Biblical Q&A: What Does “The Keys Of The Kingdom” Mean?

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Pamela’s question:

“What is meant by the keys of the kingdom?”

Thank you for your question.


Matthew 16:19

I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven, and whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.” ESV

Jesus gave to His disciples [believers] the keys of the Kingdom.

Every Christian possesses the keys of the Kingdom of Heaven.


The phrase “the keys of the Kingdom” has to do with binding and releasing. Bind means that a Christian can declare to a person if he/she rejects the Gospel of Jesus Christ that their sins remain. Loose means that the believer can say to them, your sins have been forgiven, if they repent and confess Jesus as Lord [Romans 10:9]. 

John 20:23

If you forgive the sins of any, they are forgiven them; if you withhold forgiveness from any, it is withheld.”


The keys of the Kingdom of Heaven refer to the Word of God as seen in Matthew 23:13 which says, 13 “But woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you shut the kingdom of heaven in people’s faces. For you neither enter yourselves nor allow those who would enter to go in. ESV


The scribes and Pharisees through their traditions have added to the Word of God which prevented people from knowing the true Living God and making them unable to get saved.

Mark 7:8-13 [Jesus speaking to the scribes and Pharisees]

8 You leave the commandment of God and hold to the tradition of men.” 9 And he said to them, “You have a fine way of rejecting the commandment of God in order to establish your tradition! 10 For Moses said, ‘Honor your father and your mother’; and, ‘Whoever reviles father or mother must surely die.’ 11 But you say, ‘If a man tells his father or his mother, “Whatever you would have gained from me is Corban”’ (that is, given to God)— 12 then you no longer permit him to do anything for his father or mother, 13 thus making void the word of God by your tradition that you have handed down. And many such things you do.” ESV

Matthew 23:15

Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you travel across sea and land to make a single proselyte, and when he becomes a proselyte, you make him twice as much a child of hell as yourselves. ESV


To make matters worse, the scribes and Pharisees who knew the Truth and had access to the Kingdom of Heaven so people can get saved didn’t go in themselves. That is why Jesus said about them in Matthew 15:14, “Let them alone; they are blind guides. And if the blind lead the blind, both will fall into a pit.” ESV

I hope this answered your question, Pamela.

 

 

 

Biblical Q&A: Should Christians Today Still Use Holy Water?

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[Anonymous asks] Should Christians of today still use holy water after Christ died for us?


Thank you for your question

Answer:

Holy water under the old covenant was meant for a husband’s jealousy. If he suspected of his wife’s unfaithfulness and became jealous and had reasons not to trust her, he would take her to the priest. The priest would make the holy water which would be bitter putting some of the dust of the floor found in the tabernacle and have the woman drink it from a bowl. If the woman was found guilty by the LORD, her belly would shrivel meaning, she wouldn’t be able to have children [Numbers 5:17-27]. 

Nowhere in the New Testament does it say to use holy water. That was done under the old covenant. Jesus came to fulfill the requirements of the Law, we are under grace.

What is grace? Grace just means favor, God’s favor on you. He did something for you that you didn’t deserve, mainly, keeping the law on your behalf. Through His death on the cross and resurrection, by placing one’s faith in Jesus, His righteousness gets credited to our account. God looks on those who put their trust in Him as if they have kept the whole law.

The Catholic Church still uses holy water to this day for cleansing and for battling the demonic forces of evil. The way they use it has nothing to do with the Biblical meaning of its use and its purpose.  

But the truth is that the only thing for cleansing a person’s life is the Word of God which is also used to battle against the devil’s tactics and schemes [Ephesians 6:10-18-The Full Armor of God]. 

Many false churches who claim to be Christians will always contradict God’s Word and make you do things contrary to what is written in Scripture. We must be students of His Word to be protected from deception.  

 

Biblical Q&A: Why Are people leaving the church?

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[God’s Warrior asks] One question that I have is, why are we as Christians pushing people out of the Church? Is it because of our doctrine? Are we like the Pharisees, who want to be seen in public?


Thank you for your question

Answer

I will start with your last question first: Are we like the Pharisees, who want to be seen in public?

If some churches are like the Pharisees then that would put the church in a dangerous situation [Matthew 23]. Being a Pharisee means that you don’t belong to God, they were self-centered, loved praises from men, loved money, and taught man-made tradition that contradicted the Scriptures. Basically, that would constitute a false church or a liberal one. A false church will not necessarily push people away from a church building but will be pushed away from the truth of God, Jesus Christ.

Is it because of our doctrine?

The Truth of Scripture will either bring a person closer to Jesus Christ or will push them away. It depends on the person’s heart. A heart that is hardened will not allow the Holy Spirit to come in, but a heart that has softened, through the conviction of the Holy Spirit, will gladly open his heart to Jesus. 

2 Corinthians 2:15-16

15 For to God we are the fragrance of Christ among those who are being saved and among those who are perishing. 16 To some we are an aroma of death leading to death, but to others, an aroma of life leading to life. Who is adequate for these things?

Some churches could be doing something wrong, meaning they have drifted away from Christ and are starting to become more like the world [liberal ideology] and the power of Jesus in that church will not be active because of their departure from the truth.

Revelation 2:2-5          

2 I know your works, your labor, and your endurance, and that you cannot tolerate evil people. You have tested those who call themselves apostles and are not, and you have found them to be liars. 3 I know that you have persevered and endured hardships for the sake of my name, and have not grown weary. 4 But I have this against you: You have abandoned the love you had at first. 5 Remember then how far you have fallen; repent, and do the works you did at first. Otherwise, I will come to you and remove your lampstand from its place, unless you repent

[The church of Ephesus] The believers were well versed [knowledgeable] with Scripture and even exposed false teachers, but the love that they used to have in the time of Paul, started to die and Jesus was trying to warn them to kindle [to ignite the passion for Christ they once had] or else the church would be dispersed [die off]. 

There could be many other reasons why people are leaving the churches, but Jesus did say that the gates of hell will not prevail [Matthew 16:17-19] as to destroy their [faith in Jesus Christ]. At the end of all things [appearing at the judgment seat of Christ], many who profess Jesus will be found out if their names are written in the Lamb’s Book of Life. 

Another reason would be according to 2 Timothy 4:2-4 which says, 2 Preach the word; be ready in season and out of season; rebuke, correct, and encourage with great patience and teaching. 3 For the time will come when people will not tolerate sound doctrine, but according to their own desires, will multiply teachers for themselves because they have an itch to hear what they want to hear. 4 They will turn away from hearing the truth and will turn aside to myths.

For the time will come when people will not tolerate sound doctrine refers to a time that will be close to Christ’s return. It will become more wicked, people will abandon and exchange the Truth for the lie. 

but according to their own desires, will multiply teachers for themselves because they have an itch to hear what they want to hear. These people who are leaving the churches who preach the truth are driven by their flesh, wanting to hear teachings that will satisfy [the itch] their sinful lifestyles. 

False doctrine [a church that does not preach against sin] and one’s sinful desires for material gain will be one of the strongest motivators for abandoning the truth found in Scripture.

In the end, people will reap what they have sown. Those who preached the truth to bring people to God’s kingdom will have treasures in heaven. Those who mislead people away from Christ for personal gain, eternal darkness, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.