Don’t be taken captive by philosophy!


Bible teacher Alan Ballou
Bible teacher Alan Ballou

I don’t know the exact story, but I heard that during 911 (nine-eleven), a woman convinced a large group of people to go up to the roof of the building by insisting that no one could make it down the stairs. However, two men, that didn’t take her word for it, did make it through a small opening and lived to testify about it.

In the same way we can be taken captive by philosophy (Colossians 2:8) and led away by the error of people who do not know what they are talking about (2 Peter 3:17).

For example, did you know that Christians can “fall away from grace” (Galatians 5:4)? Check and see what your Bible says. There is one quote that I have heard over and over for the past twenty years; “I didn’t know that.” God’s people experience destruction in their lives because they don’t know something and not because we face a big old mean devil (Hosea 4:6).

If I asked a thousand Christians today if we could fall away from grace, I would not expect to get one right answer in accordance with what is written even in the Bible they are using. Why? We have been taken captive by philosophy. Someone we have trusted for years has taught us that we can’t even miss grace, and so that is our attitude; it’s our viewpoint. We didn’t ask questions because we didn’t “figure” we needed to, but the Bible also says that we can miss grace (Hebrews 12:15). I don’t know how many sermons I have heard on grace over the past twenty years, but none of them were in line with scripture. Do a word search on grace and read it for yourself.

Christian philosophy is an attitude, a viewpoint, and a way of reasoning, but when the information is off, it can be deadly. Comparing human wisdom to the Word of God is like comparing chaff and wheat (Jeremiah 23:28); at least God’s thinks so (Luke 16:15, 1 Corinthians 3:19).

How can we fall away from grace? Get this! The church attending people today who try to obey Moses (the Laws of Moses) after accepting Christ Jesus as Lord are in danger of falling away from grace. Read the verse below before you speak against them or me. I’m including the NKJV, and the Amplified.

Galatians 5:4-5

4 You have become estranged from Christ, you who attempt to be justified by law; you have fallen from grace. NKJV

 Galatians 5:4

4 If you seek to be justified and declared righteous and to be given a right standing with God through the Law, you are brought to nothing and so separated (severed) from Christ. You have fallen away from grace (from God’s gracious favor and unmerited blessing). AMP

We who are in Christ, die to the Law in order that we may serve in the new way of the Spirit and not in the old way (Romans 7:4-6). No one will be declared righteous by observing the Law (Romans 3:19), but righteousness is still a requirement (Matthew 5:20). Check that verse. It can only come through faith in Jesus Christ to all who believe (Romans 3:21-26), and faith in Jesus Christ will produce love (Galatians 5:5-6), and love makes us share with our Brothers in need (1 John 3:16-19). Check it!

You might say that you are not under the Law, but if you are not under the Laws of Moses, how is it that you tithe in accordance with the Laws of Moses (Hebrews 7:5)? Tell me this. If this one verse comes true (Romans 4:14), will anyone who does not die to the Laws of Moses make it?

Romans 4:14

14 For if those who are of the law are heirs, faith is made void and the promise made of no effect, NKJV

 Romans 4:14

14 If it is the adherents of the Law who are to be the heirs, then faith is made futile and empty of all meaning and the promise [of God] is made void (is annulled and has no power). AMP

It is only through faith that we “gain access” into grace (Romans 5:2). So far, that’s three verses on grace that you have never heard on Sunday morning. Imagine that.

Christ is the end of the Law for those who believe (Romans 10:4). In fact, the King James, New King James, Amplified Bible and any other older Bible says that those who do not teach in accordance with godly edification, which is by faith with the command of love (1 Timothy 1:4-5), but continue to require that people remain under the Law, have no understanding (1 Timothy 1:7). Imagine listening to someone for years and his own Bible says that he doesn’t have any understanding.

The Law is “not made” for the righteous (1 Timothy 1:9), but yet we follow right along without even the slightest chirp. They rob God and yet preach that you rob God of His tithe. Read this passage of scripture and notice we die to the Law, and notice the verse on grace for those who don’t (verse 21 below).

Galatians 2:15-21

15 We who are Jews by nature, and not sinners of the Gentiles, 16 knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law but by faith in Jesus Christ, even we have believed in Christ Jesus, that we might be justified by faith in Christ and not by the works of the law; for by the works of the law no flesh shall be justified.

17 “But if, while we seek to be justified by Christ, we ourselves also are found sinners, is Christ therefore a minister of sin? Certainly not! 18 For if I build again those things which I destroyed, I make myself a transgressor. 19 For I through the law died to the law that I might live to God. 20 I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me. 21 I do not set aside the grace of God; for if righteousness comes through the law, then Christ died in vain.” NKJV

If we rebuild what was destroyed we make ourselves a transgressor (verse 18 above). What are you building? Learn more about Law and how is connected to our ability to stop sinning in my book “How To Stop Sinning.” I’m Alan Ballou; a servant. If you have any questions or if you have a verse that you think I have violated, please send it. There are a lot of things that every Christian should know and it doesn’t hurt to ask.

http://www.howtostopsinning.com

Righteousness is connected to what we say (Romans 10:6-8).


Alan's Blog at www.howtostopsinning.org
Read the post and put your two cents in.

Quick! Turn in your Bible to the New Testament, and find a passage of scripture that you just don’t quite accept. Now, ask yourself if you are ever going to be transformed (Romans 12:1-2), if you do not renew your mind with the Word of God and then allow it to judge you attitudes and thoughts (Hebrews 4:12)?

You cannot be transformed until you renew your mind, and you cannot renew your mind with the truth if you reject it; remaining conformed to this world rather than allowing the Word to change you (1 Thessalonians 2:13, John 6 60-69).

We are instructed to humbly accept the Word planted in us, since it can save us (James 1:21). Imagine that. In what way can the truth save us? It is written that “You shall know the truth, and the truth will set you free” (John 8:31-32). Set us free from what? The Word living in us will set us free from being a slave to sin (John 8:34-37, Romans 1:28-32). We are born again through the Word (1 Peter 1:22-25).

Check the verses and accept what they tell you before you speak against the faith in your heart (Romans 10:6-8). The truth (Word of God) sanctifies (John 17:17), and works all by itself on the inside of those who believe it (1 Thessalonians 2:13).

When we are transformed, our words will be in line with what is written. Think about that.  The Spirit is the Word (John 6:63), and when we are filled with the Spirit and can hear the convictions of the Spirit, we will not speak against the Spirit. If the Holy Spirit is leading us to speak, should we not be able to speak in line with what He (the Spirit) wrote (2 Peter 1:20-21). Hum.

In this way, the person with the Spirit of faith, speaks in line with the faith (2 Corinthians 4:13). On the other hand, a person with an ugly mouth, has a worthless religion (James 1:27). This is why those who tell dirty jokes and the like have no inheritance in the Kingdom of Christ or the Kingdom of God living in them (Ephesians 5:3-7). Check those verses before you say that I’m not telling you the truth because by simply speaking against the faith, we can fall away from the faith (1 Timothy 6:20-21).

1 Timothy 6:20-21
… Turn away from godless talk,and what opposes the truth, and what is falsely called knowledge, 21 which some have professed and in so doing have wandered from the faith.

Know that the people who follow the spirit of this world (spirit of disobedience) speak in line with the desires of this world (1 John 4:5, Ephesians 2:1-3). A person with a deceiving spirit (1 Timothy 4:1), speaks what people want to hear in order to draw disciples (followers) after himself (Acts 20:29-32, 2 Timothy 4:3-4).

Check the verses to see if they say what I am telling you, since all of us will have to give an account for every careless word we speak in the end (Matthew 12:36). By our words we overcome, and are justified or condemned (Matthew 12:37, Revelation 12:11). Our words don’t just stop having the power of life and death the moment after we say “Jesus is Lord,” but every careless word counts for good or for evil (Proverbs 18:21, James 3:2-12), and for good days in the future or for bad days (1 Peter 3:10). That’s something every Christian should know.

Matthew 12:33-37
33 “Either make the tree good and its fruit good, or else make the tree bad and its fruit bad; for a tree is known by its fruit.  34 Brood of vipers! How can you, being evil, speak good things? For out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks.  35 A good man out of the good treasure of his heart brings forth good things, and an evil man out of the evil treasure brings forth evil things.  36 But I say to you that for every idle word men may speak, they will give account of it in the day of judgment.  37 For by your words you will be justified, and by your words you will be condemned.” NKJV

Notice that after the tree is made good, the fruit will be good, but evil men cannot speak good things. The only way to change the mouth (tongue) is to change what is mostly in our hearts (verse 34 above), and we change out hearts until our attitudes and thoughts are in line with the faith (transformed). This will cause us to speak in line with the faith. To be perfect is to never stumble or be at fault in what we say (James 3:2). Again, check the verses before you speak.

James 3:2 For we all stumble in many things. If anyone does not stumble in word, he is a perfect man, able also to bridle the whole body. NKJV

Notice in that verse that the person who does not stumble in what he says has been given the ability to control his whole body. Tell me this. If a drug addict is given the ability to control his whole body, would he remain a drug addict? I have seen crack addicts delivered in days using this process, so I know it works; all without even telling them to stop smoking crack. Praise God. I have explained this process in my book, “How To Stop Sinning.”

The Word of God has that kind of power. The power of God to save, to heal, to deliver, is already in the Word of God (Romans 1:16, John 8:31-39, Psalm 107:17-22), but we have to receive it by faith, which includes living by the evidence or the instructions (Hebrews 11:1). Worldly wisdom only helps to remove that power (1 Corinthians 1:17).

Know that the righteousness that comes by faith involves things that we should say and things that we should never say (Romans 10:6-8). That’s right.  God’s new way of righteousness (revealed in the gospel) that we should be seeking first (Matthew 6:33) involves saying certain things and not saying certain things.

Therefore, we should be careful to always speak in line with the faith and never side with something that is figured using worldly wisdom. Never say “Amen” to something that sounds good, but is not written because it could be against what is written (Ephesians 4:13-14). It’s just like saying it yourself, and in doing so you can fall away from the faith (1 Timothy 6:20-21, above).

As it is written; See to it that no one takes you captive through philosophy (Colossians 2:8). I’m Alan Ballou; a servant. Test what I have said. The Lord has put words in my mouth that cannot be condemned (Titus 2:8). Glory to the Lord God almighty who gives gifts to nobodies like me. If I have violated a verse, mention it! Got questions? Ask! Learn more at http://www.howtostopsinning.com

Does baptism save us?


Alan Ballou teaching.

 

 

Preachers have been arguing about baptism for a very long time now, and it still separates close friends from different denominations today. I’m just asking you to believe what is written. Most any Bible out there that is sold in the Christian book store says that baptism does now save us in 1 Peter 3:21 (below).

 1 Peter 3:21

21 There is also an antitype which now saves us — baptism (not the removal of the filth of the flesh, but the answer of a good conscience toward God), through the resurrection of Jesus Christ, NKJV.

The problem comes in when we  lean on our own understanding, rather than simply accepting what is written. If your Bible says that baptism saves us then why would you agree with a different message? Allow me show you why.

John 12:42-43

42 Nevertheless even among the rulers many believed in Him, but because of the Pharisees they did not confess Him, lest they should be put out of the synagogue; 43 for they loved the praise of men more than the praise of God. NKJV

Christians, who can see plainly what their own Bible says, do not admit it before men because it is not inline with what their denomination teaches. Therefore, they eventually end up just as blind as their teachers because they too willing speak against the scriptures (1 Timothy 6:20-21, Ephesians 4:17-19).

We who are called to teach, do not “go beyond what is written,” or add to the Word of God (1 Corinthians 4:6-7, Proverbs 30:5-6). The King James says, don’t even “think beyond what is written.” Therefore, if you asked me if baptism saves us, I’m going to say yes, because that is exactly what 1 Peter 3:21 says!

On the other hand, the people who are not called by God to preach, will say what they want to say in order to build their crowds (2 Timothy 4:3-4, Acts 20:29-31). They do not concern themselves with what God requires of His servants (1 Thessalonians 2:4-6, Galatians 1:10), but their day is coming. The very Word of God that they reject will in turn judge them on the last day according to the Words of Jesus Christ written in John 12:48.

Therefore, test everything (1 Thessalonians 5:21), and not just the verses, but what is said in-between reading the verses, since most error is in their interpretations, and not the reading of the scriptures.

Know for sure that the person that the Lord sends to you will speak in line with the Lord’s Words (John 3:34, Jeremiah 23:22). People who do not speak in line with what is written are not “sent” by God to speak to you, but are simply called by man to fill the building with people. They may mean well, sound sincere, but they are not “sent by God.”

Get this. Everything we would ever need for this life has “already been given to us” through our knowledge of God’s which is contained in His Word (2 Peter 1:3). So there is absolutely no reason to go beyond what is written in your Bible. Don’t look for anything that isn’t already in there, because it will only fill your head with junk that is against God’s Word, and place you further away from having what God has given you.

False teachers have to pull you away from the Word of God in order to have you rely on them (Acts 20:29-31), and there is a lot of that going on these days. Check those verses in your Bible. We are supposed to participate in the promises written in our Bibles in order to receive what God has already given us (2 Peter 1:4), but how can that be done when we accept things that are against God’s Word? Check the verses to see for yourself that I speak according to the truth.

Here is what you need to know.

The people who are not baptized will not accept God’s will for their life, point, blank, period (Luke 7 29-30). Read it for yourself.

 Luke 7:29-30

29 And when all the people heard Him, even the tax collectors justified God, having been baptized with the baptism of John. 30 But the Pharisees and lawyers rejected the will of God for themselves, not having been baptized by him. NKJV

If someone doesn’t accept God’s will for their life, can they possibly make it into the Kingdom of Heaven? Many who call Jesus Lord will not be able to enter the Kingdom of Heaven because they did not do the will of the Father (Matthew 7:21). That means that there are many saved people who will not make it.

Matthew 7:21-22

21 “Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in heaven. NKJV

Therefore, baptism does save us. It may be indirectly, but it is required. So, get Baptized! I’m Alan Ballou; a servant. If I can answer a question for you in accordance with what is actually written in the Word of God, please contact me, or just leave a commit below.

One more thing to keep in mind here. Jesus commanded us to love one another (John 13:34-34), and love comes from a pure heart, sincere faith, and a good conscience (1 Timothy 1:4-7).

1 Timothy 1:3-7

3 As I urged you when I went into Macedonia — remain in Ephesus that you may charge some that they teach no other doctrine, 4 nor give heed to fables and endless genealogies, which cause disputes rather than godly edification which is in faith. 5 Now the purpose of the commandment is love from a pure heart, from a good conscience, and from sincere faith, 6 from which some, having strayed, have turned aside to idle talk, 7 desiring to be teachers of the law, understanding neither what they say nor the things which they affirm. NKJV

In our baptism, we made the pledge (vow, promise) to keep a good (clear) conscience before God (1 Peter 3:21, above). As Christians, we need to know that. Many of Jesus’ disciples followed Him up to a point, but then refused to accept what He said (John 6:60-69).

Check those verses because the same is true today. I can’t help but think that if most knew about baptism before they were baptized, then they would  strive to keep their vows. As it is written, “strive to enter through the narrow gate” (Luke 13:24-28). Why? Many will seek to enter but not be able. Check the verses!

Anyone who plans on obeying Jesus needs to know about keeping a good conscience toward God, since it is a part of the process of remaining in love. Very few today know that we have got to fight in order to remain in the faith (1 Timothy 1:18).

1 Timothy 1:18-20

18 This charge I commit to you, son Timothy, according to the prophecies previously made concerning you, that by them you may wage the good warfare, 19 having faith and a good conscience, which some having rejected, concerning the faith have suffered shipwreck, 20 of whom are Hymenaeus and Alexander, whom I delivered to Satan that they may learn not to blaspheme. NKJV

Notice that waging the good warfare, or fighting the good fight (as some Bibles put it) is having (keeping) faith and a good conscience (verse 19 above).

The Christian life is not something to be taken lightly.  If you are not fighting to remain in the faith, chances are you are on the very edge with one foot in the world, and with the teaching that is being spread around today, you probably think it’s ok with God. However, we have to remain in the faith or risk falling away to destruction (Hebrews 10:36-39, Colossians 1:21-23). Check the verse.

Alan Ballou; a servant. Author of “How To Stop Sinning.”

Being saved does not necessarily mean Eternal Life!


Alan always puts the verses on the screen from several different Bibles (KJV, NKJV, AMPLIFIED, NIV pre 1984 ver).

Jesus Christ said that those who “hear His Words” and believes God has passed from death to life (John 5:24). Check it! Can you continually speak against what Jesus said and have eternal life (John 12:46-48)? Yes you got saved, but go back and check the verses used to get you saved. Read them for yourself and see what they promise. You will not find the words “eternal life” in Ephesians 2:6-10 or Romans 10:9-13.

We are “saved” into the Kingdom of Christ (Colossians 1:12-14), or seated with Christ in His Kingdom (Ephesians 2:6-10). That doesn’t necessarily mean that we will inherit eternal life, but by receiving Jesus as Lord we are given the “right to become” children of God (John 1:12), or in other words, we were “qualified” to share in the inheritance of the saints (Colossians 1:12).

In this hope we are saved (Romans 8:24). All of the children of God, purify themselves (1 John 3:3), in obeying the truth (1 Peter 1:22-25). Those who belong to Jesus Christ, the one mentioned in your Bible, put to death their sinful nature (Galatians 5:24). Those who speak against that preach a different Jesus (2 Corinthians 11:4). Check the verses and see if they say what I am telling you.

In the end Jesus Christ will give the Kingdom of Christ back to God (1 Corinthians 15:24, Kingdom of God). Before that Christ will weed out of His Kingdom, all who cause sin and continue in evil (Matthew 13:40-42). Check those verses and ask yourself if you “believe Jesus.” If you believe Jesus then you will not be one of the ones who willingly speak directly against what He has said.

The people who will be weeded out are those who were actually in the Kingdom of Christ (meaning saved people), but they did not allow the Word to change them (John 6:63, 8:31-39). They did not allow the life-giving Spirit they received as Lord (1 Corinthians 15:45) to change them from the inside out (Romans 8:12-14, 1 Thessalonians 2:13, 1 Peter 1:22-25). Notice in the verses below that those who “allow” themselves to be led by the Spirit are really the sons of God.

Romans 8:12-14

12 So then, brethren, we are debtors, but not to the flesh [we are not obligated to our carnal nature], to live [a life ruled by the standards set up by the dictates] of the flesh.

13 For if you live according to [the dictates of] the flesh, you will surely die. But if through the power of the [Holy] Spirit you are [habitually] putting to death (making extinct, deadening) the [evil] deeds prompted by the body, you shall [really and genuinely] live forever. 14 For all who are led by the Spirit of God are sons of God. AMP

This is why it is written that certain people ” shall not inherit the kingdom of God.” Galatians 5:21 … I warn you beforehand, just as I did previously, that those who do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God. AMP

Yes they were saved, but they did not allow the change. They refused to “keep in step with the Spirit” (Galatians 5:25). They refused to “come to know Jesus” in the way described in Ephesians 4:20-24 (by putting off the old man) or as it is described in 1 John 2:3 (obeying His commands). Therefore, they are in line to hear “away from Me, I never knew you” in the end (Matthew 7:21-23, Luke 13 24-25).

Some rely on what I call the “He who began a good work in you gospel.” However, read the book of Philippians for yourself to see the character of the people this promise was made to and ask yourself if you are like them.

First of all, the Apostle Paul wrote to the “saints” in Philippi (Philippians 1:1); meaning the faithful in Christ. If you are not continually putting the Word of God in your body (Hebrews 5:11-14), then you can forget about being a saint. Read the condition in Colossians 1:21-23 before you speak; “If you continue in your faith.” Faith comes by hearing the Word (Romans 10:17), and not necessarily by hearing me or anyone else speak about the Word. I don’t care if you are the Pope, if you do not continue in your faith, you will not remain holy in God’s sight point, blank, period (Hebrews 10:36-39). Don’t let any smooth talker trick you. Read the verses and accept what God has said.

Second, notice that the Philippians were “sharing in the gospel” (Philippians 1:5). Unlike the people of this world who attend church services, but still follow the ways of this world (Ephesians 2:1-3) and promote a feel good message (1 Corinthians 10:20, 2 Timothy 4:3-4), the Philippians supported a message of “obedience” to Jesus Christ (Philippians 1:10, 27, 2:12). The people who will have eternal salvation, simply “obey Jesus” (Hebrews 5:9). Check it!

The evidence of this was that the Philippians shared what they had in order to meet Paul’s needs. This was direct evidence that the Gospel was working in them and the very reason why Paul declared that God would meet their needs (Philippians 4:14-19). We too can “know that we have passed from death to life” in this very way (1 John 3:14, below). In fact, by this we know that we are “of the truth” (1 John 3:19, below).

1 John 3:14-19

14 We know that we have passed from death to life, because we love the brethren. He who does not love his brother abides in death. 15 Whoever hates his brother is a murderer, and you know that no murderer has eternal life abiding in him.

16 By this we know love, because He laid down His life for us. And we also ought to lay down our lives for the brethren. 17 But whoever has this world’s goods, and sees his brother in need, and shuts up his heart from him, how does the love of God abide in him? 18 My little children, let us not love in word or in tongue, but in deed and in truth. 19 And by this we know that we are of the truth, and shall assure our hearts before Him. NKJV

We know that we have passed from death to life, not because we got saved, not because we attend church, or sing in the choir, but because we obey Jesus who commanded us to love one another (John 13:34-35). Jesus is the source of “eternal salvation” for those who obey Him (Hebrews 5:9). Check that verse because you won’t hear that on Sunday morning, since it doesn’t fit the man-made gospel we have come to accept.

If the evidence is there, then go ahead and proclaim the promise; He who begin a good work in you, will carry it on to the day of completion (Philippians 1:6). However, if the evidence isn’t there then I’m afraid the promise is only for those who “do the will of God” (Hebrews 10:36, Matthew 7:21). I’m Alan Ballou; a servant. Learn more at  http:www.howtostopsinning.com

Alan's Blog. A place where iron sharpens iron.

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