by Ernest Martinez
Greetings Brothers and Sisters,
It is good to hear so many good reports about how people are growing in the Lord. Some people, like me, learn slower than others. But through it all, God has shown Himself strong on my behalf. One of the reasons I started writing Theword Newsletter was to encourage the visitors of Access Christian (www.accesschristian.com). We have seen people receive encouragement from the Prayer Ministry on Access Christian. Michael Martinez (www.glpministry.org) has received prayer requests and faithfully prayed for them while giving straightforward, biblical advice to all who asked for prayer.
Unlike many praying ministries, Michael wants to make sure that people first of all receive Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior. When it comes to confronting false doctrine or false views about Jesus, Michael is faithful and bold about it. Many have asked in the past, especially those who attended The Community Church of Devore (CCOD) in Southern California, why I wrote about issues that didnâ€™t specifically address issues at the church. And now that I am not the pastor of CCOD, I am even more free to just encourage others to go to the Word of God and search it out for themselves.
The real danger of relying on so-called â€śpillarsâ€ť in the Church or our favorite scholars, Bible teachers, or pastors, is that we begin to quote them more often than we quote Jesus Christ. There is nothing wrong with quoting Paul, or James, or other biblical writers, because they were either directly or indirectly â€śquotingâ€ť Jesus Christ. Some even go to extremes and rather than testing all spirits as 1 John tells us to do, we test the spirits based on the teaching of our favorite Bible teacher.
"All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work."? 2 Timothy 3:16 â€“ 17
There is no doubt that we should be students of the Word of God, but the purpose of the instruction that we receive from the Word of God is not primarily to confront false teachers, though that is a very worthy pursuit, it is ultimately to bring people to Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior.
"Now the purpose of the commandment is love from a pure heart, from a good conscience, and from sincere faith, from which some, having strayed, have turned aside to idle talk, desiring to be teachers of the law, understanding neither what they say nor the things which they affirm." (1 Timothy 1:5 - 7)
Part of my ministry at Access Christian is to encourage Christians search the Scriptures daily, something that I must encourage myself to do. I donâ€™t have to worry if they are â€śgetting itâ€ť I simply have to remind them to get into the Word. Just as the Children of Israel forgot that they had the presence of God in their Temple, perhaps we too forget that we have God with us every day. In our Tuesday night Bible study we are going through 1 Samuel. Our leader asked us to pretend for a week that when we go into the living room we see the Ark of the Covenant. And when we approach it we say â€śgood morning God.â€ť Of course he is not suggesting that we think God is an Ark, but remember that like that Ark that was in the Holy of Holies, so is God in us. We are the Temple of the Holy Spirit. God bless you all as you seek Jesus Christ this week. Be encouraged and know that God loves you.
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Published on: 2006-08-30 (6363 reads)[ Go Back ]