Category Archives: apostles’ doctrine

Christian Growth Is Stunted by False Teachings

Growth. That’s what every living thing needs—especially Christians. To grow spiritually, we need clean spiritual food and water.

But Christians are being fed false food and fetid water, if we are to believe the apostle Peter: “There will be false teachers among you, who will secretly bring in destructive heresies.” And “many shall follow their destructive ways…In their greed these teachers will exploit you with fabricated stories” (II Pet. 2: 1-3). Who are these false preachers? It is important to know, for many Christians are following them.

The apostle Jude warns us of them, also. “For certain individuals whose condemnation was written about long ago have secretly slipped in among you. They are ungodly people”(v. 4). They secretly slither in to the congregation, sharing their tainted teachings. The apostle Paul warns us that in the latter days, many will leave the true faith and will be deceived by “seducing spirits and doctrines of devils” (I Tim. 4: 1). In our time false teachers in sheep’s clothing are teaching doctrines about Christ that are straight from Satan. And these are so-called “Christian” teachers, preachers, pastors, evangelists, priests, and prophets!

Sadly, “many” are following these false teachings about Christ and what He is doing here on the earth. The word of God says that many are being fed false spiritual food and are being deceived.  Where are “the many” today? The lambs and sheep of God have been herded into corrals with names like Catholic, Baptist, Methodist, Episcopal, Presbyterian, Pentecostal, Charismatic, et al. Funny thing. The vast majority of these denominations believe that they are just about the only ones with the truth.

Hundreds of millions meet together. But Christ said to be careful not to follow the masses. He commands us to “enter by the narrow gate; for wide is the gate and broad is the way that leads to destruction, and there are many who go in by it. Because narrow is the gate and difficult is the way which leads to life, and there are few who find it.” (Mt. 7: 13-14).

Most just read over these words, never taking the time to let them sink way down into their hearts. The “wide” and “broad” way is the easy way. The wide, easy way has you to just “accept Christ as your personal Savior,” be baptized, and you are good to go. Conversely, the narrow gate is the cross experience where we place our old sinful selfish heart on the cross with Christ and let it die with Him. Then by believing in His resurrection, we receive His Spirit that raises us up to walk in a “newness of life.” Few get this deep, for they are seduced by false teachings about salvation. And until the day that my lips and fingertips fall silent, I will continue to testify for Christ, whose truth has translated me from darkness to light (Rom. 6).

Why Do We Hold on to the False Doctrines?

How do human beings get stuck in the mire of false teachings? First, no one’s pride encourages them to admit they were wrong. And there is a tendency in human nature to cling to the traditions taught them by their elders. However, going through the “cross experience” cures all this. For when we “die” spiritually with Christ on the cross, we abdicate our own will and desire and fling ourselves into His embrace. We, like a babe in arms, trust Him to care for us. We have faith in Another who is much wiser than we are. And we believe that He will raise us up and give us of His Spirit to lead us and guide us through this new spiritual landscape. This is being “born again” or “born from above.” And thereby the sin nature is gone. And He gives us the Spirit of Truth that “leads us into all truth.” It is His Spirit now within us that helps us know what is false and what is true.

This “cross experience” is there for all of us, whether we came to Christ yesterday or forty years ago. This experience is the narrow gate that allows us to enter into His kingdom. Without it, we cannot see nor enter the kingdom of God (John 3: 3-6).

So dig deep. If gigantic waves of people are following a certain teaching, it is probably a false doctrine. The cross is the starting point for Christian growth. If a person is still breaking the Ten Commandments, then how are they growing spiritually in Christ? Just remember: With God all things are possible—even to be free from sin and sinning.

False teachings are bad food for the flock of God, which stunts their growth. The true doctrine of Christ is a portion of the “hidden manna” that Christ promised to those of us who purge out the “doctrine of Balaam” (Rev. 2: 14). This spiritual bread from heaven is hidden from those who have not entered the kingdom of heaven. But it is being revealed to you and me. It has long been hidden and “kept secret from the foundation of the world” (Mt. 13: 35).

[Be sure to order my new book The Royal Destiny of God’s Elect. It discusses these things and will be a help to you and your spiritual growth. It is free with free shipping. Just send your mailing address to my email, and I will get it right out to you. wayneman5@hotmail.com ]

Kenneth Wayne Hancock

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Filed under apostles' doctrine, belief, children of God, Christ, church, crucified with Christ, death of self, false doctrines, false prophets, false teachers, knowledge, old leaven, resurrection, sin

Thirty Fold Understanding of the Seven Teachings of the Early Apostles

The early church “continued steadfastly in the apostles’ doctrine,” which was Christ’s doctrine or teachings (Acts 2: 42). This truth is greatly neglected in the churches because they fail to recognize that the teachings of the early apostles were Christ’s doctrine, found in Hebrews 6: 1-2.

Seven doctrines are mentioned. Each of them are seen in three levels of spiritual growth. This mystery of three levels was inserted in the parables, insuring that only those who were predestined to understand the truths hidden therein, would. The disciples asked Christ why He spoke unto the masses in parables. He replied, “Because it is given unto you to know the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven, but to them it is not given” (Matt. 13: 11, 1-10). And now He has given them to you and me.

In the Parable of the Sower, He mentions the three levels of spiritual growth—30 fold, 60 fold, and 100 fold (v. 8).

Tying the two concepts together, we have seven doctrines with three levels of understanding in each. The seven doctrines found there in Hebrews 6 are “repentance from dead works…faith toward God…baptisms…laying on of hands…resurrection of the dead…eternal judgment…perfection.”

In each of these there is a knowing (30 fold), a doing (60 fold) and a being (100 fold). Right now I want to touch on the 30 fold “knowing” in each of these doctrines. I say “touch on” because we are dealing with the unsearchable riches of Christ here.

  1. The first teaching of Christ is repentance from dead works. The 30 fold fruit of that doctrine in one’s life is the crucifixion of the old self on the cross with Christ. It is the getting rid of the sin nature we are born with. Our old self is dead already in God’s eyes. We must reckon it so. This is true repentance from sin and sinning; it frees us. “For He that is dead is freed from sin” (Rom 6: 6-11). This speaks of a spiritual death of our old sinful nature. When we really believe this way down deep in our hearts, then we will experience the chains of sin falling off of us. Before we are slaves to Sin; now we are free. Why? Because our old sins died with Christ the sin sacrifice. This is the cross experience. The early church continued in this teaching. We should be doing the same.
  2. Faith toward God” is the second apostles’ doctrine. In the 30 fold child-of-God context, we then believe that Christ was raised from the dead, and that we are raised with Him. He had faith that He would be raised. Now we have faith that we are raised up along with Christ—raised from the death that sin had held us in. [For much more on these first two doctrines, read online Chapters 26-32 of Yah Is Savior: The Road to Immortality found here: https://immortalityroad.wordpress.com/book-yah-is-savior-the-road-to-immortality/  Or better yet, order your free hard copy with free shipping by sending your mailing address to wayneman5@hotmail.com Mention the book]
  3. Doctrine of Baptisms” is the third teaching that the apostles stayed in. There are several baptisms, but for a 30 fold child of God it is their immersion into Christ’s death. When He died, our sin nature died with Him. “Don’t you know that all of us who were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into His death” (Rom. 6: 3-4)?
  4. The Laying on of Hands is the fourth doctrine of the early church. There are many instances where hands of the righteous are laid upon people. What would constitute the 30 fold level of growth in this teaching?

To answer this, we must cross connect other things we know about the theme of “being children” in the faith. “Becoming a child of God” is an extremely important milestone in a Christian’s life. It is when Life enters into our hearts. Before, we are one of the “dead” burying our dead.

So 30 fold fruit in this context would tie in with “laying on of hands.” Hands are laid upon a person at the baptism into water, symbolizing being immersed into “Christ’s death.”

There is also the concept of “putting one’s hand to the plow.” In the passage, our Master says, “Follow me.”

The first one said, “Let me go bury my father.”

Christ replied, “Let the dead bury the dead.”

The next man said, I will follow you, but I need to go home and say goodbye to the family.

To which Christ said, “No man, having put his hand to the plough, and looking back, is fit for the kingdom of God”  (Luke 9: 57-62).

These two men could have become children of the kingdom. They could have begun their new Christian lives as 30 fold children. But they looked back to their earthly family. To be worthy of our new life in God, we must lay our hands to the plow and not look back to the old earthly life. Christ also said for us to take His yoke upon us. The world is the field in the parables. And this field needs to be plowed up and then planted with the see, the word of God. We are His yokefellows. We are to be equally yoked together with His Spirit intent to do his plan to accomplish His purpose. We need to be working with Him to accomplish Christ’s goal. When we pull together with Christ we will bring in the Kingdom of God (Matt. 11: 29-30).

  1. The Resurrection of the Dead is the fifth teaching. 30 fold understanding is a child of God believing that Christ was raised from the dead and that we also are raised up with Him into a new life with His Spirit now living within our hearts (Rom. 6).
  2. Eternal Judgment is the sixth doctrine that the early church continued in. We need to reckon our new life in Christ as a done deal, secured eternally with Him as our Savior and King. We must judge it so and not look back. “Remember Lot’s Wife.”
  3. And the seventh doctrine is “Perfection.” This word in the Greek is “maturity.” Thirty fold is the knowledge about this maturity concept.

Of course, there is so much more to all of these as the Spirit leads us into the 60 and 100 fold understanding. I know that some of these things are new. I offer these thoughts to you as a jumping off place in your own studies. We all have the responsibility to study Christ’s teachings. A teacher sent from God plants the seed in the  hearts and minds, but to grow, it must be watered through study and prayer.

After doing all that, most importantly, His children will have earned God’s approval and a promotion. He will look upon us no more as spiritual children, but as young men and women. We will have grown to be trustworthy heirs of the King, ready for more responsibility, ready to not just know about his purpose and plan, but to “be strong and do exploits.”

This is our calling and election, brothers and sisters. He has chosen a few to reveal the whole shooting match to. Christ is passing out his goods, His truth, to us. Will we hide it? Or will we use it to become “fishers of men”? Will we hear Him say to us, Well done thou good and faithful servant. You were faithful in a few things; I will make you ruler over many. Or will we hear a doleful and heartbreaking rebuke like the one He gave to him   who was afraid and hid the pound that was given to him? (Matthew 25: 15-30).

Kenneth Wayne Hancock

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Seven Teachings with Three Levels of Growth

I greet you now with encouraging words, words from the heart of Christ who grants us courage and strength and power. He is that positive One, the “Holy One of Israel,” who is all “Yes” and  all Love for us all. And His Spirit now lives in us.

And we are His body, despite the world that tries to corral us into a box of their own imagination as to who God is and what He want us to do and to be. We must continue to walk worthy of His great calling and election that rests upon us.

I know that many of you are seeking God fervently, longing to know His will for your lives. As I stated before in my latest book, The Royal Destiny of God’s Elect, God has a steadfast purpose, and that purpose is to reproduce Himself in us. “For consider what He has done—before the foundation of the world He chose us to become, in Christ, His holy and blameless children, living within His constant care” (Eph. 1: 4-5 Phillips).

He chose us before the foundation of the world! We are His elect, His chosen ones. (“Elect” and “chosen” are translated from the same Greek word). Brothers and sisters, the Almighty is for us! And “if God be for us, who can be against us” (Rom. 8: 31). He has chosen us to be recipients of Christ’s most precious and endearing qualities.

He has a plan to accomplish our transformation. His will is that we surrender to His commands to be holy as He is holy. We become holy when we set ourselves apart for His purpose. And His purpose is to magnify and multiply Himself in a “chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people” (I Pet. 2: 9).

Enduring the Sojourn

I know that many of you have been bounced around from church to church, rejected and ostracized and betrayed by those you loved. Think not that God has turned His back on you. Oh, no. He allows these things for our good. He ordains hardships, reluctant goodbyes, and mindless  misunderstandings to temper and then hone the sword of the Spirit within us, that we can “endure hardships as a good soldier of Christ.”

And, yet, we wander on, like Paul, shipwrecked at sea. We still cling to a bit of driftwood called “hope.” And as we are tossed to and fro, longing for a spiritual home that’s true, we wait like those poor souls in Casablanca. We wait for a word that signals passage into the Captain’s good ship.

I write to you who are still hoping to find a clarification as to what God wants for you to do. Your vision will clear as you simply believe His vision for your life. His vision for you is His purpose for you.

Doing His Purpose

To fulfill His purpose, our feet must tread in the footprints of giants—the giants of the faith, the apostles and prophets. Step one is to acquire true knowledge of their teachings. Then we must study and continue in their doctrine, which are Christ’s teachings (Heb. 5: 12-14; 6: 1-2). Then we share them, and sharing His teachings is breaking the bread of life. This is the communion so dear to His heart.

Seven doctrines of Christ were paramount in the early church. The early church “continued steadfastly” in them (Acts 2: 42). There are three levels of spiritual growth in each of the seven.

We see this three-leveled motif at work in several passages. In the Parable of the Sower, the word of God produced three levels of fruit production—thirty, sixty, and one hundred (Matt. 13: 3-9, 18-23). John writes to “children, young men, and fathers” (I John 2: 12-14). Christ likens the kingdom of God to a man who sows seed. It grows, and he does not know how it all works. “For the earth yields crops by itself: first the blade, then the head, after that the full grain in the head” (Mark 4: 26-29).That’s how the kingdom grows. Then you have Justification, Sanctification, Glorification. And the three sections of the Tabernacle. There are many more examples of the three levels of spiritual growth. There importance is indisputable.

7 Teachings, 3 Growth Levels in Each

Each of the seven doctrines of Christ have a 30 fold growth, a 60 fold, and a 100 fold growth. Let’s just look at the 30 fold level of understanding.

  1. Right now, let us take the first teaching of Christ—repentance from dead works. The 30 fold fruit of that doctrine in one’s life is the crucifixion of the old self on the cross with Christ. It is the getting rid of the sin nature we are born with. Our old self is dead already in God’s eyes. We must reckon it so. This is true repentance from sin and sinning; it frees us. “For He that is dead is freed from sin” (Rom 6: 6-11). This speaks of a spiritual death of our old sinful nature. When we really believe this, way down deep in our hearts, then we will experience the chains of sin falling off of us. Before, we are slaves to Sin; now we are free. Why? Because our old sinful heart died with Christ, the sin sacrifice. This is the cross experience. Someone says, “I know that.” But the churches rarely get into the death of our old man  nature.
  2. Faith toward God” is the second apostles’ doctrine. In the 30 fold child-of-God context, we then believe that Christ was raised from the dead, and that we are raised with Him. He had faith that He would be raised. Now we have faith that we are raised up along with Christ—raised from the death that sin had held us in. [For much more on these first two doctrines, read online Chapters 26-32 of Yah Is Savior: The Road to Immortality found here: https://immortalityroad.wordpress.com/book-yah-is-savior-the-road-to-immortality/ Or better yet, order your free hard copy with free shipping by sending your mailing address to wayneman5@hotmail.com Mention the book]
  3. Doctrine of Baptisms” is the third teaching that the apostles stayed in. There are several baptisms, but for a 30 fold child of God it is their immersion into Christ’s death. When He died, our sin nature died with Him. “Don’t you know that all of us who were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into His death” (Rom. 6: 3-4)?

{To be continued…I will share a 30 fold understanding of the other teachings a bit later. These first three are what the people need. We must understand them first and then share these keys to those trapped in sin. Be sure to order my latest book The Royal Destiny of God’s Elect. Absolutely free.}

A big agape-love hug to all of you.

Kenneth Wayne Hancock

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“Love Your Enemies”–A Radical Teaching That Leads Us to Perfection

Christ tells us to obey Him. We are to do what He tells us to do. He is our Lord, Master and Savior, after all. And then He gives us a seemingly impossible command: “Be perfect.”

And then the knee jerk response comes. “Perfect? That can’t be right. Nobody is perfect.” But why would Christ give us this command if it were impossible to obey it? Of course, that is the point. With man it is impossible, but “with God all things are possible.”

Still, Christ’s indelible words just won’t go away. Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect (Matt. 5: 48). This is not a perfection according to shallow man’s wisdom, but we are to be perfect like our Father. To make sense of this paradox, we must dig down deeper into Christ’s words.

“Be ye therefore perfect” is the command. The word “therefore” means “for that reason,” or “as a result of all that was just said.” So what was He teaching in the previous forty-seven verses of Matthew 5? Christ was teaching agape love, the love from above. He was showing how human beings think and do when God, the Spirit of Love, dwells fully within them. “God is agape love,” says the apostle John (I John 4: 8). Love solidifies the fulfillment of the seventh apostles’ doctrine—perfection.

It starts with us being born of that Spirit of love. Christ is teaching us how we will be when He is fully manifested within us. He tells us, “Love your enemies” (v. 44). Very few of us have what it takes to love everyone, especially those who hate us. So Christ is speaking of a higher love, a love that far surpasses our original self-love that we are born with.

Christ is introducing a radical new teaching, far superior to man’s feeble and petty thoughts for self. Instead of loving your friends and hating your enemies, He commands us to “love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you.” He is telling us that when  we obey these commandments, we will be showing that we are the children of our Father, for we will be like Him.

Well, what is the Father like? Our Father “makes His sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust” (v. 45). The Father opens the clouds of heaven with literal showers upon the farms of the hateful farmer and the loving farmer.

Our Father provides for both the evil and the good. That is the perfection of our Father. That is the Spirit of His perfection, the perfection that we are commanded to be like.

Understanding Why?

I know. His thoughts are not our thoughts, and His ways are not our ways. We would not do it this way. It is difficult to grasp this with the natural mind, and we are tempted to just skip these chapters. The apostle Peter before the resurrection is an example of how natural man takes care of business. He got out a sword and commenced to hack off the guard’s ear. Peter loved his friends but hated his enemies. Not good. Not God’s way. Peter would have killed all the evil ones and let God sort it out. But Peter did not have the Spirit of agape love at that time. Later he got a hold of God’s thoughts and ways, and the rest is history, which now has become our future.

What are God’s thoughts toward evil people and things? Why does He put up with the evil? Why would He desire us to love our enemies? It does not make much sense when viewed with the wisdom of the world. But with God’s wisdom…

Understanding How to “Love Your Enemies”

It is perplexing. How do we love and forgive our enemies and thereby “be perfect,” the offspring of the Father? The key is understanding that God created both the light and the darkness. That includes the literal light of day and the dark of night, as well as spiritual good and evil. God created our enemies and our friends. “I form the light, and create darkness: I make peace, and create evil: I the LORD do all these things” (Isa. 45: 7). “And God saw every thing that He had made, and, behold, it was very good.” There were no unexpected accidents in the script.

For all of us, good or bad, play a part in the drama that He has written, directed, and produced. Like a play, the script has been written by the great Author of our faith. He knows all about the protagonists and the antagonists; He created them. He has instilled in us, His sons and daughters, an unquenchable thirst for knowledge as to what this life is all about. His law of harvest states that we will reap what we sow. Those who seek will find out the answers to the mysteries of His interactions with man.

It is when we see life as God sees it that we will comprehend the need for evil to help us display the power of His love in dispelling darkness. For love, agape love, overcomes every dark and evil force on earth. God created it that way. And when that divine love surges through us, then God is glorified. When we through the power of His in-dwelling Spirit of agape love–when we love our enemies, then Love triumphs over hate, and God is glorified. Then God will have reproduced Himself in and through us.

The Father receives glory, not through us saying, “Glory to God!” He is glorified when we with His love inside overcome the darkness by loving the unlovable, by loving our enemies. We must understand that evil serves as a foil for the love within us in this drama. It is when we overcome evil with goodness, and hate with love, that we gain a critical knowledge of just who our Creator Yahweh is. We must never lose sight of His eternal purpose; it is written into the DNA of every living thing. He wants to reproduce Himself. When we love our enemies, God is multiplied. And the only place that He has ordained for that to happen is inside of us.

Moreover, if there is no evil for His children to overcome and surpass through His agape love, then God cannot be glorified. For good overcomes evil as light dispels darkness. In fact, agape love is matured within us by confronting evil.

I know that God is raising up a people who will understand all of the above. They are the Father’s chosen ones, His elect, His sons and daughters. They will reject the doubters who say, “It is impossible to be perfect.” For they will know that perfection means the completion of the spiritual growth within them. Perfection means that the Word has taken root in their hearts and has grown to full maturity and is bearing 100 fold fruit as Christ and His apostles did. For Christ did say, “Greater works shall you do than what I have done.” His word has taken root in their hearts; now that is a radical idea. It is fundamental and a sure foundation.

And armed with this knowledge, they will see that “with God all things are possible” (Matthew 19:26). It will dawn on these princes and princesses of God that “no idle word” proceeds out of the mouth of God. They’ll take this admonition to heart: “Let us go on unto perfection” (Hebrews 6:1-2). And they’ll learn that there is so much more to God’s spiritual house than the first two apostles’ doctrines–“repentance from dead works and faith toward God,” which are the first steps of “newborn babes in Christ.”

They’ll realize that they have received in their hearts the seed of perfection.  Christ is that Seed.  And now that Seed is growing, for “one plants and another waters, and God gives the increase.”  This growth is likened to a planted seed of wheat or corn.  It comes up, “first the blade, then the ear, then the full corn in the ear.”  And then harvest will come when He will have been perfectly reproduced in us.  And we then in full maturity will have completed the life cycle of God.  And that is perfection.

God’s elect will realize this in the command: “Be perfect.”  For they will see these two words as His challenge to “overcome all things” and walk on down His road to the Heavenly City.  They will answer the challenge and embark on this quest for perfection.  Because He said, “Be perfect.”                 Kenneth Wayne Hancock

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The Importance of the Apostles’ Doctrine

The doctrines that the early apostles taught were Christ’s very own teachings. And Christ’s doctrines were the Father’s. Christ said, “My doctrine is not mine, but His that sent Me” (John 7: 16). That is why they are so important to God and should be important to us.

The apostles’ doctrine is the foundation. Period. When Christ admonishes us to dig deep and lay our house upon the rock, He means for us to have that solid foundation of His teachings of truth, for He is the truth.

We cannot go any farther in our preparation to fulfill God’s purpose of reproducing Himself in us without these principles established in our hearts. This is the major reason that millions of mute professing Christians sit in the same pew every week for decades. Some feel stagnant, ossified, and stunted.  These beautiful and wonderful people spiritually grow very little, for they were not taught the doctrine of Christ, which are the teachings that the apostles embraced. The people in the pews hear sermons about Christ, but not messages from Christ.

At best, Christ’s teachings are not presented as a purposeful curriculum. Preachers accidentally hint around at a biblical theme, but precious few know where Christ wants us to go and how to get there. And yet, it is right there in the scriptures. His teachings are right there, written down in the Bible, but one needs the key to gain “entrance…into the everlasting kingdom of our Lord and savior Jesus Christ (Yahshua the Messiah). His doctrine is plainly laid out for us (Heb. 6: 1-2).

Millions of Christians have read the apostles’ doctrine, but without the compass pointing to God’s purpose, the knowledge of God becomes just another nice story, another promise of going to heaven, escaping the woes of this earth. Escaping hell and going to heaven—is that all there is?

No. Christ has promised that “few there be to find this way of truth.” That means that few will be seeking the “high calling of God in Christ.” A few will learn the apostles’ doctrine like the early apostles did. And these few in our day will do the “greater works” that Christ promised some of us will do. They are the remnant; they are the first fruits.

For there is a stark distinction between those on the milk of the word and those on the strong meat of the word. Those desiring the milk are little children spiritually; those on meat will grow strong and brave and will do the same mighty works that Christ did. That is His promise. And by doing what He did, God fulfills His purpose of reproducing Himself. But the strong meat can only be digested by those who have the strong foundation in the apostles’ doctrine. Only those who have studied and shared the milk of the word with the young ones coming into the body will grow into fathers of the faith like the apostle Paul. The apostles’ doctrine is Christ’s pure teachings without the old leaven, which is the error-filled doctrines of the Pharisees and Sadducees and Herod.

So, yes, Christ’s teachings are important. They are the yellow brick road leading to us fulfilling our very purpose in being here on earth, which is to glorify God. But here is an example of just how humble and great our God is. He will glorify us by filling us up with Himself first, and in so doing, He is glorified. When He will have multiplied Himself in us, then He will be glorified. You talk about giving and thinking of others. What Love!

In God’s Mind It Is Already Done

The key to implementing every step in our spiritual growth is this: In God’s mind and heart, it is already done. His work and purpose is already finished in us. He sees us that way, as already having all of His holy attributes. For He “calls those things which be not as though they were” (Rom. 4: 17). That is a good description of His faith in Himself and in us. Through His apostles and prophets, He has spoken prophecy about us. And He believes His own word concerning us and sees it as accomplished. That is His faith, which now is our faith since He now lives within us.

Take repentance from sin. Nobody wants to talk about that concept. Most preachers equate it to feeling sorry for the bad things that they have done. But that is “godly sorrow which leads us to repentance.” Feeling sorry is good but it is not repentance. Repentance from sin happens when we surrender our old heart, our old nature, our old self and let it die with Christ on the cross. “And he that is dead is freed from sin. Feeling conviction and sorrow and walking the aisle and joining the church does not constitute repentance from sin. For past sins keep rearing their ugly heads in a person’s mind. There is a remembering of sins, and one’s conscience bothers them, and they feel guilty and defeated again. It is only the blood of Christ that can “purge your conscience from dead works to serve the living God.” These dead works are produced by a sinful old nature.

But here is the astounding thing. Our old sinful self, in God’s eyes, is already dead. He is just waiting for His people to believe it. He has reckoned our old nature dead, and He considers us alive unto Him. What we must do is believe it in faith, confess it with our mouth that the Father has raised Christ from the dead, and we then may begin to “walk in a newness of life.” Knowing this, that our old man is crucified with Him…Rom. 6: 6.

This walk is a huge part of the first two of the apostles’ doctrine: repentance from dead works and faith toward God. The apostles’ doctrine is not only important, but also vital in us fulfilling our destiny here on earth.  Kenneth Wayne Hancock

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Faith Is Believing What God Believes

We have been sent into this world by Christ to bear witness to the truth (John 17: 18). A group of young Christians asks us to speak truth to them. What would we tell them? We should be speaking to them the exact same message that Christ spoke, not a message about Christ. Big difference. In fact, Christ’s very Spirit should be speaking through us to that group of young hungry seekers of God. But what would Christ say? Rather, what should He tell them through us?

  1. Christ spoke of God’s eternal purpose, which is this: God is reproducing Himself. He is agape love, and He intends to multiply Himself throughout all eternity.
  2. He spoke of His plan to accomplish this purpose. He created human beings to be the medium by which He would accomplish this magnificent purpose. God plants His Seed/Son in our hearts, and that seed of Love grows into His Kingdom of Love and Righteousness, till “God be all in all.”
  3. His plan is laid out in the Christ’s teachings.
  4. His teachings are His doctrine (Heb. 6: 1-2)
  5. The early apostles made it their doctrine.
  6. And the early church continued steadfastly in the apostles’ doctrine
  7. Repentance from dead works is the first teaching. Sin is the breaking of the 10 Com. law (I John 3: 4). To repent one reckons their old self dead on the cross with Christ, buried with Christ. Then belief in His resurrection in us raises us up in a newness of life (Rom. 6: 1-12).
  8. The rest of the apostles’ doctrine is faith toward God, baptisms, laying on of hands, resurrection of the dead, eternal judgement, and perfection.
  9. We receive the faith of the Son of God when we believe.

Faith, the Second Apostles’ Doctrine

The early church were of one mind and one accord. And one faith. God’s faith. Like Paul said, “The life I now live in the flesh, I live by the faith of the Son of God…”

It is all about belief—“faith” and “belief” are translated from the same Greek word. They both mean believing having not seen. But when we think of “faith” we immediately think about our faith in God. What we need to see is that we are dead and our life now is His life; our faith now is His faith, His belief in Himself, and His belief that we are in a right state with Him.

For it is God’s faith in Himself that moves mountains. “With God all things are possible.” His faith in His own intelligence and power is the foundation of His divine nature that He has imparted to us. We are to add to this faith other facets of His nature that now resides in us. God believed in His own abilities and power before He saw the fruit produced in us according to His plan of Sonship.

It Is All About the Seed

Like every spring, we get the urge to plant a seed in the garden. We take a seed and place it in the broken earth. We do this by faith, by believing that it will spring to life and shoot up and grow and finally bear fruit. We believe that this tiny seed will bear fruit before we ever plant it.

This is like God’s faith. He believes in His Seed, His Son. He has faith that His plan will work; He knows that it will, for He has spoken it, and His word is that Seed, and it always comes up and grows comes to pass.

That’s the faith we now walk in! It is not our puny faith that we have to muster up out of our depleted reserves. It is His faith! It is all about believing what He believes! Hey, He believes in His Spirit that He has placed now in us. Now we can say, “It is no longer I that lives but Christ that lives in me.” It is the Son’s faith that we live by now! (Gal. 2: 20).

I believe that this is what those young Christians need to hear. Not some tired, old, worn out platitudes about Christ, used in the 19th  and 20th Centuries. Yesterday’s light was a needed candle back then. But now Christ has arisen in our hearts with a new powerful light that illuminates our path to the entrance “into the everlasting kingdom of our” God (II Pet. 1: 4-11). Remember that yesterday’s manna is of no use today. Christ is now giving “the hidden manna” to the over comers (Ex. 16: 14-21; Rev. 2: 17).

Kenneth Wayne Hancock

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Filed under additions to our faith, agape, apostles' doctrine, baptism, belief, cross, crucified with Christ, death, death of self, elect, eternal purpose, faith, glorification, kingdom of God, light, Love from Above, manifestation of the sons of God, repentance

Faults Are Not Sins

At this point, some may be asking, Why the emphasis on the repentance doctrine? Let’s get on to the resurrection of the dead and healings and miracles.

This we will do, but to get to the growth where God would entrust us with His power to heal and raise the dead like the early apostles, we must do what they did, study what they studied, learn what they learned, and suffer what they suffered. To get to the 100 fold growth, we must “continue steadfastly in the apostles’ doctrine,” the first of which is “repentance from dead works.” Then we will have fellowship like they had, and the breaking of the bread of life, and prayers, and fear, “and many wonders and signs were done by the apostles.” The miracles came after they continued in the doctrine of  Christ.  (Acts 2: 42-47). This is after they repented and were baptized (v. 38-41).

Repentance is the cornerstone of Christ’s doctrine. He came preaching, “Repent, for the kingdom of God is at hand.” He also said, “Except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish.” No getting around it. His remnant/elect, the sons and daughters of God, His princes and princesses—they will know these doctrines backwards and forwards. They must know them and do them, for they are pre-destined to sit on thrones with Christ, judging the nations. If you and I want this, if we really desire to go all the way with Christ, then we must pay the price of admission and completion. And it costs a lot—like everything. Law school’s a must for lawyers. Medical school’s a must for physicians. And the school of the prophets is a must for God’s future apostles, prophets, evangelists, pastors, and teachers. And a part of our basic education is understanding the difference between sins and faults.

Back to the Greek

“Sin” and “fault” are two different words in the Greek. The word “sin” is translated from the word harmatia (G266), 172 times. The word paraptoma (G3900) is translated “fault, trespass, offense, fall.” We see here two distinct words for two different kinds of offenses.

We begin our new spiritual growth cycle after receiving Christ’s Spirit in our hearts. This germination and growth begins by faith. We begin as little children with the new nature from God. And as in the natural, even though little children are sincere and delightful at times, they lack maturity. They mimic the spirit around them, be it good or bad. They are not perfect, and neither are we in our new spiritual walk with God. Our old sin nature is gone, thanks be unto God, but we are left with the task of repenting of our shortcomings. Our minds must be renewed and re-programmed through study of His word.

Repentance from Sins and Faults—There Is a Huge Difference

Not knowing the difference between sins and faults breeds doubts and fears in a Christian’s mind. Some will wonder and ask themselves, “Did I just sin? I feel bad about what I did. Was it  a sin?” The problem is that many followers of Christ mistake their faults for sins. This lack of knowledge causes them to forever keep themselves in chains of self-condemnation, and this stunts their growth in Christ. Many become discouraged. But to grow into the “fullness of Christ,” we must understand what faults are and how they differ from sins.

Sins are the fruit of our original sin nature we are born with. A sin is an action that breaks the Ten Commandments. As stated above, when we surrender our old nature to the death on the cross with Christ, our old sin nature dies along with the sin it produced. We become free because “he that is dead is free from sin.” Sin does not control us anymore In God’s eyes we are His sinless little children; He imputes His new righteous nature to us as we reckon it done by faith. Simply amazing faith and power (Rom. 6: 1-12)!

Delineating the Difference between Sins and Faults

Through belief in His resurrection, we receive a new nature, a law-abiding one of love. However, many imperfections in our character and make-up remain. God waves no magic wand for us. There is no “Poof!” that instantly transforms us into being perfect Christians.

We have many habits of thought and actions that are not pleasing to God. Before coming to Christ and His cross, we had our own thoughts that were programmed by the world and its thought-giver, the devil. Our old life was filled with habits of thinking and actions that still exist after our initial repentance from sin. And most of these thoughts and beliefs are in error. These make up the old leaven that must be purged after we come to Christ and are born again.

We are not talking about theft, adultery, false god worship, murder, stealing, hatred, coveting, etc. These are sins of the old nature that are repented of when we die with Christ on His cross. But after the sins are dead and gone, we still have many faults, shortcomings, trespasses and imperfections to be repented of. Note: If you still hate, steal, commit adultery, covet, then you still have the old nature and need to take it to the cross and surrender it to death.

The Divine Nature

The Spirit of Christ in Peter tells us that we are to grow in God in order to produce powerful fruit. We are called unto glory. But first, we are to partake of His “divine nature.” God has promised us “great and precious” things. But before this happens we lack certain aspects of His nature. As we begin walking in His footsteps, we fall short. We now have a new heart, but our lack of maturity in Christ produces trespasses and faults.

Peter says we need to add aspects of God’s “divine nature” to the faith we now walk in: virtue, knowledge, temperance, patience, godliness, brotherly kindness, and agape love (translated “charity”). He says that these things operating in us will insure that we will be fruitful in the knowledge of God. With God’s divine nature within us, we will “make our calling and election sure.” These additions to our faith will also illuminate “an entrance…into the everlasting kingdom” of Christ (II Pet. 1: 4-11). Not having these seven additions to the faith operating in our Christian life is a fault, not a sin. For we cannot begin to add them until the sin nature is gone.

Lack of Patience

Some have said that losing patience with another person is a sin. But “patience” is an attribute of God’s nature. It is His patience that we must add. As new Christians we are still running on our old concept of patience, and we will run out of it eventually. “Losing patience” is a fault, not a sin. God looks on the intent of the heart. In this example we see someone who intended to be Christ-like, but there is a lack of God’s nature. There’s a lack of maturity. God’s patience has not been added to this new Christian’s nature.

As said before, spiritual growth does not happen with a snap of the finger, mystically and magically. Receiving God’s patience into our being comes with an overcoming on our part, for “tribulation worketh patience.” Patience is endurance, and going through trials develops godly patience.

Here’s an example of the difference between a sin and a fault. Christ magnified the law when He taught on this commandment: “Thou shalt not kill.” [“Kill” here is better translated “murder.”] The Spirit taught that the spiritual root of murder is hate. “And he who hates his brother is a murderer” (I John 3: 15). We as Christians have passed from darkness to the light of love, and we no longer hate anyone. We may become impatient with someone in our dealings with them. But this is not a sin; it is a fault. For the Spirit has not grown up in us to fully express the 100 fold love and patience of the Father. But we are headed that way in our growth. Big difference.

Finally, sin is a “nature” thing. It is in mankind’s original nature to break the Ten Commandments. That is why it is said that if you are guilty of one of the commandments, you are guilty of them all. To break them all is in that nature. But God has made a way to put to death our first sin nature. He replaces it with the “new man,” the spiritual nature that sins no more. But we lack maturity and still have faults and shortcomings to be repented of.

Why This Lesson Is Important

If a Christian believes that faults are sins, he will not believe this scripture: “Whosoever is born of God does not commit sin; for his seed remaineth in him: and he cannot sin, because he is born of God” (I John 3: 9). He will say to himself, “I am born again and I sin.” And that Christian will look at his fault and call it a sin, and he will reject this passage because of it. And he will miss this precious truth. And his growth in Christ will be stunted.    Kenneth Wayne Hancock

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Filed under additions to our faith, apostles' doctrine, belief, children of God, faith, love, repentance, sin, sons and daughters of God, spiritual growth, Spiritual Life Cycle