Kuwait Prince becomes a Christian

Kuwait Prince becomes a Christian

HOW TO MEET JESUS PERSONALLY

Millions of Muslims Converting to Christianity

by Salem Voice

05 Jan, 2007

Pastor Paul Ciniraj and a believer from Islam

Islam, SVM News, 1 January, 2007: Millions of Muslim converts to Christianity celebrated Christmas throughout the world. According the reports of the various missionary organizations and news medias.

The Salem Voice Ministries evangelizing Muslims in India and many other Muslim nations. There are about 500 evangelists ministering among Muslims in different African, Middle East and Asian countries. A vast number of Muslims finding the truth and attaining Salvation of Jesus Christ day by day.

‘More Muslims converted to faith in Jesus Christ over the past decade than at any other time in human history. A spiritual revolution is underway throughout North Africa, the Middle East, and Central Asia. As a result, a record number of ex-Muslims are celebrating Christmas this year, despite intense persecution, assassinations, and widespread church bombings’. These are the words of Joel C. Rosenberg, the author of the New York Times best selling political thriller.

He said, he and his wife and kids were living in the Mideast for three months. During that time, he had the privilege of interviewing more than three dozen Arab and Iranian pastors and evangelical leaders throughout the region. The picture they paint is one of Christianity being dramatically resurrected in the region of its birth.

More than 10,000 Muslims accepted Jesus Christ as their personal saviour throughout India during the last year. The Bible Society of India publishing thousands of New Testaments for the Muslims with their own terminology and vocabulary in different Indian languages and Tazi language. Pastor Paul Ciniraj Mohamed, the Director of the Salem Voice Ministries is one of the key persons of the Bible translators of the Bible Society of India to reach the Gospel to the Muslims. He is in the midst of persecution. Recently also he was threatened by the extremists to count down his days along with the whole family.

In Iraq, more than 5,000 Muslim converts to Christianity have been identified since the end of major combat operations, with 14 new churches opened in Baghdad, and dozens of new churches opened in Kurdistan, some of which have 500 to 800 members. Also, more than one million Bibles shipped into the country since 2003, and pastors report Iraqis are snatching them up so fast they constantly need more Bibles.

Thousands of Muslims turned to Christ and worshipping Lord Jesus in Morocco, Somalia, Indonesia, Thailand, Malaysia, Singapore, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Saudi Arabia, UAE and Maldives.

Around a million believed in Jesus over the past decade in Egypt. The Egyptian Bible Society used to sell about 3,000 copies of the JESUS film a year in the early 1990s. As per the figures taken from the Millennium campaign in 2000, they sold 600,000 copies, plus 750,000 copies of the individual cassette tapes (in Arabic) and about a half million copies of the Arabic New Testament. Ramez Atallah, the General Secretary of the Bible Society of Egypt informed Pastor Paul Ciniraj by email. “Egyptians are increasingly hungry for God’s Word,” he said.

‘Last Christmas, I had the privilege of visiting the largest Christian congregation in the Middle East, which meets in an enormous cave on the outskirts of Cairo. Some 10,000 believers worship there every weekend. A prayer conference the church held in May 2005 drew some 20,000 believers’, Rosenberg told.

There were only 17 Christians from Islam in Afghanistan on 2001. But there are more than 10,000 believers at present. Every week dozens of baptisms being held there.

In 1990, there were only three known Christians in Kazakhstan and no Christians in Uzbekistan, but now more than 15,000 in Kazakhstan and 30, 000 in Uzbekistan. There were only 500 Christians in Iran on 1979, but more than one million Iranians believing Jesus Christ today, most of whom meet in underground house churches.

In Sudan, more than one million have converted since 2000, and some 5 million have become Christians since the early 1990s, despite a radical Islamic regime and an on-going genocide that has killed more than 200,000. Seminaries are being held in caves to train pastors to shepherd the huge numbers of people coming to Christ. Why such a dramatic spiritual awakening? “People have seen real Islam, and they want Jesus instead,” one Sudanese evangelical leader said.

In December 2001, Sheikh Ahmad al Qataani, a leading Saudi cleric, appeared on a live interview on Al-Jazeera satellite television to confirm that, sure enough, Muslims were turning to Jesus in alarming numbers. “In every hour, 667 Muslims convert to Christianity,” Al Qataani warned. “Every day, 16,000 Muslims convert to Christianity. Every year, 6 million Muslims convert to Christianity.”

Stunned, the interviewer interrupted the cleric. “Hold on! Let me clarify. Do we have six million converting from Islam to Christianity?” Al Qataani repeated his assertion. “Every year,” the cleric confirmed, adding, “a tragedy has happened.”

One of the most dramatic developments is that many Muslims — including Shiites in Iran and Iraq — are seeing dreams and visions of Jesus and thus coming into churches explaining that they have already converted and now need a Bible and guidance on how to follow Jesus. This is the fulfillment of Biblical prophecy of Joel, “in the last days, I will pour out my Spirit on all people. Your sons and daughters will prophesy, your old men will dream dreams, your young men will see visions. Even on my servants, both men and women, I will pour out my Spirit in those days….And everyone who calls on the name of the LORD will be saved.” (Joel 2:28-32).

Within few years all of the Muslim nations will come to Christ by the work of the Holy Spirit. Satan knows it, that’s why he tries to discourage and destroy the Christian workers and the believers through the persecution and brutal murdering. But our Lord Jesus will have the final victory. Pastor Paul Ciniraj said.

Idris Salahudeen, the Pastor of the Salem Voice Ministries said, hundreds upon hundreds ordinary Muslims believing Jesus and secretly converting into Christianity by seeing brutal behaviour of fundamentalists towards Christians. Maybe this torturing is a purification of nominal Christians to have more faith and courage.

HOW TO MEET JESUS PERSONALLY

http://salemvoice.org/news117.html

 

In Central Anatolian province of Yozgat, a cuneiform tablet was unearthed in Uşaklı Mound, Predicted to date back to first half of 2,000 B.C. Yozgat DHA

In Central Anatolian province of Yozgat, a cuneiform tablet was unearthed in Uşaklı Mound, Predicted to date back to first half of 2,000 B.C. Yozgat DHA

shoebat.comhttp://shoebat.com/2015/08/21/archeologists-discover-a-4000-year-old-archeological-find-linking-allah-to-lucifer-and-the-harlot-religion/

Archeologists Discover A 4000 Year Old Archeological Find Linking Allah To Lucifer And The “Harlot Religion”

Ted

By Walid Shoebat and Theodore Shoebat

4000 years old is as close as we can get to connecting how old is “Allah” as deity, his relation to the great rebellion, sex, war … everything.

Amid excavations at four different ancient sites in the Central Anatolian province of Yozgat in the Uşaklı Mound at the Büyük Taşlık village in Turkey there laid a cuneiform tablet unearthed after laying there for 4000 years (2,000 B.C.) The cuneiform tablet in the Sorgun district of Yozgat shows symbols of Ishtar, known as the Hittite goddess of love, war, fertility and sexuality. Ishtar or “the queen of harlots” goddess was found mentioned more clearly in this cuneiform than those on any other unearthed tablets.

Linking Ishtar to other archaeologic relics, also written in the same cuneiform is the Epic of Atrahasis cuneiform dating just as far back in ancient history (1700-1800 B.C.), which reveal that this ancient deity known as Ishtar and the snake beast god known as Ishtaran another name for “Allah” who is literally mentioned in the epic by name and was a transvestite (dual male and female nature).

Ishtar Cuneiform

The The Epic of Atrahasis is the Mesopotamian account of the Great Flood, which was a corruption of the biblical account in Genesis where Satan rebelled against Yahweh. The amazing epic translated by archeologists who did not coverup the name “Allah” at the beginning of the epic where all of the gods are laboring in slavery for the head deity, Enlil, and then one rebellious deity named “Allah” then revolts against Enlil where Enlil crushes the rebellion and then defeats Allah who was also called Tammuz in Sumerian mythology. Yet this defeat of the rebellion caused by this god of war “Allah” is not considered evil, but his loss is lamented over:

Alas the lad, the warrior Ninazu! Alas the lad, my lad, my Damu! Alas the lad, the child Ningishzida! Alas the lad, Allah, owner of the net!…The shepherd, lord Dumuzi, bridegroom of Inanna … [The bitter cry for him! the bitter] cry [for him!] [The bitter] cry for the captive D[umuzi!] The bitter cry [for] the captive Ama-ushumgal-anna! Woe the lad, the child Ningishzida! Woe the lad, Ishtaran of shining visage! Woe the lad, Allah, owner of the net![2]

atrahasis

Allah, Allat, Tammuz … these were different names to the same deity, Allah, who in the Epic is referred to as  Ishtaran who according to archeology is “the beast and symbol of Ištaran, as frequently represented on kudurrus, is a snake“. Biblically, from Genesis “the snake” to Revelation “the beast” these are associated to Lucifer and the devil who caused such rebellion by transforming himself into a snake with four legs then lured Eve. On a side note, while some think that a four legged snake is myth, archeologists earthing fossil records prove that a snake with four legs is a fact, the snake must have then devolved, not evolved.

Another link to Lucifer in the Bible is Venus and the pagan deity Sin which historically both link to Allah, the ancient deity, which is not only the “moon-god” Sin (Nanna to the Sumerians) but also to the star and crescent (often identified as Venus) with Ishtar (Inanna to the Sumerians). Even the Bible links Venus to Isaiah 14:12 to Helel(Crescent) ben Shahar (morning star) identifying the Lucifer possessing the Antichrist becoming the King of Babylon.

venus-morning-star

Ishtar/Allah was originally a male deity of Venus for the Akkadian Arabs, and after settling into Mesopotamia from Yemen, became Athtar with the Sumerian goddess of Venus Inanna, and would become the Babylonian Ishtar. [3] Ishtar was the Arabian Allat, [4] the female consort of Allah who was so revered by the Mesopotamians that they had called her Um-Uruk, or “the mother of the town of Erech,” [5] an infamous city of ancient Iraq.

Since Allat (Ishtar) was the feminine root of Allah, and was worshipped in Mesopotamia, and equal to the Sumerian Inanna, since they were both Venus goddesses, we should be able to find Allah associated with this goddess, based on inscriptions.

In fact, we do, a Sumerian verse which directly identifies “Allah” with the bridegroom of Inanna, Dumuzi or Tammuz who was an ancient deified king who once ruled the city-state of Erech, or Uruk, as the fourth king of its First Dynasty, [6] at around—according to Kramer—the third millennium B.C.,[7] and whose death was ritually lamented by the Sumerians.[8]

In essence, this “Mother of Harlots” which ruled the kings of the earth from ancient times until now is  this transvestite deity Allah whose worship covers the entire region, then, and until now. So when Muslims roam roundabout the black stone it is a throwback to the worship of Ishtar, whom they called Athtar and Allat. St. John of Damascus said that the image of the Black Stone in the Kaaba in Mecca, is really an idol of Aphrodite porne, which is really just a Greek rendition of saying Allat or Ishtar, the harlot goddess.

The cuneiform of Ishtar, the goddess harlot discovered in Turkey and the worship of this Allah relates to the Kaaba in ancient times. In other words, from a biblical perspective, the facade of this harlot religion never changed and simply adopted monotheism. Christians were instructed to beware of a religion that “look like a lamb,” which in other words, seems like the real deal, but is a prostitute religion which “speaks like a dragon”. In other words it utters blasphemies. Even the imagery given in Revelation speaks of this harlot decked in gold, silver, jewels and adorned as a queen. Allah’s residence in Arabia lays an effeminate structure covered with pure silk black dress and is considered by Muslims to be a woman’s dress. The Kaaba’s attire is called “Kiswa/Kuswa” which even the prominent historian Edward Gibbons elaborated on this:

“…the kuswa of the magnificent Kaaba, is what is used for clothing of a [virtuous] covering, on top of it, it is written, the Kaaba’s dressing, meaning ‘we have dressed her her dress.” [9]

Whoever dreamt that the “seven towers” of ancient extinct Babel exists today and is literally called “Babel”? Any doubting Thomas needs to visit Mecca and see (be advised if you’r not Muslim and enter Mecca you could get beheaded). Al-Sharq Al-Awasat, the prominent Middle East Newspaper names Mecca’s great project and the choice where it was built is atop the mountain that is literally called “Mount Babel” as it is called today and in history:

“The project Towers Of The House is the first project in Mecca … which carry seven towers … “Towers Of The House” is on the area of Mount Babel in Ajyad. The site overlooks directly on the Haram al-Sharif (Holy House [Ka’ba]).”

“is also the largest tower in the world in terms of area. Contractor Bin Laden Group, Saudi Arabia … Classified as the largest building urban in terms of the total area on the face of the globe, where excess space land for the project 1.4 million square meters and consists of 7 towers”.

burj5

And just as archeologists ignored the literal reference to Allah in the Epic of Atrahasis no one in the prophecy arena has even raised a single red flag about the significance on how this harlot is described and is biblically linked to Ishtar and Babylon or how it is destroyed in the end. Isaiah links Iran vs. Saudi Arabia to what we see today in the Iran Nuclear Deal. According to Isaiah, Iran (biblical Elam) must destroy Arabia and John levels similar destruction to what seems to be the harlot’s abode in a distant desert. The house of Allah, while Isaiah 14 talks of Lucifer’s rebellion, in Isaiah 21:9, God finally ends it leveling a prophetic oracle against this harlot, the root cause of this rebellion. “Elam, attack!” says Isaiah (v2) leveling this prophetic oracle specifically against Arabia (v13) even referring to Arabia as  “Babylon is fallen is fallen” (v9) using the same announcement in Revelation 18:1-2 and Revelation 14:8 against the harlot city: “Babylon is fallen, is fallen”:

“‘Babylon has fallen, has fallen!” (Isaiah 21:9)

“The burden against Dumah” (Isaiah 21:11)

“The burden against Arabia” (Isaiah 21:13)

“All the glory of Kedar will fail” (Isaiah 21:16)

And to see the nuclear effect, again, a few chapters before, the destruction of Babylon is described as being absolute and complete “I will sweep it with the besom (broom) of destruction” (Isaiah 14:23).

“The broom of destruction” seems like footage of a nuclear explosion all with the fury and the power of the ominous cloud that sweeps up everything in its path. This woman (the Kaaba), as the Muslim myth has it, is Bab-Illah (Bab-El / Babel) the Gate Door to Allah decked with gold and silver with declarations which the Bible considers utterly blasphemous since it denies The Father and The Son.

k1

Ancient history as it seems still continues, and it is still guised as “true religion”.

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SOURCES

1 Patricia Turner and Charles Russell Coulter, Dictionary of Ancient Deities, Page 242, Ishtar, Oxford University Press US, 2001.

2 In the Desert by the Early Grass, in Thorkild Jacobsen, The Harps that Once, part i, p. 61, p. 53, p. 55

2 Date from Stephanie Dalley’s introduction to Atrahasis, in her Myths from Mesopotamia, p. 3.

3 See Langdon, The Mythology of all Races, vol. v: Semitic, ch. i, pp. 4-5, 14, 19

4 Langdon, The Mythology of all Races, vol. v: Semitic, ch. i, p. 24

5 See F. Lenormant, Chaldean Magic, ch. ix, p. 116

6 Langdon, The Mythology of all Races, vol. v: Semitic, ch. xi, p. 341; Gadd, Ideas of Divine Rule in the Ancient East, lect. i, p. 17, n. 2; Kramer, The Sumerians, ch. ii, p. 45; ch. iv, p. 140

7 Kramer, The Sumerians, ch. iv, p. 140

8 See Kramer, The Sumerians, ch. iv, p. 156

9 Edward Gibbon, The Decline and Fall of The Roman Empire, Volume 6, Chap. 1, Page 211., Little, Brown, and Company, 1855.

Written on June 20th, 2013 , Deliverance, Islam, Salvation, Terminating the Past Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

TERMINATING THE PAST

Today we come to the question of how a person deals with his past after believing in the Lord. After believing in the Lord, a person still carries many things of the past with him. How should he terminate these things?

I. THE TEACHING OF THE BIBLE BEING CONCERNED
WITH WHAT ONE DOES AFTER SALVATION

The entire Bible, both the Old Testament and the New Testament, but especially the New Testament, shows that God does not pay attention to what a person does before he believes in the Lord. Try to find a verse from Matthew 1 to Revelation 22 on how believers should terminate their past, and you will see how hard it is to find something on this subject. Even the Epistles, which touch on our wrongdoings in the past, mainly tell us what we should do hereafter, not what we should do about our past. The books of Ephesians, Colossians, and 1 Thessalonians all cover something about our past, but they do not tell us how we should terminate our past; they only tell us how we should go on.

You may recall that someone asked John the Baptist, “What then shall we do?” John answered, “He who has two tunics, let him share with the one who has none; and he who has food, let him do likewise.” He did not talk about their past but about their future. Some tax collectors came to John and asked what they should do. John answered, “Exact no more than that which is appointed you.” Some soldiers also asked, “What shall we do?” John replied, “Do violence to no man, neither accuse any falsely; and be content with your wages.” (Luke 3:10-14). This shows us that John, who preached repentance, emphasized the things that we should do hereafter, not the things of the past.

Let us also consider Paul’s Epistles. He always emphasized what we should do in the future, not what we should do regarding the past, because everything of the past has been covered under the precious blood. If we err a little in this matter, we will corrupt the gospel; we will corrupt the way of the Lord, the way of repentance, and the way of restitution. We must deal with this subject carefully.

“Know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind, Nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall inherit the kingdom of God. And such were some of you: but ye are washed, but ye are sanctified, but ye are justified in the name of the Lord Jesus, and by the Spirit of our God” (1 Corinthians 6:9-11). Here Paul speaks of the believers’ past conduct, but he does not say how they should deal with it. “… but ye are washed, but ye are sanctified, but ye are justified in the name of the Lord Jesus, and by the Spirit of our God ” (1 Cor. 6:11b). The emphasis here is not on dealing with the past, because we have a Savior who has already dealt with all our past. Today the emphasis is on what we should do hereafter. A saved person is already washed, sanctified, and justified.

 

” And you hath he quickened, who were dead in trespasses and sins; Wherein in time past ye walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that now worketh in the children of disobedience: Among whom also we all had our conversation in times past in the lusts of our flesh, fulfilling the desires of the flesh and of the mind; and were by nature the children of wrath, even as others. But God, who is rich in mercy, for his great love wherewith he loved us, Even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace ye are saved;)” (Ephesians 2:1-5). These verses do not tell us how we should terminate the things of the flesh. There is only one termination—our Lord’s termination of everything for us based upon the great love with which God loved us and the rich mercy of God.

 

Ephesians 4:17-24 also speaks of our past condition. “This I say therefore, and testify in the Lord, that ye henceforth walk not as other Gentiles walk, in the vanity of their mind, Having the understanding darkened, being alienated from the life of God through the ignorance that is in them, because of the blindness of their heart: Who being past feeling have given themselves over unto lasciviousness, to work all uncleanness with greediness. But ye have not so learned Christ; If so be that ye have heard him, and have been taught by him, as the truth is in Jesus: That ye put off concerning the former conversation the old man, which is corrupt according to the deceitful lusts; And be renewed in the spirit of your mind; And that ye put on the new man, which after God is created in righteousness and true holiness.”(Ephesians 4:17-24)

 

“Wherefore putting away lying, speak every man truth with his neighbour: for we are members one of another.” (Ephesians 4:25) This refers to the things hereafter. It does not tell us how to deal with our past falsehood but that henceforth we should no longer remain in falsehood. Today we must “…speak every man truth with his neighbour… Be ye angry, and sin not: let not the sun go down upon your wrath:  Neither give place to the devil.” (Eph. 4:25b-27). These verses do not refer to the past but to the future. “Let him that stole steal no more:” (Eph. 4:28a). Paul did not say that he who steals needs to return what was stolen. His emphasis is still on hereafter. What was stolen in the past is another matter. “… but rather let him labour, working with his hands the thing which is good, that he may have to give to him that needeth. Let no corrupt communication proceed out of your mouth, but that which is good to the use of edifying, that it may minister grace unto the hearers. And grieve not the holy Spirit of God, whereby ye are sealed unto the day of redemption. Let all bitterness, and wrath, and anger, and clamour, and evil speaking, be put away from you, with all malice: And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ’s sake hath forgiven you.” (Eph. 4:28b-31).

 

” But fornication, and all uncleanness, or covetousness, let it not be once named among you, as becometh saints; Neither filthiness, nor foolish talking, nor jesting, which are not convenient: but rather giving of thanks.”(Ephesians 5:3-4)  These words are still in the same principle. They speak of things after one believes in the Lord. They are not about the termination of things done before one believes in the Lord.

After reading all the Epistles, we find a marvelous truth: God pays attention only to what a person should do after he has believed in the Lord. He does not pay attention to the things he has done in his past. He does not tell us what to do with them. This is a basic principle.

Many people are in bondage because they have accepted a wrong gospel. Such a gospel places too much stress on dealing with one’s past. This does not mean that we do not need to deal with our past. Certain things of our past must be dealt with, but such a dealing is not the foundation of our going on. God always draws our attention to the fact that our past sins are under the blood. We are fully forgiven and saved because the Lord Jesus has died for us. Our salvation is not based on how we deal with the past. Man is not saved by repentance for his past bad deeds, just as he is not saved by trusting in his past good deeds. Man is saved through the salvation accomplished by the Lord on the cross. We should hold fast to this foundation.

II. NEW TESTAMENT EXAMPLES
OF DEALING WITH THE PAST

What then should we do with the things of our past? In reading the New Testament, I have spent much time to find out how one should terminate his past after believing in the Lord. I found only a few passages where the subject is mentioned briefly. However, they are not teachings but examples.

A. Matters Related to Idols
Needing to Be Dealt with Thoroughly

First Thessalonians 1:9 says, “For they themselves shew of us what manner of entering in we had unto you, and how ye turned to God from idols to serve the living and true God;” When a person believes in the Lord, he must deal with all idols. Please remember that we are the temple of the Holy Spirit. What agreement does the temple of God have with idols? Even the apostle John, in addressing the believers, said, “Little children, keep yourselves from idols. Amen.”(1 John 5:21) Hence, this is not as simple a matter as many may think.

One thing we must take note of is that God forbids man to make an image of anything. We cannot consider a man-made object to be living. The moment we have such a thought, the object becomes an idol to us. Of course, idols are nothing, but if we consider them to be living, we fall into error. This is why God forbids the worship of such things. Even an inclination in the heart towards them is forbidden. One of the Ten Commandments forbids the making of idols (Deut. 5:8).

Deuteronomy 12:30 says, “Take heed to thyself that thou be not snared by following them, after that they be destroyed from before thee; and that thou enquire not after their gods, saying, How did these nations serve their gods? even so will I do likewise.” This shows us that we should not even inquire how the Gentiles worship their gods. Some who are curious like to study how the nations worship and serve their gods. But God forbids us to inquire about such matters. If we inquire about them, the next thing we will do is worship their gods. Hence, we are forbidden from being curious.

 

Second Corinthians 6:16 says, “And what agreement hath the temple of God with idols?” The meaning here is quite obvious. Christians should not visit temples. There are exceptions of course, such as when a person is stranded on a deserted mountain and cannot find a place for shelter at night and there is only a temple for lodging. But generally speaking, believers should not visit any temple. This is because 2 Corinthians 6:16 says clearly that we are the temple of the living God. It also says that there is no agreement between idols and the temple of the living God. Unless one is pressed by special occasion or circumstance, it is inadvisable to go near or purposely tour any temple. John says, “Little children, keep yourselves from idols. Amen.” (1 John 5:21) Guarding ourselves from idols means staying away from them.  (As this is written in China over 60 years ago, perhaps we should stay away from “American Idol.”)

 

Psalm 16:4 says, “Their sorrows shall be multiplied that hasten after another god: their drink offerings of blood will I not offer, nor take up their names into my lips.”  Even at the pulpit, we should carefully avoid the names of other gods except in the case of a necessary illustration. We should not hold on to any superstition, fear of misfortune, or taboo for certain associations or words. Many believers still pay attention to fortunes, the reading of facial features, and destinies. (This applies to reading the horoscope and talking about what sign of the Zodiac someone is under.)  Everything related to fortune-telling or horoscopes is prohibited. Everything in the realm of idolatry should be dealt with thoroughly before God. We should sever our relationship with it completely.

A new believer must give up his idols from the very first day of his salvation. He should not mention the names of idols, be involved with fortune-telling, or visit any temples. (Some TV programs are filled with stories about heathen temples.  Such movies as “Star Wars” and “Harry Potter” are steeped in the Occult and mythology.) We cannot worship anything with an image. Even the thought of worshipping such things is forbidden. (This includes idolizing movie stars or sports heroes.)  We cannot inquire about the worship of other religions. All these things belong to the past, and we should deal with them. Anything that falls into these categories should be destroyed; they should not even be sold. We should destroy, exterminate, and remove them. I hope that new believers will not take this matter lightly; they have to be very careful about these things, for God is extremely jealous of idols.  (If you were in the Catholic Church or another religion where they worshipped Mary or other “Saints” and idols, you need to remove them and have nothing more to do with any of them.)

If you cannot take a strong stand against idols today, you will have a hard time escaping the greatest idol on earth in the future. Of course, we should not worship idols made of clay or wood. But even if there is an idol that is living, we must not worship it. There are actually living idols—the man of lawlessness (2 Thes. 2:3) being one. Please remember that you cannot worship any idols; you must reject all of them, even images of the Lord Jesus and Mary.

We must deal with this matter thoroughly. Otherwise, we will be distracted to follow another way. We are those who serve not in the flesh but in spirit. God is seeking those who serve Him in spirit, not in the flesh. God is Spirit, not an image. If all the brothers and sisters take care of this matter, they will not fall into the hands of Roman Catholicism, Islam or Mormonism in the future. One day Antichrist will come, and the power of Roman Catholicism will be greatly expanded.  (One of the worst forms of idolatry is the worship of Allah and revering of Mohammed as if he were some form of idol with power.)

In the Bible, the first thing one has to do in dealing with his past is to reject all former idols. (This includes false books like the Book of Mormon and the Quran of Islam.  A new Christian should remove from these completely.)  We must turn away from idols and wait for the coming of the Son of God. We should not even keep any picture of the Lord Jesus. Such pictures are not the real image of the Lord Jesus; they are worthless. In the museums in Rome, there are over two thousand different images of the Lord Jesus. All of them represent the imagination of the artists. In some countries artists often look for people who resemble their idea of Jesus and then pay them to pose for portraits of Jesus. This is blasphemous. Our God is a jealous God, and He will not tolerate such things among us. There should not be any kind of superstition. Some people like to say, “It is not a good day today; there are bad omens.” Such remarks are directly from hell. God’s children should get rid of these ideas from the very first day and deal with them in a thorough way. They should not allow any flavor of idolatry to come in.

In this generation, idols have actually come into the church in the form of Rock & Roll music which is sung to the same beat as the Druids used to worship idols and demons in ancient England.  The forerunner of this form of idol worship was Larry Norman who wrote a song, “Why should the devil have all the good music.”  I can assure you that the Devil has no good music and the very thought that churches are now enshrining a set of drums on the platform is a sign that the idol of Rock & Roll is alive and well in our churches.  As Frank Garlock has so adequately taught concerning music, the message is in the beat and the message of all CCM music is quite different from the words that they add as a last resort to make the Devil’s Music (a term Larry Norman loved) into pseudo-Christian music.  I truly believe that the greatest idol in our generation matches the popular music show on TV, “American Idol.”  People are completely dominated by this form of music.  It is a high far more powerful than drugs or alcohol and now the Devil’s music along with his NIV Bible are dominating churches.  The NIV teaches that Jesus is Lucifer in Isaiah 14 where the name “Morning Star,” which is a term for Jesus, is substituted for Lucifer.  Also, in the New Testament in 5 or more places, Jesus is called the “Cap Stone” which is another occult symbol.  This is a change from foundation or corner stone, the true Bible term.  So, if a person is truly saved they need to destroy all occult versions of the bible except the King James Version and occult styles of music like CCM or Christian Rock because they are certainly not Christian, nor are they spiritual or holy.

B. Improper Objects Needing to Be Terminated

“Many of them also which used curious arts brought their books together, and burned them before all men: and they counted the price of them, and found it fifty thousand pieces of silver.” (Acts 19:19)  This is another matter which new believers should deal with and terminate. (This could include the Book of Mormon, the Quran, or any pornographic books, magazines or sleazy novels, movies, and DVD’s.)

This is not a command or a teaching; it is the result of the work of the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit moved in such a strong way that the Ephesians brought out all the improper books in their possession. Here it says the price was “fifty thousand pieces of silver,” which is a considerable sum. They did not sell their books and give the money to the church. Instead, the books were burned. If Judas had been present, he certainly would not have allowed this. This was much more than thirty pieces of silver which could have been given to the poor. But the Lord was pleased to have them burned.

Apart from the kind of objects mentioned above, there are many other questionable objects that need to be dealt with. Some of them are clearly related to sins. Gambling instruments and improper books and pictures are some examples. These must be burned or destroyed. There may be many luxury items and objects of indulgence which cannot be burned. However, they still need to be removed. Burning, however, is the general principle in dealing with these things, especially if they relate to the occult.

After a person believes in the Lord, he should go home and check through his personal belongings. In an unbeliever’s home, there is always something related to sin. He may have things which do not befit the saints. Things related to sin must be burned or destroyed; they cannot be sold. Luxury items should be converted and altered if possible. If they cannot be altered, we must sell them.

The garments of the lepers in Leviticus 13 and 14 are a good illustration. Garments which have become leprous and cannot be washed must be burned. However, those which can be washed should be washed for reuse. If the style of our clothes is unbecoming, we can alter them. Some garments may be too short, and we can lengthen them; others are odd-looking, and we can make them look more inconspicuous. Some objects cannot be salvaged; they have the element of sin in them, in which case we have to burn them. Those that can be sold should be sold, and the money should be given to the poor.

There should be a termination of improper things. If every new believer will go through all his belongings thoroughly, he will have a very good start. Superstitious objects have to be burned, these belong to the occult.  Others can be altered or sold after being altered. Once we learn this lesson, we will not forget it for the rest of our lives. We must realize that being a Christian is a very practical matter; it is not just a matter of going to “church” and listening to some sermons.

C. Repaying Debts

“And Zacchaeus stood, and said unto the Lord; Behold, Lord, the half of my goods I give to the poor; and if I have taken any thing from any man by false accusation, I restore him fourfold.” (Luke 19:8)   Zaccheus did not do this as a result of doctrinal teaching; he did this as a result of the working of the Holy Spirit. If it had been the result of doctrinal teaching, only the exact amount would have been repaid, no more and no less. But since it was the working of the Holy Spirit, the amount could vary; it could be a little more or a little less. Zaccheus said, “If I have taken anything from anyone by false accusation, I restore four times as much.” Actually, a double compensation would have been more than adequate. The principle in the book of Leviticus is to add one-fifth to the original amount. For one thousand dollars, you would have to repay one thousand two hundred dollars. But if one is touched, he can pay as much as the Lord’s Spirit directs him to pay. He can be moved to repay four times or ten times as much. What is spoken of here is only a principle. In reading the Bible, we must be clear that what is covered is not a mere teaching. It is the result of the leading of the Holy Spirit when He operates in man.

Suppose that before you became a believer, you had extorted or defrauded others, stolen from them, or obtained things by improper means. Now that the Lord is working within, you have to deal with these things in a proper manner. This has nothing to do with the forgiveness you received from the Lord, but it is very much related to your testimony.

Suppose I stole a thousand dollars from someone before I was saved. If I have not dealt with the matter clearly, how can I preach the gospel to that person after I am saved? While I am preaching to him, his heart may still be on the thousand dollars. No doubt, I have received forgiveness from God, but I do not have a proper testimony before man. I cannot say, “Since God has forgiven me, it does not matter whether or not I repay him.” No, this matter is related to my testimony.

Please remember that Zaccheus restored four times as much for the sake of his testimony. At that time everyone was saying, “How could the Lord lodge in this sinner’s home? He has extorted and defrauded many people!” They were all indignant. While they were saying this, Zaccheus stood up and said, “If I have taken anything from anyone by false accusation, I restore four times as much.” This fourfold restoration was neither a requirement for becoming a son of Abraham nor a requirement for God’s salvation coming to Zaccheus’s house. This fourfold restoration was the result of God’s salvation coming to Zaccheus’s house and of his becoming a son of Abraham. Due to this act of restoration, Zaccheus had a testimony before man. This was the basis of his testimony.

I knew a brother who was not very upright in financial matters before he believed in the Lord. Many of his classmates were upper middle-class people. After he believed in the Lord, he became rather zealous in leading his classmates to the Lord. But he did not see much fruit. Although he earnestly preached the gospel to them, they said in their heart, “What is this? What about all the money?” His past had not been eradicated from them. This brother did not follow the example of Zaccheus. His sins were forgiven before God. All his problems were solved. But the matter concerning his money before his classmates was not resolved. He had to confess and make recompense for all his past wrongdoings before he could testify to others. The restoration of his testimony depended on the termination of his past.

As I have mentioned, Zaccheus did not become a son of Abraham by restoring four times as much. Neither did he gain salvation by restoring four times as much. Rather, he restored four times as much because he was a child of Abraham. He restored four times as much because he was saved. By restoring four times as much, he shut the mouths of others. They could no longer say anything. His fourfold restoration went far beyond what he owed, thus shutting the mouths of others and restoring his testimony.

Brothers and sisters, did you wrong anyone in any way before you became a believer? Do you owe anyone anything? Have you taken things home which belong to others? Have you taken anything by improper means? If so, you have to deal with all these things properly. The repentance of a Christian has to do with confessing his past wrongdoings, whereas the repentance of ordinary men only involves a change in his present conduct. For example, as a human being, if I have a bad temper, I need only to refrain from my temper. But as a Christian, in addition to refraining from my temper, I have to apologize for my former temper. Apart from not losing my temper before God, I must also apologize for my former temper before men. Only then can this matter be terminated.

Suppose you stole from others in the past. Your problem before God is settled as long as you no longer steal. Likewise, if you have ever taken things that belonged to others, your problem is settled once you stop doing it. However, this is not enough for you to have a testimony before men. Even if you have not stolen anything in three years, others may still consider you as a thief. After believing in the Lord, you must testify before men; you must deal with all your mistakes in the past. Only then will your position be clear.

But here is a difficult problem. Suppose you stole ten thousand dollars from someone. What should you do if you do not even have one thousand dollars now? In principle you have to confess to the person from whom you have stolen. You should tell him frankly that you cannot repay him at the present time. Whether or not you can repay him immediately is another matter; you should still confess and testify to him. If you do not testify now, you will not be able to testify for the rest of your life.

Please remember that in the course of giving your testimony, you may be affected by personal problems. But you cannot avoid dealing with these problems. You still must deal with the problems. You can have a testimony before men only after you have dealt with your problems.

Some have committed murder in the past. What should they do now? This is a part of their past. In the Bible there are two murderers who were saved. One was involved directly with the act of murder, while the other murdered indirectly. The first one was the robber on the cross. It is clear in the Greek language that the word robber does not just mean an ordinary robber; it means a criminal who engages in such acts as murder and arson. He was not just a thief but one who robbed and killed. After he believed in the Lord, his sins were forgiven. The Bible does not tell us how he terminated his past. The other person is Paul. He was not involved in any direct murder. However, he was an accomplice in the murder of Stephen, and he watched over the garments of those who killed Stephen. After Paul was saved, nothing was said about how he dealt with this matter.

In principle I believe that once a murderer has believed in the Lord, his sins are behind him. There is no sin which cannot be cleansed by the blood. The robber did not have to do anything to terminate his past. In fact, he had no opportunity to do anything. The Lord said to him, “Today thou shalt be with Me in Paradise” (Luke 23:43). Therefore, when we encounter such cases, we should not overly burden the conscience of others, unless of course God has first worked in that person’s heart. This is because in the two New Testament cases that deal with murder—one directly and the other indirectly—God did not pay attention to the rectification of the past. However, I believe that some have no peace in their conscience, not because they are suffering from ordinary accusations, but because God is working in them. In such cases, we should not stop them from expressing their regrets to the victim’s family.

D. The Termination of Unsettled Matters

When a person is saved, he surely has many unsettled secular matters at hand. These may easily hinder him from following the Lord. What should he do? “Follow Me, and let the dead bury their own dead” (Matt. 8:22). This is another biblical case of terminating the past. Here, a man came to Jesus and said to Him, “Lord, permit me first to go and bury my father” (v. 21). The Lord said, “Follow Me, and let the dead bury their own dead.” The word their refers to the first use of the word dead, whereas the second dead refers to the man’s father. The first dead refers to those who are spiritually dead. In God’s eyes those in the world are spiritually dead. The Lord was saying that the man should let the dead bury his father, while he should follow the Lord.

I am not exhorting new believers to not make funeral arrangements for their fathers. I am saying that the dead should bury their own dead. We must lay hold of this principle. We should let go of unfinished business. If we wait until we have finished settling them before we become Christians, we will never have the time. There are hundreds and thousands of items of unfinished business in our families, with our fathers, and in our lives. Who then could become a Christian? There is only one word to describe the principle behind all of these things—these are dead people. Let the dead bury their dead. Let the spiritually dead handle the matters of the dead! This is the principle. This is not to exhort new believers to neglect their family. It means that they should not wait until they have settled all their earthly matters before coming to the Lord. If they do, they will not be able to follow the Lord.

Many people want to settle all of their affairs before they believe in the Lord. If so, they will have no opportunity to believe in Him. We should not be bound by matters of the dead. Instead, we should just regard the unsettled matters as settled. If we want to settle them before following the Lord, we will never make it. Matters concerning idols, improper things, and debts must be dealt with thoroughly. As for other unsettled matters, we should just let them go!

With regard to the attitude of a new believer towards his past, I can only find the above four categories of things in the Word of God. As for many other unsettled affairs, we should regard them as settled. As to family duties, we should let the dead take care of the dead. We have no time to deal with them. We want to follow the Lord. Those things are not for us to settle; they are for the dead to take care of. Let the ones who are spiritually dead handle them.

A QUESTION

A brother asked: If I have offended a person and he is not aware of it, must I also confess to him?

Answer: It all depends on whether or not he has suffered material loss. If the other party is aware of this loss, you should deal with the matter by following Zaccheus’s example. Even if he is unaware of this loss, you should still confess to him, especially when material loss is involved. It is best to bring the matter to the church and let the more experienced brothers help you solve it because they know what is most expedient.

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Written originally by Watchman Nee in China during the Chinese revolution and died in a prison camp but these lessons have been the foundation of my life for 38 years.  The illustration was created by me after a study of the Greek word “eis” which means “into.”  David Williams – site Admin.

 

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