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“You Can’t Live In the Past!”

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“You Can’t Live In the Past!”

Sis. Connie, Bro. Carl Ballestero 1955

That’s what she said. She said that the church’s holiness standards and dress codes weren’t relevant today. “This is a different day.” She wanted me to know that Pentecost had moved to another level. “This is not your Father’s Pentecost! My generation is progressive!”

I said, “My generation felt it was in a new day when we invented the computer, the microwave, and the stereo. We felt it was a new day when we first orbited the earth, and when we walked on the moon. Each generation, quite possibly, has been able to make some boasts as to its uniqueness and advancements.


Did Cain and Abel say to Adam, “Pops, this is a new day!”  (Actually it was!) My point is, that argument is nothing new.

However, it is becoming more common for me to hear the statement, “You can’t live in the past.”

Concerning holiness and standards, I am encouraged to be more progressive and be relevant to this generation. I am confronted by those who laugh at holiness minded people, and make fun of their style of dress and modesty. They explore every taboo of previous generations and dare anyone to tell them ‘no’.

That statement about not living in the past may be true about many things. It has been said to people recovering from broken relationships, and to those that are tightly held in the grasp of grief, for example. There may be times when we may offer that advice, but NEVER for Salvation, and NEVER for Holiness and Separation from the World.


1. PAUL orders his son in the Gospel, Timothy, to teach his generation what has been taught to him. He is commissioned to impart to them all of the ‘Past’ that he can. That seemed to be Paul’s heartbeat. There was a reason, a good reason.

  • 2Tim. 2:2 And the things that thou hast heard of me among many witnesses, the same commit thou to faithful men, who shall be able to teach others also.

2. PAUL compares Timothy’s spirit and love for the faith, to his Mother’s and Grandmother’s love for the faith.

  • 2Tim. 1:5 When I call to remembrance the unfeigned faith that is in thee, which dwelt first in thy grandmother Lois, and thy mother Eunice; and I am persuaded that in thee also.


3. JOB made the statement, “We are but of yesterday.” We are what we are today because of yesterday.

If we can’t live in the past, then we need to quit singing songs about the past; songs like: “This Is My Christian Heritage.” Why sing about the past and then reject it? Holiness rejecters, are rejecters of all of God’s yesterdays.

When the same crowd hears about the ‘sure mercies of David” however, they chose to claim that part of the past. They want God to be the same, yesterday, today and forever, but we have those among us that reject the Apostolic church of the past. They don’t want the church to be the same yesterday, today and forever.



Holiness Is Not Yesterdays News!

  • 1Pet. 1:16 Because it is written, Be ye holy; for I am holy.

It’s Present tense. ‘Be’ ye holy. Present tense means it’s relevant.

  • 2Tim. 3:16 All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness:

“Is profitable”. That’s relevant! Doctrine is not to be kept in the past. It IS profitable. The preaching and teaching of Doctrine, is meant for every age of the church.



4. JEHOSHAPHAT – Walked in the ways of his Great, Great, Great, Great Grandfather David. God used David, the Ruler of Yesterday, to measure the Ruler of Today.

  • 2Chr. 17:3 And the LORD was with Jehoshaphat, because he walked in the first ways of his father David, and sought not unto Baalim;

Jehoshaphat was the 6th king of the Davidic line (he was preceded by David, Solomon, Rehoboam, Abijah, and Asa.)

In God’s mind, David, six generations prior, was the standard to measure all the following generations.


What would make some say, concerning holiness standards, that we can’t live in the past? There’s a reason they talk that way. Evidently, old-time Pentecost conflicts with their love for the world. The Holiness of the past is supposed to make them feel uncomfortable in their shorts, short skirts, tight apparel, jewelry, cut hair and makeup. It is supposed to make Hollywood feel uncomfortable on their conscience. They do not wish to be convicted, so they reject the past on a wholesale basis.

I fear they are no longer Apostolic, but apostate, and don’t even know it. I pray they haven’t been turned over to the spirit of delusion.

The book of Judges mentions, that in those days, every man did that which was right in his own eyes. I am now seeing a repeat of those times.

Speaking of ‘Apostolic,’ did some get ashamed of the word and take it down from their church sign so they could be more relevant? (Just asking!)

I worry that some have fallen into the Colossians’ trap.

  • Col. 2:8 Beware lest any man spoil you through philosophy and vain deceit, after the tradition of men, after the rudiments of the world, and not after Christ.
  • Col. 2:9 For in him dwelleth all the fulness of the Godhead bodily.

5. ESAU.

Remember him? God hated him and wouldn’t even let him repent. You know why? Because he refused to honor what was of yesterday. The Birthright was the blessing of yesterday, but it was also to extend into all of Esau’ families in their ‘tomorrows’. It was to be the blessing he could pass down to his son. But no, he sacrificed the eternal on the altar of the immediate. God hated him for that.

God called him a fornicator. Not because he was morally impure, but because his heart wasn’t faithful to God.

He was called profane. That word in Hebrews, meant: ‘to treat with common place’, or like it was nothing special. The birthright didn’t mean anything special to Esau. He was only interested in the ‘right now’ of his life.  He ignored the meaning of ‘the past’.

6. ISRAEL. – Built altars and memorials so that generations to come would know the history and importance of the moment. God wanted future generations to stay connected with their past.

  • Josh. 4:5 And Joshua said unto them, Pass over before the ark of the LORD your God into the midst of Jordan, and take ye up every man of you a stone upon his shoulder, according unto the number of the tribes of the children of Israel:
  • Josh. 4:6 That this may be a sign among you, that when your children ask their fathers in time to come, saying, What mean ye by these stones?
  • Josh. 4:7 Then ye shall answer them, That the waters of Jordan were cut off before the ark of the covenant of the LORD; when it passed over Jordan, the waters of Jordan were cut off: and these stones shall be for a memorial unto the children of Israel for ever.

7. JEREMIAH. When he was fourteen years of age, he stood before the King of Israel and prophesied. This young teenager did NOT say to the King. ‘Your majesty, this is a new day, and we can’t live in the past.”

This young teen bold announced his love for the past when he said, “

  • Jer. 6:16 Thus saith the LORD, Stand ye in the ways, and see, and ask for the old paths, where is the good way, and walk therein, and ye shall find rest for your souls. But they said, We will not walk therein.

The 21st century is not a new day in that respect; they rejected the past back in Jeremiah’s day too. And he was a young person pleading for his nations return to the principles of the old paths.)

This may be a new day for technology, science, medicine, and people comforts, but it’s NOT a new day for truth rejecting.

If they are rejecting the holiness, the modesty, and the separated life style of the our Pentecostal forefathers, then they are not a friend of God. They are not even a God chaser.

They may vote out all the rules and standards out of their local church or organization if they want, but that doesn’t change the Book. The Apostolic Church will never have a future if it lets go of it’s past.

Today, I humbly echo Jeremiah’s advice. Ask for the Old Paths, that’s the good way. Ask for Yesterday. Walk in Yesterday. You will find rest there for your soul.

Your soul will never find rest or be at peace if you reject the old paths. If you want a future you must hold on to the past.


Written by Martyn Ballestero

October 29, 2010 at 12:39 am

12 Responses

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  1. I love that you love holiness, modesty, separated lifestyle, and cherish the truths our forefathers have fought for. Thank you for writing, preaching, and living it!

    Nila Marxer

    October 29, 2010 at 12:48 am

  2. Thanks for running this, Marty!! I am printing it off to carry with me! I am who I am today because of the teachings of my parents,your parents, and teachers I had growing up!! I hope I never give up on holiness and I will continue teaching my granchildren the same things!! Blessings!!!

    Ialleta Weddle Coryea

    October 29, 2010 at 9:36 am

  3. Thanks for sharing this…It is so true & I still love this truth and separation from the world…I want to make it all the way!!!

    Joyce Dykes

    October 29, 2010 at 10:01 am

    • I am the Lord and I change not. I can still hear this phrase ringing through the sanctuary of the fort worth Apostolic Church taught by your dad and elder Cavaness, and elder c w Shew. We have to often thrown aside the old landmark that our forefathers set by the way to mark the path that we should follow. We need to wake up. God has not changed his Word it is forever settled in heaven. The reprobate is equally excited and convinced of their strong delusion as God’s people are about their revelations. Let us hold the standards with fear and trembling lest we lose our love for the truth and are given to a strong delusion ourselves. keep the faith brother and may God have mercy on us all and give us grace unto the end.

      bro. behan

      October 29, 2010 at 10:32 am

  4. As you so ably pointed out, these rejectors of truth and holiness rejected the old ways in the past . . .so, if it’s a new day, why are they so studiously following in their ancestors’ traditions of rejecting the old ways. Just saying.

    Wyonna Smith

    October 29, 2010 at 1:31 pm

  5. While I read this, I realize our understanding of the word aligns. However, my concern is with my sons, daughters, neices and nephews who are uttering some of these phrases “cultural relevance” etc. and their lives are seemingly not continuing to align with “the understanding of the word and what our fore fathers wrote”. My heart is set to pray, GOD bring them back into alignment… don’t allow them to go further the other way… Prayer changes things. I desire my prayers to count so I will pray for this generation to begin to understand, the truths that we continue to hold, but the ones they have chosen to discard for whatever reason. Thank you for a beautiful sermon, I felt the Holy Ghost just reading it. I have a lot of prayer time to put in for this generation… blessings to you and yours in JESUS name!

    Yvonne Magnia

    October 30, 2010 at 3:11 pm

  6. Preach, Preach, Preach! Tell it to my generation loud and clear so we can tell it to the next genearation coming the same way! The ones who have seemingly forgot “beware lest ye forget”. That would rather be so called relevant then right; progressive then persuaded. I am standing with Jeremiah and asking for the old paths! After a way they call heresy so worship I the God of my Fathers! Thanks for reminding us were not going forward without our past! Apostolic, Holiness, Modesty, Righteousness, Standards, Seperation are all words still in my vocabulary!

    Bro. Matt Coomer

    October 31, 2010 at 6:57 pm

  7. Amen…

    Michel Heimoz

    November 2, 2010 at 4:24 pm

  8. Well written and well spoken. The attack against you by those of Laodicea and backslidden false Pentecost can do nothing against this truth of holiness and righteousness before the Lord. Be encouraged!

    William Price

    November 10, 2010 at 5:18 am

  9. Teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly, in this present world;
    TITUS 2;13

    charity tanel

    March 1, 2011 at 12:58 am

  10. I love this blog!! Don’t ever want to forget what I have been taught my my “forefathers” & want this message & holiness to live on through me!!


    October 28, 2016 at 1:04 pm

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