Say Not in Your Heart

Paul quoted Moses’ words from Deuteronomy, “Say not in thine heart, Who shall ascend into heaven? (that is, to bring Christ down from above) Or, Who shall descend into the deep? (that is, to bring up Christ again from the dead.) But what saith it? The word is nigh thee, even in thy mouth, and in thy heart” (Rom 10:6-8). After having given the First and Great Commandment, “Hear, O Israel: The LORD our God is one LORD: And thou shalt love the LORD thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might” (Deu 6:4-5), Moses said the same thing several times: “If thou shalt say in thine heart” (7:17); “Thou shalt also consider in thine heart” (8:5); “And thou say in thine heart” (8:17); “Speak not thou in thine heart” (9:4); “there be not a thought in thy wicked heart, saying” (15:9); “And if thou say in thine heart” (18:21); “that he bless himself in his heart, saying” (29:19); “But the word is very nigh unto thee, in thy mouth, and in thy heart” (30:14). Loving God with all our hearts isn’t just what we say out of our mouths, but what we say to ourselves in our hearts, “in thy mouth, and in thy heart.”

Abraham learned the hard way to NOT laugh at God, “Then Abraham fell upon his face, and laughed, and said in his heart, Shall a child be born unto him that is an hundred years old? and shall Sarah, that is ninety years old, bear? And Abraham said unto God, O that Ishmael might live before thee! And God said, Sarah thy wife shall bear thee a son indeed; and thou shalt call his name Isaac [laughter]” (Gen 17:17-19). Telling Abraham to name his son “laughter” indicated that God knew he had just laughed at Him in his heart. Abraham got the point.

Jesus and John the baptizer both taught: “And think not to say within yourselves” (Mat 3:9); “But and if that evil servant shall say in his heart” (Mat 24:48); “and begin not to say within yourselves” (Luk 3:8); “he spake within himself, saying” (Luk 7:39); “And he thought within himself, saying” (Luk 12:17); “But and if that servant say in his heart” (Luk 12:45); “but afterward he said within himself” (Luk 18:4); “Then the steward said within himself” (Luk 16:3). We all speak to ourselves in our hearts. And since people don’t know what we’re saying, it’s very easy to forget that God does and begin speaking to ourselves evil things.

Jesus didn’t just suggest but commanded us, “Take no thought for your life, what ye shall eat, or what ye shall drink; nor yet for your body, what ye shall put on … take no thought, saying, What shall we eat? or, What shall we drink? or, Wherewithal shall we be clothed? … Take therefore no thought for the morrow” (Mat 6:25,31,34). We can’t be saved if we’re sinning against Christ’s commandment by thinking to ourselves about tomorrow. To take no thought for tomorrow requires that we trust God—that He becomes the God of our lives: “I will be their God” (Gen 17:8; Jer 24:7,32:38; Eze 11:20,36:28,37:23,27; Zec 8:8), “I will be their God” (2Co 6:16); “I will be to them a God” (Heb 8:10); “God is not ashamed to be called their God” (Heb 11:16); “God himself shall be with them, and be their God” (Rev 21:3); “I will be his God” (Rev 21:7). For God to be our Savior, God must be our God. It means no longer running our lives and ruining our lives!

“Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding” (Pro 3:5), requires that we don’t say anything to ourselves displeasing to God, try to figure out situations, or “help” God work things out. It means being truly at peace with any outcome and sincerely content in any circumstance we find ourselves, “I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content” (Phl 4:11). And this isn’t just a better way to live—it’s the way we must live to be saved.

The Greek verb pisteuō appears about 250 times in the New Testament and is almost always translated as “believe” but actually means “trust.” Paul taught about salvation, “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe [trust] in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. For with the heart man believeth [trusts] unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation. For the scripture saith, Whosoever believeth [trusts] on him shall not be ashamed.” (Rom 10:9-11). That salvation isn’t by believing but by trusting is evident by what David said, “O my God, I trust in thee: let me not be ashamed, let not mine enemies triumph over me … O keep my soul, and deliver me: let me not be ashamed; for I put my trust in thee” (Psa 25:2,20), “In thee, O LORD, do I put my trust; let me never be ashamed” (Psa 31:1). Salvation isn’t by believing but by trusting God. Our trust in Him won’t be put to shame, “Whosoever believeth [trusts] on him shall not be ashamed.”

Paul understood Moses’ words “Say not in thine heart … in thy mouth, and in thy heart,” that we confess the Lord publicly out of our mouths, and speak trust in God privately within our hearts. To be saved, we must trust the Father and obey His Son.

Absent from the Body, Present with the Lord?

“Therefore we are always confident, knowing that, whilst we are at home [endēmeō 1736] in the body, we are absent [ekdēmeō 1553] from the Lord: (For we walk by faith, not by sight:) We are confident, I say, and willing rather to be absent [ekdēmeō 1553] from the body, and to be present [endēmeō 1736] with the Lord. Wherefore we labour, that, whether present [endēmeō 1736] or absent [ekdēmeō 1553], we may be accepted of him.” (2Co 5:6-9).

First, we should concede that this passage isn’t about what happens when we die but what happens when we’re resurrected. The statement “that mortality might be swallowed up of life” (5:4), corresponds to what he taught the Corinthians in his first letter, “and this mortal shall have put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written, Death is swallowed up in victory” (1Co 15:54). Also, there’s nothing in this passage about an intermittent state where disembodied beings go prior to resurrection and nothing about heaven. But since it’s being approached with the assumption that disembodied beings go to heaven after death, then translations are biased to read that way. But Paul was simply comparing our current bodily state with that of our future bodily state.

This passage is being used to teach that we’re presently living inside our bodies like living in a tent or a house, but at death we’ll live outside our bodies. Likewise, that our bodies are like clothing we’re wearing, but at death we’ll be unclothed when we leave our bodies. However, these were simply figures of speech—a tent as opposed to a house, and naked or unclothed as opposed to clothed upon. In context, “For the things which are seen are temporary, but the things which are not seen are eternal” (4:18), our current temporary state is like a tent while our future eternal state is like a house. Also, “being clothed we shall not be found naked” (5:3), alludes back to “I heard thy voice in the garden, and I was afraid, because I was naked” (Gen 3:10). The message is that we don’t want to be found naked when the Lord returns. This has nothing to do with our bodies covering us like clothing.

The Greek words endēmeō and ekdēmeō aren’t prepositions denoting location of either inside or outside the body because if we adopt those meanings and apply them consistently across the passage, it results in absurdity. The same word endēmeō in “at home in the body” is used in “present with the Lord,” and ekdēmeō in “absent from the body” is used in “absent from the Lord.” Thus, inside or outside our bodies correlates with inside or outside the Lord. Therefore, if Paul was saying we’re living inside our bodies, then he was also saying that after leaving our bodies we’ll be living inside the Lord’s body! Furthermore, it’s obvious that the parallel statements “at home in the body” and “present with the Lord” had to be mistranslated to avoid absurdity because “at home in the body” and “at home in the Lord,” or “present with the body” and “present with the Lord” don’t work.

Endēmeō and ekdēmeō are verbs denoting action with no English equivalents with which to be translated. Their root dēmos means “people.” They carry the idea of residing with or away from people. In this temporary state of our body, we’re residing with people away from the Lord, but when He returns our bodies will be in a permanent state residing with Him. The conclusion is “Wherefore we labour, that, whether present [endēmeō 1736] or absent [ekdēmeō 1553], we may be accepted of him” (v. 9). It’s all about being accepted by Him in this life and in the next.

Sandwiched between all of these endēmeō and ekdēmeō parallel statements, Paul interjected “For we walk by faith [pistis 4102], not by sight [eidos 1491]” (5:7). It’s being taught that he was saying we walk by what we believe and not by what we see. However, the Greek nouns are mistranslated—pistis means “faithfulness” or “loyalty” while eidos means “appearance” or “form.” He meant that we walk by faithfulness to the Lord and not by appearance to people which agrees with what he said just a few verses later, “them which glory in appearance, and not in heart” (5:12), as he also said to the Romans, “of the heart, in the spirit, and not in the letter; whose praise is not of men, but of God” (Rom 2:29). His point is that although we’re residing with people away from the Lord, and we’re being seen by them daily, we’re not walking in such a way to be seen by them. Jesus Christ taught against this, “that they may have glory of men,” “that they may be seen of men,” “that they may appear unto men” (Mat 6:2,5,16).

The bottom line is that this passage doesn’t teach disembodiment to live in heaven. Jesus Christ lives in heaven but not disembodied! This passage is about how we live right now in our current bodily state in preparation for the judgment, “For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ; that every one may receive the things done in his body, according to that he hath done, whether it be good or bad” (2Co 5:10). It’s to live in the presence of the Lord in a permanent bodily state.

Examining Sola Fide

Habakkuk’s famous statement “but the just shall live by his faith [ĕmûnȃ 530]” (Hab 2:4), isn’t about faith but faithfulness as rendered correctly in some versions, “but the person of integrity will live because of his faithfulness” (NET), “but the righteous person will live by his faithfulness” (NIV). The Hebrew noun ĕmûnȃ appears about 50 times in the Old Testament and without exception, expresses faithfulness. The Greek noun pistis in “The just shall live by faith [pistis 4102]” (Rom 1:17; Gal 3:11; Heb 10:38) is wrongly translated as “faith” in accordance with the Reformer Martin Luther’s false salvation message of sola fide or faith alone.

The absurdity of sola fide becomes apparent when introduced into the context of everyday life. Take the workplace as somewhat of an example of our walk with God. Our time belongs to our employer. We abide by the company rules. We do the work we’re told to do while being dependable, honest, and faithful. We don’t always know why our employer wants us to do specific things but we trust that they know the bigger picture and how it will positively affect the overall health of the company and the community. We also know that since we’re simply doing what we’re told, we trust that our employer has our back if we were to experience any repercussions from doing an assignment. If we’re doing a good job we’ll be rewarded but if we’re doing poorly, then it can result in disciplinary action and possible termination. All of that makes perfect sense.

Now, let’s interject “faith” or “belief” as the sole requisite for employment. Employees get hired because they express belief in their employer. After getting hired many of them argue among themselves about whether they were hired because they believe the employer, or if they believe the employer because they were hired. Some even dare to claim that their employer gave them the belief they needed to get hired. They also squabble about whether they do a good job because they believe the employer, or if they believe the employer because they do a good job. Of course some claim that performance has a direct bearing on their job security but others claim Once Employed Always Employed. Therefore, when someone quits or gets let go, those that embrace OEAE have to say, “Well, I guess they never really were employed, because if they had been they would have continued to be employed. Therefore, they never truly believed the employer!”

In his letter to the Romans, Paul was expounding the gospel Jesus Christ Himself preached, “For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ” (Rom 1:16), “the preaching of Jesus Christ” (Rom 16:25). And the gospel Christ preached is faithful service to Him as Lord: “Who then is a faithful and wise servant” (Mat 24:45); “Well done, thou good and faithful servant” (Mat 25:21); “Who then is that faithful and wise steward” (Luk 12:42); “He that is faithful in that which is least is faithful also in much” (Luk 16:10); “Well, thou good servant: because thou hast been faithful in a very little” (Luk 19:17); “And why call ye me, Lord, Lord, and do not the things which I say?” (Luk 6:46).

Paul’s statement, “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe [trust] in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved” (Rom 10:9), has been turned into a salvation formula—just call Him “Lord” from our mouths. However, Paul had already taught earlier, “Know ye not, that to whom ye yield yourselves servants to obey, his servants ye are to whom ye obey” (Rom 6:16). We’re servants of whom we obey as Lord, not just call “Lord.”

Furthermore, Romans 10:9 must be understood within the context of its preceding quotation: “Who shall go up for us to heaven, and bring it unto us, that we may hear it, and do it? Neither is it beyond the sea, that thou shouldest say, Who shall go over the sea for us, and bring it unto us, that we may hear it, and do it? But the word is very nigh unto thee, in thy mouth, and in thy heart, that thou mayest do it.” (Deu 30:12-14). Moses was prophesying about Christ’s coming as Lord, “heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth themheareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them not” (Mat 7:24,26). Confessing Him as Lord is a commitment or pledge to do what He said. The pledge itself doesn’t save, faithfully keeping the pledge does.

The apostles and early church called themselves “servants,” “Paul, a servant of Jesus Christ” (Rom 1:1); “James, a servant of God and of the Lord Jesus Christ” (Jas 1:1); “Simon Peter, a servant and an apostle of Jesus Christ” (2Pe 1:1); “Jude, the servant of Jesus Christ” (Jde 1:1). They never once called themselves “believers” but translations have been doctored to read as though they did.

We’ve been sold the lie of sola fide. And to discourage us even further from obeying the Lord, we’re told that anything we do is our own meritorious works and not faith. It’s a devious and absurd “gospel” message that assures we won’t be saved.

Wolves in Sheep’s Clothing

“Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves. Ye shall know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles? Even so every good tree bringeth forth good fruit; but a corrupt tree bringeth forth evil fruit. A good tree cannot bring forth evil fruit, neither can a corrupt tree bring forth good fruit. Every tree that bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire. Wherefore by their fruits ye shall know them.” (Mat 7:15-20).

We think we can spot wolves. We say to ourselves, “Well, if I ever come across one, I’ll be sure to stay away.” But Jesus said that the only way they can be known is “by their fruits.” This indicates just how incredibly covert they truly are. They’re so extremely convincing as sheep that we CANNOT know them by any other way. And we’re fooling ourselves if we think we can. A “corrupt tree” can only be known in that it cannot “bring forth good fruit.” Therefore, we’ll know wolves by their fruits.

Christ later applied this same analogy of trees and fruit to the Pharisees, “Either make the tree good, and his fruit good; or else make the tree corrupt, and his fruit corrupt: for the tree is known by his fruit. O generation of vipers, how can ye, being evil, speak good things? for out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaketh” (Mat 12:33-34). The mouth is to the heart what fruit is to a tree. As a tree is known by its fruit, the heart is known by the mouth. As Christ said of the Pharisees, “He that is not with me is against me; and he that gathereth not with me scattereth abroad” (Mat 12:30). Anyone not with Christ—saying what He said, preaching what He preached, and teaching what He taught—is against Him.

What Jesus Christ taught about His Father God and about Himself is the truth, and anyone teaching different is wrong. Trinitarian ministers teach different. Therefore, they’re wrong. Now, all they need to do is repent and begin teaching what Jesus taught. But if they won’t, then they’re not with Him but against Him. They’re known by their fruits. Their fruits betray them as wolves.

Trinitarian ministers are warm, funny, and down-to-earth. They’re family men that love their wives and children. They invest in the lives of others and shed tears of joy and sorrow with them. They labor and serve in the church and in the community. They sing praise music and know their Bible well. They foster and adopt children. They enjoy visiting over a cup of coffee and having cookouts and gatherings. But there’s just one glaring problem—they disagree with Jesus! Wolves can seem just like sheep and in some ways even more so. They can only be known by their fruits.

Paul taught that as the serpent was in the beginning, his ministers are now, “But I fear, lest by any means, as the serpent beguiled Eve through his subtilty, so your minds should be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ. For if he that cometh preacheth another Jesus, whom we have not preached, or if ye receive another spirit [breath], which ye have not received, or another gospel, which ye have not accepted, ye might well bear with him.” (2Co 11:3-4), “Satan himself is transformed into an angel [messenger] of light. Therefore it is no great thing if his ministers also be transformed as the ministers of righteousness” (2Co 11:14-15). His ministers pose as messengers of truth. They’re extremely subtle and convincing.

Trinitarian ministers preach “another Jesus,” a “Jesus” that is God Himself. They deny His literal begetting by preaching that He has always existed as God. They deny that He is now 100% human by preaching the illogical claim that He is both 100% God and 100% human at the same time. They deny that His miracles were of God Himself by preaching they were of Himself as God.

Trinitarian ministers preach “another gospel,” a “gospel” of sola fide or faith alone. They deny that we can live righteously to the standard Christ commanded by preaching we’re born with an innate sin nature that prevents it. They deny faithful service to Jesus as Lord by preaching a faith confession. They deny eternal life and annihilation by preaching that man is an eternal spirit being that will always exist either in heaven or in hell.

I was a Trinitarian for almost 30 years and had plenty of amiable disagreements with them along the way. However, the dynamics changed completely once I began agreeing with Christ in contradistinction with them. And I was shocked to hear some of the things that began coming out of their mouths. If you want to put them to the test yourself—and I’m not suggesting you should—just keep pressing them to agree with Christ that His Father is His God (Mat 27:46; Mar 15:34; Jhn 20:17; Rom 15:6; 1Co 3:23,11:3; 2Co 11:31; Eph 1:3,1:17; Col 1:3; Heb 1:9; 1Pe 1:3; Rev 3:12). You’ll find out if they’re with Him or against Him. They’re known by their fruits.

God’s Foreknowledge and Predestination

Paul concluded his letter to the Romans, “according to the revelation of the mystery, which was kept secret since the world began” (16:25). This mystery from the beginning is the message hidden within the events of the creation and fall of man, “And the God of peace shall bruise Satan under your feet shortly” (16:20), “And I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed; it shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise his heel” (Gen 3:15). Paul revealed the mystery of Adam as a type of Christ to come, “Adam’s transgression, who is the figure of him that was to come” (5:14).

“And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose. For whom he did foreknow [proginōskō 4267], he also did predestinate [proorizō 4309] to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren. Moreover whom he did predestinate, them he also called: and whom he called, them he also justified: and whom he justified, them he also glorified.” (8:28-30). This passage is about God’s chosen people, “them that love me, and keep my commandments” (Exo 20:6), shown figuratively in Adam’s wife.

The Greek verb proginōskō rendered “foreknow” simply means to know someone prior as Paul used it of himself, “Which knew [proginōskō 4267] me from the beginning” (Act 26:5). Likewise, the verb proorizō is to determine something prior. Paul was alluding to the dominion God determined for the man and the woman prior to creating them, “let them have dominionmale and female created he them” (Gen 1:26,27). Since God created the man before the woman, therefore He knew him prior to knowing her. However, He determined to make her for him prior to giving him dominion, “I will make him an help meet for him. And out of the ground the LORD God formed every beast of the field, and every fowl of the air; and brought them unto Adam to see what he would call them: and whatsoever Adam called every living creature, that was the name thereof.” (Gen 2:18-19). Adam and his wife were types of God’s Son and His chosen people. And the dominion given to Adam prior to their fall was determined for them both.

Adam naming every name foretold of Christ at God’s right hand with dominion over every name, “Thou madest him to have dominion over the works of thy hands; thou hast put all things under his feet” (Psa 8:6), “Which he wrought in Christ, when he raised him from the dead, and set him at his own right hand in the heavenly places, Far above all principality, and power, and might, and dominion, and every name that is named, not only in this world, but also in that which is to come: And hath put all things under his feet” (Eph 1:20-22).

To “them he also called” is that although He called to Adam after they sinned, “And the LORD God called unto Adam” (Gen 3:9), His call was to them both, “Unto the woman he said … And unto Adam he said” (Gen 3:16,17).

To “them he also justified [dikaioō 1344]” is that the dominion over “every beast of the field” (Gen 2:19,20) He gave to them both, “let them have dominion” (Gen 1:26), included dominion over the serpent, “And the LORD God said unto the serpent, Because thou hast done this, thou art cursed above all cattle, and above every beast of the field” (Gen 3:14). The serpent accuses God’s people before Him, “that old serpent, called the Devil, and Satan … the accuser of our brethren is cast down, which accused them before our God day and night” (Rev 12:9,10). But his charges against them are cast down. God justifies them from all accusations by His Son’s intercession for them at His right hand, “Who shall lay any thing to the charge of God’s elect? It is God that justifieth [dikaioō 1344] … who is even at the right hand of God, who also maketh intercession for us” (8:33,34).

To “them he also glorified” is that He clothed them both, “Unto Adam also and to his wife did the LORD God make coats of skins, and clothed them” (Gen 3:21). This woman “a woman clothed with the sun, and the moon under her feet” (Rev 12:1), is God’s people clothed by God in His Son, “But put ye on the Lord Jesus Christ” (Rom 13:14), “put on the new man, which after God is created” (Eph 4:24), “put on the new man, which is renewed in knowledge after the image of him that created him” (Col 3:10). Being made after the Son’s image, “Let us make man in our image, after our likeness … So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them” (Gen 1:26,27), signified that they would be “conformed to the image of his Son” in glory.

God foreshowing His plan of salvation from the beginning—in whom He foreknew and what He determined prior—assures His people that He will bring it all to its fulfillment through His Son Jesus Christ.

How to Know We Are God’s Child

“Ye have heard that it hath been said, Thou shalt love thy neighbour, and hate thine enemy. But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you; That ye may be the children of your Father which is in heaven: for he maketh his sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust.” (Mat 5:43-45). Jesus taught that we must love our enemies “That ye may be the children of your Father which is in heaven.” Of course the converse is also true—those that don’t love their enemies, aren’t children of God.

Paul spoke of his former life before Christ, “for what I would, that do I not” (Rom 7:15) “how to perform that which is good I find not” (v. 18), “For the good that I would I do not” (v. 19). God’s commandment “thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself” (Lev 19:18), isn’t the friends and family plan! It includes our enemies. Paul decried his hopeless state of being unable to perform the good of loving his enemies. It’s not that it was just hard for him to do, but that he couldn’t do it.

He went on to teach in the next chapter, “Because the carnal mind is enmity against God: for it is not subject [hypotasso 5239] to the law of God, neither indeed can be” (8:7). The Greek hypotasso means “to subject one’s self” or “to submit” as he used it later, “have not submitted themselves [hypotasso 5239] unto the righteousness of God” (10:3), “Let every soul be subject [hypotasso 5239] unto the higher powers” (13:1). It doesn’t subject itself to God’s law of loving its enemies and “neither indeed can be,” “nor is it able to do so” (NET), “nor can it do so” (NIV). Paul said the same to the Galatians, “Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself” (Gal 5:14), “For the flesh lusteth against the Spirit [breath], and the Spirit [breath] against the flesh: and these are contrary the one to the other: so that ye cannot do the things that ye would” (5:17). Without God’s breath in our hearts, we cannot sincerely love our enemies as ourselves. We can put on a fake smile around them but we can’t pray earnestly for them as we would our own family, “pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you.”

Again, Paul went on to say in Romans, “The Spirit [breath] itself beareth witness with our spirit [breath], that we are the children of God” (8:16). Being able to wholeheartedly love our enemies bears witness that we have God’s breath and that we are His children. The love Paul was unable to show without God’s breath, he showed profoundly with, “I say the truth in Christ, I lie not, my conscience also bearing me witness in the Holy Ghost [breath], That I have great heaviness and continual sorrow in my heart. For I could wish that myself were accursed from Christ for my brethren, my kinsmen according to the flesh.” (9:1-3). He loved his antagonistic Jewish brethren to such an extent that if he could somehow trade places with them so that they would be saved and he would perish, he would!

He went on to say, “Therefore if thine enemy hunger, feed him; if he thirst, give him drink: for in so doing thou shalt heap coals of fire on his head. Be not overcome of evil, but overcome evil with good.” (12:20-21), “Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself” (13:9). The good we couldn’t do before, we now overcome evil with.

Without argument, David was the greatest example of love in the Old Testament. He wasn’t impressive looking as his older brothers, “man looketh on the outward appearance, but the LORD looketh on the heart” (1Sa 16:7), “I have found David the son of Jesse, a man after mine own heart” (Act 13:22). His father-in-law Saul tried repeatedly to kill him, but David never recompensed anything in return even when he had opportunity. And his own son Absalom tried to usurp his throne yet David loved him so much that he would have died in his place if he could have, “O my son Absalom, my son, my son Absalom! would God I had died for thee, O Absalom, my son, my son!” (2Sa 18:33). He loved his enemies to such a degree that he was accused of loving them more than his friends, “Thou hast shamed this day the faces of all thy servants, which this day have saved thy life, and the lives of thy sons and of thy daughters, and the lives of thy wives, and the lives of thy concubines; In that thou lovest thine enemies, and hatest thy friends” (2Sa 19:5-6).

Of course our greatest example of love is Christ Himself. He didn’t just wash the feet of 11 but all 12, “After that he poureth water into a bason, and began to wash the disciples’ feet” (Jhn 13:5). And they had no idea who it was that would betray Him, “Verily, verily, I say unto you, that one of you shall betray me … He then lying on Jesus’ breast saith unto him, Lord, who is it?” (Jhn 13:21,25), indicating He had never treated Judas any differently the entire time they walked with Him. Finally, on the cross He prayed for His enemies, “Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do” (Luk 23:34). The Son of God sincerely loved His enemies. To be God’s sons and daughters, we must also love our enemies.

Change the Heart by Changing the Treasure

“Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt, and where thieves break through and steal: But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through nor steal: For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also” (Mat 6:19-21). People sometimes say that God must change our hearts, as if we’re simply passive in the process and waiting on Him. But Jesus taught, “For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.” The location of our treasure—on earth or in heaven—dictates the condition of our hearts. It’s not that God must change our hearts first, then our desires will shift from earth to heaven. Rather, it’s that we must first change our treasure to heaven, then our hearts will be there also. To change our hearts, we must change our treasure!

Jesus began His Sermon with, “Blessed are the pure in heart: for they shall see God” (Mat 5:8). A pure heart consists mainly of clean thoughts and right motives, “the thoughts and intents of the heart” (Heb 4:12). He went on to teach, “That whosoever looketh on a woman to lust after her hath committed adultery with her already in his heart” (Mat 5:28), “For out of the heart proceed evil thoughts, murders, adulteries, fornications, thefts, false witness, blasphemies” (Mat 15:19). But how do we purify our hearts? By changing what it is that we treasure.

Now, treasure in heaven isn’t a wooden chest spilling over with gold coins and jewels. Treasure in heaven is our “Father which is in heaven” (Mat 5:16,45,48, 6:1, 7:11,21). God told Abram, “I am thy shield, and thy exceeding great reward” (Gen 15:1). He didn’t just say that He would reward him but that He is his reward! “The LORD is the portion of mine inheritance and of my cup” (Psa 16:5), “Thou art my refuge and my portion” (Psa 142:5 KJV) “The LORD is my portion” (Lam 3:24). What’s more valuable than being right with God and pleasing Him? Jesus said, “I do always those things that please him” (Jhn 8:29). And twice from heaven His Father declared, “This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased” (Mat 3:17, 17:5).

Paul’s letter to the Romans expounded the gospel message that Christ Himself preached, “For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ” (1:16), “the preaching of Jesus Christ” (16:25). The Greek adjective kryptos means “hidden,” “concealed,” or “secret.” His conclusion at the end of chapter 2 was, “But he is a Jew, which is one inwardly [kryptos 2927]; and circumcision is that of the heart, in the spirit [breath], and not in the letter; whose praise is not of men, but of God” (2:29). And this what Christ preached in His Sermon on the Mount, “in secret [kryptos 2927]: and thy Father which seeth in secret [kryptos 2927] … thy Father which is in secret [kryptos 2927]; and thy Father which seeth in secret [kryptos 2927] … unto thy Father which is in secret [kryptos 2927]: and thy Father, which seeth in secret [kryptos 2927]” (Mat 6:4,6,18). If our treasure is praise from men on earth, our hearts will be toward it and our actions will follow. But if our treasure is praise from God in heaven, our hearts will be toward Him and our actions for only Him to see.

This is what Paul meant later in chapter 8, “For they that are after the flesh do mind [phroneo 5426] the things of the flesh; but they that are after the Spirit [breath] the things of the Spirit [breath]. For to be carnally minded [phronema 5427] is death; but to be spiritually minded [phronema 5427] is life and peace.” (8:4-6). The Greek verb phroneo means “to mind” or “to seek.” The fleshly minded seek praise from flesh and blood which results in death, while the spiritually minded seek praise from God which results in eternal life and peace with Him.

Christ rebuked Peter, “Get thee behind me, Satan: thou art an offence unto me: for thou savourest [phroneo 5426] not the things that be of God, but those that be of men” (Mat 16:23). Peter’s heart wasn’t right. He wanted to look big in front of the other disciples and made the grave mistake of correcting Jesus. He yielded to Satan in seeking praise from men. Paul said, “Set your affection [phroneo 5426] on things above, not on things on the earth” (Col 3:1-2), “Whose end is destruction, whose God is their belly, and whose glory is in their shame, who mind [phroneo 5426] earthly things” (Phl 3:19).

Our fear must be toward God in heaven and not men on earth: “The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom” (Psa 111:10; Pro 9:10); “In the fear of the LORD is strong confidence” (Pro 14:26); “by the fear of the LORD men depart from evil” (Pro 16:6); “fear ye not the reproach of men, neither be ye afraid of their revilings” (Isa 51:7); “be not dismayed at their faces” (Jer 1:17); “be not afraid of them, neither be afraid of their words” (Eze 2:6).

The gospel Christ preached isn’t that we just believe some facts are true then we’re good to go. We must change our hearts. We do this by changing what we treasure.

The Tactics of Trinitarian Ministers

By the time of Christ and His apostles, most of God’s people had become religious to the point they wouldn’t listen but the common people would: “thou hast hid these things from the wise and prudent, and hast revealed them unto babes” (Mat 11:25); “the common people heard him gladly” (Mar 12:37); “all the people were very attentive to hear him” (Luk 19:48); “all the people came early in the morning to him in the temple, for to hear him” (Luk 21:38); “the Gentiles besought that these words might be preached to them the next Sabbath” (Act 13:42); “the salvation of God is sent unto the Gentiles, and that they will hear it” (Act 28:28). We’re living in the day Paul said would come, “For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears; And they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables [mythos 3454]” (2Ti 4:3-4). The tactics of Trinitarian ministers keep us trusting their religious myths, away from the truth.

Because of their education, eloquence, experience, position, and prominence, the simple and trusting listen to them, “by good words and fair speeches deceive the hearts of the simple” (Rom 16:18). They boast of themselves by belittling those that aren’t degreed by a seminary, “How knoweth this man letters, having never learned?” (Jhn 7:15), “Peter and John, and perceived that they were unlearned and ignorant men” (Act 4:13). They gain renown by endorsements from prominent ministers, “need we, as some others, epistles of commendation to you, or letters of commendation from you?” (2Co 3:1).

They discourage us from understanding the Scriptures on our own. They prescribe systematic theological resources and “Christian” books that supposedly keep us heading in the right direction. They’ll say it’s great to study the Bible on our own but we need to stay within a Bible study group—a group of Trinitarians of course!

One of their favorite sayings to hamper us from learning the truth in the Scriptures is, “If it’s new it’s not true, and if it’s true it’s not new.” However, it’s only “new” because they haven’t been teaching it! Everything Jesus Christ taught is the truth: “grace and truth came by Jesus Christ” (Jhn 1:17); “And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free” (Jhn 8:32); “And if I say the truth, why do ye not believe me?” (Jhn 8:46); “I am the way, the truth, and the life” (Jhn 14:6); “Every one that is of the truth heareth my voice” (Jhn 18:37); “the truth is in Jesus” (Eph 4:21). If He taught it, then it’s true and it’s not new. What’s new is what they’ve been teaching, and if it’s new it’s not true!

They instill the fear of damnation to keep us loyal to them. They claim that the Trinitarian view of God is essential for salvation to essentially keep us from salvation. And because they don’t want it exposed for what it truly is, they declare that Trinitarianism isn’t open for discussion. Anyone even beginning to question it is in danger of blasphemy against the Holy Spirit for which they will never be forgiven.

They teach all kinds of false doctrines that confuse, distract, and waste our precious time from doing anything fruitful for God. They concocted the doctrines of “faith alone” and “total depravity” to hinder us from living righteously according to the standard Jesus Christ taught in His Sermon on the Mount. They fabricated the false disputes of Protestantism vs. Catholicism and Arminianism vs. Calvinism that have squandered unfathomable amounts of time and resources over hundreds of years.

They portray themselves as champions of the truth by disparaging all others as blatantly false. The Council of Nicaea used Arias’ views as obviously false to tout the Trinity as apparently true. Similarly, they love denouncing Jehovah’s Witnesses and Mormons to bolster a pristine impression of themselves. By contrasting with what’s glaringly false, they magnify themselves as supposedly true.

They intimidate us from ever leaving Trinitarianism. They claim “They went out from us, but they were not of us; for if they had been of us, they would no doubt have continued with us” (1Jo 2:19) is that those who left their local church never were truly saved, when it’s actually about false teachers that went out from the Jerusalem church, “certain which went out from us have troubled you with words, subverting your souls” (Act 15:24). Those that reject Trinitarianism are said to be going out to start a cult, or else joining with Jehovah’s Witnesses, Mormons, Oneness, or Unitarians. Sadly, rather than allowing themselves to be maligned for the name of Christ, many choose to stay and protect their own.

These are just a few of the many tactics used by Trinitarian ministers to keep us loyal to them and on the broad way leading to destruction. Let’s not be taken by them and their tactics. Let’s trust in the teaching of our Lord Jesus Christ.

He that Hath an Ear, Let Him Hear

The Son of God was in complete unity with His Father as John recorded in his Gospel: “the Word was God” (1:1); “I and my Father are one” (10:30); “the Father is in me, and I in him” (10:38); “he that hath seen me hath seen the Father … I am in the Father, and the Father in me” (14:9,10); “thou, Father, art in me, and I in thee … we are one” (17:21,22). He always did the will of His Father: “My meat is to do the will of him that sent me” (4:34); “I seek not mine own will, but the will of the Father which hath sent me” (5:30); “not to do mine own will, but the will of him that sent me” (6:38); “I do always those things that please him” (8:29). And He always spoke what His Father had sent Him to speak: “he whom God hath sent speaketh the words of God” (3:34); “My doctrine is not mine, but his that sent me” (7:16); “as my Father hath taught me, I speak these things” (8:28); “I speak that which I have seen with my Father” (8:38); “For I have not spoken of myself; but the Father which sent me, he gave me a commandment, what I should say, and what I should speak” (12:49); “the words that I speak unto you I speak not of myself” (14:10); “I have given unto them the words which thou gavest me” (17:8).

God the Father sent His Son into this world to do and speak as He had been sent. Therefore, to be right with God we must fully submit to His Son—obey what He commanded and agree with what He taught. Our only hope is listening to God’s Son. But if we won’t listen to Him, we’re completely hopeless.

Jesus Christ concluded His Sermon on the Mount with an analogy of two men that both built houses. One house stood because its builder was wise and started with a foundation while the other collapsed because its builder was foolish and didn’t. The correlation of this story is that “whosoever heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them … every one that heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them not” (Mat 7:24-27). His message is clear—salvation is by obedience to Him. If we’ll obey what He taught in His Sermon we’ll be saved, but if we won’t obey Him we’ll perish. Paul and James both reiterated this, “For not the hearers of the law are just before God, but the doers of the law shall be justified” (Rom 2:13), “But be ye doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving your own selves” (Jas 1:22). We must listen to the Son of God and do what He said to be saved.

The Son taught this about the worship of God His Father, “But the hour cometh, and now is, when the true worshippers shall worship the Father in spirit and in truth: for the Father seeketh such to worship him. God is a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth.” (Jhn 4:23-24). Because God sought true worshippers, He sent His Son to teach the truth about Him. Since His Son lived and suffered and died for the truth He was sent to teach, do we suppose God will accept anything otherwise? Why subject His Son to horrible suffering and death for that end purpose only to later fudge on it? That the Son said we MUST worship His Father in the truth He taught, then we MUST. If we can be saved with a false view of God such as the Trinity, then Christ lived and died in vain.

In the Son of God’s parable of the Sower, He is the Sower preaching the truth to people’s hearts. And He declared, “Who hath ears to hear, let him hear” (Mat 13:9), “He that hath ears to hear, let him hear” (Mar 4:9; Luk 8:8). Obviously, “to hear” doesn’t mean to have sound waves vibrate over the ear drums. It’s to heed, mind, and take to heart what is heard; to submit, succumb, and surrender to it. The Son later said to all seven churches in Asia, “He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit [breath] saith unto the churches” (Rev 2:7,11,17,29, 3:6,13,22). Essentially, He was saying, “If you hear anything, you had better listen to what I’m telling you!”

The Son of God stated before His death, “Every one that is of the truth heareth my voice” (Jhn 18:37), “Everyone on the side of truth listens to me” (NIV). And John later wrote, “We are of God: he that knoweth God heareth us; he that is not of God heareth not us. Hereby know we the spirit of truth [breath], and the spirit [breath] of error” (1Jo 4:6). How do we know if we’re “of God” or not, if we belong to Him or not? It’s simple. Do we listen to His Son and His apostles or not? Those on the other side of the truth, speak against it: “spake against those things which were spoken by Paul, contradicting and blaspheming” (Act 13:45); “they opposed themselves, and blasphemed” (Act 18:6); “spake evil of that way before the multitude” (Act 19:9); “them that perish; because they received not the love of the truth, that they might be saved” (2Th 2:10); “resist the truth: men of corrupt minds, reprobate concerning the faith” (2Ti 3:8); “he hath greatly withstood our words” (2Ti 4:15); “the way of truth shall be evil spoken of” (2Pe 2:2). We MUST listen to the Son of God for any hope of salvation. If we won’t listen to Him, we’re completely hopeless.

Trinitarian Discipleship Programs

Christ’s great commission is to “Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world. Amen.” (Mat 28:19-20). In commanding us to “teach all nations” or “make disciples of all the nations” (NIV, NLT, NKJV), He left no doubt as to what we’re to be teaching them, “Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you.” But rather than teaching Christ’s commandments, Trinitarian ministers concocted their own religious discipleship programs that accomplish nothing of eternal value.

Their discipleship programs are simply doctrines and commandments of men: “But in vain they do worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men” (Mat 15:9); “(Touch not; taste not; handle not; Which all are to perish with the using;) after the commandments and doctrines of men?” (Col 2:21-22); “Not giving heed to Jewish fables, and commandments of men, that turn from the truth” (Tit 1:14). When Paul said, “Touch not; taste not; handle not,” he was alluding to the original deception, “God hath said, Ye shall not eat of it, neither shall ye touch it” (Gen 3:3). Commandments of men aren’t what God commanded.

I was a Trinitarian disciple for almost 30 years until my own study of the Scriptures finally led me to the truth taught by Jesus Christ and His apostles. Although I was a disciple of Trinitarian ministers, I wasn’t a very good one because I constantly questioned and bucked their program. I was an ongoing frustration to them because of my dogged pursuit of the truth in contention with their false doctrines.

Memorizing Scripture is one of the greatest dupes Trinitarian ministers lade on their disciples. They tout it by misusing certain statements: “thou shalt meditate therein day and night” (Jos 1:8); “Thy word have I hid in mine heart” (Psa 119:11); “Bind them upon thy fingers, write them upon the table of thine heart” (Pro 7:3). Memorizing verses helps us feel as though we’re accomplishing something, while wasting our time and mental energy accomplishing virtually nothing!

Another hoodwink is getting us on daily Bible reading plans by blended, canonical, chronological, historical, or Old and New Testament together. By immersing us into a daily reading plan, it soothes our consciences that we’re doing something of eternal value, and also keeps us from in-depth study of the Scriptures to discover the truth for ourselves. But if we really want to study, however, they direct us to their commentaries, theological works, study groups, and “Christian” books that keep us trudging down the broad way to destruction.

Memorizing verses, daily Bible reading, listening to sermons, attending Bible study groups, and reading “Christian” books are all aimed at occupying us with exactly what Christ warned against, “whosoever heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them … every one that heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them not” (Mat 7:24,26). Their programs simply spin our wheels hearing and hearing but not doing!

Apologetics is another huge deception of Trinitarian discipleship programs. It’s essentially training us to defend the very system that’s damning our own souls! Rather than “earnestly contend for the faith [faithfulness] which was once delivered unto the saints” (Jde 1:3), it’s contending for their false Trinitarian theological system. They misuse Peter’s directive, “But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts: and be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear” (1Pe 3:15), to convince us that we need to be trained with arguments against any objections. But Peter was quoting from Isaiah, “Sanctify the LORD of hosts himself; and let him be your fear, and let him be your dread” (Isa 8:13). When we fear God in our hearts and not men, He will give us what needs to be said: “take no thought how or what ye shall speak. For it is not ye that speak, but the Spirit [breath] of your Father which speaketh in you.” (Mat 10:19-20); “Settle it therefore in your hearts, not to meditate before what ye shall answer: For I will give you a mouth and wisdom, which all your adversaries shall not be able to gainsay nor resist” (Luk 21:14-15); “And they were not able to resist the wisdom and the spirit [breath] by which he spake” (Act 6:10).

Trinitarian discipleship programs also include fasting, fellowshipping, giving time and money to Trinitarian ministries, husbands and wives praying together, keeping a journal, meditating, and sharing their “gospel” message with others. It’s all about keeping us busy doing anything except what Christ commanded. Rather than “Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you,” they’re teaching them to observe their program on the broad way to destruction.