everyone to whom much was given, of him much will be required, and from him to whom they entrusted much, they will demand the more.” (Luke 12:47–48, ESV)

12Now if anyone builds on the foundation with gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, straw— 13each one’s work will become manifest, for the Day will disclose it, because it will be revealed by fire, and the fire will test what sort of work each one has done. 14If the work that anyone has built on the foundation survives, he will receive a reward. 15If anyone’s work is burned up, he will suffer loss, though he himself will be saved, but only as through fire.” (1 Corinthians 3:12–15, ESV)

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Episode 179

Disciple Up # 179
Greater Than, Pt. 2, Greater Than the Angels; Hebrews 1: 5-14
By Louie Marsh, 9-30-2020

Intro:

 Last week add on –  Nostalgia VS relevance

New Bible Study Software – Its not the same! No, push on, learn, grow, and discover new things.

GREATER THAN – HEBREWS

Part Two: Greater Than the Angels

Hebrews 1:5-14

Why the whole Angels Thing? 

Angels are worshipped and misunderstood today: https://www.powerofpositivity.com/5-ways-to-connect-with-angels/

5For to which of the angels did God ever say, “You are my Son, today I have begotten you”? Or again, “I will be to him a father, and he shall be to me a son”?

 “I myself have begotten thee” is figurative for God’s placing David’s Son, the heir of all things (v. 2), on his everlasting throne in the eternal kingdom. The inauguration of such a King is for Yahweh the begetting of a Son who rules like Yahweh himself. This inauguration is attested throughout the Old Testament and culminates, as Paul says in Acts 13:33, in the resurrection of Jesus. – Lenski, R. C. H. (1938). The interpretation of the Epistle to the Hebrews and of the Epistle of James (p. 46). Columbus, OH: Lutheran Book Concern.

  6And again, when he brings the firstborn into the world, he says, “Let all God’s angels worship him.”

 7Of the angels he says, “He makes his angels winds, and his ministers a flame of fire.”

  8But of the Son he says, “Your throne, O God, is forever and ever, the scepter of uprightness is the scepter of your kingdom.

  9You have loved righteousness and hated wickedness; therefore God, your God, has anointed you with the oil of gladness beyond your companions.”

 10And, “You, Lord, laid the foundation of the earth in the beginning, and the heavens are the work of your hands; 11they will perish, but you remain; they will all wear out like a garment, 12like a robe you will roll them up, like a garment they will be changed. But you are the same, and your years will have no end.”

 13And to which of the angels has he ever said, “Sit at my right hand until I make your enemies a footstool for your feet”?

 14Are they not all ministering spirits sent out to serve for the sake of those who are to inherit salvation?” (Hebrews 1:5–14, ESV)

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Episode 178

Disciple Up # 178
Stupid Things Christians Say Part 5: It’s Not the Same Anymore
By Louie Marsh, 9-23-2020

 Intro – a little bit of a ramble today most likely, so hang on!

nos·tal·gia

noun

  1. a sentimental longing or wistful affection for the past, typically for a period or place with happy personal associations.

ORIGIN OF NOSTALGIA

1770–80; <New Latin <Greek nóst(os) a return home + -algia-algia

Nostalgia In the Bible:

10  Say not, “Why were the former days better than these?” For it is not from wisdom that you ask this. Ecclesiastes 7:10 (ESV)

2  “Oh, that I were as in the months of old, as in the days when God watched over me, Job 29:2 (ESV)

1  By the waters of Babylon, there we sat down and wept, when we remembered Zion. Psalm 137:1 (ESV)

17  We’re going to go right on offering sacrifices to the Queen of Heaven and pouring out drink offerings to her, keeping up the traditions set by our ancestors, our kings and government leaders in the cities of Judah and the streets of Jerusalem in the good old days. We had a good life then—lots of food, rising standard of living, and no bad luck. Jeremiah 44:17 (MSG)

LINKS:

https://www.frontiersin.org/research-topics/11716/current-issues-in-nostalgia-research

https://www.gotquestions.org/nostalgic-nostalgia.html

https://chadashby.com/2017/05/31/biblical-nostalgia-in-a-postmodern-world/

15  And the men who have been mentioned by name rose and took the captives, and with the spoil they clothed all who were naked among them. They clothed them, gave them sandals, provided them with food and drink, and anointed them, and carrying all the feeble among them on donkeys, they brought them to their kinsfolk at Jericho, the city of palm trees. Then they returned to Samaria. 2 Chronicles 28:15 (ESV)

29  But he, desiring to justify himself, said to Jesus, “And who is my neighbor?” 30  Jesus replied, “A man was going down from Jerusalem to Jericho, and he fell among robbers, who stripped him and beat him and departed, leaving him half dead. 31  Now by chance a priest was going down that road, and when he saw him he passed by on the other side. 32  So likewise a Levite, when he came to the place and saw him, passed by on the other side. 33  But a Samaritan, as he journeyed, came to where he was, and when he saw him, he had compassion. 34  He went to him and bound up his wounds, pouring on oil and wine. Then he set him on his own animal and brought him to an inn and took care of him. 35  And the next day he took out two denarii and gave them to the innkeeper, saying, ‘Take care of him, and whatever more you spend, I will repay you when I come back.’ 36  Which of these three, do you think, proved to be a neighbor to the man who fell among the robbers?” 37  He said, “The one who showed him mercy.” And Jesus said to him, “You go, and do likewise.” Luke 10:29-37 (ESV)

My Camino Video https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RqPfqYessTc&t=1660s

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Episode 177

Disciple Up # 177
Greater Than – Hebrews Pt. 1 – Prologue
By Louie Marsh, 9-16-2020

Intro.

Prologue

Hebrews 1: 1-4

1  Long ago, at many times and in many ways, God spoke to our fathers by the prophets, 2  but in these last days he has spoken to us by his Son, whom he appointed the heir of all things, through whom also he created the world. 3  He is the radiance of the glory of God and the exact imprint of his nature, and he upholds the universe by the word of his power. After making purification for sins, he sat down at the right hand of the Majesty on high, 4  having become as much superior to angels as the name he has inherited is more excellent than theirs. Hebrews 1:1-4 (ESV)

VERSE ONE:

1  Long ago,  – God has been communicating with mankind for a long, long time, nothing new about it.

 at many times He didn’t do it all at once but scattered the prophets and others throughout Israel’s history.

 and in many ways,

 This refers to the difference of the various revelations in contents and form. Not the different ways in which God imparted his revelations to the prophets, but the different ways in which he spoke by the prophets to the fathers: in one way through Moses, in another through Elijah, in others through Isaiah, Ezekiel, etc. At the founding of the Old Testament kingdom of God, the character of the revelation was elementary. Later it was of a character to appeal to a more matured spiritual sense, a deeper understanding and a higher conception of the law. The revelation differed according to the faithfulness or unfaithfulness of the covenant-people.   Vincent – Word Studies in the New Testament.

10  so that through the church the manifold wisdom of God might now be made known to the rulers and authorities in the heavenly places. Ephesians 3:10 (ESV)

A very striking phrase. The adjective occurs only here, and means variegated. It is applied to pictures, flowers, garments. Ποίκιλον is used in the Septuagint of Joseph’s coat, Genesis 37:3. Through the Church God’s wisdom in its infinite variety is to be displayed—the many-tinted wisdom of God—in different modes of power, different characters, methods of training, providences, forms of organization,   Vincent – Word Studies in the New Testament.

 God spoke to our fathers by the prophets,

“In many ways.” Adverb from old adjective polutropos, in Philo, only here in N.T. The two adverbs together are “a sonorous hendiadys for ‘variously'” (Moffatt) as Chrysostom (diaphorōs). God spoke by dream, by direct voice, by signs, in different ways to different men (Abraham, Jacob, Moses, Elijah, Isaiah, etc.). –  Robertson – Word Pictures in the New Testament.

VERSE TWO:

 2  but in these last days

Yes, we are living in the Last days and have been for over 2000 years.

16  But this is what was uttered through the prophet Joel: 17  “‘And in the last days it shall be, God declares, that I will pour out my Spirit on all flesh, and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, and your young men shall see visions, and your old men shall dream dreams; 18  even on my male servants and female servants in those days I will pour out my Spirit, and they shall prophesy. Acts 2:16-18 (ESV)

he has spoken to us by his Son,

Hath spoken (elalēsen). First aorist indicative of laleō, the same verb as above, “did speak” in a final and full revelation – Robertson – Word Pictures in the New Testament.

Note the absence of the article. Attention is directed, not to Christ’s divine personality, but to his filial relation. While the former revelation was given through a definite class, the prophets, the new revelation is given through one who is a son as distinguished from a prophet. He belongs to another category. The revelation was a son-revelation. See 2:10-18. Christ’s high priesthood is the central fact of the epistle, and his sonship is bound up with his priesthood… – Vincent – Word Studies in the New Testament.

whom he appointed the heir of all things,

Hath appointed (ethēken). First aorist (kappa aorist) active of tithēmi, a timeless aorist.

Heir of all things (klēronomon pantōn). See Mark 12:6 for ho klēronomos in Christ’s parable, perhaps an allusion here to this parable (Moffatt). The idea of sonship easily passes into that of heirship (Galatians 4:7; Romans 8:17). See the claim of Christ in Matthew 11:27; Matthew 28:18 even before the Ascension. –  Robertson – Word Pictures in the New Testament.

27  All things have been handed over to me by my Father, and no one knows the Son except the Father, and no one knows the Father except the Son and anyone to whom the Son chooses to reveal him. Matthew 11:27 (ESV)

through whom also he created the world. Hebrews 1:2 (ESV)

1  In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2  He was in the beginning with God. 3  All things were made through him, and without him was not any thing made that was made. 4  In him was life, and the life was the light of men. 5  The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it. John 1:1-5 (ESV)

VERSE THREE:

 3  He is the radiance of the glory of God and the exact imprint of his nature,

The word apaugasma, late substantive from apaugazō, to emit brightness (augē, augazō in 2 Cor. 4:4), here only in the N.T., but in Wisd. 7:26 and in Philo. It can mean either reflected brightness, refulgence (Calvin, Thayer) or effulgence (ray from an original light body) as the Greek fathers hold. Both senses are true of Christ in his relation to God as Jesus shows in plain language in John 12:45; John 14:9. “The writer is using metaphors which had already been applied to Wisdom and the Logos” (Moffatt). The meaning “effulgence” suits the context better, though it gives the idea of eternal generation of the Son (John 1:1), the term Father applied to God necessarily involving Son. See this same metaphor in 2 Cor. 4:6. – Word Pictures in the New Testament.

Charaktēr is an old word from charassō, to cut, to scratch, to mark. It first was the agent (note ending = tēr) or tool that did the marking, then the mark or impress made, the exact reproduction, a meaning clearly expressed by charagma (Acts 17:29; Rev. 13:16-17). Menander had already used (Moffatt) charaktēr in the sense of our “character.” The word occurs in the inscriptions for “person” as well as for “exact reproduction” of a person. The word hupostasis for the being or essence of God “is a philosophical rather than a religious term” (Moffatt). – Word Pictures in the New Testament.

 and he upholds the universe by the word of his power.

Rend. maintaining. Upholding conveys too much the idea of the passive support of a burden. “The Son is not an Atlas, sustaining the dead weight of the world” (quoted by Westcott). Neither is the sense that of ruling or guiding, as Philo (De Cherub. § 11), who describes the divine word as “the steersman and pilot of the all.” It implies sustaining, but also movement. It deals with a burden, not as a dead weight, but as in continual movement; as Weiss puts it, “with the all in all its changes and transformations throughout the aeons.” It is concerned, not only with sustaining the weight of the universe, but also with maintaining its coherence and carrying on its development. – Word Studies in the New Testament.

After making purification for sins, he sat down at the right hand of the Majesty on high

indicates that the work of purification was done by Christ personally, and was not something which he caused to be done by some other agent. – Word Studies in the New Testament.

Comp. Psalm 110:1, 8:1; 10:12; 12:2; Ephesians 1:20; Revelation 3:21. The verb denotes a solemn, formal act; the assumption of a position of dignity and authority The reference is to Christ’s ascension. In his exalted state he will still be bearing on all things toward their consummation, still dealing with sin as the great high priest in the heavenly sanctuary – Word Studies in the New Testament.

20  that he worked in Christ when he raised him from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly places, Ephesians 1:20 (ESV)

VERSE FOUR:

4  having become as much superior to angels

The informal and abrupt introduction of this topic goes to show that the writer was addressing Jewish Christians, who were familiar with the prominent part ascribed to angels in the O.T. economy, especially in the giving of the law. – Word Studies in the New Testament.

 as the name he has inherited is more excellent than theirs

The comparative only in Hebrews. In the sense of more excellent, only in later writers. Its earlier sense is different. The idea of difference is that which radically distinguishes it from κρείττων better. Here it presents the comparative of a comparative conception. The Son’s name differs from that of the angels, and is more different for good. – Word Studies in the New Testament.

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Episode 176

Disciple Up #176
Hard Work & Hebrews
By Louie Marsh, 9-9-2020

Since I’m recording this on Labor Day, and since this has been on my mind lately, I preached a little bit about this two weeks ago, I thought I’d an episode on this as well as do an introduction to Hebrews.

Work Is Not a Result of the Fall

15  The LORD God took the man and put him in the garden of Eden to work it and keep it. 16  And the LORD God commanded the man, saying, “You may surely eat of every tree of the garden, 17  but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat of it you shall surely die.” Genesis 2:15-17 (ESV)

“to serve, cultivate, enslave, work.” This root is used widely in Semitic and Canaanite languages. This verb appears about 290 times in all parts of the Old Testament. The verb is first used in Gen. 2:5: “…And there was not a man to till the ground.” God gave to man the task “to dress [the ground]
Vine’s Expository Dictionary of Old Testament and New Testament Words.

Working in An Environment That Fights You Is

 17  And to Adam he said, “Because you have listened to the voice of your wife and have eaten of the tree of which I commanded you, ‘You shall not eat of it,’ cursed is the ground because of you; in pain you shall eat of it all the days of your life; 18  thorns and thistles it shall bring forth for you; and you shall eat the plants of the field. 19  By the sweat of your face you shall eat bread, till you return to the ground, for out of it you were taken; for you are dust, and to dust you shall return.” Genesis 3:17-19 (ESV)

Give God my all by working HARD.

6  Go to the ant, O sluggard; consider her ways, and be wise. 7  Without having any chief, officer, or ruler, 8  she prepares her bread in summer and gathers her food in harvest. 9  How long will you lie there, O sluggard? When will you arise from your sleep? 10  A little sleep, a little slumber, a little folding of the hands to rest, 11  and poverty will come upon you like a robber, and want like an armed man. Proverbs 6:6-11 (ESV)

23  Whatever you do, work heartily, as for the Lord and not for men, 24  knowing that from the Lord you will receive the inheritance as your reward. You are serving the Lord Christ. Colossians 3:23-24 (ESV)

  • God’s wisdom: to see everything from a Christ Centered perspective.

10  For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them. Ephesians 2:10 (ESV)

Work Is Tied to God’s Will for Us

 24  There is nothing better for a person than that he should eat and drink and find enjoyment in his toil. This also, I saw, is from the hand of God, Ecclesiastes 2:24 (ESV)

 10  Whatever your hand finds to do, do it with your might, for there is no work or thought or knowledge or wisdom in Sheol, to which you are going. Ecclesiastes 9:10 (ESV)

 8  The LORD will fulfill his purpose for me; your steadfast love, O LORD, endures forever. Do not forsake the work of your hands. Psalm 138:8 (ESV)

11  To the present hour we hunger and thirst, we are poorly dressed and buffeted and homeless, 12  and we labor, working with our own hands. When reviled, we bless; when persecuted, we endure; 13  when slandered, we entreat. We have become, and are still, like the scum of the world, the refuse of all things. 1 Corinthians 4:11-13 (ESV)

 Because Work Is Tied to God’s Will Refusal to Work (when able) Is a Sin

6  Now we command you, brothers, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that you keep away from any brother who is walking in idleness and not in accord with the tradition that you received from us. 7  For you yourselves know how you ought to imitate us, because we were not idle when we were with you, 8  nor did we eat anyone’s bread without paying for it, but with toil and labor we worked night and day, that we might not be a burden to any of you. 9  It was not because we do not have that right, but to give you in ourselves an example to imitate. 10  For even when we were with you, we would give you this command: If anyone is not willing to work, let him not eat. 11  For we hear that some among you walk in idleness, not busy at work, but busybodies. 12  Now such persons we command and encourage in the Lord Jesus Christ to do their work quietly and to earn their own living. 13  As for you, brothers, do not grow weary in doing good. 14  If anyone does not obey what we say in this letter, take note of that person, and have nothing to do with him, that he may be ashamed. 15  Do not regard him as an enemy, but warn him as a brother. 2 Thessalonians 3:6-15 (ESV)

Working with My Gifts & Abilities IS God’s Will

7  To each is given the manifestation of the Spirit for the common good. 8  For to one is given through the Spirit the utterance of wisdom, and to another the utterance of knowledge according to the same Spirit, 9  to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healing by the one Spirit, 10  to another the working of miracles, to another prophecy, to another the ability to distinguish between spirits, to another various kinds of tongues, to another the interpretation of tongues. 11  All these are empowered by one and the same Spirit, who apportions to each one individually as he wills. 1 Corinthians 12:7-11 (ESV)

 27  To them God chose to make known how great among the Gentiles are the riches of the glory of this mystery, which is Christ in you, the hope of glory. 28  Him we proclaim, warning everyone and teaching everyone with all wisdom, that we may present everyone mature in Christ. 29  For this I toil, struggling with all his energy that he powerfully works within me. Colossians 1:27-29 (ESV)

2  “See, I have called by name Bezalel the son of Uri, son of Hur, of the tribe of Judah, 3  and I have filled him with the Spirit of God, with ability and intelligence, with knowledge and all craftsmanship, 4  to devise artistic designs, to work in gold, silver, and bronze, 5  in cutting stones for setting, and in carving wood, to work in every craft. 6  And behold, I have appointed with him Oholiab, the son of Ahisamach, of the tribe of Dan. And I have given to all able men ability, that they may make all that I have commanded you: 7  the tent of meeting, and the ark of the testimony, and the mercy seat that is on it, and all the furnishings of the tent, 8  the table and its utensils, and the pure lampstand with all its utensils, and the altar of incense, 9  and the altar of burnt offering with all its utensils, and the basin and its stand, 10  and the finely worked garments, the holy garments for Aaron the priest and the garments of his sons, for their service as priests, 11  and the anointing oil and the fragrant incense for the Holy Place. According to all that I have commanded you, they shall do.” Exodus 31:2-11 (ESV)

An Introduction to the Book of Hebrews

Introduction to Hebrews

 The letter to the Hebrews is a unique book in the New Testament. It begins as an essay (Heb 1:1-2), progresses as a sermon (Heb 2:1-4), and ends as a letter (Heb 13:23-25). Its contents are deep and challenging. Many Christians find it difficult; some equate its difficulty with the book of Revelation.

But for Christians willing to take the time to read and reflect upon it, they will be:

Reminded of how blessed they are to have trusted in Christ

Impressed with the superiority of Christ and His New Covenant over Moses and the Old Covenant

Warned of the danger of apostasy and the need for steadfastness in their faith.

AUTHOR

 The author does not identify himself. Many believe it to be the apostle Paul (e.g., Clement of Alexandria) and have offered arguments in his favor (cf. Commentary on Hebrews, Robert Milligan, p. 5-19). Yet it seems unlikely when you consider the author’s statement, “…was confirmed to us by those who heard Him” (Heb 2:3). This suggests the author received the gospel message second-hand, while Paul declared that he had not received the gospel from or through men (Gal 1:11-12).

Other names have been proposed over the years: Barnabas (suggested by Tertullian), Apollos (suggested by Luther), even Priscilla (suggested by Harnack). Perhaps Origen says it best, “But who wrote the epistle, to be sure, only God knows.”

RECIPIENTS

 The general consensus is that this letter was written to Jewish Christians. There is uncertainty as to where they and the author were at the time of composition. Many believe the recipients were in Palestine, and the author in Rome. Others suggest the readers were in Rome and the author elsewhere, based upon a possible implication in Heb 13:24. In any case, they were Jewish Christians whom the author knew personally (Heb 10:34; 13:19).

DATE

We know the epistle was written prior to 96 A.D., because Clement of Rome quotes from Hebrews in his letter that was written at that time. There are certainly strong indications that it was written prior to 70 A.D….

There is no mention of the destruction of Jerusalem and the temple

The author writes as though priests were still offering sacrifices – Heb 8:4; 10:11

If the Jewish Christians were in Palestine, it was likely before or at the beginning of the Jewish Wars (ca. 66-70 A.D.; cf. Heb 12:4).

The time frame of 63-65 A.D. is often suggested.

PURPOSE AND THEME

 The author wrote this epistle to prevent his readers from abandoning their faith in Christ (Heb 2:1-4). To encourage his Jewish brethren not to go back to the Old Law, he endeavored to show the superiority of Christ and His Covenant (Heb 8:1-2,6). A key word found throughout the epistle is “better”:

  • Christ is “better than the angels” – Heb 1:4
  • We enjoy “the bringing in of a better hope” – Heb 7:19
  • Jesus has become “the surety of a better covenant” – Heb 7:22
  • He is also “the Mediator of a better covenant, which was established on better promises” – Heb 8:6
  • The heavenly things benefit from “better sacrifices” – Heb 9:23

Indeed, the purpose of this epistle was to exhort his readers to remain faithful to the much better things they have in Christ (Heb 13:22). As for its theme here’s what almost all Bible scholars would agree with:

The Superiority of Christ and The New Covenant

OUTLINE

1) The superiority of Christ – Heb 1:1-8:6

  • Better than the prophets, as a much better Spokesman – Heb 1:1-3
  • Better than the angels, by virtue of His Deity and humanity – Heb 1:4-2:18
  • Better than Moses, for He is the Son who provides a heavenly rest – Heb 3:1-4:13
  • Better than Aaron, as His priesthood is a superior one – Heb 4:16-8:6

2) The superiority of the New Covenant – Heb 8:7-10:18

  • For it is based upon better promises – Heb 8:7-13
  • For it is based upon a better sanctuary – Heb 9:1-28
  • For it is based upon a better sacrifice – Heb 10:1-18

3) Exhortations drawn from this superiority – Heb 10:19-13:25

  • Draw near to God and hold fast – Heb 10:19-39
  • Run the race of faith with endurance – Heb 11:1-12:29
  • Miscellaneous exhortations – Heb 13:1-25

Where this information came from: https://www.blueletterbible.org/study/eo/Heb/Heb000.cfm

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Episode 175

Disciple Up #175
Christian Men – Man Up!
By Louie Marsh, 9-2-2020

Coming Up – Hebrews

75th anniversary of the signing of the surrender accords on the USS Missouri.

Future episodes topics

https://www.christianitytoday.com/ct/2020/august-web-only/why-women-read-bible-more.html

https://www.google.com/search?q=halee+gray+scott&rlz=1C1CHBF_enUS791US791&oq=HALEE+GRAY+SCOTT&aqs=chrome.0.0j46j0.545j0j4&sourceid=chrome&ie=UTF-8

https://www.amazon.com/Gay-Girl-Good-God-Always/dp/1462751229/?tag=christtoday-20

https://sotb.research.bible/

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