Basic Christian – Holiness Summit 2012

Re-Post of the 2012 Basic Christian: Holiness Summit

Holiness Summit 2012 — The Plan for the Basic Christian: Holiness Summit 2012 is going to be to have 10 sessions (i.e. based on the 10 smaller wash basins of the Temple) that we can wash in as our offerings to God during the Holiness Summit – As the 10 wash basins of the Temple were in two groups of five each we are going to have two groups of five sessions each — “2 Chronicles 4:6 He [King Solomon] made also ten lavers [wash basins], and put five on the right hand, and five on the left, to wash [offerings] in them: such things as they offered for the burnt offering they washed in them; but the sea [the Temples’ one large main wash basin] was for the priests to wash in.”

Sessions: The first five sessions (wash basins for offering to God) are going to be centered on Christian Church Councils-Creeds and the first five topics will be Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount [Jesus’ Sermon on Justification by Faith (in Jesus) and not by the works of man], Holy Week [our Justification (Righteousness) towards God fulfilled by Jesus (Romans 4:24-25)], The Fruits of the Spirit (Galatians 5:22-26), The Council of Jerusalem (Acts 15:6) and The Apostles’ Creed [by Bishop Ambrose in about 390 A.D.] — The second group of five sessions (wash basins) are going to be Christian Church Theology topics — Holiness Doctrines — and for this series the topics will be Law, Justification, Faith, Atonement and Adoption. — “Corinthians 7:1 Having therefore these promises, dearly beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from all filthiness of the flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God.”

Basic Christian Wiki: The Basic Christian Research Wiki ‘Common Christian Faith’ The Basic Christian Research Wiki ‘Common Christian Faith’ wiki website.

Holiness Summit 2012 – An excellent opportunity to look at Holiness Doctrines to see where the Holiness Movement historically has been and also to see what changes can be made in order to better present the movement, revitalize the movement for today and help move it on into the future.

Basic Christian – Holiness Summit 2012

The Sermon on the Mount — Jesus chose the time and the location, and then with all of His invited Disciples gathered in attendance, Jesus began to speak – The original Church Council meeting was now in session — “Matthew 5:1-2 And seeing the multitudes, He [Jesus] went up into a Mountain: and when He was set [having taken a seat as a Rabbi – Master Teacher], His disciples came unto Him: And He opened His mouth, and taught them, saying …”

Did Jesus really speak, saying? Blessed are those who tithe, blessed are those who put on a show and preach from behind pulpits, blessed are those personality preachers who draw men after themselves, blessed are those who exert themselves above others, blessed are the arrogant, blessed are the abusive and most of all blessed are those who boast. Of course NOT though you wouldn’t know it from Christianity today. Instead what Jesus really said was — “Matthew 5:3-16 Blessed are the poor in spirit: for theirs is the Kingdom of Heaven. Blessed are they that mourn: for they shall be comforted. Blessed are the meek: for they shall inherit the earth. Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness: for they shall be filled. Blessed are the merciful: for they shall obtain mercy. Blessed are the pure in heart: for they shall see God. Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the Children of God. Blessed are they which are persecuted for righteousness sake: for theirs is the Kingdom of Heaven. Blessed are ye, when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for My sake. Rejoice, and be exceeding glad: for great is your reward in Heaven: for so persecuted they the Prophets which were before you. Ye are the salt of the earth: but if the salt have lost his savour [by striving against the Holy Spirit], wherewith shall it be salted? it is thenceforth good for nothing, but to be cast out, and to be trodden under foot of men. Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on an hill cannot be hid. Neither do men light a candle, and put it under a bushel, but on a candlestick; and it giveth light unto all that are in the house. Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in Heaven. …”

The Sermon on the Mount is not about one’s own boasting because it is not about ourselves as in a works relationship with God – The Sermon on the Mount is about a personal Relationship with God so what is mentioned are not works but our predicaments [i.e. Matthew 5:4 Blessed are they that mourn: for they shall be comforted.] along with our desires, hopes and aspirations all focused on the Kingdom of God — “Matthew 6:33 But seek ye first the Kingdom of God, and **His Righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.”

Conclusion: The Sermon on the Mount is Jesus’ Sermon on our Justification (Righteousness) by Faith in Jesus and not by any works of man. In the Sermon on the Mount Jesus is making it clear that any notion of a previous Law Righteousness (Matthew 5:20) or of a Works Righteousness (Matthew 5:27-30) is completely inadequate and unacceptable in the Kingdom of God. To the point that Jesus says that if even though you have your works and you sin then cut off your arm (Matthew 5:30), illustrating the point that if a person were to cut off one arm or pluck out one eye in an attempt at sinless self-works righteousness it wouldn’t work because we would still have another arm and another eye to sin with and even if we lost both arms and both eyes we still have our mouth to sin with so the answer to our Righteousness is not in our works nor in the Law but ONLY by our faith in Jesus Christ. — “Matthew 7:24-29 Therefore whosoever heareth these sayings of Mine (Jesus), and doeth them, I will liken him unto a wise man, which built his house Upon a Rock: And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell not: for it was founded Upon a Rock. And every one that heareth these sayings of Mine, and doeth them not, shall be likened unto a foolish man, which built his house upon the sand: And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell: and great was the fall of it. And it came to pass, when Jesus had ended these sayings, the people were astonished at **His Doctrine: For He taught them as One having Authority, and not as the scribes.”

Holy Week — Like the previous Church Council (The Sermon on the Mount) Jesus would also choose the time “this is the day” (Psalms 118:24), “this thy day” (Luke 19:42) for His Triumphal Entry and the location “Jerusalem” for this Church Council the Church Council of Holy Week – Where all the previous Prophecies of Old and the Teachings of Jesus would come together and actualize into our human realm and into our human existence

Holy Week, where Prophesy and Preaching become reality. While still in the Upper Room on the night of the Passover, just after Judas had departed to go and betray Jesus, Jesus spoke these words to His Disciples “John 14:1-4 Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in Me (Jesus). In My Father’s House are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto Myself; that where I am, there ye may be also. And whither I go [to Heaven] ye know, and the way [our Salvation in Jesus] ye know.” — Later that same night as Jesus and the Disciples were on route to the Garden of Gethsemane [the Garden of Destiny] Jesus would speak these words to His Disciples “John 16:5-16 But now I (Jesus) go My way to Him (Father) that sent Me; and none of you (Disciples) asketh Me, Whither goest Thou? But because I have said these things unto you, sorrow hath filled your heart. Nevertheless I tell you the Truth; It is expedient for you that I go away: for if I go not away, the Comforter [Holy Spirit] will not come unto you; but if I depart, I will send Him [i.e. itself] (Holy Spirit) unto you. And when He is come, He [Holy Spirit] will reprove the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment: Of sin, because they believe not on Me (Jesus); Of righteousness, because I go to My Father, and ye see Me no more; Of judgment, because the Prince of this World (Satan) is judged. I have yet many things to say unto you, but ye cannot bear them now. Howbeit when He [Holy Spirit], the Spirit of Truth, is come, He will guide you into all Truth: for He shall not speak of Himself; but whatsoever He shall hear, that shall He speak: and He will shew you things to come. He (Holy Spirit) shall glorify Me (Jesus): for He shall receive of Mine, and shall shew it unto you [Disciples]. All things that the Father hath are Mine: therefore said I, that He shall take of Mine, and shall shew it unto you. A little while [the cross], and ye shall not see Me: and again, a little while [the resurrection], and ye shall see Me, because I go to the Father.” — Jesus will conclude His teachings to His Disciples in His “High Priestly Prayer” (John 17:1-26) with these Words “John 17:22-26 And the Glory which Thou (Father) gavest Me (Jesus) I have given them (Disciples); that they may be one, even as We (Father, Son-Jesus, Holy Spirit) are One: I (Jesus) in them (Disciples), and Thou (Father) in Me (Jesus), that they (Disciples) may be made perfect [complete] in one; and that the world may know that Thou (Father) hast sent Me (Jesus), and hast loved them (Disciples), as thou hast loved Me. Father, I will that they also, whom thou hast given Me, **be with Me where I am; that they may behold My Glory, which Thou hast given Me: for Thou lovedst Me before the foundation of the world. O righteous Father, the world hath not known Thee: but I have known Thee, and these (Disciples) have known that Thou hast sent Me. And I have declared unto them Thy Name, and will declare it: that the love wherewith Thou hast loved Me may be in them, and I in them.”

Holy Week – Where the restoration desires of God became attainable to mankind — “Matthew 26:26-28 And as they were eating [the Passover], Jesus took bread, and blessed it, and brake it, and gave it to the Disciples, and said, Take, eat; **this is My body. And He took the cup, and gave thanks, and gave it to them, saying, Drink ye all of it; For **this is My blood of the New Testament, which is shed for many for the remission of sins.”

Conclusion: The multiple events of Holy Week [4 Feasts] are segmented but still combine into the one Passover Celebration. Jesus entered Jerusalem and with His presence the Triumphal Entry, on the Sabbath (Saturday) fulfilled the Feast of Sabbath [biblically the Triumphal Entrance of Jesus was on a Saturday (Mark 11:11, Acts 1:12) though today we celebrate it on Sunday as Palm Sunday]. The Night of the Feast of the Lord’s Passover Jesus instituted the New Testament by His body and His blood. The Feast of Unleavened Bread was fulfilled the next day by Jesus’ death on the cross. Three days later with the resurrection of Jesus and His giving to His Disciples the Firstfruits of His Resurrection Spirit Life (John 20:22) the Feast day of Firstfruits began to be fulfilled in the Church. Four separate events [Feast Days] yet all four are required and combined into the one Passover Celebration, the celebration of life as death has passed over. It is the restoration of eternal life where an unsaved person has become saved. The “salvation” event in the life of a believer is not just one solo event i.e. confessing Jesus as God but more accurately our confession is four events in one statement: 1. Jesus is King, Messiah of the Virgin Birth (our Sabbath rest), 2. The New Testament (Passover, promises of God), 3. The Cross (redemption – removal [payment] regarding our sin), 4. The Resurrection (salvation – receiving the ‘born again’ resurrection salvation Spirit from Jesus [John 20:22] – our Firstfruits of the Holy Spirit [Romans 8:23]) — “Romans 4:24-25 But for us (believers) also, to whom it [faith – faith in Jesus’ events/works of Holy Week] shall be **imputed (imputed righteousness), if we believe on Him [Father (Galatians 1:1), Jesus (John 10:17-18), Holy Spirit (Romans 8:11)] that raised up Jesus our Lord from the dead; Who was [during Holy Week] delivered [the cross] for our offences, and was raised again [His resurrection] for our justification.” – Note: after Salvation via the established events of Holy Week there is the additional event of Pentecost and the empowering of the Holy Spirit given to an already ‘born again’ Christian. Later still are the three additional, future Fall Feasts [Feast of Trumpets, Day of Atonement (Yom Kippur) and the Feast of Tabernacles (Sukkot)].

The Fruits of the Holy Spirit — The Apostle Paul’s, Holy Spirit given, Creed of the Fruits of the Holy Spirit — “Galatians 5:22-26 But the fruit of the (Holy) Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance: **against such there is no law. And they that are Christ’s have crucified [dead to this world] the flesh with the affections and lusts. If we live [living in the Kingdom of God] in the (Holy) Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit. Let us not be [worldly] desirous of vain glory, provoking one another, envying one another.”

The Apostle Paul would later write — “Ephesians 5:6-21 Let no man deceive you with vain words: for because of these [disobedience] things cometh the wrath of God upon the children of disobedience. Be not ye therefore partakers with them. For ye were [before] sometimes darkness, but now are ye light in the Lord: walk as Children of Light: **For the fruit of the (Holy) Spirit is in all Goodness and Righteousness and Truth; proving what is acceptable unto the Lord. And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather reprove them. For it is a shame even to speak of those things which are done of them in secret. But all things that are reproved are made manifest by the light: for whatsoever doth make manifest is light. Wherefore He [Holy Spirit – Isaiah 60:1-3,61:1] saith, Awake thou that sleepest, and arise from the dead, and Christ shall give thee light. See then that ye walk circumspectly, not as fools, but as wise, Redeeming the time, because the days are evil. Wherefore be ye not unwise, but understanding what the will of [Jesus] the Lord is. And be not drunk with wine, wherein is excess; but be filled with the Spirit; Speaking to yourselves in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord; Giving thanks always for all things unto God and the Father in the Name of our Lord Jesus Christ; Submitting yourselves one to another in the fear of God.”

Council of Jerusalem — The Council of Jerusalem (Acts 15:6-31) [in about 49 A.D. or 52 A.D.] where we read of the first General Church Council – The first Church Council w/o Jesus physically presiding though presiding in the empowerment of the Holy Spirit [the council of Acts 1:15 (in about 33 A.D.) was just prior to Pentecost in Acts 2:1] – A serious question of doctrine arose, and “the Apostles and the Presbyters came together to consider this matter” – The decree of the Council of Jerusalem went on, then, to establish a binding obligation upon all Christians in the local churches of Antioch, Syria and Cilicia: “that you abstain from things offered to idols, from blood, from things strangled, and from sexual immorality” (Acts 15:29) – Did the local churches bristle at this imposition of doctrine and practice from the ecclesiastical leadership of the whole Church? Not at all, but rather they “rejoiced over its encouragement” (Acts 15:31) — {Note: The Church Creeds [Jerusalem, Nicene, etc.] are important and relevant to all of Christianity. The Jerusalem Creed [1st Church Council about 49 A.D. in Jerusalem] has 4 Cornerstones the fourth one being not to offend traditional Jews. Since one of the Cornerstones of the 1st Church Council is to support Jews and Traditional Judaism it is an original and longstanding tenant that true Christianity acknowledges its debt and emergence from (God ordained) Mosaic Judaism. “Acts 1:20-21 But that we [Apostles] write unto them [Gentile Christians], (1.) that they abstain from [occult] pollutions of idols, (2.) and from [immorality] fornication, (3.) and from things [cruelty] strangled, (4.) and from [Levitical] blood. **For Moses of old time hath [traditional Jews] in every city them that preach him (Moses), being read in the synagogues every Sabbath day.” — Also Note: The personal change among each individual Apostle seems to have been substantial as it encompassed their personalities, individual behavior and individual outlook on life – Therefore the majority of the Biblical writings of the Apostles is directed at a certain amount of expected godly behavior modification in the lives of each new Christian convert. But by the time the Christian Church matured into the later Church Councils [i.e. the Council of Nicaea in 325 A.D.] the majority of the entire Church Councils were no longer about individual Christian behavior modification but instead became vested, almost exclusively, in individual Christian though, knowledge and doctrine. Though now Pastor Rick Warren and many others are dramatically shifting the current Christian Church away from thought, creeds and doctrines and are again shifting the Christian Church back into the realm of behavior modification [Purpose Driven – yoking works] but disastrously it is not a return to the original behavior modification (Acts 15:6-31) and godly accountability the Church Apostles sought for each Christian convert but is instead a behavior modification that is directing each individual away from Christianity by linking them back into the abyss of the world.}

The Council of Jerusalem: We may prove this quite readily by turning to Acts 15:6-31, where we read of the first General Church Council. A serious question of doctrine arose, and “the apostles and the presbyters came together to consider this matter” (Acts 15:6). After hearing the arguments and testimony of Peter, Paul and Barnabas, the leader of the Council, James [half-brother of Jesus, writer of the book of James], then passed a decree with the words, “Therefore I judge” (Acts 15:19, ‘dio ego krino’). This passage describes no truly democratic process, but rather it describes submission to the judgment of a central ecclesiastical authority [an authority completely submitted to Jesus Christ]. — After receiving the judgment of James, “it pleased the apostles and presbyters together with the whole Church” (Acts 15:22: ‘apostolois kai tois presbyterois syn hole ekklesia’) to dispatch delegates with a letter promulgating the decree of the Council. The council then drafted a letter in the name of “the apostles and the brother-presbyters” (Acts 15:23: ‘hoi apostoloi kai hoi presbyteroi adelphoi’). This phrasing, and especially the apposition of ‘presbyteroi’ and ‘adelphoi’, is quite precise in establishing the authority of the decision of the Council in the office of the ministers who serve and lead the Church, as opposed to a democratic process. — Does the phrase “whole Church” here refer to the universal Church, or merely to the entirety of the congregation at Jerusalem. Recalling that the leadership of the Council was comprised of the apostles who were planting local churches in the Hellenistic world, delegates of the Hellenistic churches, and the presbyters of the church at Jerusalem, we can only rightly conclude that they spoke in the name of the universal Church. Indeed, the letter explicitly states that the authors speak in the authority of the Holy Spirit (Acts 15:28); since Paul tells us that it is by one Spirit that we were baptized into one body (1 Cor. 12:13) which is Christ (1 Cor. 12:27) and over which Christ is the head (1 Eph. 1:22-23), when Luke writes in Acts 15:22 of the leadership of the whole Church assenting to the decree of James which is binding on all Gentile Christians, he is necessarily speaking of the Church in its universal or catholic sense. — The Council then sent the letter to the local churches in Antioch, Syria and Cilicia. This letter remarks that the false doctrine which the council repudiated was in fact discernibly false because “we gave no such commandments” (Acts 15:24). Hence, the Bible tells us that right doctrine is subject to the discernment of the leadership of the whole Church. The decree of the Council of Jerusalem went on, then, to establish a binding obligation upon all Christians in the local churches of Antioch, Syria and Cilicia: “that you abstain from things offered to idols, from blood, from things strangled, and from sexual immorality” (Acts 15:29). Did the local churches bristle at this imposition of doctrine and practice from the ecclesiastical leadership of the whole Church? Not at all, but rather they “rejoiced over its encouragement” (Acts 15:31). Clearly, the Bible itself sets a precedent for the government of the universal Church by means of General Councils.

The Apostles’ Creed — Sometimes titled Symbol of the Apostles, is an early statement of Christian belief, a creed or “symbol” – It is widely used by a number of Christian denominations for both liturgical and catechetical purposes, most visibly by liturgical Churches of Western tradition, including the Latin Rite of the Roman Catholic Church, Lutheranism, the Anglican Communion, and Western Orthodoxy – It is also used by Presbyterians, Methodists, and Congregationalists — The earlier text [The Old Roman Symbol, or Old Roman Creed – Wikipedia.org] evolved from simpler texts based on Matthew 28:19 “Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost” and it has been argued that it was already in written form by the late second century (circa 180 A.D.) – The title, Symbolum Apostolicum (Symbol or Creed of the Apostles), appears for the first time in a letter from a Council in Milan (the letter probably written by Bishop Ambrose of Milan) to Pope Siricius in about 390 A.D. “Let them give credit to the Creed of the Apostles, which the Roman Church has always kept and preserved undefiled” – But what existed at that time was not what is now known as the Apostles’ Creed but a shorter statement of belief — Apostles’ Creed “I believe (faith) in God the Father Almighty, maker of heaven and earth; And in Jesus Christ His only Son our Lord: who was conceived by the Holy Spirit, born of the Virgin Mary, suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, dead, and buried; He descended to the dead. the third day He rose from the dead; He ascended into heaven, and sitteth at the right hand of God the Father Almighty; from thence He shall come to judge the quick and the dead. I believe in the Holy Spirit, the holy catholic church, the communion of saints, the forgiveness of sins, the resurrection of the body, and the life everlasting. Amen.”

While the individual statements of belief that are included in the Apostles’ Creed – even those not found in the Old Roman Symbol – are found in various writings by Irenaeus, Tertullian, Novatian, Marcellus, Rufinus, **Ambrose (about 337 A.D. – 397 A.D.), Augustine, Nicetus, and Eusebius Gallus, the earliest appearance of what we know as the Apostles’ Creed was in the De singulis libris canonicis scarapsus (“Excerpt from Individual Canonical Books”) of St. Priminius (Migne, Patrologia Latina 89, 1029 ff.), written between 710 A.D. and 714 A.D. This longer Creed seems to have arisen in what is now France and Spain. Charlemagne imposed it throughout his dominions, and it was finally accepted in Rome, where the Old Roman Creed or similar formulas had survived for centuries. — {Note: The Christian Church historically has sought in large to be directed by the Gospels and the Apostolic Epistles of the New Testament – The Apostles’ Creed is a classic and still currently relevant example of how true to form the Doctrines of the Church have remained in being faithful to the “common salvation” (Jude 1:3) as it was initially delivered to the Christian Church.}

Wikipedia: Ambrose – Aurelius Ambrosius, better known in English as Saint Ambrose (about 337 A.D. – 4 April 397), was a bishop of Milan who became one of the most influential ecclesiastical figures of the 4th century – He was one of the four original doctors (of particular importance) of the Roman Catholic Church – In spite of Imperial opposition, Bishop Ambrose declared: “If you demand my person, I am ready to submit: carry me to prison or to death, I will not resist; but I will never betray the Church of Christ. I will not call upon the people to succour [help] me; I will die at the foot of the altar rather than desert it. The tumult of the people I will not encourage: but God alone can appease it.” – Soon after acquiring the undisputed possession of the Roman empire, Emperor Theodosius died at Milan in 395 A.D., and two years later (April 4, 397 A.D.) Ambrose also died – He was succeeded as bishop of Milan by Simplician – Ambrose’s body may still be viewed in the church of S. Ambrogio in Milan, where it has been continuously venerated – along with the bodies identified in his time as being those of St. Gervase and St. Protase – and is one of the oldest extant bodies of historical personages known outside Egypt

Bishop of Milan: In the late 4th century there was a deep conflict in the diocese of Milan between the Catholics and Arians. In 374 the bishop of Milan, Auxentius, an Arian, died, and the Arians challenged the succession. Ambrose went to the church where the election was to take place, to prevent an uproar, which was probable in this crisis. His address was interrupted by a call “Ambrose, bishop!”, which was taken up by the whole assembly. Ambrose was known to be Catholic in belief, but also acceptable to Arians due to the charity shown in theological matters in this regard. At first he energetically refused the office, for which he was in no way prepared: Ambrose was neither baptized nor formally trained in theology. Upon his appointment, St. Ambrose fled to a colleague’s home seeking to hide. Upon receiving a letter from the Emperor Gratian praising the appropriateness of Rome appointing individuals evidently worthy of holy positions, St. Ambrose’s host gave Ambrose up. Within a week, Ambrose was baptized, ordained and duly consecrated bishop of Milan. As bishop, he immediately adopted an ascetic lifestyle, apportioned his money to the poor, donating all of his land, making only provision for his sister Marcellina (who later became a nun), and committed the care of his family to his brother. Ambrose also wrote a treatise by the name of “The Goodness Of Death”. — Ambrose and Arians: According to legend, Ambrose immediately and forcefully stopped Arianism in Milan. He studied theology with Simplician, a presbyter of Rome. Using his excellent knowledge of Greek, which was then rare in the West, to his advantage, he studied the Hebrew Bible and Greek authors like Philo, Origen, Athanasius, and Basil of Caesarea, with whom he was also exchanging letters. He applied this knowledge as preacher, concentrating especially on exegesis of the Old Testament, and his rhetorical abilities impressed Augustine of Hippo, who hitherto had thought poorly of Christian preachers. In the confrontation with Arians, Ambrose sought to theologically refute their propositions, which were heretical. The Arians appealed to many high level leaders and clergy in both the Western and Eastern empires. Although the western Emperor Gratian held orthodox belief in the Nicene creed, the younger Valentinian II, who became his colleague in the Empire, adhered to the Arian creed. Ambrose did not sway the young prince’s position. In the East, Emperor Theodosius I likewise professed the Nicene creed; but there were many adherents of Arianism throughout his dominions, especially among the higher clergy. In this contested state of religious opinion, two leaders of the Arians, bishops Palladius of Ratiaria and Secundianus of Singidunum, confident of numbers, prevailed upon Gratian to call a general council from all parts of the empire. This request appeared so equitable that he complied without hesitation. However, Ambrose feared the consequences and prevailed upon the emperor to have the matter determined by a council of the Western bishops. Accordingly, a synod composed of thirty-two bishops was held at Aquileia in the year 381 A.D. Ambrose was elected president and Palladius, being called upon to defend his opinions, declined. A vote was then taken, when Palladius and his associate Secundianus were deposed from the episcopal office. Nevertheless, the increasing strength of the Arians proved a formidable task for Ambrose. In 385 or 386 the emperor and his mother Justina, along with a considerable number of clergy and laity, especially military, professed Arianism. They demanded two churches in Milan, one in the city (the basilica of the Apostles), the other in the suburbs (St Victor’s), to the Arians. Ambrose refused and was required to answer for his conduct before the council. He went, his eloquence in defense of the Church reportedly overawed the ministers of Emperor Valentinian, so he was permitted to retire without making the surrender of the churches. The day following, when he was performing divine service in the basilica, the prefect of the city came to persuade him to give up at least the Portian basilica in the suburbs. As he still continued obstinate, the court proceeded to violent measures: the officers of the household were commanded to prepare the Basilica and the Portian churches to celebrate divine service upon the arrival of the emperor and his mother at the ensuing festival of Easter. — In spite of Imperial opposition, Bishop Ambrose declared: “If you demand my person, I am ready to submit: carry me to prison or to death, I will not resist; but I will never betray the church of Christ. I will not call upon the people to succour me; I will die at the foot of the altar rather than desert it. The tumult of the people I will not encourage: but God alone can appease it.”

Holiness Summit 2012 — The first group of five sessions (wash basins), centered on Christian Church Councils-Creeds, has concluded — The second group of five sessions (wash basins) centering on Christian Church Theology topics and Holiness Doctrines will begin soon!

Sessions: The second group of five sessions (wash basins) are going to be Christian Church Theology topics — Holiness Doctrines — and for this series the topics will be Law, Justification, Faith, Atonement and Adoption. — “Corinthians 7:1 Having therefore these promises, dearly beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from all filthiness of the flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God.”

Law — “Matthew 22:36-39 Master, which is the great commandment in the law? Jesus said unto him, [Deuteronomy 6:5] Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like unto it, [Leviticus 19:18] Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself.” — The Law is not a series of events to be accomplished by an unaccomplished mankind nor is the Law a hidden trap to keep people from the True knowledge of God but rather the Law of God is both an Image and a boundary – It is the Image [Word] of God (John 1:1) and is also a boundary (Exodus 19:23) to keep mankind while in sin, away from God. — “John 1:1-14 In the beginning was the Word [Jesus with Authority], and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. … And the Word [as revealed to us in the Law] was made flesh [entered our physical realm], and dwelt among us, and we (Apostles) beheld His Glory, the Glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of Grace and Truth.”

“Exodus 19:23 And Moses said unto the LORD, The people cannot come up to Mount Sinai: for Thou chargedst us, saying, Set bounds [a boundary] about the Mount, and sanctify [set apart] it.” — The Law does not take us into the presence of God but only to a boundary that actually keeps us apart from God. The original law in the Garden of Eden (Genesis 2:17) was a boundary a boundary between mankind and the experience and knowledge of evil. Mankind crossed God’s Law boundary and went into the knowledge of evil [God continued to give mankind the knowledge of good]. With mankind now knowledgeable of evil the Law is not just a boundary from evil but out of necessity the Law has now also become a boundary between mankind and the Holiness of God. – The Law is the Image and Holiness of God and therefore the Law now reveals God to a separated mankind (Matthew 5:17-18) and once seeing God in His Holy Law mankind can easily recognize the need for mankind to be separated from the presence and Glory of the Holy God. Separated from God that is only until a remedy can be provided to fix man’s sinful predicament and remove the boundary of sin and of the Law. The remedy for our predicament and separation from God has been provided but not in our life, only in a new life, in the Resurrection Life provided by God’s Son Jesus Christ. The Law was actually a boundary keeping sinful people apart from the Holy God but after being cleansed by the blood of Jesus Christ and with the finality of His death (Romans 6:23) on the cross [full payment for our sins] with the resurrection of Jesus the Holy Spirit then removed the boundary of the law from us and reconciled us (Colossians 1:20) into the actual perceivable presence of God. — “Galatians 2:16 Knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law, but by the faith of Jesus Christ, even we have believed in Jesus Christ, that we might be justified by the faith of Christ, and not by the works of the law: for by the works of the law shall no flesh be justified.” — {A side note: no person has ever kept (fulfilled) the Law only Jesus has fulfilled the Law because the Law represents God. In the same way no person has ever fulfilled any of the Holy Feast days because like the Laws of Israel the Feasts of Israel are intended to represent God and be accomplished by God and not by mankind.}

Justification — is a part of our imputed righteousness, meaning that righteousness (justification) is not something that we earn it is something we receive, it has been given to us as a free gift from God – Though once imputed to us it should be evident in our life (James 2:22-24) – How do we fallen humans become Righteous and Justified in the sight of God, it’s not by our works [trying to become righteous] but only by our faith [receiving God’s free gift] in what God our Savior has already completed for us — “1 Corinthians 6:10-11 Nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall inherit the Kingdom of God. And such were some of you: but ye are washed, but ye are sanctified, but ye are **justified in the Name of the Lord Jesus, and by the Spirit of our God.” — “Romans 4:5 But to him that worketh not, but believeth on Him (Jesus) that Justifieth the ungodly, his faith is counted for righteousness.”

“Titus 3:3-8 For we ourselves also were sometimes foolish, disobedient, deceived, serving divers lusts and pleasures, living in malice and envy, hateful, and hating one another. But after that the kindness and love of God [Jesus] our Saviour toward man appeared, Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to His mercy He saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost; Which He shed on us abundantly through Jesus Christ our Saviour; **That being justified by His Grace, we should be made heirs according to the hope of eternal life. This is a faithful saying, and these things I will that thou affirm constantly, that they which have believed in God might be careful to maintain good [i.e. genuine] works. These things are good and profitable unto men.”

Faith — Belief (vb.) Faith (n.) — Belief [Pisteuo – G4100, verb], Faith [Pistis – G4102, noun] {G4100 (Belief) KJV Authorized Version Translation Count – Total: 248 – believe 239, commit unto 4, commit to (one’s) trust 1, be committed unto 1, be put in trust with 1, be commit to one’s trust 1, believer 1} — {G4102 (Faith) KJV Authorized Version Translation Count – Total: 244 – faith 239, assurance 1, believe + 1537 1, belief 1, them that believe 1, fidelity 1 — blueletterbible.org}

“Romans 1:17 For therein is the righteousness of God revealed from faith to faith: as it is written, The just shall live by faith.” — The Bible has one specific meaning for the word faith. Faith is specifically a faith in the resurrection of Jesus. Faith does not mean, “I have faith that God will pay the bills.” God may or may not pay the bills, either way God is doing a work and He has a purpose for whatever He does or doesn’t do. The faith, the one and only Christian faith, is in the resurrection of Jesus. When we have true faith the belief in the resurrection of Jesus and that through Jesus we too will be resurrected to everlasting life with Jesus in heaven, then who really cares about anything else? Who cares if the bills don’t get paid? Who cares what the governments of the world are doing? who cares if disease is racking the body? When there is faith in eternity, then the things of this world take a back seat to the things of God. Faith in the resurrection does free us up; it frees us up from the worries of this world. Sure there are bills to be paid, corrupt governments and illnesses to be dealt with, but when we deal with life in the context of eternity and the living caring God we are then freed up to make better decisions with more choices. “Galatians 2:20 I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me.” — The two Greek words Pistis (faith) and Pisteuo (belief) are the same word with two different endings just like talk and talking. In English we do not say faith and faithing, but we say faith and belief, just like we might say talk and speak. Faith and belief are the same word, they both mean trust. Sometimes we think that if only I believe then I would gain faith, except that is like saying if only I could speak then I could talk. Faith (trust) does not come from believing (trusting), but is a product of love and love is a product of a relationship. — “Galatians 5:6 … but faith which worketh by love.” Love comes First and then Faith (trust) comes from love. Our faith in Jesus comes from our love of Jesus. (source: BasicChristian.org/theology.html)

Atonement — Jesus became a man “And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us” (John 1:14) primarily for the main reason of offering Atonement on our behalf to God the Father – Sinful man is unable to offer eternal atonement, man being unable to save ourselves from our own sin – Necessitating that God become a human High Priest and offer an eternal sacrifice (Himself), one that would provide Eternal Salvation to all mankind, all those who would answer the calling of God and enter into an eternal relationship with God – Through the provided and completed Atonement of Jesus Christ – Atonement happened for mankind at one time, in one location, the cross of Jesus Christ — “Romans 5:11 And not only so, but we also joy in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom we have now received the atonement.”

Atonement is an offering, a High Priest offering, it is an offering from man (only the High Priest) on behalf of all men to God and then God either accepts the offering (atonement) or God rejects the offering (non-atonement) and the result is universal to all men either there is atonement or there isn’t, there is no partial-atonement. — “Hebrews 7:11-28 If therefore perfection [completion] were by the Levitical priesthood, for under it the people received the [Levitical] law [at Mt. Sinai], what further need was there that another priest should rise after the order of Melchisedec [Melchizedek – Genesis 14:18-22] , and not be called after the [Levitical] order of Aaron? For the priesthood being changed [from Levitical to Melchizedek], there is made of necessity a change also of the law [Old Testament to New Testament]. For He (Jesus) of whom these [High Priest] things are spoken pertaineth to another tribe [Judah, not Levi], of which [Tribe of Judah – Tribe of the Kings] no man gave attendance at the [Levitical – Tribe of Levi – Tribe of the Priests] altar. For it is evident that our Lord [Jesus] sprang out of Juda [Tribe of Judah]; of which tribe Moses spake nothing concerning priesthood. And it is yet far more evident: for that after the similitude of Melchisedec (Melchizedek) there ariseth another priest, [Eternal] Who is made, not after the law of a carnal commandment, but after the power of an [Eternal] endless life. For He [Holy Spirit] testifieth, [Psalm 110:4] “Thou art a priest for ever after the order of Melchisedec” (Melchizedek). For there is verily a disannulling of the commandment [Levitical Laws – O.T.] going before for the weakness and unprofitableness thereof. For the (O.T.) law made nothing perfect [completed], but the bringing in of a better hope [Promises of God] did; ***by the which we draw nigh unto God. And inasmuch as not without an oath [with an oath, promise – Psalm 110:4] He (Jesus) was made Priest (Eternal – High Priest): For those [Levi] priests were made without an oath; but this (N.T.) with an oath by Him [Father] that said unto Him [Jesus], The Lord sware and will not repent, [Psalm 110:4] “Thou art a Priest for ever after the order of Melchisedec” (Melchizedek): By so much was Jesus made a surety of a better Testament (N.T.) And they truly were many [Levi] priests, because they were not suffered to continue by reason of death: ***But this man (Jesus, our High Priest), because He continueth ever [eternal], hath an unchangeable priesthood. ***Wherefore He (Jesus) is able also to save them to the uttermost that come unto God by Him, seeing **He ever [eternal] liveth to make intercession for them [sinners]. For such an High Priest [Jesus] became [i.e. fittingly for] us, who is Holy, harmless, undefiled, separate from sinners, and made Higher than the heavens; Who needeth not daily, as those [Levi] high priests, to offer up sacrifice, first for his own sins, and then for the people’s: for this He (Jesus) did once, when He offered up Himself (on the cross). For the [Levitical] law maketh men [Levi] High Priests which have infirmity; but the Word of the Oath [Promises of God], which was since the law [Psalm 110 via King David came years after the law via Moses and Mt. Sinai], maketh the Son, who is consecrated [lit. complete] for evermore.” — Even in the Old Testament the atonement was not limited to just Israel as in practice it was a universal atonement from the one High Priest of Israel on behalf of all mankind. [Old Testament] “2 Chronicles 6:32-33 Moreover concerning the stranger, which is not of Thy people Israel, but is come from a far country for Thy Great Name’s sake, and Thy mighty hand, and Thy stretched out arm; if they come and pray in this House [Temple, greater Temple area]; Then hear thou from the heavens, even from thy dwelling place, and do according to all that the stranger calleth to Thee for; that all people of the earth may know Thy Name, and fear thee, as doth Thy people Israel, and may know that this House [Temple] which I [King Solomon] have built is called by Thy Name.” — The Levitical Atonement was both a yearly reminder of sin and also an instructional for better things to come [permanent sacrifice] through the Messiah but the O.T. atonement did not ‘save’ Israel or anyone from their sins as the [atonement] blood of bulls and goats did not save anyone, Jew or Gentile. “Hebrews 10:4-5 For it is not possible that the blood of bulls and of goats [Old Testament Levitical atonement] should take away sins. Wherefore when He (Jesus-Messiah) cometh into the world, He saith, [Levitical] Sacrifice and offering thou wouldest not [didn’t want], but a body [sacrifice – offering] hast thou prepared [made] Me:” — The Old Testament atonement was in a sense universal in that there was the one Jewish High Priest offering to God on behalf of mankind and yes there were probably problems (i.e. John 2:16) with the administration of the O.T. atonement. Since the O.T. atonement was universal in form (not necessarily in function) how much more is the one offering of the Messiah, Jesus Christ universal to all. But unlike the previous O.T. Levitical administration the administration of the Melchizedek Priesthood is complete, trustworthy and without any errors. “Hebrews 9:11-15 But [Jesus] Christ being come an [human] High Priest of good things to come, by a greater and more perfect Tabernacle, not made with hands, that is to say, not of this building; Neither by the blood of goats and calves, but by His own blood He entered in once into the Holy Place [Heaven], having obtained **eternal redemption for us. For if the blood of bulls and of goats, and the ashes of an heifer sprinkling the unclean, sanctifieth [Levitical redemption] to the purifying of the flesh: **How much more shall the [N.T. Salvation] blood of Christ, who through the eternal [Holy] Spirit offered Himself [as a human for Atonement] without spot to God [Father], purge your conscience from dead works to serve the living God? And for this cause He (Jesus) is the mediator of the New Testament, that by means of death [payment for sin (Romans 6:23)], for the redemption of the transgressions (sins) that were [kept, covered] under the first testament (O.T.), they which are called [all dispensations] might receive the promise of eternal inheritance.”

Adoption — Prior to ‘Adoption’ a person must first become a ‘born again’ Child of God (John 3:3) and then after becoming a Child of God, and it is only Children of God, that later receive the Adoption of God and with Adoption the accompanying Inheritance as Sons/Daughters of God — “Romans 8:23 And not only they, but ourselves also, [Children of God] which have the Firstfruits of the [Holy] Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, **waiting for the adoption [Sonship/Daughtership)], to whit, the redemption of our body.”

“John 3:3 Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be *born again [become a Child of God], he cannot see the Kingdom of God.” — Adoption Biblically is slightly different than what we think of as adoption. For instance a stranger is not adopted into the family of God, like the concept we have of adoption where a non-family member becomes a family member through adoption. The Biblical concept of adoption is confirmation of adulthood of an existing family member and with adulthood comes privileges and inheritance “as Sons”. In the Bible Jacob actually adopted his two grandchildren Ephraim and Manasseh. Jacob did not need to adopt them to make them family but he did need to adopt them to give them an inheritance in the promise land. Indeed Ephraim and Manasseh did receive inheritances in the promise land just like their uncles did, because they were adopted as sons and received the same inheritance as their uncles the sons of Jacob. – We are born into the family of God, through faith in the resurrection of Jesus in the new covenant. Jesus spoke to Nicodemus and told him that he must be “Born Again” in order to see the Kingdom of God, [in Jesus the kingdom of God is now available] the First step to becoming a member in the family of God is to be born into the family as a child of God and that is done by the person accepting the covenant of God that we are His creation separated by our sin and that He loves us and died for our sins on the cross and then He resurrected from death to reconcile us to Him in His resurrection life. When we accept the “New Covenant” we are now in a correct relationship with God, we acknowledge that God exists and that we desire to have a relationship with Him. We have asked for forgiveness of our sins, we are now cleansed from our sin, we are now clean and God in Spirit has come inside of us giving us a new life in Him, our new birth into His family as a child of God. – Once we are a “born again” child of God we are then predestined (appointed outcome) to the adoption. The actual adoption [to sons] takes place later, when we physically die and our spirit and soul enter the visible presence of God where we are then adopted as sons of God and being sons of God we then receive an inheritance in heaven in the visible presence of God. — “Romans 8:14-17 For as many [born again Children of God] as are led by the Spirit of God, they are [through predestination] the sons of God. For ye have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father. The [Holy] Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are **the Children of God: And if children, then heirs [Sons/Daughters]; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with Him, that we may be also glorified together.”

Conclusion: We have concluded our Basic Christian: Holiness Summit 2012 – And like the Priests of old we have gone to the Temple [Jesus] and have washed our offerings to God – And not only have we washed our offerings in the wash basins throughout the Temple – But as Priests of the Believers’ Priesthood we have washed in the Temple’s one Sea in the precious water of the Holy Bible — “Ephesians 5:24-27 Therefore as the Church is subject unto Christ, so let the wives be to their own husbands in every thing. Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the Church, and gave Himself for it; That He might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the Word [Bible], That He might present it [Church] to Himself a glorious Church, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing; but that it should be holy and without blemish.”

“Romans 12:1 I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service.” — In any Bible study regarding holiness, sanctification and offerings to God the question then becomes, who is a Priest? Who, is able to offer to God a sacrifice of service and adoration that is an acceptable offering? — “Revelation 5:9-10 And they [redeemed Christians] sung a new song, saying, Thou (Jesus) art worthy to take the book, and to open the seals thereof: for thou wast slain, and hast redeemed us to God by thy blood out of every kindred, and tongue, and people, and nation; ***And hast made us [Christians] unto our God kings and **priests: and we shall reign on the earth.”

David Anson Brown 06:46, 19 August 2012

Source: Basic Christian – Wiki

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