Bishop T.D. Jakes
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Alexander Mobley

Lees Summit, MO

#1 Feb 11, 2006
I love Bishop T.D. Jakes, he is a great man of God and he is passionate about Jesus Christ. I have been touched by his teachings and books and will continue to watch him everyday on TBN. If you do not have a close relationship with God, the Bishop will show you the way and he will help you change your life to amazing heights in Jesus Name.
agbona james

London, UK

#2 Aug 9, 2006
Bless you T.d Jakes
May the divine words be their for you to take
By is name you'll do it all without a mistake
Please do not shake
The treat of the enemy is fake.
Claudio Rojas

Chile

#3 Aug 26, 2006
Blessings from our Eternal Father Almighty, to you Bishop Thomas Dexter Jakes.
Is a pleassure come to you through this way.
I´m chilean, spanish preacher, but i´ve learned english and has helped me for understand your sermons, and they have to be very important for my ministry. God has blessed my life through this sermons and I´d love to be a great preacher for many people come to the the truth of Jesuschrist, that He´s the God of the heaveans and the earth.
Blessings.
Omar Jackson

Norfolk, VA

#4 Sep 14, 2006
if anyone can email me where TD Jakes is going to be preaching. I dont know how to follow up what city and date. [email protected] thanks god bless
Bishop William Caractor

Bayside, NY

#5 Aug 21, 2008
Dear Ladies and Gentlemen:

I greet you in the name of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. It is my sincere Prayer that you are being Blessed even as you read this email.

Today, we continue with the study of the Book of Matthew chapter 5.

5:40 Whether robbed by personal assault or compulsory litigation, the believer is to respond with confidence in what is eternal, rather than that which is temporal. If the believer is sued in order that the accuser may take away thy coat, he is to also let him have his cloak. The coat (Greek chiton) is the undergarment or tunic. The cloak (Greek himation) is the more expensive outer garment worn over the tunic. Jesus taught us to have confidence in an almighty God who is completely aware of the injustices done to man and totally capable of evoking ultimate and eternal justice.

5:41 In ancient times government agents were in a position to compel forced service upon a subjugated people. A Roman soldier, for example, could compel a Jewish native to carry his armor or materials for one mile. Jesus now states that if someone compels you to walk a mile, go with him twain. The believer is to be willing to "go the extra mile." Doing double our duty not only proves our loyalty to human authority, but likewise proves the spiritual intention of our heart.

5:42 Jesus clearly taught that a loan should be looked upon as a potential gift. There are many statements in Proverbs against borrowing, lending, and surety (Proverbs 6:1; 11:25; 22:7; 27:13). While we are warned of the dangers of borrowing and lending, Jesus clearly emphasizes that the believer ought to be willing to lend to those in need. Even the beggar is to be ministered to through the provision of giving to him that asketh thee. This statement certainly forms the basis of all Christian charity, and provides the proper social application of the message of the gospel to the physical as well as the spiritual needs of man.

5:43, 44 The law of love, sometimes called "law of Christ," summarizes the ethical principles of the Sermon on the Mount. "Love thy neighbor" summarizes the entire second table of the law (Leviticus 19:18-34). But the unscriptural addition "hate thine enemy" was a popular concept in Jesus' day. The admonition Love your enemies is one of the greatest statements Jesus ever made. The love enjoined in the passage is love that originates from God Himself. Man is commanded to attempt to love his enemy on the basis of mere human affection but rather on the basis of a love that comes from God. The quality of love commanded here is expressed by giving by giving. Bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them that persecute you. Loving an enemy involves doing good toward that enemy in order to win him over to Christ.

5:45-47 In summarizing the importance of love, Jesus reminded that love was a necessary proof of salvation; that ye may be the children of your Father which is in heaven may be better rendered, "that ye may prove to be the sons of your Father." An initial reading of this text out of its context might seem to imply that loving ones neighbor automatically makes one a child of God. However, the New Testament is clear that love is the evidence that one is already saved by the grace of God (1 John 3:14). Therefore Jesus reminds us that we are to love our enemies as our brethren, for even the publicans love those who love them. Publicans were public officials of Jewish nationality who worked for the Roman government as tax collectors and were generally despised by the people.

Yours in Jesus Christ,

Bishop William B. Caractor
Bishop William Caractor

Bronx, NY

#6 Aug 22, 2008
Dear Ladies and Gentlemen:

I greet you in the name of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. It is my sincere Prayer that you are being Blessed even as you read this email.

Today's topic is Are You Alive or Are You Dead.

Webster defines death as (1) the end of life,(2) the cause of the loss of life,(3) the state of being dead. I would like to address the humanness of man. Man breathes air, his lungs regenerate that air, allows it to go through the bloodstream, that it may provide oxygen to every living component of the body. The heart pumps the blood, enriched with oxygen to every living part of the body, the stomach is the container that holds the nutriments, until it can be broken down and supplies to every living component of the body. The brain, which is the component that is used for signaling, reception and containment of knowledge that is sent out to every living component of the body, The kidneys are the purification system for the body, the bladder is the container for holding the liquid waste of the body, and the eye are used for seeing, the ears for hearing, the tongue for tasting and talking, and we now go to the skeleton, which is a frame that holds the body together and that skeleton is covered with muscle, skin, and has a total network of nerves and blood vessels.

I have not given every component of the body, but just a few to show the characteristics to you of one that can be considered alive by the human sense. But, are you truly alive? Emotions make up a very important part of the body. Joy, fear, love, anger are all emotions. They, too can be considered by the human sense that this person is alive. Walking, running, jumping, working, playing, fighting, fussing, all is a characteristic, which by the human can be considered by one that is living.

Let's see what God has to say about the living. God said "Though a man be dead, yet shall he live." The natural human brain cannot understand this statement. God also said "He that believeth shall live, and he that believeth not is dead already." My question to my sister and brothers in Christ is Are you alive or Are you dead? In the transition of death, all the components that were spoken of earlier in this topic, ceases. But there is a component that is not mentioned, that lives on. That component is your soul. In order for your soul to live, it must contain love, joy, peace, long-suffering, gentleness, goodness, and faith. In order for your soul to live, you must rely on the Word of God, which says that our conscience should be sprinkled with the love of God. In order for your soul to live, you must have wisdom, "Wisdom is a principle thing, get wisdom, but in all thy getting, get understanding." Your soul must understand that you are to love thy neighbor as thyself. Your soul has to realized that God can only give you peace that surpasseth all understanding. Your soul must know that the joy of the Lord is your strength. Your soul must know that Faith is the substance of things hoped for, and the evidence of things not seen.Your soul must know that They that wait on the Lord shall renew their strength. Your soul must know that it must Bridle the human tongue. If a man desireth friends, he must show himself to be friendly. My question to you, Are you alive or Are you dead?

Are you dead to sin? Are you dead to hypocrisy? Are you dead to lust? Are you dead to filthy lucre? Are you dead to self-will? Are you dead to greed? Are you dead to idolatry or harlotry? These things are works of the flesh. The Word of God says "And they that are Christ's, have crucified the flesh with the affections and lusts." Galatians 5:24

"If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit." Galatians 5:25

Think about it. You know your surrounding circumstances. You know your life-style. I ask you again Are you alive or Are you dead?

Yours in Jesus Christ,

Bishop William B. Caractor
Presiding Prelate
Discovered Being Ministry Incorporated
Bishop William Caractor

Bronx, NY

#7 Aug 22, 2008
Dear Ladies and Gentlemen:

I greet you in the name of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. It is my sincere Prayer that you are being Blessed even as you read this email.

Today, we finish the study of the Book of Matthew chapter 5 and begin chapter 6.

5:48 The section of the Sermon on the Mount is summarized with the statement By ye therefore perfect. Since the New Testament is clear that even the believer is capable of sin, the term perfect (Greek teleios) is not to be taken as sinless perfection. Perfect here means "complete," that is, possessing a complete love that, like God's (verse 45), embraces those who love you as well as those who do not.

6:1 Jesus warns us not to give alms before men just to gain human recognition to ourselves. The one who does righteousness (or gives of his possessions) to the Lord before men merely to be seen of them has no reward from the Father in heaven. True worship results from the desire to serve God, not men, since pleasing God is far more important than pleasing men. Loss of reward is incurred by gaining the reward of human recognition as an end in itself.

6:2 Therefore in all of our giving we are not to sound a trumpet before us in a hypocritical manner of gaining attention to ourselves. This metaphorical phrase means do not "publicize" your righteousness, for such performers are hypocrites (from the Greek, "play actor"). Thus, Jesus warns against acting like the hypocrites, whose aim is to win human praise.

6:3 Let not thy left hand know what thy right hand doeth means that ones giving of finances to the work of the Lord should be done so freely and spontaneously that his right hand cannot keep up with his left hand.

Yours in Jesus Christ,

Bishop William B. Caractor
Bishop William Caractor

Woodside, NY

#8 Aug 24, 2008
Dear Ladies and Gentlemen:

I greet you in the name of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. It is my sincere Prayer that you are being Blessed even as you read this email.

Today, we continue the study of the Book of Matthew chapter 6.

6:4 The real key to success in this kind of giving is found in the phrase thy Father which seeth in secret...shall reward you. Giving by faith, out of a cheerful heart, depends on our total confidence in the fact that God does indeed see us and knows our needs. These verses certainly do not condemn public giving, but rather they speak against giving out of the wrong attitude and for the wrong motive.

6:5, 6 Praying, like giving is to be done with the Lord, not to man. Jesus said that people love to pray standing in the synagogues. Both a time and place for prayer were customary in the ancient Jewish synagogue (Mark 11:25). Therefore, Jesus is not condemning the practice of public prayer, but rather the misuse of it. Because of the statement enter into thy closet, some have suggested that public prayer is wrong. This would be contrary to the rest of New Testament statements about prayer, commandments and restrictions regarding prayer, and examples of prayer meetings (Acts 12:12). The principle here is that the believer should not make a show of his prayer nor of the answers he receives to prayer in such a way as to call unnecessary attention to himself.

6:7 Jesus warned that we use not vain repetitions (Greek battalogeo denotes babbling or speaking without thinking). Such prayer was characteristic of the heathen. A good example of this is found in the ecstatic babblings of the false prophets in the Old Testament and in the prophets of Baal who confronted Elijah on Mount Carmel (1 Kings 18:26-29).

Yours in Jesus Christ,

Bishop William B. Caractor
Bishop William Caractor

Jamaica, NY

#9 Aug 28, 2008
Dear Ladies and Gentlemen:

I greet you in the name of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. It is my sincere Prayer that you are being Blessed even as you read this email.

Today, we continue the study of the Book of Matthew chapter 6.

6:16 When ye fast is a reference both to fasting prescribed under the Mosaic Law in connection with the Day of Atonement (Leviticus 16:29) and the voluntary fast of that day. The Pharisees added two fast days, Monday and Thursday of each week, as a case of public display and piety. The Pharisees regarded the practice of fasting as meritorious (Taanith, 8:3) and appeared in the synagogues negligently attired. Their sad disfigurement of face and the wearing of mourning garb gave them an opportunity to exhibit their superior ascetic sanctity before the people. The phrase disfigure their faces (Greek aphanizo) literally denotes covering their faces and is a figurative expression for mournful gestures and neglected appearance of those wanting to call attention to themselves.

6:17, 18 This passage is not to be taken as a command against fasting but rather against the misuse of the spiritual exercise of fasting. Fasting that requires spectators is mere acting. Though Jesus Himself instituted no fast for His disciples, voluntary fasting does appear in the early churches (Acts 13:2). The injunction to anoint thine head relates to the ancient custom of anointing one's head when going to a feast. In other words, Jesus was saying that when we fast we are to do so secretly to the Lord, while outwardly maintaining the appearance of joy and triumph, which is the end result of true fasting.

6:19-21 The attention of the believer is directed toward treasures in heaven. The term treasures implies the addition or accumulation of things. The two kinds of treasures are conditioned by their place (either on earth or in heaven). The concept of laying up treasures in heaven is not pictured as one of meritorious benefits but rather of rewards for faithful service, as is illustrated elsewhere in the teaching of Jesus.

6:22, 23 The light of the body is associated with the eye. The concept here is based on the ancient idea that the eyes were the windows through which light entered the body. If the eyes were in good condition the body could receive such light. Jesus, using this language metaphorically, affirms that if a man's spiritual sight is healthy and his affections directed toward heavenly treasure, his whole personality will be without blemish. The phrase if...thine eye be single indicates devotion to one purpose: The "single eye" refers to a single, fixed vision or goal. The phrase if thine eye be evil refers to either disease or deception of vision. The "evil eye" is not something mysterious or devilish, but rather a deceptive vision that causes the viewer to mistake the identity of an object. The mistake in this context is the darkening of the mind and thus how great is that darkness!

Yours in Jesus Christ,

Bishop William B. Caractor
Bishop William Caractor

Jamaica, NY

#10 Aug 29, 2008
Dear Ladies and Gentlemen:

I greet you in the name of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. It is my sincere Prayer that you are being Blessed even as you read this email.

Today, we continue the study of the Book of Matthew chapter 6.

6:24 The kind of spiritual double vision causes one to believe he can serve two masters. Total loyalty to God cannot be divided between Him and loyalty to one's possessions. A master (Greek kurios) is a lord or an owner. That God claims total lordship over His own is obvious in this passage. Therefore, Jesus rightly proclaimed, Ye cannot serve God and mammon. The term mammon is derived from the Aramaic term for possessions or wealth. Jesus is not condemning money or possessions in and of themselves, but the improper attitude of enslavement toward wealth.

6:25 Jesus now deals with the equally dangerous tendency of those who have few possessions: worry! Take no thought (Greek me merimnao) means "Do not be anxious." This word means to be so disturbed about material needs that we distrust God and are distracted from faithfully doing His will. Anxious care is the direct opposite of faith. Therefore, even the poor are not to worry needlessly about what they should eat, drink, or wear. The question Is not the life more that meat, and the body than raiment? indicates that inner mental stability must come from the spirit of a man and not from outward physical provisions. To set one's heart on material possessions or to worry about the lack of them is to live in perpetual insecurity and to deprive oneself of the spiritual blessings of God.

6:33, 34 Jesus illustrates His point by referring to objects in nature that were immediately at hand, the birds of the air and the flowers of the field. The key point of this passage is found in the phrases Are ye not much better then they?(verse 26) and shall he not much more clothe you?(verse 30). The Bible clearly teaches that God is the Creator and sustainer of nature. Worry and anxiety are related to the length of one's life in the phrase add one cubit unto his stature. A cubit is a measurement of 18 inches. However, this reference is probably not to one's actual height but to the length of his life. The term stature (Greek helikia) may mean "age." Thus the idea seems to be that a man cannot add the smallest measure to the span of his life by worrying. This state of anxiety is related to having little faith (verse 30). Faith is total confidence in the provision of God.

Yours in Jesus Christ,

Bishop William B. Caractor
Bishop William Caractor

Woodside, NY

#11 Sep 1, 2008
Dear Ladies and Gentlemen:

I greet you in the name of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. It is my sincere Prayer that you are being Blessed even as you read this email.

Today, we continue with the study of the Book of Matthew chapter 6.

6:33, 34 This portion of the Sermon on the Mount is summarized by the statement seek ye first the kingdom of God. The disciples who have pledged their allegiance to the King must continue seeking the kingdom and its righteousness. The present imperative form of the verb (Greek zeteo) indicates a continual or constant seeking. The contrast between the spiritual and the material is again emphasized. The believer is to seek first the righteousness that is characteristic of God's kingdom and then all these things (material things) shall be added to him. When our priority is spiritual, God will take care of the material, for where God guides, He provides. We need not even worry about tomorrow, for sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof (verse 34). This means that each day has its own troubles and challenges to be responsibility handled, without worrying about the hypothetical problems that could arise tomorrow.

7:1-4 Judge not refers to an unfavorable and condemnatory judgment. This does not mean that a Christian should never exercise judgment of any kind under any circumstances. The point being made here is that we are not to judge the inner motives of another. We are not to render a verdict based upon prejudiced information. Nor are we to use ourselves as the standard of judgment for with what...ye mete (measure) you shall be judged. That ye be not judged refers to the ultimate judgment of God rather than our own judgment. The terms mote (Greek karphos) and beam (Greek dokos) are used metaphorically for a small fault and a great fault. A mote is a small speck of sawdust whereas a beam is a rafter used in building. Thus, the idea of the text is that one cannot remove the speck from his brother's eye until he has removed the rafter from his own eye!

7:5, 6 Thou hypocrite is the only statement that can be made for this play actor who pretends to be a physician when he himself is sick. The dogs and swine refer to those who have deliberately rejected the message of truth. These particular animals were especially repulsive to Jesus' audience.

7:7-10 The three imperatives ask, seek, and knock are in the present tense of the original language, suggesting both perseverance and frequent prayer. Fervent and continual prayer is to made on behalf of those for whom we are concerned. God promises to answer all genuine prayer (verse 8). Everything we need for spiritual success has been promised to us. God leaves us no excuse for failure.

Yours in Jesus Christ,

Bishop William B. Caractor
Bishop William Caractor

Yonkers, NY

#12 Sep 4, 2008
Dear Ladies and Gentlemen:

I greet you in the name of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. It is my sincere Prayer that you are being Blessed even as you read this email.

Today, we continue with the study of the Book of Matthew chapter 7.

7:11, 12 Jesus illustrated His point by comparing the willingness of a human father to give his child a gift with our heavenly Father who will gladly give us what we need. The term evil (verse 11) is used here of man's sinful nature. Even sinful men are kind to their children; therefore, how much more shall your heavenly Father delight to answer your prayers. Hence, rather than judging others, we are to treat them as we would like to be treated. This statement in verse 12, Therefore all things whatsoever ye would that men should do to you, do ye even so to them, is the biblical injunction often called the "Golden Rule." This is the law and the prophets indicates that the statement made here by Jesus is not intended to be novel, but rather a summarization of the second table of the law.

7:13, 14 The closing section of the Sermon on the Mount presents two choices to the listener. These are presented in a series of contrasts: two ways (verses 13, 14); two trees (verses 15-20); two professions (verses 21-23); and two foundations (verses 24-29). This was a common method of teaching in both Jewish and Greco-Roman thought. Enter ye in at the strait gate (narrow) means that one must come through the narrow gate in order to reach the path that leads to eternal life. Though many are on the broad...way, that leadeth to destruction (eternal separation from God), the gate that leads to life is so narrow that few there will be that find it. Christ Himself is both the gate and the way (John 14:6), and God enables men to find that gate (John 6:44).

7:15 The warning Beware of false prophets fits appropriately with the concept of the two ways. Since many are being led in the wrong way, they are obviously being led by the wrong people. False prophets were prevalent in the Old Testament, whereas God's true prophets were often in the minority. False prophets appear in sheep's clothing but are in reality ravening wolves. This is a perfect description of those preachers who have denied or distorted the truth of the gospel. They look like lambs but act like wolves. Their description is similar to that of the great False Prophet in Revelation 13:11.

Yours in Jesus Christ,

Bishop William B. Caractor
Bishop William Caractor

Far Rockaway, NY

#13 Sep 6, 2008
Dear Ladies and Gentlemen:

I greet you in the name of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. It is my sincere Prayer that you are being Blessed even as you read this email.

Today, we continue with the study of the Book of Matthew chapter 7.

7:16-20 A true test of a prophet was the conformity of his doctrine to the Scriptures (1 Corinthians 14:37; Deuteronomy 13:1-5). Their fruits refers not only to the actions of their lives, but also to the doctrines they proclaim. The two trees are contrasted in relation to the fruit they produce. Every good tree bringeth forth good fruit consistently, while a corrupt tree bringeth forth evil fruit continually. Therefore, the normal and consistent production of fruit, whether good or evil, in a person's life will bear evidence whether or not that life is of God. Verse 19 illustrates the unfruitful life of the unregenerate who is cast into the fire, a picture of eternal punishment in hell.

7:21-23 Not everyone professing Christ is genuinely saved. Even the outward verbal acknowledgment of His lordship is in itself not enough to save the unbeliever apart from true repentance and faith. A genuinely saved person is one that doeth the will of my Father, the Greek present tense suggesting that he is continually living in obedience to the will of God as the normal course of his life.

7:24-27 In drawing His concluding illustration of the two foundations, Jesus begins with the word therefore. On the basis of all that He has taught and illustrated, He concluded that all who both hear and do His sayings shall be saved. As a great Master Counselor, Jesus reminded His listener that hearing this message alone will not change his life. He must both hear and do what Jesus has said. The elements of the closing illustration are drawn from the simplicity of nature itself, the rock, the rain, and the winds. The man whose house collapsed was at fault, not because he failed to labor, but because he did not lay the proper foundation. The shifting sand represents human opinion and the doctrines of men as opposed to "these sayings" (verse 28).

Yours in Jesus Christ,

Bishop William B. Caractor
Bishop William Caractor

Brooklyn, NY

#14 Sep 6, 2008
Dear Ladies and Gentlemen:

I greet you in the name of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. It is my sincere prayer that you and the church at large are being Blessed even as you read this correspondence.

“Surely the Lord will do nothing, but he revealeth His secret unto His servants the prophets.” Amos 3:7

We cordially invite you to come and receive a word from the Lord. Our Presiding Prelate, Bishop William B. Caractor will bring the sacred message at New Jerusalem Church of Christ on Sunday, September 21, 2008 at 4:30 p.m. This service is a prophetic service for those who believe that God still speaks to His servants, the prophets. The church is located at 904 Nassau Road, Uniondale, New York 11553 where Elder Ada V. Jones is the Pastor.

We encourage you to come and receive a word from the Lord.

May God Bless you.

Yours in Jesus Christ,

Reverend Helen Caractor
Pastor of St. Peters Spiritual Temple of Prayer
Bishop William Caractor

Yonkers, NY

#15 Sep 7, 2008
Dear Ladies and Gentlemen:

I greet you in the name of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. It is my sincere Prayer that you are being Blessed even as you read this email.

As I stated, we have studied the Book of Matthew, the entire month of August. Should you desire any further studies of that Book, please send a self addressed envelope to Discovered Being Ministry Incorporated 160-18 131st Avenue, Jamaica, New York 11434 and your requested information will be send to you shortly thereafter.

This month, we will be studying the Book of Acts, beginning with chapter 1.

1:1 The former treatise must refer to Luke's gospel. Both books were written to an otherwise unknown Theophilus. Theophilus probably was a Roman official, since Luke designates him as "most excellent Theophilus" (Luke 1:3). The Greek term (kratistos) is use only three other times in the New Testament. Each of these is used to address a Roman official: Felix (23:26; 24:3) and Festus (26:25). In the Book of Acts Luke continues the ministry of Christ he began in his gospel. Christ's ministry in Acts is carried on by His Spirit through His disciples.

1:3 For some specific proofs see Luke 24:36-43.

1:3 Compare Luke's gospel account of John the Baptist's words where a baptism of fire is also predicted (Luke 3:16, 17). Christ excluded that work from what would shortly occur on Pentecost, for it refers to a more remote work involving judgment (Luke 3:17).

1:6-8 The disciples' question concerning the nearness of Christ's literal kingdom is not incongruous with Old Testament promises (Isaiah 9:6, 7; Daniel 2:44, 45), nor with the gospel teachings (Luke 19:11; 21:31; 22:18). Jesus does not rebuke or correct the question as if the disciples had misunderstood God's kingdom program. The words restore again the kingdom to Israel imply four facts:(1) this kingdom had once literally existed with Israel; (2) this kingdom is not now present; (3) this kingdom will come in God's revealed time (Matthew 24:36, 42); and (4) this kingdom will be the same, literal kingdom that once existed, only now with the promised Christ as King.

1:8 The first part of this verse is better translated, "But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes upon you." The disciples were to be concerned with world evangelism and discipleship. This Great Commission still applies today since the promise underlying it, the Holy Spirit, still applies (Matthew 28:20). This commission may also provide the key to Luke's plan in developing the Book of Acts: witness in Jerusalem (chapters 1-7), witness throughout Judea and Samaria (chapters 8-12), and witness to the distant parts of the earth (chapters 13-28).

Yours in Jesus Christ,

Bishop William B. Caractor
Bishop William Caractor

Long Island City, NY

#16 Sep 8, 2008
Dear Ladies and Gentlemen:

I greet you in the name of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. It is my sincere Prayer that you are being Blessed even as you read this email.

Today, we continue to study the Book of Acts chapter 1.

1:9-11 While they beheld - suggests several things that are not apparent. Unlike the appearances and disappearences of the former 40 days in which Jesus instantly appeared and vanished, this was a gradual and visible departure. This was different and final. He would no longer appear to them. His next appearance on earth will be at the Second Coming when He visibly (Revelation 1:7) and bodily sets His feet on Mount Olivet (Zecharaiah 14:4).

1:12 A sabbath day's journey was the distance a Jew was allowed to travel on the Sabbath (about 2/3 mile).

1:16 For the prophetic statement see John 13:18, 19 and then Psalm 41:9.

1:18 This verse needs to be correlated with Matthew 27:3-10. The simplest explanation may be found in the principle that, whereas in Acts Luke records all events (such as the acts of Judas), Matthew distinguishes between what Judas did and what the preists did. Just as the preists were the ones who purchased Potter's Field with Judas's money after his death, so Judas may have fallen only in that he was thrown down upon the rocks of that field.

1:26 Prior to Pentecost the casting of lots was a divinley approved method of discerning God's will (Josh. 18:8). Proverbs 16:33 states: "The lot is cast into the lap; but the whole disposing thereof is of the Lord." Nowhere else in Acts is there any record of a New Testament church using lots. The Holy Spirit now provides that direction (16:6,7; Rom 8:14, 26, 27; Gal 5:18).

2:1 Before Pentecost the Holy Spirit's work had been:(1) from without ("Spirit came upon"); (2) temporary; and (3) exceptional. After Pentecost the Spirit's work is:(1) from within (He in dwells- John 7:37-39; 14:17; 1 Cor. 6:19; 1 John 3:24; 4:13); (2) permanent (Rom 8:9); and (3) normal, involving all (1 Cor. 12:12).l Under the Old (Mosaic) Covenant God's work with Israel had been external, but under the New Covenant it is internal (Ezek. 36:26; 27; Heb. 8:9, 10).

Yours in Jesus Christ,

Bishop William B. Caractor
Bishop William Caractor

Bayside, NY

#17 Sep 9, 2008
Dear Ladies and Gentlemen:

I greet you in the name of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. It is my sincere Prayer that you are being Blessed even as you read this email.

Today, we continue the study of the Book of Acts chapter 2.

2:2, 3 On the Day of Pentecost God provided two symbols of the Spirit's presence: the wind, which was associated by the Jews with the Spirit (Ezekiel 37:9-14; John 3:8), and the fiery tongues which divided and rested upon each one, showing that the Spirit's baptism included all. The purpose here for the sign gift of tongues was not to make possible the hearing of the gospel but to seize the attention of all, so they would listen. The hearers were not pilgrims, but foreign-born inhabitants (verse 8). They were not merely visiting, but living in Jerusalem (verses 5, 14). Only those from Rome are identified as visitors (verse 10). Also, when the gospel is preached, Peter speaks to them all in one language.

2:4 Though verse 4 mentions only the filling with the Spirit, both the filling and the baptism occurred. Christ promised that the baptism would occur (1:4, 5) and Peter later affirms that it did happen at Pentecost (11:15, 16). The filling and baptism are two different works performed by the Holy Spirit. Note their contrasts:(1) Following Pentecost every believer receives the baptism of the Spirit (1 Corinthians 12:13); hence the New Testament never commands the Christian to receive it. But the filling of the Spirit is not experienced by all believers, and so is commanded (Ephesians 5:18).(2) The baptism is permanent, happening but once for all. The filling is ongoing, occurring continuously as seen in the present tense imperative of Ephesians 5:18, that is, "Keep on being filled." The verse commands: "And be not drunk with wine, wherein is excess [riotousness]; but be filled with the Spirit." Since Paul compares the influences of wine and the filling of the Spirit, the word control can aptly express the idea of either. The filling of the Spirit is the controlling influence of the Spirit within the believer. Such control is neither universal nor unending, thus it must be commanded and does recur within the believers (4:8, 31; Peter and others had been previously filled on Pentecost, verse 4). The adjective full expresses the abiding character of a Spirit-filled man (6:3, 5; 7:55; 11:24), but the participle form filled (used in 2:4; 4:8, 31; 9:17; 13;9) expresses an action performed at that moment. The baptism is act by which Jesus, through the Spirit, an conversion brings the believer in to relation with Himself and makes the believer a part of God's people, the church. The filling is the continuous experience within the Christian whereby the Spirit, who already indwells him, keeps control over his life.

Yours in Jesus Christ,

Bishop William B. Caractor
Bishop William Caractor

Bronx, NY

#18 Sep 11, 2008
Dear Ladies and Gentlemen:

I greet you in the name of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. It is my sincere Prayer that you are being Blessed even as you read this email.

Today, we continue the study of the Book of Acts chapter 2.

2:16-21 Peter does not say that Pentecost is the fulfillment of Joel's prophecy concerning the last days (Revelation 6:12). Peter does not see a celestial cataclysm (verses 19, 20). Yet it is that of which Joel speaks, because it is the beginning of the fulfillment. Peter did not see the Spirit coming upon all people, but he did see Him coming upon 120. It was the beginning, but surely not the complete fulfillment. Peter understood, as we should, that the last days had already begun, even with the birth of Christ (Hebrew 1:2; Peter 1:20).

2:22-36 The main point of Peter's sermon is to prove that Jesus is both God and the Messiah (verse 36). Peter seeks to prove this through Christ's miraculous works (verse 22), His resurrection (verses 23-32), and His sending of the Holy Spirit (verses 33-35).

2:27 Hell is the word hades and does not refer to the eternal lake of fire but to the intermediate state of the Old Testament dead. In the New Testament the term also refers to the grave. Peter states that David's words of Psalm 16:10 are a prophecy concerning the immediate resurrection of the Messiah, of whom David is a type.

Yours in Jesus Christ,

Bishop William B. Caractor
Bishop William Caractor

Woodside, NY

#19 Sep 12, 2008
Dear Ladies and Gentlemen:

I greet you in the name of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. It is my sincere Prayer that you are being Blessed even as you read this email.

Today, we continue with the study of the Book of Acts chapter 2.

2:38 Repent means "to change one's mind." Here, as throughout Scripture, one aspect of conversion is commonly used to represent all aspects: believing and calling as well as repenting. The grammatical name for allowing part of something to represent the whole is called synecdoche. Repentance is something every person must do (17:30). For several reasons be baptized should not be joined with for the remission of sins to teach baptismal regeneration. First, the context of this passage demonstrates that only the repentance is connected with the removal of sin at salvation: "Whosoever shall call...shall be saved" (verse 21). Peter's next recorded sermon states only: "Repent...that your sins may be blotted out" (3:19). Second, throughout Acts men demonstrate their faith and salvation prior to baptism (10:43-47). Third, the soteriological passages throughout the New Testament do not include water baptism in the salvation experience-John 3:1; Acts 16:31; Romans 4:10; Ephesians 2:1-10; 1 Peter 1:18, 19. Thus this verse is more clearly reads, "Repent for the remission of sins, and you will receive the gift which is the Holy Spirit; and let each of you be baptized in the name of Christ." Though water baptism does not save or wash away our sins, it is a command that needs to be obeyed speedily after conversion. Jesus commanded it (Matthew 28:19, 20), as does Peter here. This is the consistent pattern throughout Acts (16:31-34; 18:8).

2:40 Untoward means "normally crooked" or "perverse."

2:41, 42 The pattern set here for new believers in normative throughout this age. They publicly profess their faith through baptism and join in fellowship, edification, and service within the assembly of God's people.

2:44, 45 Communal sharing was practiced for a brief time by the early church but not throughout Acts. These believers were expecting the very soon return of Christ (as Peter demonstrates in his sermons of chapters 2 and 3), and they therefore sold their possessions. This did not last. Such communal life is not taught by the apostles. Rather we are taught to be good stewards of that with which God has entrusted us and to share willingly and cheerfully (2 Corinthians 8, 9). Further, this does not correspond to communism, because this resulted from a spiritual unity among the people and was a voluntary act (5:4).

Yours in Jesus Christ,

Bishop William B. Caractor
Bishop William Caractor

Hollis, NY

#20 Sep 30, 2008
Dear Ladies and Gentlemen:

I greet you in the name of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. It is my sincere Prayer that you are being Blessed even as you read this email.

Today, we study the Book of Acts chapter 8.

8:1-4 The earlier persecutions of chapters 4 and 5 involved persecutions of the Christian leaders, the apostles, by the Jewish leaders, primarily the priests. This persecution is much more severe, since it involves the laypeople and since it comes from the unrelenting hands of Saul. yet God's work prospers in that the gospel is widely spread outside Jerusalem.

8:14-17 The ministry of Peter and John must be understood in the light of the unique historical situation. As at Pentecost, God is initiating a new work-the beginning of the church among a distinct ethnic group. The Samaritans were Jews of mixed blood whom the other Jews despised. At Pentecost, no human instrument was involved in the baptism of the Holy Spirit. Here God delays the outpouring until after the arrival of Peter and the laying on of his hands. Thus, the Jerusalem church and the Samaritan church are united into one work, one body. Without Peter's involvement, this work may not have been accepted by some Jews. Thus schism was avoided from the start.

8:18-24 Simon the sorcerer made an outward profession of faith (verse 13), but his response demonstrates his lack of spiritual life. Early Christian writings substantiate this fact. Simon, like Elisha's servant Gehazi (2 Kings 5:20-27), sought to use God's miraculous gift for his own benefit.

8:37 Acts 16:32-34 and 18:8 demonstrate that faith precedes baptism.

8:40 Philip appears to have established his ministry in Caesarea, since about 20 years later he and his family are still there (21:8).

Yours in Jesus Christ,

Bishop William B. Caractor

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