Coaches must be more than just coaches*

This blog post will look at the responsibilities of a sport’s coach – more specifically in this instance a football (soccer) coach – and how the coach can come to exercise a much greater influence over the players that are in his* care†. Here you will see how to make an impact as a role model that is different from the worldly stereotypes everyone looks to copy.

We will look at the definition of a “coach” from the Merriam-Webster Dictionary who is defined as “one who instructs players in the fundamentals of a sport and directs team strategy”, as can be read from this extract:  

2 [from the concept that the tutor conveys the student through examinations]

a : a private tutor • hired a coach to help her daughter prepare for the test

b : one who instructs or trains • an acting coacha birth coach; especially: one who instructs players in the fundamentals of a sport and directs team strategy • a football coach; a pitching coach; a gymnastics coach ~ ©Merriam-Webster Dictionary (since 1828)

However, a coach is also one who teaches individuals, as well as the team collectively, and therefore can also be seen as a teacher or tutor. From a football coaching perspective, the players are instructed and put through their drills during their weekly practices, and the test as to what they have actually learnt and how well they can execute their skills and the game plan (team strategy) is then performed during their team matches. You will often hear from a coach after a match when the plan was not executed so well – which is most often – that, “At the end of the day, we must go back to the drawing board” which in essence, by that common cliché, the coach is saying, “We have to rectify our problems.”

A coach’s arsenal does not only consist of coaching manuals that deal with fitness exercises, skill techniques, game strategies, the laws of the game, and the like, as well as the tangible things like the kits, balls, beacons, and other equipment, but part of his arsenal is also how he presents himself and conducts himself around his young players, the young boys and girls who are impressionable and have learning minds. The players writer is specifically referring to in this article are those in the U6 through U17 age groups. Often coaches do not realise that they leave many a lasting impression upon the youngsters that are in their care and it is common, but not a hard rule, where parents have advised their child on certain aspects of the game and a common comeback by their child is: “But my coach says I should . . .” or “But my coach says . . .” [fill in the blank]! At times it appears that the “coach” knows better and holds a higher authority than the parents! This might well be concerning the qualifications and experience in coaching the sport, but not necessary when it comes to life skills and spiritual matters. It would therefore be common cause to ask yourself some searching questions concerning the coach:

  • When a coach speaks, what is his world view? and what is he actually saying?
  • Can he be trusted in what he speaks about? and what life skills is he teaching the players?
  • And morally, how does he impact upon his students?

Bill Shankly

This treatise will put all in perspective when one considers one of the “greatest coaches” Bill Shankly, a Liverpool manager on Merseyside from 1959–1974, who is quoted as saying: “Some people believe football is a matter of life and death, I am very disappointed with that attitude. I can assure you it is much, much more important than that.” It is sad to think many, many coaches hold to this world view, of which I too was one of them. But my world view has changed, and I can assure you football is not much, much more important than life and death. Coaching football has far greater lessons to be learned than just honing football players’ God-given talents. On Tuesday 29th September 1981 at the age of 68 when the socialist William “Bill” Shankly passed into eternity, he was assured that football is not “much, much more important” than life and death. Shankly died precisely on time, and scripture records it plainly:

27  And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment: ~ Hebrews 9:27

[A Gospel Tract: My Friends Are Dying And, Though They Be Alive, They Are Dead Men Walking ~ A Message of Hope ~]

Good-Coach-Great-Coach-copy-768x512

A quote by John Wooden (a past American basketball player and UCLA head coach who won 10 NCAA National Championships in a 12 year period, including an unprecedented 7 in a row), reads as follows: “A good coach can change a game. A great coach can change a life.” This is true in many respects, but I will further elaborate and add, that, A truly great coach will strive to win souls. Even if it is just one soul won, this is a far greater perspective for a coach than just changing “a game” or “a life.” In the physical realm, lives can be changed when a person’s lot or circumstances in life changes for the better. But a soul won spiritually has eternal rewards that far outweigh the physical here and now. There is wisdom in winning souls. The Holy Bible records it as follows, for it is written,

30  The fruit of the righteous is a tree of life; and he that winneth souls is wise. ~ Proverbs 11:30

Whilst most coaches teach from a secular world view, and in some cases they might even throw in some religious mumbo-jumbo, it is imperative that coaches aspire to train children and coach with a Biblical world view or they are bound to fail in this life. Many championships, accolades, trophies, medals, certificates and the like might be won, but without a God-centred Biblical world view every achievement will waste away and be nothing but dross! Following on from here is the reasons why a God-centred Biblical world view is imperative and non-negotiable.

In order for the above Proverbs 11:30 scripture verse to be applied, the person (in this case a coach) would have to be righteous before GOD, and the only way he can be righteous is by being a born again Christian – a disciple of the Lord Jesus Christ, a child of GOD! Jesus said, “. . . Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.~ John 3:3. The word “verily” comes from a Greek word [281]†† amēn, am-ane, of Hebrew origin [543]†† that means trustworthy, surely as an interjection meaning so be it. In the Hebrew [543]†† âmên, aw-mane’, means sure; abstract faithfulness; adverb truly – Amen, so be it, truth. Jesus Christ, Who is truth (see John 14:6), is emphasising the trustworthiness of His statement, the very essence of truly, truly, amen – so be it! There is no other way to get into the Kingdom. If a person is not born again of the Spirit of the living God, that person cannot see the kingdom of God. To be a true believer you need to know the KING of the Kingdom or there is no access! For access is through having eternal life which in the words of Jesus, “And this is life eternal, that they might know thee the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom thou hast sent.~ John 17:3. That would leave every person that is excluded from the kingdom of God a condemned rebellious sinner who is headed for hell and the lake of fire come Judgment Day (see Revelation 20:14,15). Jesus taught and preached the kingdom of God, and so must truly born again Christians teach and preach the kingdom of God, HIS Kingdom! Not this worldly kingdom, for it is fast wasting away!

In the Holy Bible God gives born again Christians a mandate to be ambassadors for Christ who have the ministry of reconciliation, to represent the kingdom of God here upon the earth. Just as any ambassador from a country, say South Africa, would find himself in a foreign land, say England, that South African ambassador represents South Africa in England upon English soil. So God has His believers as ambassadors representing His Kingdom here on earth for His glory and purposes alone in the ministry of reconciliation, which is the work of an evangelist reconciling sinners back to God, as we can read from God’s Word in context, for it is written:

17  Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.
18  And all things are of God, who hath reconciled us to himself by Jesus Christ, and hath given to us the ministry of reconciliation;
19  To wit, that God was in Christ, reconciling the world unto himself, not imputing their trespasses unto them; and hath committed unto us the word of reconciliation. 
20  Now then we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God did beseech you by us: we pray you in Christ’s stead, be ye reconciled to God. 
21  For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him. ~ 2 Corinthians 5:17-21

Be Biblical, a Biblicist Therefore, to be truly a “great coach”, one must be truly a born again Christian as the Bible defines a believer. However, the “great coach” does not define the believer, but the Great GOD whom he serves in that capacity as an ambassador for Christ! “He [JESUS] must increase, but I must decrease.” ~ John 3:30 [insertion by writer]. For many of the young players have never read the Bible, but the only “Bible” they will ever read may be the coach’s lifestyle: watching your every action, listening to your every word, and observing your morality. We read about this in scripture, for it is written,

2  Ye are our epistle written in our hearts, known and read of all men: 
3  Forasmuch as ye are manifestly declared to be the epistle of Christ ministered by us, written not with ink, but with the Spirit of the living God; not in tables of stone, but in fleshy tables of the heart. ~ 2 Corinthians 3:2,3

If a coach is a true disciple of the Son of God, Jesus Christ, he will stand for truth, for Jesus Christ is truth! He would not want to lie and be a false witness, but speak truth in love at all times. He would want to be Christ-like in word, thought and deed. Jesus prayed to God the Father, “16 They are not of the world, even as I am not of the world. 17 Sanctify them through thy truth: thy word is truth.” (John 17:16,17). Therefore, truth comes from God, and there can be only one truth. Truth is not subjective, one truth for one person and another truth for another person. Truth is 100%. If there is but 0.1% untruth mixed in with 99.9% truth, the 0.1% untruth will render the whole untrue! Truth will always be 100% or the portion of untruth will render it a lie, deception or a man’s fabrication (opinion)! Truth is objective – there is only ONE truth, and Jesus Christ IS that truth! He said, “6 I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me. 7 If ye had known me, ye should have known my Father also: and from henceforth ye know him, and have seen him.~ John 14:6,7.

We are also warned in Colossians 2:8, as we read, “Beware lest any man spoil you through philosophy and vain deceit, after the tradition of men, after the rudiments of the world, and not after Christ.” Therefore, if any man as a coach comes in his own stead and strength, he is lacking the truth of God in Christ Jesus. If he comes preaching and teaching with the doctrines and traditions of men, holding to vain babblings of a secular nature and man-made religious practices that are contrary to the Holy Word of God, The Bible, then he is a false teacher, a deceiver, an enemy of God. This will only lead to deception with vain words. However, a true child of God, who teaches as an oracle of God, will hold to the following instructions as to who he is in Christ Jesus, for it is written,

1  Be ye therefore followers of God, as dear children; 
2  And walk in love, as Christ also hath loved us, and hath given himself for us an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweetsmelling savour. 
3  But fornication, and all uncleanness, or covetousness, let it not be once named among you, as becometh saints; 
4  Neither filthiness, nor foolish talking, nor jesting, which are not convenient: but rather giving of thanks. 
5  For this ye know, that no whoremonger, nor unclean person, nor covetous man, who is an idolater, hath any inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and of God. 
6  Let no man deceive you with vain words: for because of these things cometh the wrath of God upon the children of disobedience. 
7  Be not ye therefore partakers with them. ~ Ephesians 5:1-7

Dear coach, what are you teaching the children, your players in your care? Are you a reflection of Christ in word, thought and deed? Or do you speak as the world? think as the world? and act as the world? “James, a servant of God and of the Lord Jesus Christ” (James 1:1), and the half brother of the Lord Jesus Christ (see Matt. 13:55; Mark 6:3), wrote under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, “Ye adulterers and adulteresses, know ye not that the friendship of the world is enmity with God? whosoever therefore will be a friend of the world is the enemy of God.” ~ James 4:4. Being a coach are you a friend of the world? And are you teaching and training your players to love the world and what it has to offer?

As a coach you should also guard against having a covetous spirit and making football an idol. There is a fine divining line between playing the game for God’s glory and playing the game for self glory. Also, if a coach and/or the players and/or the parents know more about football than about their Creator God, or they place Truthfootball ahead of their Creator God, then football has become an idol in their lives and football is their god. This goes for anything in life. If  possessions, money, property, cars, music, sport, alcohol, drugs, sex, pornography, career, cell phones, social media, partying, friends, family, religion, etcetera, etcetera, takes precedence in your life over, above and before God, then you are an idolater. God warns in the First and Second of the Ten Commandments, for it is written,

3  Thou shalt have no other gods before me. 
4  Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image, or any likeness of any thing that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth: 
5  Thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them: for I the LORD thy God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation of them that hate me; 
6  And shewing mercy unto thousands of them that love me, and keep my commandments. ~ Exodus 20:3-6 (see also Deuteronomy 5:7-10)

As can be seen in verse 5 here above, idolatry which is idol worship is hatred of God.

In order to win souls for Christ by teaching and preaching the kingdom of God, the coach must not only be His ambassador, but he needs to know what the constitution of the kingdom of God says and teaches. The constitution by which we are to live is the God-breathed Holy Bible scriptures, and not man-made constitutions, customs and traditions, confession of faiths and catechisms, or false religious writings, all that blaspheme and promote sin against the Creator God YHVH, for we read, as it is written, YHVH

16  All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness:
17  That the man of God may be perfect, throughly furnished unto all good works. ~ 2 Timothy 3:16,17

To win youngsters over and teach them Truth, coaches must first and foremost have a relationship with the God they profess to teach about, for their teaching will be an act of worship and praise to the God of Creation. That is why we are warned in scripture to not “give heed to fables” (1 Tim. 1:4), to “refuse profane and old wives’ fables, and exercise thyself rather unto godliness” (1 Tim. 4:7), and we are encouraged by the apostles “For we have not followed cunningly devised fables, when we made known unto you the power and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, but were eyewitnesses of his majesty” (2 Peter 1:16).

A coach also needs to be extremely watchful and guard what comes out of his mouth, “34 . . . for out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaketh. . . . 36 But I say unto you, That every idle word that men shall speak, they shall give account thereof in the day of judgment. 37 For by thy words thou shalt be justified, and by thy words thou shalt be condemned.” (Matthew 12:34,36,37). By way of an example, whilst writer was one Saturday afternoon assisting with an U10 match, an U8/U9 coach committed blasphemy by using the Son of God’s name Jesus Christ to show disgust at his team missing an opportunity to score a goal. Writer immediately rebuked the U8/U9 coach in front of other parent spectators, including a Muslim man standing within ear shot. In a very short period of time the team scored and the said coach retorted that he had “invoked” Jesus’ name and that is why they had scored. He made light of his sin and tried to justify his blasphemy. However, the terminology of the word “invoked” is a ". . . We ought to obey God rather than men." ~ Acts 5:29 Roman Catholic (RC) word that fits with the RC’s doctrine and dogma teachings. The words “invoke” or “invoked” are not found in the Holy Bible scriptures. In the RC Catechism #969 you can read, quote: “. . . Therefore the Blessed Virgin is invoked in the Church under the titles of Advocate, Helper, Benefactress, and Mediatrix."510. This is false teachings as the Holy Bible says there is only one Mediator, as can be read, for it is written in God’s Word, “For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus;” (1 Timothy 2:5), and the only Advocate we have in scripture is found in 1 John 2:1, “My little children, these things write I unto you, that ye sin not. And if any man sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous:”. For what is sin? We read, for it is written, “Whosoever committeth sin transgresseth also the law: for sin is the transgression of the law.” (1 John 3:4). And Jesus Christ came to fulfil the law, as we read, for it is written in God’s Word, “Think not that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets: I am not come to destroy, but to fulfil.” (Matthew 5:17). And the ONLY Advocate Jesus Christ fulfilled the law, not Mary!

Now how can this coach teach children, if he ever did, about the God-Man Jesus Christ when he blasphemes Him by using His Holy Name in vain to show disgust towards his young players? The said RC coach cannot be a true witness of truth when he violates the Third of the Ten Commandments, which reads, “Thou shalt not take the name of the LORD thy God in vain; for the LORD will not hold him guiltless that taketh his name in vain.” (Exodus 20:7). As a Roman Catholic he is teaching another gospel holding to the teachings of the pope-induced man-made catechism that is contrary to the Word of God as can be seen under the example here above dealing with the word “invoked” which is a heresy. Cursed are all that preach any other gospel and would pervert the gospel of Christ, for it is written,

6  I marvel that ye are so soon removed from him that called you into the grace of Christ unto another gospel: 
7  Which is not another; but there be some that trouble you, and would pervert the gospel of Christ. 
8  But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed. 
9  As we said before, so say I now again, If any man preach any other gospel unto you than that ye have received, let him be accursed. 
10  For do I now persuade men, or God? or do I seek to please men? for if I yet pleased men, I should not be the servant of Christ. 
11  But I certify you, brethren, that the gospel which was preached of me is not after man. 
12  For I neither received it of man, neither was I taught it, but by the revelation of Jesus Christ. ~ Galatians 1:6-12

ReligionsTherefore, as can be seen from what has been said above, coaches are more than just coaches. It is dangerous ground when a coach has a flawed world view and conveys his message to his players that they are to respect all religions, when God makes it known that there is only ONE Truth, for God is intolerant! God does not tolerate sin and neither should Christians! Coaches need to avoid secular philosophies and false religions that violate truth. God reveals, for it is written,

22  For the LORD is our judge, the LORD is our lawgiver, the LORD is our king; he will save us. ~ Isaiah 33:22

8  I am the LORD: that is my name: and my glory will I not give to another, neither my praise to graven images. ~ Isaiah 42:8

17  They shall be turned back, they shall be greatly ashamed, that trust in graven images, that say to the molten images, Ye are our gods. ~ Isaiah 42:17

10  Ye are my witnesses, saith the LORD, and my servant whom I have chosen: that ye may know and believe me, and understand that I am he: before me there was no God formed, neither shall there be after me.
11  I, even I, am the LORD; and beside me there is no saviour. ~ Isaiah 43:10,11

15  I am the LORD, your Holy One, the creator of Israel, your King. ~ Isaiah 43:15

25  I, even I, am he that blotteth out thy transgressions for mine own sake, and will not remember thy sins. 
26  Put me in remembrance: let us plead together: declare thou, that thou mayest be justified. ~ Isaiah 43:25,26

6  Thus saith the LORD the King of Israel, and his redeemer the LORD of hosts; I am the first, and I am the last; and beside me there is no God. ~ Isaiah 44:6

8  . . . Is there a God beside me? yea, there is no God; I know not any. ~ Isaiah 44:8

6  Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me. 
7  If ye had known me, ye should have known my Father also: and from henceforth ye know him, and have seen him.
~ John 14:6,7

3  And this is life eternal, that they might know thee the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom thou hast sent. ~ John 17:3

9  Wherefore God also hath highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above every name: 
10  That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth; 
11  And that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father. ~ Philippians 2:9-11

In closing, coaches need to have their “. . . repentance toward God, No greater joyand faith toward our Lord Jesus Christ” (Acts 20:21), not just any ‘Jesus’ of their own choosing, before they can even consider being used of God to win a soul for Christ. If not, they might impact upon a child’s life by either changing “a game” or changing “a life” in this present evil world, but that child will still remain an enemy of God through wicked works! We read about the Lord Jesus Christ’s ministry, for it is written,

34  And when he had called the people unto him with his disciples also, he said unto them, Whosoever will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me.
35  For whosoever will save his life shall lose it; but whosoever shall lose his life for my sake and the gospel’s, the same shall save it.
36  For what shall it profit a man, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul?
37  Or what shall a man give in exchange for his soul?
38  Whosoever therefore shall be ashamed of me and of my words in this adulterous and sinful generation; of him also shall the Son of man be ashamed, when he cometh in the glory of his Father with the holy angels.
~ Mark 8:34-38

Dear coaches, if you are not serving the one and only true God in your coaching, you are wasting your time. And you will be accountable for your every action, every word, and every thought come the day of judgment. Today is the day of salvation. Repent and believe before it is too late . . .

Soli Deo Gloria______________________

Footnotes:

* The male gender reference to the “Coach” is also applicable to the female gender. However, in this context women can witness for Christ, but women are not allowed to be public teachers in the church usurping authority over men (see 1 Timothy 2:11-15).

† A coach exercises a great sphere of influence upon players in their care just as a school teacher would do the same in education. However, it should be noted that the parents have a God-given responsibility to teach their child/ren about God and the Bible. We are instructed in Scripture, for it is written,

6  Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it. ~ Proverbs 22:6

In the event that the player’s parents are not true Christians, the Christian coach should teach and preach Christ Jesus to both parents and child/ren.

Teach Your Son

†† Strong’s Complete Word Study Concordance Expanded Edition, Copyright 2004 by AMG Publishers: James Strong, LL.D., S.T.D. Edited by Warren Baker.

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“Eyes on Christ”

Eyes on Christ 

A WARNING in love, “Eyes on Christ” DOES NOT mean being in membership of –

– the Roman Catholic church;

– the 38,000+ Protestant Denominational churches;

– the Jehovah Witnesses, the Mormons, the Seventh Day Adventists, (add in your religion), etc.

IT IS NOT following the RC catechism classes, the Westminster confession, the Baptist confession, or any man made custom, tradition or confession of faith.

IT IS NOT following the Pope, Mary, Calvin, Arminius, your favourite pastor and theologian or any other guru or false teacher, or making and worshipping a ‘god’ of your own choosing which is idolatry.

IT IS NOT using God’s or Jesus Christ’s name to score religious piety. That is blasphemy.

IT IS ALL ABOUT JESUS CHRIST AND HIM CRUCIFIED, DEAD, BURIED, RESURRECTED AND ASCENDED TO THE RIGHT HAND OF GOD THE FATHER.

Sola Scriptura (“Scripture alone”);
Sola Fide (“faith alone”);
Sola Gratia (“grace alone”);
Solus Christus (“Christ alone”);
Soli Deo Gloria (“to the glory of God alone”)

Soli Deo Gloria

Which Resurrection Sunday?

It is Sunday April 16, 2017, time is 23:50 and for the past hour or so I have had thoughts mulling around in my head and have felt compelled to fire-up my laptop and record what needs to be written.

So which resurrection Sunday are ‘Christians’ referring to as a plethora of social media has been shared this Sunday April 16, 2017. For starters can we be certain that this is the correct Sunday to be remembering our Lord Jesus Christ’s resurrection day? When does the calculations actually start to find out when the Lord Jesus Christ was actually crucified at 33 years of age. To start, does the calculations commence at 6BC? or is it 5BC? or maybe it should be 4BC? The only problem is how was the Son of GOD born pre-dating His birth when Christ’s first advent separates History into B.C. and A.D. – Before Christ and anno Domini (in the year of the Lord). Christian Theologians and Historians have this quandary of ever-trying to explain the nativity of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, that is His birth Before Christ. Perplexing as this might seem, let’s move to A.D. 2017 and see whether we as ‘Christians’ are supposed to be celebrating Christ’s resurrection on the correct Sunday?

According to the Bible our Lord Jesus Christ was raised to life after His crucifixion and death on the first day of the week (Sunday). Jesus raised to life in the Resurrection “In the end of the Sabbath, as it began to dawn toward the first day of the week” (Matthew 28:1-8; Mark 16:1-8; Luke 24:1-12; John 20:1-10). According to the Bible that would be three days after His death at the Passover which is Nisan 14 into Nisan 15 the Feast of Unleavened Bread. So, according to the Jewish calendar, if the Passover in 2017 fell on Monday April 10, 2017 at sunset which is the beginning of the Jews’ Passover Nisan 14, 5777, and on April 11, 2017 at sunset was the Feast of Unleavened Bread (see Leviticus 23) when Yeshua haMessiach, our Lord Jesus Christ, ate the Passover, i.e. the Passover is prepared and the Passover lamb is killed (Matthew 26:17-19; Mark 14:12-16; Luke 22:7-13) and “Now when the even was come,” in the evening the Passover meal is celebrated and eaten (Matthew 26:20-25; Mark 14:17-21; Luke 22:14-18), and Christ being crucified thereafter, that would make resurrection Sunday April 16, 2017 five (5) days later and not the biblical three (3) days!*

Using man’s customs and traditions to celebrate Easter is akin to the Roman Catholic Mass of re-crucifying Jesus Christ over and over again in their transubstantiation practice when you continually ‘celebrate’ His resurrection every year. As Christ died only once and so He was also only resurrected once, as we read,

9  Knowing that Christ being raised from the dead dieth no more; death hath no more dominion over him. 
10  For in that he died, he died unto sin once: but in that he liveth, he liveth unto God. ~ Romans 6:9,10

How many times is Christ resurrected? Surely, yes, we do remember that Christ was resurrected, but to ‘celebrate’ “the tomb is empty He is risen” every year would imply that He has resurrected again, and again, and again, . . . when Christ was raised once and “I am alive for evermore” (see Revelation 1:18). The problem arises that His resurrection is not even being ‘celebrated’ on the correct date and day in accordance with the Biblical time frame. Even the apostle Paul exhorted the Corinthians to keep the feast with “sincerity and truth”, as we read,

7  Purge out therefore the old leaven, that ye may be a new lump, as ye are unleavened. For even Christ our passover is sacrificed for us: 
8  Therefore let us keep the feast, not with old leaven, neither with the leaven of malice and wickedness; but with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth. ~ I Corinthians 5:7,8

But we must be careful that we do not end up in bondage practicing the “weak and beggarly elements” of legalistic day observances as we are to be wise and heed this warning, as we read,

9  But now, after that ye have known God, or rather are known of God, how turn ye again to the weak and beggarly elements, whereunto ye desire again to be in bondage? 
10  Ye observe days, and months, and times, and years. ~ Galatians 4:9,10 

Please DO NOT misunderstand me – I certainly rejoice at the resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ, but it needs to be done orderly and in accordance with GOD’s Holy Word. Therefore, our Lord and Master Jesus instituted the Lord’s Supper for all born-again believers so that there would not be contentions surrounding “days, and months, and times, and years”, as we are commanded to remember Christ until His second coming as follows, for it is written,

23  For I have received of the Lord that which also I delivered unto you, That the Lord Jesus the same night in which he was betrayed took bread:
24  And when he had given thanks, he brake it, and said, Take, eat: this is my body, which is broken for you: this do in remembrance of me.
25  After the same manner also he took the cup, when he had supped, saying, This cup is the new testament in my blood: this do ye, as oft as ye drink it, in remembrance of me.
26  For as often as ye eat this bread, and drink this cup, ye do shew the Lord’s death till he come. ~ I Corinthians 11:23-26

Otherwise, the practices all look like the pagan Roman Catholic traditions that unfold with the various assortment of cross bearing processions that take place at the Vatican, in Jerusalem, amongst the Egyptian Copts, Eastern Orthodox and many other religious acts the world over (even including crucifixions enacted!) that shows no unity of faith and practice. We Christians are to be a peculiar people in unity serving and worshipping Christ in spirit and in truth with no division.

Soli Deo Gloria

__________________________

* See a related blog posting Man’s Tradition of Easter Misses the Mark Again!!! (April 11, 2017)

The Lamb of GOD

This is a new Gospel tract . . .

_______________________________________________

The Lamb

of

GOD

~ An Easter Message of the Passover Lamb ~

~ With Compliments ~

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Gary Stephen Crous

Cell: +27 (0) 72 221 1233

E-mail: luke9.23evangelism@gmail.com

Website: http://www.luke923evangelism.wordpress.com

The True meaning of Easter has nothing to do with easter bunnies and chocolate eggs.

It has all to do with the Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of GOD, offering Himself as a Saviour for sinners who will repent and believe upon His Name. In the Gospel of John we read, “The next day John seeth Jesus coming unto him, and saith, Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world.” (John 1:29) and the apostle Paul also said, “. . . For even Christ our passover is sacrificed for us:” (I Cor. 5:7). We need to stay away from man’s customs and traditions and hold fast to GOD’s Word. “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” (John 3:16)

Jesus Christ gave a prophecy concerning His death in Matthew 12:39,40 as we read, “39But he answered and said unto them, An evil and adulterous generation seeketh after a sign; and there shall no sign be given to it, but the sign of the prophet Jonas: 40For as Jonas was three days and three nights in the whale’s belly; so shall the Son of man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth.”

And according to the Bible Scriptures this prophecy was fulfilled and so Christ was not crucified on ‘Good Friday’ according to man’s customs, traditions and religious beliefs. Here are the Biblical facts why.

ELEVEN-DAY BIBLICAL CHRONOLOGICAL ACCOUNT (From The Birth, Death, and Resurrection of Jesus Christ by Gary Stephen Crous)

_______________________________________________

Sunset (9th Nisan) – FRIDAY [sixth day of the week]

Sunrise

1Then Jesus six days before the passover came to Bethany, where Lazarus was which had been dead, whom he raised from the dead. ~ John 12:1

This was when Mary, Martha’s and Lazarus’ sister, anointed Jesus Christ’s feet with a pound of ointment of spikenard (see John 12:3) the day before His triumphal entry into Jerusalem (see John 12:12).

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Sunset (10th Nisan) – SATURDAY (Sabbath Day) [seventh day of the week]

Sunrise

The Triumphal Entry of Jesus Christ into Jerusalem (Matthew 21:1,10; Mark 11:1; Luke 19:29,37,38; John 12:12). The Messiah is the paschal lamb of the Jewish Passover as God Almighty had commanded that a lamb without blemish was to be set aside on 10th Nisan (Exodus 12:3) and this lamb would be killed on “the fourteenth day of the same month: . . . in the evening” (Exodus 12:6).

_______________________________________________

Sunset (11th Nisan) – SUNDAY [first day of the week]

Jesus went to Bethany with His disciples (Mark 11:11).

Sunrise

On the morrow when they came from Bethany, Jesus cursed the fig tree (Mark 11:12-14), He cleansed the Temple and taught (Mark 11:15-18).

_______________________________________________

Sunset (12th Nisan) – MONDAY [second day of the week]

And when even was come He went out of the city (Mark 11:19).

Sunrise

And in the morning they passed the fig tree and He speaks of the Power of Faith (Mark 11:20-24) and He teaches on forgiveness and addresses the question of authority (Mark 11:25-33). Jesus then teaches extensively (Mark 12:1-44, 13:1-37; Luke 20:1-47, 21:1-38).

1After two days was the feast of the passover, and of unleavened bread: and the chief priests and the scribes sought how they might take him by craft, and put him to death. 2But they said, Not on the feast day, lest there be an uproar of the people. ~ Mark 14:1,2 (Cf. Matthew 26:1,2 and Luke 22:1,2)

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Sunset (13th Nisan) – TUESDAY [third day of the week]

Sunrise

Judas Iscariot plans to betray Jesus. This event took place sometime after Jesus’ Triumphal Entry into Jerusalem and before the first day of Unleavened Bread as we read in the Apostle Luke’s account:

1Now the feast of unleavened bread drew nigh, which is called the Passover . . . 7Then came the day of unleavened bread, when the passover must be killed. ~ Luke 22:1,7

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Sunset (14th Nisan) – WEDNESDAY [fourth day of the week] – Passover (Leviticus 23:5)

Sunrise

_______________________________________________

Sunset (15th Nisan) – THURSDAY [fifth day of the week] – First Day of Feast of Unleavened Bread (Leviticus 23:6)

The Passover is prepared and the Passover lamb is killed (Matthew 26:17-19; Mark 14:12-16; Luke 22:7-13).

“Now when the even was come,” in the evening the Passover meal is celebrated and eaten (Matthew 26:20-25; Mark 14:17-21; Luke 22:14-18)

The Lord’s Supper is instituted by the Lord Jesus Christ (Matthew 26:26-29; Mark 14:22-25; Luke 22:19,20)

After the meal, they depart for the Mount of Olives and Peter’s denial is predicted (Matthew 26:30-35; Mark 14:26-31; Luke 22:31-34; John 13:36-38)

Jesus and His disciples go to the Garden of Gethsemane to pray (Matthew 26:36-46; Mark 14:32-42; Luke 22:39-46; John 17:1-26)

Jesus is betrayed and arrested (Matthew 26:47-56; Mark 14:43-52; Luke 22:47-53; John 18:1-11)

Jesus’ Trials –

· Before the Sanhedrin by Annas and Caiaphas the high priest (Matthew 26:57-68; Mark 14:53-65; Luke 22:54, 55, 63-71; John 18:12-14, 19-24)

Sunrise (First Day – part)

Jesus’ Trials continue “And straightway in the morning …” (Mark 15:1)

· Pontius Pilate the Roman governor (Matthew 27:1, 2, 11-28; Mark 15:1-14; Luke 23:1-7; John 18:28-40, 19:1-16)

· Herod Antipas (Luke 23:8-12)

· Pontius Pilate the Roman governor (Luke 23:13-25)

Jesus is lead away to be crucified at Calvary (Golgotha)–

· 3rd Hour (9am) – Jesus is crucified (Matthew 27:35; Mark 15:24, 25; Luke 23:33; John 19:18)

· 6th Hour (12pm) – 9th Hour (3pm): There were three hours of darkness over all the earth (Matthew 27:45; Mark 15:33; Luke 23:44)

· 9th Hour (3pm) – Jesus died giving up His spirit (Matthew 27:46-50; Mark 15:34-37; Luke 23:46; John 19:30)

Fulfillment of Jesus’ prophecy in Matthew 12:39,40 = Part of One Day, No Night

_______________________________________________

Sunset (16th Nisan) – FRIDAY [sixth day of the week] – The Preparation Day (First Night – full)

Jesus is taken off the cross and buried in a tomb by Joseph of Arimathae and Nicodemus – when evening was come, the day before the Sabbath (Matthew 27:57-61; Mark 15:42-47; Luke 23:50-55; John 19:38-42).

54And that day was the preparation, and the sabbath drew on. ~ Luke 23:54

As it was the day of preparation and the Sabbath drew on no body could remain up on the cross on the holy preparation day and the Sabbath day. Also, according to Deuteronomy 21:23, it commands that “a body shall not remain all night upon the tree”. When this is mentioned in John 19:31 the high Sabbath day is in reference to a Sabbath day during the Feast of Unleavened Bread.

Sunrise (Second Day – full)

Fulfillment of Jesus’ prophecy in Matthew 12:39,40 = Two Days (1 part + 1 full), One Night (1 full)

_______________________________________________

Sunset (17th Nisan) – SATURDAY [seventh day of the week] – Sabbath Day (Second Night – full)

In the grave (Luke 23:56).

Sunrise (Third Day – full)

Fulfillment of Jesus’ prophecy in Matthew 12:39,40 = Three Days (1 part + 2 full), Two Nights (2 full)

_______________________________________________

Sunset (18th Nisan) – SUNDAY – First Day of the Week – The Third Day (Three days dead Thur./Fri. – Fri./Sat. – Sat./Sun. and raised on the Third Day) (Third Night – part)

Jesus raised to life in the Resurrection “In the end of the Sabbath, as it began to dawn toward the first day of the week” (Matthew 28:1-8; Mark 16:1-8; Luke 24:1-12; John 20:1-10)

Fulfillment of Jesus’ prophecy in Matthew 12:39,40 = THREE DAYS (1 part + 2 full), THREE NIGHTS (2 full + 1 part)

Sunrise

_______________________________________________

Born-again Christians (see John 3:3,5-7) are commanded how to remember their Lord Jesus Christ, “23For I have received of the Lord that which also I delivered unto you, That the Lord Jesus the same night in which he was betrayed took bread: 24And when he had given thanks, he brake it, and said, Take, eat: this is my body, which is broken for you: this do in remembrance of me. 25After the same manner also he took the cup, when he had supped, saying, This cup is the new testament in my blood: this do ye, as oft as ye drink it, in remembrance of me. 26For as often as ye eat this bread, and drink this cup, ye do shew the Lord’s death till he come.” (I Cor. 11:23-26)

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Man’s Tradition of Easter Misses the Mark Again!!!

This is why our Lord Jesus Christ gave us His table to remember His death,

26  For as often as ye eat this bread, and drink this cup, ye do shew the Lord’s death till he come. ~ I Corinthians 11:26

The world over ‘celebrated’ Palm Sunday on Sunday April 9, 2017 when in actual fact our Lord Jesus Christ would had ridden into Jerusalem on the foal of a donkey on Nisan 10, which according to this year’s Jewish calendar Nisan 10, 5777* fell on Thursday April 6, 2017. So the custom of man missed the Scripture instruction. Nisan 10 in Jewish tradition is related to the reading of Torah as can be seen at the link hereunder,

י׳ בְּנִיסָן תשע״ז

Parashat Tzav / פרשת צו

Next read in the Diaspora on 08 April 2017. Parashat Tzav is the 25th weekly Torah portion in the annual Jewish cycle of Torah reading.

On Monday April 10, 2017 at sunset was the beginning of Passover Nisan 14, 5777, and on April 11, 2017 at sunset will be the Feast of Unleavened Bread when Yeshua haMessiach, our Lord Jesus Christ, ate the Passover.

ט״ו בְּנִיסָן תשע״ז

Pesach / פסח

Passover (Hebrew: פֶּסַח Pesach) commemorates the story of the Exodus, in which the ancient Israelites were freed from slavery in Egypt. Passover begins on the 15th day of the month of Nisan in the Jewish calendar, which is in spring in the Northern Hemisphere, and is celebrated for seven or eight days. It is one of the most widely observed Jewish holidays.

Pesach begins at sundown on Mon, 10 April 2017.

So dear friends, how does Easter/Passover now take place on this coming Friday April 14, 2017 after the true Biblical Passover? A very similar situation took place in 2016 as can be read here: Which Date in 2016 for Easter or Passover? As Christians we should stick to what the Holy Bible instructs us,

23 For I have received of the Lord that which also I delivered unto you, That the Lord Jesus the same night in which he was betrayed took bread:
24 And when he had given thanks, he brake it, and said, Take, eat: this is my body, which is broken for you: this do in remembrance of me.
25 After the same manner also he took the cup, when he had supped, saying, This cup is the new testament in my blood: this do ye, as oft as ye drink it, in remembrance of me.
26 For as often as ye eat this bread, and drink this cup, ye do shew the Lord’s death till he come. ~ 1 Corinthians 11:23-26 [my emphasis]

And by the way, our Lord Jesus Christ was not crucified on ‘Good Friday’. Here are the Biblical facts why.

ELEVEN-DAY BIBLICAL CHRONOLOGICAL ACCOUNT (From The Birth, Death, and Resurrection of Jesus Christ by Gary Stephen Crous)

_______________________________________________

Sunset (9th Nisan) – FRIDAY [sixth day of the week]

Sunrise

1Then Jesus six days before the passover came to Bethany, where Lazarus was which had been dead, whom he raised from the dead. ~ John 12:1

This was when Mary, Martha’s and Lazarus’ sister, anointed Jesus Christ’s feet with a pound of ointment of spikenard (see John 12:3) the day before His triumphal entry into Jerusalem (see John 12:12).

_______________________________________________

Sunset (10th Nisan) – SATURDAY (Sabbath Day) [seventh day of the week]

Sunrise

The Triumphal Entry of Jesus Christ into Jerusalem (Matthew 21:1,10; Mark 11:1; Luke 19:29,37,38; John 12:12). The Messiah is the paschal lamb of the Jewish Passover as God Almighty had commanded that a lamb without blemish was to be set aside on 10th Nisan (Exodus 12:3) and this lamb would be killed on “the fourteenth day of the same month: . . . in the evening” (Exodus 12:6).

_______________________________________________

Sunset (11th Nisan) – SUNDAY [first day of the week]

Jesus went to Bethany with His disciples (Mark 11:11).

Sunrise

On the morrow when they came from Bethany, Jesus cursed the fig tree (Mark 11:12-14), He cleansed the Temple and taught (Mark 11:15-18).

_______________________________________________

Sunset (12th Nisan) – MONDAY [second day of the week]

And when even was come He went out of the city (Mark 11:19).

Sunrise

And in the morning they passed the fig tree and He speaks of the Power of Faith (Mark 11:20-24) and He teaches on forgiveness and addresses the question of authority (Mark 11:25-33). Jesus then teaches extensively (Mark 12:1-44, 13:1-37; Luke 20:1-47, 21:1-38).

1After two days was the feast of the passover, and of unleavened bread: and the chief priests and the scribes sought how they might take him by craft, and put him to death. 2But they said, Not on the feast day, lest there be an uproar of the people. ~ Mark 14:1,2 (Cf. Matthew 26:1,2 and Luke 22:1,2)

_______________________________________________

Sunset (13th Nisan) – TUESDAY [third day of the week]

Sunrise

Judas Iscariot plans to betray Jesus. This event took place sometime after Jesus’ Triumphal Entry into Jerusalem and before the first day of Unleavened Bread as we read in the Apostle Luke’s account:

1Now the feast of unleavened bread drew nigh, which is called the Passover . . . 7Then came the day of unleavened bread, when the passover must be killed. ~ Luke 22:1,7

_______________________________________________

Sunset (14th Nisan) – WEDNESDAY [fourth day of the week] – Passover (Leviticus 23:5)

Sunrise

_______________________________________________

Sunset (15th Nisan) – THURSDAY [fifth day of the week] – First Day of Feast of Unleavened Bread (Leviticus 23:6)

The Passover is prepared and the Passover lamb is killed (Matthew 26:17-19; Mark 14:12-16; Luke 22:7-13).

“Now when the even was come,” in the evening the Passover meal is celebrated and eaten (Matthew 26:20-25; Mark 14:17-21; Luke 22:14-18)

The Lord’s Supper is instituted by the Lord Jesus Christ (Matthew 26:26-29; Mark 14:22-25; Luke 22:19,20)

After the meal, they depart for the Mount of Olives and Peter’s denial is predicted (Matthew 26:30-35; Mark 14:26-31; Luke 22:31-34; John 13:36-38)

Jesus and His disciples go to the Garden of Gethsemane to pray (Matthew 26:36-46; Mark 14:32-42; Luke 22:39-46; John 17:1-26)

Jesus is betrayed and arrested (Matthew 26:47-56; Mark 14:43-52; Luke 22:47-53; John 18:1-11)

Jesus’ Trials –

  • Before the Sanhedrin by Annas and Caiaphas the high priest (Matthew 26:57-68; Mark 14:53-65; Luke 22:54, 55, 63-71; John 18:12-14, 19-24)

Sunrise (First Day – part)

Jesus’ Trials continue “And straightway in the morning …” (Mark 15:1)

  • Pontius Pilate the Roman governor (Matthew 27:1, 2, 11-28; Mark 15:1-14; Luke 23:1-7; John 18:28-40, 19:1-16)

  • Herod Antipas (Luke 23:8-12)

  • Pontius Pilate the Roman governor (Luke 23:13-25)

Jesus is lead away to be crucified at Calvary (Golgotha)–

  • 3rd Hour (9am) – Jesus is crucified (Matthew 27:35; Mark 15:24, 25; Luke 23:33; John 19:18)

  • 6th Hour (12pm) – 9th Hour (3pm): There were three hours of darkness over all the earth (Matthew 27:45; Mark 15:33; Luke 23:44)

  • 9th Hour (3pm) – Jesus died giving up His spirit (Matthew 27:46-50; Mark 15:34-37; Luke 23:46; John 19:30)

Fulfilment of Jesus’ prophecy in Matthew 12:39,40 = Part of One Day, No Night

_______________________________________________

Sunset (16th Nisan) – FRIDAY [sixth day of the week] – The Preparation Day (First Night – full)

Jesus is taken off the cross and buried in a tomb by Joseph of Arimathae and Nicodemus – when evening was come, the day before the Sabbath (Matthew 27:57-61; Mark 15:42-47; Luke 23:50-55; John 19:38-42).

54And that day was the preparation, and the sabbath drew on. ~ Luke 23:54

As it was the day of preparation and the Sabbath drew on no body could remain up on the cross on the holy preparation day and the Sabbath day. Also, according to Deuteronomy 21:23, it commands that “a body shall not remain all night upon the tree”. When this is mentioned in John 19:31 the high Sabbath day is in reference to a Sabbath day during the Feast of Unleavened Bread.

Sunrise (Second Day – full)

Fulfilment of Jesus’ prophecy in Matthew 12:39,40 = Two Days (1 part + 1 full), One Night (1 full)

_______________________________________________

Sunset (17th Nisan) – SATURDAY [seventh day of the week] – Sabbath Day (Second Night – full)

In the grave (Luke 23:56).

Sunrise (Third Day – full)

Fulfilment of Jesus’ prophecy in Matthew 12:39,40 = Three Days (1 part + 2 full), Two Nights (2 full)

_______________________________________________

Sunset (18th Nisan) – SUNDAY – First Day of the Week – The Third Day (Three days dead Thur./Fri. – Fri./Sat. – Sat./Sun. and raised on the Third Day) (Third Night – part)

Jesus raised to life in the Resurrection “In the end of the Sabbath, as it began to dawn toward the first day of the week” (Matthew 28:1-8; Mark 16:1-8; Luke 24:1-12; John 20:1-10)

Fulfilment of Jesus’ prophecy in Matthew 12:39,40 = THREE DAYS (1 part + 2 full), THREE NIGHTS (2 full + 1 part)

Sunrise

_______________________________________________

Soli Deo Gloria

____________

Footnote:

* A date converter from the Gregorian calendar to the Hebrew calendar can be found at: www.hebcal.com/converter/

[The same unbiblical situation with secular feast days plays out every December 25th, too!]

Open emails to brother Jesse Boyd ~ Part 2

Dear Reader,

Birth of Christ ~ Click to enlarge Continuing on from Part 1 – please read Part 1 before reading this Part 2 as this will not make much sense – here are brother Jesse Boyd’s and writer’s email responses to the initial email.

As mentioned in Part 1 this blog post does not question the salvation of our dear brother Jesse Boyd, but these open emails are shared here to show the error of teachings where one tries to reconcile man’s ‘Christmas’ with GOD’s Scriptures. Whilst brother Jesse has made it clear that he does not want writer to make contact with him whilst accusing writer of being presumptuous, writer merely received “. . . the word with all readiness of mind, and searched the scriptures daily, whether those things were so” (Acts 17:11) and responded in love examining those words spoken by brother Jesse. It appears that brother Jesse only wants his hearers to accept what he has to say without ever being questioned. These blog posts are not to demean our brother Jesse in any way, but they will show that what has been spoken by our dear brother Jesse has not always lined up with what truly took place and that in this instance regarding his teaching on ‘Christmas’ he has missed the mark on certain issues.

These blog postings are not about trying to smear our brother Jesse’s name or his testimony for our Lord Jesus Christ. It is solely about Truth!

Please read first writer’s email to brother Jesse in Part 1 to get the context before reading our responses hereunder.

_______________________________________________

From: Jesse Boyd [mailto:jboyd@fpgm.org]
Sent: 11 March 2017 05:37 AM
To: Gary Crous
Subject: Re: YOUR TEACHING SERMON PODCASTS ON "CHRISTMAS"

Gary, I’ve been through this with you before, and frankly, I’m not interested in taking the time to answer you point by point. It would be a fruitless waste of my time out here on the foreign mission field. Considering the  history of these diatribes that come from you out of nowhere, it’s very hard for me to take you seriously. The sermons that you have nit picked and misrepresented remain as is. I stand by my words, and I stand by those teachings. If the "public forum" mention was some sort of threat, be my guest. Say whatever you want. As I have told you before, I am surrounded by those who hold me accountable in ministry and have a local church and a faithful pastor who do the same.  These are aware of everything that I teach and preach. I may be obligated by my testimony in Christ to consider what you have to say, but as I in no way answer to you in matters of ministry, I am not obligated to heed your words nor take them seriously in their presumptuousness. Find something better to do with your time brother. Vain and profane babblings only increase unto more ungodliness. And without the covering of a biblically-organized local church, you are only asking for trouble in ministry.

As we are persistently laboring for the Gospel in very difficult fields and doing so with the blessing and commission of the local church and a long record of faithfulness, I have a personal policy. If I never hear from you with a word of encouragement, a response to a prayer request, or just something positive and for edification, criticism that pops out of a hole is suspicious at best. Once, I’ll consider it. The second time, I usually ignore it and sever Facebook contact. In your case, because of the labors we shared together in South Africa, I have given you more grace. Brother, this is the third or fourth you have done this following a long period of silence. Since 2015, it became hard to take you seriously after you contacted me and assured me that some support was being sent to help with the earthquake victims here in Nepal. Of course, that support never showed up and some excuse was made about a bank transfer problem. Bottom line, you contacted me and you told me you were going to do something that you never did. Before you start nitpicking my sermons, it might be better to consider what Psalm 15 says about a righteous man swearing to his own hurt and still changing not. And brother, this has absolutely nothing to do with the money. I don’t need you money, and I don’t need your support. But, don’t tell a brother you are going to do something, then you don’t do it, then you crawl out of a hole of silence with a presumptuous diatribe of criticism, and then expect that brother to take you seriously. Still, I gave you grace through the last of these diatribes that came last year (you seem to be on a once-a-year schedule of some sort) and have kept the lines of communication open. Today’s email is the last straw. There is so much wrong with what you wrote, but I will not waste the time debating with you. You are obviously off-base and unbalanced spiritually and theologically (something as simple as your constant use of "YHVH" reveals a whole lot brother). The best thing you can do is put yourself under the accountability and spiritual authority of a Bible-believing local church, and spend less time straining at a gnat while swallowing a camel.

Say what you want to say in your "public forum." I’ve got more important things to do than respond or defend myself. The LORD judge between me and thee.

Goodbye Gary. Please do not contact me again.

Jesse
Sent from my iPhone

From: Gary Crous [mailto:luke9.23evangelism@gmail.com]
Sent: 18 March 2017 12:16 AM
To: ‘Jesse Boyd’
Subject: RE: YOUR TEACHING SERMON PODCASTS ON "CHRISTMAS"

Dear brother Jesse

Thank you for your response. Whilst you say you do not want to hear from me again, I think you have made serious allegations against me that needs to be corrected. You might think it is a “diatribe” and “nit picking”, but I can assure you that there are errors that I have lovingly pointed out to you and you will not humbily accept the corrections. It appears that you are of your own opinion that you never err and that no one including me can question your teachings even when they are erroneous in parts. Brother, you are a fine biblical scholar and teacher and I have learned a lot from you, but on the issues I “nit picked” I do not agree with your errors and I can assure you I have not “misrepresented” them. Must I remain silent and not be a Berean in testing all things? Am I therefore become your enemy, because I tell you the truth? (Gal. 4:16)

Brother, the “public forum” was not a threat. I mentioned this as you and many other brothers, including myself, have publicly addressed and rebuked professing and true Christians publicly. I prayed about this and sought counsel before addressing you. Once you censured me for addressing you and Ricky in a private email when in my understanding both of you were present at your karate graduation, and it wasn’t a matter of you offending me personally that I needed only to have come to you alone. More on this later. Brother, I will address your response to me in point form as you made certain accusations against me that needs to be corrected.

“I in no way answer to you in matters of ministry, I am not obligated to heed your words nor take them seriously in their presumptuousness.”

Brother, I have never asked you to answer to me in matters of your ministry. However, you are answerable for what you preach and teach. If you are not answerable then you cannot question the “teachings” of others. And my words were not in their presumptuousness. I presumed nothing but addressed your words spoken.

“I have a personal policy. If I never hear from you with a word of encouragement, a response to a prayer request, or just something positive and for edification, criticism that pops out of a hole is suspicious at best. Once, I’ll consider it. The second time, I usually ignore it and sever Facebook contact. In your case, because of the labors we shared together in South Africa, I have given you more grace.”

Brother, if you go back on your Facebook wall you will notice that I have been in agreement with a thumbs up on many of your posts or pictures. I have at times made some comments, but I do admit that they have been very brief. I do not have to broadcast that I am praying for you or your ministry or your family. Believe me we as a family pray often for these mentioned items if and when they come to mind. We are reminded to pray in the closet, right? Dear brother, communication is a two way thing. When last did you comment, thumbs up or have something positive to say to me without me asking for it? Or does everything revolve solely around the ministry of Jesse Boyd? Brother, I have longed to labour with you again, and even made my intentions known to you, but if you were serious about labouring together you might well have helped in some way. You are blessed to have the strength of the US Dollar against foreign currency as apposed to the poor value of the SA Rand. Consider these Scriptures,

Act 20:33  I have coveted no man’s silver, or gold, or apparel.
Act 20:34  Yea, ye yourselves know, that these hands have ministered unto my necessities, and to them that were with me.
Act 20:35  I have shewed you all things, how that so labouring ye ought to support the weak, and to remember the words of the Lord Jesus, how he said, It is more blessed to give than to receive.

“Brother, this is the third or fourth you have done this following a long period of silence. Since 2015, it became hard to take you seriously after you contacted me and assured me that some support was being sent to help with the earthquake victims here in Nepal. Of course, that support never showed up and some excuse was made about a bank transfer problem. Bottom line, you contacted me and you told me you were going to do something that you never did. Before you start nitpicking my sermons, it might be better to consider what Psalm 15 says about a righteous man swearing to his own hurt and still changing not. And brother, this has absolutely nothing to do with the money. I don’t need you money, and I don’t need your support. But, don’t tell a brother you are going to do something, then you don’t do it, then you crawl out of a hole of silence with a presumptuous diatribe of criticism, and then expect that brother to take you seriously.”

Brother, it appears that you keep a record of wrongs and you might have a spirit of unforgiveness. Our Lord Jesus said, For if ye forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you: But if ye forgive not men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses. (Mat. 6:14,15) You have harboured this issue since 2015. I sent you many emails dealing with the support that was to come from [shortened LHBC], where I was a member at the time. As I do not hold records of wrongs, the emails I sent to you have long been deleted. You are welcome to send me copies so that my memory can be refreshed what I said. However, from what I recollect you were at the time very supportive of me and said something along the lines that “these things happen” when there was a problem with the transfer according to an elder and his wife of LHBC. They did not want to do a ‘paypal’ payment for reasons they afforded. We even asked for your physical bank account details. I expressed my dismay at the whole problem that existed back then. I genuinely was unhappy with the whole issue surrounding the Nepal Earthquake Relief funds. In fact when I told you I was going to leave LHBC you were very supportive of my move and truly encouraged me in finding a new place to worship. Of all the emails that I have left, this one is what I sent to LHBC upon my resignation as a ‘member’ from a church that offered me the right hand of fellowship and commissioned me to “go and evangelise” when [DELETED] was the previous pastor. Here is the email [it has been shortened],

From: Gary Crous [mailto:luke9.23evangelism@gmail.com]
Sent: Tuesday, 13 October 2015 21:23
To: [DELETED]; [DELETED]; [DELETED]
Subject: EKKLESIA ATTENDANCE

Dear Brothers [DELETED], [DELETED] and [DELETED]

Grace unto you, and peace, from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. I thank you [DELETED] for your telephone call making inquiry concerning the Crous family the other week. I pray and hope you all will receive this mail in the love to you that it is sincerely intended. I write this mail to advise you – as the leadership of the [shortened LHBC] – that I have been praying and seeking the LORD regarding where we should be at this time. I had hoped to find a fellowship that had an evangelical heart for the lost. I was once told by our dear Brother [DELETED] that my frustration was showing, and it surely was as a result of a cry for my beloved LHBC brothers and sisters to be active and join me. Sadly, before becoming disillusioned, I think it is time to move one. In the past two years or so opportunities have presented themselves where we could all have worked together on missionary work – some going, some organising, some providing, all praying – to reach out to the heathen lost world, but the presented opportunities to provide and labour with our Saviour sadly escaped us. Our Master stated it best, as it is written in Luke 10:2 ~

2  Therefore said he unto them, The harvest truly is great, but the labourers are few: pray ye therefore the Lord of the harvest, that he would send forth labourers into his harvest.

Evangelism is not a one-man commissioned-to-go show left to one to go, to provide for his own and only rely on the prayers of the remaining rest. For the latter, it is often easier to speak to God about men than to speak to men about God! We, the saints, are to be perfected for the work of the ministry which leads to the unity of the faith as we read in Ephesians 4:11-16 ~

11  And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers; 
12  For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ: 
13  Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ: 
14  That we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive; 
15  But speaking the truth in love, may grow up into him in all things, which is the head, even Christ: 
16  From whom the whole body fitly joined together and compacted by that which every joint supplieth, according to the effectual working in the measure of every part, maketh increase of the body unto the edifying of itself in love.

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Here is a sermon preached on the evening of September 20, 2015 by Brother Jesse Boyd titled “Christian is a Bible Word.” Jesse raises the following question: “You may SAY you are a Christian; you may IDENTIFY yourself as being a CHRISTIAN; but can the world rightly ACCUSE you of being a Christian?” The early church turned the world upside down. Not so today. I wonder if the “church of today” – not to be confused with the beautiful and pristine Bride of Christ – has become docile and asleep due to Bible translations, men’s programmes, and the Holy Spirit being quenched and grieved by churchianity! Some weeks ago while we were going through Colossians 1:24-29 (23 August 2015: The School of Christ-like Maturity) I was saddened to hear again a mention that the scriptures will not be the same due to our different translations. By the way, I do download and listen to the podcast sermons and am encouraged! Without me becoming longwinded, the LORD commands us neither to add to nor take away from the Bible. We see this in Deuteronomy 4:2, 12:32; Proverbs 4:20-21, 30:5-6; and Revelation 22:19. The Bible says: “Thy word have I hid in mine heart, that I might not sin against thee.” (Psalm 119:11). Which Word is it if it changes so often? I would therefore ask that you kindly read the following articles if you have not already done so:

Here is also a video (https://youtu.be/bUR1-ewrHs4) that shows the various ‘contradictions’ in the modern translations that I request that you kindly view. . . . [shortened]

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Further, due to all the ecumenism that is taking place around the world and denominational teachings in the 37,000+ “types of churches”, to play it safe and not be attached to any I hereby wish to terminate my “membership” at [shortened LHBC] with immediate effect. I cannot trust “church organisations” and any “church denomination” affiliated to a man-made church council who is promoting man-made systems. Therefore true assemblies (ekklesia) of God should be autonomous. As a family, before God, we will not be affiliating ourselves with any denomination, church building or organization, as we hold to the Truth that born again believers have our names “written in the Lamb’s book of life” (see Revelation 21:27) and therefore need not to have our names on a man-made membership church roll! I acted in haste with my membership of LHBC when my convictions and conscience have always warned me. We will not forsake the assembling of ourselves (see Hebrews 10:25), but will freely meet at home and with other believers as our LORD directs. [The Holy Bible is the final authority in all matters of faith and practice. However, I would suggest that you add “Pagan Christianity?” by Frank Viola and George Barna to your library.]

Further, in closing, I am afraid I might fall into sin if I continue in fellowship with LHBC due to the following issues:

  • Edifying one another with different translations that ‘contradict’ the meaning of GOD’s Word. This will also diminish unity: “Now I beseech you, brethren, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that ye all speak the same thing, and that there be no divisions among you; but that ye be perfectly joined together in the same mind and in the same judgment.” ~ 1 Corinthians 1:10
  • A lopsided budget that diminishes any other evangelical costs. [An email titled SOME SERIOUS CONCERNS dated Monday 16th March 2015 bears reference]
  • A non-payment of a committed Nepal Earthquake Relief Fund collection for FPGM (Bro. Jesse Boyd). [Not sure if Jesse has been notified by LHBC of the non-payment]
  • There is no Biblical corporate evangelism as a “ministry of reconciliation” (see 2 Corinthians 5:18).

Pro 27:5  Open rebuke is better than secret love.
Pro 27:6  Faithful are the wounds of a friend; but the kisses of an enemy are deceitful.

With regards to the LHBC’s R500.00 monthly payment to the Crous family, you are at liberty to discontinue the same as you deem fit.

In Christ’s service,

From: [DELETED]
Sent: 07 November 2015 09:34 AM
To: ‘Gary Crous’
Cc:[DELETED]‘; ‘[DELETED]
Subject: RE: EKKLESIA ATTENDANCE

Gary,

Thank you for the email you sent on the 13th. Although we are saddened by the situation, we appreciate your email and the expression of your concerns. As it seems that most of your main concerns are long-term issues which have been addressed before by [DELETED], we think it wise not to revisit them all, and therefore accept your resignation.

We continue to pray for you, your family, and your street evangelism. With regard to the R500 monthly contribution, we would like to use it for our church’s missions work, and will therefore redirect it elsewhere. We will continue the support of your ministry till the end of December, but will then stop the payments.

Much love and prayers,
The elders of [DELETED]

[DELETED]

Pastor,
[DELETED]

Sadly brother, your mention, quote: “And brother, this has absolutely nothing to do with the money. I don’t need you money, and I don’t need your support. has everything to do with the money. Then why do you mention this? To try discredit me and my witness and testimony? Your scathing comments are not Christ-like. I hate stooping to a level of bringing up past events, but this incident is very relevant. Brother, do you remember your reaction when you were in South Africa the first time and a brother in the USA was withdrawing his support from your FPGM and how you openly verbally vented your frustration? I am sure it wasn’t about the money and your travels, right? Brother, you have held a record of wrongs for close on two years now. Don’t you think you should let it go?

“Still, I gave you grace through the last of these diatribes that came last year (you seem to be on a once-a-year schedule of some sort) and have kept the lines of communication open. Today’s email is the last straw. There is so much wrong with what you wrote, but I will not waste the time debating with you. You are obviously off-base and unbalanced spiritually and theologically (something as simple as your constant use of "YHVH" reveals a whole lot brother). The best thing you can do is put yourself under the accountability and spiritual authority of a Bible-believing local church, and spend less time straining at a gnat while swallowing a camel.”

Brother, last year was not a “diatribe” either. And I do not have a “once-a-year schedule of sorts”. Here is the opening salutation and warning that I offered you in 2016:

From: Gary Crous [mailto:luke9.23evangelism@gmail.com]
Sent: 05 June 2016 09:36 PM
To: ‘Jesse Boyd’
Subject: RE: Just Checking In

Dear brothers Jesse and Ricky

Grace to you, and peace in God our Father and our Lord Jesus Christ. In response to your email hereunder, we say many thanks to you for the updates that you send out periodically and we assure you we keep praying for you and your ministry when you come to mind with a need as we hold the ropes here in South Africa. Our prayers are for the work of evangelism where ever you go. I must admit that I am at fault where I have not communicated with you as often as I should, both in private conversation or on social media. Please do accept my apology.

I still follow your and Ricky’s Facebook postings so we know your thoughts, your actions and your mission work and we are mostly encouraged by what we see and read. However dear brother Jesse, I watched a video that Eva Tsai posted on FB which was linked to your wall on April 5, 2016 with regards to your martial arts’ black belt graduation in California after your return from Israel. Brother Jesse, I was deeply saddened to see you and the parties present all bow to a framed photograph (?) on some steps. Brother, can you kindly explain this practice! What I am concerned about is that this video is in the public domain and it clearly shows a violation of the Second Commandment by bowing to an object (idolatry). What further concerns me is that it appears that the brethren have not picked up on this, whilst yet congratulating you and liking your martial arts’ postings. I am not sure whether anyone else has approached you concerning this matter.

I do believe I am in the faith and led of the Holy Spirit, so I am surprised at your outburst, quote: “You are obviously off-base and unbalanced spiritually and theologically (something as simple as your constant use of "YHVH" reveals a whole lot brother).” For you (FPGM) that reach out to Israeli backpackers in Nepal and South America and who give them the Tanakh as well as the B’rit Chadashah it is common knowledge that in Hebrew the LORD’s Name appears as “Yod He Vav He” (YHVH). I merely state the True God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. So what is wrong with that since many people mention a false ‘god’?

Brother, it appears that you are trying to deviate the issues at hand away from what you said in your sermons. If I am wrong please point out my error so I can apologise. Besides, why would you, a learned man. even want to hold to a false “holiday” that has no Biblical foundation? And remember the Bride of Christ is one body. We are all accountable to each other in Christ Jesus,

1Co 12:19  And if they were all one member, where were the body?
1Co 12:20  But now are they many members, yet but one body.
1Co 12:21  And the eye cannot say unto the hand, I have no need of thee: nor again the head to the feet, I have no need of you.
1Co 12:22  Nay, much more those members of the body, which seem to be more feeble, are necessary:

With much love,
In Christ’s service,

From: Jesse Boyd [mailto:jboyd@fpgm.org]
Sent: 18 March 2017 10:02 AM
To: Gary Crous
Subject: Re: YOUR TEACHING SERMON PODCASTS ON "CHRISTMAS"

Gary, I asked you not to contact me again. I disagree with your conclusions and presumptions. Period. The LORD judge between me and thee. I stand by the teachings that you failed to hear and recall in their proper context, and I stand by every correspondence I have sent to you in response to your criticisms over the years. Frankly, I’m done. I never reached out to accuse you; you have done this to me numerous times. And, your comment about the dollar versus the Rand, I’m not interested in partnering with anyone in ministry that has  this man-centered mindset. I partner with South Asian believers who know far more about  devalued currency and financial struggle than you could ever know, and the Lord has used them to do mighty things for His Kingdom. I will say no more. Please don’t waste your time trying to contact me again to debate things I am not interested in debating with you. You write long emails, but they are not serving to prove any point. In fact, "in the multitude of words, there wanteth not sin" (Proverbs 10:19). Ecclesiastes 5:3 is also pretty clear. I’m really busy over here in South Asia with the work of the Gospel, and its time to cut out the distractions. I sense no call from the Lord at this time or any time in the near future to return to or labor in South Africa, so  partnership with you is a moot point anyway. Stop concerning yourself with me, I’m a nobody, and do something better with your time in what the Lord has called you to do in your own country.

Maranatha, 
Jesse

P.S. Future emails from you attempting to debate with me or argue about "Christmas" will be ignored and will not receive a response.

Conclusion:

One point which will be made here as brother Jesse does not want writer to contact him by email, without addressing each issue to the last email here above, is that writer never made reference to labouring alongside brother Jesse in South Africa, but he presumed such. Brother Jesse was well aware that writer made his intensions known that he wished to labour alongside him in South Asia and/or the USA and/or Israel, and therefore he quoted Acts 20:33-35 to be read in context with the preceding sentences thereto.

Since brother Jesse will, quote: “stand by the teachings that you failed to hear and recall in their proper context, and I stand by every correspondence I have sent to you in response to your criticisms over the years” [unquote] writer does not understand how he “failed to hear and recall in their proper context” when the sermons were transcribed and addressed from the very words spoken. The context was certainly taken into consideration for there was no other way to take what was said any other way. If you think writer has criticised you over the years, writer was asking questions and pointed out certain facts what he believed to be true. If i transgressed in any way against you which was personal criticism (which i would ask that you give me proof thereof), i humbly ask for your forgiveness for any wrong committed. However, what has been said in these blog posts, i stand by what has been written.

Soli Deo Gloria

Open emails to brother Jesse Boyd ~ Part 1

Dear Reader,

Birth of Christ ~ Click to enlarge This blog post and Part 2 which follows does not question the salvation of our dear brother Jesse Boyd, but these open emails are shared here to show the error of teachings where one tries to reconcile man’s ‘Christmas’ with GOD’s Scriptures. Whilst brother Jesse has made it clear that he does not want writer to make contact with him whilst accusing writer of being presumptuous, writer merely received “. . . the word with all readiness of mind, and searched the scriptures daily, whether those things were so” (Acts 17:11) and responded in love examining those words spoken by brother Jesse. It appears that brother Jesse only wants his hearers to accept what he has to say without ever being questioned. These blog posts are not to demean our brother Jesse in any way, but they will show that what has been spoken by our dear brother Jesse has not always lined up with what truly took place and that in this instance regarding his teaching on ‘Christmas’ he has missed the mark on certain issues.

These blog postings are not about trying to smear our brother Jesse’s name or his testimony for our Lord Jesus Christ. It is solely about Truth!

In Part 1, writer’s email to brother Jesse is recorded, and in Part 2 you can read brother Jesse’s and writer’s various email responses.

_______________________________________________

From: Gary Crous [mailto:luke9.23evangelism@gmail.com]
Sent: 11 March 2017 12:37 AM
To: Jesse Boyd (jboyd@fpgm.org)
Subject: YOUR TEACHING SERMON PODCASTS ON "CHRISTMAS"

Dear brother Jesse

Greetings to you from South Africa. I come to you in love and I pray that you will receive these corrections in the spirit of love as my brother-in-Christ. I have taken time to pray and seek our Lord’s guidance hence the lengthy delay and really considered what would be the best way forward and how YEHOVAH will be glorified in all that needs to be said. I have prayed and considered coming to you privately, but you have not trespassed against me personally (Matthew 18:15). Since you have shared these teachings with a world wide audience and made them available via podcast I am at liberty to address these issues in the public forum. However, prudence and discernment has won the day, and after consulting with another brother-in-Christ on this issue I have humbled myself before God our Father and will approach you privately asking you to recant your false teachings concerning the Doctrine of Christ’s nativity.

Before addressing the corrections here, I am reminded of these two Scriptures,

Pro 18:13  He that answereth a matter before he heareth it, it is folly and shame unto him.

Pro 27:5 Open rebuke is better than secret love.
Pro 27:6 Faithful are the wounds of a friend; but the kisses of an enemy are deceitful.

I have therefore listened to your sermons on more than one occasion and as a result thereof large portions of the sermons conducted at New Testament Christian Fellowship in Conover, NC have been transcribed here in order to deal with certain points of error. Whilst every effort has been made by me to record your exact words, it is not clear as to where the punctuation would appear, having not seen any written text from your sermons, if any. Certain emphases have been made by me based on the pitch and emphasis made by your voice recordings.

I pray that I have been a Berean who has “received the word with all readiness of mind, and searched the scriptures daily, whether those things were so” (Acts 17:11).

Whilst much more can be written, not every issue has been dealt with. For each portion of your text transcribed is preceded by JB (and the text is in green) which represents you, Jesse Boyd. Each answer is preceded by GC which represents me, Gary Crous.

Every Family Apart (Zech. 12:9-14) Sermon (Part 3 of 5) (Audio)

JB: [1:01:20] “. . . These fields near Bethlehem were not the wilderness, and it would have been culturally taboo for just regular old shepherds to be keeping flocks near Bethlehem, it wouldn’t have happened, they were in the wilderness away from the towns unless it was sheep used in temple sacrifice. These shepherds in Luke chapter 2 were Levites, of the House of Levi, they were Levitical shepherds keeping watch over flocks used in temple service. These Levites Levitical shepherds would have descended from Levi, maybe through Shimei, who were of the Gershonites, remember the Gershonites took care of things related to the outside of the tabernacle, makes sense that at some point, the descendants of Gershon would continue to minister to things concerning the outside of the temple – one of which would be keeping the temple flocks it would have made them unclean so that they weren’t able to come into the temple, but they had the very important job of inspecting the sheep to make sure they were unblemished. . . . [1:02:25]”

GC: Brother, the shepherds were not Levites. There is no Scripture that confirms the shepherds of Luke 2 to be Levites. Making reference to, quote: “These Levites Levitical shepherds would have descended from Levi, maybe through Shimei, who were of the Gershonites, remember the Gershonites took care of things related to the outside of the tabernacle, makes sense that at some point, the descendants of Gershon would continue to minister to things concerning the outside of the temple” [unquote] is simply not true and at most is speculation. Further, the duties of Gershon’s family recorded in Numbers 3:21-26 does not include shepherding, nor does it make reference to “care of things related to the outside of the tabernacle” which you are alluding to, to include shepherding or sheep husbandry, for their duties were to minister in the tabernacle / temple as we can read specifically from Numbers 3:25,26,

Num 3:25 And the charge of the sons of Gershon in the tabernacle of the congregation shall be the tabernacle, and the tent, the covering thereof, and the hanging for the door of the tabernacle of the congregation,
Num 3:26 And the hangings of the court, and the curtain for the door of the court, which is by the tabernacle, and by the altar round about, and the cords of it for all the service thereof.

Levites were set apart for tabernacle / temple duties and no other. The Levites’ assignments can be read in Numbers 1:50-54 and further the duties of the Levites in Solomon’s temple can be read in I Chronicles 23:3-32, assignments for priests and Levites in I Chronicles 24:4-31, divisions of musicians in I Chronicles 25, divisions of porters in I Chronicles 26, and duties of priests, Levites and porters can also be read in II Chronicles 8:12 and 13. To use conjecture concerning the shepherds is to tread dangerously in the area of eisegesis and not exegesis.

JB: “[1:03:45] . . . When people try to talk about when Christ was born and they try to make a statement like, “Jesus could never have been born on December 25th because December is winter in Israel and shepherds never would have been out in the fields keeping watch over their flocks in winter.” So none of that is true. I’m not saying Jesus was born on December 25th, I don’t know when He was born specifically, but it makes sense to me MOST that He would have been born in the fall around the time of the Feast of Tabernacles, but He just as easily could have been born in December – if He was born in the fall it means He was conceived around December 25th – so the end of December one way or another is someway related to the birth of Christ and it is our culture to celebrate in it, it might have come from all kinds of stuff, whatever, . . . [1:04:31]”

GC: Brother, if you say, quote: “I’m not saying Jesus was born on December 25th, I don’t know when He was born specifically, but it makes sense to me MOST that He would have been born in the fall around the time of the Feast of Tabernacles, but He just as easily could have been born in December” [unquote], you are hedging between two opinions. It brings to memory the account with Elijah and the Baal worshippers, as we read,

I Ki 18:21  And Elijah came unto all the people, and said, How long halt ye between two opinions? if the LORD be God, follow him: but if Baal, then follow him. And the people answered him not a word.

If you are “not saying Jesus was born on December 25th” then why do you celebrate and hold to the day as the birth of Christ wishing all a “Merry Christmas” on December 25th? To say you don’t know when Christ was born, but you go along anyway and celebrate His birth at December 25th then you are not being honest with those around you and therefore your statement and your actions create an oxymoron! This particular issue is dealt with later hereafter which will show the error of your ways. If you have not done so already, kindly do read this article https://luke923evangelism.wordpress.com/2016/12/25/tishri-15-or-december-25/.

JB: “[1:04:32] . . . just like our marriage ceremonies do. Then those who would would accuse us of committing sin against God because we use the word Christmas, or, maybe we got a Christmas tree in our home are the same ones who would give their daughters away in marriage in a ceremony that involves a ring, a white dress, a preacher and a licence. That all came straight from the Catholic church. So, be careful how you criticise other people when you’re guilty of the same thing. I, I get so sick of hypocrisy about, it’s these young bucks that have no right to experience that think that they know everything. . . . [1:05:03]”

GC: Brother, please consider my preceding comment. With regard to the word “Christmas” and the “Christmas tree” can you kindly provide a Scripture command given to us Christians in Book, Chapter and Verse from the Bible. We are reminded whilst praying, “9 After this manner therefore pray ye: Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. 10 Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven.” (Matthew 6:9,10). If we are to do the Father’s will on earth as in heaven, would you think Mary and Joseph had a ‘Christmas tree’ up and decorated at the birth of the Lord Jesus Christ in the succoth (booth) at the Feast of Tabernacles? Or does Father God in heaven erect a decorated ‘Christmas tree’ every year in heaven to commemorate His Son’s birth? These are rhetorical questions and both answers are of course No! So why would disciples of Jesus Christ do that which is contrary to what the Bible teaches. In fact there is even Scripture where God says, “Learn not the way of the heathen” concerning idolatry when we read Jeremiah 10:1-4.

Brother, concerning your analogy regarding persons giving their daughters “away in marriage in a ceremony that involves a ring, a white dress, a preacher and a licence” this is not the issue here at hand. But since it has been raised, that would make everyone who is married guilty of wearing a wedding ring. However, let us not forget that the practice of wearing “something” comes from before the Roman Catholic days when Abraham’s eldest servant was sent to find a wife for Isaac, as we read concerning Rebekah,

Gen 24:47  And I asked her, and said, Whose daughter art thou? And she said, The daughter of Bethuel, Nahor’s son, whom Milcah bare unto him: and I put the earring upon her face, and the bracelets upon her hands.

So brother, you should be very careful about criticizing people when you too conduct marriage ceremonies “that involves a ring, a white dress, a preacher and a licence.”

JB: “[1:05:04] . . . But anyway, this idea that shepherds wouldn’t be in the fields in the winter is foolishness, because Levitical shepherds had a had a year round responsibility. That’s like me saying, just because [pause] President, President-elect Trump wants to repair relationships with Vladimir Putin it automatically means that the Russians hacked the elections and they are the reason why Trump was elected. That’s the kind of, that’s the same type of a statement when someone says there is no ways shepherds could have been in the field, that just reveals your ignorance about the Scriptures. They would have been in the fields in winter. In fact there is a sheep that’s used in the Middle East – that most sheep give birth once a year in the spring, but there’s sheep, a sheep in the Middle East that is native to the land of Israel and other places nearby – the Awassi sheep that is known to give birth in both the spring and in the autumn. If rams are introduced into the flock right after they finish weaning their spring ah…ah litters, I don’t know if the word litters, litter wouldn’t be right for sheep, I don’t know what they would call it, ah… but, right after they weaned their new born lambs in the spring, if you introduce the rams they will get pregnant again and have another ah cycle in the autumn. They’re very fertile sheep and they are native to the Middle East, and so there would be lambs having to be cared about, cared for throughout the year. . . . [1:06:30]”

GC: Brother, whilst the Awassi sheep is native to the Middle East and known for its hardness and exceptional milk production, this type of sheep is found worldwide from Canada to New Zealand, and even in my home nation of South Africa. “The Awassi is the most common sheep breed in the Arab countries and the name allegedly comes from the El Awas tribe which roamed between the Tigris and Euphrates rivers.” The information gleaned and quoted here is from a website titled http://kenanaonline.com/users/YasserTawakol-SheepAndGoatPage/posts/193738. “However tough the Awassi may be in hot climates, it may succumb to ill-health if a succession of rainy or cold days, plus a lack of feed, leads to the depletion of the fat reserves in the tail leaving the animal susceptible to death from exposure and starvation.” This preceding quote is very interesting concerning sheep being out in the rainy or cold days (winter). Further, in my research I was unable to find any information that the Awassi ewes were able to have two lambs – once in the spring and again in the autumn during one breeding cycle. However, I did come across this Israeli website:

Sheep Farming in Israel (Source: http://www.dairyschool.co.il/sheep-farming-in-israel/

“Sheep farming in Israel is some of the most productive in the world, with carefully developed breeds of sheep that produce high quantities of milk. This success is perhaps no surprise when you consider the history of sheep farming in Israel. In the Old Testament, Abel, the second son of Adam and Eve, became a shepherd. Many other important Biblical figures, including Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Rachel, and King David, kept flocks of goats and sheep. For early Jews, sheep provided wool, meat, and milk. Because flocks of sheep were transportable, shepherding was an ideal occupation for Jews as they travelled in search of a permanent homeland.

“Today, Israelis have built upon this legacy of shepherding by improving their sheep breeds. Sheep farming in Israel is some of the most productive in the world. The Awassi is Israel’s native sheep breed. Israeli sheep farmers have been improving the Awassi breed over the last 85 years. . . . The one downside to the Awassi sheep is their rate of reproduction. Awassi ewes typically lamb just once a year and usually give birth to just one lamb.” [my emphasis]

Further, calculations can be made from this reliable information: “Awassi ram and ewe lambs reach puberty at around 8 and 9 months of age, respectively. The breeding season of Awassi ewes starts as early as April [spring] and lasts through September [autumn]. After puberty, Awassi rams are sexually active throughout the year. The normal oestrus cycle in Awassi ewes is 15-20 days (average 17 days). Oestrus ranges from 16-59 h (average 29 h) during the breeding season. The reproductive performance of unimproved Awassi sheep has been low while improved Awassi has the highest fertility and milk production and are the heaviest among all Awassi populations. The gestation length varies from 149 to 155 days (average 152 days). . . .” (Source: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21509455)

JB: “[1:06:31] . . . And there would be temple sacrifices needed all year long. So these shepherds could have been out anytime of the year, in fact the Mishnahs the oral laws speak of shepherds in the field thirty days before Passover. Thirty days before Passover is in February which is the rainiest and at times the coldest month in the land of Israel. And if you think people couldn’t be attending flocks in the winter in Israel, then you have never been into Israel. Okay, Israel is not Alaska in the winter. It’s not here in the winter, it’s not that cold. It actually snows once in a while, but it’s not that cold. WE go to Israel in the winter and we CAMP OUT! And we see shepherds and sheep out in the fields. What a stupid statement people make sometimes without even thinking about it. . . . [1:07:19]”

GC: Brother, the Mishnah (Judaism oral law committed to writing about AD 200 – Source: GotQuestions.com) is not our final authority and we should hold to the Holy Bible as our only Authority for our faith, teachings and righteous living. The Bible also states that winter is a rainy month:

Song of Solomon 2:11  For, lo, the winter is past, the rain is over and gone;

And

Ezr 10:9  Then all the men of Judah and Benjamin gathered themselves together unto Jerusalem within three days. It was the ninth month, on the twentieth day of the month; and all the people sat in the street of the house of God, trembling because of this matter, and for the great rain. . . .

Ezr 10:13  But the people are many, and it is a time of much rain, and we are not able to stand without, neither is this a work of one day or two: for we are many that have transgressed in this thing.

The ninth month referred to in the preceding verses is the month Chislev (November / December) according to the sacred Jewish calendar which is the heart of Israel’s winter. Further, it appears according to your travel blog, and from what I am aware of, you and Ricky travelled to Israel on two occasions. On both occasions in 2015 and in 2016 you were there in the spring over the time of the Jews’ Passover – the latter one you were there a month earlier as the Jews’ Passover was in a leap year – and so you were not in Israel in the heart of winter camping out as you say. You might well have had seen shepherds and sheep out in the fields, but at the beginning of and/or in the spring time. Also certain modern farming practices might have changed the way things are done nowadays.

JB: “[1:07:20] . . . But when we consider that there were shepherds near Bethlehem, and that the Jews would not allow that to happen unless it involved the temple service, its very evident that these shepherds were Levites. In fact the word Bethlehem, the city of Bethlehem over the years became synonymous with sacrificial lambs, because they were kept nearby. It’s like the city of Nazareth. When Philip went and told his brother Nathaniel in the Book of John that he had found the Messiah, he was of Nazareth . . . Nathaniel saying said, could anything good come out of Nazareth? Nazareth became synonymous with rejected. It was a synonym. Rejected. Okay, just like the word ‘Hillary’ is synonymous with ‘Devil Witch.’ I mean you know it just means that . . . [background laughter] [pause] . . . So when the Bible says when Joseph took Mary and the baby Jesus to live in Nazareth, and it says, as it was written in the prophets He shall be a Nazarene, it never says specifically in the prophets He’ll be a Nazarene, but He’s referencing Isaiah 53 Messiah will be rejected. If, if you want me to sum up Isaiah 53 in one word, Jesus was a Nazarene – He was rejected. The city of Nazareth became associated with rejection. It meant rejected, Oh you Nazarene, you rejected one. We do the same thing. Bethlehem became synonymous with sacrificial lambs. When you spoke of Bethlehem the immediate thing that came to mind were the sacrificial flocks. Kinda like we say Ashville – Ashville means liberal. You say, “San Francisco” – what immediately comes to your mind “Homo”. The same thing with Bethlehem it was associated with these Levitical flocks. . . . [1:09:20]”

GC: Brother, when I think of Bethlehem, I think of the City of David, I think of the “House of Bread.” Also, Matthew 2:23 does not appear to be referencing Isaiah 53 as the Messiah being a Nazarene for nowhere in the chapter is Nazareth or Nazarene mentioned. However Judges 13:5 appears to be the cross reference of Matthew 2:23. Further, there is no Scriptural foundation to say “the city of Bethlehem over the years became synonymous with sacrificial lambs”. The same would apply to you saying “just like the word ‘Hillary’ is synonymous with ‘Devil Witch.’” That statement is disrespectful to your sister’s-in-Christ whose names happen to be ‘Hillary.’ Some would know you are specifically referring to ‘Hillary Clinton’, but others may not. What happened to meekness, gentleness and teaching all with humility? Brother, you are coming across as arrogant.

The Honor of Kings (Pr. 25:2) Sermon (Part 4 of 5)(Audio)

JB: [9:56] “. . . It’s our honor to seek the truth and take a stand and if we are shown to be wrong by the Scriptures to wilfully admit it, and change. . . . [10:06]”

GC: Brother, I hope by the end of these corrections given to you in love, you will stand true to your word.

JB: [12:45] “. . . But please understand that our authority is not tradition. It’s not fairy tales or fables we tell at Christmas time. It’s not the Catholic church, it’s not the Catholic encyclopaedia, it’s not Wikipedia. The authority is the Scriptures. And many times the things we assume [pause] are true, are based on tradition and we think that they are based upon the Scriptures. But the Scriptures are our authority so I want to ask a few questions today, and we are going to let the Scriptures answer them. . . .” [13:20]

GC: Brother, much what you have preached in these sermons are based on tradition and not Scripture.

JB: “[17:23] It’s funny. Turn to Luke chapter 12. Jesus makes a subtle reference to so called wise men. There was a lot of them in the Jewish religious circles, always debating, always doubting, always seeking for answers outside of the Scriptures. Luke 12:29, Jesus says to the people, and it’s a subtle reference, to such wise men, a rebuke of sorts, that we aren’t to be like this.  “And seek not ye what ye shall eat, or what ye shall drink, neither be ye of doubtful mind. For all these things do the nations of the world seek after: and your Father knoweth that ye have need of these things. But rather seek ye the kingdom of God; and all these things shall be added unto you.” You see the things that wise men seek, seek, seek, seek after and worry, worry, worry, worry about are the things we are not to be concerned with, because our Father knows our needs and we are to be seeking the Kingdom of God. And to seek the Kingdom of God is to seek Him in His Word. It’s funny because this phrase here in verse 29 “do not be of a doubtful mind”. If you look at it in the original language it’s the word from which we get meteor. The meteors floating around in the heavens. In other words Jesus said, “Don’t meteorise.” A subtle reference to those who would look at the heavens and try to discern the times and try to ah, ah, ah, prognosticate about what’s happening. We’re not to be like that. . . . [19:05]”

GC: Brother, “of doubtful mind” is not making reference to a heavenly body as a meteor, or referencing prognosticators, but in the context of the Scriptures Jesus is referring to having one’s mind suspended or fluctuating in space in the sense of being anxious – having one’s mind all over the place similar to the worldly saying “being an air head”. We should be careful of taking a Scripture verse in isolation and spiritualising the same to fit our own point we are trying to make.

JB: [41:35] “. . . Buddha prophesied a coming Messiah. I’ve actually got the writing at home. . . . [41:40]”

GC: Brother, with all due respect what has Buddha got to do with “Christmas”? Are you equating Buddha to the Old Testament prophets of old who prophesied the coming Messiah? Referencing Buddha can open up to referencing Nostradamus as a biblical sage! Very dangerous and heretical!

JB: [46:00] “. . . It’s only 10 after 12 and half of you already look like you are asleep. Is this boring? Maybe it is, I’ll quit. . . . [46:08]”

GC: Brother, is it possible God was showing you something?

JB: [49:48] “. . . Wasn’t the same night as the shepherds when they came to Bethlehem that’s a Catholic myth. There’s a lot of Catholic myths out there that we believe. There’s a lot of myths that we believe in American history. Like the Civil War was fought over slavery that nobody questions because nobody seeks out historical records. Lots of myths so it isn’t surprising that we, is it at all surprising that we in the church falls for them. That’s a Catholic myth. I would tell you that [pause] Jesus had to be at least 41-days old before the wise men showed up in Bethlehem. Turn over to Luke chapter 2. The wise men obviously saw the star two years before they showed up in Herod’s court. The Bible never says that Christ . . . that there were two years between the star and Christ’s birth; it doesn’t say that at all. The star appeared two years earlier, it didn’t take them two years to get there. So there must have been a time of seeking and searching the Scriptures and then a four month journey [from Babylon]. So the two years could have started before Christ’s birth some time. All we know is that it was two years from the appearing of the star to Herod’s court. Christ could have been born any time in that two year period. . . . [51:09]”

GC: Brother, your statement is untrue, quote: “The Bible never says that Christ . . . that there were two years between the star and Christ’s birth; it doesn’t say that at all.” [unquote]. You appear to be contradicting yourself with your many references to the two years. When the wise men saw the star of Jesus it must have been a sign from God of the birth of His Son, or what was the wise men to have searched out, or known that Christ was born? In Matthew 2:2,3, when the wise men had arrived in Jerusalem, we read,

Mat 2:2 Saying, Where is he that is born King of the Jews? for we have seen his star in the east, and are come to worship him.
Mat 2:3 When Herod the king had heard these things, he was troubled, and all Jerusalem with him.

The sighting of the star is connected with the birth of the “king of the Jews?” (Matt 2:2). Later, Herod then privately inquired of the wise men “diligently what time the star appeared” (Matt. 2:7). He wanted to know the exact time and the wise men told Herod, and later we read,

Mat 2:16  Then Herod, when he saw that he was mocked of the wise men, was exceeding wroth, and sent forth, and slew all the children that were in Bethlehem, and in all the coasts thereof, from two years old and under, according to the time which he had diligently enquired of the wise men.

The death of the children were “two years and under, according to the time which he had diligently enquired of the wise men”, so when the wise men saw the star signalling the birth of Christ it was two years from when they first saw it in the east.

If you say, quote: “Christ could have been born any time in that two year period” [unquote], then the time diligently received by Herod from the wise men could have been, let’s say, one year, then Herod would most probably only have had to kill the children from one year old and under, according to the time which he had diligently enquired of the wise men. Brother, you are not being faithful to The Word.

JB: “[55:44] . . . Now we’ve talked about the time of Christ’s birth and when it could have been in times past and I don’t want to get into that again today, people that say it could not possibly have happened on December 25th, that’s not true. We can’t know exactly when Jesus was born. It makes sense to me that He would have been born in the fall around the time of the Feast of Tabernacles that symbolises God dwelling with His people – a partial fulfilment of the Feast of Tabernacles. We know that He truly fulfilled the first feast of the spring times season in His first coming and I believe those fall feasts will be ultimately fulfilled at His second coming, but it makes sense to me based on the course of Abijim (sic) and when Zacharias would have been in the temple that He would have been born sometime in the fall. And what’s interesting is that, in 5BC the Feast of Tabernacles would have started on October 16th 5BC. Herod would have been dead before April 10th 4BC. That means the forty-first day, if Christ was born on the opening day of the Feast of Tabernacles, the forty-first day when He was presented in the temple would have been December 25th 4BC. So this idea that we are way off base because we choose to talk about Christ’s birth on December 25th, most of that’s cultural, but Christ could have been born in December. If He was born to fulfil the Feast of Tabernacles then He was conceived around December 25th. Or it could be that He was presented in the temple forty-one days after His birth if He was born on the first day of the Feast of Tabernacles. The Scriptures don’t say. We can speculate, but to argue that December, the end of December has NOTHING whatsoever to do with Christ coming into the world is foolishness. It is, it’s just as much a possibility of December 25th as of any other day I suppose, because we can’t know. We know when Herod died, we know when the Feast of Tabernacles was. . . . [57:42]

GC: Brother, as we have dealt with previously it would be advisable to stick with what you MOST believe that our Lord Jesus Christ was born at the Feast of Tabernacles. To make the statement, quote: “. . . people that say it could not possibly have happened on December 25th, that’s not true” [unquote] is untrue on your part. The evidences of Scripture reveal the facts and you will be shown the error of your teachings here. In the Old Testament God tabernacles with His people continuously in the tabernacle and the temple of old. He then comes to tabernacle physically amongst His people in the New Testament Gospels. So why can He not partially fulfil the Feast of Tabernacles at His first coming? Well, you start believing this then you move away in the opposite direction.

Brother, you have greatly missed the mark in your calculations concerning your attempt to get the forty-first day to land on December 25th. Your statement, reads, quote: “And what’s interesting is that, in 5BC the Feast of Tabernacles would have started on October 16th 5BC. Herod would have been dead before April 10th 4BC. That means the forty-first day, if Christ was born on the opening day of the Feast of Tabernacles, the forty-first day when He was presented in the temple would have been December 25th 4BC.” [unquote]. Firstly, forty-one days from October 16th 5BC using the Gregorian calendar would land on November 26th 5BC (16 + 15 = 31 days in October. Therefore 15 + 26 days in November = 41 days in total). Secondly, it is not December 25th 4BC, but 5BC. And thirdly, the Feast of Tabernacles appears in the Hebrew month Tishri (which fluctuates between the Gregorian months September and October) so even if one had to move the date a month in advance to November the same will violate the Hebrew calendar. So dear brother, to say, quote: “So this idea that we are way off base because we choose to talk about Christ’s birth on December 25th, most of that’s cultural, but Christ could have been born in December” [unquote], yes, you are way off base and I plead with you to give up this foolishness and false teaching. And no, Jesus was not conceived on the Roman Catholic sun worshipping day December 25th, a day steeped in idolatry and heathenism – past and present, but He would have been conceived during the Feast of Hanukkah (early December not late December) – The Light entered the world. Remember brother, conception is different to the physical birth of the Messiah for which December 25th is professed by ‘Christians’ to be a birth day not a conception day!

JB: “[59:59] . . . If Christ was born on December 25th things would have happened much quicker, but these things are certainly possible. A man I respect greatly with regard to Old Testament chronology argues that, based on a lot of things, that, the shepherds came the night of Christ’s birth and the wise men showed up the next day in Jerusalem looking for the Christ. And by a day or so later Mary and Joseph were relocated into a house and the wise men showed up just two or three days after He was born. And then they, fled, almost immediately, and were gone for only a few weeks. I respect this man, . . . [1:00:47]

GC: Brother, whoever the scholar ‘man’ is who you respect, I would reject his teachings if I were you, as you and I will agree that he got it totally incorrect. We are reminded in Scripture, “A little leaven leaveneth the whole lump.” (Galatians 5:9). We are to avoid error at all costs! Truth is 100%. A 0.1% error renders the 99.9% untrue! That is why we must strive to be perfect, for we read,

Mat 5:48 Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect.

In conclusion my dear brother, there is error also in your part 5 “Tower of the Flock (Micah 4:8)” sermon and since there are many errors recorded here already there is no need to address any of your “Christmas” teachings further.

Brother, this is an important doctrine of God’s Holy Word concerning the birth of His Son our Lord Jesus Christ. If these errors are being taught, new and old believers alike are practicing and teaching falsehood amongst the brethren and in the assembly of believers. We are commanded to be in unity of speech, mind and judgment when we read in I Corinthians 1:9-13,

9 God is faithful, by whom ye were called unto the fellowship of his Son Jesus Christ our Lord.
10 Now I beseech you, brethren, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that ye all speak the same thing, and that there be no divisions among you; but that ye be perfectly joined together in the same mind and in the same judgment.
11 For it hath been declared unto me of you, my brethren, by them which are of the house of Chloe, that there are contentions among you.
12 Now this I say, that every one of you saith, I am of Paul; and I of Apollos; and I of Cephas; and I of Christ.
13 Is Christ divided? was Paul crucified for you? or were ye baptized in the name of Paul?

We are also to keep the unity of the Spirit as we read in Ephesians 4:3-6,

3 Endeavouring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.  
4 There is one body, and one Spirit, even as ye are called in one hope of your calling;  
5 One Lord, one faith, one baptism,  
6 One God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all.

We are to get away from the heretical teachings of men and hold to the true heroes of our faith as recorded in the Holy Bible. If you are holding to this foolish teaching of “Christmas” so you won’t offend your financial supporters and/or those already taught this fallacy, brother please repent and change so we can have unity in the faith.

In closing, this is why Christ Jesus gave us the Lord’s table to remember Him by to avoid all false teachings and divisions among brethren, as we read in I Corinthians 11:23-26,

23 For I have received of the Lord that which also I delivered unto you, That the Lord Jesus the same night in which he was betrayed took bread:
24 And when he had given thanks, he brake it, and said, Take, eat: this is my body, which is broken for you: this do in remembrance of me.
25 After the same manner also he took the cup, when he had supped, saying, This cup is the new testament in my blood: this do ye, as oft as ye drink it, in remembrance of me.
26 For as often as ye eat this bread, and drink this cup, ye do shew the Lord’s death till he come.

Brother, please head the call to recant of this false teaching. Do what is true and right. With much love in Christ,Soli Deo Gloria______________

Part 2 can be read Here.

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