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6-22-2017 Must We Hate Our Family

Jesus said: “If anyone comes to Me and does not hate his father and mother, wife and children, brothers and sisters, yes, and his own life also, he cannot be My disciple” (Luke 14:26 NKJV). “Hate” father and mother? Surely Jesus did not mean we must “detest” our parents! He said: “God commanded, saying, ‘Honor your father and your mother’; and, ‘He who curses father or mother, let him be put to death’” (Matthew 15:4 NKJV). We cannot “detest” and “honor” them at the same time. “Hate” may sometimes be used to mean “love less,” that is by comparison. “He who loves father or mother more than Me is not worthy of Me. And he who loves son or daughter more than Me is not worthy of Me” (Matthew 10:37 NKJV). To follow Jesus, we must love our family less than Jesus.
This is Johnny Polk, with “Words of Wisdom” brought to you by the Oneida church of Christ.

#hate, #love

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6-2-2016 Roots Of Prejudice

“Those who are sinning rebuke in the presence of all, that the rest also may fear. I charge you before God and the Lord Jesus Christ and the elect angels that you observe these things without prejudice, doing nothing with partiality” (1 Timothy 5:20-21 NKJV).  “Prejudice” means “judging beforehand,” and “partiality” means “leaning towards.”  Paul told Timothy to not make up his mind about sinners before hearing what they did.  But identifying sins was clear from the Word of God (1 Timothy 1:5-11 NKJV).  “Hate” comes in all skin colors.  White people who hate black people, black people who hate white people, Jews hate Germans, Muslims who hate Catholics, are all “prejudiced” and treat others with “partiality.”   All need Jesus, Who “might reconcile them both to God in one body through the cross, thereby putting to death the enmity” (Ephesians 2:16 NKJV).

This is Johnny Polk, with “Words of Wisdom” brought to you by the Oneida church of Christ.

#cross-of-christ, #hate, #partiality, #prejudice, #reconcile

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7-10-2015 Re-Enactment or Remembrance?

The Apostles, inspired by the Holy Spirit, preached to the Jews in Jerusalem that “Jesus of Nazareth” had been: “delivered by the determined purpose and foreknowledge of God, you have taken by lawless hands, have crucified, and put to death; whom God raised up, having loosed the pains of death, because it was not possible that He should be held by it” (Acts 2:22-24 NKJV). We can read, study, and learn the lessons of the cross of Jesus Christ. No re-enactment can adequately portray it. “For as often as you eat this bread and drink this cup, you proclaim the Lord’s death till He comes” (1 Corinthians 11:26 NKJV). But no one should hate the Romans for doing it! Love Jesus for the memory. History is not to promote hate, but to learn.

This is Johnny Polk, with “Words of Wisdom” brought to you by the Oneida church of Christ.

#crucified, #hate, #history, #jesus-of-nazareth, #lessons, #love, #re-enactment

Why a lot of people hate Jesus

People hate Jesus. Why? Because, especially to the western culture, he reminds us about our sin. He won’t let us forget that there’s a standard that comes from above. A standard that’s above our head. A standard that won’t be met without him! Jesus is the only true friend (advocate – 1 John 2:1) of sinners yet sinners see in Jesus an enemy.

Signs that mock. Words that blaspheme. Songs that deride. TV shows that ridicule. Evil treatment of Christians. All because of the hate that people show toward the love of Jesus. That’s the terrible irony of it all!

I read an article this morning about a new show that will be airing on a cable channel belonging to one of America’s wealthiest atheists which will be targeting Jesus with vile hate.

But for all the hate that this show will reveal, another thing that will be revealed is how the owner of this cable channel, and the actor who will be “portraying” Jesus in such a blasphemous way, will be able to sleep soundly and go about his everyday normal life with having to worry about Jesus’ followers placing a target on his head. Perhaps the only target will be his heart through prayers offered on his behalf. But this is not something that can be said about every religious figure and their followers in the world today – and those who hate Jesus know this! And yet this brazen truth only produces more hate.

People in the 21st century hate Jesus for the same reasons that people in the 1st, 2nd, 3rd, etc. centuries did. Depraved hearts, the love of money, the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eye, the pride of life, and the fact that Jesus reminds us all that although he may not say anything for the moment, he will get the last word when we stand speechless before him.

Now when Herod saw Jesus, he was exceedingly glad; for he had desired for a long time to see Him, because he had heard many things about Him, and he hoped to see some miracle done by Him. Then he questioned Him with many words, but He answered him nothing. And the chief priests and scribes stood and vehemently accused Him. Then Herod, with his men of war, treated Him with contempt and mocked Him, arrayed Him in a gorgeous robe, and sent Him back to Pilate.” (Luke 23:8-11)

He who rejects Me, and does not receive My words, has that which judges him—the word that I have spoken will judge him in the last day.” (John 12:48)

#blasphemy, #hate, #jesus

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(#137) The Proverbs of Solomon 18:19-Can You Forgive Your Brother?

Since God Created humans, only God can provide specific understanding of human behavior. God gave Solomon Divine Wisdom (1 Kings Chapters 3 and 10) to explain what and why behavior is as it is, and Proverbs 10:1-24:34 are randomly written, as if they were Solomon’s judgments about individual cases brought to him, or simply God-given explanations about life. New Testament passages may help see the continuation of Wisdom offered through Jesus Christ.

Proverbs 18:19: “A brother offended is harder to win than a strong city, And contentions are like the bars of a castle.”

Contentious statements that divide brethren are “like the bars of a castle,” that is, they defensively fortify brothers from each other. Enemies can be converted and changed more easily than a relative, and it seems the nearer the relationship, the more difficult it is to effect that change! The first brothers, Cain and Abel, were separated by Cain’s anger that his brother obeyed what was right (Genesis 4:1-12; Hebrews 11:4) but Cain was evil (1 John 3:11-12). Jacob and Esau were separated by Esau’s profaning his birthright (inheritance, Genesis 25:29-34), Jacob’s deception to receive that birthright (Genesis 27:1-46), and Esau’s bitterness and hatred for his brother. They were separated for years before they could reconcile (Genesis 33:1-15), but reconcile they did! Since the Jews come from Jacob, and the so-called “Palestinians” come from Esau, the modern-day Middle East should read the Bible and reconcile their differences as their progenitors did! Brethren in the flesh can be meaner, more violent, and destructive to each other than their enemies who are not related!

Spiritual members in a church of Christ can become as bitter as Cain, and hateful as Esau, toward their brethren. The reason is the same, they have developed “an evil heart of unbelief” and departed from the living God (Hebrews 3:12). Their contentious words become “bars” to keep them inside their castle of ugliness. “Do not marvel, my brethren, if the world hates you. We know that we have passed from death to life, because we love the brethren. He who does not love his brother abides in death. Whoever hates his brother is a murderer, and you know that no murderer has eternal life abiding in him” (1 John 3:13-15). This brings eternal damnation upon the contentious brother. No amount of attendances, giving, singing, or prayers can disguise the real intent of wrong brethren. “We love Him because He first loved us. If someone says, ‘I love God,’ and hates his brother, he is a liar; for he who does not love his brother whom he has seen, how can he love God whom he has not seen? And this commandment we have from Him: that he who loves God must love his brother also” (1 John 4:19-21).

The message of Jesus Christ, to His churches of Christ, is that of “reconciliation.” “Now all things are of God, who has reconciled us to Himself through Jesus Christ, and has given us the ministry of reconciliation, that is, that God was in Christ reconciling the world to Himself, not imputing their trespasses to them, and has committed to us the word of reconciliation” (2 Corinthians 5:18-19).

All Scriptures and comments are based upon the New King James Version, unless otherwise noted.

#anger, #bible-study, #bitterness, #brethren, #church-of-christ, #contentious, #family, #hate, #jesus-christ, #jews, #love, #palestinians, #proverbs

What’s A Credit Worth?

What’s a credit worth? A college credit that is. One college “professor” obviously thought it was worth more than one student did. The professor gave a classroom assignment that included writing the name of Jesus on a piece of paper, placing it on the floor and then stepping/stomping on it. At least one student refused. I don’t know the student, but I give him props for valuing the name of Jesus above the value of a college credit. Click here to read the actual story.

Many correlations and lessons could be spelled out here but I believe the story speaks for itself. Let’s just leave off by asking the question, “What is the name of Jesus worth to us?”

And if anyone says a word against the Son of man, he will have forgiveness: but for him who says evil words against the Holy Spirit, there will be no forgiveness.” (Luke 12:10 – BBE)

#college, #hate, #name-of-jesus, #news

HATE AND EVIL

“The world cannot hate you, but it hates me because I testify about it that its works are evil” (John 7:7, ESV). Reflect on these words just a bit. Jesus, talking to his brothers, said that he was not going up to the festival occasion just yet. In fact, his brothers asserted that when one seeks to be known there must be an effort to gain attention (7:4). Jesus, however, did not seek attention from the people. He knew that which he spoke was not going to be received by the people because – and he made it very plain – that which the people were doing was (is) evil. 

If that which the people were doing was evil, and Jesus called it for what it was, should we follow his pattern? Yes, we should. Because many Christians do exactly what the Lord did they have experienced much opposition! Do you hate evil enough to speak out against it? RT

#evil, #hate