SUNDAY READ

Do you really need God?

16
Ricardo Saludo

Ricardo Saludo

Boxing champion Manny Pacquiao kneels to Him at every fight. Basketball superstar Steph Curry points to Him after making three-point shots.

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Award-winning stars include Him in the thank-you speech. And three out of every five Americans said thanks to Him on Thanksgiving Day three weeks ago.

President Rodrigo Duterte says of his election victory: “I tend to believe now, that it was God who gave it to me.”

Then there’s Davao City church worker Dennis Larida, who lost his wife and his son to a terrorist bombing on Sept. 2, which killed 15.

“It’s very painful, but I am not questioning God,” Larida told the Christian network CBN News. “It is His will for my wife and my son to be in the glory of the Lord. I thank God for the strength He is giving me.”

For countless people in all sorts of situations, God provides some need or want. Life and sustenance. Family and friends. Health and wealth. Talent and success. And the strength, purpose and hope to bear pain and tragedy.

The first step to be holy
How about you? What do you need from God?

If you have to think hard about your answer, maybe you feel you don’t need much from Him, like the rich guy who Jesus warned would find it harder to reach heaven than a camel going through the eye of a needle.

Those who don’t need God, have no reason to pray, thank, obey or even believe.

Hence, faith tends to wane as nations get richer, more educated, and more powerful. And rags-to-riches tycoons fancy themselves as “self-made men.”

Ironically, the ones endowed by God with great wealth, knowledge and power end up thinking they don’t need Him. That’s why camels threading needles have it easier than billionaires entering heaven. The rich don’t even seek Him and His bounty.

For this reason, “Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the Kingdom of Heaven” was the first of Jesus’s Eight Beatitudes leading to holiness and happiness.

This first step on the road to heaven opens the door and lays the foundation for closeness, devotion and obedience to the Lord.

For the poor in spirit finds His providence and grace in everything, and constantly worships, thanks, asks, and uses everything received from Him for His will. That’s holy.

Now, poverty in spirit doesn’t mean having nothing to do with wealth, power, and learning. Rather, it means using these bounties from God for His Kingdom.

Thus, there are saints among monarchs endowed with wealth and power, like Louis IX of France, Stephen I of Hungary, Leopold III of Austria, Jadwiga of Poland, and Wenceslaus of Bohemia, immortalized in the Christmas carol “Good King Wenceslaus”.

Acknowledging our total dependence on God is also truthful. If, as Catholics declare in the Credo at Mass, He is the almighty Creator of heaven and earth, then He gave us all we are and have, from our life to our talents, bounties, joys and, yes, pains.

And even the most successful, rich, powerful, learned, and talented person cannot claim that he or she climbed to that pinnacle entirely on his or her own. After all, everyone began as a helpless soul needing nurturing in a mother’s womb, even the Son of God.

Hence, it is plain honesty to affirm that we owe entities outside ourselves, including God, our being, life, growth, and gains.

Dependence on Him doesn’t mean doing nothing to obtain what we need and want, for inaction closes the door to His bounty. A student who doesn’t study, blocks the Lord from helping him pass or excel.

On the other hand, just because we harness human industry, ingenuity, instruments and institutions, doesn’t mean God did not provide.

God graces our efforts, as He did with Moses in liberating the Israelites from Egypt. And He became man to save the world with Mary’s cooperation.

Quite simply, without God, no deliverance, and indeed, no creation, whether in six days or 6 billion years.

Ditto everybody’s birth, growth, and achievements. While life follows earthly rules and ways, the faithful believe God spurs and sustains every direction and development, even the ordinary course of events.

No thanks be to God
In our modern time, however, more and more people see nothing to thank God for. Instead, they credit wealth, knowledge, power, science and technology for their good life, health, success, comfort, and happiness. Until misfortune strikes.

Nothing new. Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI, one of our greatest theologians, said the story of Adam and Eve showed how men try to be like God by their own devices, even breaking His commandments, until the wages of sin leads back to faith.

Today, amazing gadgets and secular society tempt believers to ignore God and thank His providence less or never. Many families don’t even pray at meals anymore.

And when God is no longer thanked, then His worship, word and will are also forgotten.

Thankfully, the Philippines remains faithful. A 2012 global survey by the University of Chicago, “Beliefs about God Across Time and Countries,” counted 94 percent of Filipinos expressing strong and constant faith in God — highest in the world.

This Christmas and the coming year, let thankfulness toward the Lord be a constant in our daily life, at meals and Mass, work and leisure; for material and spiritual needs, and everyone and everything we treasure and encounter. Even hardship, which should make us stronger, more caring, and much closer to and trusting in God.

And when others disdain our faith and thanks for the Lord, as some comments might, hold fast. It’s humble, honest and holy. Amen.

(As part of Advent spirituality, readers may consider the webinar on Tuesday 9 a.m. Philippine time, titled “Reflections on the Nativity in the Gospels of Matthew and Luke” < http://www.ucatholic.com/nativity-webinar?utm_campaign=Re-marketing+Email&utm_source=hs_email&utm_medium=email&utm_content=39359251&_hsenc=p2ANqtz-9yHv3EFkS7GD1VlZN6woyOc7d4EXsU7AnA3AOTcAHqHwJ3nvlgbVD4lmRQwOFNIXLeAKTn7Hu8GZYrVe6HBC2halMA7A&_hsmi=39359251 >.)

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16 Comments

  1. Yonkers, New York
    19 December 2016

    If Little Tyrant Rodrigo Duterte says that as a Christian and a Roman Catholic, he believes in and loves this biblical “GOD,” why has he inflicted a REIGN OF TERROR on the Filipino people, some 80 percent of whom are CHRISTIANS, a psychotic lawless genocidal extrajudicial drive which has murdered some 5,800 hapless victims so far, probably all of them Christians like him?

    Or is he counting on his “God” to countenance his genocide because he must assume that his “God” does not love drug addicts?

    Or is it possible that Rodrigo Duterte is THE DEVIL in the flesh?

    MARIANO PATALINJUG
    patalinjugmar@gmail.com

  2. I do worship my BF| and I consider Him as my Personal God. He’ s the Best Help that I and my Family ever did have in this llifetime.

    I also do worship Jesus Christ| I get Wisdom from His Words and Teachings. The Best Days that I got are the ones which has Jesus Christ’ s Miracles on it| especially the day I met my BF ED :)

    I am Proud to be a Christian. I am Proud to have my BF as my God.

  3. I am nothing without God.

    Without God you would have no life at all. Outside of Christ there is no reality. There is no logic. There is no reason for anything. Everything was made for Christ. Your next breath comes from Christ and is to go back to Christ.

  4. Does the Universal Creator really intend for us to “need” Him or else? More than needing which you defined as praying, thanking, obeying and believing ( obeying and believing what, the Church?), what we need to do is to reflect God, and you do this only by focusing on good deeds. Beliefs can cancel each other out- note the Cardinals who are questioning the Pope- but only you can cancel out your good deeds with your bad deeds. Good deeds are rooted in compassion, and genuine compassion should include the family of Marcos and even the long dead Marcos himself. Compassion to be genuine must be consistent, or else it is hypocrisy which is not a Godly virtue. Remember too that the body, not the Church, is God’s temple and should be treated kindly and well. Therefore having too many children taxes the temple too much. So too does celibacy. The unusual, heavy presence of sexual predators in the Church organization is a result of this extreme form of asceticism , and extreme asceticism is not a Godly virtue either. Last but not least, we protect ourselves from evil by thinking for ourselves always, for to surrender our God-given faculty of critical thinking to clerical authorities is stupid, and stupidity is not a Godly virtue also. In short, the Church is not God, I am, but so are you and everybody else. We are the Universal Creator having a human experience.

    • Since you include all of us in your being “Universal Creator”, I have to vehemently speak for myself and others who refuse to subscribe to your idea: It is delusional to believe that. God is the Creator. God is definitely distinct from the creatures He created. We are His creatures. “In Him we live and move and have our being” (Acts 17:28). Unlike any of us who happens to be “creative” sometimes, we end up “creating” things FROM SOMETHING OR SOME THINGS. The only Creator creates out of NOTHING. That is the true meaning of “create”. That is the radical basis for our need of the Creator.

      All the rantings in your effort to disparage people who believe differently from you do not need to be entertained with a response. The same goes with the rantings of “C” who wrote one hour before you; you obviously teamed up to “destroy” other people’s beliefs. INC is written all over your post.

  5. It is easy to express those extolling words pertaining to God: Praise the Lord God….I believe in God. I love God.. Oh My God! *OMG)….and the fundamental linkage between God and men… that is for us to say.…Do we really need God?
    But the real question to pose is …Do we really know who God really is? Others say God is a Trinity of Persons….Other say there someone out there…a powerful being…except they don’t know who He is? Or other would just shrugged off their shoulders and say..well…you know it doesn’t really matter what people think and believe about God.
    Again the most fitting question now is not to know whether we should bother to know who really need is God? Otherwise… we might fall honoring and serving a deity which runs contrary to the fact or truth or to relegate us as worshipers of False God and idols….
    The bottom line is anything not in conformity with the truth like worship of false God is worthless and useless…as in the concept of “God being a triune entity.”

  6. This is just a joke, a realistic one though, in my opinion. There are three situations to become super rich – gambling lord, drug lord, and praise the lord (you be the judge if Velarde, Villanueva, Manalo, et al, belong to the latter).

  7. Thank you for the beautiful and meaningful message about God. It’s timely a reminder.Merry Christmas, Sir. From Edna Salcedo, OFW/Volunteer teacher, China.

  8. The real TRUTH, the Philippines is a Godless country full of abominations. The sodomites, false teachers, worthless peoples, practicing different spirits, prostitution, murderers, thieves in govt. and all other false ways are our midst.

  9. The more I grow older, the more I become dependent to our almighty God. He will make you feel secure. He said nobody can take us from the palm of His hand. He also said that if we love Him, we must follow His commandments. Sometimes I feel that some people cannot avoid committing sins. I try to minimize sin because my God is my friend and I do not want to hurt Him.

  10. Bart Balonkita on

    Warren Buffet, Bill Gates and Belinda Gates, the world’s leading philanthropists, are exceptions to the breed of billionaires who do not acknowledge God as principal source of their earthly fortunes. While they are not known that much for their respective religious beliefs and practices, yet, they are leaving behind practically all their legit acquired wealth to benefit humanity. Their example is very much Christian.

  11. A CHRISTMAS message:

    CHRISTENDOM
    celebrates of the birth of JESUS CHRIST ! ?

    Who would not feel happy with the birth of the Messiah. That is why everybody is ecstatic on this memorable day every year. But maybe one is wondering why these two words “Biblical and semi-Biblical” crop up in the celebration.

    Perhaps it would help us appreciate these words if we take the following as guide:

    A lawsuit was decided in the Court of Appeals, and both parties accept the decision. We say this is “legal”. But supposing the case is elevated to the Supreme Court and the verdict is reversed, can we not say the judgment now becomes “semi-legal” and “legal”, respectively?

    So also, in identifying JESUS CHRIST based on the many verses in the Bible in support of the following:

    JESUS CHRIST is only a man and not God (Arian doctrine)

    Arianism, in Christianity, is a Christological concept that asserts Jesus Christ is the Son of God who was created by God the Father at a point in time, is distinct from the Father and is therefore subordinate to the Father. Arian teachings were first attributed to Arius (Wikipedia).

    Numbers 23:19 God is not a man, that he should lie; neither the son of man…

    JESUS CHRIST is only a “mighty or junior God” for the FATHER is the “Almighty God” (Jehovah doctrine)

    Isaiah 9:6 For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God … Prince of Peace.

    Genesis_35:11 And God said unto him, I am God Almighty: be fruitful and
    multiply…

    JESUS CHRIST is the name of GOD, the Father and Holy Spirit (Oneness or Modalism doctrine)

    Acts 2:38 Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.

    JESUS CHRIST is both God and man, the 2nd person of the Blessed Trinity (the Athanasian Creed)

    Matthew 3:16 And Jesus, when he was baptized, went up straightway out of the water: and, lo, the heavens were opened unto him, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove, and lighting upon him: 17 And lo a voice from heaven, saying this is my (Father) beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.
    1 John 5:7 KJV For there are three that bear record in heaven, the Father, the
    Word, and the Holy Ghost: and these three are one.

    However, there is one thing common heard from the proponents of these 4 identities of Jesus Christ, that “God is a mystery incapable of clear identification”. Just wondering how believers of these doctrines accept this principle: “Which comes first, to know or to love?”

    Since there is no unanimity and harmony here, can we now conclude the identity of Christ is just “Semi-biblical”? And so, the following reveals the “Biblical”!

    In the Old Testament FATHER God claimed the following:

    Isaiah 43:10-11 Ye are my witnesses, saith the LORD, and my servant whom I
    have chosen: that ye may know and believe me, and understand that I am he
    before me there was no God formed, neither shall there be after me. I, even I,
    am the LORD; and beside me there is no saviour.

    It was FATHER God who made the following “testament or covenant of
    salvation”:

    Genesis 17:7 And I will establish my covenant between me and thee and thy
    seed after thee in their generations for an everlasting covenant, to be a God
    unto thee and to thy seed after thee.

    Apostle PAUL likewise recognized JESUS CHRIST by “divine revelation” when
    he personally met HIM on his way to Damascus. To him was revealed the
    following;

    In this testament, God’s chosen are not only “Abraham and his seeds”, but other nationalities also provided “they belong to CHRIST” (Galatians 3:28-29):

    The fulfillment of this covenant or testament:

    Hebrew 9:16 For where a testament is, there must also of necessity be
    the death of the testator.

    Clearly, therefore, FATHER God had to manifest Himself in the flesh, as written:

    1 Timothy 3:16 And without controversy great is the mystery of godliness:
    God was manifest in the flesh, justified in the Spirit, seen of angels…

    (Other translations substituted “God” with “Jesus Christ” or “He.)

    From the foregoing, the DISCIPLES testify to the following:

    Luke 1:47 And my (Virgin Mary) spirit hath rejoiced in God my Saviour.
    Luke 2:11 For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord.

    1 John 5:20 And we know that the Son of God is come, and hath given us an
    understanding, that we may know him that is true, and we are in him that is
    true, even in his Son Jesus Christ. This is the true God, and eternal life.

    To Apostle Peter this is how he recognized Jesus Christ!

    Matthew 16:15 He (Jesus) saith unto them, But whom say ye that I am?
    Matthew 16:16 And Simon Peter answered and said, Thou art the Christ, the
    Son of the living God.

    Matthew 16:17 And Jesus answered and said unto him, Blessed art thou, Simon
    Barjona: for flesh and blood hath not revealed it unto thee, but my Father
    which is in heaven.

    (Here, “flesh and blood” means “intellect and feeling” or human wisdom.)

    From the foregoing, PETER by divine revelation clearly recognized JESUS CHRIST performing two (2) roles:

    By calling JESUS the Christ, Peter saw Him as the FATHER in the flesh and now ready to fulfill His “testament of salvation” with His own death.

    Hence, His primary role:

    JESUS is the GOD
    JESUS is the creator
    JESUS is the savior
    JESUS is the one performing miracles
    JESUS alone deserves worship

    Likewise, in this role JESUS is the Holy Spirit as revealed to His Disciples:

    John 14:18 I will not leave you comfortless: I will come to you.

    This was fulfilled at PENTECOST when the HOLY SPIRIT filled the one hundred
    twenty (120) Disciples with “power and divine wisdom” (Acts 2:1-4). The Holy
    Spirit very clearly points to JESUS in His role as FATHER God.

    At PENTECOST the Disciples received the Comforter. He guided and revealed to
    them the secondary role of JESUS CHRIST. Peter by calling JESUS, the “Son of
    the living God”, he saw HIM as the “eldest brother” of the CHOSEN:

    Romans 8:29 For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren.

    As “Eldest Son of God” Jesus is the model in humility to them. Therefore, in
    this role, JESUS cannot perform the functions in His role as Father God.

    Warning!

    Now here is one important requirement in following the Two Great
    Commandments that many Bible believers have overlooked:

    Mark 12:28 And one of the scribes came, and having heard them reasoning
    together, and perceiving that he had answered them well, asked him, Which is
    the first commandment of all?

    Mark 12:29 And Jesus answered him, The first of all the commandments is,
    Hear, O Israel; The Lord our God is one Lord:

    Does not the foregoing require the identification of the one “true GOD”?

    Mark 12:30 And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all
    thy soul, and with all thy mind, and with all thy strength: this is the first
    commandment.

    Mark 12:31 And the second is like, namely this, Thou shalt love thy
    neighbour as thyself. There is none other commandment greater than these.

    The final question:

    In following the 2nd commandment, what is the difference between “neighbour
    and fellowmen?

    Merry CHRISTMAS to all!

    • Beloved, DO NOT believe every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of God; because many false prophets have gone out into the world (1st JOHN 4:1). Test ALL THINGS; hold fast what is good (1st THESSALONIANS 5:21).

      The writer of this comment is incorrect concerning (120) being filled with the Holy Spirit on the day of Pentecost! The outpouring of the Holy Spirit on Pentecost (Holy Spirit Baptism); was on the apostles of Jesus Christ and not everyone who was a disciple. Hear the word of the Lord:

      (1) Jesus Christ had many disciples (MARK 3:9; JOHN 6:60-61; LUKE 19:37-39), which would have included both men and women (LUKE 14:25-33). However, many of Jesus’ disciples turned and walked with Him no more (JOHN 6:66).

      (2) Of these disciples, Jesus chose twelve men; whom He named apostles (LUKE 6:13). These twelve men were appointed by Jesus (MARK 3:13-19). They are called twelve disciples (MATTHEW 10:1); twelve apostles (MATTHEW 10:2). Jesus gave instructions to His twelve disciples (MATTHEW 11:1), who were known as the twelve (MARK 6:7). Jesus also appointed seventy others (some say seventy-two), and sent them out two by two (LUKE 10:1, 17). Nevertheless, these were never referred to as apostles. The twelve apostles are all named (LUKE 6:13-16).

      (3) When the hour had come, Jesus sat with his twelve apostles; instituting the Lord’s supper (MARK 14:17-26; LUKE 22:14). It was during this time that Jesus told “the twelve” that one of them would betray Him (MARK 14:17-21; JOHN 13:21). It was Judas Iscariot (JOHN 13:26), who went out immediately (JOHN 13:30).

      (4) It was Judas, one of “the twelve” (LUKE 22:47), who led a detachment of troops, officers of the chief priests, and Pharisees out to arrest Jesus (JOHN 18:2-3). After Jesus had been condemned, Judas went out and hanged himself (MATTHEW 27:3-10). AFTER THIS, the apostles are no longer called “the twelve.” They are now called “the eleven” (MATTHEW 28:16).

      (5) On the first day of the week, after Jesus was risen, certain women went and told “the eleven” that Jesus had risen (LUKE 24:9-10). After Jesus appeared to two disciples, and opened the Scriptures to them, they returned to Jerusalem and found “the eleven” and those who were with them and told them that the Lord had indeed risen (LUKE 24:33-34). On one occasion, Jesus appeared to ten apostles; for Thomas, one of the original twelve, was not with them (JOHN 20:19-24). He doubted (‘Doubting Thomas’), until he saw Jesus with his own eyes (JOHN 20:35-21).

      (6) It was these men (the apostles) whom Jesus promised the Helper, the Holy Spirit, called the Spirit of truth (JOHN 14:16-18). Jesus said the Helper (Paracletos, one called alongside to help; or Comforter; Advocate; Intercessor) would teach THEM (the apostles) all things and bring to THEIR remembrance all the things that Jesus had said to THEM (JOHN 14:26). The Helper, called the Spirit of truth (the Holy Spirit), would testify about Jesus (JOHN 15:26). Jesus said the Holy Spirit would convict the world of sin, of righteousness, and of judgment (JOHN 16:8-12). Jesus told the apostles, “When He has come, He will guide YOU into all truth” (JOHN 16:13-15).

      (7) The promise of the Holy Spirit being poured out, was made to the apostles; the men that Jesus had chosen. Jesus said, “And YOU ARE WITNESSES of these things. Behold, I send the promise of my Father UPON YOU; but tarry (wait) in the city until YOU are endued with power from on high” (LUKE 24:48-48)

      (8) Luke wrote, “The former account I made, O Theophilus, of all that Jesus began both to do and teach, until the day in which He was taken up, after He through the Holy Spirit had given commandments to THE APOSTLES He had chosen, to WHOM He also presented Himself alive after His suffering by many infallible proofs, being seen BY THEM during forty days and speaking of the things pertaining to the kingdom of God” (ACTS 1:1-3). And being assembled together with THEM (the apostles), He commanded THEM (the apostles) not to depart from Jerusalem (LUKE 24:46-49), but to wait for the Promise of the Father, which, He said, “YOU have heard from Me; for John truly baptized with water, but YOU shall be baptized with the Holy Spirit not many days from now.” Therefore, when THEY (the apostles) had come together, THEY (the apostles) asked Him, saying, “Lord, will You at this time restore the kingdom to Israel?” And He said to THEM (the apostles), “It is not for YOU (the apostles) to know the times or seasons which the Father has put in His own authority. But YOU (the apostles) shall receive POWER (MARK 9:1) when the Holy Spirit has come upon YOU (the apostles); and YOU (the apostles) shall be My witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea, and Samaria, and to the end of the earth” (ACTS 1:4-8).

      (9) It was MEN OF GALILEE (the apostles) who were standing, gazing up into heaven, as Jesus was taken up and a cloud received Him out of their sight (ACTS 1:9-11). Then THEY returned to Jerusalem, where the other disciples were (ACTS 1:12-14). It was during those days that there was a number of about 120. BUT NOTHING IN ALL THE BIBLE EVER SAID THAT 120 would receive Holy Spirit baptism.

      (10) The brethren, being assembled, had to choose a MAN to take part in the ministry which “Judas by transgression fell” (ACTS 1:25). There were two MEN proposed, Joseph and Matthias (ACTS 1:23). Only ONE of those TWO could be chosen to take part in their ministry and apostleship. After praying and casting lots, Matthias was chosen, “And HE was numbered with “the eleven” apostles” (ACTS 1:26).

      (11) When the day of Pentecost had come, the apostles were filled with the Holy Spirit (not 120), and spoke with other tongues (languages which they had never studied) as the Holy Spirit gave them utterance (ACTS 2:4). Then all those assembled in Jerusalem, said, “Look, are not all these who speak Galileans?” (ACTS 2:7). All the people were amazed and perplexed that they could hear these men speak in their own native language. However, some said they were just drunk. But Peter, STANDING WITH THE ELEVEN, raised his voice and said to them, “Men of Judea and all who dwell in Jerusalem, let this be known to you, and heed my words” (ACTS 2:14). After Peter preached the first gospel sermon; telling those gathered that they were guilty of crucifying Jesus, they were cut to the heart (guilty conscience). NOW WHEN THEY HEARD THIS, THEY WERE CUT TO THE HEART AND SAID TO PETER AND THE REST OF THE APOSTLES, “Men and brethren, what shall we do?” (ACTS 2:37)

      (12) It was the apostles who were preaching. It was the apostles who had received Holy Spirit baptism. It was Peter, standing with the eleven, who was doing the preaching. And the people who repented and were baptized, continued in the apostle’s doctrine (ACTS 2:42).

      To say that 120 received the Holy Spirit baptism is a false teaching!

      “And a servant of the Lord must not quarrel but be gentle to all, able to teach, patient, in humility correcting those who are in opposition, if God perhaps will grant them repentance, so that they may KNOW THE TRUTH, and that they may come to their senses and escape the snare of the devil, having been taken captive by him to do his will” (2nd TIMOTHY 2:24-26)

    • Beloved, DO NOT believe every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of God; because many false prophets have gone out into the world (1st JOHN 4:1). Test ALL THINGS; hold fast what is good (1st THESSALONIANS 5:21).

      The writer of this comment is incorrect concerning (120) being filled with the Holy Spirit on the day of Pentecost! The outpouring of the Holy Spirit on Pentecost (Holy Spirit Baptism); was on the apostles of Jesus Christ and not everyone who was a disciple. Hear the word of the Lord:

      (1) Jesus Christ had many disciples (MARK 3:9; JOHN 6:60-61; LUKE 19:37-39), which would have included both men and women (LUKE 14:25-33). However, many of Jesus’ disciples turned and walked with Him no more (JOHN 6:66).

      (2) Of these disciples, Jesus chose twelve men; whom He named apostles (LUKE 6:13). These twelve men were appointed by Jesus (MARK 3:13-19). They are called twelve disciples (MATTHEW 10:1); twelve apostles (MATTHEW 10:2). Jesus gave instructions to His twelve disciples (MATTHEW 11:1), who were known as the twelve (MARK 6:7). Jesus also appointed seventy others (some say seventy-two), and sent them out two by two (LUKE 10:1, 17). Nevertheless, these were never referred to as apostles. The twelve apostles are all named (LUKE 6:13-16).

      (3) When the hour had come, Jesus sat with his twelve apostles; instituting the Lord’s supper (MARK 14:17-26; LUKE 22:14). It was during this time that Jesus told “the twelve” that one of them would betray Him (MARK 14:17-21; JOHN 13:21). It was Judas Iscariot (JOHN 13:26), who went out immediately (JOHN 13:30).

      (4) It was Judas, one of “the twelve” (LUKE 22:47), who led a detachment of troops, officers of the chief priests, and Pharisees out to arrest Jesus (JOHN 18:2-3). After Jesus had been condemned, Judas went out and hanged himself (MATTHEW 27:3-10). AFTER THIS, the apostles are no longer called “the twelve.” They are now called “the eleven” (MATTHEW 28:16).

      (5) On the first day of the week, after Jesus was risen, certain women went and told “the eleven” that Jesus had risen (LUKE 24:9-10). After Jesus appeared to two disciples, and opened the Scriptures to them, they returned to Jerusalem and found “the eleven” and those who were with them and told them that the Lord had indeed risen (LUKE 24:33-34). On one occasion, Jesus appeared to ten apostles; for Thomas, one of the original twelve, was not with them (JOHN 20:19-24). He doubted (‘Doubting Thomas’), until he saw Jesus with his own eyes (JOHN 20:35-21).

      (6) It was these men (the apostles) whom Jesus promised the Helper, the Holy Spirit, called the Spirit of truth (JOHN 14:16-18). Jesus said the Helper (Paracletos, one called alongside to help; or Comforter; Advocate; Intercessor) would teach THEM (the apostles) all things and bring to THEIR remembrance all the things that Jesus had said to THEM (JOHN 14:26). The Helper, called the Spirit of truth (the Holy Spirit), would testify about Jesus (JOHN 15:26). Jesus said the Holy Spirit would convict the world of sin, of righteousness, and of judgment (JOHN 16:8-12). Jesus told the apostles, “When He has come, He will guide YOU into all truth” (JOHN 16:13-15).

      (7) The promise of the Holy Spirit being poured out, was made to the apostles; the men that Jesus had chosen. Jesus said, “And YOU ARE WITNESSES of these things. Behold, I send the promise of my Father UPON YOU; but tarry (wait) in the city until YOU are endued with power from on high” (LUKE 24:48-48)

      (8) Luke wrote, “The former account I made, O Theophilus, of all that Jesus began both to do and teach, until the day in which He was taken up, after He through the Holy Spirit had given commandments to THE APOSTLES He had chosen, to WHOM He also presented Himself alive after His suffering by many infallible proofs, being seen BY THEM during forty days and speaking of the things pertaining to the kingdom of God” (ACTS 1:1-3). And being assembled together with THEM (the apostles), He commanded THEM (the apostles) not to depart from Jerusalem (LUKE 24:46-49), but to wait for the Promise of the Father, which, He said, “YOU have heard from Me; for John truly baptized with water, but YOU shall be baptized with the Holy Spirit not many days from now.” Therefore, when THEY (the apostles) had come together, THEY (the apostles) asked Him, saying, “Lord, will You at this time restore the kingdom to Israel?” And He said to THEM (the apostles), “It is not for YOU (the apostles) to know the times or seasons which the Father has put in His own authority. But YOU (the apostles) shall receive POWER (MARK 9:1) when the Holy Spirit has come upon YOU (the apostles); and YOU (the apostles) shall be My witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea, and Samaria, and to the end of the earth” (ACTS 1:4-8).

      (9) It was MEN OF GALILEE (the apostles) who were standing, gazing up into heaven, as Jesus was taken up and a cloud received Him out of their sight (ACTS 1:9-11). Then THEY returned to Jerusalem, where the other disciples were (ACTS 1:12-14). It was during those days that there was a number of about 120. BUT NOTHING IN ALL THE BIBLE EVER SAID THAT 120 would receive Holy Spirit baptism.

      (10) The brethren, being assembled, had to choose a MAN to take part in the ministry which “Judas by transgression fell” (ACTS 1:25). There were two MEN proposed, Joseph and Matthias (ACTS 1:23). Only ONE of those TWO could be chosen to take part in their ministry and apostleship. After praying and casting lots, Matthias was chosen, “And HE was numbered with “the eleven” apostles” (ACTS 1:26).

      (11) When the day of Pentecost had come, the apostles were filled with the Holy Spirit (not 120), and spoke with other tongues (languages which they had never studied) as the Holy Spirit gave them utterance (ACTS 2:4). Then all those assembled in Jerusalem, said, “Look, are not all these who speak Galileans?” (ACTS 2:7). All the people were amazed and perplexed that they could hear these men speak in their own native language. However, some said they were just drunk. But Peter, STANDING WITH THE ELEVEN, raised his voice and said to them, “Men of Judea and all who dwell in Jerusalem, let this be known to you, and heed my words” (ACTS 2:14). After Peter preached the first gospel sermon; telling those gathered that they were guilty of crucifying Jesus, they were cut to the heart (guilty conscience). NOW WHEN THEY HEARD THIS, THEY WERE CUT TO THE HEART AND SAID TO PETER AND THE REST OF THE APOSTLES, “Men and brethren, what shall we do?” (ACTS 2:37). They asked the apostles, who had just preached to them. The apostles were the ones who were given a promise by Jesus. It was fulfilled!

      (12) It was the apostles who were preaching. It was the apostles who had received Holy Spirit baptism. It was Peter, standing with the eleven, who was doing the preaching. And the people who repented and were baptized, continued in the apostle’s doctrine (ACTS 2:42).

      To say that 120 received the Holy Spirit baptism is a false teaching!

      “And a servant of the Lord must not quarrel but be gentle to all, able to teach, patient, in humility correcting those who are in opposition, if God perhaps will grant them repentance, so that they may KNOW THE TRUTH, and that they may come to their senses and escape the snare of the devil, having been taken captive by him to do his will” (2nd TIMOTHY 2:24-26)

    • Beloved, DO NOT believe every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of God; because many false prophets have gone out into the world (1st JOHN 4:1). Test ALL THINGS; hold fast what is good (1st THESSALONIANS 5:21).

      The writer of this comment is incorrect concerning (120) being filled with the Holy Spirit on the day of Pentecost! The outpouring of the Holy Spirit on Pentecost (Holy Spirit Baptism); was on the apostles of Jesus Christ and not everyone who was a disciple. Hear the word of the Lord:

      (1) Jesus Christ had many disciples (MARK 3:9; JOHN 6:60-61; LUKE 19:37-39), which would have included both men and women (LUKE 14:25-33). However, many of Jesus’ disciples turned and walked with Him no more (JOHN 6:66).

      (2) Of these disciples, Jesus chose twelve men; whom He named apostles (LUKE 6:13). These twelve men were appointed by Jesus (MARK 3:13-19). They are called twelve disciples (MATTHEW 10:1); twelve apostles (MATTHEW 10:2). Jesus gave instructions to His twelve disciples (MATTHEW 11:1), who were known as the twelve (MARK 6:7). Jesus also appointed seventy others (some say seventy-two), and sent them out two by two (LUKE 10:1, 17). Nevertheless, these were never referred to as apostles. The twelve apostles are all named (LUKE 6:13-16).

      (3) When the hour had come, Jesus sat with his twelve apostles; instituting the Lord’s supper (MARK 14:17-26; LUKE 22:14). It was during this time that Jesus told “the twelve” that one of them would betray Him (MARK 14:17-21; JOHN 13:21). It was Judas Iscariot (JOHN 13:26), who went out immediately (JOHN 13:30).

      (4) It was Judas, one of “the twelve” (LUKE 22:47), who led a detachment of troops, officers of the chief priests, and Pharisees out to arrest Jesus (JOHN 18:2-3). After Jesus had been condemned, Judas went out and hanged himself (MATTHEW 27:3-10). AFTER THIS, the apostles are no longer called “the twelve.” They are now called “the eleven” (MATTHEW 28:16).

      (5) On the first day of the week, after Jesus was risen, certain women went and told “the eleven” that Jesus had risen (LUKE 24:9-10). After Jesus appeared to two disciples, and opened the Scriptures to them, they returned to Jerusalem and found “the eleven” and those who were with them and told them that the Lord had indeed risen (LUKE 24:33-34). On one occasion, Jesus appeared to ten apostles; for Thomas, one of the original twelve, was not with them (JOHN 20:19-24). He doubted (‘Doubting Thomas’), until he saw Jesus with his own eyes (JOHN 20:35-21).

      (6) It was these men (the apostles) whom Jesus promised the Helper, the Holy Spirit, called the Spirit of truth (JOHN 14:16-18). Jesus said the Helper (Paracletos, one called alongside to help; or Comforter; Advocate; Intercessor) would teach THEM (the apostles) all things and bring to THEIR remembrance all the things that Jesus had said to THEM (JOHN 14:26). The Helper, called the Spirit of truth (the Holy Spirit), would testify about Jesus (JOHN 15:26). Jesus said the Holy Spirit would convict the world of sin, of righteousness, and of judgment (JOHN 16:8-12). Jesus told the apostles, “When He has come, He will guide YOU into all truth” (JOHN 16:13-15).

      (7) The promise of the Holy Spirit being poured out, was made to the apostles; the men that Jesus had chosen. Jesus said, “And YOU ARE WITNESSES of these things. Behold, I send the promise of my Father UPON YOU; but tarry (wait) in the city until YOU are endued with power from on high” (LUKE 24:48-48)

      (8) Luke wrote, “The former account I made, O Theophilus, of all that Jesus began both to do and teach, until the day in which He was taken up, after He through the Holy Spirit had given commandments to THE APOSTLES He had chosen, to WHOM He also presented Himself alive after His suffering by many infallible proofs, being seen BY THEM during forty days and speaking of the things pertaining to the kingdom of God” (ACTS 1:1-3). And being assembled together with THEM (the apostles), He commanded THEM (the apostles) not to depart from Jerusalem (LUKE 24:46-49), but to wait for the Promise of the Father, which, He said, “YOU have heard from Me; for John truly baptized with water, but YOU shall be baptized with the Holy Spirit not many days from now.” Therefore, when THEY (the apostles) had come together, THEY (the apostles) asked Him, saying, “Lord, will You at this time restore the kingdom to Israel?” And He said to THEM (the apostles), “It is not for YOU (the apostles) to know the times or seasons which the Father has put in His own authority. But YOU (the apostles) shall receive POWER (MARK 9:1) when the Holy Spirit has come upon YOU (the apostles); and YOU (the apostles) shall be My witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea, and Samaria, and to the end of the earth” (ACTS 1:4-8).

      (9) It was MEN OF GALILEE (the apostles) who were standing, gazing up into heaven, as Jesus was taken up and a cloud received Him out of their sight (ACTS 1:9-11). Then THEY returned to Jerusalem, where the other disciples were (ACTS 1:12-14). It was during those days that there was a number of about 120. BUT NOTHING IN ALL THE BIBLE EVER SAID THAT 120 would receive Holy Spirit baptism.

      (10) The brethren, being assembled, had to choose a MAN to take part in the ministry which “Judas by transgression fell” (ACTS 1:25). There were two MEN proposed, Joseph and Matthias (ACTS 1:23). Only ONE of those TWO could be chosen to take part in their ministry and apostleship. After praying and casting lots, Matthias was chosen, “And HE was numbered with “the eleven” apostles” (ACTS 1:26).

      (11) When the day of Pentecost had come, the apostles were filled with the Holy Spirit (not 120), and spoke with other tongues (languages which they had never studied) as the Holy Spirit gave them utterance (ACTS 2:4). Then all those assembled in Jerusalem, said, “Look, are not all these who speak Galileans?” (ACTS 2:7). All the people were amazed and perplexed that they could hear these men speak in their own native language. However, some said they were just drunk. But Peter, STANDING WITH THE ELEVEN, raised his voice and said to them, “Men of Judea and all who dwell in Jerusalem, let this be known to you, and heed my words” (ACTS 2:14). After Peter preached the first gospel sermon; telling those gathered that they were guilty of crucifying Jesus, they were cut to the heart (guilty conscience). NOW WHEN THEY HEARD THIS, THEY WERE CUT TO THE HEART AND SAID TO PETER AND THE REST OF THE APOSTLES, “Men and brethren, what shall we do?” (ACTS 2:37)

      (12) It was the apostles who were preaching. It was the apostles who had received Holy Spirit baptism. It was Peter, standing with the eleven, who was doing the preaching. And the people who repented and were baptized, continued in the apostle’s doctrine (ACTS 2:42).

      To say that 120 received the Holy Spirit baptism is a false teaching! It was not 120 disciples; rather, it was the 12 apostles!

      “And a servant of the Lord must not quarrel but be gentle to all, able to teach, patient, in humility correcting those who are in opposition, if God perhaps will grant them repentance, so that they may KNOW THE TRUTH, and that they may come to their senses and escape the snare of the devil, having been taken captive by him to do his will” (2nd TIMOTHY 2:24-26)

  12. ILVING T ZAMORA on

    Oh, you forgot Velarde, Quiboloy, Villanueva, Manalo, the Abu Sayyaf group, et al, who exhorts money by using “God” as their agent…