Puritan Belief

The Puritans are the men of God who started in the 16th century building on the purity of the gospel message that Salvation is by Grace alone.

Measuring Stick

How can every believer in Jesus know that the Spirit of their doctrine is from the right Spirit. How do you know that your understanding of God comes from the Spirit of God and not the Spirit of the Devil?

What is the 100% reliable source or measuring stick which every denomination can measure their beliefs against so that without doubt you can know that it is the Spirit of God and not the Spirit of the Devil?

Add Your Comment(51)

Measuring Stick
Posted by Correy Edmed Wednesday, June 07, 2006

51 Comments:

Blogger Samantha said...

The devil disguises pride to look like humility. I ask myself everyday, in every situation, "Does this make me boast of myself or God??"

And from that question, I know who's voice to follow.

June 09, 2006 2:25 PM   Edit
Blogger Puritan Belief said...

That is a good answer and this measuring stick that the glory is for God and not yourself is great.

My only qualm is that many other religions, sects etc have the same measuring stick and we can't all be right.

Can anyone think of another measuring stick which can be used for Christians?

June 09, 2006 5:59 PM   Edit
Blogger Modern Day Magi said...

Matthew 7:2, Mark 4:24 and Luke 6:38 all say that we will be measured by the same standard that we judge others by.

What then is the measure by which to judge?

The Measuring stick should be how we determine truth. Not a relative truth but the one ultimate Truth which is the Way to Life.

Have we seen an example of this?

Acts 17:11 tells us that the Bereans were of noble character because they "examined the Scriptures every day" in order to determine the truth of a message.

We should follow their lead then and use Scripture as the ultimate measuring stick by which to detemine truth. Anything ontrary to scripture is contrary to Christ and in opposition to the Truth.

Because "the holy Scriptures, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus. All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the man of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work."
- 2 Timothy 3:14-17

MDM

June 09, 2006 11:23 PM   Edit
Blogger Samantha said...

I do not know if there can possibly be an accurate measuring stick...and even if there was, I highly doubt we'd all agree on it. We're suppose to trust the Word, but human pride can barely agree on what the "Good News" really means.

Do you, puritan belief, have any ideas?

June 10, 2006 12:48 AM   Edit
Blogger Puritan Belief said...

Yes understanding scripture is a fabulous way of gaining truth. The heathens, new age and nearly all sects use the scripture to give what they say weight. They all believe their version of the truth is the "only truth".

I am sure most people would say they are faithful bereans and believe in the "true Christ" yet from the same scripture they can get the opposite meanings and they both can't be right.

Therefore there must be especially for Christians a "measuring stick" that we can go to, to be sure that our belief/doctrine is correct.

Yes Samantha I do know this "measuring stick" For me to embrace a doctrine I must know that it measures up and I am not being led astray.

I will write a post about it but would love for someone to say it. Your first comment was very warm. Can you trump that comment?

June 10, 2006 10:02 AM   Edit
Blogger Allforlove said...

Jesus christ is the way the truth and the life. He is the only measuring stick.

In every situation you have to ask, does this lift up Jesus Christ.

Like the wise man who built his house on the rock (the revealed word of God) we build our lives on Jesus... and even then he promises that 'with man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible'

If you dont know Jesus, you dont know God.

June 10, 2006 10:09 AM   Edit
Blogger Puritan Belief said...

canigetsomelove:

Perfect Answer!

If a doctrine doesn't lift Jesus up to the most magnified and exalted position it is false and you should not believe in it.

Lifting up Jesus is my "puritan belief" and measuring stick in each and every doctrine I embrace and believe.

who are you canigesomelove? Do I know you?

June 10, 2006 10:23 AM   Edit
Blogger Allforlove said...

How Awesome is our Jesus hey!!! words can not describe.

Do u think that believing in jesus is the only way we can be saved?

Like it says that even the demons believe.
and that not ever yone who calls jesus lord will enter into heaven

What else do we have to do or what makes us different that we will be with jesus in heaven?

The demons and those give over to their own dillusions never entered through the narrow gate which is Jesus Himself.

June 10, 2006 10:42 AM   Edit
Blogger Puritan Belief said...

canigetsomelove

Yes believing in Jesus is the only way to be saved.

There is nothing else that must be done. Once Jesus makes you alive by His Spirit you are saved and can never be lost.

What makes us different is that Jesus saved us, with bands of loving kindness he called us by name and made us His.

Most people don't believe that Jesus is the one and only true Lord of Lords. They substitute him with other people such as a mystical Father figure who is not Jesus.

June 10, 2006 1:00 PM   Edit
Blogger Samantha said...

Agreed! :)

June 10, 2006 1:18 PM   Edit
Blogger Modern Day Magi said...

canigetsomelove,
it is important also to realise that salvation is not really a question of "what do I need to do?"

Salvation comes by Grace alone and is the gift of God. Our Faith in HIm is another result of that saving Grace and not the cause of it.

MDM

June 10, 2006 1:44 PM   Edit
Blogger Modern Day Magi said...

"In every situation you have to ask, does this lift up Jesus Christ."

This alone is not enough. We cannot allow our "measuring stick" for truth to be introspective at all. There have been many who believed they were doing the work of God or representing Jesus when in fact they are not.

Hitler (an extreme example I know) believed in the 'purity and supremacy' of the White Arian race as being the chosen of God. In accordance with this belief he began a path of genocide and brought the world to war.

Clearly he was not acting upon the truth of the gospel and the message of Jesus.

We can never use "spiritual revelation" alone to be the basis of a belief or doctorine.

"But I am exalting the name of Jesus to the highest position..." is also not really an acurate measure. Oneness Pentocostals, for example, are passionate about Jesus name but they are not correct with many, if any, of their doctorines.

I've met a guy at Byron Bay, AUstralia who honestly thought he was Jesus and thus believed his own words were Truth and as good as scripture, even when they contradicted the Bible. He was wrong too.

Scripture cirtainly needs a level of spiritual discernment and insight to be able to understand the full truth found there in. However the Holy Spirit will never give a truth which is in oposition to what scripture says, if this 'spirit' comes it is a deciever.

Truth will always be found in the Word of God the Bible, anything in opposition to the Word of God is not and can not be truth.

Scripture will never do anything but exalt the Mighty name of our Lord and Saviour, the Alpha and Omega, the Messiah our God, Jesus.

MDM

June 10, 2006 1:56 PM   Edit
Blogger Puritan Belief said...

Jesus is enough Magi,

These examples really miss the point.

June 10, 2006 2:01 PM   Edit
Blogger Modern Day Magi said...

I havn't missed the point at all PB.

I simply disagree with you.

You are suggesting, and have been for the last few posts, that scripture is secondary to 'spiritual revelation'. This, I have to say, is an incorrect understanding.

The Word of God is the Truth. The Word of God is the Scripture. As you rightly say Jesus is the Truth so scripture will never contradict Him and neither will He contradict scripture.

Scripture, coupled with the Holy Spirit which 'opens the eyes' of the believer with Salvation is the measure by which Truth is discovered, weighed, tested. Anything more introspective or along the lines of "But the Spirit said so..." or "Jesus is lifted up by this...He really is..." is liable to be false if not tested against scripture.

I know you will not be convinced and this is not my aim.

Sola Scriptura - the scripture alone is the authoritive and infallable Word of God.

MDM

June 10, 2006 3:24 PM   Edit
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I guess when u have been convincingly shown over the last few weeks that doctrines you hold dear are scripturally unsound you are left with two choices...the first and most obvious would be to repent and align yourself with the jesus of the bible or the other option as you seem to be choosing in your last few posts is to try and make scripture less important than your spiritual revelation to justify your standpoint. The world is certainly becoming a place of 'relative' truth.

June 10, 2006 6:35 PM   Edit
Blogger Paul G said...

canigetsomelove,

What a great answer!
Jesus alone on the highest place! amen and amen.

modern day magi,

You are looking in the wrong direction, the truth is found only in Jesus.
The measuring stick is Jesus alone exalted in the highest place, authority, dominion and position in every doctrine, preaching and testimonies etc.
If Jesus is not on the pinnacle, then it is a false spirit.

June 10, 2006 7:06 PM   Edit
Blogger Modern Day Magi said...

paul g,
I said "Scripture will never do anything but exalt the Mighty name of our Lord and Saviour, the Alpha and Omega, the Messiah our God, Jesus."

Jesus said "If you believed Moses [the scripture], you would believe me, for he wrote about me. But since you do not believe what he wrote, how are you going to believe what I say?" - John 5:46-47

Jesus also said "Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I have not come to abolish them but to fulfill them. I tell you the truth, until heaven and earth disappear, not the smallest letter, not the least stroke of a pen, will by any means disappear from the Law until everything is accomplished."
- Matthew 5:17-18

I have never replaced Jesus with anything. His words, the scripture, are the measure of Truth. Any other measure can be false. Simply relying on a 'spiritual revelation' if it is contrary to scripture is false and leads to the path of destruction.

Unlike you, paul g, and unlike PB I will always rely on the scripture to be the Word of God and to be truth. If I ever discover a bilief I hold is contrary to scripture, I will never claim that scripture is wrong or secondary and that my 'spiritual' enlightenment is superior.

Siddhartha Gautama, Joseph Smith and Muhammad have all had 'spiritual revelations'.

Where do you draw the line at 'Spiritual Revelation' being a source of Truth?

If it is contrary to cripture then any Spiritual revelation is of an angel masquerading as an angel of light and is deceptive. God's word is True. The Scripture is True. Anything contrary to scripture is not.

MDM

June 10, 2006 9:43 PM   Edit
Blogger Puritan Belief said...

Anonymous
If anything I have said doesn't have Jesus lifted up to the highest position please inform me and I will use this measuring stick and if it doesn't measure up I will happily retract it.

Magi:
Nearly all groups says they believe in "Sola Scripture". Just look up a few creeds they all have it:
eg. ... We believe that the bible is the infallible word of God... but their preceding statements contradict another groups.

You should have rejoiced with canigetsomelove and paulg's comments.

"In every situation you have to ask, does this lift up Jesus Christ. " ... Jesus alone exalted in the highest place, authority, dominion and position in every doctrine, preaching and testimonies

We are saying you should go back and re-evaluate everything you believe from the scripture with this measuring stick and not your own wisdom.

However I have one problem:

I can't give you this measuring stick.

June 10, 2006 10:50 PM   Edit
Blogger Puritan Belief said...

Modern Day Wise Man (Magi)

Where is the wise man? Where is the scholar? Where is the philosopher of this age? Has not God made foolish the wisdom of the world? 1 Cor 1:20

To read the bible without this measuring stick and replace it with your own intellect or interpretation is like building your house upon the sand.

I fervently ask all my readers to build their house[beliefs] upon the rock[Jesus]. (Matt 7:25)

The "measuring stick"[rock] is Jesus exalted

June 10, 2006 11:02 PM   Edit
Blogger Modern Day Magi said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

June 10, 2006 11:14 PM   Edit
Blogger Modern Day Magi said...

Scripture will never do anything but exalt the Mighty name of our Lord and Saviour, the Alpha and Omega, the Messiah our God, Jesus.

Where I disagree with you is not that Jesus is and should be placed and worship above all else.

I disagree with you because I know that the Scripture is the Word of God, it is the Truth which is the Way to Life, it is the Gospel and message of Jesus. All scripture points toward Him. You however claim that we should follow or adhere to "The Spirit and NOT the Letter."

This is the falsehood of your position as all spiritual revelation (I know I am repeating myself here) needs to be measured by the recorded Words of Jesus, the "Letters in Red" as you have called them, and the inspired Word of God, the Scripture, the Bible.

Our beliefs are to be aligned with Scripture not Scripture manipulated to align with our belief.

Perhaps you should re-evaluate everything you believe in light of scripture and see how your 'spiritual revelation' bears the Light of Truth.

As the late theologian, John Wesley, stated in the 18th century, "The Church is to be judged by the Scriptures, not the Scriptures by the Church."

MDM

June 10, 2006 11:15 PM   Edit
Blogger Modern Day Magi said...

Instruct a wise man and he will be wiser still;
teach a righteous man and he will add to his learning.

The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom, and knowledge of the Holy One is understanding.

June 10, 2006 11:27 PM   Edit
Blogger Modern Day Magi said...

"Therefore everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock."
- Matthew 7:24

Notice Jesus did not say
"Therefore everyone who hears from a spirit and does not test what he hears against these words of mine and puts what the spirit said into practice regardles of what scripture might say in oposition is like a Puritan Believer who built his house on the rock."

June 10, 2006 11:37 PM   Edit
Blogger Puritan Belief said...

Magi:
Yes Magi you are right I do think this:

"You however claim that we should follow or adhere to "The Spirit and NOT the Letter."

For someone who is meant to believe in "Sola Scripture" why would you disagree with me?

For Scripture says:

Romans 7:6
... that we should serve in newness of spirit, and not in the oldness of the letter.


Perhaps take a step back for an hour or so and go to Jesus Himself not with your intellect not your wisdom but as a child and ask him about this measuring stick.

June 10, 2006 11:39 PM   Edit
Blogger Modern Day Magi said...

tsk tsk tsk PB you used some of that inferior 'Letter' as evidence of your position.

Cant have you cake and eat it too.

MDM

June 10, 2006 11:55 PM   Edit
Blogger Modern Day Magi said...

Romans 7 is talking about using the Law to gain salvation. Salvation can only be found through Jesus however.
"What a wretched man I am! Who will rescue me from this body of death? Thanks be to God—through Jesus Christ our Lord!"

MDM

June 11, 2006 12:03 AM   Edit
Anonymous suttonperth said...

100% reliable source or measuring stick which every denomination can measure their beliefs against?

The Bible.
I agree with some others. This is the measuring stick. Some say they are following Jesus, but their Jesus is not the Jesus of the Bible.

I agree that Jesus leads you into all truth and opens up the scriptures. But I would start from the Bible and then asks God's Spirit to reveal the truth. If there are many different answers (Measurements) I would be concerned about that.
Have I got the wrong spirit Lord or have they. One must always be teachable. The Lord is the Good Teacher.

June 11, 2006 2:08 AM   Edit
Blogger Samantha said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

June 12, 2006 5:16 AM   Edit
Blogger Samantha said...

Modern Day Magi said:
...and use Scripture as the ultimate measuring stick by which to detemine truth.

I disagree. I grew up Catholic and thought I believed the truth. Now people call me a 5 point Calvinist.

So I'm extremely confused how "I" can trust "me" to interpret scripture correctly? I can certainly pile verse upon verse to back up my beliefs, but so can JW's, Mormons, Jews, COC's, etc. etc. How can we determine what is true when so many interpret scripture differently?

June 12, 2006 5:18 AM   Edit
Blogger Modern Day Magi said...

Samantha,
you will find that the JW's have edited scripture to fit their beliefs, the Mormons have a whole extra book , The Book of Mormon added to scripture, Catholics include the Deuteronical books and church tradition as authorative.

The Spirit of God will NEVER be contrary to the true scriptures. Thus we are to test all 'spirits' by the scriptures. Not a single scripture which can be taken out of context easily but all of the Bible, as one book, which will neve contradict itself for it is the Word of God and He does not change.

If, as you say, you can't trust you own interpretation of scripture, how then can you trust a 'spiritual revelation' if only you have had it, and you have nothing to test it upon.

MDM

June 12, 2006 10:05 AM   Edit
Blogger Michael said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

June 12, 2006 12:02 PM   Edit
Blogger Samantha said...

modern day magi said:
If, as you say, you can't trust you own interpretation of scripture, how then can you trust a 'spiritual revelation' if only you have had it, and you have nothing to test it upon.

I never trust me, I only trust Christ.

That is the difference. If Christ is living in me, then I know I have a trustworthy measuring stick. If it is "I" that "I" put my trust in, then I am not following the Spirit.

June 12, 2006 12:13 PM   Edit
Blogger Allforlove said...

Puritan:

i agree christ alone can make us alive with his spirit. My question wasnt thought through...i was meant to say ( and u answered it) is there any way we can loose it...u said no. But what about John 15? Every branch that doesnt bear fruit he takes away...also in romans... read Rom 11.22-24 ...if u continue in his goodness, otherwise u also will be cut off...if they do not coninue in unbelief, will be grafted in , for God is able to graft them in again.

love

June 12, 2006 3:05 PM   Edit
Blogger Allforlove said...

maji,

i agree with you, scripture and christ go hand in hand...more than that they are one and the same.

For the WORD OF GOD is living and active. Sharper than any double edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow;it judges ( measuring stick ) the thoughts and attitueds of the heart - heb 5 :12

In the beginning was the word, and the WORD was with God and the WORD was God. - John 1:1

The WORD became flesh and made his dwelling among us - John 1 :14

He is dressed in a robe dipped in blood and his name is the WORD OF GOD. - rev 19:13
vs 15- out of his mouth comes a sharp sword with which to strike down the nations

i dont think you and pb disagree at all...

u cannot understand the WORD OF GOD unless the WORD OF GOD is revealed

eg... peter understood Jesus to be the christ. Jesus said it was revealed to him by heaven. Jesus said he would build his church on this rock ( the revelation of the word of God )

You can read the bible and still not understand unless the spirit reveals it.... 'seeing they may not see, and hearing they may not understand ' Luke 8 : 10

June 12, 2006 3:21 PM   Edit
Blogger Modern Day Magi said...

I disagree with PB in that he seems to be suggesting that (and thus far has not denied) 'Spiritual revelation' replaces the need for scripture.

This is not so, everything must be tested against the scriptures.

Yes the Spirit needs to open the eyes of the believer to make the scriptures come alive, as life cannot be found in the Scripture, life is found only through Jesus.

How do we know Jesus is God though?
Beause the scripture tells us He is, both prophetically in the Old Testament and Literally in the New Testament.

"By this gospel you are saved, if you hold firmly to the word I preached to you. Otherwise, you have believed in vain.

For what I received I passed on to you as of first importance: that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures."
- 1 Corinthians 15:2-4

Here in Corinthians where the Gospel message is summised for us the phrase which is repeated is obviously of importance. That Jesus is the Messiah and provides life ACCORDING TO THE SCRIPTURES, it does not say 'according to the Spirit' although this is true also.

We must be dillegent when studying the scripture, to understand the context of a passage, the reliability of a translation, how each passage fits with the rest of the bible etc.

When seeking a measure to discern Truth it must be an exterior and not introspective method. This is part of why the Bible is so important. There is more than one spirit so we need another way of testing truth than simply "But a spirit revealed it to me..." Joseph Smith say an angel when he founded Mormonism, I have no doubt at all that he actually saw an angel, it is just that it was not an angel of light but rather a fallen one who visited him.

God says what He means and means what he says.

"And God said, "Let there be...and there was..."

By His Words He created the Universe, His Word must therefore be mighty and also true. If it was not relaible then the Universe simply would not be here at all.

MDM

June 12, 2006 8:05 PM   Edit
Blogger Modern Day Magi said...

my comments are getting too long, I'll have to post about this topic at my own blog I think rather than keeping on filling here with such big chunks of text.

sorry about the length PB

:)

MDM

June 12, 2006 8:07 PM   Edit
Blogger Modern Day Magi said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

June 12, 2006 8:26 PM   Edit
Blogger Modern Day Magi said...

Hey PB,
How can you have the Statement of faith you have linked to and still claim the Word is secondary to the Spirit?

;)

June 12, 2006 9:59 PM   Edit
Blogger Samantha said...

How can the Spirit be lower than the bible?

June 13, 2006 5:42 AM   Edit
Blogger Modern Day Magi said...

I have never said that the Holy Spirit is lower or less authoritave than the Word. Simply that we must test all spiritual revelations against the Word of God. The reason for this is that there are more spirits or 'angels' than simply the Holy Spirit of God.
(the Holy Spirit is God and is not an angel)

If we do not then when a spiritual revelation contradicts scripture which should we take as Truth, the Word or a spirit?

See 2 Corinthians 11:13-15 and 2 Timothy 3:14-17.

If a spirit comes masquerading as a angel of light to decieve you then we are to use the scripture to rebuke it, to correct our false doctorine and to be trained again in righteousness.

As Martin Luther once said "I am convicted by the Scripture...and my conscience is captive by the Word of God."

Let us follw Jesus' example, when tempted by the Devil what did He use to overcome Him?

Hint: Matthew 4:1-11 and Luke 4:1-13

MDM

June 13, 2006 11:04 AM   Edit
Blogger Samantha said...

If it takes God to do the unveiling (2 Cor. 3:18), then naturally, it is God's Spirit that gives us understanding of the Word...

June 13, 2006 11:24 AM   Edit
Blogger Allforlove said...

What is the ' Letter ' ?

June 13, 2006 12:28 PM   Edit
Blogger Modern Day Magi said...

I have never said otherwise samantha,

My question however is this:

When a spiritual revelation contradicts scripture, which should we take as Truth, the Word or the spiritual revelation?

MDM

June 13, 2006 2:03 PM   Edit
Blogger Modern Day Magi said...

canigetsomelove,

see PB's earlier post By the Spirit and not the Letter

PB defined the 'Letter' with "What men do by nature is place all their emphasis on their understanding of the written word of God. They say that the 66 books of the bible is God's perfect books“

And goes on to say that the Scripture is secondary to spiritual revelation as a source of truth, indicating his belief that if scripture and a spiritual revelation conflict, the spirit is to take preference.
“For the Spirit in us backs up scripture. Otherwise scripture is meaningless.”

June 13, 2006 2:33 PM   Edit
Blogger Puritan Belief said...

Magi, You didn't understand that post like you don't understand this post.

You need a measuring stick so you don't get into errors with your own interpretation.

June 13, 2006 2:37 PM   Edit
Blogger Paul G said...

Modern day magi,

You believe that God is three persons according your scripture the Bible.
I believe God is one person the Lord Jesus Christ according to my Bible the scripture.

If you would use the measuring stick, you could discern what spirit gave you your revelation.

June 13, 2006 5:15 PM   Edit
Blogger Modern Day Magi said...

again it is not that I misunderstand you, I disagree with you.

You say that the measuring stick is the spirit and the introspective question "Am I lifting Jesus up?" This position, if followed to its logical conclusion leads to relativism and pluralism.

I say that the measure of all truth is The Word of God, the Bible. If even one part of scripture is inaccurate then all of scripture is unreliable. Scripture is the exterior and concrete Truth by which all things can be measured, most importantly the spiritual revelations on recieves as the devil and his minions can appear as angels of light with the purpose to decieve.

The Word will never contradict the Holy Spirit of God and neither will The Holy Spirit even contradict scripture.

MDM

June 13, 2006 5:18 PM   Edit
Blogger Modern Day Magi said...

I know that God is Triune in nature because of HIS Word the scripture, it is not 'my' scripture but His.

Your denial of the Triune Nature of God is a perfect example (although I did not want to rehash the issue) of why your, and indeed everyones, 'spiritual revelations' need to be tested against scripture. If found contrary you cannot claim scripture is wrong but need to realign you own belief with the Purity and Truth of the Word of God.
John 1:1-2

MDM

June 13, 2006 5:23 PM   Edit
Blogger Modern Day Magi said...

PB,
could you read my post The Authority of God's Word: Is the Bible is the inspired and infallible Word of God?

June 15, 2006 12:14 PM   Edit
Blogger Modern Day Magi said...

Perhaps you should place greater trust in the SCripture as John G Palfrey writes of the Puritans...

"The Puritan was a Scripturist with all his heart, if as yet with imperfect intelligence . . . he cherished the scheme of looking to the Word of God as his sole and universal directory."

A Scripturist according to Websters dictionary is "One who is strongly attached to, or versed in, the Scriptures, or who endeavors to regulate his life by them."

June 21, 2006 6:12 PM   Edit
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