Copyright 1994 - 2018 Bill's Bible Basics
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March 23, 2012
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March 23, 2012
Why Trust Bill Kochman?, Modern Self-Proclaimed Prophets And Apostles, Questionable Facebook Prophecies, One Of Many Teachers, Joy Of Sharing God's Word, More Perfect Knowledge, Our Coming Full Salvation Of Body And Spirit, Trust Me But Not Completely, I Am Not Infallible, My Evolving Theology, Understanding God's Word Is A Lifelong Process, The More I Learn The More I Realize How Little I Really Do Understand, Don't Be Deceived By Pride And Vanity, Receive God's Word With Meekness, Freely Share His Revelations With Humility, Clothed In Humility, Grow In Knowledge And Understanding Of God's Word, Blinded By Preconceived Ideas, God's Limitless Provision And Spiritual Bounty, Ask In Faith And Believe To Receive, Study And Test The Spirits Against The Scriptures, Real Revelations Will Not Contradict God's Word, Faith In God's Word And Not In Me, Agree To Disagree, We Must Each Be Persuaded In Our Own Minds, Don't Contradict The Scriptures, Strive To Avoid Doctrinal Debates, Humility Civility Respect, Open Thou Mine Eyes, Closing Remarks, Additional Articles
At this point, some of you may be thinking to yourselves, "Now wait a minute Bill! You are criticizing all of these other people. Why should I trust you? What makes you any different from them? Why should I believe you or even accept what you teach? Aren't you just setting yourself up on a pedestal as if you are somebody special?" I certainly hope not; because if I am, then I have no doubt in my mind that just as we saw with the verses that I shared with you in part one, God will knock me down flat on my back, and that right soon! He is a jealous God, and He will not have any gods before Him, including Bible prophecy teachers.
For the record, I by no means consider myself to be any kind of a Prophet of God, and I have never publicly referred to myself as a Prophet either. Just contemplating that thought makes me feel very uncomfortable. Even when people refer to me as a "man of God" on the web, I feel quite undeserving of the title or description, or whatever it is. In contrast, it really alarms me to see how many individuals so freely assign themselves the honorific titles of Apostle and Prophet. Due to my involvement on Facebook in recent months, it does not escape me how many people actually do this. Many prophecies also abound on Facebook, and I can't help but wonder how many of them are really from the Lord, and how many are simply the result of someone's self-deception and listening to their own minds, or perhaps even listening to Satan or his minions. No doubt some of you will be surprised by this remark. Allow me to encourage you to read "The Office of a Prophet".
As for my person, I view myself simply as one of the Lord's many scribes and teachers who is trying his best to gain a more perfect knowledge of the Word of Truth, so that I can freely share that knowledge with others. As I have shared with some of my online friends, it gives me no greater joy than to share the Word of God with others. This is what I live for, and this is what I have dedicated the majority of the past forty years of my life to doing. I am reminded of the following verse where the precious seed represents God's Word:
"He that goeth forth and weepeth, bearing precious seed, shall doubtless come again with rejoicing, bringing his sheaves with him."
Psalms 126:6, KJV
Concerning a more perfect knowledge, consider the following verse that is found in the Book of Acts:
"And when Felix heard these things, having more perfect knowledge of that way, he deferred them, and said, When Lysias the chief captain shall come down, I will know the uttermost of your matter."
Acts 24:22, KJV
The word "perfect" in the previous verse is derived from the Greek word "akribesteron". This word means "more exactly" or "more perfectly". It is synonymous with "more fully" or "more completely". In similar fashion, our Salvation will likewise be more perfect, full and complete on the Day of the Lord's Return, when we will receive our new Resurrected Bodies, and enter into the full realities of the Spirit World. It is for this reason that at the sound of the Seventh Trump, we are told the following:
"But in the days of the voice of the seventh angel, when he shall begin to sound, the mystery of God should be finished, as he hath declared to his servants the prophets."
Revelation 10:7, KJV
Concerning my previous question regarding whether or not you should trust me, my answer may surprise some of you. I think that a fair, honest and humble answer to this question would be to say that while you can trust me, you should not trust me completely. What!? Please don't be so surprised. I have never made the claim of being infallible. I am human. Thus, I can make mistakes and misunderstand God's Word just like anyone else. Remember what I said earlier. I embrace what I refer to as an evolving theology. As I learn, I change what I believe and teach, and this has been an ongoing experience for the past forty years. If any of you young people think that God gives you the full truth of His Word all in one big lump sum, I am sorry to disappoint you, but you are seriously mistaken. Learning and understanding God's Word is a lifelong process, and even then it probably does not end.
If I can teach you one important lesson in this article aside from our need to express humility in our understanding of the Word of God, it is that the more that I read and study the Scriptures, and the more that I understand them, the more I actually realize how little I really do understand. It is a humbling realization which we all need to experience. Having said that, I urge all of you to never become so deceived in your own mind, and so convinced that you know and understand so much, that your own pride and vanity become your worst enemies and bring you down. As we learned in part one, the Apostle Paul wrote:
"Let no man deceive himself. If any man among you seemeth to be wise in this world, let him become a fool, that he may be wise . . . And if any man think that he knoweth any thing, he knoweth nothing yet as he ought to know."
1 Corinthians 3:18, 8:2, KJV
Let me also add that if the Lord does see fit to reveal to you some new and exciting truth in His Word -- at least it is a new revelation for you personally -- as the Apostle James admonishes us, please receive the engrafted word with a spirit of meekness. Furthermore, please don't hoard God's Good Gold; rather, freely share His revelations with your friends in a true spirit of humility, and not as if you are some great one who deserves a pat on the back:
"Wherefore lay apart all filthiness and superfluity of naughtiness, and receive with meekness the engrafted word, which is able to save your souls."
James 1:21, KJV
"And when they were come to him, he [the Apostle Paul] said unto them, Ye know, from the first day that I came into Asia, after what manner I have been with you at all seasons, Serving the Lord with all humility of mind, and with many tears, and temptations, which befell me by the lying in wait of the Jews: And how I kept back nothing that was profitable unto you, but have shewed you, and have taught you publickly, and from house to house, Testifying both to the Jews, and also to the Greeks, repentance toward God, and faith toward our Lord Jesus Christ."
Acts 20:18-21, KJV
"Likewise, ye younger, submit yourselves unto the elder. Yea, all of you be subject one to another, and be clothed with humility: for God resisteth the proud, and giveth grace to the humble."
1 Peter 5:5, KJV
So as you can see, throughout the Bible we are repeatedly told that God honors people who are clothed in humility, and not those who are puffed up against their own brethren due to their own pride and vanity. Furthermore, as we have also seen, we must apply this same principle to our understanding of God's Word, because as Paul writes, we know nothing yet as we ought to know, and to think otherwise is to deceive ourselves.
As the following verses reveal, God expects each of us to be firmly established in our faith, to grow in the level of our spiritual maturity, and to grow in our understanding and knowledge of His Word. However, all of these things must be done in a spirit of true humility:
"When I was a child, I spake as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child: but when I became a man, I put away childish things. For now we see through a glass, darkly; but then face to face: now I know in part; but then shall I know even as also I am known."
1 Corinthians 13:11-12, KJV
"Brethren, be not children in understanding: howbeit in malice be ye children, but in understanding be men."
1 Corinthians 14:20, KJV
"Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ: That we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive; But speaking the truth in love, may grow up into him in all things, which is the head, even Christ."
Ephesians 4:13-15, KJV
"As ye have therefore received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk ye in him: Rooted and built up in him, and stablished in the faith, as ye have been taught, abounding therein with thanksgiving."
Colossians 2:6-7, KJV
"Therefore leaving the principles of the doctrine of Christ, let us go on unto perfection; not laying again the foundation of repentance from dead works, and of faith toward God, Of the doctrine of baptisms, and of laying on of hands, and of resurrection of the dead, and of eternal judgment."
Hebrews 6:1-2, KJV
"Ye therefore, beloved, seeing ye know these things before, beware lest ye also, being led away with the error of the wicked, fall from your own stedfastness. But grow in grace, and in the knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. To him be glory both now and for ever. Amen."
2 Peter 3:17-18, KJV
As I mentioned earlier, the mysteries of God's Word are given to each of us to understand incrementally -- over a period of years -- and according to our personal faith and willingness to accept them. As we have already discovered, if we are not careful, we can become so blinded by our preconceived ideas concerning what the Scriptures mean, that our speculations can become idols which prevent us from discovering the real Truth of God's Word. The result of our lack of faith, and our unwillingness to accept those things which the Lord desires to reveal to us, is that we unknowingly place a limit on what He is able to give us. And it is indeed limitless; for as King David wrote in the Book of Psalms:
"I am the LORD thy God, which brought thee out of the land of Egypt: open thy mouth wide, and I will fill it."
Psalms 81:10, KJV
While the above verse is probably referring to miracles of the past in which the Lord provided for His children during their forty years of wandering through the wilderness, and thus is a promise of the Lord's provision, it also reflects a spiritual reality as well. As the Apostle Peter informs us in his first Epistle, in a sense, we are all spiritual children; we are babes; and similar to a real mother, the Lord has an unlimited supply of Spiritual Milk from which we can draw our spiritual nourishment, as we see by the following verse:
"As newborn babes, desire the sincere milk of the word, that ye may grow thereby:"
1 Peter 2:2, KJV
The Prophet Malachi also wrote the following verse regarding the Lord's provision for His children. Not only does the Lord promise to provide for us, but He encourages us to challenge Him to prove Himself, just as He proved Himself to Jacob for twenty years in the Book of Genesis:
"Bring ye all the tithes into the storehouse, that there may be meat in mine house, and prove me now herewith, saith the LORD of hosts, if I will not open you the windows of heaven, and pour you out a blessing, that there shall not be room enough to receive it."
Malachi 3:10, KJV
You will notice that in order to be partakers of the Lord's many blessings -- including revelations from His Word -- we must first meet His conditions. This includes seeking first the Kingdom of God, obeying the Lord, and diligently studying His Word. Following are some additional verses which can be applied in both a physical and a spiritual sense. The Lord is more than able to provide both our physical and our spiritual needs when we are pleasing Him. All we have to do is ask in faith and believe that we have been heard:
"Delight thyself also in the LORD; and he shall give thee the desires of thine heart."
Psalms 37:4, KJV
"Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you: For every one that asketh receiveth; and he that seeketh findeth; and to him that knocketh it shall be opened."
Matthew 7:7-8, KJV
"And all things, whatsoever ye shall ask in prayer, believing, ye shall receive."
Matthew 21:22, KJV
"But let him ask in faith, nothing wavering. For he that wavereth is like a wave of the sea driven with the wind and tossed. For let not that man think that he shall receive any thing of the Lord. A double minded man is unstable in all his ways."
James 1:6-8, KJV
"And this is the confidence that we have in him, that, if we ask any thing according to his will, he heareth us: And if we know that he hear us, whatsoever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we desired of him."
1 John 5:14-15, KJV
In this case, we are most interested in obtaining a clearer understanding of Endtime events. Thus, if we sincerely ask the Lord to show us what the ancient prophecies mean, then we must have the faith to believe that the understanding which we are given has been guided by His Holy Spirit. Of course, if we are wise, we will also try -- or test -- the spirits, in order to determine if the revelations we are receiving are really from God, and not just from our own minds, or perhaps even from Satan or a deceptive, lying spirit. Please consider the wise advice that is found in these verses:
"Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth."
2 Timothy 2:15, KJV
"And the brethren immediately sent away Paul and Silas by night unto Berea: who coming thither went into the synagogue of the Jews. These were more noble than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness of mind, and searched the scriptures daily, whether those things were so."
Acts 17:10-11, KJV
"Beloved, believe not every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of God: because many false prophets are gone out into the world."
1 John 4:1, KJV
Concerning receiving revelations from the Lord, I am reminded of something which Mary said when she was moved by the Holy Spirit to go visit her cousin Elizabeth in the hill country of Judah:
"He hath filled the hungry with good things; and the rich he hath sent empty away."
Luke 1:53, KJV
To reiterate, whether we have physical needs or spiritual needs, the Lord promises to provide for us if we are truly seeking first His Kingdom, and are pleasing in His sight. If you would like to learn more about this topic, you may want to read the article "Seek Ye First the Kingdom of God". Just remember that insofar as revelations are concerned, the only source that we should trust completely is God's Word, the Bible. Furthermore, I do not believe that the Lord will ever reveal something to us which contradicts His written Word. So again, please make sure that if you do receive any new revelations from the Lord, that they are in full agreement with God's Word. Any modern revelations which we receive should supplement God's Word, and not contradict it.
While there are certain doctrines within my current belief system about which I am very adamant -- such as the need for all men everywhere to believe in and accept Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior -- for reasons which I already stated, I do not apply this same firmness to Endtime prophecy. As I have already made clear, I humbly recognize and admit that I am not infallible in this area. At this current time, no one fully understands the Endtime prophecies except for the Lord Himself, because He is the One who gave them to His servants the Prophets so long ago. As such, as He chooses to reveal more to me, and as I am able to understand it, I will update my articles, until the day in which I have obtained a more perfect knowledge of the Truth.
As my longtime readers will no doubt already know, I always endeavor to support my beliefs by providing verses from the Scriptures. Doing so has been my personal practice for many years now, because I want my readers to place their faith in God's Word, and not just in me, or in anything that I say or teach. Now, if you read what I have to say, and examine the Bible verses that I share, and agree with my point of view, well, great! However, if you are not convinced by the verses that I share, then so be it. In such a case, we will simply have to agree to disagree. After all, you must believe and live according to your faith, and I must do the same. As the Apostle Paul writes:
". . . Let every man be fully persuaded in his own mind."
Romans 14:5b, KJV
If you do happen to disagree with my conclusions -- which is obviously your right to do -- my one piece of advice to you would be this: Please make sure that in disagreeing with me, you are not also disagreeing with what is plainly stated in God's Word. You can disagree with me all you want, just don't contradict the Scriptures.
Of course, at the same time, if you do happen to disagree with my understanding of God's Word, please don't expect me to engage in a doctrinal debate with you, because that is one thing which I refuse to do. As I explain in the article entitled "Should Christians Engage in Doctrinal Debates?", I consider doctrinal debates to be a waste of time, as well as an exercise in futility. I have much more important things to do with my time, other than argue with people over doctrines.
In conclusion, regardless of whether we agree or disagree with each other in a doctrinal sense, let's all agree to be clothed with humility in our understanding, and to treat each other with a degree of civility and respect, as is fitting for Christian brethren, until such time when the Lord will finally open all of our eyes to the many wonders of His magnificent Word. As King David of old was inspired to write:
Open thou mine eyes, that I may behold wondrous things out of thy law."
Psalms 119:18, KJV
With that verse, I will now bring this article to a close. I trust that it has been a blessing in your life. For those of you who may be interested, for your convenience, following is a list of all of the other articles which I mentioned in this current article, along with a few other articles which are related in some way to this one:
Comet Elenin, Hercolubus, Nibiru, and Planet X
Elijah: Where Are the True Prophets?
Happy Hanukkah and Merry Christmas?
Modern False Prophets and Worldly Ecumenism
Money-Making Bible Hucksters and Mammon
Psalm 83 War False Doctrine Exposed!
Should Christians Engage in Doctrinal Debates?
So You Really Think You Are So Humble?
Sorry . . . Jesus Is Not Coming at Any Moment
Study, Work, and Don't Be Ashamed!
The Internet: Our Final Frontier; Your Last Chance
The Misguided End of the World Predictions of Harold Camping
The Office of a Prophet
The Only Credentials You Need
The Wisdom of God vs the Philosophy of Men