Questions about Christianity : LUSENET : Freedom! self reliance : One Thread

Hoot and the rest of the gang can probably help me out on this one. I am interested in reading the Bible. It is a pretty tremendous task. I used to go to church but stopped, due to ignorance, hypocrits, and apathy. I have grown up and matured alot, and am ready to start the spiritual voyage that hopefully will never end. Any recommendations on where to start. I am not sure if the beginning is the best place. I have religious knowledge. ALso, I am interested in knowing your favorite scripture. So far mine has been Psalm 69. It was how I felt at a certain point in my life. Kind of dark, definately intense.

Appreciate your help.


-- gabe grote (, August 22, 2001


Hi Gabe! I am nowhere near Hoot, but here's my .02....To start out I'd say the Gospel of John. Skip suggested this to someone, and boy, I thought it was right on. Love the opening in John.

As for favorite scripture, that's a day to day thing, but the one that gives me the most comfort and makes sense of this senselessness is the first half of the first sentence........."In the beginning God". That pretty much settles things for me. God bless!

-- Doreen (, August 22, 2001.

Gabe, get yourself a Strongs Concordence and find your self a study group that studies the bible as a whole, not influenced by money or doctrine. I love The Shepards Chapel in Arkansa, they are on short wave and also tv in some states, free tapes and very inexpensive whole book tapes.

My favorite "Ahh Haa" moment was reading Ezekiel 13, the warnings of Flase Prophesy and reading vs. 20, "Wherefore thus saith the Lord God; Behold, I am against your pillows, wherewith ye there hunt the souls to make them fly, and I will tear them from your arms, and will let the souls go, even the souls that ye hunt to make them fly."

Sounds alot like the rapture theory/prophesy. Vicki

-- Vicki McGaugh (, August 22, 2001.

Gabe, you are so right - our walk with God is the real never ending story, and a new adventure every day. I have to agree with Skip and Doreen, John is probably the best place to start. I'd also suggest that before you begin reading each day, you ask God to help you understand. If you're not real comfortable with praying yet, don't worry about what words you use, as God looks at the heart and isn't too concerned with the fancy talk that comes out of our mouths. There have been times in my life where all I could manage was a "Help me, Lord!" or even a weak, "h-e-l-p!", and in his wonderful love, He's never failed to respond yet.

When I first got serious about getting to know God, I struggled with committing to reading the Bible. At first it seemed so dull and boring and I had no clue what was meant in Hebrews 4:12 where it says "For the word of God is living and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing the soul and spirit; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart." How could an ancient book be "living"? Once I got to reading, and TRYING to understand, boy oh boy did that verse become clear. Like Doreen, I have no favorite verse because it changes from day to day, and with my circumstances. What a verse meant to me last year, last week or yesterday, may mean something entirely different to me today in different circumstances. Sometimes the first half of a verse jumps out at me, another day I read the same verse and the second half may all of a sudden apply to my life. One day a verse may show me how to deal with a person I'm having a problem with, the next day it tells me to change MY attitude or behavior. One day a verse may bring comfort, the next day it disciplines. It is indeed living! It is God speaking to us personally.

I had to smile when Doreen mentioned the first half of the first verse in the Bible ("In the beginning God") as this has special meaning to me too. I went through some very difficult years in my life, and God saw me safely through it all. When I was finally able to realize a dream I had of raising primitive horses, I named our ranch "Genesis Equines". When customers ask why the odd name, I tell them although our horses are from early times, that in the VERY beginning God was there, God created all things...including me and my horses, God is there for me every day of my life, God will be there at the end, and will be there every moment of eternity. God is in control. Without God, there is nothing, I am nothing, I would have nothing. With God, I have everything I need.

-- Lenette (, August 22, 2001.

Hi Gabe! Welcome!!! I'm not an authority on much of anything I rekon but for myself---I study almost exclusively in the New Test. I especially like the Gospel of Matthew. Revelation is also right up there at the top of my study too. Matthew 24:44 is my favorite I think although ANY could just as easily be the favorite. I do refer back to the Old testment at times but just to confirm a prophesy given in the New. Many study guides are available from different sources but I prefer to just "do my own thing". I used to go by a detailed study guide years ago but have kinda decided how I want to study since then. I never fail to glean some knowledge from the Word each time I study it. Things I thought I knew sometimes take on a new meaning as He opens my old brain up a mite.

Hope this has helped. I am so happy you've decided to follow Christ again and do His will. You will be most blessed as you follow though on your desire to acquire more knowledge and a closer walk with Him. Stick around and join in with us. We'd appreciate it!

"Study and show yourself approved----!" "My people die for lack of knowledge"!

old hoot. Matt.24:44

-- hoot gibson (, August 22, 2001.

I appreciate all of your caring and well thought out answers. It speaks volumes about your character. I appreciate it more than you will know. I have started with John, and will keep you posted on the progress.


-- gabe (, August 22, 2001.

YEEHAW,Gabe!!!! I love Psalm 121, and the day I really believed, I re- read it over and over and over. It makes me feel so loved and watched over! I started my search with Revelations, guess because i am a backwards sort of person, then went for Romans which is what did the trick for me. Paul is so eloquent and logical in that book! God bless.

-- lesley (, August 22, 2001.

Gabe: I pray that God will bless your studying the Scriptures - and He will - seek and you will find! What you have decided to do is so important - may God bless!

-- Cynthia in MN (, August 22, 2001.


It's great that the Lord is drawing you back into fellowship with Him. I know what you mean about the church. I have heard it said that if you find the perfect church, don't go or you'll spoil it. The truth is that there is no perfect local church body on this earth because they are all made up of people in various stages of spiritual growth. When we become a Christian, God makes us perfect in Christ - that's Positional Sanctification. The problem is that we are still saddled with the old nature (Romans chapters 6 & 7) and we are commanded to be obedient and grow in our faith - that's Experiential Sanctification.

My favorite Books of the Bible are the Gospel of John and the Letter to the Hebrews. My life verse: 2 Timothy 1:7 "For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind."

My favorite Bible Study Tool is the Thompson Chain Reference Bible. Mine is in the King James. I think it may be available in other translations. What I like about it is that it is not filled with commentary - it has no notes about what other people think the Bible means. What is has is the most comprehensive topical cross reference system you will find anywhere. My belief is that the best way to understand what a passage means is to study what the rest of Scripture says on the subject. The easiest way to find that out is with topical references. Many Bibles have footnotes and cross references, but I have found that most of these just cross reference words and the passage they send you to may have nothing to do directly with the one you are studying. I do fill-in preaching for our small church and the Thompson Chain Reference Bible is my primary study tool.

2 Timothy 2:15 "Be diligent to present yourself approved to God as a workman who does not need to be ashamed, accurately handling the word of truth."

Bible Study without personal prayer with God leads only to empty intellectualism. It is the Spirit of God who illuminates our minds to understand the depths of the truth of God in His Word. Be like Solomon and ask for wisdom as you study and He will grant it.

Skip in WA

-- Skip in Western WA (, August 22, 2001.

Welcome Gabe, I became interested in prophesy and started with Revelation but turned quickly to Matthew. When I was tired and depressed the Lord led me to Matt.11:28-30. God Bless

-- Jeanne - No. WI (, August 23, 2001.

Hi gabe!! You have gotton some great answers!! One thing you can be SURE of, your efforts to seek and know His Word will not be wasted. "So shall my word be that goeth forth out of my mouth: it shall not return unto my void, but it shall accomplish that which I please, and it shall prosper in the thing whereto I sent it." When you choose to seek and know Him, you WILL be blessed!

This is just my personal experience in regards to reading God's Word. I began at the beginning, "In the beginning...." For me, it helped me to comprehend the nature/character of God. WHO He was/is. Throughout the Old Testament I saw time and again the nature of God. His provision, mercy, love, anger, judegment and goodness! I also began to understand the nature of man. This helped me to understand and recognize my sin, sin in general and how sin prevents our fellowship with God and the blessings from God. That indeed He is HOLY and Righteous. And we are not. Period. No amount of "good behavior" can/could change that simple fact. BUT, He had a plan.....ahhh, relief! Road Map to Heaven!

The Romans Road

If you were to die today,are you certain you would go to Heaven?


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;''


ROMANS 5:12 ''Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned.''


ROMANS 6:23 ''For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.''


ROMANS 5:8 ''But God commendeth His love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.''

ROMANS 10:13 ''For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.''

Will you call upon the Lord,and ask Him to save you?

ROMANS 10:9-11 ''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. For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation. For the scripture saith, Whosoever believeth on Him shall not be ashamed.''

Take God at His word and claim His promise for your salvation. Is there any reason why you should not accept Christ as your Savior now? Not one, is there? Then bow your head and pray this simple prayer: ''Dear God, I confess that I am a sinner. I am sorry for my sin, and ask you for mercy and forgiveness through the blood of Your Son, Jesus. I believe He died for me and rose again. I now accept Him as my Savior."

The sweetest words I have ever spoken!! God will meet you at the point of your need. Your spirit, heart and mind are willing and many are praying for you! As to my favorite scripture, like many have said, there are sooo many it is hard to narrow it down. But, I will say Revelation 1:18 pretty much sums it up for me - "I am he that liveth, and was dead; and, behold, I am alive for evermore, Amen; and have the keys of hell and of death." This I accept. God Bless!

Sorry if this was rambling....hard to pull it all in! He-he!

-- Wendy@GraceAcres (, August 24, 2001.

Hi Gabe, my advice would be similar to Vicki's. I am so fed up with churches where you ask about a subject and what the bible says, and they give your their doctrine and then back that up with a few verses taken out of context. Drives me nuts, makes me want to foam at the mouth!! Talk about putting the cart before the horse!

So I would say, when you read the Bible, do so with a curious, unbiased mind. Don't be afraid to ask yourself questions and search out what the Bible really says, even if it contradicts everything else you've ever heard. also get really well grounded in the Old Testament. I know that isn't the way it's usually done, but the 'Old' is the foundation for the 'New', and the New testament is practically meaningless unless it is taken in context with the Old. Pray when you start to read, that the truth will be revealed to you, and take notes, don't be afraid to write in the margins and underlines pasages.

There are a lot of favorite scriptures, I especially like Psalm 19, 119, 126,145, Proverbs 31, Isaiah 55, 56:1-8, 65:17-25, and the Sermon on the Mount, starting in Matthew 5.

-- Rebekah (, August 24, 2001.

Well I completely agree with Wendy. I would start in Romans. In fact I would read Romans and John simultaneously. Read a chapter of each and then "think on these things" as Paul says in another place. You probably now have more advice than you can handle now. My favorite verse is:

Romans 8 1 There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit. 2 For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus hath 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 sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, and for sin, condemned sin in the flesh: 4 That the righteousness of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.

Little Bit Farm

-- Little Bit Farm (, August 24, 2001.

I have enjoyed each and every response. I hope to explain my feeling like this: I have had this feeling that has been building inside me to learn more. It seems to just keep growing. I believe HE sent his only SON to die for our sins. GOD did this because he loved us so much. This much I believe, then I kind of stall out. I want to learn more. This is why I believe I reached out to you guys. I saw how some readers reacted to the short story (Woody something...)that was posted awhile back, It was disagreeing in a kind and respectful way - I did not fully agree with some of the post's, yet I could totally understand why you felt that way. It made me want to learn more. So here I am reaching out for help.

I thank each of you. GOD bless - I will let you know how church went on Sunday afternoon.


-- gabe (, August 25, 2001.

Hi Gabe,

Praise the Lord that you are searching for the Truth. You will find Truth in Jesus Christ as Jesus said of Himself, I am the Way, the Truth and the Life..."

Wendy was right on with her advise , Romans and John are a great place to start. My favorite books are Daniel and Revelation. It is a good idea to get into a good study group at a bible believing church, and make it a goal to read the entire Bible. Pray that God will help you understand and He will be faithful to help you. God bless you.

-- Kathy (, August 25, 2001.

Hi Gabe, just checking in and wondering how you are? If you got to attend service Sunday? Hope all is well with you. God Bless!

-- Wendy@GraceAcres (, August 28, 2001.

Yes - It was not as moving as I would have hoped. Maybe the church - I will let you know this next sunday to see if things are any different

-- gabe (, August 29, 2001.

Gabe, I want to thank you for posting this question, it's something I've surely needed help with as well, but probably would not have asked. Now I have a better idea of how to start, too.

-- Cathy in NY (, August 30, 2001.

Hey Gabe! I'll pass on soem advice I was given when I decided that I needed to attend a church after years and years of not going. First, look around and see if most everyone has their Bible with them, second, open with prayer, third, close with prayer, fourth in between, is the service all psychology or is it Bible based flipping through the scriptures? if you aren't using the Bible in the service, try another church. Also, if they are using the Bible, but skip over some verses deemed doctrinally un important, find a different church.

Also give a church that meets these criteria at least three visits before signing them off. God's blessings and Peace to you.

-- Doreen (, August 30, 2001.

Any suggestions on a type of church? Seriously, I picked the last one by looking in the phone book. I went a few times, but it just didn't do it for me.

-- Cathy in NY (, August 30, 2001.

Well, that can be a can of worms!!! Here's my opinion fwiw:

I am completely decided that there should be no denominations, so I would recommend a non denominational, Bible believing, Word preaching, store front kind of a church. There are some great churches that are tied to a denomination, but in my personal experience, folks tend to focus on why their denomination is better than another one and this gets silly to can also get viscious. I picked the one I attend *in part* because they don't have a 501 C3 which puts a church into a contractual agreement with the IRS. The other reasons were those mentioned above.

You have to get fed, a "so-so" church is better than no church. There was a time when I would have argued strongly against that, but my opinion has changed. I think you can learn more from going to a poor church by comparing them with scripture than by going to no church at all. Just like you will live longer eating Twinkies than nothing at all. Especially if you are unchurched and hungry. Just keep going to different ones until you find one that really seems to work. It won't hurt you! Remember to compare it to food....sometimes you don't like the taste of something new at first, but if it is good for you, you'll want more of it....later. Also you can take that experience into account when visiting other churches to see if you want to attend on a regular basis. No church is perfect, because they are made up of people and we are all still very, very, far from perfect!

Hopefully this is helpful and not confusing. If it is confusing, please forgive me and just reference off of the things I cited above prior to this little dissertation. I really feel that it's important to have fellowship, probably because I didn't get it (my fault) when I was first saved and it really hurt my growth.

-- (, August 30, 2001.

Thanks Doreen, that made perfect sense to me.

-- Cathy in NY (, August 31, 2001.

Gabe, I haven't been saved very long (april 2001). At first it was really confusing about the bible because so many churches teach so many different things. My wife has been a christian for a long time and tried to help me but there are just things you have to learn by yourself, we went to alot of different churches but they were boring or they did things that i knew in my heart wasn't right.My wife has studied the bible with Pastor Arnold Murray of The Shephards Chapel,so I started to study with her, this guy is a very gifted teacher and he is non-denomenational and he doesn't beg for money, which is one thing I always hated about church and preachers. If you really want to get fed and learn alot cheack him out. No matter what stay in the word, your father will bless you for it . Take care and God Bless.

-- ariel alonso (, October 14, 2001.

I began searching and went to seminary to find answeres.The best thing I have done yet is to start in Genesis and consecutively go through the Old Covonent.I did interupt the with Mathew because the law takes diligence to get through.Inbetween books I try special studies on cassett.I dont attend church because I dont feel fed in most,and I want to be sure my intentions are pure.It is hard to find fellow students in Virginia,but I still search. Jon

-- Jonathan ONeal (, June 10, 2002.

Greetings! This report is an abridged version of a longer paper I have written on this subject. This is meant to stimulate your own study and not to believe anything just because I imply something. Read this with your Bible open! Otherwise, it will make no sense! If you are stimulated into knowing more, ask me for the long version and you will have a world of information that will possibly change your life if you choose to do so. If you want to email me, please do only at Thanks and would love to hear your comments!


Questions Every Christians Should Ask Themselves

Did God, the prophets, Jesus and the disciples he called teach one particular message on what is required for eternal life and if so, have millions of Christians based their salvation on the message of one person who contradicted all of them?

What did Jesus say about those who bore witness to themselves (John 5:31)?

Which New Testament writer referred to himself 949 times?

Who constantly reminded nearly everyone he was writing to that he was an apostle?

Who was chosen to replace Judas as an apostle(Acts 1:26)?

According to Rev. 21:14, how many apostles were there and according to Acts 1:21-22, what was the criteria for being the twelfth apostle to replace Judas?

Who admitted that he did not consult any man (including those who knew Jesus) as to how he got his gospel (Gal. 1:16)?

Would you trust a Bible teacher who claimed he got his gospel only from a vision?

Since God prophesied about John the Baptist coming before Jesus (Isa. 40:3) to testify of him, was there ever a prophecy concerning the coming of the most prolific writer in the NT?

Who was the only NT writer who felt the need to boast (2 Cor. 11:5,10)?

How many years went by before Paul ever met with Peter and James (Gal. 1:18)?

Have you ever read where James, John or Peter ever referred to Paul as an apostle?

Why did Paul circumcise Timothy (Acts 16:3) while also stating that those who are circumcised have made Christ no value to them at all (Gal:5:2)? Would it be extremely hypocritical and a bad witness for Paul to preach that circumcision was useless and to also circumcise Timothy?

Was Paul put on trial, as he said, because of his views of the resurrection (Acts 23:6-7) or because he was teaching against the law (Acts 21:27-28)?

Was Paul?s testimony of his conversion experience in Acts 22:6-15 consistent with what he told King Agrippa in Acts 26:12-19? Is he told what he would do before or after he got to Damascus?

Could Paul have been a Pharisee, with the power to arrest believers when he could have gotten that power only come from working for the high priest (Acts 9:1-2), who historically was an appointee of the Sadducees? Would a Sadduccee have ever hired an enemy ? a Pharisee to do police work?

If Paul were arresting believers and persecuting them to be put to death as he admitted for their religious beliefs apart from political reasons as Christians have been taught (Acts 22:4), what would be the logical reason? As a Jew, was it consistent with Jewish law to kill people because of their religious beliefs?

Could Paul have really gotten letters of arrest from the high priest to go into Damascus to arrest believers when Damascus was not under Roman jurisdiction since it was an Arab kingdom under King Aretas IV? Would this Arab kingdom have allowed Romans to come in and arrests its citizens because of religious beliefs since believers went there to escape religious persecution? Does this make as much sense as Canadian Mounties being given permission by the U.S. government to come to Florida to arrest people fleeing persecution concerning their harmless religious beliefs?

In light of Hitler, Stalin, Mussolini, Castro, Pol Pot etc., could Paul?s statement in Romans 13:1 be true that all authorities are those which God has established?

Was the law of God put into effect by angels or God, according to Paul in Gal. 3:19?

Why does Paul say that the law is holy (Rom. 7:12) and also say that the law was added so that trespass (sin) might increase (Rom. 5:20)? Is he saying that a perfect, holy law was given to man so that he might sin?to increase grace?

Why did Paul (on trial) say that he retained his beliefs in all points of the law (Acts 24:14) which agreed with Jesus? words in Matt. 5:17-18 while he also stated that the law was abolished (Eph. 2:15, Gal. 3:25)? Can you say ?contradiction??

Why did Paul say that the whole law is summed up in one command (Gal. 5:14) when Jesus himself said it was summed up in two commands (Matt: 22:35-40)? Where did Paul get such information ? from Jesus?.or other sources?

Why did Paul tell the Galatians that man is not justified by the works of the law (Gal. 2:16) when he told the Romans that the ??doers of the law shall be justified? (Rom. 2:13)? Which Paul do we believe? Which Paul did James agree with in James 2:17,24? Which Paul did John agree with in 1 John 2:3-4? Which Paul did Jesus agree with in Matt.19:17?

Why does Paul say we are rid of the law (Rom. 7:4-6) and then says just 19 verses later that he serves the law (Rom. 7:25)?

What is the law of Christ (Gal. 6:2), according to Paul? Did Christ bring us any new law to live by that did not already exist?

Why did Paul say that we can be justified by faith alone (Eph. 2:8-9, Rom. 3:28) when James said ??a person is justified by what he does and not by faith alone? (James 2:24)? Should we believe a man who walked with Jesus for 3 years and was his brother OR a man who claimed to have gotten a vision and admitted his gospel did not come from any man?

Why did Paul say that women should be quite at meetings ?as the law says? (1 Cor. 14:34) when there is no such law that says that?

What is required for eternal life, according to Jesus in Matt. 19:17? Will the workers of lawlessness receive eternal life, according to Jesus in Matt: 7:23? Is lawlessness a word for the breaking of God?s laws? Could laws be broken that do not exist?

Did Jesus say we would be judged according to our faith or by what we have done (Matt. 16:27)?

Do we receive the Spirit by believing what we have heard, according to Paul (Rom.3:2) or after proving we are obeying Jesus? commands (John 14:15-16)?

Why did James, who walked with Jesus, teach converts (in contrast to Paul) to follow ?Jewish? laws, like they should abstain from meat of strangled animals and from blood (Acts 15:20)? What did dietary laws have to do with the faith and why were they being taught to new converts? Does today?s Christianity teach the same dietary laws as James taught?

Did the Jews who learned the gospel from the apostles who walked with Jesus, keep or forsake the law after conversion according to Acts 21:20? Was the tone of James happy with them in their attitude of the law?

Is James asking Paul in Acts 21:22 if he is really teaching people to turn away from the law and not to circumcise their children? Does it sound as if James is calling Paul to the carpet and wanting Paul to defend himself?

Does James tell Paul to perform a purification vow (Nazirite vow) to prove that he is actually keeping the law in Acts 21:24? Does James tell Paul to do this in front of others to prove ?there is no truth in these reports about you, but that you yourself are living in obedience to the law?? Does it sound like James is wanting Paul to prove that he believes in keeping the law? Was James or Paul in charge of this council?

Does Paul tell James that he is not under the law as he told the Corinthians (1 Cor. 9:20) and ignore James request?OR does he actually perform the vow (Acts 21:26) and did he also mention an offering? Have you ever seen these scriptures before?

Since Paul did not come onto the Bible scene until Acts 7, what was the gospel and salvation message preached by others before Paul? Is there a salvation message preached by the other writers of the New Testament that echoed what Paul wrote about the law being done away with?

Can you, as a Christian, defend the plan of salvation by grace through faith alone and not by any works without quoting Paul? If Paul?s writings were non-existent, what would the message of the New Testament be? Would it be entirely different?

If the doctrine taught by Paul of salvation by grace through faith alone and not by any works is true, would you say that this is the most important doctrine in the history of mankind? If so, would you say that the most important doctrine in the history of mankind should have been mentioned somewhere else in the Bible by God, the prophets, Jesus or the disciples whom Jesus called? Or should we believe the plan of salvation based on one man?s ?vision.?

When did Jesus say the law would end (Matt. 5:17)? What did he say about those who teach others to not keep the commandments (Matt. 5:19)?

Who will be called great in the kingdom -those who keep or break the commandments (Matt. 5:19)?

Can there be sin without the breaking of the law, since SIN is transgression of the LAW (1 Jo. 3:4)? Can it be possible to break a law that has been done away with as Paul repeated?

Was the law just for the Israelites or for everyone, according to Num. 15:29, Lev. 17:12 and Deut. 31:12?

Was the law ever to come to an end (Psalm 119:152,Deut. 5:39; 29:29)? Does Psalm 119:152 hint that the laws and statutes were going to end at the resurrection or that it will always be in effect?

Did God say (as most Christians do) that the law was too difficult to keep OR that it was not too difficult to keep (Deut. 30:11)? What happens to the prayers to those who turn away from the law (Prov. 28:9)?

Did David keep the law, according to God (1 Kings 11:34)? Did Hezekiah (2 Kings 18:6)?

Does it make since that a law that is perfect (Ps. 19:7) and sweeter than honey (Ps. 119:103) would ever be done away with by a Creator who does not change His mind (Mal. 3:6)?

Will those who eat pig and the other unclean meats be among those who will not be in the eternal kingdom according to Isaiah?s prophecy (Is. 66:15-17)? Will the Sabbath apply in the tribulation (Matt:24:20)?

What does God say about those who do not uphold the words of the law (Deut. 27:26), regardless of who they claim to be?

Why did God commend the church at Ephesus for recognizing lying apostles who were not true apostles (Rev. 2:2)? According to the Bible, who was the only one who called himself the apostle to the church at Ephesus and who admitted that he was having trouble with them (Acts19:8-9)? Who complained that all of the Asian congregations had turned away from his gospel even though they were all active, functioning congregations according to Rev. 1-3?

Maybe you are wondering how Paul?s letters even got into the canon of scripture. For that matter, would you like to know how we got the New Testament? Have you ever studied the history of who canonized the NT and what was the process? Maybe you are wondering who decided Paul?s letters belong in scripture. For more complete information on this subject, email me at: and as for the complete paper on Paul. You are congratulated in advance for your open-mindedness!


-- Brett Winstead (, July 10, 2002.

I know how frustrating finding the "right" answers can be. I have tried all types of different churches in order to find them. One being the christedeplians. They taught me to use my Bible to find the right answers. But when we went into deep studies using all the tools to look up the actually words in right context I was taught there was no satan and no hell... After that I was so confused I left. Not knowing where to go from there or what to beleive. Its really hard for me since I have been in church since I was two. And now having kids of my own and a husband who just started to beleive, I don't know what to teach them...I can't bring myself to go to a church because I don't know what is right for us. I find myself in the same boat as you and I am not a new christian. Maybe reading more reponses to your post could help me also. As far as my favorite scripture goes I have being Matt. 7:7,8 "Ask and it will be given to you..." I love this one because...everytime I ask for God to help me find him, he always seems to open his door for me. the other being thE whole book of Job... this being read shows how I would want my relationship with God to be...never blaming God for the wrongs in my life but giving him my all and my unconditional love as he has given to me.

-- Crystal Ploof (, May 02, 2003.

Go to where God leads you! Susan

-- susan (, May 22, 2003.

Gabe, I've been studying with the Shepards Chapel for well over a decade now. It may well have been the greatest thing that I have ever done in my life. I hope that you and anyone reading this will take Vicki and Doreens advice under serious consideration and find a King James 16.11 and a Strongs Exhaustive Concordence and study for yourself. So much rides on finding a well educated and unbiased teacher like Dr. Arnold Murray who goes through The Word chapter by chapter and verse by verse; finding someone who doesn't take a dime for his work, who isn't persuaded my a denomination, money, politics or common beliefs. I'd be a lot worse off if it had not been for my studying 4 hours a day, 5 days a week. The times we live in are too great and terrible to not know what tomorrow brings. G.B.E.veryone

-- Barry from DE (, August 21, 2003.

sorry, i just realized how late that came.

-- Barry from DE ((, September 07, 2003.

The History Channel has some stimulating specials on Christian topics. I have learned much by checking out their presentations using the Bible.

-- Reginald Rogers (, December 30, 2003.

Moderation questions? read the FAQ