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Most of the articles on these WebPages have been written by godly men with a central belief in the Lord Jesus Christ. However as with most of us, they may have different beliefs concerning some particular doctrines. These articles have been made available for the purpose of “gleaning the good” where good can be found. I do not necessarily endorse all that is written by others, anymore than I expect others to endorse all that I write.

   Morning Thoughts by Elder Philip Conley

Luke 23:46, "And when Jesus had cried with a loud voice, he said, Father, into thy hands I commend my spirit: and having said thus, he gave up the ghost."

Acts 7:59, "And they stoned Stephen, calling upon God, and saying, Lord Jesus, receive my spirit."

This morning, there is something going around that I term "loose preaching." Ministers do not say things that are unsound, but they either apply verses incorrectly (but still teach sound principles) or they misquote things by quoting something else. These two verses are a good example of what I have heard lately.  They will say the one when they mean the other and vice versa. Now, they have quoted the Bible, but they quoted the wrong place for the particular situation, and it changes the complexity of the meaning entirely.  Therefore, let us ever try to use the Bible, but may we also properly apply it.

These two statements are made by two men (albeit one is the GodMan) at their death. Jesus made the statement in Luke, and Stephen made the statement in Acts. Now, the question arises, "What is the harm in a minister using one when he means the other?" Much in every way, in my humble opinion. Christ's statement is one of commendation and authority.  Notice that He declares "commend" rather than "commit." While commend can mean the same thing as commit in some cases, I do not believe that they are synonymous here. Christ is declaring a righteous spirit within Himself that is about to go to the Father. He has the right and authority to commend His Spirit, because there is no uncleanness in Him whatsoever.  

No man alive today or in the past has ever had the right to say such a thing. Our spirits are committed to God, by the righteousness of Christ, but we have not the authority or ability to commend them to Him. So, again, I submit that Jesus only could say such to the Father right before giving up the ghost in the death of the body. Now, let us proceed to Stephen.  He beseeches the Lord (Jesus) to RECEIVE his spirit.  Notice the difference. The hope of every child of God is that at their death our Lord and Saviour will receive our spirits right into the portals of glory to present before the Father.  

Jesus commended His Spirit to the Father, but we can only beg the Son to receive ours. Without Him, we cannot approach unto the Father without condemnation. He is our only Mediator, and He mediates for us while on earth and on to our deaths.  That is why Stephen saw the Son STANDING on the right hand of the Father. The Son was mediating for Stephen, and I declare wholeheartedly that Jesus did receive his spirit to the Father in righteousness.  Our only hope is through Him.  

When Christ declared His spirit righteous to God, we were represented in Him. By commending Himself, He commended us also. He declared us righteous in Him or justified us, and the proof came three days and three nights later when His body arose from the grave. So, when we press a dying pillow, all we can beseech is that our dear Saviour will receive us unto Himself. Our hope is anchored in heaven where He sits, and one day we hope to see Him, worship Him, praise Him, and adore Him throughout all eternity.  Thanks be unto Him that our whole spirit, soul, and body are preserved in Him forever.

In Hope,

Bro Philip