Bishop T.D. Jakes
Bishop William Caractor

Little Neck, NY

#349 Jul 21, 2010
Dear Ladies and Gentlemen,

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

Today we are studying Matthew chapter 10 Part 1.

10:1-4 The twelve disciples had been formed as a group some time previously. Now after a period of instruction and training they were sent on their first mission. They were also given power, or "authority", over demons and disease. Their miracle-working ministry was to attest the legitimate claim of Jesus to be the Messiah. Apostles (Gr. apostoloi) is the technical term that later came to be applied to the twelve disciples. The literal meaning of the term is "Sent Ones." In this passage their twelve names are arranged in six pairs, which probably corresponded to the arrangement in which they were sent out on this mission. Simon is Peter, who heads all four lists of the disciples (cf. Mark 3:16, Luke 6:14; Acts 1:13). Since he appears to be the most prominent disciple in the early stages of Jesus' ministry, as well as in the early period of the church, he probably exercised a natural leadership over the others. It does not follow from this, however, that his leadership was passed on to successors. Bartholomew was generally considered to be identical with Nathanael of John 1:41-51. Lebbeus whose surname was Thaddeus (some texts read simply "Thaddeus"): Luke gives his name as Judas (Luke 6:16) Simon the Canaanite actually means the Cananaean. Since he had been a member of the nationalist party known as the Zealots, who resisted Herod the Great by force, he is also at times referred to as Simon the Zealot. Judas Iscariot had been variously interpreted as meaning he was a member of the tribe of Issachar, or an inhabitant of Kerioth, or the one who carried the purse (Aram. secariota), or the one who was strangled (Heb. iscara). He is generally recognized as the only disciple who was not a Galilean.

Yours in Jesus Christ,

Bishop William B.Caractor
Bishop William Caractor

Little Neck, NY

#350 Jul 21, 2010
Dear Ladies and Gentlemen:

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

Today we are studying Matthew Chapter 10 Part 2.

10:5-10. The way of the Gentiles: Several Greek cities in Galilee existed seperately from the Jewish life-style. The apostles were instructed to aviod these towns and to confine themselves to the Jewish cities only. The word Gentiles is an objective genitive, indicating that they were not to enter a road even leading to the Gentiles, nor were they to enter a city of the Samaritans. The apostles were to provide (better, "get") nothing in the way of money in their purses (lit., "belts"). The fold of the robe or the girdle served the same function as our pockets. A scrip was a small bag for holding various articles. Coats were the outer robes or tunics that corresponded to the Roman toga. The Greek for staves is actually singular, meaning "staff'," agreeing with Luke 9:3 The workman is worthy of his meat: They were to rely on the gifts and hospitality of those to whom they preached.

10:11-16. Inquire means "to search out." Hospitality was a normal part of Oriental life and the disciples probably recieved many offers of accommodation; however, they were restricted to accepting hospitality only from those who received their message. Shake off the dust of your feet is a symbolic act of rejection and condemnation, the idea being that not even the dust of a wicked city was worthy of them. Verily (Gr. amen) is a transliteration from the Hebrew meaning "truly" or one of its synonyms, which gives emphasis to the statement that follows. Wise as serpents (cf. Gen. 3:1): In the ancient Near East the serpent was commonly regarded as the wisest of the beasts. A cautious wisdom was necessary in order to deal with the fierce oppostition that the disciples would face.

Yours in Jesus Christ,

Bishop WIlliam B. Caractor
Bishop William Caractor

Brooklyn, NY

#352 Jul 22, 2010
Dear Ladies and Gentlemen:

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

Today we are studying Matthew Chapter 10 Part 4.

10:32-37. Confess me means "Acknowledge that you belong to Me." In reality, secret discipleship is a pratical impossibility. Jesus constantly called for an open confession of Himself by His followers. That our confession is to be before men clearly indicates that a public confession of true Christian faithis a virtual necessity. The warning whosoever shall deny me is a comprehensive historical aorist tense, referring not to one moment of denial ( such as Peter's), but to an entire lifelong resistance to Christ. Therefore, a single act of denial does not make one unworthy of being a disciple, but a refusal to confess Christ at all eliminates one from being a true follower of Jesus Christ.

10:38-40. Taketh not His cross: This is the first mention of the cross in the New Testament. It was the custom for the condemned man to carry his cross on the way to his execution. There is plenty of evidence that our Lord anticipated the mode of His death. Findeth his life means to wrongfully gain something out of life for oneself. Here the word means the natural life as opposed to the spiritual life. That is, to pursue one's natural well-being at the expense of the spiritual, or eternal, is sinful.

10:41,42. In the name of the prophet (i.e., "as a prophet): The meaning of this statment is that those who are not prophets themselves may share in the labor and reward of the prophets by willingly supporting their ministry. One of these little ones is a reference to the fact that even the smallest service done to the most insignificant if Christ's servants shall be rewarded by the Lord Himself.

Yours in Jesus Christ,

Bishop William B. Caractor
Bishop William Caractor

Brooklyn, NY

#353 Jul 23, 2010
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 Matthew chapter 11.

11:1-7 Verses 2-19 parallel Luke 7:18-35. This imprisonment has already been mentioned in Matthew 4:12, but the circumstances leading up to it are not described in detail until 14:3-12, where the manner of John's death is also recounted. The works of Christ refers to His miracles. He that should come refers to the predicted Messiah of Old Testament prophecy whose coming had already been proclaimed by John. The blind receive their sight is an allusion to Isaiah 35:5 and 61:1, where it is stated that this will be one of the works performed by the Messiah. The poor have the gospel preached to them is another allusion to Isaiah 61:1. Hence, Jesus was clearly vindicating His messiahship to John, who may have begun to question why Jesus had left him in prison.

11:8-11 But what went ye out for to see? A prophet?...more, much more (Greek perissoteron): The quotation in verse 10 is from Malachi 3:1. John was recognized as the foreordained forerunner of the Savior and, technically, the last of the Old Testament prophets. Thus, he belonged to the Old Testament dispensation. This certainly emphasizes a clear distinction from the Old Testament era and the New Testament. The weakest believer who has the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of the risen Christ, is, therefore, in a more privileged position than the greatest of the Old Testament prophets. Them that are born of women means mortal men, the idea being that the greatest of all in this life cannot be compared with the glory of the life to come.

11:12-15 The kingdom of heaven suffereth violence (Greek biazomai): The meaning of this saying, and the connection of verses 12-14 with preceding and following contexts, indicates that John opened the kingdom of heaven to sinners and thus became the culminating point of Old Testament witness. Jesus' statement that this is Elijah indicates the ministry predicted by Malachi 4:5, 6.

Yours in Jesus Christ,

Bishop William B. Caractor
Bishop William Caractor

Brooklyn, NY

#355 Jul 25, 2010
Dear Ladies and Gentlemen:

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

Today we study Matthew Chapter 12 Part 1.

12:1-9. The sabbath day is the seventh day of the week, corresponding to our Saturday (cf. Mark 2:23-3:6; Luke 6:1-11). However, it begins at sunset on Friday and lasts until the following sunset. The Pharisees had burdened the Sabbath with a multitude of detailed observances that were not laid down in the Mosaic Law. In responding to their legalistic traditions, Jesus always referred to Scripture. Have ye not read? The passage referred to is 1 Samuel 21:1-6. The Lord makes the point that in the case of necessity the ceremonial law might be overruled. He uses the illustration of David eating the showbread. These loaves were placed on the table in the holy place of tabernacle each Sabbath. They were to be eaten only by the priest and his family (cf. Lev. 24:5-9; Num. 28:9). The priests prepared the sacrifices on the Sabbath in spite of the general prohibition of work. If the necessities of temple worship permitted the priests to profane the sabbath, there was all the more reason why the service of Christ would allow a similar liberty.

12:10-27. Withered (shriveled): Luke 6 shows that this incident occurred on a different Sabbath. However, the objection of the Pharisees on this occasion was ultimately the same. They were in opposition to Jesus' healing on the Sabbath. The reference to "their synagogue" (v. 9) indicates that in this particular synagogue the Pharisees were predominant.

Yours in Jesus Christ,

Bishop William B. Caractor
Bishop William Caractor

Brooklyn, NY

#357 Jul 27, 2010
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 Matthew Chapter 12 Part 3.

12:43-45. Jesus gives a striking parable of the precarious spiritual condition of the nation.The parable is that of a house well swept but unoccupied. The demon having been driven out, but finding no place to rest, returns with seven other spirits, resulting in an even greater degeneration. Only by inviting Christ to be the honored guest and head of the home could Israel know the full blessing of God.

12:46-50. The chapter closes with a reference to my mother and my brethren. These brothers are presumably the children of Joseph and Mary born after the virgin birth of Jesus. While some have attempted to view them as cousins, this certainly is not implied in the Gospels. By asking, Who is my mother? Jesus called attention away from the earthly relationships to more important spiritual relationships. This saying was not intended to be one of disrespect to Mary or to His brothers, for they too would come to share the spiritual. However, there is no suggestion here at all that Jesus' mother had any special access to His presence or any particular influence over Him. By using this startling question, Jesus prepared the crowd to receive the precious truth that whosoever shall do the will of my Father was, in fact, His mother, His brother, and His sister.

Yours in Jesus Christ,

Bishop William B. Caractor
Bishop William Caractor

Brooklyn, NY

#358 Jul 27, 2010
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 Matthew Chapter 13 Part 1.

13:1-3. On one of the busiest days of Jesus' earthly ministry He gave an extended series of parables (seven in Matthew and four in Mark, including one not given in Matthew). This is the turning point in Matthew's gospel. Already sensing His impending rejection, Jesus now expresses the "mystery" form of the kingdom that will feature the church. His early ministry involved a proclamation of the spiritual principles of the kingdom. To bring in a political kingdom before men were born again would be a travesty. Therefore, an interval is now announced between the Messiah's original appearance and His final return. That interval is the church age, during which believers are citizens of the kingdom that is within them ( Luke 17:21).

13:3. This section introduces a new subject, a new approach, and a new method of teaching by parables. He spake... in parables, a common method of teaching in the Near East, used to convey spiritual truth through a series of earthly comparisons.

13:3-10. The first parable is set in an agricultural context. A sower went forth refers to the ancient seed sower, planting a crop. Jesus later interpreted this parable Himself. The seed depicts the Word of God (v.19) and thus the sower is the gospel evangelist. The way side is the path trampled through the field. It was packed hard and the seed found no root, thus the fowls (demons? v. 19 wicked one[s]) snatched it away. Here there was no response at all to the gospel. The second category is called stony places or the rocky ledge beneath a thin, shallow layer of soil. This thin crust would warm quickly causing the seed to sprout instantly but without adequate rootage or moisture. Thus, the sun...scorched the crop and it withered away. The third group of seeds fell among thorns that had not been plowed. The thorns (wild growth) choked out the crop. Th good ground represents well-plowed and prepared soil capable of producing a large crop. The statement Who hath ears to hear goes beyond physical hearing and implies an inner spiritual reception of truth. This prompted the disciples to ask why He had spoken to them in parables. Whereas before, He had used parables to illustrate His messages, now they formed the basis of the messages.

Yours in Jesus Christ,

Bishop William B. Caractor
Bishop William Caractor

Brooklyn, NY

#360 Jul 29, 2010
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 Matthew Chapter 13 Part 3.

13:28-30. The servants asked what could be done with these tares. To uproot them would be to damage the entire crop. Root up...the wheat with them: The implication seems to be that too much scathing of people's genuineness of faith may damage the saved before it exposes the lost. Let both grow together indicates that there will always be some false professors among true Christian believers until the time of harvest or judgment. Note that the tares are gathered, bound, and burned first, whereas the wheat is gathered into my barn (heaven).

13:31,32. See Mark 4:30-34; Luke 13:18,19. The mustard seed is unusually small and yet grows to a great size. The idea seems to be that the tiny beginning of the church will eventually culminate in a great growth. Herbs ( Gr. lachanon) are garden plants or vegetables. However, such numerical growth will come to harbor the birds (evil ones). The parable accordingly foreshadows the growth of the church into a world power. However, outward growth is not always a true picture of spiritual depth.

13:33-35. Kingdom of heaven is the spiritual form of the kingdom in the church. Leaven is a lump of old dough in a state of fermentation, which makes the bread dough rise. It is virtually always used as a symbol of evil (cf. Matt. 16:6-12; Mark 8:15, Gal. 5:9). Three measures of meal, a common baking quantity (cf. Gen. 18:6), equivalent to one-and-a-half gallons (Gr. saton; Heb. seah). The leaven is not just false profession of unsaved church members but false doctrine that they will attempt to bring into the church.

Yours in Jesus Christ,

Bishop William B. Caractor
Bishop William Caractor

Little Neck, NY

#362 Jul 31, 2010
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 Matthew Chapter 14 Part 1.

14:1, 2. The occasion of John's death signaled a time for Jesus to retreat, lest He provoke an early death, before the appointed time. Herod the tetrarch is Herod Antipas, the son of Herod the Great, the ruler of Galilee and Perea. His ignorance of Jesus prior to this time is probably due to his self-indulgent, luxurious life-style that had little contact with religious figures. His guilty conscience over John's death caused him to think Jesus was John the Baptist risen from the dead.

14:3-8. John had been arrested because he challenged the legitimacy of Herod's divorce and incestuous remarriage. Herodias was the daughter of Aristobulus, a half brother of Antipas. She had been married to her uncle, Herod Phillip, and had borne him a daughter, Salome. However, she divorced her husband and married Antipas, who was already married. Herodias was guilty and vindictive woman who wanted John dead, and she devised a plan to get rid of him. At the king's birthday party, her daughter preformed a provocatively enticing dance which so appealed to the drunken Herod that he promised with an oath she could have whatever she wanted. She asked for John the Baptist's head in a charger (a table platter).

14:13-19. The feeding of the five thousand is the Lord's only miracle recorded in each of the four Gospels (Mark 6:30-44; Luke 9:10-17; John 6:1-13). According to John, Andrew, who had brought Peter to Jesus, now brought a boy's lunch consisting merely of five loaves, and two fishes (small baked rolls and dried fish, an adequate lunch for a boy, but hardly crumb for the immense crowd). The simplicity of the story and it's inclusion by all four evangelists should eliminate any doubt of its historical accuracy.

Yours in Jesus Christ,

Bishop William B. Caractor
Bishop William Caractor

Little Neck, NY

#363 Aug 2, 2010
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 14.

14:20, 21 Not only is the miracle itself amazing but its result was equally stunning. Twelve baskets full of fragments remained and above what was eaten. The baskets (Greek kophinoi) were small, carried on the arm, and used as a satchel. These may have belonged to the disciples, who received a basket full of blessing as a result of their labor to feed others. Collection of the fragments emphasized the adequacy and immensity of Christ's provision. Besides the five thousand men a large uncounted group of women and children were fed.

14:22-27 Following the miraculous feeding, which John relates in the discourse on the Bread of Life (John 6:22-59), the disciples departed across the sea (of Galilee) by rented ship. Jesus dismissed the crowd and went up into a mountain...to pray. That night, about three miles out in the lake (John 6:19) the disciples encountered great difficulty from a wind that was contrary. During the fourth watch, three to six A.M., Jesus came to them walking on the sea. The nearly exhausted disciples, who had been rowing all night, were afraid, thinking He was a spirit (Greek phantasma), that is, a ghost or apparition. Jesus reassured them, saying, It is I.

14:28-32 Peter answered him in his characteristically impulsive manner. This part of the story is recounted only by Matthew, who was in the boat and on whom it must have made a deep impression. The incident is not presented as a parable, but as an actual event involving three miracles. Jesus walks on the water, Peter temporarily does so, and the wind ceases immediately.

Yours in Jesus Christ,

Bishop William B. Caractor
Bishop William Caractor

Little Neck, NY

#365 Aug 6, 2010
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 15.

15:15-20 Peter, acting on behalf of the others, asks for an explanation of the saying that had given such offense. Our Lord proceeds to elaborate the teaching for their benefit. Draught (Greek aphendron) means literally "latrine." They defile: The "they" is emphatic. Evil thoughts are evil schemes. Blasphemes refers not only to blasphemy in the modern, narrow sense of the word, but also to criticism or libel of others.

15:21-25 The second withdrawal of Jesus followed John's death and further rejection by the religious leadership of Israel. Thus, Jesus actually left the country and went into parts of Tyre and Sidon, leaving Herod's jurisdiction to retire to Phoenicia for a time of seclusion. This was interruption by the woman of Canaan (lit., "Canaanitish woman"). Mark 7:26 calls her a Syrophoenician woman. The word translated "coasts" (Greek mere) means "districts." This is the only known occasion during His ministry that the Lord went outside the boundaries of Palestine. The woman was a Gentile, and descended from the Canaanites who inhabited Syria and Palestine before the conquest of the latter by Joshua.

15:26-28 By children the Lord means Jews, and by dogs, Gentiles. His attitude was intended to test the woman's faith, which was rewarded by a miraculous healing. The term used for dogs (Greek kuharios) means little dogs (pets), not wild, scavenging beasts. She replied that such dogs eat of the crumbs which fall from their master's table. She knew what could be hers, even as a Gentile, and thus became an illustration of millions of Gentiles who would later be blessed by Israel's Messiah. Great is thy faith: Jesus again commends Gentile belief (8:10).

Yours in Jesus Christ,

Bishop William B. Caractor
Bishop William Caractor

Little Neck, NY

#366 Aug 6, 2010
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, it is with a heart full of sorrow for the families that lost their lives during a rage of a disgruntled employee. My prayers are offered not only to the families that lost a member to the family of the young man that did the shooting.

This nation is comprised of different cultures, traditions, races, religions, and different beliefs, etc. Our communities are located in different sections of town, depending upon the person's ability to purchase. We hold different positions, whether it be in the corporate world, ministry, politicians, court system, school system, retail industry, or common laborer, etc. This is what makes our nation and world what it is today, "diverse."

However, we have an enemy, who comes to steal, kill, and destroy. He promotes discrimination in the workplace, discrimination in housing, hatred, which leads to violent crimes against humanity. Hitler proved that point.

I want to address mankind (male and female). We have a brain that gives us the ability to think, we have lungs that allow us to breathe, we have a heart that allow the air that we breathe to be pumped to the various organs within the body, we have an intestinal system, that allows us to ingest and digest nutriments that gives the body strength, we have blood vessels that take the blood to the cells, we have a bladder that holds the liquids, we have the kidneys that cleanses the blood, we have a skeleton frame that supports all the aforementioned, we have skin that covers this frame, God allowed some skin to be dark, red, white, and yellow, which is the makeup of our races, you know what the races are.

God created the world, placed us in a beautiful garden, but because of our desires, we had to be removed, thereby, formulating communities, tribes, and cultures. But one thing we as human beings forget, that we need what God has created, we need His Love, we need His air, we need His food, we need His clothing. I guess you say "Where are you going with this Bishop?" I am going to the point of letting you know, just like we need the things of God, we need each other.

Armies are comprised of people from different countries, different races, different traditions, which are brought together for one purpose, to protect one's right to survival. We have lost sight, we have lost the ability to raise our children, we've lost the right to have Prayer in schools, we have lost the right to have justice prevail in our courts. We have lost respect of other nations, all because we do not respect each other. Mind you, I am not trying to influence any legislature, I am only speaking truth.

Men and women have died to protect the rights of others. Yet, discrimination prevails, and all other crimes against humanity are tolerated. It is time now for the embracement of every nation, kindred, and tongue, for the purpose of defeating satan (antichrist). It is time for him that stole to steal no more, it is time for those that commit sexual crimes against humanity to stop, it is time for the Christian leaders to stand up and be counted. It is time for the lamb to lay down with the lion. It is time for mothers to be mothers, fathers to be fathers. It is time for Christians to stop looking like the world, and come from among them, and be separate. It is time for all denominations to unite for the purpose of defeating the torture of the mind, soul, and body, and to unify each other in the Love of Christ.

Oh, yes! Time is running out, the ninth court of appeals (California) has sent a message to the world, that we no longer want to obey the Word of God. Yes, Jesus died for everyone, and took on the every sin that we that believe are free from sin and death. Why, then are we allowing satan to rule when he has no rights in the Kingdom of God.
Bishop William Caractor

Little Neck, NY

#367 Aug 6, 2010
As a civil rights activist from the state of South Carolina, the hometown of the late Senator Strum Thurmond, where Jim Crow laws were in effect, where African Americans were only allowed to work in the fields, peach packing houses, and if you were educated, you were placed in the school within your community, with one large room, no regents courses, no opportunity to pursue college.

I am writing this because unity in Christ Jesus will bring this nation into subjection of the will of Almighty God.

Again, my condolences go out to those families, friends, and community regarding this race-based killing.

Think about it, we need each other. We breathe the same air, and co-habitate upon the same planet. Why can't we live together in peace?

Yours in Jesus Christ,

Bishop William B. Caractor
Bishop William Caractor

Brooklyn, NY

#369 Aug 17, 2010
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 19.

19:10 Since divorce on any grounds was common in those days (rabbinical literature) the disciples felt it is not good to marry. The severity of Jesus' statement is in total contrast to the society of that day and represents the true intention of God. While divorce appears to be allowed in both Testaments (Deuteronomy 24:1-5; 1 Corinthians 7:15, 27, 28), it is never encouraged. This is because it always violates God's original intention in marriage. Jesus' reply, All men cannot receive this saying, indicates that some are called to be married and remain married; others (who cannot accept this) are called never to marry.

19:13-17 See the parallel accounts in Mark 10:17-31 and Luke 18:18-30. the little children, for whom Jesus cared so much, were evidently sufficient age to respond to Him and He bade them come unto me, revealing that even a child may follow Christ. By contrast to their simple obedience came the complex, young rich man called Jesus Good Master, which the Savior challenged, not to deny His own deity, but to impress upon this seeker the seriousness of the implication. "Are you sure you really mean that?" would be a modern paraphrase. The young man's question What good thing shall I do? implies that he wanted to perform some work that might gain him eternal life (salvation). The Master's reply, If thou wilt enter into life, implies that the young man was still on the outside of such life. The imperative keep the commandments (verse 17) hits his point of pride--self-righteousness. Jesus goes to great lengths now to show him that he had not kept the commandments, and therefore needs God's grace.

19:18-22 This list of commands in verse 18 centers on outward duties, rather than inward nature, which was the young man's real problem. He protests that he had kept these outward demands. His luxurious wealth and self-righteousness had blinded him to his real weakness. To expose this, Jesus orders, go and sell all your possessions and give to the poor...and come...follow me (verse 21). This he would not do and went away sorrowful. Jesus thus shows him that he had not kept the commandments at all. He loved himself more than he loved his neighbor ("the poor"), and he loved his possessions more than he loved God ("me"). This passage teaches the seriousness of true discipleship, but in no way teaches the average man that he must sell his possessions in order to be a Christian.

Yours in Jesus Christ,

Bishop William B. Caractor
Bishop William Caractor

Brooklyn, NY

#370 Aug 18, 2010
Dear Ladies and Gentlemen:

I greet you in the name of 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 Matthew chapter 19.

19:23-26 The further comment that a rich man shall hardly enter into the kingdom of heaven shocked the disciples (verse 25, Who then can be saved?), who accepted the common notion of the day that the rich were blessed of God and therefore certainly saved. To correct that misunderstanding, Jesus explained the human difficulty for the rich to be converted. Hardly (Greek duskolos) implies with extreme difficulty, though not hopeless. The illustration of a camel going through the eye of a needle has been interpreted as a camel-hair rope going through a needle; or an actual camel squeezing through a small gate, "The Eye of a Needle," next to the main gate at Jerusalem; or the absolute impossibility of a literal camel going through a tiny needle's eye. This last usage is most likely.

19:27-30 In the regeneration (Greek paliggenesia) refers to the renewed world of the future, the kingdom of righteousness yet to come. While the term is used for individual rebirth in Titus 3:5, here it looks to the future millennial kingdom where the apostles will judge Israel (literally). Forsaking earthly benefits will bring a hundredfold blessing and everlasting life.

Yours in Jesus Christ,

Bishop William B. Caractor
Bishop William Caractor

Brooklyn, NY

#371 Aug 18, 2010
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 Matthew chapter 20.

20:1-14 This parable reinforces Jesus' teaching regarding true Christian service and riches. The householder is Christ Himself, the Master of the vineyard, the field of labor (service to the world through His church). Early in the morning: The first workers were hired at dawn. A penny (Greek denarion) represents a denarius, or a common day's wage. Other standing idle in the market place were not lazy but were in the usual place to seek employment. From this unemployed group, the householder hired additional workers at 9 a.m., noon, 3 p.m., and 5 p.m. The pay scale will be whatsoever is right, indicating Christ's justice to His laborers. When even [evening] was come, that is, at the end of the day, every man was paid the same wage. Therefore, the first hired laborers murmured against the goodman. However, he reminded them that he had been just in paying them what they bargained for. The statement I will give unto this last, even as unto thee is Jesus' interpretation of the "last shall be first, and the first last" (verse 16). There is here, perhaps, a sweeping view of church history, in which those working in the last hour are promised blessing equal to that of His original disciples. Thus, Jesus warns against jealousy and impurity of motive in serving Him.

20:17-28 See Mark 10:32-34; Luke 18:31-34. The journey to Jerusalem is now resumed after the stay in Perea. As the final events of His life draw nearer, the Lord again seeks to enlighten His disciples.

Yours in Jesus Christ,

Bishop William B. Caractor
Bishop William Caractor

Brooklyn, NY

#372 Aug 23, 2010
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 Ephesians chapter 3.

3:1 The writer begins his second prayer in behalf of the readers. For this cause indicates the reason for his prayer; this expression refers to their being part of the church, which is "a habitation of God" (2:22). Since God lives in the recipients, Paul prays for them. I Paul: From this point the apostle's prayer is side-tracked until its resumption in verse 14. This digression reveals Paul's own divinely appointed part in disclosing the enormous truth explained in 2:11-22--that Gentile believers now stand on equal footing with their Jewish brethren in God's family. The prisoner of Jesus may be read "a prisoner because of Jesus." Paul's imprisonment is due to the Lord's work; it is not due to any wrongdoing on his part.

3:2 This dispensation of the grace of God means "the provision consisting of God's grace." This refers to the divine ability given Paul which enabled him to successfully execute his apostolic ministry to the Gentiles.

3:3 As I wrote afore in few words refers to 1:9, 10 and 2:11-22 where the author only touched on the mystery which God had made known to him. In the most general of terms 1:9, 10 identifies this "mystery" as the establishing of a new humanity under the headship of Christ. A bit more specifically, 2:11-22 defines it as the inclusion of Gentile Christians along with Jewish Christians in God's family. But 3:6 will spell out with even more precision exactly what this mystery entails.

3:5 That the divine blessings of salvation would be extended to the Gentiles was made known from Genesis 12:3 onward. That Gentiles could be saved, therefore, was no secret. But a mystery not made known in Old Testament times was the incorporation of Jewish and Gentile believers alike as fellow members of the body of Christ. This secret is now revealed unto his holy apostles and [Christian] prophets.

Yours in Jesus Christ,

Bishop William B. Caractor
Bishop William Caractor

Little Neck, NY

#373 Aug 24, 2010
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 Ephesians chapter 3.

3:13 Which is your glory: God will use Paul's tribulations and sufferings in the ministry to spiritually benefit his recipients. Such edification will then bring about glory on their part in that they praise and honor God.

3:14 For this cause: This expression resumes the apostle's prayer begun in verse 1 but delayed by the discussion of verses 2-13.

3:15 Is named means "is derived." The whole Christian family, including those saints now departed and in heaven, and those saints still living on earth--all of them "derive" their spiritual life from God.

3:16-19 In these verses Paul makes three prayer requests for the addressees:(1) That they would be strengthened with might by his Spirit (verse 16), that is, that they be divinely enabled to successfully live the Christian life.(2) That the readers be able to comprehend...the love of Christ, that is, to better understand the enormous love Christ has for them. And (3) that they might be filled with all the fullness of God, that is, that the life, character, and virtues of God Himself may be fully developed in them.

3:17 This verse expresses the result of 3:16: Christ will dwell in the lives of those who are recipients of the Holy Spirit. Jesus already lives in them and in all Christians. The Greek word translated "dwell" means to settle down and be at home, to be at ease. When they are divinely strengthened (verse 16), they will then live the kind of lives God desires. When they thus please God, Christ will then "be at home" or "at ease" in their lives. As a permanent guest, He will enjoy living with them.

Yours in Jesus Christ,

Bishop William B. Caractor
Bishop William Caractor

Little Neck, NY

#374 Aug 25, 2010
Dear Ladies and Gentlemen:

I greet you in the name of 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 Ephesians chapter 3 and move into chapter 4.

3:20 In making the three above petitions (verses 16-19), Paul has not asked for too much. For he prays unto him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that he can ask or think.

4:1 I therefore...beseech you: In view of all that God's grace has done for the readers (as seen in chapters 1-3). Paul urges them to walk worthy of their own vocation; that is they are to live in a manner befitting the divine call or invitation (vocation) which summoned them to salvation.

4:2, 3 These verses begin to spell out what constitutes the worthy walk of verse 1. Such noble conduct includes humility, patience toward others, and bending over backward to maintain unity, or harmony, among God's people.

4:4-6 This passage elaborates on the "unity of the Spirit" (verse 3). This oneness among Christians refers to having (1) one body--the one body of Christ, the Christian church; (2) one Spirit--the same Holy Spirit who imparts the same spiritual life to all believers; (3) one hope--all Christians share the same future certainty and are headed toward the same heavenly destination; (4) one Lord--all submit to the same divine ruler, Jesus; (5) one faith--all believers have placed the same trust in Christ for salvation; (6) one baptism--Holy Spirit baptism at the time of salvation (1 Corinthians 12:13); and (7) one God and Father--all believers in Christ have the same God and heavenly Father.

Yours in Jesus Christ,

Bishop William B. Caractor
Bishop William Caractor

Brooklyn, NY

#377 Oct 23, 2010
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 Galatians Chapter 2 Part 1.

2:1-21. The argument in 1:11-24 was that Paul's gospel is divine with its origin. The argument in 2:1-21 is that his gospel is divine with nature. This is proved in two ways:(1) The Pauline gospel was acknowledged by the apostles to be authentic (vv. 1-10); (2) Paul's rebuke of Peter for his reinstating the law attests the authenticity of the Pauline gospel (vv. 11-21).

2:1. Paul's second trip to Jerusalem came 14 years after his first visit when he had met Peter (1:18). Two important figures accompanied him on this occasion- Barnabas and Titus.

2:2. The reason for this second trip was by [because of ] revelation; that is, by prompting him to go, God foresaw the necessity for this consultation with the apostles. In Jerusalem, Paul communicated (laid before) his gospel to the apostles. The Greek word rendered "commuinicated" means "to refer something to another party for his opinion of it." So Paul privately saught the judgment of them which were of reputation (the Jerusalem apostles) regarding the gospel he had been proclaiming for 14 years. Why did Paul seek the apostles' opinion? He had no doubt as to the validity of his gospel, for he had received it directly from Christ; so his consultation with John, James, and Peter was not to ascertain whether his gospel was correct. Rather it was to obtain their approval of the way he was bringing Gentiles into the church: they were admitted without circumcision on the basis of their faith in Christ. Apart from the apostles' consent, Paul's ministry among the heathen would be hindered-he would run [labor ].... in vain.

2:3-9. These verses reveal the outcome of Paul's submission of his gospel to the apostles for their opinion. That they acknowledged his gospel to be genuine and to be the same gospel they preached is seen in three ways:(1) Circumcision was not required of the uncircumcised Titus (v. 3). Had Paul's gospel been lacking in this respect, Titus would have been circumcised.(2) The Jerusalem apostles (they who seemed to be somewhat in conference) added nothing to me (v.6), that is, they found nothing lacking in his gospel so as to require the addition of something (e.g., circumcision).(3) The apostles gave to me and Barnabas the right hands of fellowship (v. 9)., In antiquity the giving of the right hand was sign of agreement made between peers. The Jerusalem apostles viewed Paul and Barnabas as partners in the gospel ministry. The apostles would never have done this had they looked upon Paul's gospel as erroneous.

Yours in Jesus Christ,

Bishop William B. Caractor

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