What does “descry” mean?


by Shawn Brasseaux

Judges 1:23 has, “And the house of Joseph sent to descry Bethel. (Now the name of the city before was Luz.)” What does “descry” mean?

There are two hints to the definition. “Descry” sounds like a more familiar word. Think of “describe”—although this is a different etymology. The Old French “descrier” means “to proclaim.”

Another way to approach the word is to read the verse before and the verse after: “[22] And the house of Joseph, they also went up against Bethel: and the LORD was with them…. [24] And the spies saw a man come forth out of the city, and they said unto him, Shew us, we pray thee, the entrance into the city, and we will shew thee mercy.” Jewish spies have been sent to the city of Bethel. What do spies do? Do they not gather information? What is necessary to describe something? Is not information important in that regard? They are mapping out or searching out the area, thereby qualified to proclaim or announce its traits.

Also see:
» What does “haunt” mean in the Bible?
» What does “listeth” mean?
» What does “churlish” mean?

What does “bray” mean in Job?


by Shawn Brasseaux

What does “bray” mean in Job?

  • Job 6:5: “Doth the wild ass bray when he hath grass? or loweth the ox over his fodder?”
  • Job 30:7: “Among the bushes they brayed; under the nettles they were gathered together.”

By the way, this is not to be confused with “bray” (pound, crush, smash) in Proverbs 27:22. See our related study linked at the end of this article.

The first Job verse is in connection to animal noises. A “wild ass” or donkey will “bray” (groan or wail) when hungry, just as an “ox” will “loweth” (moo or moan) when it is famished. “Braire” is an Old French word for “cry out;” the Old Norse term “Hloi” means “bellower, shouter.” Of course, you can guess “fodder” means food. As these creatures wish to eat, so suffering Job longs for death to come upon him and “put him out of his misery!”

Concerning the second Job verse, these are societal outcasts or wretched people, the lowliest of humanity, assembling under “nettles” (prickly or stinging plants). They also groan or moan, desiring food and/or other necessities. Job is even more miserable than they are, for, he claims, even they despise him.

Also see:
» What does, “bray a fool,” mean?
» Can you explain Job 32:8?
» What does skin for skin mean in Job 2:4?
» How could Satan access Heaven in Job and the Revelation?

What are “old cast clouts?”


by Shawn Brasseaux

“So Ebedmelech took the men with him, and went into the house of the king under the treasury, and took thence old cast clouts and old rotten rags, and let them down by cords into the dungeon to Jeremiah. And Ebedmelech the Ethiopian said unto Jeremiah, Put now these old cast clouts and rotten rags under thine armholes under the cords. And Jeremiah did so” (Jeremiah 38:11-12). What are “old cast clouts?”

The Jews have greatly abused Jeremiah the Prophet. Zedekiah, Judah’s final king, is wicked, so he has permitted the Israelites to persecute God’s messenger. The Babylonian Captivity has already begun several years prior, the LORD’S punishment on Judah for its habitual idolatry. Apostate Jerusalem is soon to fall to the Babylonian troops, and Jeremiah makes that quite clear in his preaching during the opening verses of the chapter! Pleading with his people not to resist the Gentile invasion, but rather submit to King Nebuchadnezzar and be taken political prisoners to Babylon (this is God’s will!), Jeremiah is falsely accused of “hate speech” (sound familiar?) and the princes of Judah inform King Zedekiah of his “treasonous” sermon. Those princes seek Jeremiah’s execution! Zedekiah, the coward that he is, permits them to incarcerate Jeremiah and do with him as they please.

“[6] Then took they Jeremiah, and cast him into the dungeon of Malchiah the son of Hammelech, that was in the court of the prison: and they let down Jeremiah with cords. And in the dungeon there was no water, but mire: so Jeremiah sunk in the mire. [7] Now when Ebedmelech the Ethiopian, one of the eunuchs which was in the king’s house, heard that they had put Jeremiah in the dungeon; the king then sitting in the gate of Benjamin; [8] Ebedmelech went forth out of the king’s house, and spake to the king saying, [9] My lord the king, these men have done evil in all that they have done to Jeremiah the prophet, whom they have cast into the dungeon; and he is like to die for hunger in the place where he is: for there is no more bread in the city. [10] Then the king commanded Ebedmelech the Ethiopian, saying, Take from hence thirty men with thee, and take up Jeremiah the prophet out of the dungeon, before he die.”

The aforementioned “old cast clouts” are components of the “rescue mission” to deliver Jeremiah from his pit prison. He is confined in a hole in the ground (apparently, an empty cistern or water well), so straps are lowered down to him to hoist or lift him out. “Clouts” are scraps of cloth used to mend or patch. “Cast” here is like ripped, pulled apart, strips subsequently twisted or braided. “So they drew up Jeremiah with cords, and took him up out of the dungeon: and Jeremiah remained in the court of the prison” (verse 13).

Also see:
» What are “victuals?”
» If suffering is sure to follow, why serve Jesus Christ?
» How could John the Baptist question if Jesus really is Christ?

What does “churlish” mean?


by Shawn Brasseaux

“Now the name of the man was Nabal; and the name of his wife Abigail: and she was a woman of good understanding, and of a beautiful countenance: but the man was churlish and evil in his doings; and he was of the house of Caleb” (1 Samuel 25:3).

The noun form appears twice in the canon of Scripture: “The vile person shall be no more called liberal, nor the churl said to be bountiful…. The instruments also of the churl are evil: he deviseth wicked devices to destroy the poor with lying words, even when the needy speaketh right” (Isaiah 32:5,7).

Upon initial glance, we ascertain “churlish” is connected to wickedness. It is a negative character trait. Generally, it is someone who is mean-spirited, rude, or harsh. This would be Nabal, the opposite of his kind wife Abigail (read the context). In the Isaiah passage, the description is even more specific, carrying the meaning of a miser; it is a stingy person who resorts to deceitful or fraudulent methods to retain or gain wealth (read the context). “Churl” is from the Old Norse “karl” (“man”).

Also see:
» Who are “abjects?”
» Can you explain, “God save the king?”
» What does “pernicious” mean?

What does “listeth” mean?


by Shawn Brasseaux

On four occasions, the King James Bible employs “listeth” or “listed.” What does the root word “list” mean?

  • Matthew 17:12: “But I say unto you, That Elias is come already, and they knew him not, but have done unto him whatsoever they listed. Likewise shall also the Son of man suffer of them.”
  • Mark 9:13: “But I say unto you, That Elias is indeed come, and they have done unto him whatsoever they listed, as it is written of him.”
  • John 3:8: “The wind bloweth where it listeth, and thou hearest the sound thereof, but canst not tell whence it cometh, and whither it goeth: so is every one that is born of the Spirit.”
  • James 3:4: “Behold also the ships, which though they be so great, and are driven of fierce winds, yet are they turned about with a very small helm, whithersoever the governor listeth.”

Obviously, this sense has nothing to do with making an enumeration such as a shopping list or inventory list. This sense of “list” is derived from the Middle English “listen, lusten.” When you see “list” in these verses, think of lust, desire, want, pleasure. Concerning the Matthew and Mark verses, apostate Israel did what they wanted to John the Baptist—that is, permit King Herod Antipas to execute him. They would likewise do what they desired with Jesus Christ—to wit, kill Him also. As touching the John verse, the wind is blowing where it wants. The James passage describes a man controlling the ship, commanding a boat and taking it to the direction of his pleasure.

Also see:
» What does “concupiscence” mean?
» What does “implacable” mean?
» What does “Fetch a compass” mean?

What are “victuals?”


by Shawn Brasseaux

The term “victuals” appears 17 times in the Authorized Version King James Bible. Please note “victual” is pronounced “vittle,” rhyming with “little.” It is derived from the Latin “victualia,” as in “provisions;” this is the noun use of neuter plural of Latin “victualis,” simply meaning, “pertaining to food.” Related words are “victu(s),” as in “nourishment, way of living,” and “vivere” meaning, “to live.” You can read the pertinent verses and their contexts to appreciate why the word was used:

  • Genesis 14:11: “And they took all the goods of Sodom and Gomorrah, and all their victuals, and went their way.”
  • Leviticus 25:37: “Thou shalt not give him thy money upon usury, nor lend him thy victuals for increase.”
  • Deuteronomy 23:19: “Thou shalt not lend upon usury to thy brother; usury of money, usury of victuals, usury of any thing that is lent upon usury:….”
  • Joshua 1:11: “Pass through the host, and command the people, saying, Prepare you victuals; for within three days ye shall pass over this Jordan, to go in to possess the land, which the LORD your God giveth you to possess it.”
  • Joshua 9:11: “Wherefore our elders and all the inhabitants of our country spake to us, saying, Take victuals with you for the journey, and go to meet them, and say unto them, We are your servants: therefore now make ye a league with us.”
  • Joshua 9:14: “And the men took of their victuals, and asked not counsel at the mouth of the LORD.”
  • Judges 7:8: “So the people took victuals in their hand, and their trumpets: and he sent all the rest of Israel every man unto his tent, and retained those three hundred men: and the host of Midian was beneath him in the valley.”
  • Judges 17:10: “And Micah said unto him, Dwell with me, and be unto me a father and a priest, and I will give thee ten shekels of silver by the year, and a suit of apparel, and thy victuals. So the Levite went in.”
  • 1 Samuel 22:10: “And he enquired of the LORD for him, and gave him victuals, and gave him the sword of Goliath the Philistine.”
  • 1 Kings 4:7: “And Solomon had twelve officers over all Israel, which provided victuals for the king and his household: each man his month in a year made provision.”
  • 1 Kings 11:18: “And they arose out of Midian, and came to Paran: and they took men with them out of Paran, and they came to Egypt, unto Pharaoh king of Egypt; which gave him an house, and appointed him victuals, and gave him land.”
  • Nehemiah 10:31: “And if the people of the land bring ware or any victuals on the sabbath day to sell, that we would not buy it of them on the sabbath, or on the holy day: and that we would leave the seventh year, and the exaction of every debt.”
  • Nehemiah 13:15: “In those days saw I in Judah some treading wine presses on the sabbath, and bringing in sheaves, and lading asses; as also wine, grapes, and figs, and all manner of burdens, which they brought into Jerusalem on the sabbath day: and I testified against them in the day wherein they sold victuals.”
  • Jeremiah 40:5: “Now while he was not yet gone back, he said, Go back also to Gedaliah the son of Ahikam the son of Shaphan, whom the king of Babylon hath made governor over the cities of Judah, and dwell with him among the people: or go wheresoever it seemeth convenient unto thee to go. So the captain of the guard gave him victuals and a reward, and let him go.”
  • Jeremiah 44:17: “But we will certainly do whatsoever thing goeth forth out of our own mouth, to burn incense unto the queen of heaven, and to pour out drink offerings unto her, as we have done, we, and our fathers, our kings, and our princes, in the cities of Judah, and in the streets of Jerusalem: for then had we plenty of victuals, and were well, and saw no evil.”
  • Matthew 14:15: “And when it was evening, his disciples came to him, saying, This is a desert place, and the time is now past; send the multitude away, that they may go into the villages, and buy themselves victuals.”
  • Luke 9:12: “And when the day began to wear away, then came the twelve, and said unto him, Send the multitude away, that they may go into the towns and country round about, and lodge, and get victuals: for we are here in a desert place.”

Also see:
» What are “phylacteries?”
» What are “groves?”
» What are “teraphim?”

What is a “casement?”


by Shawn Brasseaux

Proverbs 7:6 relates: “For at the window of my house I looked through my casement,….” What is a “casement?”

One useful context clue is the reference to a “window.” A “casement” must be related to an opening in a wall. That Hebrew word (“’esnab”) was translated “lattice” in Judges 5:28: “The mother of Sisera looked out at a window, and cried through the lattice, Why is his chariot so long in coming? why tarry the wheels of his chariots?” Instead of panes of glass like our modern windows, latticework covered these ancient window openings of the houses in the land of Palestine. A “casement” is actually a latticework attached to a vertical hinge, set in a window opening. The latticework swings open like a door, with “case” referring to the frame or structure itself. It was through this latticework that King Solomon looked in the Proverbs passage.

Also see:
» What is a “bier?”
» What is a “battlement?”
» What does “joined hard” mean in Acts 18:7?

What is the “train” in 1 Kings 10:2?


by Shawn Brasseaux

First Kings 10:1-2: “[1] And when the queen of Sheba heard of the fame of Solomon concerning the name of the LORD, she came to prove him with hard questions. [2] And she came to Jerusalem with a very great train, with camels that bare spices, and very much gold, and precious stones: and when she was come to Solomon, she communed with him of all that was in her heart.” What is this “train?”

We are not to suppose it is a locomotive pulling a series of rail cars running on a set of parallel tracks. This is another type of train. Let us expand our vocabulary and learn a new sense of a familiar word! One helpful verse is situated in the analogous passage, 2 Chronicles 9:1: “And when the queen of Sheba heard of the fame of Solomon, she came to prove Solomon with hard questions at Jerusalem, with a very great company, and camels that bare spices, and gold in abundance, and precious stones: and when she was come to Solomon, she communed with him of all that was in her heart.”

Her “train” is her pack animals holding goods and moving in a line, a procession of beasts of burden bearing belongings, a caravan of creatures carrying commodities. A type or picture of the Gentiles bringing treasures to King Jesus Christ as He reigns in Jerusalem (Psalm 72:10; Isaiah 61:6), the Gentile Queen of Sheba offers valuables to King Solomon. She has brought these possessions via a drove of camels—her “train.”

About 1,000 years later, during His earthly ministry, the Lord Jesus alluded to that historical event in Matthew 12:42: “The queen of the south shall rise up in the judgment with this generation, and shall condemn it: for she came from the uttermost parts of the earth to hear the wisdom of Solomon; and, behold, a greater than Solomon is here.” Also, Luke 11:31: “The queen of the south shall rise up in the judgment with the men of this generation, and condemn them: for she came from the utmost parts of the earth to hear the wisdom of Solomon; and, behold, a greater than Solomon is here.” This Person “greater than Solomon” is a superior King—the Lord Jesus Christ Himself!

In other words, if the Gentile Queen of Sheba travelled from such a faraway land to hear Solomon’s wisdom and esteem and bless him, how much more should Israel pay attention to and honor and praise the Son of God, the greater King, imparting wisdom to them during His earthly ministry?! In the Day of Judgment, those having more revelation (unbelievers during Christ’s earthly ministry) will be held more accountable for rejecting it than those who refused less spiritual light (unbelievers during Solomon’s rule).

Also see:
» How could “wise” King Solomon let foreign women deceive him?
» Why is the Bible Book of “Ecclesiastes” thus named?
» What does “my kingdom is not of this world” mean?

Did God give the stars for nations to worship?


by Shawn Brasseaux

Deuteronomy chapter 4, verse 19: “And lest thou lift up thine eyes unto heaven, and when thou seest the sun, and the moon, and the stars, even all the host of heaven, shouldest be driven to worship them, and serve them, which the LORD thy God hath divided unto all nations under the whole heaven.” Did God actually give the stars as objects of worship to the nations? “For what saith the Scriptures?”

Originally, all nations had opportunity to know the one true God. Yet, they deliberately rebelled in unbelief at the Tower of Babel, choosing instead to worship and serve myriads of pagan idols. Historically, this is documented in Genesis chapter 11, but it is not explained until Romans chapter 1. It was here that God set aside the nation Israel in chapter 12 of Genesis, beginning with Abram or Abraham.

Romans chapter 1: “[18] For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who hold the truth in unrighteousness; [19] Because that which may be known of God is manifest in them; for God hath shewed it unto them. [20] For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse: [21] Because that, when they knew God, they glorified him not as God, neither were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened.

“[22] Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools, [23] And changed the glory of the uncorruptible God into an image made like to corruptible man, and to birds, and fourfooted beasts, and creeping things. [24] Wherefore God also gave them up to uncleanness through the lusts of their own hearts, to dishonour their own bodies between themselves: [25] Who changed the truth of God into a lie, and worshipped and served the creature more than the Creator, who is blessed for ever. Amen.”

You can also read the rest of Romans chapter 1 (it closes at verse 32). Notice two more excerpts: “[26] For this cause God gave them up unto vile affections:… [28] And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a reprobate mind, to do those things which are not convenient;….” If ever you have wondered how the world, human society as a whole, ever wound up in the mess in which it currently is, simply look at the first chapter of Romans and all will be clear. We dare not speculate how the world religions originated: we just look at these passages and understand it. Astrology (worship of heavenly bodies), pantheism (“nature is God, God is nature”), and the like all began here. If that was what they wanted, that is precisely what they received—and the LORD gave them over to worship anything and everything they desired (including the celestial bodies such as the sun, the moon, the stars, and the planets).

Referring to the aforementioned evil world system and its adherents, the Apostles Paul and Barnabas preached to heathen idolaters in Acts chapter 14: “[14] Which when the apostles, Barnabas and Paul, heard of, they rent their clothes, and ran in among the people, crying out, [15] And saying, Sirs, why do ye these things? We also are men of like passions with you, and preach unto you that ye should turn from these vanities unto the living God, which made heaven, and earth, and the sea, and all things that are therein: [16] Who in times past suffered all nations to walk in their own ways.

Acts chapter 17 is even more explicit: “[22] Then Paul stood in the midst of Mars’ hill, and said, Ye men of Athens, I perceive that in all things ye are too superstitious. [23] For as I passed by, and beheld your devotions, I found an altar with this inscription, TO THE UNKNOWN GOD. Whom therefore ye ignorantly worship, him declare I unto you. [24] God that made the world and all things therein, seeing that he is Lord of heaven and earth, dwelleth not in temples made with hands; [25] Neither is worshipped with men’s hands, as though he needed any thing, seeing he giveth to all life, and breath, and all things; [26] And hath made of one blood all nations of men for to dwell on all the face of the earth, and hath determined the times before appointed, and the bounds of their habitation; [27] That they should seek the Lord, if haply they might feel after him, and find him, though he be not far from every one of us: [28] For in him we live, and move, and have our being; as certain also of your own poets have said, For we are also his offspring. [29] Forasmuch then as we are the offspring of God, we ought not to think that the Godhead is like unto gold, or silver, or stone, graven by art and man’s device. [30] And the times of this ignorance God winked at; but now commandeth all men every where to repent: [31] Because he hath appointed a day, in the which he will judge the world in righteousness by that man whom he hath ordained; whereof he hath given assurance unto all men, in that he hath raised him from the dead.”

Did you see how God, in time past, “suffered all nations to walk in their own ways” (Acts 14:16)? Did you notice their spiritual blindness in Acts 17:27 and ignorance in Acts 17:30? Remember chapter 1 of Romans! These are the results of the one true God giving the nations over to Satan back at the Tower of Babel. Before they came to faith in Christ, this was the condition of the Ephesians: “And you hath he quickened, who were dead in trespasses and sins; Wherein in time past ye walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that now worketh in the children of disobedience: Among whom also we all had our conversation in times past in the lusts of our flesh, fulfilling the desires of the flesh and of the mind; and were by nature the children of wrath, even as others” (Ephesians 2:1-3). Verse 12 says of the Gentiles in time past, “ye were… without God in the world.” Galatians 4:8 comments, “Howbeit then, when ye knew not God, ye did service unto them which by nature are no gods.”

Worshipping stars and planets was common amongst Israel’s Gentile neighbors, so Moses in Deuteronomy commanded his Jewish brethren to be careful not to join them in that satanic activity. Fallen angels, evil spirits, still occupy these regions in outer space, rendering the stars or heavens unclean in God’s sight (Job 15:15; Job 25:5; Ephesians 6:12; Revelation 12:7-12). Unfortunately, the Jewish people ignored the Law of Moses—and worshipped and served idols like all the Gentiles around them. In fact, the kings of Judah (sons of David) encouraged such worship of celestial bodies: “And he [King Josiah] put down the idolatrous priests, whom the kings of Judah had ordained to burn incense in the high places in the cities of Judah, and in the places round about Jerusalem; them also that burned incense unto Baal, to the sun, and to the moon, and to the planets, and to all the host of heaven (2 Kings 23:5). This evil happened right in the LORD God’s capital city of Jerusalem, though believing Josiah was able to reform the nation spiritually!

The concluding observation and application we can make here is simple: May we choose the truth, and not the error. JEHOVAH God values free will, so if we are content in learning and believing lies, Satan’s policy of evil will surely gratify us and we will be given over to it. If we want to know and do the truth, however, the plain record of Scripture is there (here), and let us be grateful that we have it!

Also see:
» Why does Ephesians conclude with such a “dark” passage?
» How could Satan access Heaven in Job and the Revelation?
» How does Satan operate today?
» How many angels fell with Lucifer when he transformed into Satan?
» Where in the Bible did God give Satan domain over the Earth?
» Why does God let Satan exist?
» Is there any chance more angels will leave God and follow Satan?

Should we pray with people of various denominations?


by Shawn Brasseaux

Other names for this activity are “interfaith” prayer, “interdenominational” prayer, or “ecumenical” prayer. It is often done when local religious leaders or even college students gather in public to pray for their community, state, country, or even the world. Never do we fault anyone for seeking to do right and improve society, provided they are sincerely desiring to do God’s will in life. However, we do question the underlying doctrine guiding people to do what they do and say what they say. Is it God the Holy Spirit working in them, or is it just their flesh laboring to substitute God’s work? Usually, when denominational people are involved, it is nothing but erroneous doctrine underpinning their theological system. Essentially, there is no Holy Spirit superintending the matter, so, in that case, it is nothing more than an exercise in futility.

Prayer is talking to God in light of His Word to you. However, dear friend, if you do not know what God has told you in His Word, how can you have effectual prayer? What is the point of you praying when you have no idea about what you are praying?! Even if you do happen to be in the very small minority that is grounded in the Scriptures, how can you expect denominational people to be in agreement with the truth in prayer when sound Bible doctrine does not even form the foundation for their prayer life? They cannot pray for God’s will, or pray in accordance with it, because they do not know it. It does not make sense for the person who understands sound Bible doctrine to presume he or she will have a profitable time in prayer with someone who does not. There is no fellowship, no communion, no unity—and was not the purpose of the prayer meeting to agree to the point of solving society’s problems?! The Holy Spirit is being quenched or hindered in the ignorant soul, only compounding the woes in the world. Do we still want to participate in this debacle, jeopardizing our own spiritual health in the process?

We can never, ever, EVER (!) force God to do something He is not doing today. Maybe He did do it in the past, and we are quoting Bible verses under the impression He will behave that way for us. This is just how denominationalism treats the Scriptures. Citing Bible passages without recognizing to and about whom they were spoken or written, is dangerous. It will lead to frustration, misunderstanding, and even an outright abandonment of the Bible! Denominational systems rely so heavily on verses quoted out of context. They take passages not to or about us, and they assume these verses apply to us. Here is a sure way to open ourselves up to a host of uncertainties, disappointments, and illusions. Satan’s policy of evil will use all of this as a doorway into our lives—and let us not underestimate him! Let us heed the warnings of Scripture.

For example, consider 2 Corinthians 6:14-18: “[14] Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? and what communion hath light with darkness? [15] And what concord hath Christ with Belial? or what part hath he that believeth with an infidel? [16] And what agreement hath the temple of God with idols? for ye are the temple of the living God; as God hath said, I will dwell in them, and walk in them; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people. [17] Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you. [18] And will be a Father unto you, and ye shall be my sons and daughters, saith the Lord Almighty.”

Could these words be any plainer? The Bible says we are not to attach ourselves to unbelievers—and just because someone claims to be a “believer” or “Christian” does not guarantee they really are, either. Many unsaved people say they are “Christian” just because they have joined a local church, enrolled in a denomination, had “Christian” parents, attended “Christian” schools, and so on. The aforementioned passage goes beyond simply forbidding our intermarriage with unbelievers. It refers to mingling with them in their religious services (would that not include prayer?!), participating in their ignorance (would that not include prayer?!), joining them in their Satan worship (would that not include prayer?!). This is strong language, but it is what the Bible says, and we either believe it or we do not. “Come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing.”

Galatians 1:6-9 is another thought-provoking portion of God’s Word: “[6] I marvel that ye are so soon removed from him that called you into the grace of Christ unto another gospel: [7] Which is not another; but there be some that trouble you, and would pervert the gospel of Christ. [8] But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed. [9] As we said before, so say I now again, if any man preach any other gospel unto you than that ye have received, let him be accursed.”

According to the Holy Spirit through the Apostle Paul, the Galatians were to have nothing to do with false teachers. These false teachers were actually Bible teachers: they wrongly taught that the Law of Moses (Scripture!) was applicable in this the Dispensation of Grace (see Galatians 4:21). Even today, you can find legalists and legalistic teachings (“perform to get God’s blessings”) throughout the thousands of denominations, sects, groups, and cults of Christendom. Instead of stressing grace (what God has done for us through Jesus Christ’s finished crosswork), they put the focus on us or works-religion (what we can do to merit God’s favor—tithing, water baptism, confession of sins, repentance, commandment-keeping, et cetera). They are ignorant of God’s Word to and about us today, Paul’s epistles, Romans through Philemon.

Look at another excerpt from Paul’s epistle to Galatia (chapter 5, verses 7-9): “Ye did run well; who did hinder you that ye should not obey the truth? This persuasion cometh not of him that calleth you. A little leaven leaveneth the whole lump.” What happened to these saints? Well, remember from chapter 1 (cited moments earlier), how false teachers had deceived them, leading them away from Paul’s ministry and message. Just as a small amount of yeast causes the entire lump of dough to rise, so a little false teaching inflicts great damage on its audience. The whole local assembly is subject to fall into the error. Friend, if you fellowship with individuals who are not spiritually stable, you yourself will wind up compromised. You will begin repeating their silly phrases. You will be misquoting verses too. You will end up deceived. Unfortunately, the Church the Body of Christ has been far too naïve in this regard, believing it is immune from such ruin. Over these last 2,000 years, we have permitted an abundance of lies in our seminaries, colleges, and pulpits. Little to nothing was done to stop it, and now look at the doctrinal mess besetting the whole professing church worldwide! Non-Christians look at us and cannot help but laugh. We are totally irrelevant because we do not have a clue what God is doing in the world today! And we claim to have and know the truth?! No wonder unbelievers have such a poor attitude toward the Bible.

Here is yet another admonition or warning about exercising great caution concerning false teachers: “If any man teach otherwise, and consent not to wholesome words, even the words of our Lord Jesus Christ, and to the doctrine which is according to godliness; He is proud, knowing nothing, but doting about questions and strifes of words, whereof cometh envy, strife, railings, evil surmisings, Perverse disputings of men of corrupt minds, and destitute of the truth, supposing that gain is godliness: from such withdraw thyself(1 Timothy 6:3-5). What do the Scriptures say? We are to “withdraw” from anyone, isolate ourselves from anyone and everyone, who teaches something other than what the rightly divided Bible teaches. When you listen to denominational people pray, they sound like “know-nothing” people. Their minds are “corrupt”—and you know it because you can hear the words coming out of their lips. Whatever they are saying is so antithetical to what the Holy Spirit has already said through the Apostle Paul. There is no unity, for doctrine divides.

Again, Romans chapter 16: “[17] Now I beseech you, brethren, mark them which cause divisions and offences contrary to the doctrine which ye have learned; and avoid them. [18] For they that are such serve not our Lord Jesus Christ, but their own belly; and by good words and fair speeches deceive the hearts of the simple.” If they do not teach sound Bible doctrine (God’s Word rightly divided; 2 Timothy 2:15), we are not to fellowship with them. They should not be allowed to teach at our Bible conferences or during church services. They should not be leading us in prayer either. We should not marry them. We should not go “witnessing door-to-door” with them. We should not cooperate with them in blood drives, clothing drives, food drives, or any other parachurch/paraministry philanthropic endeavors. The Bible says we are to “avoid them.” Once more, we either believe the Bible or we do not.

One final passage, 2 Timothy 3:1-5: “[1] This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come. [2] For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, [3] Without natural affection, trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good, [4] Traitors, heady, highminded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God; [5] Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away.” It is extremely important that we notice these people have “a form of godliness.” They appear religious. It seems like they are Christians. However, the Holy Scriptures consider them to be evil. What should be our response to them? “From such turn away.” Could that be any clearer, friend? It does not matter what they do or say because they “deny the power of godliness.” There is no power of God with or in them, for they have rejected His words that contain that power (Hebrews 4:12)—sound Bible doctrine. If you have the power of God with and in you—that is, you have trusted sound Bible doctrine—then you cannot expect to be compatible with these individuals.

For anyone to say it does not matter where we go to church, or it does not matter with whom we pray, or it does not matter what we believe, or it does not matter whom we invite to teach in our local assembly, that person is simply advertising Bible ignorance. They are totally unfamiliar with what the Bible has already stated about these issues, the verses we have just read, and they are therefore disqualified from being any authority on the subjects. Before they talk about matters they do not understand, they had better go study the Scriptures, lest God hold them accountable for misrepresenting Him and His words.

Once, someone argued “interfaith” prayer, “interdenominational” prayer, or “ecumenical” prayer, was acceptable because it was just a short meeting. As long as it is brief, we can do it. Applying that logic, we could swim in raw sewage—so long as we leapt out before too long! We could drink a little poison—but not too much! We could hold our hand over an open flame—provided we withdrew before being burned! Would we go sit in their local church building for an hour and listen to false teachers teach or preach? No? Well, in the form of prayer, they are teaching and preaching to us at a prayer meeting. They are still imparting to us their erroneous view of the world, the Scriptures, God, et cetera. This exposure to error will negatively affect us at some point—perhaps short-term, perhaps long-term, but, rest assured, it will ultimately damage us. All we have to do is look around at Christendom, with its thousands upon thousands upon thousands of denominations; with its millions upon millions upon millions of confused and spiritually immature church members. Dear friend, is that really what you want to get involved with?! Do you actually desire to pray with these kinds of people?! Absurdity ad infinitum!


One of the most ardent supporters of interfaith, interdenominational, or ecumenical functions, is the Roman Catholic Church. Why? Since the Protestant Reformation over 500 years ago, the Vatican has devised and employed various methods to bring Protestants back under the pope’s authority. Sometimes, this came in the form of physical assaults or wars—burning Bibles and Christians at the stake, appointing Catholic leaders after subjugating nations, and the like. In recent centuries, however, the Roman Catholic institution has taken a subtler approach to “return dissidents to the fold of Rome.”

For instance, during the early to mid-1800s, when Roman officials wanted to lead the Church of England back to the pope—from which King Henry VIII had split the British people centuries prior—a campaign known as the Oxford Movement or the Tractarian Movement was underway. A series of pamphlets or tracts promoting Roman Catholic doctrine (propaganda) was written and circulated among the English people. Also, Roman Catholics (especially Jesuits), pretending to be Protestants, trained subsequent generations of preachers in their false teaching at colleges, which ultimately led to Roman Catholic ideas infiltrating the Church of England through the pulpits (apostasy from which it has never recovered).

Out of this disaster emerged two Cambridge professors and Anglican church leaders, B. F. Westcott (1825–1901) and F. J. A. Hort (1828–1892), who successfully led a Bible translation project to overthrow the Protestant King James Bible and its underlying Greek Textus Receptus. The 1881 Revised Version and its underlying Westcott-Hort Greek New Testament are based heavily on the Roman Catholic Greek Bible known as Codex Vaticanus (or “B”)—you did see “Vatican” in “Vaticanus,” did you not?! In 1901, the American Standard Version was released, bringing the false texts and textual theories of Westcott and Hort to the United States, which resulted in over 100 Bibles during the next century. Now you know why there are so many modern English versions today! With Protestants using dozens upon dozens of Roman Catholic Bibles, and having no one standard text, their confused minds and hearts are ready to hear those words that will lead them back to Rome: “A better translation is… [Rome’s Bible says…].”

Especially since the opening of the 20th century, Roman Catholics have actually sat on translation committees of Protestant Bibles. In fact, for decades, Cardinal (Jesuit!) Carlo M. Martini (1927–2012), of the Pontifical (Pope’s!) Bible Institute, served as one of the primary editors of The Greek New Testament (United Bible Societies) and the Nestle-Aland Novum Testamentum Graece. These Greek Bibles are essentially the perverted texts of Westcott and Hort, and are the tools modern English translators use to produce modern English versions! Whether they know it or not, American Protestant churches have been “Romanized” just as the Church of England was in the 19th century!

Of course, practically no one is aware of this—and those who know it often choose to remain silent for fear of being labeled “unscholarly,” “troublemaker,” “heretic,” “divider,” “church-splitter.” Likewise, these are the insults reserved for those who refuse to participate in Rome’s ecumenical, interfaith, or interdenominational prayer services. “We ought to obey God rather than men (Acts 5:29).

Saints, please remember us in your monthly giving—these websites do cost money to run! 🙂 You can donate securely here: https://www.paypal.me/ShawnBrasseaux, or email me at arcministries@gmail.com. Do not forget about Bible Q&A booklets for sale at https://arcgraceministries.org/in-print/booklets-bible-q-a/. Thanks to all who give to and pray for us! By the way, ministry emails have really been backed up this year. I am handling them as much as humanly possible. Thanks for your patience. 🙂

Also see:
» Does doctrine really matter?
» Should we hate the denominational people who misled us?
» What does “Anathema Maranatha” mean in 1 Corinthians 16:22?
» Must one be a “King James Bible Pauline dispensationalist” to have eternal life?
» How do we identify false teachers?
» Should we be “fruit inspectors?”
» How can false teachers sleep at night?