Forum - Banjo Ben Clark


And yet, if I got to choose how I go, it might be something like this. :cry:


And yet I truly envy his passage as a statement of his life. Not many people get to pass doing exactly what they love doing the most. Personally, I’d rather pass on the main stage of a songwriters’ festival in Destin on a Saturday night singing my own songs than alone in cold dark cubicle writing software for the railroad…


Being raptured out of here would be the ultimate. Otherwise, I’ll just settle for a massive heart attack.


My sentiment exactly. Who wouldn’t want to go doing what they love?


May he R.I.P.


Amen… 1 Thess. 4:13-18 KJV

13 But I would not have you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning them which are asleep, that ye sorrow not, even as others which have no hope.

14 For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with him.

15 For this we say unto you by the word of the Lord, that we which are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent them which are asleep.

16 For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first:

17 Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord.

18 Wherefore comfort one another with these words.


He went amongst friends and with great dignity!


Thanks Michael for the scriptures, 16,17,18 are some of my favorite verses! The key is “In Christ”, in obedience to Jesus’ commandments with Jesus’s help, dead or alive! :slight_smile:


I’m so glad that we can know for sure that we have eternal life through Christ!

13 These things have I written unto you that believe on the name of the Son of God; that ye may know that ye have eternal life, and that ye may believe on the name of the Son of God. 14And this is the confidence that we have in him, that, if we ask any thing according to his will, he heareth us: 15And if we know that he hear us, whatsoever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we desired of him.
-1 John 5:13-15 KJV


What is believing in the name of the Son of God?

I believe it is highly misunderstood and the goal post is changed to what it means.

God was speaking to the people of Israel through prophets until he would send the special prophet, the savior. Paul brings this to people’s attention in Hebrews 1:1,2.

1 God, who at sundry times and in divers manners spake in time past unto the fathers by the prophets,
2 Hath in these last days spoken unto us by his Son,

The Lord God foretells about this special prophet, the savior, to Moses in Deuteronomy 19:18,19.

18 I will raise them up a Prophet from among their brethren, like unto thee, and will put my words in his mouth; and he shall speak unto them all that I shall command him.
19 And it shall come to pass, that whosoever will not hearken unto my words which he shall speak in my name, I will require it of him .

Peter declares that Jesus is this special prophet in Acts 3:22,23.

22 For Moses truly said unto the fathers, A prophet shall the Lord your God raise up unto you of your brethren, like unto me; him shall ye hear in all things whatsoever he shall say unto you.
23 And it shall come to pass, that every soul, which will not hear that prophet, shall be destroyed from among the people.

So what should be people response if they were to believe Jesus is truly a God sent?

Fear him! And listen to him! (Refer to Deut 18:22, Deut 18:15). This is what is believing in the name of the Son of God!

For example, when Jesus says that ye resist not evil, then you resist not evil. Period. Don’t invent necessary evil to take out evil!

But how is it possible to listen to (or obey) him? Is not the expectation even more with this special prophet, that you are expected to obey much more than the letter and that you have to obey in the spirit and fulfill the law??

Jesus accomplished certain things on the cross and provides certain things to make it easier for you to fulfill the law, which is the good news. The goal post is not changed nevertheless as many would think today!

Maybe too much to grasp for some of you so I’ll share the good news another time!

Romans 7:4, Ephesians 2:8-10, etc. etc.

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I’ll cling to that one.


I’m too much of a sinner to get there by being good. It’s grace through faith, or I’m lost.


Hi Jack, you don’t get there by being good. You get there by realizing that you are a sinner. And what is this grace? The chance that is provided to you to understand the true gospel. That’s what is grace. Now if you believe this is true gospel, and want to act upon it, then it is faith, and you get saved.

So what action of faith is expected out of one? 1. Start with true repentance. (I’ll come to what is repentance soon.) 2. Just keep listening to his true word. (It does the work!)

I’ll share some thoughts I shared in a bible study to make a bit more sense of what I said.

How to be spiritual? Starting point - Be born again.

In order to be spiritual, one should operate through born again spirit (spiritual man). One cannot operate through flesh (carnal man). What exactly does it mean?

It is like this. You are like how you think. In other words, you are like how your mind is. You indulge your mind to something; your action would be based on that something in your mind.

Proverbs 23:7
7 For as he thinketh in his heart, so is he:

At least there is 2 choices of influence for mind in a born again person.

  1.  Get influenced by your flesh (non-desirable)
  2. Get influenced by your born again spirit (desirable)    

Flesh (carnal man) —influence—> Your mind < —influence— Born again spirit (spiritual man)

In order for the 2nd choice to happen, you need to be born of the Spirit. Only then you could allow God’s Spirit to operate and influence your mind and thereby your behavior and activity.

Conventional wisdom expects controlling the flesh through flesh to have a correct behavior/action (this is works, hence a proven failure!) whereas God’s wisdom expects your allowing of God’s Spirit to have a correct behavior/action (this is labor of faith, hence success!). You know Jesus’ word (word is Spirit btw) sanctified his disciples! Just go and listen to God’s word and believe in it! I tell you, your steps will be ordered by it! But then the problem today is, there’s not many who is sent by God to dispense His true word, only liars and thieves and robbers, and hence false word (false message), and no desired result in churches!!

Flesh and spirit are contradictory by nature. Jesus said in John 3:6,
6 That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit.

So now, how to be born again? I’ll share later.

I’ll respond to Ben on the law thing probably tomorrow.

Galatians 3:21-26:

21 Is the law then against the promises of God? God forbid: for if there had been a law given which could have given life, verily righteousness should have been by the law.

22 But the scripture hath concluded all under sin, that the promise by faith of Jesus Christ might be given to them that believe.

23 But before faith came, we were kept under the law, shut up unto the faith which should afterwards be revealed.

24 Wherefore the law was our schoolmaster to bring us unto Christ, that we might be justified by faith.

25 But after that faith is come, we are no longer under a schoolmaster.

26 For ye are all the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus.


I am. Even after regeneration, you will still sin.

For as he thinketh in his heart, so is he:

John, when did you last lust in your eyes?

I totally agree that we must repent, and with the help of Holy Spirit do our best to live a holy life. But it seems you are implying sinless perfection, which we, at this time are incapable of.

Paul stated that what he doesn’t want to do, he does, and what he wanted to do, he didn’t do.

St. Augustine said, he hated the the hatred that he sometimes felt in his heart.

If they can’t resist sin, how can I or you? I put all my hope in faith and repentance, and ask for forgiveness throughout the day. Without it, I’m surely lost.

Titus 3:5-6:

5 Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost; 6Which he shed on us abundantly through Jesus Christ our Saviour;

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James 2:8-10:

8If ye fulfil the royal law according to the scripture, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself, ye do well: 9But if ye have respect to persons, ye commit sin, and are convinced of the law as transgressors. 10 For whosoever shall keep the whole law, and yet offend in one point, he is guilty of all.

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Romans 7:4
4 Wherefore, my brethren, ye also are become dead to the law by the body of Christ; that ye should be married to another, even to him who is raised from the dead, that we should bring forth fruit unto God.

Jack, hang on a sec. I will respond to Ben and Michael and will then get back.

Now I’m confused if Ben is contradicting me or endorsing me!

There is 2 laws here - Law of Moses, Law of Jesus.

I’ll explain how you are dead to the law of Moses.

Romans 10:4 goes,
4 For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to every one that believeth.

Christ is not the end of the law (of Moses), Christ is the end of the law (of Moses) for righteousness, for one who believes. There is subtle difference.

Matthew 5:18,
18 For verily I say unto you, Till heaven and earth pass, one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law, till all be fulfilled.

Some may argue it is fulfilled but what is fulfilling? The next couple of verses indicates otherwise that it is relevant until you get to the kingdom of heaven!

19 Whosoever therefore shall break one of these least commandments, and shall teach men so, he shall be called the least in the kingdom of heaven: but whosoever shall do and teach them, the same shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven.
20 For I say unto you, That except your righteousness shall exceed the righteousness of the scribes and Pharisees, ye shall in no case enter into the kingdom of heaven.

Let me see if I can put it this way. A dad asks his grown up son to ride 3 miles in a bicycle to buy him something from a store (law of Moses) for a reward (righteousness). Dad does this to his son to make him value the reward. The dad sees the son struggle but once he realizes his son values the reward, he simplifies his task but provides him the reward anyway. His new task for his son is to join with his mom in the car to get to the store to collect whatever is already phone ordered (law of Jesus).

Law of Jesus fulfills law of Moses. With the law of Jesus, punishment or reward is not based on one’s performance! God even rewards in advance for you to finish up a rather simpler task (Jesus’s commandments or Jesus’ yoke). This finishing of a simple task is the act of faith and a sign of obedience which is going to qualify you to enter into the kingdom of heaven.

As per John 10:48, he does not punish you immediately for not listening to him, nor does he with hold the reward, but punish you eternally if you are not going to listen to him.
48 He that rejecteth me, and receiveth not my words, hath one that judgeth him: the word that I have spoken, the same shall judge him in the last day.

So for example, Jesus’ question is like this, why is that you should resist evil when the command is you should not? Jesus is willing to make up like 10 times for any evil fall that may fall upon you, or he is even willing to destroy your enemy even before he execute the evil upon you. But he is looking for an act of faith and obedience to his word!

So you are now dead to the law of Moses and married to the law of Jesus! And by obeying the law of Jesus, you fulfill the law of Moses and even more to exceed the righteousness of Pharisees and Sadducee!

Jack, please read Hebrews 10:2 and following verses. You can understand Jesus was offered that we should have no more conscience of sins!

If you have sin conscience, there is an issue with your salvation. Because your focus is on the wrong. There is 2 things here - heart being perfect, action being perfect. When you are focused on the action, you are sin conscience. Jesus said that which is born of the flesh is flesh. No point in being focused directly on flesh. If heart is not perfect, possibly no way action can be perfect. So the idea should be to address the heart through the spirit, and your action then comes into alignment.

Romans 8:13,
13 For if ye live after the flesh, ye shall die: but if ye through the Spirit do mortify the deeds of the body, ye shall live.

The question is whether you are spiritually minded. When you are, the Spirit mortifies the deeds of the body.

One example for having a spiritual mind is, whether you have a mind to not resist evil, as Jesus’ words are Spirit! When you do have such mind, even when you fail to not resist evil, you reach out to Jesus for help. As opposed to not having a such spiritual mind at all. You are starting to being led by the Spirit and you will not fulfill the lusts of the flesh. That’s how you deal with the flesh like the lust of the eye. There is connection between the two.

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