Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Pulled Out of The Fire

As a preface to this writing, I am posting on this date for a reason.  It was 21 years ago today, October 22, 1992, that my Mother, Lois Brown Chastain accepted Jesus Christ as her Saviour.  On March 07, 1997 she entered into her promised rest.  For this knowledge I praise God.

Jude 22-23  And of some have compassion, making a difference:  (23)  And others save with fear, pulling them out of the fire; hating even the garment spotted by the flesh.

            A few days ago Sharil, (my wife) and I were discussing the core of events that convicted our hearts for The Salvation of God.  (I had recently looked at my Mother’s Bible which we had given her at Christmas in 1979.  Within the front she had written the date she accepted Jesus The Christ as her Saviour, October 22, 1992.  She also wrote the date of her Baptism, November 08, 1992.  (Her Baptism date is the date we both remember as the first time we had ever heard The Gospel of Jesus The Christ.)
            (Also, I must confess the scripture and title for this dissertation was given to me at our Sunday evening Sermon preached by Dr. James Rasbeary, our Pastor at Lighthouse Baptist Church here in Wiley, Texas.  His subject reflected on the thoughts I had in mind to write.)
            In order for my Mother’s Baptism date to be relevant to this discussion, I must back up a few months before that date. 
            Sharil and I were members of a protestant church, and attended “off and on.”  My Mother went with us occasionally, however she told Sharil and I, “I want to hear what I heard when I was a little girl.”   My comment was, “Mom, I wasn’t there, I don’t know what you heard.”  (Sharil, with much more wisdom told Mom, “Maybe you need to go to a Baptist Church.” Sharil had never been in a Baptist Church, but knew they were more conservative.)
            Later, Mom wanted/needed a hobby.  (Sharil introduced her to Kay Denson who taught her how to make porcelain dolls.)  A few weeks later, Mom related what Sharil had told her about a Baptist Church.  Kay said, “I have just The Baptist Church for you.” 
            Mom began attending Calvary Baptist Church in Palestine, Texas.  Bro Tom Huntress and his wife Vera led Mom to The Salvation of God, and her demeanor began to change considerably.  Mom asked Sharil if I would go to her Baptism, as she was afraid to ask me.   Sharil told her we both would be there.
            We attended Sunday School, (which I thought would include the Baptism, not, then in the 11:00 service, I thought it would happen, again not.)  Then they told me I would have to come back for the evening service.  Evening service? I didn’t know they went to Church twice in one week.  Finally she was Baptized at the end of the evening service. 
            (What I was not yet aware of was a Gospel seed had been planted, both in Sharil’s and my hearts.)
            In the early morning on November 22, 1992, (a day before Sharil’s birthday,) I asked her what she would like to do for her Birthday.  She was really reluctant to answer my question.  She kept asking me to decide.  I refused and finally she said, “I want to go to Church.”  She has since told me I said, “You Do?” (With extreme sarcasm.)  Then I asked, “Which Church do you want to go to?”  She answered, “The other Church.”  We attended both services that day, and except for sickness, we haven’t missed many services since.
            On January 19, 1993, Sharil and I both accepted Jesus as our personal Saviour at about 3:30 pm on that Tuesday afternoon.  The next Sunday we went forward for Baptism, and the following week January 31, 1993, we were both Baptized at the end of the evening service.
            All that I have described was God via The Holy Spirit, “pulling them [Mom, Sharil and I] out of the fire.”   Yet, it all began by the desire [Holy Ghost conviction] of my Mother wanting to hear The Word of God again like she remembered hearing when she was a young girl.
            God tells us how and what we must do to gain that Eternal Salvation.  He tells us He wants us to know we can have it.

1 John 5:13  These things have I written unto you that believe on the name of the Son of God; that ye may know that ye have eternal life, and that ye may believe on the name of the Son of God.

He wants your heart to rejoice in the knowledge of your Eternity with Him.  If you believe, Jesus will save you.

Romans 10:9  That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.

There are three thing in this verse:   1.) If you will confess your belief in Christ Jesus to others, and 2.) Believe that God has raised Jesus from the grave, and 3.) God will save you from that everlasting death in The Lake of Fire.
            Amazingly, God saved a little old widow woman at age 70, Sharil and I both at age 51, and has done miraculous things within our lives.  God called me to The Pastorate, and Sharil to be a Godly Pastor’s wife.    All this comes from that one statement from my Mother, “I want to hear what I heard when I was a little girl.”  Have you ever heard a similar statement or question?
              “If you died today would your home be in Heaven for The Eternity, or would it be the flames of hell?”    Call on His name and receive him, repent of your ways, go to that Baptist Church, and obey Christ Jesus and be Baptized.

Bro John R. E Chastain
Baptist Evangelist
Wylie, Texas

fundamentalthoughts-preacher.blogspot.com   Fundamental Thoughts

Friday, July 12, 2013

Take It To The Limit

John 3:16  For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.

Psalm_106:1  Praise ye the LORD. O give thanks unto the LORD; for he is good: for his mercy endureth for ever.

(As a preface to this devotional, I generally do not work with “Worldly” songs.   However, after eating the lunch I am describing below, I had to do this to clear the song out of my head. jrec)     

            Sharil, (my wife) and I were recently eating at our local What-A-Burger, and overhead the music of the old Eagles’ song, “Take It To The Limit” was playing. 
            (Do know, I no longer listen to that kind of music intentionally, but you must know that my toe “was a tapping.”)   Except for the chorus I had absolutely no concept what the song was about.  I mulled over some ideas concerning the chorus.  (Later, I downloaded the lyrics and found that it is a woeful song concerning lost or fleeting love.  In terms of context, I was a bit off base as to what it was about.   I have since trod down another venue.)
            I can relate this song to our sin.  “Still you're coming back, you're running back You're coming back for more.”  Isn’t this how sin works?  We “taste” a sin, will never try it again, but later just “one more time.”  But, we may go back many times.  (There can be a point of no return.)
            I was also thinking about “…take[ing] it to the limit one more time,” in relation to God’s Love and His Mercy for us.  Based on our Scriptures above, His Love and His Mercy is “everlasting” and “for ever.”  Our King James Bible teaches us God is infinite in His love for us, infinite in his Mercy on us.  Do know it is infinite for those who are saved by Faith in Jesus, God’s only Son, His only begotten Son.
            We are also taught there are limits to those who refuse His Son Jesus.  Peter asked Jesus how many time must I forgive, Jesus answered Peter:

Matthew_18:22  …I say not unto thee, Until seven times: but, Until seventy times seven.

I cannot say that “seventy times seven,” is God’s limit but we must know a limit exists.

Romans 1:28  And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a reprobate mind, to do those things which are not convenient; 

                    The context of this Scripture in Romans deals primarily with sodomy, (which is sin.)  So as a consequence of sin, God gave “…them over to a reprobate mind.”  What is a “reprobate mind?”  “Reprobate (n.) A person abandoned to sin; one lost to virtue and religion.”  In other words, abandoned, totally rejected by God. 
            Another phrase, “So put me on a highway” also intrigued me.   My thoughts went straight to The Book of Matthew.

Matthew 7:13-14  Enter ye in at the strait gate: for wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat:  (14)  Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it.

The “highway” that came to my mind are the two mentioned in these verses, “the strait gate” and the “broad way.”  (These are our choices. One choice leads to life everlasting, (becoming a Christian,) whereas the other leads to destruction, (refusing Jesus.) The “broad way” is the path of the reprobate mind.  This is a dangerous slippery slope from which many never escape.) 
            After I became a Christian, at age 51, and received a clearer understanding of a reprobate mind, I was horrified to realize that had I taken “…it to the limit one more time” and followed that “broad way” I could now have that “reprobate mind,” totally rejected by God, a castaway, and very possibly burning in hell. 
            As Christians saved by The Blood of Jesus The Christ, (through our Faith in Him,) we are eternally secure.  The question that we must ask ourselves is:  “If I Died Today, Would I Go to Heaven or Hell?”

Romans 10:9  That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.

This verse gives you the limited knowledge that you need to know.  God wants you to know that through Jesus, His Son, you can have eternal life.

1 John 5:13  These things have I written unto you that believe on the name of the Son of God; that ye may know that ye have eternal life, and that ye may believe on the name of the Son of God.

God loves you, and He wants you to know that.

John 3:16  For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.

Truly and honestly believe this and Salvation via your faith is yours eternally.

Hebrews 10:22  Let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience, and our bodies washed with pure water.

With a true heart, and a clean clear mind, Ask God Today. 
Step back away from “the limits.”  Stay forever within God’s Amazing Grace.

Bro John R. E Chastain, Evangelist
Retired Baptist Pastor
Wylie, Texas

fundamentalthoughts-preacher.blogspot.com   Fundamental Thoughts

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Once Upon A Time

Titus 1:15-16  Unto the pure all things are pure: but unto them that are defiled and unbelieving is nothing pure; but even their mind and conscience is defiled.  (16)  They profess that they know God; but in works they deny him, being abominable, and disobedient, and unto every good work reprobate.

            I remember many years ago, (prior to my salvation,) watching NBC News with Tom Brokaw.   He was upset that Dr. Jack Kevorkian was involved in assisted suicides.  (Mr. Brokaw was apparently appalled that a physician would do something that would violate The Hippocratic Oath.)  The next story showed Christians picketing an Abortion Clinic.  (Mr. Brokaw didn’t seem to be appalled, yet both physicians were doing EXACTLY the same thing, with one major difference.  The person who asked for help in ending his life made the choice.  The baby that was murdered had no choice.  (Prior to that newscast, I had NO opinion concerning abortion nor assisted suicide.)  I changed news channels and never went back.  Whatever status Mr. Brokaw had (in my mind,) was tarnished.
            Recently, our Texas Legislature has been working on a bill that will limit abortion.  (I am not sure of all the contents.)  I know that those who protested had a Senate Member Filibuster during the first attempt, with grievous protests interrupting the Legislative process.  Later, Governor Perry called a special session to grapple with this bill one more time.   (The protestors against the bill gathered along with Christians who were for the passage of this bill.)  The Christian group began singing, “Amazing Grace” and the “Pro-Choice” protestors chanted, “Hail Satan.”  (At least we know now affirmatively the “Pro-Choice” group is of Satan.  They called on their god, just like the people in The Democratic Convention booed God The Almighty.
            Think about Elijah.  (He called on God and fire came down.  He had the ability to kill all the Baal worshippers.  Now, I am not asking for that.  However, “Once Upon A Time” God judged severely those who called out a false god.)  Since the Roe v. Wade decision, we as a Nation have murdered more babies in the name of contraception than the number of Jews murdered by Hitler.
            It seems we have encouraged our daughters to become whores, our sons to become whoremongers. When the natural result of back seat copulation happens, a baby dies.  (Then our “children” can go back to doing what they desire.  It wasn’t a baby, it was just a fetus.)  Today a girl can even get a “Plan B” pill and perform her own murder.
            “Isn’t it amazing how the same people can “unload on gun owners” for potential deaths, but agree on killing more babies than have been killed (by all guns) since The Revolutionary War, maybe since the invention of guns?”  (I made that statistic up, just like those that oppose Americans their Second Amendment rights.)
            We as Christians must remember those who are for abortions and those who are performing abortions: “are defiled and unbelieving is nothing pure; but even their mind and conscience is defiled.”  They “profess that they know God; but in works they deny him, being abominable, and disobedient, and unto every good work reprobate.”
            “God never allows nor ever gives permission for any kind of abortion.  Christian, it is murder.  It is infanticide.  It is offering babies to false gods.  Abortion at any level MUST STOP.
            As I write, we are celebrating our 237th Anniversary of our Nations Independence.  When we sit back and look at our leadership, Our President, Our Judicial, and Our Congress, we find they have all failed our Nation morally and financially.  Then we wonder, what has happened to our economy, where are the jobs, where are our solid Churches that we had “Once Upon A Time?”
            We as Christians must get back to our First Love, Jesus The Christ.  We are walking more like the world, more like the Satanists who are proclaiming his name.  Our Nation must get back to the roots laid down, (with direction of God,) by our forefathers.  In order for our Nation to be spared, we the people of The Nation must change.

2 Chronicles 7:14  If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.

As Christians, we must begin acting and sounding like we did “Once Upon A Time.”  We have the information we need.  We must “Just Do It.”

Bro John R. E Chastain
Retired Baptist Pastor
Wylie, Texas

fundamentalthoughts-preacher.blogspot.com   Fundamental Thoughts

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

The Carnal Christian

1 Corinthians 3:1-4  And I, brethren, could not speak unto you as unto spiritual, but as unto carnal, even as unto babes in Christ.  (2)  I have fed you with milk, and not with meat: for hitherto ye were not able to bear it, neither yet now are ye able.  (3)  For ye are yet carnal: for whereas there is among you envying, and strife, and divisions, are ye not carnal, and walk as men?  (4)  For while one saith, I am of Paul; and another, I am of Apollos; are ye not carnal?

            The title in which I have chosen for this devotional is a relatively new phrase to me.  I have known of the context, (what the topic is,) just had never heard the phrase.  Many of you will liken this to the term “backslidden.”  However, they could be synonymous, but in the context of these verses, they are not.
            The actual definition from The Webster’s 1828 Dictionary is: “1. Pertaining to flesh; fleshly; sensual; opposed to spiritual; as carnal pleasure. 2. Being in the natural state; unregenerate.  3. Lecherous; lustful; libidinous; given to sensual indulgence.” 
            We as Christians generally define carnal as The Webster’s 1828 Dictionary.  However, most Christians divide sin into many categories:  (It is just a white lie, a little lie.)  Yet, it is still a lie.  Carnality, in our minds, is as divided as our judicial system’s range of murders.  (Murder unintentional or intentional is still murder.  This is NOT a treatise against self-defense, or against the police officer, or soldier.)  God has never allowed varying degrees of punishment. We are the ones who want “Kings” to preside instead of God.
            Carnality is ANYTHING that you put between yourself and God with no intention of changing (repentance, unregenerate.)  Whatever is keeping you away from God isn’t necessarily sin.  For example, boating, fishing, or any other activity (in itself is not necessarily sinful) that keeps you from worshipping God, (but knowing what it is doing without any intention of changing,) is the problem.  (It is the location, which is the problem.)  Again, it is anything that you allow to get between you and God.  Consequently, you are a Carnal Christian.
            In pondering these things, it came to my mind that ALL Christians are Carnal.  There has been only One non-Carnal Christian on earth and that was Jesus The Christ.

Romans 3:10  As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one:

Romans 3:23  For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God;

(These verses tell us the truth.)  All Churches are carnal as all members within are “The Church,” and every member is carnal, some more, some less. 
            In the Parable of The Sower, Jesus defines the make-up of our average Church.    As a soul-winning Christian, (vv 3, 14) (“sower”) we present God’s Word: 

Mark 4:3  Hearken; Behold, there went out a sower to sow: 

Mark 4:14  The sower soweth the word. 

As we preach, knock on doors, and hand out tracts, we will reach these four groups. The majority we meet are possibly those described below in (vv 4, 15.)   They are “by the way side” and are, (for the most part,) courteous, respectful, not saved nor concerned, a carnal worldly person, but not a Christian.

Mark 4:4  And it came to pass, as he sowed, some fell by the way side, and the fowls of the air came and devoured it up. 

Mark 4:15  And these are they by the way side, where the word is sown; but when they have heard, Satan cometh immediately, and taketh away the word that was sown in their hearts. 

The “stony ground” group (vv 5-6, 16-17) are those who gladly receive God’s Word.  They believe for a while, but later realizing the cost: of their tithe, their time, and teaching/learning, they become offended and leave.
Mark 4:5-6  And some fell on stony ground, where it had not much earth; and immediately it sprang up, because it had no depth of earth:  (6)  But when the sun was up, it was scorched; and because it had no root, it withered away. 

Mark 4:16-17  And these are they likewise which are sown on stony ground; who, when they have heard the word, immediately receive it with gladness;  (17)  And have no root in themselves, and so endure but for a time: afterward, when affliction or persecution ariseth for the word's sake, immediately they are offended. 

The third group are those (vv 7-8, 18-19) who “fell among thorns,” hear God’s Word, but too much is going on in their lives to concern themselves with eternity.

Mark 4:7-8  And some fell among thorns, and the thorns grew up, and choked it, and it yielded no fruit. 

Mark 4:18-19  And these are they which are sown among thorns; such as hear the word,  (19)  And the cares of this world, and the deceitfulness of riches, and the lusts of other things entering in, choke the word, and it becometh unfruitful. 

The last group (vv 8, 20) that “fell on good ground” is the core of our Churches.  They are the tithers, soul-winners, musicians, and/or workers who keep the Church working under Pastoral leadership. 

Mark 4:8  And other fell on good ground, and did yield fruit that sprang up and increased; and brought forth, some thirty, and some sixty, and some an hundred.

Mark 4:20)  And these are they which are sown on good ground; such as hear the word, and receive it, and bring forth fruit, some thirtyfold, some sixty, and some an hundred.

The first three groups described may be a part of our congregation, and for a period of time a member of our Church, but they are not necessarily Christians.  They may have professed, (as I did when I was nineteen,) but never had a personal relationship with Christ, just the head knowledge. 
            We must keep in mind as Christians:  we are all carnal to some degree, some more than others.  This knowledge must not be used as an excuse to walk in our iniquities.  

Romans 6:15  What then? shall we sin, because we are not under the law, but under grace? God forbid.

            My attempt in this brief dissertation is to get every Christian to look at his individual walk, and determine what he has placed between him and God.

Romans 8:7  Because the carnal mind is enmity against God: for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be.

We must strive to remove the roadblocks so we can receive God’s blessings and answers to our prayers.  We might even find fewer trials in our lives.  Jesus tells us:

John 14:21  He that hath my commandments, and keepeth them, he it is that loveth me: and he that loveth me shall be loved of my Father, and I will love him, and will manifest myself to him.

“We as Christians have The Commandments of Christ Jesus within His Word, The King James Bible.  We claim Jesus as our Saviour, as our King.  So, what keeps us out of Church, out of reading our King James Bible, from tithing, helping, soul winning?” 
            I know the answer Christian, just as Paul knew, and as you know.  It is sin.    It is whatever you consider more important than God.
            Paul teaches in our verses (1 Corinthians 3:1-4) that we must continue to grow.  We grow from babes to children, and then to adults in The Lord Jesus. 
            “Where are you?  Do you still require the milk and Pablum™  (H. J. Heinz Company), or can you grow with the meat of God’s Word?”

Bro John R. E Chastain,  Evangelist
Wylie, Texas

Fundamental Thoughts   fundamentalthoughts-preacher.blogspot.com

Monday, June 17, 2013

Pass Through The Fire

Leviticus 18:21  And thou shalt not let any of thy seed pass through the fire to Molech, neither shalt thou profane the name of thy God: I am the LORD.

            Moses, the author of Leviticus, witnessed so many merciless atrocities that it may have become “old hat.”  Today, the merciless murder of millions no longer seems to concern us.  
            I recently visited The Holocaust Museum in Dallas, Texas, and witnessed horror (via film and photographs) of the extermination of the Jews.  Adolf Hitler and his progressive political party murdered approximately 12 Million in Germany.
            A Museum will be required soon to remember The Holocaust of Abortion.   As we do not have bodies stacked in piles, (estimates of 600 million to one billion unborn infants murdered) and we cannot dig up the communal graves, it will be “less moving” and likely “old hat.” 

Amos 1:13-15  Thus saith the LORD; For three transgressions of the children of Ammon, and for four, I will not turn away the punishment thereof; because they have ripped up the women with child of Gilead, that they might enlarge their border:  (14)  But I will kindle a fire in the wall of Rabbah, and it shall devour the palaces thereof, with shouting in the day of battle, with a tempest in the day of the whirlwind:  (15)  And their king shall go into captivity, he and his princes together, saith the LORD.

            The phrase, “For three transgressions of the children of Ammon, and for four” has been a problem for me.  (I kept attempting to count the four transgressions.)  However, after much study and reading, I believe it relates to many transgressions, (maybe hundreds, thousands, or even millions.)   This phrase is used seven more times in Chapters 1 and 2.   In all these instances, “four” was added to account for the multiple atrocities that had occurred.   One atrocity in these verses was “because they have ripped up the women with child of Gilead.”   (The “women …of Gilead” were descendants of Jacob, and their ancestors walked in the Exodus with Moses.  They not only killed Mothers and Children, but also Mothers with Child.)
            In this dissertation, I am paralleling the murdering of innocent unborn children with our current practice of “legalized” abortion.  Regarding “living in a day,” our real problem in either holocaust lies at the feet of Christians, Jews, and other religions who profess sanctity of life.  (We have not raised our voices in protest.  We will discuss this either with Jesus, or at the Great White Throne.)
            As was Damascus, Gaza, Tyrus, Edom, Ammon, Moab, Israel and Judah, God will judge our nation as He judged Ammon for allowing this ongoing perpetual mass murder.  (We as individuals must raise our voices and change our ballots to stop this horror.)    
            God tells us in The Book of Amos, Chapter Four.  “Amos 4:6 …yet have ye not returned unto me, saith the LORD.”   The United States of America as a nation was founded, (as was Israel,) on Godly Christian principles.  God laid out the precepts, but “Progressivism” reared its ugly head around the turn of The Twentieth Century.    Since that time, our Governing body and our Churches have been turning their backs on God.   Our Churches have failed to speak up and define a “fetus” as a living child of God. “Amos 4:6  …yet have ye not returned unto me, saith the LORD.” (Our last Democratic Convention even booed God.)
            In Chapter Four, verse 12, God, through Amos tells us to “Therefore thus will I do unto thee, O Israel: and because I will do this unto thee, prepare to meet thy God…”  (We must be prepared to meet God.  I have a hard time imagining it will be a wonderful, totally blessed meeting.)

2 Corinthians 5:10  For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ; that every one may receive the things done in his body, according to that he hath done, whether it be good or bad.

(It will be either a “good or bad” meeting.)  I have never walked into that type of secular meeting, and walked away encouraged.  This meeting is for Christians and Christians alone, those who are “in the book of life.” 
            (If you have not accepted Christ, your meeting will be at the Great White Throne.)

Revelation 20:11-15  And I saw a great white throne, and him that sat on it, from whose face the earth and the heaven fled away; and there was found no place for them.  (12)  And I saw the dead, small and great, stand before God; and the books were opened: and another book was opened, which is the book of life: and the dead were judged out of those things which were written in the books, according to their works.  (13)  And the sea gave up the dead which were in it; and death and hell delivered up the dead which were in them: and they were judged every man according to their works.  (14)  And death and hell were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death.  (15)  And whosoever was not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire.

            However, God, within this small epistle from The Prophet Amos, has given us the answer.

Amos 5:4  For thus saith the LORD unto the house of Israel, Seek ye me, and ye shall live:

Amos 5:6  Seek the LORD, and ye shall live; lest he break out like fire in the house of Joseph, and devour it, and there be none to quench it in Bethel.

God is telling us in (vv 4, 6) that we will live if we repent and change our ways.  We as voting citizens, professing Christians, and other religious groups must take a stand and demand that we quit offering “thy seed [children] pass through the fire to Molech.”  (Molech is a false god that requires human sacrifice.) 
            We must “prepare to meet thy God.”  “Christian, are you ready?  Have you called your Congressmen and your Representatives and told them what you believe?  When are you going to do it?  Get prepared for The Meeting In The Sky.  It is coming.”

Bro John R. E Chastain
Baptist Evangelist
Wylie, Texas             


Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Walking In His Truth

3 John 2-8  Beloved, I wish above all things that thou mayest prosper and be in health, even as thy soul prospereth. For I rejoiced greatly, when the brethren came and testified of the truth that is in thee, even as thou walkest in the truth.  (4)  I have no greater joy than to hear that my children walk in truth.  (5)  Beloved, thou doest faithfully whatsoever thou doest to the brethren, and to strangers;  (6)  Which have borne witness of thy charity before the church: whom if thou bring forward on their journey after a godly sort, thou shalt do well:  (7)  Because that for his name's sake they went forth, taking nothing of the Gentiles.  (8)  We therefore ought to receive such, that we might be fellowhelpers to the truth.

             This Letter was written by “John The Revelator” to a man named Gaius.  John believed Gaius “walked a walk” that displayed not only his personal Faith, but also “charity” (a love that reflects the love (with the intensity) that Jesus loves us.)
            Jesus tells us that He is The Truth.

John 14:6  Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.

Therefore, what is the base definition of the word “truth?”  True, truth is words, which are absolutes.  (Black is the total Presence of ALL color, as white is the Absence of ALL color.)  Truth is the essence of truth alone.  There is no lie, no untruth, no error, and no blemish in truth.  Truth is a state of perfection without sin, without any hint of blemish.  Consequently, our writer John is exhorting a fellow believer for being a person who “walkest in the truth.”   Does that mean Gauis walked in perfection? No, he didn’t and neither did John, but they walked as they “testified of the truth” their LORD and Saviour Jesus The Christ.  They were doing “faithfully whatsoever thou doest to the brethren, and to strangers;” as best they could.  They were serving “the truth” to the best of their abilities.  In so doing, they were faithful.
            The question continually comes to my mind, “Am I being faithful to The Truth, my Lord Jesus?”  I do know I am not serving at 100% ability nor capacity.  I know I could do more, yet, can I do it with perfection and a honest Truth?  No, I cannot because I am not “the truth.”  (Yet God knows I have fallen short.)  My concern is that I do not use this knowledge, (that God knows,) and I will intentionally fall short.  That would be an obvious sin.
            Reader, can you say, I “walkest in the truth?”  (All who have honestly professed Jesus Christ as their personal Saviour are.)  Can we be “the truth?”  No, but we can follow Jesus to the best of our ability, and do as we should. 
            When we discover (and sometimes we do discover) sin in our lives, we must realize our walk isn’t as close to “the truth” as it could or should be.  We must repent and “loose” ourselves from that sin.  Then our walk will pull us in a bit closer.  Our daily walk in “the truth” should always point toward Jesus.  We must always attempt to be The Truth in the purest sense.  (Without blemish.)
            If you are a Christian, do you walk in the truth?  We become Christians only because of God’s “Amazing Grace.”   He bled on that cross so we can call ourselves a Christian.  Have you considered repenting of “discovered” sin in your life? 
            Today, this hour, this moment is the time to evaluate what you have been.  Then do something about it.  Do it now and walk a closer walk with God and His Son Jesus The Christ.

Bro John R. E Chastain
Baptist Evangelist
Wylie, Texas             


John 3:15-17  That whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have eternal life.  (16)  For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.  (17)  For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.

            These three verses are so important to The Gospel of Christ (as is all of God’s Word).  We can get so much doctrinal definition from them.  It is clear that Salvation is based on belief, and in that belief we gain eternal, everlasting life.  Jesus tells us He came to earth for a reason: “that the world through him might be saved.”  He also tells us to whom this applies.  It is “whosoever.”         
            Who is a “whosoever?”  A plausible definition could be “anybody regardless.”  I have personally envisioned The “book of life” (mentioned in Revelation) containing all our names, but the alphabetizing is only the letter “W.”  (My name would be “Whosoever, Chastain, John R. E”.)  This would be the way all names are displayed including Adam and Eve.  The listing would be regardless of race, ethnicity, sin, religion, or any other definable parameter.  All last names would be “Whosoever” as one family.  It would include all people regardless. 

Revelation 3:5  He that overcometh, the same shall be clothed in white raiment; and I will not blot out his name out of the book of life, but I will confess his name before my Father, and before his angels.

(I honestly have no idea whether the list of our names will be as I described.  This is for illustration only, and a figment of my imagination.) 
            What I have tried to relay is that regardless of whom you are, Jesus loves you, and is willing to accept you.  He climbed willingly on that Cross.  He was willingly nailed to that Cross to die for your sins.  All He has asked is that you Believe He is the only Begotten Son of God, and God will give you everlasting life.  (Everlasting = Forevermore = Eternally, nothing less.)
            When you sincerely call on His name, Salvation is freely given.  Your name is it still written in “The Book of Life?”  Are you an overcomer, or has your name been blotted out?

Revelation 3:5  He that overcometh, … I will not blot out his name out of the book of life…

Bro John R. E Chastain
Baptist Evangelist
Wylie, Texas             

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Many Deceivers

2 John 1:7-11  For many deceivers are entered into the world, who confess not that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh. This is a deceiver and an antichrist.  (8)  Look to yourselves, that we lose not those things, which we have wrought, but that we receive a full reward.  (9)  Whosoever transgresseth, and abideth not in the doctrine of Christ, hath not God. He that abideth in the doctrine of Christ, he hath both the Father and the Son.  (10)  If there come any unto you, and bring not this doctrine, receive him not into your house, neither bid him God speed:  (11)  For he that biddeth him God speed is partaker of his evil deeds.
            I had to look up the word “deceivers” to be sure I wasn’t thinking “outa the box.”  I had the correct concept.  A “deceiver” is a liar.  (The lies may not be bold “up front lies,” but hidden contextual, sneaky lies.)  We must also note that the use of “antichrist” (in this text) is not a reference to “the antichrist” of the “Tribulation” period.  It is a more complete definition of “deceiver” in that a “deceiver” is a liar and is against Christ Jesus.  (Now we know a “deceiver” is a liar and he is against Christianity.)
            So, where do we look for these “deceivers?”  If we are a “born again” believer, and we walk within our belief as a Christian, then we do not have to look very far.

John 3:3  Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.

            First, “Look within your own Church.  Has there been compromise on The Word of God?  Has there been compromise on the music? Has there been compromise on dress?  Has there been compromise on repentance?  Has there been compromise on sin?  Is the preaching salvation by faith, or by works?”
            I honestly could go on with this line of questions, but this also relates to you. 
Second, “Look to see where you stand.  Have you become a “deceiver” to yourself, to your heart and to your family?”  We periodically must just stop and give ourselves a “spiritual checkup.”  “Are you saved?  Do you have eternal life with Jesus and our Father in Heaven?   If you died today, this very moment, would heaven be your home?  If you cannot answer this question with a resounding “YES,” God wants you to know where your eternal home will be.”

1 John 5:13  These things have I written unto you that believe on the name of the Son of God; that ye may know that ye have eternal life, and that ye may believe on the name of the Son of God.

God wants you to know that you can know you will have “eternal life.”   If we know Jesus, and have accepted Him as our personal Savior, we will have “eternal life” with Jesus.

Romans 10:9  That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.

Confess to others that you do believe that God has raised His Son Jesus from the grave, and God will have saved you.
However, “If you have accepted the “deceivers” doctrine, (his teaching, and not the Bible’s) where and how do you give yourself that “spiritual checkup?” 
The answer is found in The King James Bible.  In order for you to “KNOW” your Bible, you must be the ONE that “READS” your Bible.  “[D]eceivers” thrive on our ignorance.  (Ignorance = lack of knowledge of a subject.)  “If you don’t read and study your King James Bible, your “ignorance” makes you a likely candidate for the “deceivers.”  “Cults” love ignorant people.  They thrive as their followers die and burn in Hell because of your lack of knowledge concerning The Bible.
            Another “deceiver” to take a hard look at is the “healer.”  There is no question in my mind God heals.  When He heals, He does the healing, not men.  If we take a honest, realistic look at these “faith healers” and realize if they were of God and God was healing through them, “Why do we have Doctors, Nursing Homes (full of the infirmed), and hospitals.  It would behoove our Federal Government to put these men on staff and pay them an outrageous wage to heal our physically ill.  (ObamaCare could be eliminated as could MediCare.  There would be no need for hospitals, just emergency care to hold us until a healer could lay his hand on us.) 
I know this might be a bit of a stretch, but all that “deceivers” do is a mighty stretch also.   They rely on our ignorance of The Bible.
            Another “deceiver” that has changed God’s Salvation Plan is known as “speaking in tongues.”  The Apostles spoke in their own language and the congregation heard the message in their native language.  The “speaking of tongues” was a hearing experience.

Acts 2:11  Cretes and Arabians, we do hear them speak in our tongues the wonderful works of God.

            I know I have not given a complete exegesis (a critical explanation or interpretation of a text) on the subject of “deceivers.”  That would be near impossible as they pick new lies, (new twists on the same subjects,) to keep those who are ignorant of The Bible confused. 
Take your King James Bible to church.  Look up the verses given, read along, and write them down and go home and read them, study them.  If what was said from the pulpit and what The Bible says is different, The Bible is your authority.  Then find a Bible (King James Bible) preaching Church, and study to show yourself approved of God.

2 Timothy 2:15  Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.

Do it now, don’t wait, don’t hesitate.  Move away from the “deceivers.”
Bro John R. E Chastain
Baptist Evangelist
Wylie, Texas             

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Our Walk

2 John 1:4-6  I rejoiced greatly that I found of thy children walking in truth, as we have received a commandment from the Father.  (5)  And now I beseech thee, lady, not as though I wrote a new commandment unto thee, but that which we had from the beginning, that we love one another.  (6)  And this is love, that we walk after his commandments. This is the commandment, That, as ye have heard from the beginning, ye should walk in it.

            In my writings, I have used the phrase “Our Walk” many times.  “Walk,” by my usage means, “how we live our lives.”  In The Epistle of 2 John, these scripture verses use “walking” to mean the same thing.

Galatians 5:25  If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit.

“Our Walk” and “our life style,” (the way we live) defines us to others that we are a Christian.  Another requirement is that we walk “in truth,” (a commandment from our Father in Heaven.)  We can define “in truth” as being faithful, and sincere to The God of Heaven and His Son Jesus The Christ.
            However, in our walk it must to be as He commands.  In (v 6) He commands “that we walk after his commandments.” Jesus also states in:

John 14:15  If ye love me, keep my commandments.

Therefore, our “walk” should always be as close as possible to what God wants for us.  (Many Christians perceive this more as a suggestion from God.)  But when we read and literally accept what has been stated, our “walk” is a command.  There are NO suggestions, and there are no other interpretations or perceptions.
            Our Walk is the definition of what we claim to be.  Many who know us, (though they tell us not to judge them) will judge us in “Our Walk.”  Bro D. L. Moody stated:  Out of one hundred men, one will read the Bible, the other ninety-nine will read the Christian.   As Christians, we are The Bible for so many.  It is so important that “Our Talk” match “Our Walk.”  “Our Walk” must match what God expects of us.
            Part of that expectation is that “we love one another,” and in that love “keep my commandments.”  In this “love [for] one another,” we are to be concerned about their souls.   As a Christian, we are allowed to judge others’ sins, and counsel them concerning their involvement in sin.  We are to “love” the individual (regardless of their sin.)  However, we are NOT to “love” their sin.  We may come across as being a self-righteous person, and/or with an angry attitude.  This is why “Our Walk” is so important.  Those we approach must see Jesus’ Love in us by our compassion and concern.
            We must remember that there was a day that we were where they are now.  “So, do you love Jesus?  Do you keep His commandments?”
            One last commandment:

(Mark 16:15)  And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature.

Go ye” into your neighborhood, (your city) and ask the question, “If you died today, would Heaven be your home?”  Show them in The Bible that they can know that an eternal life awaits them with God.  Show them.

(1 John 5:13)  These things have I written unto you that believe on the name of the Son of God; that ye may know that ye have eternal life, and that ye may believe on the name of the Son of God.
Bro John R. E Chastain
Baptist Evangelist
Wylie, Texas