The Everlasting Gospel

The Everlasting Gospel

The word Gospel means good news. In a world daily bombarded with bad news it is encouraging to know that there is some good news to be heard. This Sabbath sermon is about the everlasting ‘Good News.’ In Bible terminology it is called the ‘Everlasting Gospel.’

According to Bible prophecy the ‘Everlasting Gospel’ is scheduled to be preached to all the world just prior to the end of this age, just before the Day of Judgment.

Revelation 14: 6: And I saw another angel fly in the midst of heaven, having the EVERLASTING GOSPEL to preach unto them that dwell on earth, and to every nation and kindred and tongue and people.

Have you ever heard the Everlasting Gospel? Can you tell us what it is, what its requirements are, what’s so good about it and why it is called ‘everlasting’ in the first place?

Believe it or not, comparatively few people know the Everlasting Gospel. To be sure, millions have heard parts of it, and countless billions of Gospel tracts have been published through the centuries. But, astonishingly enough, not many people really know the Everlasting Gospel and what it calls for. If you were to ask a dozen Christians to list the main points or requirements of the Everlasting Gospel, you would probably come away with a dozen different answers, some the very opposite of the others.

Well, let us not speculate any longer. Let us find out what the Everlasting Gospel is. And, more importantly, what its requirements are. The book of Revelation tells us that shortly before the return of Yeshua the Messiah (Jesus Christ) three angels will bear special messages to mankind. The First Angel’s Message is called the Everlasting Gospel. It is the message on which we will concentrate in this sermon. Angels, in normal circumstances, do not preach to mankind. The work of preaching the Gospel has been committed to men. Yes, men will preach the Everlasting Gospel to all the world just before the return of Jesus Christ to earth. As you read the Bible text below, notice the twofold requirement of the Everlasting Gospel. In particular notice the second requirement which calls for worship of the Creator.

1. The First Angel’s Message

Revelation 14: 6:And I saw another angel fly in the midst of heaven, having the everlasting gospel to preach unto them that dwell on the earth, and to every nation, and kindred, and tongue, and people,
7: Saying with a loud voice, Fear God, and give glory to him; for the hour of his judgment is come: and worship him that made heaven, and earth, and the sea, and the fountains of waters.”

Closely examine the above message. Read it again and again and let its eternal truth sink deep into your mind: for you are in fact reading the Everlasting Gospel encapsulated in a single sentence. Of course you will not understand all that it means – no man on earth does – but here before you in essence are the twin requirements of the Everlasting Gospel, the message which throughout eternity will engage the minds of all the inhabitants of the mighty universe. These instructions are everlasting! They are ageless. They will never become obsolete; but will be carried out by the redeemed host for all time. What’s more, the blessings the Everlasting Gospel brings to those who accept it, are eternal! So let us without further delay study the Everlasting Gospel and see what it says.

  • “Fear God and give glory to Him, for the hour of His Judgment is come.
  • And worship Him who made the heavens, the earth, the sea and the fountains of water.”

What does this twin instruction mean? How does one go about obeying it? What are we expected to do – or not do – when called upon to “Fear God and give glory to Him” And finally how can a believer be sure he is worshipping the One who made the heavens, the earth, the sea and the fountains of water?

This sermon is designed to briefly answer those questions; especially the one concerning the “worship of Him who made the heavens, the earth and the sea and the fountains of water.”

2. Fear God And Give Glory to Him

To fear God means to recognize Him as the supreme authority in the universe; to look upon Him with reverential awe and holy respect. YAHWEH the Almighty God of Israel, the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob is a Being of absolute holiness, power and truth: One whose character is so noble and whose ability so great that eternity will be too short to tell His worth. The whole human race is now being called upon to fear Yahweh, to stand in reverential awe of the Holy One of Israel; to have faith in Him and to respect Him for what He is and what He has done; and is still doing for mankind.

  • Are You Meeting This requirement?
  • Do You Respect The Most High?
  • Do You Stand In Reverential Awe of His Love, Holiness And Mighty Power?
  • Or Do You Secretly Doubt That He Even Exists?

To “give glory to God” the Holy One of Israel is self explanatory. It simply means to render Him honour, praise and thanks for what He has done for you. Do you know what the Most High has done for mankind, for you? Has anyone ever told you the reason why you should give glory to God?

Well, to begin with He created mankind to live in perfect happiness with Him. But man sinned, he set aside the Almighty’s instructions, which if obeyed would have led to life. Instead man chose the way of doubt, disobedience and death. That was indeed a tragic day for mankind when our first parents sinned; for it wasn’t long before sin, suffering, sickness and death engulfed the whole human race. The Almighty, however, was not caught off-guard by man’s disobedience. In His infinite wisdom He already had an emergency plan to salvage mankind should sin enter the world. And this is how that plan found expression:

John 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.
17: For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.
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.”

Yes that is what the Almighty did for mankind, for you and for me. He allowed His only begotten Son Yeshua (Jesus) to die in our stead in order to redeem us from eternal death. It now remains for us to gratefully accept His free gift of salvation made available through His Son Jesus and to give glory to Him for so great an act of love and mercy. “And how,” you may well ask, “does one accept salvation?” “How can we be saved?” The Apostle Paul gives us the answer.

Acts 17: 31: “Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and thou shalt be saved.”

This first part of the Everlasting Gospel – of having faith in the Almighty God and accepting salvation through His Son Jesus is very well known to the Christian world. Millions of sermons have been preached about this vital first step towards salvation. But have you personally accepted Jesus as your Saviour? Have you committed your life to Him? Are you giving God the Father glory for what He has done for you? It is not enough to know that the Almighty’s Hebrew name isYahweh, or how His name is pronounced; or even to believe that His Son Yeshua Jesus was a righteous person who died for the sins of the world. The devils know all this; but it avails them nothing. What you must do if the Everlasting Gospel is to benefit you is to repent and confess your sins before the Almighty, make a total commitment to His Son and accept him as your personal Saviour. Nothing short of this will do. You may do so at this very moment by praying – in the secrecy of your own home – a short prayer like this:

  • Yahweh
  • I Now Believe In You.
  • I Accept Your Free Gift of Salvation Through Your Only Begotten Son Jesus.
  • Please Forgive My Sins, Cleanse Me From My Guilt.
  • Please Put Thy Holy Spirit Within Me.
  • Lead Me In The Way Everlasting. Thank You!

A simple prayer like this, and of course the words may be changed without corrupting the meaning, will testify to the angel host that you have personally placed your faith in God and have begun to glorify Him by accepting salvation through Jesus.

To glorify God by personally accepting salvation through His Son Yeshua (Jesus) and then by declaring your allegiance to Him is the first requirement of the Everlasting Gospel. You will not live for eternity if you refuse to meet this requirement. It is mandatory. And now to that second requirement: the one very, very few preachers proclaim1

3. Worship Him that Made the Heavens,
the Earth, the Sea and the Fountains of Water

This requirement of the Everlasting Gospel is to worship the One who made the heavens, the earth, the sea and the fountains of water. In other words, to worship the Creator! Believers are now called to go beyond the first stage of reverential awe and faith into the arena of obedient worship. This sermon concentrates on worshipping the Creator by obeying Him; not because it is the most important aspect; but because it is the most neglected. To be sure, a mental acknowledgement of Yahweh’s authority and the acceptance of salvation through Jesus are vital: but worshipful obedience is also important; especially that form of obedience which commemorates the creation of the heavens, the earth, the sea and the fountains of water. In other words, the Everlasting Gospel is calling upon mankind to worship the Creator of the Universe!

Let us now examine this most neglected aspect of the Everlasting Gospel, the aspect of OBEDIENCE. One day a young man asked Jesus this question::

Good Master what good thing shall I do that I may have eternal life?
And he said unto him: … If thou wilt enter into life keep the commandments.𔄤

(Matthew 19: 17)
“Keep the commandments.“ Is the Master here pointing to an alternative route to salvation? Is he perhaps making a colossal ecclesiastical blunder by stating thatobedience, instead of faith, is the real path to eternal life? Could it be that Yeshua is here disagreeing with the Apostle Paul who said:

“Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and thou shalt be saved?”

The answer is obvious: the Master knew very well what he is talking about. He was not defining an alternative route to salvation. He was not disagreeing with Paul or cancelling the necessity for faith. He was merely pointing to the other side of the same coin of salvation: that most neglected side of the Everlasting Gospel – the matter of obedience. “keep the commandments.” Yes keep the commandments: for that, according to Jesus, is the way to life.

When questioned further as to which commandments, Jesus specified the Ten Commandments. In other words obedience to the Ten Commandments is a vital consideration in this matter of salvation. It is a part of the Everlasting Gospel – the neglected part. And that is exactly what the First Angel’s Message calls for. It is calling for obedience. So let us now briefly consider this most neglected aspect of the Everlasting Gospel; the one which calls upon mankind to worship theCreator by obeying Him.

“Worship Him who made the heavens, the earth, the sea and the fountains of water.”

How does a Christian meet this vital requirement of the Everlasting Gospel? What are we supposed to do to ensure that we are in fact worshipping the Creator, the One who “made the heavens, the earth, the sea and the fountains of water?” For example, how can you prove that you are worshipping the One who made the heavens, the earth, the sea and the fountains of water? A man or woman may think that he or she is doing so; but can he or she prove it? The answer is yes, they can. The only one way a true believer can prove that he/she is worshipping the One who made the heavens, the earth, the sea and the fountains of water is by keeping the seventh day Sabbath which is the divinely appointed Memorial of Creation.
Read the above statement again in the light of the Bible text below, which is the fourth of the Ten Commandments:

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

Can you now see the link between the Sabbath commandment in Exodus 20 and the the First Angel’s Message in Revelation 14? Can you recognize the fact that both texts are calling upon mankind to worship the CREATOR! the One who made the heavens, the earth, the sea and the fountains of water?

To be sure you can. It is an indisputable link which only the spiritually blind will refuse to recognize. The Everlasting Gospel is calling upon mankind to Fear God and give glory to Him and to worship the Creator! Therefore, we repeat the assertion, that the only way a true believer can be absolutely certain that he/she is worshipping the One who made the heavens, the earth the sea and the fountains of water is by keeping the seventh day Sabbath, which is the divinely appointed Memorial of Creation. No other sensible conclusion is possible.

Put another way we may say that believers who ignore Yahweh’s seventh day Sabbath (Saturday) are like soldiers who refuse to honour their country’s flag. They are like army officers who trample on the official orders issued to them. Sad to say there are thousands of church leaders who are doing exactly the same thing with Yahweh’s law. They have little or no respect for His commandments and like rebellious military officers deliberately ignore the orders from above. They reject the Sabbath commandment, which if kept identifies true worship of the One who made the heavens, the earth, the sea and the fountains of water.

We trust, however, that you will be different: that you will heed the requirements of the Everlasting Gospel and:

  • Fear God And Give Glory To Him
  • Respect The Almighty, Put Your Faith In Him And Accept His Offer of Salvation.
  • And then keep His commandments, particularly His Sabbath command, which honours the Creator of the heavens, the earth, the sea and the fountains of water.

And that, very briefly, is the Everlasting Gospel. To be sure over the years you may have heard hundreds of Gospel sermons detailing the first part, to have faith in God and to accept salvation through Jesus. But today you have heard the second part, the requirement to keep Yahweh’s Law; the part which Jesus referred to when he said: “keep the commandments.” Both these requirements constitute the Everlasting Gospel; which is to go to all the world at the end of this age – just prior to the Judgment. That time has now come. The world is now approaching its final scenes and the Day of Judgment is near. It is high time that every true believer jettisoned the unproved theory of Evolution and began to acknowledge and worship the Creator by keeping His Sabbath day, which is the divinely appointed memorial of Creation.

The question is, are you willing to meet these two critical requirements?

  • To respect Yahweh and accept salvation through His only begotten Son Jesus?
  • And to keep the Almighty’s commandments?
  • Especially the commandment to: remember the seventh day Sabbath which commemorates the creation of the heavens, the earth, the sea and the fountains of water?

These are questions you must answer for yourself. No one can answer them for you. When answering them bear in mind that obedience is better than sacrifice, more acceptable than prayer and far superior to praise and thanksgiving. Obedience is faith in action – living faith. The Bible tells us that obedience is true worship and that faith without obedience is dead.
1 Samuel 15: 22-23, Matthew 15: 9, John 9: 31, James 2: 24-26

Also remember that the Everlasting Gospel will continue throughout eternity. In other words the redeemed host will respect Yahweh, praise Him for salvation through Jesus and keep His Sabbath day – throughout eternity! Does the Bible teach this; that believers will congregate on the Sabbath day to worship the Most High – throughout eternity? It certainly does.

Isaiah 66: 22:“For as the new heavens and the new earth, which I will make, shall remain before me, saith the Lord, so shall your seed and your name remain.
23: And it shall come to pass that from one new moon to another, and from one Sabbath to another, shall all flesh come to worship before me saith the Lord.”

4. False Worship

Various forms of false worship are mentioned in the Scriptures. A few are listed here in order that the reader may guard against them:

  • THE WORSHIP OF GOLD
    • The world worships the God of Gold.
    • But gold is scheduled to loose its value when the economy of the world collapses at the Message of the Second Angel. –
    • James 5: 1-7, Revelation 14: 8
  • DEMON WORSHIP
    • Devil worship, voodoo, black magic, witchcraft, Satanism etc. are all strictly forbidden in Yahweh’s Word.
    • Disorder and calamity are certain to fall on all who engage in them.
    • They are by far the worst forms of false worship. –
    • Deuteronomy 18: 9-13, Matthew 4: 8-10, Exodus 20: 3-6
  • THE WORSHIP OF THE HEAVENLY HOST
    • The Scriptures strictly forbid humanity delving into astrology.
    • The study of the supposed influence of the stars on human affairs is strictly forbid.
    • Reading of horoscopes and various other pagan practices associated with the worship of the sun, the moon and the starry host.
    • Deuteronomy 17: 1-7, Job 31: 26-28, Ezekiel 8: 15-16, 2 Kings 17: 13-20, 21: 1-9
  • THE WORSHIP OF MAN MADE PRODUCTS
    • In the final analysis there is nothing that man can make – be it a physical machine or an ideological system or doctrine – that can “save him out of his troubles.”
    • The material and mental productions of mankind may be ingenious to the extreme, they may for a short while dazzle the population,
    • But in areas of real importance they are quite useless – because they cannot save mankind from sorrow, sickness and death.
    • It is because of this fact they are not to be venerated. Humanity is on the slippery slope to self destruction, and nothing we can manufacture or do can save us – except God.
    • This ego-shattering fact must be realized before a person can hope to receive help from the Almighty.
    • So let us not delude ourselves by worshipping “the work of our own hands” or foolishly think that the ideologies and “doctrines of men” can save us – because they cannot.
    • The productions of mankind are as incapable of solving our problems or saving our souls as were the wood, stone and metal idols our ancestors worshipped centuries ago.
    • Isaiah 2: 4-8, Matthew 15: 9, Isaiah 44: 9-20, Jeremiah 1: 16, Isaiah 46: 5-7
  • BAAL OR NATURE WORSHIP
    • The worship of the creature rather than the Creator is also strongly condemned in Yahweh’s Word.
    • Nature worship is the inordinate adoration of the physical powers of the earth (rain, wind, fire) the beauty of the body, the lust of the flesh, the pride of life.
    • All such worship is Baal worship.
    • It is earthly, sensual, devilish and corrupting in its influence and effect.
    • Yahweh has created this earth with its millions of life forms to demonstrate certain spiritual lessons.
    • But alas, mankind in blind wonder fails to see the spiritual lesson, the real purpose of the physical illustrations Yahweh uses, and he worships thecreature rather than the Creator.
    • When this happens, and especially when it continues to happen in spite of repeated warning,
    • Yahweh usually hands the wilfully ignorant worshippers over to Satan who produces in them the most despicable of degradation.
    • In short, a person may study nature and learn the manifold spiritual lessons the Creator is teaching us;
    • Or he may completely miss the point and worship nature itself, and thereby risk being handed over by the Eternal to Satan.
    • That in a nutshell is the choice.
    • Acts 7: 42, Psalm 81: 8-12, Romans 1: 21-32, Psalm 81: 8-12

5. The Second Angel’s Message

When the Second Angels sounds his message the economies of all nations will collapse. There will be an international crash on all the markets of the world and millions of businesses will grind to a halt. Read Revelation chapter 18 where a total collapse of the world’s economy is dramatically described.

6. The Third Angel’s Message

Bible prophecy indicates that false worship will reach a climax when the world’s economy crashes. At that time, and all the signs indicate that the day is near, theAntichrist will make a personal appearance on the stage of time. Yes, he will actually appear before mankind and pose as Jesus Christ. When that time comes the vast majority of earth’s inhabitants will worship him in blind adoration, quite oblivious of the fact that he is the Antichrist.

2 Thessalonians 2, Revelation 13, Revelation 17: 8

Revelation 13: 4: And they worshipped the dragon (Satan) which gave power unto the beast: and they worshipped the beast, (The Antichrist) saying, Who is like unto the beast? who is able to make war with him?
5: And there was given unto him a mouth (The False Prophet) speaking great things and blasphemies; and power was given unto him to continue forty and two months.
6: And he opened his mouth in blasphemy against God, to blaspheme his name, and his tabernacle, and them that dwell in heaven.
7: And it was given unto him to make war with the saints, and to overcome them: and power was given him over all kindreds, andtongues, and nations.
8: And all that dwell upon the earth shall worship him, whose names are not written in the book of life of the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world.”

Then the Antichrist will deceive most of mankind into thinking that he has the right to change the Ten Commandments. Because most people are basically unwilling to obey Yahweh’s law – His Truth – God will hand over millions of souls to believe the Antichrist – to believe the Lie. The world will then gladly accept the falsehood taught by the Antichrist. This astonishing prediction is detailed in 2 Thessalonians 2 and Revelation 13. The choice facing mankind will then be between:

  • THE TRUTH
    • The Everlasting Gospel which calls for worship of the Almighty
      and the keeping of the TRUE Sabbath Day, the SEVENTH day of the week SATURDAY.
  • THE LIE, STRONG DELUSION
    • The temporal gospel which calls for the worship of the Antichrist
      and the keeping of the BOGUS sabbath day of SUNDAY.

That will be the choice facing mankind in the near future. The Most High has given the world ample warning about worshipping the Antichrist – the Beast. Indeed you may read the Bible from Genesis to Revelation and you will not find a stronger warning about false worship than that which is outlined in Revelation 14: 9-11.

Revelation 14: 9: “And the third angel followed them, saying with a loud voice, If any man worship the beast and his image, and receive his mark in his forehead, or in his hand,
10: The same shall drink of the wine of the wrath of God, which is poured out without mixture into the cup of his indignation; and he shall be tormented with fire and brimstone in the presence of the holy angels, and in the presence of the Lamb:
11: And the smoke of their torment ascendeth up for ever and ever: and they have no rest day nor night, who worship the beast and his image, and whosoever receiveth the mark of his name.”

Here are divine threatenings of an awesome nature. We therefore humbly advise the reader to study Revelation 13 and 14 and to read the AVITW – CANADA – USA explanation on The Mark of the Beast. You must understand what the Antichrist’s Mark is.

7. Summary

What is the Everlasting Gospel and how may a believer meet its eternal requirements? The Everlasting Gospel requires people do the following:

  • FEAR GOD / GIVE GLORY TO HIM
    • To respect the Most High and to stand in holy awe of His greatness and infinite goodness.
    • To accept – by FAITH – Yahweh’s gracious offer of salvation through His Son Yeshua (Jesus) and to give Him the glory.
    • Obey Yahweh’s commandments.
    • To express that faith by living a life of obedience to His commandments:
    • Bearing in mind that keeping the SEVENTH day Sabbath is a special act of worship.
    • It is the weekly acknowledgement that the God of Israel is the Creator!
    • The One who made the heavens, the earth, the sea and the fountains of water.
    • Obedience to Yahweh’s commandments is, in fact, faith in action. – Exodus 20, Ecclesiastes 12: 13, Deuteronomy 28

King Solomon, one of the wisest men who ever lived, summed up the twin requirements of the Everlasting Gospel in a single sentence when he wrote in Ecclesiastes 12: 13

Let us hear the conclusion of the matter: Fear God and keep His commandments: for this is the whole duty of man.”

This, then, is the Everlasting Gospel, the good news that will prompt us to worship the Most High throughout eternity. If you accept the Everlasting Gospel and apply it to your life you will be blessed abundantly and will live for all time. That is the wonderful news! But if you reject it you risk losing eternal life at the coming Judgment. So pause awhile and re-consider those twin requirements of the Everlasting Gospel:

  • FEAR GOD, stand in awe of Him, have faith in Him,
  • And KEEP HIS COMMANDMENTS, especially the SEVENTH DAY SABBATH commandment, which honours Him as the Creator of the heavens, the earth, the sea and the fountains of water.

THE EVERLASTING GOSPEL HAS NOW REACHED YOU

1. His Name

QUESTION:

Proverbs 30: 4: “Who hath ascended up in to heaven, or descended? who hath gathered the wind in His fists? who hath bound the waters in a garment? who hath established all the ends of the earth? What is His name, and what is His Son’s name, if thou canst tell?”

ANSWER:
Yahweh is His name and Yeshua is His Son’s name. For more information see Sacred Names.

Matthew 1: 21: “Thou shalt call his name JESUS: for he shall save his people from their sins.”

The Hebrew word for salvation is ‘Yeshua’ and this calls to mind the Saviour’s main purpose for coming to this earth – to save mankind from sin, from disobedience.

To Be Baptized In His Name (Acts 2: 38, 8: 16, 22: 16)

Acts 2: 38: “Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.”
Acts 8: 16: “For as yet he was fallen upon none of them: only they were (baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus.)”
Acts 22: 16: “And now why tarriest thou? arise, and be baptized, and wash away thy sins, calling on the name of the Lord.”

Healing Was Done In His (Jesus’) Name.

Acts 3: 6: “In the name of Jesus of Nazareth rise up and walk.”
Verse: 16: “And his name through faith in his name hath made this man strong, whom ye see and know: yea, the faith which is by him hath given him this perfect soundness in the presence of you all.”
Acts 4: 12: “Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men whereby we must be saved.”
Philippians 2: 9: “Wherefore God also hath highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above every name:
10: That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth;”
1 Peter 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.”
Matthew 24: 9: “Then shall they deliver you up to be afflicted, and shall kill you: and ye shall be hated of all nations for my name’s sake.”

We can see from the above passages that the name of the Saviour – Jesus(written variously in AVITW literature as Yeshua, Yahshua,or Yahoshua) is important. But in view of the fact that the Master has answered many millions of prayers in the past when called by the name of ‘Jesus’ we do not make an issue about the correct pronunciation or spelling.

2. His Past Performance – The Creation

Though the Father was the architect of the universe, the builder was His Son, the Word, the Logos.

John 1: 1: “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.
2: The same was in the beginning with God.
3: All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made.
4: In him was life; and the life was the light of men.”
Genesis 1: 26: “And God said, Let US make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth.”

Note that word ‘US.’ It implies that there was another person with the Almighty when the universe was being created. That other person was the Son, the Word, the Logos, the Spokesman, the actual builder who implemented the Father’s plans. This fact is repeated in the book of Hebrews.

Hebrews 1: 1: “God, who at sundry times and in divers manners spake in time past unto the fathers by the prophets,
2. Hath in these last days spoken unto us by his Son, whom he hath appointed heir of all things, by whom also he made the worlds.”

3. His Present Work – Salvation

John 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.
17: For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.
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.”

THE FATHER’S PART

  • Yahweh’s love for humanity. For God so loved …
  • His gift, His Son. The very best He had. He could give nothing more valuable!
  • Yahweh is NOT in the business of condemning the world. He is in the business of saving it.

MAN’S PART

  • We must believe in and accept Jesus Christ (Yeshua the Messiah) if we want eternal life.
  • If we believe we escape condemnation.
  • If we do not believe, we are already condemned.

4. The Messiah’s Position

OUR HIGH PRIEST

Hebrews 3: 1: “Wherefore, holy brethren, partakers of the heavenly calling, consider the Apostle and High Priest of our profession, Christ Jesus;”
Hebrews 7: 17: “For he testifieth, Thou art a priest for ever after the order of Melchisedec.
18: For there is verily a disannulling of the commandment going before for the weakness and unprofitableness thereof.
19: For the law made nothing perfect, but the bringing in of a better hope did; by the which we draw nigh unto God.
20: And inasmuch as not without an oath he was made priest:
21: (For those priests were made without an oath; but this with an oath by him that said unto him, The Lord sware and will not repent,Thou art a priest for ever after the order of Melchisedec:)
22: By so much was Jesus made a surety of a better testament.
23: And they truly were many priests, because they were not suffered to continue by reason of death:
24: But this man, because he continueth ever, hath an unchangeable priesthood.”

THE MELCHISEDEC PRIESTHOOD
Melchisedec was a priest of the Most High God. Unlike the Aaronic Priesthood, in which which the High Priest’s position passed from father to son,membership and position in the Melchisedec Priesthood is by divine appointment. Jesus Christ is the divinely appointed High Priest of the Melchisedec Priesthood. He officiates at the very throne of YHVH (Yahovah) on behalf of us believers on earth. The Melchisedec Priesthood will continue throughout eternity.

OUR SACRIFICE – THE LAMB OF GOD

Revelation 5: 12: “Saying with a loud voice: Worthy is the Lamb that was slain to receive power, and riches and wisdom and strength and honourandglory and blessing.
13: And every creature which is in heaven, and on the earth, and under the earth, and such as are in the sea, and all that are in them, heard I saying, Blessing, and honour, and glory, and power, be unto him that sitteth upon the throne, and unto the Lamb for ever and ever.
14: And the four beasts said, Amen. And the four and twenty elders fell down and worshipped him that liveth for ever and ever.”

OUR SOLICITOR

1 John 2: 1: “My little children, these things write I unto you, that ye sin not. And if any man sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous:”

OUR FRIEND

Luke 12: 4: “And I say unto you my friends, Be not afraid of them that kill the body, and after that have no more that they can do.”
James 2: 23: “And the scripture was fulfilled which saith, Abraham believed God, and it (his faith) was imputed unto him for righteousness: and he was called the Friend of God.”
John 15: 14: “Ye are my friends, if ye do whatsoever I command you.”

OUR KING

Revelation 17: 14: “These shall make war with the Lamb, and the Lamb shall overcome them: for he (the Lamb) is Lord of lords, and King of kings: and they that are with him are called, and chosen, and faithful.”
Revelation 19: 16: “And he hath on his vesture and on his thigh a name written, KING OF KINGS, AND LORD OF LORDS.”

OUR GUEST

Revelation 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.”

5. His Power

Matthew 28: 18: “And Jesus came and spoke unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth.
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.”

NOTE:
It is quite impossible to properly appreciate the significance of the words ALL POWER. Yes, Yeshua is omnipotent. He has unlimited power of every kind. ALL POWER. Just pause and think awhile about that staggering statement. Also remember that it extends to heaven, and earth and all creatures under the earth.At best we can only begin to understand what he is talking about; but one day we shall really know the detail!

6. Yeshua’s Objective – To Produce Holy And Obedient True Believers

Romans 8: 3: “For what the law could not do, in that it was weak through the flesh, God sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, and for sin,condemned sin in the flesh:
4: That the righteousness of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.”

The Saviour came to earth not merely to pay the price for our past sins, extremely important though that step in our salvation is; but to condemn and conquer sin in the flesh. In other words to slay sin in us, to utterly demolish in the human mind and body the very urge to sin and in its place to put a hunger and a thirst forrighteousness. (obedience) The Saviour’s ultimate objective is ‘that the righteousness of the law might be fulfilled in us.’ True believers must, therefore, constantly examine themselves to see whether or not this purpose is being fulfilled in their lives. Is sin being replaced by righteousness?

Here are questions we should constantly ask ourselves.

  • Has Messiah subdued, overcome and deprived sin of its power in my life?
  • Am I allowing Him to fulfil His purpose in my life?
    • Or am I resisting Him?
  • Does righteousness now appeal to me as once sin did

Multitudes of believers all over the earth are concerned about their lack of the Holy Spirit. This secret ‘concern’ may be analysed as follows:

  • It is either a healthy sign of spiritual growth;
    • For, like trees constantly reaching up to the sky for fresh air, rain and sunshine, believers should always seek the Spirit of the Most High to grow in grace.
    • This ever-present yearning for the Spirit of God is, therefore, a good sign.
  • Or it is an expression of massive doubt;
    • The evidence of a person who does not really take Yahweh at His word, but constantly wants some visible or audible proof to verify the fact that God has accepted him/her.

In short, a constant yearning for more of the Holy Spirit is either a sign of healthy spiritual growth or it is a sign of raging doubt. Believers must examine themselves regularly to see to which category they belong. The Bible is the best tool for doing this.

2. Divine Assurances

Yahweh’s Eagerness To Give
Luke 11: 13: “If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children: how much more shall your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to them that ask him?”
Yahweh’s Guarantee To Give
1 John 5: 14: “And this is the confidence that we have in him, that, if we ask any thing according to his will, he heareth us:
15: And if we know that he hear us, whatsoever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we desired of him.”
Measured Giving
John 3: 34: “For he whom God hath sent speaketh the words of God: for God giveth not the Spirit by measure unto him.”

3. Spiritual Conditions

The Most High is happy to give His Spirit to believers: but certain mandatory conditions apply.

Obediance
Acts 5: 32: “And we are his witnesses of these things; and so is also the Holy Ghost, whom God hath given to them that obey him.”
Right Motives
James 4: 3: “Ye ask, and receive not, because ye ask amiss, that ye may consume it upon your lusts.
4: Ye adulterers and adulteresses, know ye not that the friendship of the world is enmity with God? whosoever therefore will be a friend of the world is the enemy of God.”
Patience
Hebrews 10: 36: “For ye have need of patience, that, after ye have done the will of God, ye might receive the promise.”

4. Know The Differences

It is essential to differentiate between the following:

  • The Fruit of the Holy Spirit
    • Love, Joy, Peace, Long-Suffering, Kindness: Galations 5: 22-23.
  • The Gifts of the Holy Spirit
    • Apostleship, Prophecy, Wisdom, Healing, Miraculous Powers, Helps, Tongues, Interpretation etc. 1 Corinthians 12: 1-11
  • The Baptism of the Holy Spirit.
      Acts 1: 5: “For John truly baptized with water; but ye shall be baptized with the Holy Ghost not many days hence.
      6: When they therefore were come together, they asked of him, saying, Lord, wilt thou at this time restore again the kingdom to Israel?
      7: And he said unto them, It is not for you to know the times or the seasons, which the Father hath put in his own power.
      8: But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth.”

Great confusion will result if these differences are not understood. To begin with, all true believers are given the Holy Spirit in proportion to their faith and obedience – and according to Yahweh’s will, not ours. Second, Yahweh distributes spiritual gifts to every believer according to His own will and for the benefit of the whole church. Third, all believers are expected subsequently to produce spiritual fruit. Finally, every true believer will be baptized (totally immersed and absolutely purified) in the Holy Spirit before we enter the Kingdom of Heaven – yes every true believer.See Sermon124.

5. Evidence of The Holy Spirit

Just as surely as a tree’s identity can be determined by its fruit, in the same way the presence (and measure) of the Holy Spirit in a believer can be known by his/herspiritual performance – the character. The more of the Spirit a believer possesses, the holier will that person be. To be full of the Spirit means to be an extremely holy person. “By their fruits ye shall know them.”

Galatians 5: 22: “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith,
23: Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law.”
Ephesians 5: 9: “For the fruit of the Spirit is in all goodness and righteousness and truth;
10: Proving what is acceptable unto the Lord.
11: And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather reprove them.
12: For it is a shame even to speak of those things which are done of them in secret.”

6. Promise of The Early And Latter Rain

The Holy Spirit is as essential to spiritual growth as water and sunlight are to a plant. Yahweh, the heavenly gardener, is growing a spiritual crop. The good seed (Truth) has been and still is being sown in the minds of men and women. Without the power and presence of the Holy Spirit no spiritual growth is possible. Agricultural harvests are simply given to mankind to illustrate the great spiritual lessons and realities the Most High is seeking to teach the human race. We are His ‘vineyard,’ His ‘harvest,’ His ‘sheep.’ The whole spectrum of natural activity was ordained to teach spiritual lessons. Failure to learn those spiritual lessons is one of the tragedies of unbelieving ‘nature lovers’ of the world. Faith and obedience on the other hand will be blessed by God with natural and spiritual bounty.

Deuteronomy 11: 13: “And it shall come to pass, if ye shall hearken diligently unto my commandments which I command you this day, to love the LORD your God, and to serve him with all your heart and with all your soul,
14: That I will give you the rain of your land in his due season, the first rain and the latter rain, that thou mayest gather in thy corn, and thy wine, and thine oil.”
Joel Chapter 2: Provides Invaluable Lessons About Spiritual Rain.
Verse: 23: “Be glad then, ye children of Zion, and rejoice in the LORD your God: for he hath given you the former rain moderately, and he will cause to come down for you the rain, the former rain, and the latter rain in the first month.”
Verses: 24: “And the floors shall be full of wheat, and the fats shall overflow with wine and oil.
25: And I will restore to you the years that the locust hath eaten, the cankerworm, and the caterpiller, and the palmerworm, my great army which I sent among you.
26: And ye shall eat in plenty, and be satisfied, and praise the name of the LORD your God, that hath dealt wondrously with you: and my people shall never be ashamed.”
Verse: 27: “And ye shall know that I am in the midst of Israel, and that I am the LORD your God, and none else: and my people shall never be ashamed.”
Verses: 28: “And it shall come to pass afterward, that I will pour out my spirit upon all flesh; and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, your old men shall dream dreams, your young men shall see visions:
29: And also upon the servants and upon the handmaids in those days will I pour out my spirit.”
Verse: 30: “I will show signs and wonders in the heavens and upon the earth, blood and fire and columns of smoke. The sun shall be turned to darkness and the moon to blood, before the great and terrible day of the Lord comes.”
Also read (Isaiah 13: 6, 9-11; 24: 21-23; Ezekiel 32: 7-10; Matthew 24: 29; Revelation 6: 12-17).
Verse: 32: “And whosoever shall call upon the Name of the Lord shall be delivered.”

This promise has been partially fulfilled. Read Acts 2: 17-21 where the Apostle Peter quotes from Joel. But if you study Joel carefully you will see that we are still awaiting several events (blood and fire and pillars of smoke etc) which are to come. Yes, we are awaiting the full and bounteous downpour known as the latter rain.

7. Ask For The Latter Rain

Zecheriah 10: 1: “Ask ye of the LORD rain in the time of the latter rain; so the LORD shall make bright clouds, and give them showers of rain, to every one grass in the field.”

Our present need and duty as believers living in the time of the latter rain, at the time when the main harvest of humanity is about to be gathered, is to:

  • Live lives of faithful obedience
    • and to ask for the latter rain.

As promised in Deuteronomy 11: 13-14:

Deuteronomy 11: 13: “And it shall come to pass, if ye shall hearken diligently unto my commandments which I command you this day, to love the LORD your God, and to serve him with all your heartand with all your soul,
14: That I will give you the rain of your land in his due season, the first rain and the latter rain, that thou mayest gather in thy corn, and thy wine, and thine oil.”

Are you willing to meet those twin conditions of faith and obediencebefore you ask for the latter rain? Failure to do so is a form of self-delusion and a tragic loss for the church

Reading: Luke Chapter 15: Verses 11- 32

1. Introduction

The parable of the Prodigal Son is as much a reflection of Jehovah’s(Yahweh) character as it is that of the salvation of wayward sinners. It shows the Almighty as He really is and not as many people see Him. The Holy One of Israel, the Father of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ is often looked upon as a harsh, dictatorial monarch who rules the universe with cruel severity: a person who never laughs and who finds pleasure only in the subjection of others. In actual fact Yahweh, the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob is a Being of infinite love, compassion, mercy, generosity, patience and kindness.

He is referred to by the Saviour as OUR FATHER! His love for His children – you included – is beyond anything we can imagine. This parable briefly explains a side of His character which is unknown to the vast majority of mankind. To begin with let us never forget that Yahweh’s love does not depend on a person’s performance – becoming greater when one is good, and growing cold when one is evil.

Our Father’s love for the human race is the same today as it was when He first created man. His love for us wayward humans never changes. It is constant. To be sure the Almighty is pleased, very pleased, when His children are obedient and do His will: and He is saddened when we go astray and break His commandments. But, whatever our performance, His love for us remains constant. This vital fact should never be forgotten. We repeat: God’s love for us is constant, it never changes. His joy or sadness may rise and fall depending on our behaviour; but His love never changes.

2. This Man Receiveth Sinners

Yeshua (Jesus) came to earth to accomplish certain objectives, one of which was to dispel man’s warped opinion of the Most High and to reveal His Father’s true character. Yahweh’s character is perfectly reflected in His Son’s behaviour. The Bible says of the Saviour:

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

The parable of the prodigal son is an expression of Yahweh’s character trait. Our God receiveth sinners.

3. Freedom From Authority

We humans object to authority, to someone telling us what to do, and what not to do. From early childhood to the day we die, all of us are under some form of control: first by our parents, then by our teachers in school, then by our employers and all the while by governments which rule over us. Do this, do that, come here, go there. The stream of orders never seem to end no matter where or how long we live. Necessary though this control is, most of us find it tiresome. The prodigal son was a typical example. He had had enough of his father’s control and he longed to get away from it. The story begins:

Luke 15: 11: “And he said, A certain man had two sons:
12: And the younger of them said to his father, Father, give me the portion of goods that falleth to me. And he divided unto them his living. ”

4. Riotous Living

Freedom, in theory at any rate, is a wonderful thing. You are in charge. You do what you think is best – for you. No rules, no regulations, no one breathing down your neck telling you what to do or what not to do. The prodigal son, we are told, literally went on a wild spree.

Verse: 13: “And not many days after the younger son gathered all together, and took his journey into a far country, and there wasted his substance with riotous living.”

It’s not difficult to imagine the scene: wild parties, booze and brothels. The prodigal indulged himself to the full. There was no stopping him.

5. The Mighty Famine

It was great fun while it lasted. New friends and pretty girls flocked to his side. He was young, rich and probably good looking too. The music played, the wine flowed and so did the money. This was life! he thought. This was freedom! This was what he had wanted all along! This was fun! But he was in for a shuddering shock: which he didn’t expect would happen so soon. His money ran out; and to make matters worse a mighty famine arose in the distant land to which he had fled.

Verse: 14: “And when he had spent all, there arose a mighty famine in that land; and he began to be in want.
15: And he went and joined himself to a citizen of that country; and he sent him into his fields to feed swine.
16: And he would fain have filled his belly with the husks that the swine did eat: and no man gave unto him.”

6. No Help From Man

When one is rich and prosperous, friends abound. There is no shortage of folk ready to help you spend your money. It is the same today in every country of the world. Rich people have no shortage of friends. But life is very different when you are poor and in need. So-called friends tend to keep away and, if you’ve lived it up, you are often treated with silent disdain.

Here we have a bankrupt foreigner, one who had gone through a lot of money in a short time. He has no friends, or relatives near by to help him, and no state handouts to fall back on. The Bible says:

Verse: 16: “…and no man gave unto him.”

This young man was bankrupt. He took a job keeping pigs, but the job wasn’t bringing in enough money to even feed him. He was desperate, alone, starving and terribly unhappy. And ‘no man gave unto him.’ No doubt he had gone around to his former associates asking for their help; but the story was always the same.

‘Sorry pal, but I cannot help. You know how bad things are these days. Come back another time.’

7. He Came To Himself

But now we come to a turning point in the story; possibly the most important event that took place in this young man’s life. It was the realization that He was in a bad way. He began to compare his present condition with his days in his father’s home. The Bible says: ‘He came to himself.’ As he sat in that stinking pigsty he considered his sad and filthy state. And this is how his thoughts were recorded:

Verse: 17: “And when he came to himself, he said, How many hired servants of my father’s have bread enough and to spare, and I perish with hunger!
18: I will arise and go to my father, and will say unto him, Father, I have sinned against heaven, and before thee,
19: And am no more worthy to be called thy son: make me as one of thy hired servants.
20: And he arose, and came to his father…”

Notice the following:

  • He had – possibly for the first time ever – correctly evaluated his pathetic condition and how that even his father’s servants were better off.
  • That he had sinned against a.) Heaven, that is against Yahweh his Heavenly Father and b.) against his earthly father.
  • He then passed sentence on himself. a.) I am no more worthy to be called thy son. b.) Make me as one of thy hired servants.

Oh what humility and courage is here displayed! Having taken so difficult a decision he then set forth to carry it out.

Verse: 20: “And he arose and came to his father…”

8. Safe And Sound

It is now that we see the Father’s true character. No cruel retort: ‘I told you so.’ ‘So you’ve come back at last have you!’ ‘You thought you knew better; but it’s obvious you didn’t!’ There was none of that in the father’s mind. No anger, no recriminations whatsoever: only love and compassion for his wayward boy. The Bible says:

Luke 15: 20: “And he arose, and came to his father. But when he was yet a great way off, his father saw him, and had compassion, and ran, and fell on his neck, and kissed him.
21: And the son said unto him, Father, I have sinned against heaven, and in thy sight, and am no more worthy to be called thy son.
22: But the father said to his servants, Bring forth the best robe, and put it on him; and put a ring on his hand, and shoes on his feet:
23: And bring hither the fatted calf, and kill it; and let us eat, and be merry:
24: For this my son was dead, and is alive again; he was lost, and is found.”

Here we get a glimpse of the character of the Almighty God of Israel: of His great love, compassion and willingness to forgive and forget. Here we witness His eagerness to accept every wayward sinner back into the family fold. No matter how sinful a person may be; no matter how rebellious, self-willed and hateful: it makes absolutely no difference whatsoever. The Almighty God is willing to pardon every repentant sinner that comes back to Him.

Notice how the father (who represents God) in our story cut his son’s speech short. He didn’t allow him to say ‘Make me as one of thy hired servants. ’ Instead he called for ‘the best robe, a ring, a new pair of shoes and a banquet.’

Is that how you see the Almighty God? Do you see Him as a vengeful, hateful, unforgiving dictator who doesn’t compare for love, compassion and mercy with Jesus Christ? Many Christians see God in this light. How wrong, how terribly wrong they are. For the fact is, this parable is more about our Heavenly Father’s love for His wayward family than it is about youngsters who run away from home and fall on hard times.

Is it possible that someone in this audience is in a similar position to the prodigal son: sinful, friendless, emotionally starving to death – far from home. We are happy to tell you that your Heavenly Father is on the look out for your return. But do you have the courage to return to Him. Because, most certainly, He has the love and compassion to accept you back.

9. Summary

This parable has many lessons in it: lessons we all need to remember and apply. We’ll summarize them:

  • DO NOT RUN AWAY FROM GOD.
    • He’s not a selfish dictator as many people make out.
    • The truth is: all His commands are for our good.
    • Do not look upon them as burdensome restrictions.
  • DO NOT SQUANDER YOUR PHYSICAL OR SPIRITUAL RESOURCES.
    • On drunkenness, debauchery and riotous living.
    • Because you will soon find yourself emotionally bankruptand feeding on a diet fit only for pigs.
  • REMEMBER
    • A spiritual famine could devastate a nation in a short time.
    • At such a time, satisfaction can never be found in the pigsty of sin.
    • The only answer is to come to your senses and return to your Heavenly Father.
  • ALL YOU NEED TO DO WHEN YOU MEET HIM>
    • Is to repent and confess your sin to Him.
    • You could do this in the privacy of your own bedroom.
    • He will forgive you, have no fear.
    • Moreover, He will welcome you back with open armsand heavens blessing will be yours.
  • COME HOME DEAR FRIEND   COME HOME

A psalm of Asaph

1. Suffering/Well-Being

Human suffering is one of the most difficult things to understand; particularly when it comes to a faithful follower of God. It is not too difficult to accept the suffering of blatant sinners, because everyone instinctively knows that punishment ought to come in the wake of sin. How often have you heard people comment when an extremely evil person suffers: ‘They’re getting what they deserve. It’s divine justice at last.’

But it’s quite another matter when a good person is laid low. ‘Why him, he was such a good man, loved by the community, spent all his time doing good. Why did God – if there is a God – allow this awful tragedy to happen to him? [or her] Why? Why? Why?’

2. The Prosperity of The Wicked

What makes the acceptance of trouble, pain and death even more difficult to understand is when one considers the apparent well-being and prosperity of the wicked. Millions of blatantly wicked people live in the lap of luxury, seemingly oblivious to the troubles around them and without a care in the world. Listen to the Psalmist’s thoughts on this dilemma. He raises several important issues which sooner or later you will begin to think about.

3. Yahweh’s Goodness

Most Bible students know that the LORD God of Israel blesses the upright and punishes the wicked. Deuteronomy chapter 28 spells out this message again and again in awesome detail. Go ahead and read that chapter. The Psalmist agrees with it when he writes:

Psalm 73:1 “Truly God is good to Israel, even to such as are of a clean heart.”

4. The Sinner’s Properity

But a seemingly inexplicable problem then presents itself. The Psalmist now witnesses the prosperity of the wicked. Indeed they appear to him to be better off than the righteous. Day after day he notes how that faithful believers suffer poverty, sickness and pain; whilst the blatant sinner grew rich on the spoils of evil.

This paradox staggered his understanding. It just didn’t make sense. It didn’t seem to match the message of Deuteronomy 28. The good were perishing and the evil were flourishing. What was wrong? The Psalmist almost gave up his faith. Here are his words:

Psalm 73: 2: “But as for me, my feet were almost gone; my steps had well nigh slipped.
3: For I was envious at the foolish, when I saw the prosperity of the wicked.
4: For there are no bands in their death: but their strength is firm.
5: They are not in trouble as other men; neither are they plagued like other men.
6: Therefore pride compasseth them about as a chain; violence covereth them as a garment.
7: Their eyes stand out with fatness: they have more than heart could wish.
8: They are corrupt, and speak wickedly concerning oppression: they speak loftily.
9: They set their mouth against the heavens, and their tongue walketh through the earth.”

5. Evil Trend Setters

As if the sinner’s prosperity were not enough to doubt the fairness of God or the truth of His Word, the Psalmist considers yet another dilemma, the fame andinfluence of evil men. Multitudes follow them. Their wicked deeds are copied by multitudes. No one seems to know – or care – whether the Almighty approves or not. Sin has become fashionable and the path of righteousness has become a social joke! Does God know what’s happening? And if He does, can He do anything to stop the evil that is swamping society?

Psalm 73: 10: “Therefore his people return hither: and waters of a full cup are wrung out to them.
11: And they say, How doth God know? and is there knowledge in the most High?
12: Behold, these are the ungodly, who prosper in the world; they increase in riches.”

6. A Difficult Situation

And so the Psalmist muses on the dilemma of the prosperity of the wicked on the one hand and the sufferings of the righteous on the other. Where then is the benefit in serving God? Could it be that his faith was a painful, pointless and fruitless exercise? It is a question that staggered the Psalmist – all day – every day. It is a question that puzzles people to this very day. Perhaps even you have wondered about it!

Psalm 73: 13: “Verily I have cleansed my heart in vain, and washed my hands in innocency.
14: For all the day long have I been plagued, and chastened every morning.
15: If I say, I will speak thus; behold, I should offend against the generation of thy children.
16: When I thought to know this, it was too painful for me.”

7. The Judgment

Then Yahweh opened the Psalmist’s eyes; opened them to a stunning fact which no one can afford to ignore. It was this, that what we humans call ‘prosperity‘[wealth, fame, popularity, possessions etc.] are not the end-all of human existence. They are transient. There is something ahead awaiting every soul on earth – the Judgment! Yahweh led the Psalmist into the sanctuary; into the very courthouse of the universe and gave him a preview of the approaching Day of Judgment! Oh what a fearsome scene was there displayed!

In a flash the psalmist’s eyes were opened to a truth which comparatively few people on earth appreciate; that the Day of Judgment is coming!And only then will we know the benefits of righteousness and the terrors awaiting the blatant sinner. The Psalmist awakes to this truth as though from a dream; for now he knows why God allows the sinner their short time of enjoyment, vanity and luxury. For soon it will all end. It will end in their total destruction. They will be utterly consumed with terrors!

Psalm 73: 17: “Until I went into the sanctuary of God; then understood I their end.
18: Surely thou didst set them in slippery places: thou castedst them down into destruction.
19: How are they brought into desolation, as in a moment! they are utterly consumed with terrors.
20: As a dream when one awaketh; so, O Lord, when thou awakest, thou shalt despise their image.”

See AVITW Lesson on The Judgment.

8. Guilty Conscience

When the awful horror of the final Judgment burst upon his view, the Psalmist is gripped with a sense of shame at ever having doubted the Almighty’s justice. He had acted like a beast of the field which is totally ignorant of its Master’s plans. He exclaims:

Psalm 73: 21: “Thus my heart was grieved, and I was pricked in my reins.
22: So foolish was I, and ignorant: I was as a beast before thee.”

In other words, ‘I feel guilty and ashamed of myself. I feel like an ignorant fool, having totally misjudged the issue; having secretly thought that the LORD God was turning a blind eye to blasphemy, disobedience and blatant sin; that He was ignoring the efforts of His true followers to walk in the pathway of righteousness. How wrong was I, how wrong, how wrong!’ The message of Psalm 37 [by king David] is exactly the same.

Psalm 37: 1: “Fret not thyself because of evildoers, neither be thou envious against the workers of iniquity.
2: For they shall soon be cut down like the grass, and wither as the green herb…9: For evildoers shall be cut off: but those that wait upon the LORD, they shall inherit the earth.
10: For yet a little while, and the wicked shall not be: yea, thou shalt diligently consider his place, and it shall not be.
11: But the meek shall inherit the earth; and shall delight themselves in the abundance of peace…28: For the LORD loveth judgment, and forsaketh not his saints; they are preserved for ever: but the seed of the wicked shall be cut off.
29: The righteous shall inherit the land, and dwell therein for ever.”

9. A True Alliance

Obedient believers are never alone in this world. Friends may forsake them, relatives may forget, hard times may come, poverty may hammer on the door, sickness may sadden, but Yahweh is always close to His children. He never abandons His faithful servants. He may allow us to go through the fire, but He is there with us in the flames. And only when the great Day of Judgment arrives and the eternal verdict is heard, will the true rewards of the righteous become manifest. We have this assurance on the Word of the Almighty God. It can never fail.

Psalm 37: 17: “For the arms of the wicked shall be broken: but the LORD upholdeth the righteous.
18: The LORD knoweth the days of the upright: and their inheritance shall be for ever.
19: They shall not be ashamed in the evil time: and in the days of famine they shall be satisfied.
20: But the wicked shall perish, and the enemies of the LORD shall be as the fat of lambs: they shall consume; into smoke shall they consume away.”

10. Yahweh My Strength & Provider

Oh what divine assurances are contained in the Psalms! Here are faithful sayings which have stood the test of centuries – yea of millennia. Can we add our faith to that of the Psalmist? Are we willing to look beyond our present difficulties and, in spirit, enter the sanctuary above? We can, we must and we will. Let all who agree say … Amen!

Psalm 37: 23: “The steps of a good man are ordered by the LORD: and he delighteth in his way.
24: Though he fall, he shall not be utterly cast down: for the LORD upholdeth him with his hand.
25: I have been young, and now am old; yet have I not seen the righteous forsaken, nor his seed begging bread.”

11. Conclusion

Psalm 73 began with doubt, but ends with absolute faith. The Psalmist [Asaph] has learned, probably by bitter experience, that the LORD God of Abraham, Isaac and Israel is true to His Word. On the great Day of Judgment He will reward His faithful followers and He will surely punish the wicked. Let all who hear [or read] take note!

Psalm 73: 23: “Nevertheless I am continually with thee: thou hast holden me by my right hand.
24: Thou shalt guide me with thy counsel, and afterward receive me to glory.
25: Whom have I in heaven but thee? and there is none upon earth that I desire beside thee.
26: My flesh and my heart faileth: but God is the strength of my heart, and my portion for ever.
27: For, lo, they that are far from thee shall perish: thou hast destroyed all them that go a whoring from thee.
28: But it is good for me to draw near to God: I have put my trust in the Lord GOD, that I may declare all thy works.”

Next time you hear of the untimely death of a righteous person, a true believer, a pillar of society, do not wonder, do not secretly question God.He knows what He is doing. Next time when you witness, or read about the flourishing wealth and apparent well-being of the sinner, do not behave like an ignorant beast and doubt the existence or the wisdom of God. He knows what He is doing. Make the Psalmist’s words your very own.

  • That the Almighty allows the blatantly wicked to temporarily prosper; but only till the Day of Judgment. Then they will meet their end.
  • “That though my flesh and my heart faileth: God is the strength of my heart, and my portion for ever.

1. A Sinful World

Millions of people in every country live out their lives in silent despair, as troubles mount on every side. Broken homes, loneliness, unemployment, debt, illness, crime, vice, violence and many other ills have overwhelmed human society. Some try to drown their sorrows in drink, others take to drugs; only to find that they are compounding their problems.

All the while, personal guilt is escalating throughout society. Families are growing apart. Church congregations are breaking up. The community spirit, so strong in days gone by, is fading, and fading fast. Greed, selfishness, sex and violence are the order of the day. Many souls bravely ride out the storm, hoping against hope that things will get better.

But the situation grows worse. Some, seeing no way out of their personal problems, commit suicide. To be sure, this is all common knowledge.We mention it simply by way of introduction to show that something is radically wrong with our world. Many hundreds of years ago the Apostle Paul wrote these words about our day.

2 Timothy 3: 1:“This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come.
2: For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy,
3: Without natural affection, trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good,
4: Traitors, heady, highminded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God;
5: Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away.”

Jesus Christ (Yeshua the Messiah) also warned about these things. He added a list of international problems: wars, famines, disease epidemics, natural disasters and persecution. He said that the churches would loose many members: that love for God would wax cold and faithwould be a rare commodity. These signs, he predicted, would all precede his return to earth. They are ALL happening before our very eyes.

Matthew 24: 12:“And because iniquity shall abound, the love of many shall wax cold.”
Mark 13: 8:“For nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom: and there shall be earthquakes in divers places, and there shall be famines and troubles: these are the beginnings of sorrows.”

‘But why,’ you may well ask, ‘is the world in such a mess?’ The basic reason is because men and women have turned away from God. They have rejected the Almighty’s offer of salvation through His Son. They have rejected His Word the Holy Bible and they have rejected His commandments. The time has come for Him to act. Mankind’s allocated period of six thousand years is almost finished. God is about to step in, shake up mankind and take over the governments of the world.But before He does that He is currently making His final appeals to the human race. The Bible says:

2 Peter 3: 9:“The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.”

In other words, though the Almighty is soon to act and punish sin, He does not want anyone to perish; to be annihilated – if there is the slightest chance they may accept His offer of mercy. That is what this Sabbath sermon is about. It is an urgent invitation to consider the divine options open to you before it is eternally too late. For make no mistake, the Almighty God is about to punish the world for its transgressions.

2. Divine Options

The punishment for sin is eternal death. But before condemning a sinner to death the Almighty offers terms of mercy. Only when His mercy is repeatedly rejected does punishment follow. These divine terms are documented in the scriptures.

Option 1: Unbelief and Death

Ezekiel 18: 4:“Behold, all souls are mine; as the soul of the father, so also the soul of the son is mine: the soul that sinneth, it shall die …”
Verse: 20: “The soul that sinneth, it shall die. The son shall not bear the iniquity of the father, neither shall the father bear the iniquity of the son: the righteousness of the righteous shall be upon him, and the wickedness of the wicked shall be upon him.”

Option 2: Forgiveness / Cleansing

Ezekiel 18: 21:“But if the wicked will turn from all his sins that he hath committed, and keep all my statutes, and do that which is lawful and right, he shall surely live, he shall not die.
22: All his transgressions that he hath committed, they shall not be mentioned unto him: in his righteousness that he hath done he shall live.
23: Have I any pleasure at all that the wicked should die? saith the Lord GOD: and not that he should return from his ways, and live?”
Isaiah 1: 16:“Wash you, make you clean; put away the evil of your doings from before mine eyes; cease to do evil;
17: Learn to do well; seek judgment, relieve the oppressed, judge the fatherless, plead for the widow.
18: Come now, and let us reason together, saith the LORD: though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool.
19: If ye be willing and obedient, ye shall eat the good of the land:
20: But if ye refuse and rebel, ye shall be devoured with the sword: for the mouth of the LORD hath spoken it.”

3. Examples of Forgiveness

We will now list instances of some notable sinners of Bible times who found forgiveness from God. Their sins include prostitution, idolatry, adultery, deceit, murder and sedition. When they repented, they were all forgiven.

Rahab (Prostitution)
Rahab was a harlot who lived in the world’s oldest city – Jericho. She became a believer in the God of Israel. She and her family were spared when the city was conquered and all its inhabitants slaughtered.

Joshua 2: 18:“Behold, when we come into the land, thou shalt bind this line of scarlet thread in the window which thou didst let us down by: and thou shalt bring thy father, and thy mother, and thy brethren, and all thy father’s household, home unto thee.”
Joshua 6: 25:“And Joshua saved Rahab the harlot alive, and her father’s household, and all that she had; and she dwelleth in Israel even unto this day; because she hid the messengers, which Joshua sent to spy out Jericho.”
“Though your sins (Rahab) be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool.”

King Manasseh (Idolatry)
Manasseh was one of the worst kings who ever ruled in Judah. His sins were vile and numerous. God severely punished Manasseh. But he repented and the Most high forgave him and put him back on the throne. The story of Manasseh is breath-taking. It shows that God is infinitely merciful to even the vilest sinner.

2 Chronicles 33: 1:“Manasseh was twelve years old when he began to reign, and he reigned fifty and five years in Jerusalem:
2: But did that which was evil in the sight of the LORD, like unto the abominations of the heathen, whom the LORD had cast out before the children of Israel.
3: For he built again the high places which Hezekiah his father had broken down, and he reared up altars for Baalim, and made groves, and worshipped all the host of heaven, and served them.”
Verse: 12: “And when he was in affliction, he besought the LORD his God, and humbled himself greatly before the God of his fathers,
13: And prayed unto him: and he was intreated of him, and heard his supplication, and brought him again to Jerusalem into his kingdom. Then Manasseh knew that the LORD he was God.”
“Though your sins (Manasseh) be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool.”

King David (Adultery/Murder)
King David, for all his knowledge and love for God’s law, fell victim to the charms of a beautiful woman. When he saw Bath-sheba bathing his spiritual defences collapsed and he committed adultery with her. So captivated was the king that he had her husband murdered in battle. David then took Bath-sheba as his wife. Yahweh was terribly angry and pronounced judgement against David.

2 Samuel 12: 11:“Thus saith the LORD, Behold, I will raise up evil against thee out of thine own house, and I will take thy wives before thine eyes, and give them unto thy neighbour, and he shall lie with thy wives in the sight of this sun.
12: For thou didst it secretly: but I will do this thing before all Israel, and before the sun.
13: And David said unto Nathan, I have sinned against the LORD. And Nathan said unto David, The LORD also hath put away thy sin; thou shalt not die.”
“Though your sins (David) be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool.”

Mary, The Sister of Lazarus
Mary was a notable sinner who lived in ancient village of Bethany. What her sin was we are not told: but it may well have been prostitution. When she met Jesus she was converted. Never in all her days had she met such a man. Jesus became her Saviour and her friend.

Luke 7: 37:“And, behold, a woman in the city, which was a sinner, when she knew that Jesus sat at meat in the Pharisee’s house, brought an alabaster box of ointment,
38: And stood at his feet behind him weeping, and began to wash his feet with tears, and did wipe them with the hairs of her head, and kissed his feet, and anointed them with the ointment.
39: Now when the Pharisee which had bidden him saw it, he spake within himself, saying, This man, if he were a prophet, would have known who and what manner of woman this is that toucheth him: for she is a sinner.
40: And Jesus answering said unto him, Simon, I have somewhat to say unto thee. And he saith, Master, say on.
41: There was a certain creditor which had two debtors: the one owed five hundred pence, and the other fifty.
42: And when they had nothing to pay, he frankly forgave them both. Tell me therefore, which of them will love him most?
43: Simon answered and said, I suppose that he, to whom he forgave most. And he said unto him, Thou hast rightly judged.
44: And he turned to the woman, and said unto Simon, Seest thou this woman? I entered into thine house, thou gavest me no water for my feet: but she hath washed my feet with tears, and wiped them with the hairs of her head.
45: Thou gavest me no kiss: but this woman since the time I came in hath not ceased to kiss my feet.
46: My head with oil thou didst not anoint: but this woman hath anointed my feet with ointment.
47: Wherefore I say unto thee, Her sins, which are many, are forgiven; for she loved much: but to whom little is forgiven, the same loveth little.”

(Read about Mary in Mark 14: 3-9, John 11: 1-2, John 12: 1-3)

“Though your sins (Mary) be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool.”

The Apostle Paul (Persecutor/Sedition)
Before his conversion the Apostle Paul (previously called Saul) persecuted the Christian church. He was present – and agreed with – the death sentence when it was carried out on the first Christian martyr Stephen. But the Saviour recognized that Saul’s zeal was misguided and he decided to personally confront him. Saul was converted and renamed ‘Paul.’ He later became one of the Gospel’s greatest champions and the writer of many letters in the New Testament.

Acts 8: 1:“And Saul was consenting unto his death. And at that time there was a great persecution against the church which was at Jerusalem; and they were all scattered abroad throughout the regions of Judaea and Samaria, except the apostles.
2: And devout men carried Stephen to his burial, and made great lamentation over him.
3: As for Saul, he made havock of the church, entering into every house, and haling men and women committed them to prison.”
Acts 9: 1:“And Saul, yet breathing out threatenings and slaughter against the disciples of the Lord, went unto the high priest,
2: And desired of him letters to Damascus to the synagogues, that if he found any of this way, whether they were men or women, he might bring them bound unto Jerusalem.”

Paul’s Confession

1 Corinthians 15: 9:“For I am the least of the apostles, that am not meet to be called an apostle, because I persecuted the church of God.”
Galatians 1: 13:“For ye have heard of my conversation in time past in the Jews’ religion, how that beyond measure I persecuted the church of God, and wasted it:”
Acts 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.
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.”
“Though your sins (Paul) be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool.”

The Thief On The Cross
We do not know the name of this thief. But he is the perfect example of one who could find salvation on the very last day of his life. He began the day by cursing Christ. He ended it a converted man. This man will be in paradise because of his faith in Jesus.

Luke 23: 38:“And a superscription also was written over him in letters of Greek, and Latin, and Hebrew, THIS IS THE KING OF THE JEWS.
39: And one of the malefactors which were hanged railed on him, saying, If thou be Christ, save thyself and us.
40: But the other answering rebuked him, saying, Dost not thou fear God, seeing thou art in the same condemnation?
41: And we indeed justly; for we receive the due reward of our deeds: but this man hath done nothing amiss.
42: And he said unto Jesus, Lord, remember me when thou comest into thy kingdom.
43: And Jesus said unto him, Verily I say unto thee, To day shalt thou be with me in paradise.”
“Though your sins be as scarlet, (O Thief) they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool.”

4. What Must I Do To Be Saved?

To be pardoned from sin and its consequences – eternal death – a sinner must believe, commit one’s life to, Yeshua the Messiah. (Jesus Christ) Faith must then be expressed in obedience to Yahweh’s commandments. In short, to be saved you must trust and obey the Almighty God. There is no other option. Listen to the advice of Paul and Jesus concerning the route to salvation and eternal life.

Paul’s Advice

Acts 16: 30:“And brought them out, and said, Sirs, what must I do to be saved?
31: And they said, Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house.”
Jesus’ Advice

Matthew 19: 16:“And, behold, one came and said unto him, Good Master, what good thing shall I do, that I may have eternal life?
17: And he said unto him, Why callest thou me good? there is none good but one, that is, God: but if thou wilt enter into life, keep the commandments.
18: He saith unto him, Which? Jesus said, Thou shalt do no murder, Thou shalt not commit adultery, Thou shalt not steal, Thou shalt not bear false witness,
19: Honour thy father and thy mother: and, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself.”

5. What About You?

How will you react to Yahweh’s invitation to give up your sins and be saved? He is ready to pardon you, no matter how many times you have broken His law. So long as you confess your sins to God and then forsake them, you will certainly receive a free pardon. You can see from the Bible examples quoted that no case is hopeless. No one is beyond salvation. It is possible for even the vilest sinner on earth to be saved. Listen again to Yahweh’s pleading voice:

Isaiah 1: 16:“Wash you, make you clean; put away the evil of your doings from before mine eyes; cease to do evil;
17: Learn to do well; seek judgment, relieve the oppressed, judge the fatherless, plead for the widow.
18: Come now, and let us reason together, saith the LORD: though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool.
19: If ye be willing and obedient, ye shall eat the good of the land:
20: But if ye refuse and rebel, ye shall be devoured with the sword: for the mouth of the LORD hath spoken it.”

What Does This Mean To You?
It means this: No matter what sin you may have committed: prostitution, idolatry, adultery, murder, theft, blasphemy or sedition: you can be forgiven – if you want forgiveness. The divine offer is open to you – now! “Though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool.”

The New Testament invitation to salvation is worded like this:

Revelation 22: 1:“And he shewed me a pure river of water of life, clear as crystal, proceeding out of the throne of God and of the Lamb …”
Verse: 17: “And the Spirit and the bride say, Come. And let him that heareth say, Come. And let him that is athirst come. And whosoever will, let him take the water of life freely.”

Who Can Accomplish This Miracle?
Yeshua the Messiah can. In the privacy of your own room, kneel down and confess your sins to God and accept His offer of mercy before it is too late. We repeat: no matter how many sins you may have committed, God is willing and able to forgive you. If you accept salvation you will be able to say with the Psalmist:

Psalm 23: 6:“Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life: and I will dwell in the house of the LORD for ever.”

The alternative to salvation is damnation: and that, dear reader, is too dreadful to even contemplate.

6. The True Believers Future

No matter how desperate your present situation may be: if you believe in Yeshua the Saviour, your future is bright beyond anything you can imagine. Yahweh your Heavenly Father has in store for you an inheritance far better than the wealthiest billionaire can purchase. In the paradise of the new heavens and the new earth that He has promised to create, there will be no sickness, no sorrow, no pain and no death. The redeemed host will live there for all eternity in absolute peace, happiness and good health. This is the Word of God!

Revelation 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.
2: And I John saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband.
3: And I heard a great voice out of heaven saying, Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and he will dwell with them, and they shall be his people, and God himself shall be with them, and be their God.
4:And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away.
5: And he that sat upon the throne said, Behold, I make all things new. And he said unto me, Write: for these words are true and faithful.
6: And he said unto me, It is done. I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end. I will give unto him that is athirst of the fountain of the water of life freely.
7: He that overcometh shall inherit all things; and I will be his God, and he shall be my son.
8: But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.”

The Apostle Paul sums it up in these words:

1 Corinthians 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.”

7. Summary

There you have it: your future prospects guaranteed on the Word of the Almighty God. What stronger reassurances do you need? None whatsoever. So let us close by summarizing this lesson:

  • This Present World Is In Total Disarray And Is Getting Worse By The Hour.
    • Insoluble problems of all kinds are engulfing nations, communities, families and individuals.
    • Your own life may well be in ruins.
    • We don’t know. But do not despair; there is hope.
  • Yahweh The Creator of The Mighty Universe,
    • Is extending mercy to all mankind: even to the vilest sinner that walks this earth.
    • Failure to accept His offer of mercy will result in everlasting death: a prospect too horrible to contemplate!
    • We advise you to choose life.
  • Bible Examples of Folk Who Have Found Mercy Include:
    • Prostitutes, Idolaters, Adulterers, Murderers, Thieves, Persecutors, Liars And Sinners of All Kinds.
    • We are all included in the list.
    • Whatever you may think of yourself, you are no exception.
    • You too can be saved.
  • To Be Saved You Must Believe In The Lord Jesus Christ. (Yeshua The Saviour)
    • Then express your faith in obedience to the commandments of God.
    • This is living faith and love in action.
    • You are now being offered the opportunity to give up sin and place your life in the hands of the Almighty God.
    • This offer of salvation is made possible through Yahweh’s Son Yeshua.
  • If You Accept The Almighty’s Offer of Salvation.
    • He promises you life eternal in the new heavens and new earth;
    • Where there will be no sorrow, sickness, pain or death.
    • You have His word for it.
  • No Human Mind Can Possibly Take In The Full Extent of This Divine Offer…
    • And its endless guarantee.
    • It cannot fail.
    • It will happen exactly as stated: and you have nothing to loose by accepting it.
    • May the Almighty help you make the right decision

Reading: Exodus Chappter 12

1. Introduction

Many times in the past we have spoken and written of the Saviour: his name, Y’shua, Yahshua or Emmanuel, his power over principalities in heaven and earth, over the human body, the human mind and even the natural elements. We’ve considered his work, his message, his healing powers and the poverty he gladly accepted in order to save mankind. We’ve considered several important questions others have asked him or about him:

  • “Art thou he that is to come, or do we look for another?”(Matthew 11: 3)
  • “Pilate therefore said unto him, Art thou a king then?” (John 18: 37)
  • “Then said they unto him, Who art thou?” (John 1: 22)
  • “And Pilate answered and said again unto them, What will ye then that I shall do unto him whom ye call the King of the Jews?” (Mark 15: 12)

In Sermon Note114 we’ve considered some questions the Saviour asked others:

  • “Whom do men say that I am?” (Mark 8: 27)
  • “Whom say ye that I am? And Peter answereth and saith unto him, Thou art the Christ.” (Mark 8: 29)
  • “For what shall it profit a man, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul?” (Mark 8: 36)
  • “What will ye that I shall do unto you?” (Matthew 20: 32)

This Sabbath we will take the spiritual microscope and study one versein Scripture and follow the advice of John the Baptist when he said:

“Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world.” (John 1: 29)

2. The Son of God

Jehovah the God of Israel is referred to in Scripture as our Heavenly Father, the Ancient of Days, the Most High – EL SHADDAI, the Holy One of Israel and I AM. The Almighty has a Son, an only begotten Son: one who issued from His spiritual body just as surely as an earthly son issues from his earthly father’s physical body. Yeshua is that Son. Yehshua is not just a good man, a great prophet or leader who did mighty miracles in the distant past and who taught mankind many wonderful truths. He is the Son of the Almighty God!

He is God’s only begotten Son: which means he was not created as the angels were: not adopted like one adopts an orphan, but he was ‘begotten’ of his Father. He is also the ‘express image’ of his heavenly Father. This means that his motives, thoughts, words, deeds and the principles by which he lived were identical to his Father’s. In fact Jesus was the express image, a visible expression of his Father’s character. To be sure they are two separate individuals, who inhabit two separate bodies; but they are in total agreement, they have one purpose, one set of doctrines and one plan. The prophet Daniel describes a meeting of these two Beings in these words. Notice their descriptions a.) The Ancient of days and b.) The Son of Man.

The Father And The Son
Daniel 7:9 9: “I beheld till the thrones were cast down, and the Ancient of days did sit, whose garment was white as snow, and the hair of his head like the pure wool: his throne was like the fiery flame, and his wheels as burning fire.
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.
11: I beheld then because of the voice of the great words which the horn spake: I beheld even till the beast was slain, and his body destroyed, and given to the burning flame.
12: As concerning the rest of the beasts, they had their dominion taken away: yet their lives were prolonged for a season and time.
13: I saw in the night visions, and, behold, one like the Son of mancame with the clouds of heaven, and came to the Ancient of days,and they brought him near before him.
14: And there was given him dominion, and glory, and a kingdom, that all people, nations, and languages, should serve him: his dominion is an everlasting dominion, which shall not pass away, and his kingdom that which shall not be destroyed.”

Why did the Father, the Ancient of Days, hand over total authority to His Son? The answer is because He was totally satisfied with His Son’s performance. The Apostle Matthew tells of this when he heard the Father testify of His Son’s performance.

Matthew 3: 17: “And lo a voice from heaven saying: This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.”

The Son tells us in the following words of his Father’s plan to save mankind.

John 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.
17: For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.
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.”

3. The Sacrificial Lamb

Besides being the only begotten Son of the Most High, a position which itself is of inestimable worth, Yeshua is the Lamb of God! He is Yahweh’s sacrifice for sin. He alone can take away your sins, my sins and the sins of the entire world. What does this mean to us? It means this:

  • The Wages of Sin…
    • The transgression of Yahweh’s law is death – eternal death!
  • The Almighty, The God of Abraham, Isaac And Jacob…
    • Does NOT want any human being, however guilty he/she may be, to suffer that penalty.
    • So He provided a way of escape; someone who would die in the guilty sinner’s place.
    • That someone was His only begotten Son, Yeshua; who agreed with his Father’s plan.
  • To Demonstrate The Plan of Salvation…
    • The Animal Sacrificial system of the Old Testament was designed.
    • It was to be a model, the type, a living drama, an object lesson, a spiritual blueprint of the reality to come.
    • The reality was Jesus Christ’s death on calvary.
    • To obtain forgiveness for sin, the sinner was to take the blood of a sacrifice, confess his/her sins over it and forgiveness was granted.
    • Before Calvary this forgiveness was provisional:after Calvary it was guaranteed.
  • When The Saviour, The Real Lamb of God Sacrificed His Life…
    • He paid the price for your sins and mine.
    • Our forgiveness, our salvation, our redemption,our inheritance was assured.
  • It Now Remains For Us To Accept By Faith These Guaranteed Spiritual Provisions.
    • This and no other is the plan of savation.

Yahweh’s provision for man’s salvation has been made. Yet, strange as it may seem, the Father (the ram) is making a greater sacrifice than His Son (thelamb) did; a sacrifice He has kept secret from the whole universe. (Genesis 22: 8-13) Secret, because no mind in heaven or earth can properly understand the instense sorrow, pain and separation that sin produced between the Almighty and His creation. Secret also because He – the Father – is far too modest a being to tell of His own sacrifice in the plan of salvation: a sacrifice in which He beggared Himself in order to save His human race from annihilation. But that is another subject.

4. That Taketh Away The Sin of The World

It is possible to speak at length on the subject of sin and its cure. A thousand facts, arguments and illustrations present themselves; the subject is vast. But today we will concentrate on just one aspect: that Yeshua is the only remedy for sin. Yes, in every area of human disorder, he alone is the answer. Other answers to man’s problems may present themselves, be tried and for a time may even appear to work. But sooner or later all man-made efforts will end in disaster; in failure so complete that every thinking mind will eventually admit that man is unable to save himself from any of his many problems. Consider just a few areas where mankind faces massive problems:

  • POLITICAL PEACE:
    • The human race balances on the brink of another world war: a war which would cripple the economies of all nations.
    • Areas of current unrest include: the former Soviet Union, Africa, Afghanistan, Ceylon, the far east, Bosnia, Ireland, China and the Middle East.
    • Every week we hear of yet another flare up; often in places of which many of us have never heard.
  • HEALTH:
    • AIDS and possibly even more deadly diseases are an increasing threat.
    • The world’s puny medical resources could never hope to cure multiplied millions of sick and diseased folk.
  • THE ENVIRONMENT:
    • Planet earth is dying.
    • The air we breath, the water we drink and the soil on which we grow our food, is becoming polluted – sick!
    • Nothing we can do – however valiantly we try – can reverse the destructive effects of modern industrial farming on earth’s eco-systems.
    • Everyone knows this.
  • UNEMPLOYMENT:
    • Unemployment is a major problem in virtually every country on earth.
    • Within weeks could find themselves out of work.
    • The closure of a single factory often spells disaster for a community or town.
    • Unemployment spawns many other social ills, too numerous to mention.
  • GOVERNMENT:
    • Corrupt governments, corrupt officials, impotent laws and short-sighted plans have totally disrupted many nations of the world.
    • The citizens of many countries have become ungovernable.
  • SOCIAL PROBLEMS:>
    • Broken homes, violence, drunkenness, adultery, divorce, rape, incest, burglary, drug abuse, homelessness, starvation and widespread poverty.
    • The list is long and growing.

5. Behold

It is at this time – amid all these dead-end circumstances – I ask you to Behold Yeshua. His name means the Salvation of Yahweh. He is the answer to life’s problems. He alone can pull you out of all your troubles and grant you forgiveness, peace of mind and spiritual prosperity in this world: and life eternal in the world to come. The word ‘behold’ means look at, scrutinize, consider, concentrate on – Y’shua, Yahweh’s Lamb. The Apostles all advise us to do the same thing: to behold and seriously consider the Saviour.

Matthew 12: 18: “Behold my servant, whom I have chosen; my beloved, in whom my soul is well pleased: I will put my spirit upon him, and he shall shew judgment to the Gentiles.”
Hebrews 3: 31: “Wherefore, holy brethren, partakers of the heavenly calling, consider the Apostle and High Priest of our profession, Christ Jesus.”
Revelation 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.
21: To him that overcometh will I grant to sit with me in my throne, even as I also overcame and am set down with my Father in His throne.”

6. Consider Also These Things:

  • The Catalogue of Disaster Sin Has Brought About In This World.
    • The amazing sacrifice Yahweh made in sending His only begotten Son to pay the price for sin.
    • Have you accepted His offer of mercy?
    • Do not delay doing so.
  • The Still Secret Cost To Himself
    • The Father made in order to save men and angels from annihilation.
    • It will take an eternity to appreciate this still hidden price.
    • The present offer of free salvation through His Son that Yahweh is making to you.
  • Acceptance Means
    • Adoption into the family of God.
    • “Behold what manner of love the Father hath shown unto us, that we should be called the Sons of God:” (1 John 3: 1)

Consider these things. Don’t just dismiss them from your mind. Think about them. Talk about them to your loved ones. Pray about them. Nothing in heaven or earth can compare with their importance. Your top priority at this very moment should be to accept salvation. You cannot afford to throw away the free gift of eternal life. It’s infinitely more important than you or we can remotely imagine. But it’s true. Yahweh’s Word gaurantees your salvation if you put your trust in Him. This guarantee comes to you free of charge through the merits of the Lamb of God – Yeshua the Messiah

… The Lord Jesus Christ

Even eternity will not suffice to fully appreciate the personage and character of Yeshua the Messiah. Consequently in this short lesson we will seek to understand his immeasurable worth by considering just a few of the metaphors and parables which the Bible uses to declare him. And as we do this we will pray that the Holy Spirit of Yahweh will not only enlighten us as to the worth of His Son Emmanuel, but will also lift us to higher levels of Christian experience than we have hitherto thought possible.

Throughout this site readers will notice that we often use the Saviour’s Hebrew name YESHUA. We also use the name Jesus, which is the popular Greekrendering of the Saviour’s Hebrew name. We trust that students will understand that in every instance, whether we use Yeshua, Yahshua, Jesus, Emmanuel, the Master, the Saviour, I AM, the Logos etc. we are referring to the only begotten Son of the Almighty God,to the One who died for the sins of the world on Calvary. Further information see Sacred Names. With that thought in mind let us continue.

  1. To Begin With …
    JESUS IS THE ONLY BEGOTTEN SON OF GOD
    That is, he came forth or issued from God the Father, and is therefore God the Son. He is not just a good man or a great thinker. He is the Almighty’s Son and is therefore God!
    Luke 1: 35, Matthew 3: 17, Matthew 16: 16, 1 John 4: 15
  2. JESUS IS THE ‘LIVING WORD’ OF YAHWEH
    The Logos, the Spokesman, the Ambassador, the Representative of the Almighty. But he did not merely present an audible message about his Father and His work. He did far more than that. He was and still is the visible expression of Yahweh’s will, a living demonstration of how the Most High wants mankind to live.
    Malachi 3: 1, John 1:1, Hebrews 1: 1-3
  3. JESUS IS THE LAWGIVER
    Of the past, the Advocate of the present and he will be the Judge on the future Day of Judgment. See sermon note No. 34 The Day of Judgment. Being the only example of faultless obedience to Yahweh’s Law this world has ever known, Yeshua is the only one qualified to understand and judge a sinner’s case in the tribunal of heaven. He alone can recommend forgiveness or condemnation for the transgressors of Yahweh’s commandments.
    James 4: 12, 1 John 2: 1, Acts 17: 31
  4. JESUS IS THE HIGH PRIEST
    Of the Melchisedec Order, the only valid spiritual link between the Father and mankind. What’s more, he will always be the High Priest of that eternal order and will live forever to make intercession for us.
    Hebrews 5: 6-10
  5. JESUS IS THE LAMB OF GOD
    The innocent victim of sin, the one and only sin-offering the Father is unable to refuse. The merits of his amazing sacrifice will always gain access to the heart of God, and the sinner would do well to remember this great truth when seeking pardon from the Almighty.
    John 1: 29-36, Acts 8: 32
  6. JESUS IS THE CREATOR
    Of the visible and invisible universe; the one who brought the Father’s designs into existence. The Most High was the architect of the creation, but His Son Yeshua was the builder. Indeed there is no created thing in all heaven or earth that was not brought into being by Emmanuel the Son.
    John 1: 3, Hebrews 1: 2, Psalm 33: 6-9
  7. JESUS IS THE AUTHOR AND FINISHER OF THE FAITH
    The Alpha and the Omega, the First and the Last. In other words besides being the creator of the physical universe, he is also the Master builder ofYahweh’s spiritual creation – the CHURCH! And just as Eve was taken from Adam’s body, in like manner the Saviour is himself the source from which the Church is fashioned and formed; a church which will one day be presented to him as a bride.
    Hebrews 5: 9, Hebrews 12: 2, Revelation 1:11, Rev 21: 2-4
  8. JESUS IS THE SAVIOUR
    Of mankind, the Redeemer, the Debt payer, the Kinsman or ‘next of kin’ of every man, woman and child this earth has ever known. What’s more he is able and willing to save to the uttermost all those who come unto him by faith.
    Matthew 1: 21, John 3: 16, Acts 4: 12, Acts 16: 30-31
  9. JESUS IS THE BAPTIZER
    The Cleanser, the Smelter and Refiner of precious souls and the Purifier of corrupt and filthy hearts. In fact his paramount desire is to purge his followers and make them pure and presentable to his Father.
    Malachi 3: 2-3, John 1: 33
  10. JESUS IS THE HEALER
    The great Physician, the Restorer of diseased bodies and minds, the Balm of Gilead and the eye salve of the mind. Indeed he can and does still heal the sick, cleanse the leper and raise the dead, both in the physical and spiritual sense.
    Acts 10: 38, Exodus 15: 26, Psalm 147: 3
  11. JESUS IS THE SUSTAINER OF LIFE
    The true Manna and the Bread of Heaven,the Water of Life, the Vine and Wine of God. Consequently any individual, institution or government which departs from the standards Yahweh gave to the universe through His Son Jesus will sooner or later end in ruin.
    John 6: 48-51, 1 Corinthians 10: 4
  12. JESUS IS THE PRIZE
    The Goal, the Reward, the Pearl of Great Price. But his worth can only be truly appreciated by those who know him; and even that will take all eternity.
    Matthew 13: 45-46, Philippians 3: 14
  13. JESUS IS THE WAY
    The Route, the Light and the Destination for all those who are desperately searching for direction and purpose in life; and who are perhaps going around in meaningless circles.
    John 14: 6, Psalm 27: 1
  14. JESUS IS THE SHELTER
    The Hiding Place, the Cleft Rock, the Fortress, the City of Refuge to which fleeing spiritual fugitives may escape from the vicious onslaught of the Devil.
    Psalm 61: 2, Psalm 62: 2, Psalm 94: 22
  15. JESUS IS THE CHAMPION
    The Mighty One of Israel, the Captain of the Armies of the Lord of Hosts. And he says to the faint hearted, “Fear Not.”
    Isaiah 1: 24, Luke 12: 32, John 14: 27
  16. JESUS IS THE GREAT PROPHET
    The Seer, the All-knowing One, the “One Like Unto Moses,” the one who speaks with Yahweh face to face and to whom the future is as well known as the past. He is the Word of the Lord that enlightened all the prophets of truth from the days of Enoch to this present time.
    Deuteronomy 18: 18-19, Matthew 21: 11, Luke 7: 16, John 6: 14
  17. JESUS IS THE TEACHER
    The Good Master, the Chief Rabbi of Yahweh’s Church and he says to all who seek true knowledge: “Learn of me.”
    John 3: 1-2
  18. JESUS IS THE SERVANT OF MANKIND
    And with astonishing humility and power he manifests that strange divine principle where “he who is the greatest among men is the servant of all.” Not that Yeshua is some kind of reluctant unpaid menial, but rather that he is a ministering being whose supreme goal is to benefit the universe; the universe which he made, and for which he gave his life.
    Matthew 12: 18, Philippians 2: 7
  19. JESUS IS THE COUNSELLOR
    The Adviser, the Divine Consultant and the very Wisdom of God. He is the One who is wiser than Solomon and ringing down the ages comes the invitation to the world’s ignorant masses. “If anyone lacks wisdom let him ask of God. Ask and ye shall receive.”
    Matthew 7: 7-11, Isaiah 9: 6, James 1: 5
  20. JESUS IS THE HUSBANDMAN
    The Vinedresser, the Gardener of Paradise and his constant concern is to produce fruit in every season, the fruit of joyful holiness and praise in all of his myriad charges.
    James 5: 7, John 15: 4-8
  21. JESUS IS THE BEST FRIEND
    The Constant Companion, the “one who sticketh closer than a brother” and he says to all his followers and especially the lonely ones “Lo I am with you always, even unto the end of the world.”
    Proverbs 18: 24, John 15: 13-15, Matthew 28: 19-20

It would be true to add that Yeshua the Messiah is infinitely greater than all the realities of which these earthly allegories tell. But till such time as we ourselves are glorified and actually see him, we will have to be content with what we can learn about Jesus from the Holy Scriptures and from our present limited experience.

Nevertheless we have this absolute assurance that there lies in store for every believer an endless measure of joyful fellowship and communion with Yeshua which no pen can possibly describe and no human mind can properly imagine. And it is with this kind of holy expectation and faith that we of AVITW – CANADA – USAare able to say that “we believe in the Lord Jesus Christ, Yeshua the Messiah, the matchless Son of the Almighty God.”

And we would respectfully add that until such time as the student has accepted this fundamental Christian doctrine about the Saviour of the world, his/her walk with God has not in reality even begun

Reading Luke Chapter 15

1. Suffering Loss

Sooner or later everyone suffers loss. No matter how much insurance you may hold, no matter how careful you may try to be, the time will come when you will suffer loss. Never a day passes but we hear of nations, communities and people suffering heavy losses. It’s impossible to turn on the radio or T.V. these days without hearing or seeing those who are suffering loss. With every news broadcast the story is the same. Millions of people all over the world suffering loss on a daily basis. It’s a common experience today.Good news is mostly drowned out by bad news. For example:

  • FLOODS
    • In Britain, in the Netherlands, in the USA, in Canada, and India etc.
  • FIRES
    • In Australia, in California, in Canada and the far east.
  • EARTHQUAKES
    • In Central Asia , Japan & the USA
  • FREEZING
    • Conditions in Canada, USA & Russia
  • GLOBAL WARMING
    • The melting of the ice caps
  • TORNADOES
    • That wreck havoc to entire countries
  • FAMINE
    • In many parts of the world, especially in Africa
  • WAR
    • International, Regional, Political and Sectarian.
  • POLLUTION
    • Chemical, plastic and oil pollution
  • ADD TO THIS DISMAL CATALOGUE
    • The ever increasing rape of earth’s natural resources.
    • Entire forests being hacked down.
    • Mountain ranges being plundered for their metal deposits.
    • Virgin lands being ploughed up and left desolate and degraded.
    • The list goes on and on and on.

2. Material Loss

Then there is loss in the business world. We read of large, well known companies, which have been going for scores of years, some over a hundred years, going bankrupt and closing down. What does business loss mean for all concerned? Business loss can mean loss of house, equipment, car, pension, friends etc.

3. Loss of Health

However, business and material losses, serious though they may be, are nothing compared to the loss of physical health. Visit any hospital or old people’s home and witness the loss of: Hearing / Eyesight / Hair / Teeth / Vitality / Memory etc. Yes, the loss of physical and mental health is an extremely heavy loss. But, bad though the loss of good health may be, there are other areas where loss can be even worse.

4. Emotional Loss

This is the loss of loved ones: people whose lives are bound up with others. This includes us all. Loved ones who part from us. When they die, or even when they leave to go far away, there is a great sense of loss; an empty space in the heart which no one but they can fill. To be sure we are left with photographs, or sound recordings of their voices; but the loss of a loved one is bitter. All of us have heard of people dying a few months after the loss of a loved one: a child, a spouse or a close friend. It is a common occurrence.

5. Spiritual Loss

Surprisingly, there is yet another loss that is even worse. It is the loss of one’s own spirituality. Did you realize that you were a builder? Yes, we are all builders, builders of character. Character is the only thing we can take with us into the hereafter. Everything else, no matter how precious it may now appear to be, we must leave behind when we die. On the Day of Judgment, it will be our characters alone that will be under divine scrutiny. Possessions, health, education, opportunities etc. are important; but in the Judgment they will only count as they relate to one’s character.

Matthew 7: 24: “Therefore whosoever heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them, I will liken him unto a wise man, which built his house upon a rock:
25: And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell not: for it was founded upon a rock.
26: And every one that heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them not, shall be likened unto a foolish man, which built his house upon the sand:
27: And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell: and great was the fall of it.”

No doubt many who hear or read this sermon will, when looking back on their lives, despair at their failures. Their characters are marred by sin. They have squandered their opportunities, ruined their health, repeatedly sinned against their own consciences and are now burdened with guilt. Some are lost and don’t even know it! They have not only lost their possessions: wealth, health, friends and loved ones; but they themselves are lost!Lost in despair, lost in a world which couldn’t care less about them. They have even lost their self respect! Many are so desperate they take their own lives. Never a week passes but you hear of some poor lost soul committing suicide. It is a tragic waste of human life; which could have been prevented if the Gospel had been understood and believed.

6. What Is The Gospel?

No doubt many of you have heard the word ‘Gospel.’ But what does the word ‘Gospel’ mean? And why is it so important that the lost know what the Gospel is. The Bible tells us that in God’s sight all mankind have sinned and come short of the glory of God. This means that as far as the Almighty is concerned, there is not much difference between a person who considers himself a total failure and another who considers himself a total success. Were it not for the Gospel all of us would be bound for hell. But, thanks be to God and His Son Yeshua The Messiah, we are saved by grace and the preaching of the Everlasting Gospel. Here are some definitions concerning the Gospel. Remember them.

  • THE GOSPEL
    • Is the Good News of Salvation through Jesus Christ our Lord.
    • He is the Gospel!
    • Without him there would be no Gospel.
  • THE GOSPEL
    • Is the road map that tells the way to man’s eternal home in the Kingdom of God.
  • THE GOSPEL of CHRIST
    • Is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek.
  • THE GOSPEL
    • Is God at work, with the Holy Spirit: convicting, wooing, forgiving, cleansing, empowering, instructing and restoring fallen humanity,
    • To its rightful place in the Family of God.

7. Have You Accepted The Gospel?

For all its merits, and we have only listed a few, unless you have accepted the Gospel it will avail you nothing. There is no excuse for not accepting the Gospel. It will cost you nothing to believe the Gospel, to confess and forsake your sins and accept the Gospel.It is the greatest offer ever made. You receive so much for so little. But unless you accept the Gospel, all your imagined worth: wealth, possessions, intellect, education, fame and other achievements are valueless. They will count for nothing on the Day of Judgment. Indeed, how you react to the Gospel is by far the greatest test of your life. It is the true measure of your soul. Think about it.

  • ACCEPT THE GOSPEL and all your sins and failures will be swept aside by the Almighty; and like a miserable beggar from off the streets you will be cleansed by His Holy Spirit, clothed with the righteousness of His Son and be granted a place in the Kingdom of God! No human mind can imagine the benefits that the acceptance of the Gospel brings.
  • REJECT THE GOSPEL and all your achievements, however good you may imagine them to be, will not outweigh your sins. And for those sins, the greatest sin being that you refused to believe and accept the Gospel, you will die.

8. Why The Saviour Came To Earth

Scripture tells us that the Saviour came to this earth to seek and save the lost. That was His prime objective.

“The Son of Man came to seek and to save that which was lost.”
(Luke 19: 10)

In Luke chapter 15 we read three accounts concerning that which was lost. 

Luke 15: 1: “Then drew near unto him all the publicans and sinners for to hear him.
2: And the Pharisees and scribes murmured, saying, This man receiveth sinners, and eateth with them.
3: And he spake this parable unto them, saying,
4: What man of you, having an hundred sheep, if he lose one of them, doth not leave the ninety and nine in the wilderness, and go after that which is lost, until he find it?
5: And when he hath found it, he layeth it on his shoulders, rejoicing.
6: And when he cometh home, he calleth together his friends and neighbours, saying unto them, Rejoice with me; for I have found my sheep which was lost.
7: I say unto you, that likewise joy shall be in heaven over one sinner that repenteth, more than over ninety and nine just persons, which need no repentance.”

The sheep was lost because it wandered away from the shepherd. It was so busy eating and thinking that the grass was greener in the next field or just around the corner that it completely lost its bearings. It followed its appetite and went astray. It had absolutely no idea how far it had wandered away from the shepherd till it was too late. Only then did it realize it was lost. Perhaps the sun had gone down and it could hear wolves howling in the gathering shadows.

Are you like that sheep, nibbling your way further and further away from God? Let me tell you that the good Shepherd is looking for you. And it will make His search a lot easier if you cry out in prayerful repentance and tell Him you want to be found. Believe me He wants you back in the fold; and He will rejoice with the heavenly host when you are there.

Luke 15: 8: “Either what woman having ten pieces of silver, if she lose one piece, doth not light a candle, and sweep the house, and seek diligently till she find it?
9: And when she hath found it, she calleth her friends and her neighbours together, saying, Rejoice with me; for I have found the piece which I had lost.
10: Likewise, I say unto you, there is joy in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner that repenteth.”

Are you like that lost silver coin, a part of a set – the bridal set? The set is incomplete without you and, like that coin you could be lost ‘in the house;’ that is, in the church. You may sit in the church, sing the hymns and choruses and give the appearance of being a believer. But in fact you may be an unconverted soul, invaluable, part of the bridal set – but still lost! Let us tell you that the good Lord is looking for you and will search every corner of His house (the church) till you are found. Yes He wants you back in the set; and He will not give up till you are found. There will be joy in heaven when the silver set is complete and every lost member of God’s family is back in the set.

Luke 15: 11: “And he said, A certain man had two sons:
12: And the younger of them said to his father, Father, give me the portion of goods that falleth to me. And he divided unto them his living.
13: And not many days after the younger son gathered all together, and took his journey into a far country, and there wasted his substance with riotous living.
14: And when he had spent all, there arose a mighty famine in that land; and he began to be in want.
15: And he went and joined himself to a citizen of that country; and he sent him into his fields to feed swine.
16: And he would fain have filled his belly with the husks that the swine did eat: and no man gave unto him.
17: And when he came to himself, he said, How many hired servants of my father’s have bread enough and to spare, and I perish with hunger!
18: I will arise and go to my father, and will say unto him, Father, I have sinned against heaven, and before thee,
19: And am no more worthy to be called thy son: make me as one of thy hired servants.
20: And he arose, and came to his father. But when he was yet a great way off, his father saw him, and had compassion, and ran, and fell on his neck, and kissed him.
21: And the son said unto him, Father, I have sinned against heaven, and in thy sight, and am no more worthy to be called thy son.
22: But the father said to his servants, Bring forth the best robe, and put it on him; and put a ring on his hand, and shoes on his feet:
23: And bring hither the fatted calf, and kill it; and let us eat, and be merry:
24: For this my son was dead, and is alive again; he was lost, and is found.”

Unlike the sheep that had unthinkingly wandered away from the shepherd, or the coin that was somehow lost in the house, this boy (and it could just as well have been a girl) deliberately left his home. He wanted to get away; and the further away he could be, the better. He was tired of his father’s discipline and the dull farm life. He wanted to see the ‘bright lights’ and meet those whom he thought were ‘switched on, cool and fun to be with.’

You will notice that his father didn’t go looking for him. Much as the old man cared for his lost son, and he certainly did because in this parable he represents Almighty God, the father didn’t go into that far away country looking for his son. The son had to first:

  • COME TO HIS SENSES
    • This means he had to realize what a fool he had been.
    • How he had misjudged everything and that the ‘cool, switched-on life’ was anything but.
  • HE HAD TO RECOGNIZE
  • THEN HE HAD TO WEND HIS WAY BACK HOME.
    • A way he knew only too well.

Are You Like That Boy?
Do you have the courage to go back to your heavenly Father? Do you have the humility to admit that the bright lights weren’t so bright after all and that you have‘wasted your substance on riotous living?’ Let us tell you on the evidence of Holy Scripture that your Heavenly Father is desperately keen to see you back home. Not as a slave or servant, but as a son or daughter. He will abundantly pardon your foolishness and sin however bad you may consider your character to be. But you must come to your senses first, else you will spend the rest of your days in the pigsty of sin and depression.

Are You Lost And Know It?
Then stop resisting the Gospel, believe it, repent and make your way home before it is eternally too late. When you are home, there will be great joy in heaven; not to mention the unspeakable peace and happiness you will experience in your own soul! May the Saviour of the Lost find you before you lose everything.

Are You Lost But, Perhaps, Don’t Know It?
Well let us tell you that the Good Shepherd is looking for you. After reading this sermon, cry out to Him in Prayer and you will be found!

1. Introduction

Doctrine is an unpopular word these days. Comparatively few Christians wish to discuss doctrine. The buzz word of this generationis experience. As the‘charismatic wave’ sweeps country after country, these or similar all-to-familiar words will be heard:

“I’ve been baptized in the Holy Spirit and you haven’t. So don’t talk to me about doctrine, because I know. The Holy Spirit teaches me all I need to know about doctrine. He shows me what is right and what is wrong. It’s experience that counts, not obsolete doctrine.”

This article is not attempting to dismiss another’s experience. Rather it is an attempt to set the record straight on the vital issue of doctrine. What is doctrine anyway? The Oxford Dictionary defines the word ‘doctrine’ as:

‘a principle or set of principles and beliefs held by a religious or political or other group.’

2. Jesus Taught Sound Doctrine

Strange as it may seem Jesus Christ (Yahshua the Messiah) only taught doctrine. In fact all religious instruction, of whatever faith, is based on ‘doctrine,’ on a‘set of principles.’ We are sure no religious leader worthy of his position would advocate abandoning religious principles – doctrine!

3. What Is Sound Doctrine?

The answer is: Sound doctrine is the unique set of religious principles which originated from Yahweh the God of the Bible, the God of Abraham, Isaac and Israel. Sound doctrine, in short, is the set of principles by which the Almighty lives. They form an integral part of His character; and He alone has the right to define them. True believers may subsequently adopt and teach those sacred principles, but only the Almighty has the authority to define them: because they originated in Him.

When Yahweh’s Son, Yeshua the Messiah, came to earth he confirmed this fact. He practised and taught his Father’s doctrines – nothing else! All his sermons were based on the ‘religious principles’ he had learned from his heavenly Father. They were not his own ideas: they were his Father’s. Listen to the Saviour’s own testimony:

John 7: 16: “Jesus answered them, and said, My doctrine is not mine, but his that sent me.”
John 12: 49: “For I have not spoken of myself; but the Father which sent me, he gave me a commandment, what I should say, and what I should speak.
50: And I know that his commandment is life everlasting: whatsoever I speak therefore, even as the Father said unto me, so I speak.”

The Saviour’s famous Sermon on the Mount is an example of his Father’s doctrine.

Matthew 7: 28: “And it came to pass, when Jesus had ended these sayings, the people were astonished at his doctrine.”

4. Why Is Divine Doctrine So Important?

The answer is: because Yahweh’s principles motivate all His actions and laws. They give us insight into His plans and methods. Consequently when you study divine law, you are also studying the motivating principles and will of the Almighty God! You are studying eternal principles which uphold and govern the present and the future universe. No subject could possibly compare with the study of divine law: for it is the study of Yahweh’s own character.

Sad to say, the self-worshipping human mind thought it could do better than the Almighty. It began to conceive doctrines of its own. In this article these are called man-made doctrines. Yes, believe it or not, man set about to design his own doctrines, principles, laws and standards of morality. It wasn’t long before the church joined in and jettisoned long established Biblical principles (doctrines) handed down by the prophets and Apostles of old. The church adopted the ‘doctrines of men:’ and to each incoming doctrine it gave a Christian title. Let us list a few of the doctrines the church adopted from heathenism.

  • Mother And Child Worship:
    • This began in ancient Babylon and spread to the ends of the earth.
  • Christmas
    • This popular festival came directly from paganism.
  • Sunday Observance
    • The weekly rest day of sun-worshipping pagans.
  • Infant Baptism:
    • Nowhere in the scriptures will you find infants being baptized.
    • Jesus Christ was baptized at the age of 30 years!
    • In scripture infants are dedicated, adults baptized.
  • The Rosary:
    • Another practice adopted from paganism.
  • The Sign of The Cross
    • “The same sign of the cross that Rome now worships was used in the Babylonian Mysteries, was applied by Paganism to the same magic purposes, was honoured with the same honours.
      That which is now called the Christian cross was originally no Christian emblem at all, but the mystic Tau of the Chaldeans and Egyptians – the true original form of the letter T – the initial of the name Tammuz.”
      (The Two Babylons. page 197)
      (This informative book is published by PARTRIDGE and Co. 4 Soho Square, London UK)

These are a few of the man-made doctrines the fallen church adopted as it jettisoned the sacred doctrine of the Almighty God. It is quite impossible to tell the catastrophic effect this action had on the human race. Church leaders thought that by accommodating pagan ideas and doctrine it would attract souls to its fold. It certainly did: but millions in the church are still in darkness as far as the truth is concerned. Who knows how many – or few – of these teeming millions will make it to the Kingdom of God!

The result of this tragic policy is that the world is in moral darkness and almost on the point of self-destruction. The church has rejected the living waters of Yahweh’s truth and embraced paganism instead. This is the underlying cause of humanity’s problems: and this is why most worship – in and out of the church – is vain and futile! One might compare the ‘doctrines of men’ to spiritual contraceptives. They not only stifle life, but their long term effect is ‘virtual impotency’ in every sector of human society. Hearken to the Saviour’s words in (Mark 7: 7) concerning the doctrines of men.

“Howbeit in vain do they worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men.”

What does this verse mean for this generation? It means this: if we attempt to worship the Creator in a way that He has not authorized, no matter how popular or exciting that way may happen to be, our worship is vain, worthless and a total waste of time. We may dance around in Baal-like frenzy, we may beat the air, laugh, sing, shout, clap our hands or collapse in ecstatic delirium: but we will accomplish nothing of any value, no matter how feverishly we work at it. Because the fact is,‘worship that is not based on genuine faith and obedience to the commandments of God is vain, futile and worthless worship.’ That is what the scriptures teach!

6. The Doctrines of Nicolaitanes

False doctrine always leads to sin; and more often than not to sexual sin. Indeed that is the very reason why Satan works so hard at getting mankind to adopt falsehood. But Yahweh hates false doctrine.Therefore, no matter how attractive or exciting false doctrine may appear, it must be put out of our lives. Only then will we be able to stand in the Day of Judgment.

Revelation 2: 6: “But this thou hast, that thou hatest the deeds of the Nicolaitans, which I also hate.”

Who are the Nicolaitanes? According to the Westminster Dictionary of the Bible (page 427) they were:

“A party or sect in the churches of Ephesus and Pergamos whose practice and doctrine are severely censured. Following the doctrine of Balaam, they taught that Christians were free to eat things offered to idols and to commit the excesses of heathenism, (Revelation 2: 6, 14, 15) contrary to the command issued by the apostolic council held at Jerusalem A.D. 50 (Acts 15: 29) A sect of Nicolaitanes existed among the Gnostics of the 3rd century. They too taught the freedom of the flesh …”

In other words, the Nicolaitanes introduced ‘sexual freedom’ into their worship. Their ‘man-made doctrines, ’ initially inspired by the false prophet Balaam,appeared quite harmless at first: but it wasn’t long before they were involved in illegal sexual acts. Let us repeat: false doctrine always leads to sin.

7. Yahweh’s Doctrine

The Saviour taught sound doctrine; the spiritual principles he had learned from his heavenly Father. Never did he conceive a doctrine of his own: though he often needed to magnify, explain and demonstrate his Father’s doctrines and the laws based on them. Here is proof of this astonishing fact.

John 7: 16: “Jesus answered them, and said, My doctrine is not mine, but his that sent me.”
John 8: 28: “Then said Jesus unto them, When ye have lifted up the Son of man, then shall ye know that I am he, and that I do nothing of myself; but as my Father hath taught me, I speak these things.”

8. The Key To Understanding Sound Doctrine

Sound doctrine is best understood by the obedient; by those who really want to do the Father’s will. You have absolutely no chance whatsoever of appreciating the value of true spiritual principles and divine law if you blatantly practice sin. Only the obedient understand the Father’s will. (Daniel 12: 10)

John 7: 17: “If any man will do his will, he shall know of the doctrine, whether it be of God, or whether I speak of myself.”

9. The Doctrine of Devils

Devils are evil angels who have revolted against the Almighty.They are spirit beings and they posses enormous powers. In the distant past millions of evil angels rejected Yahweh’s authority and His laws. Ever since, they have done their utmost to ruin His creation and His work. The Holy Spirit warns us about the increased activity of evil spirits (devils) in the days just prior to the return of Jesus Christ to earth.

1 Timothy 4: 1: “Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, anddoctrines of devils;
2: Speaking lies in hypocrisy; having their conscience seared with a hot iron;
3: Forbidding to marry, and commanding to abstain from meats, which God hath created to be received with thanksgiving of them which believe and know the truth.”

One such doctrine of devils is ‘enforced celibacy.’ Another is to ‘forbid eating meat.’ (verse 3) These two doctrines are widespread in pagan lands, where they originated. They are classified in scripture as the ‘doctrines of devils.’ Sad to say the Christian church adopted these two doctrines. The tragic consequences of this adoption continues to this day in communities around the world.

10. Should We Preach Sound Doctrine?

We are commanded to preach sound doctrine! The world is perishing because of a lack of sound doctrine; those divine principles which teach us how to regulate our behaviour. The popular church has departed from the doctrines of the Bible and are now wallowing in the unclean doctrines of men and angels. Because of this, sin in its myriad forms is smothering the life out of billions of souls! We dare not remain silent; even if it means upsetting some readers.

  • Jesus Taught Sound Doctrine
    Mark 1: 22: “And they were astonished at his doctrine: for he taught them as one that had authority, and not as the scribes.”
    Mark 12: 38: “And he said unto them in his doctrine, Beware of the scribes, which love to go in long clothing, and love salutations in the marketplaces.”
  • The Apostles Taught Sound Doctrine
    Acts 5: 28: “Saying, Did not we straitly command you that ye should not teach in this name? and, behold, ye have filled Jerusalem with yourdoctrine, and intend to bring this man’s blood upon us.”
    Acts 13: 12: “Then the deputy, when he saw what was done, believed, being astonished at the doctrine of the Lord.”
    Acts 17: 19: “And they took him, and brought him unto Areopagus, saying, May we know what this new doctrine, whereof thou speakest, is?”
  • Scriptural Advice Concerning Sound Doctrine
    1 Timothy 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.”
    1 Timothy 4: 6: “If thou put the brethren in remembrance of these things, thou shalt be a good minister of Jesus Christ, nourished up in the words of faith and of good doctrine, whereunto thou hast attained.”
    1 Timothy 4: 13: “Till I come, give attendance to reading, to exhortation, to doctrine…”
    verse 16: “Take heed unto thyself, and unto the doctrine; continue in them: for in doing this thou shalt both save thyself, and them that hear thee.”
    1 Timothy 5: 17: “Let the elders that rule well be counted worthy of double honour, especially they who labour in the word and doctrine.”
    1 Timothy 6: 1: “Let as many servants as are under the yoke count their own masters worthy of all honour, that the name of God and his doctrinebe not blasphemed.”
    2 Timothy 3: 16: “All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness:”
    Titus 1: 9: “Holding fast the faithful word as he hath been taught, that he may be able by sound doctrine both to exhort and to convince the gainsayers.”
    Titus 2: 1: “But speak thou the things which become sound doctrine:”
    2 John 1: 9: “Whosoever transgresseth, and abideth not in the doctrineof Christ, hath not God. He that abideth in the doctrine of Christ, he hath both the Father and the Son.”
    2 John 1: 10: “If there come any unto you, and bring not this doctrine,receive him not into your house, neither bid him God speed.”
    Revelation 2: 14: “But I have a few things against thee, because thou hast there them that hold the doctrine of Balaam, who taught Balac to cast a stumblingblock before the children of Israel, to eat things sacrificed unto idols, and to commit fornication.”
    2 Timothy 4: 2: “Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all long-suffering and doctrine.
    3: For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears.”

11. Summary

  • Sound doctrine is a set of moral principles which come from Yahweh the Almighty God of Israel. They form the basis of His character, His will and His laws.
  • Yahshua the Messiah (Jesus Christ) always taught sound doctrine; which he received from His heavenly Father. He never introduced a single doctrine of his own: but always magnified his Father’s laws in order that mankind would appreciate their meaning.
  • Sad to say the Christian church set aside the doctrines of the Almighty and adopted in their place the ‘doctrines of men and angels’
    (Sunday observance, Christmas, Easter, Ash Wednesday, relic/idol worship, celibacy of the priesthood etc.)
  • Teaching and living by the ‘doctrines of men’ results in vain, futile and worthless worship. Believers may delude themselves and each other; but we cannot delude the Almighty. The Saviour’s warning was: ‘Every plant which my heavenly Father hath not planted will be rooted up.’ (Matthew 15: 13) This applies to all false doctrine, be it of men or angels.
  • The Bible admonishes us to live by sound doctrine:- the principles of Yahweh.
  • If you really wish to understand the will of the Almighty you must begin to obey His commandments: which are simply the divine definitions of His own principles.
  • You may have had some extremely exciting experiences. We’ll not doubt them. But if you are relying on personal experiences instead of the Word of God, then you are in for a big surprise on the soon-coming

Reading: Luke Chapter 19: 1-27

1. Introduction

King Nebuchadnezzar of ancient Babylon had a divinely inspired dream one night. In that dream God gave the idol-worshipping king a preview of world events right up to the second coming of Jesus Christ. Briefly, here is how the prophet Daniel described what Nebuchadnezzar saw:

Daniel 2: 31: “Thou, O king, sawest, and behold a great image. This great image, whose brightness was excellent, stood before thee; and the form thereof was terrible.
32: This image’s head was of fine gold, his breast and his arms of silver,his belly and his thighs of brass,
33: His legs of iron, his feet part of iron and part of clay.
34: Thou sawest till that a stone was cut out without hands, which smote the image upon his feet that were of iron and clay, and brake them to pieces.
35: Then was the iron, the clay, the brass, the silver, and the gold, broken to pieces together, and became like the chaff of the summer threshingfloors; and the wind carried them away, that no place was found for them: and the stone that smote the image became a great mountain, and filled the whole earth.”

With Jehovah’s help Daniel then explained to king Nebuchadnezzar that all the earthly empires that would follow the kingdom of Babylon [the head of gold] would be replaced by the Kingdom of God, which was represented by the stone that smote the image and broke it to pieces. The Kingdom of God would then fill the whole earth and it would last forever! In other words, it would never be overthrown by another kingdom.

The prophet continues:

Daniel 2: 36: “This is the dream; and we will tell the interpretation thereof before the king.
37: Thou, O king, art a king of kings: for the God of heaven hath given thee a kingdom, power, and strength, and glory.
38: And wheresoever the children of men dwell, the beasts of the field and the fowls of the heaven hath he given into thine hand, and hath made thee ruler over them all. Thou art this head of gold.
39: And after thee shall arise another kingdom inferior to thee, and another third kingdom of brass, which shall bear rule over all the earth.
40: And the fourth kingdom shall be strong as iron: forasmuch as iron breaketh in pieces and subdueth all things: and as iron that breaketh all these, shall it break in pieces and bruise.
41: And whereas thou sawest the feet and toes, part of potters’ clay, and part of iron, the kingdom shall be divided; but there shall be in it of the strength of the iron, forasmuch as thou sawest the iron mixed with miry clay.
42: And as the toes of the feet were part of iron, and part of clay, so the kingdom shall be partly strong, and partly broken.
43: And whereas thou sawest iron mixed with miry clay, they shall mingle themselves with the seed of men: but they shall not cleave one to another, even as iron is not mixed with clay.
44: And in the days of these kings shall the God of heaven set up a kingdom, which shall never be destroyed: and the kingdom shall not be left to other people, but it shall break in pieces and consume all these kingdoms, and it shall stand for ever.”

2. Father & Son

Daniel’s prophecy is well understood by millions of Christians. But as to what happens when the Kingdom of God is set up on earth, comparatively few have any idea. Many also have a warped understanding of Jehovah’s character.

They think:

  • The Father [Jehovah, the LORD God of Israel] is a stern, cruel, ruthless and merciless monarch,
  • Whereas His Son Jesus, [Yeshua] is the very opposite: a kind, loving and merciful Person.
  • The Son is wiser than his Father: and that he would make a better king than his Father.
  • The Son never gets angry and that he is incapable of punishing even the worst of sinners.
  • Everyone, they naively suppose, will somehow make it to the Kingdom of Heaven and be saved.
  • How wrong they are. How terribly wrong.

3. Christ’s Millennial Reign

This Sabbath we will study what Bible prophecy tells us about the millennial reign of Jesus Christ; a reign which will begin when the ‘stone shatters the metal image and becomes a great mountain that fills the whole earth.’ The millennial reign of Jesus Christ is sometimes described in Scripture as the Rod of Iron!

At the moment Yeshua the Messiah is at the right hand of his Father awaiting the day when he will return to earth and rule all nations. Amazing as it may sound, when he does arrive to take over the kingdoms of this world, not all will welcome him. Many millions of people from all nations will object to the high standards of morality the Messiah sets. This fact is detailed in several Bible passages.

Luke 19: 14: “But his citizens hated him, and sent a message after him, saying, We will not have this man to reign over us.”

Jehovah is unmoved by this rebellious reaction. He laughs at it! The Psalmist writes:

Psalm 2: 1: “Why do the heathen rage, and the people imagine a vain thing?
2: The kings of the earth set themselves, and the rulers take counsel together, against the LORD, and against his anointed, saying,
3: Let us break their bands asunder, and cast away their cords from us.
4: He that sitteth in the heavens shall laugh: the Lord shall have them in derision.
5: Then shall he speak unto them in his wrath, and vex them in his sore displeasure.
6: Yet have I set my king upon my holy hill of Zion.
7: I will declare the decree: the LORD hath said unto me, Thou art my Son; this day have I begotten thee.
8: Ask of me, and I shall give thee the heathen for thine inheritance, and the uttermost parts of the earth for thy possession.
9: Thou shalt break them with a ROD OF IRON; thou shalt dash them in pieces like a potter’s vessel.
10: Be wise now therefore, O ye kings: be instructed, ye judges of the earth.
11: Serve the LORD with fear, and rejoice with trembling.
12: Kiss the Son, lest he be angry, and ye perish from the way, when his wrath is kindled but a little. Blessed are all they that put their trust in him.”

4. The Iron Rod of Yeshua

In the New Testament we have several passages which tell of Yeshua’s rule with a ROD of IRON. Carefully note how the Saviour handles rebellious mankind. Gone are the days when he was as a ‘lamb led to the slaughter.’Gone are the days when he wouldn’t retaliate because his mission was to save mankind from sin. It will be very different during the Saviour’s millennial reign. Bible prophecy tells us:

Revelation 12: 1: “And there appeared a great wonder in heaven; a woman clothed with the sun, and the moon under her feet, and upon her head a crown of twelve stars:
2: And she being with child cried, travailing in birth, and pained to be delivered.
3: And there appeared another wonder in heaven; and behold a great red dragon, having seven heads and ten horns, and seven crowns upon his heads.
4: And his tail drew the third part of the stars of heaven, and did cast them to the earth: and the dragon stood before the woman which was ready to be delivered, for to devour her child as soon as it was born.
5: And she brought forth a man child, who was to rule all nations with a ROD of IRON: and her child was caught up unto God, and to his throne.”
Revelation 19: 15: “And out of his mouth goeth a sharp sword, that with it he should smite the nations: and he shall rule them with a ROD of IRON:and he treadeth the winepress of the fierceness and wrath of Almighty God.”

A rod has many uses. Its symbolic uses are even more significant. Here are a few examples:

5. The Rod of Moses

Exodus 4: 2: “And the LORD said unto him, [Moses] What is that in thine hand? And he said, a rod.
3: And he said, Cast it on the ground. And he cast it on the ground, and it became a serpent; and Moses fled from before it
4: And the LORD said unto Moses, Put forth thine hand, and take it by the tail. And he put forth his hand, and caught it, and it became a rod in his hand:”
Exodus 4: 17: “And thou shalt take this rod in thine hand, wherewith thou shalt do signs.”
Exodus 4: 20: “And Moses took his wife and his sons, and set them upon an ass, and he returned to the land of Egypt: and Moses took the Rod of God in his hand.”

6. The Rod of Aaron

Like a king’s sceptre, the Rod of God is a symbol of spiritual authority. This authority comes, not via the ballot box, but from Jehovah Himself. It is a gift of God.

Numbers 17: 6: “And Moses spake unto the children of Israel, and every one of their princes gave him a rod apiece, for each prince one, according to their fathers’ houses, even twelve rods: and the rod of Aaron was among their rods.”
Numbers 17: 8: “And it came to pass, that on the morrow Moses went into the tabernacle of witness; and, behold, the rod of Aaron for the house of Levi was budded, and brought forth buds, and bloomed blossoms, and yielded almonds.”
Numbers 17: 10: “And the LORD said unto Moses, Bring Aaron’s rod again before the testimony, to be kept for a token against the rebels; and thou shalt quite take away their murmurings from me, that they die not.”

7. Yeshua’s Reign

Psalm 110: 1: “The LORD said unto my Lord, Sit thou at my right hand, until I make thine enemies thy footstool.
2: The LORD shall send the rod of thy strength out of Zion: rule thou in the midst of thine enemies.
3: Thy people shall be willing in the day of thy power, in the beauties of holiness from the womb of the morning: thou hast the dew of thy youth.
4: The LORD hath sworn, and will not repent, Thou art a priest for ever after the order of Melchizedek.
5: The Lord at thy right hand shall strike through kings in the day of his wrath.
6: He shall judge among the heathen, he shall fill the places with the dead bodies; he shall wound the heads over many countries.
7: He shall drink of the brook in the way: therefore shall he lift up the head.”
Isaiah 11: 4: “But with righteousness shall he judge the poor, and reprove with equity for the meek of the earth: and he shall smite the earth with the rod of his mouth, and with the breath of his lips shall he slay the wicked.”

8. Reproof, Discipline & Punishment

As we can see from the above, the rod is also used to judge, reproveand discipline. Failure to use the rod of discipline [we’re talking about controlled punishment here, not the abuse of children or adults] always results in ill-temper, lack of respect and outright rebellion. The Bible says:

Proverbs 23: 13: “Withhold not correction from the child: for if thou beatest him with the rod, he shall not die.
14: Thou shalt beat him with the rod, and shalt deliver his soul from hell.”
Proverbs 29: 15: “The rod and reproof give wisdom: but a child left to himself bringeth his mother to shame.”
Isaiah 13: 11: “And I will punish the world for their evil, and the wicked for their iniquity; and I will cause the arrogancy of the proud to cease, and will lay low the haughtiness of the terrible.”

For further information see: Penal Laws in Scripture.

9. The Measuring Rod

A rod was also used to point out, separate and select certain sheep.

Ezekiel 20: 37: “And I will cause you to pass under the rod, and I will bring you into the bond of the covenant.”
Revelation 11: 1: “And there was given me a reed like unto a rod: and the angel stood, saying, Rise, and measure the temple of God, and the altar, and them that worship therein.”

10. Authority Over The Nations

When the Saviour returns to earth he will sweep away every local and national authority in every nation on earth! Bear this fact in mind when you cast your vote at the next general or local elections.

Daniel 2: 34: “Thou sawest till that a stone was cut out without hands, which smote the image upon his feet that were of iron and clay, and brake them to pieces.
35: Then was the iron, the clay, the brass, the silver, and the gold, broken to pieces together, and became like the chaff of the summer threshingfloors; and the wind carried them away, that no place was found for them: and the stone that smote the image became a great mountain, and filled the whole earth.”

Once this seemingly incredible political clean-out is accomplished, Jesus Christ will appoint faithful and capable officials over every city on earth. His appointments will be very, very different from what takes place today. In these appointments there will be:

  • No election campaigns or ballot boxes.
  • No party political broadcasts with politicians scrambling over each other to win votes.
  • No meaningless manifestos which prove so embarrassing soon after a party has come to power.
  • No media publicity and spin doctors.
  • Indeed, democracy itself will be a thing of the past.
  • Democracy is a pagan idea anyway; and it will be the first thing to go – never to return.

We see all this outlined in the parable of the talented servants.

Luke 19: 12: “He said therefore, A certain nobleman went into a far country to receive for himself a kingdom, and to return.
13: And he called his ten servants, and delivered them ten pounds, and said unto them, Occupy till I come.
14: But his citizens hated him, and sent a message after him, saying, We will not have this man to reign over us.
15: And it came to pass, that when he was returned, having received the kingdom, then he commanded these servants to be called unto him, to whom he had given the money, that he might know how much every man had gained by trading.
16: Then came the first, saying, Lord, thy pound hath gained ten pounds.
17: And he said unto him, Well, thou good servant: because thou hast been faithful in a very little, have thou authority over TEN cities.
18: And the second came, saying, Lord, thy pound hath gained five pounds. 19: And he said likewise to him, Be thou also over FIVE cities.
20: And another came, saying, Lord, behold, here is thy pound, which I have kept laid up in a napkin:
21: For I feared thee, because thou art an austere man: thou takest up that thou layedst not down, and reapest that thou didst not sow.
22: And he saith unto him, Out of thine own mouth will I judge thee, thou wicked servant. Thou knewest that I was an austere man, taking up that I laid not down, and reaping that I did not sow:
23: Wherefore then gavest not thou my money into the bank, that at my coming I might have required mine own with usury?
24: And he said unto them that stood by, Take from him the pound, and give it to him that hath ten pounds.
25: {And they said unto him, Lord, he hath ten pounds.}
26: For I say unto you, That unto every one which hath shall be given; and from him that hath not, even that he hath shall be taken away from him.
27: But those mine enemies, which would not that I should reign over them, bring hither, and slay them before me.”

11. The Overcomer

In the prophecy of the Revelation we see the same picture of divinely appointed authority; of overcomers being placed in charge over the nations!

Revelation 2: 26: “And he that overcometh, and keepeth my works unto the end, to him will I give power over the nations.
27: And he shall rule them with a ROD of IRON; as the vessels of a potter shall they be broken to shivers: even as I received of my Father.”

12. Who Are These Overcomers?

The Bible tells us:

Romans 12: 21: “Be not overcome of evil, but overcome evil with good.”
1 John 2: 14: “… I have written unto you, young men, because ye are strong, and the word of God abideth in you, and ye have overcome the wicked one.”
1 John 5: 4: “For whatsoever is born of God overcometh the world: and this is the victory that overcometh the world, even our faith.”
1 John 5: 5: “Who is he that overcometh the world, but he that believeth that Jesus is the Son of God?”
Revelation 2: 26: “And he that overcometh, and keepeth my works unto the end, to him will I give power over the nations.”

In other words, the believers who will be divinely appointed by the Saviour to govern the nations with him will have overcome:

  • Evil: another word for disobedience or sin.
  • With the help of the Holy Spirit they will have overcome Satanwho claims that the Word of God is unreliable and untrue.
  • In their behaviour they will have overcome the pull of the world;with its manifold temptations. Foremost amongst the sins of the world are: doubt, idolatrySabbath-breaking, envy, hate, slander, fornication,   adultery,   homosexuality, prostitution, pornography, greed, drunkenness etc.

In short: Overcomers will be faithful and obedient believers to the end; and, under Christ, they will rule in the Kingdom of God during the coming millennial reign.

13. Summary

  • The Almighty gave king Nebuchadnezzar a preview of earth’s history in which he saw all the kingdoms of this world being swept aside and replaced by the eternal Kingdom of God.
  • Comparatively few Christians realize that when Christ returns he will begin a 1000 year Reign of Peace.
  • During that Reign every form of rebellion will be put down by unbreakable, divine authority – symbolized by the Rod of Iron!
  • Obedient believers, called ‘overcomers,’ who have faithfully occupied themselves in this present evil day will be placed in positions of high rank during the millennial Reign of Christ. They will not be elected by the democratic process so highly prized today; but will be divinely appointed by Jesus Christ himself.

14. Vital Questions

  • Are you preparing for the Saviour’s Reign? Or are you being carried along by the world in unbelief and sin?
  • Do you believe that Yeshua the Messiah, [Jesus Christ] is the Son of God?
  • Do you confess to being a believer in him? And would your acquaintances know that you are a Christian?
  • Do you believe the Bible is the very Word of God? Or do you secretly doubt it?
  • When last did you attend a place of worship?
  • What about your diet, your dress, your language and your prayer-life?
  • How would you measure up to the Saviour’s inspection?
    • Would he say: “Well done thou good and faithful servant, enter thou into the joy of thy Lord?”
    • Are you equipping yourself to rule with him?
    • Do you study the Almighty’s commandments as recorded in the Scriptures;
    • The laws that are going to form the very basis of Messiah’s government during his millennial reign?
    • Or do you think that God’s commandments are irrelevant and obsolete?

You cannot afford to ignore these questions. They are vital. They must be answered – now! Putting them off will accomplish nothing of any value. You must answer them.

Our prayer is that all of us, and the millions who read this file on the Internet, will live with them in mind. And now may the Spirit of the LORD God of Israel be with each and every one who seeks to learn and do His wil

Many religious books claim Divine Inspiration, but only The Bible proves this by making detailed predictions of future events and fulfilling them. Fulfilled Bible prophecy, evidenced in archaeology, history and even in our news media today, is confirmation that God wrote The Bible because no one, human or devil, can predict future events with absolute precision, except God Himself. In our video, the evidence for The Divine Inspiration of The Old Testament and Jesus’ claims as “The Prophesied Messiah” are explored. The Bible’s claims of Divine Inspiration and Jesus’ claims of Divinity, are extraordinary claims ! Therefore, extraordinary claims demand extraordinary evidence

The Sacred Calendar

Reading: Leviticus Chapter 23

1. A Calendar Is Essential

Imagine a world without a calendar. Imagine a world where there are no answers to the question When? Imagine the confusion there would be in the following:

  • Historical Records
    • How would you fix a date in history with no calendar?
  • Future Plans
    • How would you make any appointments with no calendar?
  • Legal Documents
    • Try to imagine the confusion in the legal profession if every document or certificate was undated:
      (Contracts, Births, Marriages, Deaths, Leases, Reports, etc)

Without a calendar total confusion would reign in the world. In other words a calendar is an absolute essential for an organized society. No thinker will dispute that fact.

2. Types of Calendars

Every civilization has/d its own calendar: Islamic, Japanese, Grecian, Indian, Chinese and the popular Roman (Gregorian) calendar; which was originally patterned on the calendar of ancient Egypt. This is the calendar which hangs on the wall of virtually every office in the civilized world.

Jehovah’s Calendar
The Sacred Calendar of the God of Israel is not a Jewish calendar; though the Jews use it. It’s not A Voice In The Wilderness’ calendar, though we use it. And it’s not your calendar, though you may or may not use it. It is Jehovah’s calendar. He wrote the systems specifications for it. He wrote and compiled the program which currently makes it run. Above all, Jehovah uses it. All His historical records, legal procedures and appointments relate to His own calendar. Historical and prophetic dates throughout Scripture are geared to the sacred calendar. Get that fact straight and the Time prophecies of Scripture will come alive.

Genesis 1: 14: “And God said, Let there be lights in the firmament of the heaven to divide the day from the night; and let them be for signs, and for seasons, and for days, and years:”

3. Yahweh’s Historical Records

The Bible contains scores of examples where the dates of historical events are given. Consider a few examples:

  • The Flood
    • (1656) years after creation and 500 years before the first Jew (Judah) was born.
    • A chart showing Biblical dates is given in our article Time is Short.
  • The Abyss Bursts Open
    • Genesis 7: 11 The exact date when the abyss burst open.
  • Noah’s Ark Settles On Mount Ararat
    • Genesis 8: 4 The exact date the ark grounded on the mountains of Ararat.
      (The Second Day of The Feast of Tabernacles)
  • The Mountain Peaks Became Visible
    • Genesis 8: 5 The exact date when the tops of the mountains became visible.
  • New Year’s Day
    • Genesis 8: 13 New Year’s day ……. the earth was dry and Noah is called out of the ark.
  • The Exodus From Egypt
    • Exodus 12: 2 This month shall be the beginning of months for you.
    • See Exodus 13: 4 where the first month Abib is named.
  • The Setting Up of The Tabernacle
    • Exodus 40: 2 On the 1st day of the 1st month in the second year of the Exodus the Tabernacle was erected.
  • Revivals In Ancient Israel
    • Read about the revival under king Hezekiah.
      (2 Chronicles 29 & 30)
    • Read about the revival under king Josiah.
      (2 Chronicles 33)
    • Read about the revival later under the Apostles.
      (Acts 2)
  • The 70 Year Captivity
    • Read about Judah’s deportation and captivity in the book of Jeremiah.
  • The Restoration
    • (Ezra 7: 9, Nehemiah chapters 8 & 9)

4. Yahweh’s Plans

Prophecy is simply another word for Yahweh’s plans for mankind. The Almighty’s plans and appointments are our future. Yes the Most High and His Son Jesus have appointments: Consider this list of sacred appointments in Leviticus chapter 23.

  • The Weekly Sabbath
    • (Leviticus 23: Verse 3)
  • The Feast of Unleavened Bread
    • (Leviticus 23: Verses 5-14)
    • This is the week when the Almighty plans to rid His church (His household) of sin and hypocrisy.
    • This Feast has not been fulfilled.
    • The church is still full of sin and hypocrisy.
    • But soon that is to end. The Almighty Himself will purge His people of sin.
  • The Feast of Pentecost
    • (Leviticus 23: Verses 15-16)
    • This was the appointed time for the early harvest.
  • The Feast of Trumpets
    • (Leviticus 23: Verses 23-25)
    • This is the appointed time for the gathering of Yahweh’s people.
    • This feast has not been fulfilled.
    • Nothing of any importance has of yet (2009) happened on this Feast.
    • It awaits even partial fulfilment.
  • The (Fast) Day of Atonement
    • (Leviticus 23: Verses 26-32)
    • This is when Yahweh and His people will become at-one.
    • Yeshua the Messiah, (Jesus Christ) will bring the redeemed and purified host right into His Father’s presence.
    • This day also has a future fulfilment.
  • The Feast of Tabernacles
    • (Leviticus 23: Verses 39-43)
    • This is the appointed time when Yahweh takes up permanent residence with His people in the Person of His only begotten Son Jesus Christ. (Yeshua the Messiah)
    • ‘Jesus Christ is the Tabernacle of God.’
  • The Last Great Day
    • (Leviticus 23: Verses 39-43)
    • This ‘great day’ prefigures an eternity of joyful companionship with the Most High.
    • It is great in length; in that it never ends.

5. Jehovah’s Legal Documents

Jehovah (Yahweh) is the supreme Monarch of the mighty universe, the highest authority in all space and time. Nothing can ever take place without His permission. By His Holy Spirit He writes, signs and sealslegal documents in the presence of witnesses. These documents are sealed and signed according to His own will and are dated according to His own calendar.

  • The Parchment
    • Yahweh will use, will be the true believer’s heart and mind.
      (Jeremiah 31: 31-34, Hebrews 8: 8-10, Hebrews 10: 16-17)
  • The Seal
    • Yahweh will use, is His Holy Law
      (Isaiah 8:16, Deuteronomy 6: 6-8)
  • The Signature
    • Yahweh inscribes in the parchment of the human mind (the forehead) are the Sabbath days in His law.
      (Exodus 31: 16-17, Ezekiel 20: 8 & 20)
    • The Two Witnesses to this legal transaction are mentioned in Revelation chapter 11.
    • They are the two arch-angels who stand in the very presence of God.

6. The Coming Spiritual Election

Luke 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.
2: (And this taxing was first made when Cyrenius was governor of Syria.)
3: And all went to be taxed, every one into his own city.
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:)
5: To be taxed with Mary his espoused wife, being great with child.
6: And so it was, that, while they were there, the days were accomplished that she should be delivered.
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.”

Before the Saviour’s second coming another registration of all the world will be made. In it every man, woman and child will have to declare his/her allegiance forJehovah the LORD God of Israel, or Satan the Devil. Accepting the Name or Signature of Yahweh in the forehead (the mind) is a vote for Him. Accepting the signature or Mark of the Beastin the mind is a vote for Satan. The Two witnesses will witness your choice. (Revelation 11) And all the world will have to vote one way or the other.

Revelation 13: 11-18 Read this passage.

  • You are the parchment
  • You must decide whether or not you want to accept Yahweh’s seal – His Law – in your mind. (forehead)
  • The Two Witnesses will be present at that time. Yahweh’s Signature manifests itself in observing His weekly and annual Sabbaths (Feasts) in the Sacred Calendar.

The Mark of the Beast manifests itself in observing the bogus weekly sabbath of Sunday and the other pagan festivals in manmade calendars: festivals such asEasterChristmasHallowe’en, Ash Wednesday etc. All these are pagan festivals which have inveigled their way into the Christian calendar. They are not sanctioned in the Scriptures.

7. In The Millennium & Throughout Eternity

Yahweh’s Sabbath days and Jubile years will be observed throughout the coming millennium and through eternity as ‘memorials of salvation.’These memorials will never be forgotten any more than the Redeemer to whom they point.

Zachariah 14: 1: “Behold, the day of the LORD cometh, and thy spoil shall be divided in the midst of thee.
2: For I will gather all nations against Jerusalem to battle; and the city shall be taken, and the houses rifled, and the women ravished; and half of the city shall go forth into captivity, and the residue of the people shall not be cut off from the city.
3: Then shall the LORD go forth, and fight against those nations, as when he fought in the day of battle.
4: And his feet shall stand in that day upon the mount of Olives, which is before Jerusalem on the east, and the mount of Olives shall cleave in the midst thereof toward the east and toward the west, and there shall be a very great valley; and half of the mountain shall remove toward the north, and half of it toward the south…
6: And it shall come to pass in that day, that the light shall not be clear, nor dark:
7: But it shall be one day which shall be known to the LORD, not day, nor night: but it shall come to pass, that at evening time it shall be light.
8: And it shall be in that day, that living waters shall go out from Jerusalem; half of them toward the former sea, and half of them toward the hinder sea: in summer and in winter shall it be.
9: And the LORD shall be king over all the earth: in that day shall there be one LORD, and his name one…
11: And men shall dwell in it, and there shall be no more utter destruction; but Jerusalem shall be safely inhabited.
12: And this shall be the plague wherewith the LORD will smite all the people that have fought against Jerusalem; Their flesh shall consume away while they stand upon their feet, and their eyes shall consume away in their holes, and their tongue shall consume away in their mouth.
13: And it shall come to pass in that day, that a great tumult from the LORD shall be among them; and they shall lay hold every one on the hand of his neighbour, and his hand shall rise up against the hand of his neighbour.
14: And Judah also shall fight at Jerusalem; and the wealth of all the heathen round about shall be gathered together, gold, and silver, and apparel, in great abundance.
15: And so shall be the plague of the horse, of the mule, of the camel, and of the ass, and of all the beasts that shall be in these tents, as this plague.
16: And it shall come to pass, that every one that is left of all the nations which came against Jerusalem shall even go up from year to year to worship the King, the LORD of hosts, and to keep the feast of tabernacles.
17: And it shall be, that whoso will not come up of all the families of the earth unto Jerusalem to worship the King, the LORD of hosts, even upon them shall be no rain.
18: And if the family of Egypt go not up, and come not, that have no rain; there shall be the plague, wherewith the LORD will smite the heathen that come not up to keep the feast of tabernacles.
19: This shall be the punishment of Egypt, and the punishment of all nations that come not up to keep the feast of tabernacles.”

The Bible tells us that the Creator has scheduled Himself to make all things new. This means He will also make a new universe in which sin and suffering will never arise. Here are the Bible verses concerning this astonishing promise.

Revelation 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.
2: And I John saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband.
3: And I heard a great voice out of heaven saying, Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and he will dwell with them, and they shall be his people, and God himself shall be with them, and be their God.
4: And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away.
5: And he that sat upon the throne said, Behold, I make all things new. And he said unto me, Write: for these words are true and faithful.
6: And he said unto me, It is done. I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end. I will give unto him that is athirst of the fountain of the water of life freely.
7: He that overcometh shall inherit all things; and I will be his God, and he shall be my son.”

In the Old Testament the same promise is made. There we see the ransomed of the LORD going up month by month and Sabbath by Sabbath to worship the LORD. This is strong evidence that months and Sabbath days will continue on the new earth.

Isaiah 66: 22: “For as the new heavens and the new earth, which I will make, shall remain before me, saith the LORD, so shall your seed and your name remain.
23: And it shall come to pass, that from one new moon to another, and from one sabbath to another, shall all flesh come to worship before me, saith the LORD.”

These are sure words. They will all come true. They bear the guarantee of God Himself. Christians who ignore them, do so at their own peril. As mentioned earlier the sacred calendar of Israel’s God came into being at the creation of the universe. Bible prophecies confirm that this calendar – and the Sabbath days in it – will continue throughout time as long as the new universe exists. No amount of unbelief or argument can annul these facts! They are as eternal as the Almighty God Himself.

The reader will do well to come into line with the Almighty’s calendar – now! In this respect:

  • The First Step
    • Is to believe in the LORD God of the Bible and accept His offer of salvation through His only begotten Son Jesus Christ.
    • See our Gospel Library for details as to how you ought to go about doing this.
  • The Second Step
    • Is to jettison the pagan holidays of Christmas and Easterand all the other heathen days and to begin celebrating the Feast Days of the God of Israel.
  • The Third Step
    • Is to acknowledge and keep the commandments of the Creator; paying particular attention to His weekly Sabbath, which is the specified memorial of creation.
      (Exodus 20: 8-11)

8. Is All This Possible?

Most certainly it is and you do not have much time to make up your mind to believe and obey. Our prayer is that the Holy Ghost will move you to Trust and Obey God.

Might we encourage you to study the Sacred Calendar of The God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob (Israel)

Watch this video

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3 thoughts on “The Everlasting Gospel

  1. s a bad side to the availability of digital content, and that.
    By doing so, you’re reinforcing that negativity and attracting to yourself MORE. The most enjoyable element of Revenge with the Fallen is its sheer familiarity.

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