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The Holy Spirit In The Old Testament (2)

Understanding the prophecies concerning the Holy Spirit is very important if we are going to understand what the Jews expected when the pouring out of the Holy Spirit took place. Until we can grasp what God was promising concerning the Holy Spirit, we will never understand the true implications of the Holy Spirit's arrival. Isaiah 32:14-18. “For the palace will be forsaken, the busy city abandoned. The hill and the watchtower will become barren places forever, the joy of wild…

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The Holy Spirit in the Old Testament (1)

The subject of the Holy Spirit has been one of controversy and confusion. Some religious groups teach that the Holy Spirit still is imparting miraculous gifts to those who have enough faith. Other religious groups believe the Holy Spirit will overwhelm you, causing a person to have a variety of joyful emotions. Christians dispute about whether the Holy Spirit personally dwells within the each Christian and what is the extent of His influence over the Christian. I believe that our…

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You Have A Purpose

Why are you here? What is your destiny? What is God’s purpose? These are questions that have been around for ages. When we read the first chapter of Ephesians more questions arise. Why has God blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places? Why has God chosen us to be holy and blameless? Why has God predestined us for adoption? Ephesians 1:6 contains the ultimate reason. God did these things “to the praise of his glorious grace.” God did…

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Appeasement Is Not Grace

There is a theological doctrine that I have been thinking about and studying for many years: the concept of appeasement. Often it is declared that the sacrifice of Jesus appeased the wrath of God. Many commentaries use the language of appeasement at various places in the scriptures. I will use a variety of John Calvin's statements in his commentary on the scriptures. "When, therefore, he says, that victory has been given to us, you are to understand by this in…

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You Are Predestined

In love he predestined us for adoption as sons through Jesus Christ, according to the purpose of his will, to the praise of his glorious grace, with which he has blessed us in the Beloved. (Ephesians 1:4–6 ESV) Predestined The word “predestined” means what it sounds like — “to decide beforehand, mark out beforehand, to determine beforehand.” God decided in advance. We noted in our last lesson that God chosen us in Christ before the foundation of the world. Before…

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You Are Chosen

The doctrine of election is a controversial point that is often misunderstood. The scriptures plainly teach that we are chosen in Christ, the elect of God. The difficulty comes in explaining how this is the case. Some will deny the election of God altogether to maintain their particular doctrine and beliefs. Others will take election beyond how the scripture describe. Our analysis for this study will be in Ephesians 1:3. Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus…

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Strange Fire

John MacArthur has a three day teaching conference, Strange Fire, which concludes today dealing with many of the errors found in the charismatic movement. This conference has fanned the flames of blog writers to argue the merits of either the cessationist view or the continuationist view concerning the Holy Spirit. I will leave the audience to read for themselves the arguments that are being present in this discussion. For me, there is one text that settled this question. What I…

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You Are Faithful

There is no such thing as an unfaithful Christian. A Christian by definition is someone who is faithful. A person who is not faithful to Christ is by definition not a Christian. We are people who exercise faith in Christ Jesus. We believe in Jesus and have put our life in his hands completely. We trust Jesus no matter what happens to us in life. No matter how much prosperity and pleasure we enjoy or how much pain and suffering…

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You Are Saints

Who are you and why are you here? It is easy to lose track of our identity. We start trying to find our identity in all kinds of places. Some will try to find their identity in their work. We often speak this way where we will say that we are a mechanic, a teacher, a salesperson, and so forth as if that is who we are. Some try to find their identity in their appearance. We are too thin,…

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Purified and Restored For God

The first section of this part of Isaiah’s prophecy is about the nation’s need for purification. Isaiah 1:21-23 paint the sad picture of a righteous nation becoming full of sin. The faithful city has become a prostitute. The nation full of justice and righteousness is full of murderers now. The Lord is praising the past but lamenting the present. The Lord contrasts what he intended against what he received. He intended faithfulness but received prostitution. He intended righteousness but received…

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