Vol. 3 Number 2, February 1997
Editor Andy Neckar

Inside This Newsletter

1. WORLDLY CHRISTIANS
2. HAPPINESS IS A BY-PRODUCT OF A LIFE WELL LIVED
3. NEWS WATCH
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WORLDLY CHRISTIANS
By Andy Neckar
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All Christians are converted out of a life of sin by the power of the Holy Spirit of God. Some are called out of a life of atrocious sinfulness while others, like the Pharisees of Jesus day, having the outward appearance of Godliness, would not be looked upon by the world as hideous sinners, but sinners non-the-less.

Now--when people come to believe the gospel of Jesus Christ, the power of God unto salvation, (Rom 1:16) those people are indwelled by the Holy Spirit of God. God says they are (2 Tim 1:14; 1 Cor 6:19. Those people are born again. God says they must be.(John 3:3) They are a new creature. (2 Cor 5:17)

Now-how come all that I wonder? Why is a believer indwelled by the Holy Spirit, and born again into a new creature? My belief is, the old creature must change The old creature cannot enter heaven. THERE WILL BE A CHANGE.

Now---a change must come about in the life of a believer. There will be a visible change, sooner or later. The Holy Spirit indwelling in the life of a believer manifests itself in good works. This is how we can know we have the saving faith and not a dead faith. (James 2:26) As a person is not saved if he has not the Holy Spirit of God (Rom 8:9), so also if he had not works he has a dead faith which cannot save.

Believers are created by God (born again) unto good works.(Eph 2:10),

They are perfected and thoroughly furnished unto all good works.( 2 Tim 3:17)

They are to show a pattern of good works (Titus 2:7)

They are made zealous of good works. (Titus 2:14)

They are to maintain good works. (Titus 3:8)

They are to provoke one another unto good works: (Heb 10:24)

They are to show good works. (Matt 5:16; 1 Peter 2:12)

Having said that, I now say this:

James 2:18 Yea, a man may say, Thou hast faith, and I have works: shew me thy faith without thy works, and I will shew thee my faith by my works. (KJV)

The Bible teaches that it is impossible to show one's faith without good works of some kind. But I hear from many Christians, and preachers too, that a believer can live a life of hell and still be saved. What I am asking is, how do these people know this? The Bible doesn't teach this. It teaches just what I have been saying.

Believers lived a life of hell before they were saved. If God doesn't require a change in one's life, if that person can continue to live as he has in the past, why does God require a new birth resulting in a new creature? Why does the Holy Spirit come to indwell in the life of the believer if all this isn't necessary? Why are we commanded to repent?

The ones who preach that a person can live a life of hell and still be forever saved refer to John 10:28-29 and Eph 1:13-14; 4:30, as once saved always saved. I believe this too, but it is the Holy Spirit of God that does the sealing. Jesus Christ does the saving and the Holy Spirit keeps us in that saved state. We cannot be saved without the blood of Jesus Christ, and we cannot stay saved without the power of the Holy Spirit indwelling in the life of the believer.

Most refer to the man living with his fathers wife in 1 Cor 5:1 that a person can live a life of hell and still be saved. But Paul says in 1Cor 5:5 that the wicked person should be put away and delivered unto Satan for the destruction of the flesh, that the spirit may be saved in the day of the Lord Jesus. (KJV)

One way or another the flesh must be destroyed so that the spirit may be saved. 2 Cor 2:6-8 indicates the carnal Christian was later repentant because Paul asks the brethren to forgive him.

. The sinful nature of the flesh and the righteous nature of the spirit, lusteth against each other. (Gal 5:17) The Christian will sin occasionally in the flesh, but he will not live a life of hell (sin). Only when the Christian is delivered in his immortal body will he be completely freed from the lusts of the flesh (sin).

But before that happens, the believer will be changed now. Not from mortality to immortality. Not from a body of flesh and blood to a body devoid of flesh and blood. But the moment a person comes to believe, he is born again into a new creature. He is continually being conformed (changed) into the image and likeness of Jesus Christ. (2 Cor 3:18) Our spirits are being conformed into the image of Christ's, and when He comes for His own so will our bodies be transformed, into a glorified immortal body.(1 Cor 15:52-53.

Yes! I believe in once saved always saved. But I do not believe in once living in sin always living in sin. I believe a saved person will be changed. The desire, the motivation, the intent of the heart, and the spirit will be changed. If God would take us like we were before salvation, there would be no need of the sealing power of the Holy Spirit. There would be no need of a spiritual rebirth. If, after accepting Jesus Christ as Savior we could continue to live as we had before, that is, if our actions have not changed, our thoughts have not changed, our deeds have not changed, and our desires have not changed, we could do away with about half of the Bible.

Yes! There will be a change in the heart and life of a believer, and that change will be made manifest. We are told that salvation will manifest itself by good works. Salvation and good works go hand in hand. You can manifest good works without salvation. Many false religious systems do. But you cannot manifest salvation without good works, that is, obedience to God.

Why do I preach this way? Because that is what I believe. And I want to instill in the believer accountability to the God of the Bible.

There are two principal differences between a saved believer and a lost sinner.

1. The saved believer believes God, and has accepted Jesus Christ as Savior. The lost sinner does not believe God, so has not accepted Jesus Christ as Savior.

2. The saved believer has been changed by a spiritual rebirth and no longer lives in sin. The lost sinner has not been changed in any manner and is still living in sin.

According to some beliefs and preaching there is only the first principle difference between a saved believer and a lost sinner. I believe teachings such as this will, in general, give one the impression that they have a license to sin. I know that teachings such as this will diminish what accountability some Christians have toward the God of the Bible.

Paul experienced this very same situation in Romans chapter 6. See especially Rom 6: 14-15.

I BELIEVE IN ONCE SAVED ALWAYS SAVED, AND THAT THE SAVED PERSON WILL BE CHANGED, AND THAT CHANGE WILL BE MADE MANIFEST.

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HAPPINESS IS A BY-PRODUCT OF A LIFE WELL LIVED---IN OBEBIENCE TO GOD!

By Andy Neckar
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Don't Make a Goal Out Of A By-ProductT
he first basic misconception of attaining happiness is the fallacy of making a goal out of a by-product. Don't make a goal out of a by-product. If you make a goal out of a by-product, you either weaken the by-product or you destroy it completely. Oh, many are filled with this urge of trying to gratify oneself by searching directly for happiness.. They are making a goal out of a by-product.

You cannot have cream without first having fresh milk. Cream is a by-product of fresh milk. You cannot have one without the other. Even so, if you live a life in obedience to the God of the Bible, the Father of the Lord Jesus Christ and Savior of all who believe and trust in Him, you will be reasonably happy. God promises us joy, and joy is happiness.(1 Peter 1:8; Psalms 16:11; John 13:15-17; Psalms 146:5)

Those making a goal out of seeking personal happiness are so busy serving the trinity of ME, MYSELF, and I, that they have no time to attend to the things that produce happiness as a by-product.

Happiness is a by-product of good works, by helping others that are less fortunate than us.

Happiness is a by-product of prayer and fasting before the Lord.

Happiness is a by-product of the regular assembling of ourselves with believers of like faith.

Happiness is a by-product of the ardent fervor of our spirits.

Happiness is a by-product of the study of God's Word.

Happiness is a by-product of the fear of God, by which we attain wisdom.

Happiness is a by-product of a pure conscience toward God.

Happiness is a by-product of assurance of salvation.

Happiness is a by-product of trying to serve God in all that we do, even if we don't succeed.

The people of the world, even some Christians, are always seeking that which seemeth right to a man. (Proverbs 14:12) It seems only right that we should be happy, especially if we live a "decent" life. So we seek after happiness never realizing that "true happiness" is only a by-product of a life well lived in obedience to God.

The people of this world cannot attain this true happiness because they are incapable of living a life in obedience to God. (Rom 8:7) But True Christians have the power to attain this happiness if we walk after the Spirit and not after the flesh. The Spirit of God indwelling in us after we come to believe, enables (empowers) us to walk after the Spirit (please God; obey God). We can obtain true happiness-- but not as a result of directly pursuing it.

Happiness for a Christian (those not of this world: John 15:19) is a by-product of a life well lived-in obedience to God.(pleasing to God) True happiness for the carnal minded (people of the world) is impossible.(Heb 11:6).

So-if we, as a True Christian are unhappy and depressed because of a lack of fulfillment, then it stands to reason that we are, in some manner, out of submission to God's will and we must therefore examine ourselves.(2 Cor 13:5)

If we must take up the cross and follow Him. (Mark 10:21), then we must be willing to give up the things of this world and not make them a priority. Work to make a living to support ourselves and our family. Work to give to the poor and support the preacher. Yes! We work for these reasons, but not to lay up stores of riches and support a lavish lifestyle.

If we, as Christians, are not of this world, we should not then desire the things of this world and work for them. If we gain them in the course of making a living as all the while we are serving the Lord, well and good. We count that as a blessing from Him, and we should take advantage of that blessing accordingly.

Riches that come in this manner, as a result of a life well lived in obedience to God can and will bring happiness. Happiness may come in many ways if we do not attempt to make a goal out of a by-product. The same goes for riches. A rich man can be happy, though it is rare.

If we do not make a goal of attaining riches, but if riches come as a by-product of a blessing from God, and we do not then make a priority of safeguarding those riches, but use them in regards as a gift from God, we can have riches, happiness, joy and eternal life.

But remember, these things cannot be struggled for. Our priorities must be right. They must be in harmony to the will of God. Riches is a by-product of a blessing from God, and happiness is a by-product of a life well lived in obedience to God.

Yes, many unbelievers have riches, probably in disproportion to True Christians, for the Lord's rain falls on the unjust as well as the just. (Matt 5:45) So, big deal if a Christian has riches, what's so special about that? The rain falls on the unjust as well as the just. Right? What's to contrast between a blessing and chance of nature, or a diligent prudent man?

The answer is happiness. True happiness comes from gratitude in knowing that the rain comes from God. True happiness comes from knowing that the riches come as a blessing from God and not from self attained effort. The effort has much to do with success, but true happiness come from knowing that it is God given effort. (empowerment).

Why do I always refer to Christians as "True Christians"? Well, so many folks have now taken up the name Christian, that I don't know how to address Christian anymore. We have what we call "Christian churches", but as many as not have fallen into apostasy. We have "church members" in these Christian churches but as many as not are not saved. We may have to come up with a new word to define the True, Born Again, Bible Believing Christian.

The word Bible, cannot stand for God's Word anymore. We must ask which version. We must investigate the book. We must investigate the church, the Christian, the "man of God". We must search the Scriptures daily to see if these claims are true. To do that we must have the Scriptures. Get a King James Bible (KJV) also known as the Authorized Version and go to work. And God bless you.
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NEWS WATCH


EVOLUTION TEACHING MAKING GAINS
Catholic Cardinal John O'Connor told his audience at St. Patrick's Cathedral in NY City on Sun. Nov. 24 that Adam & Eve "may have been some other form than human…" and "It is possible that when the two persons we speak of as Adam & Eve were created, it was some other form…Perhaps Adam was a lower animal", O'Connor was quoted as saying (Associated Press, Nov. 25, 1996) This statement comes one month after John Paul II said the theory of evolution is "more than just a hypothesis". O'Connor is the head of the NY archdiocese and is one of the most influential Catholic leaders in America.
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ONE WORLD CHURCH FORMING THIS YEAR?
Episcopal Bishop William Swing, the Communist Gorbachev Foundation, Catholic and other leaders are collaborating on the New World Order's United Religions (UR) patterned after the United Nations. The UR is meant to be for religion what the UN in for nations. It is to be launched June 1997 with the writing of its charter, be in place by June 2000, and fully operational by June 2005. It will locate in San Francisco, and will be a "permanent gathering center where the world's religions engage in daily prayer, dialogue, and action for the good of all life on this earth.(excerpted from the Calvary Contender)
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LOCAL PRIEST EXPECTS THOUSANDS TO ‘COME HOME’ TO ROME DURING BILLY GRAHAM CRUSADE
In recent years (Billy) Graham has made a extraordinary ecumenical effort to send people to the churches where they live out their way of life with Christ---rather than trying to bring them into his organization or any Particular church.

The statement was made by Roman Catholic priest Ed Vilkauskas, director of evangelization for the Diocese of Charlotte, NC, prior to the most recent Billy Graham Crusade held in that city the last week of Sept. '97.

Quoted in the local Catholic News & Herald, Vilkauskas urged area Catholics to attend the services and volunteer to follow up on those who respond to Graham's alter calls. Local Bishop William G. Curlin also endorsed Catholic participation in the Crusade lauding Graham for having "publicly voiced his admiration for the pope".

The News & Herald notes that: "Thousands of people have joined or renewed the Catholic faith as a direct result of attending past Crusades."

This latest "Crusade" is one more piece of evidence that Graham has been the major twentierh century pied piper leading the evangelical world back to Rome.
[Editor] And away from Christ.
[excerpted from the newsletter Battle Cry, published by Chick Publications, PO Box 662 Chino, CA 91708
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UNITED METHODISTS OPEN DISCUSSIONS OF PHYSICIAN_ASSISTED SUICIDE
(Excerpted from a UMNS article Jan.13,1997). Death with dignity. A right to die. Supreme Court hearings on physician-assisted suicide. Amid the slogans and headlines, conversations about dying are springing up throughout the United States. According to Sally Brown Geis, United Methodist laywoman and sociologist, "Christians need to understand several facts": * "People are being kept alive who do not want to be". * "Public spending on medical care for the elderly is 15 times greater than expenditures of public funds on medical care for children, although a greater proportion of children in this country are poor".

We Must Earnestly Contend For The Faith.