Holey?? Holy?? Or Wholly?? Bible Ballistics: Vol. 11 No. 08


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Bible Ballistics: Vol. 11 No. 08 Holey?? Holy?? Or Wholly??


I’d like to share a few brief thoughts with you today. My pastor recently used a ‘visual aid’ that has stuck in my mind, and I’d like to share some of my thoughts about it with you today.

The subject he was teaching about was regarding ‘holiness’, ‘heresy’, and ‘truth’. The thing I want to focus on today is holiness. The aid that our pastor used was a large card (poster board), on one side it had holes like a piece of Swiss cheese, to remind us of “holiness”, which the dictionary says is, “the quality or state of being holy, sanctity…”.

The word used for ‘holy’ in the New Testament is “hagios”: “holy, set apart, sanctified, consecrated”, and comes from a root that means “chaste, pure…..with a fundamental idea of, separation, consecration, and devotion to God, and sharing in God’s purity and abstaining from earth’s defilement” (From Spiros Zodihates Word Study Dictionary of the New Testament.). Now that’s a mouth-full, much less a heart and mind full! But full of what? Our own ways? Or God’s ways?

“Holey” means ‘having holes. Are we living a life with “holes” in it? Do we continually have gaps in judgment, speech or behavior? Are we conforming to the world instead of God and His Word? Are we continually striving for ‘holiness’ before God and man, as HE has called and enabled us to be/do?

But as he which hath called you is holy,

so be ye holy

in all manner of conversation;

16 Because it is written,

Be ye holy;

for I am holy.” 1 Peter 1:15-16

Conversation, as mentioned here is a reference to “life style” not just our speech, but also our way of living, and God calls us to live a holy life.

I beseech you therefore, brethren,

by the mercies of God,

that ye present your bodies

a living sacrifice,


acceptable unto God,

which is your reasonable service.” Romans 12:1

Many today have come far afield of Paul’s call to live godly lives of sacrifice and holiness. Let’s examine this passage and then look at the rest of the call in verse 2. Paul says that our call (I beseech you) is so important that he begs the Romans, and us, to stand up, not on our own power, but by “the mercies of God”. Even as Paul reminded the Philippians:

I can do all things

through Christ

which strengtheneth me.”    Philippians 4:13

We can’t be “holy” apart from the power of God—the power that makes us the “sons of God” (children of God). Jesus saves and gives us abundant life—life “in HIM”—life that can rise above the world’s drain, by the God’s power that supplies that “all things through Christ” power! Paul implores us to live godly lives by God’s mercy extended to them/us, as we present our “bodies a living sacrifice” unto God! Our lives yielded to God for HIS service—to sacrifice our lives by our ‘living’ so that HIS holiness will be seen in us in all we do and say! He goes on to help us know how to accomplish this.

And be not conformed

to this world:

but be ye transformed

by the renewing of your mind,

that ye may prove

what is that good,

and acceptable,

and perfect,

will of God.

3 For I say,

through the grace

given unto me,

to every man

that is among you,

not to think of himself

more highly

than he ought to think;

but to think soberly,

according as God hath dealt

to every man

the measure of faith.”    Romans 12:2-3

I love this passage, and just as Paul called us to sacrifice our living unto God, he helps us understand that it involves not just “holy” living, but a determination to “be not conformed to this world”, but to renew our minds by the Word of God, which is part of the transforming power of God! What does transformation look like? We can gain a lot of insight by understanding the word “transformed”; it is from a Greek word, “metamorphoo”. It may look familiar to you, for it is the root from which we get our English word “metamorphosis”—the transformation that takes place when a caterpillar becomes a butterfly! That is what God does in us—HE transforms us from sinners to saints. He makes us “fit” for HIS kingdom by the blood of Jesus and the work of The Holy Spirit.

Giving thanks unto the Father,

which hath made us meet (fit)

to be partakers

of the inheritance of the saints

in light:

13 Who hath delivered us

from the power of darkness,

and hath translated us

into the kingdom

of his dear Son:

14 In whom we have redemption

through his blood,

even the forgiveness of sins:”    Colossians 1:12-14

It’s all about Jesus, His work within us, and His transforming power, which enables us to NOT conform to the world, but to yield ourselves to His transforming work from within. A transformation, which will be evident to prove:

what is that good,

 and acceptable,

 and perfect,

 will of God

God’s transforming power manifested through our behavior-a testimony of grace to the world. We are delivered and changed to be His witnesses, by His power and truth. And as we see in Romans 3:12, this transformation will always be evidenced by humility and not arrogance—servants of God not self-promoters. Paul gives us a wonderful picture of ‘holiness’ and “wholly”ness in his letter to the Thessalonians. For when we are living “holy” lives, we will be “whole” in our testimony before God and the world. “Holy” believers, living “wholly” holy lives of witness for our Lord, to a lost and dying world!

See that none render evil for evil

unto any man;

but ever follow that which is good,

both among yourselves,

and to all men.

16 Rejoice evermore.

17 Pray without ceasing.

18 In every thing give thanks:

for this is the will of God

in Christ Jesus

concerning you.

19 Quench not the Spirit.

20 Despise not prophesyings.

21 Prove all things;

hold fast that which is good.

22 Abstain from all appearance of evil.

23 And the very God of peace

sanctify you wholly;

and I pray God

your whole spirit

and soul

and body

be preserved blameless unto the coming

of our Lord Jesus Christ.

24 Faithful is he that calleth you,

who also will do it.”   1 Thessalonians 5:15-24

And one of Paul’s last messages to his son-in-the-faith, Timothy, is a word that we ought to heed and take to heart. It’s as true for us now as it was for Timothy then!

Meditate upon these things; give thyself wholly to them; that thy profiting may appear to all.” 1 Timothy 4:1

It’s your choice: Holey? Or Wholly Holy? Chose wisely, there is a test at the end!

A Testimony Of Grace??? Bible Ballistics: BBs #445


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Bible Ballistics: BBs #445 A Testimony Of Grace???


It’s a lovely spring morning here in Oklahoma as I write this morning. I’m a bit late so the sun is coming up and the birds are singing—I just love the spring and fall, when we go from the cold of winter into the warmth of spring, and then after the summer’s heat we are so glad to see the cooling off of the fall. Our spiritual walk with Jesus is kind of like that–we go through seasons of the cold hard issues of life jumping in our face and then rejoice as God sends relief and we see the blooms and refreshing of spring bringing new life. Life that has been waiting in the cold ground and upon the changes of temperature and the light of the sun, the proof of life comes popping through to our delight!

It is a wonderful gift of God that the seasons remind us of new life—new life in Jesus is much the same—for we all have seasons in our life—the good, the difficult, the welcome and the not-so-welcome, the simple and the complex—yet God is faithful through them all. He has promised to “

And let us not be weary

in well doing:

for in due season we shall reap,

if we faint not.

10 As we have therefore opportunity,

let us do good

unto all men,

especially unto them

who are of the household

of faith.”   Galatians 6:9-10

But ye, brethren,

be not weary

in well doing.” 2 Thessalonians 3:1

Like Paul, Oswald Chambers talks about the “humdrum” that often distracts us, and how we must be diligent to avoid growing “weary in well doing”; for sometimes “well doing” isn’t fun! It’s not always “fun” chasing children, or cleaning toilets, or the cooking and cleaning up of meal preparation, mowing, or digging, or hoeing a garden!!! Life can be ‘wearying’ to the max! But we are to keep our eyes on Jesus, Who provides the insight we need to overcome the sin and humdrum—the doldrums, as some people say—of living in a broken, fallen world.

Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about

with so great a cloud of witnesses,

let us lay aside

every weight,

and the sin

which doth so easily beset us,

and let us run

with patience

the race that is set before us,

2 Looking unto Jesus

the author

and finisher

of our faith;

who for the joy that was set before him

endured the cross,

despising the shame,

and is set down at the right hand

of the throne of God.” Hebrews 12:1-2

So what am I saying? I’m simply saying that life is often tedious and difficult, and we must recognize that when it sneaks up and “whacks” us on the back of the head, we must keep our eyes on Jesus! We must strive to shorten our “lead time”, so to speak, and as we walk more closely with Jesus each day, we will see sin, as sin, sooner, we can avoid it more often because we will recognize it, as sin (“the wiles of the devil”), and when we do stumble (and we all do), we can get up more quickly and learn from what we’ve experienced! Praise God Almighty! Amen and Amen! We can join Paul in pressing on with joy, courage and God’s strength and power instead of “weariness”!

Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended:

but this one thing I do,

forgetting those things

which are behind,

and reaching forth unto those things

which are before,

14 I press toward the mark

for the prize

of the high calling

of God

in Christ Jesus.”    Philippians 3:13-14

So press on dear friends, and don’t let the weariness of life drag you down. Jesus is sufficient unto the need and He has promised to be with us.

Let your conversation be without covetousness; and be content with such things as ye have:

for he hath said,

I will never leave thee,

nor forsake thee.

6 So that we may boldly say,

The Lord is my helper,

and I will not fear

what man shall do unto me.”    Hebrews 13:5-6

All because of grace:

And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.” 2 Corinthians 12:9 Amen!!!

God’s Grace In God’s Own??? Bible Ballistics: BBs #444


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Bible Ballistics: BBs #444 God’s Grace In God’s Own???


We talked last time about the grace of God that offers salvation to those who will come to Jesus; grace that saves, transforms, and supplies all we need for living. God knows His own and we can know Him, and grow in grace and intimacy as we feast on His Word. Then we are enabled and equipped to be a reflection of HIS glory, grace and love to a world in desperate need. But remember our message won’t always be welcomed, but we are to respond with the grace and dignity of the Spirit of Jesus that dwells within us!

Walk in wisdom

toward them that are without,

redeeming the time.

6 Let your speech be

alway with grace,

seasoned with salt,

that ye may know

how ye ought to answer

every man.” Colossians 4:5-6

Words and actions that are “seasoned with salt”; and salt makes things palatable! But don’t miss “seasoned”—not brined, but “seasoned”. We are to be a preserving agent—preserving the good and godly things and drawing people to the “Good Shepherd”, not drowning them in brine! YUK! Our life and our words should express “wisdom”, as we are “redeeming the time” by God’s grace; and when we are walking in His ways, He will help us to “know how ye ought to answer” anyone who asks. Peter says the same thing in a different way.

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:

16 Having a good conscience;

that, whereas they speak evil of you,

as of evildoers,

they may be ashamed

that falsely accuse

your good conversation in Christ.”    1 Peter 3:15-16

And to give an answer we must know the answer—JESUS—who gives us all we need to succeed in our walk with HIM!

Grace and peace be multiplied unto you

through the knowledge of God,

and of Jesus our Lord,

3 According as his divine power

hath given unto us all things

that pertain unto life

and godliness,

through the knowledge

of him that hath called us

to glory and virtue:

4 Whereby are given unto us

exceeding great

and precious promises:

that by these ye might be partakers

of the divine nature,

having escaped the corruption

that is in the world

through lust.”     2 Peter 1:2-4

He has given us to all we need do HIS work—right where you are! Remember God knows who you are, and where you are—He hasn’t said “oops”! So let’s pursue the things of God so that the world will see Jesus in us—God’s grace lived out day by day as we walk through this world of darkness and corruption. We are to be spreading the grace of God everywhere we go, leaving the harvest to the Father! He knows those who are His, and He is at work in us!

Nevertheless the foundation of God

standeth sure,

having this seal,

The Lord knoweth them

that are his.

And, Let every one that nameth

the name of Christ

depart from iniquity.”   2 Timothy 2:19

Even as Jesus said:

My sheep hear my voice,

and I know them,

and they follow me:” John 10:27

And if you don’t know Jesus, my friend, you can. If you hear His voice speaking to your heart, simply recognize that you have sinned—and can’t fix it; that Jesus died for that very sin—and He will fix it; repent and believe in His substitutionary (He took your place), atoning (He paid the penalty for your sin with His own blood), sacrifice (He paid the debt He didn’t owe, so we could have life that we didn’t deserve)! That my friend IS God’s grace. Amen and Amen!


I stand at the door, and knock:

if any man hear my voice,

and open the door,

I will come in to him,

and will sup with him,

and he with me.”   Revelation 3:20

How Much Good Is Enough??? Bible Ballistics: Vol.11 No. 07


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Bible Ballistics: Vol. 11 No.07 How Much Good Is Enough???


I was most encouraged by the message I heard this morning, as it reminded me of the awesome wonder of “Grace”—God’s “Amazing Grace” for sure! But what is grace? We’ve all heard the definition of grace, “underserved and unmerited favor”! But grace goes so much farther than this simple idea. What is it that saves us? It is God’s grace for sure, but what does that look like?

Let’s peruse some familiar passages in scripture and see what we can conclude. Is it our goodness that saves, or is it God’s goodness? Goodness which according to Paul’s letter to the Romans is totally underserved! But I praise God that HE has saved me anyway!!! That HE is willing to save all who will come to HIM through Jesus!

Therefore being justified by faith,

we have peace with God

through our Lord Jesus Christ:

2 By whom also we have access

by faith

into this grace

wherein we stand,

and rejoice

in hope of the glory

of God.

3 And not only so,

but we glory in tribulations also:

knowing that tribulation

worketh patience;

4 And patience,


and experience,


5 And hope maketh not ashamed;

because the love of God is shed abroad

in our hearts

by the Holy Ghost

which is given unto us.

6 For when we were yet without strength,

in due time

Christ died for the ungodly.

7 For scarcely for a righteous man

will one die:

yet peradventure for a good man

some would even dare to die.

8 But God

commendeth his love toward us,

in that, while we were yet sinners,

Christ died for us.

9 Much more then,

being now justified

by his blood,

we shall be saved

from wrath

through him.

10 For if,

when we were enemies,

we were reconciled

to God

by the death of his Son,

much more,

being reconciled,

we shall be saved

by his life.

11 And not only so,

but we also joy in God

through our Lord Jesus Christ,

by whom we have now received

the atonement.” Romans 5:1-11

We are “justified” by faith in Jesus; made right with God—we who were “without strength”, who were “the ungodly”; and yet God loved us “while we were yet sinners”—all who are apart from Jesus!!!

while we were enemies,

we were reconciled

to God

by the death of his Son

There is “none righteous, (good before God) no, not one” –apart from Jesus’ righteousness, we are all lost! And that’s what we must come to understand! It’s all about the sacrifice that Jesus made, not how “good” we can be! We can’t be good enough to cover the sin we’ve already, committed, much less the sins that we fall to each and every day! Paul has even more to say to the Ephesians, which reiterates the truth that we are all “sinners”, in need of a Savior—and only God’s grace provides the solution to our need—Jesus’ death, burial, and resurrection for our salvation (See 1 Corinthians 15:3-6)!!!

And you hath he quickened,

who were dead in trespasses

and sins;

2 Wherein in time past ye walked

according to the course of this world,

according to the prince of the power

of the air,

the spirit that now worketh

in the children of disobedience:

3 Among whom also

we all had our conversation

in times past

in the lusts of our flesh,

fulfilling the desires of the flesh

and of the mind;

and were by nature the children

of wrath,

even as others.

4 But God,

who is rich in mercy,

for his great love

wherewith he loved us,

5 Even when we were dead in sins,

hath quickened us together with Christ,

(by grace ye are saved;)

6 And hath raised us up together,

and made us sit together

in heavenly places

in Christ Jesus:

7 That in the ages to come

he might shew

the exceeding riches

of his grace

in his kindness

toward us

through Christ Jesus.

8 For by grace are ye saved through faith;

and that not of yourselves:

it is the gift of God:

9 Not of works,

lest any man should boast.

10 For we are his workmanship,

created in Christ Jesus

unto good works,

which God

hath before ordained

that we should walk

in them.” Ephesians 2:1-10

Did you get that?

we are his workmanship,

created in Christ Jesus

unto good works,

which God

hath before ordained

that we should walk

in them

It’s all about HIM—not about us! We “are his workmanship created in Christ Jesus”! There aren’t enough good works that we can do to ‘save’ ourselves, and because of that—sin– GOD sent us Jesus to do what we could never do—save ourselves! There aren’t enough good works to make up for the sin that we have done, are doing and will do—never enough!


if any man be in Christ,

he is a new creature:

old things are passed away;

behold, all things are become new.

18 And all things are of God,

who hath reconciled us

to himself

by Jesus Christ,

and hath given to us

the ministry of reconciliation;

19 To wit,

that God was in Christ,

reconciling the world

unto himself,

not imputing their trespasses

unto them;

and hath committed unto us

the word of reconciliation.

20 Now then

we are ambassadors for Christ,

as though God did beseech you

by us:

we pray you

in Christ’s stead,

be ye reconciled

to God.

21 For he hath made him

to be sin for us,

who knew no sin;

that we might be made

the righteousness of God

in him.” 2 Corinthians 5:17-21

God accepts Christ Jesus’ sacrifice—our sin placed on HIM–and credits to our account Jesus’ perfect righteousness! He who “knew no sin” took on my sin, because He loves me, and you; all so that you and I might be made “the righteousness of God in him”! And it’s only “in him”! Only One Way—Jesus! And as Paul also said in another of his letters, when we know Jesus:

I can do all things

through Christ

which strengtheneth me.” Philippians 4:13

As Jesus himself reminds us, when we “abide” in Him, He will supply everything that we need to live, grow and be of service to HIM!

I am the true vine,

and my Father is the husbandman.

2 Every branch

in me

that beareth not fruit

he taketh away:

and every branch

that beareth fruit,

he purgeth it,

that it may bring forth more fruit.

3 Now ye are clean

through the word

which I have spoken unto you.

4 Abide in me,

and I in you.

As the branch

cannot bear fruit

of itself,

except it abide in the vine;

no more can ye,

except ye abide

in me.

5 I am the vine,

ye are the branches:

He that abideth in me,

and I in him,

the same bringeth forth much fruit:

for without me ye can do nothing.”    John 15:1-5

So, my question for us today is, how much goodness are you depending on? How much goodness must one have to be right with God? Whose goodness? How much grace must God show to you before you will believe that He has made provision for YOU?

But God

commendeth his love toward us,

in that, while we were yet sinners,

Christ died for us

Until we see ourselves as “sinners” we will never need a Savior! There is not enough ‘goodness’ in the world to save—but there is a ‘good’ God who has already paid the price to all who will come to Him in repentance and faith.

Testifying both to the Jews,

and also to the Greeks,

repentance toward God,

and faith toward our Lord Jesus Christ.”    Acts 20:21

Amen and Amen!!! Grace at it’s best—IN Jesus!!!

The Battle Is God’s!!! Bible Ballistics: BBs #443


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Bible Ballistics: BBs #443 The Battle IS God’s!!!


We all have difficulties, trials, unexpected “interruptions”, and surprises, so I’d just like to take a few minutes this morning to remind us all that God is still God and HE has it.

And he said, Hearken ye, all Judah, and ye inhabitants of Jerusalem, and thou king Jehoshaphat,

Thus saith the LORD unto you,

Be not afraid

nor dismayed

by reason of this great multitude;

for the battle is not yours, but God’s…….

17 Ye shall not need to fight in this battle:

set yourselves,

stand ye still,

and see the salvation

of the LORD with you,

O Judah and Jerusalem:

fear not,

nor be dismayed;

to morrow go out against them:

for the LORD will be with you.”   2 Chronicles 20:15 & 17

We must always keep our eyes on Jesus, our Father God and His precious Holy Spirit. God has it—no matter where you are or what you are going through, remember, “the battle is not yours, but God’s”, so let Him have it!!! We can trust Him and walk in HIS Spirit.

Then he answered and spake unto me, saying,

This is the word of the LORD unto Zerubbabel, saying,

Not by might,

nor by power,

but by my spirit,

saith the LORD of hosts.”     Zechariah 4:6

So as we go about our living ‘today’, may we remember that the battle “is not yours, but God’s”—and God is our strength and redeemer. Our part is to follow Him, keep our eyes on Him, and walk in the power, provision and wisdom of HIS Holy Spirit

This I say then, Walk in the Spirit, and ye shall not fulfil the lust of the flesh.”   Galatians 5:1

God calls us to walk with Him, and He will provide our every need—our job is to consciously walk “in the Spirit” not our own selfish flesh and desires, but in HIS Spirit and HIS way.

If we live in the Spirit,

let us also walk in the Spirit.” Galatians 5:25

And we can do that because Jesus has given us His Spirit, who empowers us to live through the new covenant; which is the indwelling Holy Spirit:

To whom God would make known what is the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles;

which is Christ in you,

the hope of glory:”   Colossians 1:27

And the Christ in me—never fails:

Let your conversation be without covetousness; and be content with such things as ye have: for he hath said, I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee. 6 So that we may boldly say, The Lord is my helper, and I will not fear what man shall do unto me.” Hebrews 13:5-6

Amen and Amen. God’s got it!!!