Ch11 True Praise

True Praise

By David Cox

[ch11] v1 ©2012 www.coxtracts.com
This tract can be reproduced for non-profit purposes.




Thou shalt fear the LORD thy God; him shalt thou serve, and to him shalt thou cleave, and swear by his name. He is thy praise, and he is thy God, that hath done for thee these great and terrible things, which thine eyes have seen. Deut 10:20-21

What is praise? How is it different from worship? (according to the Bible of course). Well, praise is to say something good about somebody. If a mother rises at 5:00 AM every day to prepare a good breakfast for her kids, does other beneficial things, then her children may “praise her” for the good that she has done them. When they do this publicly, then that is praise. So in praise, we publicly recognize the acts of God for humanity which are good, great, and excellent, and in so doing, reflect God’s benevolent character.

Psa. 22:3 But thou art holy, O thou that inhabitest the praises of Israel. In a sense, God dwells in these “praises of men”. God is highly pleased when men praise Him. The Psalmist presents God as living or inhabiting in the midst of these praises.

Psa 148:1 Praise ye the LORD. Praise ye the LORD from the heavens: praise him in the heights. 5 Let them praise the name of the LORD: for he commanded, and they were created. 6 He hath also stablished them for ever and ever: he hath made a decree which shall not pass. We are to praise our God because He is worthy to be praised (2Sam 22:4; 1Chr. 16:25). Praise begins and focuses on God. Praise does not start out as something emotional (although it can get emotional), but it is a spiritual activity of the will, something we are obligated to do. Praise is spiritual, and is created by the mind and soul meditating on God before seeking to be moved by the emotions (it neither excludes the emotion nor exalts them but allows them when it is appropriate). Continue reading

ch22 Pastorless Flocks

Pastorless Flocks

Is it biblical for a church to be without a pastor?
By David Cox
[ch22] v1 ©2006 www.coxtracts.com
This tract can be freely reproduced for non-profit use



The argument goes something like this. “Pastors are bad because they are dictators, and this is not biblical, then we should not have pastors. According to us, the Bible teaches that each church should have a plurality of elders where none is over any of the others, and no one is ‘in charge’, but everybody is equal. Each mature brother in the church should work as his heart leads him. The church won’t have economic problems like this…” This is like never going to another doctor because you went to one that made matters worse and overcharged you. Find a good doctor but don’t cross off all doctors! For those who assert that the ministry of pastor is not biblical, there is a simple answer, why does the word then occur in the Bible? Is it not a biblical concept? The word and concept are completely biblical, so why do people reject it? Continue reading

fam19 Is remarriage permitted after divorce?

Is Remarriage Permitted after a Divorce?
By David Cox
[fam19] v1 ©2009 www.coxtracts.com
You may freely reproduce this tract for non-profit purposes

Mark 10:11 And he saith unto them, Whosoever shall put away his wife, and marry another, committeth adultery against her. 12 And if a woman shall put away her husband, and be married to another, she committeth adultery.

Continue reading

ch43 Time to leave your church?

When is it time to leave your church?
By David Cox
[ch43] v1 ©2011 www.coxtracts.com
You may freely reproduce this tract for non-profit purposes



Phil 2:2 Fulfil ye my joy, that ye be likeminded, having the same love, [being] of one accord, of one mind.

Every good Christian will have a serious relationship with a group of brethren (a local church) of the same faith and practice that you have, and if you have incorporated yourself into their activities and fellowship, leaving will be difficult, and it should be. Your reasons for leaving should be taken because of definite events, attitudes, practices, or doctrines in that church that make you feel that you are “not the same as they are”, that they do not have the same love of Christ as you, because they do not follow Christ according to Scripture (in teachings, doctrine, practices, attitudes, etc), there is a rupture between you that forces your physical separation from that group. You should first try to examine your own spirit, to see if you are wrong, then talk with leaders in the church group to try and resolve the problem. After prayer, no resolution, you need to go to the pastor or leaders and tell them you are troubled, and will seek another church. Continue reading

mor02 Contradictions and errors in the book of Mormon

Contradictions and Problems in the Book of Mormon

By David Cox
[mor02] v1r ©2005 www.coxtracts.com
This tract can be freely reproduced for non-profit use.
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12 Essential Mormon Doctrines not found in the Book of Mormon.

If the Book of Mormon is the “most correct of all the books on the planet” as they claim, then why does it not contain these essential Mormon doctrines of the Mormon church?

1. The Organization of the Church
2. The Aaronic priesthood.
3. The Plurality of the gods
4. God is an exalted human being.
5. Men can become gods.
6. The three levels of glory.
7. The Doctrine of the plurality of wives.
8. Celestial Marriages.
9. The Baptism for the dead.
10. The Word of Wisdom.
11. The Doctrine of the preexistence of souls.
12. Eternal progression.




Continue reading

doct16 Satan our Enemy

Satan, Our Enemy
By David Cox
[doct16] v1 ©2011 www.coxtracts.com
This can be freely reproduced for not profit use.
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1Pet 5:8 Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour:




Satan is real, not fiction. He is our enemy, and does everything he can to defeat us in spiritual warfare.

How do we identify our enemy?

Matt 16:23 But he turned, and said unto Peter, Get thee behind me, Satan: thou art an offence unto me: for thou savourest not the things that be of God, but those that be of men.

The word “Satan” means adversary or enemy, and this is used by Jesus towards Peter when Jesus expressed his plans to die on the cross, and Peter opposed this purpose.

Num 22:22 And God’s anger was kindled because he went: and the angel of the LORD stood in the way for an adversary against him.

In this passage, the Angel of Jehovah is identified as “an adversary”. Obviously the Angel of Jehovah is not the devil, but in contrast many theologians identify this angel as the pre-incarnate Christ. So the basic concept of Satan is “the adversary,” or one who opposes another, which in its purest sense, is simply an enemy that confronts someone, whoever that may be. You might think that this concept as a “district attorney”, or an attorney with the task of assigning “blame” and opposing (Zec 3:1). The relationship of Satan as the accuser before God is clear, as in Job 1, but the reasons and the calling to this task are not as clear (if first from God, or after the fall was a voluntary thing by Satan). A very interesting passage in this respect is …

Isa 45:7 I form the light, and create darkness: I make peace, and create evil: I the LORD do all these things.

Notice that God sent adversaries to confront Solomon (1 Ki 11:14, 23, 25). God himself who commands the adversity to oppose (creates their existence, but this opposition is not in itself a sin). This is not to say that God is the author of sin, but He does send bad and difficult things in life to test and prove us. Do not think that God ordains these things just to see us suffer, but as any good trainer will do, he will order his soldiers through the most rigorous training to make them something of great value to the army. In this, although Satan’s motives are not pure in themselves, his activity serves God anyway. Satan is God’s adversary (and of the people who try to obey God’s will, purposes, and do the work of God). The devil IS OUR ADVERSARY (1Pet 5:8), and he walks about seeking whom he may devour, and so it is our duty to resist him. Satan wants our destruction, and not our welfare, and God permits Satan to war against us so as to make us more dependent upon God (the need of faith), and in the end, we will be pure gold (of great value).

The Wicked One

There are various Scriptures which refer to this person in the point of his character “the evil one” or “the wicked one” (Mat 13:19; Eph 6:16; 1Jn 2:13; 3:12). He is wicked. What is wickedness? This concept is simply that he wants to do damage to others in any form or way he can. It is the lack of piety, forgiveness, or mercy. Wickedness is also a disposition to constantly destroy and cause pain and suffering in others.

Arrogance

Isa 14:13 For thou hast said in thine heart, I will ascend into heaven, I will exalt my throne above the stars of God: I will sit also upon the mount of the congregation, in the sides of the north: 14 I will ascend above the heights of the clouds; I will be like the most High.

Satan is marked by his great confidence in his own self, to the point of being pure arrogance (Isa 14:11). This character quality is to have so much self-confidence, to confide in his own intelligence and understanding, that he despises the will of others, even despising God himself. This arrogance in making decisions and acting without seeking any direction from God is where Satan fell. It is his favorite sin. 1Tim 3:6 Not a novice, lest being lifted up with pride he fall into the condemnation of the devil. As Paul unfortunately reveals here, this satanic character is an element that causes (or should cause) an immediate rejection from the ministry if found in a minister.

The Lie, Deception, and Deceit

John 8:44 Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own: for he is a liar, and the father of it. “From the beginning” Satan was always a deceiver. Everything that he pretends to offer or declare is a deception in some form. He nevers presents the full truth, but twists it in some aspect or small part so as to nullify its benefit.

2Cor 11:13 For such [are] false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves into the apostles of Christ. 14 And no marvel; for Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light. 15 Therefore [it is] no great thing if his ministers also be transformed as the ministers of righteousness; whose end shall be according to their works.

Satan has a distinct form of working, and this is the lie. He is “the father of the lie”, and this is where the lie was born, and from which all lies come. Satan’s manner of working is to always present himself and his work in some other form than what it really is. He fabricates another “reality” that is not real. Lies, deceit, distortion are the telltale marks of his work. Eph 4:14 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;

The Use of Miracles

2Thess 2:9 Even him, whose coming is after the working of Satan with all power and signs and lying wonders, 10 And with all deceivableness of unrighteousness in them that perish; because they received not the love of the truth, that they might be saved. Satan has a very strong power in our world, and even God refers to his station (given before the fall) as “the god of this world” (2Cor 4:4; Jn 12:31). Satan well knows that the very fact of having supernatural power does not speak as to where the source of that power lies, but so many people are so easily deceived by the fact of a miracle, that Satan puts this lie to good use for his purposes.

The Tempter, the Accuser

Rev 12:10… for the accuser of our brethren is cast down, which accused them before our God day and night. Satan is a condemned criminal in the eyes of God, and he has been destined to judgment, but Satan doesn’t want to go down peacefully.

Satan wants to drag everyone with him into hell that he can so his character is based in tempting and tripping up everybody anyway he can (1Chr 21:1; Luk 22:31). Moreover, he not only wants others to fall, Satan himself is who will be accusing us before God, so that God condemns us just as He will judge Satan. In Job 1:6-12, Satan accuses Job before God Zec 3:1-2; Rev 12:10.

Satanic Aggression

Rev 12:12 Therefore rejoice, [ye] heavens, and ye that dwell in them. Woe to the inhabiters of the earth and of the sea! for the devil is come down unto you, having great wrath, because he knoweth that he hath but a short time.

Satan knows what will be his end, and even so, he still presses forward with his failed plan, and he is in a hurry because his time is short. In his hurry, he resorts to much aggression against humanity so that they trip and fall as quickly and deeply as possible. The Bible tells us Satan is very cruel and brutal in this fight. One thing you will never find Satan really doing is having compassion or mercy because that belongs to the character of God, not Satan. He never pardons, only cruelly pressuring. He is a very dangerous enemy.

The Murderer

John 8:44 Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own: for he is a liar, and the father of it.

In what sense are lies and murder connected? A murderer is someone who completely has no respect of others, and hates somebody so much that he will steal, and even steal that person’s life. Murder is simply an extreme form of aggression. Hurting others, lying to them, and any other forms of harm are simply minor forms of the same aggressive spirit that is behind murder. The hatred here is that one person dislikes another so much that he will not tell the truth (which has blessing attached to it) but rather wants others to hear and believe lies (which has condemnation associated with it). Satan’s greatest work is to remove the love of truth from men so that they are not saved (2Th 2:9-10).

Our Disposition towards Satan

Jude 1:9 Yet Michael the archangel, when contending with the devil he disputed about the body of Moses, durst not bring against him a railing accusation, but said, The Lord rebuke thee.

In October with Halloween, as well as with Hollywood culture, they paint Satan in a red jump suit with horns and a tail, so as to minimize him as a real threat. We should note that God originally gave him great power and authority (“the god of this world” 2Cor 4:4), and he is a prince. Isa 14:9 Hell from beneath is moved for thee to meet thee at thy coming”. So he is a dangerous opponent not to be underestimated or taken lightly, and even the archangel Michael knows his ability (Jude 1:9). He is a very powerful enemy, but God is greater.

Satan’s Limits

Job 1:12 And the LORD said unto Satan, Behold, all that he hath is in thy power; only upon himself put not forth thine hand. So Satan went forth from the presence of the LORD.

Satan is not equal in power with God. He is a creature of God, and dependent upon God for his existence, just as we are. He is limited to what God permits him to do. Satan can only act to the limits which God allows him, and every child of God should always remember this.

Matt 8:31 So the devils besought him, saying, If thou cast us out, suffer us to go away into the herd of swine.

Satan and his demons are restricted by God’s being and power. Yes he allows them to act for now, but judgment day is coming, and God will not allow them to go beyond certain limits (Jn 19:11; Mt 12:28).

calv01 Calvinism What’s the Truth?

Calvinism

Calvinism What’s the Truth?

Calvinism

Calvinism

What’s wrong with Calvinism?
by David Cox
[calv01] v1 ©2006 www.coxtracts.com
This tract can be freely reproduced for non-profit purposes.




Ezek 18:23 Have I any pleasure at all that the wicked should die? saith the Lord GOD: [and] not that he should return from his ways, and live?

Calvinism is a theological system that distorts the concepts of God, salvation, and man and denies that God has offered divine mercy to sinners, if they would only respond to it. It tries to enclose God in a will without taking into account that by divine decree, God has also given man a will, for which he is responsible. John Calvin was a “protestant pope” with his own secret police, and practiced the execution of heretics. He burned Michael Servetus at the stake for doctrinal differences with Calvin. Calvin wanted Servetus to say “the Son of the eternal God,“ but Servetus would only say, “the eternal Son.” Calvin did not have the spirit of a saved man, but was cruel, evil, and extremist. Titus 3:10 says that we should reject a heretic, not burn him, and Calvin’s actions make him a murder (1Pet 4:15; Rev 21:8 “murderers… shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death”). Calvin believed in the baptism of infants for their salvation, likewise in the sacraments as works that communicate or give grace to the unsaved (good works). Are these the marks of true man of God? Continue reading

doct10 Theodicy: Problem of existence of evil

Theodicy
by David Cox
[Doct10] v1 ©2008 www.coxtracts.com
This tract may be freely reproduced for non-profit use.



“Theodicy” is a concept which tries to explain how evil can exist in a world where God has everything in the palm of his hand, and this God is good, generous, all powerful, and has a good disposition toward human beings.

The Bible clearly plants the idea that God is in total control of everything, and that God is good. So, accordingly the logical question is: How can evil exist then? Why doesn’t God intervene to stop all evil?

The answer that one gives to this will come from his understandings about God, and this will basically model his reaction to “bad things” that happen in his life.




Continue reading

bs02 Benefits of Bible Study

Benefits of Bible Study

Benefits of Bible Study

By David Cox

[BS02] v1 ©2011 www.coxtracts.com/bs029
You may reproduce this tract is given away for free.




The Capacity of the Bible.

2Tim 3:16-17 All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: 17 That the man of God may be perfect, throughly furnished unto all good works. .

(1) It is inspired by God.
(2) It is useful to teach doctrine.
(3) It is useful for reproof (discerning wrong).
(4) It is useful for correction (fixing wrong).
(5) It is useful to teach righteousness (what one should be doing instead of sinning).

God gave us His Word in order to prepare and equip the child of God to be perfect (spiritually mature), and in order to have the necessary preparation to fulfill God’s purpose of good works in us, and to reflect the moral character of God within our lives (1Pet 2:9).

To Better Know our Redeemer

Salvation is knowing the Savior. Salvation is not a good work that we do, but it is a personal relationship between a human being and Jesus Christ, the Savior. Only thus can a person go to heaven, and therefore, our knowledge of Jesus (our relationship with him) is what saves us (really it is not that we know him, but that He knows us).

John 17:3 And this is life eternal, that they might know thee the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom thou hast sent.

Not everybody that knows the details about Jesus is saved because knowledge (just information) does not establish a saving relationship. Neither is it a personal knowledge of Jesus that saves a person because many in the New Testament knew Jesus personally like Judas Iscariot and the Jewish leaders, but they did not go to heaven. Salvation is having a personal relationship where you place your trust in Jesus, and ask him to be your personal Savior, and sincerely believe in Him as your Savior.




The Function of Scripture.

Creation also reveals God, but one cannot understand enough about God from creation to be saved. It is limited. Scripture begins where creation cannot go further. Basically, creation alone reveals a Designer that exists as a Supreme Being that made all, and our conscience tells us that we have offended that Creator, so the two together points to Scripture (further specific revelation). Without the Bible, we are not going to know how to be saved. The Bible reveals Christ. The Bible is the complete revelation of God. It describes God in a multitude of details; also man’s sin problem and more about God’s salvation.

John 5:39 Search the scriptures; for in them ye think ye have eternal life: and they are they which testify of me.

But Scripture was given so that we may have a personal SAVING relationship with God. Nobody can be saved without coming to that through the Holy Scripture (which is the only faithful message of God) and without believing what they say about the Savior, Jesus Christ. Simply put, every attack against the faithfulness, trustworthiness, or the authority of Scripture is an attack by Satan against God’s effort to save man.




To help us Maintain Good Relations with Other Men

Deut 17:19 And it shall be with him, and he shall read therein all the days of his life: that he may learn to fear the LORD his God, to keep all the words of this law and these statutes, to do them: 20 That his heart be not lifted up above his brethren, and that he turn not aside from the commandment, to the right hand, or to the left: to the end that he may prolong his days in his kingdom, he, and his children, in the midst of Israel.

The Word of God has a function to put one right with God, but it also has a function to establish what is right in men’s relationships with other men.

To be Approved Before God

2Tim 2:15 Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.

It is the good use of Scripture that makes us approved before God. By knowing God’s will and doing it, we are approved.

For Growth and Following Christ

1Pet 2:2 As newborn babes, desire the sincere milk of the word, that ye may grow thereby:

The Bible is like our spiritual food, that which sustains our daily life. When we “eat it”, we grow spiritually in our salvation. Salvation is a relationship with God, so to grow in our salvation is to deepen that relationship with Jesus our Savior. To follow Christ is to be his disciple. This is to grow in our Christian life, and the essential element in this growth is the Word of God. Scripture is the instrument in the hand of the Holy Spirit to transform us into the image of Christ.

To Increase our Faith and Hope.

Rom 10:17 So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.

There is a direct relationship between the Scriptures and our faith. Scripture is the means or method by which God has established to increase our faith. Part of this is the “what” we believe, and part of it is the certainty and trust to believe him because we well know the character of God.

Rom 15:4 For whatsoever things were written aforetime were written for our learning, that we through patience and comfort of the scriptures might have hope.

It is by means of this function of Scripture in our life that we have the hope of eternal life by means of the work of Jesus Christ in the Cross. Faith is created by reading and believing the Word of God.

Acts 17:11 These were nobler 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. 12 Therefore many of them believed; also of honorable women which were Greeks, and of men, not a few.

In this passage, the people of Berea studied the Scriptures and they “believed”. Faith is always the result of an honest and sincere study of Scripture.

Not tasting the Scripture. The opposite of loving the Scripture with desire and seriousness to know is to be “slow” towards the Scripture. By taking an attitude of resistance, disobedience, dislike to the Scripture, or not paying attention to them or blocking what they direct in your own life, is the same as witchcraft in God’s eyes. It is idolatry, and this slowness receives the greatest condemnation from God.

1Sam 15:22 And Samuel said, Hath the LORD as great delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices, as in obeying the voice of the LORD? Behold, to obey is better than sacrifice, and to hearken than the fat of rams. 23 For rebellion is as the sin of witchcraft, and stubbornness is as iniquity and idolatry. Because thou hast rejected the word of the LORD, he hath also rejected thee from being king.

Heb 4:2 For unto us was the gospel preached, as well as unto them: but the word preached did not profit them, not being mixed with faith in them that heard it.

To Give Spiritual Power in Prayer.

1John 2:14 I have written unto you, fathers, because ye have known him that is from the beginning. I have written unto you, young men, because ye are strong, and the word of God abideth in you, and ye have overcome the wicked one.

Deut 11:22 For if ye shall diligently keep all these commandments which I command you, to do them, to love the LORD your God, to walk in all his ways, and to cleave unto him; 23 Then will the LORD drive out all these nations from before you, and ye shall possess greater nations and mightier than yourselves.

To Equip us for Spiritual Warfare.

Eph 6:17 And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God:

When we study the Bible with sincerity, we get the ability to discern between false doctrine (error) and what has truly come from God (truth).




To Clean us from Sin.

John 15:3 Now ye are clean through the word which I have spoken unto you.
John 17:17 Sanctify them through thy truth: thy word is truth.
Ps 119:11 Thy word have I hid in mine heart, that I might not sin against thee.
Deut 6:25 And it shall be our righteousness, if we observe to do all these commandments before the LORD our God, as he hath commanded us.

To Find Peace and Joy.

Ps 119:165 Great peace have they which love thy law: and nothing shall offend them.
Isa 26:3 Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee: because he trusteth in thee.
John 17:13 And now come I to thee; and these things I speak in the world, that they might have my joy fulfilled in themselves. 14 I have given them thy word; and the world hath hated them, because they are not of the world, even as I am not of the world. 15 I pray not that thou shouldest take them out of the world, but that thou shouldest keep them from the evil.

To Be Prosperous in Life.

Josh 1:8 This book of the law shall not depart out of thy mouth; but thou shalt meditate therein day and night, that thou mayest observe to do according to all that is written therein: for then thou shalt make thy way prosperous, and then thou shalt have good success. 9 Have not I commanded thee? Be strong and of a good courage; be not afraid, neither be thou dismayed: for the LORD thy God is with thee whithersoever thou goest.

Far from mysticism, activities that have magic effects, reading and studying the Word of God sincerely in order to put them into practice to change you life so as to please God and abide in his will will cause you to be prosperous in all of life. There is a divine blessing on the way of God, and only by finding it (through Scripture) and living daily in that way can you really encounter protection and blessing from God.

Deut 17:19 And it shall be with him, and he shall read therein all the days of his life: that he may learn to fear the LORD his God, to keep all the words of this law and these statutes, to do them: 20 That his heart be not lifted up above his brethren, and that he turn not aside from the commandment, to the right hand, or to the left: to the end that he may prolong his days in his kingdom, he, and his children, in the midst of Israel.

When a person walks completely in the way that God indicates, then will he have this “good life”. This good life includes a lengthening of days or long life.

To Guide us in the Decisions of Life.

Ps 119:24 Thy testimonies also are my delight and my counsellors. 105 Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path.

Prov 6:22 When thou goest, it shall lead thee; when thou sleepest, it shall keep thee; and when thou awakest, it shall talk with thee.

Ps 19:7 The law of the LORD is perfect, converting the soul: the testimony of the LORD is sure, making wise the simple.