AUGUST 1, 2007
Paul, in the first chapter, mentioned his longing to come to the saints at Rome for the purpose of imparting "some spiritual gift, so that you might be established." He continued by saying, "That I may be encouraged together with you by the mutual faith both of you and me." (Imagine being ministered to by Paul. Imagine the wealth of maturity in Christ and the volume of encouragement he could minister. Imagine getting into prayer agreement with Paul and standing in league with him as his faith reached out over their domain and yes, to a world beyond theirs.)
Thank God there are those whose universe is larger than a church locale.
Thank God there is dominion and power that can be transmitted to others through ministry. Thank God that the goal of all "body" ministries is to impart spiritual gifts that will ESTABLISH the saint. Thank God that as one ministers to others, his/her own person is ministered to and encouraged. Ministry is always a two way street.
He is a Jew who is one inwardly, Romans 2:29
God's Main Purpose:
Paul, in this verse, is citing a principle that needs to be emphasized in all fellowships, churches and gatherings. Paul recognized the fallacies of teaching the Law and the Prophets in a way that did not produce a holy people. It was entirely possible to assent to all that the Jews taught and practiced without becoming a Holiness One.
The same is true today. With all the wonderful teaching and the great expansion of opportunity to hear the "full gospel," coupled with mass media infusion and world wide exposure to the Word, if it does not produce a Holy People, the hearers hear in vain.
The "righteous requirement" *** of the Law is to bring about a Holy People.
Paul's gospel (which he declared to be the criteria of judgment in the last days) sought to produce such a Holy People. In other words, Paul considered himself having preached in vain if this did not happen.
One must ask in modern times, "With the flood of people attending gigantic conferences and mega churches, where are the Holiness Ones?" The intent of Paul then appears to be different than the intent of the modern church. Jesus found the exact dilemma within the Temple during His ministry. This was why He never sought to reform, revive or strive to correct their direction more than peripherally. He knew their hearts. He was not dealing with a Holy People. He was dealing with a people who declared themselves Holy by their adherence to the Law and Prophets. They were theologically correct and happy to live short of God's intent-to have fellowship with a holy people.
It was evident to Paul that regardless of the number of converts, both Jew and Gentile, the issue was not whether the Old Testament Law and Prophets entered into the forefront, what mattered was the end result. He realized his teaching was in vain if it did not produce a Holy People.
One must ask the question, "Amid all the faith camps, the word churches, the catechisms, the doctrinal statements, where are the Holy People?" This is a relevant question and must be queried from pulpit and pew-"Without Holiness, no man shall see the Lord."
"Be ye Holy as I am Holy," is not a suggestion. For Jesus to carry out His Mikveh (baptism) of fire, which was promised through the teaching of John in the wilderness, He must first immerse the believer in the Spirit of Holiness. Then, He can immerse that believer into the "White hot pure holiness fire of God." This is to bring the believer to be like His Father. "Our God is a consuming fire." He or she is to possess an intensity of holiness that consumes all that is not.
With so many now claiming the Baptism of the Holy Spirit, it is time to see manifestations of the Baptism of Fire (Intense White Hot Pure Holiness). (The fire and the Spirit came at one time in the upper room.)
God's aim has always been to bring about a "Holy People," filled with His Spirit and Fire. He intended to fellowship with them and to use them as world examples to bring others into their fold. Anything less would show disdain for the plan of our Lord.
Do you despise the riches of His goodness, forbearance, and longsuffering? Romans 2:4Unholy People:
At the end of Chapter One, Paul characterized an ignominious crowd of evil doers who were portrayed to be the opposite of holiness. A long list of abominations, which were an affront to God's Holiness, were enumerated. He called them a people of an "Impenitent heart." God declared them also, "A people of a hard-heart."
Can there be such a thing as the "church of the hard-hearted?" If the answer is "Yes," then it must be comprised of those who approve God's list of contemptible acts, whether by silence or acceptance. Their fellowship is in ignominy and pain.
Anything that detracts or attempts to derail the plan of God for a Holy People stands under judgment, no matter the intent of the gathering or the determinative nature of the dissent.
Paul declared two categories of judgment:
Paul's Three Hypothetical Postulates:
God's aim is to have a "Holy People." Paul explored three hypothetical situations in light of which one produced a Holy Person.
Postulate One: The Jew who boasts in the Law, but does not meet the "righteous requirement" of the Law: to walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit, in other words, to become a Holy One.For circumcision is indeed profitable if you keep the Law, But if you are breaker of the Law, your circumcision has become uncircumcision. Romans 2:25The Name of God is blasphemed among the Gentiles because of You Romans 2:24The characterizing aspects of this first postulate were made plain by Paul.
Therefore, if an uncircumcised man keeps the "righteous requirements" of the law, will not his uncircumcision be counted as circumcision? And will not the physically uncircumcised, if he fulfills the law, judge you who, even with your written code and circumcision, are a transgressor of the law? Romans 2:26
For when Gentiles, who do not have the law, by nature do the things contained in the law, these, although not having the law are a law unto themselves, who show the work of the law written in their hearts, their conscience also bearing witness, and between themselves their thoughts accusing or else excusing them. Romans 2:14-15According to Paul's Gospel Version:
Paul draws the curtain on the issue in verse sixteen. His version of a Holy People will be the designate for judgment in the last days.
In the day when God will judge the secrets of men by Jesus Christ, according to MY gospel. Romans 2:16The first verse of this chapter juxtaposes the gospel of a Holy People against a people who make spiritual judgment based on other criteria. (It is the Holy People who will judge in the end-their judgment will be based on their fellowship. Hallelujah.)
*** Key Verse for Understanding the righteous requirement:
Romans 8:1-6 There is therefore now no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus, who do not walk according to the flesh, but according to the Spirit. 2 For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has made me free from the law of sin and death. 3 For what the law could not do in that it was weak through the flesh, God did by sending His own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, on account of sin: He condemned sin in the flesh, 4 that the righteous requirement of the law might be fulfilled in us who do not walk according to the flesh but according to the Spirit. 5 For those who live according to the flesh set their minds on the things of the flesh, but those who live according to the Spirit, the things of the Spirit. 6 For to be carnally minded is death, but to be spiritually minded is life and peace. NKJV
Until Next Month, Dr. Cosby R. Oliver, PhD
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Guatemala and Honduras Missions:
From Guatemala: Larry and Marla Johnson.
11 Churches built this year so far!
We ask that you continue to pray for the church construction, it is going along very well. We have built 11 churches so far this year in Guatemala and Honduras. There are so many villages way up the mountains that have no place to preach the gospel or worship the Lord. It is so very important to us to put churches in every village that does not have one! We won't rest until we have done so here in eastern Guatemala. Our goal is to build 20-25 this year. The precious village people are always so very grateful for their new church. We only wish that you could be with us in every dedication! Here are a couple of shots of the latest dedications.
Feeding centers are praying!
For last the last month or so, several children have been abducted from various villages and one found dead with organs having been removed. This is obviously witchcraft. But rumors run wild in the villages. Many are afraid to send their children to the feeding centers. There have been some attempted and even successful lynchings. There have also been threats on the lives of some of our feeding center Pastors and their wives. We ask that you please lift our feeding centers up in prayer daily. Please pray protection over the children and over our workers. Pray that they find the guilty and the rumors stop. Pray that the villagers will not be driven by fear.
Again: Larry and Marla dedicating two churches:
Below is an email synopsis of a couple church dedications that we did at the end of May. We don't know if you have time to read about the churches on our website, so we thought that we would give you a glimpse of what dedicating a village church is like! Enjoy! We are headed out this weekend to dedicate 2 more!
May 28th, 2007
My, my, my, we had quite an adventure! We left out at 8:00 AM and didn't get back until 10:15 PM! It was a fantastic, touching, awesome, freaked out, faith filled kind of day! The first service was so touching, in the village of Santa Elena. The pastor, Magdaleno, has been saved from alcohol and abusing his wife for 8 years now. He began having services on the porch of his home, where people walk for 30minuntes to an hour away just to have a place to worship. Magdaleno and his wife envisioned a church and donated part of their livelihood--land with coffee plants right in front of their home. They donated it in faith believing that God would supply, and He did--through you and the 100 club! We dedicated it yesterday to the holy use of God to preach the word and win the community. They had it all decorated with balloons! They wept with joy and gratitude for what God did through you and people that do not even know them. They have a small group (10) but are working hard to win the lost of Santa Elena. They fed us afterward to honor us......mmmm chicken soup! It is amazing how chicken can be too tough to actually come off of the bone!
The next church was at 3 in the afternoon. They literally must have spent days preparing for this service. They themselves, hand painted a banner on a sheet and strung it at the entrance of the village across the road, saying Welcome, Jesus loves you! (Then we arrived at the church to see that they had-since it was built in Jan/Feb. worked so hard to put up block walls! ) They got donations and all the brethren worked to get the walls up for the dedication! They had it all decked out with bougainvilleas and calla lilies. They had hand made little gifts with pictures of Jesus and a caption that said all things are possible if you only believe! They had also hand made a banner for behind the altar saying the same thing. They had made plant stands for behind the altar out of banana trunks! and had calla lilies on them! It was kind of pretty in a village sort of way! They had music from the mother church in the bigger town. Then they honored Larry and I with plaques. They told the story of how the church was birthed in may of 2005. The pastor had a vision in his heart to have a church in his native village, so he called his pastor from the town and they prayed, set their faith. A few months later, someone donated the land. And at the beginning of 2006, God caused them to meet Larry. They patiently waited their turn on the docket and finally in Jan/Feb, we built their church. The pastor, when telling the testimony said "the brothers of this church are not poor, I won't call them poor, they may not have much money right now but I refuse to call them poor, so they couldn't give money but they gave what they did have, time and work to get these walls up!" Wow, that was fantastic!!! We prayed for the sick and the Holy Ghost began to move! It was so great. The power of God filled that place, lives were touched. Then they fed us! Whew, it was a full day. But little did we know that our journey of faith was just starting for the night!!! On the way down the mountain at almost 8:00 at night, pitch dark, the clutch started going out on the truck!!!! Larry didn't even say anything; he just prayed. We had 3 guys from Michigan with us. As we came to the bottom of the mountain to the black top the clutch went away completely and the truck wouldn't shift gears. One of the men was a mechanic and he looked at it. In the dark! He said it had fluid so the master cylinder was going out. He drove the rest of the way home, pumping it over and over to change each gear! What a deal; we praise the Lord for his protection on the mountain once again, and our safe return to the ministry center. Thanks for praying for us; prayer works! Each trip up the mountain is a new chance to use our faith. Here are some photos for you to catch a glimpse of the festivities. Each church says to please tell you how much they want to meet you and they will be praying for their new family in the states. We are please with the heart connection that was established yesterday with both churches.
Gonzales New Church on the left - Santa Elena New Church on the right
It costs about $3000 to supply materials for this type work…sometimes a bit more. Please feel free to contact Larry and Marla direct. Theirs is a pure work. Dr. Oliver
Answer to Prayer:
From India: Pastor Suresh, whom we reported last month was under fire with a death threat and also the government against him. Thank you for your prayerful intercession for this pastor.
Rev Kim Freeborn
PASSION FOR SOULS INTERNATIONAL
P.O. Box 2912
BATH, BA1 1YX, England UK
Tel: +44 (0) 1225 316753
Cell: +44 (0) 7779 710821 www.pfsi-ministry.org
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