17  Mar
When NOT To Pray

Did you know there is not one single example in the New Testament of anyone being healed by prayer? I’m dead serious. Not a single one – I’m about to prove it.

Understand, I have witnessed God’s healing for myself on many occasions. And like you, I had been taught that God does this when we pray for healing. But did you ever think to ask the oh-so-obvious question… WHERE is that done in the Bible?

James 5:16 Confess your faults one to another, and pray one for another, that ye may be healed. The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much.

That is a scriptural command, yes… but can you point to any New Testament example where ANYONE actually did that?

Think about it. Where is there ONE SINGLE CASE of ANYONE praying for a healing?

Acts 3:6-8 Then Peter said, Silver and gold have I none; but such as I have give I thee: In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth rise up and walk. And he took him by the right hand, and lifted him up: and immediately his feet and ankle bones received strength. And he leaping up stood, and walked, and entered with them into the temple, walking, and leaping, and praising God.

Where is the prayer there? Where did Peter pray saying “Oh God, if it’s Your will, we know that You can heal him – we beg you to grant him Your mercy and raise him up!” – did you read that there? I didn’t. And yet that’s how your typical prayer for healing goes, give or take. But Peter didn’t do that at all! He didn’t stop to pray, he just commanded him to rise and walk – AND HE DID!

Mark 1:23-25 And there was in their synagogue a man with an unclean spirit; and he cried out, Saying, Let us alone; what have we to do with thee, thou Jesus of Nazareth? art thou come to destroy us? I know thee who thou art, the Holy One of God. And Jesus rebuked him, saying, Hold thy peace, and come out of him.

Notice! Jesus didn’t PRAY asking GOD to cast the demon out – JESUS rebuked him and cast the demon out!

Mark 1:27 And they were all amazed, insomuch that they questioned among themselves, saying, What thing is this? what new doctrine is this? for WITH AUTHORITY COMMANDETH HE even the unclean spirits, and they do obey him.

Of course, Jesus did nothing without the Father – it was the Father whose power was used (John 14:10). We know that the Father did the actual work, but nevertheless Jesus did NOT pray here! He used His AUTHORITY to cast them out! And then there is the example of calming the sea – did Jesus pray, asking God to calm the sea?

Mark 4:39 And he arose, and rebuked the wind, and said unto the sea, Peace, be still. And the wind ceased, and there was a great calm.

Get that! HE said this TO THE SEA! Not to God, asking God to calm the sea, but He spoke directly TO THE SEA, and rebuked the WIND, and IT OBEYED immediately!

Verse 41 And they feared exceedingly, and said one to another, What manner of man is this, that even the wind and the sea obey him?

Or as Luke recorded it:

Luke 8:25saying one to another, What manner of man is this! for he COMMANDETH even the winds and water, and they obey him.

And all that was done without prayer. But that bit was just the teaser. Before we get into the article proper, we need to establish a very clear but little known fact: that healing is the forgiveness of sin.


Luke 5:20-21 And when he saw their faith, he said unto him, Man, thy sins are forgiven thee. And the scribes and the Pharisees began to reason, saying, Who is this which speaketh blasphemies? Who can forgive sins, but God alone?

Notice their response! The same one most people who read this article will probably have, those steeped in the old ways. They’ll say this is blasphemy – we MUST pray to God for EVERYTHING, for who can COMMAND that things be done but God alone?

The answer is simple – those whom God has given the AUTHORITY to command such things to be done! Jesus HAD the power to forgive sins, because His Father had given it to Him! And He in turn gave it to US!

Verses 22-24 But when Jesus perceived their thoughts, he answering said unto them, What reason ye in your hearts? Whether is easier, to say, Thy sins be forgiven thee; or to say, Rise up and walk? But that ye may know that the Son of man hath power upon earth to forgive sins, (he said unto the sick of the palsy,) I say unto thee, Arise, and take up thy couch, and go into thine house.

Jesus said that healing – commanding the invalid to “Arise and walk” – is the SAME as saying “your sins are forgiven” – because healing IS the forgiveness of sin! There is no difference between the two statements! You can’t heal someone without forgiving their sins!

Psalms 25:18 Look upon mine affliction and my pain; and forgive all my sins.

There is much more on that particular subject in my article “whose sin caused YOUR sickness?” For now, I will move on. We know that Jesus certainly understood the purpose for prayer, and the times when prayer was necessary – and how did Jesus tell us to perform miracles? Through prayer?


Did Jesus say you would have to ask GOD to cast the tree into the ocean for you, or that YOU would COMMAND the tree YOURSELF?

Luke 17:6 And the Lord said, If ye had faith as a grain of mustard seed, ye might say unto this sycamine tree, Be thou plucked up by the root, and be thou planted in the sea; and it should obey you.

IT would obey YOU – not God hearing your prayers and casting it FOR you, but the tree DIRECTLY obeying YOU!

Time and time again in the Bible, EVERY example shows this same method of you COMMANDING something to be done, and it HAPPENING! Not you begging God in prayer for something, but taking God out of the loop and commanding it to be done directly!

Again, I must qualify that you are not the source of the POWER – God is the source of the POWER (John 14:10), and of yourself you can do NOTHING… but you are the source of the COMMAND! Imagine that God has given you His debit card, and His pin number; and He has AUTHORIZED you to use it for whatever you think appropriate.

It’s not YOUR money. But you can spend it without asking God first! Because your name is on the list of those authorized to withdraw the money! But only because God TRUSTS you to use it wisely, as He would have it used – if you decide to pull out $10,000 and run off to Mexico, you may be sure that God will come looking for that money you used inappropriately!

Oh yes, you’re accountable for that money, and you’re accountable for the authority you exercise on God’s behalf – but that doesn’t negate the fact that you HAVE AUTHORITY! You are able to command things to be done, demons to be cast out and healings to be performed, BECAUSE of the authority God has GIVEN you!

Luke 9:1 Then he called his twelve disciples together, and gave them power and AUTHORITY over all devils, and to cure diseases.

He gave them AUTHORITY! Authority over devils, and authority OVER DISEASES! It’s that thing of AUTHORITY that so many have missed! Suppose you’re a building contractor, and you hire a foreman to manage your crew; and you give him AUTHORITY to make decisions; does he then HAVE AUTHORITY? Of course he does! He can hire and fire, decide whether to put a wall here or there, and make DECISIONS – decisions without consulting you! That’s what authority IS – authority to make decisions ON YOUR OWN!

That foreman has the authority to COMMAND an employee to dig a ditch – it’s not a request! The employee either does it or gets fired! The foreman doesn’t have to ask you about every nail he drives or every cent he spends – if he does, what’s the point in having him? You hired him so you wouldn’t HAVE to make every little decision yourself! That’s HIS JOB!

So, as servants of Jesus given authority, we are to act as that foreman did – and as our example to help us do that, we are given Jesus; we are to walk as He walked (1 John 2:6). And how did He perform miracles? By praying, or by simply COMMANDING them to be done?

Matthew 8:5-7 And when Jesus was entered into Capernaum, there came unto him a centurion, beseeching him, And saying, Lord, my servant lieth at home sick of the palsy, grievously tormented. And Jesus saith unto him, I will come and heal him.

Notice Jesus didn’t say “I will come and pray for him”. He said “I will come AND HEAL HIM”!

Matthew 8:8-9 The centurion answered and said, Lord, I am not worthy that thou shouldest come under my roof: but speak the word only, and my servant shall be healed. For I am a man under authority, having soldiers under me: and I say to this man, Go, and he goeth; and to another, Come, and he cometh; and to my servant, DO THIS, AND HE DOETH IT.

This man UNDERSTOOD authority! And he knew how authority WORKED! And he knew that Jesus HAD authority! So He knew that Jesus had only to SPEAK THE WORD and his servant would be healed! Not pray! Again and again, PRAYER IS NOT INVOLVED IN THESE HEALINGS AT ALL! But only to COMMAND the sickness to depart, and it would depart!

Verses 10, 13 When Jesus heard it, he marvelled, and said to them that followed, Verily I say unto you, I have not found so great faith, no, not in Israel…. And Jesus said unto the centurion, Go thy way; and as thou hast believed, so be it done unto thee. And his servant was healed in the selfsame hour.

And Jesus was AMAZED by the faith this man had! Far greater than the Israelites He was used to dealing with! Because he recognized Jesus’ authority and realized that Jesus had only to command, and it would get done!

Mark 13:34 For the Son of man is as a man taking a far journey, who left his house, and gave authority to his servants, and to every man his work, and commanded the porter to watch.

God compares us to SERVANTS who have been given AUTHORITY! And specifically says that we have AUTHORITY over devils and diseases! Not only that, but the ability to do GREATER works than even Jesus Himself did!

John 14:12 Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me, the works that I do shall he do also; and greater works than these shall he do; because I go unto my Father.

God has given us authority. And authority means the POWER to make DECISIONS for ourselves! In fact, GREATER authority, and the power to make GREATER decisions than He made as a man – meaning we can do mightier things than He did! It means that if you COMMAND that mountain to be cast into the sea – IT WILL BE CAST INTO THE SEA. Jesus plainly said so.

Matthew 21:21 Jesus answered and said unto them, Verily I say unto you, If ye have faith, and doubt not, ye shall not only do this which is done to the fig tree, but also if ye shall say unto this mountain, Be thou removed, and be thou cast into the sea; it shall be done.

He didn’t say, “if you pray to God, asking God to cast the mountain into the sea…” – did He? I know that’s how you’ve been taught; it’s how I was taught… but have you ever DONE IT? Jesus KNEW how it was to be done, and HE DID NOT SAY TO PRAY ABOUT IT! He said IF you have faith, then you can say TO THE MOUNTAIN “be removed, and cast into the sea” – and IT WILL BE DONE!

This is a direct COMMAND to the mountain! But that’s just an inanimate object – does that apply to healing people? How did Jesus do it?

Luke 4:39 And he stood over her, and rebuked the fever; and it left her: and immediately she arose and ministered unto them.

Jesus didn’t pray about it! He just REBUKED the fever – just as He had REBUKED the devils! Did He pray about the damsel, to raise her from the dead?

Mark 5:41 And he took the damsel by the hand, and SAID UNTO HER, Talitha cumi; which is, being interpreted, Damsel, I say unto thee, arise.

EVERY SINGLE EXAMPLE – every ACTUAL example – of healing in the New Testament was done WITHOUT PRAYER! Every one… well, almost. But there is a definite reason for each of the semi-exceptions. Let’s start with the easiest one:

John 11:41-43 Then they took away the stone from the place where the dead [Lazarus] was laid. And Jesus lifted up his eyes, and said, Father, I thank thee that thou hast heard me. And I knew that thou hearest me always: but because of the people which stand by I said it, that they may believe that thou hast sent me. And when he thus had spoken, he cried with a loud voice, Lazarus, come forth.

Jesus did pray in connection with raising the dead here; by why? Because He needed to do so? Certainly not, based on Matthew 5:41. No, He plainly gave us the reason He chose to pray here – so that the people standing by would know that it wasn’t HIM that did the work, but that GOD had sent Him. So that they didn’t think it was some magic of His own, but just the authority His Father gave Him that accomplished these things. He clearly said it was for THEIR sakes that He prayed, not His own, nor for the sake of Lazarus!

A lot of light is shed on this subject by a story which is often read, but seldom fully understood. A man’s son had a devil, and he told Jesus…

Luke 9:40 And I besought thy disciples to cast him out; and they could not.

And picking up the story in Matthew…

Matthew 17:18-21 And Jesus rebuked the devil; and he departed out of him: and the child was cured from that very hour. Then came the disciples to Jesus apart, and said, Why could not we cast him out? And Jesus said unto them, Because of your unbelief: for verily I say unto you, If ye have faith as a grain of mustard seed, ye shall say unto this mountain, Remove hence to yonder place; and it shall remove; and NOTHING SHALL BE IMPOSSIBLE UNTO YOU. Howbeit this kind goeth not out but by prayer and fasting.

Jesus said simply that they could not cast Him out because of their unbelief! Because of their lack of faith – which you know from my other articles means their lack of OBEDIENCE! So they didn’t have enough faith, meaning they didn’t have enough AUTHORITY to cast out THIS RANK of devil – yes, devils come in ranks. Some are more clever, some more wicked than others (Luke 11:26).

So although God had given them the authority, they didn’t have the FAITH to use it! And so they couldn’t cast it out BY THEMSELVES! But now we get to the fascinating part! Remember EVERY SINGLE EXAMPLE of a demon being cast out in the ENTIRE Bible is done without prayer – but here Jesus said that THIS kind comes out only by PRAYER and fasting!

…but did Jesus pray, before casting it out? No! Because Jesus’ faith, and hence His authority, was ample for the task! But the DISCIPLES did NOT have enough faith, thus not enough authority for the same miracle! So THEY would have to PRAY, and perhaps FAST, to have it cast out!

This tells us that if your authority isn’t enough for a really tough problem – be it demon, healing, or whatever it is you’re doing, then it is APPROPRIATE, NECESSARY, and GOOD to pray for help!

Let’s go back to that analogy of the foreman again. You’re the foreman this time, and you work for a good boss. Your boss is a busy man though, and doesn’t like to be bothered for every detail of the job – that’s why he hired you and gave you authority to make decisions on your own. And so you don’t ask his permission to buy a truckload of drywall or hire a new employee. He knows you’ll do a good job – sure, you’ll make mistakes occasionally but they aren’t likely to be anything he can’t fix.

But one day the city inspector comes by, a real nasty fellow, and threatens to shut you down just because he doesn’t like you, or maybe because he wants a bribe. You can’t handle this on your own. He knows the laws better than you, he has all the power, and there’s simply nothing you can do. Does your boss expect you to sort it out for yourself? Of course not! This is when you call your boss and say GET DOWN HERE! I need help to do the job you sent me to do!

And so your boss gets involved, talks to his friends on the city council and gets this corrupt inspector fired, and you can move on with your life. Yes, you need the boss’s help sometimes! And when you need it, you shouldn’t be ashamed to ask for it because the last thing your boss needs is a foreman who is too proud to ask for assistance when he’s in over his head!

And Peter did the same thing. He’d never raised the dead before. He’d seen it done, sure, but let’s face it, it must be a rather intimidating thing to set your hand to do!

Acts 9:40 But Peter put them all forth, and kneeled down, and prayed; and turning him to the body said, Tabitha, arise. And she opened her eyes: and when she saw Peter, she sat up.

Peter needed help. The proper way – if you had perfect faith – would have been to do what Jesus did, and simply say “arise”. But Peter didn’t do that. He prayed – apparently by himself, presumably asking for help. He wasn’t praying OVER her, because it says he prayed and THEN turned to the body and said… “Tabitha, arise”.

So this still wasn’t a prayer FOR healing – this is a prayer BEFORE healing! There is a difference. The fact is there is not a single example in the NT of anyone praying for someone’s healing. If you want to heal someone, you have to man up, take the responsibility for the choice on your own shoulders and rebuke the fever; not whine at God, asking Him to rebuke the fever for you!


Here’s what happens. You work for God – as a priest, foreman, whatever you want to call it, so long as you understand that you have been given authority by God which you can exercise, with discretion, when you feel it is appropriate.

You are personally responsible for when you use this power, and when you don’t. God will audit your accounts at the end of the month (so to speak) and so you need to be ready to provide receipts and explain why you did this or that.

When you command something to be done, it is done on your authority, and yours alone. When you rebuke a fever, it is God’s power, but it is YOUR authority that made the decision. If not for you, this wouldn’t have happened.

When you pray, however, you are ASKING God to make a decision. You are pleading/asking/begging Him to heal someone, forgive someone, or whatever the case may be. And while it is you that is asking, it is GOD’S authority that makes the decision!

Back to your foreman analogy, when you’re the foreman buying a load of shingles, if it’s right your boss will be pleased; if it’s wrong, he’ll be annoyed. If however, you call him on the phone and say “look, I’m buying X shingles for Y price to be delivered in Z days”, and then he says yes or no, either way it’s HIS decision and can’t possibly come back on you!

So then it makes sense that you’d want to run EVERY decision past your boss – but if you do that, why does he even have you? No, he WANTS you to take personal responsibility, and make the RIGHT decisions. And God wants that even more!

These decisions, when to pray, when not to – these are relatively unimportant, the key is that He wants you to learn HOW TO MAKE SUCH DECISIONS PROPERLY! He wants you to be able to make them just as well as He can!

When you pray, you’re asking God to make a decision because you’re either too gutless or too inexperienced to make it for yourself. When you command something to be done, you’re doing it on your own authority – and if it’s the right call, you’ll be trusted more. If it’s the wrong call, you’ll be given an opportunity to learn from it. If it’s a REALLY wrong call, or the last in a long LIST of wrong calls, then God might simply start ignoring you altogether and take that authority away.

Either way, prayer is what you do when you’re a spiritual babe. When you are mature, when you’ve grown up as a Christian, it’s time to take matters into your own hands. That’s what God wants, and that’s what you need – and that’s how to REALLY see the power of God working around you.


God has given His followers AUTHORITY. This authority is given for a reason – not so you can empty the hospitals, but so you can learn what it’s like to make decisions with the power of God – something you’ll be doing a lot in the resurrection as a king or a priest!

This authority is proportional to, and limited only by, your faith. You are a servant in whom God has invested authority to decide to heal someone, or decide not to heal someone – to cast out a devil, or not.

Matthew 18:18 Verily I say unto you, Whatsoever ye shall bind on earth shall be bound in heaven: and whatsoever ye shall loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven. Again I say unto you, That if two of you shall agree on earth as touching any thing that they shall ask, it shall be done for them of my Father which is in heaven.

Now there are things that govern whether you should heal someone, or whether you shouldn’t. Their attitude – are they repentant, did they commit their sins in ignorance, are they determined not to repeat them; is there good to be gained by healing them?

1 John 5:14 And this is the confidence that we have in him, that, if we ask any thing according to his will, he heareth us:

Few scriptures are more abused than this one. Every prayer is prefaced with “O God, if it is your will, heal this poor man!” Think about this; God is in charge; God is aware of everything going on in this man’s life; God cares about him more than you do! What exactly do you think God is intending to do if not His will!! What else COULD He do, but do HIS OWN WILL? Who is going to stop Him?


If God is all powerful, then God’s will is ALREADY being done. The only reason for Him to change that is because you ask Him to do so! And the only reason to do that, is for you to learn responsibility, compassion, but most of all good judgment. Keep reading the context:

Verses 15-16 And if we know that he hear us, whatsoever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we desired of him. If any man see his brother sin a sin which is not unto death, he shall ask, and he shall give him life for them that sin not unto death. There is a sin unto death: I do not say that he shall pray for it.

Here we are told that we should pray for some sins but also that we should not pray for other sins! Which? God expects you to know!

John 20:23 (ESV) If you forgive the sins of any, they are forgiven them; if you withhold forgiveness from any, it is withheld.

God expects you to hear people’s sins, and refuse to pray for their forgiveness! That’s what these scriptures say! If you just rubber stamp “yes” to all prayer requests, you are certainly praying for some “sins unto death”, and making your prayers meaningless to God!

1 John 5:14 doesn’t mean you are supposed to pray using the words “if it’s your will, God…”! It means your prayer is ALREADY supposed to be in line with His will! You’re supposed to know what it is!

Ephesian 5:17 Wherefore be ye not unwise, but understanding what the will of the Lord is.

If you don’t know what God’s will is, if you don’t know whether someone should be healed or not you should keep your mouth shut! Otherwise, God will withdraw what little authority He has given you, for you are not using judgment – you’re just saying yes to everything!

Healing is the forgiveness of sins. Physical, spiritual, either way – to be healed, you must be forgiven. Every example in the Bible of healing shows people powerfully and miraculously forgiving someone’s sins. But what if someone is unrepentant? What if they haven’t stopped their sins, but are STILL actively sinning?

What if a smoker comes to you, asking for you to heal his lung cancer. He isn’t asking for your help quitting smoking – he absolutely refuses to stop smoking and sinning against his body. He is completely unrepentant. But he wants God’s help anyway, to make his lung cancer go away.

That man’s sins should be retained because he still hasn’t learned the lesson from those sins! When he has, and he’s ready to repent then – only then – will God be willing to heal him and only then should you even CONSIDER praying for him!

Or what if someone comes to you for healing, but refuses to “confess their faults” – remember, that’s the other half, the FIRST half, of James 5:16! If they aren’t willing to discuss what caused this problem in their life – whether it’s sickness, unhappiness, poverty, loneliness, or whatever – then why should you pray for their sins to be forgiven when they won’t even look at them?

In other words, if they aren’t interested in finding the CAUSE of their problems, if they’re only interested in a magic pill to make the pain go away… that’s why there are doctors in the world. That’s why there are false preachers in the world. God brought TRUTH, he brought freedom from sin for those who want it!

James 5:14-16 is there for people who need help, who truly don’t understand why they are living under a curse, and who go to the elders of the church, the wise men who should understand what causes problems like this, for help finding out what they need to do differently!

And when the person is sincere and willing to work on their problems, the elders should, on their own authority that God has given them, use the power of God to forgive their sins and heal their sickness. But if in their judgment the person isn’t willing to change, then they should refuse. That’s what the Bible REALLY says.

Many people will be horrified by that statement, but slow down and ask a simple question… so what? So this one person refused to pray for them. Like there aren’t tens of thousands of people out there glad to pray for anyone, for any reason – without even KNOWING the reason? If God disagrees with the elder’s decision, He can answer one of their prayers!

So what if one person refuses to “sign the petition” because in his judgment this person has not learned their lesson? What if that’s EXACTLY the motivation this sinner needs to rethink their life? We’re here to help people. Not always by making their life easier – but by making their life better. And the only way to really do that is to find sin and eradicate it.

John 9:31 Now we know that God heareth not sinners: but if any man be a worshipper of God, and doeth his will, him he heareth.

Find the will of God. Show the person who needs help the will of God; then ask according to the will of God, and you WILL be heard.

Posted by natnee, filed under Uncategorized. Date: March 17, 2017, 8:41 am | Comments Off on When NOT To Pray

(By Crystal Burson)

The world today says that Satan’s sin was that he focused on himself, using the pronoun “I” too much. But there is little to support this idea because God Himself uses the pronoun “I” all the time. So if anyone should be accused of focusing on himself, it would be God, for He spends most of the Bible talking about Himself and His plan!

Others say that Satan’s sin was that he wanted to be like God:
Isaiah 14:14. …I will be like the most High.

But this is not a wrong desire! Satan, all the angels, and all of humanity SHOULD desire to be like God! God desires for everyone to be holy as He is holy (Leviticus 20:7), to be clean and separate (2 Corinthians 6:17), to be perfect as He is perfect (Matthew 5:48). Those who are able to do that in this time will one day be just like Christ (Luke 6:40, 1 John 3:2). We will even be equal with Christ (Philippians 2:5-6, Revelation 3:21), in the same way that an elder brother is equal to his other siblings.

So what WAS Satan’s sin?

God had given man 6 days in which to labor and do all of his work (Exodus 20:9), but nowhere in the Bible did God ever give the angels time to do their own work. Instead, they were supposed to be doing the work of God, helping Him build a family; they were supposed to be ministers for us (Hebrews 1:14). But Satan took it upon himself to go about his own work and build his own empire (Isaiah 14:13-14). He thought, “I am beautiful and perfect (Ezekiel 28:12, 15), and why should God be the only one who can create beings in his image? Why can’t I do it just as well?”

Ezekiel 28:2. Son of man, say unto the prince of Tyrus [Satan], Thus saith the Lord GOD; Because thine heart is lifted up, and thou hast said, I am a God, I sit in the seat of God, in the midst of the seas; yet thou art a man, and not God, though thou set thine heart as the heart of God:

Satan’s sin was NOT in saying “I am a God”, for it is not wrong to say that you are a God if indeed you are (John 10:33-36). But his sin was in being lifted up by his beauty and wisdom (Ezekiel 28:17), saying he was a God while he was still an angel. He desired to rule the universe with God, able to create beings in his own image, but without working to be qualified for such a task. Without the training God was providing him then, he could not possibly have been a good ruler.

By going about his own work, Satan was taking the responsibility of deciding right and wrong, of making moral decisions, upon himself instead of submitting to God’s laws and letting his senses be properly trained to discern good and evil (Hebrews 5:14). In a manner of speaking, Satan was taking the responsibility of the priesthood upon himself instead of being content simply to carry the instruments of the temple and minister to the people (Numbers 16).

Thus the first sin was committed, and with it, the first time an atonement was needed. The Day of Atonement remembers this event every year on the tenth day of the seventh month in the Biblical calendar. On this holy day, everyone fasts and afflicts his soul and does no work whatsoever.

Leviticus 23:27-30. Also on the tenth day of this seventh month there shall be a day of atonement: it shall be an holy convocation unto you; and ye shall afflict your souls, and offer an offering made by fire unto the LORD. And ye shall do no work in that same day: for it is a day of atonement, to make an atonement for you before the LORD your God. For whatsoever soul it be that shall not be afflicted in that same day, he shall be cut off from among his people. And whatsoever soul it be that doeth any work in that same day, the same soul will I destroy from among his people.

And the punishment for doing any manner of work at all on Atonement is being cut off from among the people. Exile. Banishment.

So we keep Atonement by not going about our own work, and going beyond that with fasting, denying ourselves every pleasure to show that we are completely separate from Satan and have no part in him. Keeping this day holy shows that we are not of those who go to do their own work on this day instead of the work God wants us to do – build a family.

Posted by natnee, filed under Uncategorized. Date: October 5, 2016, 7:19 pm | Comments Off on What Was Satan’s Sin?

(By Crystal Holmes)

Does motive matter? Does God care WHY you are righteous? Does He care if you are righteous because you want His blessings, or because you like being a part of a group, or because you are in the habit of being righteous, or because you like truth?

The Old Testament was given for our learning and is full of examples to learn from. So let’s consider one. Jonah was sent to Nineveh to tell the people that their wickedness had come to God and that He would destroy them if they did not repent (1:2, 3:4). Notice the response of the people and the motive of the king:

Jonah 3:5, 8-9. So the people of Nineveh believed God, and proclaimed a fast, and put on sackcloth, from the greatest of them even to the least of them…. [The king said,] But let man and beast be covered with sackcloth, and cry mightily unto God: yea, let them turn every one from his evil way, and from the violence that is in their hands. Who can tell if God will turn and repent, and turn away from his fierce anger, that we perish not?

These people did not want to die! Their PRIMARY reason for repenting was self-preservation! NOT to love God with all their hearts and all their minds! NOT to seek His truth and obey Him because they liked Him! This was a purely selfish reason to do what God said! Just like being righteous because you get to be a part of a group or because you get God’s blessings is selfish! And what did God do when He saw the people of Nineveh repent and obey His commandments, albeit for selfish reasons? Did He say, “Well, I’m still going to destroy you. You’re only repenting because you don’t want to die! You are being selfish and not repenting for the truth’s sake”? No!

Jonah 3:10. And God saw their works, that they turned from their evil way; and God repented of the evil, that he had said that he would do unto them; and he did it not.

God honored their repentance and spared their lives EVEN THOUGH their motives were selfish. He did not care WHY they repented; He was just glad they did! And if you think this is an isolated event, consider that Israel did the SAME THING!

Psalm 78:34-38. When he [God] slew them, THEN they sought him: and they returned and enquired early after God. And they remembered that God was their rock, and the high God their redeemer. Nevertheless they did flatter him with their mouth, and they lied unto him with their tongues. For their heart was not right with him, neither were they stedfast in his covenant. BUT he, being full of compassion, FORGAVE THEIR INIQUITY, and destroyed them not: yea, MANY A TIME turned he his anger away, and did not stir up all his wrath.

Notice! When God slew the Israelites – when He killed some of them – THEN they sought Him and repented! They only wanted to live – just like the Ninevites wanted to live! NOT ONLY THAT! They were LYING to God about changing, and God KNEW IT! Nevertheless, God FORGAVE them and turned His anger away, only so they could again commit sin and flatter Him with their mouths. This happened REPEATEDLY throughout the Old Testament – showing that motives didn’t matter – but what does the New Testament reveal?

Jesus performed many miracles, some of which included feeding thousands of people from very small amounts of physical food available. And He said that those people followed Him NOT because of the other miracles or because they wanted to know the truth. He said they followed Him because they wanted to be fed!

John 6:26. Jesus answered them and said, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Ye seek me, not because ye saw the miracles, but because ye did eat of the loaves, and were filled.

Jesus told the people to either believe Him or believe the works.

John 10:38. But if I do [the works of my Father], though ye believe not me, believe the works: that ye may know, and believe, that the Father is in me, and I in him.

It would seem that Jesus is saying that motives don’t matter, but wait! They DO matter!

Mark 10:29-30. And Jesus answered and said, Verily I say unto you, There is no man that hath left house, or brethren, or sisters, or father, or mother, or wife, or children, or lands, for my sake, and the gospel’s, But he shall receive an hundredfold now in this time, houses, and brethren, and sisters, and mothers, and children, and lands, with persecutions; and in the world to come eternal life.

Jesus says that people who give up those things for HIS SAKE AND THE GOSPEL’S shall receive a hundredfold in this life and eternal life. NOT those who give them up for other reasons – like to be a part of a group or to receive some sort of blessing from God! So, motives DO matter!

Now it seems I have contradicted myself, but I haven’t! God has instituted two covenants. The first covenant was given to a people who were wholly carnal and who loved to have it that way! The second covenant was given to a people who were spiritual and who wanted to know the truth of God.

Under the old covenant, God could only judge people by their works – not by the intentions of their hearts. Why? Before I answer that question, consider that the people DID NOT WANT God to be able to see their hearts or even to have access to their hearts. Instead, they wanted Moses to be a mediator.

Exodus 20:19, 21. And they said unto Moses, Speak thou with us, and we will hear: but let not God speak with us, lest we die…. And the people stood afar off, and Moses drew near unto the thick darkness where God was.

So, why couldn’t God judge the people by the intentions of their hearts? Because the people were uncircumcised in heart, God could not see their motives. The foreskin of their hearts was still present, hiding their thoughts and motives from God and from others. For those people living under this covenant, to be accepted, all they had to do was to do well. And they didn’t have to do well for the right reasons to be accepted of God!

Genesis 4:7. If thou doest well, shalt thou not be accepted? …

But, under the new covenant, God CAN see the thoughts and intents of the heart, for that is the very DEFINITION of the new covenant. The foreskin covering the heart is removed at baptism – at the signing of the New Covenant Contract. This is the covenant God wanted from the beginning!

Deuteronomy 10:16. Circumcise therefore the foreskin of your heart, and be no more stiffnecked.

One example of this in the New Testament is Simon Magus. He was a sorcerer of Samaria that appeared to many to have converted to the true faith as taught by Philip, Peter, and John. When the apostles laid hands on people and imparted to them the gift of the holy spirit, Simon tried to pay them for this power:

Acts 8:17-19. Then laid they their hands on them, and they received the Holy Ghost. And when Simon saw that through laying on of the apostles’ hands the Holy Ghost was given, he offered them money, Saying, Give me also this power, that on whomsoever I lay hands, he may receive the Holy Ghost.

And Peter responded with:

Acts 8:20-23.Thy money perish with thee, because thou hast thought that the gift of God may be purchased with money. Thou hast neither part nor lot in this matter: for thy heart is not right in the sight of God. Repent therefore of this thy wickedness, and pray God, if perhaps the thought of thine heart may be forgiven thee. For I perceive that thou art in the gall of bitterness, and in the bond of iniquity.

Peter said that Simon’s motives DID matter! He said that Simon’s heart was not right with God and that Simon was still in the bond of iniquity! There were still sins hidden in Simon’s heart that he had not repented of, and Peter – through the holy spirit – could see his heart! AND it was BECAUSE his heart wasn’t right that he had “neither part nor lot in this matter” – no part in the holy spirit – no part in the new covenant!

2 Corinthians 9:7. Every man according as he purposeth in his heart, so let him give; not grudgingly, or of necessity: for God loveth a cheerful giver.

Purposing in your heart is more private than purposing with your lips. God can see whether you are giving cheerfully or not. With an uncircumcised heart, God can see all of your motives – be it giving with a spirit of cheerfulness or desiring something so you can consume it on your lusts.

James 4:3. Ye ask, and receive not, because ye ask amiss, that ye may consume it upon your lusts.

Every person begins his life under the old covenant. As he begins to do the law, he is justified in God’s sight (Romans 2:13-15). Fearing the Lord by keeping His commandments is a good start, for doing just that, a person can have increased understanding in the law of God (Psalm 111:10, Proverbs 1:7, Proverbs 9:10). For people under the old covenant, motives do not matter. God is just happy they are obeying Him.

But, for baptized people – for those who choose to live under the new covenant – motives do matter. The more an individual knows God, the more that individual’s motives matter – the more God expects of him.

Luke 12:48. But he that knew not, and did commit things worthy of stripes, shall be beaten with few stripes. For unto whomsoever much is given, of him shall be much required: and to whom men have committed much, of him they will ask the more.

So, do motives matter? Yes and No. It depends on where you stand with God – whether you are under the old covenant or the new covenant. But for anyone who truly wants to know God, motives matter.

Posted by natnee, filed under Uncategorized. Date: December 5, 2015, 11:29 am | Comments Off on Does Motive Matter?

Let’s say, while you’re out of the house, your neighbor breaks into your house, and steals your TV. He installs it in his house, and you can see your TV in there when you get home that night. Is it right for you to wait for him to leave the house, so you can break into HIS house, and reclaim the TV that is, after all, rightfully yours?

If you’ve answered NO, good for you. This is how Christ would handle it. If you’ve answered “Well, after all, it IS my TV – it’s not really stealing!” then answer the question… How is it possible to fulfill this command of scripture:

Romans 12:17 Recompense to no man evil for evil…

If you take justice in your own hands, and steal that TV back, you are recompensing evil for evil. Do not misunderstand – you are helping no one, least of all the thief, by letting him get away with it – but you are limited by God to using LEGAL means. But if you go to the sheriff, and discover he is corrupt, or for some reason is unable to do anything… you CAN’T take the law into your own hands.

Romans 12:19-21 Dearly beloved, AVENGE NOT yourselves, but rather give place unto wrath: for it is written, Vengeance is mine; I will repay, saith the Lord. Therefore if thine enemy hunger, feed him; if he thirst, give him drink: for in so doing thou shalt heap coals of fire on his head. Be not overcome of evil, but overcome evil with good.

Is God unable to replace your TV? Is He so powerless or unconcerned with your welfare that He can’t find a way to prosper you somehow to make up for it? If you use the same methods used by those who are evil, the world can’t tell the difference between you and them – even if, LEGALLY, it belongs to you – if you can’t LEGALLY get it back, LET IT GO. God says HE will repay you – and them.

When faced with this question, many say “well yes, Christ did say to turn the other cheek… but that doesn’t mean you have to be a doormat!”

Luke 6:27-29 But I say unto you which hear, Love your enemies, do good to them which hate you, Bless them that curse you, and pray for them which despitefully use you. And unto him that smiteth thee on the one cheek offer also the other; and him that taketh away thy cloke forbid not to take thy coat also.

So if he takes your TV… offer him your VCR too?

1 Peter 2:12-15 Having your manner of life honest among the Gentiles: that, whereas they speak against you as evil-doers, they may by your good works, which they shall behold, glorify God in the day of visitation. Submit yourselves to every ordinance of man for the Lord’s sake: whether to the king, as supreme; Or to governors, as to them that are sent by him for the punishment of evil-doers, and for the praise of them that do well. For so is the will of God, that with well-doing ye may put to silence the ignorance of foolish men:

Returning to our example, if you take back your TV, then your other neighbors can’t tell a difference between you and him. Sure, it was your TV to begin with, but you both stole to get it. And even though you had a right to that TV… tell me how it is possible to steal from a thief, and turn the other cheek at the same time…

However, I don’t believe you can do that. If someone steals from you, and you can’t easily reclaim it, LET IT GO. God doesn’t want you in trouble with the law for any reason, because it reflects badly on Him. Even if you’re more or less innocent – unless you’re in jail for preaching the gospel, you reflect badly on God!

Philippians 2:15 That ye may be blameless and harmless, the sons of God, without rebuke, in the midst of a crooked and perverse nation, among whom ye shine as lights in the world.

So, if this principle is established, we can use it to magnify the eighth commandment in quite some detail.

For example: downloading music off the internet has been deemed illegal by the Supreme Court. If you do this, as well as you may justify it, the world will call you a thief. As indeed you are; what right do you have to the work of someone else? Regardless of what exorbitant price they place on music, you have no right to steal it from them.

Remember the scripture that says “the labourer is worthy of his hire” (1 Timothy 5:18) – worthy of HIS hire, not the hire you think he might be worth, but the hire he places on himself!

Romans 2:21-24 Thou therefore which teachest another, teachest thou not thyself? thou that preachest a man should not steal, dost thou steal? Thou that sayest a man should not commit adultery, dost thou commit adultery? thou that abhorrest idols, dost thou commit sacrilege? Thou that makest thy boast of the law, through breaking the law dishonourest thou God? For the name of God is blasphemed among the Gentiles through you, as it is written.

You are held to a higher standard than the world. God wants you to be BLAMELESS. This means that semi-legal things like this MUST STOP before God can bless the church.

Daniel 6:4-5 Then the presidents and princes sought to find occasion against Daniel concerning the kingdom; but they could find none occasion nor fault; forasmuch as he was faithful, neither was there any error or fault found in him. Then said these men, We shall not find any occasion against this Daniel, except we find it against him concerning the law of his God.

Daniel was totally BLAMELESS. These men wanted to tear Daniel down – just as, and for the same reason as, the world wants to tear you down – and if Daniel had speeding tickets, or illegal music, or in ANY way violated the least of the laws of the land, they would have found it. And yet, they could not find ANYTHING. He was BLAMELESS.

And why shouldn’t he be? The laws that the country enforces that you shouldn’t steal, or shouldn’t endanger the lives of others are not contrary to the law of God. And Daniel, and you, are obligated to obey them.

Romans 13:1-4 Let every soul be subject unto the higher powers. For there is no power but of God: the powers that be are ordained of God. Whosoever therefore resisteth the power, resisteth the ordinance of God: and they that resist shall receive to themselves damnation. For rulers are not a terror to good works, but to the evil. Wilt thou then not be afraid of the power? do that which is good, and thou shalt have praise of the same: For he is the minister of God to thee for good. But if thou do that which is evil, be afraid; for he beareth not the sword in vain: for he is the minister of God, a revenger to execute wrath upon him that doeth evil.

This includes using hacked copies of software, prevalent in the world and the church today. Sure, “Microsoft is a thief, and wouldn’t miss the money” – and the classic reasoning “And I wouldn’t have bought it anyway” but is that really the point?

Can you imagine the hey-day the enemies of God would have, if they are able to say things like “That guy in God’s church writes articles against stealing – on a STOLEN, HACKED, program!” Can you imagine the shame God feels if that happens?

It simply can’t happen in a person, or a church, God is going to be with.

If your employer overpays you, even though he cheated you a few months ago, is it right of you to just take it “as payment for the time he ripped you off”? Or is the right answer to inform him of his mistake? Which answer will show credit to the things you say you believe, and the God whom you claim to serve?

The bottom line – it is NOT alright to steal from a thief. Ever.

1 Peter 2:19-20 For this is thankworthy, if a man for conscience toward God endure grief, suffering wrongfully. For what glory is it, if, when ye be buffeted for your faults, ye shall take it patiently? but if, when ye do well, and suffer for it, ye take it patiently, this is acceptable with God.

Posted by natnee, filed under Uncategorized. Date: November 14, 2015, 12:12 pm | Comments Off on Is It OK To Steal From A Thief?

(By Crystal Holmes)

Why did God forbid things like seething a kid in his mother’s milk, wearing garments made of wool and linen, or rounding the corners of your head? Why not let an ox and an ass plow together? Why not mix your seeds or practice crossbreeding? What’s wrong with these things? This paper will examine these commandments (and a few others) that seem strange to most people. We will see WHY God gave these commandments and why you should keep them.

Seething a Kid in His Mother’s Milk

Exodus 34:26. The first of the firstfruits of thy land thou shalt bring into the house of the LORD thy God. Thou shalt not seethe a kid in his mother’s milk. (See also Exodus 23:19).

Many have said that eating milk and meat together is bad because it hampers digestion and assimilation of the calcium and iron. Others have simply said that it means you should not butcher the kid and the mother in the same day, or that you would have to use separate utensils for kids and other goats or sheep. But is that really what it means?

Let’s begin by looking at this verse in context. The context is driving out the pagan peoples of the land.

Exodus 34:11-13. Observe thou that which I command thee this day: behold, I drive out before thee the Amorite, and the Canaanite, and the Hittite, and the Perizzite, and the Hivite, and the Jebusite. But ye shall destroy their altars, break their images, and cut down their groves: For thou shalt worship no other god: for the LORD, whose name is Jealous, is a jealous God:

God also told them to not even make mention of the names of other gods – not even to talk about them:

Exodus 23:13. And in all things that I have said unto you be circumspect: and make no mention of the name of other gods, neither let it be heard out of thy mouth.

Why? Why did God forbid them from even saying a pagan god’s name? Because He did not want them to make covenants with the inhabitants of the land! He did not want His people to mingle with those pagans, sacrifice to their gods, or learn their abominable practices!

Exodus 34:15. Lest thou make a covenant with the inhabitants of the land, and they go a whoring after their gods, and do sacrifice unto their gods, and one call thee, and thou eat of his sacrifice;

God is a jealous God, and He does not want Israel defiling herself by mingling with the heathen in the land – who are so evil and profane that God is driving them out. God wants a CLEAN people! And the only way to have that purity is to drive out the people and destroy their religion. Afterwards, Israel was commanded to keep three feasts to God (Exodus 34:18-23), and God says that His sacrifices are not to be offered with leaven. Leavened bread symbolizes sin, as Jesus alluded to when He spoke of the leaven of the Pharisees and Sadducees (Matthew 16:12), and as Paul mentioned when delivering sinful people to Satan for the destruction of the body (1 Corinthians 5:1-9).

Exodus 34:25-26. Thou shalt not offer the blood of my sacrifice with leaven; neither shall the sacrifice of the feast of the passover be left unto the morning. The first of the firstfruits of thy land thou shalt bring unto the house of the LORD thy God. Thou shalt not seethe a kid in his mother’s milk.

So, you see, the context of seething a kid in his mother’s milk has something to do with driving out the pagan peoples of the Promised Land and then making pure offerings to God by His standards. The pagan peoples seethed kids in their mothers’ milk during their harvest season, because they were worshiping the gods of fertility and prosperity. While driving out other people, it would have been easy for the Hebrews to begin practicing the religion of the pagans. They would have to destroy their altars and other pagan religious items, so they would see them and handle them. They would ask the natives how they served their gods and then begin to serve them themselves. They did this in the days of the judges!

Judges 2:3, 12. Wherefore I also said, I will not drive them out from before you; but they shall be as thorns in your sides, and their gods shall be a snare unto you…. And they forsook the LORD God of their fathers, which brought them out of the land of Egypt, and followed other gods, of the gods of the people that were round about them, and bowed themselves unto them, and provoked the LORD to anger.

Adam Clarke’s Commentary concurs that the commandment against seething a kid in his mother’s milk was based on the practices of the pagans in the lands God was driving out:

This passage has greatly perplexed commentators; but Dr. Cudworth is supposed to have given it its true meaning by quoting a [manuscript] comment of a Karaite Jew, which he met with, on this passage. ‘It was a custom of the ancient heathens, when they had gathered in all their fruits, to take a kid and boil it in the milk of its dam; and then, in a magical way, to go about and besprinkle with it all their trees and fields, gardens and orchards; thinking by these means to make them fruitful, that they might bring forth more abundantly in the following year. Wherefore, God forbad his people, at the time of their in-gathering, to use any such superstitious or idolatrous rite.’ –Cudworth on the Lord’s Supper.

This was a superstition of the pagans whereby they paid homage to their gods of fertility and prosperity. This was how the pagans celebrated THEIR harvest festival! They hoped that their fields and trees would be more fruitful in the following year if they sprinkled them with the kid who was boiled in his mother’s milk. And so God was justifiably worried that the Israelites would mix these pagan traditions with HIS harvest festivals!

This was a thoroughly PAGAN practice! That’s why God forbade it! He didn’t want His people to follow the pagan rites and worship false gods. Following some magical voodoo they had learned from the people they were supposed to be displacing meant they were rejecting God and His law. Almighty God ALONE was responsible for their prosperity and growth. He ALONE would bless them for being obedient to Him. This particular commandment was simply a magnification of the general commandment:

Deuteronomy 12:30. Take heed to thyself that thou be not snared by following them, after that they be destroyed from before thee; and that thou enquire not after their gods, saying, How did these nations serve their gods? even so will I do likewise.

Mingling Seeds

What do you think of the following commandment?

Leviticus 19:19. Ye shall keep my statutes. Thou shalt not let thy cattle gender with a diverse kind: thou shalt not sow thy field with mingled seed….

God is talking about crossbreeding here. He does not want you trying to mix cattle with other species, or any animals of different species. But just as God does not want you to mix different species, He does not want you – a believer – to be mingled with an unbeliever. He does not want light and darkness, righteousness and unrighteousness, the God-fearing and the God-hating, to be mixed together.

2 Corinthians 6:14. Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? and what communion hath light with darkness?

God wants His people to be separate – to be holy – just as He is holy. Mixing paganism with truth does not work, and God will not stand for it or support someone who does it.

But now for more on the physical application of this commandment. Trying to cross a watermelon and an apricot doesn’t work. Trying to cross a cow with a camel doesn’t work. But mixing two very close species produces an offspring that has different traits than its parents. They may be better or worse than the parents, but they are almost always different. For thousands of years now, gardeners have been practicing horticultural selection to produce new and better plants.

Take, for instance, the cruciferous vegetables. This group of vegetables includes cabbage, kale, kohlrabi, collards, broccoli, cauliflower, and Brussels sprouts, just to name a few. ALL of these varieties of this one species (Brassica Oleracea) came from one type of plant – wild cabbage. This is accomplished by saving and planting seeds from the individual plants that had a trait that the farmer wanted in the offspring. One plant may produce a big head while another would withstand the cold weather better. So, the farmer would plant seeds from these two parent plants next to each other so that they could cross-pollinate and, after a few generations, produce an offspring that had both qualities. This process eventually produces a new species, and if taken far enough produces a plant that can no longer reproduce because of a very narrow genetic pool; these plants are called hybrids.

This process is not wrong. Nearly all food in the supermarkets today have undergone this process to some extent. But crossbreeding plants and animals was also a pagan practice. By mixing certain seeds or animals together, they believed that their harvests would be more bountiful the next year. But the pagans were not after better genetics. They were after better MAGIC. They did not plant crops together because they wanted to combine the traits or produce a better plant. They planted them together because this plant was the plant of Ba’al, and this plant was the plant of Astarte, and when you planted them together their energy warded off bad luck, or created a good vibe that led to increased fertility and prosperity. Or something like that.

Maimonides, the 12th century Jewish historian, writes in his work “The Guide for the Perplexed”, Book 3, Chapter 30 (my emphasis is in bold):

On examining these old and foolish doctrines we find that it was most generally believed by the people that by the worship of stars the earth will become inhabited, and the ground fertilized. The wise, pious, and sinfearing men among them reproved the people and taught them that agriculture, on which the preservation of mankind depended, would become perfect and satisfy man’s wishes, when he worshipped the sun and the stars. If man provoked these beings by his rebelliousness, the towns would become empty and waste.

When a tree is grafted into another in the time of a certain conjunction of sun and moon, and is fumigated with certain substances whilst a formula is uttered, that tree will produce a thing that will be found exceedingly useful….

Thus, we see that these commandments were given because the pagans God was driving out were practicing these things and He did not want His people to practice them. God knows how perverted our current world is, and He looks at your heart. If you want God’s truth, you must be separate from the world, not mixed into it. If you eat crossbred food because you want to be more fertile or you want to have a better magical energy, then you are sinning. If you don’t care whether the food is crossbred or not – if the idol is nothing to you (1 Corinthians 8:4) – then you may eat all you desire with a pure conscience.

Hair Cuts and Grooming

Here are two commandments about how to cut your hair:

Leviticus 19:27. Ye shall not round the corners of your heads, neither shalt thou mar the corners of thy beard.

Deuteronomy 14:1. Ye are the children of the LORD your God: ye shall not cut yourselves, nor make any baldness between your eyes for the dead.

The pagan priests would trim the corners of their heads and their beards, much like monks have done. You’ll note, however, that almost everyone has a ridge on their head where the frontal and parietal bones join. This is the ridge whose highest point is at or near the “crown”. And what do pagan priests do? They shave the hair off the crown, creating what has been termed a tonsure (Figure 1). Some who prefer to keep their heads mostly bald (or have trouble growing hair) may opt for wearing a thin ring of hair around their heads, called a “monastic crown” (Figure 2). The modern-day Jewish skull cap (or kippah) also is a type of tonsure (Figure 3).

Figure 1.
Figure 2.
Figure 3.

The tonsure was a pagan practice because by it, they showed obedience to the sun god! Note what Alexander Hislop in his “The Two Babylons” Chapter 6, Section 2, writes (my emphasis is in bold):

Now, as Rome set so much importance on this tonsure, let it be asked what was the meaning of it? It was the visible inauguration of those who submitted to it as the priests of Bacchus. This tonsure cannot have the slightest pretence to Christian authority. It was indeed the “tonsure of Peter,” but not of the Peter of Galilee, but of the Chaldean “Peter” of the Mysteries. He was a tonsured priest, for so was the god whose Mysteries he revealed. Centuries before the Christian era, thus spoke Herodotus of the Babylonian tonsure: “The Arabians acknowledge no other gods than Bacchus and Urania [i.e., the Queen of Heaven], and they say that their hair was cut in the same manner as Bacchus’ is cut; now, they cut it in a circular form, shaving it around the temples.”

Maimonides adds (Book 3, Chapter 37): “We have explained in our large work that it is prohibited to round the corners of the head, and to mar the corners of the beard, because it was the custom of idolatrous priests.”

So the practice of trimming the corners of the head and beard are actually pagan practices and should not be practiced as such.

But what of “making baldness between your eyes for the dead”? This is another pagan practice. The Israelites were not allowed to make themselves bald at all when mourning. They could not cut themselves or their hair because that’s what the pagans did when they mourned. Notice God’s commandment contrasted with what the priests of Baal did when he did not answer their prayers:

Leviticus 21:1, 5-6. And the LORD said unto Moses, Speak unto the priests the sons of Aaron, and say unto them, There shall none be defiled for the dead among his people…. They shall not make baldness upon their head, neither shall they shave off the corner of their beard, NOR MAKE ANY CUTTINGS IN THEIR FLESH. They shall be holy unto their God, and not profane the name of their God….

1 Kings 18:26-28. And they took the bullock which was given them, and they dressed it, and called on the name of Baal from morning even until noon, saying, O Baal, hear us. But there was no voice, nor any that answered. And they leaped upon the altar which was made…. And they cried aloud, and CUT THEMSELVES AFTER THEIR MANNER WITH KNIVES AND LANCETS, till the blood gushed out upon them.

God wants a HOLY people who will take care of their bodies as the temple of the Lord (1 Corinthians 6:19), not people who will wound themselves and mourn for pagan gods.

God wants you to worship Him – and Him alone – and He wants you to honor Him with your body, including your hair cut, and not pagan customs and superstitions!


Now, for perhaps the two most famous clothing-related scriptures. And also some of the most misunderstood scriptures.

Leviticus 19:19. …neither shall a garment mingled of linen and woollen come upon thee.

Deuteronomy 22:5. The woman shall not wear that which pertaineth unto a man, neither shall a man put on a woman’s garment: for all that do so are abomination unto the LORD thy God.

First notice that wearing either woollen garments or linen garments were permitted. When someone had a plague of leprosy, the garment was to be examined, “Whether it be in the warp, or woof; of linen, or of woollen; whether in a skin, or in any thing made of skin” (Leviticus 13:48). These were garments made of EITHER wool OR linen, NOT wool AND linen. Also notice that the virtuous woman of Proverbs 31 is hailed for seeking wool and flax (of which linen is made) and for working with her hands to provide for her family.

Proverbs 31:13. She seeketh wool, and flax, and worketh willingly with her hands.

The pagan priests wore garments made of linen and wool woven together. They believed that wearing wool and linen in this way (just like they believed that mixing cattle and hybridizing seeds) would impart some kind of magical blessing on them. They also would cross-dress, the women dressing as men in front of certain gods, and the men dressing as women in front of other certain gods. This commandment has NOTHING to do with women being forbidden from wearing pants or shorts. God really does not care what you wear so long as it is not used in idolatrous practices or have images or words from false gods on it, and it is appropriately modest.

Maimonides, in Book 3, Chapter 37, continues:

…because it was the custom of idolatrous priests. For the same reason, the wearing of garments made of linen and wool is prohibited: the heathen priests adorned themselves with garments containing vegetable and animal material, whilst they held in their hand a seal made of a mineral. This you find written in their books. The same is also the reason of the precept, “The woman shall not wear that which pertaineth unto a man” (Deut. xxii. 5). You find it in the book Tomtom, that a male person should wear coloured woman’s dress when he stands before Venus, and a female, when standing before Mars, should wear a buckler and other armour. I think that this precept has also another reason; namely, that the interchange of dress creates lust and leads to immorality.

* * * * * * * * * *

What is the conclusion of the whole matter? These seemingly odd commandments are in fact legitimate. They were given because a rebellious and stiff-necked people who had no faith wanted (and needed!) God to spell out every little thing they could and could not do. But if you aren’t consciously worshiping Venus or Mars or any other false god, then you don’t need to worry about this commandment. If you aren’t thinking about the magical powers you might get by mixing seed, then don’t be concerned about eating hybridized food. In short, if the REASON for God’s giving the commandment no longer exists, then there is NO REASON to continue keeping those commandments.

Those rules aren’t relevant to our society. But the same concept applies to our modern, corrupt society. There are many customs that would tempt carnal people back into the pagan religious mysteries. For example, there is nothing wrong in itself with eating black-eyed peas on New Year’s Day. But it is a custom and superstition used by people to serve modern-day false gods.

If YOU were writing laws for a people who couldn’t judge right from wrong based on a minimal framework of Law, you would write out all the rules, including “Thou shalt not eat black-eyed peas on New Year’s Day.” This is all God did in writing these seemingly odd commandments for a carnal people. But He wants a people who don’t NEED to have EVERYTHING written out for them. It is up to you to judge yourself now, because God is judging people and selecting those who will rule with Him in His Kingdom. And He is doing this NOW!

1 Peter 4:17. For the time is come that judgment must begin at the house of God: and if it first begin at us, what shall the end be of them that obey not the gospel of God?

It is okay if you want to eat meat and milk at the same meal, which, by the way, must be acceptable if Abraham, the father of faith, did it and was not rebuked for it (Genesis 18:8). It is okay if you want to butcher a kid and his mother in the same day. It is okay if you want to trim your beard or the hair around your temples. It is okay if you want to pluck your eyebrows. It is okay if you want to wear linen clothes or wool clothes. It is even okay if you want to wear clothes made of linen and wool since no one in our society would worship the heathen gods in that fashion.

But it is NOT OKAY for you to practice the rites of God-hating pagans! And if you do so, you will be DESTROYED!

Psalm 145:20. The LORD preserveth all them that love him: but all the wicked will he destroy.

Posted by natnee, filed under Uncategorized. Date: October 31, 2015, 10:40 am | Comments Off on Seething a Kid, Mixing Wool and Linen, and Other Strange Bible Commandments

This week’s audio article is The Evolution of Language, written by Nathaniel Burson, as read by Crystal Holmes. Enjoy!

Or download the complete mp3 file here:

“The Evolution of Language” MP3 File – right click and select “save as”, “save link as”, or “save target as” to save it to your computer.

Posted by natnee, filed under Uncategorized. Date: October 17, 2015, 11:31 am | Comments Off on New Audio Article: “The Evolution of Language”

Quite often, when a person’s prayer goes unanswered, you’ll hear something like this “Well, I prayed for him, but he didn’t get well. I guess God said no”.

Is this TRULY the CASE? OR is this nothing more than a satanic justification of a lack of faith! It’s time this excuse was exposed for the LIE that it is!

HOW does God say no? Let’s look at one example of where a righteous man, whose prayers God heard, was told “No”.

2 Corinthians 12:7-9  And lest I should be exalted above measure through the abundance of the revelations, there was given to me a thorn in the flesh, the messenger of Satan to buffet me, lest I should be exalted above measure. For this thing I besought the Lord thrice, that it might depart from me. And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness.

Paul prayed that the thorn in his flesh, which isn’t named, would be healed. And God said “No, it’s there for a reason”. But if you’ll notice, God ACTUALLY said that. If you have a red-letter Bible, you”ll notice this is in red for a reason! If you literally hear God saying “No”, then you aren’t justifying of a lack of faith. But I’ve yet to meet someone who had this happen!

And there is another example of a man whom God loved, who was told “No”. Again, this was for a very good reason. Nathan the prophet went to King David, immediately after the “Bathsheba incident” and told him “God says no… the child will die”.

2 Samuel 12:14  Howbeit, because by this deed thou hast given great occasion to the enemies of the LORD to blaspheme, the child also that is born unto thee shall surely die. And Nathan departed unto his house. And the LORD struck the child that Uriah’s wife bare unto David, and it was very sick. David therefore besought God for the child; and David fasted, and went in, and lay all night upon the earth.

David had already been told “NO”, but he prayed and fasted anyway. He was hoping he’d change God’s mind.

Verses 18-23 And it came to pass on the seventh day, that the child died. …. But when David saw that his servants whispered, David perceived that the child was dead: therefore David said unto his servants, Is the child dead? And they said, He is dead. Then David arose from the earth, and washed, and anointed himself, and changed his apparel, and came into the house of the LORD, and worshipped: then he came to his own house; and when he required, they set bread before him, and he did eat. Then said his servants unto him, What thing is this that thou hast done? thou didst fast and weep for the child, while it was alive; but when the child was dead, thou didst rise and eat bread. And he said, While the child was yet alive, I fasted and wept: for I said, Who can tell whether GOD will be gracious to me, that the child may live? But now he is dead, wherefore should I fast? can I bring him back again? I shall go to him, but he shall not return to me.

David and Paul prayed for something God had a good reason not to give them. If you do the same, IF YOU HAVE FAITH, God will tell you just as he told them. But God ignoring your prayer is most definitely NOT him saying no! God not answering your prayer is your own lack of faith, nothing more! If you indeed have faith, and God decides this can’t happen, HE’LL TELL YOU. Unless He tells you this, the answer wasn’t “No”, but rather “I can’t listen to you right now, you are simply too unclean”!

Ezekiel 39:24 According to their uncleanness and according to their transgressions have I done unto them, and hid my face from them.

If you justify your prayers not being answered, if you make excuses for why God ignores you, excuses that allow you to feel good about yourself, your prayers WILL NEVER BE ANSWERED!

Jeremiah 8:6, 10 I hearkened and heard, but they spake not aright: no man repented him of his wickedness, saying, What have I done? every one turned to his course, as the horse rusheth into the battle…. Therefore will I give their wives unto others, and their fields to them that shall inherit them: for every one from the least even unto the greatest is given to covetousness, from the prophet even unto the priest every one dealeth falsely.

It’s time to stop LYING to yourself! Time to stop justifying God not answering your prayers! It’s time to ask yourself WHAT HAVE I DONE to cause this, WHAT DID I DO that prevents God from hearing me – before it’s too late!

Isaiah 55:6-7 Seek ye the LORD while he may be found, call ye upon him while he is near: Let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts: and let him return unto the LORD, and he will have mercy upon him; and to our God, for he will abundantly pardon.

If you truly want it to change, then FIND OUT WHY God isn’t HEARING you! On the other hand, if you are happy the way you are, if you are satisfied with the amount of faith you have now, if you just want to FEEL GOOD ABOUT YOURSELF, then you only have the unmitigated judgment of God to look forward to!

Revelation 3:17, 19 Because thou sayest, I am rich, and increased with goods, and have need of nothing; and knowest not that thou art wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked:… As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten: be zealous therefore, and repent!

Posted by natnee, filed under Uncategorized. Date: October 3, 2015, 9:25 am | Comments Off on How Does God Say No?

This week’s audio article is How Does God Heal The Sick?, written by Nathaniel Burson, as read by Crystal Holmes. Enjoy!

Or download the complete mp3 file here:

“How Does God Heal The Sick?” MP3 File – right click and select “save as”, “save link as”, or “save target as” to save it to your computer.

Posted by natnee, filed under Uncategorized. Date: September 19, 2015, 12:22 pm | Comments Off on New Audio Article: “How Does God Heal The Sick?”

John 9:1-3 And as Jesus passed by, he saw a man which was blind from his birth. And his disciples asked him, saying, Master, WHO DID SIN, this man, or his parents, that he was born blind? Jesus answered, Neither hath this man sinned, nor his parents: but that the works of God should be made manifest in him.

This ranks up there as one of the most abused scriptures ever. Basically, the reasoning goes like this; this man didn’t sin. His parent’s didn’t sin. Therefore he wasn’t blind as a result of sin! He was only blind so that Jesus could work a miracle on him! Therefore sickness isn’t the result of sin!

So it’s not your FAULT that your life is a shambles, “it just happened”! It’s not your FAULT you’re sick, “you just caught something!”

Most people out there, perhaps you, believe that is what this scripture says. And if I was trying to explain it WORSE than that, I don’t think I could do it! That’s as bad as it can get! If that is right, then it means that GOD made someone grow up and spend over 20 years of his life BLIND… JUST so that Jesus could “show off” and do one miracle!

This belief would mean that sickness ISN’T the result of sin, and therefore sickness just HAPPENS! And therefore sin doesn’t necessarily cause sickness! It makes God out to be a MONSTER who would CAUSE this person to be blind for NO REASON except that it let Christ do a miracle! Like some twisted Dr. Jekyll, he makes people sick just to cure them and look like a hero. You know, I bet that’s what Satan thinks of all God’s miracles! Shame on anyone who believes, much less teaches, that!

THINK ABOUT IT! Did God CREATE man to be blind? Did God INTEND that people suffer, lose teeth, eyes, break bones, bleed, or die? Did He PLAN it so that we would HAVE to feel that? Let’s fast-forward a bit and see!

Revelation 21:4 And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away.

NO MORE PAIN! No more tears! Do you suppose we’ll have BLIND people then? Do you suppose there will be people with deformities of ANY kind? WHY NOT? Because God is RULING it, and it is a RIGHTEOUS kingdom!

Revelation 22:15 For without are dogs, and sorcerers, and whoremongers, and murderers, and idolaters, and whosoever loveth and maketh a lie.

The people mentioned there break commandments number 1, 7, 6, 2, and 9 respectively, so I think we can assume that ALL commandment breakers are included in this – those people are LOCKED OUT of the Kingdom of God! And BECAUSE there are no broken commandments, there is no SIN, for sin IS the breaking of the commandments! (1 John 3:4). And so there is also no suffering, and no pain, and no blindness!

By the same token, there was no SIN in the Garden of Eden either, and so Adam was not blind or lame or bald, and Eve didn’t have prematurely gray hair, toothaches or look like a giant pear! Because it was their SIN that caused those things!

Romans 5:12 Wherefore, as by ONE MAN sin entered into the world, and DEATH BY SIN; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned:

So because of Adam’s SIN, all those things come upon us. But it didn’t stop there! Because it wasn’t just one ACT of Adam’s that perpetuated this. It was an act that set up a PATTERN of disobedience! A PATTERN of following “the way that seems right to a man” – the way that ends in death, every single time.

Eve picked the forbidden fruit, Adam ate it, and they got kicked out of the Garden. Then they taught their children things that weren’t true to justify their own disobedience. As a result Cain was raised with a belief system that allowed him to kill Abel.

Cain, naturally taught his children that sin was OK (After all, he tried it and hadn’t died!), and so his children found newer and better ways to sin! All the way through history this story was repeated, all of us trapped into the pattern of perpetuating Adam’s sin. But that cycle can be broken! You didn’t HAVE to disobey God – you just WANTED to, and your parents and your preacher said it was OK, but you didn’t HAVE to do it! But you DID, and so now YOU are stuck just like Adam was.

But now back up and look at this scripture again with fresh eyes and see what exactly Jesus said:

John 9:3 Jesus answered, Neither hath this man sinned, nor his parents: but that the works of God should be made manifest in him.

Before you run off and build a doctrine around a scripture, settle down, sit on your hands and close your mouth and read WHAT IT SAYS! Jesus exempts two groups, and ONLY those two groups, from blame for this man’s blindness; He says it isn’t the MAN’S fault, or his PARENTS. Most people rush off there and conclude “so it wasn’t anyone’s fault!” – but Jesus didn’t say that!

He didn’t say that the Pharisees hadn’t sinned and caused this. He didn’t say that the man’s grandparents hadn’t sinned and caused it. He didn’t say that Adam hadn’t sinned and caused it! He didn’t say that Satan hadn’t sinned and caused it! He said ONLY that this man and his parents had not specifically committed a physical or moral sin and caused it!

Remember, unless God WANTED to put death, sickness and disease on innocent people – people whom HE PERSONALLY SAID HADN’T CAUSED IT – just so He could show off, then SOMEONE sinned, SOMEWHERE!

The wages of sin is DEATH. NOTHING else can earn death but sin! Find another way to die! Go on, do it! But if you obey God, you CANNOT die – so if someone dies, it’s the result of a sin, SOMEWHERE. So if this man’s eye was DEAD (which I don’t think is too big a stretch) then it was DEAD because of the wages of SIN.

Proverbs 26:2 As the bird by wandering, as the swallow by flying, so THE CURSE CAUSELESS SHALL NOT COME.

You have it as a promise from God that there is NO curse that falls on a man without a CAUSE, SOMEWHERE. And I think we’d all agree that blindness is a curse! God also said:

Ecclesiastes 7:14 In the day of prosperity be joyful, but in the day of adversity consider: God also hath set the one over against the other, to the end that man should find nothing after him.

So when things go well, be happy! But if they are NOT going well, THINK ABOUT IT! God set it up this way so that you can figure out what you’re doing wrong – with His help! So if this man was blind, it was a symptom of SOME sin, whether a sin of the society, a sin of the doctrine of the Pharisees, or just the fact that the land of Israel wasn’t healthy anymore because they hadn’t “dressed and kept the Earth” – when you think about it, there were a LOT of blind, dumb, lame, sick people for Jesus to heal in Palestine, far more than there should have been in a healthy nation.

And so someone sinned. But wait a moment! What about this verse…?

Romans 5:13 (For until the law sin was in the world: but sin is not imputed when there is no law.

Sin EXISTED in the world before the law had been given (to Moses)… but sin didn’t COUNT where there was no law. In other words, if you’re IGNORANT, God doesn’t chalk that sin up against you! But hold on now! Sin DOES have a penalty! It may not be a SPIRITUAL penalty, but there IS a penalty.

For example, if you don’t KNOW that driving over someone’s foot will hurt them, God won’t hold you accountable on a spiritual level – but they’ll have a broken foot all the same! (I know, I was the one who had the broken foot!). So there IS a penalty, even for a sin of ignorance – just not necessarily a moral penalty.

When David counted up Israel so that he could invade the rest of the world and become emperor of Earth (which wasn’t part of God’s plan), God was angry and punished him. He gave him three options – three years famine, three months losing battles, or three days disease. David opted for the shorter sentence…

1 Chronicles 21:14 So the LORD sent pestilence upon Israel: and there fell of Israel seventy thousand men.

David’s sins made the whole nation suffer. SEVENTY THOUSAND DIED! Not for their sins – not for their parents sins! But for the sins of ONE man, the king David! There was a sin someplace – and not a sin of pure ignorance, but sin where someone knew at least partially that this was wrong, but his greed and lust for power overcame that fear to disobey God – and that sin must have come from David.

Verse 8 And David said unto God, I have sinned greatly, because I have done this thing: but now, I beseech thee, do away the iniquity of thy servant; for I have done very foolishly.

A fact which David admitted, as we see. So now with this background, we can finally answer the question of this young blind man. Jesus said he didn’t know any better, nor did his parents. Neither one had sinned. They may not have been living perfectly – they no doubt were not – but it didn’t matter, for “where there is no law, there is no sin”. They didn’t know any better, so it didn’t count as “sin”. But there WERE people who DID know better – and didn’t care. THEIR sin caused it.

Later on in the same chapter after the blind man was healed, the Pharisees ran him through the inquisition a few times, then Jesus found him and told him who He was, and concluded with this statement, which will tell us WHO really WAS to blame:

John 9:39 And Jesus said, For judgment I am come into this world, that they which see not might see; and that they which see might be made blind. And some of the Pharisees which were with him heard these words, and said unto him, Are we blind also? Jesus said unto them, If ye were blind, ye should have no sin: but now ye say, We see; therefore your sin remaineth.

IF you were blind, YOU WOULD HAVE NO SIN! But they said “We see!” “WE are the wise doctors of divinity, priests of God’s chosen people, WE have the truth!” – and because they said that, THEIR SIN COUNTED against them! They KNEW better, and yet they WOULD NOT obey God!

John 7:19 Did not Moses give you the law, and yet none of you keepeth the law? Why go ye about to kill me?

The health of Israel was clearly in a decline. And historically the truth about God comes right along with the truth about health, for John, speaking for God, said:

3 John 1:2 Beloved, I wish above all things that thou mayest prosper and be in health, even as thy soul prospereth.

But when the Pharisees left the law, they left health. They left proper farming practices and proper eating practices. And the laws of health are no less binding than the laws given from Mt. Sinai. And the priests were supposed to teach both.

Malachi 2:7 For the priest’s lips should keep knowledge, and they should seek the law at his mouth: for he is the messenger of the LORD of hosts.

So yes, it wasn’t for that man’s sins, nor for his parents. But the Pharisees said “WE are not blind!” – and they weren’t. They KNEW better. And so Jesus did not exempt them from blame – for they WERE to blame. Just as the ministry in any church today is to blame for the health of that church.

So you might be sick because of YOUR sins. More than likely, you are. Then again your parents might be the ones to blame. Or it might be the sins of Kellogg, or Dow Chemical. Or the sins of Thomas Jefferson and the other founding fathers for not framing the constitution quite right.

It really doesn’t matter whose fault it is, there WAS a sin that caused it, and the solution to ANY sin is to STOP sinning and do it right! Since there is a rather wide variety of sins out there that cause sickness, I won’t go into that – but you can take it to the bank that you are sick because of sin.

It’s your job to find out what the sin is, and how to fix it.

Posted by natnee, filed under Uncategorized. Date: September 5, 2015, 10:14 am | Comments Off on Whose Sin Caused Your Sickness?

This week’s audio article is Christ Had A Sinful Nature!, written by Nathaniel Burson, as read by Crystal Holmes. Enjoy!

Or download the complete mp3 file here:

“Christ Had A Sinful Nature!” MP3 File – right click and select “save as”, “save link as”, or “save target as” to save it to your computer.

Posted by natnee, filed under Uncategorized. Date: August 22, 2015, 9:18 am | Comments Off on New Audio Article: “Christ Had A Sinful Nature!”

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