Tag: The Gospel

Being Faithful is Loving the Lord Jesus Christ

Counted Faithful

Book of 1 Timothy 1:1-20

Paul, the ambassador for Jesus Christ our King, is writing to his dear son in the “Gospel”, Timothy.

The most important job of the Church is share the “Gospel” of Jesus Christ and to make disciples just as Paul has made a disciple of Timothy and then went further in his teaching when God called Timothy to be a Pastor.

Anything else is secondary to this function.

1) The disciple must first believe the doctrine of Jesus Christ.
2) The disciple must rest on the sacrifice of Jesus Christ for all our sins.
3) The disciple must be absorbed with the Holy Spirit.
4) The disciple must imitate the example of Jesus Christ so close, that he resembles Him. (This is what Christ-Like means, a Christian)

Timothy became such a disciple and later he was called of God to become a Pastor.

*****1Ti 1:1 Paul, an apostle of Jesus Christ by the commandment of God our Saviour, and Lord Jesus Christ, which is our hope;

The authority to call anyone into the service of God must come from God Himself! We cannot call ourselves to be a Pastor!

We can rest assured that Paul, then named Saul, was truly an apostle specifically called by the Lord Jesus Christ.

Also notice that Paul knew that it is the Lord Jesus Christ who is God and Savior, one person of the Holy Trinity!

Paul also new that all our hope lies in the truth of the “Gospel” and in all the Word of God!

So, we must clearly understand that Jesus Christ is our only hope for salvation!

Jesus Christ is the love of God shown to us in His Son!

Joh 3:16 For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.

Jesus Christ is the author of our hope.
Jesus Christ is the object of our hope.
Jesus Christ is the foundation of our hope!

God has provided the only means of salvation to every person since the resurrection of His Dear Son.

If God had not loved us and have a plan of salvation from the beginning, then no one could be saved!

Paul spoke with such authority because these epistles to Timothy and Titus will be considered the Pastoral Epistles and this is a specific calling of God.

Paul expected young Timothy to share these epistles with all the church.

All the epistles of Paul were passed from church to church!

The question comes up many times by those who are full of pride, why should the church make disciples?

The answer lies in the truth that all the world is enslaved by sin!

These people are gripped by spiritual death and are too blind to see it.

These people are doomed to face the judgment of God and they need someone to tell them the truth!

1Ti 2:3 For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Saviour;
1Ti 2:4 Who will have all men to be saved, and to come unto the knowledge of the truth.

Timothy needed to hear these things from Paul the Apostle of Jesus Christ, who was also the same messenger of God who had led him to the Lord.

*****1Ti 1:2 Unto Timothy, my own son in the faith: Grace, mercy, and peace, from God our Father and Jesus Christ our Lord.

Why is it so important that our children be taught the Word of God? Because on occasion you get a Timothy!

His mother Eunice and his grandmother Lois had prepared this young man in the Old Testament Word of God at a very young age as it was written in the laws of Moses. They had also been converted on Paul’s first trip to Lystra.

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

Timothy was just a child when Paul had first come to Lystra. He was probably no mare that 10 to 12 years old when Paul led him to the Lord. He was no more than 18 when Paul returned on his second missionary trip and had grown so much in the Scriptures that Paul took Timothy with him and treated him as his son.

1Co 4:17 For this cause have I sent unto you Timotheus, who is my beloved son, and faithful in the Lord, who shall bring you into remembrance of my ways which be in Christ, as I teach every where in every church.

Timothy became so likeminded in the Scriptures as Paul, that Paul said his mind was at one with Timothy.

Php 2:19 But I trust in the Lord Jesus to send Timotheus shortly unto you, that I also may be of good comfort, when I know your state.
Php 2:20 For I have no man likeminded, who will naturally care for your state.

From this point on, Timothy would travel with Paul or would be sent by Paul to other locations.

Timothy may not have reached the age 30 years old, when Paul left him at Ephesus to correct the errors in doctrine that had made their way into this church.

The problems in Ephesus was not only from the Judaizers but many of the Greeks tried to bring parts of their pagan worship into the Church

**Timothy had been saved by the “Grace” of God just like every Christian is saved.

The “Grace” of God is revealed in the death of the Lord Jesus Christ.

Jesus Christ died, to redeem us from all our sin.
Jesus Christ died, to raise up a peculiar people a people set apart for His use.
Jesus Christ died, to stir us into good works like the works that He did.

All these came because of the ‘”Mercy” of God.

The “mercy” of God came to us because of His compassion for us, His love for us, and His pity for us!

God has mercy for us because He truly cares about all His creation, especially we of human race..

God sees our needs and provide our needs and the greatest need we had, was to be in harmony with our God!

Because of God’s “mercy” He has withheld His judgement of us, even though we deserve His wrath.

All those who do not know the mercy of God do not know God at all!

The peace of God means, we are bound together with the Lord Jesus Christ and secure in the love of God!

If we know the peace of God, we can then be at peace with God!

Timothy knew all these things and was a willing young Pastor to serve God, wherever he was sent!

*****1Ti 1:3 As I besought thee to abide still at Ephesus, when I went into Macedonia, that thou mightest charge some that they teach no other doctrine,
1Ti 1:4 Neither give heed to fables and endless genealogies, which minister questions, rather than godly edifying which is in faith: so do.

What was Timothy’s job at Ephesus? Timothy was charged to defend the truth of the “Gospel” of Jesus Christ.

This must be the charge of every Pastor, Missionary, and Evangelist!

This must be the same charge to every “Born Again” child of God!

It is a fact, that all false teachers teach a false doctrine because, they cannot know God. Only those filled with the Holy Spirit who will only come by acknowledging the truth of Jesus Christ that can have such knowledge

Paul had gotten the Macedonian call at this time and the Holy Spirit was at work in Paul, yet he felt Ephesus could not be abandoned at this time, so it was Timothy who had to stay there to lead this church back to the truth.

Paul had warned this church that false teachers would come, and it is also a fact that we need to understand, false teachers will make an attempt to cause problems in every church!

We simply must guard against all those who attempt to corrupt the Word of God!

We must demand that our teachers and preachers teach the truth of the Word of God and the “Gospel” of Jesus Christ!

We can see that Timothy even at this young age, was strong enough in the Word of God, that Paul trusted him to work that truth into this church.

There is also no one on the face of this earth who has the authority to change the Word of God!

In the day of Timothy there were many of the Jewish faith who made attempts to stop Christianity.

There were also many from the pagan Greeks who wanted to incorporate Christianity into their own beliefs.

Some say this was the beginning of the Catholic church.

Tit 1:10 For there are many unruly and vain talkers and deceivers, specially they of the circumcision:

There were many who taught fables rather than the truth of God.

Tit 1:14 Not giving heed to Jewish fables, and commandments of men, that turn from the truth.

There were those that wanted the Christians to abide by the Laws of Moses.

Tit 3:9 But avoid foolish questions, and genealogies, and contentions, and strivings about the law; for they are unprofitable and vain.

The true Word of God, does not contain fables as some say! Fables are any fictional teaching of the Scriptures.

The Lord Jesus taught using with parables, but He never taught using fables and neither should any man of God!

There is nothing contained in the Hebrew or Greek Scriptures that suggest the use of fables!

2Pe 1:16 For we have not followed cunningly devised fables, when we made known unto you the power and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, but were eyewitnesses of his majesty.
2Pe 1:17 For he received from God the Father honour and glory, when there came such a voice to him from the excellent glory, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.

That word “genealogies” is the teaching of those who take comfort in their godly heritage.

As Christians we can look back to the faith of Abraham because the Scriptures point us to him.

The truth is, we cannot be saved just because Abraham had such a great faith.
We cannot be saved just because we have godly parents or godly grandparents.

We must accept the Lord Jesus Christ ourselves in a faith such as Abraham had in trusting God, as our personal Savior and there is no other means of salvation period! *****End of discussion!

What did Jesus say?

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.

It is only because of the love of God, that we get this opportunity to be saved!

*****1Ti 1:5 Now the end of the commandment is charity out of a pure heart, and of a good conscience, and of faith unfeigned:
1Ti 1:6 From which some having swerved have turned aside unto vain jangling;

Those false teachers had put empty discussions of the Law ahead of the “Love of God”!

The church is to teach love for one another, just as God loves each of us!

What had Jesus said?

Mat 22:37 Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind.
Mat 22:38 This is the first and great commandment.
Mat 22:39 And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself.
Mat 22:40 On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets.

When there is no love in a church, then there can be no church!

It is also a terrible sin to compromise the Word of God, just to get more members or to keep the ones you already have!

*****1Ti 1:7 Desiring to be teachers of the law; understanding neither what they say, nor whereof they affirm.

The teacher or preacher must not allow ambition to cloud their understanding of the truth!

To make disciples as preachers and teachers, the church must focus on learning as well as teaching!

When those who do not know the Lord ask why we love the Scriptures, we should just say, “because we have a personal relationship with the Author”.

Tit 1:10 For there are many unruly and vain talkers and deceivers, specially they of the circumcision:
Tit 1:11 Whose mouths must be stopped, who subvert whole houses, teaching things which they ought not, for filthy lucre’s sake.

Jas 1:26 If any man among you seem to be religious, and bridleth not his tongue, but deceiveth his own heart, this man’s religion is vain.
Jas 1:27 Pure religion and undefiled before God and the Father is this, To visit the fatherless and widows in their affliction, and to keep himself unspotted from the world.

We must also understand that the Laws of Moses had their purpose in the day of Paul, just as they do today!
Those laws point out that we are all sinners who cannot measure up to our Savior!

*****1Ti 1:8 But we know that the law is good, if a man use it lawfully;
1Ti 1:9 Knowing this, that the law is not made for a righteous man, but for the lawless and disobedient, for the ungodly and for sinners, for unholy and profane, for murderers of fathers and murderers of mothers, for manslayers,
1Ti 1:10 For whoremongers, for them that defile themselves with mankind, for menstealers, for liars, for perjured persons, and if there be any other thing that is contrary to sound doctrine;
1Ti 1:11 According to the glorious gospel of the blessed God, which was committed to my trust.

The Scriptures were not written for those who already think they know it all. Nobody can teach these people!
The Scriptures were not written for those who want to do it their own way. This what Elvis said and the theme of humanism!
The Scriptures were not written for those so full of pride, who think they are much better than all others. Pride was the downfall of Lucifer (Satan).

The Scriptures were written for those who know they are sinners in need of a Savior!

False teachers will always put pride and self-righteousness above the Word of God!

False teachers would say, to be saved required you to give yourselves to Christ, but also you needed to add to this the obedience of Judaism to be truly saved!

False teachers will always reject that salvation can come only by the free gift of the “Grace” of God alone!

False teachers will confuse everyone on the gifts of God!

The law is good if it is used properly! The law teaches us what God considers to be sin. There are 613 Jewish laws and not just those 10 commandments.

Those laws can only teach us how far short we come when compared to the goodness of God which was in the Lord Jesus Christ!

False teachers will also teach that God had a set of scales to weigh our goodness against the things we do that are bad and whichever one came out on top would determine if you went to Heaven or to Hell.

But God says we have no goodness, “which is righteousness” to put on our good side.

Isa_64:6 But we are all as an unclean thing, and “all our righteousnesses are as filthy rags”; and we all do fade as a leaf; and our iniquities, like the wind, have taken us away.

There is nothing wrong with being good, but no amount of goodness will get you saved!

God is a perfect God and we cannot come face to face with God until we are also perfect!

God gave all those laws to show all of us, that we had a great need of a Savior!

The Law was given to all those who are lawless and disobedient.
The law was given to the ungodly and sinners.
The law was given to those who are unholy and profane.
The law was given to those murderers who are so low that they would kill their own families.
The law was given to all those who commit fornication, and adultery, and homosexuals and all immoral people.
The law was given to all those who trade in slavery, and kidnappers.
The law was given to all liars and those who commit perjury.
The law was given to anything else that goes against the truth of the Word of God.

There is no one left out of this list because we are all sinners!

Rom 3:23 For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God;

False teachers just do not understand the truth of God or they will reject the truth of God!

God has made a way for every human being upon this earth to join Him in Heaven and that way is by the “Gospel” of the Lord Jesus Christ!

We must never be deceived. It is the truth of the “Gospel” that is the only way to become perfect enough to join God in Heaven!

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:

The Gospel is described as “glorious”.
The Gospel is described as “everlasting”.
The “gospel” is the unchanging, perfect, Word of God!

All those who come to know the Lord Jesus Christ in a personal relationship, will tell you how great it is to know the truth of Jehovah, the saving God!

*****1Ti 1:12 And I thank Christ Jesus our Lord, who hath enabled me, for that he counted me faithful, putting me into the ministry;
1Ti 1:13 Who was before a blasphemer, and a persecutor, and injurious: but I obtained mercy, because I did it ignorantly in unbelief.

There are no true ministers of the “Gospel” unless they are called by Christ Himself!
There are no true ministers unless they came by “faith”, trusting the Lord!

It was Jesus Christ who enabled Paul to teach the truth of the “Gospel”.

Enabled means to strengthen and give power to.

The power of Paul’s ministry came from the Lord Jesus Christ.
The power of every minister of the “Gospel” comes by the Lord Jesus Christ!
The power to continue in the ministry of the “Gospel” comes by the Holy Spirit who is the only path to the Lord Jesus Christ!

Joh 15:15 Henceforth I call you not servants; for the servant knoweth not what his lord doeth: but I have called you friends; for all things that I have heard of my Father I have made known unto you.
Joh 15:16 Ye have not chosen me, but I have chosen you, and ordained you, that ye should go and bring forth fruit, and that your fruit should remain: that whatsoever ye shall ask of the Father in my name, he may give it you.

There can be no self-made ministers of the “Gospel” of Jesus Christ!

Those that call themselves, can only serve to a humanistic false religion who will lead people into a false sense of security!

It is Jesus Christ who found Paul to be trustworthy, to teach the wonderful Word of God.

It is Jesus Christ who finds any of us to be trustworthy, to teach the truth of the Word of God!

If you preach or teach the truth of the Word of God, God knows those who are faithful to Him!

*****1Ti 1:14 And the grace of our Lord was exceeding abundant with faith and love which is in Christ Jesus.

Paul had spent some time trying to destroy the Church but by the “Grace”, he had been forgiven.

Paul had committed blasphemy, hating even the name of Jesus Christ.
Paul was the persecutor who first set out to wipe the name of Jesus off the face of this earth.
Paul was injurious to destroy the rights of others who sought the Lord Jesus to be saved.

By God’s “Grace”, Paul was forgiven of all these things but all these things continue by others of the world today and yes, they can also be forgiven.

Paul thought he knew God and that Judaism was the true path to glorify God, but he had been wrong.

Judaism is not the way.
Islam is not the way.
Jehovah’s Witness is not the way.
Mormanism is not the way.
Religion means death.

Christianity is life and leads to eternal life because Jesus Christ is the God of the Bible and has all the authority of God because He is God!

The Lord Jesus poured out His “Grace” onto the Apostle Paul and Paul was gloriously forgiven of all his sin!

None of us are worthy of the “Grace” of God and we can thank God for giving us the Apostle Paul who remained faithful all his days.

God’s “Grace” is sufficient to cover any sin but one and that is the sin of not believeing that The Lord Jesus Christ is the God of the Bible!

We must remain faithful to the Gospel all our days to be of any use to Him!

In fact, when we remain faithful to the Lord, this is when He will pour out blessing after blessing to us all our days!

*****1Ti 1:15 This is a faithful saying, and worthy of all acceptation, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners; of whom I am chief.
1Ti 1:16 Howbeit for this cause I obtained mercy, that in me first Jesus Christ might shew forth all longsuffering, for a pattern to them which should hereafter believe on him to life everlasting.

Why did the Lord Jesus come to this world? Jesus Christ left Heaven to come to this world to save sinners!

**The Apostle Paul is the greatest of examples of just how far God will go to save a worthless sinner!

It is an indisputable fact, that even the worst of sinners can be saved!

Jesus Christ would save the entire human race if they would only believe that His able to do it!

It is still “faith”, not just any faith, but “faith” in the “Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ”!

Luk 19:10 For the Son of man is come to seek and to save that which was lost.

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 Apostle Paul is also the greatest example of God’s “mercy”!

Paul was also chosen to be the pattern of mercy to all those in sin!

It was not easy in that day to bring the “Gospel” to the gentile nations.

The truth of Paul was that if God could save Paul, then God could save anyone!

Joh 3:15 That whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have eternal life.
Joh 3:16 For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.
Joh 3:17 For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.

**The Apostle Paul is our greatest proof of God’s “mercy”!

*****1Ti 1:17 Now unto the King eternal, immortal, invisible, the only wise God, be honour and glory for ever and ever. Amen.

When we know of the glorious salvation that Jesus Christ has given us, we to should break forth into praise!

**Our Savior is the unchanging King of all the ages.

Psa 145:13 Thy kingdom is an everlasting kingdom, and thy dominion endureth throughout all generations.

**Our Savior is Immortal, which means He is incorruptible, He cannot age, He cannot deteriorate, He cannot decay within His being. He absolutely cannot die! He is immortal!

Mat 25:34 Then shall the King say unto them on his right hand, Come, ye blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world:

**Our Savior is invisible! He cannot be seen by people with physical eyes in this physical dimension!

He came, He took all our sin to the lower part of the earth, and He ascended back to His throne!

Joh 1:18 No man hath seen God at any time; the only begotten Son, which is in the bosom of the Father, he hath declared him.

**Our Savior is the only wise God. “Yes Jesus Christ is the God of the Bible” the stumbling block of this world!

Jud 1:25 To the only wise God our Saviour, be glory and majesty, dominion and power, both now and ever. Amen.

Eph 3:20 Now unto him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that worketh in us,
Eph 3:21 Unto him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus throughout all ages, world without end. Amen.

**Our Savior is the only living and true God who can interact with this world!

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:
1Pe 2:10 Which in time past were not a people, but are now the people of God: which had not obtained mercy, but now have obtained mercy.

Timothy probably had not reached the age of 30 at this time and he needed to be encouraged to become the pastor at Ephesus.

*****1Ti 1:18 This charge I commit unto thee, son Timothy, according to the prophecies which went before on thee, that thou by them mightest war a good warfare;
1Ti 1:19 Holding faith, and a good conscience; which some having put away concerning faith have made shipwreck:
1Ti 1:20 Of whom is Hymenaeus and Alexander; whom I have delivered unto Satan, that they may learn not to blaspheme.

Each and every believer is called to be in the army of God, but the calling of the Pastor is to do more!

Many a believer fail to realize, that as Christians we are in a great battle, in fact a war and our job is to fight a good fight.

Paul would have had Timothy to be like himself while he was also like Jesus.

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.

Timothy was sure he was called of God into the ministry and it was now time for him to begin his ministry.

Every Pastor must be called of God. To be a Pastor is not just another profession as many see it today. It is never another place just to make a living.

Just like every new Pastor, Timothy would find himself right in the middle of spiritual warfare. He had witnessed these many times already, but the Apostle Paul and other Elders had taken charge, but now he would be on his own but not forsaken by the Lord.

The truth is when a person is called into the ministry by the Holy Spirit, he or she must not reject the call. They must jump right into the battle and fight a good warfare.

To reject the call of God is to live in misery!

Sometimes we must be stirred up to get into the battle and Paul was doing this to Timothy here in this passage.

Each ministry is a sacred trust, a sacred commitment to the Lord!

The war we fight, is for the minds and the souls of the lost, some even being of our own family. We must jump right into this conflict if we are called of God.

The Pastor, the highest calling, is God’s instrument to not only be a fisherman of men but, also God’s instrument to teach and make other disciples.

Each Pastor must be faithful to fight a good warfare!

The greatest weapon of defense is the shield of “faith”.

Good conscience is that conviction that our course of conduct is right, and it is accompanied by an obligation to the truth of God.

Conscience is our sense of right and wrong!

Conscience does not come by training, because each of us are born with a sense of right and wrong.

Rom 2:14 For when the Gentiles, which have not the law, do by nature the things contained in the law, these, having not the law, are a law unto themselves:
Rom 2:15 Which shew the work of the law written in their hearts, their conscience also bearing witness, and their thoughts the mean while accusing or else excusing one another;)

Though conscience does not come by training or education, it must still be developed and matured!

A good and healthy conscience comes by living a godly and righteous life before our Savior!

It is Holy Ghost conviction, that works with our conscience for us to discern right and wrong!

It is that same conscience, under conviction of the Holy Spirit, that convicts us of sin.

Rom 9:1 I say the truth in Christ, I lie not, my conscience also bearing me witness in the Holy Ghost,
Rom 9:2 That I have great heaviness and continual sorrow in my heart.

The word conscience is used 31 times in the New Testament.

There is the good conscience.
There is the conscience void of offense.
There is the weak conscience.
There is the pure conscience.
There is the seared conscience of which we see more of today.
There is the defiled conscience which has been around since the sin of Adam.
There is the evil conscience.

And the most frightening thing we can do with our conscience, is to put it away.

If we put away our conscience concerning our faith, we will be shipwrecked.

Shipwrecked means our faith is destroyed!

Hymenaeus put away his conscience by denying the true doctrine of the resurrection of Jesus Christ.

Alexander the coppersmith also rejected the truth of God.

Paul delivered them to Satan which means:

1) They were excommunicated from the Church and left out in the world with the hope that they would come to the truth of the “Gospel” of the Lord Jesus Christ. (We never read where they made a change)

2) The were given back to the world, which is under the power of Satan.

The church would then pray that some circumstance would happen to them out in the world that they might repent and return to the church and accept the truth of the “Gospel” of the Lord Jesus Christ.

The truth is, it is impossible to commit sin and escape the chastisement of the Lord!

The Lord says we will reap what we sow!

There remains also the Spiritual power that inflicts punishment for sin.

Even modern medicine agrees that misbehavior causes physical, emotional and mental punishment.

And we must always remember that church discipline is put in place, in order that those who receive the discipline may return to Jesus Christ for forgiveness.

1Jn 5:16 If any man see his brother sin a sin which is not unto death, he shall ask, and he shall give him life for them that sin not unto death. There is a sin unto death: I do not say that he shall pray for it.
1Jn 5:17 All unrighteousness is sin: and there is a sin not unto death.

The Lord always knows what is best for His Church!

Amen

Submitting to Jesus Christ

Joy in Complete Submission to Christ

Book of Philippians 1:18-30

My pastor recently preached a sermon on “Doing My Little Part”. Some examples were:

1) The brick walls. A wall of bricks of any size begins with just one brick. If I do what the Lord has called me today then I can be one of those bricks in the salvation plan of God. That would be my ministry!

2) The Bible. The Bible is the most important Book on the face of this earth but the Bible consist of 66 books and each one of those books has in it the Word of God and the same message from start to finish. We need all 66 books to have the complete message of God. Not bits and pieces.

3) The United States is a great nation. Within the United States there are 50 states. Without every state doing its part how can we say we are united but being united is what makes us a great nation. America is more divided now than at any other time in its history. Most people know what truly caused that division (not slavery), yet those lessons are forgotten. It is a fact that a handful of people cannot dictate the actions of the many without division and then failure. Which is the goal of those who finance this division!

Even the Christian Church is divided because some handful of so-called Christian leaders have chosen to say God has become a liberal and abandoned His truth, when God is neither liberal nor conservative, God is just God and He never changes nor will He ever change from the completed Words He has given us. If God changed every season, how could we trust Him. Which again is the goal of those who push this agenda.

As Christians, all have our little part to do in the salvation plan of God!

It is also a fact that no one can face the wiles of the Devil on their own!

As we ended last week’s lesson the Apostle Paul gave us these words:

Php 1:17 But the other of love, “knowing that I am set for the defence of the gospel”.

Paul joined the other 11 Apostles and said, we must defend the “Gospel”, the Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ.

What is the “Gospel”?

1) The Gospel is in fact all 66 Books of the Bible.
2) The “Gospels” are in fact the first 4 Books of the New Testament. (Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John)
3) The “Gospel” is the history of the birth, the life, the works, the death, the resurrection, the ascension, and the doctrines of Jesus Christ!
4) The “Gospel” is the revelation of the “Grace of God”!
5) The “Gospel” is the salvation plan of God, presented from Genesis 1:1 to Revelation 22:21

It is called the Gospel of God. Rom 1:1 (all 66 books)

Rom 1:1 Paul, a servant of Jesus Christ, called to be an apostle, “separated unto the gospel of God”.

It is called the Gospel of Christ. Rom 1:16 (the four Gospels)

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.

It is called the Gospel of salvation. Eph 1:13 (The works of Jesus Christ and the promises of God)

Eph 1:13 In whom ye also trusted, after that ye heard the word of truth, “the gospel of your salvation” in whom also after that ye believed, ye were sealed with that holy Spirit of promise,

The truth is we must never allow the circumstances of this world to come into our lives and prevent us from serving the Lord!

Let’s begin:

*****Php 1:18 What then? notwithstanding, every way, whether in pretence, or in truth, Christ is preached; and I therein do rejoice, yea, and will rejoice.

Paul was in bondage in Rome and he would remain that way for at least two years.

Much of that time was spent chained to a Roman soldier, so Paul could only witness to one man at a time.

We can just imagine that not many Roman guards were easily impressed by anyone such as Paul.

They had one duty and that was to make sure Paul did not escape or it would cause their own death.

We can just imagine how Paul took advantage of this truth because death is a reality for every soldier!

Later Paul was placed under house arrest in his own hired house with no freedom to leave.

Yet even in all these circumstances the “Gospel” was spreading in Rome.

In fact, the talk of the town was the Lord Jesus Christ.

John Bunyan, also in bondage for preaching the “Gospel” said: “I never had in all my life so great an inlet into the Word of God as now. Those Scriptures that I saw nothing in before are made in this place and state to shine upon me. I have seen that here which I am persuaded I shall never in this world be able to express”

In Paul’s case, we know that many who had stayed behind closed doors became bold enough to preach the truth of the “Gospel” more openly.

Paul also expressed a great desire to study all the Scriptures again even after all his years as a missionary.

2Ti_4:13 The cloke that I left at Troas with Carpus, when thou comest, bring with thee, and the books, but especially the parchments.

We also know that there were many who were envious of Paul and used this same boldness for evil saying that Paul was locked up for things other than the “Gospel”.

And of course, just as today, there were also many who rose up in dispute of the “Gospel”!

Paul said whether in pretense or the truth, Jesus Christ was the talk of Rome and Paul could rejoice knowing that even under these circumstances he had continued to do the best he could to further the Gospel of Jesus Christ, allowing Paul great joy under dire circumstances!

One of the greatest acts of God is to take something that was intended for evil and make something good come out of it.

While in Jerusalem, and many other nations, including Rome, there were many trying to stop the spread of the Gospel, God had a better plan!

The only thing that can stop the “Gospel” is when we quit being witnesses for the Lord, when we rebel against the “Great Commission”!

This brings to mind the story of Joseph in the Book of Genesis.

Gen 50:20 But as for you, ye thought evil against me; but God meant it unto good, to bring to pass, as it is this day, to save much people alive.

God has His way of doing these things!

We also know that Paul, by the Holy Spirit gave us most of his epistles while in bondage in Rome.

It is always our job to speak out the “Grace” of God no matter our circumstances.

We must always rely on the “Gospel of Jesus Christ” because it is the only truth that will lead to salvation, which is reconciling ourselves with our Holy God!

We must refuse to be envious of anyone else, as we all have our own part and God rewards according to how we do our own part and God never compares our work with what others do.

The Lord does not require big ministries but they are ok.
The Lord does not require big names.
The Lord does not require a great following or large numbers.
The Lord only requires faithfulness and effort, effort being the greatest key to rewards and not any other thing!

As our world deviates from the Gospel we need to remember the words of the Apostle John:

2Jn 1:7 For many deceivers are entered into the world, who confess not that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh. This is a deceiver and an antichrist.
2Jn 1:8 Look to yourselves, that we lose not those things which we have wrought, but that we receive a full reward.
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.
2Jn 1:10 If there come any unto you, and bring not this doctrine, receive him not into your house, neither bid him God speed:
2Jn 1:11 For he that biddeth him God speed is partaker of his evil deeds.

None of these things are open for dispute nor even discussion. The Word of God is just the truth!

Another thing that happened was that the more the Christians heard of Paul in bondage, the more the prayers for his release.

*****Php 1:19 For I know that this shall turn to my salvation through your prayer, and the supply of the Spirit of Jesus Christ,

Paul had great joy in knowing, that the Lord Jesus Christ was the talk of all Rome.

Paul had great joy in knowing, if deliverance did not come while he was in bondage, it would certainly come when the Lord called him home!

Paul had great joy in knowing, that salvation had come to Rome. It was time for those who heard the Gospel to make that choice that we all must make.

2Co 6:1 We then, as workers together with him, beseech you also that ye receive not the grace of God in vain.
2Co 6:2 (For he saith, I have heard thee in a time accepted, and in the day of salvation have I succoured thee: behold, now is the accepted time; behold, now is the day of salvation.)
2Co 6:3 Giving no offence in any thing, that the ministry be not blamed:

What is the truth of Paul that should also be true to every “Born Again” child of God?

2Ti 2:10 Therefore I endure all things for the elect’s sakes, that they may also obtain the salvation which is in Christ Jesus with eternal glory.

If we cannot love the lost, we will never try hard enough for their salvation! We cannot save them but we can lead them to the One who can!

We always seem to concentrate on those who speak the loudest against the Word of God, when we need to concentrate on those who have never heard the Word of God and those who need another opportunity.

We can also realize what Paul realized, God will save us and deliver us even from criticism and opposition.

1) Because of the prayers of those who support the truth of God. (This Philippian Church would begin to pray just as soon as they received this epistle)
2) Because it is the job of the Holy Spirit to delivers us from all evil or supply all our needs as we go through such things!

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.
Luk_11:4 And forgive us our sins; for we also forgive every one that is indebted to us. And lead us not into temptation; but deliver us from evil.

We seem to forget these things.

By the way for those nay-sayers, the Spirit of Jesus Christ is the same Holy Spirit, who is the Same Holy Ghost, who is the Spirit of God!

Many of God’s children shudder in fright at the Holy Ghost but He has the same love of God, because He is God!

It is the Holy Ghost who was given to us “to share with us the deep things of God”

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.
1Co 2:10 But God hath revealed them unto us by his Spirit: for the Spirit searcheth all things, yea, the deep things of God.

We seem to forget these things.

What should be the goal of every believer? To be like Christ! “This is being a Christian”

To be saved is one thing.
To be Christian is to be saved with Jesus Christ magnified in our own bodies!

*****Php 1:20 According to my earnest expectation and my hope, that in nothing I shall be ashamed, but that with all boldness, as always, so now also Christ shall be magnified in my body, whether it be by life, or by death.

To be Christian is to allow Jesus Christ to be magnified in our own bodies!

When will the rapture take place and we join our Savior while we live?

Rom 8:19 For the earnest expectation of the creature “waiteth for the manifestation of the sons of God”.

When will we join our Savior if we die before the rapture of the Church?

2Co_5:6 Therefore we are always confident, knowing that, whilst we are at home in the body, we are absent from the Lord:
2Co_5:8 We are confident, I say, and willing rather to be absent from the body, and to be present with the Lord.

We can only be bold in Christ when we are filled the Holy Spirit!

Joh_14:16 And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever;

Once saved we are endowed with the Holy Spirit who will never leave us for any reason.

BUT: 1) We can grieve the Holy Spirit. (We can offend the Holy Spirit)

Eph_4:30 And grieve not the holy Spirit of God, whereby ye are sealed unto the day of redemption.

2) We can “Quench” the Holy Spirit. (Put out His flame for the work of the Lord)

1Th 5:19 Quench not the Spirit.

3) We can resist the Holy Spirit. (Stand against, or oppose Him and the ways of the Lord)(Normally before salvation)

Act 7:51 Ye stiffnecked and uncircumcised in heart and ears, ye do always resist the Holy Ghost: as your fathers did, so do ye.

Just as a gas tank that needs a refill, though the Holy Spirit will never leave us, we need to pray for a refilling of the Holy Spirit at least every day but maybe before each and every decision we make!

The 12 Apostles of the Lord Jesus Christ (includes Paul) all had great powers but none of those powers could be used on themselves.

They had great knowledge of many, many things of God, but they did not know all things, especially things concerning themselves!

They had to rely on the Holy Spirit and so it is with each and every Christian! (this will not ever change)

We would be fools to ever be ashamed of the “Gospel”!

We are fools if we do not follow the lead of the Holy Spirit in our lives and be available to the Lord always!

Paul had to exercise his “faith” and patience just as much as any of us do!

What is hope? The desire of some good with a great expectation of obtaining it!

We can have hope in the promises of God because we have God’s guarantee that we will obtain all His promises!

Paul was a natural born leader trained to rule in Judaism and the Supreme Court of Israel, yet the Lord made Paul a humble servant of the Word of God to the people of God.

Paul was nothing until the Lord Jesus Christ was magnified in his body and guess what neither are we!

We are nothings until the Lord makes a something out of a nothing! It’s called the act of “Creation”. The Lord Jesus said we must be “Born Again” to be able to see the New Heaven!

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.

We must live Christ and when this is true, then death brings eternal riches beyond our imagination! (this does not mean money)

*****Php 1:21 For to me to live is Christ, and to die is gain.
Php 1:22 But if I live in the flesh, this is the fruit of my labour: yet what I shall choose I wot not.

The Apostle lived and breathed the Lord Jesus Christ. (a great example for us all)

When we can travel in peace on this earth, we can cross over to the other side realizing things will actually be much, much better! (Joy)

When we can experience never ending life today and recognize that we actually have no clue of just how wonderful life with the Lord can be, we can certainly have that desire to be with the Lord. (Joy)

Death to the Christian is just saying good bye cruel world and hello to the never-ending day of glory! (Joy)

When we present our bodies as a living sacrifice to the Lord, the Lord will present each Christian to His Father as a new husband would present his perfect wife to his own farther. (Joy)

When we yield our bodies, it means all our bodies.

Jesus said:

Mat 22:37 Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind.
Mat 22:38 This is the first and great commandment.

We must give our whole body.
We must give all our mind.
We must give all our heart.
We must give all our soul.

Our Christian life can be good but our Heavenly life will be much more better!

Jesus Christ is our source of existence and our source of life!

Whatever death brings to the Christian we still know that Jesus Christ will be the Lord of it!

1Co 15:41 There is one glory of the sun, and another glory of the moon, and another glory of the stars: for one star differeth from another star in glory.
1Co 15:42 So also is the resurrection of the dead. It is sown in corruption; it is raised in incorruption:
1Co 15:43 It is sown in dishonour; it is raised in glory: it is sown in weakness; it is raised in power:
1Co 15:44 It is sown a natural body; it is raised a spiritual body. There is a natural body, and there is a spiritual body.

Jesus Christ gave every breathing moment of His life to the Church surely, we can give Him all we have of our own bodies!

We cannot base our life on the things of this earth that are aging and will one day pass away, as if they had never existed!

It is only though our Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ that we can be a part of that world where nothing can ever age and nothing can ever pass away.

It would be easy to say well Lord just take me on home and He would have done that when He saved us but there still some things that need to be done before we go home to Heaven.

*****Php 1:23 For I am in a strait betwixt two, having a desire to depart, and to be with Christ; which is far better:
Php 1:24 Nevertheless to abide in the flesh is more needful for you.

Life in the glory world with the Lord Jesus Christ will be so much better that it is certainly hard to concentrate on this world but if we are part of the army of God and have lost family and friends and neighbors it could be much better for them if we stay here on this earth for a while longer!

We cannot save any of them but we certainly be available to tell them about the Lord when that opportunity presents itself!

Remember Stephen, that even while he was being stoned to death and realizing that he would die, he was still bold to deliver the message of God because he knew his death “would really be life”.

Act 7:59 And they stoned Stephen, calling upon God, and saying, Lord Jesus, receive my spirit.
Act 7:60 And he kneeled down, and cried with a loud voice, Lord, lay not this sin to their charge. And when he had said this, he fell asleep.

We should also notice, his flesh was not dead when his breath left his body, “his flesh was dead when his spirit left his body”. (this why people can be revived)

Paul’s desire to be a soul winner was greater than his desire to die so that he could be with the Lord but only because we need to always leave death in the hands of the Lord!

Personally, I am so glad that Paul chose to give more time to the Church and the “Gospel”.

Paul was very confident that this was the right choice! This must be the choice that we make!

*****Php 1:25 And having this confidence, I know that I shall abide and continue with you all for your furtherance and joy of faith;
Php 1:26 That your rejoicing may be more abundant in Jesus Christ for me by my coming to you again.

Confidence comes from our “Faith”!

The chosen Apostles of God were given many powers to use in their ministry but they could not use them on themselves!

The Apostles could not see their own future no better than we can ourselves!

Act 20:22 And now, behold, I go bound in the spirit unto Jerusalem, not knowing the things that shall befall me there:

As Christians if we are involved in a ministry that God has called us into, we can be sure that we are safe in the arms of God until our part of that ministry is complete. God may take us home after that. God may give us another ministry after that. God may use us in some other way. Only we can put ourselves on a shelf!

We should never desire to be put on a shelf awaiting the outcome of things that we know are coming, according to the Word of God!

Paul had a desire to be with the Lord, I do too and I am sure that would include most of us that know the Lord but we have a purpose and now is the time for that purpose!

It is all our job to take the “Gospel” as far as we can!

There is no greater joy than being involved in the “Gospel” of the Lord Jesus Christ!

We can depart this world and be with Christ. This is His promise!

We can remain in this world and be with Christ which is not as good but, Christ will still be with us always!

We must love the Lord and desire to be with Him, absolutely.

We must also love the Lord enough to do what He has ask us to do, not out of duty but out of love! (holding forth the Word of God)

Christ was willing to lay all things aside in Heaven, including His Majesty to put of the flesh of a human to die in place of our sin.

Surely, we can be willing enough to lay things aside long enough to take His message to the world beginning in our own home and our own family.

We can tell that Paul loved to see and be around other Christians.

When you are around a bunch of Christians, you may hear about families, you may hear about this evil world but the one thing that is always consistent you will hear that the answer to every problem is Jesus Christ!

*****Php 1:27 Only let your conversation be as it becometh the gospel of Christ: that whether I come and see you, or else be absent, I may hear of your affairs, that ye stand fast in one spirit, with one mind striving together for the faith of the gospel;

The best way to start a conversation with another Christian is the way we lead our lives.

Are we living like we are a citizen of Heaven? We are just pilgrims passing through this world but while we are here we are to be “ambassadors” for Jesus Christ!

While we remain in this earth we will remain in the view of the public, especially those who have never heard of Christ Jesus and even those who have rejected Him.

We owe it to our Lord to be noticed as a Christian. To be a Christian is never to be a secret lifestyle!

We must remain in a group and stand fast in the Lord! Our King is coming soon to put things in the right place instead of this upside-down world we live in now!

What is wrong with the Church today? There are so many unethical doctrines that have been substituted for the Word of God, people no longer know the truth.

Our young people are enticed into the place of worship but they are then never given the truth and they soon believe the “Gospel” is just a lie.

Until foolish people begin to consider the Word of God themselves, they will always allow those who would twist the truth into some false thing!

We need to hear of the affairs of every house of worship to see if they follow the ways of Christ Jesus.

Today the name Jesus Christ is not mentioned in some places of so-called worship because it may offend someone. (You got to be kidding me)

Those that are offended by Jesus Christ in this “Day of “Grace” have already rejected the only means of salvation!

Sad but also true!

When we live according to the Word of God (rightly divided) we will easily stand out in this evil world!

When we strive to make this world a better place, we will meet with opposition from every side but that means we try harder and never give up.

After all who can stop the Lord when He refuses to be stopped!

As far as the laws of this land, we are to serve the Lord and the laws of Heaven. If the laws of this land survive the test of the Word of God, then we must abide, if they do not, we must adhere to the law of God!

We must do everything we can to remain at peace with this world that will never know true peace.

Our job is to grow in “Grace” in our daily walk with the Lord.

This is the job of the individual but also the entire congregation of the Church.

We must remain in oneness in the love and the service of Jesus Christ.

People may see us to be strange and that is great because we are never to resemble this world!

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.

When we do this, we will:

1) talk right
2) dress right
3) live and conduct ourselves right
4) we will proudly declare to be a Christian
5) we will carry out the affairs of Heaven without hesitation
6) we will separate ourselves from those who call this world their true home

And we must never be terrified by the evil things we see or hear in this world!

*****Php 1:28 And in nothing terrified by your adversaries: which is to them an evident token of perdition, but to you of salvation, and that of God.

We must never be ashamed of the “Gospel”!

To be honest to be timid in the work of the Lord shows a lack of “faith”!

It means we may not trust the Lord enough.

When we do not trust the Lord, we will become the prey of those in this world!

Jas 3:13 Who is a wise man and endued with knowledge among you? let him shew out of a good conversation his works with meekness of wisdom.

Jas 3:17 But the wisdom that is from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, and easy to be intreated, full of mercy and good fruits, without partiality, and without hypocrisy.
Jas 3:18 And the fruit of righteousness is sown in peace of them that make peace.

We must remember if we are reproached for the work of the Lord then we are doing something right!

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.

When we have the fear of the Lord, there is nothing upon this earth that can bring a greater fear.

When we honor the “Gospel” and the one who holds the “Gospel” then we will strive to worthy of the “Gospel”!

When we are timid it is possible we are dishonoring the “Gospel”!

When we are timid we find it hard to stand firm in the “Gospel”!

When we are timid, the only safe place is within a body of believers who are not timid!

It is only as a team that we can overcome the evil of this world and we simply cannot quit and walk off the field!

Courage and fearlessness should be the traits of the Christian.

Many display Christ as a wimp. Jesus Christ was the adopted son of a carpenter and if you noticed the homes of that day, not many were not made from wood. Jesus Christ was a real man!

The truth of all those who persecute Christians is that they are sealing their own doom!

Christian persecution is a sign that the Christian way is real and true!

Christian persecution is to be a privilege and not a terror!

It should be a privilege to suffer for the name of Jesus Christ!

We are never to deny our Lord under any circumstance!

We are to face the same conflict as Paul.

We know it would be far better to be with the Lord but for those in our own family and those we love it may be better if we remain here a while longer.

*****Php 1:30 Having the same conflict which ye saw in me, and now hear to be in me.

We must remember Paul is teaching the Church by the Holy Spirit.

The Power of the Church lies in the Holy Spirit and the strength of the Church lies in the unity of the actions of the Church.

Satan has been at his job for a long time and no one has ever come up with a plan to defeat him except Jesus Christ, who got this plan from His Father in Heaven.

There is nothing that anyone can do that can add to the destruction of Satan beyond the Word of God.

We must surely contend for the faith!

Jud_1:3 Beloved, when I gave all diligence to write unto you of the common salvation, it was needful for me to write unto you, and exhort you that ye should earnestly contend for the faith which was once delivered unto the saints.

To contend is to fight, to strive, to use great effort in defense of the “Gospel of Jesus Christ”.

We can take this to mean a lot of things but it is best to accept it as it is written!

The Apostle Paul never backed down from his defense of the “Gospel” and he suffered greatly for it because in many cases he stood alone.

No matter what the rest of the world is doing to stop their own persecution and giving in to the terror and the government, the safe side is still the “Gospel” of Jesus Christ.

After all, the only one I have ever known to rise from the dead and enter the glory land is the Lord Jesus Christ. It is best to see what He did and follow Him all the way to “Glory”!

Remember our strength is not in numbers, our strength is in unity, one mind for Christ Jesus!

Jas_4:7 Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.

To submit is to yield to the power and the authority of our Savior and our Redeemer!

Amen

We Can Be Certain That Christ Arose

The Certainty of Christ Resurrection

Book of Luke 24:1-35

The truth is, the atonement of Jesus Christ did not end with His death. The atonement of Jesus Christ could not end until His resurrection.

Rom 1:4 And declared to be the Son of God with power, according to the spirit of holiness, by the resurrection from the dead:

When John and Peter raced to the tomb of Jesus they saw grave clothes lying in the tomb still retaining their shape as though the body of Jesus was still in them but He was not there.

They realized that only one thing could have happened. The body of Jesus had passed through His burial wrapping and Jesus had risen from the grave just as He had said He would do.

It is John who later writes how Jesus had passed through the walls or the physical doors in that upper room in His resurrected body.

Joh 20:19 Then the same day at evening, being the first day of the week, when the doors were shut where the disciples were assembled for fear of the Jews, came Jesus and stood in the midst, and saith unto them, Peace be unto you.

Joh 20:26 And after eight days again his disciples were within, and Thomas with them: then came Jesus, the doors being shut, and stood in the midst, and said, Peace be unto you.

It was John who verified the reality of a bodily resurrection of Jesus Christ our Lord and in His final work, He had overcome death to show us all what true life is all about!

Without the resurrection of Jesus Christ what hope would we have of eternal life?

Joh 11:25 Jesus said unto her, I am the resurrection, and the life: he that believeth in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live:
Joh 11:26 And whosoever liveth and believeth in me shall never die. Believest thou this?

Jesus Christ openly displayed this truth for all the world to see!

It must be clear to us all discovering that empty tomb was the greatest discovery in human history.

The facts remain, that many people either have not heard of the resurrection or they simply refuse to accept that Christ Jesus arose from that grave having defeated death.

Every human being must discover this fact for themselves in order to be saved from the wrath of God!

It’s called “Faith” and that faith in the Word of God and His promises.

*****Luk 24:1 Now upon the first day of the week, very early in the morning, they came unto the sepulchre, bringing the spices which they had prepared, and certain others with them.

This first day of the week would have been on Sunday and would have begun at 6 PM the previous Sabbath evening.

This was the day after the Jewish Sabbath and the same day chosen by the early church and the modern day church to gather together to worship the Lord, the Apostle John called it the Lord’s Day.

We are to worship the Lord everyday but the Lord’s Day should always be special!

The Lord’s day should remind us all of the “Resurrection” of the Lord.

After all, Jesus Christ is the only One who said He would come back from the dead and then proved it by doing it!

That empty tomb that morning was the greatest discovery in all of human history and there is no other way to look at it.

The truth is, Jesus arose before the dawn of that day because He had made a promise to another man on a cross and we know that God will always keep His promises.

Luk 23:43 And Jesus said unto him, Verily I say unto thee, To day shalt thou be with me in paradise.

The resurrection of Jesus Christ was His triumph over death to prove to us all that we could also triumph over death if we would place our “Faith” in the work that He did at the Cross.

Death reigns no more in the life of the believer!

The rule of death hanging over our heads has been broken forever!

1Co 15:55 O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory?
1Co 15:56 The sting of death is sin; and the strength of sin is the law.
1Co 15:57 But thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.

The laws of the Sabbath and it’s observances no longer had any authority over the Lord nor His New Testament Church.

The New Covenant was in place for the Church!

Mat 26:28 For this is my blood of the new testament, which is shed for many for the remission of sins.

Because of “Resurrection Power” every believer is now dead to the law but open to the laws of Christ.

Rom 7:4 Wherefore, my brethren, ye also are become dead to the law by the body of Christ; that ye should be married to another, even to him who is raised from the dead, that we should bring forth fruit unto God.
Rom 7:5 For when we were in the flesh, the motions of sins, which were by the law, did work in our members to bring forth fruit unto death.
Rom 7:6 But now we are delivered from the law, that being dead wherein we were held; that we should serve in newness of spirit, and not in the oldness of the letter.

Those who first witnessed that empty tomb are a strong evidence of this truth because they had also witnessed His death.

They knew He was dead. They knew He had been buried in a borrowed tomb. They had no question in their mind about His death because they had been eyewitnesses to all these things.

If it had been a stranger who found this empty tomb, it could have made all these things irrelevant and no one would have ever trusted in the resurrection.

Further proof is the fact that they had purchased spices to anoint the body of Christ in a more proper Jewish way as it had only been hastily done before.

They knew Jesus had died.

They truly cared for the Lord.

They wanted to take care of the body of Jesus just as they would have for any family member who had died.

They were also obedient to the Law because they had strictly obeyed the law of the Sabbath.

They had refused to break the Sabbath even though they certainly wanted to take care of the Lord.

They certainly would not have lied about any of these things and they had no cause to!

*****Luk 24:2 And they found the stone rolled away from the sepulchre.

On the way to the grave they had discussed how they could ever roll the stone that had closed off the tomb from thieves, so we can just imagine that it was a great stone.

Mar 16:3 And they said among themselves, Who shall roll us away the stone from the door of the sepulchre?
Mar 16:4 And when they looked, they saw that the stone was rolled away: for it was very great.

They were perplex at what they saw, the stone was not where it had been placed as they had also witnessed.

We now know that the physically resurrected body of Jesus was was not bound by the physical laws of this earth!

Jesus did not resurrect as a spirit but His body was now obedient to the Heavenly Laws and this world we know of, had no control over Him!

So twice already we have had a glimpse of a “Glorified Body”!

*****Luk 24:3 And they entered in, and found not the body of the Lord Jesus.

There was no body in that tomb.

Oh, the folded napkin was there, to serve it’s own purpose.

The wrappings that had been placed around the body of Jesus were there, still holding to the shape of the body but his body was not within those wrappings.

The body of the Lord Jesus Christ was not inside that tomb anywhere!

They were then persuaded that what Jesus had said that He would do, He had actually done!

Rom 4:21 And being fully persuaded that, what he had promised, he was able also to perform.

We must believe that God means what He says and He also says what He means!

2Ti 1:12 For the which cause I also suffer these things: nevertheless I am not ashamed: for I know whom I have believed, and am persuaded that he is able to keep that which I have committed unto him against that day.

And if further proof was needed God also provided His own witnesses.

*****Luk 24:4 And it came to pass, as they were much perplexed thereabout, behold, two men stood by them in shining garments:
Luk 24:5 And as they were afraid, and bowed down their faces to the earth, they said unto them, Why seek ye the living among the dead?
Luk 24:6 He is not here, but is risen: remember how he spake unto you when he was yet in Galilee,
Luk 24:7 Saying, The Son of man must be delivered into the hands of sinful men, and be crucified, and the third day rise again.
Luk 24:8 And they remembered his words,

We should clearly understand that stone was not rolled back because Jesus could not have escaped without that being done.

That stone was rolled back so these ladies could enter that Garden Tomb.

AND, There was no doubt that these were angels:

Mat 28:2 And, behold, there was a great earthquake: for the angel of the Lord descended from heaven, and came and rolled back the stone from the door, and sat upon it.
Mat 28:3 His countenance was like lightning, and his raiment white as snow:

These women fell down in reverence but they fell down more in fear.

But these angels only had one question which really meant, “Why Did You Not Believe The Words Of Jesus”

We are fools not to believe the Word of God!

The world is full of people who honor truly dead men, who they believe to be their savior.

How can anyone honor a dead man in that way, as they certainly could not save themselves, so what power could they have over death.

I worship a Living Savior!

I worship a Living God who has power over death, the grave, and in fact over all things!

All these that worship a dead savior have no hope for any life after this life they live now!

Eph 2:12 That at that time ye were without Christ, being aliens from the commonwealth of Israel, and strangers from the covenants of promise, having no hope, and without God in the world:

To be without God, is to live all your life in the grip of death!

These angels said He is not here, because He has risen!

That evidence was very clear. Jesus was not in that tomb!

Those angels reminded these ladies that Jesus had done exactly what He said He would do.

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.

Joh 2:19 Jesus answered and said unto them, Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up.

They had never accepted these words of Jesus as being true!

But now they were convicted by their own thoughts.

All the followers of Jesus had been confused about these things Jesus had said but they now realized that they had been wrong.

We should all remember these simple words of Jesus:

Mat 19:26 But Jesus beheld them, and said unto them, With men this is impossible; but with God all things are possible.

We serve the God who has the power to do as He wishes to do at any moment!

There are some places we just will never find our Lord!

We will never find Him dead and in some grave!

We will never find Him in man’s law!

We will never find Him in human nature!

We will never find Him in philosophy!

Since our Lord is alive and cannot die, He certainly cannot be found among the dead!

Even though some Christians are worldly, you will never find Christ Jesus to be worldly!

Heb 13:8 Jesus Christ the same yesterday, and to day, and for ever.

What we see in the Scriptures about the Lord will always hold true!

The modern day Christ is the same One who is written about by the New Testament writers!

These ladies who now knew the truth then rushed to tell the 11 remaining disciples what they had seen.

*****Luk 24:9 And returned from the sepulchre, and told all these things unto the eleven, and to all the rest.
Luk 24:10 It was Mary Magdalene, and Joanna, and Mary the mother of James, and other women that were with them, which told these things unto the apostles.
Luk 24:11 And their words seemed to them as idle tales, and they believed them not.

It seems amazing that these men who had spent so much time with the Lord and had heard the words that He had said, simply refused to believe these ladies who now knew the truth.

To these 11 men these things just seem to be too astonishing to be true and had to be ridiculous and wild imaginations.

Mat 28:8 And they departed quickly from the sepulchre with fear and great joy; and did run to bring his disciples word.

It would have been hard to miss the excitement these ladies had when they were trying to convince these men of the truth and them so full of doubt.

They had a lot to tell.

The stone was rolled away, the body of Jesus was not in those grave clothes that were still laying there.

They had seen the angels and the angels had told them many things.

These 11 men really had no excuse to not believe, these were the very things that Jesus had said He would do.

Mary Magdalene was a true believer not some religious nut.

Joanna had provided finances for the ministry of Jesus and no doubt much of that had provided for the families of these men. She was a sincere Christian.

Mary was the actual mother of James the Less one of these 11 men and a mother would have never lead her son in the wrong way.

And there were other women also.

Salome the mother of James and John.

These men simply thought that the government had done something with the body of Jesus.

The government thought these disciples of Christ had stolen the body but neither of these things could have been true.

This secret could not have been hidden!

The governments persecution proves they did not have the body of Jesus.

The faith of the disciples proves they did not have the body of Jesus.

The family of Jesus became believers so they could not have stolen the body of Jesus.

There was only one alternative, Jesus had done exactly what He said He would do!

There can be no Church if this is not true!

1Co 15:12 Now if Christ be preached that he rose from the dead, how say some among you that there is no resurrection of the dead?
1Co 15:13 But if there be no resurrection of the dead, then is Christ not risen:
1Co 15:14 And if Christ be not risen, then is our preaching vain, and your faith is also vain.
1Co 15:15 Yea, and we are found false witnesses of God; because we have testified of God that he raised up Christ: whom he raised not up, if so be that the dead rise not.
1Co 15:16 For if the dead rise not, then is not Christ raised:
1Co 15:17 And if Christ be not raised, your faith is vain; ye are yet in your sins.

But Peter’s heart was still drawn to the Lord, even though he had failed Him!

*****Luk 24:12 Then arose Peter, and ran unto the sepulchre; and stooping down, he beheld the linen clothes laid by themselves, and departed, wondering in himself at that which was come to pass.

Peter who had denied Jesus three times at His trial and whose heart was broken for what he had done, just could not wrap his head around the things that Jesus had told Him.

BUT, Peter was still drawn to the Lord despite his failures.

When we look down on Peter we need to take a hard look at ourselves in life’s mirror.

Peter arose.

Peter rushed to the tomb.

Peter was ready to believe what Mary and the other ladies had told him.

Peter took a close look at the evidence.

The folded napkin lying by itself. We already know that a folded napkin meant the one who folded it was not finished.

The linen clothes in which Jesus had been wrapped lying undisturbed as the body of Jesus had just passed through them.

It was plain that the body of Jesus had not been carried away or stolen because no one would have taken the time to do these things!

BUT, Peter still could not accept what he saw as many do today.

The truth is, it is very dangerous for us not to understand the Word of God.

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.
2Ti 2:16 But shun profane and vain babblings: for they will increase unto more ungodliness.

Unless the words we read are intended to be symbolic and those places are noted, we need to accept the Word of God just as it is written!

Twisting the Word of God to mean something else is sinful.

Adding to the Word of God is sinful.

Taking away from the Word of God is damnation!

These things lead to unbelief and eternal damnation.

The evidence of the resurrection of Jesus Christ speaks for itself.

That tomb was empty!

The evidence within, revealed that no one could have stolen that body of Jesus.

Peter was so locked up in the impossibility of these things that he just could not believe at this time.

This my friends is where most of the world is today, yet they still believe in so-called gods whose bones are still within the tomb in which they were buried.

Who can figure that one out?

What other proof do we have?

The Apostle Paul wrote these words:

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:
1Co 15:5 And that he was seen of Cephas, then of the twelve:
1Co 15:6 After that, he was seen of above five hundred brethren at once; of whom the greater part remain unto this present, but some are fallen asleep.
1Co 15:7 After that, he was seen of James; then of all the apostles.
1Co 15:8 And last of all he was seen of me also, as of one born out of due time.

But at this time Peter and John departed from that tomb just wondering about these things that had seen and heard.

Next we see how the Lord Jesus deals with those who have lost all hope.

*****Luk 24:13 And, behold, two of them went that same day to a village called Emmaus, which was from Jerusalem about threescore furlongs.
Luk 24:14 And they talked together of all these things which had happened.

The first thing we see is how easily the Lord Jesus can join in communication with us.

And like Jesus has already said, where two or three are gathered He would be there with them.

Mat 18:20 For where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them.

Many have guessed who these two men are but that is not even important or the Word of God would have said.

This was simply a lonely walk by two disciples of the Lord who walked with broken hearts, their world was crushed by the death of our Savior.

This day was the same day that those women had discovered the empty tomb and reported it, so these two disciples had heard all these things.

As they made their way to Emmaus they were very sad to the point of despair.

So as they walked they hardly noticed as a stranger joined with them.

*****Luk 24:15 And it came to pass, that, while they communed together and reasoned, Jesus himself drew near, and went with them.
Luk 24:16 But their eyes were holden that they should not know him.

As these two disciples were walking and discussing all the things that they had heard that morning, Jesus did what He does for everyone of us. “He went with them”

They had been so caught up in their sorrow that they had not noticed Jesus who had joined them in their travel.

Their eyes being “holden” would be similar to not being able to see because of the glare of the Sun.

The truth is, we can become so preoccupied with our own sorrows and distress, that we do not recognize the truth of our Lord:

Heb 13:5 Let your conversation be without covetousness; and be content with such things as ye have: for he hath said, I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee.

Jesus had been walking along with them for a while and they had not noticed Him.

*****Luk 24:17 And he said unto them, What manner of communications are these that ye have one to another, as ye walk, and are sad?

Jesus will always show concern for our troubles and sadness as He said unto them, “why are you so sad”.

The Lord will always ask us “Why are we so sad”.

No matter what happens to God’s people, we are still saved.

The truth is, these two were trying to understand the death, the burial, and the empty tomb of out Lord.

Jesus Christ was the subject of their conversation!

They wanted answers that only God could provide!

*****Luk 24:18 And the one of them, whose name was Cleopas, answering said unto him, Art thou only a stranger in Jerusalem, and hast not known the things which are come to pass there in these days?
Luk 24:19 And he said unto them, What things? And they said unto him, Concerning Jesus of Nazareth, which was a prophet mighty in deed and word before God and all the people:
Luk 24:20 And how the chief priests and our rulers delivered him to be condemned to death, and have crucified him.

Then Jesus ask them “what things” have cause you to be this way?

God will always want us to know exactly what is bothering us.

When we pray to God we need to give Him a good description of what our problems are!

He already knows, He just wants us to see if we know exactly what we are seeking the answers to.

At first this Cleopas attacks, saying “how could anyone in the area not know what had happened in Jerusalem”.

We need to always be aware that when we are full of doubts, that is when the Devil will launch one of his attacks.

It helps to have friends we can discuss these things with. That’s why God wants us to be like a family because we are the family of God.

Cleopas said Jesus, the Great Prophet of Israel had been condemned to death and crucified.

It had not just been the elders of Israel but also the Roman rulers, in a sense the whole world that had done this evil thing.

BUT, this was not what they had expected from Jesus, they had had higher hopes.

*****Luk 24:21 But we trusted that it had been he which should have redeemed Israel: and beside all this, to day is the third day since these things were done.
Luk 24:22 Yea, and certain women also of our company made us astonished, which were early at the sepulchre;
Luk 24:23 And when they found not his body, they came, saying, that they had also seen a vision of angels, which said that he was alive.
Luk 24:24 And certain of them which were with us went to the sepulchre, and found it even so as the women had said: but him they saw not.

You see the biggest disappointment of Cleopas and the disciples. They had expected Jesus the Messiah to over come all these enemies of the people and it had been just the opposite, He had been overcome. He had even promised to return in 3 days and they still believed He had not even done that.

The disciples could only see the end of all their hopes.

When we allow the things of this world to take us down to this level, we need to question our faith!

Jesus had told them to watch, for on the 3 day something dramatic would happen, days are still 24 hours long.

They had expected this to mean that His triumph over Rome would have taken place but they had seen no changes in these things.

Added to all this, they felt that even the body of Jesus had been stolen.

They had heard about the heavy stone that was rolled away, the women could not have done this thing.

They had heard of the empty tomb but could not understand the significance of this.

They had heard about the angels but that seemed too far fetched.

Some had felt that Jesus was alive but how could that be true.

If so, then why had Jesus not been seen.

The things of this world had robbed them of their “faith”!

Jesus Christ wants to know all the things that bother us as we go through this life down to the most minute detail.

And how did Jesus respond?

*****Luk 24:25 Then he said unto them, O fools, and slow of heart to believe all that the prophets have spoken:
Luk 24:26 Ought not Christ to have suffered these things, and to enter into his glory?
Luk 24:27 And beginning at Moses and all the prophets, he expounded unto them in all the scriptures the things concerning himself.

What’s wrong with this world? This world does not take the Word of God serious!

These disciples of Christ Jesus simply did not believe what the prophets had said and they had come up with their own plan of what the Messiah would be and would do.

The greatest sin of all is the sin of unbelief!

The world today refuses to accept the truth of a “risen Savior”.

The sin of unbelief will send them to an eternity in the “Burning Lake of Fire”!

If we have faith in our risen Savior, then we must relinquish the control of our lives to Him and obey and serve Him.

Act 2:36 Therefore let all the house of Israel know assuredly, that God hath made that same Jesus, whom ye have crucified, both Lord and Christ.

What had been the truth of the Scriptures?

As true disciples we are to take the Word of God seriously!

We are to study the Word of God to see what it says and not so much how men interpret what it says.

God says what He means and God means what He says and we need to feel comfortable with this truth!

If we were not capable of understanding the written Word of God, God would have chosen another method to teach us.

If the death of the Messiah and then the Resurrection of the Messiah had not been necessary we can be sure God would have used some other method!

In order for our salvation, these things had to take place.

Jesus had no choice but to obey the will of His Father!

We must accept these things and also realize that we are also to obey the will of our Father who is in Heaven.

In fact to be in the will of our Heavenly Father is to be in the safest place we can be in the world!

The pure truth is, that the plan of God had not been defeated but there was actually a great victory!

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?

When our doubts over come us, then we need to return to the Word of God and begin at the beginning, the Book of Genesis and we will see that the Messiah was promised even from the words of Moses.

The Lord Jesus Christ can be found throughout all the Bible!

Unbelief will ruin our day and also our testimony and break the heart of our Lord, but He will never give up on us because His faith remains steadfast.

1Co 1:8 Who shall also confirm you unto the end, that ye may be blameless in the day of our Lord Jesus Christ.
1Co 1:9 God is faithful, by whom ye were called unto the fellowship of his Son Jesus Christ our Lord.

The Jews lived according to the Pentateuch, the 5 books of Moses so Jesus began from these books and went through the writings of all the prophets and pointed out all the places that concerned the Messiah.

We are expected to believe what the Word of God says!

If we are to slow to believe, then we may listen to what some man says that opposes the Word of God.

We are to believe what the prophets of God say. If we are to slow to believe we may miss the fulfillment of that prophesy.

The Bible plainly states that the Messiah had to die!

The Bible plainly states that the Messiah had to rise again!

The Bible plainly states that the Messiah had no choice!

These things were the will of God and had been God’s plan even before creation began.

AND, God’s plan was a complete success!

Jesus showed these two disciples “all the Scriptures” concerning these things.

We can see that “unbelief” not only destroys our testimony but it will leave us sad, perplexed, and in despair.

We simply cannot symbolize all the Scriptures.

The disciples of Jesus Christ had begun to accept a dead Savior just like the world does, and so many other men today but they had a hard time dealing with a risen Savior and most of the world has that same problem today.

We simply cannot pick and choose what we are going to believe in the Word of God. It is an all or nothing book.

This trip was about 7 miles or as much as 3 hours as they drew close to the village where they were going.

*****Luk 24:28 And they drew nigh unto the village, whither they went: and he made as though he would have gone further.
Luk 24:29 But they constrained him, saying, Abide with us: for it is toward evening, and the day is far spent. And he went in to tarry with them.
Luk 24:30 And it came to pass, as he sat at meat with them, he took bread, and blessed it, and brake, and gave to them.
Luk 24:31 And their eyes were opened, and they knew him; and he vanished out of their sight.

When the truth of the Scriptures open up our eyes then we will always want to hear more.

Jesus wold have gone on further because He will never enter into any house where He is not invited, just as He will never enter into any heart unless He has been invited.

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.

In order to hear the truth, we must invite Jesus into our temple to become a Temple of God!

1Co 3:16 Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you?
1Co 3:17 If any man defile the temple of God, him shall God destroy; for the temple of God is holy, which temple ye are.

There are 9 different occasions recorded in the Gospels where Jesus broke bread with His disciples and then blessed it.

SO, We can see why they remembered this thing but not only that, those hands still bore the scars of the nails that bound Him to the cross.

God opened their eyes to the truth and Jesus vanished out of their sight!

If they had not invited Jesus into their home they would have missed out on this great opportunity.

We miss so very much when we do not accept the Lord when we first come under Holy Ghost conviction. Even when we do later, we have already missed out on so many blessings.

It is a fact that once we are saved, the Word of God will burn within us and our need to tell others about what Jesus has done in our lives will just want to come out.

When we hear the Word of God explained and conviction comes, the only thing lacking is a response on our part.

What is Christian Heartburn?

Jer 20:9 Then I said, I will not make mention of him, nor speak any more in his name. But his word was in mine heart as a burning fire shut up in my bones, and I was weary with forbearing, and I could not stay.

It is a fact that once we are saved the Word of God will burn within us and our need to tell others about what Jesus has done in our lives will just want to come out.

When we sit on our hands and refuse to do the work of the Lord we not only hinder our blessings but someone in this world may have missed their own opportunity to know the Lord.

Quit having Christian heartburn and get busy serving the Lord!

That soul that is won to the Lord is the remedy to Christian Heartburn!

These two disciples of the Lord had Christian Heartburn.

They now knew the truth and they had to let it out!

*****Luk 24:32 And they said one to another, Did not our heart burn within us, while he talked with us by the way, and while he opened to us the scriptures?
Luk 24:33 And they rose up the same hour, and returned to Jerusalem, and found the eleven gathered together, and them that were with them,
Luk 24:34 Saying, The Lord is risen indeed, and hath appeared to Simon.
Luk 24:35 And they told what things were done in the way, and how he was known of them in breaking of bread.

It was night time and night time travel was dangerous but that did not stop these two disciples. They now knew the risen Savior and not just a dead Savior.

It was a late hour when they arrived back in Jerusalem but most all the disciples were already gathered together and all the talk was about their risen Savior!

They were all bursting with excitement because the truth of the Messiah was finally sinking in!

The amazing truth about the Word of God is that there are promises that no man has ever tried to find!

There are treasures that no one has taken the time to dig up.

There are medicines that have not been uncovered.

There are truths that have not yet been exposed.

There are little golden nuggets of information that are waiting on those that are willing to search for them!

The Bible is a love letter from God, He has not left anything out that would be a help to us but we just refuse to search the Scriptures.

These disciples had been around the Scriptures all their life and the truth of a risen Savior had never been a part of their reality until now when the truth was before their eyes.

This was one of those things in the Scriptures that had eluded them but was now exposed by the Lord Himself.

One of the most beautiful sights there are is when that lost soul finally realizes the truth of the Scriptures and faith takes over.

Once we know the Lord Jesus Christ as our personal Savior, it is then time for our feet to take over and go tell someone else about it!

Our biggest mistakes are made in this life when we look at our plan for this life from ground level and not from God’s level

We can be certain that Jesus Christ arose from that grave, not because there were so many witnesses to this truth but because the Word of God has told us about our Messiah, our Savior, from the very first book of the Bible and has relayed His truth all the way to the Book of Revelation and every book in between.

Questions?

Let’s Pray!

Christ’s Divine Nature

The Certainty Of Christ Divine Nature

Luke 2:1-38

The word divine when it pertains to Christ means the attributes of the true God.

As we study the Lord Jesus Christ we will see many prophesies that will be fulfilled.

As foretold by Jacob many years earlier:

Gen 49:10 The sceptre shall not depart from Judah, nor a lawgiver from between his feet, until Shiloh come; and unto him shall the gathering of the people be.

Shiloh is generally understood as being the Messiah.

The truth of this prophesy is that the sceptre had departed from Judah because Israel was under the rule of Rome with Caesar Augustus ruler as emperor.

Cyrenius was governor of Syria and Judea was included as a province of Syria.

Herod was now King of Judah.

Judea was no longer ruled by one of it’s own princes. Herod was an Idumean prince a descendant of Esau.

The promised land was no longer in the hands of Israel, but in the hands of Rome.

Even the Temple was controlled by Herod.

The priests of God were no longer the ministers of God but servants of the secular world.

The scepter had most definitely departed from Judah and it was time for Shiloh to come.

The Apostle Paul said it was the fullness of times!

Eph 1:10 That in the dispensation of the fulness of times he might gather together in one all things in Christ, both which are in heaven, and which are on earth; even in him:

We see that God says what He means and God means what He says!

Many more prophecies will be fulfilled in the Lord Jesus Christ because He is the fulfillment of God’s will!

*****Luk 2:1 And it came to pass in those days, that there went out a decree from Caesar Augustus, that all the world should be taxed.
Luk 2:2 (And this taxing was first made when Cyrenius was governor of Syria.)
Luk 2:3 And all went to be taxed, every one into his own city.

We will see that taxation was used by God to fulfill His plan for the birth of the Messiah. God did not cause this taxing but God certainly made a use of it!

This emperor of Rome was arrogant enough to consider the lands and the properties seized by his military as the only part of the world worth having.

To him the world was only those lands under his control. We know that Rome never ruled the entire world at any one time!

Augustus considered himself to be a god and this was his world.

The name Augustus means “majesty”.

Augustus began to rule a third of Rome in 44 BC when Julius Caesar was assassinated but had consolidated power under himself and had terminated the days of the Roman Republic around 27 BC.

Augustus Caesar ruled a mostly peaceful kingdom from 27 BC until he died in 14 AD.

He was a great builder of roads and commerce which brought on taxation and he sent out a decree throughout all the lands of Rome.

This decree caused every man to register in the place of their birth.

What had God prophesied:

Mic 5:2 But thou, Bethlehem Ephratah, though thou be little among the thousands of Judah, yet out of thee shall he come forth unto me that is to be ruler in Israel; whose goings forth have been from of old, from everlasting.

The scribes that reported to King Herod clearly understood this to be the truth of God:

Mat 2:5 And they said unto him, In Bethlehem of Judaea: for thus it is written by the prophet,
Mat 2:6 And thou Bethlehem, in the land of Juda, art not the least among the princes of Juda: for out of thee shall come a Governor, that shall rule my people Israel.

The common people of Judea clearly understood this to be true:

Joh 7:42 Hath not the scripture said, That Christ cometh of the seed of David, and out of the town of Bethlehem, where David was?

There can be no doubt that the hand of God was involved in this decree!

*****Luk 2:4 And Joseph also went up from Galilee, out of the city of Nazareth, into Judaea, unto the city of David, which is called Bethlehem; (because he was of the house and lineage of David:)
Luk 2:5 To be taxed with Mary his espoused wife, being great with child.
Luk 2:6 And so it was, that, while they were there, the days were accomplished that she should be delivered.

Despite the plans of man this taxation led to the fulfillment of the Scriptures!

The city of Nazareth was located in the area of Galilee and Joseph had to travel to Bethlehem to a city of the area of Judaea.

The Scriptures make it very clear Joseph was of the lineage of David.

The Scriptures make it very clear that Mary was great with child.

The Scriptures make it very clear that Mary was still espoused to Joseph and the marriage had not taken place. Joseph and Mary had not yet consummated their marriage.

Mat 1:25 And knew her not till she had brought forth her firstborn son: and he called his name JESUS.

The Scriptures make it very clear that the birth of Christ would take place in Bethlehem as the days of Mary would be fulfilled during this time.

It should also be obvious that Joseph and Mary would have been in Bethlehem if not for this decree.

We can see that it is God who will overrule when it comes to His plans.

We should never forget that the salvation plan of God is His plan and He wants us to be a part of His plan and not any plan of our own or some salvation plan concocted by some other human!

King David had been born in Bethlehem and therefore it was necessary that the Son of David be born in Bethlehem.

And Jesus was so born.

*****Luk 2:7 And she brought forth her firstborn son, and wrapped him in swaddling clothes, and laid him in a manger; because there was no room for them in the inn.

Prophesy was fulfilled:

Isa 7:14 Therefore the Lord himself shall give you a sign; Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel.

Immanuel still means “God With Us”!

God had left the riches and the glories of Heaven to be born in a smelly stable.

God was laid in in a feeding trough, a manger.

Even in His humble beginning the Messiah was rejected by mankind. There was no room for Him then and there is no room for Jesus in our world today as He is still rejected as the Messiah by most of this world.

Even if someone had cared for a young mother, room should have been made for her but even that was not the case.

Kind of reminds us of our world today that ignore the needs of young mothers and entice them into abortion!

The Messiah, the Lord Jesus Christ was born in poverty.

If Joseph had any money he could have gotten a room.

God intended that this His birth take place away from people, all alone. It was this young mother who had just given birth to this child that wrapped baby Jesus up in those swaddling clothes.

It was Mary who laid baby Jesus in that feed trough and not on the ground.

Our Lord Jesus Christ was born into a corrupt world full of sin, full of selfishness, full of greed, and full of unkindness.

We see an innkeeper was so caught up in worldly things that he would not even help a young mother about to bare a child!

On a sad note, we can see that all the world missed the first coming of Christ when it was totally unnecessary.

And many will miss the second coming of Christ to get His church when it is also completely unnecessary!

Luk 21:34 And take heed to yourselves, lest at any time your hearts be overcharged with surfeiting, and drunkenness, and cares of this life, and so that day come upon you unawares.

It was the angels that told the world that a Savior had been born.

*****Luk 2:9 And, lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them: and they were sore afraid.
Luk 2:10 And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people.
Luk 2:11 For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord.
Luk 2:12 And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger.

It was an angel that informed the world that a Savior had been born but he did not go to the King or to any ruler but to these lowly shepherds.

Bethlehem-Ephratah was a place that provided many of the sheep for the sacrifices of the Temple.

Bethlehem-Ephratah would also be the place to provide the sacrifice of Jehovah, the perfect Lamb of God!

Many people reject the idea that angels would even appear to shepherds because shepherds could seldom be found worshiping God.

The job of the shepherd was 7 days a week.

The reputation of a shepherd was lowly and the religious people of that day snubbed them and mostly ignored them.

This Scripture also leads us to believe that the birth of Christ was not in December as is celebrated in our day but the fact remains that our Savior was born just as the Bible says.

Shepherds were despised because they were unable to attend services at the Temple and they could not keep the oral laws of the Pharisees and the ceremonial laws of washing and cleansing.

The truth of the Scriptures is that God first gave the “good news” to those that most all the world considered to be sinners.

In fact the “Shekinah Glory” of God had at last returned to this earth!

Isa 59:20 And the Redeemer shall come to Zion, and unto them that turn from transgression in Jacob, saith the LORD.
Isa 59:21 As for me, this is my covenant with them, saith the LORD; My spirit that is upon thee, and my words which I have put in thy mouth, shall not depart out of thy mouth, nor out of the mouth of thy seed, nor out of the mouth of thy seed’s seed, saith the LORD, from henceforth and for ever.
Isa 60:1 Arise, shine; for thy light is come, and the glory of the LORD is risen upon thee.
Isa 60:2 For, behold, the darkness shall cover the earth, and gross darkness the people: but the LORD shall arise upon thee, and his glory shall be seen upon thee.
Isa 60:3 And the Gentiles shall come to thy light, and kings to the brightness of thy rising.

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.

The angel proclaimed the birth of the Messiah.

The angel encouraged the shepherds to to visit the baby Jesus.

The angle gave these shepherds a sign they would find our Savior wrapped in swaddling clothes and lying in a manger.

God’s message has always been that He came to save sinners:

Luk 5:31 And Jesus answering said unto them, They that are whole need not a physician; but they that are sick.
Luk 5:32 I came not to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.

So the first announcement of His coming was given to sinners!

Joh 1:14 And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth.

Jesus was born at the exact right time and the exact right place to fulfill all the Word of God!

Jesus was not born to become our Savior, Jesus was born our Savior!

Jesus is Christ the Lord!

Jesus is the Anointed of Jehovah!

The title “Christ” means the union of the two natures of Jesus, His Divine nature and His human nature!

The God-Man!

Eph 1:22 And hath put all things under his feet, and gave him to be the head over all things to the church,
Eph 1:23 Which is his body, the fulness of him that filleth all in all.

And suddenly there was an angelic host.

*****Luk 2:13 And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying,
Luk 2:14 Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men.

Suddenly there was a multitude of angels that joined with the angel that gave the message to these shepherds.

The Bible says that there are more angels than we have the ability to count.

Daniel said these words:

Dan 7:10 A fiery stream issued and came forth from before him: thousand thousands ministered unto him, and ten thousand times ten thousand stood before him: the judgment was set, and the books were opened.

That word “host” means an army of angels.

God gave these lowly shepherds a peek into the spiritual world.

These angels did two things.

1) They cried out giving glory to the God that made them.

2) They cried out in peace and goodwill for all mankind.

Peace can only come to those who are reconciled to God.

God knew that the problem of sin needed to be solved not temporarily but permanently!

The only way to solve this human problem was the birth of our Savior, according to the Scriptures.

Dan 9:25 Know therefore and understand, that from the going forth of the commandment to restore and to build Jerusalem unto the Messiah the Prince shall be seven weeks, and threescore and two weeks: the street shall be built again, and the wall, even in troublous times.

Joh 4:25 The woman saith unto him, I know that Messias cometh, which is called Christ: when he is come, he will tell us all things.
Joh 4:26 Jesus saith unto her, I that speak unto thee am he.

Isa 9:6 For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace.
Isa 9:7 Of the increase of his government and peace there shall be no end, upon the throne of David, and upon his kingdom, to order it, and to establish it with judgment and with justice from henceforth even for ever. The zeal of the LORD of hosts will perform this.

The Lord Jesus Christ would be born exactly as the Scripture had said!

It was choice time for these lowly shepherds. Would they believe what this angel had said or not?

*****Luk 2:15 And it came to pass, as the angels were gone away from them into heaven, the shepherds said one to another, Let us now go even unto Bethlehem, and see this thing which is come to pass, which the Lord hath made known unto us.

We see that these shepherds did believe.

We see that they immediately decided to go into Bethlehem. They even felt an urgency to go!

We see they did believe these angels were the messengers of God because the Lord had made this thing known to them and they went with haste.

*****Luk 2:16 And they came with haste, and found Mary, and Joseph, and the babe lying in a manger.
Luk 2:17 And when they had seen it, they made known abroad the saying which was told them concerning this child.
Luk 2:18 And all they that heard it wondered at those things which were told them by the shepherds.

They went with haste and they found that things were just as the angel had told them.

They found Mary and Joseph.

They found the Lord, the Messiah, wrapped in swaddling clothes and lying in a manger.

When they had seen the truth they began to tell others what the angel and said and the signs they had seen.

They had been spoken to by God’s messenger.

They had witnessed the heavenly host.

They had seen the Shekinah Glory of God and Heavens bright glory.

They had found the babe just as the angel had said, lying in a manger.

They certainly had much to tell others!

A simple carpenter and a carpenter’s wife had brought forth the Savior.

They certainly had some “good news”!

But Mary weighed all the things in her mind of all she had seen and all she had been told by the angel Gabriel.

*****Luk 2:19 But Mary kept all these things, and pondered them in her heart.

This young mother had witnessed the awesome power of her God.

Mary realized that this babe she had so carefully laid in a manger was not only a child that would depend on her for his nourishment but this babe was also the awesome God who had performed all the things she had witnessed.

Mary had given birth to the Messiah!

Mary, not much more than a child herself, still had never known a man, was still unmarried by the laws of the Jews, had suffered through the rumors that had been told of her.

She had suffered the doubt of Joseph and her parents, the tiring trip from Nazareth to Bethlehem, the smelly stable, a visit from some shepherds who told her an amazing story of angels proclaiming the glory of God, and she could only sit down and absorb all that had happened to her.

All Mary could do was to remain her humble self, and trust God, for God was in control of these things and she was only a vessel to be used by Him!

The Bible says:

1Pe 3:4 But let it be the hidden man of the heart, in that which is not corruptible, even the ornament of a meek and quiet spirit, which is in the sight of God of great price.

But those shepherds could not remain quiet.

*****Luk 2:20 And the shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things that they had heard and seen, as it was told unto them.

These shepherds who had not taken the time to get close to the Lord all their days, now left to go back to their flocks praising God.

The truth is if you ever meet the Savior, you will leave a change person!

These shepherds also found that what God said He would do, would then come to pass!

These shepherds realized that they had seen the Savior!

God had spoken.

They had received His message.

They obeyed and they met the Messiah.

The promised Savior had now been born!

They certainly had reason to praise God!

The day that Jesus Christ was born into this earth was the beginning of a new day in the history of this world!

Christianity is positive truth because it is based on historical facts from Moses to Jesus Christ, from Christ to the last Church Age and then on to eternity.

All those that become born to Jesus Christ will all become new creatures in a new world!

2Co 5:17 Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.
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 5:19 To wit, that God was in Christ, reconciling the world unto himself, not imputing their trespasses unto them; and hath committed unto us the word of reconciliation.

The days of Jesus on this earth then proceeded to pass by.

*****Luk 2:21 And when eight days were accomplished for the circumcising of the child, his name was called JESUS, which was so named of the angel before he was conceived in the womb.

Circumcision was a sign of the Abrahamic Covenant.

Circumcision was the seal of the “gospel covenant” made by God with Abraham and was a covenant of faith!

We know that to Moses, God had made a covenant of works which was not a legal covenant.

Jesus taught the Jews with these words:

Joh 8:39 They answered and said unto him, Abraham is our father. Jesus saith unto them, If ye were Abraham’s children, ye would do the works of Abraham.

As science has now proven, it is on the eighth day that the coagulant in the blood of an infant normally reach their optimum effectiveness, but God knew this all along.

Jesus Christ was circumcised to fulfill the law.

Gal 4:4 But when the fulness of the time was come, God sent forth his Son, made of a woman, made under the law,
Gal 4:5 To redeem them that were under the law, that we might receive the adoption of sons.
Gal 4:6 And because ye are sons, God hath sent forth the Spirit of his Son into your hearts, crying, Abba, Father.
Gal 4:7 Wherefore thou art no more a servant, but a son; and if a son, then an heir of God through Christ.

The Messiah was then named Jesus, which means “Savior”.

It had been the angel Gabriel who had the instruction to name the babe Jesus.

Mat 1:21 And she shall bring forth a son, and thou shalt call his name JESUS: for he shall save his people from their sins.
Mat 1:22 Now all this was done, that it might be fulfilled which was spoken of the Lord by the prophet, saying,
Mat 1:23 Behold, a virgin shall be with child, and shall bring forth a son, and they shall call his name Emmanuel, which being interpreted is, God with us.

This thing was done in Bethlehem because Mary could not go to the Temple until she went through her time of purification.

*****Luk 2:22 And when the days of her purification according to the law of Moses were accomplished, they brought him to Jerusalem, to present him to the Lord;
Luk 2:23 (As it is written in the law of the Lord, Every male that openeth the womb shall be called holy to the Lord;)

First Mary had to observe the 7 days of uncleanness:

Lev 12:2 Speak unto the children of Israel, saying, If a woman have conceived seed, and born a man child: then she shall be unclean seven days; according to the days of the separation for her infirmity shall she be unclean.

Then before Mary could offer Jesus to the Lord, she had to observe 33 days of purification.

Lev 12:4 And she shall then continue in the blood of her purifying three and thirty days; she shall touch no hallowed thing, nor come into the sanctuary, until the days of her purifying be fulfilled.

Only after these 40 days were properly observed could Mary present her son Jesus to the Lord and bring a sacrifice for a burnt offering.

Lev 12:6 And when the days of her purifying are fulfilled, for a son, or for a daughter, she shall bring a lamb of the first year for a burnt offering, and a young pigeon, or a turtledove, for a sin offering, unto the door of the tabernacle of the congregation, unto the priest:

It is the burnt offering that signified God’s acceptance of the offerer, Mary, in anticipation of the shed blood of Jesus.

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.
Eph 1:7 In whom we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of his grace;

This was the ceremony of dedication of the child to the Lord.

A male child was presented in the Temple when the family was close to Jerusalem.

The Lord Jesus was subject to all the legal requirements of the law because, He was made of woman under the law! (Gal 4:4)

The Lord Jesus was subject to all the legal requirements of the law because, he was made like unto His brethren.

Heb 2:17 Wherefore in all things it behoved him to be made like unto his brethren, that he might be a merciful and faithful high priest in things pertaining to God, to make reconciliation for the sins of the people.
Heb 2:18 For in that he himself hath suffered being tempted, he is able to succour them that are tempted.

The Lord Jesus said He had not come to destroy the law but only to fulfill the law.

Mat 5:17 Think not that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets: I am not come to destroy, but to fulfil.
Mat 5:18 For verily I say unto you, Till heaven and earth pass, one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law, till all be fulfilled.

Then Jesus said the law was fulfilled with love:

Mat 22:37 Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind.
Mat 22:38 This is the first and great commandment.
Mat 22:39 And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself.
Mat 22:40 On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets.

Just how poor were Joseph and Mary?

Joseph despite being of royal lineage was a very poor man!

*****Luk 2:24 And to offer a sacrifice according to that which is said in the law of the Lord, A pair of turtledoves, or two young pigeons.

What we see is that it was a deliberate choice of God to have a poor family bear His Son!

2Co 8:9 For ye know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that, though he was rich, yet for your sakes he became poor, that ye through his poverty might be rich.

The proper offering was a lamb for a burnt offering and a pigeon or a dove for a sin offering.

The poor were allowed to bring a second pigeon or dove!

We see that no matter our circumstances in this life, Christ Jesus has already gone through that thing, even poverty!

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.
Heb 4:16 Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need.

The Lord Jesus Christ can relate to any problem that comes upon us.

Even while the dedication of the Lord was taking place we see that God was still working in other lives.

*****Luk 2:25 And, behold, there was a man in Jerusalem, whose name was Simeon; and the same man was just and devout, waiting for the consolation of Israel: and the Holy Ghost was upon him.
Luk 2:26 And it was revealed unto him by the Holy Ghost, that he should not see death, before he had seen the Lord’s Christ.
Luk 2:27 And he came by the Spirit into the temple: and when the parents brought in the child Jesus, to do for him after the custom of the law,

We meet Simeon who was a just and devout man.

Just means he was righteous, Simeon did things the right way!

Devout means that Simeon and a reverent fear of the Lord.

Simeon had developed a personal relationship with the Lord!

Simeon knew it was possible for the Messiah to come in his own lifetime, in fact according to the prophet Daniel the Messiah was due at any moment.

This is also true for the Second Coming of Christ!

Simeon found consolation in the baby Jesus!

The truth is there is no other place and no other being where consolation can be found but Christ Jesus!

Simeon was a man led by the Holy Spirit!

Because Simeon walked so close to the Lord, Simeon was given a special promise.

At some point the Holy Spirit had revealed to Simeon that he would not die until he had seen the Messiah.

Great things happen to those who trust in the Lord!

The Holy Spirit led Simeon to the Temple so that promise could be fulfilled.

If we follow the lead of the Holy Spirit, He will always lead us to Jesus, who is the answer to every prayer!

Simeon became one of the few humans that were given the privilege of holding God in his own arms!

If your name is written down in the Lamb’s Book of Life, then you to will one day come face to face with the Lord God Almighty!

*****Luk 2:28 Then took he him up in his arms, and blessed God, and said,
Luk 2:29 Lord, now lettest thou thy servant depart in peace, according to thy word:
Luk 2:30 For mine eyes have seen thy salvation,
Luk 2:31 Which thou hast prepared before the face of all people;
Luk 2:32 A light to lighten the Gentiles, and the glory of thy people Israel.

Abraham told Isaac that “God would provide Himself a Lamb” and that fulfillment was in Jesus Christ!

All the prophets looked forward to this day!

Simeon did not hesitate, he knew for certain his Savior and once he had embraced his Savior who would be the source of true peace to the entire world.

Joh 14:27 Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.

This child of God was especially prepared to be God’s Savior!

Act 2:23 Him, “being delivered by the determinate counsel and foreknowledge of God”, ye have taken, and by wicked hands have crucified and slain:
Act 2:24 Whom God hath raised up, having loosed the pains of death: because it was not possible that he should be holden of it.

Simeon confessed that the child Jesus is God’s salvation.

In order to know the salvation of God we must all confess, “before men”, that Jesus Christ is the fulfillment of God’s salvation plan through whom God will save the world.

1Jn 4:15 Whosoever shall confess that Jesus is the Son of God, God dwelleth in him, and he in God.

It is the Lord Jesus Christ who is not only the Savior of Israel but also to the Gentiles.

Gentiles are all those who are not Jews!

Jesus Christ came to be the Light of the entire world!

Jesus Christ is God’s method to reveal the Revelation of God, to reveal the truth, the way, and the life to all men!

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.

Jesus Christ is the glory of Israel!

In fact Jesus Christ is the glory of all people no matter their nationality!

Isa 45:25 In the LORD shall all the seed of Israel be justified, and shall glory.

Rom 2:10 But glory, honour, and peace, to every man that worketh good, to the Jew first, and also to the Gentile:
Rom 2:11 For there is no respect of persons with God.

And Joseph and Mary marvelled at those things which were spoken of Him!

Joseph and Mary both had been told many things about Jesus and all things would prove to be true but they marvelled that a total stranger whom they had never met could say all these things.

Many of these things were to give this young family strength for those days ahead.

*****Luk 2:34 And Simeon blessed them, and said unto Mary his mother, Behold, this child is set for the fall and rising again of many in Israel; and for a sign which shall be spoken against;
Luk 2:35 (Yea, a sword shall pierce through thy own soul also,) that the thoughts of many hearts may be revealed.

There are 4 signs associated with the birth of Christ Jesus.

1) The sign of the virgin birth. (Isa 7:14)

2) The sign of the guiding star. (Matt 2:2)

3) The sign of the swaddling clothes. (Luk 2:12)

4) The sign of the stumbling stone.

The Lord Jesus in Scripture was to be the “stone of stumbling” but also the “chief cornerstone”!

We know that many of those in our world choose a path other than God and they will stumble and fall over Jesus Christ because He is the only pathway to God!

We also know that many have risen to the truth and have realized the it is Jesus Christ who is the only cornerstone of salvation!

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.

Jesus Christ causes each and everyone of us to make a choice!

The truth is that Jesus Christ has always been opposed and we know He was eventually murdered.

Jesus Christ was first a sign of God’s love!

Jesus Christ will soon return to bring God’s judgment!

Most of mankind do not want that kind of God, they simply want a God they can put on a shelf and take Him down as they please in times of trouble.

Mankind wants only a God whose love will endure all our sins with no repercussions.

They do not want a God who requires sacrificial love!

Mankind simply wants a license to sin and not a God who makes demands of righteousness!

The truth is, a sword pierced the soul of Mary the day the Lord Jesus sacrificed Himself in order that we can live.

The cross brought pain to the loving mother of Christ Jesus, while the death of Christ was to reveal all the thoughts in each man’s heart!

Mankind either sees the love of God and surrenders to the “Grace” of God or he will look upon the cross as something repulsive.

All mankind’s greatest struggle is to admit that we are all a sinful people!

Rom 3:23 For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God;

And then came Anna.

*****Luk 2:36 And there was one Anna, a prophetess, the daughter of Phanuel, of the tribe of Aser: she was of a great age, and had lived with an husband seven years from her virginity;
Luk 2:37 And she was a widow of about fourscore and four years, which departed not from the temple, but served God with fastings and prayers night and day.
Luk 2:38 And she coming in that instant gave thanks likewise unto the Lord, and spake of him to all them that looked for redemption in Jerusalem.

Nothing is known of Anna except what we read in these Scripture.

It seems that Anna became a prophetess this very day she met the Lord Jesus Christ.

She also had been a virgin before her marriage which lasted only 7 years.

From that time forward Anna had remained a servant of God.

Anna had never lost hope all her 84 years of age.

She still believed and she never remarried but she still waited on the Messiah.

Anna never ceased to worship, night or day!

Anna was a woman to whom her God meant everything!

Anna also knew the child Jesus instantly and gave thanks that she had seen Him and she began to witness to all those that sought redemption and came to the Temple.

Salvation was not in the Temple, salvation is in the Lord Jesus Christ, the God of the Temple.

God says:

Psa 107:2 Let the redeemed of the LORD say so, whom he hath redeemed from the hand of the enemy;

We will never get to hold the baby Jesus in our arms as did Simeon but we all once we have a personal relationship with the Lord are to proclaim His name!

The truth is God uses ordinary people in His plan of salvation.

God does not want us to make our own plans of salvation, God just wants us to be a part of His plan!

Questions?

Let’s Pray!

The Problem Of Humanism

The Problem Of Human Wisdom

1 Corinthians 2

Wisdom is the right use or the right exercise of knowledge. Wisdom then is discerning or judging what is the most just, most proper, and most useful means to an end result.

Knowledge is a clear and certain perception of things that exist, or the truth and the facts of those things.

We cannot have knowledge of that which does not exist!

The truth is that God has a perfect knowledge of all things that exist but human knowledge is very limited and is mostly gained by observation and experience.

Therefore there are great problems that come from human wisdom!

Humans simply cannot ever know all the things of God!

The problems of divisions in the church at Corinth was caused by an underlying ignorance of the purpose of true preaching.

In last weeks lesson we had this verse:

1Co 1:21 For after that in the wisdom of God the world by wisdom knew not God, it pleased God by the foolishness of preaching to save them that believe.

If we trust human wisdom, then we can never know God!

The truth is, that the Preaching of the Word of God was never meant to be a popularity contest!

The truth is, that if we walk in God’s wisdom we will enjoy God’s blessings!

*****1Co 2:1 And I, brethren, when I came to you, came not with excellency of speech or of wisdom, declaring unto you the testimony of God.

Preaching then should be more about the message than the act of proclaiming that message!

We should not forget that Paul was a highly educated man. Paul studied the Old Testament at the feet of Gamaliel the most noted Doctor of the Mishna in Israel during his day.

The Mishna was a collection of all Jewish traditions and explanations of the Scriptures.

Paul was saying that he came to Corinth and he spoke neither oratorically nor philosophically.

The salvation message of God is simple and it does not require a great speaker!

What is the testimony of God?

1Jn 5:10 He that believeth on the Son of God hath the witness in himself: he that believeth not God hath made him a liar; because he believeth not the record that God gave of his Son.
1Jn 5:11 And this is the record, that God hath given to us eternal life, and this life is in his Son.

The message of the Gospel is a simple message and not hard to understand and it seems this is why it is so easily tossed aside and rejected but the truth is the most always the simplest answer.

What is the truth of the Gospel?

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.

What was the message of the Apostle Paul?

*****1Co 2:2 For I determined not to know any thing among you, save Jesus Christ, and him crucified.

Paul did not mean for anyone to set aside all human knowledge.

Paul meant that Jesus Christ and Him crucified would always be the central point and the essence of all his knowledge the rest of his own life as a minister of God.

Php 3:8 Yea doubtless, and I count all things but loss for the excellency of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord: for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and do count them but dung, that I may win Christ,
Php 3:9 And be found in him, not having mine own righteousness, which is of the law, but that which is through the faith of Christ, the righteousness which is of God by faith:
Php 3:10 That I may know him, and the power of his resurrection, and the fellowship of his sufferings, being made conformable unto his death;
Php 3:11 If by any means I might attain unto the resurrection of the dead.

Salvation can begin immediately to all those that accept this one point in the Gospel of Jesus Christ and there is no more important point to be made in all of Scripture!

Each sinner in need of a Savior has see Christ Jesus as that Savior!

The Apostle Paul preached what he believed!

Sadly many in the pulpits today do not even believe the Word of God that they preach and it effects the message that they have in a most negative way!

The truth is “faith” produces “faith”!

And without “faith” we cannot begin to please 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.

It is these truths that made this mighty man of God so humble in the pulpit!

*****1Co 2:3 And I was with you in weakness, and in fear, and in much trembling.

The proper state of mind to preach the “Gospel” must always be the opposite of self-confidence!

The success of the “Gospel” does not depend on the skill of the preacher, but wholly on the the work of the Holy Spirit!

The act of saving faith is not by reason of, and not by arguments addressed to it’s understanding, but solely on the power of God and the truth that is accepted in the heart of that one that hears it!

Rom 10:10 For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.

The preacher that knows all these things will trust that the Lord is by his side and any needed strength will come from the Lord by His Holy Spirit!

*****1Co 2:4 And my speech and my preaching was not with enticing words of man’s wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power:
1Co 2:5 That your faith should not stand in the wisdom of men, but in the power of God.

If we remember the Book of Acts, Paul came to Corinth from Athens. In Athens Paul had spoken as many of the philosophers had on Mars Hill.

Philosophical messages do not lead to much results.

A preacher must not ever preach down to those listening.

The message of the Lord must reach out to those who have a need!

When Paul arrived in Corinth he kept the message of the Lord simple!

It is the message of the Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ that remains the most important message of salvation!

Paul did not come to Corinth to persuade men through words of wisdom or enticing words.

It is not important for any preacher or teacher to compete with philosophers or mighty men of wisdom who twist and turn words to meet their goals.

The Word of God is not in competition, the Word of God is simply the truth!

It is important for the man of God to teach the facts of the cross!

It is important for the man of God to stay out of the business of the Holy Spirit because it is only the Holy Spirit who can lead those that hear the “Gospel” to the Lord!

Heb 4:12 For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any twoedged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.

We cannot become Christians until we allow the “Cross of Jesus Christ” to make it’s impression upon us!

If we cannot realize that Christ died so that we can live, we have missed the importance of the Word of God!

The world we live in is becoming more and more resistant to the Laws of God!

The world we live in is ignoring the warnings of God!

The world we live in ignores the God who provides the air we breath and the food we eat and considers God too feeble to be of much help in this world!

But, there are still those in this world that understand the act of self-sacrifice!

God sacrificed Himself so that we can live!

Once we understand the “Mercy” and the “Grace” of God and His desire to save us from sin and destruction and instills in each believer the hope of true life eternal, then salvation is in the asking of God for forgiveness.

Without faith we cannot please God!

The only secure place for faith lies in the Power of God!

Men have theories that change as new things develop.

True science changes when new facts are discovered.

Politicians sell out their influence for money and power!

Philosophy and religion are just man-made words and ideals!

But the “sure” Word of God can be depended on!

What is faith?

Heb 10:39 But we are not of them who draw back unto perdition; but of them that believe to the saving of the soul.
Heb 11:1 Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.

1) The substance of faith is in the promises of God!

Tit 1:2 In hope of eternal life, which God, that cannot lie, promised before the world began;

2) The evidence of faith is in seeing in our mind what the eye cannot see.

3) The things that are not seen are the invisible and spiritual world of our Holy God!

When we can get that mental picture of Heaven in all it’s glory, then that desire to go home to be with our Savior will remain with us all the days of our life!

Isa 64:4 For since the beginning of the world men have not heard, nor perceived by the ear, neither hath the eye seen, O God, beside thee, what he hath prepared for him that waiteth for him.

*****1Co 2:6 Howbeit we speak wisdom among them that are perfect: yet not the wisdom of this world, nor of the princes of this world, that come to nought:

We know that there are no perfect Christians but Paul is referring to those who are no longer “Babes In Christ” and have moved on to those who are maturing in Christ.

Even a Babe in Christ, though saved, have not reached a point where they can comprehend the wisdom of the Word of God!

The word “world” normally would mean the “Cosmos” which means the material aspects of our world.

Paul uses instead the word “Aeon” which means “the world in it’s moral and intellectual aspects”.

Paul is saying there is a wisdom that is much higher that that of any man!

Our salvation was purchased by the Son, the Lord Jesus!

Our salvation was planned by the Father, Our Heavenly Father!

Our salvation is eternal because of the indwelling of the Holy Spirit!

To the Church we know we live in the Church Age.

In reality there are only two ages, this Age we live in now and the Age that is to come.

The Age of now began with Adam and will end with the Second coming of Christ.

Most of us will only see a small portion of this Age because we can live only a short period of time.

The Age that is to come is when God Himself will take control of this world and remove all sin and make all things right!

Only for the Christian, the Age that is to come can already be realized and in a sense we are already living in that Age that is to come now after accepting the truth of the Scriptures!.

Only for the Christian do these two Ages over lap!

Only in this Age are the princes of this world allowed to govern and rule under the limits that God has set!

It is obvious that in the end all the rules and the ways of mortal men will come to nothingness!

In all these years of mankind, none have been able, to overcome the truth of God and they never will!

1Jn 5:19 And we know that we are of God, and the whole world lieth in wickedness.
1Jn 5:20 And we know that the Son of God is come, and hath given us an understanding, that we may know him that is true, and we are in him that is true, even in his Son Jesus Christ. This is the true God, and eternal life.

No mere man can obtain the wisdom that is God’s only!

*****1Co 2:7 But we speak the wisdom of God in a mystery, even the hidden wisdom, which God ordained before the world unto our glory:
1Co 2:8 Which none of the princes of this world knew: for had they known it, they would not have crucified the Lord of glory.

All human wisdom and philosophy of the world’s so-called intellectuals will eventually come to mean nothing.

True wisdom is that wisdom that is centered on Jesus Christ!

This is the wisdom that existed in the heart of God before the world began!

Pro 8:22 The LORD possessed me in the beginning of his way, before his works of old.
Pro 8:23 I was set up from everlasting, from the beginning, or ever the earth was.

Pro 8:35 For whoso findeth me findeth life, and shall obtain favour of the LORD.
Pro 8:36 But he that sinneth against me wrongeth his own soul: all they that hate me love death.

The carnal mind cannot understand the deeper truths of Christianity!

Even a brand new Christian still has a carnal mind and still a “Babe in Christ”.!

Php 3:15 Let us therefore, as many as be perfect, be thus minded: and if in any thing ye be otherwise minded, God shall reveal even this unto you.

A full grown Christian is one who is no longer a “Babe in Christ”!

In the government of Israel and that government of Rome had truly accepted the wisdom of Christ Jesus, they certainly would never have crucified the “Lord of Glory”!

Act 3:17 And now, brethren, I wot that through ignorance ye did it, as did also your rulers.
Act 3:18 But those things, which God before had shewed by the mouth of all his prophets, that Christ should suffer, he hath so fulfilled.

The wisdom of this world can only lead to the death of those that follow it!

In reality then, can this carnal worldy wisdom ever be very wise?

The wisdom of the world has never been able to accomplish the needs of this world in over 4000 years!

*****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.

The truth is, that no matter how wonderful we think Heaven will be, the truth of Heaven goes far beyond the imagination of all mankind!

This world we live on still has many beautiful places that have escaped the results of sinful men and it was the Lord who created this entire Cosmos.

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:
Col 1:17 And he is before all things, and by him all things consist.

It is this same Creator who has gone to prepare a place for all those that 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.
Joh 14:3 And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also.
Joh 14:4 And whither I go ye know, and the way ye know.

We can only get a glimpse of these things if we are endowed with the Holy Spirit of God!

*****1Co 2:10 But God hath revealed them unto us by his Spirit: for the Spirit searcheth all things, yea, the deep things of God.

We know the Word of God came to us by the Holy Spirit!

2Pe 1:19 We have also a more sure word of prophecy; whereunto ye do well that ye take heed, as unto a light that shineth in a dark place, until the day dawn, and the day star arise in your hearts:
2Pe 1:20 Knowing this first, that no prophecy of the scripture is of any private interpretation.
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”.

So what we can know of the beauty of Heaven, we can only find in the written Word of God and most of the things we know about Heaven were revealed to the Apostle John and recorded for us in the Book of Revelation.

These things were therefore revealed to us by the Spirit of God!

*****1Co 2:11 For what man knoweth the things of a man, save the spirit of man which is in him? even so the things of God knoweth no man, but the Spirit of God.

We are all individuals and no two of us are alike. We can be close friends but there is no way that I can know all the things of your life without you telling me.

Each person has his own body, soul, and spirit.

The spirit of man could be said to be our self-consciousness.

Our spirit is the substance in which thinking, knowing, doubting and the power of motivation subsist!

God not only has a spirit, God is Spirit!

Joh 4:24 God is a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth.

Our own spirit has the power of understanding what kind of people we are.

In much the same way the Spirit of God understands the nature of God.

Each of us understand our selves better than anyone else could possibly understand us!

And likewise it is only the Holy Spirit that can know the great depths of the wisdom of God!

To know the Lord Jesus Christ as your Savior and to be endowed with the Holy Spirit, is proof that God wants us to know everything about Him!

*****1Co 2:12 Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the spirit which is of God; that we might know the things that are freely given to us of God.

The very moment we trust in Jesus Christ the Holy Spirit enters into our body!

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?
1Co 6:20 For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God’s.

We are at that time baptized into the “Body Of Christ”!

1Co 12:13 For by one Spirit are we all baptized into one body, whether we be Jews or Gentiles, whether we be bond or free; and have been all made to drink into one Spirit.

At that very moment God places His seal of ownership upon each believer!

Eph 1:13 In whom ye also trusted, after that ye heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation: in whom also after that ye believed, ye were sealed with that holy Spirit of promise,
Eph 1:14 Which is the earnest of our inheritance until the redemption of the purchased possession, unto the praise of his glory.

The Holy Spirit is God’s gift to all that call upon the Lord Jesus for salvation!

Joh 14:16 And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever;

It is the Holy Spirit that makes our liberty possible!

2Co 3:17 Now the Lord is that Spirit: and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty.

To all that trust in the Lord, we then become citizens of Heaven even the remaining days on this Earth!

Joh 17:14 I have given them thy word; and the world hath hated them, because they are not of the world, even as I am not of the world.
Joh 17:15 I pray not that thou shouldest take them out of the world, but that thou shouldest keep them from the evil.
Joh 17:16 They are not of the world, even as I am not of the world.

We can never be caught up in Satan’s bondage ever again because we have a new Father, a Heavenly Father, who is more like a dad than any dad of this Earth!

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.

BUT, No one can know these things without knowing the Holy Spirit of God!

*****1Co 2:13 Which things also we speak, not in the words which man’s wisdom teacheth, but which the Holy Ghost teacheth; comparing spiritual things with spiritual.

We can see that the Apostle Paul claims that his teachings are not really his.

Paul’s teachings were God’s because his words were taught to him by the Holy Spirit and this lines up with what the Lord Jesus taught!

Joh 14:26 But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you.

Jesus promises us the Holy Spirit would be our guide to all the truth of the Scriptures!

Joh 16:13 Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will shew you things to come.

Just as the Apostles Paul was taught by the Scriptures, then we must begin at the same place. We must become familiar with the Scriptures.

Joh 17:8 For I have given unto them the words which thou gavest me; and they have received them, and have known surely that I came out from thee, and they have believed that thou didst send me.

You see it is only by the Holy Spirit that we can compare spiritual things with spiritual!

The Holy Spirit becomes our personal householder!

Mat 13:52 Then said he unto them, Therefore every scribe which is instructed unto the kingdom of heaven is like unto a man that is an householder, which bringeth forth out of his treasure things new and old.

But those that reject the Word of God can never know these things this is the problem of humanism!

*****1Co 2:14 But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.

The natural man who cannot accept the truths of God then cannot appreciate spiritual truths!

Without understanding the truth of the atoning sacrifice of the Lord Jesus Christ, the natural man only sees foolishness in those that believe and foolishness in the Word of God!

1Co 1:18 For the preaching of the cross is to them that perish foolishness; but unto us which are saved it is the power of God.

Jude says these are those persons who exalt themselves above the truth of God!

Jud 1:19 These be they who separate themselves, sensual, having not the Spirit.

It may seem strange but no matter how intelligent these people are, they will never understand the things of God until they accept the Lord Jesus Christ!

That is the one real thing that most of the world rejects but it is the only means of salvation and the only means into the family of God!

Joh 16:7 Nevertheless I tell you the truth; It is expedient for you that I go away: for if I go not away, the Comforter will not come unto you; but if I depart, I will send him unto you.
Joh 16:8 And when he is come, he will reprove the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment:
Joh 16:9 Of sin, “because they believe not on me”;

The only sin that cannot be forgiven is the sin of rejecting the Lord Jesus Christ, ALL other sin can be forgiven!

On the other hand, those who are “born again” and “spiritually mature” can discern and understand all the deep things of God!

*****1Co 2:15 But he that is spiritual judgeth all things, yet he himself is judged of no man.

These spiritual are all those that follow the lead of the Holy Spirit!

These are the same ones who can judge every situation as God would judge it!

These are those who judge by the Word of God!

1Jn 2:27 But the anointing which ye have received of him abideth in you, and ye need not that any man teach you: but as the same anointing teacheth you of all things, and is truth, and is no lie, and even as it hath taught you, ye shall abide in him.

We are to be witnesses and not judges but the truth is that God judges all people by His own Words and therefore things that go against the Word of God we are to also point out to others!

This not as much being a judge as it is pointing out the truth!

We cannot be judged by the natural man or any other man because we have already been judged by a higher power than mortal men!

Rom 8:1 There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.

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.

Anyone that passes judgment on a “born again” child of God is passing judgment on God Himself who is the only true Judge of all mankind!

*****1Co 2:16 For who hath known the mind of the Lord, that he may instruct him? But we have the mind of Christ.

Though it is impossible for anyone to have the mind of Christ, by the Holy Spirit we can understand all the words that Jesus spoke and are recorded in the New Testament.

We also have the completed Word of God in the 66 books of the Bible!

The truth is, that the Word of God does not have to be analyzed and to be understood.

The Word Of God Only Has To Be Believed!

To have the mind of Christ means to look at our world through our Savior’s point of view and accept what He says as the complete truth!

Having the mind of Christ does not mean we have the ability to instruct God nor change any of His Word!

Rom 11:33 O the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! how unsearchable are his judgments, and his ways past finding out!
Rom 11:34 For who hath known the mind of the Lord? or who hath been his counsellor?
Rom 11:35 Or who hath first given to him, and it shall be recompensed unto him again?
Rom 11:36 For of him, and through him, and to him, are all things: to whom be glory for ever. Amen.

The things of God are unsearchable except through the Words He has given to us!

God teaches us all we need to know in this world we live in now!

Questions?

Let’s Pray!

The Causes Of Church Divisions

The Problem Of Church Divisions

1 Corinthians 1

The Church at Corinth was established on the second of the three missionary journeys of the Apostle Paul.

Paul had traveled as far as Macedonia and Greece.

Paul had made successful visits to Philippi and Thessalonica and then he had a not so pleasant encounter with those of Athens.

After these things Paul had finally made it to the city of Corinth.

Corinth was an important commercial center and was already populated by more than 600,000 people.

Corinth was heavily Grecian in character and was famous as a center for sports in those days.

Corinth was also a very immoral city and sin was rampant, and there was also had a temple to the false goddess Aphrodite.

It is said that there were 1000 female prostitutes who served as priestesses in that place.

Temptation was everywhere and Corinth was “sin city” in that day!

It was at the city of Corinth where Paul met Aquila and Priscilla.

Luke the physician and of the Book of Luke, was also with the Apostle Paul at this time.

Corinth had been founded by Julius Caesar and also had a heavy military presence.

Corinth was also the capitol city of Achai and the residence of the Roman proconsul who administered the city according to the Roman Emperor.

Because of it’s location at the isthmus of Corinth commercialism fueled the sin of this city and this city also had a very mixed population from many nations.

Corinth was a city of wealth but that wealth was distributed unevenly and the gap between the rich and the poor grew ever wider as time passed.

Corinth was as famous for sexual immorality as it was for all these other things!

The Greek word for Corinth is “korinthos”.

BUT, The people who lived there would simply say “korinthiazethai” which means “to fornicate”.

The Apostle Paul remained in Corinth for a good while before he returned to Antioch in Syria.

Let’s begin:

*****1Co 1:1 Paul, called to be an apostle of Jesus Christ through the will of God, and Sosthenes our brother,

The word apostle means “one sent” and many question the apostleship of Paul but we should not!

If none of the other Apostles questioned it then neither should we!

The Apostle Paul was certainly God’s messenger to the Gentiles!

Gal 2:8 (For he that wrought effectually in Peter to the apostleship of the circumcision, the same was mighty in me toward the Gentiles:)
Gal 2:9 And when James, Cephas, and John, who seemed to be pillars, perceived the grace that was given unto me, they gave to me and Barnabas the right hands of fellowship; that we should go unto the heathen, and they unto the circumcision.

The Bible says that it was the Holy Ghost that separated Paul and paired him with Barnabas just as the other Apostles were paired and sent out!

Act 13:2 As they ministered to the Lord, and fasted, the Holy Ghost said, Separate me Barnabas and Saul for the work whereunto I have called them.

Paul was personally called just as the others were called!

Act 9:4 And he fell to the earth, and heard a voice saying unto him, Saul, Saul, why persecutest thou me?
Act 9:5 And he said, Who art thou, Lord? And the Lord said, I am Jesus whom thou persecutest: it is hard for thee to kick against the pricks.
Act 9:6 And he trembling and astonished said, Lord, what wilt thou have me to do? And the Lord said unto him, Arise, and go into the city, and it shall be told thee what thou must do.

Paul was an eyewitness to the resurrection of Christ Jesus!

1Co 15:8 And last of all he was seen of me also, as of one born out of due time.

Paul received the same three years of training as had the others!

Gal 1:17 Neither went I up to Jerusalem to them which were apostles before me; but I went into Arabia, and returned again unto Damascus.
Gal 1:18 Then after three years I went up to Jerusalem to see Peter, and abode with him fifteen days.

Paul was given the same “so called” powers of the Apostles as was the others!

Act 14:8 And there sat a certain man at Lystra, impotent in his feet, being a cripple from his mother’s womb, who never had walked:
Act 14:9 The same heard Paul speak: who stedfastly beholding him, and perceiving that he had faith to be healed,
Act 14:10 Said with a loud voice, Stand upright on thy feet. And he leaped and walked.

Act 19:13 Then certain of the vagabond Jews, exorcists, took upon them to call over them which had evil spirits the name of the Lord Jesus, saying, We adjure you by Jesus whom Paul preacheth.
Act 19:14 And there were seven sons of one Sceva, a Jew, and chief of the priests, which did so.
Act 19:15 And the evil spirit answered and said, Jesus I know, and Paul I know; but who are ye?

Act 20:9 And there sat in a window a certain young man named Eutychus, being fallen into a deep sleep: and as Paul was long preaching, he sunk down with sleep, and fell down from the third loft, and was taken up dead.
Act 20:10 And Paul went down, and fell on him, and embracing him said, Trouble not yourselves; for his life is in him.

That Paul was a Christ chosen Apostle, is a sure thing and we should accept him as an Apostle of Jesus Christ!

Paul identifies this Sosthenes as his Christian brother. It is possible that this was the same Sosthenes that ruled the synagogue at Corinth who was unjustly beaten by a mob.

Act 18:17 Then all the Greeks took Sosthenes, the chief ruler of the synagogue, and beat him before the judgment seat. And Gallio cared for none of those things.

The truth of Scripture is this:

Rom 8:30 Moreover whom he did predestinate, them he also called: and whom he called, them he also justified: and whom he justified, them he also glorified.

No one can know God until they are called!

*****1Co 1:2 Unto the church of God which is at Corinth, to them that are sanctified in Christ Jesus, called to be saints, with all that in every place call upon the name of Jesus Christ our Lord, both theirs and ours:

The word Church comes from the Greek word “ekklesia” which means a called out assembly.

The word “sanctified” comes from the Greek word “hagiazo” which means purified or consecrated to God or those that have been washed in the blood of the Lamb.

Sanctified means all those that are separated or set apart for God’s use and at that time “living or dead” become a Saint simply because of their faith in the Lord Jesus Christ!

Each individual believer is then the “House of God” and when two or three or more are gathered together they form the Church!

1Co 3:16 Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you?

Paul addressed this epistle to the Church at Corinth but also to all Saints in every place that call on the Lord Jesus Christ as their personal Savior!

There is only one Church and we are all brothers and sisters in Christ no matter where we live as long as we recognize the Lord Jesus as our Savior!

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.

*****1Co 1:3 Grace be unto you, and peace, from God our Father, and from the Lord Jesus Christ.

The two things the Apostle Paul knew for sure was, that he was not worthy to called an Apostle and we are also not worthy to be saved.

Salvation is all about the “Grace of God”!

To be called of God is to then to be more like God in the way we live “as best we can”!

It is only by the “Grace” of God that we can be at peace with God!

Those that build on anything but “Grace” will never know the “peace of God”!

Peace with God comes to only those that know the Lord Jesus Christ as a personal Savior!

The “Grace” of God comes only by the unsearchable riches of Jesus Christ!

If this church at Corinth was to survive then they would have to come together in the Lord Jesus Christ!

*****1Co 1:4 I thank my God always on your behalf, for the grace of God which is given you by Jesus Christ;
1Co 1:5 That in every thing ye are enriched by him, in all utterance, and in all knowledge;
1Co 1:6 Even as the testimony of Christ was confirmed in you:

The purpose of this epistle was to address the divisions in this church so Paul first commends the good things of the church.

The glory of the church must be in the Lord and not in some human of the church!

We must be thankful for the “Grace of God”!

Grace is the unmerited favor of God and comes only by Jesus Christ!

A church is not a church, unless it is enriched by Jesus Christ!

To be “in Christ” is to be a member of the church!

It is the church that is the “Body of Christ”!

1Co 12:27 Now ye are the body of Christ, and members in particular.

All divine powers and all qualities of character which belong to Jesus Christ, are passed on to the members of each Christian assembly, so that we all can share in the the utterance and the knowledge of God!

It is the testimony of Christ in each believer that confirms us all before God!

*****1Co 1:7 So that ye come behind in no gift; waiting for the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ:
1Co 1:8 Who shall also confirm you unto the end, that ye may be blameless in the day of our Lord Jesus Christ.

We can see that all believers stand on level ground at the cross of Jesus!

No Christian is inferior to any other Christian!

AND, even in the beginnings of the New Testament church, we can see that they knew that the Lord could come back at any time to get His Church!

Most all prophesy concern the restoration of Israel and not the Church!

The process of being made holy in the eyes of God consist of:

1) Salvation: Repenting of sin and accepting the Lord Jesus Christ as your personal Savior.

2) Sanctification: Christ saving work involves the completed, the on-going and the future saving activity of each individual saint of God.

We are saved, we are being saved, we are saved daily and we will be saved eternally!

3) Glorification: The completed work of salvation and sanctification!

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.

Heb 2:9 But we see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels for the suffering of death, crowned with glory and honour; that he by the grace of God should taste death for every man.
Heb 2:10 For it became him, for whom are all things, and by whom are all things, in bringing many sons unto glory, to make the captain of their salvation perfect through sufferings.
Heb 2:11 For both he that sanctifieth and they who are sanctified are all of one: for which cause he is not ashamed to call them brethren,
Heb 2:12 Saying, I will declare thy name unto my brethren, in the midst of the church will I sing praise unto thee.

When we see Jesus on the “day of Jesus Christ we will be like Him”!

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.

So Paul, after bragging about the truths of the church, it was now time to address the issues of the church.

*****1Co 1:10 Now I beseech you, brethren, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that ye all speak the same thing, and that there be no divisions among you; but that ye be perfectly joined together in the same mind and in the same judgment.

What was the first problem of the Church at Corinth?

The congregation was split into separate groups!

Now it is not possible for every Christian to agree on every detail in the Word of God but it is extremely important that we all agree on the doctrine of the Word of God and the doctrine of Salvation!

In reality and in content, the Bible stands distinct from all other religious writings!

For example, the Koran was written by by one man under the guidance of Mohammed’s father in law. Later a group of Arab scholars produced a unified version and destroyed as many variant copies as they could find trying to preserve the unity of the Koran.

The Bible on the other hand was written by at least 40 different writers from diverse vocations and across separate periods of time and each writer had very little knowledge of what previous writers had written but in the end the Bible is a completely unified book!

There are no contradictions or inconsistencies within the pages of the Bible!

This is true because the Holy Spirit caused the writings of the Word of God!

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.

In unity, within these 66 Books of the Bible, they teach of the “Triunity of God”, God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit!

In unity these books teach the “Deity of the Lord Jesus Christ”!

In unity these books teach of the “Personality of the Holy Spirit”!

In unity these books teach of the “fall of and the depravity of mankind”!

And in unity these books teach of the “Salvation by the Grace of God”!

Is is apparent to anyone who takes a serious look at the Word of God, that no human being or beings could have orchestrated the harmony of the teachings of these divine Scriptures!

Had God not revealed Himself in the person of the Lord Jesus Christ, then the Bible would be as useless as the other so called religious writings such as the Koran!

Luk 2:30 For mine eyes have seen thy salvation,
Luk 2:31 Which thou hast prepared before the face of all people;
Luk 2:32 A light to lighten the Gentiles, and the glory of thy people Israel.

Rom 16:25 Now to him that is of power to stablish you according to my gospel, and the preaching of Jesus Christ, according to the revelation of the mystery, which was kept secret since the world began,
Rom 16:26 But now is made manifest, and by the scriptures of the prophets, according to the commandment of the everlasting God, made known to all nations for the obedience of faith:

There is no excuse for any Church to be divided over the consistent Word of God!

There is no excuse for the many denominations to be so divided over the consistent Word of God!

There is only one Word of God and there is only ONE CHURCH of the Living God!

Our God is ALIVE!

SO, why was this Church in Corinth so divided?

*****1Co 1:11 For it hath been declared unto me of you, my brethren, by them which are of the house of Chloe, that there are contentions among you.

Contentions from strife or struggles in an effort to obtain something that no one else has!

There is only One God and there is only one means of Salvation and the Word of God is specific!

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.

To dispute this fact of the Word of God will bring contention to all Bible Doctrine!

Chloe was a concerned Christian who she, and her household, had stayed in touch with the Apostle Paul but Paul had also gotten his information from other sources.

1Co 5:1 It is reported commonly that there is fornication among you, and such fornication as is not so much as named among the Gentiles, that one should have his father’s wife.
1Co 5:2 And ye are puffed up, and have not rather mourned, that he that hath done this deed might be taken away from among you.

The Church in Corinth were grouping themselves around various human leaders and this caused divisions in the Church.

The was a church where the people had remained “Babes in Christ”!

*****1Co 1:12 Now this I say, that every one of you saith, I am of Paul; and I of Apollos; and I of Cephas; and I of Christ.

Whenever we try to group ourselves around other human beings we will automatically reject other leaders and their followers!

At this time in Corinth, Paul, Apollos, and Cephas (Peter) all preached the same sermon and had the same message.

It is true that the authority of Paul was being questioned by many because of false men of the Jews who were called the Judaizers.

It is true that Apollos was an eloquent speaker.

But there is no evidence that Peter had ever preached at this Church but we do know that many Christians had escape Jerusalem because of persecution and had heard Peter preach.

And it seems that there some who still considered Christ to be a mere man, which ignores the Word of God!

*****1Co 1:13 Is Christ divided? was Paul crucified for you? or were ye baptized in the name of Paul?

What are the facts?

It is the Word of God that is to be the final authority in every congregation of believers!

No human leader, human teacher, Pastor or Preacher or Pope has the final nor the sole authority of the Word of God!

2Pe 1:19 We have also a more sure word of prophecy; whereunto ye do well that ye take heed, as unto a light that shineth in a dark place, until the day dawn, and the day star arise in your hearts:
2Pe 1:20 Knowing this first, that no prophecy of the scripture is of any private interpretation.

We must accept a literal interpretation of the Scriptures!

Literal means that the words and sentences of the Scriptures are understood in their normal meaning,

Literal means that the words are to be understood in a normal communication or a normal conversation.

For instance Psalms 22 has been fulfilled literally.

Isaiah 53:1-12 has been fulfilled literally.

Micah 5:2 has been fulfilled literally!

There is only one truth of all the Scriptures literally!

Joh 3:16 For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.

It is not just necessary that we read the Scriptures, it is also important that we study the Scriptures!

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

Because all Scripture comes from God!

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.

Then Paul describes his personal calling.

*****1Co 1:17 For Christ sent me not to baptize, but to preach the gospel: not with wisdom of words, lest the cross of Christ should be made of none effect.

Paul “is not saying” it is not important to be Baptized.

Paul “is not saying” that he did not speak in the wisdom of the Scriptures.

Paul “is saying” the most important message of the Church is the “Gospel of Jesus Christ”!

Until salvation is secure, no Church ordinance has any real meaning!

Until salvation is secure there is no wisdom that can be gleaned from the Scriptures!

There is nothing that can become a substitute for the truth of the Cross!

What was the commandment given to Paul?

Act 26:17 Delivering thee from the people, and from the Gentiles, unto whom now I send thee,
Act 26:18 To open their eyes, and to turn them from darkness to light, and from the power of Satan unto God, “that they may receive forgiveness of sins, and inheritance among them which are sanctified by faith that is in me”.

Many of the Body of Christ have gotten away from this most important message to the lost, which is the “good news” of Jesus Christ!

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:
1Co 15:5 And that he was seen of Cephas, then of the twelve:

The preaching of the cross must return as the most important message in each and every Church!

*****1Co 1:18 For the preaching of the cross is to them that perish foolishness; but unto us which are saved it is the power of God.

Being saved is not an intellectual process!

Salvation only becomes the power of God when the Holy Spirit moves into the believer!

Those that regard Christianity as foolishness prove to others that are perishing in their own sin and on their way to Hell!

BUT, All mankind are fools until we meet Christ Jesus at the foot of His cross!

Tit 3:3 For we ourselves also were sometimes foolish, disobedient, deceived, serving divers lusts and pleasures, living in malice and envy, hateful, and hating one another.
Tit 3:4 But after that the kindness and love of God our Saviour toward man appeared,
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;
Tit 3:6 Which he shed on us abundantly through Jesus Christ our Saviour;
Tit 3:7 That being justified by his grace, we should be made heirs according to the hope of eternal life.

It is the preaching of the “Gospel” that brings salvation!

1Co 1:21 For after that in the wisdom of God the world by wisdom knew not God, it pleased God by the foolishness of preaching to save them that believe.

The most important message to the Church that is making disciples, is to keep the main thing, The Main Thing!

The Main Thing of the Church is Jesus Christ!

*****1Co 1:26 For ye see your calling, brethren, how that not many wise men after the flesh, not many mighty, not many noble, are called:

The Apostle Paul was addressing the membership of those of Corinth.

Paul said to look at your own church, the ones God has called and blessed.

It is a fact that in most every church you will not find many that the world considers to be wise.

There are usually not many of nobility or families of the so-called “well to do”.

There are usually not many people of power that attend church.

BUT, God calls “whosoever will come” in spite of these things!

The Apostle Paul was once a self-righteous religious zealot, but he was called.

These Corinthians came from one of the most evil cities in the world of that day, but they were also called.

No one is too sinful, no one is too evil, no one is so out of touch with reality, that God will not save if they answer God’s call!

All the Apostles of Jesus Christ were considered to be unlearned and ignorant men by the religions of that day!

Act 4:13 Now when they saw the boldness of Peter and John, and perceived that they were unlearned and ignorant men, they marvelled; and they took knowledge of them, that they had been with Jesus.

*****1Co 1:27 But God hath chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the wise; and God hath chosen the weak things of the world to confound the things which are mighty;
1Co 1:28 And base things of the world, and things which are despised, hath God chosen, yea, and things which are not, to bring to nought things that are:

God chose to begin His Church with these men, that the world considered to be unlearned and ignorant men!

The lost world may admire men of power, men of royalty, men of great knowledge, men of a high social status, and men of great riches, but none of these can ever guarantee eternal life!

As the world has found out, it is those that call on the Lord Jesus Christ that have obtained salvation and life eternal because God is no respecter of persons.

Rom 10:8 But what saith it? The word is nigh thee, even in thy mouth, and in thy heart: that is, the word of faith, which we preach;
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 10:11 For the scripture saith, Whosoever believeth on him shall not be ashamed.
Rom 10:12 For there is no difference between the Jew and the Greek: for the same Lord over all is rich unto all that call upon him.
Rom 10:13 For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.

God’s foolishness truly does confound all those that seek the wisdom of this world!

God does these things to erase the pride of life from all those that have faith in the Lord Jesus Christ!

It is the pride of this life that becomes the stumbling block to those that need to seek the Lord Jesus Christ the author of eternal life!

*****1Co 1:29 That no flesh should glory in his presence.

Justification before God can come only by “faith”!

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.

By using what this world considers to be nobodies, God shows that all wisdom and all power are entirely His own!

There will be no boasting of human greatness or human wisdom when we stand before God at the “judgment seat of Christ”.

The wisdom of the believer simply comes from Jesus Christ!

1Co 2:16 For who hath known the mind of the Lord, that he may instruct him? But we have the mind of Christ.

*****1Co 1:30 But of him are ye in Christ Jesus, “who of God is made unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption”:

Jesus Christ is our wisdom!

Jesus Christ is our righteousness!

Jesus Christ is our sanctification!

Jesus Christ is our redemption!

Eph 2:10 For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them.

Humanism nor human philosophy can never bring these things to any person!

We are nothing in ourselves but we can find all we need in the Lord Jesus Christ!

Rom 8:1 There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.
Rom 8:2 For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus hath made me free from the law of sin and death.

A Church that is bound up in Christ Jesus and the love of God will not have divisions!

But, because we are only humans there can never be a perfect church!

It is only by Jesus Christ that our relationship with God is restored and it is only by Jesus Christ that any rifts that come between believers can be restored!

Jesus is all we need!

Questions!

Let’s Pray!

The Gospel Promises

The Gospel Promises

Book of Galatians 3:10-18

What does God ask of us?

God simply ask us to believe!

This has always been what God has asked since the beginning of time!

If we will only believe what God says, God has made some special promises to us all.

2Pe 1:2 Grace and peace be multiplied unto you through the knowledge of God, and of Jesus our Lord,
2Pe 1:3 According as his divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness, through the knowledge of him that hath called us to glory and virtue:
2Pe 1:4 “Whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises”: that by these ye might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust.

What is the truth?

It is by the promises of God that we can partake of God’s divine nature.

It is by the promises of God that we can escape the corruption that is in this world we live in.

These promises of God are unconditional except for the one thing, that we believe what God says.

God promised that He would be our God.

God promised that mankind, His creation, would be His people.

God promised that He would one day dwell amongst His people.

God promised that He had a plan to make all these things happen!

God has made available to us all, His plan in His Written Word, and God’s plan cannot fail!

God has asked us all to teach those we come in contact with, the Word of God, but God made a promise that one day even this would no longer be necessary.

Jer 31:34 And they shall teach no more every man his neighbour, and every man his brother, saying, Know the LORD: “for they shall all know me”, from the least of them unto the greatest of them, saith the LORD: for I will forgive their iniquity, and I will remember their sin no more.

God’s promises are being fulfilled before our eyes and He will soon be with us and we with Him!

God’s plan requires us only to believe, “to have Faith” because there is no other means by which we can be a part of God’s plan!

There never was, there is not now, and there never will be another way to spend eternity with Our God!

All those that think they can work their way into God’s Heaven will remain under the “Curse of Sin”!

Let’s pickup where we left off last week.

*****Gal 3:10 For as many as are of the works of the law are under the curse: for it is written, Cursed is every one that continueth not in all things which are written in the book of the law to do them.

We must not be confused, to be “Cursed” is to be condemned and doomed to the wrath of God!

We must also not be confused about sin, Sin Has Consequences!

What God told Adam?

Gen 2:16 And the LORD God commanded the man, saying, Of every tree of the garden thou mayest freely eat:
Gen 2:17 But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die.

What were the results of Adam’s sin?

Gen 3:17 And unto Adam he said, Because thou hast hearkened unto the voice of thy wife, and hast eaten of the tree, of which I commanded thee, saying, Thou shalt not eat of it: cursed is the ground for thy sake; in sorrow shalt thou eat of it all the days of thy life;
Gen 3:18 Thorns also and thistles shall it bring forth to thee; and thou shalt eat the herb of the field;
Gen 3:19 In the sweat of thy face shalt thou eat bread, till thou return unto the ground; for out of it wast thou taken: for dust thou art, and unto dust shalt thou return.

1) All mankind was sentenced to earn a livelihood from a cursed ground. This would mean toil and sweat.

2) The women are sentenced to suffering in childbirth and we know that this is still true.

3) The women are sentenced to be subjects of their husbands.

4) Then at the end of life, all mankind would return to the dust that we are all made of.

It is not work that is the curse because God will always expect some sort work from us.

It is the fact that work will not be a pleasant thing. There will always be sorrow, toil, frustration, sweat, and weariness that are connected with work here on this Earth.

Even though this curse fell on Adam because he had allowed the words of his wife to take precedence over the Word of God.

On this Earth we live on, the dust, the elements from which all life has been made are included in this curse.

Under this curse, all God’s creation would begin to die and decay and return to that dust from which all life on this Earth came.

It should be obvious that any failure to obey the Word of God brings a curse!

Then if the Law carries a curse, then it could not then bring salvation for it is impossible to keep all the Word of God, all the time, because we can never eliminate, that desire, or that lust that is in us all.

A person either keeps all the Law or that person is cursed!

Cursed then means we will stand before our Righteous Creator and bear the punishment for our sin!

It is that same Word of God that presents that punishment for sin, which is “Death”!

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

But by God’s Grace, He has provided a means to escape this “Death”.

This death is not just the death of the body as we all will one day die.

This death is the eternal separation from the Living God!

For those that think they have lived free of sin and are still able to do so, are just deceiving themselves.

Rom 7:9 For I was alive without the law once: but when the commandment came, sin revived, and I died.
Rom 7:10 And the commandment, which was ordained to life, I found to be unto death.
Rom 7:11 For sin, taking occasion by the commandment, deceived me, and by it slew me.

The same Word of God that contains the Law that some people brag that they can keep all their lives, also says that no one can be justified by that Law.

*****Gal 3:11 But that no man is justified by the law in the sight of God, it is evident: for, The just shall live by faith.

All those that think they can approach God by keeping some laws or doing some works will fall under the curse because these are impossible things to do!

God has said from the beginning, if you want to depend on obedience of all the law for salvation then that’s fine, but you must live all your life by that law knowing there is no room for failure!

Lev 18:5 Ye shall therefore keep my statutes, and my judgments: “which if a man do, he shall live in them”: I am the LORD.

The Word of God says that there is a righteousness that can come by the Law.

Rom 10:5 For Moses describeth the righteousness which is of the law, That the man which doeth those things shall live by them.

Note the Jews had 613 laws, not including the laws of government, and not one individual was able to keep all those laws all the days of their lives.

Every honest human being knows that they cannot keep even the Law of God in every single detail.

Every honest human being knows that they cannot even keep all the laws of man in every single detail.

Trying to obey some laws is seeking to be justified by works.

Hab 2:4 Behold, his soul which is lifted up is not upright in him: but the just shall live by his faith.

God says that it is only by “Faith” that we can be justified!

If we trust the Word of God then we would be fools to ignore God’s chosen way to approach Him!

No man can be justified by any law in the sight of God!

Only God is perfect!

Only God can be perfectly righteous!

There is no man that can achieve perfection on his own!

Therefore no man can become righteous on his own!

The Law carries with it a curse!

Faith carries with it life!

SO, why is this such a hard choice?

*****Gal 3:12 And the law is not of faith: but, The man that doeth them shall live in them.

It is a fact that the law requires no faith.

The law only requires total and absolute obedience!

This does not mean that a legalist cannot have faith but it does mean that the law requires no faith!

When you decide to trust in the law for your salvation, then God says you must be perfect in your obedience to the law.

There is no room for error!

God gives us the laws that are required to meet justification, in written form. We call it the Bible. Some people just say The Book!

God also says there is a curse attached to those laws.

God says those that trust in their own obedience to those laws must be perfect in that obedience!

This is the stumbling block of the law!

Rom 10:3 For they being ignorant of God’s righteousness, and going about to establish their own righteousness, have not submitted themselves unto the righteousness of God.
Rom 10:4 For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to every one that believeth.

What is the greatest commandment in the Bible?

Deu 6:5 And thou shalt love the LORD thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might.

The Law then had only one purpose!

The law was given to show all mankind their sin and to cause within them, a personal guilt for being disobedient to God and to God’s Law!

Rom 3:19 Now we know that what things soever the law saith, it saith to them who are under the law: that every mouth may be stopped, and all the world may become guilty before God.

The law then is inferior to the “Grace of God”!

When we study the Bible we will see that the law was given to Moses by angels and from Moses to mankind and Moses was the mediator of the law as long as he lived.

But is was God Himself who gave the promise of “Grace” and “Righteousness” to Abraham!

The Law comes with certain conditions that must be met.

The “Grace” of God is unconditional requiring only “Faith”.

That’s why Jesus said He did not come to destroy the law!

Mat 5:17 Think not that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets: I am not come to destroy, but to fulfil.

The Lord Jesus Christ, The Messiah, came to reveal the full depth of the law.

The Messiah came to this Earth to redeem us all from the terrible curse of the law!

*****Gal 3:13 Christ hath redeemed us from the curse of the law, being made a curse for us: for it is written, Cursed is every one that hangeth on a tree:

What are the facts of Scripture?

Christ Jesus has bought us all back and paid the ransom to free us all from the “Curse” of the law with His own blood!

Jesus Christ took our condemnation, our doom, our death, and our punishment upon His own self by becoming a curse for us and He took our place.

2Co 5:21 For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him.

The Apostle Paul illustrates these things for us by quoting from the Old Testament:

Deu 21:22 And if a man have committed a sin worthy of death, and he be to be put to death, and thou hang him on a tree:
Deu 21:23 His body shall not remain all night upon the tree, but thou shalt in any wise bury him that day; (for he that is hanged is accursed of God;) that thy land be not defiled, which the LORD thy God giveth thee for an inheritance.

This “does not” mean that a man is cursed because he is executed on a tree or as we know a cross.

This “does” mean that any man who is executed upon a tree, a cross, is there because he fell under the curse of the law!

The cross portrays the death of the lawbreaker and not true life that can only be obtained by ‘Faith” and God’s law of Grace”!

It is “Grace” that fulfills the Law of God!

Jesus Christ bore the curse of the law in order to open the door of blessing to all mankind!

Jesus Christ bore the curse of the law in order to fulfill the promises made to Abraham and to be a blessing to “all nations”!

*****Gal 3:14 That the blessing of Abraham might come on the Gentiles through Jesus Christ; that we might receive the promise of the Spirit through faith.

Every human being that believes upon Jesus Christ, that Christ Jesus bore our own curse, is accepted by God and are all given the blessings of the true “Promised Land”.

Rev 21:1 And I saw a new heaven and a new earth: for the first heaven and the first earth were passed away; and there was no more sea.

1) There is the promise of a divine nature:

2Pe 1:4 Whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises: “that by these ye might be partakers of the divine nature”, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust.

2) There is the promise of 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 3:4 Nicodemus saith unto him, How can a man be born when he is old? can he enter the second time into his mother’s womb, and be born?
Joh 3:5 Jesus answered, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God.
Joh 3:6 That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit.

3) There is the promise of becoming a new creation:

2Co 5:17 Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.

4) There is the promise of becoming a new man:

Eph 4:24 And that ye put on the new man, which after God is created in righteousness and true holiness.

It is the indwelling of God’s Holy Spirit that causes all these promises to be fulfilled.

Eph 1:13 In whom ye also trusted, after that ye heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation: in whom also after that ye believed, ye were sealed with that holy Spirit of promise,
Eph 1:14 Which is the earnest of our inheritance until the redemption of the purchased possession, unto the praise of his glory.

It is the fulfillment of these promises that allow us into God’s New Heaven!

These promises cannot be broken!

*****Gal 3:15 Brethren, I speak after the manner of men; Though it be but a man’s covenant, yet if it be confirmed, no man disannulleth, or addeth thereto.

We should not ever forget that the Bible teaches us that true life is a life in the presence of God. In this teaching the Bible teaches that though this body of flesh, ages with time and will one day die, true life can only begin at that time.

In the O.T.

Dan 12:2 And many of them that sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake, some to everlasting life, and some to shame and everlasting contempt.

In the N.T.

Joh 5:28 Marvel not at this: for the hour is coming, in the which all that are in the graves shall hear his voice,
Joh 5:29 And shall come forth; they that have done good, unto the resurrection of life; and they that have done evil, unto the resurrection of damnation.

Notice there is a place of everlasting shame but also a place of everlasting life.

It is during this life we now live that we can make a choice of our eternal destination!

2Co 6:2 (For he saith, I have heard thee in a time accepted, and in the day of salvation have I succoured thee: behold, now is the accepted time; behold, now is the day of salvation.)

Paul says, let’s look at this and just take God and eternal salvation out of the picture for a moment.

1Co 15:32 If after the manner of men I have fought with beasts at Ephesus, what advantageth it me, “if the dead rise not? let us eat and drink; for to morrow we die”.

This is living in the world of the Atheist!

It is estimated that less than 3% of the population of this world say they are Atheists and most of those will call on a god before their death.

This means that 97% of the world’s population believe in some sort of supernatural being.

97% of our world of over 7 billion people believe in an after life and this many people cannot be wrong, it is just that the Atheist make the most noise!

97% of the world believe that the basis for eternal security does not rest with man, but with God!

The Bible teaches us that the eternal security of each believer is based on the work of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit.

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.

It is the Father who has the power to keep us secure in our salvation.

Rom 8:28 And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.
Rom 8:29 For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren.
Rom 8:30 Moreover whom he did predestinate, them he also called: and whom he called, them he also justified: and whom he justified, them he also glorified.

And the Father will not lose any of those to eternal death, that trust Him!

Rom 5:7 For scarcely for a righteous man will one die: yet peradventure for a good man some would even dare to die.
Rom 5:8 But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.
Rom 5:9 Much more then, being now justified by his blood, we shall be saved from wrath through him.
Rom 5:10 For if, when we were enemies, we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, being reconciled, we shall be saved by his life.

Now knowing all these things, do we really believe that God will keep His promises or not?

As we have seen God took full responsibility for Abraham’s destiny, because Abraham believed God!

The Apostle Paul says that even when men make a covenant with themselves, that covenant is expected to stand!

In the old days, a covenant was sealed with a hand shake.

In our day covenants are seal by legal binding documents.

By law, the promises of a covenant are sealed and both parties are bound by the words of that covenant!

No one outside the existing parties of that covenant can add to or change the wording of that covenant!

And now Paul describes the covenant made with Abraham.

*****Gal 3:16 Now to Abraham and his seed were the promises made. He saith not, And to seeds, as of many; but as of one, And to thy seed, which is Christ.

First, we see that the covenant made to Abraham also included his “seed”.

Second, the important question is “Who” is meant by the seed of Abraham?

Since the word “Seed” is singular and not plural then we can expect this “Seed” to be only one person.

The same Bible that teaches us all the wonderful things of God says that this “Seed” was Jesus Christ.

The entire Old Testament leads us to this “Seed” of Abraham!

What this means is, that the promises made to Abraham have been passed down to Jesus Christ.

Now if we just think like a man, then this is what the Word of God teaches!

**It is Jesus Christ who will inherit all the promised land, which includes the land of Canaan, the entire world, and the new world that is to come!

**It is all those that “believe” that shall inherit the world of Jesus Christ and reign with Christ throughout all eternity.

Mat 5:5 Blessed are the meek: for they shall inherit the earth.

**It means that only by “Faith” can the believer become justified and acceptable to God!

Rom 4:13 For the promise, that he should be the heir of the world, was not to Abraham, or to his seed, through the law, but through the righteousness of faith.

Abraham’s part in the covenant with God, was to believe!

Rom 4:3 For what saith the scripture? Abraham believed God, and it was counted unto him for righteousness.

God’s part in this same covenant, was to keep and to fulfill all His promises!

The Apostle Paul says, that if you just think according to the way most men think of man-made laws you would still come to this same conclusion, when you look at the details of the covenant God made with Abraham.

And the pure fact is, that God made this covenant with Abraham some 430 years before the Laws of Moses were even written.

*****Gal 3:17 And this I say, that the covenant, that was confirmed before of God in Christ, the law, which was four hundred and thirty years after, cannot disannul, that it should make the promise of none effect.

When the Law was given to Moses, the covenant given to Abraham had not yet been fulfilled!

Joh 1:17 For the law was given by Moses, but grace and truth came by Jesus Christ.

And Jesus said not only had He come to fulfill the covenant given to Abraham, but He had also come to fulfill the Laws of Moses which had a totally different purpose.

Mat 5:17 Think not that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets: I am not come to destroy, but to fulfil.
Mat 5:18 For verily I say unto you, Till heaven and earth pass, one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law, till all be fulfilled.

Jesus was not just speaking of the Laws of Moses but all the Word of God.

When we come face to face with God, we will be judged by the Word of God!

The point of this sermon by the Apostle Paul remains that no man is justified by the law and neither can they be!

God’s covenant, God’s inheritance, and God’s eternal security come by “Promise” and “Not By Law”!

*****Gal 3:18 For if the inheritance be of the law, it is no more of promise: but God gave it to Abraham by promise.

What did Abraham inherit?

The most important thing that Abraham inherited was his own righteousness!

Gen 15:4 And, behold, the word of the LORD came unto him, saying, This shall not be thine heir; but he that shall come forth out of thine own bowels shall be thine heir.
Gen 15:5 And he brought him forth abroad, and said, Look now toward heaven, and tell the stars, if thou be able to number them: and he said unto him, So shall thy seed be.
Gen 15:6 And he believed in the LORD; and he counted it to him for righteousness.

And Abraham’s righteousness came by “Faith” and not by any law!

It was only after being accepted before God that Abraham was given the privilege, by Grace, of living forever in the New Heaven and the New Earth.

What did Jesus promise to all those that have Faith?

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.
Joh 14:3 And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also.

Thank God, He is more about His promise than He is about some Law.

God has never changed from the promises He has made and He never will!

Mal 3:6 For I am the LORD, I change not;

What was the highest priority of the Apostles?

Luk 17:5 And the apostles said unto the Lord, Increase our faith.

We should also pray to God to increase our “Faith”!

This should also be our priority as we grow in the Grace and Knowledge of the Lord!

Questions?

Let’s Pray!