Jude warns us to avoid the ways of Cain, Balaam, and Korah that characterize false teachers—greedy, worshipping on one's own terms, appealing to the masses.
Many have wondered why God would allow the oracles of a pagan soothsayer to be included in His Word. Balaam's prophecies are significant to God's purpose.
Balaam, motivated by self-interest, believing that the ends justify the means, willing to do anything to get his way, is spiritually inferior to a donkey.
Balaam illustrates the paradox of someone who knows God's will, but willfully and deliberately disobeys, presumptuously thinking he could manipulate or bribe God.
Blinded by greed, Balaam used whatever mental gymnastics necessary to arrive at the answer he wanted. He turned the grace of God into a license for evil.
Christ severely criticizes the church of Pergamos for the doctrine of Baalam and idolatry. Nevertheless, to those who overcome, He will grant eternal life.
Contrary to Protestant understanding, our works emphatically do count - showing or demonstrating (not just telling) that we will be obedient.
Cultural compromise, such as found in Pergamos, brings judgment from Jesus. To those who refuse to compromise their convictions, Christ promises eternal life.
In the letters to the seven churches, Scripture foresees that a dearth of steadfastness marks the time of the end, but Christians are urged to hold fast.
Christ cautions the Pergamos congregation to shun the doctrine of the Nicolaitans. The Church suffers when it harbors those who compromise and offend.
Despite the Council of Laodicea's condemnation of the Sabbath, a group of believers termed Paulicians kept God's laws and resisted the heresy from Rome.
Kim Myers takes issue with certain portions of the premise "It doesn't matter what group or what church you belong to." Churches within the greater church of God who follow "the Way" should have the following commonalties: 1.) respect for the Sabbath and the preparation day, 2.) adherence to the plan of God, …