Eternal Victory

The Eternal Victory of the King

Book of Matthew Chapter 28

There is so much of this world that knows about the Lord Jesus Christ that His existence cannot be denied!

All human history has been transformed by the person of Jesus Christ!

Even the calendar was changed because of the truth of Jesus Christ.

The Roman ruler of the known world acknowledged the truth of Jesus Christ.

So we can see that the resurrection from the dead of the Lord Jesus Christ is the most important event in all of history.

It is the greatest day for all Christians and all humanity!

You cannot be a Christian and deny the deity of the Lord Jesus Christ!

The Word of God does not give Christians the option of denying the deity of Jesus Christ!

You are not a believer, if you deny the virgin birth of the Lord Jesus Christ.
You are not a believer, if you deny the true life and death of the Lord Jesus Christ.
You are not a believer, if you deny the “bodily” resurrection of the Lord Jesus Christ.

When we say the “Good News” the “Gospel” then these are the things that should come to mind!

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:

Verse 1

*Mat 28:1 In the end of the sabbath, as it began to dawn toward the first day of the week, came Mary Magdalene and the other Mary to see the sepulchre.

Sunday, the first day of the new week should remind all who have been “Born Again” that we cannot die. Oh, we may give up this wicked body of flesh, but our souls are bound for Heaven to be forever with our Holy God.

Sunday is the Lord’s Day!

As Saturday, some say the Sabbath, the day of rest ends, we should lift our eyes toward Heaven and on the Lord’s Day gaze upon the face of our Creator.

Sunday is the “Day of the Lord” and the day we need to worship the Living God!

It is the day to claim the Word of God for the coming week and all weeks in our future.
It is the day to show our gratitude for all the things our Lord has provided and to thank Him for all the things He has promised to provide!
It is the day to show the world we truly love the Lord.
It is a day to lift our eyes toward Heaven and just “Praise the Lord”!

It is the third day after the Lord Jesus was buried that Mary Magdalene and that other Mary, which to me means she was not the mother of Christ Jesus.

Surely the mother of our Lord would not have been described as “the other Mary”.

She may have even been the sister to the Mother of Jesus as there were many forms of the name Mary such as Miriam.

We know at the death of the Lord Jesus she was with Mary the mother of Christ.

Joh 19:25 Now there stood by the cross of Jesus his mother, and his mother’s sister, Mary the wife of Cleophas, and Mary Magdalene.

It was these two Marys, that came to the tomb at the dawning of that Sunday morning.

*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:
Mat 28:4 And for fear of him the keepers did shake, and became as dead men.

As these two saints of God approached the location of the Tomb of Jesus there was suddenly an earthquake.

We should note that no one saw the Lord Jesus Christ exit from that tomb.

In fact the Lord Jesus Christ had left this tomb before any of these things occurred.

This angel had rolled away this stone that had been rolled into place by Joseph of Arimathea.

Mat 27:59 And when Joseph had taken the body, he wrapped it in a clean linen cloth,
Mat 27:60 And laid it in his own new tomb, which he had hewn out in the rock: and he rolled a great stone to the door of the sepulchre, and departed.

We must never think that this angel removed the stone for the Lord Jesus to exit the tomb. He removed the stone so these women and any others could look into the tomb and see that Jesus was no longer there.

There had been at least four soldiers guarding the tomb of Jesus from the moment He was buried, and it can be said that these hardened soldiers became so afraid that they passed out.

Mat 27:63 Saying, Sir, we remember that that deceiver said, while he was yet alive, After three days I will rise again.
Mat 27:64 Command therefore that the sepulchre be made sure until the third day, lest his disciples come by night, and steal him away, and say unto the people, He is risen from the dead: so the last error shall be worse than the first.
Mat 27:65 Pilate said unto them, Ye have a watch: go your way, make it as sure as ye can.
Mat 27:66 So they went, and made the sepulchre sure, sealing the stone, and setting a watch.

This also should give us some idea of how we may react when we first see the Lord face to face.

Every precaution was taken to ensure that no one came to remove the body of the Lord Jesus Christ.

Our Savior did not need any help to leave that tomb!

Joh 10:17 Therefore doth my Father love me, because I lay down my life, that I might take it again.

We should also understand that these guards, once they awoke, were also afraid for their own safety.

This tomb was like a jail in the sense that a guard could be executed for allowing a prisoner to escape, especially one whom the government had taken such precautions.

We should understand that the power of God is awesome, but it can also be terrifying.

These guards witnessed things that were unbelievable, and they did not know what to do.

Remember these were hardened soldiers who had been through many of the wars of Rome.

They became so afraid of their lives they went to the Chief Priest rather than their own commanders.

For these women, they did not know what to think, seeing all these things. Their only concern was for our Savior.

This is also a great lesson for us.

No matter what is going on in this world, we must stay focused upon our Savior!

This angel answered because he understood the conversation that was taking place between these women.

*Mat 28:5 And the angel answered and said unto the women, Fear not ye: for I know that ye seek Jesus, which was crucified.
Mat 28:6 He is not here: for he is risen, as he said. Come, see the place where the Lord lay.

We can be sure that these believers were afraid just as any of us would have been.

This angel calmed their fears by saying “I know you are seeking Jesus”.

The same Jesus who was crucified because there is only one Jesus Christ.

It is this one event that brought recognition to Christianity even though it is still being denied.

These women saw a real angel and maybe two according to the Book of Luke.

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

It is possible that there were even more angels about the tomb only showing their selves to converse with those who came.

These angels appeared as men and nowhere in the Bible do, we see women mentioned as angels.

Angels are the messengers of God!

These women had no reason to fear because they came because they loved the Lord!

Mat 7:7 Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you:
Mat 7:8 For every one that asketh receiveth; and he that seeketh findeth; and to him that knocketh it shall be opened.

The Lord Jesus Christ gave Himself to be crucified for all mankind, but it is important that we believe this!

2Co 5:14 For the love of Christ constraineth us; because we thus judge, that if one died for all, then were all dead:
2Co 5:15 And that he died for all, that they which live should not henceforth live unto themselves, but unto him which died for them, and rose again.
2Co 5:16 Wherefore henceforth know we no man after the flesh: yea, though we have known Christ after the flesh, yet now henceforth know we him no more.
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.

Knowing these women still had doubts these angels said come and see.

Much of the world had an opportunity to see the truth of the Lord, but the Lord Jesus said we need to have “faith”.

They also told these two Marys to tell His disciples that the Lord Jesus had risen from His death and was going to Galilee just as Jesus had told them.

As they hurried to tell the disciples they met the Lord Jesus Christ who called out to them.

We can read about this thing in the four Gospels, and we can believe them all as the truth.

We should note that the Lord Jesus used the phrase “my brethren” even at this time.

The one thing we know for sure about these things is that this tomb is still empty, it was only needed for three days.

When those guards awoken, they feared for their lives so much so they reported to the Chief Priests rather than their own commanders, for they would have been put to death!

They may have even taken the money they were given and left Israel.

*Mat 28:11 Now when they were going, behold, some of the watch came into the city, and shewed unto the chief priests all the things that were done.
Mat 28:12 And when they were assembled with the elders, and had taken counsel, they gave large money unto the soldiers,
Mat 28:13 Saying, Say ye, His disciples came by night, and stole him away while we slept.
Mat 28:14 And if this come to the governor’s ears, we will persuade him, and secure you.
Mat 28:15 So they took the money, and did as they were taught: and this saying is commonly reported among the Jews until this day.

1) We should understand that there is no excuse for trained soldiers to fall asleep on guard duty.

There were enough of them that they could sleep in shifts.

This thing would be under the penalty of death for a Roman soldier to do such a thing.

2) The followers of Jesus Christ had no motive to steal the body of Jesus Christ.

The things that He had said He would do could only occur if He was in that tomb.

The disciples never made such a plan to kidnap the body of Christ.

What could they have possibly done with the body of Christ if they did possess it?

3) We should understand that the theft of the body of Christ would have been a Capital Crime punishable by death because the tomb had been sealed with the seal of Pilate and that of Rome.

None of the disciples were ever brought to trial nor arrested.

4) These soldiers realizing these things went to the only place that might save them from death.

They realized they may have seen an act of God.

They were very familiar with the false gods of Rome who were said to have such powers.

5) They were certain that no one would believe what had happened to be the truth.

So we see the Chief Priests and the Elders of Israel sough to discredit these things the soldiers reported.

It seems that money still works to buy a new story or to create lies.

What we need to understand is that the truth will always prevail.

Pro 12:19 The lip of truth shall be established for ever: but a lying tongue is but for a moment.
Pro 12:20 Deceit is in the heart of them that imagine evil: but to the counsellors of peace is joy.

Treachery had been used to arrest the Lord Jesus Christ.
An illegal court had tried Him.
False charges had been brought against Him before Pilate.
Now bribery was being used to discredit the resurrection of Jesus Christ.

As believers we know that the truth will always prevail.

Joh 8:32 And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.

We know many things the disciples did from the other three Gospels, but we now read where the disciples went to Galilee just as the Lord Jesus instructed.

*Mat 28:16 Then the eleven disciples went away into Galilee, into a mountain where Jesus had appointed them.
Mat 28:17 And when they saw him, they worshipped him: but some doubted.

We see that Matthew closes out what the Holy Spirit gave to him with the command to all Christians.

To Matthew the Lord Jesus Christ was the Son of David as prophesied and the soon coming King of Israel and King of all the world.

Mat 1:1 The book of the generation of Jesus Christ, the son of David, the son of Abraham.

Mat 5:35 Nor by the earth; for it is his footstool: neither by Jerusalem; for it is the city of the great King.

Now Matthew writes that the Lord Jesus is risen just as He had said.

Now in the power of the resurrection, we are all to go forth proclaiming the Lord Jesus and His eternal kingdom.

The eleven disciples traveled to Galilee to meet their Savior as He had instructed but some still had doubts that Jesus would be there.

We can trust what the Lord tells us because He would never lie to us!

We have appointed places where we are to meet the Lord and we should never doubt that He will be there!

1) We will meet Jesus in our worship if it is in Spirit and Truth.

Joh 4:23 But the hour cometh, and now is, when the true worshippers shall worship the Father in spirit and in truth: for the Father seeketh such to worship him.

Our worship is not where we go, our worship is where Jesus is at, and He is only in places that preach the truth!

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

2) We will meet Jesus in our Bible study.

Joh 5:39 Search the scriptures; for in them ye think ye have eternal life: and they are they which testify of me.

3) We will meet Jesus in our prayers.

Joh 14:13 And whatsoever ye shall ask in my name, that will I do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son.
Joh 14:14 If ye shall ask any thing in my name, I will do it.

4) We will meet Jesus in our devotions.

There is a good chance that not just the eleven disciples met the Lord Jesus at Galilee.

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:
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.

We should be able to say that more than 500 people, some believing and some in doubt until they saw Him, if we need more proof of the Resurrection Messiah.

The Lord Jesus is real, and He is our Savior and He will return as the King of this world!

If you want to remove your doubts just go and visit the Lord Jesus Christ and you will find Him.

Act 17:27 That they should seek the Lord, if haply they might feel after him, and find him, though he be not far from every one of us:

Though many still doubt, believers know that the Lord Jesus Christ has the power of God because He is God!

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

The Lord Jesus has the power of God for one main reason, to save those who are lost.

Php 2:8 And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross.
Php 2:9 Wherefore God also hath highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above every name:
Php 2:10 That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth;
Php 2:11 And that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.

To those who reject the Lord Jesus Christ, you should know that you will still bow to Him.

His authority is over all the known universe and all the invisible creation.

He is the Lord of the angelic host.

Isa 2:12 For the day of the LORD of hosts shall be upon every one that is proud and lofty, and upon every one that is lifted up; and he shall be brought low:

The Lord Jesus Christ will rule this world for 1000 years!

Rev 20:4 And I saw thrones, and they sat upon them, and judgment was given unto them: and I saw the souls of them that were beheaded for the witness of Jesus, and for the word of God, and which had not worshipped the beast, neither his image, neither had received his mark upon their foreheads, or in their hands; and they lived and reigned with Christ a thousand years.

The most important thing to the believer is His power to forgive sins.

Joh 5:22 For the Father judgeth no man, but hath committed all judgment unto the Son:

Joh 5:27 And hath given him authority to execute judgment also, because he is the Son of man.

There is no one or nothing that has more power than the One True God!

The power of the Lord Jesus Christ gives us confidence that our sin has been forgiven and we have that personal relationship with our Creator.

He asks only one thing of us.

*Mat 28:19 Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost:
Mat 28:20 Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world. Amen.

Some mistake this as a commandment only to Pastors and Preachers and other such men but this commission is for every believer!

There is no more important Scripture in all the New Testament!

As believers we are to replicate ourselves.

We are to go each of us to make disciples who will then go forth themselves in a continuous fashion.

The Church is set forth as a place to worship the Messiah.

The next phase of the Church is to make disciples.

Any other business of the Church comes after these two things have their priorities in place.

Feeding, clothing, and helping others beyond the teaching of the “Gospel” should never be undertaken until these commandments of the Lord are working as commanded!

The Lord Jesus Christ came to seek and to save and He gave His life to accomplish these things.

What did He teach us?

Mat 10:38 And he that taketh not his cross, and followeth after me, is not worthy of me.

Mat 16:24 Then said Jesus unto his disciples, If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me.

Teach the “Gospel” no matter where we are located understanding that wherever God has placed us is our mission field.

Baptizing is just making a public confession of our faith, but our Lord Jesus was baptized, and we should follow in His ways.

We must know that God is a Holy Trinity that cannot be denied.

The Lord Jesus says, the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost (Spirit) which is Jehovah God the Great “I Am” of the Bible.

After our salvation we are to follow as best we can in all the things of Jesus Christ.

To ignore these things is to reject the truth of the Messiah!

What the Lord Jesus Christ did must be studied and studied to the point of learning so we can teach others.

The things that the Lord Jesus Christ taught should rule in our life and our societies today.

Our world has reached this point of wickedness because the Lord Jesus Christ has been rejected!

We must understand we are never alone; the Lord Jesus is with us forever, even here on this earth and forever with us when he takes us home to a place prepared for us!

Amen

Jesus Christ The Victory Of Our Faith

Jesus Christ, Our Victory Of Faith

Text: Hebrews Chapter Eleven

Our salvation comes from “Faith” in Jesus Christ!

But “faith” is not new to the New Testament.

It was Adam’s lack of faith that brought sin into this world!

Our Faith is the only way we can approach our God!

It begins with “Saving Faith”.

Eph 2:8  For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:

We must then wear the “Shield of Faith”.

Eph 6:16  Above all, taking the shield of faith, wherewith ye shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked.

We must then have the “Prayer of Faith”

Jas 1:5  If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him.
Jas 1:6  [But let him ask in faith], nothing wavering. For he that wavereth is like a wave of the sea driven with the wind and tossed.

We will not get any response from God if we do not have faith!

Saving “faith” involves three main things:

1.) Saving faith involves Knowledge: There are certain basic truths that must be believed for salvation.

We must believe that Jesus is who He says He is.

Joh 8:23  And he said unto them, Ye are from beneath; I am from above: ye are of this world; I am not of this world.
Joh 8:24  I said therefore unto you, that ye shall die in your sins: for if ye believe not that I am he, ye shall die in your sins.

We must believe that all men are sinners!
We must believe that the sacrifice of Jesus Christ was for our sin!
We must believe in His bodily resurrection!

2.) Saving faith involves Conviction: There must be an inner conviction that the Gospel is the truth “and it is the truth that makes us free”.

Jesus does not just “set” us free, because we could be caught again. To set is to place something somewhere.

Jesus “makes” us free so can never be caught again! God made a new creation, a new creature, Born Again.

Joh 8:32  And ye shall know the truth, and [the truth shall make you free].

Conviction comes from the Holy Spirit who will convince each of us that the world is full of sin, and righteousness and judgment will come from the Godhead in Heaven.

3.) Saving faith involves Trust: As a result of the knowledge of Christ Jesus and the conviction of the Holy Spirit, we must make a decision to to place our lives in the hands of of God.

And, This must come from the heart of each of us.

Our “faith” is the greatest power we have in this world!

The “Bible Faith” is to have total confidence in “all” the Word of God!

We must believe regardless of circumstances or consequences!

We should have only one operation of our “faith”.

God speaks and we hear and obey!

Ecc 12:13  Let us hear the conclusion of the whole matter: [Fear God, and keep his commandments: for this is the whole duty of man.]

Because “unbelief” is the greatest sin against God and “it is the only sin that cannot be forgiven”, we need a testimony of “faith”!

This is the theme of today’s lesson!

It is so easy to try to make our Christian life a series of rules.

We all think we need some kind of guideline to live by BUT it is our “faith” that gets us close to Our Father in Heaven and that only through His Son, we know as Jesus!

*****Heb 11:1  Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.

First of all, Faith is not some blind opinion that everything happens for the best!

Faith is not That everything in nature is the order of the universe!

Our faith is not that everything in this universe will produce good!

God said man will wax worse as time goes by, so things can never get better!

Our Faith is not based on believing, in spite of the evidence to the contrary!

Our faith has to be based on the Word of God!

Our Faith must have substance!

Faith is a real thing!

The object of that real thing must be Lord Jesus Christ!

Faith is to a Christian as a foundation is to a house!

If our foundation is not solid then the house will settle and fall.

Our “faith” is the substance of our “Hope”!

Our “Hope” must be in the promises that are recorded in the Word of God!

The evidence of our “faith” is the fact that we can believe on invisible things because we can see the visible evidence of those invisible things.

AND, Evidence is something you can take to court to prove your innocence.

Our Faith cannot be just a leap into the dark!

Our Faith cannot be an “I hope so” statement!

“Faith” is real!
“Faith” is measurable!
And we can have evidence for our “faith”!

*****Heb 11:2  For by it the elders obtained a good report.

Who were these elders?

These were the fathers of the nation of Israel.

This chapter we are studying gives us a list of most of those elders.

That good report  did not come because they were perfect people nor even because they were great leaders.

That good report came because they believed the Word of God!

God wants us to be saved by “faith” but we must not come up short because God also  wants us all to “walk by faith”!

We have already see that we are saved by “Faith”!

Our shield against all evil Is Our Shield of Faith”!

And, We have already seen that our prayers cannot be answered unless we have Faith!

In fact God will not even hear us unless we have enough faith to believe He can accomplish what we ask Him to do!

Jesus says to pick up our cross daily and follow Him but there is no need to pick up that cross unless we are “motivated by faith” in the Word of God.

We must walk by “faith” and not by sight!

*****Heb 11:3  Through faith we understand that the worlds were framed by the word of God, so that things which are seen were not made of things which do appear.

We must totally accept Creation just as it is written down for us in the Book of Genesis, The Book of the beginnings!

Evolution had no part in God’s Creation!

God spoke and things happened just as it is written!

There are many people in this world that place their faith in evolution BUT it is a fact it takes a greater faith to believe in evolution than it does in the facts of Creation written down for us.

There is no proof at all of things evolving. There is only proof of things dying!

So, Evolution is not a science it is simply another false religion!

Our “faith” in the Word of God allows us to see the future as present and the invisible, as things we can see.

Can you get a picture of your mansion in Heaven, well it’s there and it’s real and it is in God’s House in Heaven!

You see, If God did not create mankind, then man had to create God.

I find that to be impossible in my mind but all false religion is based on man-made gods or on objects that our true God created.

God started with nothing and we can see what He has created with our own eyes!

That word “framed” means that God made everything He created to fit perfectly together.

Isa 40:12  Who hath measured the waters in the hollow of his hand, and meted out heaven with the span, and comprehended the dust of the earth in a measure, and weighed the mountains in scales, and the hills in a balance?

*****Heb 11:4  By faith Abel offered unto God a more excellent sacrifice than Cain, by which he obtained witness that he was righteous, God testifying of his gifts: and by it he being dead yet speaketh.

When we read this verse we see that we can approach God only in our faith!

Let’s review:

Gen 4:4  And Abel, he also brought of the firstlings of his flock and of the fat thereof. And the LORD had respect unto Abel and to his offering:
Gen 4:5  But unto Cain and to his offering he had not respect. And Cain was very wroth, and his countenance fell.
Gen 4:6  And the LORD said unto Cain, Why art thou wroth? and why is thy countenance fallen?
Gen 4:7  [If thou doest well, shalt thou not be accepted? and if thou doest not well, sin lieth at the door]. And unto thee shall be his desire, and thou shalt rule over him.

The Bible tells us:

Rom 14:23  And he that doubteth is damned if he eat, because he eateth not of faith: [for whatsoever is not of faith is sin].

Cain clearly understood that if he had no faith then it was sin!

AND, Cain’s lack of faith led to the first murder in the Bible!

God had made it very clear with the sin of Adam, when He had shed the blood of an innocent animal to make those first clothes.

Heb 9:22  And almost all things are by the law purged with blood; and without shedding of blood is no remission.

Cain clearly understood these things yet He still rebelled against the Word of God.

God has also made it very clear to us all:

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.

To ignore the Word of God will bring eternal damnation!

God had revealed to Adam and his descendants the true way to worship. Abel obeyed God by “faith”.

But, Cain showed his lack of “faith”.

1Jn 3:12  Not as Cain, who was of that wicked one, and slew his brother. And wherefore slew he him? Because his own works were evil, and his brother’s righteous.

Cain was full of religion but he was not righteous!

Who was the first Martyr of faith? Then it had to be Abel the son of Adam.

Because of his “faith” Abel is still speaking to all who would read and study the Word of God!

Because of his death and his blood was shed by the wicked Cain, Abel is still speaking to the Father who will bring vengeance on this world.

And God says:

Heb 12:24  And to Jesus the mediator of the new covenant, and to the blood of sprinkling, [that speaketh better things than that of Abel.]

*****Heb 11:5  By faith Enoch was translated that he should not see death; and was not found, because God had translated him: for before his translation he had this testimony, that he pleased God.

The Book of Genesis gives us this information:

Gen 5:24  And Enoch walked with God: and he was not; for God took him.

The Bible says clearly that Enoch did not die like other men!

Enoch was translated!

God took Enoch. The word “took” in Hebrew means God fetched him away, God carried him away!

In fact the word “took” can mean these things:  to take,  to get,  to fetch,  to lay hold of,  to seize, receive, acquire, buy, bring, marry, take a wife, snatch, take away

In the New Testament we find these words:

1Th 4:17  Then we which are alive and remain shall be [caught up together with them] in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord.

This is what we believe to be the “Rapture” of the Church that will happen before the seven year Tribulation Period.

Those words “caught up” have a similar meaning: to seize, carry off by force, to seize on, claim for one’s self eagerly, to snatch out or away.

What happened to Enoch was was so unusual that no one else in the Old Testament had this experience before the flood and only Elijah had a similar experience after the flood.

2Ki 2:11  And it came to pass, as they still went on, and talked, that, behold, there appeared a chariot of fire, and horses of fire, and parted them both asunder; and Elijah [went up by a whirlwind into heaven].

We can see that Elijah was taken up, or brought up, or taken away.

These things happened to people that please God and God gives us the the exact same way to please Him!

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

We come into our classroom every Sunday morning and flop down in these seats with “faith” enough in them that they will keep us from falling to the ground yet, we cannot have enough “faith” in the Word of God that brings rewards greater than anything that we can imagine!

What is our problem?

We just do not believe what God says!

Why is the nation of Israel suffering today?

Psa 78:21  Therefore the LORD heard this, and was wroth: so a fire was kindled against Jacob, and anger also came up against Israel;
Psa 78:22  [Because they believed not in God, and trusted not in his salvation:]

What does God say to us all in the New Covenant?

Joh 3:18  He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.
Joh 3:19  And this is the condemnation, that light is come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil.

We have God’s Book of Facts!

We have God’s remedy for a rewarding life!

We have God’s answer to all our problems!

It’s called “Faith”!

It is IMPOSSIBLE to please God without “FAITH”!

So, What are some examples of what “faith” can do?

*****Noah had never even heard of rain or thunder storms but he had “faith” in the Word of God. The world was destroyed but Noah and his family was saved.

God gives this example and this warning:

2Pe 2:5  And spared not the old world, but saved Noah the eighth person, a preacher of righteousness, bringing in the flood upon the world of the ungodly;

*****Abraham left his home seeking a city built of God. He knew it was not on this Earth because he lived in a tent!

Php 3:20  For our conversation is in heaven; from whence also we look for the Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ:

This our place of true fellowship!

*****Sara had enough “faith” to believe God would allow her to have a child, though she had not ever had one for 90 years, and to not only have this child but to raise this child.

She also had enough “faith” to believe that her husband, who was Abraham, though 100 years old could be a father and help her raise this child.

*****Abraham had “faith” enough in the promises of God to believe that even if he killed his only son that God could still raise him up from the dead and the nation of Israel would still be formed.

*****Isaac believed the Word of God and taught it to his sons!

*****Joseph knew that Egypt was not the place of the promises and requested that Israel take his bones to the promise land. He knew that it was not Canaan land because he knew it was not in this world.

*****Jochebed knew that God had plans that she could not totally understand and she was not about to let some King take her child Moses. Moses was given into the hands of God.

*****Moses knew though the world he lived in hated the children of God, yet he chose to be one of them.

Rom 8:16  The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God:
Rom 8:17  And if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with him, that we may be also glorified together.
Rom 8:18  For I reckon that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us.

*****Moses knew that if he served the living God and no king of this earth could change that fact:

2Co 4:17  For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, worketh for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory;
2Co 4:18  While we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen: for the things which are seen are temporal; but the things which are not seen are eternal.

*****Moses understood the absolute “Grace” of God when he was making the symbol of the cross on the entrance to those homes.

1Pe 1:2  Elect according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, through sanctification of the Spirit, unto obedience and sprinkling of the blood of Jesus Christ: Grace unto you, and peace, be multiplied.

*****Moses understood the mercy of God and that no body of water could hinder the progress of God’s people.

Psa 136:13  To him which divided the Red sea into parts: for his mercy endureth for ever:
Psa 136:14  And made Israel to pass through the midst of it: for his mercy endureth for ever:
Psa 136:15  But overthrew Pharaoh and his host in the Red sea: for his mercy endureth for ever.

*****Joshua knew it would have to be God’s plan and not his own that would bring down the walls of Jericho.

2Co 10:4  (For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds;)
2Co 10:5  Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ;

*****Rahab had faith as did Gideon, and Barak, and Samson, Jephthah, and David and Samuel and all those true prophets of God.

1Pe 1:10  Of which salvation the prophets have enquired and searched diligently, who prophesied of the grace that should come unto you:
1Pe 1:11  Searching what, or what manner of time the Spirit of Christ which was in them did signify, when it testified beforehand the sufferings of Christ, and the glory that should follow.

It is by “faith” our weakness are made strong, our bodies are healed, that we escape the evil of this world, and that we are strong enough to fight back.

*****Heb 11:36  [And others] had trial of cruel mockings and scourgings, yea, moreover of bonds and imprisonment:
Heb 11:37  They were stoned, they were sawn asunder, were tempted, were slain with the sword: they wandered about in sheepskins and goatskins; being destitute, afflicted, tormented;
Heb 11:38  (Of whom the world was not worthy:) they wandered in deserts, and in mountains, and in dens and caves of the earth.

These “others” are the unnamed army of God!

These are [the true heroes] of “faith”!

These are the “ones” who would not renounce their “faith” for any reason!

These things still happen to Christians right now in our day.

Christian persecution happens in all Muslim nations, in all Hindu nations, and in all Atheist nations which are mostly communist and it is on the rise in America.

It has even been said “why do not the Christians leave America if we do not like the changes”.

I can say only one thing to that. This nation of America was founded by people seeking a place to worship the God of the Bible, freely.

As a soldier I fought for the freedoms this nation offers to those that are oppressed!

I pray that my faith is strong enough to join the ranks of the people mentioned in these verses.

The Apostle Peter wrote:

1Pe 4:12  Beloved, think it not strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened unto you:
1Pe 4:13  But rejoice, inasmuch as ye are partakers of Christ’s sufferings; that, when his glory shall be revealed, ye may be glad also with exceeding joy.

Peter also wrote:

1Pe 1:7  That the trial of your faith, being much more precious than of gold that perisheth, though it be tried with fire, might be found unto praise and honour and glory at the appearing of Jesus Christ:
1Pe 1:8  Whom having not seen, ye love; in whom, though now ye see him not, [yet believing], ye rejoice with joy unspeakable and full of glory:

It is in our “faith” that we can find joy!

The prophet Isaiah also wrote:

Isa 57:1  The righteous perisheth, and no man layeth it to heart: and merciful men are taken away, none considering that the righteous is taken away from the evil to come.
Isa 57:2  He shall enter into peace: they shall rest in their beds, each one walking in his uprightness.

The world does not care when one of God ‘s children is killed or maimed but it is for sure that, those that are Martyr’s, have been taken away from the evil that is still to come in the future.

Rest assured not one of God’s children will suffer in Heaven!

When we realize we are going to a better place, then the trials of this Earth should be meaningless!

Life is precious and we should never rush to death but we should not be afraid of death!

2Co 5:1  For we know that if our earthly house of this tabernacle were dissolved, we have a building of God, an house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens.

Just as a child of God is not worthy of the “Grace” of God, the World is not worthy of those that love the Lord enough to lay down their lives for Him!

*****Heb 11:39  And these all, having obtained a good report through faith, received not the promise:
Heb 11:40  God having provided some better thing for us, that they without us should not be made perfect.

It is by “Faith” these others and these that are named were able to accomplish the things of God!

We are weak Christians when we [try to blend into this world] to go unnoticed!

This may be the biggest problem our young  people face today because peer pressure is so great!

But we must all realize that we are not alone!

God’s people and including Jesus Christ Our Savior, are going to be persecuted for what we believe in!

We have to turn that persecution into a motivational tool that keeps us going.

We still must realize the closer we get to God the Father and His Son the greater our protection!

And it should be our goal to get closer to the Lord Our God!

But, that does not mean that God will not let others see us suffer persecution or even death!

It’s God’s plan, we just need to get involved in His plan and we will all soon be going home!

These Old Testament saints look forward to the promises.

Job said:

Job 19:25  For I know that my redeemer liveth, and that he shall stand at the latter day upon the earth:
Job 19:26  And though after my skin worms destroy this body, yet in my flesh shall I see God:

The New Testament child of God looks forward to the fulfillment of those promises!

The Apostle Paul said:

1Co 15:51  Behold, I shew you a mystery; We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed,
1Co 15:52  In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed.

We should all ask ourselves “where is our Faith”?

Questions?

Let’s pray!