Spiritual Starvation and the Manna that’s Already There

Many of the teachings of Christ that are recorded in the Gospel records were tough for many of the Jewish leaders and also for many of the normal Jews to understand. Jesus was so beyond Man’s thinking of who this Messiah was supposed to be, so beyond the systems and traditions that they tried so desperately to cage Him up in, that they simply couldn’t believe, or receive, many of the words that came out of His mouth.

Many times they tried to trick Him into saying something to accuse Him with. But they failed. They asked Him questions that should have baffled a normal man, but not Him. He had an answer to every question. He was able to cut directly to the heart of each matter and look beyond the outer appearance to the inner workings of each man’s soul. Now, whether they were able to receive and believe it or not was completely up to them.

There is one specific teaching that was recorded in John’s Gospel that caused Him to lose many of His followers. I personally believe it was one of the hardest teachings that was ever presented by Him while on earth. And I also think this is still one of the hardest teachings for many people–even for many believers.

It’s not that they necessarily deny this teaching, for say. But more they fail to recognize its practical, and greatly vital importance. Comprehending this teaching, spiritually, not just intellectually, in my opinion, can drastically alter our walk with Him. This specific teaching can revolutionize our relationship with Jesus Christ.

I know this by experience.

A Parallel of Today from John 6:26-59

In this passage, Jesus had just performed an astonishing miracle–He provided bread from Heaven for 5,000 people. After which the people went in search for Him in Capernaum–across the lake. Upon arriving on the other side of the lake, Jesus confronts them as to why they are following Him:

“I tell you the truth, you are looking for Me, not because you saw miraculous signs but because you ate the loaves and had your fill.” (John 6:26)

He was essentially saying, “You have come not because you saw some awesome things such as miracles, but because you are hungry.” He then proceeds to tell them not to work for food that spoils, but to work for the food that He will give that will endure to eternal life (6:27).

These people were hungry, not only physically hungry, but more so spiritually hungry. They were dying of spiritual starvation and Jesus saw this quite clearly. The bread from Heaven was just  a shadow or a figure of what He was really about to show them. He then tells them that He is the Bread of Life and the works of the Father are to “believe in the One He has sent”.

He tells them,

“Unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink His blood, you have no life in you…For my flesh is real food and my blood is real drink. Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood remains in me, and I in Him.” (John 6:53, 55-56)

This holds within it a powerful truth for us today: when the people are starving spiritually, Jesus doesn’t offer them a method or a set of steps to a deeper spiritual life, He offers His flesh as food and His blood as drink.

This means so much more than atonement only. For a long time I considered this passage something that had already been fulfilled when He died on the cross. I thought He was speaking only of the atonement and washing away of my sins and the sins of the world. But again, Jesus Christ is much deeper than that!

Our atonement and forgiveness has indeed already been fulfilled. But there is part of this teaching that hasn’t quite been fulfilled in a sense–because it’s a day-to-day practice. It is that of eating the flesh and drinking the blood of Jesus Christ.

After Jesus had presented this teaching of eating His flesh, many of disciples deserted Him. They said themselves, “This is a hard teaching, who can accept it?” and, “How can this man give us his flesh to eat?”

I think the same thing, in essence, happens today.

Many of the sons and daughters of God are able to accept the fact that their forgiveness and washing away of sins has been completely fulfilled by Jesus Christ on the cross. Though many still have a guilt complex, they still are aware of this fact. But when it comes to daily partaking and eating of Christ, many falter. They will sit and listen all day to how our sins are forgiven, how the blood of Christ covers all sins, and how He was the sacrificial Lamb. They will even sit and study the teachings of Christ laid out in the Gospels as though they can perform such demands themselves. But once mention is made of feasting upon Christ, many simply can’t understand. So, like the Jews in John 6, they begin to grumble amongst themselves with words such as, “That New Age stuff is so weird.” or, “That’s way over my head, he is being so philosophical.”

But they remain in a state of spiritual starvation. Many admit to this fact.

Partaking and eating of Christ isn’t in the literal sense of the phrase–this is how the Jews took it upon hearing Christ speak of it. No, it’s a daily, spiritual partaking.

All that we need for our fulfillment in all things spiritual is found in Christ. For, “in Him [Christ] all the fullness of Deity lives in bodily form.” All the fullness of God is in Christ and “all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge” too. These things do not dwell in the teachings of Christ, in the miracles of Christ, in the healings of Christ, in the actions of Christ, or in the commandments of Christ. These are parts of a greater picture. No, all the fullness of God is in Christ! Nowhere else are such things to be found.

So we can meet all our needs, physically and spiritually by partaking of Christ alone. We need not concern ourselves with fully understand the teachings of Jesus, the commandments of Jesus, or even the doctrine of Jesus. These are all side-notes, outlets of expression–they are not the main prize; though many have them the main attraction.

So what will you say when Jesus says to you, “Eat My flesh and drink My blood?” Will you then ask for a miracle? Will you then ask that He tell you the Greek word for “flesh”? Will you then grumble and say, “This teaching is too hard, how can I accept it?” Or will you be like Peter and say, “To whom shall I go? You have the words of eternal life!”

Amen.

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41 thoughts on “Spiritual Starvation and the Manna that’s Already There

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  1. Amen Michael, hunger is so, so, important to receiving all that God has already provided in Christ. Great post. Can’t believe I opened my email this morning and read this, since I was drafting a post late last night related to spiritual hunger. Confirmation from God to me through you. Thanks.

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  2. Yeah – that’s NOT philosophical, though many people may not even read or follow to the point when they could grasp it themselves. This is sad!
    What will they do then with all those other passages where the bible speaks of “Christ in all” (1cor 7:14/Eph. 1:23) and all things in Him (1cor 8:6), us being one with Him, He in us and we in Him (John 14:20+17:21-22)!
    He is so GREAT, so VAST and so wonderful – how could we ever live without Him?

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  3. BLESSINGS, dear Michael!
    This is a wonderful teaching, young man. May the Word of God be the TRUTH you tenaciously cling to, if it make every man a liar!
    May your ears be ever open to hear what the Father IS saying, your eyes open to see what He IS doing.
    Lovingly in Jesus’ love,
    Marie

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  4. The Jews in history and/or today, even, including Gentiles from all eras, were not able to appreciate and understand what Jesus was saying because of their hardened hearts and stiff necks. How many times did Jesus say, “Have you not read?” “Did you not know?” How many times did he rebuke the religious leaders of the time for not knowing what they should have known from their supposed mastery of the Torah, and yet they didn’t. Still, most of the new Christians who had no background of knowing the Jewish scriptures and yet Paul and the other Apostles and the others who wrote the divinely inspired N.T. were able to understand what was in the letters written to them. Surely, if (since) the Holy Scriptures were written as God’s revelation to us of not only Himself, but of His Son, our Lord Jesus Christ, and the Holy Spirit, He would have no purpose in making them difficult to understand or requiring any “special” revelation over and above what every Christian has because of the indwelling Holy Spirit. What would be the point to communicate when those He is intending to communicate to are not capable of receiving that communication?

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  5. I need some clarity about your following point “”We need not concern ourselves with fully understand the teachings of Jesus, the commandments of Jesus, or even the doctrine of Jesus. These are all side-notes, outlets of expression–they are not the main prize; though many have them the main attraction.”
    Our emphasis is Christ himself but the methods of living this are also critical since it has serious consequences if applied in the sense that it is merely a mystical experience with “Christ” versus an accurate understanding of his covenant with us with an humble heart of faith by the Holy Spirit and where we participated in it by obedience. It sounds great in wording but how do we know it or have an certainty. Is it simply subjective depended on our personal sense of rightness or on the authority of Christ and the Apostle’s teachings? I am commenting because I am seeing a new teaching spreading among us which marginalized the scriptures for knowing Christ in place of personal discovery placing us as the final arbitrators as truth versus the scriptures which leads us safely to Christ the ultimate truth.

    Paul left Timothy with the following which goes against this new approach to know Christ. It was with the understanding that Timothy need vital reminders critical for his walk with Christ and they are vital for us too. (1 Timothy 4:13)
    “Until I come, devote yourself to the public reading of Scripture, to preaching and to teaching. Do not neglect your gift, which was given you through prophecy when the body of elders laid their hands on you. Be diligent in these matters; give yourself wholly to them, so that everyone may see your progress. Watch your life and doctrine closely. Persevere in them, because if you do, you will save both yourself and your hearers.”

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    1. Albert,

      First off, thanks for commenting.

      That’s actually a really good question. I do ask that you please understand that I am not suggesting that we neglect Scripture or the teaching and doctrine in Scripture. But I am saying that all Scripture (both Old and New Testaments) all speak of Christ. He said this Himself. However, many, like the Jews in Jesus’ time, have made the Scriptures the main goal–learning them, studying them, and reading them. Some take the Bible and make it the food, but it only speaks OF the food–the food being Jesus Christ.

      I use Scripture in almost all my blog posts. But I do not use Scripture only to study doctrine and teachings, I use it to find Christ. For He is the goal, He is the Life, He is the Bread, and He is the Word. In my opinion, the bible isn’t the “word”, Jesus Christ is the Word made flesh (John 1).

      Scripture is also very useful, and needed, in checking ourselves and our theology. The basic, foundational truths that are outlined in the Bible by the Apostles is absolutely vital in keeping ourselves in “check”. For example, if I begin to think that getting drunk in bars is an acceptable act for a Christian, then I can easily check the Scriptures and find that this isn’t so. For Paul was quite clear about drunkeness and so was the Old Testament.

      There is also the fact that the 1st Century Christians didn’t have a Bible and only had small portions of the Old Testament. So they relied heavily upon the Spirit and the Apostles for their doctrine and teaching. So, at the end of the day, if somehow all the Bibles were burned and we had absolutely no access to Scripture for the rest of our lives, what would happen? Do you think the the life of Christ would simply pass away? Would the Holy Spirit cease to work? Would God not talk? Is He constricted to a book? No, never.

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  6. Thank you for your reply. I agree wholeheartedly with you that we can get lost in theological pursuits like the pharisees did and missed that is about discovering Christ himself not a religion. This is common now is so many churches and so tragic. Definitely God can work despite the absence of bibles but yet in so many countries it is bibles that the the authorities fear since it is the critical component for the spread of the gospel. Paul himself stated that someone sharing the “good news” would be necessary for someone hearing the good news of “Christ” and the preaching of the gospel was the “power” of God. Reading of Romans was the spark that freed many from the dark shadow of Catholic Church’s teachings and its fragments are greatly daily treasured by persecuted believers whose lives are changed by it. I personally was lost in religion far from the reality of Christ and in my teens discovered Christ by reading the scriptures since it was the only thing I could relied with certainty. The only two options were teaching of men or my personal subjective experiences which could by influenced by my flesh or demonic deception. It was in the new testament epistles that I discovered the beauty of Christ himself. I have tragically watch friends wander from the authentic Christ as they were led by self deluded subjective experiences or revelations that led them to the wrong “christ” not portrayed in the gospels. I treasured reading the scriptures and depended on the “Holy Spirit” to reveal Christ in its pages. Paul emphasized discovering Christ as his ultimate pursuit and constantly warn young believers about the dangers of scriptural ignorance. The early Church starting in the book of Acts daily hid the early gospel teaching in their heart even it was not yet printed because it was vital for their development of their faith in Christ. We need to emphasis “discovering Christ” in the scriptures which is desperately need without giving the impression that the scriptures are not a “critical component’ in our faith since some may believe that scriptural reading and study is optional making them easy prey for the deceiving schemes of false teacher and Satan’s substitution for Christ.

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  7. Well said, Albert. I too have become deeply concerned about the trend that seems to be dismissive of the Scriptures, God’s Word, which sadly may be an natural result of believers being, ultimately, biblically illiterate about what the God’s Word actually teaches about God and Jesus and the Holy Spirit. The fact that God’s Word says in the last days there will be a falling away, it is difficult to see it happening before your very eyes.

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  8. Michael,

    In your original post you said:

    “So we can meet all our needs, physically and spiritually by partaking of Christ alone. We need not concern ourselves with fully understand the teachings of Jesus, the commandments of Jesus, or even the doctrine of Jesus. These are all side-notes, outlets of expression–they are not the main prize; though many have them the main attraction.”

    The greater portion of the above Albert quoted in his initial comment to you, to which you replied:

    “I do ask that you please understand that I am not suggesting that we neglect Scripture or the teaching and doctrine in Scripture.”

    If you are not suggesting that we “neglect” Scripture, teaching and doctrine, which the God’s Word, itself says is profitable (2 Ti. 3:16) for many things and which Paul encourages be entrusted to faithful men who will be able to teach others also, what is it you are suggesting? Why would you say that the teachings of Jesus, the commandments of Jesus and the doctrine of Jesus are “side-notes”? Why would anything of Jesus be a “side-note”?

    Paul, earlier in 2 Timothy commands that we be diligent to show ourselves approved of God (apparently diligent study of God’s Word is not something God would fault us for). Christ is the Solid Rock. God’s Word is written explanation and description of what that means for Jesus to be our all in all.

    The difference between the Pharisees and born again believers is that we are indwelt by the Holy Spirit (not by Jesus Christ, as some would say, but by His Spirit). The Holy Spirit is God. Jesus is God. They are part of the Triune God, but they are not the same person.

    God’s Word transforms our lives, conforms us more and more to the image of Jesus. If we neglect God’s Word we risk, as Albert said so well, being deceived because the Enemy likes nothing more than to convince people that God’s Word isn’t really important to our spiritual health. God’s Word, prayer, being filled with the Spirit, and obeying God’s commands…not for the purpose of eternal salvation but for the purpose of obeying our loving God and Savior, Jesus Christ, and because God does know best.

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    1. Cheryl,

      You are obviously misunderstanding me. You are taking my words and assuming that I am on either side of two extremes. Those extremes being either that I say we should neglect Scripture or the other extreme which says that Scripture is everything. I am NOT on either side of those extremes. (And indeed they are both extremes)

      What I am saying, Cheryl, is that many have taken the Bible and made it their god. They worship it, they pray to it, they sacrifice to it, and they treat it as though, in and of itself, it is a deity. But it simply isn’t. It only points to the true God, the Living Deity which is God manifested in the face of Christ.

      So, my point is NOT me saying, “Hey, quit reading your bibles!” Nor is it, “Hey, if you don’t read your Bible every day, you’re a bad Christian!” For neither of those are the heart of our Lord, Jesus Christ.

      But my point is, that Jesus Christ is enough. He has “all the fullness of God” within Him, and by Him all things were made. And He is the Word of God made Flesh. Scripture is NOT the Word made Flesh but instead points, expresses, manifests, and displays the Word made Flesh.

      I read my Bible every day, Cheryl (occasionally I don’t, but virtually daily). But I DO NOT read it in order for me to try to find some secret formula to the better, deeper Christian life. I DO NOT read it to find some faith passage to conjure up more faith by my own self-efforts in order to please God. I DO NOT read it in order to study the end-times prophesy as though I could somehow find a verse that will tell me the day or the hour.

      No, I read my Bible to commune, to fellowship, to know, and to be more intimate with my Heavenly Father. I read it to search for Christ in my heart–to drink and eat of Him in my spirit. I do this every day. And yes, there are times when we must do the work of a scholar and check our own theology–especially if we are teaching or preaching to others.

      I hope that answers your question.

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  9. Michael,

    Because of this article, I have gotten rid of all my Bibles and will never read the scriptures again. (grin) Just kidding!

    On another note, idols never go easily. The Bible idol is a huge obstacle that keeps many from the point of the Bible, which is the person of Jesus Christ.

    Jesus spoke to the religious leaders about this very thing in John 5:39-40. Here is my paraphrase of this passage:

    “You’re starving to death because you’re trying to eat the cookbook. The cookbook was written about FOOD!” (paraphrase of John 5:39-40)

    Somethings never change. Keep pressing on brother!

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  10. Awesome article!

    Many of us are learning and starting to eat and drink of Christ. So few of us know how to do this as it is so rarely practiced, Perhaps you could give examples of eating and drinking of Christ from your life. That would encourage many brothers and sisters!

    Presently, for me it is a call to daily deny myself, take up the cross, and follow Him, but inso doing, I give Him my burdens and take his yoke. By eating of Him and drinking of him, I am no longer asking for help with this problem, or a blessing for another situation. Rather, I give him the situation, and even today, and look for him to make the next day possible. Everything that happens, good or bad, I see Christ in. Whether it be my physical food, shelter, dealing with a relationship, fellowship with others, or asking for Him to guide me in my business.

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  11. The idea that the bible is an idol is baffling to me since it is not found in the writings of the prophets, the apostles or Christ himself. In fact, the opposite is evident in their writings. So this brings up an important question? Have we made our personal musings an idol? What is idol? Anything that takes us away from the authentic worship of God or changes our perspective about him. If we ultimately place our human understanding as the final determiner of what God wants from us then we may walking in darkness while convinced that we in the light. This is more about a leaning towards mysticism which is one of the subtle deceptions of Satan and is idolatry. Let me clarify that some people approach the bible with an unregenated heart or wrong heart condition full of malice, pride, sin or their personal human intellect void of the Holy Spirit which trageticallys leads them to dead religion not an supernatural encounter with Christ himself. This is too common in our religious history.

    Going back to the statement that the “Bible idol is a huge obstacle that keeps many from the point of the Bible, which is the person of Jesus Christ”. Where is the basis for confirming this? Do we trust the musing of a man or we do as the Bereans did with Paul in the book of Acts go to the scriptures and see if it is lines up with the reveal truth of God? This is an alarming new trend spreading under the guise since we now have the Holy Spirit and Christ that the study of scripture is only a hindrance but no one can give an credible defense for it. Please do not confuse what I am saying that we should become a dead religious person who quotes verses but their life is an empty shell like the religious leaders in Jesus’s time. Let me say it this way. Study and preaching scripture without the Holy Spirit will dry us up but seeking and preaching with the pretense we need only the Holy Spirit will blow us away from Christ into false teaching or teachers. I have seen both. We need the foundation of scripture combined with a right heart condition depended on the Holy Spirit to open our eyes and HIs empowering us to have transformed lives. An accurate understanding of scripture keeps us on the path that leads us to Christ. The scripture points us to Christ. The criticism that Christ had with the religious leaders was not their “scriptural idology” but it was their harden evil hearts which twisted scriptures to justify their evil deeds and blinded them. It is our hearts that is the main issue not scripture now we are advocating to trust our hearts only? The “Word of God” as described in Hebrews is the sword that helps us distinguish between our soulish impressions and the Holy Spirit leadings which can be easily confused. The deception in these days will more subtle than ever before in human history and we need to bury ourselves deep in the writings of scripture especially those of Christ and the apostles. I have spent too many years in the wilderness seeking mysticism and now I have a deep confidence and peace that rests on the “word of God” that never passes away.

    “1 Peter 1:23 For you have been born again, but not to a life that will quickly end. Your new life will last forever because it comes from the eternal, living word of God. 24 As the Scriptures say,
    “People are like grass;
    their beauty is like a flower in the field.
    The grass withers and the flower fades.
    25 But the word of the Lord remains forever.”
    And that word is the Good News that was preached to you.”

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    1. Jesus said “You search the Scriptures because you think they give you eternal life. But the Scriptures point to me!”

      Albert, you bring up very good thoughts. The trend to dismiss the Scriptures is alarming to me as well; the moment we disregard the Scriptural canon is the moment that we become double-minded and unstable.

      Some argue that the New Testament church had the Holy Spirit, so we don’t need anything else either. Well, that’s not the whole story. The New Testament church had the apostles; and with them, the teachings of Christ.
      During the Last Supper, Christ told them that he would send them (the apostles) a helper that would remind them of all he (Jesus) said. And then, in Acts, Luke wrote that the church “continued stedfastly in the apostles’ doctrine and fellowship, and in breaking of bread, and in prayers.” We have “the apostles’ doctrine” in our New Testament.
      Just like the New Testament church devoted themselves to the apostles’ teachings, so we devote ourselves to the Scriptures’ teachings; they are the same thing.

      One major concern for me is this: if the Scriptures aren’t the full revelation of Christ, then what is? I’m acquainted with people who preach “new revelations” of Christ. They teach things foreign to the Scriptures under the banner of a “continuing Word.” They deny the authority of Scripture and rely on “personal revelations.”
      Well, the Word is continuing, in a sense; because the Word is Christ. But “revelations” that add to the New Testament are on a slippery slope to, like you said, personal musings at best, and false teaching at worst.

      A man that doesn’t abide in Christ is dead, and a man that doesn’t have the authority and witness of the Scriptures is unstable.

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      1. Albert,

        It is quite clear that you are completely misunderstanding me here. I believe I made my points already in my last reply to you. So I suppose I’m just missing something here.

        So I’m sorry I can’t answer your question because I’m quite unclear what your question really is.

        So I’ll state my previous points in summary:

        1) I DO NOT agree with this new teaching (though it is quite ancient, far from “new”) that we are to neglect the Scriptures and not read our Bibles.

        2) I AM NOT saying that sound doctrine and teaching are a bad thing as it appears you are trying to imply that I’m saying. For indeed, because I read my Bible, I know that Paul encouraged Timothy in this particular area. So, to say that I am against the study of Scripture would be say that I’m also a hypocrite and double-minded seeing as how I constantly quote it and attempt to manifest Christ from it (and the fact that I read the Bible daily). So that argument doesn’t work.

        3) I AM saying, however, that the Bible is a gift and a tool that is to be used to POINT us to Christ…it is not Christ Himself for Jesus is NOT a book, ink, or paper, but a real and living Person. The book only points us to Christ which you hinted at in your last comment which is why I’m still confused as to your question seeing as how you stated yourself that it points to Christ.

        4) I AM saying that to use the Bible only to draw up theological thesis and doctrines is lifeless and futile. But to use the Bible as a tool, as a compass, as a guide to fellowship with Christ, my Father, my All, is very much fruitful!

        To sum it all up I’ll quote my friend, Nathan Burgman:

        “Many people know about Oprah Winfrey. They know some of her likes, her dislikes, what she wears, what her favorite book it, etc. Millions know about her. But how many actually know Oprah Winfrey? How many know her personality quirks? How many know her moods in the morning or how she likes her steak cooked? Not very many because most people only know ABOUT her. The same is with Jesus Christ. We can know all ABOUT Him, what He likes, what He dislikes, and even what He ate and said. But how many actually know Him in an intimate way?”

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  12. Brother Albert the issue of idolatry is at a heart level. You said, “I have a deep confidence and a peace that rests on the word of God that never passes away”. To me that shows you draw your peace out of the bible and confidence on the bible, not a person, Jesus Christ. Michael is not implying we neglect them which you brought up again. It also seems there is a concern if you stop reading your bible you will fall away to false teachings or go into a bad experience like you mentioned with the mystiscm. I want to encourage you that the body of Christ is supposed to share life together under the headship of Jesus Christ. Thus we cannot get weird or fall into a false teaching. We have to live by his indwelling life, and that can only be learned by living in body life. Because the head and the body cannot be seperated. Also, to live by his life keeps us from the knowledge of Good and Evil just a couple thoughts.

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    1. Yes, indeed, Nate. Only in the Body of Christ can we find brothers and sisters to keep up stable and sharpened. It is when we get on our own, without any peers or brothers around us, that we get goofy and off of Christ.

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  13. Please note that I write out out of concern motivated by love for you all. Seen too many tragedies due to scriptural ignorance. The usage of words by some is what troubles me because it sends the wrong message to many readers. Neglect of scripture is one thing but to make the point that the collective body experience is supreme to Christ’s teachings is contradictory. Body members can get deceived so the scriptures are a safeguard from this. The body can be separated from the head if they look to personal revelations instead of a correct scriptural understanding and examples of these were the some of the churches listed in the book of Revelation. Just spoke to a brother who attended a fellowship that placed a great emphasis on the collective experience versus confidence in scripture for their relationship with Christ and that scripture was not critical. The results were tragic. Obviously we obtain our confidence from scripture not our personal or someone’s else revelation or collective experiences unless it coincides with scripture. How do we know with certainty? Even Peter the apostle espoused this clearly and please note he states that Christ will shine in our hearts when we pay close attention to what was written. These writings are our lamps (similar to what David also said in Psalms 119:11). Yes, Body life is important since sharing our lives is an means of Christ using others to help others but people can fail us easily. I know so many who wander looking for the perfect fellowship since their faith was in the body not ni the head being Christ. The last days will be filled with widespread deceptions and a thorough understanding of scripture will be the best safeguard. Paul used his last days on earth to write letters to Timothy that stressed that he need to pay close attention to his doctrine and that scripture study and teaching would save him and his hearers. Where did he espoused to Timothy that scripture would be a hindrance to knowing Christ? To truly live by the life of Christ means to enrich our minds with his teachings received with pure hearts and abide in them by faith evidence by obedience. I have watched groups of people go astray but God’s word reveal by the scriptures is lasting and it is the sword against Satan’s arrows primarily his subtle deceptive teachings.

    1 Peter 2: 16 ” For we were not making up clever stories when we told you about the powerful coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. We saw his majestic splendor with our own eyes when he received honor and glory from God the Father. The voice from the majestic glory of God said to him, “This is my dearly loved Son, who brings me great joy.” We ourselves heard that voice from heaven when we were with him on the holy mountain.

    Because of that experience, we have even greater confidence in the message proclaimed by the prophets. You must pay close attention to what they wrote, for their words are like a lamp shining in a dark place—until the Day dawns, and Christ the Morning Star shines in your hearts. Above all, you must realize that no prophecy in Scripture ever came from the prophet’s own understanding, or from human initiative. No, those prophets were moved by the Holy Spirit, and they spoke from God.”

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  14. Michael,

    your last points were spoken with clarity and wisdom and clear up my concerns. I apologized with my many words. Just had a very bad experience with those who referred themselves as “free believers”. The church desperately to know Christ beyond mere facts but a living reality that touches others around them. I desperately want to see Christ lived out in our lives as a reality because this the greatest defense to the spreading atheism that mocks our “churchanity” in so many places. God Bless!

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  15. Our absolute dependence upon food, water, shelter, and rest are common to all, and indicate a spiritual need that is only quenched, or satisfied ‘in’ Christ.

    For the Jews they were commanded to observe the Sabbaths, and feasting was a central part of these days. they were indeed referred to as “Feast Days’. We as we enter His rest, find that He is indeed food, living water, shelter, and rest from our wearisome works.

    Your post is clear, concise, and very uplifting, thanks for your ministry of Love my brother!

    Like

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