Weekly Word Definition – Foreigner

A person born in or coming from a country other than one’s own.

The noun Foreigner has 2 senses:

1. a person who comes from a foreign country; someone who does not owe allegiance to your country.

2. someone who is excluded from or is not a member of a group.

What is the difference between Foreigner and alien?
  1. As nouns the difference between foreigner and alien is,
  2. a foreigner is a person from a foreign country.
  3. an alien is a person, animal, plant, or other thing which is from outside the family, group, organization, or territory under consideration.
Who is considered a foreign national?

A foreign national is a person (male or female) that is a legal resident of a country other than the United States. This person may come to the United States throughout the year, whether on vacation or on business, but their primary home is in another country.

Luke 17:17-19 (NKJV)
So Jesus answered and said, “Were there not ten cleansed? But where are the nine?
Were there not any found who returned to give glory to God except this foreigner?”
And He said to him, “Arise, go your way. Your faith has made you well.”

There are people from all over the world that have been promised a place in Heaven. God will not discriminate against anyone who has the faith needed to become a Christian.

Those who desire to go to Heaven must do so through faith in Jesus Christ. Just because we are from the most powerful country in the world today, does not insure us a place in Heaven. Just because we belong to the original church or the largest church in the world does not matter when it comes to going to heaven.

There are no natural citizens in Heaven. There are only foreigners. We cannot buy a place, win a place in Heaven.

Just as the foreigner in verse 19 above, only our faith in Christ will give us a place in Heaven. We are born into this world and people are born into many different countries, however, according to Christ (John chapter 3), we must be born again to go to heaven. We can only reach Heaven through faith and the healing powers of re-birth.

Have a nice day, foreigner.

Weekly Word Definition – Disciple

A scholar, sometimes applied to the followers of John the Baptist (Mat 9:14), and of the Pharisees (Mat 22:16), but principally to the followers of Christ. A disciple of Christ is one who

  • (1) believes his doctrine,
  • (2) rests on his sacrifice,
  • (3) imbibes his spirit,
  • (4) imitates his example (Mat 10:24; Luke 14:26, 27, 33; John 6:69).

Illustrated Bible Dictionary: And Treasury of Biblical History, Biography, Geography, Doctrine, and Literature.

Usually a substantive (μαθητής, mathētés, “a learner,” from manthánō, “to learn”; Latin discipulus, “a scholar”): The word is found in the Bible only in the Gospels and Acts. But it is good Greek, in use from Herodotus down, and always means the pupil of someone, in contrast to the master or teacher (διδάσκαλος, didáskalos). Matthew 10:24; Luke 6:40.

  1. In all cases, it implies that the person not only accepts the views of the teacher but that he is also in practice an adherent. The word has several applications. In the widest sense, it refers to those who accept the teachings of anyone, not only in belief but in life. Thus the disciples of John the Baptist (Matthew 9:14; Luke 7:18; John 3:25); also of the Pharisees (Matthew 22:16; Mark 2:18; Luke 5:33); of Moses (John 9:28). But its most common use is to designate the adherents of Jesus.
    1. In the widest sense (Matthew 10:42; Luke 6:17; John 6:66, and often). It is the only name for Christ’s followers in the Gospels. But
    2. especially the Twelve Apostles, even when they are called simply the disciples (Matthew 10:1; Matthew 11:1; Matthew 12:1, et al.). In the Acts, after the death and ascension of Jesus, disciples are those who confess Him as the Messiah, Christians (Acts 6:1-2, 7; Acts 9:36 (feminine, mathétria); Acts 11:26, “The disciples were called Christians”).
    3. Even half-instructed believers who had been baptized only with the baptism of John are disciples (Acts 19:1-4).
  2. We have also the verb, μαθητεύω, mathēteúō, “Jesus’ disciple” (literally, “was discipled to Jesus,” Matthew 27:57);
  3. “Make disciples of all the nations” (the King James Version “teach,” Matthew 28:19); “had made many disciples” (the King James Version “taught many,” Acts 14:21); “every scribe who hath been made a disciple to the kingdom of heaven” (the King James Version “instructed,” Matthew 13:52). The disciple of Christ today may be described in the words of Farrar, as
    1. “one who believes His doctrines,
    2. rests upon His sacrifice,
    3. imbibes His spirit,
    4. imitates His example.”

The Old Testament has neither the term nor the exact idea, though there is a difference between teacher and scholar among David’s singers (1 Chron. 25:8), and among the prophetic guilds the distinction between the rank and file and the leader (1 Samuel 19:20; 2 Kings 6:5). The International Standard Bible Encyclopedia.

  one who accepts and assists in spreading the doctrines of another: such as

a: Christianity:  one of the twelve in the inner circle of Christ’s followers according to the Gospel accounts

b:  a convinced adherent of a school or individual a disciple of Freud

Capitalized, Christianity:  a member of the Disciples of Christ founded in the U.S. in 1809 that holds the Bible alone to be the rule of faith and practice, usually baptizes by immersion and has a congregational polity Merriam-Webster

Weekly Devotional – May 15, 2021

Rulers of Tens

Exodus 18:21 (NKJV)

Moreover, you shall select from all the people able men, such as fear God, men of truth, hating covetousness; and place such over them to be rulers of thousands, rulers of hundreds, rulers of fifties, and rulers of tens.

When I joined the Navy in 1976, the first place they sent me was “Boot Camp.” There was 6 weeks of intense learning. There were three things they were teaching you.

The first thing they taught me was to remain silent while the orders were being issued. There were many who learned this the hard way. But in the end, they did learn.

Many of the Psalm teach us the same thing, I especially like Psalm 62:5-8. Though I may only lead tens, my leadership is important. Not because I have man’s training, but because I was appointed and trained by God. It was not man’s training that put me in my position of authority, it was God’s standards and His knowledge leading me.

The second thing the military taught me was how to follow the orders of my superiors. This one, well, let’s just say it was a hard pill for me to swallow.

Before I joined the Navy I had been the boss for several years and their style of leadership was much different than I was used to using. When you are trying to make a deadline in the civilian world, everyone needs to keep working toward the goal in order to meet the deadline. However, if you are a little late no one gets hurt. In the military, if you don’t work hard someone could die.

God’s work is the same as the military, but worse. If you die in war, that is only the first death and the state of your eternal life has already been determined. The state of your eternal life is dependent on how well God’s army is doing its job. If God’s people fail to recruit you as the military recruiter did, the state of your eternal life is in jeopardy (Romans 6:23). God’s people must then teach you how to fight against evil and learn the truth that is in God’s word (Ephesians 6:10-20).

The third thing I learned from the military was leadership. They taught me that each promotion came with a different type and level of responsibility. When you reach the higher levels you take on a lot of responsibility. You only reach the higher levels when your superiors feel you are read to meet the task.

We have many leaders in our churches today that decided out of high school that being a preacher is an easy job. Because of this, many people who might have been saved are dying without knowing how to be saved.

Just as in the military, God is your senior officer and only He can decide whether or not you are ready to handle the responsibility. No College can teach what God already knows. Although I believe college can make a pastor a better administrator, only God can teach someone to be a preacher or teacher and only after they have been called to do so by God. Who knows, God may think you worthy to lead more than ten!!   

Weekly Word Definition – Sanctification

The definition of Sanctification:

The state of growing in divine grace because of Christian commitment after baptism or conversion (Merriam-Webster)

In the first instance, to sanctify is to regard or declare “Holy” by separating from common usage to the service of God. (Funk & Wagnall’s Bible dictionary)

Hebrews 13:12 (NKJV)

Therefore, Jesus also, that He might sanctify the people with His own blood, suffered outside the gate.

Ephesians 5:26-27 (NRSV)

to make her holy by cleansing her with the washing of water by the word, so as to present the church to himself in splendor, without a spot or wrinkle or anything of the kind, yes, so that she may be holy and without blemish.

Ephesians 4:23-24 (NIV2011)

to be made new in the attitude of your minds; and to put on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness.

Sanctification is not some magic trick that God uses to keep us in line. It is the act of regeneration that leads to sanctification. Regeneration is the act of studying God’s word to the point of building a good relationship with God through the Holy Spirit.

We are not sanctified by the act of baptism, laying on of hands, or with some class that we attend. Only the Holy Spirit can help us achieve sanctification. Notice I did not say the Holy Spirit would give us sanctification. The Holy Spirit will only lead us and help us to achieve sanctification.

Why do we need sanctification? Without sanctification, we are just another person in the large pool of society. Just another person bound for the inevitable pool of sinners bound for the permanent punishment of the wicked.

To have sanctification is to be part of a small group of Christians that will live with God in Heaven.

Weekly Devotional – April 3, 2021

God’s Love for You!

Jesus answered and said to her, “If you knew the gift of God, and who it is who says to you, ‘Give Me a drink,’ you would have asked Him, and He would have given you living water.”

John 4:10 (NKJV)

I remember when I bought my first house. My ship was in the dry dock in Brooklyn, New York. My wife was stay with her parents in Douglasville Pennsylvania. She called a real estate agent in Virginia Beach, Virginia. My wife told him what we were looking for and gave him some information about us.

I left work early on Friday, Picked my wife up and we made it to Virginia late that night. On Saturday morning we met with the agent and he took us to look at houses. When we walked into the first house, it had everything my wife told him we were looking for and more. When I asked the price, it was far below the price we told him we wanted. The agent had already gotten us approved for a larger amount than we were paying so we signed the paperwork that day and moved in the next week. That agent was trying to help us because we were in the military. Today the real estate agents are trying to make a buck and won’t try to help you at all.

God is even better than that real estate agent. God wants to move us into a home that costs for more than we could ever afford. But God doesn’t get it financed for you like the real estate agent did. God will let his Son pay the price for you

God’s gift to the world wasn’t salvation, His gift to the world was the death of His only begotten Son on the cross at Calvary. Jesus died for our sins. A price we could never pay. Salvation was the result of that Gift.

Go ahead and get a drink like the women at the well did. Drink the everlasting water of salvation and remember it was God’s love for you that made it possible for you to drink. God’s love for this world is told in John 3:16. Go ahead and let God show you His love, it’s overwhelming!!!

Weekly Word Definition – Prayer

The word for this week is “Prayer”

A solemn request for help or expression of thanks addressed to God. Oxford Dictionary

An address (as a petition) to God or a god in word or thought. Merriam – Webster

In the Bible “prayer” is used in a simpler and a more complex a narrower and a wider signification. In the former case, it is supplication for benefits either for one’s self (petition) or for others (intercession). In the latter, it is an act of worship which covers all soul in its approach to God. Supplication is at the heart of it, for prayer always springs out of a sense of need and a belief that God is a rewarder of them that diligently seek Him (Hebrews 11:6). But adoration and confession and thanksgiving also find a place, so that the suppliant becomes a worshipper. It is unnecessary to distinguish all the various terms for prayer that are employed in the Old Testament and the New Testament. But the fact should be noticed that in the Hebrew and Greek aloe there are on the one hand words for prayer that denote a direct petition or short, sharp cry of the heart in its distress (Psalm 30:2; 2 Cor. 12:8), and on the other “prayers” like that of Hannah (1 Samuel 2:1-10), which is in reality a song of thanksgiving, or that of Paul, the prisoner of Jesus Christ, in which intercession is mingled with doxology (Eph. 3:14-21). The International Standard Bible Encyclopedia.

There are four things all Christians must know about prayer.

To have a good prayer life, you must have a good relationship with God. To obtain the good relationship, you must study God’s word and learn His will.

Be humble and contrite, God will be willing and generous.

Christian Word Definition: Fasting

Abstain from all or some kinds of food or drink, especially as a religious observance. Oxford Dictionary

Fasting is a willing abstinence or reduction from some or all food, drink, or both, for a period of time. An absolute fast (dry fasting) is normally defined as abstinence from all food and liquid for a defined period, usually a period of 24 hours, or several days. Water fasting allows drinking water but nothing else. Other fasts may be partially restrictive, limiting only particular foods or substances. A fast may also be intermittent in nature. Fasting practices may preclude intercourse and other activities as well as food. Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

There are many preachers today who wrongly teach fasting from the Old Testament. Fasting is a personnel decision and must be kept between the person and God.

Although not commanded of us by God, if done correctly and sincerely, I can’t see why God would not honor the humility of the fast.

Group fasts would be the same as the Pharisees hypocritical pretenses. Fasting is an individual decision and is between the person and God. What good would it do to announce your fast to the church? A Fast is about humility and a closeness to God. An announcement would be a statement of pride and could give the wrong message to both the church and to God.

The Things Which God has Prepared for Those Who Love Him

But as it is written: “Eye has not seen, nor ear heard, nor have entered into the heart of man the things which God has prepared for those who love Him.”

1 Corinthians 2:9 (NKJV)

I think the Bible Knowledge Commentary sums up verse 9 better than anyone else I have read.

The blessings of salvation were prepared by the Father, carried out by the Son, and applied by the Spirit (Eph. 1:3-14) to all believers who as a result, love God.

The Bible Knowledge Commentary: An Exposition of the Scriptures by Dallas Seminary Faculty.
  1. God has been setting the stage for salvation since the beginning of time. Man was created to look, act, and think like God.
    1. God created man in His own image, Genesis 1:27
    2. God Breathed the breath of life into man, Genesis 2:7
    3. God has given us the “Mind of Christ.” 1 Corinthians 2:16
  2. All that God created; He gave to man. Genesis 1:28
  3. God demonstrated His ultimate love toward man by giving His only Son to die on the cross in our place. To pay for the sins we committed, Jesus was sacrificed. He had no sin.
  4. On the day of Pentecost, the Holy Spirit was introduced to man. He was not given to man to judge man, but to lead man in the ways of God. The Spirit was given to help us understand God’s word, enjoy God’s love, and live a Christian Life.

Today our young people read these verses of scripture and they mean extraordinarily little to them. They cannot understand how we could own all this and not make a profit from it. In fact, we do make a profit, just not each individual.

Even those who are Christians have a hard time putting all this in perspective. We get hung up on, “what do I get out of all this?”

Simple, you get all that is listed above and a lot more. All that is listed above is already our responsibility, and there will be much more to come.

Christ stated in John 14:10 that the statements He made didn’t come from Him, they came from the Father. Why? Because the Father lived in Christ just as the Holy Spirit lives in the Christian today.

Paul and eleven of the twelve disciples were called Apostles, I too have that distinction because I also teach and preach the Gospel. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t put myself in the same circles as those Apostles, but God does. I am a part of that circle of teachers and preachers because that is the way God structures the church.

I do not share the same physical father as Christ; however, I do share the same Spiritual Father. If I love my Spiritual Father as Christ did, the Holy Spirit will live in me just as the Holy Spirit lived in Christ (Matt 3:16-17). With the Holy Spirit to guide me and tell me what to teach and preach, how could I possibly go wrong? However, I do have to follow the commands.

How does one follow (obey) the commands, quite simple, you live the bible daily. If you are living the word of God daily, you will automatically follow the commands because they are a part of the bible.

I can live the bible the same way Christ did. I am in the Father and the Father is living in me.

Let me explain two things that people often get wrong.

  1. Christianity is not a religion; it is a Way of Life.
  2. God has already given us His love through the death of Jesus on the Cross. Now we must give our love to God by following His commands

If you are indeed a Christian, then you live in the Father and the Faither lives in you just as He lived in Christ. You are a part of God because God lives in you. AMEN!!

Christian Word Definition: Disciple

A scholar, sometimes applied to the followers of John the Baptist (Mat 9:14), and of the Pharisees (Mat 22:16), but principally to the followers of Christ. A disciple of Christ is one who

  1. believes his doctrine,
  2. rests on his sacrifice,
  3. imbibes his spirit,
  4. imitates his example (Mat 10:24; Luke 14:26, 27, 33; John 6:69).
Illustrated Bible Dictionary: And Treasury of Biblical History, Biography, Geography, Doctrine, and Literature.

Usually a substantive (μαθητής, mathētés, “a learner,” from manthánō, “to learn”; Latin discipulus, “a scholar”): The word is found in the Bible only in the Gospels and Acts. But it is good Greek, in use from Herodotus down, and always means the pupil of someone, in contrast to the master or teacher (διδάσκαλος, didáskalos). Matthew 10:24; Luke 6:40.

  1. In all cases, it implies that the person not only accepts the views of the teacher but that he is also in practice an adherent. The word has several applications. In the widest sense, it refers to those who accept the teachings of anyone, not only in belief but in life. Thus the disciples of John the Baptist (Matthew 9:14; Luke 7:18; John 3:25); also of the Pharisees (Matthew 22:16; Mark 2:18; Luke 5:33); of Moses (John 9:28). But its most common use is to designate the adherents of Jesus.
    • In the widest sense (Matthew 10:42; Luke 6:17; John 6:66, and often). It is the only name for Christ’s followers in the Gospels. But
    • especially the Twelve Apostles, even when they are called simply the disciples (Matthew 10:1; Matthew 11:1; Matthew 12:1, et al.). In the Acts, after the death and ascension of Jesus, disciples are those who confess Him as the Messiah, Christians (Acts 6:1-2, 7; Acts 9:36 (feminine, mathétria); Acts 11:26, “The disciples were called Christians”).
    • Even half-instructed believers who had been baptized only with the baptism of John are disciples (Acts 19:1-4).
  2. We have also the verb, μαθητεύω, mathēteúō, “Jesus’ disciple” (literally, “was discipled to Jesus,” Matthew 27:57);
  3. “Make disciples of all the nations” (the King James Version “teach,” Matthew 28:19); “had made many disciples” (the King James Version “taught many,” Acts 14:21); “every scribe who hath been made a disciple to the kingdom of heaven” (the King James Version “instructed,” Matthew 13:52). The disciple of Christ today may be described in the words of Farrar, as
    • “one who believes His doctrines,
    • rests upon His sacrifice,
    • imbibes His spirit,
    • imitates His example.”

The Old Testament has neither the term nor the exact idea, though there is a difference between teacher and scholar among David’s singers (1 Chron. 25:8), and among the prophetic guilds the distinction between the rank and file and the leader (1 Samuel 19:20; 2 Kings 6:5).

The International Standard Bible Encyclopedia.

  one who accepts and assists in spreading the doctrines of another: such as

  1. Christianity:  one of the twelve in the inner circle of Christ’s followers according to the Gospel accounts
  2. a convinced adherent of a school or individual a disciple of Freud

Capitalized, Christianity:  a member of the Disciples of Christ founded in the U.S. in 1809 that holds the Bible alone to be the rule of faith and practice, usually baptizes by immersion and has a congregational polity

Merriam-Webster

Whoever Claims to Live in Him

Whoever claims to live in him must live as Jesus did

1 John 2:6 (NIV2011)

No one has ever seen God; but if we love one another, God lives in us and his love is made complete in us.

1 John 4:12 (NIV2011)

Stop for a moment and think about God’s Love and what it means to live in the Love of God. You are claiming to Walk with God, Understand God, Live your life in God’s Will. How can a poor human accomplish all that? Because we are Blessed.

Sometimes I go to the grocery store or one of the box stores and as I start to walk away from the counter, the person on duty says, “have a blessed day.” I immediately turn and ask what that means. It is rare for the person to even get close to the meaning. Usually they state, “it means have a happy day.”

The Greek word used in the Beatitudes for “blessed” is Makarios. Makarios is the poetic form of the word Makar

Makarios: “a prose form of the poetic makar, blessed one.  Blessed, blissful.  Biblically, one is pronounced blessed when God is present and involved in his life.  The hand of God is at work directing all his affairs for a divine purpose, and thus, in a sense, such a person lives coram Deo, before the face of God.” (New Testament Lexical Aids in the Hebrew Greek Key Study Bible.)

To be blessed is when we can say that we look like Christ. We look like him because He is living in us. Since Christ never sins, then we cannot sin. Christ is always humble; therefore, we must maintain that image of humility and at the same time we must also love our neighbor enough to die for them.

When I was in the Navy, I saw men and women every day that were ready to go into battle. Everyone who is ready for battle knows there is a chance they might not come back alive; however, they choose to go anyway.

Many of these people did not go to church and had no time for the bible. Some of them were truly Christians. To tell them apart was hard. You had to talk with them and learn firsthand whether they were Christians or not. God is not even asking us to do something that the world won’t do. God is simply asking that we act like Him, so we can confuse the enemy

For “who has known the mind of the LORD that he may instruct Him?” But we have the mind of Christ.

1 Corinthians 2:16 (NKJV)

People are really confusing when it comes to dealing with God. They say they are Christians (like Christ). They have the Holy Spirit living in them directing their lives every day (if they listen) and they have the mind of Christ. In other words, they have the ability to think the same thoughts that Christ is thinking, and you still hear them say they are going into their closet to ask God what He would do.

How many preachers and teachers have you heard say they will call down the Holy Spirit to guide them. Well, if you say you are a Christian, you have the Holy Spirit “in you.”

To know that God through the Holy Spirit is living in you, you must study the word of God and allow Him to help you understand it. In other words, don’t be dumb.

Accordingly, to have the mind of Christ you must know what Christ is thinking. If you study the bible you will find that Christ is the word of God.