Category Archives: crucified with Christ

Renewing Our Minds Changes Us

To renew our mind—how do we do it? We do it by adding Christ’s divine thoughts to our faith.

Peter tells us to “gird up the loins of your mind” (I Peter 1:13). The first item of the armor of God is to stand, “having your loins girt about with truth” (Eph. 6:14). Every Christian knows that the truth is in Christ. But the young Christian [and the old as well] has thoughts and concepts about Christ that are not Christ’s thoughts.

The apostles were writing to Christians who evidently needed to have their concepts of Christ’s gospel straightened out. Or they would not have been receiving those letters to the churches. It is the same today. The spiritual battleground is in the mind. We are led by our thoughts.

And God has given us the power to chase negative thoughts away and banish false concepts out of our minds. When our thinking has been purged and cleansed, then we will have been transformed, or changed. How is one transformed? “And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove [discern, reckon as genuine] what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God” (Rom. 12:2). We will be able to know what God’s perfect will is and how to walk in it. But our minds must be free from false doctrines. That is how the renewal begins.

Definition of Renew

To renew means “to make new again.” You mean, our minds were new once upon a time, and then they got sullied, and now they await a cleansing and a restoration to the purity they once held?

Could this “renewing of our minds” entail us thinking what Christ thought? We are admonished to let Christ’s mind be in us (Phil. 2:5). Think like Christ thinks. Let Christ’s mind be in you. You mean we must allow it to reside in us? We do this by moving out our old thoughts to make room for the new thoughts, which are Christ’s thoughts, thoughts that require faith/belief.

So what did he think about?  He thought of the invisible heavenly things, not the things consumed by the five senses. “Take no thought for your life,” your visible earthly life (Matt. 6:25-31). He was submissive to the father in all things and taught us to do the same. In so doing, he was humble, giving glory and praise to the Father.

We must “let” His mind take over our mind. To do this we must know the plan and purpose of God. Christ always said, “I must be about my Father’s business” (Luke 2:49). He always did those things that pleased the Father.

Knowing the true plan and purpose of God is a big chore, but what is bigger is eliminating the old desires we had for our lives– our plans and schemes, our dreams for our own little futures. And they are little “compared to the glory that shall be revealed in us.”  Our old lives are but “dung” compared to eternally being at His side.

The Cross

Christ always taught His followers to repent from sin. This is the first step in getting rid of the false concepts about Christ. It is the cross that puts to death our old sinful selves, along with its desires, and enables us to “be raised to walk in a newness of life.” This shows us where our old thoughts were leading us and where the thoughts of God now bid us come.

First, we must get to that place of submission. We must leave the old life at the cross and take on Christ’s mission, which is establishing His Kingdom of love and righteousness throughout the earth and sharing his throne with his elect. That takes much study and prayer.

All this is for those human beings who renew their minds with Christ’s thoughts and are changed from selfish sinners into compassionate monarchs, soon ruling with Christ in His Kingdom right here upon earth. “To him that overcomes will I grant to sit with me in my throne…” (Rev. 3:21).

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The “Deep Things of God”—Knowledge That Will Change Your Life

We are commanded, “Add to your faith.” The seven additions to the faith are “the deep things of God.” Knowledge is one of those deep things.

Man’s wisdom teaches us that knowledge comes as we get to know God better. But knowledge is not us knowing him or us knowing about him. It’s what he alone knows. It is proprietary knowledge—God being the Proprietor. For knowledge is an attribute of God. Knowledge emanates out of Him–not us. Knowledge is part of his “divine nature.”

And God has hidden His knowledge and wisdom from the eyes of natural man. The disciples inquired of Christ about the hidden knowledge. And He responded, “The knowledge of the secrets of the Kingdom of heaven has been given to you, but not to them” (Matt. 13:11 NIV).

Example of Hidden Knowledge

The irony is rich. We were drowning in sin, and we reached for the lifeline. But we found that God’s lifeline does not save our old way of living; it puts it to death. His lifeline is the cross. Being crucified with Christ is God’s way of putting to death our old selfish heart. Then we are buried with Him, and then we are resurrected with Him by believing in Christ’s resurrection (Rom. 6:6-12). This is part of the hidden wisdom. It is a secret that natural man’s wisdom does not comprehend.

By this belief, we receive the Spirit of God into our hearts. Our old sinful life is dead and gone, whether we feel it or not. As we seek Him and grow, the Spirit now within us seeks and searches and shares with us the “deep things of God” (1 Cor. 2:6-16).

The knowledge to be added to our faith is an attribute of the Spirit of God. It can only be attained through a gift from God to us; only the Spirit can teach us His knowledge. It is in the heart of God. It is the kind of knowledge that only God has. It’s the knowledge that is of Him and by Him and for Him, to be channeled through us out into the world.

The Spiritual World Contains Secrets and Mysteries

His divine nature is painted in secrets and mysteries, to be meted out to those who seek Him with all their heart. Only God can give his own secrets and mysteries and knowledge to us. Therefore, we must ask Him for wisdom and knowledge. It is His to give. He is the Great Giver of His own secrets of hidden wisdom. And He “has freely given us all things” (Rom. 8:32).

To be in reverential awe of Yahweh is the first step in attaining knowledge. “The fear of Yahweh is the beginning of knowledge” (Prov. 1:7). Fearing Him, being in awe of Him—that is the start of knowledge and wisdom. When His omnipotence floods the heart and mind, then we begin to know Him and the power that He wields in His universe.

It Is All God’s Doing

Comprehending all this is having “the mind of Christ.” Paul speaks of “the wisdom of God in a mystery,” a “hidden wisdom.” God ordained it so. He ordered His plan to unfold in the very beginning. He planned it that there would be a wisdom and knowledge hidden from the eyes of the unregenerated ones. And God ordained the hidden wisdom, revealed along the way, as steps toward our glorification. “But we speak the wisdom of God in a mystery, even the hidden wisdom, which God ordained before the world unto our glory” (1 Cor. 2:7).

He planned everything—all the secrets and mysteries—to bring us into a glorified state. He ordered it; it was part of His plan. Our glorification is His way to reproduce Himself. He does it by sharing Himself. That is what agape Love does. It shares His glory with us. After all, He did say that man is the “glory of God” (I Cor. 11:7).

The Crucifixion—Hidden Knowledge

The crucifixion of Christ is an example of this “hidden wisdom,” which leads to our glory, culminating in us sitting with Him on His throne. The rulers of this world system did not know the “hidden wisdom.” Paul wrote, “We declare God’s wisdom, a mystery that has been hidden and that God destined for our glory before time began. None of the rulers of this age understood it, for if they had, they would not have crucified the Lord of glory” (1 Cor. 2:7-8).

This is secret knowledge that is only attained by the Spirit revealing it to us. Natural man cannot give us secret wisdom; only God can give it. Millions of souls all over the earth are “destroyed for lack of  knowledge” (Hosea 4:6).

We are talking about knowing the mind of Christ (1 Cor. 2:16). This knowledge is indispensable, for we must know His thoughts before the Spirit will enable us to act according to that knowledge. Knowing comes before doing.

There is only one way for us to know the secret, hidden wisdom, and that is for the Spirit to reveal His knowledge to us (v. 10). Natural man’s eye, ear and heart cannot see, hear, nor feel the secret things and blessings that “God has prepared for them that love him (v. 9).

Once we receive the Spirit, then He will begin to “search all things, yea, the deep things God” in and through us! I repeat. The Spirit of God inside of us will search. The Spirit will be the driving force that leads us in our search for His truth. The hidden wisdom was this: God used hate and evil, that led to murder, to accomplish the crucifixion. It was the very thing that had to take place on the very day of Passover. The Pharisees and the Romans were serving God’s purposes, trying to wipe out the Savior through hateful murder. Their sin took the Savior’s human life but enabled the resurrection to become our lifegiving source of power. We will see that the “deep things of God” help us grow into powerhouses that bear much fruit for the King. Being in awe of Him will lead us into much more hidden knowledge and wisdom.

What Prevents Us from Going Deeper?

Later in chapter 3, Paul explains how he could not go further into the deep things of God with them. He could not teach them the “meat of the word” because they were “carnal” or worldly (3:2). And why were they worldly? Because of their “envying, strife, and divisions.” Think denominations and their thoughts of being the only true church. Christ is not divided. But that is for another time…

Kenneth Wayne Hancock

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Filed under additions to our faith, cross, crucified with Christ, death of self, false doctrines, glorification, knowledge, mind of Christ, resurrection, spiritual growth, wisdom, Yahweh

Christ Says, “Repent!” Repent from What? “Sin.” How Do I Do That?

Imagine yourself in a small town, and Christ Himself began to preach in the town square. His message would be the same: “Repent, for the Kingdom of heaven is at hand.”

Now some in the crowd would think that they would need to quit drinking beer on Friday night and go to church with their girlfriend Sunday morning. Some would take his short message to mean that they must straighten up. And some would take the word “repent” a little deeper to mean stop lying and cheating and doing bad things.

The latter is a step in the right direction, but it goes much deeper–way down into the selfish heart of the hearer of Christ’s command, “Repent.” Repent from what? Repent from sin. But it is difficult to repent from sin when there are so many different definitions of it. What does the Bible say?

Sin Defined

What is sin?  Sin is the breaking of the law.  Whosoever committeth sin transgresseth also the law: for sin is the transgression of the law. I John 3:4. “But which law?” someone will ask. There are hundreds of laws in the Bible and hundreds more made by man.  Which law is John talking about?  It is the Ten Commandments. How can we be sure?  Paul clears up the matter irrefutably.  I had not known sin, but by the law: for I had not known lust, except the law had said, Thou shalt not covet. Romans 7:7. “Thou shalt not covet” is one of the Ten Commandments.  Coveting or desiring your neighbor’s possessions is prohibited in the Ten Commandments, given to Moses on Mt. Sinai.  Therefore, sin is  breaking one of the Ten Commandments.

And we have all broken them.  “All have sinned and have come short of the glory of God.”  Our old carnal fleshly nature is corrupt and sinful and depraved.  A person cannot please God if they are led around by its selfish ways.  Paul flashes back to this sordid state in Romans 7, letting the reader know that someone out there does understand what it means to be a slave to the sinful nature.  When we were in the flesh…You mean when you were in that old carnal nature?  You mean, Paul, that you are not now in the flesh?  …the motions of sins, which were by the law, did work in our members to bring forth fruit unto death. Romans 7:5. For when we were controlled by the sinful nature, the sinful passions aroused by the law were at work in our bodies, so that we bore fruit for death. Romans 7:5, NIV. He goes on in that chapter to relate the utter confusion and frustration that a sinner feels when they want to do good, but the sin within them prevents them from being the righteous person they really desire to be.

Preachers for ages have erroneously taught that Paul was talking about his sinful present state at the time of the writing of the letter to the Romans.  No!  The apostle Paul had seen  the  risen Savior, had been on at least two missionary journeys over the space of twenty-four years, had written much of the New Testament, had raised the dead, healed the sick, and cleansed the lepers—no, we had better get this right—Paul in Romans 7 was not speaking about himself in 57 A.D!  He was flashing back to that time when he was a slave to sin.  He was sharing in the sinner’s sad plight, with great empathy.  He was feeling a sinner’s seemingly hopeless condition without the Savior.  He is explaining in Romans 7:14-24 just how hellish it was to be in the bondage to sin.  He has flashed back and writes in the present tense for the reader to feel the immediacy of the horrendous bondage the sinner is in.  He mentions what it was like being in bondage to sin, a slave to sin and sinning twenty-four years earlier.  The thing that he hates to do (sin) is the thing he does.  In this sinful state he has no power in and of himself to stop sinning, even though he knows that it is wrong and wants to stop it.  That is bondage; that is a slave to the sinful nature.

But just before Paul’s description of a sinner caught in the bondage to sin, he contrasts two states of being.  When we were in the flesh, the motions of sins which were by the law, did work in our members to bring forth fruit unto death.  But now we are delivered from the law…Romans 7:5-6. He contrasts the two states. “When we were” in bondage to sin, and “now we are delivered”—these are the two contrasting conditions of a human being.  One is before the Spirit of God comes into a life, and the other is after.

Somebody wants to tell me, “My pastor has never taught this.” And I’ll say to them, “Look, I’m just teaching what Paul taught. That is my job. Welcome aboard.”

Our Old Nature Must Die on the Cross

So how does one get out of the bondage of sin and sinning?  How do we deal with this sin problem in our lives?  The scriptures say that “He shall save His people from their sins.”  How does this happen?  Can we ever get in a “right” state with God?  What must we do?  There is only one thing to do with the carnal sinful self and that is to confess our depraved state, identify it with Christ on the cross, and let it die with Him, our sin sacrifice.  There is only one way for sin to be destroyed; it must be crucified.  But we cannot really do anything to bring this on.  It is a total work of God that has already been done—at the cross.  We cannot do anything to deserve this wonderful deliverance from this death caused by sin and sinning.  All He wants us to do is believe what He has already done to deliver us from the bondage of sin.

First, we must know this one thing: our old man, our old ego, our old self, our old nature, our old heart, our old carnal nature, the flesh, the depraved body of sin within us—it is put to death with the sacrificial Lamb.  Knowing this, that our old man is crucified with him, that the body of sin might be destroyed, that henceforth we should not serve sin. Romans 6:6.

This death is not a physical death, but it is a spiritual death. Paul did not say that our old sinful nature was going to be taken care of some day when we all get to heaven.  No!  He said that it is dead, already put to death on the cross! That is not a misprint or a mistranslation.  The sacrificial Lamb of God took our sins upon Him at the time of His death.  He was our scapegoat, as when the Levitical priest laid hands on the goat transferring the sins of the people onto it.  Christ died as a sinful lost man that day, for He “was made to be sin for us, who knew no sin that we may be made the righteousness of God in Him” (II Cor. 5:21).

He wants us to believe this—that our sinful nature died with Him on the cross, and that we were buried with Him, and that we were raised up with Him as well.  For if we have been planted together in the likeness of his death, we shall be also in the likeness of his resurrection. Romans 6:5.

Is this hard for us to believe?  Is it hard to have faith in this teaching?  Yet the elect will believe this word.  The others will fall as the children of Israel did through unbelief.  For you see that God is not asking us to do anything except believe what He has already done for us.  He first believed in His work in us long before we got here on this earth.

Repentance from sin is the first of Christ’s teachings/doctrines. It is the foundation upon which the rest of His teachings are laid. His sons and daughters will humble themselves and make the sacrifice.

To read much more on this topic, click here: Ebook: The Unveiling | Immortality Road (wordpress.com) .

{This is an excerpt from my book The Unveiling of the Sons of God. Order a copy; it is totally free with free shipping to my readers. Just send your mailing address to my email: wayneman5@hotmail.com Include your name and the title of the book.}  

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The Secrets in the 90% of the Verses They Don’t Teach

Preachers only teach a few Bible verses that support their company line.

But let’s face it: Everything we know about Christ is from words written down by a few of His followers. These disciples became apostles, sent forth to spread the good news of His Royal Government come to earth. Christians the world over count their words as the scriptures of truth, inspired by the Spirit of God.

Almost all denominations say that they believe the apostles’ words. They say that they go by every word of God found in the Bible. Yet each denomination uses very few of the apostles’ words, yet still claiming to have the whole truth of God.

Although many congregations are sincere, they still, in essence, are saying, “Join us, walk the aisle, be baptized, come to church, enjoy the fellowship, pay your tithes and offerings and you are in. You’re going to heaven.” They patchwork a few verses of the Bible, yet never dig deep into those very apostles’ words about Christ’s plan and purpose. Their sermons recount others’ interpretations. They are in a straitjacket, bound by doctrines based on 10% of the Bible.

But you won’t hear about how the cross puts sin to death in our lives. You won’t hear Romans 6 preached. Why? The people in the pews don’t want to hear it, and they might just leave and not come back when they do hear it. Roman 6 is about our crucifixion with Christ, our death, burial, and resurrection with Him. Can’t have a resurrection without a death. It is about the death of our old sinful self and our resurrection with Christ. These are somber, yet joyful words, but you won’t hear it preached.

Furthermore, you won’t hear the apostle John’s gospel, except for John 3:16 and maybe John 1:1. What about the rest of the Gospel of John? What holy mysteries await us in the 90% of the apostles’ words that they don’t teach?

What They Wrote

What did the apostles write down for us? They wrote about Christ’s Kingdom, which is the gospel, the good news (Mark 1:14). They recorded Christ’s words about the Kingdom in parables, which contain the mysteries of God “which have been kept secret from the foundation of the world” (Matt. 13:35). They wrote about the way to become like Christ, which is the “riches of the glory of this mystery…Christ in you, the hope of glory” (Col.1:27).

They wrote about God’s eternal purpose: the reproduction of Himself–in us! They wrote about God’s plan to fulfill His purpose. And a portion of His plan is presented in one of His new commandments: “Add to your faith” certain attributes of God’s divine nature, hence the title of this book, The Additions to the Faith.

These additions have been written down plainly in the Bible for us by none other than the apostle Peter in his second letter to us. Peter walked with Christ. He was privy to many of Christ’s secrets and mysteries. But, alas, you won’t hear about those mysteries in church on Sunday because those mysteries are hidden, to be revealed to those whom God has chosen for that honor. The mysteries that Peter speaks of are contained in the 90% of the writings not taught today.

The Additions to the Faith explains Peter’s words as to what those additions are and how they work together to help His elect grow spiritually. When all seven are added, Christ’s Spirit will be living in us fully. Thus, fulfilling the Father’s eternal purpose.  

This and much more are contained in the 90% of the verses that they don’t teach. Christ said that the Spirit of Truth “will guide you into all truth” (John 16:13). He will show us what is in the 90%.

[This is part of the Introduction of my new book due out next year. Thought I would share it with you. It is extremely important knowledge for those called to bear “much fruit.” Don’t be dismayed that you have not heard some of these things. They are found in the 90% of the verses I was talking about, and Yahweh is revealing more about them each day.]

Be sure to order my previous books, free with free shipping, found here: Ordering My Free Books in Paperback | Immortality Road (wordpress.com)

Kenneth Wayne Hancock

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Filed under additions to our faith, Bible, church, cross, crucified with Christ, death of self

I Have Chosen You

Chosen to Be Free from Sin

As Christians, God has chosen us “to proclaim liberty to the captives and the opening of the prison to them that are bound” (Isa. 61:1). That is our goal.

“I have chosen you.” These are Christ’s very words. And we need to decide right now if we believe these words. If we do not believe them, then, like in The Matrix, we can go back to the inevitable, heart-sickening drone of our old lives, never to sniff the sweet air of freedom…

Somebody just squeaked up in back. “I am already free,” they say quite indignantly.

Really? Free? Everybody quotes John 8:32: “You shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.” But very few know what the “truth” is or how it frees you. Everybody seems to have their own “truth” and their own definition of “free.” So, I must ask: Free from what exactly? What was Christ talking about here?

He answers our questions two verses later. “Whosoever commits sin is the slave of sin” (8:34). [Sin is breaking the Ten Commandment law [1 John 3:4]. He who sins is the slave; he is the one who is not free. He is the one who obeys the old sinful nature’s commands.

The truth that makes us free from sin  

Christ is talking about being made free from sin and sinning. Sin is the slave master of him who sins. And, “No man can serve two masters…” (Matt. 6:24).  It is the truth that shall make them free.

So, what is the truth that frees someone from sinning? Christ said, “I am the way, the truth, and the life” (John 14:6). He is the Truth, the Deliverer and Savior, and He has provided the way to put an end to sin in a person’s life, thereby making them free. That is good information. But how does Christ make us free from sin?

Through either ignorant or uninformed preachers and pastors, the church has foolishly perverted the truth that will deliver the sinner.  Preachers proclaim that they “sin every day”! They say, “I am a sinner saved by grace.” And, sure enough, they continue sinning. Worse yet, they teach their congregations that they will always sin. According to Christ’s words, which they claim to go by every word, they are telling them that they will always be in bondage to sin, that they will always be a slave.

Pastors need to teach their flocks this truth

Here is the truth that “makes us free,” written down for us by our apostle Paul: “For we know that our old self was crucified with Him so that the body of sin might be done away with, that we should no longer be slaves to sin—because anyone who has died has been freed from sin (Romans 6:6-7  NIV).

When Christ died, our old self died! When He was buried, our old self was buried. And when He was raised from the dead, so were we. And Christ gave us a new heart, a heart that is free. We are freed from sin and sinning, folks! It is already done; we just need to believe it! This truth will transform your life. It will slay the old dragon Sin and place Christ seated on the throne of your heart. This is the truth that Christ was talking about, the truth that makes us free! “Now if we be dead with Christ, we believe that we shall also live with him” (v. 8).

The Missing Ingredient

What is the missing ingredient that makes all this happen? It is faith. Belief. Believing without concrete visible evidence. It is believing His word when He says that our old sinful life is dead and gone. Our belief starts when we reckon it so. We must reckon our old spiritual nature dead. This is not a natural death of the earthly body. “Reckon you also yourselves to be dead indeed unto sin, but alive unto God through Jesus Christ our Lord” (Rom. 6:11).

To complete our initial spiritual transformation, we count (reckon) ourselves to be “buried with him in baptism, wherein also you are risen with Him through the faith of the operation of God, who has raised Him from the dead” (Colossians 2:12). HalleluYah!

This is the truth! But they will not believe this truth that frees them from sin and sinning. They do not believe that anyone can do what Christ and his apostles say we can do! They don’t understand that it is the Spirit of Christ that lives within us now. We could not walk a righteous life before. Now it is Christ who lives within us. This is repentance from sin, the first of the seven doctrines of Christ and His apostles. [Order my book The Apostles’ Doctrine, free with free shipping. You need it. It gives much more information. Info here: https://immortalityroad.wordpress.com/donate ].

Oh, that the pastors and preachers all over the world could get this message! Then they could free the precious members of their congregations, who are slaves and don’t even know it.

But a few will respond. Would you help me get this message out to a preacher or pastor or someone hungering for the truth—truth that will make them free from sin? You can share this article with anyone and everyone on any platform. Let us become the “fishers of men” by casting the truth out into the sea of mankind, thus giving the people a chance at freedom.

I’m talking about freeing the slaves with the truth. The truth is Christ’s life now residing in our hearts. There’s no greater calling than to be used by Christ to free the captives.

“I have chosen you.” He has chosen you to share the truth that will make the people free from sin. And he has “ordained (appointed) you, that you should go and bring forth fruit, and that your fruit should remain” (John 15:16).

What kind of fruit is He talking about? It is the good fruit that we bear after our cross and resurrection experience. (Matthew 7: 18).

I have chosen you and appointed you to bear fruit”

Understanding His message in Romans 6 is believing Him when He declares, “I have chosen you.” His chosen ones are not slaves to sin. They have been made free by knowing the truth of Christ’s death, burial and resurrection in us.

One caveat: The people do not believe they are slaves to sin, and they will fight you all the way. But they are really fighting Christ. So, “do not be dismayed at their faces”.

Kenneth Wayne Hancock

[What do you believe Romans 6 to mean? What are your thoughts about the truth that Christ spoke of? Make a comment, share and hit that like button if you appreciate the content.]

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Chasing Your First Experience with Christ

Many young Christians get entangled in the trappings of the first flush of Christian love that they experience. Christ’s amazing, selfless love many times overpowers them. They experience tremendous joy and love. And then, a bit later, the rush of that first, fine feeling of the love from above subsides and seemingly leaves them.

Instead of seeking more of His plan and purpose and seeking the “unsearchable riches of Christ,” the babe in Christ stays there in that congregation or circle, glued to a belief that if they stay right there, the Spirit will return and give them that same feeling again, just like what happened before. It is as if they are a prisoner of their own experience with God; it is just the first step.

I am not putting anyone down here. I speak from personal experience. A babe in Christ is like the thrill seeker going after that first high. But that first experience with God is when He calls us. The second will not be like the first. They don’t realize that spiritually young children of God are mostly alive to what they can receive of the Father. It is not about us feeling good. It is about His Spirit growing in us and manifesting His love through us. The rest of the journey is about how God works out His growth within us

In the above scenario, we see a picture of a child of God, a “babe in Christ.” They are held in the “play pen” of the music and activities of the church house or the study group. The pastors and teachers do not feed them with “the sincere milk of the word that they may grow thereby.” They learn about Christ having existed and some of the things that He did. They are not taught about how His Spirit grows and lives in us. They are not taught the “cross experience” (Romans 6) whereby we are crucified with Christ, which allows our old sinful nature to perish through belief in Christ’s death and resurrection. This is the seed beginning of His growth in us. And without this knowledge, “babes in Christ” will wither on the vine. Their pastors and teachers will be held accountable.

God wants us all to grow, and we cannot grow like He wants us to grow spiritually if we persist in trying to recapture those first few experiences that God called us with. Paul said that we must leave them in order to grow to full potential. “But this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before, I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus” (Phil. 3: 13-14). The “high calling” is not being a child of God; it is becoming a manifested son and daughter of the living God.  God wants us all to grow up spiritually and become like the early apostles and prophets.

Kenneth Wayne Hancock

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Banishing the Ghosts of Egos Past

In a moment of weakness, Christians will say that their “flesh” just took over, and, well, they sinned. This is not the whole spiritual story. It is old leaven teaching that is false and contradicts what the scriptures say. The Word says, “They that are Christ’s have crucified the flesh….” Crucified flesh is dead flesh. Let’s look a bit deeper into “flesh” because it is not our epidermis.

Sarx is the Greek word that is translated “flesh.” Thayer’s says that sarx is “the animal nature of old man Adam. It is the earthly nature of man apart from divine influence and, therefore, prone to sin…” It is the whole lost Adamic man, body and soul, that St. Paul refers to [See Gal. 5:16-19 and Rom. 6 & 8].

After we come to Christ and give our heart to Him, vestiges of the old nature, or rather ghostly memories of the old life come into our new life. It often is through a thought or an imagination or a reaction to certain stimuli that reminds us of what we used to be. These negative thoughts are whispered into our ears by a dark angel. Instead of standing on the word that says we have a new life where “all things have become new,” the spirits of egos past come back to haunt us to see if we really believe His word. They come by our adversary, the devil.

Temperance, then, is that aspect of the divine nature where we overcome these thoughts through cleaving to the truth of His word. The self-control that it brings is a result of the presence of the Spirit in our hearts. Temperance is the addition to the faith that dispels the vestiges of our old life. The truth as to what is taking place makes us free of the confusion.

If we “walk in the Spirit, we shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh.” The Spirit and the sarx, which is represented in vestiges of our old life, are opposites. The flesh is rooted in appeasing the old self. The Spirit is rooted in selflessness.

Many people teach that after receiving Christ, these two natures are at war in the Christian. This is not true. Again, many say that this old carnal nature still lives in a Christian. But the Bible says  just the opposite. “They that are Christ’s have crucified the flesh with its affections and lust.” (Gal. 5: 24). Furthermore, Christ said, “Either make the tree good, and his fruit good; or else make the tree corrupt, and his fruit corrupt: for the tree is known by his fruit” (Matt. 12:33).

The old carnal sinful nature has been put to death in Christ. We may not feel like it at times, but in God’s eyes our old nature is dead with Christ on the cross–whether we feel it or not. There are still some habits and faults, to be sure, that must be dealt with as we add temperance to the seedling of faith now planted in our hearts. These spiritual attributes come with maturity in Christ “till Christ be formed in us.”

The Spirit of God says that our “old man is crucified with Christ.” Just like the subjects of a natural king did in the days of old, we rather have surrendered to the truth expounded to us by the apostles and prophets of God–that God has in these last days “spoken to us by his Son,” the “Prince of peace.” God’s Son, the Christ, is “the heir of all things,” and by him God made the worlds (Heb. 1:2). Christ is the “King of kings.” He is the Logos, “the Word,” the Plan and Purpose of God. If we get in line with the King and His thoughts, then we will be right with God. It is His sovereign word that has spoken: Our old life has died on the cross with Christ. Period. Whether we accept the fact or not. Lost man becomes found when he believes it.

The Modern Ego

The angst of the modern ego erupts from this molten thought: There is Someone else who is over us, in charge of us, more powerful than us, more knowledgeable, wiser. In a word, we humans must come off our high horse and surrender to the King of the universe, known in English as Jesus Christ, but whose Hebrew name more closely resembles the Hebrew name Yahshua.

If you could boil down man’s spiritual problems, you would scrape off the bottom of the pot a spoonful of humility. Humility comes when we realize that there is a Supreme being who is immortal, and we are mere human beings, frail and, oh, so mortal. He knows all things, and it is our privilege to be privy to some of His secrets and mysteries. When He says that our old sinful nature, with all its selfish, egotistical carelessness, is dead, then it is gone. We need to believe Him! He says that our old nature died with Christ. In His eyes and in His mind, we have obtained from Him a new life. He has spoken His word about the matter. It has come to pass. Since He believes that we have a new life, then our new life in Him is the truth. Believing Him transforms us into the answer to all our problems. We start there in what His word says. Our feelings and imaginations must conform with what He says about our spiritual condition. Always remember this: Our feelings and emotions will let us down.

Our spiritual walk must show that we believe Him–that He is all powerful and is everything good in this world, and we are but “a vapor, that appears for a little time, and then vanishes away” (James 4:14). Without Him we are doomed to wander in our lowly estate, destined to inhabit the dusty chambers where no cry escapes. This should change mankind’s direction.

But what do most humans do? We strut and preen the feathers of our pride which has deluded us into thinking that our mean and insignificant thoughts surge from an intelligent mind. We believe that we are in control, that we are the captains of our own fates…until we first peer directly into Death’s empty eyes and realize that the time of our departure is imminent. This crushes and grinds our thoughts to powder, now mixed with tears, which makes a merciful balm-of-Gilead that anoints our eyes that we may finally see another face, the royal countenance of our King.

And what will we encounter? We will see Him as the sovereign King, first in all things, but humble and merciful to us His people. When our hearts truly look at Him this way as our King, then we will have come home like the prodigal son did, and He will deal with us as family. And He will say to us, “Well done thou good and faithful servant…”    Kenneth Wayne Hancock

[From Journal entry dated 12-9-12. This will be used in a chapter in my new book that I am working on now entitled The Additions to the Faith, to be published in 2023]

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Yahweh’s Joy Is Our Strength

On those dark and painful days of doubt, we sometimes wonder, “Where will I find the strength to carry on? I know that I am weak, and deep down I know that God is my source. But how does it happen? What is the spiritual mechanism that transfers His strength to us?

In the end, strength to weather the world’s “whips and scorns” does not come from us. We are the weak ones in the equation. We are the ones manufacturing a grim quizzical look toward our troubles. But this faux face of courage ultimately fades as God backs us into a tight corner to face down our personal enemies—Doubt and Unbelief. These culprits prevent us from getting strength. But God’s elect will overcome all doubts and unbelief.

The elect are those whom He has chosen to be the first to tap into and manifest the full strength of the Spirit. They are “a kind of first fruits.” They are the first humans that He will fully show His secrets to during this, the time of the end. They will learn how their old, weak, sinful nature dies on the cross with Christ. It has already died on the cross with Christ. “Knowing this, that our old man is crucified with Christ, that the body of sin might be destroyed that henceforth we should not serve sin” (Romans 6: 6). And then we are “buried with him in baptism, wherein also you are risen with him” by just believing that God has “raised him from the dead” (Colossians 2: 12: 13). Just believe in the Resurrection? Yes, both Christ’s and now yours, too !

Halleluyah! Faith! Belief! It’s God’s faith in His resurrection plan, not our puny faith. The truth is, there is only one faith—His (Eph. 4:5). It is the “faith of the Son of God.” That’s where we tap into His strength.

The Joy of Yahweh

The “joy of Yahweh is our strength.” At first glance, that sounds good. The joy of God. He has joy; we don’t, as seen in the previous scenario. And then we begin to see that when we are down, weak and without strength, we can look at our Creator’s joy, and we can wait and wait and, alas, somehow it is not becoming our joy. We do not get strengthened by this. We don’t understand about how to tap into His strength.

There’s a deep revelation here. Yes, the “joy of the LORD is our strength,” but it is when we realize and believe that it is no longer I that lives but Christ that lives in me (Gal. 2:20). We will rejoice with great joy when we believe this: We no longer live in our flesh bodies, which now is His body. We are dead and our “life is hid with Christ in God” (Col. 3:3). It is the Spirit that now lives in our earthly bodies. When we really believe this word of God, great joy will abound and gush through us like rivers of living waters of joy and with it, strength.

This is the revelation simply put: We are dead. We have, however, through belief in his resurrection, a new life living inside us. It is eternal life; it is Christ that lives within us now, even when we don’t feel like it.

We are now members of a spiritual body called “Christ.” We now live in Him, and he lives in us. We must not look at Him after the flesh, but after the Spirit, this spiritual way that the apostles saw Him. When we believe that it is no longer us that live, but Christ that lives in us, then we will see wonderful strength-giving things. When He has joy, we have joy because it is Him exulting in us. When He strengthens, we get strengthened because that’s what the one Spirit does; He shares His strength, along with many other things. We need only to ask the “great cloud of witnesses that have walked with Him. They will tell us.        Kenneth Wayne Hancock (from a Journal entry 12-7-21)

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Predestination Versus “Free Moral Agency”

Many are clamoring to know the secrets of the universe. They want to know the deep mysteries of life. Questions arise in the hearts of seekers and non-seekers alike: “What’s it all about? Why am I here? Is it just to live, die, and go to heaven? Is that all there is?

The answers to these questions are written down in a book found in hundreds of millions of homes around the world. But few crack the Holy Book. When they do open it, they try to understand it, but they get discouraged when comprehension does not come. It is as if God is saying: You do not realize that I “have poured out upon you the spirit of deep sleep, and have closed your eyes…And the vision of all is become unto you as the words of a book that is sealed” (Isa. 29:10-11). [There is your sealed book, the same one found in Revelation 5 and 6. Only Christ can loose the seals.]

The writings in the Bible are the words of the Spirit of God. Their purpose is to teach us the answers to the questions above. They explain God’s plan to accomplish His purpose to reproduce Himself in certain human beings.

God Is Sovereign

First, we must understand that there is a Creator/Supreme Being, and He is sovereign. He has created everything as it has pleased Him. We exist according to His pleasure. “You have created all things, and for your pleasure they are and were created” (Rev. 4:11). This earth and its inhabitants are not here by accident. We exist to please Him, whether we know Him or not.

He has a plan, and it pleases Him to use us to fulfill it. His plan to reproduce Himself (Love) in us will come to pass, whether we, mere specks of dust, believe it or not.

It pleased Him, the Scriptures of Truth say, to use certain humans in our dispensation to complete His purpose. It is like a movie director casting actors and extras for a film. He has a vision of what he is looking for in an actor. In fact, he has an actor in mind. Another actor may audition for the role, and may be accomplished, but the director has already chosen an actor since the conception of the film project. He makes his choice according to his pleasure. We get it; he is the director.

Chosen Ones

Likewise, God has known those whom He has chosen, before they were ever conceived in their mother’s womb. He has “foreordained them to be conformed to the image of His Son.” They are “predestinated” for this glory. He knew of us before we were born (Jer. 1:5). He knew we would respond to His pulling us out of the quagmire of sin and degradation. He foreknew us and gave us a destiny before time on earth began. And that destiny is to be just like His Son—same glorious likeness. Christ is the firstborn, and those whom He has chosen will be like Him (Rom. 8:29-30).

And so, He calls those whom He has predestinated. Then He justifies them, making them righteous in His sight. Those whom He has justified He then glorifies. Through believing this, we realize that God is for us! And with God for us, “who can be against us (v. 30-31)?

It is to us that He shall reveal the great mysteries of God. His chosen ones He calls His “elect.” He will crown them, and they will take a seat upon His throne at the establishment of His soon coming kingdom/government (Rev. 3:20). These are His elect, the first fruits, the remnant. Their destiny is to be His cadre of rulers who will have overcome all things—“after they have suffered a while.”

They Have No Choice

God is sovereign. His word is law. He says that He has chosen certain people to fulfill His purpose. Their destiny to be like Christ is sealed. It is pre-determined. They do not have a choice. It may seem to them that they have a choice when they are first called. But they do not. God’s will is stronger than the waves and currents in the sea of man. His desires for His elect are irrefutable. His goals for us are pre-destined to be ours. He is omnipotent.

If we are chosen for the 100 fold fruit bearing role, He will call us, making Himself real to us. If we become lazy and stay too long at the fair, He will create material and physical challenges that will make us industrious for His things.

Free Moral Agents?

But many followers of Christ have declared themselves to be “free moral agents.” Free? The Scriptures only speak of “being made free from sin” (Rom. 6:18). Christ said, “Whoever commits sin is a slave of sin” (John 8:34). But in Christ we are free from sin and sinning because “we are buried with him by baptism into death.” We then believe that Christ was raised from the dead and rose the third day. Through this belief, our sin nature dies on the cross with our sin sacrifice Christ, thus freeing us from sin. Then through His grace, we become “the slaves of righteousness.” We willingly lay down the old life and take on us the form of a servant [“slave” in the Greek and most English translations].

But, I agree that it seems like we humans are “free moral agents.” We have been told that we are “the captains of our fate,” that we choose our own destinies, that we call the shots. They have trained us to be good little existentialists, thrashing out our own destinies. They tell us that everything hinges on you. They say that your destiny remains to be seen, that it is still to be determined—by you.

There is one major problem with this existentialist philosophy. A Supreme Being does not enter the picture. Humans are left to flounder around trying to be their own god that can solve life’s bitter trials. But that is not what the Good Book declares. Not at all. Just the opposite, in fact.

“Free moral agency” has you being your own god, your own savior. But the written word of God declares Him to be omnipotent (all powerful), omniscient (all knowing), and omnipresent. Most of us Christians will agree that He has these qualities. If these qualities faithfully describe Him, then is it a big stretch to believe that He can and does choose whomsoever He wills, to bring them into His great house, making them vessels of honor?

Since He is all knowing of future things, His foreknowledge of our destinies secures them in His book of life. If we are predestined to be His elect, the ones that He has chosen to reveal His Son in—then He will put it in our hearts to seek Him out.

If you are still reading this and wanting more, then you have come to a clear pure stream, where God does not want your money, but rather your heart. It is a spiritual place far from material things and away from phony philosophies, theories and fears. It’s a place cradled in the bosom of Omnipotence and sheltered in His unfathomable omniscient Love.     Kenneth Wayne Hancock

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The Importance of the Apostles’ Doctrine–Again

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? REPORT THIS AD

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 are already finished in us. He sees us that way, as us 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. We must remember that there is only “one faith.”

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.

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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