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Music "In Christ Alone" by Celtic Women (Adrienne Liesching) from CD "Wow Worship" Disc 2
I have been a Christian for 65 years. I am not ordained nor have I been to Bible College or Seminary. The Holy Spirit teaching me God's word and pastors using God's word have taught me what I know. I am a lay Evangelist who has the gifts of Exhortation, Word of Wisdom, Word of Knowledge and Working Miracles. God has used me as a lay missionary for many years. Our church in KS had me on their ministry list as a lay missionary. I could feel their prayers.
I fell in love with Jesus when I was 3 years old and started reading the Bible when I was 5 on my grandmother's lap. I have never stopped. I am 64 years old now and have no idea how many times I've read God's word all the way through.
My Dad died when I was 11 years old and God became my father in a more complete way.
My Mom taught us to watch for Jesus' hand in all things. IE: He brought the rain so our crops would grow.
After my Husband was born again, we did an in depth study of the Bible during every spare moment that would last for about 3 (1978-1981) years. We bought a Strong's Exhaustive Concordance and a few other Bible study aids.
The book that gave us a lot of understanding was "Manners and Customs of Bible Lands" because it told us what some of the things Jesus did meant back then. IE The honored guest got the sop and Jesus gave that to Judas at the last supper. That's why the other disciples did not understand who would deceive Jesus.
Every night after Supper we would push our plates back and have a interactive Bible study with our children because we did not want them to be fooled by anyone from a cult, etc. We started this when Stephi was 10 and David was 8 and did not quit until they left home. We made sure all of God's word was in them before they embarked into the world.
We have no idea what was on TV during that time. After a year of intense study in the King James version of the Bible we realized people were looking at us like we were weird. We were speaking King James English. They don't even speak that way in England any more. We went out and bought New International Version Bibles so we would speak American English again. During this period is when I learned doctrine.
We just started reading a new Bible from Guideposts that is in chronological order. It is broken down into days of the year (helps developed a habit of reading the Bible each day-gives you a big picture). We have already learned some new things. I don't care how much you read the Bible you will always learn something new when you do. The Holy Spirit teaches us things as we are able to accept the new information. God is so good.
I've read God's word in the King James Version, New King James Version (Nelson's Study Bible-no theology just simple explanations), New International Version (Life Application Bible-counselors' best friend & Thompson's Chain Reference Study Bible-wore tabs and pages out/picture above), Living Bible (made sure it was OK for my children) & Parallel New Testament Bible-KJV, NIV, Greek linier (read & used to see which translation was closest to the truth if in dispute), The Amplified Bible for understanding (hardest one to read).
I do word & subject studies. When God puts something in my heart to study, I do it because He knows I am going to need it in the near future for myself or someone else. One of my gifts is exhortation and people come to me for counseling. Sometimes it's a stranger in line at the store or someone I know. It's happened so many times that it does not freak my husband out any more. God just draws people to Him through me. It's not me - it's God. He is so wonderful to allow me to share in His ministry.
If you are purchasing your first Bible I recommend the New King James Version of the Bible because it is in everyday English now with the these and thous removed. It is also a word for word translation just like the King James. You lose none of the promises.
IE the NIV say's
Eph 4:31 Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice.
It does not tell you how or have the promise
Eph 4:31 Let all bitterness, wrath, anger, clamor, and evil speaking be put away from you, with all malice.
Here in the NKJV you have a promise that if you are willing to give it up, God will remove it from you. Tells us how.
I also recommend that if you are a new Christian, you should read the book of John First and the New Testament second (then go to the next step). If you are a Christian who has never read the whole Bible before read it from Geneses to Revelations so you will have a big picture of God. Then you should read the New testament again to get out of the law and under grace. You should then read and study the book of John again because it is about spiritual things. Keep in mind that the Old testament is a picture of the Spiritual in the New testament.
If you disagree with me on any subject, feel free to write me at firstname.lastname@example.org and show me in scripture in context where I am wrong. I am a Saint because I belong to Jesus but I am also human. God is the only person who makes no mistakes.
No person should feel slighted because someone questions what they say. Scripture says you are of noble character if you examine the Scriptures to see if your mentor (Pastor, Preacher, Teacher, Leader) is correct.
Acts 17:11 Now the Bereans were of more noble character than the Thessalonians, for they received the message with great eagerness and examined the Scriptures every day to see if what Paul said was true.
1 Tim 4:16 Take heed to yourself and to the doctrine. Continue in them, for in doing this you will save both yourself and those who hear you.
Prov 22:6 Train up a child in the way he should go, And when he is old he will not depart from it.