What is the Church?

church-today

Is it a building, a denomination, a place for evangelism, or is it an assembling of believers (fellow citizens with the saints, the body of Christ) for the purpose of worship, praise, song, edification, prophesying, teaching, sharing communion, and comforting ourselves together. Ephesians 5:18-20 “…but be filled with the Spirit, addressing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody to the Lord with all Your heart, always and for everything giving thanks in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ to God the Father.” 1 Thessalonians 5:11 Wherefore comfort yourselves together, and edify one another, even as also ye do.” Colossians 3:16 “Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom; teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord.”

The word church in the Bible comes from the Greek word ecclesia, which means a called out company or assembly. Wherever it is used in the Bible it refers to people, specifically the body of Christ (“because we are members of His body” Ephesians 5:30), those who “having believed were sealed with the Holy Spirit of promise” (Ephesians 1:13). See also Ephesians 1:21-23, 2:1; Ephesians 4:11-16; Ephesians 5:25, 31-32.

The Church is the body of Christ. It was never meant to be a mixture of believers and non-believers. “Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? and what communion hath light with darkness? And what concord hath Christ with Belial? or what part hath he that believeth with an infidel? And what agreement hath the temple of God with idols? for ye are the temple of the living God; as God hath said, I will dwell in them, and walk in them; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people. 2 Corinthians 6:14-16King James Version (KJV).

The body of Christ today has become so diluted, lukewarm and of no real effect because it has become an acceptable (to itself) mixture of light with darkness. What else can we expect it to become? Jesus makes it very clear who His Church is in Matthew 16:15-19. It is all of us who to whom God has revealed the answer to the question: “Who do you say I am?” Those to whom the Spirit of God has not made known the answer, are not of the church and do not belong in it. 1 Peter 2:9-10 “But ye [are] a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should shew forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvelous light: Which in time past [were] not a people, but [are] now the people of God: which had not obtained mercy, but now have obtained mercy.

The body of Christ, the church, is often defined as a local assembly or group of believers (1 Corinthians 1:2; 1 Corinthians 15:9; 2 Corinthians 1:1; Galatians 1:1-2; Galatians 1:13), for the purpose that “He might present her to Himself a glorious church, not having spot or wrinkle or any such thing, but that she should be holy and without blemish” Ephesians 5:23-27). The Bible makes reference to the church being the bride of Christ (2 Corinthians 11:2; Ephesians 5:25-32). This also alluded to in John 14:1-3 when Jesus talked about making a place at His Father’s house for us. This is reference to the Jewish tradition when a man and woman are engaged, and the man goes back to his father’s house to build on an addition for them. When the addition is done and everything is ready, he comes to call for his bride, which symbolizes the resurrection (Matthew 25:1-12; Revelation 19:7-9; Revelation 22:17 “And the Spirit and the bride say, “Come!”).

Too often people describe a church building or organization as the church. This is because they emphasize the facility or organizational hierarchy as what constitutes a church. Most churches today are organized in such a way that the public face of a church is seen as a benevolent business (how many today are 501(c)3 organizations), and not as the body of Christ – a peculiar people, a holy nation, in the world but not of it.

The church is not a physical building. Believers are referred to as the temple of God (1 Corinthians 6:19 “…your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you,”). As with a physical building, the church also has a chief Cornerstone – Jesus Christ, and a foundation built upon the apostles and prophets (Ephesians 2:19-22 “Now therefore ye are no more strangers and foreigners, but fellow citizens with the saints, and of the household of God; And are built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ himself being the chief corner [stone]; In whom all the building fitly framed together groweth unto an holy temple in the Lord: In whom ye also are builded together for an habitation of God through the Spirit.”).

Within every local church or assembly of believers, Christ has given gifts to each believer for the purpose of equipping the saints and edifying the body of Christ, His Church. Ephesians 4:11-16King James Version (KJV) “And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers; For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ: Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ: That we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive; But speaking the truth in love, may grow up into him in all things, which is the head, even Christ: From whom the whole body fitly joined together and compacted by that which every joint supplieth, according to the effectual working in the measure of every part, maketh increase of the body unto the edifying of itself in love.”

I do not know when or how evangelism crept into the church to become a part of the worship service of the body of Christ, but it is clearly wrong. Jesus never told us to bring the darkness into the body of Christ. 1 Thessalonians 5:5 “Ye are all the children of light, and the children of the day: we are not of the night, nor of darkness.” He clearly told us in Matthew 28:19-20King James Version (KJV) to “Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world. Amen.” We were called to go out into the world and preach the gospel (each one of us individually who is in Christ is called to evangelize wherever we find ourselves “in the world”), and then bring those who believe and are saved into the body so they might be equipped and edified. Luke 24:47 “And that repentance and remission of sins should be preached in his name among all nations, beginning at Jerusalem.” Mark 16:15 “And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature.” and Matthew 28:19 “Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost:” Acts 1:8 – 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.”

The church body also serves as a local group to resolve conflicts within the body of Christ and serve as a court (Matthew 18:15-20; 1 Corinthians 5:12-13; 1 Corinthians 6:1-8). In addition, baptisms and communion are observed by the church body (Acts 2:38; 1 Corinthians 11:24-26). Other ministries are performed by the members of the church as God has gifted each person (Romans 12:3-14 “But the manifestations of the Spirit is given to each one for the profit of all”; Ephesians 4:1-12). This makes me wonder where the “tradition” of one man or woman leading the church service – to the exclusion of the gifts of the Spirit given to each one for the profit of all – came from. That certainly was not how the biblical church operated.

A biblical church involves at least two people gathering together in the name of Jesus. “For where two or three are gathered in my name, there am I among them” (Matthew 18:20). Church consists of believers coming together, in the same physical space, in the name of Jesus Christ to publicly worship Jesus, serve Jesus, and help each other know and love Jesus more through the study of His Word. If you are not gathering together with other believers in the name of Jesus, do not call yourself a church.

A biblical church is overseen by qualified elders. In Titus 1:5–9, Paul said to Titus: “This is why I left you in Crete, so that you might put what remained into order, and appoint elders in every town as I directed you—if anyone is above reproach, the husband of one wife, and his children are believers and not open to the charge of debauchery or insubordination. For an overseer, as God’s steward, must be above reproach. He must not be arrogant or quick-tempered or a drunkard or violent or greedy for gain, but hospitable, a lover of good, self-controlled, upright, holy, and disciplined. He must hold firm to the trustworthy word as taught, so that he may be able to give instruction in sound doctrine and also to rebuke those who contradict it.” If you are not being led by qualified elders, do not call yourself a church.

A biblical church maintains corporate holiness through church discipline. Matthew 18:17 says, “If he refuses to listen to them, tell it to the church. And if he refuses to listen even to the church, let him be to you as a Gentile and a tax collector.” The church really is a place of spiritual protection. Jesus expects his followers to help one another pursue holiness. If a Christian begins to engage in serious sin, Jesus expects the members of his Christian community to lovingly rebuke him. If the person refuses to repent of his sin, the entire church is expected to get involved. This process presupposes that a Christian will be vitally connected to other Christians. The reality is, the process of discipline cannot happen apart from a local church. If you are not maintaining holiness through church discipline, do not call yourself a church.

A biblical church is a place where Christians can use their spiritual gifts to bless one another. 1 Corinthians 14:26 says, “What then, brothers? When you come together, each one has a hymn, a lesson, a revelation, a tongue, or an interpretation. Let all things be done for building up.” Paul was clearly assuming that the Corinthians would be gathering together on a regular basis in the name of Jesus for the purpose of worshiping together. When they gathered together, they were to use their spiritual gifts to build one another up in the context of corporate worship. If you are not using the spiritual gifts to of the body to build other Christians up, do not call yourself a church.

 

 

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The First Five Trumpets Have Sounded

This is the continuation of my earlier post beginning a series on understanding the Book of Revelation https://godsmorning.live/2016/12/18/understanding-the-book-of-revelation-the-unveiling-or-the-disclosure/ 

Because the explanations of the Seals are long and involved, I decided to jump in with the Trumpets first, especially as we are headed soon into the Sixth Trumpet. It is critically important for Christians to be getting themselves focused in Christ and Christ alone in this time — come out of the world, stay in the Word, and pray without ceasing. If you are reading this and have not yet accepted Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior, the time to do so is now.

Revelation 8:6-9:11 The Seven Trumpets are much shorter duration events than the Seals, and overlap them. “So the seven angels who had the seven trumpets prepared themselves to sound.”   

wwi

First Trumpet – World War I, 1914-1918 – scorched earth policy, strategic bombing, military and civilian casualties exceeded 38 million. “The first angel blew his trumpet and there followed hail and fire, mixed with blood, which fell on the earth; and a third of the earth was burnt up, and a third of the trees were burnt up, and all green grass was burnt up.”          

wwii

Second Trumpet – World War II, 1939-1945 – deadliest war in history involving more than 30 countries and resulting in more than 50 million military and civilian deaths (with some estimates as high as 85 million), “something like a great mountain, burning with fire, was thrown into the sea …” Atomic bombing of Hiroshima, “a third of the ships were destroyed.” 105,127 ships participated in World War II – 36,387 ships were destroyed.   

chernobyl

Third Trumpet Chernobyl (Russian for wormwood) nuclear disaster 1986. “The name of the star is Wormwood.” And “A third of the waters became wormwood, and many men died of the water, because it was made bitter.” How many have actually died or been made sick as a result of the Chernobyl disaster may never be known; however thyroid cancer, a very rare disease in children had skyrocketed to nearly 7,000 cases in Belarus, Russia, and Ukraine by 2005. New data (in 2005), based on Belarus national cancer statistics, predicted approximately 270,000 cancers and 93,000 fatal cancer cases caused by Chernobyl. The report also concludes that on the basis of demographic data, during the last 15 years, 60,000 people have additionally died in Russia because of the Chernobyl accident, and estimates of the total death toll for the Ukraine and Belarus could reach another 140,000.         

schumann-resonance

Fourth Trumpet – As is God, this is an unfathomable mystery to me. There is nothing specific in the account of the Fourth Trumpet to tie it to any particular humanity-related “trumpet worthy” event. There are no human aspects mentioned, only “a third of the day was kept from shining, and likewise a third of the night.” In my mind, if a day is 24 hours, then we are looking at 8 hours being kept from shining. I am sure I am not the only one who has felt like days and nights have gotten shorter, and time and is passing so much faster. Researching this led me to the Schumann Resonance frequency. Time is actually speeding up (or collapsing). For thousands of years the Schumann Resonance or pulse (heartbeat) of Earth has been 7.83 cycles per second. The military has used this as a very reliable reference for global military communications because it was believed to always be constant. However, since the 1980’s this resonance has been slowly rising. Some scientists believe that it is rising faster than we can measure, seeing as it is constantly rising while measuring.  The change in the Schumann Resonance frequency indicates the speeding up of time. Accordingly, 24-hours of time is experienced in 16 hours or less. That is, the time perceived is shortened. Science is unable to tell why this rate has increased, or the factor that caused this increase. We know, even if science cannot explain it, that it is God, who created everything and has everything under His power and control and who told us about this almost 2,000 years ago, as a clear sign that the end was near.

Some scientists believe the earth will actually stop rotating when this pulse reaches 13 cycles per second. When the earth stops rotating on its axis it is believed that it will remain still for around 3 days and then start spinning in the other direction. This will cause a reversal in the magnetic field around the earth, but what will happen after this point is unknown.

This brings to mind Revelation 8:1 “When the Lamb opened the seventh seal, there was silence in heaven for about half an hour. Then I saw the seven angels who stand before God, and seven trumpets were given to them.” Possibly this stillness of earth, if it does occur, corresponds with the approximate half an hour of silence in heaven. If a half hour is viewed in prophetic time (where a day is a 360 day biblical year), it would actually remain still for seven days. Then comes the seven bowls of the wrath of God.

As far fetched as all this may seem, a number of reports suggest that we will reach this critical mass or zero point when the earth stops rotating, very soon.” http://in5d.com/schumann-resonance-and-the-time-speeding-up-phenomenon/

“Given that the earth’s atmosphere carries a charge, a current and a voltage, it is not surprising to find such electromagnetic waves. The resonant properties of this terrestrial cavity were first predicted by the German physicist, W.O. Schumann between 1952 and 1957, and first detected by Schumann and Konig in 1954. The first spectral representation of this phenomenon was prepared by Balser and Wagner in 1960. Much of the research in the last 20 years has been conducted by the Department of the Navy who investigate Extremely Low Frequency communication with submarines.”

For more information, see: “Handbook of Atmospheric Electrodynamics, vol. I”, by Hans Volland, 1995 published by the CRC Press. Chapter 11 is entirely on Schumann Resonances and is written by Davis Campbell at the Geophysical Institute, University of Alaska, Fairbanks AK, 99775.

Although this organization is foolishly attempting to bypass God’s plan for mankind and use science in a new age way to solve the ills of mankind, the graphs are very interesting. There is nothing human beings can do to save the planet, solve poverty, end disease and war, or usher in a Utopian perfect society by all “vibrating” together, or any other plan they can come up with. Nothing can change what has been prophesied in God’s written Word, in which He told us the end from the beginning. https://www.heartmath.org/research/global-coherence/gcms-live-data/

gulf-war 

Fifth Trumpet – Gulf War, 1991, Revelation 9:1-2 “And the fifth angel sounded, and I saw a star fall from heaven unto the earth: and to him was given the key of the bottomless pit. And he opened the bottomless pit; and there arose a smoke out of the pit, as the smoke of a great furnace; and the sun and the air were darkened by reason of the smoke of the pit.” Out of this smoke would come the locusts with faces like the faces of men – jets, planes and helicopters (John would never have seen an airplane or helicopter so was describing what he was seeing and hearing, not knowing what it was, as best he could describe it). Revelation 9:3 “And there came out of the smoke locusts upon the earth: and unto them was given power, as the scorpions of the earth have power.” Revelation 9:7-9 “And the shapes of the locusts were like unto horses prepared unto battle; and on their heads were as it were crowns like gold, and their faces were as the faces of men. And they had hair as the hair of women, and their teeth were as the teeth of lions. And they had breastplates, as it were breastplates of iron; and the sound of their wings was as the sound of chariots of many horses running to battle.”

Revelation 9:11 “They have as king over them the angel of the bottomless pit; his name in Hebrew is Abaddon, and in the Greek he is called Apollyon.” (meaning Destroyer). Saddam (translated from Arabic to English, means “destroyer”) Hussein was so named by his mother after an extremely difficult pregnancy which Iranian doctors had encouraged her to abort but which she endured (aided by Jewish doctors), and the Iraqi people nicknamed their leader “The Destroyer.” Saddam’s true importance is not just what the late Iraqi leader did himself, but what he unleashed (aided by the US), as the First Gulf War paved the way for the rise of ISIS and the current sectarian warfare in the Middle East.

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The Golden Key! The Golden Thread!

golden-key

The Golden Key! The Golden Thread!

(Octavius Winslow)

Click to LISTEN to Audio while you read along with the quote below!

Jesus is the one great theme both of the Old Testament and the New. The whole Bible is designed to testify of Christ, “The Scriptures point to Me!” John 5:39

In Christ the Messiah, in Jesus the Savior, in the Son of God the Redeemer–all the truths of the Bible center.

To Him all the types and shadows point!

Of Him all the prophecies give witness!

All the glory of the Scriptures, from Genesis to Revelation–culminates at the cross of Christ!

The Bible would be an inexplicable mystery apart from Christ, who unfolds and explains it all.

He is the golden Key which unlocks the divine treasury of Scriptural revelation!

Until He is seen, the Bible is, in a sense–a great mystery. But when He is found, it is a glorious revelation.
Every mystery is opened,
every enigma is explained,
every discrepancy is harmonized, and
every truth and page, sentence and word–is quickened with a life and glowing with a light flowing down from the throne of the Eternal God.

Christ is the substance of the Gospel.
All its divine doctrines,
all its holy precepts,
all its gracious instructions,
all its precious promises,
all its glorious hopes–
meet, center, and fill up their entire compass in Jesus!

He is the Alpha and the Omega of the Bible–from the first verse in Genesis, to the last verse in Revelation.

Oh, study the Scriptures of truth with a view of learning Christ.

Do not study the Bible as a mere history.
Do not read it as a mere poem.
Do not search it as a book of science.
It is all that, but infinitely more.
The Bible is the Book of Jesus!
It is a Revelation of Christ!

Christ is the golden thread which runs through the whole!

Blessed Lord Jesus! I will read and study and dig into the Scriptures, to find and learn more of You!
You, Immanuel, are the fragrance of this divine box of precious ointment.
You are the beauteous gem sparkling in this divine cabinet.
You are the Tree of life planted in the center of this divine garden.
You are the Ocean whose stream quickens and nourishes all who draw water out of this divine well of salvation.
The Bible is all about You!

www.gracegems.com

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The Second Beast, the False Prophet and the Three Frogs

three frogs.jpg

No matter how much people want to claim that America was not founded on a relationship and covenant with God, we need look no further than our currency, which clearly states “In God We Trust”, to see that is not true. Also remember the Pledge of Allegiance, which said “…One nation, under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.” And, as far as I know, the Holy Bible is still used to swear in Presidents and in courts of law. Also remember the patriotic songs, God Bless America, “God Bless America, land that I love”, Stand beside her and guide her Through the night with the light from above”, America the Beautiful which says “God shed his grace on thee” (6 times), “God mend thine every flaw”, and “May God thy gold refine”; The Star Spangled Banner which says “And this be our motto – “In God is our trust“; Our Country Tis of Thee “Our father’s God to Thee, Author of liberty, To Thee we sing. Long may our land be bright With freedom’s holy light; Protect us by Thy might, Great God, our King!”

The Prayer in the First Congress, A.D. 1774

O Lord our Heavenly Father, high and mighty King of kings, and Lord of lords, who dost from thy throne behold all the dwellers on earth and reignest with power supreme and uncontrolled over all the Kingdoms, Empires and Governments; look down in mercy, we beseech Thee, on these our American States, who have fled to Thee from the rod of the oppressor and thrown themselves on Thy gracious protection, desiring to be henceforth dependent only on Thee. To Thee have they appealed for the righteousness of their cause; to Thee do they now look up for that countenance and support, which Thou alone canst give. Take them, therefore, Heavenly Father, under Thy nurturing care; give them wisdom in Council and valor in the field; defeat the malicious designs of our cruel adversaries; convince them of the unrighteousness of their Cause and if they persist in their sanguinary purposes, of own unerring justice, sounding in their hearts, constrain them to drop the weapons of war from their unnerved hands in the day of battle!

Be Thou present, O God of wisdom, and direct the councils of this honorable assembly; enable them to settle things on the best and surest foundation. That the scene of blood may be speedily closed; that order, harmony and peace may be effectually restored, and truth and justice, religion and piety, prevail and flourish amongst the people. Preserve the health of their bodies and vigor of their minds; shower down on them and the millions they here represent, such temporal blessings as Thou seest expedient for them in this world and crown them with everlasting glory in the world to come. All this we ask in the name and through the merits of Jesus Christ, Thy Son and our Savior. Amen.

Reverend Jacob Duché
Rector of Christ Church of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
September 7, 1774, 9 o’clock a.m.

As George Washington said in his inaugural speech: “Such being the impressions under which I have, in obedience to the public summons, repaired to the present station; it would be peculiarly improper to omit in this first official Act, my fervent supplications to that Almighty Being who rules over the Universe, who presides in the Councils of Nations, and whose providential aids can supply every human defect, that his benediction may consecrate to the liberties and happiness of the People of the United States, a Government instituted by themselves for these essential purposes: and may enable every instrument employed in its administration to execute with success, the functions allotted to his charge. In tendering this homage to the Great Author of every public and private good I assure myself that it expresses your sentiments not less than my own; nor those of my fellow-citizens at large, less than either. No People can be bound to acknowledge and adore the invisible hand, which conducts the Affairs of men more than the People of the United States. Every step, by which they have advanced to the character of an independent nation, seems to have been distinguished by some token of providential agency. And in the important revolution just accomplished in the system of their United Government, the tranquil deliberations and voluntary consent of so many distinct communities, from which the event has resulted, cannot be compared with the means by which most Governments have been established, without some return of pious gratitude along with an humble anticipation of the future blessings which the past seem to presage. These reflections, arising out of the present crisis, have forced themselves too strongly on my mind to be suppressed. You will join with me I trust in thinking, that there are none under the influence of which, the proceedings of a new and free Government can more auspiciously commence… Having thus imported to you my sentiments, as they have been awakened by the occasion which brings us together, I shall take my present leave; but not without resorting once more to the benign parent of the human race, in humble supplication that since he has been pleased to favour the American people, with opportunities for deliberating in perfect tranquility, and dispositions for deciding with unparellelled unanimity on a form of Government, for the security of their Union, and the advancement of their happiness; so his divine blessing may be equally conspicuous in the enlarged views, the temperate consultations, and the wise measures on which the success of this Government must depend.”

Three days before George Washington took the oath of office as the first president of the United States, Congress passed the following resolution: Resolved, That after the oath shall have been administered to the President, he, attended by the Vice President and members of the Senate and House of Representatives, shall proceed to St. Paul’s Chapel, to hear divine service performed by the Chaplain of Congress. Accordingly, the Right Rev. Samuel Provoost (1742–1815), newly appointed chaplain of the United States Senate and first Episcopal bishop of New York, officiated at a service in St. Paul’s Chapel on April 30, 1789, immediately following Washington’s inauguration. The Bible used in the inaugural ceremony was from St. John’s Lodge No. 1, A.Y.M., and due to haste, it was opened at random (although we know nothing is random with God) to Genesis 49:13 (“Zebulun shall dwell at the haven of the sea; and he shall be for an haven of ships; and his border shall be unto Zidon”).”

In Genesis 30:20 Leah exclaims, “God hath endowed me with a good endowment; now will my husband dwell with me (or ‘honor me’)… so she called his name Zebulun”; the derivation being from zabhal, “to exalt” or “honor” (OHL, under the word). Zidon relates to fishing and maritime activities. Zidon: “A fishery, a town on the Mediterranean coast, about 25 miles north of Tyre”. Ezekiel 27:8  “The inhabitants of Zidon and Arvad were thy mariners: thy wise men, O Tyrus, that were in thee, were thy pilots.” As we know, vast underwater banks stretch along the edge of the continental shelf from southern New England to Newfoundland, Canada. They provide the right combination of water temperature, currents, and food-rich shallows and ledges for Atlantic cod and other species to thrive. Two areas were especially important to commercial fishermen: George’s Bank, located about 100 miles east of Cape Cod, and the Grand Banks, 1,000 miles beyond – our “border unto Zidon”.

Zebulun – According to Isaiah and confirmed as fulfillment of prophesy by Matthew, this part of Galilee enjoyed a large share of our Lord’s public ministry. Matthew 4:12-16 “Now when Jesus had heard that John was cast into prison, he departed into Galilee; And leaving Nazareth, he came and dwelt in Capernaum, which is upon the sea coast, in the borders of Zebulun and Nephthalim: That it might be fulfilled which was spoken by Esaias the prophet [Isaiah 9], saying, “The land of Zebulun, and the land of Nephthalim, by the way of the sea, beyond Jordan, Galilee of the Gentiles; The people which sat in darkness saw great light; and to them which sat in the region and shadow of death, light is sprung up.” This verse of course is speaking of Jesus, but it also speaks of the “great awakening” periods in American history, with another yet to come.

“On April 30th, 1789, America had a Constitution and a newly formed government. On that day, the government, the House, and the Senate gathered for the Inauguration of our first president, George Washington. In his Inauguration Address, Washington gave a prophetic warning: “We ought to be no less persuaded that the propitious smiles of heaven can never be expected on a nation that disregards the eternal rules of order and the right which heaven itself has ordained.” Washington’s warning was, if we would depart from God, He would remove His blessings, His prosperity and His protection from our nation.

After Washington’s address, the government, the House, the Senate, and America’s first president traveled on foot to Saint Paul’s Chapel. No one knows exactly what was said inside but we do know the entire government was on their knees praying and consecrating this nation to God. In the chapel there is also a plaque above Washington’s pew with the words “Almighty God, we make our earnest prayer that you will keep the United States in Holy protection.”

Saint Paul’s Chapel is located at the corner of Ground Zero and is the spiritual birthplace of America. Although America’s towers of Babel were brought to their knees on 9/11, Saint Paul’s Chapel remained untouched. The chapel is located just steps from Ground Zero. And yet, on 9/11, it somehow survived without a scratch. No broken windows. Even the steeple remained intact. Only one tree – a nearly 100-year-old sycamore in the churchyard – fell. And it ended up serving as the chapel’s savior. According to the Associated Press, it was that tree that “prevented a huge steel beam from smashing the 235-year-old church to splinters. Uprooted by the impact, the tree paid the ultimate price.”

After noting what we were told in Isaiah 9:10-11, can we really think it is just a coincidence that the bricks of the American towers of Babel that have fallen, erected at the spot of the consecration of this nation to God, in the process cutting down the sycamore tree that protects Saint Paul’s Chapel, and that in 2003, the sycamore tree was replaced with a 20-foot Norway spruce (cedar)? (The Pinaceae or pine family of trees includes trees such as firs, hemlocks, larches, pines, cedars, and spruces.). Anyone who does not see the adversaries and enemies who have been raised and stirred up against the United States is asleep or blind.

Isaiah 9:10-11 “The bricks have fallen, but we will build with dressed stones; the sycamores have been cut down, but we will put cedars in their place.” So the LORD raises adversaries against them, and stirs up their enemies.”

America’s first Presidential Inauguration of George Washington incorporated seven specific religious activities, including: 1) the use of the Bible to administer the oath; 2) affirming the religious nature of the oath by the adding the prayer “So help me God!” to the oath; 3) inaugural prayers offered by the president; 4) religious content in the inaugural address; 5) civil leaders calling the people to prayer or acknowledgement of God; 6) inaugural worship services attended en masse by Congress as an official part of congressional activities; 7) and clergy-led inaugural prayers.” http://allianceforreligiousfreedom.com/educate-yourself/america-dedicated-to-god/

God may mean nothing to many Americans today, but when this nation was founded, He certainly did. Hence, we are the beast that appears like a lamb, but speaks like a dragon – a perfectly fitting description of America who started out as Christian believers, giving praise and glory to God and then turned her back on Him, and now must suffer His judgment after having been the recipient of His abundant blessing for so long.

The Image of the Beast

two-beasts

We know the Roman Catholic Church is the first Beast whose deadly wound was healed, so how does the second beast (America) cause the earth to worship the first beast and what is the image of the beast?

Rev 13:12 And he (the lamb-like beast) exerciseth all the power of the first beast before him (this is the power and authority of Satan), and causeth the earth and them which dwell therein to worship the first beast, whose deadly wound was healed.
Rev 13:13 And he doeth great wonders, so that he maketh fire come down from heaven on the earth in the sight of men,
Rev 13:14 And deceiveth them that dwell on the earth by the means of those miracles which he had power to do in the sight of the beast; saying to them that dwell on the earth, that they should make an image to the beast, which had the wound by a sword, and did live.

The False Prophet

Verse 12 is showing us that the United States will combine Church and State and strictly enforce apostate Roman Catholic religious doctrine, just as the Roman Catholic Church did in the middle ages. The current effort on the part of apostate evangelical Protestant and non-denominational Christians to “take back America”, while following and promoting the false teachings of the first beast – this is the false prophet.

In Verse 13 it shows us that this revival of Church and State in the United States will be accompanied by great wonders (miracles). The fire coming down from heaven is a deceiving miracle, a false wonder, which may well refer to the counterfeit outpouring of the Holy Spirit already sweeping churches in North America today with false manifestation of tongues, holy laughter, being slain in the spirit, drunk in the spirit, etc.

In verse 14 the lamb-like beast (the United States) promotes an image to the first beast (the Roman Catholic Church). When it says “an image to the (first) beast”, it means that the apostate Protestant movement in the United States will encourage the establishment of Church/State power, and legislate it’s Antichrist agenda on everyone. It will be the mirror “image” of the satanic practices, policies and persecutions of the Roman Catholic Church of the Middle Ages. Of course, there is also the physical image of the beast, pictured above, which is unmistakable.

The Three Frogs

Revelation 16:13 “And I saw three unclean spirits like frogs come out of the mouth of the dragon, and out of the mouth of the beast, and out of the mouth of the false prophet. For they are the spirits of devils, working miracles, which go forth unto the kings of the earth and of the whole world, to gather them to the battle of that great day of God Almighty.” The dragon of course is Satan, so one frog will come out of the mouth of the one to whom he has given his throne and authority (the Antichrist/the Papacy). The beast (of Revelation 13 and 17, not the two-horned lamb beast) is the Roman Catholic Church. The false prophet is apostate Protestantism, coming out of the “beast which rose out of the earth; it had two horns like a lamb and it spoke like a dragon” – America, with the two horns representing church and democratic (no crown, so not a kingdom) state.

Frog’s tongues are attached to the front of their mouths rather than at the back like humans. To catch its prey, a frog thrusts its tongue out of its mouth to wrap around and capture it. Proverbs 26:28 “A lying tongue hates those that are afflicted by it; and a flattering mouth works ruin.” Proverbs 6:23-24 “For the commandment is a lamp and the teaching a light, and the reproofs of discipline are the way of life, to preserve you from the evil woman, from the smooth tongue of the adventuress.”

The “unclean spirits like frogs” are the evil, lying and flattering (playing to man’s pride and vanity) spirits who look to deceive many, including Christians who are not solid in their knowledge of God’s Word, and faithful in their daily walk with and in obedience to Jesus Christ. The Word of God is our weapon Hebrews 4:12 “For the word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and spirit, of joints and marrow, and discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart.” Ephesians 6:10 “Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of His might. Put on the full armor of God, so that you will be able to stand firm against the schemes of the devil. For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the powers, against the world forces of this darkness, against the spiritual forces of wickedness in the heavenly places. Therefore, take up the full armor of God, so that you will be able to resist in the evil day, and having done everything, to stand firm. Stand firm therefore, HAVING GIRDED YOUR LOINS WITH TRUTH, and HAVING PUT ON THE BREASTPLATE OF RIGHTEOUSNESS, and having shod YOUR FEET WITH THE PREPARATION OF THE GOSPEL OF PEACE; in addition to all, taking up the shield of faith with which you will be able to extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. And take THE HELMET OF SALVATION, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.” All Christians need to be fully armored in these times.

1 Timothy 4:1-2

“But the Spirit explicitly says that in later times some will fall away from the faith, paying attention to deceitful spirits and doctrines of demons, by means of the hypocrisy of liars seared in their own conscience as with a branding iron,”

Revelation 13:14

“And he deceives those who dwell on the earth because of the signs which it was given him to perform in the presence of the beast, telling those who dwell on the earth to make an image to the beast who had the wound of the sword and has come to life.”

These are some of the signs that are now being performed. This is not to insinuate for a moment that the Holy Spirit does not continue to give us utterance, as only He knows the words a person needs to hear, and how they should best be uttered through us.

Definition of utterance

1:  something uttered; especially: an oral or written statement: a stated or published expression

2:  vocal expression: speech

3:  power, style, or manner of speaking

We are told in Acts 2:4: “And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit, and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance.” We are also told in Acts 2:6 “And at this sound the multitude came together, and they were bewildered, because every man heard them speak in his own language.” They understood the message because it was being given by the utterance of the Holy Spirit through the apostles, in their own language. Today, the gospel has been preached in the whole world, so for anyone who needs to hear the message of the gospel of Jesus Christ in French, Spanish, Swahili, Hindi, Russian, Arabic or any other language, there are Christians who speak those languages to share it with them, as the Holy Spirit gives them utterance. If the Holy Spirit is not the one giving us utterance, we might as well just shut our mouths, because it will be of no effect. Acts 2:17-21 goes on to speak of the days we are in today: “And it shall come to pass in the last days, saith God, I will pour out of my Spirit upon all flesh: and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, and your young men shall see visions, and your old men shall dream dreams: And on my servants and on my handmaidens I will pour out in those days of my Spirit; and they shall prophesy: And I will shew wonders in heaven above, and signs in the earth beneath; blood, and fire, and vapour of smoke: The sun shall be turned into darkness, and the moon into blood, before the great and notable day of the Lord come: And it shall come to pass, that whosoever shall call on the name of the Lord shall be saved.” This is God’s Word, spoken by Peter on the Day of Pentecost concerning the last days, which we are now in, and He makes no mention of tongues, or being slain, drunk or laughing in the spirit.

False tongues – In the account of Pentecost in Acts 2:1-11 we are told: “And when the day of Pentecost was fully come, they were all with one accord in one place. And suddenly there came a sound from heaven as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled all the house where they were sitting. And there appeared unto them cloven tongues like as of fire, and it sat upon each of them. And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance. And there were dwelling at Jerusalem Jews, devout men, out of every nation under heaven. Now when this was noised abroad, the multitude came together, and were confounded, because that every man heard them speak in his own language. And they were all amazed and marvelled, saying one to another, Behold, are not all these which speak Galilaeans? And how hear we every man in our own tongue, wherein we were born? Parthians, and Medes, and Elamites, and the dwellers in Mesopotamia, and in Judaea, and Cappadocia, in Pontus, and Asia, Phrygia, and Pamphylia, in Egypt, and in the parts of Libya about Cyrene, and strangers of Rome, Jews and proselytes, Cretes and Arabians, we do hear them speak in our tongues the wonderful works of God.”

This account of Pentecost says nothing about those filled with the Holy Spirit speaking some kind of jibberish language that no one could understand. They were telling of the wonderful works of God to the multitude of people who gathered – in their respective languages/tongues – so that they could understand. There is no example in the New Testament of the use of tongues for any other purpose than to preach the Gospel and proclaim that Jesus was the Christ, the Redeemer. It was a valid sign gift given to Christians to validate that Jesus Christ was the Messiah. It was used of the Holy Spirit to present the Gospel to foreign speaking Jews. When then Jews saw the supernatural gift being practiced, it was a testimony that Jesus was the Christ and that those practicing the gift were of God. Common sense alone tells us that it could not possibly glorify God to have people telling of Him in jibberish that no one can understand. This is Satan scorning and mocking the Holy Spirit in derision and defiance.

Modern Pentecostalism began on January 1, 1901, when Agnes Ozman, a student at Charles F. Parham’s Bethel Bible School in Topeka, Kansas, spoke in tongues (she is said to have spoken Chinese). Even though Chinese might sound like jibberish to someone who does not speak it, it is an actual language which someone who speaks Chinese would understand. Parham insisted that Miss Ozman had spoken and written Chinese. In fact, Parham himself and at least thirty other students claimed that they too had received the gift of tongues. In the face of careful scrutiny and hard questions, Parham defiantly enlarged his original fiction: He announced that the students had spoken many languages. He himself had received the capability of preaching in German and Swedish, Agnes Ozman in “Chinese,” and others in a variety of languages including Japanese, Hungarian, Syrian, Hindi, and Spanish. Parham noted that “cloven tongues of fire” appeared over the heads of speakers. Sometimes interpretations followed such as “God is love,” “Jesus is mighty to save,” and “Jesus is ready to hear.” [1][Gary B. McGee, “The Revivial Legacy of Charles F. Parham,” Enrichment Journal (Summer 1999)]

John 8:44 “You belong to your father, the devil, and you want to carry out your father’s desires. He was a murderer from the beginning, not holding to the truth, for there is no truth in him. When he lies, he speaks his native language, for he is a liar and the father of lies.”

Holy Ghost laughter (or being drunk in the Spirit) – We usually think of laughter as associated with merriment and happiness; however, in the Bible, it is often used to express defiance or derision, mocking or scorn. While one of the fruits of the spirit is joy, the joy of the spirit results in an all-encompassing sense of joy in all circumstances – not an isolated “sonorous and interrupted expulsion of air from the lungs”, as Webster defines laughter. Joy is the positive and cheerful outlook of a person who has been called by God and understands how beneficial it is to obediently follow God’s commands and way of life. Psalm 16:11: “You will show me the path of life; in Your presence is fullness of joy; at Your right hand are pleasures forevermore.”

Webster’s Revised Unabridged Dictionary

Laughter (n.) A movement (usually involuntary) of the muscles of the face, particularly of the lips, with a peculiar expression of the eyes, indicating merriment, satisfaction, or derision, and usually attended by a sonorous and interrupted expulsion of air from the lungs.

International Standard Bible Encyclopedia

LAUGHTER laf’-ter (chaq, tsachaq, “to laugh,” sechoq, “laughter”; gelao, katagelao):

(1) Laughter as the expression of gladness, pleasurable surprise, is the translation of tsachaq (Genesis 17:17Genesis 18:12, 13, 15Genesis 21:6), which, however, should perhaps be “laugh at me,” not “with me,” as the King James Version and the Revised Version (British and American) (so Delitzsch and others; see also Hastings in HDB), not in the sense of derision, but of surprise and pleasure. In the same verse for “God hath made me to laugh,” the Revised Version (British and American) gives in margin, “hath prepared laughter for me,” and this gave his name to the son, the promise of whose birth evoked the laughter (Yitschaq, Isaac); gelao (Luke 6:21, 25) has the same meaning of gladness and rejoicing; sechoq, “laughter,” has also this sense (Job 8:21 Psalm 126:2). It is, however, “laughed to scorn” in Job 12:4; the Revised Version (British and American) “laughing-stock”; so Jeremiah 20:7; compare 48:26, 27, 39; Lamentations 3:14, “derision.”

(2) Sachaq is used (except Job 29:24 Ecclesiastes 3:4) in the sense of the laughter of defiance, or derision (Job 5:22Job 41:29);

(3) La`agh is “to scorn” “to laugh to scorn” (2 Kings 19:21 Nehemiah 2:19); sachaq has also this sense (2 Chronicles 30:10); tsechoq (Ezekiel 23:32); sechoq (Job 12:4); katagelao (Matthew 9:24 Mark 5:40Luke 8:53); the simple gelao occurs only in Luke 6:21, 25; see above. Katagelao is found in Judith 12:12, “laugh to scorn” (Ecclesiasticus 7:11; 20:17; 1 Maccabees 10:70, the Revised Version (British and American) “derision”).

For “laugh” (Job 9:23) the Revised Version (British and American) has “mock”; for “mocked of his neighbor” and “laughed to scorn” (Job 12:4) “laughing-stock”; for “shall rejoice in time to come” (Proverbs 31:25), “laugheth at the time to come”; “laughter” for “laughing” (Job 8:21).

1 Corinthians 12:4-11
”Now there are varieties of gifts, but the same Spirit; and there are varieties of service, but the same Lord; and there are varieties of working, but it is the same God who inspires them all in every one. To each is given the manifestation of the Spirit for the common good. To one is given through the Spirit the utterance of wisdom, and to another the utterance of knowledge according to the same Spirit, to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healing by the one Spirit, to another the working of miracles, to another prophecy, to another the ability to distinguish between spirits, to another various kinds of tongues, to another the interpretation of tongues. All these are inspired by one and the same Spirit, who apportions to each one individually as he wills.”

Watch this video of people “drunk in the Spirit” and honestly say you believe this is of God https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X2V7KbbfRHA. This is Satan scorning and mocking the Holy Spirit in derision and defiance.

Being slain in the Spirit – Nowhere in the Bible are there any accounts of believers being “slain in the Spirit” or anything even closely resembling it. God is not the author of confusion – He is Holy, Holy, Holy. Do any of these ring of holiness? This is Satan scorning and mocking the Holy Spirit in derision and defiance.

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Where do we go when we die?

God has blessed me with the opportunity and calling to intensely study His Word, in the process shattering some of my previously firmly held beliefs, which had been based on false teachings of men. Where we go when we die is clearly taught in the Bible. The false teachings of many, even dedicated Christian church leaders, has opened the door for Satan to lead many into the occult. Hear and believe what God tells us, not what man says.

One of Jesus’ most significant miracles recorded in the Bible was the resurrection of Lazarus from the dead (John 11). There are other instances of people who had been raised from the dead, but unlike those mentioned before in the Bible, Lazarus had been dead for an entire period of four days. When Lazarus died, Jesus said, ‘Our friend Lazarus sleeps, but I go that I may wake him up.’ Then His disciples said, ‘Lord, if he sleeps he will get well.’ However, Jesus spoke of his death, but they thought that He was speaking about taking rest in sleep. Then Jesus told them plainly, ‘Lazarus is dead.’” (John 11:11-14).

The Bible compares death to sleep more than fifty times. After death we are asleep, we are unconscious; we are not aware of the passing of time or of what is going on around us. The Bible says in Ecclesiastes 9:5 “for the living know that they will die; but the dead know nothing… their love, their hatred, and their envy have now perished”, Psalm 146:4 “His spirit departs, he returns to his earth; In that very day his plans perish.” and Psalm 115:17 “The dead do not praise the Lord, Nor any who go down into silence.”

It makes sense that after Lazarus was raised from the dead, he doesn’t share what he saw or experienced. He didn’t have anything to tell, except that once he was dead, and now he is alive! He didn’t experience hell or heaven. He was simply “sleeping” in his tomb. Peter on the Day of Pentecost said the same of King David. “Men and brethren, let me speak freely to you of the patriarch David, that he is both dead and buried, and his tomb is with us to this day…For David did not ascend into the heavens…” (Acts 2:29, 34).

What happens to your soul when you die?

Many Christians think of the soul as an immortal entity within us that goes on living after death. In fact it is unconscious and aware of nothing. At the resurrection, our corruptible body is replaced with an incorruptible glorified one, and our soul is resurrected and lives again. The Bible says that Jesus “was put to death in the flesh but made alive [resurrected] in the spirit.” (1 Peter 3:18; Acts 13:34; 1 Corinthians 15:45; 2 Corinthians 5:16).

Jesus’ own words showed that he would not be resurrected with his flesh-and-blood body. He said that he would give his “flesh in behalf of the life of the world,” as a ransom for mankind. (John 6:51; Matthew 20:28) If he had taken back his flesh when he was resurrected, he would have canceled that ransom sacrifice. This could not have happened, though, for the Bible says that he sacrificed his flesh and blood “once for all time.” Hebrews 9:11, 12.

If souls existed as separate entities that lived on after we died, that would mean we have immortality. However, the Bible says human beings do not have immortality. Only God is immortal (see 1 Timothy 6:15,16). Paul says that the righteous “seek for glory, honor, and immortality” (Romans 2:7). If we had immortal souls, why would the righteous seek after something they already have?

Is there life after death?

Though we may die, Jesus says, “I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in Me, though he may die, he shall live” (John 11:25). Those in Christ will receive immortality when He comes again. 1 Corinthians 15:51-54: “Behold, I tell you a mystery: We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed—in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed. For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality. So when this corruptible has put on incorruption, and this mortal has put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written: ‘Death is swallowed up in victory.’”  The Bible says that all those who have died—both righteous and wicked—will be raised to life in one of two resurrections. The righteous will be raised to life at Jesus’ second coming. “For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of an archangel, and with the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first.” (1 Thessalonians 4:16). According to this verse, the righteous do not to go heaven when they die. They remain asleep in the grave until Jesus returns and raises them to immortal life.

The wicked are raised to life in a separate resurrection—the resurrection of condemnation. Jesus said, “Do not marvel at this; for the hour is coming in which all who are in the graves will hear His voice and come forth—those who have done good, to the resurrection of life, and those who have done evil, to the resurrection of condemnation” (John 5:28-29).

The prophets never mention in the Bible that the righteous immediately go to heaven or the wicked go to hell when they die. Nor did Jesus and His apostles teach it. When Jesus was about to leave His disciples, He did not tell them they would soon come to Him. “Let not your heart be troubled; you believe in God, believe also in Me. In My Father’s house are many mansions; if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself; that where I am, there you may be also” (John 14:1-3). Christians often point to Luke 23:43 as their proof that the dead immediately go to heaven or hell: “And Jesus said unto him, Verily I say unto you today, you shall be with me in paradise.” A misplaced comma can completely change the meaning of a statement. Since all the other verses throughout the Bible that make it clear that the dead sleep, it is obvious that the comma belongs after today, not before. He is telling the thief that day, as they hang side by side on crosses, that he will be with Jesus in paradise, but not that day. This is further proved by the fact that Jesus did not ascend to the Father that day. In John 20:17, He tells Mary, two days later on the day of His resurrection: “Touch me not; for I am not yet ascended to my Father: but go to my brethren, and say unto them, I ascend unto my Father, and your Father; and to my God, and your God.” The Bible is the inspired Word of God; punctuation is of man.

When He returns, our loved ones asleep in Christ will awake from their tombs. No matter how long the time has passed, be it long or short, will seem but a moment to them. By the voice of Jesus, they are called forth from their deep slumber, awakening to a glorious immortality.

“For the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised incorruptible…So when this corruptible has put on incorruption, and this mortal has put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written:

‘Death is swallowed up in victory.’”

The last sensation was the pang of death, the last thought, that they were falling beneath the power of the grave, but then, imagine, when they arise from the tomb, to the shout,

“O Death, where is your sting? O Hades, where is your victory?” (1 Corinthians 15:55).

https://www.jw.org/en/bible-teachings/questions/jesus-body/

Job 7:21

“Why then do You not pardon my transgression And take away my iniquity? For now I will lie down in the dust; And You will seek me, but I will not be.”

Job 14:10-12

“But man dies and lies prostrate Man expires, and where is he? “As water evaporates from the sea, And a river becomes parched and dried up, So man lies down and does not rise. Until the heavens are no longer, He will not

Daniel 12:2

“Many of those who sleep in the dust of the ground will awake, these to everlasting life, but the others to disgrace and everlasting contempt.

Matthew 9:24

He said, “Leave; for the girl has not died, but is asleep.” And they began laughing at Him.

Mark 5:39

And entering in, He said to them, “Why make a commotion and weep? The child has not died, but is asleep.”

Luke 8:52-53

Now they were all weeping and lamenting for her; but He said, “Stop weeping, for she has not died, but is asleep.” And they began laughing at Him, knowing that she had died.

1 Kings 2:10

Then David slept with his fathers and was buried in the city of David.

1 Kings 11:43

And Solomon slept with his fathers and was buried in the city of his father David, and his son Rehoboam reigned in his place.

2 Kings 14:16

So Jehoash slept with his fathers and was buried in Samaria with the kings of Israel; and Jeroboam his son became king in his place.

Revelation 14:13

And I heard a voice from heaven, saying, “Write, ‘Blessed are the dead who die in the Lord from now on!'” “Yes,” says the Spirit, “so that they may rest from their labors, for their deeds follow with them.”

Acts 7:60

Then falling on his knees, he cried out with a loud voice, “Lord, do not hold this sin against them!” Having said this, he fell asleep.

1 Corinthians 15:6

After that He appeared to more than five hundred brethren at one time, most of whom remain until now, but some have fallen asleep;

John 5:28-29

“Do not marvel at this; for an hour is coming, in which all who are in the tombs will hear His voice, and will come forth; those who did the good deeds to a resurrection of life, those who committed the evil deeds to a resurrection of judgment.

1 Corinthians 15:20

But now Christ has been raised from the dead, the first fruits of those who are asleep.

1 Thessalonians 4:13-17

But we do not want you to be uninformed, brethren, about those who are asleep, so that you will not grieve as do the rest who have no hope. For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so God will bring with Him those who have fallen asleep in Jesus. For this we say to you by the word of the Lord, that we who are alive and remain until the coming of the Lord, will not precede those who have fallen asleep. For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first: Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord.

Daniel 12:2

“Multitudes who sleep in the dust of the earth will awake: some to everlasting life, others to shame and everlasting contempt”.

The Bible often refers to the state of death as “sleep.” This is because the dead will actually be “awakened” (resurrected) at the end of time, some, as Gabriel says, “to everlasting life, others to everlasting contempt.”

Ezekiel 37:12
Therefore prophesy and say to them, ‘Thus says the Lord GOD, “Behold, I will open your graves and cause you to come up out of your graves, My people; and I will bring you into the land of Israel.

Ecclesiastes 9:5-6

For the living know that they shall die: but the dead know not any thing, neither have they any more a reward; for the memory of them is forgotten. Also their love, and their hatred, and their envy, is now perished; neither have they any more a portion forever in any thing that is done under the sun.

Psalm 115:17

The dead praise not the Lord, neither any that go down into silence.

Psalm 146:4

His breath goeth forth, he returneth to his earth; in that very day his thoughts perish.

John 5:28
Marvel not at this: for the hour is coming, in the which all that are in the graves shall hear his voice,
John 5:29
And shall come forth; they that have done good, unto the resurrection of life; and they that have done evil, unto the resurrection of damnation.
John 11:24
Martha saith unto him, I know that he shall rise again in the resurrection at the last day.

Acts 7:60
And he kneeled down, and cried with a loud voice, Lord, lay not this sin to their charge. And when he had said this, he fell asleep.
Acts 24:15
And have hope toward God, which they themselves also allow, that there shall be a resurrection of the dead, both of the just and unjust.
Isaiah 26:19
Thy dead men shall live, together with my dead body shall they arise. Awake and sing, ye that dwell in dust: for thy dew is as the dew of herbs, and the earth shall cast out the dead.

What does Jesus say about the dead?
Jesus “said to them, ‘Our friend Lazarus sleeps, but I go that I may wake him up.’ Then His disciples said, ‘Lord, if he sleeps he will get well.’ However, Jesus spoke of his death, but they thought that He was speaking about taking rest in sleep. Then Jesus said to them plainly, ‘Lazarus is dead.'” (John 11:11-14 NKJV).

He also said, “This is the Father’s will which hath sent me, that of all which he hath given me I should lose nothing, but should raise it up again at the last day” (John 6:39).

Jesus says the dead really are dead. They are not yet in heaven, nor are they yet in hell. They are “asleep,” awaiting the resurrection “at the last day.”

Why is it important that you know the truth about the dead?

Satan’s first lie was, “Ye shall not surely die.”

Since then, he has convinced many, even sincere Christians, that when you die, you aren’t really dead. If Satan can convince you that the dead are living and are able to communicate with you, he can then begin to use that belief to deceive you out of your eternal inheritance, just like he deceived Adam and Eve out of their garden paradise.

For instance, you might believe that your dead grandmother is visiting you and telling you that your pastor is evil, that any religion is acceptable to God, or whatever else that could turn you from your loving Father, His truth, and His kingdom.

You must know the Word of God and the God of the Word. Diligently read the Scriptures every day and pray regularly so that your connection with heaven remains secure and your knowledge of God increases.

If the dead don’t immediately go to heaven, how did Moses and Elijah appear at the transfiguration?

Texts in question: Luke 9:2930Matthew 17:1–3Mark 9:34

“As He prayed, the appearance of His face was altered, and His robe became white and glistening. And behold, two men talked with Him, who were Moses and Elijah.”

Proof texts: 2 Kings 2:11Jude 9

One of the most powerful stories in the Gospels is that of Christ’s transfiguration. In the sight of Peter, James, and John, Jesus temporarily shed His earthly form and allowed them to see His divinity. The Father’s voice then pierced the sky, saying He was well pleased with Jesus, His son. The experience was so powerful to those who saw it that Peter affirms its validity in his epistle, 2 Peter 1:16–18 “16 For we have not followed cunningly devised fables, when we made known unto you the power and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, but were eyewitnesses of his majesty. 17 For he received from God the Father honour and glory, when there came such a voice to him from the excellent glory, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased. 18 And this voice which came from heaven we heard, when we were with him in the holy mount.”

The text might be troubling, however, to those who otherwise understand that people go to sleep at death to await a bodily resurrection at Christ’s return. How can Moses and Elijah have been present at the transfiguration if they are waiting for the resurrection?

To make sense of this, we must first understand two important principles. The first is that, while the general resurrection of God’s people will happen at the end of time, there have been individual resurrections recorded in the Bible. Christ’s resurrection, for instance, was not part of the general one. Neither were those of the saints who came forth from the grave after Christ’s resurrection (see Matthew 27:5253). The prophets Elijah and Elisha both performed resurrections during their ministries (see 1 Kings 17:17–22 and 2 Kings 4:32–35). Individual resurrections throughout history do not invalidate the general resurrection when Christ returns.

The second principle to understand is that some people have left the earth without dying, and therefore are not in need of a resurrection.

Moses and Elijah each fit one of these two categories.

The story recorded in 2 Kings 2 tells us unmistakably that Elijah was taken to heaven without first dying. Verse 11, specifically, says he was caught in a heavenly whirlwind and taken to heaven in sight of Elisha, his successor. Appearing with Christ at the transfiguration would not have posed a problem for Elijah; he had already spent much time with Jesus in heaven before His human birth in Bethlehem.

Moses, on the other hand, died in the wilderness before the Israelite people entered into the Promised Land. The story of his death, as recorded in Deuteronomy 34:56, reveals something extraordinary. The Bible says that God Himself buried Moses, and that none of the Israelites were ever aware of his gravesite. This is the first biblical hint that something special awaited Moses after death.

The New Testament, however, gives us more information. In Jude 9, we’re told that the archangel Michael contended with Satan over the body of Moses. In other words, Satan claimed Moses as his own, worthy of death just like everyone else. Michael, however, thought differently. As the archangel, He has the power to resurrect God’s people. (See 1 Thessalonians 4:16; the voice of the archangel raises the dead in Christ at Christ’s return.) Moses was not meant to stay dead. Indeed, he was resurrected from the dead and has been living in heaven since that time. Truly, he has already experienced life after death.

Therefore, the presence of Moses and Elijah at the transfiguration does not answer the question “What is death?,” because neither one was dead! Elijah never tasted death at all, and Moses was given a new life at his resurrection, just like Christ’s people will receive at His return.

While the transfiguration doesn’t directly give us information on the state of the dead, it retains theological significance nonetheless. When Peter recounted his experience in 2 Peter 1:16–18, he writes that he witnessed Christ’s coming at that time. In other words, he understood the experience to represent the return of Jesus Christ. Moses and Elijah represent the two classes of God’s people who will be present at that miraculous event: Moses represents the “dead in Christ” who rise to new life, and Elijah represents “those who are alive and remain” who will be translated to heaven and eternal life without ever experiencing death in the first place (1 Thessalonians 4:16). Understanding that the transfiguration is a representation of the second coming of Christ also helps us understand Christ’s promise that “some standing here … shall not taste death till they see the kingdom of God,” spoken a few days before the transfiguration (Luke 9:27).

When we understand the profound significance of this event in light of what Moses and Elijah represent, we can gain an understanding of the nature of death as a result. There would be no need of a bodily resurrection if everyone immediately went to heaven to live in Christ’s presence at death; similarly, translation to heaven would have no special significance because everyone would go to heaven immediately upon death. Moses and Elijah act as evidence that death brings a sleep of unconsciousness while the sleeping saints await the return of Jesus Christ.

http://www.truthaboutdeath.com/q-and-a/id/1606/if-the-dead-dont-immediately-go-to-heaven-how-did-moses-and-elijah-appear-at-the-transfiguration

When John describes Heaven in Revelation 4, he speaks of the 24 elders seated round the throne of God clad in white garments wearing crowns of gold. I believe, which seems to be a fairly common belief, that these 24 are made up of the twelve apostles (I personally think excluding Mattias, who we hear so little of, and including Paul). We also know there were Old Testament saints who were resurrected with Jesus. We are told in Matthew 27:51-53 “Then, behold, the veil of the temple was torn in two from top to bottom; and the earth quaked, and the rocks were split, and the graves were opened; and many bodies of the saints who had fallen asleep were raised; and coming out of the graves after His resurrection, they went into the holy city and appeared to many.” We know Elijah (and also Enoch) never tasted death, so were not included. We have good reason to believe Moses was given a special resurrection treatment by God, so he was also not there. We can only make assumptions as to the identity of the saints that were resurrected with Jesus, but they make up the remaining twelve elders presently seated on thrones round the throne of God.

God warns us repeatedly about necromancy (communing with the dead), diving spirits, mediums, divination, spiritists and the like, which are defiling and detestable to Him. In these latter times, Satan will be using evil spirits to convince people that the Antichrist is Christ. 1 Timothy 4:1 “But the Spirit explicitly says that in later times some will fall away from the faith, paying attention to deceitful spirits and doctrines of demons,” and Paul warns us in Ephesians 6:11 “Put on the full armor of God, so that you will be able to stand firm against the schemes of the devil.” The false teaching by church leaders that the dead in Christ are presently with Jesus may be done with the best of intentions to comfort a grieving family, but it is false teaching that opens the door for Satan.

Isaiah 8:19

When they say to you, “Consult the mediums and the spiritists who whisper and mutter,” should not a people consult their God? Should they consult the dead on behalf of the living?

Deuteronomy 18:10-12

“There shall not be found among you anyone who makes his son or his daughter pass through the fire, one who uses divination, one who practices witchcraft, or one who interprets omens, or a sorcerer, or one who casts a spell, or a medium, or a spiritist, or one who calls up the dead. “For whoever does these things is detestable to the LORD; and because of these detestable things the LORD your God will drive them out before you.

1 Samuel 28:7

Then Saul said to his servants, “Seek for me a woman who is a medium, that I may go to her and inquire of her.” And his servants said to him, “Behold, there is a woman who is a medium at En-dor.”

Deuteronomy 18:11

or one who casts a spell, or a medium, or a spiritist, or one who calls up the dead.

Deuteronomy 26:14

‘I have not eaten of it while mourning, nor have I removed any of it while I was unclean, nor offered any of it to the dead. I have listened to the voice of the LORD my God; I have done according to all that You have commanded me.

Isaiah 29:4

Then you will be brought low; From the earth you will speak, And from the dust where you are prostrate Your words will come. Your voice will also be like that of a spirit from the ground, And your speech will whisper from the dust.

Leviticus 19:31

‘Do not turn to mediums or spiritists; do not seek them out to be defiled by them. I am the LORD your God.

1 John 4:1

Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, because many false prophets have gone out into the world.

Revelation 21:8

“But for the cowardly and unbelieving and abominable and murderers and immoral persons and sorcerers and idolaters and all liars, their part will be in the lake that burns with fire and brimstone, which is the second death.”

2 Kings 21:6

He made his son pass through the fire, practiced witchcraft and used divination, and dealt with mediums and spiritists. He did much evil in the sight of the LORD provoking Him to anger.

Leviticus 20:6

‘As for the person who turns to mediums and to spiritists, to play the harlot after them, I will also set My face against that person and will cut him off from among his people.

Deuteronomy 18:10

“There shall not be found among you anyone who makes his son or his daughter pass through the fire, one who uses divination, one who practices witchcraft, or one who interprets omens, or a sorcerer,

Leviticus 20:27

‘Now a man or a woman who is a medium or a spiritist shall surely be put to death. They shall be stoned with stones, their bloodguiltiness is upon them.'”

2 Corinthians 11:14

No wonder, for even Satan disguises himself as an angel of light.

1 Samuel 28:7-19

Then Saul said to his servants, “Seek for me a woman who is a medium, that I may go to her and inquire of her.” And his servants said to him, “Behold, there is a woman who is a medium at En-dor.” Then Saul disguised himself by putting on other clothes, and went, he and two men with him, and they came to the woman by night; and he said, “Conjure up for me, please, and bring up for me whom I shall name to you.” But the woman said to him, “Behold, you know what Saul has done, how he has cut off those who are mediums and spiritists from the land. Why are you then laying a snare for my life to bring about my death?” read more.

1 Timothy 4:1

But the Spirit explicitly says that in later times some will fall away from the faith, paying attention to deceitful spirits and doctrines of demons,

1 Chronicles 10:13

So Saul died for his trespass which he committed against the LORD, because of the word of the LORD which he did not keep; and also because he asked counsel of a medium, making inquiry of it,

Ephesians 6:11

Put on the full armor of God, so that you will be able to stand firm against the schemes of the devil.

Revelation 22:15

Outside are the dogs and the sorcerers and the immoral persons and the murderers and the idolaters, and everyone who loves and practices lying.

Isaiah 19:3

“Then the spirit of the Egyptians will be demoralized within them; And I will confound their strategy, So that they will resort to idols and ghosts of the dead And to mediums and spiritists.

Daniel 2:27

Daniel answered before the king and said, “As for the mystery about which the king has inquired, neither wise men, conjurers, magicians nor diviners are able to declare it to the king.

Daniel 4:7

“Then the magicians, the conjurers, the Chaldeans and the diviners came in and I related the dream to them, but they could not make its interpretation known to me.

Ephesians 5:11

Do not participate in the unfruitful deeds of darkness, but instead even expose them;

Acts 16:16

It happened that as we were going to the place of prayer, a slave-girl having a spirit of divination met us, who was bringing her masters much profit by fortune-telling.

Exodus 7:11

Then Pharaoh also called for the wise men and the sorcerers, and they also, the magicians of Egypt, did the same with their secret arts.

Exodus 22:18

“You shall not allow a sorceress to live.

Exodus 8:7

The magicians did the same with their secret arts, making frogs come up on the land of Egypt.

1 Thessalonians 5:21

But examine everything carefully; hold fast to that which is good;

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FOR BIBLE BELIEVING CHRISTIANS ONLY

A Christian who fights against keeping God’s day of rest and devotion to Him (that is what “keep it holy” means) is like a wife who fights against keeping date night with her husband because she is too busy with her job, projects, volunteer work, studies, the kids, etc. In this world of rushing to and fro, the wife (bride) who does not love her husband enough to set aside time to just intimately be with him, growing in her love and knowledge of him, is courting disaster in their marriage. It is the same with us in our relationship with God. If we do not love Him enough to spend the intimate one on one time with Him on the day that he has specifically sanctified for us to come out of the world and be with Him, we are courting disaster in our relationship with Him. It tells Him that we love the world more than we love Him – we commit adultery (James 4:4). Proverbs 7:1-2 “My son, keep my words, and lay up my commandments with thee. Keep my commandments, and live; and my law as the apple of thine eye. Ask yourself: What is the apple of my eye? Is it God and His Word, or it is the world? The 4th commandment is not a legalistic command – it is a loving one given by our God who loves us and knows us more intimately than we can possibly imagine, and desires for us to love and know Him the same – it is meant to be a blessing, not a curse. He desires for us “to be rooted and grounded in love, that we may have power to comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and depth, and to know the love of Christ which surpasses knowledge, that we may be filled with all the fullness of God”. When a husband and wife are going through a time of trial and tribulation, keeping their date night is critical to keeping their relationship solid through it. The Bride is getting ready to go through a time of tribulation like she has never seen before, and if she is not solid in her intimate relationship with her Husband, she risks having her love grow cold, becoming an adulteress, and hearing Him say: “I never knew you, depart from me.”

When the Holy Spirit convicts me of something, I listen, and allow Him to lead me in the Word to prove it true. In addition to all the scriptures below which prove the truth of His conviction of me, in my study of Revelation (the final word Jesus has given us that His Elect might be prepared for these times), there are three things we are clearly told that believers must be doing when He comes:

  1. Keeping the commandments of God;
  2. Having the faith or testimony of Jesus Christ; and
  3. Not having taken the mark of the Beast, which connects directly with #1.

Because so many Christians have completely accepted Satan’s changing of the law and times, enactment of a law requiring everyone to keep Sunday as a secular/one world day of rest, relaxation and worship (to whatever god people choose to believe in, for the unity, brotherhood, security and wellbeing of all – One World Religion), will so effectively become the basis for the mark of the beast. Only those truly keeping the commandments of God and having the faith or testimony of Jesus Christ would be subject to the penalties of not keeping the law, because they would be God’s Sabbath keepers, and thereby easy to identify.

Since my mother and I have started keeping God’s Sabbath, we have found it to be such an incredible blessing that we are so grateful God gave us. The Sabbath was given for us after all, not for God (“The Sabbath was made for man, and not man for the Sabbath.” Mark 2:27). Although I believe He is blessed by our following His command and keeping the day he set aside for us to rest and focus on Him, it is His command, not our carnal mind’s choice, of what Sabbath day we are to keep.

There are Christians today, being so encompassed by the false teachings of the Roman Catholic Church, who question whether the Sabbath God established was actually Saturday. The Catholic Church herself tells us it is so, and more importantly, the Jews tell us it is so. The Jews were given God’s commandments, and since that time until today, have kept the Sabbath Saturday, the last day of the week. We need look no further than the day Jesus Himself kept – even in death, he rested on the Sabbath in the tomb.

Genesis 2:3King James Version (KJV)

And God blessed the seventh day, and sanctified (made it irrevocable) it: because that in it he had rested from all his work which God created and made. (It was sanctified, made irrevocable – if God was able to change his Law after he blessed and sanctified it, why do we not think he would have done so to save His Son? If God was able and willing to change His law, there would have been no reason for Jesus to die, or reason for us to trust in our salvation because of his death. If God is that changeable, we have no assurance in any of His Word, and might just as well be Muslims, Buddhists or Druids.)

Psalm 89:34King James Version (KJV)

34 My covenant will I not break, nor alter the thing that is gone out of my lips. (God cannot lie. Jesus said: “I and the Father are one”, so how could we allow ourselves to believe that He lied and altered the thing that has gone out of His lips.)

Exodus 20:6King James Version (KJV)

And shewing mercy unto thousands of them that love me, and keep my commandments.

Exodus 20:1King James Version (KJV)

And God spoke all these words, saying,
(God never takes back His words – “My covenant will I not break, nor alter the thing that is gone out of my lips.”)

Exodus 20:8-11King James Version (KJV)

Remember the sabbath day, to keep it holy. 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 (foreigners, gentiles) 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.

Exodus 24:12King James Version (KJV)

12 And the Lord said unto Moses, Come up to me into the mount, and be there: and I will give thee tables of stone, and a law, and commandments which I have written; that thou mayest teach them.

(God not only spoke the Ten Commandments, He also wrote them with His finger in stone, twice! There is no changing them.)

Exodus 31:18King James Version (KJV)

18 And he gave unto Moses, when he had made an end of communing with him upon mount Sinai, two tables of testimony, tables of stone, written with the finger of God.

Leviticus 23:32King James Version (KJV)

32 It shall be unto you a sabbath of rest, and ye shall afflict your souls: in the ninth day of the month at even, from even unto even, shall ye celebrate your sabbath. (This is referring to a monthly Sabbath, not the 4th commandment Sabbath, but identifies the time for keeping the Sabbath – from even unto even.)

Leviticus 20:26King James Version (KJV)

26 And ye shall be holy unto me: for I the Lord am holy, and have severed you from other people, that ye should be mine. (We are called to be holy unto Him, which calls for us to keep His commands.)

Numbers 23:19-20King James Version (KJV)

19 God is not a man, that he should lie; neither the son of man, that he should repent: hath he said, and shall he not do it? or hath he spoken, and shall he not make it good?

20 Behold, I have received commandment to bless: and he hath blessed; and I cannot reverse it.

Deuteronomy 5:12King James Version (KJV)

12 Keep the sabbath day to sanctify it, as the Lord thy God hath commanded thee.

Deuteronomy 5:29New King James Version (NKJV)

29 Oh, that they had such a heart in them that they would fear Me and always keep all My commandments, that it might be well with them and with their children forever!

Deuteronomy 7:9King James Version (KJV)

Know therefore that the LORD your God, He is God, the faithful God, who keeps His covenant and His lovingkindness to a thousandth generation with those who love Him and keep His commandments;

Deuteronomy 28:1-2King James Version (KJV)

And it shall come to pass, if thou shalt hearken diligently unto the voice of the Lord thy God, to observe and to do all his commandments which I command thee this day, that the Lord thy God will set thee on high above all nations of the earth:

1 Kings 18:17-18King James Version (KJV)

17 And it came to pass, when Ahab saw Elijah, that Ahab said unto him, Art thou he that troubleth Israel?

18 And he answered, I have not troubled Israel; but thou, and thy father’s house, in that ye have forsaken the commandments of the Lord, and thou hast followed Baalim. (Just as we have followed Antichrist.)

Psalm 19:7-11New King James Version (NKJV)

The law of the Lord is perfect, converting the soul; The testimony of the Lord is sure, making wise the simple; The statutes of the Lord are right, rejoicing the heart; The commandment of the Lord is pure, enlightening the eyes;The fear of the Lord is clean, enduring forever; The judgments of the Lord are true and righteous altogether. 10 More to be desired are they than gold, Yea, than much fine gold; Sweeter also than honey and the honeycomb. 11 Moreover by them Your servant is warned, And in keeping them there is great reward.

Psalm 89:34King James Version (KJV)

34 My covenant will I not break, nor alter the thing that is gone out of my lips.

Psalm 103:17-18King James Version (KJV)

17 But the mercy of the Lord is from everlasting to everlasting upon them that fear him, and his righteousness unto children’s children; 18 To such as keep his covenant, and to those that REMEMBER his commandments to do them. (Note, the 4th commandment is the only one that starts with “Remember”.)

Proverbs 7:1-2King James Version (KJV)

My son, keep my words, and lay up my commandments with thee. Keep my commandments, and live; and my law as the apple of thine eye.

Jeremiah 17:21-23King James Version (KJV)

21 Thus saith the Lord; Take heed to yourselves, and bear no burden on the sabbath day, nor bring it in by the gates of Jerusalem; 22 Neither carry forth a burden out of your houses on the sabbath day, neither do ye any work, but hallow ye the sabbath day, as I commanded your fathers.

23 But they obeyed not, neither inclined their ear, but made their neck stiff, that they might not hear, nor receive instruction.

Jeremiah 17:27King James Version (KJV)

27 But if ye will not hearken unto me to hallow the sabbath day, and not to bear a burden, even entering in at the gates of Jerusalem on the sabbath day; then will I kindle a fire in the gates thereof, and it shall devour the palaces of Jerusalem, and it shall not be quenched.

And then what happened because they would not hallow the Sabbath day:

Jeremiah 39:8-9King James Version (KJV)

And the Chaldeans burned the king’s house, and the houses of the people, with fire, and brake down the walls of Jerusalem.

Then Nebuzaradan the captain of the guard carried away captive into Babylon the remnant of the people that remained in the city, and those that fell away, that fell to him, with the rest of the people that remained.

Ezekiel 20:20King James Version (KJV)

20 And hallow my sabbaths; and they shall be a sign between me and you, that ye may know that I am the Lord your God.

Daniel 7:24-26King James Version (KJV)

24 And the ten horns out of this kingdom are ten kings that shall arise: and another shall rise after them; and he shall be diverse from the first, and he shall subdue three kings.

25 And he shall speak great words against the most High, and shall wear out the saints of the most High, and think to change times and laws: and they shall be given into his hand until a time and times and the dividing of time.

26 But the judgment shall sit, and they shall take away his dominion, to consume and to destroy it unto the end.

Isaiah 8:16King James Version (KJV)

16 Bind up the testimony, seal the law among my disciples

Isaiah 24:4-6King James Version (KJV)

The earth mourneth and fadeth away, the world languisheth and fadeth away, the haughty people of the earth do languish.

The earth also is defiled under the inhabitants thereof; because they have transgressed the laws, changed the ordinance, broken the everlasting covenant.

Therefore hath the curse devoured the earth, and they that dwell therein are desolate: therefore the inhabitants of the earth are burned, and few men left.

Isaiah 42:21King James Version (KJV)

21 The Lord is well pleased for his righteousness’ sake; he will magnify the law, and make it honourable. (to be honored, to be kept)

Isaiah 56:6-7King James Version (KJV)

Also the sons of the stranger, that join themselves to the Lord, to serve him, and to love the name of the Lord, to be his servants, every one that keepeth the sabbath from polluting it, and taketh hold of my covenant; Even them will I bring to my holy mountain, and make them joyful in my house of prayer: their burnt offerings and their sacrifices shall be accepted upon mine altar; for mine house shall be called an house of prayer for all people (not only the Jews, but all people, which includes us).

Isaiah 58:13King James Version (KJV)

13 If thou turn away thy foot from the sabbath, from doing thy pleasure on my holy day; and call the sabbath a delight, the holy of the Lord, honourable; and shalt honour him, not doing thine own ways, nor finding thine own pleasure, nor speaking thine own words:

14 Then shalt thou delight thyself in the Lord; and I will cause thee to ride upon the high places of the earth, and feed thee with the heritage of Jacob thy father: for the mouth of the Lord hath spoken it.

Isaiah 66:22-23King James Version (KJV)

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.

Daniel 7:25King James Version (KJV)

25 And he shall speak great words against the most High, and shall wear out the saints of the most High, and think to change times and laws: and they shall be given into his hand until a time and times and the dividing of time. (We know who He is speaking of and which times and laws He is warning us Satan will think to change – the only Law God set down which deals with times.)

Hosea 8King James Version (KJV)

Set the trumpet to thy mouth. He shall come as an eagle against the house of the Lord, because they have transgressed my covenant, and trespassed against my law.

Matthew 5:17-19King James Version (KJV)

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

19 Whosoever therefore shall break one of these least commandments, and shall teach men so, he shall be called the least in the kingdom of heaven: but whosoever shall do and teach them, the same shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven.

Matthew 12:2-8King James Version (KJV)

But when the Pharisees saw it, they said unto him, Behold, thy disciples do that which is not lawful to do upon the sabbath day. But he said unto them, Have ye not read what David did, when he was an hungred, and they that were with him; How he entered into the house of God, and did eat the shewbread, which was not lawful for him to eat, neither for them which were with him, but only for the priests? Or have ye not read in the law, how that on the sabbath days the priests in the temple profane the sabbath, and are blameless? But I say unto you, That in this place is one greater than the temple.

But if ye had known what this meaneth, I will have mercy, and not sacrifice, ye would not have condemned the guiltless.

For the Son of man is Lord even of the sabbath day. (The Lord’s Day, which Jesus set free from the burdens that had been placed upon it by the Pharisees – he didn’t do away with it, but did set it free to be as God had established it to be.)

Matthew 19:16-17King James Version (KJV)

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.

Matthew 24:20King James Version (KJV)

20 But pray ye that your flight be not in the winter, neither on the sabbath day:

Mark 16:9King James Version (KJV)

Now when Jesus was risen early the first day of the week, he appeared first to Mary Magdalene, out of whom he had cast seven devils. (Even at the time of His greatest sacrifice to the world, Jesus rested in the tomb on the Sabbath).

Luke 4:16King James Version (KJV)

16 And he came to Nazareth, where he had been brought up: and, as his custom was, he went into the synagogue on the sabbath day, and stood up for to read.

Luke 13:14-17King James Version (KJV)

14 And the ruler of the synagogue answered with indignation, because that Jesus had healed on the sabbath day, and said unto the people, There are six days in which men ought to work: in them therefore come and be healed, and not on the sabbath day. 15 The Lord then answered him, and said, Thou hypocrite, doth not each one of you on the sabbath loose his ox or his ass from the stall, and lead him away to watering? 16 And ought not this woman, being a daughter of Abraham, whom Satan hath bound, lo, these eighteen years, be loosed from this bond on the sabbath day? 17 And when he had said these things, all his adversaries were ashamed: and all the people rejoiced for all the glorious things that were done by him.

Luke 16:17King James Version (KJV)

17 And it is easier for heaven and earth to pass, than one tittle of the law to fail.

Luke 23:56King James Version (KJV)

56 And they returned, and prepared spices and ointments; and rested the sabbath day according to the commandment.

John 5:18King James Version (KJV)

18 Therefore the Jews sought the more to kill him, because he not only had broken the sabbath, but said also that God was his Father, making himself equal with God. (The two primary things – plus the 2nd commandment, which they completely removed, and other things too numerous to mention – that the Papacy, the many antichrists, have done and we have allowed ourselves and others to follow.)

John 9:14-16King James Version (KJV)

14 And it was the sabbath day when Jesus made the clay, and opened his eyes. 15 Then again the Pharisees also asked him how he had received his sight. He said unto them, He put clay upon mine eyes, and I washed, and do see. 16 Therefore said some of the Pharisees, This man is not of God, because he keepeth not the sabbath day. Others said, How can a man that is a sinner do such miracles? And there was a division among them.

(Jesus could have avoided many of His problems with the Jewish leaders if he just changed the Sabbath to Sunday and did his healing, picking wheat heads, etc. then – if He was going to change the Sabbath, that would have been the time to do it, but He did not, because He could not.)

John 14:15King James Version (KJV)

15 If ye love me, keep my commandments. (Since Jesus and the Father are one – the Ten Commandments are His.)

John 15:10King James Version (KJV)

10 If ye keep my commandments, ye shall abide in my love; even as I have kept my Father’s commandments, and abide in his love.

Acts 13:42-44King James Version (KJV)

42 And when the Jews were gone out of the synagogue, the Gentiles besought that these words might be preached to them the next sabbath. 43 Now when the congregation was broken up, many of the Jews and religious proselytes followed Paul and Barnabas: who, speaking to them, persuaded them to continue in the grace of God. 44 And the next sabbath day came almost the whole city together to hear the word of God.

(If the Sabbath had been changed for Gentiles, Paul would have told them to come back the next day, Sunday, the first day of the week, or told them to come the first day of the following week, but he didn’t, because it hadn’t been changed.)

1 Corinthians 14:33King James Version (KJV)

33 For God is not the author of confusion, but of peace, as in all churches of the saints.

Hebrews 4:4-10King James Version (KJV)

For he spake in a certain place of the seventh day on this wise, And God did rest the seventh day from all his works. And in this place again, If they shall enter into my rest. Seeing therefore it remaineth that some must enter therein, and they to whom it was first preached entered not in because of unbelief: Again, he limiteth a certain day, saying in David, To day, after so long a time; as it is said, To day if ye will hear his voice, harden not your hearts.

For if Jesus had given them rest, then would he not afterward have spoken of another day. (He is asking a question, not making a statement, and the answer is “no”, He did not speak of another day.)

There remaineth therefore a rest to the people of God. 10 For he that is entered into his rest, he also hath ceased from his own works, as God did from his.

2 Corinthians 5:21King James Version (KJV)

21 For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him.

(We are made the righteousness of God in Him, which sets us free from the law for our salvation, but Heaven forbid it should ever free us from the desire in loving obedience to keep His law, which He has told us to do – not for our salvation, but in obedience to Him who has given us everything – none of which we deserve.)

James 2:10King James Version (KJV)

10 For whosoever shall keep the whole law, and yet offend in one point, he is guilty of all.

James 4:17King James Version (KJV)

17 Therefore to him that knoweth to do good, and doeth it not, to him it is sin.

1 John 2:3-5New King James Version (NKJV) The Test of Knowing Him

Now by this we know that we know Him, if we keep His commandmentsHe who says, “I know Him,” and does not keep His commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in himBut whoever keeps His word, truly the love of God is perfected in him. By this we know that we are in Him.

1 John 3:22King James Version (KJV)

22 And whatsoever we ask, we receive of him, because we keep his commandments, and do those things that are pleasing in his sight.

Revelation 1:10King James Version (KJV)

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

The Seal of God is upon those who keep His law

Revelation 7:2-3King James Version (KJV)

And I saw another angel ascending from the east, having the seal of the living God: and he cried with a loud voice to the four angels, to whom it was given to hurt the earth and the sea, Saying, Hurt not the earth, neither the sea, nor the trees, till we have sealed the servants of our God in their foreheads. (Seal of God – Isaiah 8:16King James Version (KJV) 16 Bind up the testimony, seal the law among my disciples.)

The Great Commandments of Jesus had nothing to do with the Ten Commandments, which is clear because neither command has anything to do with the words spoken in the Ten Commandments. Jesus was quoting the law in Deuteronomy and Leviticus, not making up a new commandment to replace those spoken from the lips, and written in stone by God.

Matthew 22:36-40King James Version (KJV)

36 Master, which is the great commandment in the law? 37 Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. 38 This is the first and great commandment. 39 And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. 40 On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets. [Jesus was quoting these two scriptures of law, not the Ten Commandments – read them and you will see clearly.]

Deuteronomy 6:4-5King James Version (KJV)

Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God is one Lord: And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might.

Leviticus 19:18King James Version (KJV)

18 Thou shalt not avenge, nor bear any grudge against the children of thy people, but thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself: I am the Lord.

This is one Scripture used by many to deny God’s 4th commandment and exalt themselves above His Word to choose the day convenient to themselves. This scripture has nothing to do with the Sabbath, but with the day(s) on which people choose to fast (the religious leaders held certain days to be of greater importance than others for the purpose of fasting); Paul is telling them it doesn’t matter what day they choose to fast, or whether they fast at all:

Romans 14:3-6King James Version (KJV)

Let not him that eateth despise him that eateth not; and let not him which eateth not judge him that eateth: for God hath received him. Who art thou that judgest another man’s servant? to his own master he standeth or falleth. Yea, he shall be holden up: for God is able to make him stand. One man esteemeth one day above another: another esteemeth every day alike. Let every man be fully persuaded in his own mind. He that regardeth the day, regardeth it unto the Lord; and he that regardeth not the day, to the Lord he doth not regard it. He that eateth, eateth to the Lord, for he giveth God thanks; and he that eateth not, to the Lord he eateth not, and giveth God thanks.

These are the Words of Jesus to us specifically concerning the times we are now in, which we should diligently be studying and hearing. He tells us repeatedly that the time is at hand, and He is coming soon:

Revelation 12:17King James Version (KJV)

17 And the dragon was wroth with the woman, and went to make war with the remnant of her seed, which keep the commandments of God, and have the testimony of Jesus Christ.

Revelation 14:12King James Version (KJV)

Here is the patience of the saints: here are they that keep the commandments of God, and the faith of Jesus.

Revelation 14:9-10King James Version (KJV)

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:

Revelation 16:2King James Version (KJV)

And the first went, and poured out his vial upon the earth; and there fell a noisome and grievous sore upon the men which had the mark of the beast, and upon them which worshipped his image.

Revelation 22:10-11King James Version (KJV)

10 And he saith unto me, Seal not the sayings of the prophecy of this book: for the time is at hand. 11 He that is unjust, let him be unjust still: and he which is filthy, let him be filthy still: and he that is righteous, let him be righteous still: and he that is holy, let him be holy still.

Revelation 22:14-15King James Version (KJV)

14 Blessed are they that do his commandments, that they may have right to the tree of life, and may enter in through the gates into the city. 15 For without are dogs, and sorcerers, and whoremongers, and murderers, and idolaters, and whosoever loveth and maketh a lie.

The Reason Most Christians Do Not Keep God’s 4th Commandment – We are following the Beast:

What the Catholic Church (Beast/Antichrist) has to say about the Sabbath:

The Convert’s Catechism of Catholic Doctrine (1957): 50:

  1. Which is the Sabbath day?
    A. Saturday is the Sabbath day.
    Q. Why do we observe Sunday instead of Saturday?
    A. We observe Sunday instead of Saturday because the Catholic Church transferred the solemnity from Saturday to Sunday.

Chancellor Albert Smith for Cardinal of Baltimore Archdiocese, letter dated February 10, 1920:

If Protestants would follow the Bible, they should worship God on the Sabbath day which by God is Saturday. In keeping the Sunday, they are following a law of the Catholic Church.
Stephen Keenan, Catholic—Doctrinal Catechism 3rd Edition: 174:

Question: Have you any other way of proving the Church has power to institute festivals of precept?

Answer: Had she not such power, she could not have done that in which all modern religionists agree with her, she could not have substituted the observance of Sunday the 1st day of the week, for the observance of Saturday the 7th day, a change for which there is no Scriptural authority.

John A. O’Brien, The Faith of Millions: 472-473: “The third commandment is: ‘“Remember to keep holy the Sabbath day.”

(This is after the Catholic Church has rewritten the Ten Commandments to remove the 2nd commandment, rewrite the 3rd and split the 10th to create 10 again.)

Our Sunday Visitor (February 5, 1950):
Practically everything Protestants regard as essential or important they have received from the Catholic Church… The Protestant mind does not seem to realize that in accepting the Bible and observing the Sunday, in keeping Christmas and Easter, they are accepting the authority of the spokesman for the church, the Pope.
Louis Gaston Segur, Plain Talk about the Protestantism of To-Day (London: Thomas Richardson and Son, 1874): 213:

Thus the observance of Sunday by the Protestants is a homage they pay, in spite of themselves, to the authority of the (Catholic) Church.

The Catholic Mirror (September 23, 1893):

The Catholic Church, for over one thousand years before the existence of a Protestant, by virtue of her divine mission, changed the day from Saturday to Sunday…

The Adventists are the only body of Christians with the Bible as their teacher, who can find no warrant in its pages for the change of day from the seventh to the first. Hence their appellation, “Seventh-day Adventists.”

Catholic Priest T. Enright, CSSR, Kansas City, MO:

It was the holy Catholic Church that changed the day of rest from Saturday to Sunday, the 1st day of the week. And it not only compelled all to keep Sunday, but at the Council of Laodicea, AD 364, anathematized those who kept the Sabbath and urged all persons to labor on the 7th day under penalty of anathema.

Catholic Priest T. Enright, CSSR, lecture at Hartford, KS, Feb 18, 1884:

I have repeatedly offered $1000 to any one who can furnish any proof from the Bible that Sunday is the day we are bound to keep…The Bible says, “Remember the Sabbath day to keep it holy,” but the Catholic Church says, “No, keep the first day of the week,” and the whole world bows in obedience.

“But there is something still wanting to a full statement of the untenable position taken up by those sticklers for ‘Sabbath’ observance. What right, anyhow, have these gentlemen as Protestants to lay down the law as to what is to be done or not done on Sunday? Sunday is a Catholic institution, and its claims to observance can be defended only on Catholic principles. If the ‘Bible and the Bible only is the religion of Protestants,’ if ‘whatever is not read therein nor may be proved thereby’ has no claim on their faith or observance, what scrap of title can they show for all their dogmatic insistence as to the requirements of the Lord’s Day? From beginning to end of Scripture there is not a single passage that warrants the transfer of weekly public worship from the last day of the week to the first. Thus Sunday observance is an incongruous adjunct of the Protestant faith, utterly out of keeping with its fundamental principle, and strongly suggests a religion that suffered sadly from too much hurry in the making.
If any Sabbatarian wants to know the proper method of spending the Sunday, the Catholic Church is the natural source to apply to for information. Under her direction the Sunday supplanted the Jewish Sabbath, and she is, therefore, the best fitted to settle any dispute as to its claims.”

“Rome may well laugh at the inconsistencies that leave Protestantism at such a disadvantage. The watchword of the Reformation was, ‘The Bible and the Bible only,’ but there are many, very many, who do not stand to this watchword today. When Elijah stood on Carmel before the worshippers of Baal, he called, ‘if the Lord be God, follow Him; but if Baal, then follow him.’ 1 Kings 18:21. Surely that challenge needs to be repeated to Christendom today. If our guide is the Bible, then follow the Bible; but if Rome, then follow Rome.”

Source: The Catholic Press, Sydney, Australia, Saturday, August 25, 1900, quoted in The Bible Echo, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia, Vol. 15, No. 42, Oct. 15, 1900, page 674.

“Perhaps the boldest thing, the most revolutionary change the Church ever did, happened in the first century. The holy day, the Sabbath, was changed from Saturday to Sunday. ‘The Day of the Lord’ (dies Dominica) was chosen, not from any directions noted in the Scriptures, but from the Church’s sense of its own power. The day of resurrection, the day of Pentecost, fifty days later, came on the first day of the week. So this would be the new Sabbath. People who think that the Scriptures should be the sole authority, should logically become 7th Day Adventists, and keep Saturday holy.” [emphasis added]

Source: Sentinel, Pastor’s page, Saint Catherine Catholic Church, Algonac, Michigan, May 21, 1995.

http://amazingdiscoveries.org/S-deception-Sabbath_Sunday_Catholic_Church

Thomaston, Georgia
May 22, 1954

Pope Pius XII
Rome, Italy

Dear Sir;
Is the accusation true, that Protestants accuse you of? They say you changed the Seventh Day Sabbath to the, so-called, Christian Sunday:
Identical with the First Day of the week. If so, when did you make the change, and by what authority?

Yours very truely,
J. L. Day

THE CATHOLIC EXTENSION MAGAZINE
180 Wabash Ave., Chicago, Illinois
(Under the Blessing of Pope Pius XII)
Dear sir:
Regarding the change from the observance of the Jewish Sabbath to the Christian Sunday, I wish to draw your attention to the facts:
(1) That Protestants, who accept the Bible as the only rule of faith and religion, should by all means go back to the observance of the Sabbath. The fact that they do not, but on the contrary observe Sunday, stultifies [cause to appear foolish or absurd] them in the eyes of every thinking man.
(2) We Catholics do not accept the Bible as the only rule of faith. Besides the Bible we have the living Church, the authority of the Church, as a rule to guide us. We say, this Church instituted by Christ, to teach and guide men through life, has the right to change the Ceremonial laws of the Old Testament and hence, we accept her change of the Sabbath to Sunday. We frankly say, “yes, the Church made this change, made this law, as she made many other laws, for instance, the Friday Abstinence, the unmarried priesthood, the laws concerning mixed marriages, the regulation of Catholic marriages, and a thousand other laws.
(3) We also say that of all Protestants, the Seventh-day Adventists are the only group that reason correctly and are consistent with their teachings. It is always somewhat laughable to see the Protestant Churches, in pulpit and legislature, demand the observance of Sundays of which there is nothing in the Bible.
With best wishes
Peter R. Tramer, Editor

http://forerunnerchronicles.com/pope-demands-sunday-to-be-a-day-of-rest/

Pope demands Sunday to be a day of Rest

In a most revealing fashion on June 6, Pope Benedict XVI declared to an enthusiastic audience of 15,000 pilgrims in St Peters Square of Vatican City that “Sunday must be a day of rest for everyone”. Siting the necessity of spending time with family and with God as the basis for his blasphemous assertion for the need of reverencing this false day of worship, The Pope went on to say:

“By defending Sunday, one defends human freedom… Sunday is the day of the Lord and man, a day which everyone must be able to be free — free for the family and free for God”

No matter how emotionally invoking his sentiments about the family and God may be, they are 100% contradictory to the infallible Word of God. According to Genesis 2:1-2 and Exodus 20:8-11, The Sabbath, the Lord’s special day of rest, is the seventh day of the week and not the first.

And the last time I checked, the seventh day is Saturday my friends, and not Sunday. Jesus himself said in Mark 2:28 that he is “Lord of the Sabbath”. Which, once again means that, Saturday (which is the seventh day of the week) and not Sunday (which is the first day week) is the LORD’S DAY.

Towards Global Sunday Law

“The Pope is calling for the world to acknowledge and honor Sunday as a day of rest. Legislation that will force the world to worship and rest on Sunday would be the ideal solution. There are many voices clamoring to fulfill exactly such a goal, using the economy, the environment, and even the family as reasons to legislate Sunday rest.

Another standoff is on the horizon. Those who refuse to give up the Biblical seventh-day Sabbath will face trials as tough as the furnace faced by Shadrach and his companions. However, we can hold fast hope, knowing that the God who spared the Israelite men from the fiery furnace is coming again soon.

Here are some of the ways the world is moving towards Sunday legislation:”

https://amazingdiscoveries.org/S-deception-unity_Sunday_legislation_global_law

http://www.truthontheweb.org/nt10com.htm TEN COMMANDMENTS IN THE NEWTESTAMENT

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What an Abomination Christmas Has Become

christmas-2016

There are many Christians who celebrate Christmas, knowing full well that Christ was not born on December 25, but honoring it as the day we celebrate the birth of our Lord and Savior.

The first recorded date of Christmas being celebrated on December 25th was in 336, during the time of the Roman Emperor Constantine. In 350, Pope Julius I officially declared that the birth of Jesus would be celebrated on the 25th December. The Bible gave us no date for Jesus’ birthday (although the season indicated by scripture was definitely not December) for a reason – it was never meant to be celebrated – and now the falsely established day has become an abomination in the world. If Jesus wanted His birthday to be celebrated, He would have made it known to His apostles, and at least one of them would have written about it; but none of them did. The only day that was important to Jesus was that dreadful day he would die to pay the penalty for the sins of all those who would believe on Him, and His resurrection, when He would prove His divinity to the world. Because of its known pagan origin, Christmas was banned by the Puritans and its observance was illegal in Massachusetts between 1659 and 1681.

His “birthday” has been an abomination since long before I was a child, although there was a modicum of true Christmas spirit back then. Christmas has become all about lies, greed and despair: Santa Claus, elves, flying reindeer, Christmas trees, excessive shows of garish lights and big plastic creatures, spending way too much money on gifts (financially strapping some and putting others into a state of depression because they are financially unable to provide the prerequisite stuff that no one even knew they wanted until advertisers told them they did) – no wonder people are so opposed to saying “Merry Christmas”. How many people over the years have come away from Christmas sad, unfulfilled, physically and emotionally spent. That was never what our Lord wanted us to experience on account of Him – actually the exact opposite. That is probably why His birthday was never made known in the Bible.

We know the Catholic Church picked the date which corresponded with the last day of the popular pagan festival of Saturnalia, so that they might attract pagan converts and their money into the Church. When anything is established on deception, it must eventually be degraded into something vile and of no repute. Hence Santa replaced Christ, because it was never about Christ to begin with – it was about deception – and it became about nothing more than money and stuff, fistfights in the aisles of Walmart, overworked retail employees and UPS drivers, angry shoppers, sadness, despair, stress, the unfulfilled desire to fill our empty spiritual hole with things, so that we leave our family after Thanksgiving dinner to hit the stores first for the best stuff as dictated by the world.

I love Christmas because for me, it focuses on Christ – His love and great sacrifice in leaving the heavenly realm and taking on flesh to die and pay the penalty for my sins. I long ago departed from the madness and stress of Christmas shopping, parties and pagan pursuits for the more joyful and peaceful time of focusing on Him who gave Himself for me. I love sharing the time with family and friends, breaking bread and fellowship in His name – focusing on the true meaning of Christmas – the Light that came into the world, not to condemn the world but to save it – Immanuel, “God with us”.

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Understanding the Book of Revelation (the Unveiling or the Disclosure)

signs-of-the-times2

The Book of Revelation is one of the most exciting and amazing books in the Bible, especially in these end times when much of it is being fully revealed; however, too many Christians, including pastors, avoid it because they do not understand its symbolism. To be blessed by it, it must be read aloud, as we are told at the start: “Blessed is he who reads aloud the words of the prophecy, and blessed are those who hear, and who keep what is written therein; for the time is near.” Finally, we are told in Revelation 22:10 “Do not seal up the words of prophecy in this book, because the time is near.” We should not be sealing up the words of this prophecy by ignoring it because we think we cannot understand it. Our carnal minds cannot; but the Holy Spirit knows all things and will lead us in all understanding if we enter into studying it prayerfully, asking for His wisdom, knowledge and understanding. This is a summary of Revelation to the extent I have been led to understand it, which of course is dimly because all has not yet been revealed.

Chapters 1-3 is “The Revelation of Jesus Christ which God gave Him to show His servants—things which must shortly take place.” These chapters include the seven letters to the seven churches in existence at the time of John. 1:11 “I am the Alpha and the Omega, the First and the Last, and what you see, write in a book and send it to the seven churches which are in Asia: to Ephesus, to Smyrna, to Pergamos, to Thyatira, to Sardis, to Philadelphia, and to Laodicea.” (the seven golden lampstands with Christ at their midst). I believe these praises and admonitions of Jesus to the churches then likewise apply to churches today – not by specific name, but by the spirit exhibited by individual churches. I believe it is critical for all churches today to prayerfully read these letters, honestly evaluate themselves in light of them, and immediately begin making the necessary corrections to be worthy of receiving the letter addressed to the Church at Philadelphia. His letter He addressed to Laodicea would sadly apply to too many churches today.

Note of interest: the “throne of Satan” (Revelation 2:13), the Great Altar of Zeus at Pergamum (modern day Turkey) where Antipas was killed, is now located at the Pergamum Museum in Berlin, Germany. In the late 1800’s a German engineer excavated the acropolis of Pergamon and shipped it to Berlin. He rebuilt it and opened it as a museum in 1901. In 1930 the Pergamon Altar was rebuilt, bigger and more impressive. The Churches in Germany need to really look at themselves in light of this. According to Christianity Today: “The Protestant state church is fairly dead. The percent of committed Christians in Germany is maybe at 3 or 4 percent. Eighty percent belong to a church nominally, Protestant or Catholic. A mere 0.5 percent belong to a free evangelical church. The percent of people believing in life after death is fewer than 50 percent. It is what German philosopher, Ruediger Safranski, calls “cold religion,” very left-brained, very cognitive, focused on rituals and membership but not on personal commitment.” One has to wonder if there isn’t a direct correlation between the decline of Christianity in Germany and the housing and exhibiting of Satan’s Throne there.

Chapter 4 John is taken up where he sees God on His throne in Heaven, the twenty four elders, the four living creatures, the seven torches of fire, which are the seven spirits of God (the Holy Spirit representing the Spirit of the Lord, Wisdom, Understanding, Counsel, Power, Knowledge and Fear of the Lord).

Chapter 5 Jesus Christ “the Lamb” is identified as the only one worthy to open the scroll.

The next post will take us to Chapters 6, six of the seven seals, including the four horsemen.

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The Blessed Valley of Weeping

fog and light

The Valley of Weeping

I have been through the valley of weeping,
The valley of sorrow and pain;
But the ‘God of all comfort’ was with me,
At hand to uphold and sustain.

As the earth needs the clouds and the sunshine,
Our souls need both sorrow and joy;
So He places us oft in the furnace,
The dross from the gold to destroy.

When He leads through some valley of trouble,
His omnipotent hand we trace;
For the trials and sorrows He sends us,
Are part of His lessons in grace.

Oft we shrink from the purging and pruning,
Forgetting the Husbandman knows
That the deeper the cutting and paring,
The richer the cluster that grows.

Well He knows that affliction is needed;
He has a wise gracious purpose in view,
And in the dark valley He whispers,
Hereafter you will know what I do.”

As we travel through life’s shadowed valley,
Fresh springs of His love ever rise;
And we learn that our sorrows and losses,
Are blessings just sent in disguise.

So we’ll follow wherever He leadeth,
Let the path be dreary or bright;
For we’ve proved that our God can give comfort,
Our God can give songs in the night!
Author unknown

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Israel Unveiled: Magdala, Part 1

A must watch teaching for all Christians, but especially women.

Behold Israel

Watch the first part of Israel Unveiled: Magdala

Israel Unveiled: A journey through 11 different sites in the land of the Bible with Amir Tsarfati.

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