The Kingdom of Heaven

New Lessons About the Kingdom

Book of Matthew Chapter 13

We now get to listen in as the Lord Jesus Christ preached in a new way.

The Lord Jesus loved to use parables.

We may not know as much as we like to about the Kingdom of Heaven, but because of King Jesus and His preaching, we know much more of those things that were once mysteries to those who were gathered, to hear the Lord Jesus preach.

The Lord Jesus uses these parables to describe the principles of the Kingdom of Heaven.

So what is a parable?

A parable is a representation of something that is real in life or in nature from which a certain thing is drawn for instruction.

A parable is a mode of speaking for us to learn spiritual things.

A parable is an earthly truth that expresses a Heavenly truth!

A parable is an earthly comparison to a Spiritual truth!

Let us listen to the Lord Jesus:

*Mat 13:1 The same day went Jesus out of the house, and sat by the sea side.
Mat 13:2 And great multitudes were gathered together unto him, so that he went into a ship, and sat; and the whole multitude stood on the shore.
Mat 13:3 And he spake many things unto them in parables, saying, Behold, a sower went forth to sow;

Jesus had just preached a sermon and He had healed some who had faith but remember Jesus found not much faith in Capernaum.

Mat 11:23 And thou, Capernaum, which art exalted unto heaven, shalt be brought down to hell: for if the mighty works, which have been done in thee, had been done in Sodom, it would have remained until this day.

Since the Lord Jesus had begun His ministry, He had no time to rest so, after a tiring day Jesus just went out to the Sea of Galilee to enjoy a moment of tranquility but it did not last long so, Jesus began to teach some truths of the Kingdom of Heaven.

We should understand that a parable is not a fable.

A fable is just a fictitious story or some legend that may or may not have existed.

A parable was a means of teaching the truth in a fashion that could be easily understood.

We first meet the sower. In the next parable we find this sower is the Lord Jesus Christ Himself.

These first two parables set the standard for all the remaining parables.

A sower would sow seed. Today we would say broadcast, casting seed out by hand.

Most time the seed of a crop would be cast upon plowed ground, but this was not always the case.

In some soils the seed was cast before the plowing.

In some wet soils the seed would be trodden down by animals.

Isa 32:20 Blessed are ye that sow beside all waters, that send forth thither the feet of the ox and the ass.

The one thing we should clearly understand is that the seed of the Christian is the precious Word of God, the Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ.

It is the Gospel Seed that will bring great results when presented the right way!

Pro 11:18 The wicked worketh a deceitful work: but to him that soweth righteousness shall be a sure reward.

Psa 126:1 When the LORD turned again the captivity of Zion, we were like them that dream.
Psa 126:2 Then was our mouth filled with laughter, and our tongue with singing: then said they among the heathen, The LORD hath done great things for them.
Psa 126:3 The LORD hath done great things for us; whereof we are glad.
Psa 126:4 Turn again our captivity, O LORD, as the streams in the south.
Psa 126:5 They that sow in tears shall reap in joy.
Psa 126:6 He that goeth forth and weepeth, bearing precious seed, shall doubtless come again with rejoicing, bringing his sheaves with him.

Now let us hear this great parable of the Lord Jesus Christ.

We must be careful where we sow the “Gospel Seed”!

*Mat 13:4 And when he sowed, some seeds fell by the way side, and the fowls came and devoured them up:

The first danger in sowing the “Gospel Seed” is to sow it upon prepared ground. If the seed is not placed where it can be covered then the birds will come and devour the seed.

I know birds have keen sight but as one who loves to feed the birds, they must have another sense that directs them to seed.

There was always a foot path to divide one field from another and seed that dropped on that foot path just could not grow into a useful plant.

On the day, this parable was taught, this sower was the Lord Jesus Himself.

He as our example, is teaching some who might become future sowers of the Word of God.

The ground that is plowed with the “Gospel Plow” (Grace) is ready to receive the “Gospel Seed”(Word of God).

What we should know is that these “fowl” represent that “wicked thing” we know of as Satan.

*Mat 13:5 Some fell upon stony places, where they had not much earth: and forthwith they sprung up, because they had no deepness of earth:
Mat 13:6 And when the sun was up, they were scorched; and because they had no root, they withered away.

There are many today who claim to have received the truth of the Lord, but their hearts are so hardened by their sin they just cannot accept it as the complete truth.

It is like seed that lands on stony ground where there is not enough soil to provide the nourishment to the seed. That soil will dry and become nothing, but dust and that seed will never produce.

Stony ground is cold like a cold heart. These people have no spiritual warmth because the Holy Spirit has not moved in.

What did God say?

Eze 11:19 And I will give them one heart, and I will put a new spirit within you; and I will take the stony heart out of their flesh, and will give them an heart of flesh:
Eze 11:20 That they may walk in my statutes, and keep mine ordinances, and do them: and they shall be my people, and I will be their God.

This is exactly what happened to Israel, their hearts turned to stone!

Zec 7:12 Yea, they made their hearts as an adamant stone, lest they should hear the law, and the words which the LORD of hosts hath sent in his spirit by the former prophets: therefore came a great wrath from the LORD of hosts.
Zec 7:13 Therefore it is come to pass, that as he cried, and they would not hear; so they cried, and I would not hear, saith the LORD of hosts:
Zec 7:14 But I scattered them with a whirlwind among all the nations whom they knew not. Thus the land was desolate after them, that no man passed through nor returned: for they laid the pleasant land desolate.

Remember we serve an unchanging God and stony hearts cannot receive the rainfall from Heaven and they cannot get into Heaven!

Rev 21:6 And he said unto me, It is done. I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end. I will give unto him that is athirst of the fountain of the water of life freely.

They will be scorched by the Sun without having received the Son!

They have no root in themselves.

When we find a Bible believing Church, the Lord teaches us “to put our roots in” so we can grow in Christ.

When we have no root then we cannot grow, we must endure!

Mat 10:22 And ye shall be hated of all men for my name’s sake: but he that endureth to the end shall be saved.

Just hearing the Word of God preached and taught will not get you to Heaven, you must receive the Word of God as the truth.

*Mat 13:7 And some fell among thorns; and the thorns sprung up, and choked them:

Thorny ground is deceptive ground. When we see growth in bare ground, where weeds grow, we think well “anything” can grow in that place, but this is never true.

Any growth from that seed will soon be choked out.

Thorny ground represents those who receive the Word of God but just want to add it to their lives as they exist and not repent of their sinful ways.

This is the theme of the queer and lesbian and the cross-gender movement today and many other sinners.

They say God made them the way they are, and we just need to accept them for who they are, but God teaches us all that we must be “Born Again”.

God forgave me of my sin, but He told me to go and sin no more. It is called to repent!

The Lord Jesus Christ did not come to die just so I could hold on to my sin!

The Bible says:

1Jn 2:15 Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him.
1Jn 2:16 For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world.

Those thorns are the cares of this world!

They prick and stick the Word of God, until what God says is meaningless to them.

Those with their minds on this world do not have their minds upon the Lord Jesus Christ!

This world will hinder, irritate, aggravate and trouble a person from pursuing the truth of God!

The deceitfulness of riches is also thorns, that keep us from the truth of God!

When we become self-confident or self-dependent, we have rejected the truth of God who says we need Him!

Joh 15:5 I am the vine, ye are the branches: He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without me ye can do nothing.

We cannot change the truth of God or it would no longer be the truth!

2Co 13:8 For we can do nothing against the truth, but for the truth.

Some people see wealth as a blessing from God, but this is rarely the case.

God would never put us in a place where we would feel that we do not need Him!

Then there are some seed that lands on good fertile soil that has been prepared by the Holy Spirit.

*Mat 13:8 But other fell into good ground, and brought forth fruit, some an hundredfold, some sixtyfold, some thirtyfold.
Mat 13:9 Who hath ears to hear, let him hear.

The tender heart that has been plowed with the “Gospel Plow” will reproduce the “Gospel Seed”!

The Gospel is not hard to understand.

That Seed is not just the Word of God, but it is the Gospel Seed of the Lord Jesus Christ, the “Good News”!

1Co 15:1 Moreover, brethren, I declare unto you the gospel which I preached unto you, which also ye have received, and wherein ye stand;
1Co 15:2 By which also ye are saved, if ye keep in memory what I preached unto you, unless ye have believed in vain.
1Co 15:3 For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures;
1Co 15:4 And that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures:

Not every believer is the same:

Eph 4:6 One God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all.
Eph 4:7 But unto every one of us is given grace according to the measure of the gift of Christ.
Eph 4:8 Wherefore he saith, When he ascended up on high, he led captivity captive, and gave gifts unto men.
Eph 4:9 (Now that he ascended, what is it but that he also descended first into the lower parts of the earth?
Eph 4:11 And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers;
Eph 4:12 For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ:

Not all believers are equal.

Some will work harder than others, but we must also realize the location where Christians do that work.

Remember Moses preached 120 years and only his family went with him on the Ark.

So yes, some may produce 30-fold and others 100-fold, but the object is still to be busy about the work of the Lord once we are saved.

The production of the Gospel Seed lies in the hands of our Savior!

As my Pastor says: “the Holy Spirit was not given to us for our enjoyment, He was given to us for our employment” and this is true.

The Holy Spirit gave us all the Word of God and Jesus says we need to listen to what the Holy Spirit is saying!

Now Jesus teaches these parables to His disciples!

*Mat 13:18 Hear ye therefore the parable of the sower.
Mat 13:19 When any one heareth the word of the kingdom, and understandeth it not, then cometh the wicked one, and catcheth away that which was sown in his heart. This is he which received seed by the way side.

We see immediately that the key to salvation and the work given us by the Lord is understanding the Word of God.

What is the “word of the kingdom”? It can be none other than the “Gospel”!

The “Gospel” is the Words of Salvation saved for us by the Holy Spirit!

The Gospel is pure as Jesus is pure and it is the truth of a Holy God!

Jesus teaches these disciples to hear these parables according to the privileges given to them.

Mat 13:15 For this people’s heart is waxed gross, and their ears are dull of hearing, and their eyes they have closed; lest at any time they should see with their eyes, and hear with their ears, and should understand with their heart, and should be converted, and I should heal them.
Mat 13:16 But blessed are your eyes, for they see: and your ears, for they hear.
Mat 13:17 For verily I say unto you, That many prophets and righteous men have desired to see those things which ye see, and have not seen them; and to hear those things which ye hear, and have not heard them.

You see it is a privilege to be called of God and then be presented the “Gospel” of Jesus Christ!

It is these soon to be Apostles who were given the privilege first to deliver the “Gospel” to the world!

We must understand that when we present the “Gospel” to some lost soul who has been called of God, then Satan will immediately come to that person to discredit the Gospel in some way.

The Devil will snatch away the truth of the “Gospel”!

The Devil hates the Lord Jesus Christ and will do his best to keep everyone out of Heaven.

He cannot go himself and he does not want anyone else to get there.

It is easier to understand when we understand the truth of the Devil.

*Mat 13:20 But he that received the seed into stony places, the same is he that heareth the word, and anon with joy receiveth it;
Mat 13:21 Yet hath he not root in himself, but dureth for a while: for when tribulation or persecution ariseth because of the word, by and by he is offended.

Rocky ground has not much soil, but it will grow seed until the Sun rises and draws out all the moisture and that seed will die.

In many a person there is an enthusiastic receiving of the truth of God.

Oh how they welcome the truth at least until the real truth sets in.

As Christians we live in an evil and wicked world where we are hated.

Persecution is real folks.

That old heart that was never broken by the “Gospel Plow” has no real life within it.

They have a form of “godliness, but they know not the reality of God’s power and the power of everlasting life.

The Lord says to stay away from these people.

2Ti 3:5 Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away.

The Lord says they are ever learning but never able to grasp the truth of Jesus.

2Ti 3:7 Ever learning, and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth.

We must understand that being a Christian will draw Satan’s crowd near to us to cause persecution.

2Ti 3:12 Yea, and all that will live godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution.

This is the place where many so-called Christians go back to their old lives of sin!

But there are still others.

*Mat 13:22 He also that received seed among the thorns is he that heareth the word; and the care of this world, and the deceitfulness of riches, choke the word, and he becometh unfruitful.

We all know that the love of money is the root behind all the evil in this world!

1Ti_6:10 For the love of money is the root of all evil: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows.

The deceit of riches does hinder, the growth of the Word of God within us!

In our world today sinful so-called pleasures go unhindered. Free to roam this world to cause destruction.

Plagues such as we have just gone through, will make things even worse.

People will become more dependent upon government, which by the way was probably more involved in the cause than we want to admit.

The cares of this world will come to the forefront.

Anxiety and future uncertainty will rule lives that are not dependent upon God.

The Word of God will be choked out by fear of what tomorrow might bring, because they refuse to believe the God who holds tomorrow in His hands.

There will be a great falling away which we see today!

2Th_2:3 Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day shall not come, except there come a falling away first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition;

God has already told us of all these things.

1) We see that the Devil snatches up and devours.
2) We see the Flesh attempts and fails.
3) We see the World surrounds and chokes.

Only the Lord Jesus Christ could have spoken such a simple parable with such a deep and far-reaching meaning.

But there will always be that true believer!

*Mat 13:23 But he that received seed into the good ground is he that heareth the word, and understandeth it; which also beareth fruit, and bringeth forth, some an hundredfold, some sixty, some thirty.

There will always be some who hear the truth and cling to the truth for evermore!

What did the Lord our God say?

Isa 55:11 So shall my word be that goeth forth out of my mouth: it shall not return unto me void, but it shall accomplish that which I please, and it shall prosper in the thing whereto I sent it.

1) There is hearing.
2) There is understanding.
3) There is “faith”.

Without “faith” there is no reproduction!

Through “faith” there is fruit bearing and producing!

These things come by a receptive, teachable heart that is prepared by “Grace”!

Amen

Are You Cold and Indifferent to the Truth?

The King Fulfilled Prophecy

Book of Matthew Chapter 12

We should understand that there will always be some who reject the message of Christ Jesus because they reject the person of Christ Jesus!

There will be opposition to Christianity because it does not fit into the themes of this world.

The religious world in the day of Jesus were in a position in which they might have known much about the Messiah.

It is Christ Jesus who made this world we live in!

Col 1:16 For by him were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers: all things were created by him, “and for him”:

It is the Lord Jesus Christ who has preserved this world.

What is the greatest of all sin? The greatest of all sin is to be ignorant of the Lord Jesus Christ.

This is a sin where there is no excuse.

We have our creation written down and described to us.
We have a God who continuously preserves our world up to this point.
We have a Savior who has revealed Himself according to His written Word.

As we begin this chapter in the Book of Matthew where we will witness the religious crowd of Israel begin to show their hatred for their own Scriptures and the truth of them.

Everything Jesus has done so far has proved that He was the promised Messiah, but hatred enters where belief should have been.

The blind saw.
Lepers were cleansed.
Demons were driven out.
People were raised from the dead.

There could be only one explanation for this, for only God could have done these things.

The Old Testament prophecies were being fulfilled before their eyes.

There could be only one explanation for this, the Messiah had come just as the Word of God had said.

These people just refused to believe what their eyes saw!

They remained cold and indifferent to the truth that was before them.

They had no heart for the truth of the Scriptures they so acknowledged came from Jehovah God.

We will witness as Jesus begins to break His relationship with these Jews and begin His turn to all the world which was also prophesied.

*Mat 12:1 At that time Jesus went on the sabbath day through the corn; and his disciples were an hungred, and began to pluck the ears of corn, and to eat.
Mat 12:2 But when the Pharisees saw it, they said unto him, Behold, thy disciples do that which is not lawful to do upon the sabbath day.

The meaning of Sabbath is to rest from labor.

The Sabbath is the seventh day and is something essentially Jewish.

The keeping of it, is one of the laws given to the Jews by Jehovah.

Exo 20:8 Remember the sabbath day, to keep it holy.
Exo 20:10 But the seventh day is the sabbath of the LORD thy God: in it thou shalt not do any work, thou, nor thy son, nor thy daughter, thy manservant, nor thy maidservant, nor thy cattle, nor thy stranger that is within thy gates:
Exo 20:11 For in six days the LORD made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that in them is, and rested the seventh day: wherefore the LORD blessed the sabbath day, and hallowed it.

The Sabbath was not a day that was given to the Church, even though the Lord does still teach us we need to rest at least one day of the week.

The Church observes the Lord’s Day. The Lord came out of that tomb on Sunday, known as the Lord’s Day.

Rev 1:10 I was in the Spirit on the Lord’s day, and heard behind me a great voice, as of a trumpet,

The Church was given no specific day to worship, because we are to worship the Lord every day!

There is no law written to the Church about when to worship the Lord!

It was not the 613 commandments given to the Jews that got the Lord in trouble with His opposition, especially the Pharisees.

It was the “oral laws”, “man’s laws” that had been added, claiming to be the Word of God!

As our Creator and the same One who gave us the Word of God, then we should accept that Jesus knew all the Word of God better than anyone.

To be clear then, if the Jesus is the Lord of my life, then He is Lord of the Sabbath and Lord of everyday that I exist!

We already know that in the lifetime of our Savior, He did not sin, so it is evident He obeyed all those 613 laws written in the Word of God.

Jesus was not obligated to keep any law that violated His own words, even though He also kept the laws of the government that was in place.

He certainly was not obligated to keep the legalistic oral law of the Pharisee! Or the Sadducee or the Scribes, or any other human being.

We must understand the Word of God in the “context” in which it was written!

These disciples had broken no law as they passed through this corn field and taken enough to satisfy their hunger.

Deu 23:25 When thou comest into the standing corn of thy neighbour, then thou mayest pluck the ears with thine hand; but thou shalt not move a sickle unto thy neighbour’s standing corn.

They were not harvesting they were only satisfying their hunger!

These Pharisee saw it as their job to enforce these “oral laws” which were no more than traditions that had become outrageous and considered to be of greater influence that the Word of God itself.

Exo 35:2 Six days shall work be done, but on the seventh day there shall be to you an holy day, a sabbath of rest to the LORD: whosoever doeth work therein shall be put to death.

No one was expected to go without a meal on the Sabbath!

If you are following the Lord Jesus, you will move when He moved, whether you had eaten or not.

How did the Lord Jesus respond?

*Mat 12:3 But he said unto them, “Have ye not read” what David did, when he was an hungred, and they that were with him;
Mat 12:4 How he entered into the house of God, and did eat the shewbread, which was not lawful for him to eat, neither for them which were with him, but only for the priests?

Do you know the biggest problem with all those who claim to be God’s people? They refuse to read the Word of God themselves!

We need to read what God says!
We need to study what God says!
We need to understand what God says!

2Ti 2:15 Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.

Jesus asked these hypocrites, “have ye not read”.

David was forced to go on the run by Saul, even though David was God’s anointed King of Israel.

Be careful or you will miss the typology here.

David was hungry and those with him were hungry just as those who were with the Lord Jesus on that day.

If David, the King anointed by God had been rejected while he was a fugitive, the holy things connected with these ceremonial things given to Israel by Jehovah, would have ceased to be holy!

When King Jesus is rejected, then all the things of the Church are then common and no longer holy.

1Sa 21:5 And David answered the priest, and said unto him, Of a truth women have been kept from us about these three days, since I came out, and the vessels of the young men are holy, “and the bread is in a manner common, yea, though it were sanctified this day in the vessel”.

There is nothing holy with a so-called Church where the Lord Jesus Christ is rejected!

There is no part of that so-called church that is holy.

They may say, “we do not reject Jesus”, yet when they reject the teachings of the Word of God, they have rejected our Savior and everything He stands for and stands against!

These Pharisee had rejected the Lord Jesus Christ and what He stood for!

It is ridiculous to speak of Sabbath keeping, when the Lord of the Sabbath is rejected!

It is ridiculous to speak of a personal relationship with the Lord when you reject the truth of the Word of God or you try to twist the Word of God in an attempt to change its meaning!

How did Jesus feel about these super religious men?

Mat 23:23 Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye pay tithe of mint and anise and cummin, and have omitted the weightier matters of the law, judgment, mercy, and faith: these ought ye to have done, and not to leave the other undone.
Mat 23:24 Ye blind guides, which strain at a gnat, and swallow a camel.

That “shewbread” symbolized the presence of God who is the “Bread of Life”. Twelve loaves of bread were brought to the House of God as a symbolized offering to God.

It was a thanksgiving offering!

Those loaves symbolized an everlasting covenant between God and His people: that God would see to it that His people had whatever food was necessary to sustain His people.

They were changed every week the old loaves given to the priests.

King David had a legitimate need.

The Lord Jesus Christ promises to meet our needs!

Hypocrites will always insist on their own observations without having understood the truth of the Bible!

Again Jesus asks “have ye not read”.

*Mat 12:5 Or have ye not read in the law, how that on the sabbath days the priests in the temple profane the sabbath, and are blameless?

We should understand the Lord Jesus here.

We have the perfectly written Word of God, but we must accept these words in the context they were written!

According to their interpret ion of the Sabbath by these hypocritical Pharisees, even the priests at the Temple should be stoned to death for doing what the priests were given to do according to the same Word of God.

We must never go against the Word of God!

Doing good according to the Word of God, is never a sin under any circumstances!

The worship of the Lord is a necessary thing!

It does not matter what the government says!

It was necessary for the Jews to worship according to the laws given to them which included animal sacrifices.

Remember their sin was only forgiven for one year, if they did what God had said to do in those three feasts that were required by God.

Today we know the Lord Jesus Christ put an end to animal sacrifice by sacrificing Himself which upon your “faith” forgiveness is eternal.

Heb 9:12 Neither by the blood of goats and calves, but by his own blood he entered in once into the holy place, having obtained eternal redemption for us

Then Jesus told them it was not the Temple that was important, it is the One who paid our sin debt that is the most important!

Jesus is Lord of the Sabbath because He is the Lord of life!

*Mat 12:6 But I say unto you, That in this place is one greater than the temple.
Mat 12:7 But if ye had known what this meaneth, I will have mercy, and not sacrifice, ye would not have condemned the guiltless.
Mat 12:8 For the Son of man is Lord even of the sabbath day.

As long as the Church exists there will be some who think their learning has surpassed the Word of God, and the things said by the Lord Jesus Christ, and they will become adversaries unto Christ Jesus and His disciples!

For the super religious in Jerusalem and all of Israel, the Temple was the most important place in all the world.

Many today feel like Rome is the most important place in all Christianity!

What did Jesus teach? Jesus said, “It is not in a building”!

The Lord Jesus Christ is what Christianity is all about!

You cannot remove the Lord Jesus and still have Christianity!

You cannot remove the importance of the disciples of Jesus Christ and still say you are a Church!

Buildings are just places for the people of God to gather to worship the One True God and fellowship with other disciples of Jesus Christ!

If the priests including the High priest, did not have to obey the laws of the Sabbath, then why would the Lord of the Sabbath have to observe some man-made law?

The Sabbath was set aside for the descendants of Israel, the ones to whom many promises were made to spend time with Jehovah.

Laws and ceremonies have no place in the House of God.

It is the Word of God that must reign supreme, and it is the Word of God that teaches us about the Messiah, who physically stood before those hypocrites that day we read about in chapter 12.

Jesus Christ, the Messiah is the true High Priest.

Jesus Christ, the Messiah is the true and only sacrifice that is acceptable to God the Father!

Jesus Christ, the Messiah is the Lord of everyday to the true believer.

There is no day greater than any other day to worship the Almighty Living God!

What we should notice is, the mercy of the Messiah to tolerate our foolishness!

Any place of worship only possesses the symbolic presence of God, now He may show up in power and strength, but only because He resides in the believer.

1Co 6:19 What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own?

The Lord Jesus Christ possesses all the fullness of the Godhead bodily!

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”.
Col 2:10 And ye are complete in him, which is the head of all principality and power:
Col 2:11 In whom also ye are circumcised with the circumcision made without hands, in putting off the body of the sins of the flesh by the circumcision of Christ:
Col 2:12 Buried with him in baptism, wherein also ye are risen with him through the faith of the operation of God, who hath raised him from the dead.

If we cannot understand what these things mean, then how can we say we have come to worship.

They Lord Jesus Christ must be the Lord of our lives every day and every moment of every day!

*Mat 12:9 And when he was departed thence, he went into their synagogue:
Mat 12:10 And, behold, there was a man which had his hand withered. And they asked him, saying, Is it lawful to heal on the sabbath days? that they might accuse him.

This man with the withered hand was not allowed to go into the Temple to worship or even to visit.

Nor was any other person who had some infirmity.

The Temple was no more than a worldly showcase for the world to go to visit.

Jesus Himself said it had become no more than a den of thieves and He was not talking just about the moneychangers and those who bought and sold.

Jesus was talking about those ran the Temple.

It was the synagogue where these who had infirmities could worship and the super religious hypocrites did not like this either.

We should understand that no one would hire a man with a crippled hand and this man would end up being nothing but a beggar.

This man did not know Jesus would stop by on this day, he had simply come to worship Jehovah and to hear someone read the Word of God.

Copies of the Bible were too expensive for regular people to get one and those who could afford them did not ever read them.

Jesus loved to preach in the synagogues, because there would be other like this man with this withered hand and Jesus would show compassion to them.

What a question to ask, is it lawful according to the Word of God to heal on the Jewish Sabbath days?

Jesus was hated so much by this religious crowd they would use anything against Him!

The Lord Jesus never showed fear to these adversaries!

Yes, the religious crowd were the greatest adversaries of the Lord!

When we go to the house of the Lord, we are to go to worship!

Everyone went to worship except these who claimed to obey all the Word of God!

They went to find fault in the people of God!

We should clearly understand this evil, wicked, religious crowd knew that Jesus had the power to heal. They acknowledged that they knew it.

These same men would drop what they were doing and go home to save one of their animals, even on a Sabbath.

Yet here stood a man who had damaged his hand in some fashion and was no longer able to provide for himself nor for his family in the House God to worship Jehovah showing his great faith.

This had gotten the attention of our Savior!

How could anyone believe that God had to keep Himself from doing good on any day, much less a day He had set aside for rest and worship.

Jesus showed no fear, and He answered this foolish question with action.

*Mat 12:11 And he said unto them, What man shall there be among you, that shall have one sheep, and if it fall into a pit on the sabbath day, will he not lay hold on it, and lift it out?
Mat 12:12 How much then is a man better than a sheep? Wherefore it is lawful to do well on the sabbath days.
Mat 12:13 Then saith he to the man, Stretch forth thine hand. And he stretched it forth; and it was restored whole, like as the other.

Jesus spoke to this crowd and said, by your own actions, you prove that it is lawful to do good on a Sabbath!

It is “faith” that is the answer to the Word of God!

We must understand that so-called religion is nothing without believers.

Jesus explained to this religious crowd that they would break their own rules to save a sheep that had fallen into a pit, no matter what day it was.

Is not a man better than a sheep? If you have the love of God in you, that answer is simple.

We should listen as Jesus preaches to these men. He took one point, to build upon it.

Jesus then said, if you are so willing to help an animal in jeopardy of their life, then the answer to your question is “it is lawful to do well on a Sabbath”!

For which, the animal or is it mankind that God shows the greatest love?

How much do we oppose God by twisting and turning His Holy Word to say what it does not say?

This thing takes place in many a Church today!

It is irresponsible to treat the Word of God in this fashion!

There are animal owners today who put the life of humans at risk, just to keep their animals safe.

There are people all over the world starving to death, some because of religious beliefs about animals.

Rituals and rules that jeopardize the lives of people, have no place in the House of God!

Jesus knew what was in the hearts of these men, and they had no compassion on this man with the withered hand, but their goal all along was to destroy Jesus.

The world today would rather destroy the only means of salvation and keep the world lost in its foolishness!

It does not take good eyes to see that this world is dying!

There are no true atheists!

Even an atheist worships himself or herself and they will fight you over their belief!

An atheist says, “I am my own god above all others”!

They do not want to hear anything that goes against their beliefs.

These Pharisee had become blind to the truth by using man-made rules to push the truth of God away.

In fact, in typology it was Israel at this time that is represented by this withered hand.

Israel was withered spiritually in this day of Jesus and refused to change.

The Lord Jesus had come to restore Israel to Jehovah and because of religion, they chose to remain cripples and are crippled even today!

Here stood the Living God with the power to heal, the power to cast out devils, the power to feed great multitudes, the power to restore sight to the blind and the power to heal lepers and these puny human beings thought they could destroy this man named Jesus, which would be impossible!

*Mat 12:14 Then the Pharisees went out, and held a council against him, how they might destroy him.
Mat 12:15 But when Jesus knew it, he withdrew himself from thence: and great multitudes followed him, and he healed them all;
Mat 12:16 And charged them that they should not make him known:
Mat 12:17 That it might be fulfilled which was spoken by Esaias the prophet, saying,
Mat 12:18 Behold my servant, whom I have chosen; my beloved, in whom my soul is well pleased: I will put my spirit upon him, and he shall shew judgment to the Gentiles.

The Lord Jesus Christ did not withdraw Himself because of fright!

The Lord Jesus the Messiah withdrew Himself to make sure everything happened just as written down in the Word of God and to fulfill all prophesies.

He did not come to “Judge” at this time, but He will return to Judge all those who reject Him.

We should never allow anger to rule our decisions at any time!

Jesus came to show His Mercy and His truth the first time He came!

Psa 85:10 Mercy and truth are met together; righteousness and peace have kissed each other.
Psa 85:11 Truth shall spring out of the earth; and righteousness shall look down from heaven.

He will “Judge” according to the same Word of God we have today when He returns!

He asked those who He had healed to not make Him known.

Jesus wished to avoid confrontation with this super religious crowd until it was time to do so!

Jesus did not want the public to push Him forward as their King at this time.

These things will come later.

Jesus had not fulfilled the ministry He came to teach.

The plan of salvation by the Gospel was much more important than these other things!

We must humble ourselves before the Lord, and Jesus is our example of a humble servant during this first time He came!

One lesson Jesus was teaching which is still in place today is, “when they persecute you in one place then move to another place”.

Eventually enough believers will be gathered together to take a stand on the Word of God.

This is what frightens the world governments today.

Guess what, it is going to happen when King Jesus returns in “judgment”!

Php 2:5 Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus:
Php 2:6 Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God:
Php 2:7 But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men:
Php 2:8 And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross.

Jesus came to do the will of the Heavenly Father, and it included His physical death, but God is Spirit, and He cannot die!

Joh 3:34 For he whom God hath sent speaketh the words of God: for God giveth not the Spirit by measure unto him.

Joh 10:17 Therefore doth my Father love me, because I lay down my life, that I might take it again.
Joh 10:18 No man taketh it from me, but I lay it down of myself. I have power to lay it down, and I have power to take it again. This commandment have I received of my Father.

As Christians, we do not have to be concerned what God is going to do, He spells it out for us!

What we have to concern ourselves with is, are we going to be obedient Christians?

Both these things are explained precisely in the same Word of God!

Our Heavenly Father by the will of His Son, places the same Holy Spirit into everyone that He chooses, so we can have no fear of death!

It is the Holy Spirit who makes the changes necessary to become a Christian, being like Jesus Christ!

2Co 3:18 “But we all”, with open face beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord, “are changed into the same image from glory to glory, even as by the Spirit of the Lord”.

Amen

The Messiah Confirms His Mission

Jesus Confirmed His Kingdom

Book of Matthew Chapter 11

What is the truth, there is more effort necessary to be saved by grace than by works!

A life of faith is a life of self-denial! It is not easy, though God’s grace will prevent it being too difficult.

All the eager and enthusiastic followers of Jesus Christ must seize the kingdom and must win it as a prize of war.

In this sense, the Lord Jesus announced Himself as the Redeemer, who had come to save the world, to destroy the works of the devil, to annihilate the powers of evil, and to bring men from the kingdom of darkness to the kingdom of light.

He reconciled men to God, gave them access to God, united them to Him as His dear children, and made His people one with God as He Himself is One with His Father.

We cannot therefore think we can just walk into Heaven without facing obstacles!

*Mat 11:1 And it came to pass, when Jesus had made an end of commanding his twelve disciples, he departed thence to teach and to preach in their cities.

We know that Jesus had sent the 12 chosen disciples out to preach that the Kingdom of God is at hand.

They were to go to the Jews only at this time.

What did the Lord Jesus do at this time? He went and preached in their cities.

What was the key to the messages of the Lord?

Isa 61:1 The Spirit of the Lord GOD is upon me; because the LORD hath anointed me to preach good tidings unto the meek; he hath sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to them that are bound;
Isa 61:2 To proclaim the acceptable year of the LORD, and the day of vengeance of our God; to comfort all that mourn;
Isa 61:3 To appoint unto them that mourn in Zion, to give unto them beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness; that they might be called trees of righteousness, the planting of the LORD, that he might be glorified.

We know that John the Baptist was locked up in prison because he preached the truth to the government of Israel.

To King Herod he said, it is unlawful by the Books of Moses for him to marry his brother’s wife with whom he had committed adultery.

Herod had committed that sin and he locked away John the Baptist to shut his mouth.

This tactic is still in use today in many places.

What did the laws of Moses say?

Lev 18:16 Thou shalt not uncover the nakedness of thy brother’s wife: it is thy brother’s nakedness.

Lev 20:21 And if a man shall take his brother’s wife, it is an unclean thing: he hath uncovered his brother’s nakedness; they shall be childless.

John was locked up and later beheaded in a trap setup by a wicked woman.

The disciples of John were a bit confused because John himself was dealing with some doubts.

*Mat 11:2 Now when John had heard in the prison the works of Christ, he sent two of his disciples,
Mat 11:3 And said unto him, Art thou he that should come, or do we look for another?

Most of us will go through periods of doubt so we need to keep the truth of the Scriptures close to our heart.

We could say our doubts are wavering faith, which is dangerous if allowed to continue.

John had predicted the coming of Christ just as the Old Testament Prophets had foretold so John preached.

Mat 3:11 I indeed baptize you with water unto repentance: but he that cometh after me is mightier than I, whose shoes I am not worthy to bear: he shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost, and with fire:
Mat 3:12 Whose fan is in his hand, and he will throughly purge his floor, and gather his wheat into the garner; but he will burn up the chaff with unquenchable fire.

The Lord Jesus had just begun His ministry, but what our Lord was providing was a means of salvation for the entire world and most of the Jews had a real problem with this.

They wanted a king that was like the Old Testament King David and who would free them from the tyranny of Rome.

Judgment would come later, but we can also say “Judgment” begins the moment people reject the truth of God, just as eternal life begins the moment, we accept the Lord Jesus Christ.

John was seeking a more visible proof that the Lord Jesus is the Messiah.

John wanted the Lord Jesus to proclaim that He was the Messiah and the things the Lord had already done were according to the Old Testament prophets.

The message of the Lord Jesus is still salvation at this time!

Psa 118:25 Save now, I beseech thee, O LORD: O LORD, I beseech thee, send now prosperity.
Psa 118:26 Blessed be he that cometh in the name of the LORD: we have blessed you out of the house of the LORD.
Psa 118:27 God is the LORD, which hath shewed us light: bind the sacrifice with cords, even unto the horns of the altar.

So Jesus began to answer them.

*Mat 11:4 Jesus answered and said unto them, Go and shew John “again” those things which ye do hear and see:
Mat 11:5 The blind receive their sight, and the lame walk, the lepers are cleansed, and the deaf hear, the dead are raised up, and the poor have the gospel preached to them.

Jesus said, go show John what you have seen and what you have heard.

We should notice that word “again”. It looks like John had ask for proof more than one time.

The healing miracles that Jesus had done were impossible for man to accomplish!

The sermons that Jesus had preached, He preached with authority like no one that had come before Him in the name of the Lord.

His birth place was known by most of them!

The virgin Mary was not accepted by many of the super religious but only by true believers.

Joh 8:41 Ye do the deeds of your father. Then said they to him, We be not born of fornication; we have one Father, even God.

The many prophecies that had already been fulfilled by His life.

There was no doubt that Jesus was the Messiah, but none of the Jews had seen, that Jesus first came to save, and He would later return in “Judgment”.

Luk 4:32 And they were astonished at his doctrine: for his word was with power.

Joh 8:51 Verily, verily, I say unto you, If a man keep my saying, he shall never see death.

Joh 12:45 And he that seeth me seeth him that sent me.
Joh 12:46 I am come a light into the world, that whosoever believeth on me should not abide in darkness.
Joh 12:47 And if any man hear my words, and believe not, I judge him not: for I came not to judge the world, but to save the world.
Joh 12:48 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.
Joh 12:49 For I have not spoken of myself; but the Father which sent me, he gave me a commandment, what I should say, and what I should speak.
Joh 12:50 And I know that his commandment is life everlasting: whatsoever I speak therefore, even as the Father said unto me, so I speak.

We either accept that the Word of God is true, or we will believe the lies of this world.

The biggest problem the world has, is that word “Gospel”, they just do not want to understand it.

The word gospel means, “good news” or “good tidings”!

The “Good News” of salvation.

Rom 1:16 For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek.

The world simply loves “bad news”. This is why most news channels are accepted because they give nothing but bad news!

The Lord Jesus Christ was fulfilling Scripture just as it was written!

People just do not want to accept the Word of God as it is written and many of those call themselves believers!

So what do they believe?

Who are those who are blessed today?

*Mat 11:6 And blessed is he, whosoever shall not be offended in me.

All the things that the Lord Jesus had done from the time He was a babe in Bethlehem, prove that He is the Messiah!

The Lord Jesus did not just profess to be the Messiah, He proved that He is the Messiah.

Some of the Apostles struggled in their faith also, but they soon believed when the Lord Jesus walked out of that tomb as prophesied!

Joh 14:8 Philip saith unto him, Lord, shew us the Father, and it sufficeth us.
Joh 14:9 Jesus saith unto him, Have I been so long time with you, and yet hast thou not known me, Philip? he that hath seen me hath seen the Father; and how sayest thou then, Shew us the Father?
Joh 14:10 Believest thou not that I am in the Father, and the Father in me? the words that I speak unto you I speak not of myself: but the Father that dwelleth in me, he doeth the works.
Joh 14:11 Believe me that I am in the Father, and the Father in me: or else believe me for the very works’ sake.
Joh 14:12 Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me, the works that I do shall he do also; and greater works than these shall he do; because I go unto my Father.

The one thing, that many miss is that they struggled to believe that the Lord Jesus is the Messiah, but many more did affirm that there is truly a sovereign God.

Many today deny there is a Holy God, all the time bragging on their personal god!!!!!

Mother Earth, Earth Day, Allah, Buddha and much too many to name them all.

The Lord Jesus is exactly who He claims to be, and it would be a much better world if more people believed this fact!

I am not looking for a Messiah to come, I am looking for the Lord Jesus Christ to come again!

Joh 10:32 Jesus answered them, Many good works have I shewed you from my Father; for which of those works do ye stone me?

Why did wicked people want to murder a man that never did anything bad?

Who can figure that one out?

Jesus said take the time to read the Bible and you will see!

Joh 5:39 Search the scriptures; for in them ye think ye have eternal life: and they are they which testify of me.
Joh 5:40 And ye will not come to me, that ye might have life.
Joh 5:41 I receive not honour from men.
Joh 5:42 But I know you, that ye have not the love of God in you.

If you take the time to study the Word of God, you will see that there could be no Messiah if it is not the Lord Jesus Christ.

People are waiting on a fairy tale while the truth stares them in the face!

Jesus then says, what were you looking for when you saw John the Baptist?

People were looking for the Messiah and John said it is not me, but many insisted that John could have been the Messiah.

*Mat 11:7 And as they departed, Jesus began to say unto the multitudes concerning John, What went ye out into the wilderness to see? A reed shaken with the wind?
Mat 11:8 But what went ye out for to see? A man clothed in soft raiment? behold, they that wear soft clothing are in kings’ houses.

Some people thought that John was wavering in his faith, but this is really not true.

John wanted to be sure that Jesus was the Messiah, if not then he still had much work to do.

When the Lord gives us a task to do, we are not finished with it until the Lord says we are finished with it!

John was not a wavering reed, but he was a man solid in his convictions!

John was not a man that dressed in fine clothes to impress the people, John was a man of discipline and self-denial.

John was the voice that said the true King is Coming.

John was the greatest of natural men, but not as great as the least of true believers.

John the Baptist was the last of the Prophets of days of the Law.

John came in the power of Elijah to proclaim the Lord Jesus Christ.

John was not afraid of Herod or of what Herod could do to him.

John did not preach for the applause of men nor did he weaken his sermon before the doubters.

John preached the message given to him by the Lord and he did not stop until he was beheaded and then his legacy continued as Jesus said.

John did not sway with every breeze of change as we see today in the modern church.

John stood firm on the Word of God.

John the Baptist was much more than a prophet!

John was the last of the priest in the line of Aaron and He passed that priesthood over to the Lord Jesus Christ!

*Mat 11:9 But what went ye out for to see? A prophet? yea, I say unto you, and more than a prophet.
Mat 11:10 For this is he, of whom it is written, Behold, I send my messenger before thy face, which shall prepare thy way before thee.

We must understand that the Old Testament pointed to the coming of Jesus Christ, the true Messiah. Christ and Messiah are the same word when it comes to the Lord Jesus.

John the Baptist said: “He is here”. John prophesied of the salvation that comes by accepting that the Lord Jesus is truly that Messiah.

Joh 1:29 The next day John seeth Jesus coming unto him, and saith, Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world.

Joh 1:36 And looking upon Jesus as he walked, he saith, Behold the Lamb of God!

What are we looking forward to?

Rev 22:3 And there shall be no more curse: but the throne of God and of the Lamb shall be in it; and his servants shall serve him:

You see John the Baptist was himself a fulfillment of Prophecy with the job of preparing the way for the Lord and after he had done so, his ministry was complete and the world destroyed him as they did most all prophets of God, but not before they had preached the message of God!

Then the Lord Jesus bragged on John just a little bit.

* Mat 11:11 Verily I say unto you, Among them that are born of women there hath not risen a greater than John the Baptist: notwithstanding he that is least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he.
Mat 11:12 And from the days of John the Baptist until now the kingdom of heaven suffereth violence, and the violent take it by force.

Jesus said the John was the greatest of all-natural men, but true greatness comes only to those who are “Born Again” into the family of God.

All those Old Testament Saints were at one time inferior to anyone who of God’s saints by the work of Jesus Christ.

Gal 2:16 Knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law, but by the faith of Jesus Christ, even we have believed in Jesus Christ, that we might be justified by the faith of Christ, and not by the works of the law: for by the works of the law shall no flesh be justified.

John was perfect by the works of the Law and there were others like him and none as great as those “justified” (already Judged) by the faith in Christ Jesus.

All those who insists upon justification by the Law are still under the curse from the time of Adam!

Tit 3:5 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;

These things are not so hard to understand!

The preaching of John the Baptist was the signal for all mankind to press for the mark as Paul put it.

Php 3:14 I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.

Far too many reject this truth!

Jesus Christ is still calling today, but He will not continue to do so for very much longer or He will have lied to His Church!

God does not lie!

As Christians we need to take this time to seize the Kingdom of God and it is prepared for us to do so with “faith” in the works of Christ!

John preached to repent, and this part of his preaching is true today! We must repent of our evil ways and Jesus Christ is the tool of that repentance and our example to follow!

John could not preach the cross because it had not happened.
John could not preach the resurrection because it had not taken place in his lifetime.

Today it is our privilege to know the truth of the Lord Jesus Christ.

All the called, of God are to preach the Gospel of Jesus Christ, no other message has the importance of this message!

John was the last of the true prophets of God!

We now have the completed Word of God which has replaced all prophets of God.

We do not need prophets anymore!

*Mat 11:13 For all the prophets and the law prophesied until John.
Mat 11:14 And if ye will receive it, this is Elias, which was for to come.
Mat 11:15 He that hath ears to hear, let him hear.

Again the Lord Jesus says that John the Baptist was an end of an Age. The Age of the Law!

John was the bridge that connected prophecy to the fulfillment of prophecy when it comes to the Messiah!

Jesus Christ is that true Messiah, there is no other!

Heb 9:15 And for this cause he is the mediator of the new testament, that by means of death, for the redemption of the transgressions that were under the first testament, they which are called might receive the promise of eternal inheritance.

John was that promised man that came in the power of Elijah, not Elijah but he was like Elijah.

Joh 1:21 And they asked him, What then? Art thou Elias? And he saith, I am not. Art thou that prophet? And he answered, No.
Joh 1:22 Then said they unto him, Who art thou? that we may give an answer to them that sent us. What sayest thou of thyself?
Joh 1:23 He said, I am the voice of one crying in the wilderness, Make straight the way of the Lord, as said the prophet Esaias.

Some believe John was the resurrected Elijah, but I believe Elijah has not returned as of yet, but will be one of the two witnesses of the 7-year Tribulation Period.

John did resemble Elijah in many ways, but he says so himself that he was not Elijah.

We know that all Scripture is given to us by the Holy Spirit.

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

2Pe 1:21 For the prophecy came not in old time by the will of man: but holy men of God spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost.

Jesus completes this passage by saying if our ears are working, we need to listen to what the Holy Spirit has to say, and this is said many more times.

If God says it one time, then it is enough, but when God repeats Himself then we had surely pay attention!

*Mat 11:28 Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.

Here is a personal invitation from the Lord Jesus Christ, the God of the Bible.

Christ pleads with those who have no other steps to take and who fill their journey is unbearable and over.
Christ pleads with those who are about to explode and cannot take any more of this world.

Christ does not mention what causes these things, because He has personally felt this kind of pressure.

Heb_4:15 For we have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin.

Christ knows what we are going through!

You see it does not matter what we are going through, Jesus Christ is the answer to that thing!

This is a simple invitation that opens the door to great things and things that will last throughout eternity.

The solution Christ offers is rest. We can rest our weary soul when we know the Lord.

We see that Christ offers this rest only to those who want to learn from Him!

We must put some effort into knowing the Lord Jesus Christ!

We become over-burdened in this world.
We see that worldliness and carnality do not bring much pleasure and is not a lasting pleasure.

We must choose:

Heb 11:25 Choosing rather to suffer affliction with the people of God, than to enjoy the pleasures of sin for a season;

We get tired of the power of sin in our lives.
We see that earthly possessions do not last.
We see that fame is just emptiness.
We see that power is just loneliness.
We see that religion is not what it is made out to be and just full of rituals that are meaningless.
We see rules and regulations that do nothing more than rob us of our freedoms.

Life in this world causes exhaustion.

Searching for the truth, but never coming to the truth leaves us empty.

Only the Lord Jesus and help us with these things in this life and He promises a great life that will last throughout eternity.

Isa 1:18 Come now, and let us reason together, saith the LORD: though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool.

Let us just take on the yoke of Jesus.

*Mat 11:29 Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls.
Mat 11:30 For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.

When Christ was upon this earth, He was meek and lowly, but He was not lacking in power.

God cares for those who love Him!

All the traits of God are perfect!

Yes, Jesus was meek and yes Jesus was lowly but He did not lack in power!

Jesus was perfect in in His understanding.
Jesus is perfect in His patience. (I Know this is true because He saved me!)

1Pe 5:7 Casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you.

Jesus will always offer encouragement and we must too!

Jesus, custom fits His yoke upon us, to match our problems and gives us the answer and help we truly need!

God made us so He knows how to custom fit our yoke!

To find the rest that God promises we just need to learn and labor under the leadership of our Savior and our Master!

Jesus is not a taskmaster He only requires obedience. After that, it is all downhill until we reach the Highest Hill of Heaven!

1Jn 5:3 For this is the love of God, that we keep his commandments: and his commandments are not grievous.
1Jn 5:4 For whatsoever is born of God overcometh the world: and this is the victory that overcometh the world, even our faith.
1Jn 5:5 Who is he that overcometh the world, but he that believeth that Jesus is the Son of God?

Amen

Being a Disciple of Christ

Jesus Sent Men on a Mission

Book of Matthew Chapter 10

Who is a disciple of Jesus Christ?

1) They will believe His doctrine.
2) They rest upon the sacrificial works of the Lord Jesus Christ for our salvation.
3) They are full of the Holy Spirit the Spirit of Jesus Christ.
4) They will follow according to His example.

You cannot be a disciple of Jesus Christ if you reject any of these things!

There were many who followed Jesus at the first, but Jesus chose 12 specific men for His own reasons.

*Mat 10:1 And when he had called unto him his twelve disciples, he gave them power against unclean spirits, to cast them out, and to heal all manner of sickness and all manner of disease.

We can say that Jesus chose twelve men because there were 12 Tribes of Israel.
At the time of Jesus the separation of the tribes of Israel did not exist in the fashion as determined by Moses.

It is the Church who will “Judge” the twelve tribes of Israel during the 1000-year reign of the Lord Jesus.

Mat 19:28 And Jesus said unto them, Verily I say unto you, That ye which have followed me, in the regeneration when the Son of man shall sit in the throne of his glory, ye also shall sit upon twelve thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel.

Notice men have no power before they are given power by the Lord Jesus Christ.

These men were given only the same powers that Jesus had already shown to the world!

Mat 9:35 And Jesus went about all the cities and villages, teaching in their synagogues, and preaching the gospel of the kingdom, and healing every sickness and every disease among the people.

Jesus considered all humans as spiritual sheep:

Mat 9:36 But when he saw the multitudes, he was moved with compassion on them, because they fainted, and were scattered abroad, as sheep having no shepherd.

Jesus also said many more would become disciples if there were enough laborers with His message:

Mat 9:37 Then saith he unto his disciples, The harvest truly is plenteous, but the laborers are few;
Mat 9:38 Pray ye therefore the Lord of the harvest, that he will send forth laborers into his harvest.

These powers were amazing powers to be given to men.

At this time they could only preach the same message as John the Baptist except to say the Messiah had come.

1) They had power to heal all manner of sickness and disease.
2) They had power to cast out evil spirits.

If you do not have the Holy Spirit living in you, then you have an evil spirit living in you!

Then we see the names of these 12 disciples who are now called apostles.

The 12 Apostles were men specifically chosen by the Lord Jesus Christ.

We know that the traitor Judas is in this first group, but he is later replaced by the Apostle Paul, still because every Apostle had to be specifically chosen by the Lord Jesus Christ.

We know Paul, then Saul, was chosen as he traveled the Damascus Road.

There were no other apostles then nor can there ever be.

The Church is the one and only group chosen to spread the Word of God throughout the world today!

Their names:

*Mat 10:2 Now the names of the twelve apostles are these; The first, Simon, who is called Peter, and Andrew his brother; James the son of Zebedee, and John his brother;
Mat 10:3 Philip, and Bartholomew; Thomas, and Matthew the publican; James the son of Alphaeus, and Lebbaeus, whose surname was Thaddaeus;
Mat 10:4 Simon the Canaanite, and Judas Iscariot, who also betrayed him.

We must understand that when the Lord Jesus allocates power to individuals, it is not about ranking it is only about His ministry.

It is not about position, it is not about wealth, it is not about fame, it is not about earthly dominion.

Those given the power of Jesus Christ are given that power to reach and help people.

The soul of man is the most important commodity to the Lord.

The power of God is to be always directed against the evilness and wickedness in this world.

It is not the power to judge, the Lord holds that power to Himself.

Jesus Christ in the flesh could only be in so many places.

The Lord Jesus taught men to carry on His work after He completed that work and returned to Heaven in all His glory.

These 12 men were not administrators, they were always just ministers.

The Church has only one Head and that Head is the Lord Jesus Christ!

It is not the Pope or any other religious leader.

Eph 5:23 For the husband is the head of the wife, even as Christ is the head of the church: and he is the saviour of the body.

The Church is that “body”, the Body of Christ.

Israel was first called the people of God, but they rejected the Lord.

Remember, the Lord Jesus will not force Himself upon anyone. When you say leave He will leave as Jews insisted before Pilate.

Mat 27:22 Pilate saith unto them, What shall I do then with Jesus which is called Christ? They all say unto him, Let him be crucified.
Mat 27:23 And the governor said, Why, what evil hath he done? But they cried out the more, saying, Let him be crucified.
Mat 27:24 When Pilate saw that he could prevail nothing, but that rather a tumult was made, he took water, and washed his hands before the multitude, saying, I am innocent of the blood of this just person: see ye to it.
Mat 27:25 Then answered all the people, and said, “His blood be on us, and on our children”.
Mat 27:26 Then released he Barabbas unto them: and when he had scourged Jesus, he delivered him to be crucified.

Why would they still believe they are God’s people?

The Church is now God’s chosen people!

1Pe 2:9 But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should shew forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvellous light:

It is these Apostles who taught the message given to them by the Lord Jesus, how can we reject their message?

Jer 3:15 And I will give you pastors according to mine heart, which shall feed you with knowledge and understanding.

An apostle belongs to the One who sent them.
An apostle is commissioned to be sent out.
An apostle possesses the authority and the power of the One who sent them.

These powers were given to these 12 men and to Paul and no others.

Because these men died, then their apostleship died out.

At first these men went only to the Jews, but we must also remember, the Lord Jesus is all-knowing, and He already knew what would happen, Jesus came to die for all sinners in every land!

*Mat 10:5 These twelve Jesus sent forth, and commanded them, saying, Go not into the way of the Gentiles, and into any city of the Samaritans enter ye not:
Mat 10:6 But go rather to the lost sheep of the house of Israel.

These disciples were undergoing a training program that they did not really even understand at this point.

This was a temporary mission.
They were to go only to certain places.
They had a specific message.
They had a specific manner in which they were to conduct themselves.
They had specific powers given under the authority of the Lord Jesus.

We should completely understand that no one is given the power to preach the Word of God unless they are called and then sent by the Almighty Living God.

Much of the problems in the Church today is because of so-called men of God were not truly called of God.

The message to the Jews was a message of repentance as John the Baptist preached.

The difference being John preached Jesus was coming.
These 12 would preach that Jesus the Messiah was now here.
These 12 after the death of Christ and after the Holy Spirit gave them full power would preach, Jesus is coming again and their message would be to all people, in every nation, Jew, Gentile, and Samaritan alike.

Every human being will fall into one of these categories!

There were at this time many others who were following the Lord but most of them followed Him because of the miracles He had shown.

You see a ministry for the Lord is not a profession with retirement plans and salaries and all such things.

A ministry for the Lord is a commission!

Without the power of a calling to serve, you would have to serve in your own strength.
Without the power of a calling, you will try to serve with your own ideas of God’s plan.
Without the power of a calling, you will always come up short in proclaiming the Gospel.
Without the power of a calling, you will always wonder if you are doing any good at all.

We find these problems in many a house of God today.

These 12 went only to Israel at this time and not to the lost world.

Only after the death of Christ and the Holy Ghost came down to these disciples at Pentecost, would their message be a true salvation message!

Rom 9:30 What shall we say then? That the Gentiles, which followed not after righteousness, have attained to righteousness, even the righteousness which is of faith.
Rom 9:31 But Israel, which followed after the law of righteousness, hath not attained to the law of righteousness.
Rom 9:32 Wherefore? Because they sought it not by faith, but as it were by the works of the law. For they stumbled at that stumblingstone;
Rom 9:33 As it is written, Behold, I lay in Sion a stumblingstone and rock of offence: and whosoever believeth on him shall not be ashamed.

Rom 10:13 For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.

We must understand that Israel will always hold a special place in God plans.

God made certain promises to Israel and He will keep those promises.

If we truly understand the plan of God for our salvation, then we should also understand once we are saved our first priority is to reach out to our family.

These Jewish disciples were reaching out first to Jews a lesson to them for the future and a lesson for us once we come to know the Lord Jesus Christ as our own personal Savior.

We also see that those who are lost are as sheep. Sheep have to have a Shepherd to survive!

What was their message?

*Mat 10:7 And as ye go, preach, saying, The kingdom of heaven is at hand.

They were not sent to “discuss” the Kingdom of Heaven, they were sent to preach!

They were to proclaim the Kingdom of God is at hand.

They were to preach the message that the Lord Jesus gave to them, not some message of their own.

What did God tell Jonah?

Jon 3:2 Arise, go unto Nineveh, that great city, “and preach unto it the preaching that I bid thee”.

This is another problem in the modern church. The modern Church has forgotten “to preach the message of Jesus Christ”.

This is the message given to the Apostles after Pentecost when they were filled with the Holy Spirit and sent out to the World!

We are never to preach or teach our own ideas about the Gospel, we are simply to preach and teach the Gospel of salvation and then all the Word of God as it is written.

2Pe 1:20 Knowing this first, that no prophecy of the scripture is of any private interpretation.

These disciples preached repentance and this repentance message is forgotten today!

We have to stop our sinful ways and turn toward Jesus Christ and His ways.

We cannot say God made me the way I am and refuse to repent, this is what the meaning of being “Born Again” is all about!

We must turn from our old ways and turn to the ways of Jesus Christ!

These disciples were given other powers that are not given to the workers of Christ today.

The Jews always had to have proof.

Mat 12:39 But he answered and said unto them, An evil and adulterous generation seeketh after a sign; and there shall no sign be given to it, but the sign of the prophet Jonas:

This same sign that was shown to the Jews was shown to the world!

Mat 12:40 For as Jonas was three days and three nights in the whale’s belly; so shall the Son of man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth.

The Lord Jesus Christ remained in a borrowed tomb for three days and three nights just as He said!

*Mat 10:8 Heal the sick, cleanse the lepers, raise the dead, cast out devils: freely ye have received, freely give.

These disciples were given great powers from the Lord, these powers do not exist on this world today.

These things cannot be done without the authority of the Lord Jesus Christ!

Mat 10:1 And when he had called unto him his twelve disciples, he gave them power against unclean spirits, to cast them out, and to heal all manner of sickness and all manner of disease.

We should understand all powers for the ministries of Christ come by Christ!

Notice the differences in the powers given to the Church and the powers given to these disciples who were to go strictly to the Jews.

1Co 12:28 And God hath set some in the church, first apostles, secondarily prophets, thirdly teachers, after that miracles, then gifts of healings, helps, governments, diversities of tongues.
1Co 12:29 Are all apostles? are all prophets? are all teachers? are all workers of miracles?
1Co 12:30 Have all the gifts of healing? do all speak with tongues? do all interpret?
1Co 12:31 But covet earnestly the best gifts: and yet shew I unto you a more excellent way.

The greatest trait we can be given from the Lord is a giving love!

1Co 13:3 And though I bestow all my goods to feed the poor, and though I give my body to be burned, “and have not charity”, it profiteth me nothing.

The message of Jesus Christ is nothing without “love”!

These disciples had to go to the house of Israel based upon their faith in Jesus Christ!

*Mat 10:9 Provide neither gold, nor silver, nor brass in your purses,
Mat 10:10 Nor scrip for your journey, neither two coats, neither shoes, nor yet staves: for the workman is worthy of his meat.

If we place our faith in any of these things, then we cannot say we have true faith in the Lord Jesus Christ.

Most missionaries today do not go to the field until they have established a fund of support for themselves and their families, but the Lord Jesus did not allow these 12 disciples who would become the 12 Apostles, after Paul joined them, to carry these things with them.

The only thing they had, was their faith that Jesus was the Messiah, and the Kingdom of God was surely at hand.

These disciples were not allowed to accumulate great estates through their ministry, and they were not allowed to spend their own money on the ministries of the Lord.

1) Their minds and their hearts had to be centered on the Gospel and ministering to the people. Not buying, selling, or accumulating.
2) They were to trust God to meet their needs and teach dependence upon the Lord.
3) They were to depend upon God’s people to provide.
4) They were to allow God’s people to be a part of the Lord’s ministry by the act of giving to that ministry!

The true servant of God is worthy of our support!

These Apostles were to give full time to the ministry of the Lord Jesus Christ, and they could not do this without support from God’s people!

*Mat 10:11 And into whatsoever city or town ye shall enter, enquire who in it is worthy; and there abide till ye go thence.
Mat 10:12 And when ye come into an house, salute it.
Mat 10:13 And if the house be worthy, let your peace come upon it: but if it be not worthy, let your peace return to you.

A worthy house would be a hospitable house. A person who was willing to entertain strangers.

There was most always someone like this in every town, city, or village, it was in the Jewish culture.

These people would have good reputations for their hospitality to strangers and have good morals according to the Word of God.

These disciples were to stay in this home until their work was done in this area.

A worthy host would normally not be the rich nor the leading citizens of a city.

In many cases, the worthy host may not have the best accommodations, but this was not important.

God’s people are never to seek more comfort and luxury over a Godfearing home!

All these things were to test the sincerity of these soon to be Apostles.

Once established they were to go house to house with the words of Christ.

Pro 18:24 A man that hath friends must shew himself friendly: and there is a friend that sticketh closer than a brother.

Col 4:6 Let your speech be alway with grace, seasoned with salt, that ye may know how ye ought to answer every man.

If they were accepted into the home, then they were to share the peace of God.

If they were not accepted, then their salutation would be enough, and they would go elsewhere.

They were to say nothing else at all.

It iss called being courteous no matter what that person did to you.

We are not ambassadors for Christ to make enemies!

If they reject the message of Christ, then they have rejected Christ!

These were all Jews but no matter what was served at mealtime was not to be rejected!

They were to be content with their accommodations!

If the house be worthy of it, God shall give them the peace you wish them. If not, He shall give you what they refuse.

The same will be the case when we pray for them that are not worthy.

*Mat 10:14 And whosoever shall not receive you, nor hear your words, when ye depart out of that house or city, shake off the dust of your feet.
Mat 10:15 Verily I say unto you, It shall be more tolerable for the land of Sodom and Gomorrha in the day of judgment, than for that city.

What is discernment?

Mal 3:18 Then shall ye return, and discern between the righteous and the wicked, between him that serveth God and him that serveth him not.

As witnesses of the Lord Jesus we must discern and make “righteous” judgment, of the people we witness to.

We are not their personal judge, but we can judge according to the Word of God!

Jas 2:18 Yea, a man may say, Thou hast faith, and I have works: shew me thy faith without thy works, and I will shew thee my faith by my works.

1Pe 2:12 Having your conversation honest among the Gentiles: that, whereas they speak against you as evildoers, they may by your good works, which they shall behold, glorify God in the day of visitation.

1) Are they kind and gracious or cold and hard?
2) Are they just shy and bashful or really not interested?
3) Are they truly receptive or just kind and gracious to everyone?
4) Are they spiritually sensitive or just interested in religious questions?

In reality, we are not to waste our time on those who will never trust the Lord.

1Th 4:8 He therefore that despiseth, despiseth not man, but God, who hath also given unto us his holy Spirit.

How did the Apostle Paul react to these things?

Act 20:26 Wherefore I take you to record this day, that I am pure from the blood of all men.
Act 20:27 For I have not shunned to declare unto you all the counsel of God.

Jesus put things a little harsher!

When we are rejected as witnesses for the Lord, just trying to tell someone about Jesus, the Lord Jesus says Hell will be hotter for those people.

If we consider the people of Sodom and Gomorrah to be some of the worst of all sinners, then we are thinking wrong.

Gen 13:13 But the men of Sodom were wicked and sinners before the LORD exceedingly.

We see many living in this lifestyle today and they will suffer in a like manner of Sodom and Gomorrah but those who have rejected the simple witness of the child of God, will find the “Judgment” of God to be even more severe!

Jud 1:7 Even as Sodom and Gomorrha, and the cities about them in like manner, giving themselves over to fornication, and going after strange flesh, are set forth for an example, suffering the vengeance of eternal fire.

Sodom and Gomorrah rejected the truth of God!

Lam 4:6 For the punishment of the iniquity of the daughter of my people is greater than the punishment of the sin of Sodom, that was overthrown as in a moment, and no hands stayed on her.

Today those who reject the Lord Jesus Christ, reject the “Grace” of God who sent His only begotten Son to die for them.

All sin brings death of the soul and eternal damnation and eternal separation from a loving God, but to reject the Son of God brings with it an even harsher judgment!

At this time, these 12 men were witnessing to the Jews, but it will be the same for all those who reject God’s Son!

The witness for Christ is just the messenger as is every true Pastor and Preacher.

Those that reject the messenger also reject the message, and that message is the salvation plan for this world.

This rejection brings the condemnation of God!

Jud 1:14 And Enoch also, the seventh from Adam, prophesied of these, saying, Behold, the Lord cometh with ten thousands of his saints,
Jud 1:15 To execute judgment upon all, and to convince all that are ungodly among them of all their ungodly deeds which they have ungodly committed, and “of all their hard speeches which ungodly sinners have spoken against him”.

As the messengers of God we are God’s sheep, and our Shepherd is the Lord Jesus Christ.

*Mat 10:16 Behold, I send you forth as sheep in the midst of wolves: be ye therefore wise as serpents, and harmless as doves.

The Lord Jesus has told us we would face persecution for becoming His sheep.

Joh 15:20 Remember the word that I said unto you, The servant is not greater than his lord. If they have persecuted me, they will also persecute you; if they have kept my saying, they will keep yours also.

2Ti 3:12 Yea, and all that will live godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution.

It is only the Lord Jesus Christ who can send true messengers of Heaven.

We as disciples are commissioned by the Lord Jesus Christ, and we should have great comfort in this fact because we go forth with the power of God.

The Lord Jesus is fully aware of the persecution we will face!

Persecution teaches us about God’s care for us.
Persecution matures us as believers.

God sometimes uses persecution to touch the hearts of the persecutors.

We must also consider that if we are persecuted to our death, we will be in Heaven before our dead body hits the ground.

Death holds no power over God’s children!

We must not be caught off guard when persecution comes.

It is almost impossible to walk upon a snake, they can feel your presence as you walk.

A snake will get out of your sight as quickly as possible.
A snake is very quiet!
A snake does not expose itself needlessly.
A snake always seeks to preserve itself.

A dove is mild and meek.
A dove bears no ill or hurt.
A dove is innocent and inoffensive.
A dove is a symbol of peace and not war.

When we have the love of God, we will act like we have the love of God!

1Co 13:4 Charity suffereth long, and is kind; charity envieth not; charity vaunteth not itself, is not puffed up,
1Co 13:5 Doth not behave itself unseemly, seeketh not her own, is not easily provoked, thinketh no evil;
1Co 13:6 Rejoiceth not in iniquity, but rejoiceth in the truth;
1Co 13:7 Beareth all things, believeth all things, hopeth all things, endureth all things.
1Co 13:8 Charity never faileth: but whether there be prophecies, they shall fail; whether there be tongues, they shall cease; whether there be knowledge, it shall vanish away.
1Co 13:9 For we know in part, and we prophesy in part.
1Co 13:10 But when that which is perfect is come, then that which is in part shall be done away.

There is much more to be being a witness for Jesus Christ than just walking around with a Bible in your hands!

Amen

Jesus the Answer to All Life’s Questions

Jesus Dealt with Questions

Book of Matthew Chapter 9

We can talk about the greatest of the traits of God, but we should understand that every trait of the Lord is perfect.

There is no weakness in the Lord Jesus Christ.

The world will certainly look upon humility as a weakness, but it is not.
The world will look upon compassion as a weakness, but it is not a weakness.
The world will look upon love as a weakness, but love is not a weakness.
The world will look upon forgiveness as a weakness, but forgiveness is a great trait to have.

The Lord Jesus is perfect in every trait the world calls a weakness and yet there is no power in the world that can stand against the power of God!

We have already established that Capernaum was at this time the base of operations we could say of the ministry of the Lord Jesus Christ.

The Lord Jesus had been busy since His time of temptation, though Satan stood against Him every day!

Jesus had been in Gadara where He had met a man who had been possessed with the devil and Jesus had caused that horde of demons to leave this man.

The one thing we know for sure is, that Jesus can heal anybody, anywhere, and at any time if they will only trust Him.

Gadara was on another side of the Sea of Galilee and Jesus had been asked to leave Gadara and He left.

We should completely understand, the Lord Jesus will never force Himself upon anyone.

This is a choice we must make ourselves and we must invite Jesus to come into our hearts.

Jesus left Gadara but not before He left a great witness of the truth behind.

Jesus was now returning to Capernaum where we pick up our lesson.

*Mat 9:1 And he entered into a ship, and passed over, and came into his own city.
Mat 9:2 And, behold, they brought to him a man sick of the palsy, lying on a bed: and Jesus seeing their faith said unto the sick of the palsy; Son, be of good cheer; thy sins be forgiven thee.

The palsy was a disease that caused the loss of muscular motion.

Either in the whole body or in parts of the body. We will meet a man here who could no longer walk.

We might say if this man was in such bad shape, why does this passage begin with forgiveness?

It is really simple! It is far better to be forgiven of our sins than to be healed of any sickness.

If we are healed of one thing it will not be long until we are sick or weak from something else.

When you are forgiven of your sin by the Lord Jesus Christ, you are forgiven throughout eternity.

It is foolish to believe that our Savior has the power to forgive us our sins and then does not have the power to keep us saved.

Rom 10:13 For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.

Why was this man forgiven? “Faith”!

Notice the joy in the voice of the Lord for being able to forgive this man and then add to that He healed him.

You will never receive anything from the Lord Jesus Christ unless you have saving faith!

Heb 11:6 But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.

We must believe there is a God who is All-Powerful, and we must believe that he is in the person of the Lord Jesus Christ!

1Jn 2:22 Who is a liar but he that denieth that Jesus is the Christ? He is antichrist, that denieth the Father and the Son.

As we will learn as we continue in our study of the Book of Matthew, unbelieving religious leaders had already sent out spies to spy upon Jesus.

*Mat 9:3 And, behold, certain of the scribes said within themselves, This man blasphemeth.

The scribes who were the men who made handwritten copies of documents, especially of the Old Testament Scriptures and the Books of Moses, the first 5 books of the Bible.

The one thing these scribes got right was the fact that only Jehovah God can forgive sin, because no matter what sin we commit, we sin first against God!

God expects us to treat each other as we would treat ourselves and most of us love ourselves!

When God says, “Thou shall not”, He means it.

The Lord Jesus did not blaspheme because He is God! God cannot deny Himself!

God the Father (Jehovah), God the Son (Jesus), God the Holy Spirit (Holy Ghost).

Listen to what this passage says. These scribes spoke within themselves.

Jesus knows our every thought!

This is kind of scary. I know I have had some terrible thoughts that would greatly shame me if anyone else knew them, but Jesus does know them, and this is another reason we need Him to forgive us.

Mar 7:20 And he said, That which cometh out of the man, that defileth the man.
Mar 7:21 For from within, out of the heart of men, proceed evil thoughts, adulteries, fornications, murders,
Mar 7:22 Thefts, covetousness, wickedness, deceit, lasciviousness, an evil eye, blasphemy, pride, foolishness:
Mar 7:23 All these evil things come from within, and defile the man.

Jesus knew exactly what these hypocrites were thinking!

*Mat 9:4 And Jesus knowing their thoughts said, Wherefore think ye evil in your hearts?
Mat 9:5 For whether is easier, to say, Thy sins be forgiven thee; or to say, Arise, and walk?
Mat 9:6 But that ye may know that the Son of man hath power on earth to forgive sins, (then saith he to the sick of the palsy,) Arise, take up thy bed, and go unto thine house.

We must understand that sin is a great evil. If we get this one right, then we will understand that “faith” is a great blessing!

You see Jesus did not concentrate on the suffering Jesus concentrated on his “faith”.

Does this mean that Jesus does not see our suffering? No not at all!

When “faith” is present, then suffering, just as sin, can be done away with!

In typology these men spoken of with palsy, represent the Children of Israel who are paralyzed in unbelief and cannot move forward until the blindness has been removed from their eyes.

Rom 11:7 What then? Israel hath not obtained that which he seeketh for; but the election hath obtained it, and the rest were blinded
Rom 11:8 (According as it is written, God hath given them the spirit of slumber, eyes that they should not see, and ears that they should not hear;) unto this day.
Rom 11:9 And David saith, Let their table be made a snare, and a trap, and a stumblingblock, and a recompence unto them:
Rom 11:10 Let their eyes be darkened, that they may not see, and bow down their back alway.
Rom 11:11 I say then, Have they stumbled that they should fall? God forbid: but rather through their fall salvation is come unto the Gentiles, for to provoke them to jealousy.

They have stumbled at the truth of the Scriptures and paralyzed, but we already know this will end after they go through the seven years of tribulation.

We must understand, we are still “heathen” until our sins are forgiven.

No amount of healing can take place until our sins are forgiven!

To Jesus it was just as easy for Him to say “rise up and walk” or ‘thy sins are forgiven” for only He knows what is in our heart!

The truth is all mankind are disabled and sick “spiritually”!

What is the truth of the job Jesus has given us to do?

1) We must realize it is our job to get the disabled to Jesus Christ.
2) We must acknowledge that only Jesus Christ has the power to help.
3) We must persist and persevere until we get the disabled to Jesus Christ.

Our lost children and grandchildren are not just someone we love they are spiritually disabled!

We must not miss that Jesus knows the rejection of religionists.

Religionists think only evil when the name Jesus is mentioned!

We also note that these evil and wicked men did acknowledge that Jesus had the power to heal.

They did not recognize that this healing power as being the power of God.

They rejected Jesus for many reasons and one of those reasons was that He could heal anybody at any time, and their thinking was that God would certainly not heal sinners.

The Lord Jesus asked, “Why do you have evil in your hearts”?

Why is this world so afraid that Jesus is real?

Because their hearts are so full of evil wickedness!

You know what Jesus did not do? He did not show any fear.

He just went about the business He came to do. He was not intimidated by evil men!

What did this man who “was” paralyzed do?

*Mat 9:7 And he arose, and departed to his house.
Mat 9:8 But when the multitudes saw it, they marvelled, and glorified God, which had given such power unto men.

You see anyone can say “I forgive you” or even “rise up and walk”, but if there is no action from those sayings then they are only loose words.

The Lord Jesus spoke our world into existence!

Col_1:16 For by him were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers: all things were created by him, and for him:

There will always be action in the Word of God, so we can depend upon the Word of God as being the truth and it is not important that the world believe, it is important that we believe as individuals.

When the Lord Jesus says your sins are forgiven, then it is not necessary for the world to believe!

Salvation comes to those whose sins are truly forgiven!

The fact is, the Messiah did truly come, and He will return a second time for separate reasons.

Salvation means truly saved and not ever lost again!

Heb 7:25 Wherefore he is able also to save them to the uttermost that come unto God by him, seeing he ever liveth to make intercession for them.

The sad fact is that some people attempt to glorify God, yet they will not receive forgiveness.

Just recognizing that someone has the power of God is not enough for forgiveness.

Forgiveness begins in our own heart and the Lord sees into the heart!

It is not even important that we marvel at the power of Christ!

It is important that we recognize Jesus as the Messiah, and not just some prophet and not some man who went around doing good!

Col_1:16 For by him were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers: all things were created by him, and for him:

1Jn_4:2 Hereby know ye the Spirit of God: Every spirit that confesseth that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is of God:

1Jn_5:1 Whosoever believeth that Jesus is the Christ is born of God: and every one that loveth him that begat loveth him also that is begotten of him.

The Lord Jesus Christ is certainly Emmanuel the God Man!

All those who witnessed these things marveled and glorified, but they did not recognize our Savior.

Then Jesus spots Matthew.

*Mat 9:9 And as Jesus passed forth from thence, he saw a man, named Matthew, sitting at the receipt of custom: and he saith unto him, Follow me. And he arose, and followed him.

In this passage we will see a short introduction to the person of Matthew, known as Levi before accepting the Lord Jesus Christ.

Mar 2:14 And as he passed by, he saw Levi the son of Alphaeus sitting at the receipt of custom, and said unto him, Follow me. And he arose and followed him.

Luk 5:27 And after these things he went forth, and saw a publican, named Levi, sitting at the receipt of custom: and he said unto him, Follow me.
Luk 5:28 And he left all, rose up, and followed him.

If Matthew had written this book without the Holy Spirit, he would certainly have used more words to describe himself, but as Christians we know our old life is in the past but forgotten by the Lord and we begin a new life just as Matthew did.

The name Matthew means “Gift of God”. He was the son of Alphaeus and was a publican or today we would say tax collector.

We all hate the tax collector!

Custom, as it was called was not for Israel but for Rome. A man such as Matthew would be located at the gates of every city, town, village, and along each highway.

They collected money that was paid for goods.

Many of these tax collectors would collect more than was due and they became rich. Rome did not care as long as Rome received what was called for.

They were called “Publican” which means an employee of low degree.

1) They were Jews who worked for Rome.
2) They collected more that was required.

On this day Matthew began working for the Lord and he and the Lord made a big deal of it making a feast to celebrate his last day as a Publican and his new life as a disciple of Jesus Christ.

What we should understand is that Matthew wanted all such as himself to meet the Lord.

*Mat 9:10 And it came to pass, as Jesus sat at meat in the house, behold, many publicans and sinners came and sat down with him and his disciples.
Mat 9:11 And when the Pharisees saw it, they said unto his disciples, Why eateth your Master with publicans and sinners?

Matthew was a hated man, but he found that God loved him.

Luk 15:1 Then drew near unto him all the publicans and sinners for to hear him.
Luk 15:2 And the Pharisees and scribes murmured, saying, This man receiveth sinners, and eateth with them.

Matthew had decided no more needed to be known about himself, and he moved on to tell the world about a Savior who loved all sinners and who came to save them.

When everyone else saw a man as a traitor who worked for Rome, Jesus saw a disciple who would become an Apostle.

The Bible teaches us to pay our taxes:

Rom 13:1 Let every soul be subject unto the higher powers. For there is no power but of God: the powers that be are ordained of God.
Rom 13:2 Whosoever therefore resisteth the power, resisteth the ordinance of God: and they that resist shall receive to themselves damnation.
Rom 13:3 For rulers are not a terror to good works, but to the evil. Wilt thou then not be afraid of the power? do that which is good, and thou shalt have praise of the same:
Rom 13:4 For he is the minister of God to thee for good. But if thou do that which is evil, be afraid; for he beareth not the sword in vain: for he is the minister of God, a revenger to execute wrath upon him that doeth evil.
Rom 13:5 Wherefore ye must needs be subject, not only for wrath, but also for conscience sake.
Rom 13:6 For for this cause pay ye tribute also: for they are God’s ministers, attending continually upon this very thing.
Rom 13:7 Render therefore to all their dues: tribute to whom tribute is due; custom to whom custom; fear to whom fear; honour to whom honour.
Rom 13:8 Owe no man any thing, but to love one another: for he that loveth another hath fulfilled the law.

“As much as we can” we must live in peace with our governments.

The Lord Jesus saw the loneliness of Matthew, his lack of purpose, a man who needed a Savior.

What did Jesus see when He saw me?

What did Jesus see when He saw you?

What does Jesus see when He looks at His world today?

This world was created for Jesus to show His power!

One day for the Church at the ‘Rapture” and seven years later one day of “Judgment” for those who reject Him!

Mar 8:34 And when he had called the people unto him with his disciples also, he said unto them, Whosoever will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me.
Mar 8:35 For whosoever will save his life shall lose it; but whosoever shall lose his life for my sake and the gospel’s, the same shall save it.
Mar 8:36 For what shall it profit a man, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul?
Mar 8:37 Or what shall a man give in exchange for his soul?
Mar 8:38 Whosoever therefore shall be ashamed of me and of my words in this adulterous and sinful generation; of him also shall the Son of man be ashamed, when he cometh in the glory of his Father with the holy angels.

This is why today, during the Church Age is the “Day of Salvation”!

Jesus sat down with these sinners and joined them in a meal.

Then the super religious, who rejected all sinners and rejected that they were sinners or that they were self-righteous, looked upon Jesus with disgust.

We should acknowledge that the first thing that Matthew did was to bring all his old friends into the presence of the Lord Jesus Christ.

2Ti 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.

This is exactly what we are all to do today. To bring every sinner into contact with the one and only Savior.

Even Jesus cannot save a self-righteous man or woman!

*Mat 9:12 But when Jesus heard that, he said unto them, They that be whole need not a physician, but they that are sick.
Mat 9:13 But go ye and learn what that meaneth, I will have mercy, and not sacrifice: for I am not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.

Those who are whole are all those who think they do not need our Heavenly Savior!

What is the reality of this passage? It reminds us of the last Church Age that we are now in!

Rev 3:17 Because thou sayest, I am rich, and increased with goods, and have need of nothing; and knowest not that thou art wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked:

The so-called modern-day church has forgotten that there is never a day that we do not need our Savior!

Jesus is not allowed inside the modern church.

The teachings of Jesus about abortion are forgotten.
The teachings of Jesus about the sodomites and the lesbians, and those who cannot determine what sex they are, all forgotten.

We either accept the Word of God as it is written and believe what Matthew wrote and Jesus said.

Those that are whole do not need Jesus!

When we place ourselves above the Word of God, then we have rejected the God of the Bible and He is the Lord Jesus Christ!

Joh 1:1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.
Joh 1:2 The same was in the beginning with God.
Joh 1:3 All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made.
Joh 1:4 In him was life; and the life was the light of men.
Joh 1:5 And the light shineth in darkness; and the darkness comprehended it not.

Just like Jesus says, “go your way and learn what this means”.

Jesus did not come to this earth to save those who have made themselves to be righteous!

Jesus came to save me a dirty rotten sinner! He can save you to.

Sin is a sickness and a sickness that affects our minds.

This sin sickness needs a Heavenly Physician!

Sin is the sickness of the spirit. Our spirit cannot be healed, but needs to be replaced by the Holy Spirit.

Sin is a sickness of the flesh. Our flesh cannot be healed, but needs to be replaced, we need to be Born Again!

We are foolish to believe our sin sickness cannot be healed and it begins with repentance!

Do not be one of those who continue to walk with the fatal disease of sin believing the Devil!

A merciful Physician named Jesus, brought the tools needed to heal us all and it begins with “Faith”!

You see, we just need a “Blood Transfusion”, we need to be washed in the blood of Jesus.

Rev 1:5 And from Jesus Christ, who is the faithful witness, and the first begotten of the dead, and the prince of the kings of the earth. Unto him that loved us, and washed us from our sins in his own blood,
Rev 1:6 And hath made us kings and priests unto God and his Father; to him be glory and dominion for ever and ever. Amen.

A merciful God came down from Heaven to put a stop to animal sacrifice and sacrificed Himself that we might be saved!

Then Jesus was confronted by men who had become the disciples of John the Baptist.

*Mat 9:14 Then came to him the disciples of John, saying, Why do we and the Pharisees fast oft, but thy disciples fast not?

By this time John the Baptist was in prison because he was not afraid to preach the truth to the government of Israel being led by King Herod.

It would not be long before John would be beheaded because of a political farce.

John had told his disciples that he had to step back so he would not draw people away from Jesus.

Joh 3:27 John answered and said, A man can receive nothing, except it be given him from heaven.
Joh 3:28 Ye yourselves bear me witness, that I said, I am not the Christ, but that I am sent before him.
Joh 3:29 He that hath the bride is the bridegroom: but the friend of the bridegroom, which standeth and heareth him, rejoiceth greatly because of the bridegroom’s voice: this my joy therefore is fulfilled.
Joh 3:30 He must increase, but I must decrease.

John’s disciples were a bit confused, so they watched Jesus for a while, and then had some questions.

Jesus will always receive our questions, but we must be prepared to know that what Jesus says is the absolute truth!

We cannot question the Word of God!

How, did Jesus answer?

*Mat 9:15 And Jesus said unto them, Can the children of the bridechamber mourn, as long as the bridegroom is with them? but the days will come, when the bridegroom shall be taken from them, and then shall they fast.
Mat 9:16 No man putteth a piece of new cloth unto an old garment, for that which is put in to fill it up taketh from the garment, and the rent is made worse.
Mat 9:17 Neither do men put new wine into old bottles: else the bottles break, and the wine runneth out, and the bottles perish: but they put new wine into new bottles, and both are preserved.

We have talked a little about fasting.

When we fast, we prove to the Lord that we are serious about some request and are willing to give up something that we need if He would consider filling our request. A fast should always be about godly things such as beginning a ministry.

The disciples of Jesus did not seem bothered by the fact that John was in prison and be willing to fast and pray to God that he might be freed.

The Lord Jesus speaks wonderfully here.

Remember Jesus is God in the flesh and if He wanted John out of prison, He would have just caused it to happen as He did for the Apostle Peter.

John the Baptist had a large following, but we must remember his message.

Joh 1:7 The same came for a witness, to bear witness of the Light, that all men through him might believe.
Joh 1:8 He was not that Light, but was sent to bear witness of that Light.
Joh 1:9 That was the true Light, which lighteth every man that cometh into the world.

The Lord Jesus was that Light that John preached of and this message was fulfilled and had no real meaning.

Jesus Christ is the Light of the world!

Joh_8:12 Then spake Jesus again unto them, saying, I am the light of the world: he that followeth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life.

John’s disciples, just as the disciples of Christ, were to become little lights just as we are today!

Mat_5:14 Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on an hill cannot be hid.
Mat_5:15 Neither do men light a candle, and put it under a bushel, but on a candlestick; and it giveth light unto all that are in the house.
Mat_5:16 Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.

The little lights, of the world is the Church and as commanded we must not allow our light to go out!

How could the disciples of Jesus mourn for John, when the Lord Jesus Christ was with them every day?

We fast today because the Lord Jesus is back in Heaven being an intercessor for our prayers.

When you put a patch on an old garment to repair a hole all people will see is that patch.

The religion of Judaism cannot be patched to become Christianity.

Christianity is something new that the Lord Jesus has built from the ground up.

The Lord Jesus Christ is the Head of the Church and we are the Body of Christ.

Eph_5:23 For the husband is the head of the wife, even as Christ is the head of the church: and he is the saviour of the body.
Col_1:18 And he is the head of the body, the church: who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead; that in all things he might have the preeminence.

You cannot take Christianity and pour it into Judaism, it will rot Judaism, and both would fail.

A bottle in this passage is really a skin that was used to contain the juice of the grape.

You could only use these things one time, because the juice would cause the wine skin to rot, and you would lose the grape juice.

You cannot take Judaism and pour it into Christianity, because Judaism is all about the Law and not Grace.

Rom_6:14 For sin shall not have dominion over you: for ye are not under the law, but under grace.
Rom_6:15 What then? shall we sin, because we are not under the law, but under grace? God forbid.
Gal_2:21 I do not frustrate the grace of God: for if righteousness come by the law, then Christ is dead in vain.
Gal_5:4 Christ is become of no effect unto you, whosoever of you are justified by the law; ye are fallen from grace.

These things are not hard to understand if you trust the Lord Jesus Christ and the Word of God.

We must just remove our own thoughts and concentrate on what the Lord has done for us.

He has reconciled us back into the favor of God!

2Co_5:18 And all things are of God, who hath reconciled us to himself by Jesus Christ, and hath given to us the ministry of reconciliation;
2Co_5:20 Now then we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God did beseech you by us: we pray you in Christ’s stead, be ye reconciled to God.

Amen

What Is A Miracle

Jesus Used the Power of a King
Book of Matthew Chapter 8

The definition of power is “the ability to perform under one’s own authority any task”.
In the case of the Lord Jesus Christ we would say Supernatural Power!
The ability to perform supernatural tasks under His own authority!

Mat 28:18 And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth.

Jesus not only has “power”, but His power includes authority and ability!
We would never wish an ignorant, impatient, unmerciful man to possess such power and no man on this earth does possess such power, though some would have you to believe that they do.
All man-made power comes from God, good or bad. God provides the good and God may allow some bad if it fulfills His purpose!

Rom 13:1 Let every soul be subject unto the higher powers. For there is no power but of God: the powers that be are ordained of God.

We could say that Jesus shows us only a small portion of the power He possesses!
We can just open our eyes such as this season of Spring and see death come back to life and realize we have a God of life.
We sometimes forget His power of creation.
In fact we sometimes allow His power to save a soul, but forget His power to keep a soul saved when the same Scriptures say Jesus has “all” power on Earth and in Heaven!
Let us see what Jesus has to say:

*Mat 8:1 When he was come down from the mountain, great multitudes followed him.
Mat 8:2 And, behold, there came a leper and worshipped him, saying, Lord, if thou wilt, thou canst make me clean.

We should ask ourselves, just what is a miracle?
A miracle is a wondrous work of God that can be seen with our own eyes that takes place in this world.
There are no miracles that do not involve the work of our Omnipotent, all Powerful, God!
I repeat myself, there are “no miracles” that happen in this world that do not involve the hand of God.

Jas 1:17 Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning.

No human can be the cause of a true miracle!
Man does not have the ability to change this world, only God has that power, and that God is Jehovah, the Lord Jesus Christ!
Not Allah, not Buddha, not any false deity!
We must not forget we live in a cursed world!
Only Jesus has the power to change this world or make changes to this world!
It is His world!

Col 1:16 For by him were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers: all things were created by him, and for him:

It would be better to ask ourselves, who can limit the power of God?
On the day of the Sermon on the Mount, a light came on in the mind of this leper.
This leper knew that to be healed of his leprosy all Jesus had to do was to just do it.
Do not let the doctor fool you, he or she cannot heal you, they can be used of God as an instrument of healing, but all healing comes by the will of God, just as this leper found to be true.
Medicines do not heal they are just tools of our Savior when they are prepared according to His will. We should realize that all medicines that work are made from some part of God’s creation.
On this day, all Jesus did was touch this leper and this is all any of us need, a touch from on High.

*Mat 8:3 And Jesus put forth his hand, and touched him, saying, I will; be thou clean. And immediately his leprosy was cleansed.

Again we see the compassion of the Lord Jesus, but we also see amazing faith of a believer.
We begin to see where “faith is the key” to the workings of our Savior and our God!

Heb 11:6 But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.

If we believe in “typology teaching” and we should, we can also see that leprosy in the Bible is a type of moral corruption.
Immorality will lead to the destruction of the body even more than leprosy!
The Lord Jesus Christ can take away our sin just as easy as He healed this leper of His leprosy!
In the time of these lepers, they lived a life where no one would touch them for fear of catching that disease.
Many have found out, that we as humans need a touch from those we care about and who care for us.
The leper who ventured out in public in the days of Jesus, had to walk pronouncing that they were unclean.
They would say, “unclean, unclean”, and crowds would move to allow them to pass through.

Lev 13:45 And the leper in whom the plague is, his clothes shall be rent, and his head bare, and he shall put a covering upon his upper lip, and shall cry, Unclean, unclean.
Lev 13:46 All the days wherein the plague shall be in him he shall be defiled; he is unclean: he shall dwell alone; without the camp shall his habitation be.

The leper was treated as dead while he lived.
It is the exact same for each sinner who has not ask the Lord to come into his heart.
We are all the walking dead until, we accept Jesus Christ!

Rom 6:23 For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.

Jesus immediately reached out to touch this leper to show him His great love, and immediately his leprosy was healed.
Jesus is the only one who can heal leprosy just as through Jesus is the only way sin can be forgiven!
Jesus did not like to broadcast to the world the truth of His miracles.
The message of Jesus is “Grace by Faith”!

Eph 2:8 For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:
Eph 2:9 Not of works, lest any man should boast.

*Mat 8:4 And Jesus saith unto him, See thou tell no man; but go thy way, shew thyself to the priest, and offer the gift that Moses commanded, for a testimony unto them.

We should clearly understand that the Lord Jesus Christ did not want a multitude of people coming to Him just to see some miracle.
The Lord Jesus Christ came to this earth with a plan of salvation. The same for the Jews and the Gentiles.

Mat 12:18 Behold my servant, whom I have chosen; my beloved, in whom my soul is well pleased: I will put my spirit upon him, and he shall shew judgment to the Gentiles.
Mat 12:19 He shall not strive, nor cry; neither shall any man hear his voice in the streets.
Mat 12:20 A bruised reed shall he not break, and smoking flax shall he not quench, till he send forth judgment unto victory.
Mat 12:21 And in his name shall the Gentiles trust.

The laws of Moses were still in effect for the Jewish people and this leper needed to go to the priests.
Without the official verdict of the priests, this leper could still not return to communal privileges.
They still had to offer up the designated sacrifice to Jehovah.

Lev 14:4 Then shall the priest command to take for him that is to be cleansed two birds alive and clean, and cedar wood, and scarlet, and hyssop:
Lev 14:10 And on the eighth day he shall take two he lambs without blemish, and one ewe lamb of the first year without blemish, and three tenth deals of fine flour for a meat offering, mingled with oil, and one log of oil.
Lev 14:11 And the priest that maketh him clean shall present the man that is to be made clean, and those things, before the LORD, at the door of the tabernacle of the congregation:

These laws still existed in the time of Jesus and they still do to practicing Jews today the exception being, they have no Temple nor Tabernacle to practice their religion that still cannot save.
Again Jesus shows His compassion and a healing based upon faith.

*Mat 8:5 And when Jesus was entered into Capernaum, there came unto him a centurion, beseeching him,
Mat 8:6 And saying, Lord, my servant lieth at home sick of the palsy, grievously tormented.
Mat 8:7 And Jesus saith unto him, I will come and heal him.

Capernaum was at this time, was the base of operations for the Lord and His disciples.
As Jesus was returning, He is met by a Roman officer. A Centurion would be in charge of 100 Roman soldiers.
Beseeching is not begging, but we could say he was pleading with Jesus and he got the attention of Jesus with the words that he spoke.
He was pleading for a servant. We do not know if this servant was a Jew or Gentile, and it did not matter.
Now palsy is known as paralysis, and no doubt the life of this servant was in jeopardy or could have been.
The pain comes from the uncontrolled contraction of muscles.
Leprosy and paralysis could not be cured by the medical professions of that day and not even today.
We see where this Roman officer had compassion for someone, who most Romans would consider a nobody.
Capernaum was in fact a military town and just like today cities near military bases are full of sinful attractions.
Notice what Jesus said. He did not say He would come and take a look at this man.
Jesus said: “I will come and heal him”.
You know, it did not matter how close to death this servant was, Jesus was intending to heal him!
When this Roman showed the same compassion, then the Lord Jesus also showed compassion which is a trait of believers and Jesus told the man He would come and heal his servant but then something astounding happened.
A sign of faith that even the Jews did not show.

*Mat 8:8 The centurion answered and said, Lord, I am not worthy that thou shouldest come under my roof: but speak the word only, and my servant shall be healed.
Mat 8:9 For I am a man under authority, having soldiers under me: and I say to this man, Go, and he goeth; and to another, Come, and he cometh; and to my servant, Do this, and he doeth it.
Mat 8:10 When Jesus heard it, he marvelled, and said to them that followed, Verily I say unto you, I have not found so great faith, no, not in Israel.

Many will teach you that the Gospels are all about the Jews, yet here we see Jesus with a Roman officer and Jesus treats him as He treats all people.

Act 10:35 But in every nation he that feareth him, and worketh righteousness, is accepted with him.
Act 10:36 The word which God sent unto the children of Israel, preaching peace by Jesus Christ: (he is Lord of all:)

The world has never gotten this one right. The world picks and chooses who they will deal with and all the others are left out.
The Roman officer humble himself before the Lord Jesus who he had never met, but knew only by reputation.

Mic 6:8 He hath shewed thee, O man, what is good; and what doth the LORD require of thee, but to do justly, and to love mercy, and to walk humbly with thy God?

Here is a Gentile who had come to believe in the Jewish Messiah something these Jews had not done themselves.
We have already said it is faith that gets the attention of our Savior. Without faith we cannot please Him at all.
This Roman soldier recognized the power of God in this man called Jesus.
The truth is, no matter where we come from in this life, we are all unworthy to come before the Lord!
As a military man myself I understood the chain of command.
With the Lord Jesus Christ there is no chain of command!
When that veil in the Temple rent into two pieces the doorway to the throne of God was opened to whosoever would come to the Lord, who humbled themselves and were full of faith.
We next understand that this Roman soldier did all these things in the presence of the Lord and he did not do it for himself but for a lowly servant.
We can see the typology in this if we pay attention.
Jesus spoke to those who were present who were Jews.

*Mat 8:11 And I say unto you, That many shall come from the east and west, and shall sit down with Abraham, and Isaac, and Jacob, in the kingdom of heaven.

We now see Jesus the Messiah as the Prophet.
He prophesies of the revival of the Gentile nations. The Church Age that we are now in.
We know that the Jews at this time felt that Jehovah was God of the Jews only, but the Messiah, God in the flesh, had a different message.
We are in the midst of the Church Age today, well in fact near the end of the Church Age.

The last Church Age is described this way:

Rev 3:14 And unto the angel of the church of the Laodiceans write; These things saith the Amen, the faithful and true witness, the beginning of the creation of God;
Rev 3:15 I know thy works, that thou art neither cold nor hot: I would thou wert cold or hot.
Rev 3:16 So then because thou art lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will spue thee out of my mouth.
Rev 3:17 Because thou sayest, I am rich, and increased with goods, and have need of nothing; and knowest not that thou art wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked:

It is evident that these things are true today of the modern church who have booted Jesus out of the Church.
Say what we will but the modern Church does not follow the teachings of Jesus Christ which are commandments!

Rev 3:20 Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me.
Rev 3:21 To him that overcometh will I grant to sit with me in my throne, even as I also overcame, and am set down with my Father in his throne.

It is about time for the Church Age to end and it will end with a Banquet in Heaven when the Lord Jesus brings His Church home.
All those who will miss out on the marriage supper of the Lamb, will be left in this outer darkness. “Outside the banquet hall”

*Mat 8:12 But the children of the kingdom shall be cast out into outer darkness: there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth.

This is what is called the “Judgment of God”.
The Lord Jesus is upfront claiming He will reject all those to lack the faith that this Roman soldier had!
The “Judgment” on unbelievers will be terrible!
Here Hell is described as an “outer darkness”. A home of pitch blackness. A place without any light at all but still a place of torment.
Terrible weeping with the striking of teeth together in rage but also in anguish.
Who would want to go to this place, but this is where all those who reject the Lord Jesus and His Power to forgive sin but it is He who can also takes away that sin by forgiveness?
The greatest enemy of the Church today is all those who claim the Lord Jesus Christ, but who also want to hold onto their sin saying it is God who made them the way they are in sinful lifestyles.
You will not be able to find this line of thought in the Bible or at least in a true Bible.
Today there is a Bible for every belief when in fact there is only One Word of God.

Rom 1:17 For therein is the righteousness of God revealed from faith to faith: as it is written, The just shall live by faith.
Rom 1:18 For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who hold the truth in unrighteousness;
Rom 1:19 Because that which may be known of God is manifest in them; for God hath shewed it unto them.

If your faith tells you that God made you the way you are, then your faith is meaningless because God said we must be Born Again into a new life according to the works of Jesus Christ who had “no sin”.
To be a Christian still means to be “Like Christ”.

Jesus told this Roman to go on home and he would find his servant to be healed.

*Mat 8:13 And Jesus said unto the centurion, Go thy way; and as thou hast believed, so be it done unto thee. And his servant was healed in the selfsame hour.

Notice the “as thou hast believed”.
Did you notice that Jesus did not need to be in the presence of this man with the palsy to heal him?
No matter where the Lord is, He can heal us!
In reality we can say the Lord is everywhere all the time.
When Jesus has “all” power then this is what it means.
All these miracles the Lord did, do prove that He was the Messiah, but He did not do these things for that reason.
Jesus did these things because He is full of compassion for us!
Did Jesus heal everyone that He knew were in need? No
Did Jesus heal to prove He was the Messiah? No
It is not the action of miracles that prove that Jesus is the Christ.
It is the truth of the Scriptures that prove that Jesus is the Messiah!
We should also notice that Jesus approves greatly when we have interceded on the behalf of others, because this is what He has done for all of us.
We should be able to see what true “faith” can accomplish!
The more faith we have, the more we can receive of the Lord!

*Mat 8:14 And when Jesus was come into Peter’s house, he saw his wife’s mother laid, and sick of a fever.
Mat 8:15 And he touched her hand, and the fever left her: and she arose, and ministered unto them.

We now know that it was Peter who lived in Capernaum.
We now know that Peter was a married man. A married man could not be a Pope!
We now see that Jesus does heal without a request.
It is the traits of compassion, mercy, and love that bring forth the “Grace” of God!
Jesus came into this home of Peter to rest because the flesh side of the Lord was tired, but the God side of Jesus does not ever rest.
We see that this mother did not ask for anything, Jesus just saw her suffering.
At this time Jesus had chosen His 12 disciples, yet Peter being a disciple did not earn him special privileges for his family. His family still suffered the same afflictions that are in the world.
According to the Book of Mark, Jesus had just preached a sermon in a Jewish synagogue.
Synagogues could be called a satellite of the Temple because not everyone could make it to the Temple on the Sabbath.
We should remember the Sabbath’s Day journey which is less than a mile.
This mother n law was in a home. There was no crowd, no publicity, no recognition.
Just a mother who had been overcome with a fever and just a touch from the Master set her free and she arose to help feed her family.
This is what God loves to do, to minister to His children.
God’s power is unlimited but so is His mercy!

*Mat 8:16 When the even was come, they brought unto him many that were possessed with devils: and he cast out the spirits with his word, and healed all that were sick:
Mat 8:17 That it might be fulfilled which was spoken by Esaias the prophet, saying, Himself took our infirmities, and bare our sicknesses.

After a meal and a little bit of rest, the whole city turned out to see the miracle man Jesus Christ.
The ultimate cause of all sickness is sin.
The ultimate cause of all the wickedness in this world is those who are possess with evil spirits.
Do not be fooled. If you do not have the Holy Spirit living within you, then you are possessed by an evil spirit!
The Lord Jesus Christ can meet the needs of a multitude just as easily as He does for one individual such as Peter’s mother n law.
One reason that Jesus did not want to broadcast his healing was so that people would want to see His miracles rather than listen to His message.

There is not one miracle that will save us from going to Hell even though saving a rebelleous sinner as I was from Hell could be seen as a miracle by those who knew me.
Not one miracle can save us from the wrath to come.
Not one miracle can deliver us from evil.

Faith in the works of the Lord Jesus Christ for our salvation, is the only thing that can save us from the wrath to come and eternal damnation!

Joh 14:6 Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.
Joh 14:7 If ye had known me, ye should have known my Father also: and from henceforth ye know him, and have seen him.

The world needs Jesus.
This city of Capernaum needed Jesus, but they chose the wrong reason.
It is great to be healed from sickness.
It is great to no longer possess an evil spirit.
These things will not get you through Heaven’s gates.
Why did God pour Himself into this body of flesh called Jesus?

Luk 19:10 For the Son of man is come to seek and to save that which was lost.

Mat 20:28 Even as the Son of man came not to be ministered unto, but to minister, and to give his life a ransom for many.

The Lord Jesus Christ had the power to heal everyone in this entire world. but this world has a greater need, and it is not miracles.
Whether we like it or not the Lord Jesus is returning to “JUDGE” this world and no amount, of miracles can keep us from this “JUDGMENT”!
By casting out devils, Jesus proved that Satan, the head Devil, had no power to stand against the Lord.
He is just a liar and a deceiver!
The one main reason the Lord Jesus healed so many during His days on earth was to fulfill prophecy.
Jesus had to make the written Word of God to be real or we would not be able to trust the Word of God.
People try to deny it, but the Lord Jesus made the Word of God come alive!

Joh 1:1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.
Joh 1:2 The same was in the beginning with God.
Joh 1:3 All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made.
Joh 1:4 In him was life; and the life was the light of men.
Joh 1:5 And the light shineth in darkness; and the darkness comprehended it not.

We do not have to understand all these things, we just have to accept it as the truth that it is!
The power of God is not to be mocked!

Act 10:36 The word which God sent unto the children of Israel, preaching peace by Jesus Christ: (he is Lord of all:)
Act 10:37 That word, I say, ye know, which was published throughout all Judaea, and began from Galilee, after the baptism which John preached;
Act 10:38 How God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Ghost and with power: who went about doing good, and healing all that were oppressed of the devil; for God was with him.

The one thing that the world rejects is that all these things put together proved that this Jesus was truly the Messiah.
The world may call Him just a good man.
The world may call Him just a prophet.
Jesus is truly the Messiah.
I call Him Lord!
This world we live in cannot ever be fixed.
The Lord Jesus Christ will make all things new!

2Pe 3:10 But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night; in the which the heavens shall pass away with a great noise, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat, the earth also and the works that are therein shall be burned up.
2Pe 3:11 Seeing then that all these things shall be dissolved, what manner of persons ought ye to be in all holy conversation and godliness,
2Pe 3:12 Looking for and hasting unto the coming of the day of God, wherein the heavens being on fire shall be dissolved, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat?
2Pe 3:13 Nevertheless we, according to his promise, look for new heavens and a new earth, wherein dwelleth righteousness.

We can be a part of this new world only by faith in the works of the Lord Jesus Christ.

Amen!

Jesus the Preacher, the Sermon on the Mount

Jesus Changed Things like a King

Book of Matthew Chapter 6

Last week in Chapter 5 we read of the inward holiness of all those whose home would one day be in Heaven.

These are all those who know the Lord Jesus Christ as their personal Savior.

We should clearly understand that our journey to Heaven begins when we accept the Lord Jesus Christ into our heart and begin our walk of sanctification with the Lord.

2Co 6:17 Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you,
2Co 6:18 And will be a Father unto you, and ye shall be my sons and daughters, saith the Lord Almighty.

To come out from amongst them is to repent!

You see what we do with our Christian life does matter to the Lord.

God expects us to be kind to one another.
God expects us to do good in the world.
God expects us to get personally involved in the goodness we learn from the Lord Jesus Christ.
God expects us to be personal witnesses of the Lord Jesus Christ.

In fact we are not being Christians unless we do these things.

Our fleshy nature must show an inward holiness because we are filled with the Holy Spirit.

All our intentions must be pure!

We must be pure in our giving.
We must be pure in our prayers.
We must be pure in our fasting.
We must be pure in our desires.
We must be pure in our actions while we are barely being seen!

*Mat 6:1 Take heed that ye do not your alms before men, to be seen of them: otherwise ye have no reward of your Father which is in heaven.

Most people see the word “alms” as relating to giving, especially the giving of money, but the Greek word “eleemosune” actually means “acts of kindness”, “acts of compassion”, “acts of righteousness”.

Alms giving is doing good toward others without seeking a reward for your actions or drawing any notice to yourself.

Alms giving is a Christian duty and comes second only to witnessing for Christ and living in obedience to the Lord.

In fact living in obedience to the Word of God includes the giving of alms!

Mat 5:16 Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.

When we accept this as being the truth and it is, then we must be alert to the deception of the giving of alms by those who put on a show as they make a big deal out of the giving of alms as many of the Pharisee and Sadducee did in the time of Jesus.

It happens today when buildings are built, and someone’s name is placed upon it and many such things as this. Pews are in someone’s name.

*Mat 6:2 Therefore when thou doest thine alms, do not sound a trumpet before thee, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and in the streets, that they may have glory of men. Verily I say unto you, They have their reward.

We have not talk about that word “therefore” in a while so let us not forget the meaning of the word.

Therefore means: For that; for that or this reason, referring to something previously stated.

In other words pay close attention to what was said in verse 1 when we read verse 2.

If we broadcast our alms giving, seeking glory for ourselves, then we are hypocrites then what we have done will not get a reward in Heaven.

In fact hypocrites do not even make it to Heaven!

Hypocrite is someone claiming to be Christian in their beliefs, but their actions prove otherwise.

Our Capitol city of our nation, is full of professing hypocrites.
The modern-day, Church is full of professing hypocrites.
Anyone denying the truth of the Scriptures is a hypocrite if they claim to be Christian, meaning like Jesus Christ.

Singers who refuse to sing in Church unless they are guaranteed a certain amount are hypocrites. They know the church uses love offerings as a gift, or alms giving.

Evangelist, who refuse to preach unless they are guaranteed a certain amount, are hypocrites.

Pastors who are called to preach but reject a church because of the salary offered are hypocrites.

Church members who claim Jesus Christ but pick and choose over the Gospel they will commit to are hypocrites.

Those who would rather have a reward here on earth rather than Heaven’s Glory are all hypocrites!

Then the Lord Jesus gives us the remedy.

*Mat 6:3 But when thou doest alms, let not thy left hand know what thy right hand doeth:

The more secretive we are in our charitable giving the better the reward in Heaven!

We know it is impossible that our left hand not to know what our right hand is doing but the Lord is saying no one else needs to know!

Our charitable giving is personal and individual.
Our charitable giving should always be for the promoting of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

We should not dwell on our giving, if it is not given for the joy of giving it is not given for the right reason.

Once we have given our alms for the right reason then we have placed it in the hands of God, and we should forget about it and allow God to do His work!

*Mat 6:4 That thine alms may be in secret: and thy Father which seeth in secret himself shall reward thee openly.

The only person who knows all “ALL” our secrets is our Heavenly Father. There is nothing we can hide from God!

When we have followed these guidelines in our giving, then the Lord will many times reward us in this life where many will see how God has blessed us.

The truth is a true relationship with the Lord can be seen as coming from the heart and a devotion to God in absolute sincerity.

We cannot increase the size of our Mansion in Heaven.
We cannot increase our wealth in Heaven because wealth has no meaning in Heaven.

We can know that there are rewards other than these things that God has for those who are true to Him!

Any time we appear as a hypocrite we will lose rewards that we could have gained.

A Heavenly reward is out of this world!

We all need some help in our prayer life and there is no such thing as being prayed up!

*Mat 6:5 And when thou prayest, thou shalt not be as the hypocrites are: for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and in the corners of the streets, that they may be seen of men. Verily I say unto you, They have their reward.
Mat 6:6 But thou, when thou prayest, enter into thy closet, and when thou hast shut thy door, pray to thy Father which is in secret; and thy Father which seeth in secret shall reward thee openly.

Do we pray with a motive?

Prayer is having a conversation with God! Sure there is a place for corporate prayer but if you are like me, much of what I talk to God about is just between He and I!

It is important for good godly men to pray in the Church.
It is important for good godly women to pray in the Church.
It is important for others to pray while we pray.
It is important for our children to hear us pray.

But still, the majority of our prayers should be between us and God and we must always end our prayers in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ.

If we do not take our prayer life seriously, we certainly become hypocrites.

We do not have to have a reason to begin a conversation with our Heavenly Father!

He always wants to hear from us!

When we are speaking to our Heavenly Father, we can speak to Him about anything and we do not always have to make a request of Him.

This is the prayer the Lord is speaking of here in this passage. One on one prayer with the Living God.

Hypocrites pray to be seen of men.

This does not mean that when we have altar call all those who go to the altar go to be seen of men.

This is a perfect time to pray because it normally takes place at the end of the message that is given to the Preacher.

This is a time when a heart is touched and just wants to talk to the Heavenly Father.

What Jesus describes is something else entirely.

A hypocrite may stand up while the message is still being preached and disturb the message claiming a movement of the Holy Spirit. This is not to say that this could not happen but there must be a movement of the Holy Spirit.

Anytime we draw attention to our conversation with God then we are praying to be seen of men.

God expects us to pray even though He already knows what will happen in our lives.

To pray shows that we trust that God can change the outcome of certain things, which He can.

We must certainly understand, God will never go against His written Word!

There is nothing we can say to God that will make Him change His plan that begin before creation.

The most important thing we can pray for is “forgiveness”!

We hold the most important gift God has given us, which is the freedom to choose!

The most important prayer is to pray for the forgiveness of our sin.

God will not hear any prayer until He has first heard this prayer!

Psa 66:18 If I regard iniquity in my heart, the Lord will not hear me:

Our greatest challenge in our prayer life is to make sure our Heavenly Father will hear our prayers!

This is the right motive for praying!

If our prayers are heard by our Heavenly Father, then we have prayed a good prayer.

We must live our lives so that our prayers are always heard by our Heavenly Father!

We must remember the answer to our prayers comes by the will of God for our lives.

We cannot change God’s will for us except by refusing.

When we are praying in public when we should be praying for that public and not for ourselves.

Our prayer life should consist of public prayer, but we must establish all prayers in our closet prayers!

We must be willing to spend some quiet time with the Lord!

We should be willing to go to God at any time and before every situation that affects our lives.

Praying is not to chant over and over!

Our prayers should be in the language that we use every day. God understands every language!

No one language, except foul language, is more important than another!

*Mat 6:7 But when ye pray, use not vain repetitions, as the heathen do: for they think that they shall be heard for their much speaking.
Mat 6:8 Be not ye therefore like unto them: for your Father knoweth what things ye have need of, before ye ask him.

Vain repetitions mean at least two things:

1) Saying the same words over and over again as in a chant. These prayers do not come from the heart and God is not listening.

2) Using certain religious words or phrases thinking God hears just because we are using religious talk. Wrong, God hears a one-word prayer if it comes from a sincere heart. Such as “Help”.

Ecc 5:2 Be not rash with thy mouth, and let not thine heart be hasty to utter any thing before God: for God is in heaven, and thou upon earth: therefore let thy words be few.
Ecc 5:3 For a dream cometh through the multitude of business; and a fool’s voice is known by multitude of words.

We should never just rattle on without thought of what we are saying! Knowing this we must certainly not ever stop and close out our prayer until we have given God a chance to speak.

After all we are praying to receive and answer most of the time.

It is also OK to pray to God when we are not expecting and answer. We are His child, and every true father likes to speak to his children.

God already knows our needs and He promised to meet our needs.

There are times when we may feel He is not meeting our needs, but our most important task is to be living in the Will of God.

If we are not living in the will of God, then why should He meet our needs?

Pro 3:5 Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding.
Pro 3:6 In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths.

Then the Lord says our prayers should be something like this:

*Mat 6:9 After this manner therefore pray ye: Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name.
Mat 6:10 Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven.
Mat 6:11 Give us this day our daily bread.
Mat 6:12 And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors.

Why can we call the Creator of this world Our Father?

1) With respect to Jesus Christ, as the Son of God, all those who choose to believe the Work of Christ toward our salvation.

Joh 1:12 But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name:
Joh 1:13 Which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God.

2) Because we are “Born Again” into the family of God and filled with the Holy Spirit.

Rom 8:14 For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God.
Rom 8:15 For ye have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father.
Rom 8:16 The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God:
Rom 8:17 And if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with him, that we may be also glorified together.

3) Because we have received the free gift of “Grace”. God’s Riches at Christs Expense we can call God our Father.

2Co 1:2 Grace be to you and peace from God our Father, and from the Lord Jesus Christ.

4) Because we have chosen to live by the Will of God and not our own will, God is then our Father.

Gal 1:3 Grace be to you and peace from God the Father, and from our Lord Jesus Christ,
Gal 1:4 Who gave himself for our sins, that he might deliver us from this present evil world, “according to the will of God and our Father”:
Gal 1:5 To whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen.

If we do not acknowledge God as our Father, then why would He even listen to us?

A wise earthly father does all he can for his children even if he does not grant all his child’s request the child still calls him their father.

We must respect our Heavenly Father as also God with all Power but with all Goodness also!

There is no other way to have a conversation with our Heavenly Father if we do not acknowledge Him and we must reverence Him for who He is, the Almighty Living God!

Then we can proceed with our prayer.

*Mat 6:10 Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven.

The Kingdom of God is greater than all the kingdoms of this world.

1Co_2:9 But as it is written, Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him.

If we cannot believe in a Heavenly Kingdom, then why take the time to pray.

Mar_11:23 For verily I say unto you, That whosoever shall say unto this mountain, Be thou removed, and be thou cast into the sea; and “shall not doubt in his heart, but shall believe that those things which he saith shall come to pass”; he shall have whatsoever he saith.

Heb 11:3 Through faith we understand that the worlds were framed by the word of God, so that things which are seen were not made of things which do appear.

Heb 11:10 For he looked for a city which hath foundations, whose builder and maker is God.

Rev_3:12 Him that overcometh will I make a pillar in the temple of my God, and he shall go no more out: and I will write upon him the name of my God, and the name of the city of my God, which is new Jerusalem, which cometh down out of heaven from my God: and I will write upon him my new name.

Rev_21:2 And I John saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband.

If we cannot believe these things and have a desire to be with our Heavenly Father in His Kingdom, then we are wasting our time praying to the One True God.

Our Heavenly Father holds power over all His creation, and we need to live according to His will on this earth!

If we cannot do the will of God, we cannot be in the family of God!

Mar_3:35 For whosoever shall do the will of God, the same is my brother, and my sister, and mother.

*Mat 6:11 Give us this day our daily bread.

We must desire the “mercy” of God!

We must take no thought for tomorrow we need God’s mercy day by day!

That daily bread is not just the food we eat but also that Heavenly Manna.

Mat_4:4 But he answered and said, It is written, Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God.

Luk_4:4 And Jesus answered him, saying, It is written, That man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word of God.

We do have a specific need for our sustenance, but we should never be praying for luxuries.

We must include Jesus!

Joh_6:33 For the bread of God is he which cometh down from heaven, and giveth life unto the world.

Joh_6:35 And Jesus said unto them, I am the bread of life: he that cometh to me shall never hunger; and he that believeth on me shall never thirst.

Joh_6:48 I am that bread of life.

Joh_6:51 I am the living bread which came down from heaven: if any man eat of this bread, he shall live for ever: and the bread that I will give is my flesh, which I will give for the life of the world.

*Mat 6:12 And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors.

We must understand that sins are debts, shortcomings in our service due to God.

We in debt to duty, worship, and most of all obedience to the Lord.

Obedience is where Adam failed!

We must understand that forgiveness is a favor that comes by God’s “Grace” through the Lord Jesus Christ.

Our hearts must be free of ill-will toward all others!

We must first be forgiving to those who have sinned against us before we pray for our own forgiveness.

Mat 5:23 Therefore if thou bring thy gift to the altar, and there rememberest that thy brother hath ought against thee;
Mat 5:24 Leave there thy gift before the altar, and go thy way; first be reconciled to thy brother, and then come and offer thy gift.

We must understand that God supplies His “pardon” to us only according to these terms!

Our Heavenly Father promises to pardon us if we are obedient in all these things!

We cannot deal falsely with God and expect answer to our prayers!

*Mat 6:13 And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil: For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever. Amen.

God will never tempt us Himself!

Jas 1:13 Let no man say when he is tempted, I am tempted of God: for God cannot be tempted with evil, neither tempteth he any man:
Jas 1:14 But every man is tempted, when he is drawn away of his own lust, and enticed.

As Jesus was led by the Holy Spirit to face temptation, we will also face temptation, but He will also deliver us out of that temptation.

2Pe 2:9 The Lord knoweth how to deliver the godly out of temptations, and to reserve the unjust unto the day of judgment to be punished:

God will always make a way to escape that temptation! It is the worship of false gods that will cause God to lift His hand of protection away from us!

1Co 10:13 There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it.
1Co 10:14 Wherefore, my dearly beloved, flee from idolatry.

It is the Lord Jesus Christ who made a way for God to deliver us from temptation.

Gal 1:3 Grace be to you and peace from God the Father, and from our Lord Jesus Christ,
Gal 1:4 Who gave himself for our sins, that he might deliver us from this present evil world, according to the will of God and our Father:

All God requires of us is to pray and to pray for forgiveness!

King Jesus has already solved the sin problem for each believer!

1Jn 3:8 He that committeth sin is of the devil; for the devil sinneth from the beginning. For this purpose the Son of God was manifested, that he might destroy the works of the devil.

God is in the business of saving souls!

Psa 121:7 The LORD shall preserve thee from all evil: he shall preserve thy soul.
Psa 121:8 The LORD shall preserve thy going out and thy coming in from this time forth, and even for evermore.

That word “Amen” says we understand what we must do, (our part) and the God promises to do His part.

2Co_1:20 For all the promises of God in him are yea, and in him Amen, unto the glory of God by us.

However we word our prayers, they need to based, upon these things of this prayer as taught by Jesus Christ our Savior.

Why would He defend us if we reject His teaching!

We must be just as forgiving as we expect our sinless God to be!

*Mat 6:14 For if ye forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you:
Mat 6:15 But if ye forgive not men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses.

What is the truth? If we cannot find it in our heart to forgive someone who has done us wrong, then we cannot be saved because our heart is still wicked.

Jer_17:9 The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it?

We cannot say we believe if we do not possess the trait of “mercy”!

Without “mercy” a loving God would have completely destroyed this world.

Psa 86:15 But thou, O Lord, art a God full of compassion, and gracious, longsuffering, and plenteous in mercy and truth.
Psa 86:16 O turn unto me, and have mercy upon me; give thy strength unto thy servant, and save the son of thine handmaid.

God would not be God if, He was not merciful!

How can we expect to be accepted into the family of God if we do not show that same “mercy”?

What will God do to those who refuse to forgive? Listen to what Jesus says.

Mat 18:33 Shouldest not thou also have had compassion on thy fellowservant, even as I had pity on thee?
Mat 18:34 And his lord was wroth, and delivered him to the tormentors, till he should pay all that was due unto him.
Mat 18:35 So likewise shall my heavenly Father do also unto you, if ye from your hearts forgive not every one his brother their trespasses.

Mat 18:33 Shouldest not thou also have had compassion on thy fellowservant, even as I had pity on thee?
Mat 18:34 And his lord was wroth, and delivered him to the tormentors, till he should pay all that was due unto him.
Mat 18:35 So likewise shall my heavenly Father do also unto you, if ye from your hearts forgive not every one his brother their trespasses.

To be forgiven:

1) We must confess our sins.
2) We must have faith in God and believe he is capable of forgiving such unworthy sinners.
3) We must repent, we must turn away from our wickedness, forsake our sins, and turn to God believing in the work of the Lord Jesus Christ to save our souls.
4) We must forgive “all” those who wronged us. Hard feelings and anger are sins that must be confessed to show we are sincere in seeking the forgiveness of our Heavenly Father.

When we refuse to forgive then we become a judge of another person’s sin:

Luk_6:37 Judge not, and ye shall not be judged: condemn not, and ye shall not be condemned: forgive, and ye shall be forgiven:

Without these things we cannot be saved and do not be fooled by naysayers!

God makes a promise to forgive to all those who also are willing to forgive.

We are all still sinners, but those sins will be forgiven upon request.

Rom 10:9 That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.
Rom 10:10 For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.

Rom 10:13 For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.

It all goes back to that forgiving heart that shows “mercy”!

*Mat 6:16 Moreover when ye fast, be not, as the hypocrites, of a sad countenance: for they disfigure their faces, that they may appear unto men to fast. Verily I say unto you, They have their reward.
Mat 6:17 But thou, when thou fastest, anoint thine head, and wash thy face;
Mat 6:18 That thou appear not unto men to fast, but unto thy Father which is in secret: and thy Father, which seeth in secret, shall reward thee openly.

We have seen this word “fast” in some of our recent lessons and we can see that Jesus takes for granted that we as Christians will have a time when we need to fast to prove to God, we are serious about some request.

The most dangerous fast is the fast that is wrong!

Fasting as a “hypocrite” is wrong!

Why do we fast?

1) We fast to gain a sense of God’s approval and of self-approval. This is wrong!
2) We fast to fulfill some religious act. This is wrong!
3) We fast gain religious recognition. This is wrong!
4) We fast to genuinely meet God for some special purpose. This is the only reason to fast!

Our heart must be pure!

Mat 15:8 This people draweth nigh unto me with their mouth, and honoureth me with their lips; but their heart is far from me.

We must desire the knowledge of God!

Hos 6:6 For I desired mercy, and not sacrifice; and the knowledge of God more than burnt offerings.

We must not act super-spiritual!
We must never be over-confident in ourselves, our confidence must be in the Lord.
Our fasting experience is our own and not to be broadcast.
We must never act like we are suffering from our fasting experience.

If we cannot give up a couple of meals for the Lord what does that say about us!

The more secretive we are with our fasting the closer we are to an answer from God!

No one else needs to know about our fasting it is between us and a Holy God.

We must fast to God alone, there is no other reason to fast!!!!!!!

We fast when we are feeling a call from God a call to get alone with God and discuss His calling.
We fast to prove to God He is most important to us.
We fast because our needs come from Him as He promised.
We fast because we are serious in our request.
We fast to break the bondage of our habits.
We fast to remain physically fit to serve the Lord.
We fast because God and God only, has the answers to our request!

Amen

The Master Teacher

Jesus Taught Like a King

Book of Matthew Chapter 5 verses 1 through 16

What happened immediately after Jesus was baptized? Jesus tempted of the Devil.

What happened immediately after Jesus was tempted of the Devil? Jesus began His ministry.

Jesus began His ministry with what is now called the Sermon on the Mount also called the “Beatitudes”.

We can understand the “beatitudes” as the blessedness of the saved soul.

We are nothing unless we have accepted the truth of the Lord Jesus Christ!

Psa 32:1 Blessed is he whose transgression is forgiven, whose sin is covered.

You are not forgiven by our Holy God until you have accepted the truth of the Lord Jesus Christ, it is just that simple!

We can also understand this sermon of the Lord Jesus Christ as the “qualities” of all those who will be found in the Kingdom of God.

We must begin these qualities once we have accepted the salvation of the Lord, “we must be Born Again”!

Remember John the Baptist preached “repent because the Kingdom of God is at hand”.

Jesus begins by preaching the qualities of those who will be found in the Kingdom of God.

If we consider that blessedness is happiness, then we can understand the preaching of the Apostle Peter:

1Pe 4:14 If ye be reproached for the name of Christ, happy are ye; for the spirit of glory and of God resteth upon you: “on their part he is evil spoken of”, but on your part he is glorified.
1Pe 4:15 But let none of you suffer as a murderer, or as a thief, or as an evildoer, or as a busybody in other men’s matters.
1Pe 4:16 Yet if any man suffer as a Christian, “let him not be ashamed; but let him glorify God on this behalf”.

Or James the half-brother of our Lord and Savior:

Jas 1:12 Blessed is the man that endureth temptation: “for when he is tried, he shall receive the crown of life, which the Lord hath promised to them that love him”.

We can consider blessedness and happiness to be almost equal in this first sermon of our Lord Jesus.

*Mat 5:1 And seeing the multitudes, he went up into a mountain: and when he was set, his disciples came unto him:

We first see the compassion Jesus had for the people.

His disciples came to Him. As disciples we should always be seeking Jesus!

These Jews were seeking King Jesus!

The Lord Jesus chose this place on a mount because it was big enough to accommodate those multitudes who were following Him.

It was also a place His voice would carry. We can just imagine these people being quiet because they wanted to hear what Jesus had to say.

If you are a human being then it behooves you to hear what the Lord Jesus Christ has to say!

The Lord Jesus Christ was a great preacher who was always full of the Holy Spirit:

Joh 3:33 He that hath received his testimony hath set to his seal that God is true.
Joh 3:34 “For he whom God hath sent speaketh the words of God: for God giveth not the Spirit by measure unto him”.
Joh 3:35 The Father loveth the Son, and hath given all things into his hand.
Joh 3:36 He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life: and he that believeth not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth on him.

We can understand these words of Christ Jesus as a proclamation of the Kingdom of God “by the King of His coming Kingdom”.

Jesus is teaching His disciples.
Jesus is showing His authority over the Scriptures. His authority was within Himself.
Jesus taught as the Jewish Messiah. The Messiah who would be King of His Kingdom.

Mat 7:28 And it came to pass, when Jesus had ended these sayings, the people were astonished at his doctrine:
Mat 7:29 For he taught them as one having authority, and not as the scribes. (A scribe could only read the Word of God)

We will see that the way to be saved is not given in this Sermon!

But we should not forget all Scripture is written for us to learn!

2Ti 3:16 “All scripture” is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness:
2Ti 3:17 That the man of God may be perfect, throughly furnished unto all good works.

This includes all the Old Testament and all the New Testament. (This does not include the acrophobia books not inspired by the Holy Spirit)

So let us begin:

*Mat 5:2 And he opened his mouth, and taught them, saying,
Mat 5:3 Blessed are the poor in spirit: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

What will we be like as “Subjects” in God’s Kingdom?

Notice Jesus did not start by passing out copies of the Old Testament. Jesus sat down and taught with the Words of His mouth.

Jesus teaches us as the fulfillment of all the Scriptures. Jesus taught with authority!

To be blessed is to be “happy”.

To be blessed is a spiritual joy and satisfaction regardless of the conditions we face.

The Apostle Paul understood this to mean:

Php_4:11 Not that I speak in respect of want: for I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content.

This is the thing carries us through times of pain, and sorrow, and loss and grief.

Everyone wants to be blessed, but most of the world seeks that blessedness in the things of this world and it cannot be found in the things of this world!

1Jn 2:15 Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him.
1Jn 2:16 For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world.

Those who are blessed are those who choose the Lord because He first chose them!

Psa 65:4 Blessed is the man whom thou choosest, and causest to approach unto thee, that he may dwell in thy courts: we shall be satisfied with the goodness of thy house, even of thy holy temple.

Eph 1:3 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ:
Eph 1:4 According as he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before him in love:
Eph 1:5 Having predestinated us unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ to himself, according to the good pleasure of his will,
Eph 1:6 To the praise of the glory of his grace, wherein he hath made us accepted in the beloved.

We cannot associate these poor in Spirit with those who are poor in worldly things.
We cannot associate those who are mean spirited with those who are poor in Spirit.
We should not understand that the poor in Spirit are poor in spirituality.

Poorness of spirit, in a godly sense, is true humility or true contrition of heart, because we acknowledge that we are sinners in need of a Savior.

We are poor in spirit when we acknowledge we are nothing without the Lord Jesus Christ and then Jesus Christ will take us into His Kingdom!

*Mat 5:4 Blessed are they that mourn: for they shall be comforted.

To mourn is the condition of all those who are brokenhearted because of their own sin or of the sin of others or the sin of this world.

It can be somewhat compared to mourning over the death of a loved one.

Isa 53:3 He is despised and rejected of men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief: and we hid as it were our faces from him; he was despised, and we esteemed him not.
Isa 53:4 Surely he hath borne our griefs, and carried our sorrows: yet we did esteem him stricken, smitten of God, and afflicted.
Isa 53:5 But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed.

It can be that brokenness when we read the things Christ Jesus went through on the cross, while realizing it was our sin that put Him there!

2Co 7:10 For godly sorrow worketh repentance to salvation not to be repented of: but the sorrow of the world worketh death.

It is the Lord Jesus Christ who can only provide that comfort!

Joh 16:33 These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.

You know, it is the Lord Jesus Christ who will wipe away all those tears of mourning!

*Mat 5:5 Blessed are the meek: for they shall inherit the earth.

It is all those who have humbled themselves before Christ who can enjoy the remainder of their days upon this earth!

They are teachable in the ways of the Lord.
They have nothing to prove to this world.
They have a renewed purpose and meaning and a significance in this life knowing it will end in the glory world, in the Father’s House!

As Christians we learn to control our circumstances by not allowing our circumstances to control us!

We know we are on the winning side and we act like it!

*Mat 5:6 Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness: for they shall be filled.

When we hunger for righteousness it means we have put to death the sin in our lives!

Rom_8:13 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.

Jesus Christ died to remove sin and the control that sin had over our lives.

It is righteousness that will fill that gap where the sin is gone forever!

Eph 3:19 And to know the love of Christ, which passeth knowledge, that ye might be filled with all the fulness of God.

Being filled with our Righteous Savior!

*Mat 5:7 Blessed are the merciful: for they shall obtain mercy.

To be merciful is to be compassionate!

Fourteen times in the Gospels, the word compassion is used where 10 of those times Jesus used the word compassion Himself.

The other 4 times it said Jesus had compassion or that Jesus was moved with compassion.

This verse states emphatically, that if we are merciful to all others showing compassion, then God will show mercy to us and He proved this on the cross!

The modern Church have removed the importance of the cross because they would rather cling to their sin calling it the modernization of the Word of God. God is not old fashioned!

The Lord gives us an example.

Mat 18:22 Jesus saith unto him, I say not unto thee, Until seven times: but, Until seventy times seven.
Mat 18:23 Therefore is the kingdom of heaven likened unto a certain king, which would take account of his servants.
Mat 18:24 And when he had begun to reckon, one was brought unto him, which owed him ten thousand talents.
Mat 18:25 But forasmuch as he had not to pay, his lord commanded him to be sold, and his wife, and children, and all that he had, and payment to be made.
Mat 18:26 The servant therefore fell down, and worshipped him, saying, Lord, have patience with me, and I will pay thee all.
Mat 18:27 Then the lord of that servant was moved with compassion, and loosed him, and forgave him the debt.
Mat 18:28 But the same servant went out, and found one of his fellowservants, which owed him an hundred pence: and he laid hands on him, and took him by the throat, saying, Pay me that thou owest.
Mat 18:29 And his fellowservant fell down at his feet, and besought him, saying, Have patience with me, and I will pay thee all.
Mat 18:30 And he would not: but went and cast him into prison, till he should pay the debt.
Mat 18:31 So when his fellowservants saw what was done, they were very sorry, and came and told unto their lord all that was done.
Mat 18:32 Then his lord, after that he had called him, said unto him, O thou wicked servant, I forgave thee all that debt, because thou desiredst me:
Mat 18:33 Shouldest not thou also have had compassion on thy fellowservant, even as I had pity on thee?
Mat 18:34 And his lord was wroth, and delivered him to the tormentors, till he should pay all that was due unto him.
Mat 18:35 So likewise shall my heavenly Father do also unto you, if ye from your hearts forgive not every one his brother their trespasses.

Every believer can be merciful and therefore “must be merciful”!

When we understand the blessings of God, then we should understand that it is certainly more important to give than to receive!

The Lord will deal with us just as we deal with other people. We had better keep this in mind!

So, whatever mercy we desire from God, then we had better show that mercy to our brothers and sisters in Christ!

A merciful heart is a pure heart!

*Mat 5:8 Blessed are the pure in heart: for they shall see God.

A pure heart is “clean”, it is unsoiled from the things of this world. It is unpolluted, “a pure heart is Holy”!

Remember no one can see God and live, yet here we read that those with a Holy heart shall see God, in fact they are the only ones who will ever see God face to face!

Of all the other traits of the Christian, none of those traits can be true if our heart is not pure and like the heart of the Lord Jesus Christ!

How do we see God now?

1Co 13:12 For now we see through a glass, darkly; but then face to face: now I know in part; but then shall I know even as also I am known.
1Co 13:13 And now abideth faith, hope, charity, these three; but the greatest of these is charity.

Perfect charity comes from a pure heart! Charity is a “giving love”!

Our pure heart will become a reality when we meet the Lord in the air!

1Jn 3:2 Beloved, now are we the sons of God, and it doth not yet appear what we shall be: but we know that, when he shall appear, “we shall be like him; for we shall see him as he is”.
1Jn 3:3 And every man that hath this hope in him “purifieth himself”, even as he is pure.

All the qualities of the true Christian come together with a pure heart which leads us to righteousness!

Psa 17:15 As for me, I will behold thy face in righteousness: I shall be satisfied, when I awake, with thy likeness.

Only then can we become a true peacemaker, a true child of God.

*Mat 5:9 Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children of God.

The Lord has left us upon this earth after our salvation “to become peacemakers”.

It is our job to prepare the highway to the Lord for individuals who are lost, just as did John the Baptist begin preparations for Jesus to build the “Highway to Heaven”!

It is our job to make peace between the lost and the Lord!

We are to solve disputes and never be the cause of them!

We must find ways to explain the truth of God to those who do not understand it, without compromising the Word of God.

We must take our faith, with a pure heart, full of mercy and love, and show these things to the unbeliever.

Rom 5:1 Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ:
Rom 5:2 By whom also we have access by faith into this grace wherein we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God.

We must remember we can only get close to Christ Jesus because of the blood He shed for us.

Eph 2:13 But now in Christ Jesus ye who sometimes were far off are made nigh by the blood of Christ.
Eph 2:14 For he is our peace, who hath made both one, and hath broken down the middle wall of partition between us;
Eph 2:15 Having abolished in his flesh the enmity, even the law of commandments contained in ordinances; for to make in himself of twain one new man, so making peace;
Eph 2:16 And that he might reconcile both unto God in one body by the cross, having slain the enmity thereby:

We are reconciled to God by His “grace” and we must show “that same grace” to all we meet, even to our enemies.

When we do these things, we will be persecuted by those who are sold out to Satan.

*Mat 5:10 Blessed are they which are persecuted for righteousness’ sake: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
Mat 5:11 Blessed are ye, when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for my sake.
Mat 5:12 Rejoice, and be exceeding glad: for great is your reward in heaven: for so persecuted they the prophets which were before you.

There are many people in this world who are persecuted for one evil reason or another, only the Church is persecuted for doing good.

The Church is persecuted simply because most of the leadership of the world hates the Lord Jesus Christ and the principles that He teaches through His disciples!

The teachings of Jesus Christ reveal the wickedness and immorality that is approved by the world, even though the queer movement represents only a small fraction of the world’s people, less than ten percent.

The teachings of Christ Jesus go against abortion, when it is those two people who decide to commit a sinful act, neglecting the responsibility of their actions!

Why is the everyday taxpayer held responsible for the acts of two people who should be held accountable?

It is not the child who is at fault, so why is the child punished with death?

Abortion is now used, not just to murder an innocent living child, but also to choose the sex of the baby, to check for traits that are unwanted, and many other reasons and then aborted child is not treated with any respect but is sold for its body parts. “True wickedness”.

When we are persecuted for doing what is right, it shows how low our world has become!

2Ti 3:12 Yea, and all that will live godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution.

I accept the fact that I may be persecuted just because I love the Lord Jesus Christ, but it does not make it easier, it is just like all the other Word of God, I just accept it as the truth and move on.

It just shows that I serve an all-knowing God!

Whoever thought people would be treated so bad just because they were trying to do good for all people.

Our government has already decided that we are too ignorant to know right from wrong!

Today you can do all manner of evil and much of the world will stand up in your defense, even come to your rescue, but if you try to do the things the Lord Jesus Christ did or try to live your life according to the Word of God, you are treated as less than a human being.

In fact the world will say you are mentally unfit.

But it does not matter because we have a Savior and if you reject that Savior you are only causing harm to yourself and to those you love.

Just because you persecute God’s people, you cannot rob them of God’s blessings!

Jesus speaking here just says, I can be happy that I am seen to be like Him.

In fact Jesus says to rejoice! Be exceeding glad! For our rewards are just piling up in Heaven!

Persecution is just a test of true discipleship!

1Pe 4:13 But rejoice, inasmuch as ye are partakers of Christ’s sufferings; that, when his glory shall be revealed, ye may be glad also with exceeding joy.
1Pe 4:14 If ye be reproached for the name of Christ, happy are ye; for the spirit of glory and of God resteth upon you: on their part he is evil spoken of, but on your part he is glorified.
1Pe 4:15 But let none of you suffer as a murderer, or as a thief, or as an evildoer, or as a busybody in other men’s matters.

The world may try to protect the murderer, and the thief, and the evildoer, and all those who are busybodies in other people’s matters, but “Heaven is not open to the world”.

Jesus is not preparing a home for the world He is preparing a home only for those who love Him!

Joh 14:1 Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in me.
Joh 14:2 In my Father’s house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you.

I will not worry about what this world can do to me, because I have a Living Savior who cannot be touched by the ways of the world and I want to be like Him!

The Church exists for the sake of the world to try to change the evil ways of the world, but most of the world have sold their souls to the Devil and they are not looking to change!

*Mat 5:13 Ye are the salt of the earth: but if the salt have lost his savour, wherewith shall it be salted? it is thenceforth good for nothing, but to be cast out, and to be trodden under foot of men.

At one time salt was so valuable in this world that Roman soldiers were paid with salt because it could be used to meet their needs in any nation they traveled and was more valuable than gold.

Salt makes many foods acceptable because it changes the flavor of the food.

Job 6:6 Can that which is unsavoury be eaten without salt? or is there any taste in the white of an egg?

Salt was a preservative especially for edible meats and fishes and is still used today for this reason.

Salt can also be used for destruction of the land not allowing it ever again to produce life, such as the land that was once Sodom and Gomorrah.

Zep 2:9 Therefore as I live, saith the LORD of hosts, the God of Israel, Surely Moab shall be as Sodom, and the children of Ammon as Gomorrah, even the breeding of nettles, and saltpits, and a perpetual desolation: the residue of my people shall spoil them, and the remnant of my people shall possess them.

Psa 107:34 A fruitful land into barrenness, for the wickedness of them that dwell therein.

Salt is also used in blessings.

Lev 2:13 And every oblation of thy meat offering shalt thou season with salt; neither shalt thou suffer the salt of the covenant of thy God to be lacking from thy meat offering: with all thine offerings thou shalt offer salt.

It is the Christian life that can change the evil ways of Sodom and Gomorrah in our world today.
It is the Christian life that can show the world the beauty of living for Christ Jesus before it is too late.

It is the quality of Christian salt and not the quantity of Christian salt, that can make a difference in this world!

The flavor of evil can be changed by salt of God’s people!

Remember God’s people are salted and preserved forever more!

But much of the Church has lost its saltiness and it has no more value than the soil we walk upon.

In fact, as the false church gains in popularity, the world becomes a barren wilderness of sin!

The true Church is also the Light of this world.

*Mat 5:14 Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on an hill cannot be hid.
Mat 5:15 Neither do men light a candle, and put it under a bushel, but on a candlestick; and it giveth light unto all that are in the house.
Mat 5:16 Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.

The Christian who stays true to the Word of God cannot be hidden any more than the Sun can be blocked from its light.

God is Light, darkness is sin:

1Jn 1:5 This then is the message which we have heard of him, and declare unto you, that God is light, and in him is no darkness at all.

Every Christian being filled with the Holy Spirit has the Light of God living within them, glowing with the Light of Life.

Joh 8:12 Then spake Jesus again unto them, saying, I am the light of the world: he that followeth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life.

Joh 9:5 As long as I am in the world, I am the light of the world.

Now that our Lord Jesus Christ is in Heaven, then the Church is the Light of the World.

Eph 5:8 For ye were sometimes darkness, but now are ye light in the Lord: walk as children of light:
Eph 5:9 (For the fruit of the Spirit is in all goodness and righteousness and truth;)
Eph 5:10 Proving what is acceptable unto the Lord.

Light is clear and pure.
Light penetrates darkness.
Light enlightens, it enlarges our vision.
Light reveals, it opens up the truth of darkness.
Light guides us down the right path.
Light strips away darkness.
Light protects us from the ways of darkness.

Our own Christian Light will grow dim if it is not used!

The more we confess the Lord Jesus Christ, the brighter we will shine, and no amount of persecution can change that.

There is no other light in this world that can benefit this world, we cannot allow our Christian Light to become dim and go out!

Light only has one purpose and that purpose is “to shine”!

After God created Heaven and the void of Earth, He next made “Light”!

Amen

Jesus Is Tested

Jesus Was Tested as a King

Book of Matthew Chapter 4 Verse 1 through 11

We should remember the numbering of the Chapters and verses in the modern Bible did not exist in the time of Jesus so if we back up to Chapter 3 in the Book of Matthew, we find these verses.

Mat 3:16 And Jesus, when he was baptized, went up straightway out of the water: and, lo, the heavens were opened unto him, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove, and lighting upon him:
Mat 3:17 And lo a voice from heaven, saying, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.

It is this time that the Lord Jesus Christ began His earthly ministry!

The next thing we see is the beginning of our lesson today.

We will find Jesus being tempted of the Devil.

What is temptation? We could say temptation is “enticement”. Enticed to do things that go against the Word of God!

The source of all temptation is Satan and the works of Satan.

Satan can be effective in his works of temptation because we live in the flesh.

We know that God cannot be tempted and neither does He tempt any of His children nor is He the source of temptation to those who are lost.

Jas 1:13 Let no man say when he is tempted, I am tempted of God: for God cannot be tempted with evil, neither tempteth he any man:

When we read that Jesus is tempted of Satan, we should understand that it is because Jesus was 100% man still being 100% God.

It was extremely important that Jesus, while in His flesh be sin free, impeccable. After salvation this should be our goal.

We will see that Jesus did not just wander into temptation but the Holy Spirit who drove Christ Jesus into the wilderness to be tempted of the Devil.

There is no place we can go upon this earth that we will not be exposed to temptation!

The Holy Spirit drove Jesus Christ into the wilderness which may not be far from where Jesus was baptized of John the Baptist.

*Mat 4:1 Then was Jesus led up of the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted of the devil.

We must never understand that this was the only time that our Lord Jesus faced temptation because He was tempted throughout His ministry upon this earth, but He cannot be tempted now that He is back in Heaven as said in the Book of James but also in other places.

Heb 4:15 For we have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin.

We should understand that if Christ Jesus was so tempted then, while in His flesh, then it could have been possible that He could have sinned if He so chose to.

To be a true man then Jesus was capable of sinning!

1Pe 2:21 For even hereunto were ye called: because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that ye should follow his steps:
1Pe 2:22 Who did no sin, neither was guile found in his mouth:
1Pe 2:23 Who, when he was reviled, reviled not again; when he suffered, he threatened not; but committed himself to him that judgeth righteously:
1Pe 2:24 Who his own self bare our sins in his own body on the tree, that we, being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness: by whose stripes ye were healed.

We should understand as a test of our own goodness, God will allow us to be tempted of Satan.

All human goodness needs the strain of temptation.

We will never have a testimony until we have been tested!

We do not know what form Satan took in his temptation of Christ Jesus, but we do know he took the form of a serpent when he went after Eve.

When we read and study this passage, we know this temptation was terrible enough but the worst of the times of the temptation of Christ came in the Garden of Gethsemane.

Luk 22:44 And being in an agony he prayed more earnestly: and his sweat was as it were great drops of blood falling down to the ground.

Heb 12:2 Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.
Heb 12:3 For consider him that endured such contradiction of sinners against himself, lest ye be wearied and faint in your minds.
Heb 12:4 “Ye have not yet resisted unto blood, striving against sin”.
Heb 12:5 And ye have forgotten the exhortation which speaketh unto you as unto children, My son, despise not thou the chastening of the Lord, nor faint when thou art rebuked of him:
Heb 12:6 For whom the Lord loveth he chasteneth, and scourgeth every son whom he receiveth.
Heb 12:7 If ye endure chastening, God dealeth with you as with sons; for what son is he whom the father chasteneth not?

Before this temptation began our Lord Jesus first fasted.

*Mat 4:2 And when he had fasted forty days and forty nights, he was afterward an hungred.

Fasting has been in the Church from the beginning and again our example is the Lord Jesus Christ.

Fasting has a place in our relationship with the Lord.

Fasting is a means to teach us self-discipline.

Fasting is a means of preparation for beginning a ministry as it seems the Lord Jesus was doing here in this passage.

Fasting is not a means to obtain God’s Grace!

Grace comes by beginning a “sincere” relationship with the Lord by accepting the work He did for our salvation.

All fast are not acceptable to the Lord.

Isa 58:4 Behold, ye fast for strife and debate, and to smite with the fist of wickedness: ye shall not fast as ye do this day, to make your voice to be heard on high.
Isa 58:5 Is it such a fast that I have chosen? a day for a man to afflict his soul? is it to bow down his head as a bulrush, and to spread sackcloth and ashes under him? wilt thou call this a fast, and an acceptable day to the LORD?
Isa 58:6 Is not this the fast that I have chosen? to loose the bands of wickedness, to undo the heavy burdens, and to let the oppressed go free, and that ye break every yoke?
Isa 58:7 Is it not to deal thy bread to the hungry, and that thou bring the poor that are cast out to thy house? when thou seest the naked, that thou cover him; and that thou hide not thyself from thine own flesh?
Isa 58:8 Then shall thy light break forth as the morning, and thine health shall spring forth speedily: and thy righteousness shall go before thee; the glory of the LORD shall be thy rereward.
Isa 58:9 Then shalt thou call, and the LORD shall answer; thou shalt cry, and he shall say, Here I am. If thou take away from the midst of thee the yoke, the putting forth of the finger, and speaking vanity;
Isa 58:10 And if thou draw out thy soul to the hungry, and satisfy the afflicted soul; then shall thy light rise in obscurity, and thy darkness be as the noonday:
Isa 58:11 And the LORD shall guide thee continually, and satisfy thy soul in drought, and make fat thy bones: and thou shalt be like a watered garden, and like a spring of water, whose waters fail not.

We are bought and paid for with the blood of Jesus, making Jesus our new owner. We should hate man-made slavery, but it is a privilege to be a slave to the Lord Jesus Christ!

Fasting is not a substitute for righteousness.

The ministry of the Lord Jesus Christ began with a fast for 40 days and forty nights and there can be little doubt that Jesus was very hungry.

We should understand that Satan (the Tempter) will usually show up when we are in a period of physical and mental weakness.

He will then try to confront us with his lies.

*Mat 4:3 And when the tempter came to him, he said, If thou be the Son of God, command that these stones be made bread.

In this temptation of our Lord we must remember that Jesus was 100% man and 100% God. If Jesus in the flesh could not fulfill His ministry without being sustained by His Godly power, then no human would be able to do so.

Jesus had to refrain from using the power of God to sustain Himself. It will obvious He did use some portions of Godly power to help others as we study the Gospels but never for Himself!

These are called miracles which He still does today!

God will help us because we do not have the power within ourselves to do so!

In fact the greatest lesson we will learn in life is, that we cannot help ourselves to obtained salvation, we need the Lord Jesus Christ in a personal relationship to be saved.

The Lord Jesus Christ possesses the only means of salvation. Do not be fooled by naysayers!

By the end of those forty days, Jesus in His flesh had reached a point where it was critical that He get something to eat.

Satan knew this as he had been spying on Jesus all this time.

There is nothing outside God’s creative power except the power to do wrong!

There is hardly anywhere you go in Israel where you will not see stones and many of those stones were round and to the hungry eye, they could appear to be small loaves of bread.

It would have been really easy for the Lord to do this.

In fact John the Baptist said God could just as easily raised up humans from those same stones.

Luk 3:8 Bring forth therefore fruits worthy of repentance, and begin not to say within yourselves, We have Abraham to our father: for I say unto you, That God is able of these stones to raise up children unto Abraham.

Jesus later said if He needed to hear praise He could just as easily gotten praise from those same stones.

Luk 19:40 And he answered and said unto them, I tell you that, if these should hold their peace, the stones would immediately cry out.

Yes, He could have easily changed those stones into bread, but He did have a response to the tempter.

*Mat 4:4 But he answered and said, It is written, Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God.

The message of Satan: Go ahead and trust yourself, you do not need God.

The message of Jesus to Satan: I choose to live by God’s ways!

This must be our answer! We must choose to live according to the Word of God!

Jesus had all the power of God, but it is always best to live by the Word of God!

As humans we may be bound by our human necessities, but when we base our existence on our necessities, then these things will become our standard for living.

God lives upon a greater plain and He knows we have human needs, and it is He, that supplies those needs so, we need much more than life’s necessities.

We need God! We do not need some false god, we need Jehovah God, and we need the truth of life and the truth of Spiritual life!

We have in our possession a Book of Truth. The world can only provide lies with very little truth because higher powers have decided that the public is too ignorant to know the truth.

God on the other hand is not afraid to give us the truth!

Our physical life is but a short period of time, but our Spiritual life is forever!

Jesus quoted part of a passage from the Book of Deuteronomy.

Deu 8:3 And he humbled thee, and suffered thee to hunger, and fed thee with manna, which thou knewest not, neither did thy fathers know; “that he might make thee know that man doth not live by bread only, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of the LORD doth man live”.

Every human being has a spiritual hunger that must be satisfied yet, so many settle with falseness, and they are never really satisfied in this life.
Many reject the need for spiritual things, and this leads them to a miserable life.

Many choose some sort of substitute for the truth and they ruin their bodies and their minds. They are happy one day and miserable for many more days, and livein endless cycles of denial.

We can only be at peace when we have the satisfaction of the Lord Jesus Christ and depend upon the truth of the Scriptures for true life now, and endless life forever.

When we get to Heaven, we will be more alive than we can ever obtain here upon this earth.

The Devil did not like the response of the Lord, so he took the Lord to Jerusalem.

*Mat 4:5 Then the devil taketh him up into the holy city, and setteth him on a pinnacle of the temple,
Mat 4:6 And saith unto him, If thou be the Son of God, cast thyself down: for it is written, He shall give his angels charge concerning thee: and in their hands they shall bear thee up, lest at any time thou dash thy foot against a stone.

As there was not a designated pinnacle upon the roof of the Temple, the Greek word used here means the highest point of the roof of the Temple. The apex of the building.

The word pinnacle in architecture, is a term used for a wing-like projection and was most probably one of the Temple porches that overlooked the Kedron Valley that is between the Mount of Olives and Mount Moriah which adds to its height.

We should understand that the city of Jerusalem also sits upon a hill and at this time of Jesus, Jerusalem was probably the highest capitol city in the ancient world.

In the Gospels only Matthew describes Jerusalem as the Holy City.

Again the Devil quotes Scripture. We must understand that Satan has read every bit of Scripture and he can understand it as much as any lost person can, but without the Holy Spirit he cannot understand the truth of the message of God.

Here, the Devil quotes from the Book of Psalms.

Psa 91:11 For he shall give his angels charge over thee, to keep thee in all thy ways.
Psa 91:12 They shall bear thee up in their hands, lest thou dash thy foot against a stone.

Of course God could get safely off the top of any high peak, but in the flesh the Lord would have perished.

The angels would have certainly rushed to His rescue.

We must remember that Satan was trying to get Jesus to use His godly powers to save Himself.

He did not have to prove Himself to Satan. Satan knew exactly who the Lord Jesus was.

Jas 2:19 Thou believest that there is one God; thou doest well: the devils also believe, and tremble.

If Jesus was a human Messiah, then certainly God the Father would have not allowed Him to be injured.

The Lord Jesus gives us a great understanding of the truth of God!

No matter our relationship with our Heavenly Father we must never tempt God.

God will do exactly what He says He will do and in most cases He will go far beyond what He says, but we must never test God just to see if He is telling the truth.

What our Heavenly Father says is the truth without question! God is not to be tested! God is to be trusted!

Faith is the greatest key to our relationship with our Heavenly Father!

Heb 11:6 But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.

The Lord Jesus replies sternly to Satan.

*Mat 4:7 Jesus said unto him, It is written again, Thou shalt not tempt the Lord thy God.

We must clearly understand, the only way we can obtain the glory of the Lord is by obedience!

God gave us His Word so we could know the truth and decide ourselves who to believe!

This is where Adam failed and this in the one thing we must overcome!

Again Jesus quotes from the Old Testament, the New Testament had not been written.

Deu 6:16 “Ye shall not tempt the LORD your God”, as ye tempted him in Massah.

At Massah, Moses and Aaron had displayed distrust in Jehovah when they tried to glorify themselves with a miracle of God.

Num 20:7 And the LORD spake unto Moses, saying,
Num 20:8 Take the rod, and gather thou the assembly together, thou, and Aaron thy brother, and speak ye unto the rock before their eyes; and it shall give forth his water, and thou shalt bring forth to them water out of the rock: so thou shalt give the congregation and their beasts drink.
Num 20:9 And Moses took the rod from before the LORD, as he commanded him.
Num 20:10 And Moses and Aaron gathered the congregation together before the rock, and he said unto them, Hear now, ye rebels; must we fetch you water out of this rock?
Num 20:11 And Moses lifted up his hand, and with his rod he smote the rock twice: and the water came out abundantly, and the congregation drank, and their beasts also.
Num 20:12 And the LORD spake unto Moses and Aaron, Because ye believed me not, to sanctify me in the eyes of the children of Israel, therefore ye shall not bring this congregation into the land which I have given them.

We should understand this as the one thing that kept Moses from leading the children of Israel into the Promised Land.

We as the Church understand that it is by “obedience” to the Word of God that we enter into God’s true Promised Land, the New Heaven.

We must never tempt our Heavenly Father!
We must always obey the written Word of God!

The Lord Jesus Christ in His flesh could never misuse the true power He had while He was upon this Earth!

Again, Satan was defeated but Satan will never stop until the Lord is through with him, but he can only tempt us, he cannot force us to sin if you are one of God’s children by Jesus Christ.

We sin when we choose to go against the Word of God!

*Mat 4:8 Again, the devil taketh him up into an exceeding high mountain, and sheweth him all the kingdoms of the world, and the glory of them;
Mat 4:9 And saith unto him, All these things will I give thee, if thou wilt fall down and worship me.

What is the greatest sin we do as Christians today? We compromise our ministry and our mission in the work of Christ with this evil and wicked world!

We lose our testimony and are all but useless in the work the Lord has given us to do!

It is not important to know if there is such a mountain in this world.

It is important to know that as powerful as Satan maybe, he does not have absolute power on this earth and he never has had that power.

It would have only been important to Satan if he could convince the flesh side of the Messiah that he did have this power.

In these three temptations we have seen the truth of the temptations of the Devil.

1Jn 2:16 For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world.

Our Lord Jesus was tempted in these three things.

Satan maybe the prince of this world but he will be judged and spend eternity in Hell just like every other non-believer!

Joh 12:31 Now is the judgment of this world: now shall the prince of this world be cast out.
Joh 14:30 Hereafter I will not talk much with you: for the prince of this world cometh, and hath nothing in me.
Joh 16:11 Of judgment, because the prince of this world is judged.

He is also called the prince of the power of the air:

Eph 2:2 Wherein in time past ye walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that now worketh in the children of disobedience:

We should clearly understand that Satan only has limited power, and that limited power is under the control of Jehovah God!

Many a national leader has fallen under the trap of that same offer Satan made to the Lord Jesus Christ.

We see it every day in the USA, the craving for power.

Eventually the Antichrist will step upon the scene and he will crave for worldly power.

Luke wrote it like this:

Luk 4:6 And the devil said unto him, All this power will I give thee, and the glory of them: for that is delivered unto me; and to whomsoever I will I give it.
Luk 4:7 If thou therefore wilt worship me, all shall be thine.

Satan is indeed the ruler of darkness, but darkness is always overruled by Light.

Shine a light into a dark room and you will see darkness flee to its limited places to hide where darkness becomes shadows that move about as the light moves about always hiding from the light.

Jesus gives Satan His greatest rebuke.

*Mat 4:10 Then saith Jesus unto him, Get thee hence, Satan: for it is written, Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and him only shalt thou serve.

We must understand that though Satan is powerful, he does not have the power of God.

God will never lead us into temptation, but this is Satan’s favorite game!

We are to put on the armor of God and take our stand even if we are facing the Devil!

Jas 4:7 Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.

We must know who has the greatest power!

1Jn 4:4 Ye are of God, little children, and have overcome them: because greater is he that is in you, than he that is in the world.

Satan cannot overcome the child of God unless we allow it to happen.

We are to worship only the Lord our God and He only are we to serve! It is just that simple!

The Devil gave up for a moment, but he tempted Jesus all the days he was upon the Earth.

*Mat 4:11 Then the devil leaveth him, and, behold, angels came and ministered unto him.

The Lord Jesus Christ describes to us actual scenes. We do not know what form the Devil used and it is not important.

These were not dreams that the Lord had but a reality, and it will be the same for each of us that love Him.

Satan just does not give up!

If Satan is bold enough to tempt the Lord, knowing who He was then, why should we think he will not come after us.

Now he may not come himself. Remember Satan can only be in one place at a time, but he will send one of his demons.

Satan will do his very best to ruin our Christian testimony, but without his temptations, we would not have a testimony to begin with.

We have the power within us to resist the Devil, the Tempter, Satan, the Deceiver, or whatever you want to call him!

It begins with Scripture.

Many Churches today listen to preachers who twist the truth because they have sold out to Satan.

They preach from perverted text with intent to deceive because they are already sold out to the Devil.

If you know the Scriptures then run them out of the pulpits of America, and you will witness the greatest change this nation has ever had!

The angels did come to minister to the Lord for no doubt he was weak, which is another lesson for us.

Even in His weakness, the Lord easily overcame the full power of Satan with His flesh side!

Jesus Christ is our example in everything we do for the Lord God!

Amen

Born To Be King

Jesus Was Presented as a King

Book of Matthew Chapter 3

We should understand that the Gospels are not intended to give us a day by day, account of the life of Jesus.

The intent of the Gospels are to teach us how the Church was to begin.

The intent of the Gospels are to teach us God’s plan of salvation.

The intent of the Gospels are to teach the Jews the fulfillment of the Old Testament prophecies.

We will find a thirtyyear gap between chapter 2 and chapter 3 of Matthew’s Gospel.

This chapter begins with the forerunner, John the Baptist.

A fulfillment of prophecy.

Isa 40:3 The voice of him that crieth in the wilderness, Prepare ye the way of the LORD, make straight in the desert a highway for our God.
Isa 40:4 Every valley shall be exalted, and every mountain and hill shall be made low: and the crooked shall be made straight, and the rough places plain:
Isa 40:5 And the glory of the LORD shall be revealed, and all flesh shall see it together: for the mouth of the LORD hath spoken it.

Chapter 3 Verse 1

*Mat 3:1 In those days came John the Baptist, preaching in the wilderness of Judaea,
Mat 3:2 And saying, Repent ye: for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.

“In those days” means the days the Lord Jesus Christ walked upon this earth.

This wilderness was a true wilderness. It was a wild, barren and desolate place and it was in this same area where we will find that the Lord was tempted of Satan.

In general, when the Bible speaks of a wilderness in the New Testament it means a less cultivated place opposed to pastureland that is plowed regularly.

John lived in the true wilderness.

John was the forerunner for Jesus Christ, and he had begun his own ministry.

Mal 3:1 Behold, I will send my messenger, and he shall prepare the way before me: and the Lord, whom ye seek, shall suddenly come to his temple, even the messenger of the covenant, whom ye delight in: behold, he shall come, saith the LORD of hosts.

God had sent many prophets and many true priests and many messengers to the Jews and yet they had rebelled against them all, killing many of them.

We know that John the Baptist would also be murdered for taking a stand against a wicked government but not before his ministry was complete and the ministry of the Lord Jesus Christ had begun.

What was his message?

Repent, for the kingdom of God was at hand.

To repent is not just to feel sorrow and regret but it is a complete change in lifestyle, a complete change in your heart, and a complete change in your way of thinking!

Daniel best describes the kingdom of God:

Dan 7:13 I saw in the night visions, and, behold, one like the Son of man came with the clouds of heaven, and came to the Ancient of days, and they brought him near before him.
Dan 7:14 And there was given him dominion, and glory, and a kingdom, that all people, nations, and languages, should serve him: his dominion is an everlasting dominion, which shall not pass away, and his kingdom that which shall not be destroyed.

The Lord’s kingdom is not of this earth.

Joh 18:36 Jesus answered, My kingdom is not of this world: if my kingdom were of this world, then would my servants fight, that I should not be delivered to the Jews: but now is my kingdom not from hence.
Joh 18:37 Pilate therefore said unto him, Art thou a king then? Jesus answered, Thou sayest that I am a king. To this end was I born, and for this cause came I into the world, that I should bear witness unto the truth. Every one that is of the truth heareth my voice.

Though the Lord will rule this earth as King for 1000 years, His true Kingdom will be in the New Jerusalem where all the saints of God will join Him to be with Him forever and forever.

*Mat 3:3 For this is he that was spoken of by the prophet Esaias, saying, The voice of one crying in the wilderness, Prepare ye the way of the Lord, make his paths straight.

We already have seen this prophecy but let us see it again.

Isa 40:3 The voice of him that crieth in the wilderness, Prepare ye the way of the LORD, make straight in the desert a highway for our God.
Isa 40:4 Every valley shall be exalted, and every mountain and hill shall be made low: and the crooked shall be made straight, and the rough places plain:
Isa 40:5 And the glory of the LORD shall be revealed, and all flesh shall see it together: for the mouth of the LORD hath spoken it.

What is “make His paths straight”?

The image of making His paths straight is as building a highway leveling the mountains, filling in the valleys making a sure path to God’s future kingdom, even though that road would be a narrow one.

Mat 7:13 Enter ye in at the strait gate: for wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat:
Mat 7:14 Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it.

The Lord Jesus Christ provides that only pathway to God’s rebuilt Heaven. Not many ways but one way and that way by the Lord Jesus Christ!

It is the job of every Christian to prepare the way of the Lord to the lost!

The ways of John remind us of that Old Testament prophet Elijah.

*Mat 3:4 And the same John had his raiment of camel’s hair, and a leathern girdle about his loins; and his meat was locusts and wild honey.

You cannot be a prophet of God without spending a lot of time alone with God!

John chose the wilderness of Judah.

2Ki 1:7 And he said unto them, What manner of man was he which came up to meet you, and told you these words?
2Ki 1:8 And they answered him, He was an hairy man, and girt with a girdle of leather about his loins. And he said, It is Elijah the Tishbite.

The raiment of Elijah was made of camel’s hair or the skin of a hairy animal.

That raiment sounds like it would be rough but in fact camel’s hair was a good material for clothing, keeping out the heat, the cold, and the rain.

A prophet of God would never wear clothing that could deceive a person.

The Christian is told to wear modest clothing:

1Ti_2:9 In like manner also, that women adorn themselves in modest apparel, with shamefacedness and sobriety; not with broided hair, or gold, or pearls, or costly array;

Jesus asked the religious leaders this question:

Mat 11:7 And as they departed, Jesus began to say unto the multitudes concerning John, What went ye out into the wilderness to see? A reed shaken with the wind?
Mat 11:8 But what went ye out for to see? A man clothed in soft raiment? behold, they that wear soft clothing are in kings’ houses.
Mat 11:9 But what went ye out for to see? A prophet? yea, I say unto you, and more than a prophet.
Mat 11:10 For this is he, of whom it is written, Behold, I send my messenger before thy face, which shall prepare thy way before thee.

Jesus loves and respects all those who prepare the way before Him:

Mat 11:11 Verily I say unto you, Among them that are born of women there hath not risen a greater than John the Baptist: notwithstanding he that is least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he.

John the Baptist brought baptism by immersion to a reality.

*Mat 3:5 Then went out to him Jerusalem, and all Judaea, and all the region round about Jordan,
Mat 3:6 And were baptized of him in Jordan, confessing their sins.

The preaching of John was real.
The preaching of John was about the truth.
The preaching of John was about repentance.

John had the same message to the poor, the rich, to the religious elders, and to the government!

There was no baptism without first confessing your sins and confessing repentance.

What is our first confession? We must confess we are a sinner.

1Jn 1:9 If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.
1Jn 1:10 If we say that we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us.

Our next confession is the need of a Savior, and there is only One Savior.

2Jn 1:9 Whosoever transgresseth, and abideth not in the doctrine of Christ, hath not God. He that abideth in the doctrine of Christ, he hath both the Father and the Son.

1Jn 2:22 Who is a liar but he that denieth that Jesus is the Christ? He is antichrist, that denieth the Father and the Son.
1Jn 2:23 Whosoever denieth the Son, the same hath not the Father: (but) he that acknowledgeth the Son hath the Father also.

Next comes baptism:

Baptism was not new because baptism was practiced in all ancient religions.

For John, baptism was an outward sign or repentance and a changed life. To be baptized was also to promise the Lord we would have that faith in His cleansing of our sins.

The full immersion baptism must represent the death the burial and the resurrection of the Lord Jesus Christ.

The full immersion baptism must be done in the name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Ghost!

Mat 28:18 And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth.
Mat 28:19 Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost:
Mat 28:20 Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world. Amen.

Baptism cannot save, it is only an admission that Jesus Christ is the only way to be saved from a Devil’s Hell!

If you cannot believe all these things, then you are only taking a bath and a hundred baptisms will never get you closer to the Lord and a sprinkling can only get you wet!

John preached hard against religious deceivers:

Mat 3:7 But when he saw many of the Pharisees and Sadducees come to his baptism, he said unto them, O generation of vipers, who hath warned you to flee from the wrath to come?
Mat 3:8 Bring forth therefore fruits meet for repentance:
Mat 3:9 And think not to say within yourselves, We have Abraham to our father: for I say unto you, that God is able of these stones to raise up children unto Abraham.
Mat 3:10 And now also the axe is laid unto the root of the trees: therefore every tree which bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire.

If we refuse to repent, then we cannot receive the Holy Spirit.

If we do not show the fruit of the Holy Spirit in our lives, then we are not saved.

What is the fruit of the Holy Spirit?

Gal 5:22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith,
Gal 5:23 Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law.
Gal 5:24 And they that are Christ’s have crucified the flesh with the affections and lusts.
Gal 5:25 If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit.

Eph 5:9 (For the fruit of the Spirit is in all goodness and righteousness and truth;)
Eph 5:10 Proving what is acceptable unto the Lord.

These Pharisee and Sadducee were not going to repent, and they did not bear the fruit of the Spirit.

We should understand the meaning of being called a “viper”.

A viper is full of deadly poison and venom. The doctrine of false religion is full of malice against the truth and is deadly in that it will separate you from the love and the presence of God!

We live in a world today where the truth is rejected, and the poison is received.

Notice John was a true preacher and not afraid of organize religion.

Both John and the Lord Jesus Christ would not be welcome in the Church of today!

It is not baptism with water that saves!

It is being washed in the blood of Jesus and then baptized with the Holy Spirit and the Holy Spirit will not live in a false house.

*Mat 3:11 I indeed baptize you with water unto repentance: but he that cometh after me is mightier than I, whose shoes I am not worthy to bear: he shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost, and with fire:
Mat 3:12 Whose fan is in his hand, and he will throughly purge his floor, and gather his wheat into the garner; but he will burn up the chaff with unquenchable fire.

You see until you accept that the Lord Jesus Christ is the one and the only way to remain in the presence of God, then you cannot be a home for the Holy Spirit.

1Co_3:16 Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you?

1Co_6:19 What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own?

You cannot be a Living Temple of God until you are washed in the blood of Jesus Christ.

1Co_6:11 And such were some of you: but ye are washed, but ye are sanctified, but ye are justified in the name of the Lord Jesus, and by the Spirit of our God.

Heb_9:14 How much more shall the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself without spot to God, purge your conscience from dead works to serve the living God?

1Pe 1:18 Forasmuch as ye know that ye were not redeemed with corruptible things, as silver and gold, from your vain conversation received by tradition from your fathers;
1Pe 1:19 But with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot:

Do not be fooled by organized religion!

Jesus will thoroughly cleanse this earth from all sin, and none will be allowed in Heaven!

We are not as worthy as John and though he was the forerunner, a great prophet, who even made Herod tremble, said he was unworthy to be even a slave to the Lord Jesus Christ.

We must be washed with the water of the Holy Spirit which means surrounded, immersed, inside and outside by and with the Holy Spirit.

It means a new birth!

Joh_3:3 Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.

Joh_3:7 Marvel not that I said unto thee, Ye must be born again.

The fan of Christ Jesus is the “Gospel”!
His floor is the “Church” which is covered in a mixture of wheat and chaff.

Jesus will gather the wheat, those who are washed in the Spirit, to take to Heaven, and He will purge all who reject Him for a lifetime of torment!

Even Jesus was baptized to show us all that repentance is real even though He had no sin to repent of.

*Mat 3:13 Then cometh Jesus from Galilee to Jordan unto John, to be baptized of him.
Mat 3:14 But John forbad him, saying, I have need to be baptized of thee, and comest thou to me?
Mat 3:15 And Jesus answering said unto him, Suffer it to be so now: for thus it becometh us to fulfil all righteousness. Then he suffered him.

Jesus teaches us that we must set our life apart unto our Heavenly Father in a renewed spirit of dedication.

Jesus always did the will of our Heavenly Father and we must do our best to do the same!

Joh_5:30 I can of mine own self do nothing: as I hear, I judge: and my judgment is just; because I seek not mine own will, but the will of the Father which hath sent me.

The One and Only Living Example we have is the Lord Jesus Christ who teaches us by example.

Being 100% man but truly 100% God, Jesus made sure his human side did never exalt Himself above other humans.

He was and is higher than the highest but showed himself as a humble human being who lived in the will of His Heavenly Father.

Jesus needed to be baptized but he needed to be baptized by John specifically.

Jesus had traveled by foot from Nazareth of Galilee to where John was on the River Jordan which was a long walk.

It is on this day of His baptism that the Lord Jesus Christ began His earthly ministry!

It was John who had been preparing the way for Him.

The Lord Jesus identified Himself with the ministry of John the Baptist.

What was John’s message? “Repent and be baptized for the Kingdom of God was at hand”.

The Lord Jesus Christ is the door, not the doorway, but the door to the Kingdom of Heaven!

He is the founder of Christianity.
He is the Head of the Church, which is the Body of Christ.
He is the purchaser of all Righteousness, which He did on the Cross.
He is the Ideal Man our true Example!

John already had stated that the Messiah was much greater than he and said to the Lord “I need to be baptized of thee”.

John was not one to humble himself before anyone. He boldly preached the truth of God, but we must all humble ourselves before our righteous God!

All manner of people had come to John to be baptized but John knew he was nothing compared to the Lord Jesus Christ.

Neither are any of us!

There is no disgrace in humbling yourself before the Master!

**Jesus came to fulfill every law written by Moses and He did, He was the perfect man, to become the perfect High Priest.

Exo 29:4 And Aaron and his sons thou shalt bring unto the door of the tabernacle of the congregation, and shalt wash them with water.
Exo 29:5 And thou shalt take the garments, and put upon Aaron the coat, and the robe of the ephod, and the ephod, and the breastplate, and gird him with the curious girdle of the ephod:
Exo 29:6 And thou shalt put the mitre upon his head, and put the holy crown upon the mitre.
Exo 29:7 Then shalt thou take the anointing oil, and pour it upon his head, and anoint him.

** Jesus came to pay “every man’s” penalty for breaking those same laws, there 613 laws given by Moses.

** Jesus demonstrated to the fullest extent His humiliation in becoming a man.

Php 2:5 Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus:
Php 2:6 Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God:
Php 2:7 But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men:
Php 2:8 And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross.

**Jesus identified Himself with all those He came to save!

**Jesus became the pattern for every human being!

**Jesus began His ministry, as the High Priest always entered his ministry in such a ceremony.

When Jesus came up out of the water, our Heavenly Father recognized His Only Begotten Son.

*Mat 3:16 And Jesus, when he was baptized, went up straightway out of the water: and, lo, the heavens were opened unto him, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove, and lighting upon him:
Mat 3:17 And lo a voice from heaven, saying, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.

The Heavens opened. We will get to see this one day soon.
The Holy Spirit descended like a dove.

Remember this was a sign given to John the Baptist to verify the Messiah.

Joh 1:32 And John bare record, saying, I saw the Spirit descending from heaven like a dove, and it abode upon him.
Joh 1:33 And I knew him not: but he that sent me to baptize with water, the same said unto me, Upon whom thou shalt see the Spirit descending, and remaining on him, the same is he which baptizeth with the Holy Ghost.

The voice of a Holy God spoke about His Son.

“Noticed God said, “my beloved Son”.

One day when we get to Heaven our Heavenly Father will say welcome home son or welcome home daughter.

Amen